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The beauty of offering vendors the chance to use our blog as a place to share stories or free write pieces, is that we get submissions like this blog by Lindsey from Meant Mgf. It takes time and courage to sit down & write one’s story, and we can’t wait to allow Lindsey to share her’s with you.

Take It Away...

Hi! My name is Lindsey and I am the maker behind Meant Manufacturing, we build one of a kind bags and accessories handcrafted using authentic materials including Pendleton wool. I am an Oregonian, born and raised, and after living in several pieces of Oregon paradise I have settled with my husband and two dogs in a small town on the Central Oregon Coast. Here we are surrounded by the ocean, rivers, lakes, sand dunes, forests, and an amazing community.

Growing up, I was fortunate to have a family that encouraged and supported any and all wild dreams. My brother and I were taught to dream big and that no goal was too big to accomplish. I always wanted to grow up to find a career that would make other people smile. I believe I took the complicated way to accomplish this goal. I took the traditional American approach and attended college, worked through school to build my resume and after graduation join the workforce in my field. Wa,wa,waaaaa…..So boring! I do not mean to discount the experience, after all it did what it was supposed to. I learned more than I could have ever imagined, I grew leaps and bounds as a person, overcame obstacles, and most importantly it really did prepare me for ‘the real world’.

Once I was in that real world, however, I never stopped dreaming and I never stopped creating. I recall countless hours sitting at what I now refer to as those ‘fancy’ jobs daydreaming so to speak of how I would escape, how I could make something so great to give to this world. The problem I found with these ‘fancy’ jobs was the red tape. Red tape surrounded everything good about those jobs. Politics, meetings, approvals, red tape everywhere. I guess it’s necessary? I was never convinced. It’s stressful. Don’t let that be confused with lack of hard work to accomplish important things, no, that is far from what I mean. What I mean is that these smart minds could have done so much good in the amount of time spent cutting through that red tape. It was a long time coming for me, but one day I had enough. I decided along with my husband and the support of my family and peers that I needed to act on one of the several dozen business plans I had started. I was going to open a Cafe. This plan was bullet proof.

We had secured land, designed an amazing space, built a brand, scheduled the grand opening and then we sat and watched while it crumbled to the ground right before us. I will never forget the night I went to bed so excited because we were getting on a plane the next day to go to Las Vegas to meet with the property owner who was helping us build our cafe. When I woke up and checked my phone, I was surprised with something entirely unexpected, my tiny little Facebook page for my handmade business had exploded. I had never invited anyone other than close friends and family to ‘like’ that page. I didn’t think I was ready for that. Somehow, I was suddenly generating on average about 75 ‘likes’ an hour and these potential customers were converting to sales, and fast! We got off that plane in Vegas and the trip that was supposed to be all about our future cafe quickly became more about my handmade business. I woke up each morning, went to the pool, responded to messages and emails, sent invoices, and was getting paid! This was the life. Everyone was so excited! I thought I was dreaming.

I still have no clue how that happened, but as I mentioned earlier, our little cafe dream was crumbling and this handmade business of mine was on a roll. This is what I was in love with all along, I never had to force it, there was never any red tape, it was just love and passion and it made people smile! My handmade business was Meant to be. This is where the name came from. The feeling of trying so many times to build something incredible, when in reality I had already built it without even knowing. That is a crazy feeling. Today, my handmade business is still in its baby stage. I am cultivating, nurturing, and learning from it every day. I am fortunate to have the support of my family, friends and community who have believed in me more than I believe in myself. I am excited, more than anything to see where this journey continues to take me and I look forward to taking you all along with me on that ride!

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