Monday, January 5, 2009

A New Year Brings Big Changes

Ann and I have been waiting for the right time to announce this, and with the beginning of a new year, it seems like the right time: Ann is leaving Secret Leaves. Since I know you will all be curious as to why, she is going back to school to take some graphic design courses. She also wants to spend more time doing this:

Ann Hirschfeld of String Buzz

Stop by and see (hear) her here. Her music is lovely and she has a good blog with news about her band, great shows she has seen and various and other sundry bits of entertainment and info.

I am sad to see her go for many reasons:

  • She has been an EXCELLENT business partner
  • We have more fun at work than should be allowed
  • She comes up with some inspired design ideas
  • She does all the bookkeeping, which I hate doing!

Having said that, I am also looking forward to what lies ahead. I plan to make some changes to Secret Leaves that I think will bring deeper personal satisfaction for me. There are a couple of mistakes I feel I have made along the way that I want to rectify. For one, I am no longer going to worry that our prices are too high (read Ann's excellent post about this here.) Our goods are very labor intensive; we make them using real old things that are fascinating and unique; our craftsmanship and attention to detail are impeccable. The truth is that they cost what they cost and folks will either buy them or not. (I hope it's the former!)

Brown moth blue cover

Another mistake I have made in the past is pandering to what I imagine a specific customer is looking for. This is unwise for two reasons: first, you can't guess what someone else is going to like or want; second, they have ordered based on what they have seen on our web site or in our marketing materials, so why not do what we do? That's what attracted them to us in the first place!

I am also completely re-vamping our web site. I have also opened an Etsy store that will feature one-of-a-kind pieces and things that don't fit into Secret Leaves' lines. I hope that you will all check back here at this blog, the web site and the new Etsy store to stay posted on my progress as Secret Leaves moves forward into this new phase.


PS. 'bye Ann--I'll miss you!


lapaperie said...

Beautiful journal there! :)
Can't wait to see your site revamp as well.

Secret Leaves said...

Hello lapaperie. Nice to hear from you. Thanks for stopping by. : )


Maija said...

Best wishes to Ann on her new adventure! I wish you great success with Secret Leaves- your products are outstanding!!

Secret Leaves said...

Thanks Maija. I will pass your good wishes on to Ann. :)

The Junkin' Yaya said...

I guess it is time for a phone call! :)

Give my best to Ann and am glad to see you are following your true path!!!!

I'll try calling you this week...xo...deb

Tyler said...

sad to see you go, ann but know i'll be seeing you around. your work is impeccable indeed and i know sharon has loved your partnership. cheers to your rock-n-roll lifestyle! i am so happy to know you and hope you'll remember me when you're famous.

Tyler said...

and sharon, your work is gorgeous, worth every penny and then some. it is completely unique and thoughtfully reclaims vintage ephemera, honoring the minutia of everyday lives. love love love it all. looking forward to the updates this year.

lotta said...

Best of luck Ann with your music, school, and design work. Sharon, it sounds like you have the right business plan in order. Way to go! I can't wait to see what will unfold over there this coming year.