An Open Window

There is an old saying, “when one door closes another door opens.”  Well, maybe it doesn’t have to be a door, maybe, just maybe it could be a window.  A window of hope.   

This business started very organically.  I had a skill set and once my friends and neighbors new about it they started requested my services.  After a very successful career in IT/Project Management it felt really good to do something creative, be my own boss, and reinvent my professional life.  It also felt really good to have more flexibility with my family.  All of that also came with sacrifice and with sacrifice comes good life lessons.  While I love this new profession and love what I get to do every day, I also have felt something was missing.  I get the privilege of creating beautiful things that improve your home, the largest investment and most intimate space, I still felt like I needed to find a way to give back and pay it forward.  The challenges (time and money) of a baby business made it hard for me to dig into that and figure out how and what to do.  As a goal for 2019 I wanted to figure out a way to give back but I wanted it to relate to my business and I was on a mission to figure that out! 

 

I believe in my first blog I may have mentioned that my growing up was a little dysfunctional.  There were hard times, eviction notices, living without power, my fathers substance abuse, just to give you a little glimpse.  In the grand scheme of things, I have turned out pretty well even with so many cards stacked against me.  In my 20’s whenever someone would come into my life and learn about my past they would always ask how I turned out so good.  I suppose that is a pretty good question, but I wasn’t sure the answer.  I was just doing what I do.  As I struggled with infertility in my 30’s I had the opportunity to have my strength exercised again and the answer to that question became clear.  I turned out okay because I had HOPE.  Hope is a powerful thing.  Hope comes from so many different sources but as I thought back on my life I realized that there were lots of things and sometimes they were just little things that helped to provide me with Hope.  The acknowledgement that someone cared and believed in me through various acts of kindness gave me hope.  Hope made me believe my life could be better, I could be better, things didn’t have to stay the same.  This is why giving back and paying it forward is so important to me.  If you feel stuck, you will never reach your full potential.  Life is full of twists and turns and the challenges never stop coming, even when you are more “normal” so having hope and knowing how to use hope is really important. 

 

As I thought about hope and I thought about my business an idea came together.  Windows, windows let light in, windows let fresh air in, windows provide a way out, windows are a great symbol of hope.  Is there anything better than opening the window shades and feeling the sun on your face?  What if, we started a program where a portion of our sales went into a special program that allowed us to do acts of kindness?  This just might work! 

 

So today, we are rolling out our new program An Open Window.  A portion of all of our sales will go into An Open Window and will be used to provide HOPE to someone else.  Perhaps we will buy a sofa for a family that cannot do it financially and doesn’t have anything to sit on, or maybe we will provide drapery for a special family faced with a difficult situation.   As the funds build we will identify new opportunities to spread hope and keep all of you posted with An Open Window projects.  Our first project is being funded by myself and our team and we will be sharing the details with each of you. 

 

What is even more exciting is that as each of you help us to build our dream with our business you also get to help make these acts of kindness happen.   Each of our clients will be An Open Window Hopemaker.  Making your home beautiful will contribute to helping someone else feel hopeful. It doesn’t get much better than that! 

 

So, when one door closes – we have An Open Window

In the beginning...

There isn’t a career test out there that pin points who should be a curtain maker, or upholsterer, or just maker of beautiful things.  So, where in the world did it start with me?  How did I get this idea to create?  Well, I think I was always creative and always interested in making my little corner of the world pretty. 

I grew up in a lot of dysfunction and my room was my happy place.  It wasn’t big, but it was mine and it had a small window that felt like it was in the clouds every spring when the Bartlett pear in our backyard bloomed.  I found myself asking for lamps, art work, bed spreads, and more for every birthday and Christmas.  I wanted anything that would help transform that space into something just perfect for me.  Red was my color of choice and boy did I know how to use a pop of color.

As I grew older I found myself working after school at a craft store.  I loved working in that store.  Every isle was full of things that were just a few steps away from becoming amazing.  I didn’t know then but I was learning to really appreciate “custom” items and the value behind having something that is just perfect for a space and unique to my home. 

During high school, we moved and my sister and I had to share rooms.  That meant my signature color would no longer work.  My sister and I picked out inexpensive comforter sets and while they were nice in the room, the room was missing something.  It was white and didn’t have a lot of character.  Our beds had drawers on the bottom so the bed skirts that came with the comforter set were not needed and my creative mind all of a sudden had a plan.  Those windows in that house had no molding and the metal mini blinds were not helping the situation.  I used my employee discount to purchase a couple of bottles of craft paint, a roll of masking tape, and some ribbon.  I taped off a border around the window and went to work with the paint creating a beautiful trim around the windows.  While that was drying I started reworking those bed skirts into pretty swags using the ribbon I purchased.  Once the swags were in place the room had character, color, and something special.  Somehow in this boring, dare I say cheap, rental I was able to add some style on a budget.  It was amazing how some paint and leftover fabric could transform a space.  I didn’t know then that this was the moment that I inherently learned the importance of dressing a window.

All these years later, after a long and healthy career in IT and project management my path has come back to making spaces beautiful.  It really happened very organically – some might call it destiny.