Friday, 29 November 2013

Playing Christmas Hooky

I'm pleased to report that so far, this week has been much kinder to us all. Alessi is better now, finally. We've moved on from last week's disappointments and I've been able to relax a great deal.

The reason for that is simply that I've decided to take an early break. This means closing the shop for Christmas a few weeks sooner than planned, but it'll be worth it.

Our illnesses last week reminded me how important it is to spend time with my family. This year has gone crazily fast. Since I opened the business I've been working hard on that and if I'm being honest, I've missed a lot as a result. I don't mind usually as this is what I love doing and it's by choice. But if any of you follow me on Twitter, you may have picked up on my excitement that Christmas is coming, (26 sleeps people!) and I want to do ALL the festive things with my family.

So as I said, I'll be taking a break from the shop until the new year. That's a whole month to annoy you all with my seasonal witterings. And no, I'm not even slightly religious. That's right, I'm one of those kinds of annoying Christmas people.

You might want to stop following me now.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

The Week That Wasn't

This week has been horrendous.

I had big plans and had even arranged for some Alessi free time to focus on work. Then we all came down with some kind of stomach virus. And nothing like last winter's offerings either.
This one has floored us.

Poor Alessi has suffered the most and for the longest. She's a tough little boot though and in between the tears, the sleeping and just generally feeling floopy, she has still managed to crack a smile every now and again.
I chuffing love that kid.

Unfortunately, there have been a multitude of other things that went wrong too. Dan got some disappointing news, I had a whopper of a bill land on the doorstep, no work was done obviously despite having a busy week planned and there were a hundred other mini let-downs that just left us feeling a little battered and sorry for ourselves.

And while Dan and I are both well and ready to go again, poor Alessi still isn't 100%.
Last night she ate her first proper meal in six days. She slept pretty well and didn't end up in our bed for the first time this week, but then again today she still seems to have an upset stomach and has gone back to not eating. I could cry.

There was going to be a Christmas giveaway too. A made to measure Belle dress in a gorgeous wine colour. I really wanted to give someone a Christmas treat and was looking forward to announcing it, but unfortunately that idea has had to be shelved. With Alessi still unwell and with no time to do any sewing there's just no way it'll happen.

So that's us at the moment. I just want Alessi well again. Hopefully that will be very soon now. I miss my goofy little monkey bombing around the place, all crazy hair and smiles. Hopefully next week will be better.

*Crosses fingers*

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Introducing Belle!

I know you will have seen this dress only a couple of posts back. That was when I took the first dress I ever made myself that I'd stupidly stained with ink and gave it a bit of a revamp. I was so pleased with the result that I wondered if I should list it in the shop.

After playing around with various ideas, I decided that this dress, the one that's been sitting right under my nose for the past eight months, is exactly what I've been looking for. I've wanted a signature dress for the shop ever since I opened it. The design I started out with is one of my favourites. It's flattering and although it can be a little time consuming to put together, it's one I have a lot of confidence in.

But I wanted something more from a signature dress. A design that was not only my own, but was relatively simple to put together, that left room to play with different looks and one that, to put it simply, just felt right.

Enter Belle.

Aint she a beaut? I am seriously head over heels in love with this dress. It's simplicity. It's fit that is both comfortable and flattering. It's design flexibility meaning that I will never grow bored of it.
Dear Belle, why oh why did it take me this long to find you?!
And today I ordered fabric to make a few of my own too - god I love my job!

This sunflower Belle can be found in both my Etsy and Folksy shops. However if the colour doesn't take your fancy, it's also available in maroon, teal and orange. How about that?

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Finding a balance

We've shifted down a gear or two over at Casa Bliss lately.

Well I have anyway. The little one continues to live at break neck speed and the bearded one is always on a go slow. But after writing this post a couple of weeks ago I decided enough really was enough.

I've taken up running and am surprisingly enjoying it, although my efforts are currently being scuppered by the weather and the clocks having gone back last weekend. Hey, I said I enjoy it, but not so much that I'm willing to go out in the rain and the dark.

I'm also blogging less often and am twittering less too, the latter is a biggy for me. I love Twitter. So much so I have not one, but two accounts. One I consider my personal account where I tweet family gubbins and my personal views. Then there's my business account (TheDressTree) where I talk shop to my heart's content without fear of boring anyone.
However I just want to focus on the business twitterings for the time being. That's not so say that there won't be any family or personal stuff in there - this is me we're talking about and I am a hopeless oversharer.
It's just one of the many changes I'm making to keep life as simple as possible. As simple as it can be with a part time job, full time business and whirling dervish to look run after anyhow.

There have been other things of course, but I won't bore you with the details of every little change I've made. What's important is that *touch wood* my efforts seem to be paying off. I feel a little calmer these days. A little more able to cope and not stretched to breaking point as I did this time last month. Having to say no to people isn't easy. Neither is convincing myself to sit down in the conservatory and soak in the sun while it's out instead of racing upstairs to take photos of something while the light is good. But little by little, inch by inch I'm feeling as though I'm finding my balance again.

I'll reach my goals eventually, it'll just take a little longer to get there. But at least I'll get there in one piece.

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