Posted on

Exciting News! Tabitha Mary is picked as Theo Paphitis’ #SBS Winner!

On Sunday I tweeted amazing Business Tycoon Theo Paphitis about my humble business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and to my surprise and excitement I was chosen by him as one of six weekly winners!

This means that Theo Re-tweeted my business to his 500,000+ Twitter followers!!

How blooming exciting!

I was totally unaware I’d been picked until my phone started going mad with Twitter notifications – oh gosh the excitement when I saw what had happened was unreal!

sbs tabitha mary theo paphitis
Theo Paphitis chose Tabitha Mary as his #SBS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has over 1700 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.

As a result of my #SBS win yesterday I have already received an impressive boost in followers online, and so many lovely congratulations messages, it is quite overwhelming!

Tabitha Mary SBS Winner
Theo himself Re-Tweeting my business! WOW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will now also be profiled on the #SBS website (www.theopaphitissbs.com) which is exclusive to all Small Business Sunday winners.

I’m over the moon and couldn’t wait to share my success with you all!

Exciting times ahead for Tabitha Mary…

TM

x

Official SBS Winner Tabitha Mary
Official #SBS Winner
Posted on

Bedfordshire Sights Map Launch at Bedford High Street Showcase Market

This weekend I took part in the Bedford High Street Showcase Market. What a fab day it was! Bustling and buzzing with a variety of local businesses.
I had a new print and new products launching at the event. I’d had all my popular Bedford prints put onto magnets and tea towels and my gosh did they go down well! I sold out of magnets and nearly all the tea towels went! I’ll definitely be getting more made for the Castle Quay Weekender and River Festival.

The newest print I was launching was my Bedfordshire Sights Map which is a bit of a new look for me and an updated version of my typography Bedfordshire County Map. But this map does come with a bit of a challenge! Can you work out the landmarks represented on the map?

  • Harrold Country Park
  • Churches
  • The small towns and villages that make up some of Bedfordshire’s most picturesque areas.
  • Hot Air Balloon rides
  • RAF Twinwood
  • Bedford Park Pavilion
  • Black Cat
  • Cardington Sheds
  • Leighton Buzzard Light Railway
  • Chalk Horse of Dunstable Downs
  • The Charles Wells Well Tower
  • Ickwell Maypole
  • Swiss Gardens
  • Tea Shops
  • Moot Hall
  • Stevington Windmill
  • Wrest Park
  • Willington Dovecote
  • Jordan’s Mill
  • Shuttleworth Collection
  • Forest Centre
  • Dunstable Downs
  • Woburn Abbey
  • Woburn Safari Park
  • Whipsnade Zoo
  • Luton Airport
  • Bedford Suspension Bridge
  • Moggerhanger

Some of the icons on the map relate to maybe multiple attractions, but I do hope I’ve captured the diversity of this great county.

I’ll be back in Bedford on 18th-19th July at the Castle Quay Weekender with more magnets and tea towels in stock and I’m aiming to have another new print ready for then too! Watch this space! TM x

 

Posted on

Brand new prints launched….

Gosh it’s been a very busy couple of weeks! The Country Living Show is now over and what a fantastic experience it was! I met some really lovely stall holders including Lucky Lobster Art and Kate Moby. The show was jam packed with lovely jewellery, clothing, art and of course food! NOM! I didn’t get much time to shop but I did manage a quick wander around during a quiet 5 minutes.

At the show I launched 4 BRAND NEW prints! Which are now available online. The Flying Scotsman is a hot topic at the moment and I just couldn’t resist capturing it in a print. I’m super pleased with the result and so it seemed where the customers of the Country Living show as it was one of my best sellers.

My second best seller was my NEW ‘Let’s go to the Seaside’ print which is a new edition to my typography range. So many people loving this print for their bathrooms or beach huts.

You may remember the London prints I added to this collection not that long ago, they were also super popular.

I’ve always been inspired by the propaganda posters from both the World Wars but i’ve not yet done a print that really reflects this inspiration. Well, now I have! ‘Carry a message.’ I really enjoyed doing this print, its a little different to my usual work and I love it! I hope you do to!

Last, but not least I have done a special limited edition of my forever popular Shipping Forecast Regions print. Only 10 exist and they’re all numbered a signed.

Shipping Forecast A3 poster for sale by me

A huge thank you to everyone that visited me at the Country Living show and a big HELLO to all the lovely new owners of #mytabithamary prints and followers.

There’s even more new stuff coming shortly… stay tuned… TM x

Posted on

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

xmas newsletter 2-01.jpgGosh! What a year 2015 has been! My first full year of trading as a self employed designer and it has just been incredible. Mainly thanks to all the fantastic support I’ve received from everyone I’ve met. Predominately in the Bedfordshire community, what a great place to be self employed.

I end the year pretty exhausted but exhilarated to announce that I am a finalist for the ‘Best New Business Award’ presented by Bedfordshire Business Women. The winners are announced on 21st January, I couldn’t think of a better and more exciting way to start 2016! Good luck to all the fabulous finalists.

I’m signing off now for some well deserved offline time. Orders can still be placed on my website but won’t be despatched until 4th January.

There’s so many super exciting plans for the New Year, a new website, new prints, new collaborations, wholesale licensing and a wedding! EEK!

Watch this space for all the updates as they happen!

Thank you once again for all your support and making 2015 better then I could have ever dreamt of. Have a wonderful Christmas and I’ll see you in 2016! TM x

Posted on

Bedford Park Proms

Bedford Park Proms are back and all systems are go in organising their 20th event in the Park which will be held on 6th August 2016.

It’s going to be a night to remember with a spectacular classical concert with the London Gala Orchestra, Bedford Choral Society, Brit award winners Blake, Rebecca Newman and all finished off with a fireworks and laser finale! And guess who’s designed the flyer?! Only little old me! I was so excited when Mark & Louise approached me about doing the flyer. We’ve also created a fab print as a great keepsake of what’s set to be a night to remember.

Bedford Proms Flyer-01

Tickets and Prints are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased from Bedford Park Concerts an exclusive early bird rate is now on pricing Adult tickets at £24.50 which rise to £31 from 1st May, Children £5. They can also be bought in person at the Pavilion, Bedford Park.

The prints can be bought from myself here and are at a reduced price until 1st August 2016 when they’ll go up to full price. I will be at the Proms on the night selling them in person too.

Bedford Park Proms copy

Follow Bedford Park Proms on Facebook Twitter or Instagram

We hope to see you there! 🙂 TM x

Posted on

Happy Birthday to me!

Gosh, I just cannot believe that this week marks the one year anniversary of me leaving full time employment and taking my little business out into the big bad world all on my own! To mark my 1st year I’m taking a few minutes to reflect on the year gone by and my plans for the next year.

I’d been running Tabitha Mary has a hobby alongside my full time job as a Graphic Designer for 3 years. I was selling prints online and attending the odd craft market when I found time. Sales had slowly increased along the way and I was finding I was working harder and later into my evenings and weekends to keep up with demand. In the spring of 2014 I met my Fiancée Paul. We knew instantly that we’d found love (awww… cue for the sick bucket!) but more importantly he was 100% behind my business and believed in me and my product. When we met we lived on opposite sides of Hertfordshire, me in Bishops Stortford, he in Tring. If we wanted to live together, someone was going to have to move. It was the opportunity I never thought I’d get! We both agreed that it was now or never. So we jumped in, feet first! I quit my full time job designing licensed stationery and moved west into our new house in Leighton Buzzard where Tabitha Mary HQ was created in our spare bedroom.

I started my new life in the self employed world by flying to Nepal and trekking the foot hills of Annapurna – as you do! I’d already booked the trip before all these decisions were made. But what fabulous timing. It gave me the break I needed to reset, recharge and refocus my mind onto being my own boss.

On my return I got busy selling at Christmas events, designing new prints and freelanced for 2 months at the Tigerprint Studio in London. I’d never been busier!

Come the New Year and I just couldn’t quite believe that I already had months of work booked in, a mix of freelance, commissions, events and new print launches planned. Never in my wildest dreams had I thought this plan was going to work out!

And it’s continued in this way. I have been completely mesmerised, overwhelmed and humbled by the kindness of everyone I’ve met, exhibited / sold with and the opportunities that have come my way and the support shown by those who I’ve worked with. I’ve made some mistakes, but i’ve learnt from them and carried on!

My work ethic across the year has been to say yes to everything and my goodness what fun and craziness it’s lead to! From small school fairs to the conservative conference!

A rather MASSIVE thank you goes to all those in Bedford who have shown such consistent support. From the Pavilion cafe commissioning THAT print, to Creative Bedfordshire and Velocity for their small business support. And of course a huge thank you to my wonderful Fiancée who proposed in the Summer and has been my rock, business confident, advisor, sales man and right hand man all the way through. I wouldn’t be here without him.

Who’d have thought all of this would’ve stemmed from the shipping forecast print I did for my parents 4 years ago!

So… what are the plans for the next year?

Well my biggest plan is to expand my range, buy a super duper whizzy new printer and be able to offer LARGE scale printing done in house and to get myself out into the world of wholesale more. I tapped into it a bit this year, but would love to grow that side of things. And we of course cannot forget the wedding planning and becoming Mrs Paul in May!

There’s plans set for me to talk to college students about being a self employed designer and to hold a Q&A evening with Creative Bedfordshire to talk all things small business. Set to be a fun evening where you can pick my brains on what i’ve learnt and where hopefully I can pick yours too! As i’m ALWAYS learning!

Not to mention the HUMONGOUS list of prints I want to do!

It’s set to be busy!

Hope you all follow me along for the ride.

Thank you for all your support. To celebrate there’s 20% off everything online until Sunday when you use code IAMONE

TM x

Posted on

Mount Vesuvius, Naples, An Italian Wedding Commission

At last weekends Handcrafted in Bedfordshire Market I met a lovely lady who asked me to design a print of Naples for her husband for their 15th Wedding Anniversary this weekend.

I of course jumped on the chance to create such a lovely gift for her to give him, how romantic! After a couple of sketched ideas we decided upon a fictional scene incorporating the gorgeous cliffs that Sorrento is so well known for with the iconic silhouette of Mount Vesuvius in the background.

Naples Main copy

I’m so pleased with this print and hope her husband loves it!

Happy Anniversary you two love birds!

My Fact of the day: Did you know that Mount Vesuvius is regarded as one of the most dangerous volcanoes today due to the 3 million people living in its shadow and the fact its last eruption was in the last 100 years! SCARY!

TM xx

Posted on

Annapurna, Nepal: A magnificent trip

In October 2014 I went to Nepal taking in the sites of Kathmandu, Patan, Bhuktapur, The Annapurna Massif and Chitwan National Park.

I begun the trip exploring Patan and Bhuktapur. Ancient areas of Nepal where the most traditional buildings, values and ways of life can be found. I was mesmerised by this beautiful country from the second I got there. The people are enchanting and friendly and the architecture is just absolutely stunning.

IMG_8829 DSCF3425 DSCF3440

I couldn’t believe it when exploring the jungle of alleys in-between the houses in Patan (truth be known, I was very lost and getting a little bit worried I wouldn’t find my way out!) I stumbled across a printers, screen printing the most wonderful papers. I just couldn’t believe my luck, how this lost print designer found a fellow printer in Nepal! Just one of those memorable moments.

DSCF3359

Other than exploring the major towns of Nepal my trip really evolved around the 4 day trek into the Annapurna foot hills, staying at the basic and wonderfully traditional tea houses along the route. From the moment our Gadventures group walked into the park the views were spectacular but the further we went in they just kept getting better! The route was undulating and at times really tough going; compared to my Kilimanjaro trek it was a walk in the park! But I hadn’t gone for a physical challenge but to simply explore.

The morning views had been fantastic throughout the trek, but on our final morning of the trek we woke up to the most spectacular view:IMG_9353IMG_9377

What a way to end our time in the mountains! The trip didn’t end there though as we set off for Chitwan National Park for a short safari tour.

I could write forever on my time in Nepal, the smells, sounds, views, culture, just everything about it is enchanting. My trip also signified a massive change in my life, it saw me quitting my full-time job as a Graphic Designer and stepping into the unknown world of self employment with my business ‘Tabitha Mary.’ A horrifically scary decision and step to make, but one I will never regret. I’ve had just the most fantastic year being self-employed and felt it was finally time to capture the place that focused my mind onto my new and exciting challenge ahead. The people I met there and sites I saw will never know how much they touched my life. I hope everyday that they are safe and well after the horrific natural disaster that struck in April 2015. The print captures that stunning view we woke up to on our last morning in the Annapurna National Park.

Nepal copyNepal Crop copy

If you have trekked in Nepal then like my Kilimanjaro print I can personalise this print for you, just drop me an email tabitha@tabithamary.co.uk to find out more.

TM x

Posted on

Eastbourne Promenade, an emotional gesture

I was recently contacted by a customer who was enquiring about a print enlargement. Unfortunately I couldn’t fulfil his request,  but what caught him about the print was the kite in the sky. His family had recently been through some awfully tragic circumstances and his granddaughter loved kites and wanted to have a new print to offer some future hope to her and the family.

Their home town of Eastbourne is also where I studied Art Foundation and local to where I grew up in East Sussex. I so badly wanted to provide this family with a print they’d love, I set about designing an Eastbourne print, with a kite, just for them. I couldn’t help but feel that this gesture was rather insignificant in the grand scheme of their pain; but I just felt like I wanted to do something to help them.

Their reaction has truly humbled me and it is a lovely reminder of the power a kind gesture can have on a stranger. I think we should all help a stranger more often.

Eastbourne copy

Posted on

Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park Commission

I was recently commissioned by Bedford Borough Council to produce a print advertising their plans for a Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park.

The Brief was to capture a canal within our lovely countryside with people enjoying being outdoors doing a variety of activities:

Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park copy Bedford and Milton Keynes Waterway Park Crop copy

I believe the council will be using it is as advertisement and may also be producing it for retail. It will  be available on my website in A3 and A4 formats from 10th August.

TM x

Posted on

My first video advertisement

So, rumour has it that video is the new social media frenzy and is an absolute must for any self employed business owner.

The thought of making a video scares the living daylights out of me! But luckily, for my first attempt the lovely Katie was willing to share her story of our work together and here is the result:

I’ll be shooting footage whenever and wherever possible of my business, what I get upto and sharing many more videos to come!

If there are any pre-existing customers out there who are willing to help me out i’d really appreciate it! It only has to be a 5 second clip! I can mash them all together to make another video.

I will I guess feature on one at some point…

Hope you enjoy!

TMx