How I started my own business December 2, 2017December 2, 2017 Marta Friday the 1st of December marks a week since I’ve opened my own business to the public – an online Gallery & Shop selling my own art… it’s been an amazing and thrilling week and it’s been going so well! As I typed the first sentence of this post my mobile just went: ‘KECHING!’ which means that another order has been placed… and this one is going all the way to the USA! Honestly, I’ve never imagined myself having my own business based on my art… mainly because I haven’t done any drawing or painting for over 10 years! I knew I could draw, I used to draw a lot as a teenager but my expectations of myself and a different career path made me stop … the only reminder of what I could do were a few framed pictures on my gallery wall back from 2003 and earlier… How it all started? In the end of September I randomly picked up a box of dry pastels which were on sale in one of the book / stationary shops on my high street. Me being ‘silly me’ I just had this idea of an ‘Eye Love You’ picture for my husband where I would draw an eye and add rest in words… and so I drew my own eye while sitting in front of the mirror. After this I wanted to draw a face and so the ‘Red Head’ came to life, after that it all just snowballed and I just wanted to draw all the time… In October I fell in love again with drawing. With so much love, support and encouragement which I’ve received from strangers on Instagram, by November I knew I had to do something with my newly rediscovered passion. My obstacle was time or rather a lack of it….trying to refurbish my Victorian house whilst being a super mum to my 2 year old and a good wife for my husband! I had to either stay up at night to draw or do it while my son was snoozing during the day which then meant that any DIY wouldn’t get done… My parents live far away so I don’t have that luxury of unlimited babysitting and my little one is due to start a nursery in April next year and I didn’t want to wait until then. I had to invest in myself by paying someone for childcare. After the first day of working from home I couldn’t believe how much I got done: 5 hours of uninterrupted time to myself – that is a pure luxury when you are a mum of a young child. On the fist day I had my business plan done to the smallest detail and an accounting framework for my business as well as a rough design for the website. A few days later I met up with an accountant to triple check everything and I opened a business bank account. In the month that followed I focused on drawing, branding, web design and testing various printing companies to find the quality that I loved. Throughout the process I had amazing responses and support from the lovely Insta community which was incredibly encouraging. When I joined Instagram back in July I really didn’t expect to meet so many lovely people as mad about interior design and DIY as I was and with so many things in common. It was fantastic to learn about other women who run their own businesses and/or are refurbishing, styling, making over their houses while juggling their family lives. I’ve met so many lovely ladies and everyone was incredibly supportive and helpful. If I wasn’t sure about a certain area of the business I could just ask and the girls would share their knowledge and expertise. I found this incredibly refreshing – no competition, no bitchiness, just loads of support and bloody loveliness. ( I say ‘bloody’ here so you don’t get nauseous while reading all this sweet loveliness) Click here to see ‘Frida’ in greater detail. Click here to see ‘Shield Maiden’ in greater detail. First day of my new job aka working for myself and from home was amazing. Hands up one of the best days at work that I’ve ever had… well OK, equally as good as a day spent at the London Fashion Week at my previous job. First week of running the business didn’t disappoint either and my highlights were the messages which I’ve been receiving from my customers as they were getting their art delivered. Reviews and emails mean a lot to me. After all it’s the Instagram people who inspired me to start all of this. To follow my journey on Instagram click here and to check out my art go to online Gallery & Shop.