Love Coastline - trading independently in Honiton

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 May 2019 | UPDATED: 09:14 13 May 2019

Gemma Lindsay owner of Love Coastline in Honiton with Amy Smallwood. Ref edr 14 19TI 1771. Picture: Terry Ife

Gemma Lindsay owner of Love Coastline in Honiton with Amy Smallwood. Ref edr 14 19TI 1771. Picture: Terry Ife

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Love Coastline - trading independently in High Street, Honiton.

Love Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1812. Picture: Terry IfeLove Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1812. Picture: Terry Ife

Please introduce yourself…

Hi, I'm Gemma From Love Coastline in Honiton.

After running Coastline Jewellery for 13 years, I took a break from retail to raise my small family and dedicate my time to the children. Now both children are at school, I decided it was time to come back so Love Coastline was born, and we are now back on the High Street in Honiton, bigger and better than ever!

Love Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1805. Picture: Terry IfeLove Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1805. Picture: Terry Ife

What made you decide to set up shop as an independent trader in Honiton?

Once both children started at school, I started the search for a new property to rent on the High Street, to take up the challenge of retail once again.

Having been in retail since the age of 14, I started my journey on the markets in Manchester. I then moved to the South West where Coastline jewellery was born, working on the Summer Tourist Markets in Torquay and Brixham.

I then moved to Honiton and started selling from my market stall outside Costa coffee for four years, incorporating trade with exhibiting at county shows and festivals in Devon and Cornwall. We still sell at county shows and festivals today, but we are now firmly established back on our beloved High Street, next door from the original shop at 59 High Street. My friend Amy messaged me via Facebook to tell me that Violet and Grey wanted to sell on their lease, so the following day I was in asking to take it on. Once I make a decision, not much gets in my way of achieving my goals and it just seemed so right, and still does to this day. Amy is now a part time employee of Love Coastline, and a very valued member of the team.

Love Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1788. Picture: Terry IfeLove Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1788. Picture: Terry Ife

The premises are slightly larger than what we had previously so we have extended our jewellery range to include Sterling Silver. We now have six rails of Italian-style linen clothing and knitwear, along with scented candles, jewellery boxes, handbags and scarves. We will soon be introducing a children's range which will include the very popular Blade & Rose leggings for babies and toddlers.

The ranges we stock have proved a huge hit with people travelling far and wide to buy from us. It's been amazing, better than I could have ever imagined. Our Italian linen clothing just flyies off the hangers, and our bright colourful handbags are our best sellers at just £15 each.

How do you see your business faring over the next five years?

Love Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1780. Picture: Terry IfeLove Coastline. Ref edr 14 19TI 1780. Picture: Terry Ife

We are very much looking forward to what the next five years will bring.

Honiton is such a vibrant and exciting town, with such lovely local people and fantastic independent shops. Love Coastline will continue to expand on the ranges of products we sell. By continuing to build our online and high street presence, we will ensure customers can shop with ease and convenience.

What one piece of advice would you give to anybody considering setting up a local independent shop or business?

Gemma Lindsay owner of Love Coastline in Honiton. Ref edr 14 19TI 1754. Picture: Terry IfeGemma Lindsay owner of Love Coastline in Honiton. Ref edr 14 19TI 1754. Picture: Terry Ife

We are very lucky to still have our Local market here in Honiton, and for me, that was the best way to gage if a business idea or product would work in the town.

I would advise a prospective business owner to do market research, maybe an online survey, and ask people other than friends and family what they think of the business idea and really listen to feedback.

Behind any successful business there are a team of amazing people, and these people have helped put Love Coastline back on the map. "I am grateful to each and every one of them and couldn't have done it without their amazing support".

Amy and I will see you soon, Gem x

Visit www.lovecoastline.co.uk, also find us on Instagram and Facebook.

To read more features from East Devon Resident, click here.

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