Today is Maker Monday (ok, every Monday is Maker Monday), and also Day 1 of the Indie Business Network 30-day blog challenge, so what perfect timing to talk about my history of loving to make stuff, and how I came to make natural skin care products full time.
I've been a maker since I was a child.
I used to hand-sew custom Barbie clothes, and I learned to knit and crochet at a young age (only to forget, and later learn again). I loved, and still love, anything crafty. Drawing, cross-stitching, macrame. Although I was too young for actual baking, I created a mud-pie bakery called Cakeland in my backyard. I wanted to try making anything and everything I could.
In my late single-digits to early teens, I was all about the friendship bracelet craze. I still remember all the stitches as if my hands had memories. In my later teens, sewing and beading became my favorite. I recently discovered these two patchwork skirts while cleaning out a closet. I made them when I was 19!
I've always known I wanted to make things for a living, though it took me a long time to figure out exactly what.
In my late teens, I made and sold patchwork hats and peyote stitched beaded wraps for dreads to a shop in Boston. In my early 20s I sold my handmade jewelry on the streets of Galway, Ireland. I worked as a barista for 10 years, enjoying the gratification of making creative coffee drinks. And, in the middle of that 10-year span, in my mid 20s, I started making Wunder Budder.
For several years I was distracted by traditional college and working, only making Wunder Budder part time. I didn't have the confidence I needed to make it a full-time business, but making skincare and aromatherapy blends was what I would turn to in times of high stress (which was pretty much constant as a full-time science-major adult student). Eventually, I realized that if making something was relieving my stress, I should be making that thing full time!
So, long story extremely short, I turned my favorite hobby into a full-time job.
It's not always easy, but it is always gratifying to make things, especially when people love what I make. The best days are when I get repeat customers, or a note from someone who had to tell me how much they loved a Wunder Budder they just used or how it made a difference in their life.
But really, every day I get to make something is the best day.
What are some things you like to make?