Initially London was founded in 2015 by Jane Wiest, an ex-New Yorker with an obsession for big bold American-style monogramming and embroidery. Initially London’s monogrammed accessories and linens are now well established in the UK, offering a modern take on personalisation, with a huge range of font style and thread colour choice.
Initially London 's mantra is that a well designed monogram is more than just initials: it becomes a personal brand logo that never goes out of style.
Our range of classic accessories, gorgeous linens and unique gifts are made for all ages and occasions and, as much as possible, use sustainable fabrics such as sisal, raffia, organic cotton, canvas and leather. We design and produce many of our own lines, but also source from artisan producers and small manufacturers in Britain, Morocco, India, Europe and America.
All our embroidery is done in our London studio by a team of incredibly talented embroidery specialists, graphic designers and textile artists.
WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY ABOUT US
We are known for our very high customer service standards, the quality of our products and our unusual approach to personalisation. Our clients say wonderful things about us:
- "Initially London are perfectionists: talented, stylish, problem-solvers, professional, speedy and fun to work with" (Brooke L.)
- "Excellent quality and quick services. Lovely ideas for presents!" (Tatiana T)
- "Absolutely thrilled at the exceptional customer service and fantastic product" (Tim S.)
- "A fantastic female-founded, British production-based business. I love the wide variety of products you can choose from and the ways you can make them distinctly personal with a wide array of colours and fonts" (Kate B.)
OUR ONLINE PRESENCE
Initially London’s innovative website re-creates the design experience of working with us in our showroom by allowing clients to choose from over 50 font styles and thread colours to create a bespoke monogram. Designs can be endlessly experimented with, changed and previewed on every item before purchasing. The Shopify app that powers our website is one of the most extensive personalisation design tool on the market.
In addition to embroidery, we use laser etching to monogram products such as stainless steel bottles, glass candles, cork yoga blocks, rubber stamps and more. The result is the same: a detailed design that is sure to last.
The combination of product choice, graphic design technology, colour and craftsmanship makes for a creative purchase experience and a unique product.
WHY WE NEED A TUKTUK
Our business was founded in London and, as a result, there is a very large and loyal London-based clientele. In addition to these core retail clients, we have London-based trade clients who use us for white label monogramming, events, corporate gifting, interior design and more. The ability to deliver quickly, efficiently and sustainably to these core clients is critical to our business.
Our busiest time of year is September through December, when the gifting season hits full throttle. This year we are anticipating a delivery crisis due to the rapid growth in online shopping since lockdown. We are beginning to worry about the strain on the roads and the courier system in London over the next few months and beyond.
As a means of ensuring that our London deliveries arrive in a timely manner, we hope to purchase a Piaggio Ape van (affectionately referred to as the "tuktuk") which we would use for deliveries in a range of London postcodes. Because the tuktuk would be branded with Initially London's logo and details, this curious little vehicle would also serve as a moveable billboard for the business as it makes it way around London's loveliest neighbourhoods.
BENEFITS TO US AND THE COMMUNITY
We are constantly thinking of ways to make our e-commerce business more environmentally sustainable and efficient and we believe the Initially London tuktuk concept would go a long way in this area:
- Less packaging is required for hand deliveries compared to postal shipping.
- Recycling bins in London homes are limited in space so we anticipate that clients will be happier to receive a reusable white shopping bag than shipping boxes that have to be dismantled for recycling.
- Less road congestion in our local neighbourhood because the tuktuk's 3-wheel profile is slim and short so it can move nimbly through even narrow city streets without blocking traffic.
- Lower emissions and petrol use: the Piaggio Ape 50 is fully compliant with the stringent limits of the Euro 4 standard on vehicle emissions, a vast improvement over standard white petrol or diesel vans. Fuel efficiency is impressive at up to 80mpg.
WHY WE'RE ASKING FOR YOUR HELP
It's been a year that no one could have anticipated. Our carefully laid plans for the year were, like all businesses, thrown to the side in March and we've been fighting like mad to make a new plan as we go. Our incredibly supportive client base has helped us get through this difficult time, and we continue to build that base. Crowdfunding is a great opportunity to tell our story to a wide audience and earn buy-in from existing and new friends of the business.
We will use the crowdfunding proceeds to pay for the purchase, fitting out and branding of the Initially London tuktuk.
Huge thanks from the whole Initially London team for any support you can give us.