Every now and again I like to write about things that have a connection to writing or literature but still appeal to the shopaholic in me. Last time I introduced the Book Clutch bag developed by the talented Maria. However, if your budget doesn’t quite stretch to a bespoke clutch you may want to consider a gift for yourself (or the writer in your life) from The Literary Emporium ( http://www.literaryemporium.co.uk/ ). Have no fear, this store has gifts for both male and female literary enthusiasts.
I took some time to catch up with the owner of this gorgeous online store, Rio and ask her a few questions.
- How did Literary Emporium start?
When I graduated from university with a degree in English, I didn’t have a career planned out. Instead I knew that I wanted to run my own business. I didn’t know what type of business but I was certain that I wanted to be my own boss. However, mountains of student debt meant I wasn’t in any position to experiment with business ideas and instead I went into a fulltime job the week after I finished university. I worked in the charity sector for three years, and whilst it was rewarding, I personally felt unfulfilled. Eventually, I decided to try to turn my hobby of designing and making jewellery into a business. I chose a literature theme for my shop as I’m a huge book lover, and my degree in English was put to good use with researching ideas. I have now expanded my literature jewellery range and also offer lots of different literary themed products including cards, notebooks and keyrings.
- What is it you love about literature so much?
Ever since I was little I have always loved reading and am happiest when immersed in a book (think Roald Dahl’s Matilda!). I suppose I love the escapism of literature and how the words conceived by someone else can transport you into a different world.
- What is your favourite piece in the collection of products you sell?
My current favourites are my Magic Notebooks which I designed to look like the dusty old spell books that you might find at Hogwarts.
- What is your best seller?
I sell my products on notonthehighstreet.com and have been lucky enough to have my Jane Eyre Birdcage necklace included in three of their Christmas catalogues which are sent to millions of people each year. As such, I spend most of November and December making and sending this necklace and it’s lovely to think that so many people have received it as a Christmas gift!
- Who is your favourite author and why?
I’m one of those awkward people who don’t have a favourite author as I simply could not choose but JK Rowling, Roald Dahl and Sylvia Plath all rate very highly on my list!
- What next for Literary Emporium?
In 2016 I hope to find more time to design new products so I need to improve at delegating the making and packaging of some of my orders. I’d love to expand my range to include literary mugs and t-shirts so I need to get designing!
- Sum up your brand in one phrase
Handmade gifts inspired by great works of literature.
I have already bought several items from Rio, I particularly love the fact that each item of her jewellery comes with a famous quote card which inspired the design. My current favourites are her magical notebooks (great for scribbling plot ideas) and her star studs (inspired by Oscar Wilde). I have also have my eye on her Alice in Wonderland print (which you can see in the imagery gallery below). Rio is currently having a sale on several items so do head over and have a look – you may be able to pick up a bargain in time for someone’s birthday! P.S The Galaxy Cuff-links for men are particularly gorgeous!
Happy 2016 Everyone – I wish you all a year filled with happiness, love and exciting opportunities!