With 2012 coming to an end, I can’t help but look back on this past year and ask myself “did that all really happen?!” It’s still hard to believe that something that started out as ‘a bunch of ideas’ has become a full-fledged crafty business! It’s been a really amazing ride so far. Back when I was studying business at University, I never really thought I would go the entrepreneurship route, but the more I become involved with my own business, the more I enjoy the excitement of experiencing new things on my own accord. Of course, it’s a lot of work, but there’s nothing quite like seeing someone walk down the street wearing something you made with your own two hands.
This year I focused on developing my ideas for yoga products and apparel. On the product side, I attempted to create yoga accessories that were both stylish and functional, like a meditation cushion that could convert into a bag. On the apparel side, I created designs with the intention to make people laugh. At the beginning, it was tricky to find the proper materials. I remember racking my brain trying to find a piece of hardware that would allow a yoga strap to be detached off of a bag. It took me a while to find what I was looking for, but I eventually got what I needed by asking around. That’s been one of the most amazing parts of this journey: the connections I’ve made with people. I’ve been able to connect with other crafters who have been more than willing to share their experiences and sources with me. I love being part of a crafty community!
Speaking of craftiness, this year I tried my hand at a lot of craft shows. I did 6 craft shows in Nov/Dec ALONE! It was a crazy Christmas season. There were even times when I would run out of stock on the Saturday and have to frantically screen-print or sew the same evening to make more for Sunday morning. I also did a few other events, including the Autumn Shift Festival, Kirtan Vancouver Festival, the Vancouver Yoga Conference and the Beyond Pink entrepreneurship exhibition. There was definitely a steep learning curve when it came to shows. At the beginning I didn’t even know that you could accept credit card with your phone! Now, I’ve got my own handy card reader! Ah, how I love technology!
This year I helped raise money for Moksha Yoga’s Living Your Moksha campaign by selling my C(OM)-UNITY shirts at Moksha Yoga Burnaby. The campaign’s goal was to raise enough money to build 7 schools in 7 countries. I’m happy to say that, as a collective community, we raised over $100,000 for Free the Children. Wow!
I’m happy to say that my products are now coast to coast! Inner Fire is now carried in studios in Victoria, Vancouver, Winnipeg, Charlottetown, St.John’s and Portsmouth (New Hampshire). It’s still a little crazy to think that I’m a retail wholesaler, but so far so good and I’m hoping to expand in the coming year :)
This year I was featured on a local TV show called The Express, hosted by the lovely Johanna Ward. It was amazing exposure and I’m really grateful for the opportunity to showcase what I do. Here’s the link to the clip if you haven’t already seen it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXjMeEdidEk
I am so grateful for everyone who has helped me along on my journey this past year. Special thanks go out to Mom and Dad, Kristina, Russ, everyone at Moksha Yoga Burnaby, the YWCA Vancouver and the Vancouver Aquatic Centre. I feel so blessed to have the support from so many amazing friends and colleagues. All those little “Likes” on Facebook do make a difference!
I’m so excited to see what 2013 will bring. I hope the new year will bring new opportunities for you to “Ignite, Explore and Inspire” your own passions in life. Happy New Year!