When løve takes its sweet time
Are we there yet?
Sharing this journey means I regularly get asked questions such as:
“When will we get to see your shoes?”
“How far away are they?”
“What‘s the latest news with your shoe business?”
I love the questions, I love the excitement and enthusiasm people around me have. But the answer is always some variation of ‘soon’ or ‘not yet’. I’m on the way, and moving ahead, but if you ask anyone in the early stage of a startup journey how it’s progressing, they’ll likely say ‘Not fast enough!’
Loving the waiting
Those who know me personally will know how much I love my husband (aw…) But we both had some harder years before we met. Then, we spent five years together working on ourselves before we got engaged, to make sure that we were laying the right foundations for our marriage. Those looking on from the outside regularly asked ‘What’s happening with you guys?’ or ‘When is the wedding?’ But we took our sweet time… and I’m totally glad we did. Now we’re sharing this amazing adventure together – including raising our two boys – and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Waiting well, and working and loving in the waiting, is a skill that’s undervalued in our ‘I want it now’ society.
That’s probably because we live in a world where everything and everyone is so easily and quickly accessible. In many ways, it is wonderful – I love being able to FaceTime my nephews in the UK, to be able to share photos of the boys during the day with Andrew while he is at work, and to have progress Skype calls with Italy just like that. But I don’t think it’s always magical, you know? I can get impatient all too quickly when technology doesn’t work to the lightning speed I’m used to, and sometimes we’re all in too much of a hurry that we rush things that are meant to take time to grow/build/marinate (anyone else thinking about slow-cooked lamb?! Ok, it’s just me…).
But another thing, very close to home: the fashion industry is so fast-paced with trends changing all the time, the ‘I want it now’ frame of mind can be overwhelming. And that has real costs, too. Thankfully, there is a shift towards a much more considered, socially- and environmentally-responsible approach to doing business – one with less wastage and more concern for who and where the products are made, and what happens to them afterwards. Did you know there’s 6,000 tonnes of textile waste that goes to landfill every single week in Australia?!! (But I digress, and those are thoughts for another post, for another time)
So yes, I still have a sense of urgency regarding my shoes, and I’m desperate to get them out there, but I’ve learned that good things take time. And great things can take even more time!
As the age old saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and well I don’t think Løvinde can be either. If I wanted to sell a few dozen pairs of handmade imported shoes at markets, then I could have been out there doing it years ago. But my dream is bigger and that means bigger foundations: patent discussions, global trademarking, setting IP holding trusts and trading entities and learning about convertible notes (um, what?) and so on. I can’t even believe some of these things as I write it – my vision has always been about the shoes and the movement they’d create, not the business per se… but they are obviously both tied together. It’s also been a time of building relationships for the long haul, like with our manufacturing partners in Italy who we now consider dear friends. And it’s all making progress, just the behind-the-scenes variety.
Am I there yet?
If I’m honest, underneath it all there’s been a recurring question in my mind: ‘Am I the person I need to be able to do the things I’m planning on doing?’ I don’t know. But I do know that every step I take, I’m a step closer. It’s also funny to look back on how far I’ve come, and to do things naturally now that I would have been panicked about before (meet a major shoe buyer? Sure, why not? Talk to potential investors? Well, I guess that’s part of my job as a founder, so…)
What I’m left with is the idea that I just need to keep doing the little things I can to become more of the person I need to be, so that when the shoes are finally here, I’ll be ‘there’ and ready too.
I may be taking my sweet time… but just wait until the big day arrives. I’m so excited to share it with you! I promise, it’ll be worth the wait.
Follow the Journey
I’d love to share with you what inspires me and what I learn along the way… Join me?