Not My Beautiful House FAQs

Here's some frequently asked questions about Not My Beautiful House, the Creative Meanwhile Space for Kingston!

What is “Not My Beautiful House”? 

A Creative Meanwhile space for and led by you, students, graduates and community of Kingston!

It'll be part exhibition, gallery, event space and shop. We want to encourage collaboration between Kingston Uni and the community, supporting local businesses, empowering people to make their own money and gain experience. The “meanwhile” part refers to the fact we’re using a vacant space on a temporary basis. The actual name of the space is Not My Beautiful House - we've only just announced our brand so this is why you'll be used to hearing 'Creative Meanwhile'!

Where is it?

19-23 Fife Road, KT1 1SB, the old PC world, a few mins walk from Kingston station. We’ll be here until the end of August, when it will be redeveloped to a co-living space.

When will it open? How long for?

We plan to open as a shop from the start of May, then open as an event and workspace as restrictions allow. We plan to move to another space in September, but we don’t know where just yet.

Who is behind Not My Beautiful House?

We (your Students Union) have been working in partnership with Studio KT1 on this project.

Who else is involved?

We’ve also been working with the Business School and students from various courses! You can get involved by joining our steering group to decide the direction of the project and what happens in the space, or our panel to decide which artwork and products should be showcased and on sale.

What is the steering group?

The steering group will decide what happens in the space, from events to skills workshops, as well as the general direction of the initiative. You can also help us ensure all students are represented and gaining fair use of the space.

How can I join the steering group? What commitment is it?

You can apply to the steering group here to direct what happens in the space and represent students. This is a voluntary position from April to September 2021. You will be required to attend one 2 hour meeting every fortnight.

What can I sell in the space? How do I apply?

You can sell products, work, or host events to make your own money! We’re looking for all sorts to go in our shop; ceramics, paintings, fashion, jewellery, prints - the more unique, the better. you could have a one off piece, or make a range of your own products. We’ll take 25% commission of sales to continue facilitating the space.

Apply to sell your work in our space here

Don’t be afraid if you've never thought about selling before - that's why we're here to help!

If I'm selling work, am I responsible for my own taxes etc? 

Yes, you must register for HMRC self assessment which can be done online here. You'll receive UTR number from Inland Revenue. Any money paid to you will be paid gross (i.e. without deduction of tax and NI) and you will be responsible for this. When we tell you about your sales for the month, you will invoice Creative Meanwhile for the amount (80%) paid to them (20% for NMBH/ UKS). You must keep records of your work sold, related expenses and earnings, then you have nothing else to worry about. You are entitled to Personal Allowance of £12,570 in 2021/22, i.e. the amount that can be earned without deduction of tax. Personal Allowance is reduced by £1 for every £2 earned over £100,000. Any questions about this, let us know. 

Who decides if my work gets shown or sold?

Every month, a panel will review work and services being submitted for sale, deciding on what should be displayed. We’ll make sure people on the panel are experienced in the relevant fields, and we’ll make sure no one you know judges your work (and you’d never judge your own).

How can I be a part of the panel to judge artwork? Do I need any skills?

You can apply here if you have any knowledge or experience such as retail, art, creative industries, curation or marketing you think will help make our decision. You’d be supporting the development of students, graduates and the Kingston community. This is a voluntary opportunity - the panel changes monthly, so it’s just a few hours commitment! All meetings will take place digitally so you don't have to be local.

How much will I get paid for my work?

We’ll host workshops and share resources to help you make sure you are valuing your self and your work enough, but you decide what you sell your products, art or services for when you apply. We may discuss this with you if we think it needs changing. We take 25% commission on sales to continue facilitating the space.

Can I host events, exhibitions or workshops in the space?

Yes! Whether you’re a student, graduate or if you just live in Kingston, you could host an event by yourself or as part of a group. We offer fees for speakers/ workshops if we think it benefits students and the community, or the opportunity to hire the space for your own event and sell your own tickets.

Tell us about your ideas here - we're starting to book events and pop ups!

Will there be paid jobs?

Part time jobs will be going online this month, keep an eye on our vacancies!

Will it be called “Creative Meanwhile Space for Kingston”?

Nope! Creative and Cultural Industries students from Kingston have been designing the brand and identity of the space/ initiative. We’ll be launching soon…

I’m staff or a Kingston graduate. Can I get involved?

Yes! The space is open to everyone, all students, graduates and staff are welcome to sell work or host events, and there are many opportunities for the local community to do the same. We also might need your help on the panel.

What about if I’m not local to Kingston? Is there an online version of the store?

You could sell digital work, or host virtual events and workshops. The panel will also be digital, so you can take part no matter how far away you are. We’re looking into ways to make the process of selling/ printing work from afar easier, so tell us any ideas you have. Our goal is to also sell some work via an online store, but we want to start off the physical space first.

I’m a local business - how can I get involved?

You can host pop ups, events and other activities with us to promote your business, we want to support you! Our media pack will be available soon but we're already taking bookings. If you'd like to book please email us 

You can see our terms and conditions here

Sounds like a great idea! How can I support the initiative?

Our crowdfund campaign is still accepting donations to host more events and workshops, and you can pledge to be part of it. We'd love to hear about any in kind donations useful to the build and launch of the space, such as creative materials, equipment or services like electricians and plumbers. Please get in touch with us if you're able to help!

What if you can’t open because of COVID-19 restrictions?

We plan to have a phased opening; our shop will open first, followed by pop ups, exhibition and gallery space, and then in person events and workshops. All of our events will run virtually until we’re able to run them safely in person!

How will you keep customers and your staff safe with COVID-19?

It will be mandatory, for those who are able, to wear masks. There will be hand sanitiser points upon entry and elsewhere in store, and we’ll sanitise and clean our spaces throughout the day. All of our staff and volunteers will be provided with PPE and check temperature each morning. We encourage everyone making use of the bookable workspace or attending workshops and events to get a COVID-19 test prior to their visit.

I have more questions!

Email us and we'll get back to you ASAP.