Interview: Evelyn Mosley
Fox & Spindle is based in Margate. Their shop is unique, different and full of independent stock. I was lucky enough to have an interview with Eve about Fox & Spindle.
Tell us a little bit about your background.
I have always been interested in art, making and all things creative, I studied Art in Brighton and Bath Spa specialising in Sculpture.
Describe your shop in three words.
Unusual, fun, independent.
I adore your business. What made you decide to set up Fox & Spindle?
I was working as a buyer for several years (making on the side, generally sewing) and wanting to be my own boss decided that I could combine my skills to discover if I could create something that other people would also like. Bored of high-street shops and a fan of artists and makers it seemed the ideal path to take.
Why did you call your shop Fox & Spindle?
I went through lists and lists of ideas for names until my friend came up with this. I liked the fact that it sounded like a pub! it also combines my love for ginger animals and the relation spindle has to craft.
What is the reason behind the logo and the design?
It was something simple but we are currently looking at a redesign that will convey our identity more accurately.
How has your creative process changed since the start?
I was making a lot more for the shop myself initially but time constraints have reduced this down unfortunately but I hope to rectify this again as its great to have lines exclusive to the shop and also do something that I really enjoy.
How did you manage to learn and hone your craft?
My mother was a dress maker (she actually makes our very popular knitted animals) and always encouraged me to make things, she is a good critic! I think making 3D things has always interested me the most and I enjoy working out how to create patterns and shapes so am constantly developing designs seeking tips along the way. There are so many places to seek advice these days and so many people willing to share, its great.
Have you always wanted to own your own little shop?
I think that there is a certain romance attached to having a shop. I have always wanted to curate and in a way I am doing that here, I have always wanted to be successful and have been driven to work hard.
What do you sell in your shop?
I sell prints, clothing, accessories, homewares and cards. Perfect presents really or things that can hopefully lift someones mood. Essentially I look for things that aren't stocked all over the place, its really important to be different and to create something unique.
Why has social media been an important platform for you to use?
Social media is massively important especially now with the website its essential for creating awareness. Its also an opportunity to show the items in the shop in a different setting and draw attention to them.
Who inspires your shop?
The people I buy from and my customers. I also have shops that I love including the Here Shop and Gallery in Bristol Stokes Croft.
Do you have any favourite pieces of work that you adore at the moment from your shop?
A gold octopus print by Arbitrary Matter - I love it.
Is it important to stock independent artists?
Yes it is, I stock independent artists work and also small businesses. Since I have been going I have seen illustrators staring up and growing into businesses with several staff which is great to see and inspiring.
What do we hope to see in this up and coming year for your Facebook page, Instagram and your work?
Better pictures ;) I hope to do more giveaways and really seek to define what we are about more clearly for people to see.
What are you currently working on?
I am currently working on the website, I also find Instagram and twitter favourable at the moment.
What’s your typical working day?
My typical working day varies a lot. Changing displays, putting out new stock, researching new stock, admin, cleaning and of course serving my lovely customers. No day is the same that is for sure.
What’s been the biggest struggle in getting your business off the ground?
Managing an unsteady cash flow and dealing with uncertainties.
Tell us the most important business lesson you've learnt.
To be more confident with my decisions.
Do you have any exciting plans for this year?
Yes, we have lots in the pipeline, gallery space to showcase our artists and a refurb are on the list. We also seek to increase our clothing section and online presence.
What are your career plans with your shop?
To grow our brand and make a success of it.
What advice would you give to people looking to define their own style?
Go with what you like, what makes you happy and catches your eye and don't be afraid to stand out.
Do you have any advice for anyone starting their own shop?
Be prepared for a lot of hard work and sacrifices.
What’s next for Fox & Spindle?
Onwards and upwards - is that vague? I am interested in developing and moving in any direction we need to take.
What's the best piece of creative advice you've ever been given?
Don't always bury your head in galleries but seek inspiration from your environment - soak it up.
Please follow their lovely Facebook page ‘https://www.facebook.com/foxandspindle’. They are always posting wonderful photographs about new products in their shop. They also have an Instagram and website.