in the workshop

Stepping Into The Unknown

The other day I was chatting with a man about vaccinations and what comes next. This is, I imagine, the same conversation people have been having all over the world since last year's lockdowns began. March 2020 to March 2021 feels like a loop that we've experienced alone. Together. A mass disruption event beyond what almost anyone would have imagined. While not a year I will look back upon with undiluted pleasure, many amazing things have come my way in twenty-twenty, and there are lessons I hope to carry forward into the years ahead.

When we moved to 13th street fifteen years ago, I was in the midst of chasing a dream about making awesome products. I wanted people to know about us for sure. Visibility meant opportunity. For me success was about the quality and efficacy of the skincare we made. If we got that right, money would follow. Then my ego began listening to all the people who were compelled to should all over my plan. You should open a larger store. You should open two. You should make sample sizes for hotels. You should wholesale. You should become a lifestyle brand. I appreciate that the noise and excitement people were compelled to share came from a beautiful place, but rarely does the larger conversation become about what makes us happy. Is money the key to happiness? What constitutes success? Who are we trying to please? And each time we step into the unknown, what is it we hope to find?

For Sarah and myself, this last year has peeled away all the preconceived notions about what we should or should not do. We followed our gut early on in the pandemic and pivoted into a position that will propel us into the next fifteen years. Breaking free of the main street model, twenty-twenty has proven to us that having a thriving, self sustaining business does not mean slavishly chasing after every dollar, open morning until night 365. The last decade and a half was about building our brand. All of the past stress, pressure, debts, successes and failures are now balanced by a sense of calm. The next fifteen years will be built by trusting in the process we have already created. Finding success in our own sense of happiness while continuing to work on the brand we love.

There will be many among us looking to go back to the old normal. Expectations that somehow the world will go on as before. But I imagine there will be many who will be longing for something richer. Deeper. A fresh perspective on how we live into the next decade of our lives. There is more room for amazing and wonderful things to occur when we are offered a fresh perspective.

Sarah, Alli and I look forward to welcoming you into our reimagined shop on May 5th, 2021. Belly up to the scent stations to sniff out your favorites and discover our newest scent blend creations. Sample the skincare, scan the shelves for new and favorite products, or peruse the colorful soap list on an ipad. We are also very excited to chat about how you can make your own custom skincare creations right online. Sure, the doorbell will need to be rung, masks worn and a limited number of people coming in at a time, but we have recreated the experience to be more personal. One on one. And while some might find the new situation a little bit disappointing, the old model of shopping (at least at duross & langel) is a thing of the past. The former shop hours are in the dustbin. In the process of navigating the last year or so, we have surrendered to the process. Our goal is to be better over more. Quality over quantity might mean a bit less coin, but at the end of our lives who is going to say "I wish I had worked more hours?"