Art school graduates Rachael Sommerville and Cara Holsgrove have found the perfect outlet for their creative skills.
Since teaming up at Edinburgh College of Art, where they both qualified as illustrators, the pair have established their own business specialising in bespoke wedding stationery, illustrated greetings cards and other paper goods.
By selling at craft fairs and markets and promoting their products on social media they were able to launch an online platform before opening their own shop, Paper Parade, earlier this year.
“We wanted to find a creative outlet for our skills that would allow us to continue painting and drawing. Instead of doing it for another company we thought the best way was to do our own thing,” says Cara.
“Selling at craft fairs allowed us to see what was popular. There has to be an audience for what you are doing so we had to go with what people were most interested in. The feedback was that people liked our design because it was different from what they could find in shops.”
The opening of their retail space and studio in Morningside means Cara and Rachael can now sit down with customers and discuss their individual requirements to the finest detail. Whether ordering invitations for a party or stationery for a wedding, clients seem to enjoy the personal touch and being able to brand their own event.
Cara added: “We love having the shop and being in the middle of community where we can meet our customers and other people doing similar things. We are big on collaboration and like doing events with other small businesses, like florists or cake makers. You find everyone is happy to help and share their insights. It is a really nice community.”
Paper Parade, 40 Comiston Road, 0131-629 4161, paper-parade.co.uk. Open: Tues-Sat,10am–5pm.