Wednesday, 6 May 2015

A Life Update

I've been absent from this blog for a little while.  2015 has not been the best year for me so far. I don't like to complain online because I know there are so many people who have it so much worse than me, and every day I read stories that make everything that's happened to me pale in insignificance. But I know that my feelings aren't made better just because someone else has had a harder time. My emotions aren't invalidated because there are worse things happening in the world. And this blog, and my online life in general, is all about sharing things, being open, and building real relationships, so I feel it is just as important to share the lows as it is to share the highs. It's so easy to write about the good things, the positives, the new products, press features, and events. But the words to write that you're struggling and things are hard - they are much more difficult to come by.

Most people already know about the saga at the start of my year with the studio I was supposed to move in to. Well since then I have moved out, back to my home studio. The landlord still has not refunded my money, despite saying he would, and is refusing to contact me at all. Over the last few months I have tried through various avenues to get my money back, but because the company operates so shadily (like not giving out an address) everything I've tried has basically come up against a wall. So I am £1800 out of pocket, and I doubt I will ever see that again. Obviously the financial implications have affected my business hugely, as well as really shaking my confidence and forcing me to rethink the future.

Around two months ago my Nan had a heart attack and was rushed in to hospital. Although the issues with her heart haven't gotten worse since, and her condition has stabilised somewhat, she suffered what they think was a stroke, that has left her completely changed, unable to remember who people are, completely disorientated, and confused. Seeing her change so completely and so suddenly has been hard on the whole family - she is the last grandparent me and my sisters have left.

And finally, me and my boyfriend split up. It's been a tough thing to come back from - we had been together for two years, and I'd hoped this was it for the long term. I thought we would settle down together and build a life together, and for that to suddenly all be taken away has hit me hard. I've come to the conclusion that break ups are a lot like getting hit by a car. Have you ever been hit by a car? I have (that's a whole other story for another time though!) You don't even feel the impact, or realise what has happened or why it happened, but suddenly you are on the ground and all you can feel is pain. And the strangest part is the thing I thought about first was being ashamed, not wanting anyone to know, wanting to hide away. Obviously that is way easier after a break up compared to when you are lying in the road with a broken foot and a crew of paramedics around you! And afterwards there is the constant mental replay. How it could have been avoided, what you did wrong, who was to blame. And, eventually, the realisation of how lucky you were that it wasn't a million times worse.

Everything that can be broken can be fixed. I believe in that because I don't know how to live without that as truth. I am a pragmatist about relationships - there isn't someone out there for everyone, it's just not possible. Divorce rates rise year by year, nothing is ever guaranteed. I don't base my life and my happiness on relationships any more. My happiness comes from my own actions, from living my dreams, from building a life I am proud of. But still I long for someone to share it with, who I can rely on to always be there. I've never been much of a 'dater.' I've had two long(ish) relationships, one for five years, and one for two years, and it's hard not to feel like you've been left on the shelf, especially as I am nearing the big 3-0 next year! But I hate the dating scene, I'm not good at meeting new people, I like staying in, having routines, building familiarity.

I know I will bounce back from these things eventually. I am grateful for the incredible positives in my life, and that the tougher times help me to see these things even more clearly. My amazing family that support everything that I do, my friends who make me smile and lift me up every day, my dogs, my house, my health, my job, the opportunities I've been given that never cease to amaze me. This post is not a pity party, although there are times when that is exactly what I would like. This post is to let you guys know what's going on, because it's you that makes all this possible. Thank you for all the kind words I receive each day, that spur me on and keep my head up. Love you guys xoxo


  1. I am so mad on your behalf for the financial worry - that is the last thing you need when your head and your heart are in pieces. It's a shitty cherry on top of a shitty cake.

    Things will get better soon xx

  2. You're super tough! And you're doing great. Things will be awesome again soon I'm sure.

    Landlords are ass-bags, is there no ombudsman you can go to about it! May be time to take it higher!


  3. You are an amazingly talented, creative and inspirational person Zoe. I know I have never met you before but I love following your work online and can tell from everything you do you have a real passion for your work and I admire that greatly.

    I am heartbroken to hear what you have been through and can only offer you a great big virtual hug as well as sending as many positive vibes your way as I can, so I hope they reach you and help a little.

    As my Grandad always says, "these things are sent to try us" and they bloody well do when they hit but you sound like a determined and focussed person and I'm sure you'll build yourself back up with your positive mindset, the support of your friends and family and by following your dreams.

    Stay strong lovely lady and hopefully I can give you a real hug one day at future crafty events (I hope that doesn't sound creepy! haha!)

    Love and sunshine

    (Hello Sunshine)

  4. Oh Zoe. I'm sorry things are so awful right now. I really hope they start to improve soon. Re. Relationships - I totally agree on not building your happiness around another person, but instead sharing the happiness and the life you have with another person, should they come along. Even when you're having the worst day, if you can, try and remember that you're an inspiration to so many! Myself included. Lots of love! Ax

  5. Zooooeeeee! You are such a brilliant, fantastically creative, kind and thoughtful human being. So sorry 2015 has been crappy for you so far, but I'm sending so many good vibes your way. I hope it helps a little. I do hope the second half of the year brings you good things. Just take it easy, take good care of yourself and watch some junk on Netflix. Let me know if you have any time and fancy a coffee/co-work day sometime. Would be lovely to see you. Much love!! xx

  6. Keep on keeping on Zoe, you're an amazingly talented lady so believe in yourself,, treasure what you have everyday and don't let anything knock you down especially not boys (and cars) xx

  7. Ahhh Zoe, sending you so much love! I don't know if you remember, but I met you last year at the vintage Guildford show (I bought a cat necklace and spoke about my lovely butterfly necklace in the Blogtacular goodie bag); I am truly sorry for all the heartache you've had this year. I cannot believe the run of bad luck you've had, but you'll get there, just take each day as it comes. Life can be so cruel this time; break ups are the worst of times - my last break up was the worst of times and it took me an incredibly long time to get back on my feet. The best advice I can give you is to look after yourself - you'll have good and bad days. You have an amazing talent and I've loved watching your business grow so big big hugs to you. :) If you ever need to chat you can reach me at thislittlespaceofmine [at] Lots of love to you xxxx

  8. Sorry to hear you're having such a rubbish time, wanted to reach out and say I know exactly what you're going through. I've had a similar 2015 so far, my grandma and my uncle died, I split up with my boyfriend, got ill and then my mum has recently been admitted to hospital. All of this has really affected my blogging as I have a full time job too and just haven't had time or energy. We've got to be strong and things can only get better right? Chin up, well done for sharing and know that you're not alone. xxx

  9. I'm sorry life has knocked you about this year. I don't know you personally. I'm just a customer & appreciater of your work. But your outlook seems great. And please try not to feel left on the shelf. If it's any help I'll share this. I didn't even have a relationship until I was 30. I was independent, happy alone & quite self sufficient. Also shy & not much good at dating & snaring the boys! But like you wanted someone to share with. It wasn't until I turned 30 I found that! Once you've taken time to recover just remember if you still want to share your life finding someone really can happen at any time & place. (this from a person who suspected she'd literally never meet anyone). Also wishing you lots of love for your nan. I know just how special nans are. Take care. Sending you strength & positivity. From an anonymous customer & internet friend. X

  10. There's a really great quote from Perks of a Wallflower about being allowed to feel your own feelings and have your own problems and how you shouldn't compare them, because your feelings are equally as valid as anyone elses - but I can't remember the words. I wish I did - as now is the perfect time for it! Either way, what I've written is pretty much it. Sure some people have it worse, but that doesn't make how you feel any less important or significant - those are 3 rubbish things to be dealing with this year.

    Urgh - I'm still so frustrated for you about the studio and your landlord :/ I'm so so sorry about your Nan - how terrible for your family and for her and so sorry to hear about your boyfriend too, on top of everything else :/ I wish I could help you more love with everything, if you do need anything I can help you with, let me know!

    You will bounce back and this too shall pass xxx

  11. i'm so sorry for all the hardships that have come your way (and all around the same time too!!) i wish i could give you a great big hug, make a pot of tea & convince you everything will get better!!!

    you are such an amazing person, i KNOW that great things are in store for your future!!! xoxooxo

  12. I'm sorry for all that's happened! I'm SO glad you talk about your life, and that you're honest. I hope the rest of the year treats you much better!

  13. Sending so much love. Those are huge huge things to happen - and all at once? That sucks ): I'm so angry on your behalf about the studio, and I'm not surprised it's hit you hard. I really hope you get your money back.

    It's been so lovely to see you at Renegade & Outlaw - next time it'd be lovely to grab a drink together (:

    Annah xxx

  14. so sorry to hear how hard life has been lately for you! i hope it gets better soon, and i'm sure it will! xx


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