Last weekend, my body reminded me that I'm old and have two kids in school, so I was down and out with whatever mutated virus they brought home. It did force me to slow down and start putting words on paper, to help keep me organized and moving forward. One recurring thought that came to mind was "grateful". I am personally grateful for all the good in my life. The hard work I've put in, to get the most back has been worth it. I want to incorporate "grateful" - maybe incorporate a place to write on the tags why they're grateful, what they're grateful for or if they're gifting an item - what the recipient does to make the gifter "grateful". I've changed those darn tags so many times, I'll be shocked if my designer takes another order....
We rolled out our product "buckets" to the first round of our outreach partners. I have gotten great feedback from both the people who get to pick from them and the providers who make them available. I do need to stop in this week and see how they're all doing, who needs more of what, etc. I haven't seen one of my bracelets in the wild, but I keep looking (I will not ever approach anyone who I think has one on unless I 100% know them). I've also been approached by a few businesses who want to put some bracelet racks up as a consignment situation in their established spots. I also added some free baskets in a few surrounding libraries.
I went way outside of my comfort zone and participated in the pop up mental health awareness night that Olive Pit Brewing in Lisbon put on. Alongside Eastcraeft, we were there all night selling our products and raising some good money for https://afsp.org/ - another connection I was thrilled to make.
Connecting with people who have lost a loved one to suicide, and getting a chance to honor that person through a memorial bracelet is one thing I've unexpectedly come to love. The project originally started to reach people before they make the choice, but has ended up being a comfort for those who have been left behind. It's both heart breaking and an honor to bring a glimpse of that person back, even if it's just through their favorite color.
I'm actively trying to figure out how to redo the online store and I also need to think about Christmas packaging! I'd like to get away from making duplicates and making the offerings truly one of a kind, but it's impossible to showcase the hundreds of bracelets I have! Maybe rotate out a new batch every month? Bee The Reason is the Crumbl of jewelry? Someone with more experience, jump in and tell me what to do!
Goal this week: drop off at consignment sites & condense the project mission onto tiny signs so people know what they're supporting without me standing there to explain.
Happy Fall - anyone in Maine would be hard-pressed to call this past summer "enjoyable" when we had 8 sunny days and what felt like 3 feet of rain.
https://www.eastcraeft.com/ (visit my friend Maggie's store to support all her hard work to combat suicide!)