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Looking Back & Moving Forward
Gilded Bee Turns 1!

To think that this time last year Gilded Bee was barely a glimmer in mine & Emily’s eyes’.   We were reflecting on a Christmas of crazy bauble making (read more about that here) and we had started talking about how a business that created gift solutions for events and other business needs could be something that was needed, something we could be quite good at and importantly something that we could passionately commit ourselves to.

As we approach our 1st birthday we wanted to take a look back at the last 12 months...

Those of you that were early supporters of us may remember that we were originally VandE (yes, a cunning combining of our initials)  however and we were always aware that the name didn’t mean much and by the time we’d had to pronounce and explain it a thousand times (no we are not an 80’s hairdressers -Vandé) we were sure it had to go!  So in March we became Gilded Bee.  Yes, another funny name but this time one that we felt really resonated with who we were.

Through the spring we were busy talking to lots of amazing suppliers to understand how we could work together to create great gifts.  Where possible we looked for people who designed and made in the uk, and were delighted to find so much great talent on our doorstep.

From ceramicists to book binders, and chocolate makers to 3D printers we were, and continue to find ourselves spoilt for choice.

July was a whirlwind.  We bagan it spending a week creating a midsummer Christmas with Photographer Toby who helped us to create great product and lifestyle shots which would be so important for our website.  The whole process was a first for both of us and a steep learning curve in achieving those great shots that always look so effortless.  Don’t even get us started on finding a Christmas tree in July…
This was also the month that we pitched for and subsequently won Dacorum’s Den.  An amazing experience that aside from prize money that was to help fund our website also provided excellent input from the judges and most of all a big confidence boost that other people could share our vision and see that we could create a successful business.

During the ‘quiet’ month of August we hunkered down and cracked on with building the website.  Instrumental to bringing our vision to life was the fantastic Pete at Swanky Pixels  with input from ace copywriter Paula from PG Features.  Another steep learning curve but we got there…

A little later than planned and well into September our website was up and running.. Phew!   We were, and continue to be  so grateful to those who supported us, friends and family and even some people who didn't know us at all!  Our first website order was for an international pharmacutical company -a leap of faith for them and thrilling for us to exceed their expectations.

So all of a sudden Christmas was upon us.  We were thrilled to find ourselves fulfilling interesting and varied briefs. It was lovely to share our vision with people who wanted to step away from sending employees and clients the usual hampers and chocolates and give them gifts that would either encourage recipients to either socialise with loved ones or take a bit of time for themselves.  This meant gifts that ranged from card games and cocktail shakers to beautiful coffee table books and luxury scented candles.  These were lovingly packaged and despatched.

We loved to hear how our service took the stress out of gift giving.  After just a brief conversation we were able to run with it and sort the rest.  From the initial gift proposals to sealing the final boxes we never forgot that it was the little details like the message in the giftcard or the colours used to wrap that would make all the difference in connecting the giver and reciever.  This seemed to really hit the spot for our clients who found it hard to carve out the time needed to get it right.

So as the dust settles on the miles of ribbon unfurled, hundreds of bows tied and enough tissue and shredded paper to sink a ship we are well and truly grateful for everything that came our way -good and bad and can't wait to see what 2018 has in store...

If you enjoyed reading about what we've been up to, take a look here for some other news.

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