The beginning of Create Gift Love (formerly Made Lovingly Made)
To celebrate International Women's Day we wanted to share Emily's story of how her dream became a reality....it all started with a red sofa!
Emily Carr, along with husband Tony, started Create Gift Love or what we used be known as 'Made Lovingly Made' in 2012. It is difficult to say the exact date of when Create Gift Love began but there are two key moments that stand out.
It was Christmas 2011 and Emily decided to make handmade gifts for all of her family and friends. The ladies received scented candles and bath salts, while the men received wooden cufflinks. The cufflinks were a huge hit and unbeknown to Emily back then, would go on to be Made Lovingly Made's first ever product.
A few months later, Emily and Tony bought a beautiful red velvet sofa at an auction, costing them a grand total of £90. The purchase was a massive impulse buy. Emily didn't measure it beforehand and even though she absolutely loved it, it was too big for the tiny cottage they lived in and so unfortunately the sofa had to go.
Turns out, the sofa was an antique and they were able to sell it for 10 x the price. Winner! Even though Emily and Tony had just got engaged the money was actually used to start up Create Gift Love. Tony saw the potential in the business (and in Emily) and encouraged her to go for it. For this Emily is forever grateful.
This was the humble beginning of Create Gift Love. A very basic website was created and a good friend of theirs offered to list the cufflinks on his website Pushka Knobs, they know how to do cupboard knobs. They then applied to be included on Not on the High Street and the rest is history as they say.
Making cufflinks on the kitchen table, to a dedicated workspace in the shed has taken a lot of hard work, worry and sanding to get Create Gift Love off the ground. However, it was definitely worth the blood, sweat and tears three years down the line. Create Gift Love now operates from a much bigger premises and from just Emily, there is now a team of seven full time members of staff. They are also one of only 11 companies to be on the 'Top Seller List' on Not on the High Street.
Obviously before Create Gift Love, Emily had a job and a pre-wood life, she is in fact a qualified pharmacist! There is no feasible connection between what she does now and what she trained for five years to be. Her parents were more than a little concerned when Emily announced at the age of 28 that she would leave her career in pharmacy to make things out of wood. They feared she was having some sort of crisis but now three years down the line Emily's parents are her biggest fans. They regularly call with ideas and want to know all the latest wood news, affectionately referring to Emily as ‘Woody’!
That’s the beauty of life and the unknown, as perfectly as you plan your future, life has other plans and Emily couldn't be happier.