A Lancashire mum is launching her first range of fabrics, and opening a new studio.
As her fledgling fashion brand goes from strength-to-strength, Sophie Bell-Carr is set to unveil Huxter Prints, a collection of fabric prints created by her team following growing demand from customers for bespoke designs.
The textile designer and busy mother-of-two is also moving the business from the garage of her family home in Ribby near Kirkham, to a new studio at Clifton Fields, Freckleton, to accommodate increasing orders and two new members of staff.
Sophie, 40, established Huxter after becoming frustrated with the limited options for her two lively boys, Buster, seven, and Huxley, four. Drawing on 20 years’ experience in high end textiles and interiors, she started making her own fun and colourful clothes.
It wasn’t long before friends started to put in their orders and now, two-and-a-half years on, Sophie has a thriving business with customers all over the world thanks to the internet.
She said: “I wanted to make unique, durable and most of all fun clothing for children, inspired by my two boys. I discovered some incredible fabrics near to where we were living in Germany at the time, and have been importing them ever since.
"However, with a background in textile design, I’ve always wanted create my own patterns and I’ve enjoyed building up a collection uniquely Huxter.”
As a military wife - husband Rob is currently serving in Kuwait but will be moving to Fulwood Barracks on his return - many of her customers are army friends, and were the inspiration for the first of a range of regimental fabrics.
She explained: “There is such pride in being a member of a regiment, but unsurprisingly the army doesn’t do much of a line in children’s merchandise.
"A lot of friends were ordering clothes for their children to wear for special events like homecoming parades. I was bowled over to discover that two of my dresses were worn by girls seeing their fathers given honours at Buckingham Palace.”
She said she will have a full suite of regimental designs to complement the other range of children's wear.