RichCraft Furniture is one of the businesses based in the Blackhorse Lane area of Walthamstow taking part in the first edition of Forge.
Funded by British furniture designer-maker Richard Evans, the brand is an emerging furniture and lighting manufacturing company.
Richard made his debut by exhibiting at the London Design Fair in September 2018. He is already tipped as an Emerging Talent by Arts Thread and has exhibited as part of the emerging talents team at the inaugural Handmade Oxford. In July 2019 he also exhibited his work as part of the New Designers, One Year On showcase.
Tell us a bit about your business.
I set up RichCraft Furniture as a way of unlocking my desire to design and make handmade furniture and lighting products. My interest lies in simplifying furniture without compromising on my aesthetic values of clean lines, functionality, and playfulness. I create both unique and production pieces which are useful, as well as beautiful. RichCraft is best known for the aesthetically pleasing mix of materials and contemporary twist to freestanding work.
What made you go into this creative industry?
I studied design at University and after graduating in 2013 found myself working in a different sector. I wasn’t entirely satisfied with the direction my career was going, and eventually changed jobs a couple of times to try new things. Then I discovered Blackhorse Workshop and decided to start designing and making things again. This led me to produce a range of furniture and lights which I later exhibited at the London Design Fair. I’ve found working on projects and creating original pieces of design really lights a fire inside of me, which is extremely motivating keeping me wanting more. It’s like nothing I’ve done before!
What are the pitfalls and benefits of running your own creative business?
One of the major benefits has been the satisfaction you get from building something and securing work. I enjoy not being stuck in front of a computer and working within a creative environment alongside other like-minded makers. Overall, being self-employed awards you lots of freedoms which I like. Some of the pitfalls which I’m learning about is the ability to secure work and picking yourself up when jobs fall through. Being a newly established business it can be hard to convince people to trust you with their project.
How long have you been a Walthamstow resident?
Although, I’ve lived in London all my life I have only been based in Walthamstow for just over a year. The creative area of Blackhorse Lane has really opened my eyes into the creative industries in London and the range of work people do.
There seems to be a real community feel among the area’s creatives, why do you think that is?
I think camaraderie among creatives comes from everyone doing what they love. There is real drive amongst the community to do bigger and better things. I also believe community comes from realising how hard it is to establish yourself in business, so everyone’s sympathetic to the highs and lows that go along with it.