One Year Later: How The Pandemic Changed My Business

business headbands sade sequoia shop

I know we’re all saying this, but seriously, I cannot believe it’s been a whole year! Mentally, I’m still in last March.
There have been a lot of life changes and a huge shift in my routine. One of the biggest changes was to my business. I’ll share more about the shop’s history in a later post, but I used to offer made-to-order, custom-sized skirts. Each skirt could take anywhere from 2 - 4 yards depending on the size, and 2 - 4 weeks to make depending on order volume and whatever else I had going on. The last sample skirt I made was this yellow floral beauty.
A yellow floral skirt on a mannequin.
I didn’t have a chance to make it available for custom sizing before I had to put my shop in vacation mode. It was difficult to find more fabric anywhere because everyone was in mask-making mode. And then was in mask-making mode! I was commissioned to help make hundreds of masks along with several other volunteers, so between that project and my day job, I had no time to make skirts even if the fabric was available.
The shop was on hiatus for two and a half months. During that time, I wondered if I would even be able to reopen. I had no idea how I would source fabric if there were shortages anywhere. It was time to get creative.

Changing Direction

…Creative by my standards, anyway. I’m not much of a creative person at all! However, a few months before the hiatus, I had learned how to make headbands. I loved how my first headband turned out.
A knotted headband with blue floral fabric laying next to a eucalyptus branch.
The only thing I didn’t like was using a hot glue gun. So during the hiatus, once the mask-making project was over, I started learning how to make headbands without the hot glue gun. I figured that headbands required a lot less fabric and were way quicker to make. I decided that I would reopen with headbands, neckties and masks (of course) to start. 
One red knotted headband and one navy blue floral knotted headband laying next to each other.
Although I enjoyed making all those skirts, I have to be honest: It’s difficult to market something that doesn't completely resonate with you. But headbands are way more relatable. Headband sales have been way more steady than skirt sales. And the fact that I don’t operate on a made-to-order model anymore is a huge relief!
2020 was a rough year, but a silver lining is that it taught me how to be adaptable.

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  • Celia on

    Wow, the pandemic really shifted your business! But I love that you got creative and made it work for you! Keep making all the pretty things! 🌻


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