A creative lifestyle brand, which focuses on seasonal wellbeing, has come into bloom after receiving start-up support from the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce.
Rhianydd Jones, from Coventry, has launched online retailer Seasonal Soul, which aims to encourage customers to embrace a more balanced lifestyle. The start-up combines two of Rhianydd’s main interests – creativity and wellbeing – and was inspired by her personal journey to live more seasonally.
Seasonal Soul has established several branches to the business, including blogging and social media. In June, a new online shop was launched consisting of a collection of home furnishings, accessories and gifts, with prints and fabrics all designed by Rhianydd, and printed and manufactured in the UK.
Rhianydd, who previously held positions within business development at leading retailer George, said setting up her own business was not only a professional journey but also a personal one.
“I think everyone at some stage in life experiences a turning point where a life-changing decision needs to be made,” she said.
“Despite having a good job, I was craving more creativity and a better work-life balance so the time was right to 'take back the reigns and do what I really wanted to do – own my own business.”
The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber supported Rhianydd by providing guidance with business planning, forecasting and suggesting local business leads – including one of its previous start-up clients, Andy Mosely, of Ravon Creative Media, who assisted with professional photography for the Seasonal Soul website.
Rhianydd said: “Concise yet informal meetings with the Chamber, discussing planning tools and opportunities, has really contributed towards Seasonal Soul’s success to date.
“Growth of the online collection is in progress, as we’re now working with the UK Trade and Investment team at the Chamber to look at wholesale opportunities and expand into international markets.”
“Building any brand takes time and the credentials of its look and feel are priority, but thanks to the Chamber’s support and putting me in touch with other local businesses, I now firmly believe the foundations for Seasonal Soul are well established.
Wendy Brown, business adviser at the Chamber, said: “As we continue to lead busy lives increasingly dependent upon technology, more and more people are looking to return to a simpler life more in tune with nature, so Rhianydd’s venture came at a very opportune time.
“At the helm of the local business community, the Chamber is perfectly placed to provide guidance to entrepreneurs and start-ups such as Seasonal Soul.
“Rhianydd showed vision and passion for the brand and this approach, coupled with our start-up support, has established a solid foundation for Seasonal Soul from which it will grow long-term.”
For more information about Seasonal Soul, visit www.seasonalsoul.co.uk.