Posted: 26.06.20 at 11:49 by Hannah Corfield
A new retail outlet has opened at the Combe Garden Centre today (June 26), offering a touch of luxury for customers.
Velvet and Parade - founded by mother and daughter Sara Fisher and Lauren Meadham - now occupies the space linking to The Kitchen café area, which will reopen on July 4.
Lauren told Honiton Nub News: "We believe in the importance of life’s simple pleasures so have carefully selected a collection of homeware, thoughtful gifts and stylish accessories to bring joy to the everyday.
"It is this sentiment that inspires us to seek out products that can be
cherished and celebrated and it means the world to us when we are chosen to be a small part of our customer’s stories.
"Our vision is to combine stylish and quality products presented in a beautiful setting.
"The shop is light and bright with crisp white panelling and beautiful apex skylights reminiscent of a garden room.
"We’re delighted to be a part of the Combe Estate family, working alongside both Combe Garden Centre and The Kitchen teams.
"Customer experience is key for us all and we put the customer at the heart of all we do."
Lauren explained a bit about how the Velvet and Parade brand came to be.
"We first launched our online store offering jewellery and accessories in 2013.
"I'm the eldest daughter, one of four; three girls and a boy. Our sense of home and family is strong, growing up in idyllic Sidmouth with our aunty occupying the house behind, and grandma living in the house next door.
"I felt the keen pull of home after my degree studying Textiles at Winchester School of Art.
"It was during the summer break from university that I met and worked with James Trevett, Manager of Combe Garden Centre.
"Following my degree, I returned to Sidmouth and spent three years gathering experience working in retail and product sourcing, followed by seven years working for local charity, Hospiscare, in their retail arm, looking after stores across Devon.
"It was while working for Hospiscare and born from these experiences that the Velvet and Parade online shop was launched.
"Alongside the online store, we also travelled the South West creating pop-up shops, but our dream has always been to open a store in the community we love.
"We wanted to be able to put down roots - for our customers to feel part of something real and tangible - that we can devote our time to rather than a side project whilst working full time.
"There is nothing better than interacting face-to-face with our customers and witnessing their happiness when discovering an item in the collection."
In response to how the coronavirus crisis had affected them, Lauren said: "We were hoping to open a little sooner but as has been the case for many, the pandemic has impacted our plans.
"It has been a challenge to receive our products, which were carefully selected in the months prior to lockdown.
"We have introduced measures such as a one-way system and hand sanitising stations in order to keep our customers and staff safe and we are delighted to now be in a position to open with our full collection and welcome customers from tomorrow."
Velvet and Parade is open Monday to Saturday from 9am - 5pm and on Sunday from 10am - 4pm.
For more information email [email protected] or visit the Velvet and Parade website.