I keep talking about Oslo Soup. Some people nod knowingly and others raise a confused eyebrow. So let me tell you what you should know, and why it's important.
Back in October 2016, I think it was, I was approached by some very polite and lovely people who asked me to pitch at something called Oslo Soup. Two things were unclear for me right there and then... What is a 'pitch' and what is Oslo Soup?
When I started the Handmade in Norway Facebook group back in August 2016 I had no idea what I was really getting in to. I thought (hoped) to be able to create a small network of creative people. Now, 1400 members is not a small network - So you can see that the group has grown beyond anything I could have imagined back then. But I think maybe the brains behind Oslo Soup Giulia, Janine, Leeanne, Margot and Tara saw something back then that I hadn't yet seen. Potential. Potential to make a difference.
Before I go on, let me tell you a little about Oslo Soup. Not so much their background and what they do - You can visit their website to read that (I'll give you a link later on). No, I'd like to tell you about what they have done for me, and every other member of Handmade in Norway.
When Giulia contacted me in October, she sowed a little seed. Her suggestion to pitch, and her interest in, what was really back then just a small group of people that had similar interests, well, she got me thinking. The interest that Oslo Soup's collective minds had shown in something that I had only recently started, gave me confidence. It made me curious as to what 'we' could become. Since then our numbers have more than quadrupled, we are arranging workshops, markets, creating downloadable resources and cheat sheets, connecting members with the people that can help them start their own businesses, making bigger plans to connect us all with the best bunch of cheerleaders we could wish for, each other. Oslo Soup did for me, what I hope to do for everyone in Handmade in Norway. They gave me a shot of confidence and a kick up the rear to do what, deep down, I always wanted to.
But to make good things happen, well, you need, how can I put this? A bunch of absolutely chuffing brilliant people to help. Oslo Soup do an amazing job sourcing the ideas, the pitches and the people behind them. But they also source other amazing individuals and businesses to help make the events happen. The venue, the food, the drink and lots of other donations all need to be in place to make that happen. The following list of links will take you on a tour of extreme generosity and community spirit - These are the people donating to the next Oslo Soup event on the 2nd of April.
So, why am I telling you all this? Because these things are important. Just as Handmade in Norway is becoming an important part of some people's lives. So is Oslo Soup and the generosity and hope that the Oslo Soup team, and the long list of people donating their time and/or products, give to others. These guys are playing a major part in changing people's lives. As creative people, fellow makers, we are in the business of inspiration - being inspired, inspiring others, selling pieces of glorious handmade inspirations the 'we' each create. So we all should applaud the truly inspiring work done by Oslo Soup and their partners, after all they inspired me to build the group and let the ideas become reality - to create a community of creatives.
So, once I figured out what a 'pitch' was and got over the fact that there will be lots of people watching me... I thought that this is one of those opportunities that don't happen again, like ever. If we really are to become each others best resource and network, then I have to do this. Let's let people know more about us, by standing there and telling them. Let's keep building, supporting, sharing and inspiring each other.
Let's do for each other what Oslo Soup did for me, and for us all.
Ok, here's a few more links - Here's the 4 groups pitching at the next Oslo Soup event on the 2nd of April in Tøyen.
This blog post was originally posted in February of 2017, just before my pitch for Oslo Soup. I have since updated the blog post several times to include more information and links.