<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Category: Small Business
 

Viewing the 'Small Business' Category

Worry...Act...Relief...Repeat

March 26th, 2009 at 08:29 am

Being an 'A' type has it's advantages.

1. You can eat most anything with a hyperdrive metabolism without gaining weight. (But still have high cholesterol).

2. Lots of money gets saved on gym memberships (you don't need one).

3. Multi-tasking is for weenies, google-tasking is the norm. The house is clean, the yard is pretty tidy, the meals are planned for a week, laundry is going, etc.

But there are disadvantages too.

1. The brain is hard to calm, there's always a few things trying to get attention.

2. Sometimes, ok, most of the time, you overthink, over-analyze and worry about things too much.

Take the camera situation (see yesterday's post). For several years I have used a hand-me-down digital for all things photo'ed. Such as the items I sell on-line (left sidebar), family events, and more.

Being not only resistant to new technology, (who wants to relearn how to use a camera?), and armed with a 'If it ain't broke don't fix it!' mentality, I plodded along.

More and more I was faced with the limits of this camera. Especially: not able to photo closely with enough clarity; and a desire to get back to an old love of creative photography (I have a special friend in the closet, my Nikon SLR from 25 years ago).

Sooooo I got it. A beautiful little new love, Canon A590 IS.

It was only $124! And I splurged on a new high tech rechargeable battery pack for $25. (At least I don't have to relearn how to recharge batteries).

My hubby already had a spare 1 Gig chip. I am going to sew a sweet little case with space for extra batteries, and whatnot.

What spurred me to write this entry though-
What a relief to take this step. Like getting married, or buying a house, it feels like What Was the Big Deal?

So on my happy way I go today. Here are the first demo takes (watch for some spectacular wildflower scenes coming to this blog soon):





one of the Oldest Crafts in the world

March 10th, 2009 at 07:23 pm

And no, it's NOT what you're thinking.

And besides beading. What is it? Arranging and Pressing flowers.

Inexpensive
Flowers, leaves, plants can be gathered from most anywhere. Your yard is a beginning point. Street landscaping? Park bushes?

Three Pot Series - Geranium


All you need is card stock and a bottle of white glue. Pre-packaged blank cards in a pack of 20 or more can be found at the hobby store for under $5.

Or fold your own and make envelopes, it isn't that hard.

Historical
Without any research, common sense tells me this has been done by at least my great grandmother's generation in the early 1900s. (Off to look up some interesting facts on arranging dried flowers...)

Big Clay Pot Series - Spring Bouquet


I like the connection to the past and the satisfaction of continuing the tradition. My kids know how to press flowers now.

Practical
These cards are impressive to give on occasions ie, birthday, Mother's Day, friendship, condolences, etc. Very personal and unmass-made. Sign your name on the back!

Black Vase Series - Formal Bouquet


Notice in the above examples the little added touches of fancy edged borders (doesn't everyone have one of these scissors now?) and hand cut pots and vases. Scared of the scissors? Skip the vase and glue on a ribbon tied like a bow. Easy!

Waste Not - Want Not (or What's in Your Junk Drawer?)

February 4th, 2009 at 11:02 am

Even non frugal people keep those bits of yarn, twist ties, foreign coins, and old postcards just in case the need arises some day. Right?

I am certainly the anti pack rat but here's some of the things in my home office drawer:

... a harmonica (I always wanted to learn)
... a part used box of reinforcements for three ring binder paper (antique?!)
... a plug-in thingy which expands any electrical outlet into 3 more outlets
... a couple partly used AAA batteries
... a partly used roll of 2-sided tape
... an extra coin pouch
... another coin pouch filled with a variety of key chains
... a small container of thumbtacks
... a very small pink pocket knife

What brings this to mind is a good use I put to some jewelry supplies this past week.

As is not uncommon to many of us crafters, I bought some supplies which were not used completely or did not work out for their original intent.

In this case, it was some very thin, part-silver wire. I bought 2 rolls of silver wire, one thin and one thicker, and have found the heavier weight to be more suitable for much of my work. But the thin wire was just too good to waste.

Rather than sell, give away, or throw it out, there it lay in wait in my studio.

Then, I was invited to enter an upcoming exhibit themed 'Healing Arts'. Faster than a speeding bullet I retrieved a raw quartz point which I had made into a rough pendant a couple years ago. This, I thought, might fit the theme if I made it into a necklace. (Organic folks of past and present feel quartz crystal has healing properties).

Now for a chain. I have a few mass produced oval links and wanted to connect them and weave a strand of small beads in and out of them as a chain. But it needed intermediate links, so I decided to handform straight links with -- SILVER WIRE WRAP!.

Here's the technique I mean (these are earrings I made to practice):

GEOMETRIC DIAMOND SHAPE SILVER WIRE WRAPPED EARRINGS




So, there you have it. From waste not to want not. Another frugal success story.

And by the way, what's in YOUR junk drawer?

Can You Stand One More Product Photo?

January 29th, 2009 at 12:51 pm

This just might be my first $50 item, except I hesitate to put it in the art gallery shop because the salt air (we are in a harbor right off the beach) wreaks havoc on the goldplate:

TROPICAL MIX NECKLACE & EARRING SET


Desc: Many strands of freshwater pearl, glass, stone and metal gathered by gold(plated) cones hang on 18" fine link gold(plated) chain. Exotic tropical peaches, moss greens, creams, lavendar and golds. Matching earrings on 14K GF hooks.

I volunteer down there this weekend for a couple hours and will see how things are moving (or not) and how many visitors lately (usually January-March is very slow cause it's COLD down there).

A decision to put up or wait until summer, our high season, can be made after then.

btw, SA'ers, I autofeed these blog posts to twitter now, therefore the emphasis on and plethora of merchandise photos.

How I started my biz w/free supplies and more...

January 27th, 2009 at 01:01 pm

Silly other facts and truisms about Pretty Cheap Jewelry.

...why you should not start cross stitching EVER NEVER

...why I'm a carrot

...and see the cross between Leonardo daVinci and a flip flop

http://dzfantasy.blogspot.com

it's a rich site, give it a minute to load. Thanks for lookin'.

Fun, Food, not to mention Profit!

January 26th, 2009 at 01:01 pm

It never rains in Southern California? Well it did on this past Saturday on a planned 'semi-private' home boutique I helped organize.

About 20 sellers of my internet craft club set up shop under a grand carport instead of the circular driveway of our gracious generous host.

We held workshops and demonstrations in the garage. We chatted and enjoyed each other's company immensely. (How often do you meet up with so many of your online buddies??)

And although the major numbers of visitors were deterred by the rain, most of us sold a few items anyway. Just the icing on the cake!

I sold a set of 6 of these embellished wine glasses I crafted:


And speaking of cake, the hostess fed us sweets and teas and cakes and lasagne and more!

Not bad for a rainy day!

Great Fun with the BigWigs

January 21st, 2009 at 11:58 am

Havin' fun over on Twitter finding celebrities, politicians, and other smarty pants to follow. For example:

- Cesar Millan (the dog whisperer)

- Yoko Ono

- my ABC evening news co-anchor (he followed me back, maybe they will notice my work?!)

- Barack O'Bama (ok, he has 164,000 followers, so I'm a little speck in the crowd, but he followed me back! Or at least some staffie did).

Found these folks using http://www.oddtwits.com

And just figured out how to autofeed my blog posts to twitter. Lessee if this one works.....

Made Small Investment in Advertising / Received nice big check from Dec show

January 17th, 2009 at 08:53 am

My internet craft club used 'Weebly.com' (free website host) last fall to promote gifts for the holidays. The site manager is a tech savvy whiz, a graphic designer by trade, and an angel in disguise.

This spring is the 2nd edition of the website and I am joining in the fray. We are contributing a nominal $8 for a 12 week period. The money will actually be used for small internet ads for the site, not toward any club member's pocket!

Only the front page is ready (I am in the 5th row at the moment, but the items change frequently). Have a look if you want:
http://www.handmadeincalifornia.net/

Note the 'Chatterbox' (in the header for now but a tab at the top) - there will be announcements of special deals.

I already have a special deal to add (see it in my shop announcment also Pretty Cheap Jewelry

----------------------------------

In other small biz news-

Sales from a small town show I participated in Dec 2008 came yesterday, $140. NICE. It was for a 2-weekend show which I did not have to be present (very very convenient). I believe they collected sales tax and that is part of the check so actual goods sold were worth about $127. ALL of this check has been applied to fees for 3 shows in 2009.

Soooooo, that just means I am sticking to my Resolution #2 - Make a Profit in 2009. (read: raise prices).

First big show is in April, the city sponsored Art Walk. Thousands stroll the downtown area and I have a table right smack in the thick of things. Wish me much luck, to be sure I will be blogging my preparations, hopes, dreams and results.

-----------------------------------

Just one last note: Google analytics giving me lots of good data! Folks using keywords 'guitar jewelry' clicking on these items consistently, so guess what I'm going to add to my webstore?

Pearly White Guitar Pick Earrings



Teal and Plum Guitar String Bracelets, Set of 3

Another widget from Google (any volunteers?)

January 13th, 2009 at 10:23 am

I maintain a private google group for my mailing list, ie no one can post or see your email address. It is simply for me to send 1ce or 2wc a month offers to fans.

Today I noticed google offers a widget for me to use on my blog for sign ups.

See it there in the lower left sidebar?

Maybe a visitor or two will be interested. I use this blog for more than SA'ers, such as announcements to craft members, features of artists, etc.

I try to make my email offers full of zany trivia, fun facts, and above-all really rock bottom specials and freebies. For example, I had a Gorham crystal sleigh frame to give away with any December order (click on the 'visit' part of the widget to have a look at some of my offers.)

So, once again, Google comes through! Maybe I'm just slow?.....

Can I, Will I, Dare I

January 5th, 2009 at 08:34 pm

charge $50 for something this year (and make the sale)?

......New Year's Res Status.......

RESOLVED
1. Refrain from reading/posting in the weekly Etsy team forum.
Why? Because:
a. huge time sink
b. return on the investment is poor
c. stressful to compare to others regarding their sales, new items, traffic to their shop, etc.
STATUS AOK so far, trying to re-use the time to twitter and spread out posts in other places more as a low cost promotion.

2. MAKE A PROFIT IN 2009
Yes, some of my prices are going up.
a. Items online remain reasonably priced. However, nothing can be listed so low as to undercut my in person sales.
b. Items sold in the art gallery lose 1/3 (they keep) and must be priced accordingly.
c. I keep all income from weekend fairs and specialty shows except for a few percent on credit sales. And need to make enough sales to cover the event fees!
STATUS GOING FOR IT with this new item!

Squiggle Doodle Scribble Chain Necklace
Pure imagination anchored with a heart locket. Fun to look at, inside and out.
A true original $48.00


3. Wear mascara most weekdays. OK, this one is just cause I am such a dolt when it comes to looks. Gotta do something easy! You would think it's a no brainer, but you don't know me!!
STATUS so far so good

Black Books @ Year's End

December 31st, 2008 at 03:24 pm

The numbers are crunched, the bottom line is in, and....

Pretty Cheap Jewelry finished the year in the black for the 3rd year in a row. And I promise there is very little creative (read 'crooked') book keeping involved.

The expenses? $2,000 for a long, but simple total of supplies, postage, some office items, event fees, and a very little bit of miscellaneous.

The income? $2,300 steady, sometimes small, sometimes moderate monthly sales in a good variety of venues including shops, weekend markets, internet site and specialty shows.

I'm happy with the results, but am committed to *increasing profit* in 2009.

Comments welcome, especially other home biz readers ....and of course, here is the other black book the title refers to!

BIG LITTLE BLACK BOOK
Hand bound, hard back slim journal filled with 24 pp of reclaimed office graph paper. Covered with faux suede, sexy to the touch. Ready for those important numbers, emails, appointments, and dates.



Quickbooks Pro 2009 FREE after rebate today (Mon) 12/22 only @ Staples

December 22nd, 2008 at 07:32 am

Just thought I'd pass along this offer, posted by a crafter on another forum.

Fairly high priced but powerful home accounting software.

Here is the Staples link for details:

http://www.staples.com/office/supplies/StaplesProductDisplay...

Fingers Crossed ... HOPE WISH DREAM

November 4th, 2008 at 12:56 pm

I had an interview today with a very busy coffee house owner to ask if they would be interested to carry my items for sale.

I am a regular customer (once every couple weeks) and back in the spring light heartedly mentioned "I could spruce up those [3 empty wooden] shelves for you!"

Just happened to be cashiered by the owner who very nicely replied, "Ask me later in the year, I just had a baby".

Oooooo. I am like an elephant and never forget.

Today I showed her some samples and met with me for about 15 minutes Big Grin

She was most interested in my Gifted Cards (smarter than your average card) like the one below. And will show the other co-owners before ordering wholesale.

.....It would be GREAT....

GIFTED CARD - CONGRATULATIONS
These pretty earrings are attached right on the front of a greeting card scripted "Congratulations". Card and earrings designed and crafted by me.

Time Off = Stay Home and Cook, Clean, Craft

October 21st, 2008 at 05:59 pm

Production line closed! All 3 big jobs on my To Do list for the week are DONE.

1. Clean kitchen, dining area floors.
2. Make applesauce.
3. Finish 2 jewelry projects that have languished on my desk for A YEAR.

And I still did a couple little things to boot:
a. made 3 cards out of the finished cross stitch designs from commuting
b. experiment with new ring design

Here is the second and final jewelry that I have put off making. Why? Each little glass raindrop is wirewrapped, a time consuming and repetitive job. The final piece is not EXACTLY what I envisioned a year ago but I'm very satisfied with the results.

Golden White Necklace and Earring Set

Supreme Good Use of Free Resource

October 16th, 2008 at 12:16 pm

My online crafting club has made a Gift Guide using a free website host Weebly.

Firstly it is brilliant in the use of a free service and a wonderful way to get the word out to shoppers.

If you seek something for the person who has everything, or are just wishing for the un-mass produced for a holiday gift, this is the place!

http://www.handmadeincalifornia.net

You will be rewarded with excellent service - each and every one of these shop owners are known to me and have very high quality standards.

Not only are these all 'Made in California' owners, you can feel good about supporting independent, small businesses.

I have no items in the site so this is an unbiased blog post! Enough said! Go click!

OnLine Marketing-It Keeps Going, and Going, and ...

October 2nd, 2008 at 11:46 am

Small business owners spend as much time advertising as they do making actual sales (probably even more of the former). On line marketing can be a huge time sink, so it's important to make every moment of effort yield the biggest possible return.

OK, nothing smart yet. And let's throw in that I personally need to do all my advertising free.

Yesterday I was browsing a magazine my husband subscribes to. It appeals to him (and me) on the subjects of science and travel. These are not my core markets, but there were a few articles on subjects more directly up my small biz alley (specifically environmentalism).

One of the articles mentioned a website that is hugely popular, gets something like 2 million hits a month. (Compare that to Etsy which I think gets something like 1 million hits a month). It not only is a site which I am interested in, and will participate in for my own love, but is associated with a larger group I already respect.

NOW THERE IS WHERE I WANT TO BE SEEN!
I perused the site today, joined the forum and off we go!

What is it?
Tree Hugger dot com
A part of the larger Discovery Channel network.

About to lose my Art Exhibit virginity

August 27th, 2008 at 10:44 am

OK, that is a pretty vulgar title.

But I am very proud and excited to be part of a formal, independently curated art exhibit for the very first time.

WHAT: FRAGILE SANDS reveres Hobo Jungle (also known as Seaside Park, the County Fairgrounds location)
http://www.fragilesands.com/events.html
WHERE: Bell Arts Factory
WHEN: Sept 5 - Oct 20

More details http://www.bellartsfactory.com/specialevents_fragilesands.ht...

Oh yes, and my book? It is a story of the Santa Clara River, inhabitant animals, native (and not so native) plants and what the future holds. Large ~ Tactile ~ and meant to be touched and read. Also available on-line http://www.fragilesands.com/shellie.php

Wish you could come to the reception and sip wine with me.

Small Web Biz Alert! Want Free Ads?

August 22nd, 2008 at 08:38 am

A new'ish site allows you to make graphic (or text) ads and place them on blogs and websites all over the place. It's been around long enough to be established, and the crafters worls is very involved in it.

http://www.projectwonderful.com

What: You register for free, make up an ad, there are 6 or 7 sizes from the 'button' to 'skyscraper' ranges. Use a great photo, catchy phrase or whatever.

Why: The major objective is to allow others to receive income from ads on their site, from anywhere like 1 penny to a dollar or so a day. (Really busy sites can charge the higher rates, but even little guys can charge the lower rates). But the additional reason is for those of us with webshops to place ads. You specify the cost you are willing to pay (for me that is $0 right now). You then place a 'bid' and await approval from the site owner. There are many sites with free slots that no one else is bidding against you.

Who: Anyone can make an ad and bid on a site. If you are able to work this blog, you can make an ad. It's very easy. And the site contains a search function to find folks who will place your ad (for free, or you specify the price you are willing).

When: The free ads are good for 2 days. OK, it's not long but I am already on two sites and loving it! (An Etsy blog, and a vegetarian site).

Don't hesitate to message me if you need help.

Find Buried Treasure Site

May 15th, 2008 at 11:07 am

You already know I am in the Etsy handcrafted internet marketplace. There are 100,000 shops (of which about only 1/2 are really active). But it is a fabulous community of buyers and sellers as you might have checked.

The good? What fun!! You have never seen the likes of some of the outrageous and inspirational crafted goods.

The bad? What a mountain of stuff! It is a huge task to see and be seen sorting through the items.

One of the active and smart sellers who undoubtedly has some advertising know how started a new site to pull out some of the 'Buried Treasure'.

I joined here:
http://buriedtreasury.blogspot.com/2008/05/prettycheap.html

Please make a comment on my little gallery if you like! And you can put in other tags (where it says 'Dig it Up') to see other galleries.

Try the tag 'bargain' or 'clever'!

Have Fun!

3 Smart No Cost Promotions for Internet Shops

April 8th, 2008 at 12:52 pm

Sales are tough, especially for handmade jewelry! Lots of folks enjoy crafting, and most everyone seems to try their hand at jewelry. But it's true for card makers, soap shops, and knitters.

How can you compete? Especially on the internet?

I've had a sale this past week from a no cost promotion and am going to tip you off!

What's at stake? These are SOLD
'O' Iolite Earrings


1. Games. Make it fun for your customer to play a game. I ran a 'Name that Tune' puzzle and gave a virtual gift certificate to the person(s) who answered correctly. The puzzle can be hidden in various places in your shop, such as the titles, item descriptions, item pictures and anywhere else you want them to go. What other games can you think of? Do you like word scrambles? Trivia?

I give you only one big caveat! Be sure to comply with local laws, ie special laws apply to drawings (with or even without purchase required) and sweepstakes type games. Avoid the whole sweeps issue by removing any aspect of chance to your players. For example, give EVERYONE who gets the answer right a prize.

2. Mailing Lists. Make sure you have a mailing list for potential customers! Put out a sign up sheet at every craft fair you vend. Get names by giving out small goody bags ('Free Goody Bag for signing up') filled with samples of your work, candy, or whatever you ingeniously think up! Use that list! Send out specials to subscribers at least monthly, including 'Free Gift with Purchase', Sneak Preview prices, and more. Do a simple, no cost email mailing without an attachment (many spam filters will flag an attachment).

3. Join some Groups. Many internet groups are out there for posting free ads, showing off work and general camraderie. The trick is defining your market!!! It would be exhausting and unprofitable to post just anywhere so if you make baby clothes, join some mommy groups! If you make dog treats, join the pet lovers groups! Look in yahoo, google, myspace and just google your target market.

It takes time, but has returns.

Calm Before the Storm

April 2nd, 2008 at 07:52 am

This Saturday I am hosting a craft fair at my house (yikes!). Five local colleagues will have booths out front, we are providing light refreshments and have free goodie bags to hand out for every guest that brings a coupon which has been on a flyer we are distributing.

Send me sales mojo! It is intended for our extended contacts, ie family, friends, neighbors, school friends, co-workers, etc. But I expect half or more of the attendence will come from the street signs 2 of us are placing within 1 to 2 miles of the house. I have made about 16 BIG signs.

Am busily tagging my things with prices as I speak (write). And just yesterday had a little lightbulb go off while making a necklace. See the shell piece on the item below, it was picked up off the beach by my then 8-y-o and has languished in my bead box awaiting the perfect use.

Natural Buddha
Strand of polished jasper chips (obtained in a trade), bone donuts (reclaimed from a former necklace), and tiny gold beads, hold a framed picture of peaceful Buddha. Picture protected by a permanently affixed plexiglass window.

Just showing off new work...

March 22nd, 2008 at 08:29 am

I have monthly craft fairs starting in April and have made some new things, like
White Wedding or whenever Earrings
Classic for ladies down the red carpet, or just perfect for prom. White ceramic drop ringed with sparkling swarovski crystal. Finished on goldplated ball posts to keep them fabulously affordable. Shown in tahitian-style pearl and apricot. (click mini photo, left column for more description and price).

5 Tips How to Run a Successful Low-Cost Home Craft Show

March 17th, 2008 at 09:29 am

You've been to those infomercial home shows (BLEH) where a rep takes an hour of your time showing stuff you don't really need....

You've been to a home boutique where the place is packed with specialty items, they hand you a hot tea or coffee to sip, and it's a pleasure to walk around browsing...

How about something inbetween?

By default (since my first choice venue fell through), I am hosting a home craft show in a couple weeks. It has been fun planning! Without any retail experience, it's falling together well.

1. Get commitments from your sellers.
Every seller needs to take ownership of the event by taking a volunteer assignment. Examples: placing low/no cost ads in local media outlets, making street signs, or bringing snacks/drinks.

I am charging no table fee, a very nice perk for my sellers, however, each is responsible for some other part of the event.

2. Motivate your sellers in prior weeks in attracting guests
Prepare an email flyer, as well as a print flyer and send these to your sellers at least a month ahead of the event date. Send reminders (such as weekly) to your sellers to distribute these and give them specific ideas!

In the reminders, include anecdotes of your own experiences giving out the fliers to give your sellers a feeling of confidence and comfort. Examples: hand out to church friends, neighbors, school contacts, co-workers, shops frequently patronized (the shop will likely allow fliers to be left for other customers).

3. Have small refreshments for the guests.
I am holding my entire event outside, so this is less problematic than if you have an indoor event. We will have individual sized plain water, flavored waters, soda. Trays of very inexpensive snacks are planned, such as pretzels, cookies, crackers. The cost of snacks can be shared by your sellers, or (in my case) are being brought as part of the 'fee' to be in the event.

4. Have a 'freebie' for guests.
On our flier we have included a coupon to be reedemed at the event for a goody bag. My sellers have donated small items (representative of what they sell) and I have made very nice goody bags with the items, including: jewelry samples, greeting card samples, hair ribbons and bows, fun magnets and pins, and more. Coupons should indicate "while supplies last". Other shows have drawings for one large basket or box of similar donated items, but there are local laws regarding raffles I wish to avoid.

5. Make the event festive but inexpensive.
Our event is a spring boutique and I'll dress up the front of the house with balloon bouquets, a big banner, and create shade structures with draped sheer fabric overhead. Other holiday events can make great use of decorations you already have!

Wish me luck and stay tuned for more blog posts as the time gets closer!

What are you doing SO COOL you only do it once in 4 years?

February 29th, 2008 at 08:12 am

I wish I could say I was doing something that cool. But just another day at work for the most part.

May I show off a handsome necklace I designed this past week? Not available in my internet shop Pretty Cheap Jewelry unless reserved by special request.

SEMI PRECIOUS BUDDHA
Carved cinnabar, brickred stone, bloodred sparkling swarovski, and milkwhite freshwater pearl links hang in a 'Y' necklace featuring a bark brown carved stone buddha pendant. (please excuse my hasty photography)

Anyone Else Heard of Seth Godin?

February 21st, 2008 at 12:21 pm

He is a marketing guru of sorts, championed by the internet crafters and small business entrepreneurs I hang out with, but I don't know much about his qualifications or knowledge.

Here is his blog, and he constantly gives reference to other websites:

http://www.sethgodin.typepad.com

Free Fun, Get a Chance for a Door Prize with Your Vote on Crafter's Contest

February 1st, 2008 at 01:32 pm

My crafting group, the California Crafters Club of Etsy (CCCOE) had a monthly contest where each member made an item in the topic of "SCIENCE".

All the entries are in and we ask the public to vote on the best one.

A door prize will be given to a random voter at the end of the voting period (shipping included).

If you want to have a little free fun, look over the entries and post your vote here:
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5447218

To vote you must be registered with Etsy (just with an email and password, like amazon).

The link above includes a link to the picture of the prize (there are two), links to each of the items, and a place where you can see all the items at once. If you have time, read some of the item descriptions. Several of these crafters are extraordinarily interesting (the prize for example!).

Why? Yes, we do it for exposure to our crafts, our shops, and also for stimulating our creative skills.

Mine is in there, you'll have to discover it for yourself.

Good luck and have fun! There is no big catch, this is a casual group of small entrepreneurs supporting and learning from each other. And this is our 4th or so monthly contest, they have been a great success!

$27 Million into my company

January 30th, 2008 at 03:48 pm

I am a shop owner inside the 'Etsy' website (as many of you know, click on the left pics for a little piece of them).

An investor came in with $27 million for Etsy which will help them become a household word.

See an article here from cnet, internet news service:
http://www.news.com/8301-13577_3-9861216-36.html?tag=blog.1

And they expect to go public. No time line, no other details.

But I've been involved for 2 years, a veritable oldster!! And am ready with the little buck$.

I'm Going to Meet My On Line Buddies!

January 24th, 2008 at 08:59 am

Not Saving Advicers, my Etsy buddies!

I belong to a team of California Crafters inside the Etsy handmade marketplace. We call ourselves the California Crafters Club of Etsy (CCCOE). It is a statewide group, so alot of distance separate many of us.

But a good number are in Los Angeles, of course. And a few near my location.

A comment in our group discussion was made about the wholesale fabric shop in downtown LA (Michael Levine's) and a couple members decided to meet there to shop!

A few more members are truly professional jewelers and work in the downtown LA jewelry district. They wanted to join and it took off from there.

I am going down just to have a blast and see who some of these characters are! And they no doubt wonder about me!

As I mentioned, a couple new members of this Crafting team are fantastic professionals and I show two pieces below. Somewhat intimidating but inspiring to be in this group!

New Beginnings Ring
by Amanda K Lockrow Jewels
http://www.amandaklockrowjewels.etsy.com



BodyCast
by PalliekoDesigns
http://www.palleikodesigns.etsy.com

Never Mind $$ I Need More Time

January 22nd, 2008 at 11:13 am

Which is higher priority?

Craft items to build 'after' Valentine's Day stock?

Redesign business cards to reflect new logo on website at Pretty Cheap Jewelry?

Pursue April Art Show (application due in Feb)?

Oh, yes;
Plan 2 kids birthday parties in Feb?
Cook hot meals?
Clean the house?

OK, nevermind those last two.

I actually am fairly caught up and have started a line of wedding styles for my business. Watch for photos after Valentines Day!

Three day weekends are helpful, and we have another one coming up 1/28 (Teacher Buy Back Day). That means I stay home from work with the kids and get a couple hours to chip away at the list.

SOLD Yesterday!
Vintage Cupid Valentine's Bangle.
~~~~Offer to Saving Advicers~~~~~
Free pack of handmade pressed floral notecards with any order from my shop (click 'prettycheap' left column). Mention this offer, expires 1/31/08.

New Year, New Consignor!

January 18th, 2008 at 05:02 pm

Pretty Cheap Jewelry has added a new address! I'm now available in 3 local and one distant shop, as well as the original website (link in the left margin).

Wonderful to acheive this goal so early! (of adding a shop to my family in 2008)

Here's a few new items to delight your eyes. Everything made (by me) with quality and care and sold for fun and love at a bargain basement price.

~~secret special to SavingAdvicer's only~~
A free Dark Chocolate Hershey 1 lb bar with the order of any 3 notecards or journals. Offer good until 1/31/08 only. Please mention this post at check out.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Thanks and here's to a sweet 2008!

BEAR HOPES AND DREAMS JOURNAL
Slim volume perfect for a new marriage, graduate, or baby book.


WATCH US GROW
Photo album cover features cross stitched sprig and ruffled lace!


GRACIAS
One of 3 International thank you cards featuring different girls, each holding a heart. (sold separately)


<< Newer EntriesOlder Entries >>