Stonehaven textile brand encourages individuals to get crafty with new online workshops

A Stonehaven textile brand has expanded its offering and launched a series of online workshops that encourage others to develop their creative skills and reap the benefits of learning a craft.

Thursday, 11th March 2021, 7:00 am
Mhairi Allan in her studio

Launched in 2018, Paper Houses Design is a textile and homeware design business with a focus on sustainability.

Owner Mhairi Allan specialises in creating bold and stylish patterns on every day, sustainable products that are made to last. Mhairi takes a transparent approach to digital textile design by sharing behind-the-scenes footage of how her products are made through Instagram and blog posts.

Prior to COVID-19, Mhairi had successfully applied to exhibit her work at events such as the Craft Scotland Summer Show, which she had hoped would help fund her second collection. However, due to the impact of the pandemic, she had to adapt her business model and worked with Business Gateway to access the DigitalBoost service to develop her website.

Mhairi said: “Through Business Gateway, I was able to access the DigitalBoost services and take a HealthCheck to see where I could improve my online presence. Following this, I accessed webinars and other resources which gave me the confidence to launch the workshops. Since then, I’ve been able to reach nine people through the delivery of two workshops and have raised £46 for The Make Bank. Our next live workshop is on March 28 and I really hope to engage new customers through a workshop Facebook group.

“Business Gateway has pushed me out of my comfort zone, and the team has been a pillar of support during a turbulent time.

"Sometimes when you work for yourself, you really need some people around you to tell you like it is, and Business Gateway has been that for me. My adviser Aisha signposted me to various resources and funding opportunities and really ensured I made it through the challenges of the past year.”

Aisha Kasim, business adviser, Business Gateway, said: “COVID-19 presented Mhairi with many challenges, but by adapting her business model and expanding her offering, she has turned these difficulties into a true success story.”

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