2017 | Looking Back on a Year We Never Thought Was Possible - Charliemadison Originals LLC

2017 | Looking Back on a Year We Never Thought Was Possible

2017 was a tough year in many ways, both personally and in business. But it was also a tremendous year of growth, challenges, collaborations, and giving back. Putting together a list of the highlights from an entire year wasn't easy - there were so many awesome projects, new friends, and opportunities - I hope you enjoy a look back at a few of our favorite memories from a year that I never thought was possible.

The year started with our largest and most meaningful charity contribution yet - to Operation Purple Camps, an organization that benefits military kids. February brought us the best news in our mailbox - the long-awaited trademark for our business name (and if you're a fellow business gal, you know how important and significant this is). In March, we celebrated our first collaboration of the year - our bracelets were included in the monthly subscription gift from Milso Box.

In April, I gathered together my two girls and their friends for a photo shoot with our favorite local photographer - the weather did not cooperate, but we still managed to have a blast. May brought our most favorite collaboration to date - a co-branded project with R.Riveter featuring military branch bracelets - one for each branch of our Armed Forces. June was a crazy busy month - not only did we celebrate our 2-year shop anniversary, but we released a huge summer collection of new styles.

We brought back our second annual (and very popular) Sample Sale Event in July - and boy did you all go crazy for the one-of-a-kind pieces and awesome deals. We were busy for a week after that sending out all your goodies! August brought another fun and meaningful collaboration with our sweet friends at Legacy Magazine - exclusive bracelets to celebrate the launch of their beautiful magazine celebrating the lives of military service members and their families. We were so in love with those bracelets! In September, we released another addition to our Military Tribute Bracelet collection - Milspo Pride - a beautiful bracelet to celebrate the lives and contributions of military spouses around the world.

October was the start of a very busy holiday season and another amazing collaboration with our friends at the Military Spouse Wellness Summit - a special bracelet to celebrate their Renew You Retreat. Another gorgeous design! We kicked off November with an online Holiday Open House bash, where we introduced our holiday bracelet collection, limited edition gift sets, and diffuser earrings - plus a ton of freebies and goodies for our guests. We rolled right into December, excited for the upcoming holidays, and not only featured a ton of women-owned businesses in our own Holiday Gift Guides, but were incredibly honored to be included in some pretty amazing gift guides from other businesses.

But running a business is not all rainbows and unicorns - there were plenty of behind the scenes moments of doubt, hard lessons, and tears - and that's nothing to be ashamed about. Without them, the new discoveries, lightbulb opportunities, and moments of clarity were not possible. And I am incredibly proud to say that all the hard work, tears, and hustle were what pushed us OVER our sales goal for the year - a goal that I made in January 2017 - a crazy big, scary, and lofty goal I secretly thought we would never reach. Yet we surpassed it! We could not have had such an incredible year without the support of our wonderful customers, our family, and our friends and our shared belief that inspiration, encouraging others, and celebrating our everyday moments are what matters! 

Thank you for the amazing year of collaboration and growth, for spreading the word to your family and friends, and for helping us to give back to organizations that support military members and their families!