Tom Keelings is a 23-year-old entrepreneur from Burnley with a pretty unique business..
TTS Services specialises in the cleaning and restoration of caps, bags, but mostly, designer trainers – a great model for sustainable fashion.
Tom started the business in 2019 from his parents’ house where he’d restore around 20 pairs a month. However, TTS really took off last year and he now takes in around 150 pairs a month since going full-time with the business in August.
He’s even worked with Burnley FC players such as Dwight McNeil, Bobby Thomas and a few other big names including former-Love Island stars.
We visited Tom’s town centre unit to see him in action,
“Sustainability is a massive part of what I’m doing. Instead of leaving a good pair of trainers to go to waste, I’ll give them a new lease of life.”
“Also, not everyone has the money for a new pair of trainers every time they go wrong. My prices start from £25 which is a fraction of the price a new pair will cost.”
“I’ll even restore unwanted trainers in my own time and take them to local charity shops.”
When asked what gave him the idea to start this venture he said,
“Funnily enough I’ve spoken about this with my family since I was young. I’ve always been into designer trainers; I used to love wearing them, but I also always kept them.
“I had friends asking how they always looked brand new. It was because I kept on top of the cleaning, that’s really where the idea stemmed from”
After gaining this passion from an early age, Tom has taught himself the art of trainer restoration and refined this skill over time.
“Restoration could be anything from re-dyeing a shoe, repainting it, regluing it, stitching work if your dog’s been chewing them, there’s all sorts of bits and bats you can do to make them look like they’re straight out the box.”
With business booming, Tom’s now on the lookout for a town centre shop where he can focus more on the customer experience and possibly stem out into the re-sell of designer clothing.
“That’s my goal for this year – have a proper shop where customers can come and drop off their trainers and, if the shop’s big enough, I’ll tap into the market of used clothing.”
We’d love to see TTS Services in a Burnley town centre shop – it will be great to see it grow over the next few years.
Kudos to this young entrepreneur for using his life-long interest to make money and help us be more sustainable in the process.