Sunday, November 13, 2011

How I got to this point & some NEW covers

image of M&L, via here
It seems that quite a few of you wonder how I do all of this after my previous post.
Well, I thought I would share...not that there is any mysterious formula to it all mind you.
When I started on this little journey, it was just to give me something to get into creatively
while our boys were babies and I was at home full time.
I have always been creative, even as a child, I would spend hours colouring, drawing houses and their interiors, hoping someday, I would have that home. I used to make things for my Barbie dolls - movie theaters, sofas etc out of whatever I could find.
It has never left me and I needed it back once I left work to have the children.

our Mason, about a week old with Mic
While they slept, I sewed.
At first it was all hand sewing, so I didn't wake them from their naps.
So it was little things like dolls and the like. I enjoyed making their dresses and pantaloons and smocks. Having a house of Men, a little doll business never went wrong!

our living room, Christmas 2010
When I started the blog, I would write about things I done in the house as we were in early renovation stage at the time and I would make bits and pieces for the 'new' rooms.
Over the years, the rooms have changed many times =0/
It was also a place for me to talk Interiors and plan the opening of my own store one day.

The clay tags came about after an idea I got from something totally unrelated
(because I do that a lot!)
I put some on etsy along with some cushions I had made, and it took off.
Juggling this at first was daunting, and at times became overwhelming as at the same time, my blog took off. I couldn't believe the interest my ramblings was getting.

after all, I was buying things like this $5.oo sideboard and fixing it up....

and making little vignettes all over the place!

My cushions became popular too and orders flooded in, making me look through my
sketchbooks of old and re-inventing early designs...doodles from when the boys were babies and I didn't have the time to sew en-mass.
Once the nominations/awards and mentions started coming in, it hit me that I could be on the right track 50Antique Blogs
...Apartment Therapy top 10 award
...Kidspot interior blog nomination
...HGTV Canada
...Aust Home Beautiful
...Wedding magazines etc, etc

One things for certain...if I wasn't such a list writer, I would never had kept up.
My diary is my personal assistant.
As some of you know, I am also a Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor and trying to keep the two flowing nicely has been a great challenge for me.
I have worked the two, totally different passions, so that they never interfere with our Family.
This was hard when our boys were very small and I worked when they slept during the day on the shop side of things and worked in the evenings training people and doing the blog while they slept at night.

Nowadays though, our boys are at School and this is when the shop work gets done. I also train on these days. When I pick them up from School, work stops and it is family time.
I teach weight loss Bootcamps, Zumba and train people at night once Mic gets in from work, so they always have a Parent with them, and I'm only gone for an hour or so at most, then home to read with them and tuck them in.
We have never left them in care, as that was our plan even before we had them, that I would stay home and raise them until they went to School. I know not everyone can do this, but that was our choice.

Now, it is like a well oiled machine and I am now able to do Designer Markets and get Marley & Lockyer out there on a bigger scale, which was always the plan.

photo of M&L rings via here
The range has grown beautifully and now includes Jewelry, the original clay tags and of course cushion covers. Now though, I mostly use vintage materials with my own designs.
I thought I had better start using the enormous amount of vintage linens and cottons I have in storage, before they take over my workroom!!

I love getting out at the Design Markets and meeting long time Marley & Lockyer fans and hearing of how many pieces you have or of the gift you received from a loved one.
Knowing it was made solely by me =0)
To this day, I still do everything from the design, making each tag to the finish, finding the linens and screen printing/blocking and all of the sewing....right down to lugging it all off to the post office!

I do want to thank each and everyone of you for encouraging me all of the way, talking about it on your own blogs/sites and helping to give this passion of mine a name out there. I have made the most AMAZING Friends and contacts through all of this and I am totally thankful to you all xx

SO off you go and make your dream come true!
Shifting gears here....
I wanted to share with you some new Coffee covers that will be available at the upcoming
designer market that M&L will be attending this Friday, 18th (4-8pm) and Saturday, 19th (10-3pm).
Hopefully, I will be making some for The Shop, but I wanted to see what the reaction was at the Market first. I love them, but that's a little bias ;0)

That Paisley print at the side is divine!
I would love to know what you think
...even though it's only a sneak peak.
So, there you have it. My long winded explanation of how I got here.
Sorry if you nodded off ;0)


  1. Ness, you are an inspiration! Good for you with you success of your gorgeous products.

  2. What a great post, Ness; I love your story. Someday, I hope to make my passion my only job! You have done well and your items are beautiful!

    Take care!

  3. Hey Ness,
    Stopping by to say hi and read your story. Mine is so similar, down to the dreaming of Barbie's surroundings in her imaginary house!! So funny :)and being there always for our children, knowing when to shut it down to be a mom. Kudos to you for that!!
    Your designs are always so beautiful and I love your new covers. I'm sure they will do well whether you sell them at the holiday market or on line.
    One thing I know for sure is that any new business takes hard work, commitment and patience...everything in baby steps!!!
    Thanks for sharing your story. Good luck at Niche-All Wrapped Up. I'm sure it will be a big hit!


  4. Hi Ness

    I just found your blog and I am enjoying it very much.

    I am your new follower and look forward to your visit xxx

  5. What a great post! I am feeling so inspired by stories like yours at the moment. It is giving me the motivation and courage to give myself more of a go. Goodluck with your dreams for a shop of your own, I'm sure it will come into reality x

  6. Good on you Ness! What a lovely post and thanks for sharing. You deserve to do well, you have put in all the hard work, make beautiful things, so go enjoy and be successful. ;-)

  7. Oh Sweetheart, thanks for taking me back to the beginning of your story, long before I found you and your gorgeous spot in Blogland.

    I really admire your enthusiasm, organisation, work ethic and approachability. They have all combined to make your business such a fabulous success.

    I can't wait to see where your journey takes you, my friend!

    J x

  8. thanks for sharing Ness! You are a great inspiration!!I definently think i need to me more of a list maker!!! that seems to be something that most people recommend - people who are good with their time ! unlike myself!!
    beautiful photos - especially the one with the newborn! Have a wonderful day!!!
    laura xx

  9. That is a wonderful post Ness. I feel like I am hesitating at the edge of the cliff right now, ready to take the leap onto bigger things, getting myself out there, but man it is scary! I have had this dream for so long and can see it all in my mind but keep having the doubts creep in...but at the same time, if I don't give it a go, I will always wonder...sorry that is a bit cryptic, lol! Reading your story is an inspiration to me, in the direction of positive, so...thanks :)

    xx Karen

  10. Hi Ness,

    I certainly did not nod off, you are creative, inspirational and amazing at what you do. You truly inspire me. Mimi xx

  11. Great post Ness, no nodding off for me. I find it fascinating to see how you fit it all in. I am a working mum too and sometimes it is such a juggle.

  12. Your creations are wonderful! I just discovered your blog via Pinterest. Congratulations on all of your well earned success! Love the $5 sideboard. :)

  13. Love it, we share so many passions and you are one step ahead of me with kids and business being older. So glad to hear it gets easier.. Inspirational Ness, just inspirational xx

  14. Ness you are awesome. Your blog is one of my favorites and the energy and passion you put into your products has inspired me to keep going with my own little blog and even to start making my own products and put myself out there at markets. I love reading all your positive stories about your customers and your market stall sales and they have been so inspiring to me that they have helped give me the courage to pursue my long held creative dreams too. Thank you so much for such a lovely honest account of how you got to where you are. You work so hard you deserve every success x


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