Back to the Drawing Board!

Friday, 21 September 2018

We're not allowed to talk about the downsides and failures of life on line especially when it comes to business because that's negative talk and when it comes to business the majority are bout keeping up appearances and positive vibes only, well in my experience anyway. I am not a fan of smiling and pretending that everything is okay, I've spent years doing that much to the detriment of my mental and physical health. I believe you should share the upsides because it encourages, I also believe you share the downsides because it makes people feel less alone. I going into cliche metaphor territory but life is pretty much like a fairground of rides, sometimes you're just on the merry go round, going round and round in circles, other times your on the roller coaster. Sometimes it's scary like the ghost train, sometimes it's bumpy and sometimes it stops and starts like the big wheel until you get going and get to the great view from about but I guess what I'm saying is nothing stays same, each ride comes to an end at some point. We need to stop acting like everything is fine all the time just because someone doesn't like to face the fact that life can be rubbish sometimes, personally, I think positive vibes only is a bit of a toxic mentality but that is a conversation for another day.

I wasn't going to talk much about the business side of things on here but after being self employed for nearly four and half years, I've learnt a lot of things, mostly from scratch and that sometimes no matter how hard you work at something, if it's not meant to be it's not meant to be. Since December last year my business has suffered a 60% drop in sales! It was going up and up and up and then suddenly nothing, I admit I was not prepared for this, I just got caught in the flow and it wasn't until I hit that brick wall of reality I realised no one is immune! Not gonna lie I took it a little personally, I even blamed myself saying it was my own fault for not working hard enough but working seven days a week is not exactly lazy. It sparked off a depression episode but I'm okay now.

So I took a break and went back to the drawing board, figuratively and literally. Things picked up a little but not enough to warrant carrying one, there really is no point in flogging a dead horse, so I've decided to do something I've been meaning to do my pretty much since I was a teen, and that is to make a career out of writing and art. So I bought some painting boards and paints and then realised what with all the clutter I've accumulated from my handmade and vintage business ventures, I didn't actually have that much room to paint in. My work room is tiny as it is and storing a bunch of vintage and craft supplies takes up a lot of room. If you follow me on insta, you'll know on stories I was regularly worried about getting trapped under an avalanche of crafts supplies. So I decided to do a clear out, which I go on more about in a different post but it ended up extending into my personal stuff as well because certain aspects of my life have changed, like I no longer really dress up vintage or retro. It's taken a while but it's kept me busy whilst I fine tune my new career plan.

But the clear out has been good, not just physically in terms of space but also mentally. Spinning lots of plates can be hard and I know that I will always have doing an assortment of things, I personally need that kind of diversity because I have a lot of interests. I read Emily Wapnick's How To Be Everything which I found very helpful for people who basically want to do and be everything. I'm also currently reading Emma Gannon's The Multi-Hyphen Method and also have a few other books to read on being self employed etc as well. For me I've narrowed it down to writing and art, which is partly why I came back to blogging, I am currently also setting up a writing blog and this blog will be for my creative endeavours and also art for me covers a lot of different mediums.

I'm kinda sad Etsy hasn't worked out but their recent policy changes and new business plan have also given me the kick up the but I need to strike out more on my own or at the very least find a different platform. Etsy used to be a company that looked after the small indie sellers but when they went public and started allowing loopholes for bigger business to get their foot in the door, it's now just gone down the same path as some of the more corporate selling sites. You just can't treat little businesses the same as big businesses for many reasons, which I'll skip for now as this post in quite long already! Anyway I'm closing my Etsy for good on the 21st October this year and eventually will open my own store on Bigcartel or Shopify, I'm looking into other options as well like Society6 and Artfinder for further down the line. I'm also going to work full time on my main Instagram page to focus on my work and get it out there.

Starting a new career adventure is scary but I've put it off too long but somehow the timing feels right now. I'm removing distractions or more accurately excuses, so I can just concentrate on writing and designing. I've done some preliminary sketches for some painting and I want to combine my embroidery work with some abstract art ideas I've had and I have ideas for other art projects as well. I will be mostly on Instagram as it is of course a great (algorithms aside) place to show off work and also with instastories you can do little vignettes of work updates etc though to be honest it just mostly me having conversations with my cats! 

As always what started off as quick post has turned into an essay! have a great weekend.

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