Now, onto Pixipots!
As some of you know, a while ago I was asked to write an article about bullying for Foroige.ie, who also agreed to advertise my art competition on their facebook page. While I’m not a member of my local group due to other commitments, I’ve followed their projects for a couple of months now. It’s really struck me how enthusiastic everyone is, always willing to lend a hand and help young people shine.
Someone who’s certainly shone is nineteen-year-old Vanessa Mulhall. With the help of Foroige’s Youth Entrepreneurship Programme NFTE, she has set up her own business. NFTE encourages enterprise among young people and teaches them how to be successful in business.
Enterprise is defined as people using their initiative to come up with ideas that they can turn into a business, and that’s exactly what this young lady has done. Vanessa’s very own enterprise takes the form of “Pixipots”. The idea for Pixipots came when she caught sight of a ceramic ornament in her grandmother’s house which always made her smile. Suddenly there it was... an idea! She decided to decorate plant pots so that they could be used for storage and ornaments. Off she went to Art and Hobby to get paint and decorations. She was delighted with how her first pot turned out and saw an opportunity from it!
I think that the unique selling point of Pixipots is that they’re fun, colourful and totally homemade. For me, it makes a huge difference knowing that your ornament or desk tidy has been hand-painted with care by someone who really loves what they’re doing and is willing to put time and effort into it. For me, there’s something so special about that.
At first, Vanessa set up Pixipots as a way of earning a little extra cash (which we’d all love to do!) but as time has passed it’s clear how passionate she has become about her craft. Anyone can see that she loves what she is doing—she has been working on Pixipots for three years now, after all! Such commitment has led to her selling pots to people like government representatives! So far she has sold over 300 pots!
I know that embarking on something like this can be really tough and requires a lot of willpower. I was curious to see how Vanessa had changed as a person since beginning her business. She told me that before she started Pixipots she was shy and quiet. Now, she finds herself talking to people she’s never met! She’s much more outgoing and confident, which she never would have expected. I’ve been emailing her back and forth and her confidence is clear as well as her passion for what she does.
Interestingly, she doesn’t actually see herself as an artist and wouldn’t dream of studying art in college. She really enjoys making the pots but doesn’t want art to become a “job” for her, which I understand. Sometimes, it’s best to keep a pastime separate from your work or education.
I really admire Vanessa’s commitment and wish her all the best! If you’re interested in buying a Pixipot, you can check out her blog. I found her on Twitter but I’ve just looked at her Facebook page and I think that’s the place to go, it has pictures of a variety of Pixipots as well as more information and updates!
Now I’m off to clear a space on my desk for one of these bad boys!