Well, September happened. Actually, it happened so fast I can't even believe all of the things that we did in September. There were a few product launches, a lot of project deadlines (including one for another book!) and the shipment of our quarterly subscription box. And you'll probably notice that we wrote no blog posts this month because, to be honest, we just didn't have time. As a person very prone to severe anxiety, the month of September was a doozy.
If you're an subscriber to our subscription box you already know that a it was really delayed this quarter. I'm not going to go into the details (though I could probably write a whole essay on them) but there were about 4 separate things that went wrong with this box. And one of them was taking much much too long to get resolved, so we decided to just ship anyway. Truly, it was a comical number of errors--all of which could have been prevented in a number of ways, mostly by the manufacturers who make the things but also by me, who could have been more vigilant.
The question I've been asking myself a lot lately is, how early is too early? I ask this about buying for the Pencil Box (which happened generally 4-6 months before a box is set to ship) and especially for holiday season, because it's creeping up really fast and because every year I realize I should've taken care of everything earlier.
I wish I could show you what our basement looks like right now but it would spoil a lot of surprises. Basically, I'm not taking any chances with holiday season this year or with our December Pencil Box. Christmas is coming early at CWPE, because I've realized that the best way to thoroughly enjoy holiday season as a shop owner and not feel stressed is to get ALL of the work that isn't wrapping presents done well before Thanksgiving. We're even have a few mini shop makeover projects planned before the big day--November 1st--when the majority of our holiday stuff will be online.
What I've learned most this year, though all the collaborations and new exclusive products that we've been working on is that you can never plan too far in advance or be too careful. I've been really lucky so far this year to have gotten to work with many of my friends, in the stationery biz and otherwise, and all of the advance planning and work is totally worth it. Meredith and I have even already planned a most of our projects for next year already because we're just really excited.
I'm grateful that you all trust us so much to be understanding when we make mistakes because let's face it, even when things are executed to the best our ability, it happens sometimes. The only thing we can really do is to try our hardest to not make the same mistakes twice.
Photo: My favorite moment in the shop, mornings in the shop.