DUKKI 3 YEARS ON.

So much has happened in the last three years, but winning the competition gave us hope, because for the first time since I was made redundant (in the march of 2014) someone actually saw the potential in our business model, and deciding to become self employed, instead of working for a soulless corporation didn’t seem like such a big mistake after all.

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Heidi – Head Bogger

A very personal account.

Ayup, yer boggers. It’s three years to the day, since we won the Inspiring Retail competition, that spring-boarded our little online home-run business, to a thriving destination shop in the centre of Nottingham. When Ian and I applied for the  competition just a month before, we never thought we’d eventually end up winning it.

So much has happened in the last three years, but winning the competition gave us hope, because for the first time since I was made redundant (in the march of 2014) someone actually saw the potential in our business model, and deciding to become self employed, instead of working for a soulless corporation didn’t seem like such a big mistake after all.

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Just after winning the Inspiring

I’m not going to say it was easy. When I was made redundant in 2014, I was probably at my lowest point emotionally. I had given everything to my previously job, lost relationship after relationship,  and felt terrifically undervalued as a human being by the end of it. I also thought that I didn’t have the skills I needed to find another job, so becoming self employed seemed like the only lifeline. Surviving on Beans on toast, and the odd graphic design job here and there, I really thought “This is it. who’s going to employ me now?” I felt like I’d sold my soul for 4 years, and gained nothing from it.

I referred myself for a series of cognitive behavioural therapy, which is probably the best decision I have ever made, as it allowed me to see things differently, and discuss my problems with someone unbiased. It was certainly the turning point, and I would recommend it to anyone. There is a huge stigma attached to mental health issues, and I, myself have been guilty in the past of thinking people should just “gerroverit”, but it only takes one significant life event to make things not OK. and things were definitely NOT OK.

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Little Audrey

A week after we met, I went to pick up a kitten I’d bought, (because I’d resigned me-sen to a lifetime of spinsterhood, surrounded by cats.) Now, we’re a little family unit, and she’s as much a daddy’s girl as anything! She’s a bleddeh tinker!

I’ve always been a ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ kind of girl, and spontaneity doesn’t phase me, whereas Ian is a lot more level headed, and I think that’s why we work so well together. When we won the shop in Broadmarsh, I knew it would work, and I was excited about living each day as it comes. Don’t get me wrong, you need a good business plan in place, if you’re to succeed, but not going through with the shop, after being given such an opportunity, was not an option. I knew we had to make it work, and it nearly killed us!

DUkki Broadmarsh opening.
Look how empty our shop looked when we first opened!

We opened 1st December 2014, 3 weeks after winning the competition. Luckily I had suppliers in place from my previous job, and, as it happens, all those skills I’d learned manufacturing personalised gifts, transferred very well to this job, which is why we manufacture 80% of the products we sell on site now.

Two good years in the Broadmarsh centre, allowed us to open our current shop in St. James’s Street. A lovely quirky little shop, just next door to the Malt cross, and Handmade Nottingham – another wonderful example of an independent gift shop. We love being on St. James’s Street, along with several other independent businesses. It suits our brand, and has upper floors which we use for studio space and manufacturing.

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Our beautiful shop on St James’s Street.

We never know what each day will bring, but we have built such a wonderful following on social media, and even have our own ‘Bogger Talk’ group on Facebook, dedicated to speaking proper Notts! I only wish I could clone myself, so that I could achieve all the ideas that are floating around in my head! Any small business owner will tell you, that there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Right now, whilst I’m typing this, I’m acutely aware of the fact that Ian is running around like a blue arsed fly, collecting stock together for a market we’re doing on Sunday!There is always something I want to do, and never enough time to do it, which is why this monthly blog, has become a quarterly rant, and my mailing list members are lucky if they receive an email twice a year!

Any-road, I love running Dukki, and chatting with you Boggers on Facebook (please like our page!) and we hope to be able to continue it, for as long as the economic climate allows us to! If you find yourself in Market square, just nip up St. James’s Street and see us. We’ll always welcome you, and the ‘kekkle is allus on!’

If you’ve got this far, then well done! I’ve rambled on forever, so I’d better go and get all the other jobs done that I’ve neglected.

Ta-ra, me duck!

Our upcoming events: Barton’s PLC ‘Not the Camden Market’ Sunday 5th and 19th November, Chilwell High Rd.

25th-26th November – Rufford Abbey Winter Market.

Barton’s PLC ‘Not the Camden Market’ Sunday 3rd and 17th December, Chilwell High Rd.

Late night shopping ’til 8pm every Wednesday in December. We will also be open on a Monday throughout December annorl!

 

 

 

A Brief History of Dukki

AY UP, yo boggers!

You might alreadeh follow us on Facebook, twitter or Instagram, and know a bit abaht us boggers, or you might ‘av just chanced upon our blog on your travels through tinterweb. Warrever the circumstances, we thought we’d introduce ussens, and tell you all abaht how Dukki wuz formed. (No, we ‘aven’t spelled the words wrong, it’s colloquial writing. If yer don’t like it, yowl soon geroverit, me duck!)

The history of Dukki, is also kind of a love story!

Way back in 2014, I was made redundant, from a job that I’d slogged at for 4 years, with little recognition. you know the type, you put everything into it, thinking that you’ll make something of yourself from it one day, but that day never arrives…

Shurrup---mousematAfter 100s of job applications, and the realisation that I didn’t like ‘working for the man’ I decided to set up my own business. It was later that month, that I went on a blind date with a slightly quirky, bald man, and on a very sunny afternoon in #Beeston in the beer garden at The Crown, we discussed art, illustration, Nottingham and everything in between…. We discovered that we were both artists, and talked about how he could sell some of his work on my website, and we got on so well. In the July, we hosted our first stall with the @bibfmarket at the vintage warehouse, which was a quiet event, but we had such good feedback, that we pursued more. With no money for a car, we would load stock into suitcases and wheel it to events, like @bartonsplc monthly craft markets, and the @craftinthecityevents.

In December 2014, we won the Inspiring retail awards, and had 3 weeks to open our shop! It was a whirlwind from start to finish, but the rest is history. This photo was taken on the first day, right before we opened. 


We had hardly any stock, and hadn’t got a clue what would happen. We now get to live and work together every day, and we’re so proud of how things have gone. All we want to do is celebrate Nottingham, and the beautiful things it has to offer, and we’re so glad that you all want to support us whilst we do it. Getting to work with a slightly quirky bald man, isn’t half bad either 🙂

Introducing Katie Abey Design

Introducing Katie Abey Design.
This year has been a whirlwind here at DUKKI. But we’re very pleased to announce that our DUKKI SHOWCASE 2015 is ending with a big rainbow coloured bang, probably containing jelly beans, or unicorn droppings if that’s what you like to call them….

This year has been a whirlwind here at DUKKI. But we’re very pleased to announce that our DUKKI SHOWCASE 2015 is ending with a big rainbow coloured bang, probably containing jelly beans, or unicorn droppings if that’s what you like to call them……ahem.

We introduce Katie Abey to our shop, although she needs very little introduction, because she is already a well known bogger on the Nottingham Illustration scene.

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A big load of Katie’s goodies, currently on display in our shop, Broadmarsh Centre, Nottingham.

Katie lives and works in a crazy little house in Derbyshire, with her fiancé, Jeff, and their cat, Frank. She works from home and has her work area carefully positioned next to the kitchen (and therefore the fridge and the kettle!)

She is inspired by anything weird and wonderful and aims to create colourful and happy illustrations by combining humour and puns with a touch of attitude and sweetness. Her aim is to create statements that are relate-able and will make people smile.

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It certainly did!

Every single day starts with with a fun illustration to get the cogs whirring. She enjoys drawing her illustrations using pencil and fine-liners and then adding colours and textures digitally.

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Her work has appeared in all sorts of places, from the walls inside Spanky Van Dyke’s, the hoarding for the redevelopment campaign in Sneinton Market, and even a range of Stationary for WH Smiths! (oo-er!)

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Cotton tote bags on sale in our shop.

When she’s not drawing she enjoys music, reading, going on adventures and frequently changing her hair colour to match its surroundings!

You can follow Katie on Facebook here and twitter here, and, of course, pop in and see what she has for sale in DUKKI!

DUKKI SHOWCASE 2015 – Introducing Mel Graham Artist

Mel will be featuring some larger pieces of work, alongside smaller prints and cards.
Driven by her passion to paint, new work is always available.

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We are very proud to announce that our next artist to exhibit at DUKKI will be the Internationally selling and self taught artist Mel Graham!

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Mel’s endless landscapes and dramatic seascapes focus on the sheer and raw beauty of space and nature. Her colours are vibrant and brush strokes vivid, with colours chosen entirely by mood.
Her studio and adjoining gallery, are located in Nottingham, UK.  The light and space provides the opportunity for large and striking work to be produced.  Inspiration is drawn from the sea, and the empty expanse of natures finest. 

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Mel will be featuring some larger pieces of work, alongside smaller prints and cards.
Driven by her passion to paint, new work is always available.  Work often takes weeks to complete, or sometimes only hours.  Mel generally works on about four pieces at once, leaves them, and then works again,
re-defining and re-energising her work.

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She has sold hundreds of paintings from the UK to Australia, The Falkland Islands to San Francisco.  She received a “Highly Commended” status in the Artist category in the Patchings 2015 Competition for Squall of Teal.

More examples of her work can be found on Artfinder.com and her website which can be found by clicking here. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Help us to give a big welcome to Mel, by sharing this blog, and supporting local artists. You can keep up to date with all things DUKKI on our Facebook page.

Ta, me owds!

Burning Sensations Pyrography are now exhibiting at DUKKI

Please help to support our local artists, by popping into the shop, but if you can’t make it to Nottingham, you can follow Burning Sensations Pyrography on Facebook by clicking here

Ay up!

Our July exhibition has started. Its a pyrography takeover, her at DUKKI, and here are some of the highlights. Make sure you pop down to see it all. 24 hours in, and some of the items in these photographs have already been sold!

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  The exhibition will run until the 31st July11758840_10153226116587182_2035818164_n Beautiful home sweet home hanging pieces, and mini trinket boxes.

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Steam Punk Style wooden trunk £65 (detail shown below)

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More burnt offerings!11774406_10153226116197182_449120725_nThe tree of life Plaque.

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Eye of Horus plate,

Please help to support our local artists, by popping into the shop, but if you can’t make it to Nottingham, you can follow Burning Sensations Pyrography on Facebook by clicking here

Ta for now, me duck!

DUKKISHOWCASE2015 – Introducing Burning Sensations Pyrography

Liz has been a pyrography Artist for 17 years. She concentrates mainly on cartoon and tattoo style art, hand burning pictures and words onto wooden items, like keepsake boxes, plaques and bookmarks.

Good Morning everybody! It’s time to introduce the forthcoming exhibition we are having here at DUKKI. The next bogger to come and exhibit is Liz from

                                      Burning Sensations Pyrography                                          17-31 July 2015

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Liz has been a pyrography Artist for 17 years. She concentrates mainly on cartoon and tattoo style art, hand burning pictures and words onto wooden items, like keepsake boxes, plaques and bookmarks.

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She also carries out commissions in a variety of different styles, providing personalised unique gifts.

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Burning Sensations Pyrography is based in Gedling, Nottinghamshire and you will also find them at various craft stalls, festivals, tattoo conventions and comic conventions. They cover a wide range of steam-punk/alternative fairs all over the UK, selling their burnt wooden offerings; in fact, you can find them tomorrow at Dubdayz Summerfest tomorrow 11th July.

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you can follow Burning Sensations Pyrography on Facebook by clicking here

Come down and show your support for her creations from 17 July, DUKKI, Upper level, Broadmarsh Shopping Centre, Nottingham, NG1 7LN

DUKKI SHOWCASE 2015 – Introducing Tom Marshall of Photogra-Fix

Tom Marshall is a photo colouriser, based in Glasgow, but originally from the East Midlands. He uses digital techniques to transform black and white photos into full colour works of art which bring history back to life.

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This year has flown by, and it’s now time to introduce Tom Marshall from PhotograFix, who will be exhibiting ‘Nottingham’s Past in Colour’ here at DUKKI from 17th June to 5th July.

Tom Marshall is a photo colouriser, based in Glasgow, but originally from the East Midlands.  He uses digital techniques to transform black and white photos into full colour works of art which bring history back to life.  The colours used for each image are researched to the fullest extent possible and often many days of work go into completing each picture.

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We are particularly excited about having Tom to exhibit with us this month, as he is                                             brother to Heidi, owner of Dukki.                                                    Heidi says “Growing up with Tom, it was easy to see that his career path would take him down a creative route. After making countless short special effects films, and later studying Media at the university of Lincoln, Tom became more and more interested in photography and old photographs in particular, which is where PhotograFix was born. I’m delighted to have him exhibiting at our shop!”

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Tom has a great love of the history of Nottingham and the surrounding area, with a particular interest in the architecture that has long since disappeared.

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 Tom has had the pleasure of colourising historical photographs for the Open University, the British Army, the National Museum of Ireland and the Welsh Guard, alongside commissions for private clients. 

Below, a  group of Irish soldiers recuperating with nurses c1917. Pictured are two different nursing organisations, the Territorial Force Nursing Service (TFNS) and the Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service (QAIMNS). The TFNS wore a blue grey cape with a scarlet trim, and just visible on the uniforms of the nurses to the left of the image is a small silver ‘T’ which defines them as such. This Image was colourised as part of a recent exhibition for the National Museum of Ireland and a link to the exhibition can be found here 

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Toms offers a full restoration service, and colourising starts from £25.

 To See more of Tom’s work at www.photogra-fix.com or at www.facebook.com/PhotograFixUK