This week I am thrilled to welcome a fellow blogger MummyLish aka Lucy from LISH Concepts as a Jubilee Design Divas special. Lucy has very kindly written a guest post for me and shared her passion for crafting and blogging. Enjoy!
I’ve always had an entrepreneurial streak and loved spending evenings brainstorming potential business ideas. It wasn’t until the arrival of Littlelish (now 2) that I seriously began to explore realistic ways to start up a business. Littlelish was the loveliest of babies, happy and content when with me but very unsettled when I left her side. We’ve since discovered she has a highly sensitive personality which explains a lot. She wouldn’t settle at any nursery (we tried more than 1) and she refused to drink from a bottle. I realized rather quickly that I had no other option but to stay at home. Looking back I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
Initially I set up a creative services agency – Lish Concepts which I enjoyed for a while but to give your business your all you really need to LOVE what you are doing. I enjoyed graphic design but I had a bigger passion, art and crafts. I always complained that I didn’t have enough time for it. I wondered if I would make the time for it if I saw it as a business goal. And the answer was yes!
It was back in January 2012 when I decided to start making Art and various handcrafted items to sell. I was inspired by my findings on the internet thanks to my new blog I was writing about my favourite thing in the world, my daughter. I’d been doing lots of research into blogs and I found one I especially admired, a creative lady who blogged about her life and her shop. I remember thinking “I could do that” and more importantly “I would LOVE doing that”.
I started making artwork and small hanging decorations from my beautiful shell collection. What I love about shells is how each one is unique with a beautiful texture and colour all of its own. My shell hanging hearts are a real work of love as they take an incredibly long time to make but I don’t mind because I enjoy the end result so much and love to share this with others. I recently sold a series of shell hearts to a lady who had just bought a new house and wanted 3 to hang in a row on a white painted brick wall. She’d planned it all out in her head and I took great satisfaction in knowing she would be admiring them every day.
I branched out from working with shells to creating a variety of art work from drawing to lino prints as well as my best selling birch tree bark art. More recently I have started to sew little creatures with matching cards that make lovely gifts for young and old alike.
Lish stands for love . inspiration . style . happiness which is my magic recipe for creativity. I make things that are close to my heart inspired very much by my love of life, nature, people and the beauty of the world around us with the sole goal of making people happy.
In the last 5 months I’ve sold my online pieces all over the world. It is mind boggling for me to think about someone in America displaying my work. I’m now beginning to do craft fairs in and around the UK which I adore. I love the face to face contact with people and hearing what they think about my work. It is an excellent source of inspiration and I always take a note pad and jot ideas down. Members of the public often come up with some really great extensions to what you have already made. I take on quite a few personal commissions for people who have an idea but are not creative enough to pull it off. I love helping them to realize their visualization.
The fairs have also been great for building my confidence and for networking. All the fellow crafters I have had the pleasure to meet have been very friendly and helpful sharing tips and advice. It is a real community feel.
I’m working on so many new lines for Lish Concepts that sometimes I need to slow myself down. I’m still a fulltime mum to Littlelish during the day and crafter extraordinaire by night. I have been known to make some very long evening hours which is pretty exhausting. I normally make the mistake of going at warp speed with my projects because I am so motivated and excited. But this often means I crash and burn after a couple of weeks. I’ve learnt to moderate this over time but still have an occasional blip. The housewife in me stops functioning all together and I am only drawn to crafting and making more mess. I am nowhere near creating a healthy balance yet, hopping between making, networking and blogging!
But the fantastic thing is I have been able to be there every minute of every day with Littlelish and I have really seen her flourish. She is now a bright, confident, strong willed little lady who knows what she wants! And so I am. Having a project to work on gives you a boost of inspiration, something to focus on to make you feel a bit more like ‘you’ again. Now I am not only a good mummy but an inspired one with a business of my own to keep my brain cells fresh and buzzing and it feels great!
My blog, LISH Concepts is also really starting to take shape. Now I write about design, style, eco as well as my life with Littlelish. I absolutely love writing more than I ever would have imagined but as with all creative processes I find myself having weeks I feel really inspired and others where I don’t seem to be able to string a sentence together. If this happens I will just turn my attention to something else, crafting, painting or brainstorming. Boredom is never something I suffer with!