Well, this is some exciting news to share with you! Today, we get the keys to the unit next door to our studio space… because today, we effectively double our dye production space.
This is the greatest ongoing saga at SweetGeorgia, that we are always coming perilously close to running out of space. For the past several months, we have been experiencing that craziness that comes with having very little space to work in. What was our lunchroom is now also a shipping station as well as a mini-skein production workspace and also drying space… and sometimes customers come to see our seconds yarns there too. My office is now storage space for outgoing wholesale orders. And our tiny retail space has been doubling as drying space for wet, dyed yarns. We have completely maxed out on our electrical consumption, so much so that sometimes we’ll overload and trip the circuit breaker up to three times a day. Everyone has been very patient and gracious about the fact that it has been extra cozy at the studio, but I can feel that everyone could breath a little easier if we had more room.
For about a year now, I have been searching for new space. We looked at moving away from South Vancouver. I looked in Richmond. And even back in False Creek. I looked at East Van and Chinatown. We prayed that the right space would open up when the time was right. My inability to find a suitable space, coupled with at least three act-of-God-type disasters this past year, really started to make me question whether or not I was on the right path at all. And just as I was about to sign a lease contract for a “bandaid solution” space, I got the call that our next door neighbour’s unit was available.
How unbelievably lucky and blessed, I say.
It has been an interesting exercise in visioning, trying to figure out what SweetGeorgia might look like one, two, or five years from now. How much space would we need? Will we ever get to the point where things will just be “normal” rather than constant creative craziness? Do we even want that? There’s lots that I have planned in my brain that just needs to make its way out into reality. Much of it is tied up by my paralyzing self-doubt. But I promise they are all exciting and fun things for the future. And we need space for my ideas.
Because of this new, additional space (combined with bringing more dyers and artisans onto our team), we should be able to make more beautiful hand-dyed yarn with shorter delivery times. We know, when you want to knit something, you want the yarn yesterday, not days or weeks from now. Currently we are actively working on bringing our delivery time way down and would love to be able to get to the point where we can even keep things in stock! (Especially with those Party of Five mini-skein sets which were more popular than we could have imagined). The extra space will hopefully allow us to host our guests and visitors better too, without having everyone crammed into our tiny storefront. And hopefully, we’ll be able to host really comfortable (and less stuffy) spin-ins during Spinzilla week 2015!
I’m excited about us reaching this new milestone and energized about all that we can do with the space. But, the saga is not over yet. Within the next year or so, we’ll need to decide if we will stay or if we’ll grow. I’m leaning towards the latter, of course. While juggling the space, people, and workflows required for this constant growth is not easy, it is an absolute blessing. And that constant growth would not be there, if it were not for you, our dearest readers, knitters, spinners, customers, and supporters who come to visit us every day, starting projects with our yarns and fibres, and showing up to read these words. I thank you from the very bottom of our hearts for this blessing that is our life and work.