Thursday, January 3, 2013

ST: A Year in Review

Well it was quite a year for Scarlet Threads! Looking back, I am so proud of what our little business has accomplished and what we have learned. Looking forward, I cannot wait to see what 2013 and beyond has in store for us.

There are a lot of people to thank for the success we've enjoyed over the past four years. I won't lie to you - we've had setbacks. But, Our Staff answered the challenge - first making 2012 a year of recovery, then of hope, and finally a year of unparalleled advancement of Our Vision!

Many thanks to...
    From Kristin in Iceland!
  • Our Customers and Community. Each of you has contributed to the Vision and have helped us to become a "something real." Carrie has said countless times in the past weeks Our Community "really believes in us! They really believe that we are doing something." That confidence has kept the Vision alive and has kept us growing in our ideas and ideals. We couldn't have done it without the people who have purchased our products, prayed for our mission/ministry, and believed in us as individuals and a team.
  • Our new Staff: Tisha, Lexi, Faerl, and Christina. We appreciate your tireless efforts to expand the ST Community both online and in person.
  • Our Families. Believe it or not, even though ST is a small (some might say "micro") business, ST requires a huge amount of time and sacrifice. Time with our husbands, children, friends, and occasionally our jobs (shhhh don't tell) have been back burner-ed because there is invoicing, blogging, web updating, inventorying, tweeting, facebooking, business plan building, China traveling, product developing - you get the idea-ing - to be done!
And - look what we've accomplished...
  • One new artisan! If you haven't visited our new Wired Hearts collection, you are missing out. We found an incredibly talented street artisan (right under our nose, as it turns out) and incorporated his wonderful ideas into ST. Part of our vision is to open new markets to talented artisans. We obviously want the artisan to benefit financially from the increased demand. But, we also want to introduce a wonderful product to our Community and allow you to get to know the Artist who creates it. The way we see it, it is a win-win-win!
  • The Scarlet Scraps Adoption Grant Fund! This brings a few tears to my eyes. We've been looking for a way to give back to this Community and as Carrie took a big step towards her adoption, the Scarlet Scraps idea fell in our laps. (A gift from God, perhaps?) Adoption is what brought Carrie to China and many in our ST Community have a heart to adopt or to support orphans or adoption. What better way can we serve than by giving an Adoption Grant to a deserving family? Product development ideas and low-inventory items  will be designated as Scarlet Scraps and the profits going directly to the grant fund!
  • New Markets here and abroad! We shipped ST products to 75% of the States in the Union! That's 36 in all! We shipped internationally to several countries: Germany, Iceland, Australia, Canada - just to name a few. And, we were blessed to participate in trade shows in Beijing and the US.
  • Icing on the cake. We increased our online community (4050 strong on Facebook!)

All that said, we have even higher hopes for the future! Isn't that why you make New Year's Resolutions? To set the bar higher? Here are ours, in no particular order. We are...
  • Determined to reach all 50 states in 2013!
  • Committed to identify and partner with another artisan (fingers crossed - in Indonesia).
  • Dedicated to raise funds for ONE (or more) ADOPTION GRANT in 2013.
  • Creating a new website (already in progress).
And that is certainly not all! We have to continue our flurry of activity and maintain the new size and scope of ST! We cannot wait for you to see the new products that we developed on our last trip to China. Deng Jia has completed production and Hannah has shipped them to our "distribution center" (i.e. Carrie's closet).

Tisha and her little one at
the Fabric Market in China
Now it is time for you (reader, customer, and well wisher) to tell us! What is your favorite thing about our vision? Have we succeeded in our mission to help you invest in an artisan and to know the company you purchase from? Have we communicated the change we aspire to be in the world? And, are there any ways that we can help you to further be involved in our mission? We would love your feedback.
After all, it's a brand new year and we can't wait to start keeping our New Year's Resolutions!

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