In 2016, two friends decided that they wanted to meet more crafty, likeminded women in Glasgow, Scotland. What started as a nice opportunity to make new friends has grown into something more powerful than they could have ever imagined.
The founders of Wild & Kind, Trudi & Megan, are a couple of old friends who reunited years after their misspent youth to create a community for women and people in marginalised gender groups. They recognised a complete lack of free, sober safe spaces in Glasgow especially for people who experience multiple social and economic barriers such as, but not limited to, being part of a marginalised group, low income and accesibility.
They both have a history of working with young children, and it was while running free craft shops for kids they heard the same thing from parents over and over again. ‘I wish there was something like this for me’.
It was from this longing that Wild & Kind’s ‘Wild’n’Craft’ workshops were born and very quickly grew a community of sensitive souls. They began to notice that a large number of workshop attendees had anxiety and they began actively designing and curating their workshops to suit the needs of their new friends.
The vision for Wild and Kind developed over the initial months and became a way for Megan and Trudi to share their privileges and empower people through creativity. Having experience in the merch industry, they decided to register Wild & Kind as a community interest company to create a ‘profit for purpose’ organisation that could become self-sufficient and continuously redistribute it’s profits to women and people from marginalised gender groups.
Wild & Kind’s first income stream came from collaborating with Lady Trample of ‘Chicks in Bowls’ and ‘Me ‘n’ You Vs The World’. They began manufacturing custom patches worldwide. They rented a small shop on the Gallowgate in the east end of Glasgow and people began stopping by to find out more about the new community centred company.
They decided to trial run some ideas while in this tiny 300sq ft property, one of which being a pop of shop where local artists could come and use their window space at the weekends, free of charge.
It was only a short few months before people began coming regularly to the studio to ask for advice, looking for encouragement or were just looking for a chat in a safe and friendly space. Recognising a need for this kind of service, and with demand becoming high for their time, they set up a bookable service called a ‘Kind Cuppa’ which is now held all day every Thursday.
With a need to grow the business to support their social aims, they decided to invest in a Direct to Garment printer. In keeping with the ethical business ethos, this style of printing is one of the most eco friendly ways to print and they choose to only use plastic-free, water based, vegan inks. They began by deciding to only supply 100% organic garments from the world most ethical garment supplier; Continental Clothing, and have recently began also suppling items from Stanley/Stella.
Building any start up business is difficult in the early stages and Wild & Kind had to put their ‘Wild’n’craft’ Workshops on hold for a few months in 2018 while they navigated the complexities of their new enterprise. With a long term goal of sustainability, taking the time to focus on generating a stable income has allowed the team to reinstate their workshops with plans to increase their regularity more and more over the next 12 months. They also hope to be able to launch their own line of grants and funding by 2021.
To find our what we’ve been up to at Wild & Kind you can check out our blog which can be found at the bottom of our homepage or by visiting our social media links and following us for updates.