New Year, New Directions

The change to a new year is a great time to look back at what you’ve done in the last 12 months and think about what you want to do with the next 12 months. I always dread sitting down and actually doing the work because, well, focus.  But, here I go....

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I started 2017 as a homeschooling, stay-at-home mom and wife, still settling into life in Cleveland and trying to make friends in my new city of Cleveland and neighborhood. I was knitting up a storm for family and myself, adjusting to cold winters, and trying to figure out what I really wanted out of life. I was starting to feel normal after a long road to overcoming postpartum depression.  I was coming to terms with leaving behind a three year stint of owning and operating a 3-acre organic vegetable farm in Virginia. And I was still trying to decide if leaving behind my 10+ year career as a CPA was the best choice. Basically I didn’t quite feel settled, satisfied, or fulfilled, but I couldn’t define it and didn’t know what or why about anything. I did a lot of journaling, late night brainstorming, knitting, painting, thinking, reading, and talking.

Eventually an idea that had been in my mind as a tiny spark for years started to surface and take shape. It took many iterations over several months and continues to evolve, but basically, I decided to open a studio to provide a space for people to make things. A place to learn “how-to” do all sorts of things. The theory behind it being that life is stressful, work can be painful, and the world around us is beyond insane right now. Often the best way to get your mind back in the game and stay capable of facing each strange new day is to take time to make things. Sensory activities, problem solving, color play, working on something new to you, approaching something from a new perspective, working on something that produces a visible, tangible result. All of these have carried me through the tumult and changes of my life. I’ve been making things on weekends, evenings, and vacations continually since I was a child. Maybe it was time to share that with other people.

It’s been an interesting several months of developing classes, teaching, meeting inspiring new people, setting up a brick and mortar space, learning how to run a business in a new state and city, and figuring out this industry that I had never actually worked in for income before. I just knew it was something I wanted to do and that people needed, whether they knew it or not yet.

I ended 2017 as a homeschooling mom, wife, and owner of a cool studio in my new hometown that has become a gathering place for people who like to make things and be around other people who like to make things.

So, looking forward, what will I do in 2018? I’m going to focus on three main things at the Studio.

  1. Bring really cool makers into the studio to teach special workshops related to their specific art or craft. I love the inspiration I get from seeing passionate makers that really excel in their field and are also able to share that with their fans through useful, meaningful workshops, demos, and presentations. We’ve already started with workshops by Triple Threat Press and Sarah Harste. Several more are in the works, that I am so excited to share with you soon.

  2. Add a retail side to the studio so you have a convenient place to find and purchase super inspiring and high quality craft supplies, whether you take classes at the studio, or just want supplies that make you happy. I want to have kits, curated supplies, patterns, and resources to help you find just what you need without having to travel far or spend forever searching online. And some finished products from the makers that teach at the studio.

  3. Host retreats for focused creative evenings and weekends. Some craft camp themed get togethers for both adults and kids. Some sip and make events. The possibilities are so exciting. I have a few of these in the works currently, and can’t wait to share them with you once the details are confirmed.

I have some other goals and such, but these are the three biggest things I want to accomplish this year. I would love your ideas, requests, etc. as I work toward these goals. Hit me up with suggestions via instagram and facebook, or shoot me an email. Or gasp, stop by the studio and hang out, chat it up.

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Let me know what kinds of classes, retreats, specific makers, special supplies, and more you seek, but can’t find. Or have found, but can’t access easily yet.

Here’s to an excellent year for all of you, and I hope we get to share in several fun experiences together.