One year ago today…

Colours of winning cutting edge nastygal bag

This post is a bit different from normal, but I had one of those ‘one year ago today’ notifications from Facebook and it triggered a realisation that I hope you might find useful.

The FB post was a reminder about getting investment at the end of our Indigogo campaign last year (yey!)  And my initial reaction was, ‘Wow, was that only one year ago?! SO much has happened since then’.

The realisation? That day-to-day I’m guilty (very guilty) of focusing only on the big picture.  Then feeling bad that I haven’t reached where I want to be yet, thinking I’m never getting anywhere at all.

I’ll be living completely in my head; one design, one season, one achievement ahead of myself. Not seeing what amazing things are currently happening, or that have happened already.  Because I want it all to be done NOW.

Sound familiar?

I wanted to that I’d share just in case you were living too far in the future too.  Join me in taking a moment to look back over the last 12 months and be grateful – to yourself!  And then take a look at the current moment, and be proud of what and who you are right now.

Life is a crazy ride, we might as well enjoy it.

Speak soon;

Jennifer x

P.S. I’d love to hear what you are proud of yourself for from the past 12 months, or even right now.  Join us in the blog comments and let me know.

I’ll go first, I am thankful to myself for achieving: A successful crowdfunding campaign, launching 3 handbag designs, being nominated for an international award, taking the leap to travel whilst working and visiting Bali, Singapore, China, New York and the UK, starting work with my new business coach, meeting hundreds of amazing kickass women through networking (both in person and online), being in the press numerous times and now being on the brink of launching another design.

P.P.S. I’ve had lots of questions about when the backpack will be launched – All I need to do is count up the votes for the colours at the end of this week (THANK YOU for your input if you voted, if you haven’t yet, you still can here) and it will be all systems GO.

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A (tropical takeover) week of working ON the business, not IN it.

Its a blog TAKEOVER!

Kind of, kind of not, because the takeover is by me!  Over the past year you will know that I’ve been featuring some incredible ladies each week, starting with an inspiring Q&A every Monday, with women from a wide variety of industries.  The focus; to share inspirational stories and journeys with the intention of helping you to follow your own passions.  I’ve loved seeing our own community strengthen and grow as a result – I’m so proud of the growing connections and interaction within our little Tribe!

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Working ON the business, not IN it.

Today I’m shifting the focus slightly to let you know that this week will be different because…. I’m going away on retreat!!

Not yoga, not meditation, not a relaxation retreat. But a business retreat.

Yes, that’s right, it’s time to step away from my never ending ‘to-do’ lists to focus on the bigger picture. And you know what – I have a feeling that it’s not going to be easy.

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A week of Business Badass

The retreat is run by (amazing result generating) coaching company; The Game Changers, whom I recently started working with.  Part of the 12 month program is to attend 5 day business workshops where I will take time out (along with the rest of our little team – yes, I finally have a TEAM!! More about them soon!) to work on strategies and plans for the future.

When I first found out that the retreat was on the beautiful island of Lombok, Indonesia I was pretty happy.  Tropical Island Paradise?? YES PLEASE!!  Though, I have a feeling that the beach has been strategically placed nearby to help relax and balance ourselves after each day of hard work, rather than for daily swimming, sunbathing, cocktails and coconuts!

Five full  days of personal and business development is going to be a huge test and a challenge, but I also know that I’m going to love it, and meet some incredible and inspiring people who going after their dreams too.

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Stay connected

To share the experience with YOU, I promise to be updating daily, direct from the action over on Instagram Stories (you can follow here) I’ll also broadcast some LIVE streams and insights as we go so we can all learn together. I hope you will join me to see what we are getting up to and to be equally inspired.

See you over on Instagram!

Jennifer

Follow Jennifer Hamley handbags on Instagram

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What’s in your handbag, Vicky Charles?

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Hello  and welcome to another episode of What’s in your handbag! This week we peer into the depths of successful single mum Vicky Charles’s gorgeous handbag.  Vicky is a copywriter and social media specialist and we’re eager to see what essentials she takes with her on the go.  We had an amazing talk on Monday about Vicky’s inspirational story (read it here) and today we get to see what’s hiding in her beautiful bag!

Hello again Vicky, how are you?

Great thanks Jen!

I’m loving the colour of your bag!

My handbag is from Hobo.  I forget the name of the style, and a trawl through their website suggests they don’t sell these ones any longer! I love it because it holds more than you’d think, but is also very smart. And everyone always comments on the bright colour!

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And here’s what’s inside!

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  1. Reusable bag: I hate plastic bags and have a huge collection of reusable bags; I try to keep at least one in my handbag at all times!
  2. Various lipsticks: I buy lipsticks, use them for a while, lose them in the bottom of my handbag and buy another… ad infinitum! Every now and then I clear out my bag and find several I’d forgotten I had!
  3. Pens: I’m a writer; I carry a pen everywhere!
  4. Hobo “Rachel” purse. This is ridiculously large; I can use it as a clutch when I go out! It’s great though as it has loads of little pockets and it’s great for all of those loyalty cards and vouchers. Plus it has a little mirror on a chain!
  5. Kindle: because you never know when you might have five minutes spare for reading.
  6. L’Occitane hand cream: this tube is the perfect size for my handbag! I love this cream because it’s effective but not greasy.
  7. Tin of mints: I’m a parent blogger and we are given lots of things like this at events. Some are more useful than others!
  8. Pain killers – just in case!
  9. Loose change: with a purse that big, how do I still manage to miss with my coins?!
  10. Random hair clip: do all mums end up with this stuff in the bottom of their bags? To be honest I’m surprised there weren’t a few pieces of rogue Lego in there!
  11. Tissues: useful for so much more than just runny noses…
  12. Notebook: see pens above! Taking notes on a mobile device just isn’t the same. When you write something down by hand it actually goes into your head!
  13. Chocolate rice cakes: for emergencies, especially on the school run! My little girl is always starving when she comes out of school and I try to persuade her to eat rice cakes rather than buying ‘cakey’ cakes!
  14. Mobile: I took the photo with my mobile but it’s never far from my hands!

Thank you Vicky! It’s been a pleasure having you as are Inspirational Woman of the Week! As a further treat, Vicky is offering you a personalised social media appraisal with 5 specific tips for your own account. You can email vicky@vickycharles.com and quote this blog to get a reduced price of £30.

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That’s it from us this week. I wish you an amazing couple of days and we’ll be back in touch on Monday with some more inspirational business women!

Jennifer x

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Finalist at the 2017 Handbag Designer Awards… & GIVEAWAY!

I’m super excited to announce our nomination in this years Independent Handbag Designer Awards!  The winners will be announced at an event ceremony in New York City on June 14th.  I cannot wait to get there and meet the other finalists, sip champagne and (fingers crossed!!) bring home the award for the Cutting Edge #GirlBoss bag.

ABOUT THE BAG

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This bag has been created for fabulous women-on-the-go, who want to look and feel great at the same time.  Featuring a top handle and shoulder straps, it can be worn as a backpack, shoulder bag or handbag – giving you complete freedom on how to wear it.

Inside, it features all the organisation that made the Model KT work bag famous.  Yes, the bag that won two awards in NYC in 2015 – (thanks to ALL your voting!!).  Included in the design is a padded laptop sleeve, key chain and phone/purse/passport compartments.  The bag is lightweight so you can work from anywhere.

1500 ENTRIES!!

Now in its 11th year, the Independent Handbag Designer Awards received over 1500 submissions; sent from 5 continents and 28 countries!  I am totally blown away to have been selected and take a place on this amazing international stage.  Our bag is in The Cutting Edge Bag by Nasty Gal category and the winner will be chosen from five finalists by a panel of industry expert judges.

Nasty Gal Cutting Edge handbag design Jennifer Ham finalist 2017

…2 MORE AWARDS…

Firstly is the Retail Award.  The winner of which will have their bag stocked in the luxury NY retail store Neiman Marcus – WOW!

And secondly is the ‘InStyle Audience Fan Favourite‘, as VOTED BY YOU!  The winner will be featured in InStyle magazine, the high street glossy fashion publication.  The exposure with this kind of opportunity is what dreams are made of!

– VOTING GIVEAWAY –

You can vote for my design at http://bit.ly/Vote-For-JenniferHamley – simply click on the red arrow next to my sketch until it turns green, then your vote is counted!

As a huge thank you for voting, I’m running a GIVEAWAY to win the bag!  All you have to do is vote, then share on any social media with the hashtag #VoteForJenniferHamley (please use the hashtag so that we can count your vote).  You may vote and share as many times as you like – each share will get you an extra entry!!

GOOD LUCK and fingers crossed for all of us!

Jennifer x


  • P.S. If you want to vote more than once on your smartphone, simply follow these instructions.
  1. Vote and share with #VoteForJenniferHamley
  2. Close phone browser (Safari/Chrome/Firefox)
  3. Open browser up again
  4. Vote and share again
  5. Close phone browser
  6. Open browser up again
  7. Repeat!  GOOD LUCK!
  • On a PC
  1.  Open an incognito browser
  2. Vote and share with #VoteForJenniferHamley
  3. Close browser
  4. Open a new browser
  5. Repeat! GOOD LUCK!

 

Q&A Monday with Jehan Mir

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Hello and welcome to another dose of feminine business motivation.  This week our inspirational woman of the week is Jehan Mir,  a leading couture designer, dress-maker & stylist based in London. Her creations are things of beauty – as you will see shortly! Jehan is ready and willing to share some of her key insights into how she’s learnt to follow her dreams.

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