Reflections on 2014, and Looking to 2015
In less than a week, my website will turn 3 years old. This past October, my Youtube channel turned 4 (for all intents and purposes). More than ever I realize the importance of running a blog and a channel side-by-side, as different people have different ways of sourcing information. Before we charge ahead, I will preface this by saying that 2014 was not exactly my most productive year (I didn’t meet some of my goals), but it may have been the most exciting year so far. Read on…
Accomplishments of 2014
YOUTUBE VIDEOS – This year I made 95 Youtube videos, just a few short of my goal of 100. I believe that I would have achieved the goal had I not fallen down the stairs and then get into a car accident in November, leaving me with injuries that would have been unwise to wear a corset overtop. For this reason, I have not posted a corset review in nearly 2 months and have fallen behind schedule – but I still persevered and continued making “Fast Foundation” videos. I believe that 95 videos (an incredible 41 of which were corset reviews) is still an achievement.
MORE RESEARCH TOOLS – My “Research” section of my website, where you can learn more about the hundreds of corset makers and companies in the industry, has seen a beautiful amount of growth this year. The Guided Galleries section is now 25 galleries strong; and with the switchover to a new mapping interface, we were able to overcome the 250-corsetiere cap and grow the Corsetiere Map to well over 300 makers! In 2014 I also introduced the Corset Dimensions Directory (better known as the Lace-Base by most users) and the Corset Dimensions Calculator, as well as the current work in progress, a table that organizes OTR corsets and their companies into their relative “waist training friendliness“.
TRAVEL – In March of this year, I returned to Wenatchee, Washington to reunite with the owners of Orchard Corset and to meet with some other corset bloggers in the industry (including the one and only Cora of The Lingerie Addict, Heidi of Strait-Laced Dame, and Scarlet and Miss Miasma of The Corset Authority) for a fun few days of interviews, photo shoots, and making S’mores. Following this conference I participated in my first fan meetup with Cora and Orchard Corset in Seattle, and later on had the immense honour of visiting and interviewing author Sarah Chrisman. Sarah and Gabriel were so gracious to let me look at their incredible antique collection and get a taste of what it would have been like to live in a Victorian home at the turn of the century.
In August, with the amazing help of the fundraiser led by Christine Wickham (Ariadne’s Thread) and Lowana O’Shea (Vanyanis), I had the mind-blowing opportunity to travel all over England and attend the prestigious Oxford Conference of Corsetry 2014, where I met many influential people in the corset industry such as Julia Bremble of Sew Curvy, Cathy Hay of Foundations Revealed, Jenni Hampshire of Sparklewren, Autumn Adamme of Dark Garden Corsetry, Alison Campbell of Crikey Aphrodite!, and about 50 other corset makers! During the remainder of my 10 day trip, I had the immense pleasure of travelling and site-seeing in different towns with Lowana and also Beata Sievi (Entre-Nous), squeezing in two interviews along the way. It’s sure to be an experience I’ll never forget.
PHOTO SHOOTS – one of the biggest highlights of my travels this year was participating some photo shoots, one with Orchard Corset and another with Sparklewren, Ina-Glo Photography, and Samantha Gardner MUA, who with their combined power managed transform my default derpy self and make me feel like a Goddess for an afternoon. Back home, this year I was also introduced to Remedy Photography who is insanely local to me, and we had a blast together in two separate photo shoots in 2014 – I definitely hope to work with Remy again in the future.
COLLABORATIONS – this year has been amazing in terms of networking and collaborations. In January 2014, I was invited to become a regular guest blogger for Timeless Trends, and later on write a couple of articles for Corset Connection as well, which has been incredibly fun. This year I also worked with Orchard Corset to make my modified CS-426 corset with hip ties into one of their regularly-stocked options – and they even put my label in each corset!
The experience and camaraderie that has been developed with the owners and managers of these companies has been absolutely invaluable, and it’s strengthened my opinion that the corset industry, whether in OTR or custom, are full of amazing, caring people – good, hard-working people who can all co-exist.
LOSS – this year has seen an incredible amount of loss, in many ways, for many people in my personal life. House fires, cars totalled, and about half a dozen funerals. For our corsetry community, the loss of Christine Wickham was the biggest shock this year. She was sweet, intelligent, incredibly caring, and helpful to everyone in the community, young and old, experienced and new. She serves as my inspiration on a daily basis.
Looking to 2015
Near the end of 2014, due to my injuries and other extraneous factors, I think I burned out and needed a few weeks to rest, reassess my goals, and recharge.
This coming year, I am not setting as many goals for myself as I did for 2014 – partially for self-preservation against possible disappointment later, and partially because I want to be flexible to any incredible opportunities that may arise next year. Back in 2012, my only goal was to do one productive thing towards my corset passion each day. That small step every day was incredibly effective and actually set the foundation for amazing projects later on – so I think that will be my one achievable resolution for 2015.
Next year my goals include 60 videos (the topics have already been planned out – but if I make more than 60 next year, splendid). I hope to have the time to attend two other corset events next year, and also resume corset consultations (introducing a new Skype option for those who prefer a more face-to-face interaction and need fitting or measuring guidance). Next year I also have the opportunity to go back to school. This will undoubtedly cut into my time for corsetry, if only for a couple of years – I am passionate about always learning though, and increasing my knowledge base takes high priority in my life.
Thank you once again, friends, for staying by my side for yet another year! I have no idea what 2015 will bring, but I do have a feeling that it will be wildly better than 2014 – and I’m excited.
Do you have any goals, plans or resolutions for this year – corset related or not? Leave a comment below!