Creative Industry Finance
Catherine Tough design and make knitted gifts and accessories.
I started my business straight after completing my MA at the Royal College of Art in 1999. I had a number of commissions after the show which encouraged me to take a small stand at Top Drawer, exhibiting hot water bottle covers, cushions and hand knitted scarves. Everything took off from there.
My business is designing and making knitted gifts and accessories combining traditional craft with an eye for modern design and a sense of humour.
I heard about the Creative Industry Finance programme while I was taking part in the Crafts Council Injection programme, aimed at mid-career designer makers and thought it was the ideal opportunity and time to take the business forward.
Our proudest moment was completing our first order for The White Co. We had to hand make 1500 lavender hearts with a very short lead time, and undergoing all their compliance testing. It was quite rigorous but after that it made us feel like anything is possible.
“The loan has been vital to push our ideas forward; we have bought in a new printed range of cushions and just launched our bamboo socks which is a big step in overcoming the seasonality of our accessories.”
– Catherine Tough
The biggest challenge for us is managing production to meet demand and the cash flow behind this. The loan has been vital to push our ideas forward; we have bought in a new printed range of cushions and just launched our bamboo socks which is a big step in overcoming the seasonality of our accessories.
We are looking at exhibiting in Europe for the first time this year so I think that will lead to a much larger customer base. In five years’ time I can see a much larger scale version of our studio full of very busy knitters.