I have always had a dream to be able to make a career in being creative. I've tried lots of different genres of crafts, including making costume jewellery a few years ago, which I sold every Saturday at St George's Market in Belfast, whilst also working full-time.
After a career in events, when I went off on maternity to have my twins, I knew that financially I couldn't return to work due to childcare costs, so I wanted to see if I could make some money for myself.
After setting up a Facebook page to sell some artwork I created, I started customising shoes as they are a passion of mine! I could not believe the response and the demand for personalised, customised shoes. What had started as a hobby to make 'pin-money', quickly turned into a business!
THE NEXT STEP
Recently I have made the leap to get paid childcare so I can put more time into Lish Designs. I have also been fortunate enough to come across premises that I can use as a Studio space!!
THE 'MAKE ROOM'
I will set up a space that I can work from to create bespoke orders, and also display my products for purchase to passers-by should the opportunity arise. I also plan to display work from other crafters in an attempt to support other artists and hopefully pass sales their way.There are also 3 rooms upstairs that I hope to get other crafters to use, so I will be creating a space for creativity and supporting other artists.
But the most exciting thing for me is that I will finally have a space that I can facilitate workshops and classes to try to teach others and instill a passion for making things handmade. I will aim to hold regular classes for both adults and children in evenings and weekends, teaching them new skills and offering themed classes for Christmas, Valentines, etc.
The reason I have turned to crowdfunding, is simply to help with the basic set-up costs. The tables, chairs, paint, cabinets, fabric, signage.... even a kettle and cups! By supporting my project, you are buying in to my idea that creativity is something that should be nurtured by providing a space that I can make beautiful things for others, and also teach skills to others!