Folks, Waltzingmouse Stamps store is closing.
It took me a half hour just to write that one line.
Gosh, that was hard.
WMS store will close down completely at the end of March 2016,
just over a month shy of our 7th birthday.
I want to thank everyone who has ever shopped with us, partied with us, chatted with us or generally just cheered us on - you have made the last 7 years a blessing to me,
Thank You so much for being part of WMS!
What happens now?
Shipping of in-stock items will continue up until the end of March from both the UK and USA locations. Folks having discount codes or gift vouchers etc should use them now as once the store closes at end of March, WMS will cease to trade and all vouchers and codes will no longer be useable.
If there's anything you ever wanted from WMS, it would be best to order it now - I am hoping to stay in the stamping/craft industry but I have no idea if any of these designs will ever be available again since I won't be running a stamp store!
Why is WMS closing?
Well it's a long story, but if you want to hear it:
I began Waltzingmouse Stamps in 2009 with the vision that I wanted to provide the very best quality design, in the very best quality photopolymer paired with the very best quality customer service. At the time I was operating on a very small scale and that was grand, I was able to make all three of those things happen and still be at home for the wee folks and pretend that I was doing some housework as well.
It was a really steep learning curve and I enjoyed it, I like a challenge. I learned how to design for polymer, how to design dies - I taught myself how to set up and run a company and how to set up and run an online store, I'd never done anything like that before and I was determined to do all of these things to the best of my ability.
To do them right.
As the business grew, I was juggling lots of different things and I was managing because I was ok with giving up on housework. Mr B took over the kitchen.
I had the opportunity, twice, to 'Go Big' and I passed both times because I didn't want to be a big company. WMS stayed small, so that I could hang on to as much family time as possible. My big priority is to raise my children and I need to be here to do that. WMS gave me the chance to earn a living and also be around for my wee folk and I am really, really lucky to have been able to do that for so long.
The business grew as big as I could handle, and that's thanks to you folks who came and played along with us, and I am very grateful for you. WMS has always been fortunate to have had the loveliest folks, from all over the world. I've 'met' folks from Iceland to South Africa, from Moscow to Brazil, Japan, Australia - all over the globe - what an amazing thing, to find myself here in a damp corner of Ireland chatting to all these wonderful folks. Exotic addresses to ship to, beautiful names, beautiful people everywhere!
I really never thought that we would get as far as we did - and look at the Designs Teams we have had! We've had the most talented and kindest ladies in the craftosphere here at WMS!
It has been a charm.
Along with a growing business though, came growing time pressure, and I found myself working all day and late into the night, every night, for several years. I'm not afraid of hard work and it was still worth it, I was still able to do the school runs and be at home, even if I was closed away in the office most of the time.
However this last year or so things have gotten a little out of hand. My wee folk need me as much now as ever, maybe even a little more. There have been huge changes in online business practices to keep up with and a number of frankly ridiculous EU directives have been introduced, making it much harder for small businesses to function economically. Consequently there's been a lot of time-greedy admin tasks that have resulted in my not having enough time for designing,
for making, or for efficient customer service,
and that compromises my original vision for WMS.
I don't want to compromise, and so I have decided to close WMS.
Immediately? Well I'll be tying up loose ends at WMS until end of March, and I will be crafting. I will be taking the opportunity to get out from underneath my admin rock and see what's going on, maybe reconnect with the whole blogging world. I will be redesigning this blog to reflect me, myself and my crafting interests.
I'll be getting back to making and I will be getting myself ready for an adventure. You know that saying? The one about the door closing and another one opening, well it's true - I will be able to tell you more about it later this year, but how about you pop back in a week or so and we can talk crafting, you know actual cardstock and glue and maybe ink and such, like we used to?