A chat with a Devon business – Whole Caboodle Design

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A taste of Whole Caboodle Design

In the Janners quest to support local small businesses, I caught up with Lorraine from whole Caboodle Design, who specializes in “handmade wedding stationery & gifts made with love”  and this is what she had to say.

“My name is Lorraine and I am The Whole Caboodle. I’m a northerner moved south! I grew up near Sheffield before moving to Lincoln to study graphic design and Illustration, then headed down to sunny Devon. Growing up, my family came to Devon every year for our holidays, and I now live just a stones throw away form the beautiful caravan site where we always stayed. It did feel a bit like being on an extended holiday for the first few years but now I’m well and truly settled with husband and 2 kids.

Since being very young I’ve always been interested in art and design and all things crafty, and although my background is graphic design and Illustration, I’ve always brought a 3D element to my work. I love using handmade papers, pretty ribbons, wire work, beads and beautiful crystals.

The Whole Caboodle began whilst I was at University. Given free reign to write our own brief and I chose to design and market a range of greetings cards. I sold them to a gallery and a little interior design shop where I worked on a Saturday. From there an agent spotted my work and I began selling to gift shops and galleries up and down the country, fulfilling orders between university projects and in my free time at weekends, occasionally drafting in a few housemates to get orders finished on time! After my degree it felt right just to carry on. My best selling designs were my Wedding cards, so after a while I steered the business more towards wedding stationery and that’s where I am now. I offer a full range of handmade stationery which includes invitations, menus, place cards, seating plans, favour boxes and more. Some clients choose everything, others just one or two bits and pieces, it’s nice to have that mix.

I work almost full time from my lovely studio above the garage, where I live. My studio is a relatively new addition to an old house. The house (built around 1850) has a touch of Sherlock Holmes history and it’s documented that Arthur Conan Doyle stayed here whilst carrying out research on the moors for The Hound of the Baskervilles. I like to think of that while I’m sat working!

If I’m not working on orders, then you’ll still find me in the studio working on new designs. My morning consists of having a cup of tea, seeing the kids off to school then I’m at work by 9am, clocking off again at 3pm to do the school run (apart from Wednesday mornings when you’ll find me running through the countryside like a mad thing with a little running group consisting of a few local mums).

I love antique fairs and flea markets which often provide inspiration for my work, particularly things like vintage buttons, old postcards and old manuscripts. I have a fabulous collection of old linen buttons for a design that I’m working on at the moment, and vintage typewriters and pens which I like to feature in photos alongside my invites. I love beautiful things with a little bit of sparkle and that’s what I try to convey in my work and I love the fact that designing wedding stationery allows me to be a little part of a couples’ big day.”


So there you go, now pop in and have a look, and whilst your there buy a few bits and bobs!


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