Welcome to a little snippet of the things whirling around a young tailor's head! The Andra's Finds blog was originally meant as a blog encouraging other young women to be both classy and fabulous. Now, it has evolved into so much more. Andra's Finds is the creative outlet for both myself and my business. On it you'll get updates in the fashion world, ideas to get yourself ready for a new season, and a peek into the life of an entrepreneur! Won't you come and see what I've found?
A lot of people end up thinking I have my whole life figured out.
When I was a little girl, no older than seven or eight, my mind was already made up. No questions, no doubting myself. Someday, I was going to own my own business.
Granted, I had no idea what kind of business I wanted to own, but I WANTED to own my own business. In my head, it didn't matter if it was a restaurant, a boutique, coffee shop, or bakery. What mattered to me is that it would be mine.
While other girls dreamed of princesses like Snow White and Sleeping Beauty, I already had my mind made up. I didn't want any of that prince nonsense. Had The Princess and the Frog been around when I was little, Tiana would have been my Disney Princess.
As I got older, I never lost sight of that goal. I continued wading through my school while gaining all kinds of leadership experience; first working on a yearbook and later bringing to life a new improvisation group. Continuing through my high school years, I learned to answer phones as a receptionist, bit my tongue with customer service as a cashier and finally learned the ins and outs of time management and deadlines as a catering coordinator. Through all of this, I never lost sight of my dream. If you ever asked my last boss about my dream, he would probably laugh and tell you how from the beginning of my time there I warned him that I wouldn't stay forever. I knew I was destined for more.
Eventually I graduated from high school with my dream and came to a stark realization: I was never meant to go to college.
Now that statement may seem really small and rather insignificant, but for me, that was a huge decision. My whole life, this was the goal, this was the plan. Everything I had done in high school was supposed to prepare me for this huge step deemed "higher education." What would I do? What COULD I do without a degree?
Not long before I graduated, my mom and I went shopping together (just another day right?). We both strolled around the store pointing to this or admiring how pretty that display was. On our way out of the store though, a beautiful, emerald dress with some interesting structure caught my eye.
Pulling the bright green dress of the rack, mom and I admired it with awe! The problem came when the price tag caught my eye. Yikes! I couldn't afford it working part time! With that, out came my notebook! "Your notebook?" were the very next words out of my mother's mouth. She was a little shocked that I kept a little note (or sketch) book inside of my purse. Much to my shopping companion's surprise. I captured the design in my little book for me to take home and create my own version.
"You have a gift" Were the words that forever echoed in my head after that occasion.
With those four little words clunking around in my head, I decided, "Why not give it a try?"
So I went online, purchased some online classes, and begun to learn this lost art of sewing!
Before long, a few online classes weren't enough. I needed more. So my family and I began to ask around to see if I could find someone to teach me one on one and eventually possibly help me open my own business.
I can't even begin to tell you how many different places I went to try to get someone to teach me alterations. I constantly came across people who either couldn't understand what I needed because of a language barrier, or were afraid I would cut in on their business. Nevertheless, among this disheartening search, I became more and more convinced of a real need for a young, English-speaking tailor in my area! The dream was not dead!
With the futility of my own family's efforts being thwarted, I went to my best friend and vented my frustrations about this search.
Me and My best friend! (She's key in this story!)
Even amidst my grumbling, the Lord was at work.
Not long after my exhausted search, my friend was given the honor of being a bridesmaid and went into the local bridal store to get her dress altered. As soon as she and her mother met the tailor she was working with, an idea began forming in their heads. They dared to ask, "could we bring a friend to our next appointment?"
Thus, I met a woman with my same sewing skills, my love for beautiful dresses, and someone who had accomplished my dream.
Now, I'm so thrilled to be working with her and even filling in where she needs me.
Better yet, there's now a certificate hanging in my studio confirming that I'm finally living my dream.
Me and a few wedding dresses behind the scenes at the local bridal store!
I firmly believe that God gives us not only dreams, but gifts and even family (biological or in Christ), for a specific reason. We can't see it, but He has us covered. After all, He makes ALL things beautiful, in THEIR time.