Shopping small and local in Welsh gift shops has never been more important. If we don’t shop local then it will be buy buy local. We are grateful to our hard working stockist around Wales so wanted to highlight a few and find out a bit more about them. We sent a few questions out to the owners of Welsh gift shops to find out more about the people and shops we supply.
First up, Benedict at The Little Welsh Dresser in Llandeilo, one of our very first stockists. You can find them at thelittlewelshdresser.com
When did you open your shop? I opened back in September 2014, that’s over 6 years ago now!
What made you decide you wanted to own a Welsh gift shop? I’d always had a desire to open a business in the premises as they’ve been owned by my family since 1904 – when I was a teenager I wanted it to be a pub!
What is your favourite item in your shop at the moment? It’s a difficult one this, having control over the items I sell here means that I only stock items that I love! I’d have to say Annie Sloan Chalk Paint overall, it’s the main reason people come to the shop and ultimately I was using the paint as a ‘hobby’ before opening the shop, it makes work so much fun painting furniture and giving advice to customers on how to paint their own furniture!
Who would your dream celebrity customer be and why? Hmm another tricky one, I’m not someone that follows people that most would regard as celebrities – that said we’ve had quite a few Welsh rugby players come to the shop and that always makes me smile. I’d love Annie Sloan to come and visit the shop, she closely follows all her stockists and from all the photos of the shop she’s seen she’d probably feel like she’s been here already, but it would be great to have her here!
What is the funniest thing that has ever happened in your shop? Ha! Well following on from you asking about celebrities, I did have Eva Longoria visit the shop – she was lovely, but I had no idea who she was! She was asking me to translate some Welsh words and I was aware she was recording it, but didn’t think much of it. It was only when she posted it on social media and some of my friends saw it that I found out!
Next up is Angharad at Adra in Caernarfon. You can find her at adrahome.com
When did you open your shop? Adra was founded in 2007 and for the first six years retailed exclusively online via our website adrahome.com. I was running the business from my own home and by 2013 we HAD to find new premises as the stock was well and truly taking over the house! As luck would have it, an office, unit and shop became available in Parc Glynllifon, half a mile away from my home!
What made you decide you wanted to own a Welsh gift shop? As an online retailer, I craved to see Adra’s lovely goods displayed for all to see, touch and smell. It was also the natural next expansion for the business. The shop at Parc Glynllifon is the mansion estate’s former saw mill and a listed building – I love its character and history.
What is your favourite item in your shop at the moment? It’s Christmas – my favourite time of the year and definitely the time where the shop looks at its best. The shelves are bursting with all kinds of goodies, and as I only sell products that I’ve fallen in love with myself – choosing one favourite item is quite an impossible task!
Who would your dream celebrity customer be and why? We once had an order addressed and billed to Buckingham Palace… not at all my ‘dream celebrity’, but quite a thrill nevertheless!
What is the funniest thing that has ever happened in your shop? On more than one occasion, we have found half-drunk cups of tea left ‘on display’. The staff are more careful where they leave them now!
And last but not least it’s Louise at Artyzans gallery in Pontardulais, our nearest stockist and one of our bespoke customer with her very own range. You can find her at www.artyzans.gallery
When did you open your shop? Shop opened November 18
What made you decide you wanted to own a Welsh gift shop? I wanted a place to sell my jewellery, so that I could meet people for commissions
What is your favourite item in your shop at the moment? The plants are my favourite items in the shop at the moment.
What is the funniest thing that has ever happened in your shop? Funniest is when people get caught up at the traffic lights and look over and see the shop for the first time, their faces make me laugh especially when their jaws drop.
Thank you to everyone who took part. We loved reading your replies and love your celebrity customers!
Which Welsh gift shop will you be visiting this weekend? Have a look at our stockist map for your nearest