To all the square-peg-in-a-round-hole creatives
Earlier this month, we initiated a conversation on Instagram stories on “standing out” and “fitting in” as a creative.
Although “standing out” has the majority vote, we can’t ignore the fact that there are creatives who feel pressured to fit in. Then today, we came across this article about Elisa, a fashion designer who makes clothes for the disabled and finding acceptance in the design industry.
This is a message to Elisa and all the square-peg-in-a-round-hole creatives:
Hani and I see you. Your effort matters. Your dedication counts. It is making a difference, even though you may not be able to feel it quite yet.
Sometimes it can get really lonely to not be doing it the way everyone else is but that’s exactly how you thrive in today’s world.
You bring your whole self to your work and the community you serve.
Not to the industry authority. Not to grant and loan approvers. Not to landlords. And most importantly, not to everybody.
You create with your mind, hands and heart for the people who need your work the most — just them.
You create your minimum viable product and find your minimum viable audience, that’s all it takes to grow your own community.
The industry authority, grants, landlords and the mass don’t care about what you do but your community does.
Because your work recognises their struggles, opinions and desires.
Your work makes your community’s life better and that’s important.
Now, Hani and I are going to be completely honest with you about what’s more important than your work.
It’s marketing your work.
It’s 100% your responsibility to reach out to the people who need you, not them finding you.
Marketing makes change happen.
So if change isn’t happening, you’re not marketing to the right people or not enough.
That’s why we created Focus Formula.
A training program for handmade businesses to thrive small and slow in a big and fast world.
Sharing what brought us from applying for a loan and being criticised on our work’s profitability to raising our own capital, growing a community and creating work that matters long-term.
From seeking solutions externally to reaching into our own creative reserves and inner wisdom.
You can be small and have a big impact.
Enrol in the Focus Formula training program so we can help you go from where you are to where you want to be.
PS: Elisa, your fee to Focus Formula will be on us if you decide it’s right for you.
Here’s the thing, trying to introduce what we do as Fictive Fingers in a single sentence is impossible.
It could go something like:
“Hani and Aisah are sisters who are behind Fictive Fingers, a brand of textile products made by their own hands that can be distinguished by their prints like Raga. They’re also known for their widely popular printing classes (they’re not running them anymore but they have been for the past 7 years) and sharing insights on things like fabric knowledge, slow fashion and textile waste etc on their Instagram. Oh and they have their own community who buys directly from their website, waits for the products to be made to order and swears by their products that last for years. They even have a secondhand store for their community to contribute worn pieces and they’re all snap up in a matter of hours!”
We’re neither the kind of textile designers as described in design textbooks nor makers who are only focused on perfecting the craft. Our Linen Wrap is a wearable product and our insights are noted for being more comprehensive than what’s covered in fashion school but we’re not fashion designers.
The Linen Tote raises the standards of an ordinary tote but we’re not here to implement our zero-waste approach and redesign every existing textile product.
We’re actually creating works of art disguised as functional products that motivate people to think differently by enhancing human connection and questioning sustainability.
Ask anyone who owns our products, especially the ones who have them for years, about the impact our work has on her life. Here’s one:
“Your work got me to slowly trying to reduce wardrobe clutter and having better curated pieces.” — Aisyah, owns the Linen Wrap
If we can thrive as a square peg in a round hole, you can too.