Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Epic 2015 Update Post

Where to even begin?!?! Two entire posts for the year 2015 and that's IT??? I have two weeks to remedy the situation... here we go.

Well, first things first: I'm still alive, still living in Dakar, still loving wax. I am actually on vacation in the U.S. right now... hence the time to catch up! These past two months have been an absolute whirlwind for Six Bougies (the brand). It has been fun, challenging, invigorating, overwhelming... but totally positive! More details after a personal caveat...

My partner in crime, Megan, moved to Mexico this summer :( As many who live the expat life will attest, international friendships can be hard to make and maintain with such a transitory lifestyle. But Megan and I (and a few other friends) were in Dakar for four years together. That is a looooong time, abroad or stateside! We basically went to adult college together, and its been tough with her gone. As an introvert, I am at my most content with a small circle of really close friends with whom I can be 100% real. I do love meeting new people and tagging along with extroverted friends for more social experiences (I'm not a hermit!), but I definitely crave connection and depth over quantity in my friendships.

Megs being cute in Mexico. Besties in DKR.

Needless to say, the past six months have been an adjustment: halfheartedly making new friends, busy at the day job, all while growing Six Bougies. Of course, Megan is still kicking in Mexico and I know she has plans to continue contributing to the blog and the brand! Perhaps we will be seeing some Mexican textiles mixed in with our African finds some time soon...

This leads me to my next announcement: our good friend Becky has stepped in to help with Six Bougies! Becky is a fellow half-American (and half-Norwegian) and former study abroad-er hailing from Seattle. Her Etsy profile says it best: Rebecca grew up inspired by Scandinavian design based on childhood summers spent at her grandmother's house in Oslo. Moving to Dakar has fueled Rebecca's love for mixing vibrant colors and patterns, especially in the form of bold wax rompers. (I added that last bit about Becky's epic wax rompers ;) And no, it is not lost on us that we are quite the all-American sounding team: Kim, Megan, and Becky. We could be the Babysitter's Club of West Africa!

Welcome Becky! Expert fabric sourcer and fashion maven, Madame Dakar.
Said rompers in action.

Over the course of November and December, Becky and I have participated in four Christmas sales, with one more this week at Charly's on December 17! We practically sold out of pillows, bags, and accessories by the fourth market and just had a whole new set of merchandise made in one week. It's been wild. I'll reveal our new stuff in an upcoming post :)

I am hosting a private sale in the Boston suburbs on December 23  (please come if you are in the area!) so needed to bring some Six Bougies goods with me to the U.S... plus the Charly's sale. Just imagine the racing between tailors and fabric markets, coming up with new designs mid-holiday season. But, we are truly thriving on the fast pace and having a BLAST.

We are all especially thrilled with the increased exposure, the sales (obvi ;), and the new potential to GROW the business and increase our dedication to social programs. By the way, 25% of all holiday profit will be going to officially establishing a Social Program Fund that will directly benefit the tailors and artisans we work with to bring you Six Bougies loot :) You can still make purchases on Etsy, although I will be updating the offerings in the next few days.

Sales, sales, and more sales!

Private sale in Boston on December 23! Message me for more details if you're in the area.

I will end on another exciting note, which deserves its own post, coming soon: Six Bougies is now available 7 days a week at a shop in Dakar, Gallerie Keur Marie Ganaar in Mermoz!

Keur Marie Ganaar is an artist co-op hidden in a quiet and quaint corner of Mermoz, featuring work from nearly 20 artisans. We are really proud to be part of the team. Thanks to Megan for making that partnership happen in June, right before she left for Mexico. She set the bar high ;)

I'll be back with more before the end of 2015 ;)

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