Part 3 : Unapologetically Me: Getting Over My Fear of Failure

Over the weekend, I spent time preparing the Puddle Duck Collection for its debut on our website. Yesterday, we released it and had huge success. I am now writing this blog post with even more confidence that choosing to implement changes with SAA was the right choice. So CHEERS to that!

In the last post, we went over how I suffered greatly from PPD and PPA in 2023 after the birth of our 3rd child. I had been put on Zoloft & set up for therapy that April knowing it would probably take about 6 months for my anxiety and depression to level out. With the summer approaching, I had decided to focus on surviving it and cherishing every moment. However, things were not going well for my business, SAA. The sluggish economy, the difficulties of promoting on Instagram, and my lack of inspiration were all contributing factors to our struggles. I was creating things without any real inspiration, lacking the energy to create as I used to. It was a challenging time for us.

This is what I mean by "surviving" 😂 she LOVED the Lucky Charms box, so it became a part of her play mat 💪🏻☘️🌈💖🦄

But with a lot of support from our family, we were able to push through 2023 & come to 2024 with a new mindset, Marc was able to take on another job & things were slowly getting easier for me to manage. It was November 2023 when I picked up my iPad again. I had upped my dose of Zoloft & found the sweet spot that everyone talks about with the medicine - I was finally feeling like the backpack of bricks I was carrying around was taken off - felt like a huge weight was lifted off of me. Because of the clarity I was now experiencing I realized that a lot of what I was doing to "keep going" was just dragging me down further. The things I did to seek inspiration were not serving me in a way that pushed me to be creative - they were doing just the opposite. I wrote a whole blog post about it here on Elleia Made so I won't go too much into that part of my journey. But just know that making those changes is what prompted me to fully commit to changing SAA in 2024.

Marc & I spent much of the summer of 2023 apart. Our marriage needed a time out & he was working so much. I took the kids camping solo a lot of the weekends. It was a special time for us but we also missed Daddy a lot.

You may be saying, "Alright, let's hear about the changes already!" But I need to give you some context to make sense of it all. It was a battle - a personal war within myself and my business as it seemed to be spiraling downward. But amidst the chaos, I found inspiration and pushed through, realizing that my life needed a change.


These are some of my first successful patterns in 2023. I was still just learning & trying to find my style again. But it was such a relief to finally have figured out how to create the patterns successfully. It was like sewing a bonnet & then screwing up with the trim... but we've mastered all aspects of bonnets making I KNEW I could master pattern designs. So I did (and then some!) I am damn proud of myself!

So, I set out to make some changes. In the upcoming post, I'll go into detail about each one, their reasons, and how you can see them in action right now. Here is a little preview of what we'll go over.

1. I decided to introduce new materials into SAA, tapping into the world of modern textiles while still using donated, upcycled, and thrifted fabric to make our products.
2. I pushed myself to perfect my surface design and fabric printing skills, knowing that I had the talent to do so.
3. I rebuilt the website, not only reflecting these changes but also making it easier for me to manage listings and make space for blogging.
4. I learned about the power of Pinterest and the impact of pinning.
5. I sought out a company that aligned with my business and had the quality I desired, not just for printing our designs but also for print-on-demand services.

This was August 2023 & you can see I am coming "back to life" We were signing the kids up for soccer teams at their school, Marc & I were doing much better & things were looking up, finally. 

These five changes were just the beginning, and I'm sure I will think of more as I go into detail with each one. Remember, even amidst the chaos, there is always a way to find inspiration and reconnect with what truly matters.

If you have been following the series, I want to express my gratitude and offer you a secret link to our website's Free Download Collection. I frequently add new freebies with each blog post, but in case you missed any, you can visit the collection now.

Looking forward to seeing you all on Wednesday! I am eager to discuss these changes with you as they truly came from the heart.

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  • It's April Again

    Sweet as April started as a blog to document my journey of motherhood while raising two special needs children & battling through secondary infertility. We're on the other side of our infertility journey & excited to keep sharing our lives online, this blog is where we'll continue to do that

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  • Elleia Made

    I fell in love with watercolors when my son Elliot was born. That was over 10 years ago & since then I have picked up a paintbrush numerous times which has now morphed into an Apple Pencil. Along with SAA I am a surface designer for other brands as well as our own line of merchandise. This blog is a place for me to share every stroke of my "brush" & let you know what's up & coming

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  • Sweet As April

    I have been designing bonnets for over 7 years now & never tire of seeing these little hats from to life. This blog is a place for us to share that journey - from BTS, new designs, sales, thoughts & just my every rambles this is a place where you can stay up to date on all things SAA & join our loving community

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