Honesty as a Small Handmade Business Owner
It was this image and an honest caption that sparked the largest response on social media I have ever received since I began my journey with A Gift By Gaia. You can view the post here. It left me wondering why. For any small business owner who works hard to promote themselves knows that it is hard to beat the algorithm on Instagram! I also know that it is equally tough to be honest about times where you've struggled to get your business off the ground.
Here stands a woman who, behind the magical Faery outfit and relaxed festival vibes, worked incredibly hard to pull together a stall for her first ever vending event (yes, the Faery standing there is me!). I was beyond nervous, had no idea where to begin speaking to potential customers, and was almost praying that someone wouldn't ask how much something costed in fear of being laughed at. I must have changed the prices five times before even setting up! I managed to shift a few items, but the footfall dwindled. Whilst this was partially out of my hands (the festival was the first of its kind), I learnt so much that weekend. And in a way, I am incredibly fond of that stall set up. It was thrown together, raw and honest. I had no experience of how to present jewellery for stalls, the importance of 'raised levels'. I under priced my creations despite the love, craft and care gone into each individual item. At one stage, and this I admit with a smile, I entirely abandoned my stall to go and join the circus pixies and hula hoop at the teepee next to me:
In the end, I made some new friends, and aside from the market stall experience I got to have a good time! Since growing as a small handmade business owner it has become a passion to connect with, inspire and encourage other craftspeople. It is during those times that you long for comfort and mutually lived experiences to spur you forward. Have belief in yourself, your art and those who will find your vision beautiful and worthy of investment! It took me a year to let people in on what happened behind the scenes, and it was received warmly.
Since then, I was offered an opportunity to sell my jewellery at the famous Camden Market. Home to loved creatives and original vibrancy, I was able to continue my journey in fostering self-confidence with A Gift By Gaia. More on that journey in the next blog-post!