About Laura's Beau
Laura’s Beau was founded in 1994 by Gill Kinnear with the help and guidance of her father, the late Ted and the support and help of her husband Ian. After 55 years in the household textile industry, Ted had been involved at the highest level in design development , manufacturing, buying and retailing.
Gill grew up in a textile-orientated household where there were always designs-in-development draped around the family home. Following the formation of Laura’s Beau, Ted introduced Gill to his favourite suppliers and these supplier relationships continue to this day. Ted taught Gill how to initiate a design and take it right through to the finished product, this was a thorough, unique and invaluable training.
The fundamental principles of the business were laid down in 1994. The emphasis is on traditional quality. All products are made from 100% cotton, all products are printed, quilted, pvc-coated and manufactured in the UK. Ted’s "old-school" principle of "good business with nice people" continues to underpin the business to this day.
Laura’s Beau was quickly very well established within the football and rugby market as a supplier of logo branded textiles. Laura’s Beau supplies many clubs throughout the league from small to Premier league clubs.
In 2001, Gill decided to produce her own range of British-made high quality floral textiles. This was a brave move as the biggest advertising textile slogan of the day was ‘chuck out your chintz’. It was believed that customers now bought on solely on price and preferred the cheaper, albeit, inferior quality products which were imported from overseas by the container load.
Gill and Ted decided to “buck the trend” and sell high quality British made floral textiles. They focussed on William Morris designs for which they held the licenses and a range of designs from a C19th & early C20th century French textile archive that Gill discovered and purchased.
The wholesale side of the business took a new direction by exporting overseas and soon regular shipments started. In 2010, with a “state of the art” direct dispatch operation in place, Gill decide to sell directly to the public and the retail catalogue and online mail order business proved to be highly successful.
In 2013 the new, improved, website was launched and Laura’s Beau continues to go from strength to strength. Laura’s Beau continues to be founded upon the traditional principles of business integrity and quality Ted instilled in 1994, yet it harnesses the most up-to-date technological methods, which ensure our retail customers always receive quality goods in the fastest of dispatch time, with honest, courteous, service.
In 2014, Laura, Gills daughter, graduated university, and has since been working in the business developing her own range. The range is called 'Hearts & Kisses' and can be viewed on our website. The range was inspired from Paris, and chosen out of our French archive. The range comes in a host of products, iPad cases, make up bags and a 1950s vintage apron, to reach a new and younger audience with our products. It has been a very successful range of products for the business.
2015 has been the most ambitious in licencing new William Morris designs. In May, Golden Lily was produced, this is the most complex of all the designs Laura's Beau has ever produced. There are 10 colours within the design and it is a firm favourite with customers worldwide. October will see the launch of two new William Morris designs, Willow Bough printed in both blue and green colourways and another design titled Brother Rabbit which will be produced in a deep blue colour. Producing all these designs in many different products and fabrics, Laura's Beau proves to be one of the biggest retailers of William Morris household goods in the UK- something they are incredibly proud of, and are excited as to what will come next!