A Most Exciting New Adventure

Dearest Friends,


I don't want to delay. I want to share with you some exciting news!

 Starting tomorrow, Ivana Creates will be changing in a big way. I will no longer be working with my favorite brands (aside from the occasional fangirl shout out, of course). Instead, this blog will be focusing on a new and exciting chapter!


Tomorrow marks the official kickoff launch for my brand new papercrafting company,  Pigment Craft Co. 

Someone, PLEASE pinch me!!

We are so pleased to be able to launch such an exciting offering for our Canadian friends, who have long been limited by the barriers of cross-border shopping. We are also thrilled to announce that we will be serving US and international markets, while supporting local and US jobs. We hope to make shipping as economical as possible and free for qualifying orders, as well as offer a promo for intl. orders, so that you can feel free to order to your heart's content, wherever you may be located.

It is the best way I know how to say thank you for your support of this blog, and for being a part of this incredible community of creatives. 


In addition, we are happy to announce that our Canadian, US, and Aussie customers will enjoy duty-free shopping! More info on that will be coming soon :)


We are SO excited about sharing this new chapter of our life with you and we want to thank you from the bottom of our heart for all of your support. This community is a rare gem in a world that can seem so broken at times. My heart never loses sight of how fortunate I am to be part of such an incredible family.


With that, I really want to open my heart and share a little bit about how and why Pigment came to be. 

It feels like the right thing to do, and a proper way to say goodbye this blog-as-we-know-it...A support that was there for me when I needed it most.


But can we first pause and mention - how CRAZY it is that this blog has been kicking around the internet for some 12+ years!?! And that you've been there the whole time? How swiftly time flies when you're having fun!


Like many of you, playing with paper has been a life-long affair that I am certain will always hold a piece of my heart. It has been there like a steady, gentle companion, ready to uplift, encourage, and give meaning to even the hardest of days. This became evermore clear, when our life drastically shifted in 2017. Though some of you may know what I'm about to share, many of you likely don't. I've tried so very hard to keep this out of our happy community (though I'm not so sure that was a good thing). 


I know so many people struggle with challenges, and it seems like many of us keep them private and hidden away.


Today I'm choosing to open my heart and share a little piece of it with you. I hope that it will help someone who may be struggling right now. Someone who feels like their future isn't as bright as they once thought it was. Someone who feels alone, scared, and uncertain about how they can go on in light of insurmountable challenges. 


My story started four years ago, when I became ill. At first, it was a consortium of nagging, unusual symptoms. Within weeks, we realized something was seriously wrong. With my digestive and respiratory systems failing me, and many additional complications, days became long, and relentless. I ceased to function in many meaningful ways.


Planning for our future and the joys of starting a family, overnight turned into unforgiving symptoms, on-going doctors appointments, trips to the ER, and navigating challenges in getting the support we needed towards a prompt diagnosis. Leaving each appointment with more questions than answers, only amplified the fear and uncertainty we felt. As days turned into weeks, weeks into months, and months into years, we couldn't believe at the life that lay in front of us. And how different it was from where we had hoped to be as a young couple with the world at our feet. 


We searched for answers, for any flicker of hope. Though hope was not dead within us, with each passing day, it seemed like a chance at a normal life was getting further away. Accepting our new normal, I would push myself to to do all the normal things. But it left me feeling so depleted and worse, it compromised my health further. So we did the only thing we knew, we withdrew from many of life's most joyous things. During this time, crafting saved me. It helped me stay connected, when my entire world felt like it was shrinking. Though I didn't share my struggles publicly, I felt SO loved and supported in our loving, little community. I felt its healing powers day in and day out. Without this creative space, without YOU - I don't know if I would have had the strength to carry on during my hardest days.


Then a miracle came our way. Last year, we were blessed to connect with an incredible doctor that was able to diagnose my condition, and with it, offer a life-changing treatment. 2020 will undoubtedly go down in history as one of the most wretched, challenging years that our planet has seen. But for us, 2020 was a year of remarkable change in the most joyous, exhilarating way. A year of hope and new beginnings. 


Contrary to what the entire world experienced, nearing the end of 2020 made me feel like I could dream again.


And my dream was to rebuild our life. And then make space for all the things that brought joy.


So we did. In 2020, we dedicated ourselves to enjoying all that life had to offer - and what a year to do it in! Taking our time to rebuild health, our home, rethink our goals, work on our dreams and our relationship, and all of the neglected pieces that invariably take a back seat in light of a curveball.


I also decided life was too short to wait for that big dream or to take that chance you've always wanted to explore. All of a sudden nothing seemed to feel as scary as before. It's funny how life's hardest moments can act as a way to propel you forward, as you shed expectations, fears, and worries. 


During much of this time, I was also immensely blessed to work with some incredible people in this industry, and I am so grateful for all of the opportunities, and even more, the friendships. A part of me hoped that the opportunities would become exciting collaborations, but I realize now it was all building to a very important place, and exactly where I needed to be.  


Truth be told, Pigment was a dream, thought up many moons ago by a kid who knew nothing of the world, but had a passion to bring papercrafting to everyone. In absence of my illness, it may have come much sooner, or it may have never come to be. But this is is my second chance at life! I feel honored to have had the privilege to learn about perseverance, faith, and not wasting a. single. precious. moment!


It feels SO good for it all to come around full circle and to launch Pigment in this season of hope. 


While I am a deeply private person in many ways, I am sharing this story with you because I want to start this journey with an open heart, open arms and so much hope and JOY. 


I invite you to join me, and spread your love of creativity everywhere you go! And if you're struggling, I hope you will invite creativity in. It is one of the truest forms of good that still exists. And it really does have the power to heal.


Let's never forget to celebrate and cherish it. 


I hope you will come and meet Pigment - we have many exciting happenings in store and many dreams to conquer.


This is just the beginning and I couldn't be happier that you're here for the ride.


All my love,

Ivana



24 comments

  1. Ivana, your post touches my heart deeply. I'm thrilled that you're feeling refreshed and rejuvenated after such an arduous ordeal and, hopefully, the treatment addresses your health issues completely and permanently. Excited that you'll be at the helm of what sounds like an amazing Canada-based company! Waiting to see what you have up your sleeve to dazzle and delight us!
    Hugs and love,
    ~carol

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    1. Thank you so much, Carol, for these kind words. It's a very exciting chapter and we're thrilled to be able to give back to this amazing community in some small way. Thank you for all of your support and kindness, and here's to chasing dreams - however grand they may be! xoxo

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  2. I'm so very happy for you & your hubby, Ivana! I honestly don't know how you found my blog, but your friendship is truly a blessing in my life. I love that even though we're far apart in many things including where we live & our ages, crafting & kindness brought us together. It's so wonderful your health has improved & now you're embarking on this great new phase in your lives. I'm excited to see what Pigment has & am cheering wildly for joy & success! Sending huge, warm hugs, Greta

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    1. Thank you so much, Greta! How lucky are we to have connected through this wonderful art? I am even more grateful for the opportunity to pay it forward and to continue on this wonderful, joyful, creative journey. Thanks so much for all of your support!! xoxo

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  3. Like a Phoenix from the ashes you rise my friend! bigger, stonger and even more awaseome!! I always knew you could do it!! Because YOU CAN do anything you dreaming of doing! Never stop! Gongratulations to you and Mark! xoxo

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    1. Thank you sweet Aneta, it means the world to have your support!! Sending so much love to you and Halti!! xoxo

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  4. I always love hearing the back story of why entrepreneurs start their business. Thank you for sharing yours. Can’t wait to see what you’ve been working on.

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    1. Thank you, Carolyn! We're so excited to unveil more!! xoxo

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  5. Ivana, I already said it on Instagram that I am SO excited and happy for your and your new adventure! But after having read your story, I am even more excited for you and I am so very proud of you!! I am wishing you all the best from the bottom of my heart and I cannot see what you have in store for us all!
    Xo,
    Kathleen

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    1. Thank you so much, Kathleen! It has been a long road, but the journey was worth it! Sending you a big hug!! xoxo

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  6. I just love that you shared this. it made my day, and am so happy for you and reassured that there is hope out there for us all. Best wishes for a happy, exciting adventure, that we get to share in!

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    1. That makes me smile SO much, Lee Ann. Thank you so much for the kind wishes and for all of your love and support. Sending you many hugs! xo

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  7. Ivana, I'm so happy 2020 brought you answers to your health questions! You would never have known there was a thing that worried you with all the happiness you brought to our world!
    HUGE success is my wish for your newest endeavor, sweet girl... Bless you, and everything your heart touches... xx
    =]

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    1. Aww, thank you, Michele! I think it was only a matter of the happiness this community brought to me rubbing off! How can one not be happy and joyful when surrounded by so many beautiful hearts..! I sure feel blessed beyond measure :) Thank you for being such a massively amazing person, and for all the happiness and beauty YOU share! Love to you, dear friend!

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  8. Such an inspiration you are Ivana! While I’m so sad to know of all the challenges you’ve faced, it seems like it has all come together to put you in this very moment. Big hugs and blessings to you! And I’m so excited for your improved health!!!! Xo

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Kelly! Every time I read a note from you, I just want to jump right through the screen and give you a GIANT, squishy hug! You are absolutely, positively radiant, my friend and I feel so lucky to have gotten to know you! Thank you so, so much for all of your support!! xoxo

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  9. Dearest Ivana, tears are flowing like the waters of Niagara Falls down my checks right now. A mixture of heartfelt sorrow and (deeply relatable) understanding for the profound medical challenges that you have come up against and face daily, and on the (far more cheery side) of joy for your incredible new business venture.

    What an amazing, inspiring story and undertaking. I am proud beyond words of you and will be cheering Pigment on every step of the way.

    May success in all its many forms, happiness, wellness, and endless blessings be yours as you launch this business (and always).

    Giant hugs,
    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

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    1. My dearest Autumn, thank you SO much for your kind words and wishes! I am undoubtedly, incredibly and positively lucky-as-can-be to have this new chance at life, and it hurts so much to know that so many do not get that opportunity. I vehemently hope that my story is the story every single struggling soul gets to fulfil one day. As for me, I intend to use this second chance to its fullest measure, whenever I can, and the best that I can. And I dedicate it to everyone out there who is still searching for answers, for positive changes and for hope. Heaps upon heaps of thanks for all of your encouragement, support, and love..Now and through the years. Sending you so much love to you, sweet friend! xoxo

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  10. Ivana, thank you so much for sharing your story with us and your talents with us. I am so excited for you.

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    1. Thank you so much, Amy! Your support means so, so much to me! Sending you a massive hug, dear! xoxo

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  11. Ivan’s, I’m in tears. I would have never guessed the struggles you had and so thrilled for the hope and healing you have received! Thank you for your openness. I’m a private person, too, so I understand that it isn’t easy to share. Wishing you so many blessings and so much success in your new adventure!!!

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    1. Awww, Lindsey...I'm tearing up, too! Reading your note, I can totally relate. It is super hard talking openly being a private person... But this community makes it so much easier. I am so grateful for you, and for everyone in this big, happy, creative family of crafters. Thank you so much for the kind wishes, and for being such a beautiful, bright, and magnificent person. Sending you heaps of love, my sweet friend xoxo

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  12. What a blessing that you finally got the answers you needed! Your posts are always so cheerful and happy, I would never have guessed you weren't feeling well. Thanks be to God that you are doing better. How exciting for you and your hubby to have this new chapter in your lives. I wish you both the very best of luck!

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    1. Oh Lisa, thank you so much! I'm positive the cheeriness is a byproduct of our amazing community and beautiful goodies we get to be surrounded with every day. I really do feel like crafting saved my sanity, and I will forever be grateful to you and everyone in our little family, who provided that support when I needed it most. Thank you SO much for all the ways you have encouraged and cheered me on, sweet friend. It means more than words can ever express. Love to you, beautiful friend! xo

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