Pausing for thought as we head into the New Year
As 2022 gets going, we are already working hard to take Shaffay UK forward, including preparing beautiful new designs to launch later in the year. It is all very exciting, and sometimes all-consuming. There is much to do.
In order not to get too wrapped up in the what next? mentality, I think it is important for each of us – just every now and then – to step back and acknowledge how far we have come.
Yes – really! Covid Year 2 had more than its fair share of problems of course, but Shaffay UK reached plenty of milestones worth celebrating before we get too far into 2022 and perhaps you did to?
2021 was the year in which Shaffay UK finally launched! Very exciting – especially as the desire to make beautiful, luxury slippers for women had been going around my head for some time.
That idea floating around my head was one thing. It was, of course, another thing entirely to make it a reality: to make a desire for supersoft, elegant slippers into real-life, actual, in-my-hands, luxe leather house shoes. It takes far more talent than I possess to launch a business and there are so many elements to consider that I cannot (surely no one can..?) possibly rack up all the necessary skills fast enough to go it entirely alone. I therefore needed – and continue to need – a lot of help. Fortunately, there are lots of excellent people out there, and it is simply a matter of finding them. And of learning, of course. And learning and learning…
Why it’s important to celebrate
In addition to all the practicalities involved, and rumbling alongside them, launching a brand, or indeed starting or persevering with any significant project, is a process of constant self-appraisal with regular sprinklings of self-doubt. If you are working hard to make something happen at the moment, or indeed if you have ever put your life and soul into achieving something, you will likely know what I mean. You will be familiar with that voice in the head that is continually asking questions and offering endless criticisms, such as “what else should you be doing?”, “why have you not done this?”, “why can’t you do that?”, and most unhelpfully of all: “why on earth do you think you can do this, anyway?” Sometimes it’s useful; sometimes it’s not.
Have you laid down your “marker”?
That is why I think it is important to celebrate progress: to recognise that progress and acknowledge the people who helped it along – but also to lay down a marker: a solid reminder of what you have achieved. Once it is laid down, when that voice next asks why you think you can do whatever it is you are doing, you can point to that marker with and respond: because I have achieved this much already.
I hope you have laid down your own marker for the beginning of this new year. Here’s mine in the form of some of the key milestones that Shaffay UK reached in 2021:
Shaffay UK’s 2021
Latest (fifth?) prototype arrives from the workshop and this one is perfect: a single, gorgeously soft slipper.
Our new logos and branding are finalised.
The colourways are selected for our first range of luxury house shoes: the Signature Collection. We decide to name them for four cities that are particularly significant to me: London, Cairo, Paris and Shanghai.
The www.shaffay.com prelaunch landing page goes live.
Beautiful slipper samples arrive: two pairs in each of the four colourways.
Shaffay UK’s first photoshoot in Muswell Hill, London. We end up with a wonderful set of shots of our beautiful model looking fabulous in our elegant slippers at an equally elegant location.
Shaffay UK’s first product photoshoot. We take our slippers to Charles Ward, expert footwear photographer in Northampton, Britain’s shoe-making capital. He does an amazing job as you can see from the product shots on our website.
Our website www.shaffay.com is finalised.
- Stock arrives.
- First sales.
- Shaffay UK’s luxury slippers are now a reality and on people’s feet!
Shaffay UK accepted as a new Partner by www.notonthehighstreet.com
We start the Christmas season with a stall at the Novikov Christmas Market in Mayfair and enjoy people’s response to the wonderful softness of our slippers.
Shaffay UK pop-up in John Lewis, Oxford Street. We have a very enjoyable time meeting many lovely people and have lots of wonderful conversations. It is fantastic to see how much people love our gorgeous slippers.
Marker laid down! All set for 2022. Make yours a happy, healthy and stylish year.