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We’re delighted to start our series of interviews with sisters Sheryl and Gillian who recently launched Curated Pieces, an ethically-minded home decor and lifestyle boutique that we love!
This online boutique freshly launched in September 2020: https://curatedpieces.com/
Can you introduce yourselves and tell us what you did before launching Curated Pieces?
Sheryl: I’ve been Head of Design/Creative Director at a number of companies working on creating new branded products with clients such as MTV, O2, ACCA, and Orange.
I’ve also previously been an exhibiting artist at a couple of exhibitions in the UK and US in my early twenties, with studies focused on plants and nature.
Gillian: I’ve been in IT for many years, holding senior roles managing and defining IT implementations for companies including Wickes, DHL, and Salesforce.
How did the idea of creating Curated Pieces start and how do you share the roles in the company between the two of you?
Sheryl: We often have little telepathic moments over the years, and Gill and I started talking and realised that we both wanted to launch a business with purpose. We then realised that many of our ideas were so similar. We’re quite like twins even though there is a five-year difference, we share a lot of the same interests, such as creativity, plants and nature, and our views on how we impact on the environment, as well as home decor. I work on the creative direction, brand, and design as well as positioning, we share product and business development as well as partnerships.
Gillian: Yes, I had wanted to launch my own business and I had all these ideas and it felt so in tune with what Sheryl was thinking too. So it was kismet in a way. We decided that we wanted to launch a different type of sustainable and ethically-minded boutique with exclusives and a socially responsible ethos. I work on operations, logistics, marketing, and building out our business infrastructure.
Can you tell us a bit more about the lovely homeware collection you have launched to highlight vulnerable and critically endangered species of birds?
Sheryl: I’d recently got back into sketching quite heavily, fuelled by a sabbatical, then lockdown, and had an increased awareness of birds popping into my frame of existence. I got my entire family involved in ‘Sketching Sunday’s’ too at some point.
I felt after producing so many sketch studies on birds and learning more about different species of birds that I wanted to do something meaningful with my art and reached out to the charity BirdLife International to see how my art could be used to really help drive awareness about birds that might go extinct as well as raising funds for the amazing conservation work that they do. They really stood out to me as I love the work that they do globally and at grassroots level with communities.
Gillian: We’ve really enjoyed working with Sue at BirdLife International on this project.
You have collaborated with artist and illustrator Scarlett J Hanley to create your Home Grown collection, can you tell us a bit more about the collaboration?
Sheryl: Yes, we love Scarlett and her wonderful, watercolour, illustration style. We were captivated by it and thought it would be great to collaborate with her on one of our first collections. We’ve started with prints that people are loving and will continue to extend the collection over the next couple of months. The great thing about Scarlett is also her interest in sustainability and how she explores this is her own workflow.
Gillian: We met her at a well known home interior exhibition and instantly knew we’d love to work with her and see how she could bring life to a collection with us. We’ve enjoyed bringing the Home Grown collection to market.
The Home Grown Collection A3 Prints – Exclusive to Curated Pieces
Are you open to new collaborations?
Sheryl: We always love meeting different creative minds and launching new partnerships. If anyone wants to collaborate with us please get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.
What’s been the highlight so far since you’ve launched your online shop?
Gillian: Really getting our presence out there and launching our business online has been a highlight. It was such a journey but I am glad we’re live now.
Sheryl: Definitely the launch of the collection with the charity BirdLife International. I am looking forward to the awareness it will raise as well as seeing how it will resonate with the wider public. My second highlight is Scarlett’s ‘Pretty Radishing’ getting featured in the Guardian’s Affordable Art section in October in under a month of us launching. We were so happy for Scarlett and Curated Pieces.
We’re so glad you’ve been using Press Loft to generate press for your newly launched products. Do you have a favourite piece of press coverage you have generated so far via Press Loft?
Sheryl: Press Loft is great for us. I’ve loved seeing all the coverage we’re getting. The Guardian coverage for sure was a favourite, as well as The BirdLife Collection Hummingbird plate getting featured in Living Edge Magazine.
Gillian: We love Press Loft! Definitely the coverage we mentioned in the Guardian’s Affordable Art section for ‘Pretty Radishing’ from our Home Grown collection.
What’s next for you and your brand?
Sheryl: Collection expansion for existing BirdLife and Home Grown collections as well as new sustainable and ethical partnerships. We’re super excited about the year ahead!
Gillian: Expanding the sustainable and ethical product ranges as well as planning new marketing activity! It’s all go!