This year has been both an exciting and challenging one for us so far, with lots going on behind the scenes.
We've been exploring new ways of doing things, changing some of our processes, investing in new equipment and sorting out getting assistance with some aspects of our work.
The latter is now well underway: we're partnering with an ethically run workshop filled with skilled artisans to help make some of our jewellery components. This is both daunting and exciting.
The reason for all this effort is try to make the business more sustainable for me personally and more able to keep up with demand, particularly over the busiest months of the year.
Here's a blog post from about 18 months ago which explains the dire need for some changes. It's taken longer than we'd hoped to get them figured out and underway, but finally it's all happening!
The downside of change
The downside of this process is that the time taken to research and implement these changes has meant that I've not been able to spend a lot of time at my jewellery bench for long periods this year, although that is finally starting to get sorted out.
In particular some of our especially complex designs have been out of stock for some time as we've just not had enough capacity to get them made. I hope to have that corrected soon.
It's also delayed the creation of a new jewellery range, which is something we usually try to complete earlier in the year. But that process is now well underway soon and will be completed as soon as possible - stay tuned for details.
The upside of change
You're unlikely to notice most of the changes in terms of the jewellery you purchase. This is because the changes are intended to be a more effective way for us to achieve the same outcomes in terms of our jewellery pieces.
What should be noticeable as the dust settles is that we'll be much more able to keep items in stock in reasonable quantities throughout each year and hopefully participate in more design markets and work with more retail outlets.
Plus I should have time freed up in future to enable me to work more on new designs and engaging with customers, which is something I'm really looking forward to.
So it's all onwards and upwards from here!