Sally Jewers is opening Made By Sally J in Jacky Whites Market on October 15 and it will offer products made from reclaimed textiles, predominantly denim.
And one recent addition to the business is ‘a line of unusual dog coats and bandanas’, said Sally.
“When doing outdoor markets I realised that many people spend more on their pets than they do on themselves.
“Also having had dogs in the past I know that it is sometimes difficult to get coats that fit well.
“I started with a few prototypes and they went really well. Because denim is hard wearing it is great for dog jackets.”
There are also plenty of options for denim products for humans and Sally added: “Popular products include embellished jackets and dungarees, bags and aprons.
“I will also be offering a customisation service so customers can ‘design’ their own products and order made to measure dog coats.
“Everything is created by hand and no two products are alike.”
Sally, 57, added: “I have been running my business for a couple of years online and at craft fairs so this is an exciting opportunity for me.
“In the rest of my time I am a freelance educational consultant and working with UK and international schools and colleges. This work moved online last March giving more time to grow my craft business.”
The former New College Durham lecturer worked as a musician before moving into teaching.
“I was a lecturer at New College Durham for about 15 years before leaving to become a freelance consultant,” said Sally.
“I have been running my craft business alongside the consultancy for about five years.
“I have always been a keen amateur sewer having learnt from my grandmother at a very early age. She was a professional dressmaker specialising in wedding dresses and evening wear.
“I would watch her sewing and she would give me the unused fabric which I’d turn into outfits for my dolls, stitching them by hand at first and then using a sewing machine.”
Sally is also a ‘keen recycler and I especially like denim,’ she said. “As a fabric it is hard wearing and often improves with age.
“I love taking a jacket that looks tired and past its best and transforming it into something unique or turning a wrecked pair of jeans into an interesting bag or a funky dog coat.”
Sally said her products sell in her online shop across the UK but she also has regular customers in the USA, in Canada and Australia.
She added: “I am hoping the move to Jacky Whites will allow Made by Sally J to have a more regional presence and a place where customers know where to find my products.
“Most of the jackets I sell are made to measure but I have a range that can be bought off the peg.”