Events, Inspiration, Uncategorized, Update

New Beginnings

Hello!

It’s been a while, but I’m back!

I was struggling for a long time with running my craft business in the midst of this horrific pandemic.  I have been working at the day job throughout – initially just part-time in the office, but the last couple of weeks, I am back to fulltime.  I am fortunate enough to work just a short walking distance from my house.  There are only a few of us in the office, and we have a lovely large space, so can spread out nicely.  Being in the building trade, we are already super conscious about Health and Safety, so I actually feel safer at work than I do going to the supermarket!

But, getting back to Athena Makes!!!! I am finally getting my ass in gear! I posted about this on my page recently, so apologies if you have already read this, but at the beginning of the year I was actually seriously considering closing Athena Makes down. I had completely lost my mojo, I wasn’t loving anything I was making, and I seriously struggle trying to sell items I don’t love myself! Sales were down, a lot of the emporiums I take part in were either postponed, cancelled, or the organisers of them just didn’t seem to be giving them the time it needed. I was feeling quite lost, and despondent, and honestly didn’t see a way forward.

Being made to stay home, and change our ways of life actually gave me the boost I needed to get creating again.  I was a slow process, but my embroidery mojo has returned!  It really is hard to put into words how good this made me feel. I absolutely love my jewellery making, but embroidery is what makes me feel good about myself! The therapeutic value of stabbing a needle into something cannot be valued highly enough!

I have been working on some new ranges!  I have a range of floral creatures – so far a fox, elephant, narwhal and penguin, with plans to do many more.

I started a new range of quote hoops – uplifting, meaningful, or just plain funny quotes.  But possibly my favourite new range is my vintage hoops.  I have a huge stash of vintage fabrics, trims and embellishments that I have been collecting for years.  Putting these together with modern embroidery techniques is so much fun, and I am loving the results!

I have also still been making jewellery.  I have been working on new chainmaille designs, and have been raiding my gemstone stash for some new designs with sterling silver.

I am also finally getting my Etsy shop updated – I am regularly adding links to the newly listed pieces as they are uploaded. Some of these you may have seen before, but now they will all be available in one place.  I have got a quite a backlog to get through, so if there is anything in particular you would like adding – just shout!

I have also launched a new scheme this month – RAOK boxes (Random Act Of Kindness).  At the beginning of every month I will be putting post up on my facebook page, where people can nominate themselves, or a friend to receive a box of goodies.  There will be handmade items from me (of course!), handmade goodies that I will be purchasing from other small businesses (spreading the love!) together with bits of stationery, tea, and chocolate!

I will pop the link below for this months post.

I think that’s it! If you have made your way through all that – Thank you, and well done!!!! It really does mean a lot to me when you leave a little comment, or a like on my post. And I love to answer questions!

Love and huge (socially distanced) hugs.

Zoe

Xx

RAOK Link

Inspiration, Uncategorized, Update

June 2020

Hi Everyone!

I always seem to be apologising for how long it is since I last posted!  At the beginning of the year, I had the best of intentions for at least monthly posts.  I had a list of topics to focus on each month, and had ideas for competitions, and giveaways for you all.

Then Covid-19 happened.  I honestly don’t know what to say about the last few months.  I think we have all verged between fear, anger, resignation, apathy, and empathy.  There have been times that I could have easily sat and cried, or screamed.  The one thing that I strongly believed was that the only saving grace of this pandemic was that it was bringing people back together (while socially distancing!)  It was starting to help communities care about each other again.  Neighbours were helping neighbours.  People were checking in with their families and loved ones, it was starting to feel like people were starting to re-focus on the important things in life.

Then another in a long stream of black men was killed by a member of the police force that is supposed to serve and protect them, and the world started to fracture again.  I am incredibly lucky to live in a country where this level of racism is rare.  It certainly still exists in the UK, and it is horrific that in this day and age racism exits anywhere, but the scenes in America are truly heart-breaking.

Many people will wonder why I am posting this.  I am a white woman living in the UK that could not possibly have any understanding of the pain racism causes.  But what I do have is a voice.  What I do have is a page, and a forum where I can speak out, and I should.  Everyone who has a voice, should speak out.  Long gone is the time of silence, and “minding your own business”.  This is every human beings business, and we have a duty to stand by our black communities, and unite with them to fight.

Tomorrow I will be sending out an update blog, which I hope will make people smile, and be uplifting, but for today, I just want to finish with the following quotes, which I think sum it up

“I am not black, but I stand with you”

“I understand that I cannot begin to understand, but I stand”