Heidi, Jakki and Puddin the Pirate Pug live aboard a Narrowboat and cruise all over the beautiful canal systems of England and Wales operating a floating Pirate themed ice-cream & gift shop – The Pirate Boat.
After returning from travelling in South East Asia and Africa, Heidi decided to sell her house to buy the boat. She wanted to combine her love for adventure with making a living at the same time – thus – in 2015 The Pirate Boat was born.
In 2017 Heidi was looking at expanding the range of products to sell – something that was small and easy to store but also ideal to post to customers that couldn’t get to visit The Pirate Boat.
The initial idea was to provide a line of Pirate Badges to sell from the boat at canal festivals and online, but it wasn’t long before customers were asking for other designs such as Crew Badges, Hippie Badges, Political Badges, Funny Badges and Custom badges to promote their own businesses and events.
Word of mouth quickly spread and we found ourselves supplying more and more badges, so we ended up starting an eBay and Etsy shop and just over a year later in addition to our own designs, we had made almost 2000 custom orders.
It soon became clear that we needed our very own online shop so Heidi (being the technical one) set about learning how to achieve our next goal.
While designing the website there were times when Heidi wanted to throw her laptop out of the porthole and into the canal, but after ringing her mate Hamish and drinking lots and lots of Rum she persevered and managed to launch BadgesOnboard.com on the world wide web. WOW, from a little narrowboat on the UK’s canals Badges Onboard has gone global and to date we have shipped our specially designed little gems as far a field as Japan, Germany, Australia, USA and Greece.
Heidi is the playful dreamer of the duo, where as Jakki is more grounded and level headed. She keeps things organised and on track when Heidi is often distracted, “oh look a duck”….. Even though Jakki has been part of the crew since day one she has only recently taken up the option of moving aboard and becoming a full time crew member. Jakki and her trusty sidekick Puddin the Pug signed up for the positions of Pirate Crew and Captain Pugwash…the rest is history.
Designing our own badges enabled us to expand our horizons and not just sell from the Pirate Boat but to have stalls at land events and festivals too – We sold out of Pirate Badges at the amazing Conwy Pirate Festival, so we now know to take a lot more stock next time!
A recent much loved surprise was that our humble little badge stall recently won the award of most liked retail stall at the LFEST Festival 2019 in Llandudno where we sold hundreds of our LGBTQ badges
Take the time to explore our website, and if you have any questions about Badges Onboard and the work we do, we are only an email away.