So, I believe we are all well due a catch up! Firstly, I just feel like I never got to say a massive thank you for everyone for all of your orders, support, kindness and love throughout 2019, it was the best year I have ever had, and I really mean that from the bottom of my heart. Some of you may have noticed I (Jazmin, the one woman band behind this brand if you didn’t know) have been a bit quiet since the start of 2020 on social media, maybe (definitely) also updating the website and getting some wonderful new products out which are ready to go. There has been a big factor that has stopped this and now there is an even bigger factor. So, let’s have a little chat.
In all honesty, I have been struggling. I set this wonderful business up nearly 4 years ago and I have enjoyed nearly every single minute of it, and 2019 was the icing on the cake. That being said, I have for many years struggled with an aspect of my health and over the last few years it seems I have began a relapse in this chronic condition and those relapses seem to last longer each time. I have never been able to secure a diagnosis for what happens to my body, but with each time I fall back into poor health it just worsens and worsens. The Doctors I have seen over the years have long suspected Endometriosis but after testing negative twice in the past, I have to go through another lot of tests and day surgery to see if that is what is happening now, or to rule it out. It’s a bloody shitter if I’m honest with you friends. And writing this all up now feels like it’s actually real (although, I know it’s real, but hey, years past medical trauma and clinical weight bias has really fucked me up I have come to realise.) Now, I know for a fact I truly worked myself into the ground last year, I pushed myself maybe too much and my body needed some time to recover, but things haven’t been so simple. Although I’m now thankfully on pain management, I am able to try and build my strength up bit by bit, and then along came Coronavirus.
Sorry to drop this word but we need to discuss this in relation to where we’re at now with Plus Equals, the future and how this is all going to go down. And right now, I really am not sure about the last two parts of that, but right now it’s obviously not a great time to be running an indie fashion brand and signed off your part time job due to your ill health. While I am still taking orders and trying my hardest to get these out in a timely fashion, you will notice that processing and delivery times are going to be longer than before. At Plus Equals, everything is handmade by me to order and that relies on me being able to A. make the order, B. order the right fabrics and C. ship these to you, and a lot of you wonderful people are international shoppers. All three of those things are comprised right now by both my health and Covid-19. Realistically, I have had to accept the fact that my business model is likely going to have to change, but the current pandemic we are in has only affirmed this. Certain suppliers for items are not able to fulfil orders and right now, shipping times are taking a very long time, especially internationally. So, all this considered, what do I do? I want to continue to make you all the most amazing, fabulous, colourful fashion, but can I right now? Yes, at a limited capacity. How long for will I be able to sustain this? I’m not really so sure but I am doing everything I can do figure out a way of producing something for everyone that is appropriate for this time in our life, benefits the community and brings light to all your lives. It’s very hard right now to see what is unfolding around us all, to see the light shine on the deepest inequalities in our society globally, and personally, I can find death very triggering so it has been a dark time to exist as someone living with a High Risk family member and being someone who is also possibly Immunocompromised.
With all this said, a bit of a brain ramble I suppose, a lot of uncertainty too, and for that I am sorry. There is nothing worse than feeling the fire of inspiration but with the working capacity of zero. It’s also quite a terrifying idea to think of something I have worked so incredibly hard to build from the ground up might no longer exist this time next year, because right now that’s a real possibility. Pending some of you wonderful people asking me how you can support if you want to - gift vouchers are available now in a wide array of denominations so if you have a few quid spare and know that you’ll want something in the future, anything coming in helps directly cover the costs of day to day running. I will be listing up a few more sample sale bits - these are all still available to ship, but I will only be running weekly post office trips, or relying on someone to do it for me.
I’m so looking forward to being able to get back to my business, my passion, the thing I really wake up for in the morning in full capacity as soon as I can, and I’m thinking I’ll be sharing some throwback archive images of the Plus Equals journey as I haven’t been able to create content (that really hurts my soul so much, I just adore shooting so much) and I’m toying with doing some more lives etc. so please do keep your eyes peeled on the PE socials, so please stay in touch. Be kind, take care of yourselves, this weird shitty rollercoaster is going to end soon and I just can’t wait for the day I can bake banana bread because I want to, not because of some incessant quarantine need.
Love Jazmin x