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Sunday, 20 November 2011

Starting My Own Business

I have been giving this some thought since I wrote what's Doll Doll Dolly all about and I have somehow convinced myself to further explore starting my own business. I have a dream of having a creative space for people to sell their craft, obtain craft supplies and take part in workshops. 

I have made my situation pretty public in the article I mentioned above, I have an illness which may make things difficult for me, but I really think this is my only option for the future. I have always been so defeatist over my future, thinking it was uncertain and sometimes impossible. I have realised that my negative thoughts have been the thing holding me back, feeling lazy and at times low.

I need to get some of my thoughts and questions answered:

  • How easy is it to start up a business?
  • How can I make my dreams a reality?
  • Is my idea a good idea?
  • How long is the process? 
  • How much will it cost? Can I get a loan? Grant? 

I think my best chance is contacting the Princes Trust for advice and creating a business plan, as I am not that business minded. I would also love to speak to anyone who has started their own business. I would like to know:
  • If it was successful and what made it successful
  • How difficult it was
  • If it was worth it
  • The challenges of owning your own business 

What I really want to do is weigh up the pros and cons of running a business, to see if it is really something I could cope with and would want to do. I have some really great ideas and I think it would be a real shame if my hometown couldn't benefit from them. Please contact me if you have any advice for me in my business adventures! 


  1. I'm thinking along the same lines. I'm not sure about the whole thing but would like to give it a go, as long as I can still work part time to begin with. You are right, there are so many things to consider!

  2. Thanks for the comment. My head feel like it's going to explode with all the things you have to think about. I really need to sit down and write a plan, but I am a little scared about the prospect of the unknown. Business is such a risk and a long process. I wish you luck if you decide to go down the business road :-)

  3. Hello!

    My advice would definitely be to plan, plan, and then plan some more! You also need to really think about what you want to achieve, the number of hours you want to work and if this will be possible and the kind of personality you have. There are lots of different ways of going about things and lots of different things that are just waiting to be created. It is tough, real tough, but as a good friend said to me when I was starting on a similar journey, 'The things worth having are often the most difficult to get.'

    Good luck!

    Emily x

  4. Thank you so much for getting back to me. I agree that I really need to plan, but I really need to figure out what I want to achieve. I think I need to start small, start a craft group and gain experience. I have the personality but just not the body I guess, however things have been looking up and working freelance is helping heaps. I think it will be a long road of working things out and gaining ground slowly. I think I will contact the Princes Trust for some advice. I agree with your friend. I am super determined to make something of myself, but it's going to take a lot of hard work.

    Thanks again Emily

    Abbey x

  5. I can totally understand where you are coming from! I am setting up my own business and I have been for nearly two years. Its all in the planning and not giving up when you face obstacles (and there will be plenty). I am on the verge my own website going live after selling a few things on Folksy. One thing that you can never do enough of is 'to do' lists and goal planning. I have 'to do' lists coming out my ears and even if you don't do them it helps you get clear in your head what needs to be done eventually!

    Good Luck!

    Tracy @gypsysboutique.co.uk

  6. Hello. It's lovely to read such an honest post and one so full of optimism. Being optimistic (as you know) is such an important part of running your own business and being able to face the difficulties and work around them. I have been self-employed twice in my life (both in similar venture - designer maker ladies handbags) and this time I work full time as a teacher as well as run my own business. This isn't an option for everyone (and is somewhat exhausting at times) but it does help me to prioritise. One of the most daunting things I found when setting up a business is wondering ""What on earth do I do first?" I agree with your previous comment - lists are very useful. When I decided to go self-employed again (2011) I got in touch with Business Link, who (during both periods being of self-employed) were extremely helpful. I hope recent government funding cuts haven't affected the amount of service they can offer, but this is always a sad possibility. Their website is fantastic though, especially for newbies to business. It is easy to understand and find. I can't recommend them enough for the help they gave me, including the support of their advisors. They even helped me to gain funding towards my e-commerce website, which was excellent. Some local authorities have specific enterprise support as well which can be really helpful, but it depends on where you live I imagine. Writing a business plan was much easier than I thought, even the financial forecasting, which really helps you to see what is viable and what isn't. Banks have lots of free literature which they can give you, including business plan templates. A blog is a great way to start though as you are already building up a nice community. Good luck with everything, hope it goes well, Holly