Stalybridge home to a Blossoming business popular with celebrities

A STALYBRIDGE business is making people around the world bag adoring looks while lying at their doors – all after proving a real sleeping giant.

Not bad for something started from Laura Brownhill’s spare bedroom.

Copley Mill, at St Paul’s Trading Estate off Huddersfield Road, may look unassuming but it is home to something huge.

For Koko Blossom and its offshoot Mattify are providing many famous faces and customers around the world with a wide range of personalised products and doormats they cross every time they leave or enter their homes.

Managing Director, Laura Brownhill. Image by GGC Media

All this came from humble beginnings, as creative director Laura – whose four-woman team is producing magic – revealed to The Correspondent.

She said: “I wanted a business I could start from home when my little one was still a baby.

“I just started it in the spare bedroom, outgrew that and moved the bedrooms around, then I moved to smaller unit here at Copley Mill and it’s got bigger and bigger.

“We’re literally serving the world. We send products to America, we sent someone in New York ordered two of our doormats. I think that’s amazing.

Koko Blossom and its offshoot Mattify are providing many famous faces and customers around the world with personalised products

“Several celebrities have bought things from us too. I think it’s amazing – if a bit weird.

“After studying PR and Marketing at the University of Central Lancashire, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do from there, so I just started doing any job.

“I felt really unsettled, so I went travelling for a year to get my head around what I wanted to do.

“I came back and got a job with Dorma, a huge bed linen company, and I feel that set me on the path towards everything else.

Mattify supplies doormats with a difference

“I then worked for an Australian bed linen company, travelling out there twice a year to go and pick ranges I’d go and present to big stores here.

“Then I fell pregnant and had my son. I was working in Worsley and it was taking an hour every day to get there, so I thought, ‘This isn’t going to work.’

“I put together a range of personalised pillowcases. I thought I’d stick with something I know, so I got white pillowcases and started printing names on.

“I was accepted on to Not On The High Street and it grew to the point I didn’t have to go back to work. I just started running the business full-time.

The products are proving popular with celebrities

“It started with the pillowcases but there was obviously a need for them. It really grew and about two years down the line, by some luck, Next phoned me and said they were starting a personalised section on their website and asked if I wanted to go on as the products stood out.

“They only chose six businesses from across the UK to go on, we were one alongside five massive ones.

“I don’t know what kind of fortune hit us that day but it really did, and it helped the business get bigger and bigger.”

After beginning eight years ago, Koko Blossom became firmly established and broadened its range.

Among its products, which need fresh artwork doing every time as they are personalised, are tea towels featuring lyrics of a couple’s first dance for a second, cotton, wedding anniversary.

Personalised bags, perfect for holiday season

And a search for something for Laura’s own home led to her latest hit, Mattify.

She added: “At the time we started, personalised was getting big. We were one of the first to start doing it, then we moved more into personalised lifestyle products – phone cases, suitcases, bags, we do loads of beach bags during the summer.

“But four years ago, I was doing a house renovation and was looking for a nice doormat.

“I couldn’t find any trendy doormats that were good quality and couldn’t see any nice, personalised ones either, so I thought, ‘There’s an opportunity here,’ and started Mattify.

“That’s growing and growing. Next have taken those too.”

A company as successful as Laura’s could easily find itself in a multi-million pound facility in the middle of the Cheshire set, but Stalybridge is home and will be.

Laura, who comes from the town and whose children go to Millbrook Primary School, told The Correspondent: “I’ve lived here all my life. I went to Copley school and Ashton Sixth Form College.

“I just love Stalybridge, it’s where I was born and feel comfortable in. We also find it really handy.

“And our future plan is to get our products in other high street retailers.”

KOKO Blossom offers a click and collect service for people who live locally and do not want to pay postage and packaging on orders.

You can find them, and purchase, by clicking www.kokoblossom.co.uk and www.mattify.co.uk.

They are also on Instagram at www.instagram.com/kokoblossom.

 

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