Illustrator Katie Cardew has launched a new range of products ahead of opening her first shop in Stamford this summer
Katie Cardew's new warehouse is worlds apart from the dining room table where her business began.
In eight years the illustrator has transformed her hobby into a thriving career, attracting commissions from brands like Estee Lauder.
This week Katie launched a full new range of products, which coincides with plans to open her first shop in Stamford this summer.
She said: "Our new warehouse in South Luffenham is incredible and I'm really proud to see the business grow from working on the dining room table.
"We love Stamford and even though lockdown has been difficult for some retailers, Stamford seems different. People are very receptive to artists and like to support smaller businesses. We can't wait to open there."
For Katie, drawing was only ever a hobby. She studied English at university and took a job in finance when she moved to London. The job didn't satisfy her creativity and the chaotic London lifestyle wasn't for her, so she moved home and started to draw.
After securing a few magazine commissions, Katie realised she could earn a wage from her hobby and the business was born.
She believes her quirky style made her stand out from the crowd, and her commissions became particularly popular.
The arrival of lockdown gave Katie the chance to take time out and focus on the new range.
She said: “It’s been the strangest year – on one hand we faced the tribulations of covid, but on the other hand it has given me the breathing space to design this collection – something I have wanted to do for years."
The new range has 350 products including a personalised collection and children’s range.
There are floral designs and coastal scenes featured on storage baskets, picnic blankets and embroidered sweatshirts.
Katie said: "I knew exactly what products I wanted. I just thought about what I would like in my own house.
"I'm in my element when I'm coming up with new ideas and lockdown really gave me the head-space to do that."
All the products stem from Katie's fine art prints. Creating a print takes a day but translating those designs to all the different products can take months.
Katie said: "I strive for quality over quantity, so I won't launch any new product until I'm happy with it."
The new range went live on Tuesday at www.katiecardew.com