Friday, February 16, 2007

Behind the picture Friday

I am all green and elegant in this photo.

I was supposed to go out today, do some grocery shopping and meet my mom for lunch, but unfortunately when I was almost one foot over the threshold I realised that Robert took my wallet with him to work (he was buying someting on Wednesday and forgot to give the wallet back to me), so without any money for shopping or a bus ticket I stayed at home and decided to devote my time to some craft activities and blogging!

All's well that ends well! *^v^*

(Although it means going shopping in the evening, when everybody's there after work... *sigh*)

Alice asked me yesterday how was my working-from-home routine. Well...
It's getting better than it was!

But it's not so easy to explain, so let's start from the beginning:

Okay, let's be honest, I'm not that cheerful and happy-all-the-time person as I may seem from the smiles on my photos and colourful clothing. All these are just signs of a one desperate woman trying to fight her depression. Now, it sounded very grim and serious, and it isn't THAT serious (I'm not on anti-depression medication, life is generally okay, ect) but the last 2,5 years after I left my 9-5 job wasn't easy. It was a different type of "difficult" than before.

First phase was the following: I don't have to get up tomorrow at 7 and go to the office. Which was good! ^^ But then it was very weird, because for some time I felt separated from my office desk. I get attached to things easily, and when you were coming to work everyday for 6 years and saw your desk, with all your stationary supplies, a computer, a board with important notes, ect, it was somehow reassuring and you felt safe in life. And then I became a woman without her desk. Of course I had my desk at home, but it was different, it wasn't THE desk - my workplace.

Second phase started when I finally agreed that it WASN'T strange not to be obliged to go the office everyday - I felt free, creative, inspired by many things that surrounded me, I redecorated our flat, we payed our debts, got married, and I generally was a happy housewife with crafty hobbies. *^v^*

But then one day my best friend Anna, Robert and myself gathered in our living room and talked about the posibility to open a shop. And it all seemed reasonable, with setting up a business, taking some loans, buying and making stuff to sell. We agreed on main issues, opened a shop, had it for six months, then closed the 'real' shop and stayed only in the virtual reality. (more about it here)

I've been thinking about our shop many times and it often ocurred to me that it wasn't my dream to have it. No. It was Anna's dream and Robert's dream. And Robert couldn't just leave his 9 to 5 job and throw himself into this new risky business, so I stood in his place. Why did I agree on it even when I wasn't convinced that it was what I wanted?
I knew I'll be a crap behind the counter (which turned out to be 100% true) because I am a loner, I don't need a lot of company and I'm scared of meeting many new people, being nice to them when I have to, ect.
I never considered gothic style as MY style, I liked many styles, different costumes, and I suffered when I had to dress accordingly while being in our shop, when I felt like wearing pink t-shirt with green trousers and red shoes.
~ I could sew, I had some costume ideas.
~ I could be Robert's 'representative' in our shop, when he was in the office, so I could try and realize his dream for him.
~ I felt guilty. I felt that I don't bring any money to our piggy bank, so I think I felt obliged to take this task upon me and be useful and productive.
~ Maybe I wanted to prove something to my family, or to myself? That I am worth something, that I can make living in other way than just 9 to 5 job?

Then time passed and we carried on somehow, our shop had its ups and downs, and it's been over two years now since we opened this business (in the meantime I started to make things and sell them through some online galleries). We even thought about giving it time till the end of 2006 and then closing it down (the income hardly covered the accountant's and insurance expenses), but then we decided to try a bit longer. It could fly really high, I think, with somebody who is enthusiastic about this type of merchandise, with a person devoted to gothic fashion, determined to carry on irrespective of a small Polish gothic scene hence few buyers.
But am I that person? I'm not sure. I can see that Robert is, but again one of us has to bring regular income each month... I may have some ideas for merchandise but when it comes to producing it - drawing patterns, cutting the fabric, sewing, ect, I find millions other things to do and postpone it as long as I can. What does it say about my attitude to MY shop when I would even vacuum the whole flat or clean the dishes than sit at the sewing machine?...

I don't know what's been happening to me for all this time. Is it just me being lazy or is it really not my place, not my dream I am trying to live?

Whereas some time ago I found my crafty basis:
My mission is: to fully concentrate on fabric and yarns to find my own way of expressing my ideas with the use of fiber.
I'm not sure whether this rule applies to this business.

I also looked at the second point of my manifesto, which I wrote last September:
2. My on-line gothic shop should be my prior concern and first of all I'll be concentrating on products for this shop - sewn & knitted, I may add some jewelery, but only if the first two product types have been supplied;

Well, of course it should be, if I wanted it to be successful and bring some money, but it wasn't. I'm afraid it never was a priority. I've been trying to live somebody else's dream, and even so I've been scared to let it go because I haven't found my own dream yet. And I didn't want to disappoint Robert's hopes he put into this shop. I'm still not ready to let it go because I would feel I wasted those two years of hard work of others, some fame our shop gained over this time, opportunities that still maybe lie in there for me.


Let's go back to the sentence that started this long train of thoughts:
It's getting better than it was!
Frankly speaking, I find more and more pleasure in making things for OUR shop. This weekend I'm going to add new stuff - 8 Elisabethan corsets, and I've already planned to make new models next week out of different fabrics. I have ideas! I dug out my old WIPs and will be finishing them in the next few days. I find pleasure in customers' mails with questions about some products that are not available at the moment. I found my way of working - I go to my living room (I don't have a studio unfortunately) and sit at the table with a sewing machine on it in SILENCE. I used to work there with a tv on or some music in the background but it just distracted me from what I was doing.

Something is changing in me so I change things around me. Maybe it's my homeopatic medicine that I take for strengthtening my immunity system? (I found out that this medicine is also given to patients with a depression...) *^v^*

To finish off with some knitting, here is the first photo of my "I'm Blue..." scarf.
Yarn: from my stash without labels but very soft,
Needles: bamboo 4,5 mm,
Pattern: my own (trials&error method! ^^), I'll post it when it's finished.

Please disregard mudprints on the windowsill, it's our cat's... ^^

1 comment:

  1. I feel that maybe we are similar in some ways but I'm still doing my 9-5 office job. I just can't seem to find what I want to do with my life to enable me to leave my safe job.

    I think that you can never really have the passion that makes a venture a success and unless it truly is your dream.

    I'm glad that you are beginning to find out what you want to concentrate on.