I will admit that I make New Year’s resolutions, and for the most part I usually carry them out. Sometimes within the year, but sometimes they get ‘rolled over’ to the next year. Doesn’t matter, they will happen one way or another, when the time is right.
Today, however, I’ve been thinking a lot about all the great things that have happened with Sprouts Press over the last year and how grateful I feel about it all. I’m also thankful for the lessons I’ve learned throughout 2014. Some have been wonderful, some have been near misses, and some have been painfully head-on total mess-ups. It happens. I’ve learned and moved on.
Anyways, here’s a brief but enjoyable list of the good things for Sprouts Press in 2014:
10. This 365 blog project. Yup, this little project has taught me the value of time management. Planning/scheduling and has made me value all the hours in the day.
9. Joining the Arts Market as a vendor, effectively giving me a not-so-scary glimpse into having a retail space for creative wares.
8. Being featured as a bookbinder in a publication about bookbinding!! You may remember this post about my humble little page in the book: “The Little Book of Book Making” by Charlotte Rivers.
7. Having the opportunity to teach bookbinding right here in Toronto. I’m ever so grateful to the lovely ladies over at Graven Feather who host my bookmaking workshops with grace and enthusiasm. It’s a beautiful and welcoming space that you must check out if you’re in Toronto’s west end.
6. Seeing my creations available at various brick and mortar shops in Toronto, but also farther away, (like in the Strand Bookstore in NYC!! Woot!!). I’m looking forward to growing this area of my business next year, any suggestions are most welcome!
5. Being a part of the One of a Kind Christmas Show here in Toronto is an experience I’ve enjoyed, and I learned so much. The sheer size of the show was a challenge in so many ways; prepping inventory, designing and building a booth, organizing volunteers for breaks, and the list goes on. What I’m trying to say is that it was a great exercise and the lessons I learned are invaluable.
4. I wrote a business plan! If you follow me on social media you may remember my many posts and statuses about ‘phase 1’ and ‘Passed, now onto phase 4!!’, and various similar statements. And you may have been one of the people who participated in my market research survey (thank you so much for taking the time, it’s much appreciated!) Well, this had to do with the business program I am in. End result: I am a proud business owner with a 56 page business plan!!
3. The ability to sell my creations online, through Etsy and the One of a Kind Online shop. I know, this is a strange thing to say but just imagine the days before this was an option. I cannot. And, not that there’s much to compare with, but 2014 was my best year for sales on Etsy! Woot!!
2. This year, I’m grateful for all the amazing connections I’ve made with other small business owners and makers/artists/artisans. This leads into feeling like part of a real community both online and offline. Some people may not realize how important this is for artists, but it can often be a very solitary life. Finding people that I trust to accept advice from and share my experiences with is pretty fantastic.
1. And the number 1 good thing from 2014 is being able to take on Sprouts Press full time!!! Yaaaaaay!! This is a dream come true for me, it’s my passion and I cannot imagine not doing this!
Thanks to everyone who has helped me along the way in whatever ways you’ve been able! You know who you are, you awesome, amazing and generous people!!!
Bring on 2015!