My steep learning curve….

When I had my eldest daughter, as you may already know, I experienced something of a change. Yes, I was sleep deprived. Yes I was enjoying motherhood. On top of that though, I was experiencing a sudden NEED  to create. Looking back, I never thought it would lead to the creation of Dollies Daydream.

In my life I have studied for a degree in Psychology, worked in retail, undertook research projects for a local charity, trained to be a teacher, stood in front of a group of 16-18 year olds and attempt to inspire them.  Possibly most scary of all, I have become a mother – responsible for not one but two children.

I can’t explain why I felt the need to start Dollies, especially when I had begun this amazing new adventure called motherhood.  It took me by surprise. Maybe it’s partly because I wanted to reclaim something for me, partly because there was only so many things I could create for myself!  

As I have already discussed, I have never been the most patient person and there have been times in this journey where I have definately run before I could walk but it’s all slowly coming together. What I have found however, is that the learning never stops.

I may enjoy making things but during this journey (so far) I am learning to put myself out there, to be confident in my work.  I am learning to sell myself and my work.  Years ago, selling your work would mean getting out there to craft fairs, speaking to people face to face. Yes, that’s a great part of selling work today but it also entails online networking by using social media, blogging and websites.  It means learning to take great photos (again, I’m learning to be patient here and wait to set up a shot and for good lighting – I don’t always succeed!) and pricing your work realistically.

I’m not going to lie and tell you this is easy.  After spending hours playing about with my mobile website (and muttering a few choice words in the process) it is far from easy at times.  Saying that, I look at all that I am learning and feel a sense of pride of all that I am acheiving. 

I am proud of all that I am learning about myself and my audience; about the web and all the other technical skills.  When I have those moments when I feel like I could just pack it all in, I think about how amazing it feels to get a photo right or to see your work listed on a craft site.

I started this adventure hoping that someone might like my work enough to buy it (and I love the amazing feedback I do get from my customers) but it has turned into more than that.  When I do sell my work it sometimes feels like a fantastic by-product.  Every day I find out something new and apply my already existing knowledge to the challenges I face.  I am constantly looking at the world for inspiration and admiring others who are further along this path than me. I am pushing myself beyond my comfort zone and experiencing everything that that brings.

It’s not a walk in the park but although nothing can top motherhood, I have to say I would not swap this experience for anything.  Starting Dollies Daydream has introduced me to some fantastic people, amazing experiences and interesting lessons.  It’s a massively steep learning curve but I’m still here and still moving forward – how fantastic is that!

Until next time,

Toni xx