First of all, I want to apologize to my new blog subscribers if I filled up your inbox this week. I recently designed a new website with blog and jewelry in one, but I didn’t want to lose all my old blog entries and so I was so excited to find a plugin to import the old entries into the new blog. While still patting myself on the back my dear sweet friend Kerry sent me a text to let me know that she had recently subscribed to my new blog and just got nearly 700 emails notifying her of “new” AnneMade Jewelry blog posts. I wanted to crawl in a hole right there, totally mortified. I’m very thankful if you’re still with me as I am gearing back up to be a jewelry designer again after living in Sweden.
Back to my regularly scheduled post…
After filling Christmas orders at the end of 2013 I started to focus on our upcoming move to Sweden, so other than a few little projects here and there I haven’t picked up my jewelry pliers for almost two years. It’s not that I didn’t think about jewelry, but living in Europe brought the opportunity to more easily see some things on my bucket list so it was fun to focus on something else for a change. If you’re a small business owner or a designer of any sort you may be able to relate to the illness I have of never being able to turn off that part of my brain. I would admire the shape of olive leaves, arches, and ironwork, all while mentally recreating them in wire. It’s a sickness.
Many people ask why I haven’t created jewelry in Sweden like I did back in the States. At first I was just enjoying the break, perhaps a little burned out from the pace of Christmas and then the move itself. Then I slowly started noticing shops around Gothenburg that might be a good fit for the look of my jewelry. When we went home for a visit I was excited to start creating jewelry again so I brought back tools and beads and my restocked wire organizer. I created some pieces for a Swedish friend, but each time I got my tools and supplies out on the dining room table I knew I had to put everything away before dinner. I didn’t have a dedicated space to work in our apartment, and I am the sort of person who thrives in a messy studio.
This is my old studio before it was packed away in storage for our time in Sweden…
In Sweden, having to clean up and put everything away was really discouraging to my creative process, just like the knowledge that I’d be moving back to the States before long kept me from pursuing client relationships. Plus I loved my expat life with the PTA walking group and tennis lessons and fika and international Bible study and traveling around Europe, so I decided to enjoy it while it lasted. And sure enough, the time has come to head back to a new-to-us home in a different part of Virginia, the moving details are falling into place, and I am chomping at the bit to meet my new studio space.
The time off has given me a chance to process and think about what I want from my business, where I want it to go. Starting a new chapter gives me a chance to make some changes, and I’m excited about unpausing and moving forward. I even dragged out my tools and wire to check the feasibility of some new designs I sketched, and I realized that my wirework skills are a little rusty. My hands wouldn’t do the thing my brain was telling them, at least not the first time. Practice, practice!