Bek Tainton, the lady behind Oh Sew Lovely, has a shop on our top floor.
Bek, who is from Taunton, who was a keen artist found she didn’t have time to paint after having her children between 2005 and 2008, but still needed a creative outlet, so started sewing instead.
She began by making dolls clothes and graduated to selling items at craft fairs, but wanted to be able to draw and design. She discovered free machine embroidery and began sewing pictures.
She now makes cushions, pictures, decorations and gifts using the free machine embroidery method and you’ll find her fab unit, which is packed full of goodies, on the top floor.
We recently sat down for a quick chat with Bek to find out more…
What’s your favourite daytime drink, tea or coffee or do you prefer something else?
Elderflower cordial or orange squash (I don't like any hot drinks).
What do you enjoy most about making/creating/what you do?
I really enjoy designing and the design process. The vast majority of what I do is making bespoke pictures and cushions. I love getting a new design brief and coming up with ideas and producing something that the customer loves.
I also love the fact that I can create something that will sit in people’s houses and be cherished for years to come, that is a really lovely feeling!
Name one thing you couldn’t live without and why?
For my business, it would be my sewing machine! I couldn’t produce my designs without it.
In my life, it would be my husband and children, they are what inspires me and motivates me.
Also, I couldn’t live without means of communication. Whether that be phone, text, facetime, whatsapp etc.
I have friends spread over several countries (from living abroad) and across the U.K. I don’t know how I would cope without my friends and being able to keep in touch, they are really important to me.
What is the most important tool to help you when you’re crafting/creating/working?
Other than my sewing machine, I would say my purple pen for marking where I will sew. It fades with light or water, but it is invaluable for getting my designs and especially the writing in the right place. After that I would say my scalpel for cutting very close to the work and undoing bits if they are not perfect.
If money was no object, where in the world would you most like to go?
I’ve travelled quite a bit, but India was one of the places I only visited briefly and would love to go again properly. I am fascinated by everything to do with India and one day I would love to return and travel around.
In a normal week, how much time do you spend making/crafting/working in your business?
I am a primary school teacher (part-time), so in a normal week, I work on a Thursday and Friday and then for the rest of the week, I will be sewing all day Monday and Wednesday at the sewing machine.
On top of that, I will usually be doing something on a Tuesday afternoon for the business and most evenings. I try to leave the weekend for family, but when I am busy, I will sometimes be sewing on a Saturday too. I feel really fortunate to have a great job (teaching) and be able to have my own business, as both of them give me something different and I can put different things back into the world with each.
When you’re not working what else do you like to do?
See friends, read, decorate (we’ve spent the last year decorating our home top to bottom). My husband and I both dance, so we try to go out to do that when we can (salsa or LeRoc usually).