Back in June last year I declared the start of a year of productive non-employment. My job had come to an end (it wasn’t a great time to be on a fixed-term employment contract in the public sector…) and I decided that it was time to do some of the things I’d been thinking about for ages. Like spending more time sewing, trying to build up my business, starting a MA translating French Literature, and maybe doing the odd bit of contract work to help tide me over.
As everyone knows, the best laid plans of mice and men… and all that. Two weeks into my year (and approximately 100 pages of reading potential translation texts) an opportunity dropped into my lap. An opportunity that I’d always wanted, but hadn’t dared to articulate for my year of productive non-employment. That opportunity that I think secretly all of us who slave over our sewing machines/knitting needles/hot glue guns/vector art programmes dream of.
And it dropped into my lap.
Well, as much as it is possible for a shop to drop into a lap. Rather, fellow-Wellingtonian Melina Martin approached me, and others like me, to go in on a business venture. She’d seen the perfect location. All we needed was elbow grease, enthusiasm, and the willingness to commit ourselves to the
Our very first shop window - August 2011
Originally we planned for 6 months, to get us through to Christmas, and to see how it went. And it went! So over a year on, and Made.it is starting to become known around Wellington. It’s still a lot of hard work. Sometimes I still think we’re crazy. But it’s also incredibly fulfilling to be doing something I’ve always wanted to, and at the same time providing a venue for other small businesses like my own to have their work available throughout the week and year.
Somewhere along the line, we turned 1
So, slightly more than a year on, I’m feeling pretty good about declaring that year of productive non-employment. Even if I haven’t quite gotten around to starting that Masters yet…