Business Name: Edward & Vintage
Industry: Confectionery & vintage home ware
Telephone: 01335 390 537
Tucked away in the little village of Tissington, Derbyshire, you will find a cottage that goes back in time to the 1940’s selling over 300 traditional sweets and vintage home ware. With the help of NBV’s business support, David Walker (proprietor) has gone from strength to strength and has been nominated as one of the UK’s Best Vintage Shops by Homes and Antiques Magazine.
David has kindly answered some questions which tell us a tale of turning a childhood dream into a profitable and enjoyable way of life.
Why did you decide to go out on your own?
I really wanted to explore a dream that just would not go away! I looked at the costing and decided it was worth taking a calculated risk.
How would you describe Edward and Vintage?
Edward and Vintage is a blend of Vintage Home-ware and traditional chocolates, sweets and hand-made fudge set in a small village in the Peak District.
Who’s involved in the business?
When I opened Edward and Vintage it was just me, thankfully the business has grown very quickly and now employs 2 part time staff alongside myself.
Where did you get the idea from?
I wanted to recreate a picture I had carried from my childhood of a magical shop where there was every treat you could ever dream of. There are many traditional sweets shops out there at the moment, but with Edward and Vintage, I wanted you to really feel that time had stood still the moment you walk through the door, and recreate those wonderful memories from various childhood generations.
What did you have to do to get the business going?
I was not in a position to undertake a bank loan and after much market research and costing out the venture; I knew I would need to sell my home to fund the business….not something to be done lightly or for the faint hearted!
What do you hope to achieve with your business?
My goal with Edward and Vintage is to create a brand that is recognized as a symbol of quality and deliciousness! I do not want to create a chain, but hope that the internet sales will continue to market the brand whilst the shop becomes its own little Mecca for sweet lovers everywhere. As one customer said: “there is only one Graceland and Edward and Vintage is worth the same pilgrimage!”
What lessons have you learned so far?
Start on a small scale, and let the customers assist its development; don’t be afraid to listen to your customer feedback. It’s the customer who will make your business a success.
What’s your biggest challenge?
Being everything the business needs and balancing your growth with demand.
What did you enjoy most about it?
The challenge that never stops!
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve had?
Never stop your market research, look for every opportunity to promote the business and as my NBV adviser said: “starting a business is easy maintaining its growth is when the work begins!”
What would you say to others wondering whether to start their own business?
Do your research and then do more and if you still think it’s a good idea follow your heart and bank balance!