Crafty women in the region have created their own way to find a niche in the world of work and contributed £326m to our economy, a new study shows.
The report by notonthehighstreet.com and Oxford Economics says the growing creative sector is emblematic of the changing world of work, which is seeing more people turn away from traditional ‘9 to 5’ roles in favour of more flexible and independent ways of working - a situation whihc particularly suits many women with family commitments.
It says the North West is a leading force for creative business owners, with almost 12,000 small creative businesses employing 17,000 people and contributing £326m to the economy.
Of those small creative businesses selling with online marketplace notonthehighstreet.com, a whopping 90 per cent are run by women, well above the national average for female creative business ownership (27 per cent).
Notonthehighstreet.com, an online marketplace, also adds that female labour force participation has increased 3.2 per cent over the last decade, – one of the highest regions of growth and a contributor to overall regional female employment of 1.5m.
One Fylde coast business which has benefitted from the online marketplace is Daisy Maison, which offers crafted artwork from Westby with Plumptons near Blackpool.
Run by sisters Julie and Shelley Ellison it was founded eight years ago and specialises in hand made, paper, card and 3D artwork.
SHelley said the way of working suits both sisters and their family oriented lifestyles.
She said: “I was working for and insurance company but had to travel a lot and I was missing my kids. Now we don’t need to miss sports days and have time to spend with our families. We are a close family and it really suits our lifestyles.
“We started out mainly selling to trade but becoming part of notonthehighstreet has changed everything for us.
“The power of advertising is such that we have now become well recognised and it has given us the confidence to try new things.”
Simon Belsham, CEO of notonthehighstreet.com, said: “All over the country these businesses are highlighting the huge change under way in the UK workforce; which is seeing more women in work and more people turning to self-employment and flexible working.”