Meet Philip & Tanya Taylor..
Harrow & Green is the creation of husband and wife duo, stylist Tanya and graphic designer Philip Taylor.
We design and create luxury, personalised gifts inspired by modern typography and old-style fonts but are most famous for our hessian Christmas sacks which were snapped up by Kate Middleton for Prince George and Princess Charlotte.
All of our products are designed and printed in-house to guarantee quality, originality and integrity.
We are a small business which has gone from strength to strength and now supply to some of the world’s leading department stores including Selfridges, Harrods, and most recently Nordstrom in the US.
1. Can you explain to us how the idea for your business came to you and how the whole process kicked off?
Our creative journey and business idea began after Tanya had completed a course at Central St Martins and we had just finished renovating our Victorian House in Balham.
Sitting in the living room with our new fireplace in winter we decided that we really needed a vintage sack with our address on it to put all of logs in, however nothing seemed to exist at the time, and we couldn’t find the style we wanted. So, we ended up going online, finding a sack and printing it ourselves. Our family and friends loved it so much that requests started to come through – we actually still sell it on our website.
Proving so popular this then sparked another idea with Phil who as a child used to receive Christmas presents in a pillowcase and we both thought, why not make beautiful luxury, personalised sacks for presents rather than just logs!
So, we created a few, word and demand started to spread, and we soon found ourselves busily fulfilling requests in the snow.
In 2011, Phil set up the Harrow & Green website and we both decided to pitch our product and ideas to Notonthehighstreet.com (NOTHS). The product and inspiration team at NOTHS loved it so much, they started to sell It through their website.
Since then our business has gone from strength to strength and we now supply to some of the world’s leading department stores including Selfridges and Harrods. Everything is designed and printed in-house to guarantee quality, originality and integrity.
2. What were the biggest challenges you faced when bringing the idea to market?
We were an unknown brand with a brand-new idea so that was always going to be a huge challenge. Finding reliable suppliers was difficult but our perseverance and hard work has paid off.
3. Where do you think good ideas come from and what inspires you?
Good ideas can come from everywhere but it depends on what inspires YOU. We have always been passionate about design and love getting our inspiration from travelling around the UK and Europe. We also love modern typography and all things vintage.
4. What are your company’s values and why are these things important to the business?
We are a brand concentrating on sustainable, reusable and environmentally friendly products. We believe above all that what we create must be beautiful, functional and of the highest quality.
5. What is next for your brand?
We have some exciting ideas and potential new product lines in the pipeline but at the moment are very excited by our expansion into the United States. We hope next year is going to be a very important year for us.
6. What one piece of advice would you have for someone just starting out on their business journey or currently going through a setback?
If an idea isn’t working then move fast to ascertain what the problem is with the product. Don’t prevaricate and don’t try to make something work when it just isn’t going to happen – just move on and don’t beat yourself up. Failure is a part of every business.
7. What resources and tools do you use to remain productive or up-to-date on industry trends etc?
We keep up to date by monitoring the news agenda, listening to podcasts, reading a variety of books and publications, visiting galleries and museums and maintaining a dialogue with all of our industry contacts.
More info on Harrow & Green…
Brand Name: Harrow & Green
Twitter handle: @HarrowAndGreen
Facebook handle: Harrow & Green
Instagram handle: harrrowandgreen