Even though I had slowed way down on the Ribbon Jar (not getting as much new stuff, making fewer jars) the last few years I was so afraid to let it go. I created the Ribbon Jar six years ago and it’s been a huge part of me. When people ask me what I do I always answer, “I own an online ribbon shop.” I talk about ribbon, I use ribbon and, until the first of the year, I was packing ribbon orders every day. I sent them all over the United States, to Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Singapore and everywhere in between.
New Years weekend we moved everything over to an office in my brother’s building, where my mom already has her design office (she is an interior designer). We were just about done when Tuesday started melting down and I had to go nurse her to nap time. It took a while and when I came downstairs everyone had left. It was empty, all the ribbon was gone. I started crying a bit. I mean, what was I doing?!?!?! I had a good business and a just starting Photography thing (whose website was kicking my butt). I was overwhelmed and a little scared to just move on. Bj knew it was time before me and had been gently suggesting I sell for a while. When I met with a broker he told me most likely I would sell to someone I knew. I didn’t think so, everyone who knew me knew you had to work every day. They knew I was up late working to get newsletters out. They knew because they helped me a lot. My mom basically took over everything for weeks after I had Tuesday so I could have a mini maternity leave. She would take my packages to the post office almost every day so I didn’t have to get Tuesday all bundled up to go out that first crazy year.
I’m glad I’m writing this post a few weeks in. My mom is AMAZING. If I were her I would be just trying to tread water for a while to get everything figured out. She’s not afraid of pushing herself and taking on anything. I let my stock dwindle knowing I was going to sell and my mom has been working around the clock sourcing and ordering the coolest stuff. She’s putting new ribbon into the shop daily. She designed these ribbon racks in her new space and by the end of the month they will be overflowing with goodness.
That’s my super long winded way to say I’ve handed the Ribbon Jar over and I’m full on into this next adventure. I am so thankful for everyone whose supported me over the years. Out of college I worked for I Remember When (a now defunct scrapbooking company). I was a purchaser and warehouse manager and learned so much. I went to my first trade shows with them. Then embarking on my own my mom and her husband Bill helped support me when I moved back home for a year so I could save money. My dad built jar storage with me. Sciarrino designed for me for next to nothing. My brother helped me move multiple times and I took over his room in our family house when I was at home; filling it with ribbon. My step-sister was my poorly paid intern for a summer. Sciarrino and my mom both came with me on purchasing trips. I had so many great guest designers. Bj. Bj did so much for me. He helped me with code, he helped me through slow times. He loaded boxes. He’s everything and always supportive, I couldn’t ask for anything more in a partner.
And you. My readers, thank you! Every comment and purchase. Everyone who signed up for the newsletter, who spread the word about my site. Everyone who linked to me. It means so much. I’m relearning now just how hard it is to start up a site. To get back into search rankings. I sort of forgot how much work that was at the beginning (please update your links/bookmarks/feeds to me if you haven’t already, thank you).
But I’m willing to put in the work. Because I believe in myself. I know from my experience with the Ribbon Jar that if you have a good idea and you believe it in you can make it happen.
To my mom best of luck to you! I love you so much. I was seriously surprised when you offered to take over; but I shouldn’t have been… you’re amazing and I know you’ll take the Ribbon Jar to the next level. See you in Martha darling!