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Introducing our new guest blogger – Ellie from Red Anchor Emporium

Ellie Red Anchor Emporium by Candee Photography

Ellie Red Anchor Emporium by Candee Photography

A very warm welcome to Ellie who will be our guest blogger for the next two weeks. Ellie is my partner in crime for Dr Sketchy’s Anti Art School Nottingham and is joining us to talk about the trials and tribulations of starting a new creative business. We asked Ellie 10 questions to get to know her a little bit better…
Who are you?
My name’s Ellie, aka Scarlett Daggers (my stage name), a handbag obsessed, button hoarding, rock n roll loving burlesque performer with a minor cake addiction who thinks crafts are cool. I’m just starting to set up my business, Red Anchor Emporium, at the moment so everything’s very new, very exciting and ever so slightly nerve wracking! I’m based in the outskirts of Derbyshire but still work part time in Nottingham.

What brought you to Nottingham?

I was born here, moved away when I was small and moved back when I was a bit bigger. I’ve just moved to Derbyshire but I’m not very far away!

What keeps you in Nottingham?
To steal the answer of one of the other guest bloggers, Rachel Parry, it’s home. Nottingham is a great base for me, it’s easy to travel up and down the country for shows but most importantly my family is here. I also co-organise Dr Sketchy Nottingham with Charlotte Thomson and we have such fun I couldn’t imagine giving that up by living anywhere else.

What makes you different to other creative people in Nottingham?

I have quite eclectic tastes and incorporate them into my creations wherever possible. Style from the 20s to the 60s, Rockabilly, Tiki and Burlesque influences feature heavily in my designs.

I love playing with textiles and pyrography (not at the same time) and a lot of my products are quite heavily detailed. Fabrics are printed on, embroidered and beaded, wooden handles are customised with pyrographed patterns and lettering. With my handbags I pay as much attention to the inside as the outside, something that I really pride myself on is attention to detail.

Charlotte from CN with her Red Anchor Emporium Bespoke Wedding Handbag (Photo by Candee Photography)

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Hopefully still loving every minute of what I’m doing! I see myself taking on more commissions and I’d really like to be able to get a stall at the rock and roll/vintage weekenders like Hemsby, Rhythm Riot and Rockabilly Rave, which are like gold dust. I want to have expanded my product range and learnt new skills, like working with resin. I’ve no doubt my long term goals will change as I go along. My first priority is to leave the day job and be crafty full time.

What do you wish you had more time for?
Baking and teaching myself things like website design……. but mainly baking.

What keeps you awake at night?
Usually my other half having dreams about zombies!

What do you think is Nottingham’s best kept secret?

Ooh a few places. I love Pike’s Haberdashery and Sharma’s fabric stalls in Victoria Centre market. As a chronic hoarder of fabric and trimmings I go there a lot!

Shops like Kathleen & Lily’s (who are our next Guest Bloggers incidentally! -Charlotte) and Daphne’s Handbag on Mansfield Road, and Frock just around the corner on Forest Road, are full of beautiful clothes, jewellery and vintage bits and pieces. Unfortunately my very favourite place on Mansfield Road has not survived, RIP Dotty’s Cafe.

Also Page 45, just off Market Square, which is a wonderful comic shop with a mind boggling range that will keep you in there for hours.

What would you like to see more of in Nottingham?
I’d like to see more independent shops. It’s such a shame that places like Dotty’s and Selectadisc, which was a Nottingham legend, to name just two, have had to close. I’d love it if Nottingham had an alternative retail centre like the Forum in Sheffield and Afflecks Palace in Manchester.

What Big Thing are you currently working on?
I’m sewing like mad to stock up my Folksy shop and prepare for this year’s craft fairs. Hopefully I’ll be attending as many as possible with my partner in crime Charlotte Thomson. We’re also promoting the pants off our next Dr Sketchy Nottingham event which will be on Saturday 12th February at the Glee Club on Castle Wharf, Canal Street (shameless plug).

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