Well here's a (long overdue) blog post I never wanted to write. Some of you may wonder about the creative process and how I design new Sloafers. I don't follow trends, because I hate waste. I go to tanneries where I look and feel and go by sight; I put things together then and there that I love and I know you'll love. So what happens when you get a call a week later after you've "nailed" your new collection, to tell you that everything you chose is out of stock? The question I have to stop asking, is why did they show it to me in the first place?
Firstly I cried. Then I went on instagram and told everyone my new collection was dead and not going to happen. Was that the right approach? Should I not be putting a gloss on all this and making out everything is fine?
I'm a small business and so as much as things go right some of the time, there are a whole load of disasters bubbling away behind the scenes - some of which I can do something about, some of which I just can't.
I'd designed an evening range - purples, jade greens, corals - with beautiful ornate and colourful stone beads for the toe as an alternative to our current bow. I saw them across the room - wow that sounds like I'm in a bar - and I knew they were the ones. It all happened really easily after that, pulling out rich velvets and suedes in elegant and sophisticated tones to match. Ok wow that read so badly like a page from a romance novel but it's kind of the same. When you know, you know.
I called seven offices in Europe who hold stock from this supplier, thinking even if I could only get 20 or so, I could make it a limited edition. It turns out they truly are limited. There are none. Then I went onto Etsy to see if someone could make me the pieces from photos of the ones I could no longer get. The results were hilarious - people optimistically attempted to 'match' my stones but with nothing remotely close. Or nothing remotely stone.
For now - there is nothing I can do. I have to sit back and actually do nothing. It costs money every time I go to Portugal so that was a big waste of money and there's no way I can do that again for a couple of months at least.
Is there a happy ending to this? Absolutely not.
But what I lack in new collection, I make up in by having awesome followers. Responses to my story were brilliant -
"Oh bollocks, that's awful. Have a glass of wine."
"Aaaaaagh - eat chocolate and shout a lot."
"You've got this."
All of which I did. I am not quite sure "I've got this" but I'll make a plan.