Artisans across Perthshire are capitalising on a trend for shopping locally and have doubled their membership of a specialist website in less than 12 months since its launch.
Perthshire Artisans, which showcases the region’s creative talent, began in June last year with just nine artists.
Developed by specialist rural enterprise agency GrowBiz, the site promotes the region’s diverse range of creative talent, enabling local artists and creatives to find new markets as well as providing business support and a community amongst the artists themselves.
It now has 18 members from across the region.
Jackie Brierton, chief executive of GrowBiz, said: “Perthshire has a real nucleus and diversity in creative businesses and our vision from the outset has been to bring them together, help tell their stories and provide a route to market.
“At a time when we need to shop local and focus on sustainability and the slow economy, Perthshire Artisans is a unique resource for anyone looking to find out more about the creative process and support the diversity of creative talent across the region.”
Benefits of a creative community
Contemporary jewellery maker Kate McLaughlin, based in Perth, was one of the nine initial artists chosen for the launch of platform in 2020.
She said: “Perthshire Artisans is so much more than an online shopping experience.
“As well as a beautifully curated selection of local handmade products, it’s a supportive community for artists and their small businesses.”
One of the newcomers to have joined Perthshire Artisans include Comrie-based Laura Grace Caldwell, who works with polymer clay.
She said: “I applied to be a Perthshire Artisan to meet other like-minded makers, artists and entrepreneurs and to know that I have access to an abundance of business and enterprise support.
“Being selected alongside so many other talented artists to join the platform gave me such a boost, it’s wonderful to be part of a creative community like this.”
Perthshire Artisans project manager Caron Ironside added: “Perthshire Artisans is a unique platform for creatives, with equal value placed on the artisan and their practice, their incredible and original creations and the stunning place in which they choose to live and work.
“Supporting a community of artisans and their businesses to develop and thrive collaboratively in their chosen rural location is at the core of the initiative.
“Having a dedicated online destination like this enables anyone to enjoy a bit of creative Perthshire, wherever they are in the world.”
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