Biz talk: things I’m afraid to tell you

I thought it would be a great way to clear the slate at the start of the month by addressing something things that trouble me business-wise. After seeing the incredible wave of participants, and being one myself the first go round, it has been so freeing and connecting that I thought I would take another step and talk about business related fears.

So here goes…

I’ve really struggled finding my audience here and in some ways, back home. This will sound like a horrible thing to say but I really think people expect my work to look a certain way based on my appearance. That because I’m natural I use tons of wood and make extremely Afro-centric things. I’ve never had anyone outright say something negative to me, but I’ve definitely been asked when am I going to make something big or loud or whatever. I usually shrug it off, but it’s certainly something that sticks to my bones when I’m feeling vulnerable and exposed. Now this may sound ridiculous to someone reading it, but it’s a very real thing I deal with. I feel that being placed in a category based on looks means my business is supposed to reflect that and since on the surface it doesn’t appear to, I’m slighted.

Another thing that has always bothered me and I’ve spoken about here countless times before is being respected for my price points. I know my price tags are well within a reasonable range, but the amount of times that I’ve been told directly to my face that something costs too much is almost incredible. Sometimes to the point where I wondered why am I even still doing this?

I’ve set up my goals and even created the 6011 collective, but now that we’re in June I realize just how little has been done. I’m not panicking because I still have the rest of the year, but I’m just saying. Having a reliable support system is more important than just having a support system. You need to know you can count on someone to help with the load. 6011 Collective is on an indefinite break and I am trying to think of ways to get that ball rolling again.

I feel so separated from my community [*]. Equal parts of being initially unsure of myself and intimidated by the online world of business women and then not wanting to feel too personal then getting over all that and just being myself–took a while. I’m talking years. I started around the same time as some more known in the blogosphere, but it took a long while to feel comfortable. To exchange ideas. To connect with others. I still struggle with this, but not nearly as bad as at first. My thing now is getting to know and having a real community and friendship with other jewelry designers. It’s important to have and feel that sisterhood.

[*] SO The most amazing thing happened to me this weekend. More of what I’m kind of dying to share with you from yesterday’s post. As soon as the ink is dry I will share it, but I feel a lot different about that last thing I’m afraid to share now. I met this amazing community of women designers and business owners on Saturday. So I say I feel less like this because I don’t actually know them yet, but the potential is there. And it is palpable. And beautiful.

Please take a moment to read all of these amazing posts by other bloggers.

TIATTY – Round 1 (Organized by Ez of Creature Comforts):

Design for Mankind | Little Brown Pen | Beautiful Hello | Curating Style | Sweet Fine Day | The Jealous Curator | Happy Days | Sage & Berries | Really Handmade | Peck Life | Satsuma Press | Rena Tom | For the Easily Distracted | The Hemborg Wife | Vitamini Handmade | Courtney Khail Stationery and Design | Meg in Progress | Dando Photography Blog | Widdershins22 | Alison Citron | Pink Moon Daily | Just Pretty Things | From China Village | Tea with Me | The Darling Ewe | Not Your Average Ordinary | The Electric Typewriter | Elleby Design | Parsimonia {Secondhand With Style} | Life as an Artistpreneur | Hello Cupcake | Dellie | The A & B Stories | Pretty Little Things | Feistyelle | Nib & Zed | Well and Cheaply | I Ripple. I Dance. | Whitfield Awesome Blog | Foxtrot Press | Dry As Toast | The List of Now | Apple Blue | For the Love of | Four Flights of Fancy | Miss Modish | Snapshots & Secrets | Dirty Laundry | Bubby & Bean | Penelope’s Press | Little Nostalgia | Vale Design | Pikaland | Fleurishing | Print Pretty | Vespa Tales | Hazel & Agnes | Amanda’s Musings | Mo’ Funk Designs | Ordinary Mommy | Camp 1899 | In Honor of Design | Liberty’s Yarn | Love, Life & Pictures | Stacey Winters | Owl in the Rain | Living Life Creatively | Emma Elizabeth Clease | I Live in Vacouver Now | British Cream Tea | Maquette | Little Paper Trees | Change is Necessary for Growth | Practically Perfect | Lovely Indeed | Radiant Republic | Teacher Goes Back to School | Acute Designs | This Little Street | The Proper Pinwheel | Kellee Rich | Gluten Free Travelette | Benbrie House | Sierra BB | Lost in Cheeseland | Going Home to Roost | Creative Soul in Motion | Quietly Fabulous | L’elephant Rose | The Anna Delores Blog | Some the Wiser | JRebecca Style | I Saw You Dancing | Wolfie and the Sneak | Threadbare Supply Co. | Lemonwood and Honey | Lolalina | This Texan Wife | C’est ma Vie |

TIATTY – Round 2 (list found at Mimi + Meg):

Coco + Kelley / Court & Hudson / Sacramento Street / My Cup of Te / Crystal Gentilello / MIMI+MEG / The Decorista / Modern Eve / Apartment 34 / Design Blahg / Vmac & Cheese / Miles to Style / Life in a Venti Cup  / The Zhush / Radiant Republic / Savvy Home / The Doctor’s Closet / Design Manifest / Because It’s Awesome / {extra}ordinary wonders / Sparkling Footsteps / Hitha On The Go / Note To Self / So Much To Smile About / Blogstar / The Goods Design / Style & Pepper / Small Shop Studio  / Long Distance Loving / Maggie Rose Blog / The City Girl In Me / The Best Laid Plans / Concrete Jungle DC / Food Fashion Fitness / East Coast Chic

TIATTY – Round 3 (organized by Lights & Letters)

Jill at Terra Savvy | Erica at The Elbow | Jen at Taking Off the Mask | Kate at Modern Home Modern Baby | Laura at My So Called Sensory Life | Monique at Razing Mayhem | Caroline at Salsa Pie | Leslie at Life In Every Limb | Tammie at Tam.Me | Melanie at Inward Facing Girl | Amy at Old Sweet Song | Michelle at Early Mama | Jen at Jen Epting | Leslie at Lights and Letters  | Sarah at SAWK Photography


Happy Monday one & all…

I’ve had an incredible past few weeks and the best part of it so far happened on Saturday. I’ll get into it more as this month progresses, but just know that some things will definitely be changing around here quite soon! I wanted to start the week with a bunch of things that brought me great joy lately.

Doily Blanket from GOOD KNITS

It would be pretty dope to try and make this myself, but for those who can’t (or if I somehow give up) this blanket by Good Knits has my name written all over it. (via Danni)

I decided not too long ago that I want to try and grow my hair again. I’ve done it a few times successfully, but I am a bit scissor happy. I think I want to make an inspiration board and put it up in the house with these amazing women. The Coiffure Project will keep me in check.

This video has me feeling pathetic about not doing yoga like I used to so I’m really recommitting myself to getting my old super fit self back. No more slacking. Seriously.

Wayang Puppet tattoo by Guen Douglas

Our super friend and tattoo artist Guen Douglas just did another amazing tattoo on my husband last week. It is fashioned after Indonesian Wayang shadow puppets and holds a special place in D’s heart.

Have an amazing day!




Happy Thursday.

This week has seen some of the best weather since I’ve been living in Europe. I’ve been rightfully outside soaking every bit of this hot hot heat and working on getting my cocoa brown because you never know when this will just go away–never to return. Hence my silence on the internets.

I’m going to share some photos from my mom’s trip to Amsterdam. Once she booked her ticket, I knew that I would just wait to experience this city with her as a tourist. That’s something I’ve missed out on completely and now that I have it under my belt, I kind of want more. I view Amsterdam with a different eye because I have most of D’s radar as far as what is and isn’t a tourist trap.

We went to a lot of museums that I’ll write about bit by bit. Some were terribly interesting while others left me completely hollow.  Over the next few days, I’ll share photos of our time together and talk about some of the things we did.







Support Prologue: From The Shelter Of My Mind

I have finally resurfaced! I’ve got a ton of recapping of my mom’s trip to do but that will come later this week. Today I am dedicating to my great friend, wedding officiant and sometimes spiritual mentor Adam Tillman-Young. He wrote a book! Do you know how unbelievably difficult it is to write a book? I remember we had a conversation years ago about writing books and he’s gone and done it. What an inspiration! It’s called, Prologue: From The Shelter Of My Mind. He’s an outrageously amazing and hilarious and sincere person. Just completely rare. While I don’t want to oversell him (I don’t even know if that’s humanly possible) I am leaving this space with one MAJOR request.

Watch his video. Go to his Kickstarter. Support his project. You will be a better person for it. The world will be better for it. Adam will most likely catch a fit of delight from it. Please let his flower grow. If there is anyone who is more deserving, I’d have a hard time finding them. He is just tops!

He is almost at $1,000 and needs another $5300 to complete his goal. Let’s make his dream come true. Let’s say you can’t afford even $1 (it is possible), I’d love EVERYONE to spread the word. Post it on your facebook page, your blogs, your tumblrs, twitters, instagrams, whatever else there is!

Thank you & I love you today and everyday.


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