Member Spotlight: Bellwoven label and garment accessory specialist
Bellwoven Packaging specialises in the design, manufacture and supply of a wide range of garment accessories and has been established for more than 40 years.
The company’s product range includes garment labelling, tickets, tissues, ribbons and bespoke packaging, all of which can be produced in a sustainable way. Bellwoven can offer low minimum order quantities and a full branding package, using its in-house designers for full consistency throughout.
Many of the firm’s products are still manufactured in its UK factory, which is based along with the Head office and warehouse in the former cotton mill town of Colne in Lancashire. Bellwoven has 19 offices and production sites around the world, offering a full range of garment accessories including woven labels, printed labels, hang tags, badges, barcodes, bags, leather labels, packaging, seals and buttons.
Bellwoven’s customers vary from large multinational retailers to small independent brands and shops based here in the UK.
Helen Little is Bellwoven’s sales executive based at the UK head office in Colne.
How did you get where you are today?
I started working for Bellwoven back in 1995 as a receptionist. Soon after my employment commenced, I was transferred into the sales office where my responsibility was new developments and enquiries, which was solely an office-based role. As my three children left high school a few years ago I felt the timing was right to become a UK Sales Executive representing Bellwoven. I could commit much more time and travel the country offering my expertise and 25 years of experience to customers on a personal, face-to-face basis which I feel is highly important.
What attracted you to your role?
I have always had a keen interest in fashion and branding so this seemed the perfect role for me.
What does a typical (pre pandemic) day look like for you?
My days are spent mainly out visiting customers. When I am in the office I am providing quotations and artworks, liaising with potential and existing customers with their enquiries/orders. I also spend time researching the industry looking for new brands that I can help and introduce myself to. Out of the office, I travel all around the UK meeting customers to discuss their needs whether new developments or as a re-branding exercise.
What skills/characteristics do you need in your role?
To understand customers’ needs and help in the best way I can. The years of experience that I have brings a vast amount of background knowledge, which enables me to advise on what I feel is best for the customer. Also I see a friendly personal approach is so important to build up a good working relationship.
What do you like best about your role?
The relationship I build with customers… To help initially with their requirements and then look forward to seeing all the components coming together. As we can offer all labelling, tickets and bespoke packaging it is always rewarding seeing the final results. Knowing I have helped from the initial development of artwork to the point of delivery.
What has changed in your role over time and what has stayed the same?
Our product range has changed over time which has in turn changed my role. I can now help with full garment branding and packaging rather than just labels and tickets which were our main product base when my role began. This is highly important to keep brand consistency with substrates, design and colours throughout. Also the importance and ability to now offer environmentally-friendly options throughout our product range, using recycled substrates, organic, and bio-degradable options.
What are the biggest challenges you face?
Going forward with research and environmentally-friendly products. We now offer certified FSC hang tags and 100 % recycled cotton labels as we believe recycled labels and renewable materials help to reduce impact on our environment.
What motivates you?
My interest in my job and passion to help and secure orders.
What advice would you give to someone following in your footsteps?
Enjoy your role and keep it interesting, this definitely reflects in how you portray yourself and makes building customer relationships easier.
What does working in the UK fashion and textile industry mean to you?
It means a lot to know I have helped – it’s that simple. I meet so many people whether they are start-up customers where I help to offer low MOQS and advice on the best way to move forward, to large global clients both of which give me equal job satisfaction. Working for a company like Bellwoven feels like I am part of one big ‘family’, that in itself is something I am proud to still be a part of after all this time and hopefully is portrayed within my work.
Get in touch with Helen at Bellwoven at 07940 519205 or email@example.com
Bellwoven is a UKFT member. Interested in becoming a UKFT member? Find out more about membership here.