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Seeking local designers and makers

LOCAL designers and makers are being invited to showcase their talents by two professionals with over 40 years of retailing experience.

Jacqueline and Andrew Ward of Armstrong Ward in Kendal have played a mentoring role helping dozens of local makers and designers over the last 15 years to launch new products.

The couple set up their independent furniture, homeware and gift store in Wainwrights Yard in 2005. It’s grown from a start-up with 35 supplier products on sale across one floor, to a two-storey emporium of 200 makers with a café and online store.

Amongst the local, established and emerging designer-makers, are Becca Hall illustration, The Little Lakeland Soap Company and Sedbergh Soap.

Jacqueline explains that supporting local talent is an important part of their business, she said:

“We like to have a steady supply of new and well-made products that delight our customers, solve their problems, and meet their needs.

“We champion British made from John Sankey and Emma Bridgewater to Neom organics, St Eval Candles and Amanda Coleman Jewellery. As well as items that are made to last.

“As there are no trade or makers fairs this autumn, we are particularly keen to hear from local designers and makers who want to work with us to showcase their products.

“It’s very much about a two-way process and we are keen to mentor, help and incubate new talent,” added Jacqueline.

Jacqueline and Andrew say that town centre shops are more important than ever as places where people can access local services and products.

Anyone who is interested in contacting Jacqueline and Andrew about their call for local makers and designers is asked to call the store on 01539 720400 or email

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