Meet the Maker - SowHow

Sunday, April 05, 2015
Happy Easter! We hope you are enjoying a lovely weekend eating your fare share of chocolate Easter eggs (invented right here in Bristol!) The warmer days have turned our attention to the garden and our growing plans for 2015. In our new venture Lab Shop we are now selling SowHow's beautifully designed packets organic seed packets. Full of advice, inspiration and recipe ideas these will help you grow every step of the way. Paul, aka SowHow, told us more about his Bristol based business....Firstly please can you introduce yourself.... 
My name is Paul and I’ve lived in Bristol for 18 years and have worked as a designer for most of that time. In 2008 I was lucky enough to get an allotment plot and that’s where my interest in gardening began. The idea behind SowHow originated from looking around garden centres and thinking about redesigning the seed packets on display.

Where do you find inspiration? 
There’s a thriving creative scene of designers, artists and craft-people in Bristol which means that inspiration is always close-at-hand. The numerous excellent Arts Trails in the city are usually worth exploring. I find going back to the classic examples of early 20th-century design often helps – discovering new things from old books!

Have you any exciting plans for 2015?
Spring is going to be busy! As well as promoting the product range online at, I’m planning to get involved with initiatives to inspire more people to grow-their-own veg. (If you’ve any suggestions please get in touch!)
How would you describe your aesthetic?
The SowHow look is directly inspired by modernist design posters and classic book covers. I decided on a minimalist, colourful graphic style as alternative to the standard packaging approach used for most gardening products. And I feel it’s important that the information inside the packets is carefully-crafted too.

What do you find challenging and rewarding about working from home?
SowHow is run from a tiny studio at home so space is the biggest challenge. I try to be very organised to keep on top of orders and stock. Fortunately, seed packets are small and light so they don’t take up too much room.
Which Bristol green space are you currently enjoying and why?
My allotment plot in South Bristol is an urban escape to the country. Digging over soil in the fresh air is great exercise & a welcome relief from working in front of screens all week.

Which Bristol neighbourhood do you call home?
I've lived in Bedminster for over 10 years now. It's a great area, especially for young families, with plenty of things to do on and around North Street.

How do you try to make greener choices in your business?
All SowHow seeds are fully organic and are sourced from an independent UK supplier. Also, the packets are printed on sustainable FSC paper stock.
Our Bristol 2015 tagline is "initforgood". What are you "initfor" in 2015?
My hope is that SowHow can inspire more people to get growing, whatever shape or size of garden they have. As Bristol is the European Green Capital of 2015, this is the perfect place and time to give it a go!

Thank you Paul!

You can find Paul's individual seed packets - bursting with potential - plus his 3 gift packs, perfect for those with smaller spaces, in our new shop. Lab Shop is part of Bristol 2015 Lab and you can find the Lab, opened to celebrate Bristol's year as European Green Capital, on Bordeaux Quay on Bristol's historic Harbourside. See you soon!

Lab Shop
10 - 6 
Everyday in the school holidays 
Fri - Sun in term time

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