Small business heroes: Jane Means Jane Means

Small business heroes: Jane Means

Author, presenter and designer Jane Means talks to Direct Line for Business about why she decided to start her self-titled gift wrapping training academy.

Small Business Case Study: Jane Means

Jane Means started her company back in 1995 when she decided to turn her hobby of cardmaking into a business, with only a small budget and a kitchen table available at the time.

But with a mind full of creative ideas, a strong determination to prove her critics wrong and a lot of hard work, Jane’s business has grown beyond her initial expectations.

Now known as the ‘Gift Wrap Guru', Jane’s extensive portfolio includes services for Harrods, House of Fraser, Lakeland, The Queen Elizabeth Foundation, Meadowhall, WHSmith, O2, Philips, Marks & Spencer, American Express, Crabtree and Evelyn, and Claridges to name a few. 

And with clients now travelling from around the world to attend her workshops in the UK and Singapore, Jane Means has grown from a hobby to become a truly global business.

How did Jane grow her business?

When Jane first started out 20 years ago, she spent much of her time making bespoke cards and wedding stationery. Her work soon gained a reputation for its high quality and attention to detail, and Jane became very successful.

So successful, in fact, that she was commissioned by the Crown Estates of Somerset to make a card for the Queen (which later went on display in Buckingham Palace Mews) and soon became a regular supplier to Harvey Nichols.

By the late nineties Jane realised her true passion was gift wrapping and after finishing her teaching training, she decided to start offering gift wrapping courses in her parents Lincolnshire watermill.

These courses have become one of Jane's most popular services, with clients travelling from as far away as Bermuda and Australia to attend.

If you're planning to follow in Jane's footsteps and sell your crafts this Christmas, you need to make sure that you have the right insurance in place to cover your stock and equipment should the unexpected happen. Find out more about our Craft Insurance.

For more tips on starting and running a small business, why not head over to our Small Business Heroes video hub?

Related topic: Learn how Dan Roberts created a business from utilising surplus fruit and veg to create smoothies, these are now made to order for offices and events around London.

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Last Updated: 08 Dec 2015