Here at #SNIZL, we believe that small businesses are big business. We’re proud to support some of the best local and independent companies in the Nottingham area, and we work hard to bring you great deals and discounts as soon as they land. We caught up with Anthony, co-owner and co-founder of Sauce & Brown, an independent clothing company based in Annesley Woodhouse specialising in hand-crafted products that are specifically limited to 100 of each design. Read on to find out what he had to say about the future of the business, why Nottingham is great for start-ups and what you can expect when you buy in to the brand!
Can you tell us a bit about your brand?
We started Sauce & Brown back in 2014, mainly because we found ourselves with a little spare time on our hands. We work with a business called Clothvsona which is a cloth printing and sampling service, and we decided that we could really expand upon this and get stuck in to something we felt really passionate about. We began looking into producing shirts but back then we felt that the price points were a little higher than we wanted, so we decided a range of t-shirts would be a great place to start. We noticed the market was oversaturated with chains of endless designs and there seemed to be a distinct lack of originality, which is where the idea of ‘One of One Hundred’ came from. We decided that we would only create 100 of each design, and once they were gone, they were gone! This was a completely new and fresh idea that hadn’t really been explored before, so we really wanted to focus on that and in turn it became something that was totally unique to us. People seem to really like that aspect of our business, and knowing they own something that’s in such limited supply is often what keeps them coming back. We also found that the hand-crafted designs were another huge selling point – we draw and design these completely in-house so there’s nothing like them anywhere else on the high street. We knew that the clothing industry needed shaking up and we really wanted to be one of the first to do it, and so Sauce & Brown was born!
What made you want to start a business in Nottingham?
This is where we’re from! We were born and bred in the East Midlands and we wanted to keep things local and true to our brand’s voice. We love this city and we’re proud of our roots and we feel that our designs really represent that. Ideally, our next step would be to open up a store in the city centre, but for the moment we’re happy keeping costs to minimum and focusing our time and resources on producing the best designs we can without compromising on quality. We’re currently working closely with several independent retailers in the city centre which stock a selection of our pieces. We also have a great online presence and do really well over on our website so it isn’t too important where we’re based! Sometimes people will see something on the website and drop by and pay us a visit just to meet us and find out more. We love that people will make the trip out to visit us specifically rather than just in passing – this gives us a great chance to really get to know our customers and develop a lasting relationship that keeps them returning time and again.
What or who inspires your brand?
We’re hugely inspired by traditional tattoos and old-fashioned drawings. All the drawing is done by hand and by me in the studio, with a biro, a bit of paper and my imagination. Then we just run with it! We also take a little inspiration from the 60’s and have a real mod-theme going through a lot of our pieces which you can really see in our check shirts. We don’t necessarily keep up with the latest trends or strictly follow the seasons and produce huge collections, we just like to do things our own way. Every so often we’ll throw in a completely new and different design in just to keep things fresh and inspired!
What makes your designs different to those on the high street?
All our products are hand-drawn and hand-designed by us – two guys that are genuinely really passionate about what we do. We feel we’re completely different to anything else that’s out there right now, we’ve got particular pieces such as the pin-up shirt that is synonymous with our brand and really stands out as our own. People often know something is Sauce & Brown just by looking at it and it’s great that we’ve become a real talking point when someone recognises something of ours.
What is the creative process behind your designs?
We just start scribbling! We pass it around between us and add or take away what works and what doesn’t. This process has been working really well for us so far and people seem to really like our designs, so there isn’t much more to it than that!
Do you plan on branching out and developing other lines?
We’re currently dabbling in producing a home-ware line and at the moment we have some great hand-designed coasters and flasks that have been doing really well, as well as a smaller range of accessories like wallets and lanyards. We get asked all the time if we’re planning to design a range for women, but for now we’re specialising in what we do best and sticking to menswear before we potentially consider designing for a female market in the future! We’ve done a few designs for a childrenswear line such as our original coin design, and to really keep it in the family we had Andy’s 7 year old daughter design the Sauce & Brown writing on one of the kids t-shirts which was a big hit!
Where are your current stockists?
In Nottingham we’re currently stocked in the Made in Nottingham store in Broadmarsh Shopping Centre, as well as Dezigne which is based down in Hockley. Across the rest of Nottingham we have some of our pieces in a barbers called Deakin & White in Toton and Long Eaton, plus the Two Little Magpies in Beeston. We’re also based in a shop called Badger a little further North in Chesterfield and we’re really proud to be working with lots of little home-grown boutique businesses local to the area.
Is Nottingham a good city for small businesses?
I personally think so, yes. All the brands that we work with are independent businesses making a good go of it and doing really well. Our friends at Dukki Designs in the Broadmarsh are another great example of a great local company and everyone is always willing to help and support each other and offer advice and guidance. It’s really nice to feel like part of a small community of people in the area that are all working hard to the same goal – just to make something of a business that they put their heart and soul into.
What’s next for Sauce & Brown?
We’ve just designed a new Autumn/Winter range called “Made in Mansfield”, made just up the road from us in Mansfield from 100% British Wool to really keep things that little bit more local. We’re working on woolly jumpers and woollen hats for a little later in the year, plus loads of brand new shirts about to drop and some great new designs and ideas in the pipe-line for the newest collection which was just released last week. We’ve also really recently become stockists of Gandys flip flops just in time for the Summer, and we’re hoping to bring in a whole other line of outerwear and winter coats at some point in the future. From here, we really hope to just keep branching out across the country and keep working hard to continue getting the word out about us. Watch this space!
If you’re keen to find out more about what these guys do and fancy checking out their website, just visit their website by clicking here and browse through their exclusive collection of hand-printed designs from t-shirts and shirts to socks and coats. Plus, for a limited time only Sauce & Brown are offering all SNIZL users 10% off when they shop in store or online – just head to our website to claim the deal!