Studio Talk #10: The Denouement

Here we are.

There's only one show left in the tour that's marked the most exciting adventure of my life, and I feel the denouement coming on like a bad cold.

  At the Harley Davidson Museum.

At the Harley Davidson Museum.

It might take me a while to get over this one.

We all wish for life/business-changing opportunities but... what do you do after?

I've been on Jewel's Handmade Holiday Tour with my bus fam (there's 11 of us to a tourbus) plus all the other people on the tour, 24/7 for a whole month and each day we band together to set up, sell and teach at, and break down another show. 

We've been discovering new cities together, solving problems together (yes, things go wrong from time to time), eating way too much food, and learning a lot about ourselves. But the overarching theme is go-go-go.

  San Diego's bloodies are CLUTCH.

San Diego's bloodies are CLUTCH.

Now, I have PLENTY to keep me busy when I get back to Knox, but instead of waking up to make the bus driver coffee and work on another batch of jewelry before the next big show, I'll be waking up to making coffee for just 'lil ole me, a dog walk, and designing collections for future shows.

Instead of problem-solving how I'm going to get my clothes cleaned (yes, I've used more than A FEW hotel showers across the country) and wondering when I'll be able to wash my hair next, I'll be planning my pets' grooming appointments and, like, dusting my apartment.

Yes, there are plenty of exciting projects ahead, but... I'm going to miss my tour life. There's something about being in a new place every day that really... stretches you.

I've always identified as an introvert and, while I have definitely had days on this tour where I'm like omg I cannot say a word until the show tonight, I've realized that I don't ACTUALLY want to go it alone. I've made friends who feel like family and I don't want to go back to it being just me. So I'm going to make sure it doesn't.

I'm going to make more coffee dates, send more letters, have friends over for dinner more often, and work hard at making maker connections outside of my immediate community.

So what do you do to keep the high going even after the show/tour/adventure/project/collaboration has ended? I need to know how to keep this loving feeling alive.

To keep my eye on the prize and make sure I draft off this tour energy for as long as possible, I've made a little list for thangs to get right on when I land in Knox.

  • Send TY notes to everybody who helped make this tour possible -- I mean, seriously, it's been an honor touring for Jewel
  • Reach out to nearby Madewell's and Free People's about potential pop-up shops
  • Create a solid wholesale collection and line sheet to pitch new stockists
  • Re-do the website to include super exciting news about the Knoxville gallery/makerspace I'm creating (yay!! 👏)
  • Work on new S+B branding with award-winning brand strategist, A Name Brand Co.
  • Finalize makerspace display/merchandising ideas with Bird on the Wire Studios
  • Meet with Paris of Paris Woodhull Illustrations about installing a mural at the space
  • Expand plans for an S+B DIY kit collection
  • Make a spreadsheet of shows to apply to for 2018 and set REMINDERS in my calendar to apply
  • Line up some freelance copywriting + social media strategy work to supplement my income now that I'm paycheck free (so scary!)

I guess this is enough for now, right?

K, I'm on my way to explore Hershey, PA before tonight's show!

XX

Ryan-Ashley