Barbara Adams is the brainchild behind Acolyte Home and Gifts a relatively new online store showcasing beautiful unusual gifts and interiors from a small group of talented, independent designers and artists.
DreamwallStyle got chance to interview Barbara Adams and find out more about Acolyte Homes and Gifts.
Q1.Please tell me more about the Inspiration behind Acolyte Home and Gifts?
A1. I’ve always enjoyed shopping, especially finding those more unusual presents for family and friends my dream was to work for myself. The concept of an on-line business really appealed to me, one which would give customers a varied choice of quality products; the type that I would love to have in my own home and to give as gifts. I also wanted to build a reputation for outstanding customer service – which I believe we provide, both for our designer / artisan sellers working alongside us and the end customer purchasing the products.
Q2. When did you officially launch Acolyte Homes and Gifts?
A2. Acolyte Home & Gifts went live in November 2010. Whilst technically I own it, my daughter Elyse is very much involved in the business – which is lovely for me to have the chance to work with her, and believe me, if two generations can agree on the same item, then we’re pretty well set for it to be a success on Acolyte. If only one sees the appeal, she has to sell the concept to the other. So far, this approach has worked very well.
Q3.Please tell me more about the Charities page?
A3.We have a dedicated Links page for charities, some of which are possibly not so well known, where people can click through to find out more. In essence, it’s those charities which are close to our hearts. For example, The Dog’s Trust – inspired by Isaac the office dog, our 8 year old Cairn Terrier who rules our home and whom we obey without question. We have to leave all the doors open so that he can follow the sun around the house for snoozes. When he’s in the office, curled up in his favourite chair, the snore decibels reached can be quite alarming to visitors!
Q4. Please share some of your Favourite Products.
A4. Difficult! They’re all equally lovely so possibly the best thing to do would be to pick from each of the Designers and artisans so here goes:
The Acorn Clock by Andy Driscoll Design I love this clock! It tells you straightaway by its silhouette that it`s made of oak. Simplistic in design and functional too.
This part of a Collection of jewellery designed exclusively for us by Jo Tubb of GemHeaven jewellery. The pendant is silver, hand cut and embossed – very striking.
Elyse’s favourite from Jo’s Collection. With rubies for the berries and hand cut vine leaves of silver, it’s a work of art.
Hand crocheted, this Rainbow Cloud appealed to us both as soon as we saw it. Used as a mobile or a window decoration, it’s very fresh and quite unique.
In a word: luxury. The soft furnishings included with the chaise are inspired by Audrey Hepburn. IRI also have a beautiful range of feather down filled cushions which I have a sneaky eye on, all with differing designs.
We love our work! These chocolates are out of this world and we say that as we have sampled most diligently. They’re made by hand by Fiona Sciolti; the lavender & vanilla are our favourites.
Fiona Foster joined us in December 2011. This airbrushed picture of a cat with its attention to detail is incredible; right down to the very last whisker!
I’m originally from Germany and could immediately see the appeal of bilingual books for children to give as gifts. Beautifully illustrated by Suzanne Wilson and well written by Genevieve Yusuf.
Q5. What are your plans for Acolyte Home & Gifts in 2012:
A5. Our plans for 2012 are exciting; quite simply to expand the number of designer and artisans, giving the end customer a greater choice of unique products. However, it`s far from a ‘pile them high, sell them cheap’ approach. Acolyte Home & Gifts will remain a ‘by invitation only site’ which allows us to be selective about who joins, at what point and which products are offered for sale. We’ve worked hard on developing a system which is fair to those who sell with us and which also offers excellent choice, variety and quality to the end customer. A lot of that has evolved by taking on board what our existing sellers have told us and, where possible, shaping the way we work to what they need in order to grow their businesses and profiles. They, after all, trust us with their Brands which for many, have taken years to establish. That has a high level of responsibility for us to honour.
Q6. Please tell DreamwallStyle more about your nomination in the ‘Great of Great Britian?
A6. We’ve also been nominated as a Great of Great Britain – a modern day version of the Great Exhibition of 1851 where members of the public can vote on-line for their favourite businesses , organisations and people in the public eye.
It would be fantastic to stay in the competition for as long as possible but the nomination itself was a lovely surprise especially when you look through and see some of the ‘big’ names and inspirational people who are taking part.
Each vote we get will allow us to take one step closer to winning some Stand space at the Exhibition itself – and what better way to showcase the amazing talented people we work alongside and who help to make Acolyte Home & Gifts what it is today and hopefully what it will become in the future – a first choice stop for quality, variety, uniqueness and where designers and artisans want to join.
VOTE for Acolyte Homes and Gifts Here: http://www.thegreatexhibition2012.co.uk/greats/acolyte-home-gifts/?search=1
To visit the website: www.acolytehomeandgifts.com
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