Archive for July, 2008

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The next step in this project’s development in the website that will represent Vala Bags and sell them. I know how to design websites, but I was hoping I could get collaboration from another Vala -someone who is the target market for the bags. I asked around. I asked on LinkedIn. Of course, everyone know a web designer, but I was looking for a Vala web designer.

I am still on the lookout and I’m sure, in the long run, I will find her. But the bags are waiting and I am supposed to be trying to fail. So tomorrow morning, I am heading into the woods, with no distractions, a laptop and the Flash Bible, to see what I can create.

By the middle of August, I hope to show you a website.

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There are lots of wise words out there in the universe. Which words we need depends on who we are. It’s like there’s a medicine for each illness.

I have been blessed and cursed with a gift for strategy and ideas. So in growing this project, I spend weeks thinking about every development, researching possibilities, asking others, weighing possibilities. But the most important task is waiting on the shelf: selling bags.

I am doing this for 2 reasons: 1) it’s what comes naturally and 2) Despite all the passion and conviction I feel, there is a quiet undercurrent of fear of failing. Because that’s what strategy people do: try not to fail.

So when I heard these words from Michael Masterson in “Ready, Fire, Aim,” it was like medicine. The way to success is to try to fail as quickly as possible.

I know with all of my cells that this is great in every way a project can be great. I know that it provides value to every stakeholder, and can make a difference in the lives of thousands. In order to not fail, I think and dream and plan each tiny step, just to make sure it works – to give myself the best possible platform from which to leap.

But the truth is that these little things that I make perfect are probably not going to make or break it – especially since it’s the beginning and as I learn and grow, it could all change.

So I should try to forget about the platform and just leap.

Because if I’m going to fail, better fail as soon as possible. It would be worse to drag it out long and slow, while the bags wait for me to exhaust all possibilities. And while pushing the idea as fast and hard as I can, to see if it will fail, I will actually make stronger strides toward success.

The idea of trying to fail feels good. It releases me from my constant thinking and throws me into the arena.

So look out! You might find me knocking on your door with Vala bags for sale.

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I finally found a producer of these. What a world we live in – one person can find a small company on another continent and form a business relationship with people she’s never seen.

I wanted woven hemp labels. But I learned that hemp is too coarse to weave, so they will be printed. They will have to be hand sewn onto the bags using the same fiber that the bags are made of – keeping it authentic and plant based.

One of the themes of this project is finding the balance between expected conventions of a luxury brand in the developed world and the preservation and celebration of an ancient original artpeice.

I think these tags will suit that balance.

Next steps: website development and packaging