Who's who: The Compartment Store

We first saw these guys when we went to Renegade Craft Fair last year and we just loved their paper goodness and the trunk they use - wow, just so cute.  We pinned them down before they wheeled away and had a quick chat for you to find out a bit more.

Who are you?
We are The Compartment Store, a mini department store on wheels! We are a collaborative shopping experience founded by Kitty Farrow, a specialist bookbinder and box maker, and gift-wrap enthusiast Victoria Jane of Gift Wrap HQ.

What do you do?
The Products - We make paper products and stationery. We have created an inventory that celebrates paper paraphernalia from the past and we have something for every occasion. We like to work with offcuts, saving all wastage where we can. It allows us to make an interesting collection of products that you won’t find in your average card shop. We particularly love the postcard, and have given it a little makeover. We have created our own version by incorporating our favourite technique, gold foil blocking. All our products are made by hand in London on vintage machines and using traditional techniques. You will find us folding, creasing, cutting, blocking whenever we can.

The Store - We sell our handmade paper goods from our travelling trunk, The Compartment Store. Our travelling trunk is reminiscent of that of a travelling sales man. We absolutely love the fact that we can open shop pretty much anywhere. The trunk gives us flexibility to move around and we can adapt it to a number of situations and spaces. We also like to move the compartments around and re-merchandise our shop as often as possible as we like to keep the customers happy and excited to discover what we have for sale in our Compartment Store, creating a mini shopping experience.

How did you start?
Friendship first then business! Originally we bonded over a love of letter writing and used to write long elaborate letters to each other for fun. It was in these letters that we dreamt up our idea for having our own department store, where we could separate our creations into their own sections or compartments. With a large ambition and no square footage quite in our price range we decided to go small and invented The Compartment Store, our very own mini department store on wheels! With lots of compartments to fill we began making.

What’s next?
We have our own online store, thecompartmentstore.co.uk, which is very exciting. So we are working on refining that and teaching ourselves the ways of online shopping. We are also trying to do more fairs and finding out where our market is and what our customers respond to. We are also working on a few commissions.

What advise would you give yourself , if you could go back to the beginning?
We are just starting out so we are at the beginning, any advise for us would be gladly taken! We would love to do more events and bespoke work for parties. We also love working in collections and themes so we will hopefully get to work on some more special ranges for summer, maybe a summer holiday compartment!

How can you resist all this gorgeousness!?!  We both love stationary and paper goodies and so combining that with having a shop you can take wherever you want is amazing!  I'm sure it won't be long before these girls have their own place though and are taking over the world, one postcard at a time!

H & Sammy, xxx