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Boots the Chemist

I’m quite a tough cookie I like to think. I’m not offended by much.

When I popped up in Boots, The Glades shopping centre in Bromley Kent, I honestly thought it would be a joyful experience.

For the majority of the time it was. But I was nowhere near prepared for the bossy few women who wanted to tell me I was charging too much for my key hooks.

They wanted to give me this valuable advice without a brief summary of the crafting process.

I took a step back and really thought about what they were seeing. I didn’t want to ignore their comments, I wanted to embrace them and turn them into something positive. 

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£30 for key hooks. Was that really too much? I didn’t think it was. After you pay Tax, commission and materials PaddyRose wasn’t left with much profit for all the hard work and creatvity.

Yet I was standing there in Boots the chemist with my precious display of handcrafted gifts, being told by a few customers that I was over charging.

I hadn’t really faced this issue before so in a strange way I was quite grateful for their criticism. We learn through the eyes of others.

If these unique good luck gifts were overpriced, I would need to try and see how I could make them cheaper.

What could I adjust, the commission stays the same, the Tax stays the same, the cost of materials also stays the same, the only thing I could change was the time it took to make each one. The process needed to be faster, which meant design something easier to create. 

While set up in the Boots store, I did notice a lot of people looking at the one plaque I’d made with a saying on it.  It said ‘Have faith in yourself, you’ve got this’ and it sold to a lovely gentleman who was so pleased with it. He’d purchased it as a Christmas gift for his daughter. He made my day.

I really enjoyed making this one and because it wasn’t so detailed it was actually easier to paint. Normally I use reclaimed timber but if I can’t source it locally I use FSC certified wood from a local timber yard called Homeleigh timber supplies, they are an independant builders merchant based in Ashford, Staplehurst and Maidstone Kent.

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For this design I used Farrow & Balls modern emulsion, Setting Plaster. Its pink but not really bright or baby pink, it’s subtle.  Funnily enough in the past when walls have just been plastered, I often looked at them and thought its almost a shame to paint them as they actually look quite nice. Then F&B make a colour of their very own named after it. 

Anyway after taking some time out I came up with my Bossy Boots collection.

I’m going to make a range of key hooks with bossy phrases written inside the shoes and price them cheaper at £25.

My theory was, I’m saving time making them so I can give back to my consumer by charging a bit less. I think that’s a fair exchange.

So the Bossy Boots Collection was born, we have:

No.1    Today is a new day

No.2    Buck up your ideas

No.3.   Don’t let idiots ruin your day

No.4    Remove those shoes

No.5.   Don’t overthink stuff

No.6.   Sort your sh*t out

I don’t think I will ever see the ladies again who gave me their feedback.

But I want to say thank you. They helped me in more ways than they will ever know.

As for the lovely gentleman who paid the full £30 for a good luck gift for his daughter, well I owe him a fiver.

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