Thursday, 1 April 2010

Doors Open to Brighton Mind Boutique

The time has come! Flooring re-done, walls up to date, stock in, garments priced, cakes out, and bubbly popped, as the queue begins forming. Doors opened to the new Brighton Mind shop on Wednesday 31 March - the opening to it's first boutique style shop.

It was over four months ago when we received this brief, and to get so far and see the end result is such a huge achievement, yet a relief following our hard work. I can see a great improvement in the whole store design and the goods offered. Including donations from a range of celebrity names for the launch.

The main aim of the store concept is to transform it into a unique charity worth shopping in. An environment that will encourage customers to browse and consume great donations in keeping with that charity feel. This is a big step for Mind as well as it is for us students. It's been a great opportunity to do something for a good cause, and I hope this will be the start to creating a better brand identity for Mind.

Our campaign 'EQUALITY in Mind' also launches, hoping to tackle stigma and discrimination as 1 in 4 people suffer from mental health distress. It is more common than you think, and it's not something that everyone speaks out about so someone close to you may be going through this.

The grand opening included a catwalk with students modelling ethical designs following the 'make do and mend' concept that were also shown at the Ideal Home Show, and a silent auction for those celebrity pieces ending Friday 9 April. So, if you've not seen what's on offer - go before they get snatched! Highest bids win.

The launch was a huge success as we saw the end of day income increased by a fantastic 280% more than a good day at the original Mind shop. All thanks to those who came and purchased. So let's hope this continues!

To end this blog, I just want to say some thank you's to some people involved in this success -
- My team: Emily Marsh, Hellen Njagi, Shama-Rose Morgan, Carol Chung and Rasha Muyheddeen for bringing our great ideas together to get this far!
- Tom Empson, Mind's communications officer and our mentor at UCA for his hard work in helping us along the way and also his commitment to this project behind the scenes.
- Bob and Chris from Mind, for giving us this opportunity to redesign one of their shops and working to put the proposals into the store.
- The team back at the Mind office and our tutors at UCA for coming and supporting.
- Sara Callarman and those who volunteered to be in our campaign: very grateful for their contribution!
- The girls who designed and modelled the catwalk collection; you were great!
- Amanda and Rosie at the Brighton Mind shop for being a great support behind our ideas. We hope they are content with what they have to work in now!

…and finally, to everyone who donated and purchased as all this will make a huge difference to Mind and those who need support. Keep those donations coming!

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