It was raining hard that day but as I stepped into the charming and cozy restaurant, I was greeted by fresh and pretty smiling faces. I knew I was in for a lovely afternoon. It was, once again, the Blissmakerie, put together by Martine de Luna and her team at Make it Blissful last September 13. This time, it was held at Mateo’s, a Spanish-inspired Filipino restaurant that recently opened in New Manila.
Blissmakerie is designed to get women of different crafts, careers and walks of life together in one place so they can share their stories and inspire one another. What Martine is really trying to do here is create a strong community that women who want to celebrate life and follow their passions can be part of and feel right at home in. And it doesn’t really matter how different the backgrounds of these blissmakers are or how varied our jobs seem to be — everybody just wants to do something that matters and lead meaningful lives.
That afternoon, I was seated with a fulltime mom-slash-make up artist, a teacher who sews and a government employee who is also a mom-blogger. Our jobs and interests are very much different from one another but somehow, we were all standing on the same page. We all wanted to follow our bliss. And that made for a really interesting and enlightening table conversation, which I enjoyed and learned a lot from.
It was also very inspiring to hear April San Pedro, or I Am Artisan as she’s known online, speak about her journey to bliss. April is an artist in many different ways. She is a graphic designer, a crafter and an entrepreneur based in Davao City and her entire life is driven by her passion for art. She told everyone about how she jump-started the craft and artist community in her city and proved to us that one can achieve success by simply doing what makes her happy. It’s not a breeze and it does involve hard work but her life shows that it’s possible. I believe everyone, including me, took that message to heart.
April, because of her love for paper crafts, even gifted each one with her handmade paper flowers!
Just as much as our hearts and minds were satisfied, our stomachs were also well filled with Mateo’s delicious fare and delightful desserts.
As a simple art activity we were all given black notebooks and chalk pens to creatively write down our take-home word for day.
And of course, capping off the event was the unboxing of the Blissful Boxes — a gift box filled with products thoughtfully curated by the Make it Blissful team. Each box contained items from Lulu Swing, Elin, Niqua, Philosophy, A Vanilla Story, Paper Pliers, 23060PH, and Urban Ashram. Thank you to these brands for being so generous!
It was tough to walk out of that place and end those invigorating conversations. However, it was nice to know that we all made new friends and that we can pick up the conversation, keep sharing stories and even collaborate with one another. Martine, together with her team — Carmel, Rikka and Audrey — did such a good job putting together a wonderful afternoon. Congratulations, ladies!
There will be another Blissmakerie before the year ends, so if you’d like to join and be in the company of women who will encourage and inspire you to follow your bliss, or if you are interested in becoming a collaborator, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read Martine’s own post about the Blissmakerie here.