September 5, 2013

Farewell to The Ruby!

Farewell to The Ruby | grownupshoes.com

Oh, friends. What a tough decision this has been to make.

Since it first began, The Ruby has truly been a labor of love. Chelsea, Candice and I have made no profit from any of the events that we’ve put on or the newsletters we’ve sent out, and we’ve been fine with that, wanting this to be a community-run, collaborative effort. But as each of our businesses grow (knock on wood!), it’s getting harder to find the time and energy to devote to this wonderful side project that we each care about so deeply. It’s gotten really tricky, and cutting back on the time we dedicate to The Ruby would mean putting out a product we’re not completely proud of, which isn’t an option for us. We tossed around the idea of trying to make a profit from it, but ultimately decided that wasn’t what we saw for The Ruby. So, as difficult of a decision as it’s been for each of us, we’ve all decided to discontinue the collaborative.

When we started The Ruby, I was still working at a full time job and this source of creativity and collaboration made me feel extremely supported in the big change I went through. I can’t imagine having made such a switch without The Ruby, to be honest. It reinforced my desire to create and gave me the courage I needed to make that big leap. One of my personal motivations for starting the group was that when I first started blogging and realizing I wanted to do something creative, I felt like I had nowhere to turn to learn more or even find out what my options were. I would Google Austin Stylist and cold email the first 15 names that popped up—seriously. I had no idea how to get started or even what I wanted to do. For me, The Ruby was about making sure that girls like me, who didn’t go to school for something creative and didn’t know their whole lives that they wanted to do graphic design or styling or photography or floral design, had a quality, reliable resource to call upon. It meant meeting the right girl to get your foot in the door. Finding an internship, having coffee with someone who’s doing what you want to do, or going to a workshop to figure out exactly what it is you want. And I feel very proud in saying that I think we succeeded in doing those things. Even though I wish we had the ability to continue, I feel really happy with what we’ve done, the connections we’ve made and the creativity we’ve sparked, if only in each other.

As sad as we are to stop working together as The Ruby, we’re each really excited to dive back into our own brands and projects with a fresh outlook and renewed excitement for what we love to do. I hope that I still get to see each of you who came out and supported us at our events—it has been such a wonderful and welcomed adventure getting to know this special group of girls. When we began, I was still very much trying to find my way in this creative world and figure out what it was I wanted to do and how to get there. I feel so fortunate to be writing a year and a half later that I feel like I’ve found that and it’s in no small part thanks to this collaborative of terrifically talented girls who came together in this specific time and place. What a lucky bunch we are.

Thanks for believing in us and in The Ruby! Here’s to many more adventures.

— Ana

PS: Always wanted to come to a Ruby event but never made it happen? You get one last chance. We’re meeting for a final hurrah at Whisler’s on E. 6th Street next Thursday, September 12th at 5:00 PM. Don’t miss it! Seriously…cause this is your last chance;)

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15 Comments »

  1. Comment by celine {aquahaus} — September 5, 2013 @ 8:14 am

    Bummer!! I loved The Ruby. But I’m sure you will each flourish in your own endeavors. Best of luck.

    [Reply]

  2. Comment by Dominique — September 5, 2013 @ 8:21 am

    Ana,
    I recently moved to Austin and was so excited to hear about The Ruby. I’m glad I’ll have one last chance to be a part. Reading your farewell letter resonated with me. I feel like where I am today is exactly where you were 18 months ago. Maybe you have learned some shareable lessons along the way?

    [Reply]

  3. Comment by Emily — September 5, 2013 @ 8:55 am

    A great 18 mos. for sure! I’ll always cherish the time and ladies I met while enduring that incredible rush of starting up a biz! You ladies are all gems and do incredible work – I will see you at Whisler’s to thank you and wish you luck. xo

    [Reply]

  4. Comment by Katie — September 5, 2013 @ 9:20 am

    Oh Ana! That must have been a really tough decision. I, along with many other women, are so thankful you three started and grew The Ruby for as long as you did. I am right where you were 18 months ago, so that gives me some hope. Thanks for giving me a bit of community in Austin.

    See you September 12th :) I’ll be sure to pull you aside and say hello in person.

    [Reply]

  5. Comment by Kerri Curtis — September 5, 2013 @ 10:05 am

    Ana, Candice and Chelsea,
    Oh, wow so bittersweet. I’m very sad to see the Ruby go, but also excited for all of you talented ladies and so happy we were able to work on the fun and inspired projects that we did. I will miss your Ruby letters and creative and community-building events and concepts. A beautiful trio and an amazing adventure! I can’t wait to see what you all do next…it’s going to be great.
    Keep us posted.
    With much admiration and all the best,
    xo Kerri

    [Reply]

  6. Comment by Rachel — September 5, 2013 @ 11:58 am

    This is a beautiful and raw post – I love the honesty and openness. So refreshing!

    [Reply]

  7. Comment by Lauren — September 5, 2013 @ 1:50 pm

    I’m so thankful for the support that The Ruby has extended me and I know this had to be such a difficult decision. You’ve inspired many – in fact, so much so that I’ve talked to several Fort Worth creatives about establishing a community based group in the area, as well. You have forged a trail and I wish you the best!

    [Reply]

  8. Comment by emily — September 5, 2013 @ 4:42 pm

    So sad to see the Ruby ending but grateful for you girls and the opportunity to be part of such a supportive community. Thank you!! Y’all are awesome – excited to see each of you flourish in your fields. I so wish I could come next thursday, but i won’t be able to make it – sending lots of love!!

    [Reply]

  9. Comment by Angela — September 5, 2013 @ 8:02 pm

    What a challenging- and honest- decision to be faced with. And with what grace you faced it! Your inclusiveness of others made the difference… and you have touched many- beginning with me. Thank you for all that you did to elevate the community around you. I can’t wait to celebrate all that you do!

    xo
    Angela

    [Reply]

  10. Pingback by Carleen Lookbook on Refinery29 | Grown-up Shoes :: Style and Design Blog :: Austin, Texas — September 6, 2013 @ 6:01 am

    […] a week this has been! First, your sweet, sweet response to our news about The Ruby (I might have teared up at one point yesterday reading so many sweet emails and comments), and now […]

  11. Comment by Miro - Dose of Dash — September 10, 2013 @ 10:22 am

    SO gutted. But also so grateful that I was able to join when I did. For me, The Ruby did all that you had hoped for in creating it.

    [Reply]

  12. Comment by Becky Murphy — September 12, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

    I’ll be there tonight. I only got to go to one event but it was done with excellence. I think everyone understands why it’s shutting down, even though we’re so sad to see it go.

    Thank you for everything! Looking forward to what’s to come.

    [Reply]

  13. Pingback by Michael Kors Spring 2014 | Grown-up Shoes :: Style and Design Blog :: Austin, Texas — September 13, 2013 @ 8:48 am

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  14. Comment by Ana Perkins — September 13, 2013 @ 8:51 am

    Thanks to each of you for your sweet comments! I’ve loved reading every one of these messages (repeatedly!) and I treasure the time I got to share with The Ruby girls. Your support and kind words mean the world.

    Thank you!
    A

    [Reply]

  15. Pingback by Happy New Year + a Look Back at 2013 | Grown-up Shoes :: Style and Design Blog :: Austin, Texas — December 30, 2013 @ 11:06 am

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