Meet our 'Maker of the Month' - Yorkshire Dragonfly

After being made redundant from her job in 2016, Tracey Moore decided to turn her hobby into a business.

Tracey sells a wide range of handmade gifts from facemasks to jewellery.

We sat down with her to learn more about her business...

How did you set up your business?

Being made redundant from my job in 2016 gave me the push I needed.

I had been painting silks for years as a hobby, making scarves for relatives etc. and all of my friends and family said I should try to make a business of it.

I started as an online business on Etsy in 2016. This is where most of my regular customers are but I do attend fairs and now word is getting around about weddings I do.

After a while, various contacts made me think of other things and I have started to diversify. I’ve started working with Artisan and Eco in Doncaster town centre and I sell jewellery and rainbows in Pepper’s of Yorkshire at Yorkshire Wildlife Park.

What kind of products do you sell?

Everything I make is unique. All my ideas are weird and wonderful.

I make anything from bespoke hats to reusable face pads. I’ve started my own range of shopping bags, clay jewellery, face masks and even dog bandanas!

I make all the items myself including some on a 1911 sewing machine that I turn by hand.

Why Yorkshire Dragonfly?

Yorkshire is because I always try to buy from Yorkshire providers and suppliers. I’m proud to be a Yorkshire woman born and bred! We don’t make much silk in Yorkshire mind you.

As for dragonfly, well people describe me as one. I love colours and I am easily distracted. I flip about from one thing to another – oh and I love my food.

How can people view and buy your products?

I do sell directly through Facebook and Instagram but mostly on Etsy. However, as I mentioned earlier you can find my products in Artisan and Eco in Bower’s Fold or at Pepper’s of Yorkshire.

I chose these particular shops as I believe that my products should be sold in a responsible way.

Why did you join Handmade in Doncaster?

I knew the programme existed from when I worked at Doncaster Council. I knew the lady who ran it before (Jeanne) and have attended the events ever since.

I think it is important to have something like this. It’s really good to have a representation of handmade businesses here.

What benefits has there been of joining the programme for you?

I did some fairs in the council building that went well. It is nice to have the support and be able to meet other similar businesses.

You can discuss things and ask questions like ‘where did you source that from?’ ‘How long did it take you to make that?’ as well as referring customers to others too.

Why is it important to buy local?

The more you can buy local the more investment there is in your economy. If you are buying from someone who buys locally as well the money is staying in your area.

I’d rather give back to the Doncaster community. The majority of well-made handmade items will far outlive mass produced products.

You can also always go back to the maker to get items repaired too.

What does the future hold for your business?

I’m happy to carry on as I am as the moment but I am always looking for retail outlets to sell my items from.

One thing I am looking into is exhibiting at the new art gallery, The Gallery Gate, on Scot Lane this year. I make art by wrapping a canvas in silk which I have painted.

 

You can learn more about Yorkshire Dragonfly on her Facebook and Instagram accounts and their Etsy page: www.yorkshiredragonfly.etsy.com

The Handmade in Doncaster programme offers access to a newsletter, participation in a members area on Facebook, access to business support, a ShopAppy online store for free and test trading opportunities.

If you are a hand maker in Doncaster and are interested in joining, please contact Gemma White on gemma.white@doncaster.gov.uk or call 01302 737364.

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