Yorkshire Lads Launch County Themed Clothing Website
13 August 2015
Two young, Yorkshire entrepreneurs with a passion for the county have launched a new e-commerce business that offers 100’s of original t-shirts and merchandise products, all with a Yorkshire theme.
Kristian Wilkinson aged 26 and Edward McConville aged 29 originally created I’m from Yorkshire as an online community in 2013 allowing users to share and showcase photographs and stories from across the region. However after identifying a gap in the market for Yorkshire themed products, they have since started designing and printing t-shirts featuring common sayings from the county.
“We launched I’m from Yorkshire on Yorkshire Day as an online community. It enables people from Yorkshire to come together and celebrate all that they love about the region by sharing photographs and stories."
The community proved to be extremely popular with a loyal following and it didn't take long for the two entrepreneurs to spot a demand and the e-commerce side of the business was born. The rest, as they say, is history!
Since the products launched tens of thousands of Yorkshire folk have bought them and sent back photographs from all over the world. Just looking through the pictures on Facebook, which has attracting 136,000 people and counting, you can see how loyal a following they have gathered and how passionate Yorkshire folk are about their roots.
“Whilst the business is still very much focused on the community that we have built, there is no denying that the products we create are hugely popular. We can now offer them clothing and merchandise. We stock hundreds of t-shirts and a wide range of other items including flags, keyrings, phone cases, mugs, shopper bags and cards that showcase sayings and icons synonymous with the county.
“All of our products are developed following suggestions from the community; we use the feedback that we receive on Facebook to develop new ideas and bring these to life. That is the power of social media and the main driving force for the e-commerce side of our business. Giving the people what they want!”
Having been born and raised in Yorkshire, Kristian and Edward are extremely passionate about the county and believe that this strong sense of identity that is associated with the region is a major benefit for the business and a reason they now attract between 5,000 and 20,000 hits to the website every day.
“Yorkshire people are seen to identify more with their county than their country and the dialect and accent is also very distinctive. We saw this immediately when we started the community, receiving hundreds of photographs and stories every week from users. With I’m from Yorkshire we have been able to capitalise upon this using it as a basis for the business. It’s early days but the response from customers has been excellent. We hope to eventually become the 'go to' resource online for anything and everything Yorkshire”
“The community from I’m from Yorkshire are encouraged to share their photographs of the area on our Facebook page, the next step will be giving users the opportunity to have the photograph printed onto a t-shirt or a beach towel. We hope to introduce this service within the next two months after receiving positive feedback from our customers.
“A personalised piece of clothing makes for a great present or simply a gift to yourself which proudly displays your Yorkshire roots. We have no doubt that this type of service will prove popular with our clients.
In 2015 the ambitious duo are also looking to establish strong connections with retailers and gift shops and have their range stocked on the high street. They are already working with numerous councils in the area and a handful of independent gift shops. As well as this Edward and Kristian are hoping to network and establish ties with other 'Yorkshire' themed businesses and entities.
“Our ambition next year is to see our t-shirts and merchandise stocked in shops across the region. The range is an ideal addition for gift stores or retailers that have high footfall from Yorkshire folk.”
Edward comments: “You don't have to look far to find other organisations who are showcasing their Yorkshire roots. One such partner worth a mention who we have worked with on cross promotion is The Great Yorkshire Brewery. Carl and his team have created a fine range of brews all Born and Bred in Yorkshire. We are hoping that in the next chapter of our story we can network and build strong ties with likeminded people.”
Not content with focusing on just clothing, Kristian and Edward also plan to launch a new YouTube channel this year focusing particularly on Yorkshire themed videos. Before doing so, the company hopes to raise its profile, and as part of this recently sponsored a Yorkshire Day event which was held in Pontefract on 1st August.
“Yorkshire Day, which celebrates everything associated with Yorkshire, seemed like a natural fit for I’m from Yorkshire. We’re passionate about the county and were keen to show our support for the celebration. We had a stall on the day, showcasing our great range of products; and it proved invaluable in getting everyone talking about I’m from Yorkshire.”
With orders increasing by the day, an ever expanding product list and big ambitions to take I’m from Yorkshire online to in store, there is no doubt that the future of this company looks like it’s going to be a good ‘un.
For further information about I’m from Yorkshire, please visit website http://imfromyorkshire.com/