I love corsetry and costume design. In watching Project Runway I almost fell into a bit of that snobbish attitude that costume design is not "as good" as fashion, but that was rather silly. If you have a passion for something, and a desire to be better at it, be the best and others will appreciate your work. You can't help but admire something when you can see the passion and drive that was set behind it.
If you know much about me you know that I've had to learn my trade mostly through my own playing about. We live in a marvelous age where you can find almost anything online, and I do not take that for granted. Learning to sew and even design with out the aid of a mother, grandmother, aunt, teacher, or master is not as difficult now as it once was, but it does still take a desire to seek the knowledge out.
There have been times in my life when my head was in a dark space. When my confidence was on a foundation of sand and I feared sinking. I've torn myself to bits as I "un-stitched" pieces or re-cut things. I've cried and berated myself for not being able to figure things out when working on a piece. I've learned to smile and show gratitude when taking a compliment rather than pointing out the flaws that I see in my work.
You may wonder where all of this sappy reflection comes from. I'm not usually so sentimental. But as I am currently working on one of the largest commissions that I have ever faced, and am concurring challenges with it in a much shorter time span than I would like, I realize that I'm very lucky to even be able to be doing this at all. I'm ever so thankful for the men and women who have taken me under. I have brilliant mentors when it comes to business, and I've had people willing to share their knowledge with me, or bought me books, or handed me some fabric and an idea and let me play.
I'm still very young as a business, and I still have a great many obstacles ahead of me, but as I improve my craft and situation, I have to be grateful for those challenges. When we stop being challenged, we stop improving.