Hi Maya! Can you tell us a little more about yourself and your shop Ruby Loves Flamingos?
"Well, I almost became a secondary school (school for 11-16 year olds) teacher a few years ago, until I ‘escaped’ teacher training! The children were brilliant the
rest of it wasn’t. But before that I have a long history with art and design. I studied theatre design at university and
afterwards worked as a freelance costume designer/maker for a few years before I fell into teaching adults drawing skills and portraiture. It was soon after leaving teacher training that I took up knitting again and taught myself to crochet. My mum taught me to knit when I was a child but I’d not really picked up a pair of needles since my late teens. This time though it felt different. I began to really appreciate the craft of it all and I haven’t really stopped knitting or crocheting since! Taking a ball of yarn and turning it into something wearable never fails to please me. I have always been irredeemably creative and often dreamed of being my own boss, making money from my creativity. Then a friend told me about Etsy and that’s where I am now. I’ve also opened a shop on a British site called Folksy and have plans to have shops on other online markets and maybe a site of my own one day."
You obviously have a lot of goals and dreams to be had. What continues to inspire you?
"I can be inspired by many things; that must be the artist in me. What I love about knitting and crochet though is that I can combine colour, texture and pattern. Recently, I became determined I would master the art of Fair Isle knitting, or stranded colour knitting as it’s sometimes referred to. It can be incredibly tricky to get just right and has been known to make grown women (and men, let’s be fair) weep which is why I’ve always given up on it. Now I am so, so close to getting it perfect, which makes me very happy because not only does it give me a real sense of achievement it also means I can begin to introduce this work into my shop."
How exciting! Sounds like quite a challenge. Have there been an other challenges you've been faced with in your business journey?
"I suppose my biggest obstacle is time. It always has been. I’m a full time mum, my daughter is very nearly three years old and I've been working on my business since she was very young so, finding the time to do that and be a mother has been tricky – everything seems to take so long!
I guess another obstacle has been, not knowing what the heck it is I’m doing! ;) Opening up an online shop on Etsy sounds very straight forward at first but there is so much to learn, and I’m still learning stuff now, developing my brand, working on promotion etc etc…"
Yes, time is always a common issue and the sea of shops is so vast... how are you working through these things?
"I try to manage my time by making lists. I call them ‘running lists’, as in they’re very flexible. I keep an unlined notebook especially for my lists and as long as I can keep track of everything I need to do then in theory, everything will get done. When it comes to learning how to operate an online business then other sellers have been an endless well of advice and support. It’s a really great community!"
Any advice you'd like to share from that well with us today?
"This is a tricky question to answer because there is SO much advice, plus I’m still chasing my business dreams! You need to be passionate about what you make or do, and be prepared to work hard and be willing to learn from others. Also, don’t expect instant success, very few people achieve this. Passion, Patience and Persistence would be the three P’s, if you needed three P’s? ;)"
The three P's is so perfectly true! Thank you so much Maya for stopping by and sharing your story with us. Look forward to much more success in your future!
Enjoy 15% off until Nov. 27th! Code "CUPCAKE"
**excludes sale items**
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