lifestyle

STUDIO TOUR: THE LITTLE LENDING COMPANY

You all know by now I’m obsessed with pretty thing. For me, a party, wedding or event just isn’t complete without a host of pretty little extras to create the perfect atmosphere.  The Little Lending Company, based in Norfolk, is one of my favourite places for sourcing those added bits and pieces, and owner Penny happens to be one of my favourite people. Specialising in rustic, industrial pieces with a Scandinavian twist, Penny collects and curates some of the more quirky items you need (yes, need!) for your next party.  She’s also a super stylist, and I’m excited to hear more about her new ‘styling stations’ and styling pacakes launching later this year!

I caught up with Penny in her Scandi-inspired studio to find out more:

Tell us a little about your business?  We’re an alternative hire company offering a unique and eclectic range of decor accessories and props for your big day. We have all those little extras to make it all just little more offbeat and perfectly laid back.  Simple, timeless pieces are our specialty and I’m always adding to our collection. Relaxed, Rustic, Industrial and a little Bohemian is what we’re all about.

How did you get started in the industry?  I set up my little company after my own wedding day back in 2013. I had a whole heap of curiosities that I couldn’t bring myself to sell. It had been a struggle to find what I needed for our day so decided, on the honeymoon, to come home and start something. I didn’t know how it would work or what the response would be like but after choosing the name there was no going back! I really felt there was a gap in the market for something a little different when in came to little extras.

What do you think has made your business successful?  I can’t quite believe I’ve almost had 2 whole years running this wonderful little enterprise from home, I still have a way to go but I think I’m very much my brand and I offer things that I love and I hope that our couples will love too; timelessly cool and eclectic décor. Weddings are more than ever now an expansion of the couple and for those couples we meet I’m thrilled when they love what we offer. I keep things understated, to me less will always be more and I feel our little lenders really understand the brands ethos.

Where do you work & how do you make sure your space stays inspiring? I spend about 50% of my time sat in my office, emailing, updating the site, blogging and pinning/facebooking so I like my office space to be simple, and of course it’s white. It’s easy to update and change my work space because I have a show shed full of pieces that I’m forever switching in. I love Elle Decoration and often use ideas I have seen there or on Pinterest to update my home.

What’s the biggest mistake people make whensstarting their own business? The biggest mistake I made when starting my own business was saying ‘yes’ to everything. To small orders that just weren’t worth heading out for or to shoots that the images didn’t work for me or what I do. I would say don’t rush into saying yes, stay true to you and your brand, if it’s not right for you then you don’t need to do it.

How would you describe your style?  My style is causal, I wear lots of oversized tops, too many stripes and red lippy is a must. I often buy from Scandinavian brands. I’m a sucker for shoes so like to buy a statement pair each season. My home is also very Scandi inspired with tones of grey, mid-century furniture and all white walls. I am my brand so it’s super important to live what I love.

I’m passionate about offering something new (or well, old) to our Little Lenders and I genuinely am excited to hear their wedding ideas and hope that comes across in the relaxed approach I take.

What trend predictions do you have for 2016?  I think ‘white’ weddings are going to continue. White layered on white tables, white flowers and simple foliage. I’m excited about modern, clean takes on what a white wedding is and means today.

Boho beach vibes are going to be bigger; I look to lots of the Australian wedding blogs for inspiration and love the oceanic, relaxed modern-nomad feel I’m seeing coming through.

What challenges have you set yourself for the next 12 months? I’d like to keep expanding and growing the range; finding even more cool pieces to keep us fresh and exciting.

I would love to work with more like-minded suppliers from the wedding industry to create some more photo-shoot magic.

I’ll be adding more ‘styled station’ packages to the site and also pushing forward on our new styling services too.

To head abroad on a sourcing trip; flea markets in Brooklyn, Moroccan tile shopping in the souks or Sacndi cool shopping in Copenhagen…Now maybe this is slightly dreaming!

Tell us 5 things we don’t know about you…

  • I’m a chocoholic; I can’t go a day without some…
  • My background is in Fashion Design and had some amazing trips abroad in my career.
  • I have two furry children, black and white cats; Tinky and little Arlo.
  • I spend far too much time online.
  • I’m a perfectionist, my nickname is Penny Perfect!
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Louise

After a decade-long career in corporate interior design, I took a giant leap of faith, left the security of an office job, and founded B.LOVED in 2011 as a platform for romantic and beautiful wedding inspiration. Thanks to a whole lot of creativity, hard work and passion, my gamble paid off and B.LOVED became one of the leading wedding blogs in the UK.

You’ll also find me working as an Editorial Stylist, where I design and curate beautiful photoshoots for wedding and lifestyle brands, as well as contributing as a founding member of bridal inspiration hub Aisle Society, and running wedding industry community the B.LOVED Hive from our super pretty base in London. Yep, I definitely have the best job in the world.

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