Year on year the Trouva boutique community has continued to flourish, now sitting at over 400 boutiques in total. This growth is never as apparent as when we invite our boutique owners to our biannual retailer event – a gathering that has been steadily growing in size over the past year and a half. We see these events as a chance for boutique owners to convene and gather inspiration from the other members of our talented community.
The third iteration of this event took place at Trouva HQ in Clerkenwell at the end of February, and was attended by over forty boutiques. Upon arrival guests were welcomed by members of the Trouva team and encouraged to mingle with their fellow boutique owners over a drink kindly provided by our friends at Freedom Brewery. Conversation flowed as our guests shared their personal experiences of owning an independent business. Many boutique owners (particularly those from small towns) spoke of the benefit of being able to connect with so many fellow business people in one place.
The evening’s timetable was focused around two speaker events, which were designed to give our community some food for thought. The theme? Creativity in 2o18. The first to speak was a representative from the Maison et Objet trade show, who unveiled plans to rework and refine the way the show is structured in the coming year. This was particularly pertinent given Trouva’s recent partnership with Maison et Objet, and the fact that a number of our boutique owners had travelled to the Maison et Objet Spring show with the Trouva team in January.
The second part of the presentation was a panel discussion led by Trouva’s Creative Director Lucy Ward. Three female creatives gathered to give their thoughts on how creativity is evolving, giving invaluable advice to our boutique owners (who are themselves creatives). The first was Otegha Uwagba, the founder of Women Who, a collective of creative working women and author of Little Black Book. The second was Trouva boutique owner Zoe Anderson, the founder of Shoreditch boutique (and maximalist paradise) W.A. Green. The third was Lana Churchill, gallerist and founder of Peckham performance space and gallery Bosse & Baum. Lucy asked them questions about their respective career paths, their thoughts on what it means to be a creative in 2018, and what their hopes are for the coming year, personally and professionally.
The panel was enthusiastically received and sparked rich conversation. As our independent community continued to mingle late into the night, there was a sense of energetic excitement in the room that we hope has left our boutique owners feeling inspired and stimulated.
Many thanks to Forest London for creating beautiful floral displays, Earl of East for their amazing candles, and Freedom Brewery for providing guests with fantastic beer. Your support was hugely appreciated.