The first we heard of the awards, was after the deadline for nominations had passed. Rowena and I were extremely annoyed. Then we shrugged it off, and noted it in the calendar for next year. It would be an amazing opportunity to be nominated- and imagine winning!
So anyway, one evening this week as I was leaving, I found the post for the day. (It was late!)
In the bundles of boring white envelopes and gubbins was a large A4 envelope with Time Out on it. I frowned. And opened it immediately.
Inside were little stickers and business cards, all saying 'vote for us'.... and it was as I pulled out a large poster with our name on it that the penny finally dropped!
Rowena had just left for the evening, I so I sent her a text asking her to call me. I took a picture of the poster. And I couldn't wait, so I tried calling. Twice. Just as I resigned myself to texting the news, she called me back.
I simply said, "We're in the Time Out nominations"... And then after a brief exchange her confusion cleared up. I could hear the emotion in her voice, and she burst into tears. (My eyes were a little moist too, if I'm honest)
To be nominated is such a big deal. One never really considers that there are real people behind a successful shop, people that live, breath, and sweat blood and tears into what they do. We'll never find out who nominated us, but knowing someone did is a wonderful feeling.
And now comes the hard work! We're still a young and growing business (even though I know we looks really slick and well put together), and we have to work hard to shout this news and get as many votes as possible. Until the 31st of October, I will I have not much to say on social media other than 'please vote for us!'... I will be trawling through my email addresses and emailing people I haven't spoken to in years, just in the hopes of getting the extra vote.
But my reason for wanting to win isn't as simple as 'if we win we will get great exposure'. I mean, yes, there is an element of that, but it's mainly because I want it for my colleague, and friend, Rowena.
Row set the business up on her own, with an idea and a credit card. In the journey to where we are now, she's been locked on trains, had people not leave her house for 5 hours while they fret over a pair of shoes, seen coffee knocked over expensive beaded dresses by careless customers- and so many more stories besides! She lives and breathes this business. It is her baby. I am proud to be a co-parent of that baby, and I know how much it would mean to her for us to win.
(Click the ‘vote’ button next to us! And if you feel so inclined, please leave a short review as we’ll get to keep the reviews for the boutique in the Time Out listings after the event) Voting closes on 31st October. I'm not sure what time it closes, so you should do it now just to make sure ;)