Our 2021 started with a box on our doorstep and some sad news: the co-working space in Makati where we have been consigning since 2018 was folding due to the effects of the pandemic.
The box contained unsold sleeves, battered tags, and a faded acrylic display that gathered dust as the co-working space remained locked up since March 2020. The only physical presence of our store was gone. For good.
Carrying this box up to storage reiterated the weight that the pandemic pressed on micro-businesses, more so for ventures like us who offered non-essential goods.
We wanted to sulk, and that we did.
But we couldn’t allow ourselves to stay down for too long. We needed to move on not just for our sake but also for the faux leather suppliers, partner sewists, riders, and everyone else whose livelihood were impacted by our small venture.
Thankfully, there were entities that offered assistance to small businesses. These opportunities, however, weren’t served on a silver platter. Taking part meant we had to organize our legal affairs, streamline our operations, and formalize all aspects of the business.
Not to mention, we had to squeeze in time for sending product samples, handling the email back-and-forth, calling to follow up, and attending virtual meetings – all on top of our day job.
We’ve all heard it before – when a door closes, a window opens. But this year taught us that finding windows isn’t the end of the quest. You have to knock, hoist yourself up, and reach out with all your might for them to let you in. Many are willing to help, but first, you must help yourself.
Now, we’re ending 2021 with a physical presence in two malls, consignments in two online platforms, two internally-managed online stores, and an e-commerce website. We’re far from being a multi-million business, but we’re thriving.
We couldn’t have done it without the help of our partners, customers, and most of all, supporters like you, who take the time to read blog posts like this and keep us on your radar. You’re the ones who keep us afloat in the most trying of times, and this we say with all sincerity: thank you. ❤️