Merry Christmas xxx

Merry Christmas xxx

Just popping in to wish you and all those you love a very Merry Christmas xx and to give a wee honest update :-) 

I'm all done for 2018! yay! final orders have been posted out and any outstanding are waiting for January 2018... What a year! THANK YOU to every one of you who have purchased from Periwinkle and Clay this year, I'm eternally grateful for every single order, no matter its size or value.  I'm also really thankful for all of you who have left such beautiful feedback on Facebook or on the products in the shop :-)

I think my folders are telling me I've made and framed over 1,500 tiles since September... I'm seeing tiles in my sleep :-D  It's been another amazing year for the business and I'm so incredibly proud.  I've managed to keep the studio running, improved products, introduced lots of new pieces and made lots of you super happy :-) 

This time last year, I'd just moved into the studio *was trying to move into the studio, and to be honest, I was a worn out stressed mess, I won't lie!  I felt burnt out until probably August time when it was time to pull my socks up and get going on Christmas again... I was uber proud that the business was growing and it was doing so well... but I wasn't doing so well and I was thoroughly drained.

In early November I finally admitted I wasn't myself (probably hadn't been myself since before Eliza) and I needed some help... lots of you responded so positively to my honest Facebook post... that post was a bit of a turning point!  A few weeks earlier I saw a new doctor who prescribed me something to help, I was hesitant but I finally admitted to myself that I was struggling and I wasn't who I knew I could be and who I used to be... I felt I was struggling with the business, I felt lonely, I was struggling with just being me, with life in general, being a mum and all that goes with it.  I'd lost my mojo, passion and was finding every day really hard to get through.

Thank you to all of you who have since given me 'virtual' and real hugs, offered advice and support and listening ears.  To all of you who told me that the post on Facebook had also helped you.  I'm pleased to report that things are better, I'm feeling happier and more content and feel like I've grasped some more control over life.  I came off social media for as much as I could for a break and I currently feel like 2018 is going to be a much stronger year for me.

That post helped me hugely as a little guardian angel said she wanted a job - I recruited Kat who has been a huge help in the business with packing, keeping me going and organised! I was possibly a bit naive to think I could manage this Christmas on my own and even Kat (a previous customer) has said she is shocked at quite how much goes into creating your lovely pieces ;-)

So... next year, a fresh start, a new year - I've had lots of thoughts swimming round in my head for a few weeks... what would I love to do more of, etc. I'm going to spend a little bit of time between Christmas and New Year doing some planning.  But what I do know is...

There will be more beautiful clay tiled frames, GREY frames, FEATURE WALLS, more of what I've started this year and some new 'non-clay' pieces.  There may or may not also be a re-brand... we shall see :-)

One thing I do know for sure is that I've decided to find a way to support two charities next year.  The British Heart Foundation (heart disease is very relevant to my family) and also I'd like to find a Mental Health charity to support - so watch this space for more.  If you have any recommendations for a Mental Health charity to support, please leave me a comment xx

If you've read this far - thanks! what a lot of waffle ;-)

I truly hope that you and yours have a super magical Christmas and that 2018 is brighter, better, exciting and more colourful for all. 

Love Claire xxx

Claire Millen

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