Why you should always try and shop with independent businesses

This blog post is all about independent businesses and how kick-ass they all are!

Why you should always try and shop with independent businesses

Yesterday I went to see a friend at work, her family is lucky enough to run a gallery (Kaya Gallery, Plymouth) and it really got me thinking how important small independent businesses are! Now I'm definitely not shaming people who shop in high street chains, I'm known to shop at a fair few but I'm starting to realize how hard the people running these small businesses work. I know quite a few people who have tried to or are currently trying to start making or selling something they're passionate about and I think they are amazing!

They're so committed to their product and the service that they provide, getting the best material so you can get the best out of it. These people are so passionate about what they do - it's what they're good at and what they love. In the same way I write blog post regardless of how many people I reach, they are willing to put so much work and effort into their passion regardless of how much they make every month. I want to use this blog post to talk about some of the small independent businesses that I have been involved with, and to get you to show them some support along with any other start ups you can find! 

This is my favorite collection currently being displayed at The Kaya Gallery on the Barbican in Plymouth. I am lucky enough to be great friends with the family who has recently taken ownership of the gallery. They are such passionate people who love and are so proud of what they do day in day out, they make the gallery such a warming and lovely place to be. The gallery promotes local, individual artists and gives them a place to become known and to be seen by the public.

Not only do they sell beautiful art work but they also have an amazing commitment to the environment! They have stopped using plastic bag and have replaced them with a recyclable paper, and they are now using second hand collected bubble wrap so plastic isn't being used unnecessarily. Along side this they are selling reusable cups that are also being sold in many other independent businesses across the barbican (these cups also give customers 10% off in many of the cafes and coffee shops). Such commitments to the surrounding area, local people and the environment is unfortunately not reflected in many large chain businesses however they are still more popular than these smaller ones.

This company is doing such great work for everyone involved and I feel really lucky to know them and watch their journey but they always need customers and promotion to move forward! There are so many reasons to shop at this business and so many others like it across the world - if you see a local gallery or any place selling local art; pop in, have a chat with them, you might walk away with something completely unexpected! 

This is my absolute fave collection by local Cornish jeweler Sea Daisy. The woman who runs this company hand makes this jewelry and is a talented uni student from Cornwall, and one of my closest friends. She devotes so much time and effort into making the best and cutest products for her customers and always does such an incredible job. She has been very successful across the South West selling her products in many pop up shops and galleries.

A lot of her other jewelry is inspired by the Sea (As reflected in the name of her company) incorporating shells and sea glass, the results are truly one of a kind. The best part about this particular independent businesses is that the products can be tailored to you or someone you love with a little communication with the seller herself, this means not only do they make incredible personal presents; they are also a great way to treat yourself ordering a product in a particular pattern or colour that suits you! How many more reasons do you need to pick a beautiful handmade piece of jewelry over a piece bought on the high street that nearly everyone else has. Not only are you getting an amazing product, you're giving someone the opportunity to carry on doing what they love and what they're good at!! So next time you see somewhere that sells handmade jewelry, give it a go! 

There are so many great ways to get involved with amazing independent businesses, whether it be writing about them and spreading the word or by trying to shop more with them! If you're not quite sure where to find them, try markets or possibly even local festivals (food, music, fashion whatever you're into). Try and look out for them when you're next out shopping, either online or out and about! 

Thanks for reading everyone - I hope you enjoyed it! xxx

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