Businesswoman Claire Silverwood is on a high after the launch of her new business website, Welsh Treasures, that celebrates the best of Wales.
Welsh Treasures is an online store that showcases a range of products from across the region, giving small businesses a platform from which they can sell their arts and crafts whilst also promoting the individuality of what Welsh Artisans have to offer.
Commenting on the launch of the website, Claire explains how the website and business came to fruition:
“I loved my previous job. It was rewarding and challenging; plus, I worked in a beautiful location surrounded by stunning welsh countryside. My passion within the role, was to source local welsh products to sell within the company’s retail outlet. In February 2020 I was presented with the Champion Manager of Wales 2020 award, and I was looking forward to another successful and exciting year, but 2020 turned out to be very different. Like many others I was furloughed.
“Later that year, the company decided to close a number of retail outlets across Wales resulting in myself and my staff being made redundant. I was devastated; and at a loss as to what to do next. A good friend suggested I should set up my own business doing something I enjoyed and had experience in. This is how the idea for Welsh Treasures was born.”
So what was it that made Claire to promote Welsh crafts from small producers? Claire explains:
“I knew that there were many talented artists and craftspeople living and working locally and reasoned that this must be true in all areas of Wales; yet most people never get to see or own any of their exquisite work.
“I began by talking to local Welsh craftspeople, and discovered that they were keen to become part of a niche marketplace within which they could sell their products – a marketplace that offered a personal service, which promoted the individuality and quality of their work and supported the craft skills they practised.
The aim of Welsh Artisans is to promote local artisans living or working in Wales and to provide them with a platform to sell the exquisite products they have designed, crafted, handmade, or painted themselves. Claire explains:
“Unlike mass-produced goods these pieces are unique and original in their design and making; so every purchase is special. Many of the products are one-off or entirely handmade. Nobody else will have exactly the same item in their home or be given such a personal gift. There is a story to be told, and talked about, for each Welsh artisan. You can read all their stories in the ‘Our Suppliers’ section on our website.
“Welsh Treasures range is extensive and includes: Items sourced using local slate, copper or sustainable wood; Textiles, including welsh tapestry made at the last water powered Woollen Mill in Wales or by a skilled worker who breeds, then uses the wool harvested from her own sheep; Jewellery, from natural sea glass or freshwater pearls, others intricately crafted in silver; Glass and ceramics, including love spoons and elegant glass dragons; Beauty and Well Being, with products containing natural ingredients, including Vegan and bb or candles produced with beeswax from the sellers own bees – and much, much more. Many of the products contain notable welsh icons, beautifully created and incorporated in subtle ways enhancing but not overpowering their creations.
“I also wanted Welsh Treasures website to extol the beauty of our stunning welsh countryside, and the dynamic culture and thriving language of Wales. Welsh Treasures are proud to showcase the remarkable and diverse original paintings and prints of extremely talented welsh artists. Much of their inspiration comes from their connection with and immersion in the Welsh countryside. Our range of books in Welsh or English aims to encourage the learning of the welsh language and a love of welsh stories; whilst other authors offer a wonderful insight into welsh history, its countryside and diverse culture.
Claire is delighted with the result, and the result is a truly unique site that sells original products direct to the public. Claire says:
“I am excited and proud to introduce the Welsh Treasures website, which brings together the work of talented artisans from every corner of Wales.
“Home is the essence of the individual or family within it. To display pieces of distinctiveness and uniqueness is to reflect personal passions and interests. To give gifts made with creativity and devotion is more personal and shows thoughtfulness. To buy crafted items supports the local economy, the artisans who live and work locally and the traditional skills they practise such as glass art, silversmithing, weaving, wood carvings and many others. Also, it helps to protect the environment because most of the products are made in small craft studios or people’s homes not in big factories or large production facilities. “
To learn more, or shop for a unique gift (possibly one for yourself too!) visit www.welshtreasures.co.uk and be inspired.