You know me and flowers, I am just a bit potty. I love to grow them, pick them, style them, give them , smell them – eat them! Ahem! Yeah, all a bit in love with blooms. The Monet quote ‘I must have flowers, always and always’ is quite apt for me.
These wooden ‘flowers’ are a neat take on fresh blooms. What a perfect way to send a bunch of tulips to a long distant friend or relative, with a personalised tag too. Designed and made by sisters Jennifer and Stacey who go by the name of We are Scamp. I recently caught up them to find out more…
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about what you do?
Scamp was born nearly 5 years ago. It’s a family affair consisting of myself (Jennifer) and my younger sister Stacey. We have 5 kids between us ranging in ages between 3 and 9. When our first children were born we both found it difficult to find bright and original products that weren’t based on the typical blue for boys and pink for girls ideology so we felt there was room for someone who created that was trying to steer away from those kinds of products. Neither of us has formal training in the creative industry but both have enjoyed being crafty as children and continue to be with our own. We have a keen eye for good design and love bright colours and bold patterns.
The Scamp studios now produce a collection of hand screen printed products including babywear and super soft baby blankets. We most recently have delved into the world of laser cutting which has really enabled our range to expand and allowed us to create a range of lovely personalised wooden products (including mobiles, bookmarks, flowers and room plaques) for all generations of the family. Everything sold by Scamp is designed and created by us and all of it is made in the UK.
What is your inspiration behind We are scamp?
Our strapline is Bright Colours, Bold Designs, Fun Times which pretty much sums up what inspires us!
You are sisters, what is it like working closely with a family member?
Working together with Stacey has been a really good experience. There is obviously the odd disagreement but generally we work very well together with lots of complementing skills. There is a level of honesty that you can have with a sibling that can sometimes be difficult with a work colleague! We both have very similar tastes so coming up with new designs or new products is very collaborative and we value each others opinions so trust what the other one thinks. There is also the matter of having children so a total understanding about hours that can be worked and fitting everything in around kids, schools, appointments and holidays is there. It does mean that school holidays can often be spent between London and Leeds (where we both live) so we can combine Scamp meetings with cousin playing (and the odd photo shoot too!)
What is a typical working day for you?
My day starts around 7.15 when I’m woken by the sounds of my kids playing in their bedroom. I love secretly listening in to their conversations before I walk in to get them ready for the day.
After school drop offs it’s usually back to my little studio to answer emails then it could be anything from thinking about new products, chatting to Stacey about upcoming projects, doing the accounts, working on a bit of a marketing plan and sorting out social media for the next week, chatting to others about possible collaborations, photography of products, updating our website, meeting up with current stockists to speak about future plans or figuring out what we will be doing at our next trade show. I usually have forgotten to eat lunch until about 1.30 so it’s a quick run down to the kitchen and a hurried soup or salad then it seems no time before I have to stop my afternoon tasks and pick the kids up from school. My day ends more often than not later than in should as I tend to have to catch up on a few things once Ava and Jonah are in bed. A lot is squeezed into a day!
What do you love most about what you do?
My favourite thing about the job – now that’s a tricky one! I love seeing a design or an idea I’ve come up with become a finished product, and more importantly sell well. I enjoy taking Scamp out and about too – meeting customers face to face and hearing what they think about our products is really good and valuable.
You provide a service where customers can customise your products, what has been the strangest request?
I can’t quite remember the specific wording but the ones where a young child has ‘written’ what they would like to appear on a bookmark to a favourite teacher are the sweetest – not necessarily grammatically correct but very heart felt! We actually haven’t really had any particularly strange requests … probably this is a good thing!
Where do you go for style and inspiration?
Pinterest is always a great starting point for style and inspiration and I do love interiors/lifestyle magazines when I have a moment to read them. Oh Comely, Living etc and Kinfolk are ones I’d pick up when I have time (usually on a train journey somewhere!) I quite often have a wander around some blogs (often child or craft/design/interiors related) as well. But, my favourite place for inspiration has now got to be Instagram – I love the visualness of it and often see trends or styles that can spark an idea off for something for Scamp. Some of the blogs I like are: Apartmenttherapy, Designsponge, Babyccinokids , Whatkatiedoes. Away from the online world I do love to spend the odd day wandering around the galleries and streets of London which have endless opportunities for inspiration as well.
If you were stranded in the wilds what item would you want with you to survive?
This is a bit like desert island discs! An item I don’t think I could survive without would be reading material … so, if I could get a solar powered kindle charged up with many, many books I’d love that!
Where would you like to be in ten years?
I’ll be a mum to two late teenagers in ten years (scary thought!) so I’d like to think I’ll be supporting them in whatever their post school plans are, still working for myself and creating more Scamp plans and generally living a happy and healthy life with my family.
Thank you Jennifer, I love your work, and the ‘bunches’ of flowers are such a sweet idea! We are Scamp are offering one Littlegreenshed reader a chance to win a bunch of flowers, customised in a way you like. All you need to do is complete the usual widget below. Winner will be announced on Friday 22nd May. Good luck!