Wow, a few weeks ago I found out I had been nominated for Business Mother of the Year at the Portsmouth Venus Awards. Voting has now open at https://www.venusawards.co.uk/portsmouth/. Since then, life has been a bit of a whirlwind. Lots of exciting and scary things have been happening both personally and in the business.
The Venus Awards have been such a learning curve for me. I had to go an film a one minute video for this award after being nominated and it was one of the most nerve racking things I've done. Just to stand in a room with the cameraman and pray that I remembered everything that I needed to. It's completely different to holding paint workshops, where its a informal friendly chat.
When I first arrived (it was held at the Peter Cooper Garage, in Portsmouth), I didn't even have time to take off my coat before I was ushered into an office. I was so lucky that I did it in one take, otherwise my speech would have just have gone round and round in my head.
Then a week ago, I found out I'd made the short-list! It must have been so hard to narrow it down, but there are 13 or so of us who have made it through to the semi-finals and public vote. Now there is just a week of voting before we find out who has made the top 3!
But enough about the awards, I don't think I've ever given you a bit of background on me, so here it is,
After graduating from Uni, I was a bit lost and had no idea what I wanted to do. So thought, well I like Uni, lets stay a little longer and decided to stufy for a PhD looking at Noroviruses! I had my son in the middle of studying for my PhD and my daugther 4 months before having my Viva. Nothing like making life hard for yourself!
After finishing this, I became a Technical Specialist for a Science Company, which I still do 3 days a week. But as exciting as this is, I needed something else to do. Anyone that knows me, understands that I can't just do one thing ;)
I have always been a bit crafty, it's a way to keep me occupied in the evenings. I started with cross-stitch, then sewing, then knitting and finally found Chalk Paint and my love affair with painting furniture began. This hobby outgrew my home and I have become more and more sucked into this fantastically, amazingly creative world of upcycling.
Eliza Rose was created in July 2015 after a year of trading at Molly's Den Winchester with no name. I started trading at Molly's Den completely by chance (it's too long of a story to go into here) and over time it grew into something much bigger than I was expecting.
The business was named after my daughter, who is now 2 years old and I also have a little boy, Rhys who is 5. They keep me very busy, but love joining me on trips to re-stock!
A few months after creating Eliza Rose, we opened a space within The Boutique Village and I became a stockist for Everlong Superior Finish Paint and Chic Mouldings. Stocking Everlong Chalk Paint really was the game changer for me. It meant that I could began doing the free Everlong workshops which have been a massive hit, and I loved helping people in starting their upcycling journey.
I've honestly enjoyed seeing all the amazing furniture that people bring in and how fantastic it looks after they have finished!
Fitting in growing the business alongside the kids is hard, I'm not going to lie. Trying to fit everything into the 4 days when I'm not doing my 'proper job', keep my kids alive and grow a business is like a permanent juggling act. Sometimes I really don't want to paint furniture late into the evenings or try and think up new and interesting posts for social media but the majority of the time, I love it! I love looking at images of painted furniture that other people have done and learning new techniques.
To say thank you to everyone who has voted, I'm running an Everlong Paint Tester Pot giveaway on my Facebook page :D