So, I debated over and over about whether or not I wanted to blog about this. And finally I decided that I might as well. There have been other issues that I have dealt with that I blogged about and suddenly either felt better or got some good feedback from others to help me with the issue at hand. So, here goes… (warning: this is a long one, sit back & grab a glass of wine or a bevo)
For those who may not know, I started a custom children’s clothing line this time last year in preparation for quitting my “real”job. Idle time is not something that I have ever really been good at, and I also knew that I might still want some spending money of my own since the hospital feels the need to pay my husband less than minimum wage for the hours that he works. So, brownie-goose was born. I absolutely LOVE to sew, and I love to find fabrics that are so vibrant, loud and colorful and put them together in combinations that sometimes don’t make sense…but they make me happy. For a humongo ego boost, apparently I am not the only one that likes it since people continue to order from me. The things I make are a bit on the different side, definitely NOT traditional and just downright fun. You just can’t find stuff like that in Target and such, and sometimes you can find them in boutiques, but you will pay out the wazoo for it. Anyways, a star was born with brownie-goose and suddenly grew so much bigger than I ever, ever imagined. In other words, basically I have been tied to my sewing machine in any sort of spare moment I get since about June. I cannot complain really because I still enjoy it and it absolutely MAKES my day when someone tells me how much they love my stuff. I mean, it is like crack (well, I have never used crack so I really wouldn’t know, I’m just saying…) and it just motivates me to do more and more.
So, here I am…at a crossroads with brownie-goose. My husband said to me the other day “Amy, life is what is happening as you are looking forward to the future.” This came in context of when I was telling him that I wont be as nutty (haha) and the house will get cleaned and I will go back to cooking, etc. once I get through the Christmas orders. I mean, I cannot stand for people to tell me my business, especially when they are right. Life is happening, and I am slowly missing out on it while I am in my beautiful new sewing room. So, something needs to give. It has been in the back of my head for a while but I have been so stubborn and just keep letting it go thinking things won’t be this busy forever, right? Torn is about the only word for what I am feeling right now. I’m just absolutely, positively torn. What do I do? For those of my readers who are my biggest brownie-goose fans don’t panic…I am not going to stop. But I am at a point that reminds me of one of my favorite poems from high school literature (for those English buffs out there…forgive me for I know I wont get this completely correct but I am a math nerd, I like number and calculators) that talks about two roads diverge into a wood. Or something to that effect. So I have two roads diverging in front of me. One that I could take would have me scaling back BG to an extent. I will continue to do all my sewing (this is especially helpful for my control-freak manor) but only take specific amounts at a time. I haven’t worked out all the details, but scaling back is the main theme of that road. The other road is sparkly and shiny and has blinking lights when I think of it. Contracting out my sewing and going “big.” This allows me to do the trunk shows that I would love to do, it allows me to actually advertise my business instead of not carrying cards with me for fear of having more orders. It allows me to actually think about wholesale and getting my stuff in stores for the people that have asked. I mean, wow….wow…wow when I think of it. But, I also know that the grass is not always greener. I don’t know all the details of “going big” and am having the most awful time trying to find out information on it. I don’t know any seamstresses (other than friends, and I just don’t want to go there and risk the loss of a friendship) to ask about, the thought of a manufacturer sewing my stuff almost gives me a panic attack…and then, to think would my control-freak self actually be okay with things going out with my name on it without my seal of approval? Would I actually spend time fixing things that I didn’t feel were good enough? Can you kinda get an idea of what all is going on in my head? I just want a good, easy answer.
And then yesterday I went to talk to a lady at a local sewing shop that I just think the world of. She opened my eyes to what I knew my heart was telling me to do. Scale back Amy, keep it in your own hands in your own control. There is always tomorrow to “go big” but for now, keep it real. Keep it “small.” Keep it what I know and ignore all the flashy lights and billboards. So, I knew it. After talking with Ms. Bette, I knew what had to be done, but for some strange reason…I couldn’t accept it. I wasn’t ready for it to be final. I thought I’ve got plenty of time to mull this one over, just let it be and the right answer will make itself known. I am a huge believer of faith and letting the right things work themselves out, but I don’t always have the patience or ability to let go of the reins to let it happen. Then today I added 6 more people to the mailing list and had more emails of people asking when I would be taking orders again, these are people that aren’t already customers. So, I began to doubt my decision. How can I scale back when my customer base is growing? How do I only take orders from a fraction of my customer base? Oh my goodness, I just don’t know.
The funny thing is…I think it was this time last year that I posted a long blog about my uncertainties of quitting my job as a nurse and becoming a stay-at-home mom. I stuck with my gut on that decision, although I was scared to death to not work and be at home, and now I know it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Although I do miss the pediatrician that I worked for something awful on a daily basis. It all worked out okay then, and I know it will all work itself out now, I just don’t know what to do. I’m just torn.