Locate to Create are a young inspiring company, piecing together beautiful vintage props to create the most gorgeous events. We wanted to go behind the scenes to find out about their successes and top tips for business.
Tell us a little more about Locate to Create
“Locate to Create is a family run business, with a passion for locating and styling unique and quirky items to help create bespoke events and experiences.
Locate to Creates services include both Prop Hire and Event Styling. These services have been used for photoshoots, weddings, private parties and corporate events. We have worked with venues both large and small, locally in Kent and nationwide. These include, the Natural History Museum, Banqueting House, Hayne House, The Old Kent Barn and Elmore Court, Gloucestershire.
We specialise in and are truly obsessed with, all things vintage, rustic and boho. We love colour and festival vibes, but equally embrace rich shades and muted tones.”
Why vintage props, what was the catalyst for your business?
“With my mum previously owning a vintage interiors shop, I guess you could say ‘like mother like daughter’. That aside, the real reason I fell in love with vintage props was their ability to add personality and unique touches to any event. No vintage item is ever the same and I truly believe that every event deserves to be a truly bespoke experience.
When starting Locate to Create I had a real desire to source props that you wouldn’t usually expect or associate with events and items that are difficult to source or make yourself. This helps Locate to Create to stand out from the competition.
I absolutely love being creative and trying innovative ideas (the best thing about my job). Using vintage props encourages me to think outside the box and reuse items not for their specific design purpose. Why not turn a vintage drinks trolley into a cake table or dessert station? By using vintage pieces, we are both recycling and up-cycling, which is also great for our environment!”
You have come so far… and so quickly! What have been the biggest lessons that you have learnt along the way?
“Its mad to think that this time last year I was in the middle of writing my dissertation, whilst also aiming to come out of university with a fully functional business. I am super proud of the business myself and my family have created. We have enjoyed the challenges along the way. Also I need to mention that Locate to Create wouldn’t be where it is today without the continued support of the people and clients we have had the pleasure of meeting and working together with.
I think the biggest lesson learnt is;
“if you don’t try, you will never know if you can succeed.”
I repeat this to myself a lot during the day to day running of my business. No matter how much research you do, every business is unique and what might work for someone else, might not be the best tool for you. You have to try, learn from mistakes and find what works for you and your business.
I think another lesson is not to compare myself to other business. It is really easy to be drawn into negative comparison on Instagram and other social media accounts!”
What was the ‘tipping point’ for your business when you knew you were onto something?
“I would say my ‘tipping point’ for the business was our boho style shoot I organised and created. This was the first styled shoot I have ever planned and I worried about it SO much! I couldn’t actually believe that all the suppliers I had on board had agreed to be part of the shoot. But, the photos by Rebecca Carpenter were incredible! I think it was then that I thought wow I styled that and everyone loved it. The response from this shoot has been incredible and it has given me such confidence. I have since carried this experience forward and now relish the thought of organising shoots and styling events from concept to reality.
I also remember getting my first ever booking, that feeling is exciting, encouraging and very addictive!”
What was your first major order and how did you deliver it without the production team and skills that you have today?
“My first major event was not huge in product quantity but it was huge for us as it was for a very prestigious event. Golborne Events asked me to provide props for a Harry Potter theme…. at the Natural History Museum! I couldn’t believe my first ever event was going to be at the Natural History Museum! A real pinch me moment!! This event didn’t required a large production team, but it still involved working out delivery, collection times and the logistics of delivering into London. Now we’re very used to events in London and the challenges involved.”
Many entrepreneurs start their career as a solo entity. Being in a family team, you must be a fantastic support for each other. Do you all bring different attributes to the business?
“Yes, working as a family team is great…. but, it can also be very challenging! We all have our own individual jobs, tasks and responsibilities. Supplying props and styling events can be extremely hard physically and I spend a good proportion of each week in the back of vans or helping to load, unload etc. I couldn’t do that on my own, so the help from my family is essential in so many ways.”
We’re so excited for the future of Locate to Create… can you tell us what we can expect from you over the next couple of years?
“Eek.. we already have some incredible events and weddings booked for 2019 and 2020 which is super exciting. We are currently looking to expand into a larger premises. Once we find what we are looking for, we are hoping to allow clients the opportunity to come and view items, discussing their needs face to face. Additionally, we are constantly expanding our stock. Watch this space!”
Finally, what has been your favourite job to style and why?
“We recently styled a pop up Christmas Shop which was a lot of fun. Not only did I have to think of creative ways to display our clients products using our props but I also got to look at all the beautiful stock! A bit of early Christmas shopping never hurt anyone! When styling pop ups its extremely important to think of innovative ways to display products, within a workable space whlist highlighting clients products to maximise sales. This was a new challenge, but we loved it. Other favourites have included tipi weddings, The Lord Mayors Boat Race and an Alice in Wonderland wedding.”
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