And just like that, we are now a year old! We started with just a few tools, some salvaged pallet wood, and a small garage. Now, we have more tools, different kinds of wood and still, a small garage.Things are the same, but different.
I still remember my first sale. It happened just 2 days after I opened our Etsy shop. I just went for it with no preparation at all – we just had some products (clocks made from reclaimed wood) and that’s it. No cardboard box, no bubble wrap, nothing! So we hurriedly bought some things for the shop and shipped the product to our first ever customer (a fellow Etsy seller!). We were so happy and thought “Oh, someone bought from us, maybe we can really do this”. So, we made some more products along the way.
We also started going to markets. We had 3 markets that we joined this year: The Maker’s Nest, The Makers and Shakers Market and Finder’s Keepers. Huge success in all of them! However, the preparations were not easy! We had to make a lot of stocks while there were incoming orders – this is a huge stress for both of us. We were trying to meet deadlines while making stocks! Sleeping late (like 3AM) has become the norm. And as you know, we have two kids under 4 so managing everything was a bit difficult. I even brought them to our first market and it was SUPER hard. My toddler was so bored that he tried to shake our walls that some of our displays fell down. Of course you cannot contain a toddler in a 2×1.5m space! Good thing the baby slept all day while I carried her. So for the next two markets, I had help from a friend who stayed with my kids while we went to the market. And the next one, my parents were here to take care of them.
With the unexpected demand and surge in orders, came with a lot of health issues. My husband had tendinitis and I had the tennis elbow. We got sick several times as well but we continued working while not feeling well. It was really tough
Because of all that, we decided we needed help. It started with little things like buying a dishwasher (what a life saver!), having someone to baby sit my kids on a weekend so both of us can work and getting people to work at the workshop from time to time. And I knew from then on that the Christmas season will be busy so I asked, no, begged my parents to come to Australia from overseas to help us. It helped a lot! But still, we were trying to catch up on orders.
And can we please talk about the weather! There were days when it was raining so hard that the water is going inside the garage/workshop. I was staining our products inside our house! Sometimes, the weather became too hot that I got headaches.
But we never gave up! And I am so proud to say that in a year we had the following achievements:
- 900+ sales at Etsy
- Got featured in several online sites, blogs and magazines in Australia and around the world like Better Homes And Gardens Australia, Herald Sun Newspaper in Australia, Architectural Digest in Spain, Moje Lepo Stanovanje (a Slovenian magazine) and many more.
- Collaborations with other businesses
- Big order from a company in Australia
- Had stockists and wholesalers
As always, I am super thankful to everyone who has supported us in our journey. We are so excited to what we can offer you this year! Hopefully, we can streamline processes, simplify work and make more beautiful and functional products! Again, thank you so much.