Before you begin I must warn of domestic abuse triggers. This is a raw and personal story detailing my personal journey to this business and beyond but be assured of a happy ending.
Kirsty Rockett Photography
Art has always been my favourite way to loose time but as the years pass its also been my
most reliable friend, my therapist and my constant in life's ever changing and sometimes cruel circumstances. For whatever my sins in past lives domestic abuse and the destruction it causes has been a theme in this one but thankfully a cycle that is now broken. My art has always been its antidote. Art has not only been the key to releasing pain and helping move out of victim hood, its also built me further than I thought I could. It's the basis of my business, it's changed how I live my life and been the tool to bring all my dreams into existence.
As a child art was my best friend, and it wasn't just limited to paper. My imagination was wild and I had 6 imaginary friends to keep me company too. My mum fled from my dad with me when I was a baby after he hit her once and she will always be the strongest woman I will know. It meant that money was tight and material possessions were scarce despite the long hours she worked. Which had the potential to breed loneliness and sadness in a child, but I had worlds to get lost in paintings to paint and models to make. It makes me wonder if circumstances sparked the creativity in me or at least fueled it, I know for sure though the joy of creation was more than any plastic toy could have given me.
There's only been one time in my life when art held no value to me, when the place my spark once resided was a dark void. History repeat and I found myself in the same situation as my mum all those years before, only just into my in my 20's with a young baby and a violent husband. I couldn't find the courage to leave. I was psychologically tormented for so long I thought the blame was mine. The bruises healed every time but the words stuck and it took me 18 long months to escape, but I did and art was there to save me.
My creative side had never left me, it just lay dormant and when I started to play with it again I found solace in the familiarity of creation. It was like a big hug from an old friend and a place to feel safe to build back up the pieces of me which had been systematically torn down. When I'm in the flow my insecurities and fears don't exist, the only thing with my attention is what's in front of me, it allowed me the space I needed to heal. I dabbled with every medium that drew my attention, the spark returned quickly and the ideas flowed. In the years that followed I filled my walls and home with all sorts of art. During this time I also created two adorable humans in a new relationship. This was destined to break down too. I was mentally equipped to cope this time though. On my own with 3 young children and facing homelessness and now without a job it should have felt like my world was ending. But instead I felt like this was the real start, the chance to build my life how I wanted for myself and my children without compromises and emotional poverty. It was my art that built me to this place and I knew the mediation I found in painting was the key to everything.
My painting had taken on a new role, it had healed me and now the energy was to propel me forward in a way I had never experienced before. I now understood that the universe was flowing through me when I was in the vortex of creation and at these points I had no energetic resistance to all my desires. One of the main things I saw in my future was to start my own business, to work around my children and not only use my talents but get paid for them too. Hand painting designs onto shoes was the idea which stood out to me to use, I had so many comments and my friends and family had all asked for their own pair during my many experiments. At every step the universe provided exactly what I needed, the money came, the new house came, I was given funded nursery places for my children, I passed my driving test and for the first time in my life had my own car which meant my own freedom. And the most important thing, my children were happy.
My business was born in January 2017, named after the Sumerian goddess of love, sensuality, fertility, procreation and also war.
INANNA BESPOKE SHOES:
I help brides who are struggling to get excited by the bland pairs on offer off the the shelf. I offer a bespoke designing service to co-create the shoes of your dreams to not only adorn your feet on your wedding day but for years to come.
It was nearly 4 years ago I started Inanna and its become so much more than I could see at the start. The help I was given was incredible, endless free business start up courses through the chamber of commerce, a business mentor and a start up allowance. The right people always showed up with help just as I needed them and still do. Wedding shoes were where I pitched to start and immediately started taking bespoke orders and a collection of my shoes bought by a local wedding boutique to sell. Orders to begin with though were scarce which I can see now was fortunate because I needed this time to spend learning all about what it takes to run a business, the accounts, advertising, the social media and building a website. The process hasn't just grown my abilities but expanded me as a person and all along the way I've been forced way out side my comfort zone to grow. I still lay very much on the side of introversion but I can talk to my clients without fear and post on social media without overthinking every word I type. My personality can (mostly, bad days still happen) shine through the awkwardness of my social anxiety, because its for a purpose. Inanna almost becomes the alter ego of me, featuring only the the best bits,highlights and talents much like most peoples social media. I have even learned how to graciously receive a compliment without squirming, my work is out there now to be seen, appreciated and sell, and the words of encouragement and love for my work is as much a part of it's success as the sales. My products have evolved now beyond only shoes, I hand paint jackets, bags, Dr Martens and purses, not only for bridal but for fashion too. I have to admit I have toyed with giving up so many times because my business is like an extra child, I nurture it constantly and its never far from my mind at any time of day, but the last year my breakthrough with orders came and my order books are now always full for upwards of two months with bookings confirmed for over a year away. Each high vibing feeling of success energetically clears me to allow more. Breaking into styled shoots has been a real winner, they have allowed my work to be published in countless wedding blogs and even magazines. Two of last years biggest wins were having an article I penned on finding your perfect wedding shoes published in Alternative Wedding magazine and the start of my international orders, sending my work to the U.S. With every win new ideas are born, I now have more ideas than time to realise them and its the constant flow of ideas that keeps me excited.
The future of Inanna will be moving into new products to offer alongside hand painted, I have been learning to make shoes now by hand from only leather and raw materials and I also have a tattoo machine and am slowly learning to tattoo designs onto leather. I started this business because I felt compelled to do so from deep within. It fufills me in a way no other occupation could. It indulges my desire to work alone and the need to recharge away from others. Most of all I love the work, I love the feeling of achievement seeing the images I hold in my head brought to life to share with others. And I will be forever grateful for the change its brought about in me as a person, I will always be an introvert but now I feel less scared of the world and my mind and soul is nourished everyday in exactly the way it needs.
The clarity of manifestation I have found in painting also drew my true soul mate to me over 2 years ago. I had finally settled into acceptance of who am, content with where I was and where I was heading and in divine timing that's when he showed up. I had felt his presence with me for months before, old song lyrics would repeat over and over in my head
of him, I experienced dreams where he was with me and even a waking vision of his face. When we met I knew instantly here was the man I am going to spend the rest of my life with, a feeling I have never known before. He was also the final stage of my healing that I didn't know I needed, to be able to trust another human completely. To feel the love of someone who accepts me just as I am, even the difficult parts and when I struggle silently holds space for me without judgement. All our dreams align, our values, or morals and our plans for the future are divinely guided. All the uncomfortable memories no longer feel like mine, they are abstract and don't live inside me. Without using my abilities to imagine and create, none of this would have been my reality and I have never been so excited for the future. A future where this business plays a huge part. I will continue to use my art to bring about all I wish and I will be painting until the day I die, because art is part of who I am.
Art is my superpower
Bouquet and buttonhole
Me and Mr Inanna Bespoke Shoes
Katie Morley Make-up