Three years ago, my boss and I were talking about different career paths. She brought up freelancing and I poo-pooed it. I’d contemplated owning my own business just long enough to decide I didn’t want anything to do with the B-word. I didn’t want to hustle. I didn’t want to be my own boss. I didn’t want to make big decisions. Three years later, I’m a business owner.
Two years ago, one of my Girls’ Life coworkers started a new business with a friend. MAKE TRIBE is a luxe crafting events biz that has morphed into a beautiful indie brand. When I first heard about it, I was dubious. It is a perfect fit for my coworker, but I didn’t get it. Two years later, I get it.
Three years ago, I was set in a direction for two reasons: First, I was good at most of what I was doing, and second, I had decided back in college that this was what I was going to do. Changing paths was not an option—it had not occurred to me as something a successful person could or would do. Two years ago, I was stuck in an “I could never do that” mentality. Well guess what? I’m going to do it.
Over the last week, I’ve quietly told a few friends about my plans. And over the last two months, I’ve been puttering away quite diligently, sometimes scatterbrained and sometimes strategic, to put it into action. Now, I’m going to mention it briefly to you: I’m opening an Etsy store. I’m playing with line sheets and creating patterns and experimenting with what I like to me and what inspires me to keep making, regardless of the potential bottom line. In the store that exists in my head, you’ll find bright, beautiful personal and home goods that will make you smile when you see them. My goal right now is to make the kind of accessories I wanted to buy when I hit my first major adult milestones: first job, first apartment, first big move, first promotion, first serious romance, first friends-getting-married or friends-having-babies or friends-buying-a-house. You know, the sorts of things you rush on to the ‘net to buy when something big and awesome happens to you or your friends. Stuff you covet and keep and treasure and pull out when you’re having a bad day.
When I started Ingenue Diaries late in 2013, I did it as a creative outlet. Then, I had been laid off, moving, desperately clutching at some semblance of a plan. Since then, I’ve gone through a couple different ones. Now, ID has become a part of me. It’s not just a blog—it’s been and will continue to be the creative experience I’m living. I’ll be writing just as I am right now about what’s going on in my mind and my life, but the focus is going to narrow. Where we are now is more general. Where we’re going will center on the creative process (both writing and making), on building a business, on nurturing a brand, and on living a life that’s not what I expected it would be two, three, or five years ago.
Cheers to doing and living and making, friends! Thanks for sticking with me!