002 You Just Never Know

Posted by Kyle Williamson-Fox on

Opportunities are usually disguised by hard work, so most people don't recognize them. 
- Ann Landers

Yesterday I forgot to mention that The Pillow Shoppe does custom work. We tend to stay within the realm of custom pillows, bench/seat cushions, table runners, and foam ottomans. I also forgot to mention that my mom and mentor, Pia, is quite funny. 

We had someone refer us to a Toronto designer, telling him that we did great custom work and could possibly help him with a project of his. Pia set up a consultation with him on March 21st; the same day as my grandmother's 87th birthday. 

Pia scheduled the meeting early enough so she could have the consultation and still have plenty of time to get home to prepare dinner for Ma's birthday.

Unfortunately, the designer was running late. Being a good daughter, Pia didn't want to miss out on making dinner so she asked me to meet with the client and get all the necessary information for a follow-up meeting.

I met with the designer and came away from it thinking we may not be able to do this kind of job, as it was something we'd never done before. Sewing and manufacturing is not my specialty, so I looked forward to passing on the information to Pia to see what she thought.

Later at dinner: 

"I don't know if we can do this job, Mum. It sounds complicated. We've never done anything like this before." 

She nodded and said to me, "I'll give him a call and see how we can make this work. You just never know what kind of opportunity it will present." 

We celebrated Ma's 87th with a lovely meal and cake. My grandmother is a wonderful woman and I love her dearly. She is the matriarch of our family and has been an entrepreneur most of her life. Every time I visit, she always asks me how things are at the shoppe and passes on her wisdom through tales of running a business back in the day. Her latest venture being selling her beautiful handmade feather art in the form of cards and wall hangings. 

Being an artist and craftswoman, she taught my mom how to sew at the age of five. I guess this was the groundwork for what happened next.

Pia met with the designer a few days later and agreed to do the custom project! She told me that it will be difficult but very possible.

I thought she was nuts, but over the past six years working with her, I've learned to trust her when she says she can do something. She's a strong European woman!

Since we are still working on the project, I cannot divulge the details just yet. All I can say is: it's "wild".

More on it later. Thanks for reading.

- Kyle





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