Archive | June, 2013

What’s in a name?…

28 Jun

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Using good old fashioned pen and paper and a some brain cells..Thinking up my business name has been one of the most enjoyable tasks I’ve done since starting up my business!

Many of us have spent hours thinking about what we’d call our dream business if it ever came to fruition or come up with the ‘perfect’ business name but with no idea what the business would really do..

Well, I started out knowing I wanted to sell vintage advertising. It was probably going to be mostly French, initially at least, and I knew the era I loved most, and had most stock from, was the 1920s art deco period. I needed a name that captured the feel of my products, indicating what I would sell while also giving me scope for future expansion of my product line.

I did loads of brainstorming and doodling in the back of my colourful leather notepads (turquoise being the current favourite). I initally started off with the name ‘Vintage Prints’ because that’s what I sold. Not very imaginative but it was a starting point and enabled me to at least put an identifiable business name on the pictures I was selling.

Then a number of people suggested using my own name as my business name. I didn’t think this would work as I had a clear idea of the brand I was wanting to create and that wasn’t going to be based on me personally…plus my name is a bit too long!

I love typography, old letterpress letters, faded ink and antique paper and thought that the word ‘Press’ perfectly described the adverts from old press magazines I was selling.

The penultimate name I came up with was actually ‘The Vintage Press’ but, luckily I now think, there is already a swanky, art-nouveau style restaurant in California with this name who also owned the domain.

The next evening while writing new lists of all the key words which represented what I wanted to do, I replaced ‘Vintage’ with ‘Deco’ and realised I had found my name. 

Amazingly no-one else registered it and the domain for both .co.uk and .com was available.  I snapped them up!

Overall it took me around 4 months to come up with ‘The Deco Press’. And I LOVE it!

I’d love to know the process you used to come up with your business name and if you are still happy with it later down the line…

 

 

 

Coming up: Registering and hosting a new business domain name

 

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Edinburgh International Film Festival – You can watch films there..

20 Jun

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The 67th Edinburgh International Film Festival opened yesterday and runs until 30th June. I’ve visited the Festival in a work capacity – it was particularly hard watching my 4th great film of the day knowing I then had to ‘network’ in the gorgeous bars and restaurants of this ‘dream in masonry and living rock’ (poetic observation from Robert Louis Stevenson..)

Anyway, I managed ok and am this year intrigued by two very different directors showing there.

With more of a high art vibe, there will be a retrospective of the work of French Director Jean Grémillon who made many well regarded films from the 1920s through to the 1960s and during the time when Europe was in turmoil and under German occupation. His work has strong links to the avant garde, art and music and should be interesting to watch knowing the historical context.

In a different vein, the new film “Frances Ha” by one of my favourite directors, Noah Baumbach will have its UK premiere tomorrow. Baumbach of The Squid and the Whale fame has again set this film in New York, and also Paris, and a film with these cities as a backdrop has got to be worth a watch.

To anyone currently smoozing up in Edinburgh and enjoying the films..I wish I was there!

 

 

Social Responsibility in small business…Who’s the winner?

14 Jun

 

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I’ve always worked in the Private Sector – It just happened that way. I won’t lie – The work was pretty interesting, the people (mostly) friendly and the parties could be great. Really though, the work didn’t leave me with a sense of having done something worthwhile with my working day. 

When I set up my own business I wanted to directly help people in some way. Now, of course I know that selling vintage art isn’t going to save the world or save anyone from poverty, but I can use it to make a big difference in a little way… This is one of the principles underlying The Deco Press and I hope do this through my involvement with a company called Lend With Care. 

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Lendwithcare.org are an online organisation and part of the charity Care International. Via the website you can choose to lend any amount of money to a small business owner in a number of different developing countries including Cambodia, Ecuador and Benin. They may need the money to expand their stock or take on seasonal help. Any number of people can contribute to the same person until they reach their requested loan amount. They then work to repay the loan back to you as they make money in their business. Once they have repaid the loan you can re-lend it to another entrepreneur and so the positive cycle continues.

I specifically look to lend money to businesses run by women and my aim is to loan out 10% of the profit generated from running The Deco Press to Lend With Care, enabling my small business to help other small businesses. Everyone’s a winner baby.

Is it really a good idea? Is it really enough? I don’t know, but at least it’s a start.

 

Coming up: What’s in a name?..

 

A chance to set up a ‘pop-up’ shop..

7 Jun

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I’ve been really busy over the last few weeks preparing for the opening of my very first Deco Press ‘pop up’ shop inside the brand new Handpicked Hall in Leeds city centre! 

It’s set to be an eclectic mix of local retailers selling art, food, vintage and fashion inside the beautiful Victorian Grand Arcade, and I can’t wait to be part of a venture supporting and promoting small, local, creative businesses.

The newly refurbished space is light and bright and packed with original Victorian features alongside a brand new pitched glass roof. It has had many incarnations since the Arcade was first built in 1897. My favourite being when it was The Pleasure Rooms and host to seminal club nights such as Back to Basics!.. In fact I might have to do another post on a now ‘vintage’ form of advertising art – my collection of Back to Basics club flyers.. but that’s one for another day!

Handpicked Hall opens on Friday 14th June when I’ll have a space on the Art floor and I’ll also be there on Saturday 22nd June with further dates to follow, so come on down and say hello!

 

 

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