Full-time with a Full Brain

I. Am. Tired.* The first time I set out to write this post, I was sitting on my couch, wrapped in a blanket, trying not to fall asleep. Though cozy, the cocoon I put myself in did not help as I got writer’s block, so I stopped writing and went for a walk with my dogs to get some fresh air and maybe even a fresher perspective. Today, I am sitting at my kitchen table, nursing a headache as I drink my coffee, trying to feel like a legitimate business owner. I know you did not come here to listen to me whine, but running a small business solo is no joke.

I have known this for a while now, but there are so many hats that a small business owner like myself wears. This week, in my first official week of working for Fado Made as a full-time business, I have mainly been a photographer and content creator, focused on taking product photos to add more substance to the website and online shop, all the while trying to figure out the darn Instagram algorithm, in addition to designing and making every item by hand, meeting clients for coffee, calculating prices, researching materials, managing the Fado Made social media accounts, and continuously updating the website. This Thursday has felt like a long time coming, as I have already experienced a lot of highs and lows, and with just one more weekday to go, I am sure there will be more to follow.

With that said, even though I am technically running Fado Made by myself, I know I have a whole army of support behind me. I see it in the encouraging messages I receive from friends and family, from the enthusiastic comments on Instagram and Facebook, in each share on social media, from reviews on Google, and in the handful of orders I have received just this week. I was even surprised yesterday when I came home after running an errand to find a cute pink package on my back porch, which turned out to be an incredibly thoughtful and uplifting gift from my amazing sister-in-law. I am still quite scared and anxious, as I really want this to work out, but it is good to know that I am not entirely alone. Please know that I am eternally grateful to everyone who has reached out and shown an ounce of support to me recently. Thank you.

Now, back to business things. As I set my sights on Fado Made full-time, I am thinking more about what that means for me in terms of how to grow this business, make it more profitable, and not lose my mind (though it is debatable that I may already have). Part of my work for the past two years has been to make Fado Made known as a business to come to for custom leather goods/accessories. As I move forward and continue to grow this business, custom work/orders will remain the backbone of Fado Made to bring your dream accessories to life, but with that said, I am also going to start offering more standardized items, still with the option to customize to your liking.

With standard items, my idea is to give you the option to customize each style with what leather, leather cording, and hardware finish I have readily available straight from the website. I hope this update will make the ordering process easier from every angle for you as the customer and me as the business owner. But do not worry— the option to order a unique (rather than “standard”) accessory will always be there. For the time being, all information for placing custom orders right now can be found in the CUSTOM ORDERS section of the website.

If anyone still finds themselves reading this and has any comments or suggestions, I am more than open to it! I would love to hear what you want to see in my online shop and what you like in an online shopping setting. If I did it correctly, I should have added a comment section to my blog starting with this post, so please feel free to add your two cents if you have any.

*More on being tired— I booked a flight to New York to visit Connecticut in March last night, and when I read my itinerary this morning, I saw that I booked New York to Knoxville rather than Knoxville to New York. Thank you to American Airlines for helping me and refunding my money in a time of mindlessness…

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