When my husband and I decided we were ready to leave Denver to move to Portland, I knew no matter when the move happened I would have to take some time off making and really running my business. I make physical products that require an array of different materials, setups, shipping options, etc. I also sell supplies for others to create, and in my mind there just wasn’t a way I would be able to make all of this happen while living in temporary spaces. I knew we would find a home to buy (a privilege I am very aware of) sooner rather than later, but I accepted I would have some time off from making to work on the backend parts of my business that were in need of some long overdue love.
I also knew that taking a time off from really being able to make and run my business would be hard, but what I didn’t realize is how attached I am to being able to create and how much of a part of my life it is. Up until now I never stopped to think how long I have been crocheting, creating, and exploring new crafts. I started crocheting as a side hobby when I was fourteen (I’m about to turn 30). I can’t really remember a time since I picked up a crochet hook that I didn’t casually work on projects in the evenings or when I had free time. I remember being in elementary school and making endless amounts of friendship bracelets, being in college and cooking religiously for my friends and roommates, living in New York City in my early twenties and figuring out how to grow a garden on my fire escape. I have always had projects. Something to occupy my free time.
Back in 2015 I started to take Likewoah more seriously as a side hustle and would fill all of my spare time working on crochet items for winter markets, coming up with new patterns, figuring out how to sell to my first wholesale accounts. When it turned into a full time job in 2018, I found I was never not working. I was creating at all hours of all days, while sitting in the car, at the movie theater, I felt I didn’t have the time to stop as I was making so little money, I needed to hustle harder.
I have grown and learned a lot in the last few years of running this business and do my best to no longer work sixteen hour days for months on end around the holiday season. I have learned if I don’t take time for myself, my business will fail from my burnout. What I didn’t expect to realize in these last few weeks is how creating, crafting, learning is not only what I do for a living, but it is what brings me joy in my life. There are many things I love, a good home cooked meal, spending time in nature, pretty much any physical activity, I just never stopped to think about how much I get out of creating fiber art.
I have had time these last few weeks to streamline some parts of my business, to do some research on new ideas I have for Likewoah that I just hadn’t had the time to spend days searching the internet to figure out where to start. Yet with all this time all I want to do is create, to make something, to start working on these new ideas.I’m sure as soon as I am back in my space creating and making again I will wish for some time off to breathe, as we always think the grass is greener on the other side. Hopefully I can look back to this month off from creating and remember the joy I get from making when the hustle starts again.
For the first time in running my business I feel like I now get why I do it, not because it was a side hustle that turned into a full time job when I got fired from a job. Not because it’s something other people told me I’m good at. Not because it was a way to make some extra cash in my early twenties. It’s because it is what I truly love doing, and what I meant to do being at this point in my life. I often question where things will go in this business, will fiber art be relevant in five, ten, twenty years? Will Likewoah stay in the form of a business it currently is? Will it be just me running the show? I have no answers for these questions, but I have allowed myself to stop stressing over what will happen and focus more on what is happening.
With all this said in my long winded way, I will be opening back up for orders and all regular Likewoah Handmade things come the beginning of August. I move into my new home on 7/30, so please be patient with me as I get settled into my new space to run Likewoah and find all the things needed to get orders on their way to you, as I am sure I packed them in a variety of different boxes that I didn’t label.
Thank you for being patient with my month or so break in order to move to a place I have been ready to call home for the majority of my life. Thank you for being here, for supporting this business of mine, and for supporting small, ethical, sustainable, businesses in general. You work hard for your money and I know you can find fiber art goods and supplies cheaper so I want to express my sincere appreciation for you caring for the greater good of the world and the people living in it and spending a little extra to invest in ethically and sustainably goods and supplies at Likewoah.