I was gathering a few images for my December mood board when reflecting on a few personal thoughts I’d love to share today. Honestly, I am not a good writer (not even in my mother tongue) and do not talk too much about my life on any platform. Furthermore, Eclectic Trends has been undergoing a major rebranding this Autumn, and it feels even less appropriate. But since I have not spent too much time over here lately, I’d love to look back today.
From top to bottom, left to right: Georgina Lane | Luzena Adams | Ciara Richardson | Oncewed | Benjamin Vnuk Photography | Tanya Markova-Nya | Rowan Mersh | Miss Tristan B | via ThePoetryOf MaterialThings | Ryuichi Naira
2015 feels like two years in one. Actually until end summer, the year has been pretty challenging with health issues and a so-called frozen shoulder I’ve had for the last 18 month. I can’t lift up my right arm which is pretty uncomfortable, painful at the same time and means short nights. The good news is I am getting great attention from a physiologist now and hope to be back in a few month.
We are still on the hunt for a new home. I guess the day we find the right place, it must be just one amazing spot that is waiting for us since it’s been now a couple of years trying to move towards the beach. The thing is, I absolutely want to work in a different way and do need a few different characteristics to keep growing. Do you know that sensation of ‘if I can’t change my environment, it’s not going to help me to expand’? I have even started to consider a more into the mountain area approach which is pretty strange for me. I am just totally drawn by the sea! The evolution over the past two years has been from looking for a rooftop apartment in Barcelona, to an apartment close to the sea, and now it’s a house in the countryside. Ha, that covers pretty much everything, and I can’t wait to see what we make in the end. As long as there is a fireplace, I guess, all is alright :)
Businesswise, I had like two before/after moments this year. I was not too happy with the blog and a rather ‘nice to have’ platform not showing a clear USP. Though most of the B2B work would enter thanks to the blog, I wanted to make it much more profitable and advertisement was not my preferred choice. Instead, the idea of working with creatives and offering a product seemed much more appealing to me. And it turned out to be such a good decision!
The publishing of the mood board online courses in English and Spanish gave me a totally new perspective of business. I knew how interesting this could be but until you don’t experiment and try out new ways, you don’t have concrete expectations. Well, let me tell you, the four month of production were totally worth it! I would do it again straight away and have learned quite a bit along the way. It’s not an easy task if you don’t outsource which was actually our case. Everybody tells me how lucky I am to have a husband who is a producer. Let me put it like this: yes, right, it’s handy (and I am very lucky to have this amazing man at my side) but think as well of all the hours you work together (nope, it’s not a 40 hours week), you can not concentrate on other projects at the same time, neither of us. Thus you don’t invoice, right? There is always a pro and a con of pretty much all endeavours but bottom line is, we would sure do it again (actually we will).
Another major adventure was rebranding Eclectic Trends in Autumn. I stumbled upon a template I loved, bought it and started adapting my content. To my surprise, I had to find out the template developer would not help me with uncountable bugs (he basically did not answer any email at a certain point), the platform did not feel responsable for selling a lousy product, and I had to hire a web master who tried to do his best. That meant basically reprogramming the entire thing, and believe me, Summer was a mess. The blog would literally fall apart every 24 hours, I had to change the launch date many times, and up to today, I am still having ‘issues’. Actually, I am starting in January a second rebranding fase trying to get rid off quite a few technical and visual bugs. Optimizing is my new mantra for 2016! What’s yours?
But hey, the result has been overwhelming! I have already projects confirmed until next summer, there are a few international workshop collaborations coming up, I am working on super interesting trend consulting projects both in Spain and abroad, new doors have opened I wouldn’t even have dreamed about 12 month ago. There are international trend conferences I am giving next year. And yes, that has a lot to do with the rebranding process and how Eclectic Trends is perceived now. If you have any doubt about a future rebranding, I would highly recommend to go for it! Do a mood board, get clarity of what you want to transmit and how to position yourself. I’ll write soon a post about my own process, I might even do a podcast.
What I really miss though, is my ceramics atelier and spending time there. Not all is possible, or let’s be honest, I haven’t put it as a priority right now. The idea of going online with a small collection is totally on hold, and truth be told, I am quite unhappy with it. But being in stand-by does not mean, I could start anytime again, right? I will not even put it on a well intended 2016 list but just see how things flow. And eventually when going back, just take it as something to enjoy, not seeing it as a business model. I might consider it just as a get-away with no further purpose than enjoying the moment.
Personally speaking, 2015 has been my year of being surrounded by a wonderful community. I have joined Extraordinaria and spent a few sessions with 25 entrepreneur ladies, all eager to learn, grow and support each other. New friendships are made, and we ended the year accomplishing the fire walking a few days ago. If any of you has been through that experience, you might relate to the sensation of ‘ok, if I can walk on hot coals, I could do anything’. And this is pretty powerful!
Looking back, especially the past 4 month have been very intense, I have had to reduce my online presence easily a 60-70%, so next year I will definitely outsource more than I already do and get regular help to be able to work ON the business and not IN the business. There is no official vacation for me this festive season except for a couple of days lost in the countryside but that is alright.
I hope you year has been treating you nicely and if you had some challenging moments, you might have learned quite a bit and feel stronger for new adventures to come.
Thank you for being there, reading, commenting, coming to my courses or enrolling online! A warm thank you as well to all newsletter subscribers and anybody who is part of this awesome community! I see you back in January with a nice surprise. G, x
How has your year been?