Wednesday, February 27, 2008
slow and steady wins the race
My dear friend, Sharon of secretleaves, reminded me that my blog should serve a professional purpose as well as sharing lovely design. Oh yes, that business thing...As often is the case, I get caught up in the making, the ideas and the preciousness of a project. She and I shared a studio in my former life and we constantly laughed at the number of jobs we did for free just because we loved the work. Excellent for creative nourishment, not so brilliant as a business model. So, I'm committing to a sprinkling of periwinklebloom 'business posts'.
As I've considered my new 'model' I've found that I fall comfortably into the concept of 'slow design' (much like the slow food movement). The idea of recognizing white space or listening to silence, the potential in the banal if we just slow down is quite refreshing. These slow movements encourage collaboration, responsibility, pace and harmony of form and function. Right up my alley! This concept also fits quite well in my fairly new role as a mother. Although in this case, I need only look at my toddler to see the fantastic in the minutia. Funny that such a small being can reroute my entire professional direction. With much resistance at first, I have gracefully given in and take the time to pause and absorb with her. It is shockingly simple and I am amazed that she is teaching me. In hindsight my parents are actually responsible for my somewhat meandering and tardy pace, as we were the family with no microwave, a 25 year old TV, no cable, no garage-door opener, family walks with personalized walking sticks (mine was in the shape of Puff-in-stuff's flute) and the family who embarrassingly ate carrot chips instead of cheese puffs. Thank you sincerely, mom and dad for the perspective.
Another concept I've found inspiring lately is the model/metaphor of a 'bonsai business'. A commentary on Marketplace/NPR suggested that while these trees need to be trimmed and reshaped, they do not exceed their naturally ordained size as opposed to the growth model prominently embraced by most companies (see Starbucks). My ambitions with periwinklebloom are in fact to stay small. Much like an artists guild from another age, I value the entire process, the exchange, the hand-crafted, the relationships.
After nearly 2 years of slow research into local/domestic vendors, green farming practices, organic cotton 101, women's coops, sewing lessons, clean energy, recycled paper, vegetable-based inks, restoring an 80 year old letterpress, how in the heck to attain a tax i.d. # and recalling art historical traditions, I am close to launching my collections. And I will happily share my knowledge of the above topics in upcoming posts. I'm meeting with a 'web guy' tomorrow in fact to begin my site. I'm quite sure it will be a slow process but I invite you to visit, to cozy up with a big cappuccino and to take your time looking.