This week I am proud to announce that I launched my new Drawn to a Story online shop!!
And I couldn’t be more proud.
This is big.
It’s been a dream of mine for three years.
So what was the dream?
To provide a range of products and gifts that help people feel seen and heard in their global lives.
Like any spectrum, there’s the full gamut of experiences in the global community. I refer to the shop being for people who ‘Struggle, Survive and Thrive in Expat Life, and for those who love them’.
As someone who’s moved through ‘Struggle’ (not so elegantly) into the more stable, but not easy ‘Survive’, and now very happily sitting in ‘Thrive’, I want to help.
I want to help people feel validated in their experiences.
I want to let them know they are not alone.
I want to offer them a sense of belonging.
So…. I now have an online shop.
WE, the expat community now have an online shop.
All the products are themed to expat life, third culture kids, global nomads. They speak our language and they hold up a mirror to us to see our lives reflected and celebrated.
The drawings come from my book, Living Elsewhere.
It’s been a real joy to use them to spread the love more widely.
One of the nicest things about creating something new is that you also get to establish your own ethos.
You get to choose to live your TRUTH every day.
This is mine.
It’s important to me to run Drawn to a Story with these values at its core.
I am passionate about clothes being accessible. I want more equality within diversity. Here, each size within a clothing product is the same price.
Gendered clothing reinforces sterotypes, social conditioning and limits personal expression. In my store, there are no genders. Clothes are just clothes.
Change for Good
I aspire to make positive change and create a better future together. Each year, I donate 3% of shop sales (in 2020 up to £200) to a charity of my choice.
Passionate about Products
When you buy a gift, you want it to be just perfect. If there are products you wish were in the shop, but aren’t, please let me know.
Dreams are not made by one person alone
Like the saying, ‘it takes a village to raise a child‘, so too does it take a village to raise a shop.
I could not have achieved this without support.
Angie – My wife. My support in every way possible. This is the woman who encourages me to follow what feeds my heart and soul. She brings me cups of tea and coffee when I’m working, smiles at me when I’m stressed and is so incredibly thoughtful. On Sunday night, I worked all night to make sure the shop was ready to launch on Monday. She stayed up night too to support me, so I wasn’t doing it on my own. Isn’t that amazing? Thank you for everything!
Naomi Hattaway – From I am a Triangle.
Without Naomi, I would have a book and I wouldn’t have created Drawn to a Story. At one of my lowest points, I was desperately trying to find purpose amongst feeling lost. I had an idea to create a book of drawings about expat life. I mentioned it to Naomi and she said, “What a wonderful idea. Go for it.” Her immediate support gave me the push to leap forth. She kindly gave me feedback on every single draft cartoon, promoted my work and was constant support through the process.
Sundae Schneider-Bean – Intercultural Strategist and Solution-oriented Coach
Not only is Sundae a dear friend, but working with her has revolutionised my work life. I hired Sundae to help me ‘go up a gear’ professionally. Through our coaching sessions, she helped me to realise my potential and develop strategies to move forward. Sundae had a wonderful way of getting to the nub of my struggles through a beautiful mixture of candidness and compassion. With Sundae’s help I’ve been able to imagine and create a future where I am living with purpose and fulfilling my dreams. Thank you.
Jerry Jones – The Culture Blend and Expat Up
In 2018, I met Jerry at the Families in Global Transition conference in The Hague. The night we met, we talked for four hours. It was a conversation that changed both our lives. We came back to FIGT the following year to present our story, Unlikely Connections: The Baptist and the Lesbian. Jerry helped me to realise that I had something to say and reminded of the importance of sharing your truth, because you never know who needs to hear it.
Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You all mean the world to me.
All that is now left to say is, please take a look at the shop http://www.drawntoastory.com
I hope that you find products here that you love AND also products you want to give to the people that you love.