I have been dipping my toe into the pool of self employment for a year now. I have got to the point where I have so many ideas on how to push my business further but simply don’t have the time!
Since graduating I have always wanted to run my own business. But I didn’t know what in. I have a degree in Textile Design. I have always been creative. My mother was a seamstress too. My love for vintage really developed with I worked in the vintage store in London called The Girl Can’t help it!
I have been obsessed with my idea for a bespoke made to measure vintage inspired company for about two years now. Funnily enough it started when I need to make a quick buck to buy my pug Maybellene! I was living in London at the time. It’s a really expensive place to live and all my share cash was being spent on getting my sleeve finished by Valerie Vargas. A friend of Mr BooBoo Kitty’s had always had pugs. I used to joke, if you ever have a litter, I would be first on the list! Well I was told Dotty was pregnant in January, Maybellene was born in February. She was ready to take home in April! So that gave me just over three months to raise £1000. Pretty pricey for a dog, yes I know. But pedigree bitches normally sell for over £1,500!!
At that point I had been making my own dresses for quite some time. So I tended to wear my own creations. But my wardrobe was still full of shop bought items. Items I bought simply because they had a rockabilly look, nice fabric but not necessarily a great fit or cut. So I sold them on ebay. Sold most of the items in my wardrobe, including shoes and even things I liked and fitted.
I decided to take photos of dresses I had made and put them on ebay. If you did buy one of my early dresses I would love to hear from you. I made a few sales. So I made a very crude looking facebook page, very poor quality photos of me modelling in my front room. I got a very good response on facebook and got a few orders.
I raised the funds to buy Maybellene and enough to cover her vets bills, kit her out with toys and accessories. And not once did I regret selling the contents of my wardrobe.
I continued to push my business as much as I could. I was still living in London and worked long hours in the city. So didn’t really have the time it needed to make it grow.
In May 2010 I moved back to Nottingham, where I did my degree. I got an admin job as I had built up credit card debts form living in London and financially wasn’t in a position to start my own business.
I have gained so much experience in my current job. It’s for a marketing company. So what I have learnt in terms of marketing for a small business has been invaluable! My role also involves me working with a number of small business owners. I now feel confident in my ability to run my won business and make a success of it.
I am going to miss the office banter and the friends I have made here. Some how I don’t think Maybellene has as many funny stories as my current work colleagues do!
It has indeed been a scary discussion to make. I am extremely exited for the future. I would like to thank all my beautiful customers. And everyone in the industry I have worked with, chatted to, tweeted, emailed. None of this would have been possible without you. Thank you!