I spent the entire last decade in a creative line of work, but most of that existed in the tech space. After making an abrupt decision to take an eight week leave of absence from almost everything to protect my mental health and values, I felt a little lost. By the end of the first week of "doing nothing," I found myself ordering boxes full of art supplies I'd been wanting to try and signing up for online workshops around new techniques I wanted to learn. I made a commitment to make something every day and document it on social media for accountability. It didn't take long for the orders to come and I whipped up a business plan that gave me six months of runway just to see where things went. The rest is history.
I still spend my days in the tech space, because old habits die hard, but every other minute seems to be spent creating or thinking about creating something. Every product I make is intended to brighten someone's day, to make them feel hope, to remind them that someone cares about them and that they're worthy of love.
We're currently renovating a century old, historic building in downtown Athens and hope to open later this Spring for folks to come shop in person. The level of support North Alabama shows to its local businesses and makers is astounding. It truly does feel like community over competition among the makers themselves too.
As a local maker, what does it mean to you to be part of a flourishing community here in North Alabama?
I'm so passionate about supporting other local, small businesses instead of finding the best bulk deal, even if that means I have to buy less. By supporting other local families, I know they're contributing to local charities, sending their kids to local schools, participating in local activities. Local businesses keep money local and that's how communities stay strong for future generations.