One of my milestones of 2011 was becoming @craftyguider last April. I had an ipod for a present and hubby kept talking about twitter. It finally clicked that it wasn’t just about people saying ‘I’m making a cup of tea’, ‘I’m drinking my cup of tea’, ‘think I’ll watch deal or no deal in a second’. Twitter has opened up another world to me. I’ve ‘met’ some wonderful people on there, learned new things, been inspired to try new things, and most importantly, been able to chat with people when I needed it most.
The biggest change in my life inspired by twitter was launching Craftyguider.com (mainly thanks to @meanyjar and @duckingfabulous). Craft has become a therapy for me, but there is a limit to the amount of birthday cards I need to make for my friends and family. The website is where I can make lots of gorgeous things and then sell them on to raise money for a good cause. My darling husband set up, deleted, and then relaunched my website for me. It has boosted my confidence no end and he gets to see the stock that I make leave the house and not come back!
At the end of 2011, I was lucky enough to win #wwbizoftheday with the newly launched WW Business Network and a new logo for the website from Yarm Web Design on the same day. Today I got the news that I’ve been shortlisted for the Purple Dog Network #purplebiz. I want to make Craftyguider a proper business that is taken seriously. I have lots of plans for the website, new stock and new ideas for 2012. Keep watching!
Having got a lovely Liebster award from the talented meanyjar, I’ve just got another one from the lovely SoStaceySews who I nominated for my award. Thank you so much Stacy!
This of course means that I get to choose another 5 bloggers who get to recommend their favourite five. It was hard narrowing down my last selection to five, so I get another go!!!
I discovered Flossie Teacakes today and was blown away! I ordered two PDF patterns (oh my ever growing WIP list!), and I’m going to get some shirring elastic when I’m crafty shopping next.
Daffodils and Snowdrops is currently blogging about her advent swap goodies. Definitely something I want to do next year. She makes gorgeous stuff and is a fellow meanyjar speedboat owner.
Fellow twister team member and library biscuit muncher Mummy Misfit who is an author so that makes her a ‘sleb compared to me. Both her books are on my Christmas list! Please Father Christmas. I’ve been a very good girl…
Sew Scrumptious is a wonderful crafter who is organising pillow case dresses to be sent to girls living in poverty around the world. A definite service project for my Guides next year.
The fantastic Flower Mammy who became mammy to Flower’s baby bruv this week. Her blog may be a bit on the quiet side at the moment, but is good when she’s on full throttle.
Thanks Stacy for the opportunity to do it all again!
I haven’t made new year resolutions for years as I always made unachievable goals that got me down when I inevitably failed at them. This year, to coincide with my birthday which is in the new year, I’ll be sharing my list of aims for 2012.
One of these aims will be based on getting my Work in Progress (WIP) load down. I currently have numerous kits from magazines I want to do, as well as a fancy dress costume for the youngest craftyguidelet from a year ago, and her birth sampler cross stitch I started over three years ago. Added to that are some flannels that need embroidering for a friend and her son, and some fabric to make into a present for her too.
I also have half finished kits. I’m sure I’ve got a load of candle wax stashed somewhere, and card making decoupage pages.
I keep promising to make things for me and the craftyguidelets. Add some Barbie sleeping bags, various princess fancy dress costumes, quilts, clothes for me, mini bunting for the kitchen and hundreds of other things.
I am also a sucker for new things. On the pile of new crafts to try I have a decoupage kit and a jewellery making kit. I bought felt for Christmas decorations for the website, and I’ve also got some lovely lavender to go in lavender bags. I’ve got a large collection of craft magazines inspiring me to try things, and some wool to make mittens, a scarf and a phone case.
Work in progress? Unfortunately there’s not a lot of progress!
Liebster is a German word meaning dearest, and the Liebster blog award is given to bloggers you love. It was my honour to receive my award from the lovely and talented meanyjar who makes fantastic stuff on etsy and folksy and is a cracking follow on twitter! Thanks lovely!
As part of the award, I need to keep the chain going and recommend five more bloggers to take a look at. I’m just getting into the world of blogging, but these are five I always take a look at.
Dolldolldolly who is a metal addict and a crafter with truely individual and brilliant products.
SoStaceySews a craftaholic on a mission for 2012.
Skulls and Ponies who lists dancing like an idiot as one of her likes, so definitely my kind of girl! Gorgeous crafty bits on folksy too.
Project Pinup which is co-created by fellow twittermafioso Ducking Fabulous . Two fantastic blogs for the price of one!
Knitting Novice who is a great mum, fellow crafter, and is currently blogging her way through chemo. A fantastically brave and positive person.
And as for my blog? I’m going to try and visit it more often and continue to develop my style. One of my resolutions for 2012 is going to be to read more blogs and leave lots of comments.
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It’s my first ever attempt at a sale today. As it’s cyber Monday I decided to join in with 25% off my Christmas stock http://bit.ly/rUsmDg . This has also meant my first venture into tweetdeck and scheduled tweets. Last night I was even rewriting my twitter profile to be more professional!
Craftyguider is a bit of a strange entity. I use it to raise funds for my Guide unit, but I would also like to develop it as a serious web shop. I want it to be taken seriously so it may have to grow up a bit. Just a bit mind you. Can’t get rid of the Doozer yet!
After all the panic about the Craft Fair last weekend, it actually went well. I’d spent ages working on stocking fillers (owls, hair clips etc.) which were popular, but I also managed to sell lots of Christmas presents too. Two of my handbags went which means I’ve got two left to list on the website when I get a chance.
I managed to chat to lots of lovely people about my work and the Guides. It was lovely to hear feedback.
The raffle organised by Victoria (@Butterfly_Craft) in aid of Help For Heroes went well too. I won a prize of an oil painting and hand painted cards from the talented Maro Kirby (www.angelatmyeasel.com) who was on the next stall. I donated one of my Snowflake Christmas stockings (http://bit.ly/tlMYmy) which was one of the first prizes selected so I was thrilled!
At Remembrance Sunday service and parade the next day, a lovely woman stopped me as I was taking the Guides into church. She’d bought one of my peony cushions (http://bit.ly/uj5vzk) and wanted to tell me how much she loved it.
Next year I might try to increase my craft show attendances and develop the business more, but with a healthy book of commissions, two 5th birthday parties to organise for the craftyguidelet, and Christmas, I have plenty to keep me busy.
As my regular tweeps on twitter will know, I am currently in bed with a lap top and hot water bottle for company. I have a hurtie hip as the craftyguidelets (aged 2 and 4) would say. As I’m not going anywhere fast (or at all), I thought I’d have a quick blog.
Over the last few months, I SHOULD have been preparing for my second non-Guiding craft show, and my first without cards. I’ve been making lists of what I should make, how many, where to source the materials, how to price it, thinking of new ideas, buying more materials. Now with 3 working days to go, I’m having a panic about stock.
Today I’ve finished a personalised Christmas stocking for an order, but that is it. Four handbags are on the office floor almost finished. Bunting is ready to be cut out. Another string of bunting just needs to be sewn onto the tape. I have five naked cushions that should have covers. And as for the army of owls I wanted to have, I haven’t even started. I’ve also got a lovely idea for lavender bags, and two more ‘Worry’ bags to make to send to a school for an order.
It’s my own fault. I’m definitely not in the ‘little and often’ club. I’m an ‘all or nothing’ girl. I plan, I procrastinate, I make lists. I’m the most organised disorganised person around. I put on a good show of being organised, which I suppose is what I’ll do on Saturday. I’ve got a 2’ x 6’ table to fill, and I’m sure I’ll fill it. This isn’t my livelihood. All profits go to the Guides, and if I look at my stash, I’m sure I’ve got enough to present Craftyguider properly to the locals. I’ll have business cards, Guide publicity and a winning smile (that’ll scare ‘em!).
A positive Doozer will be manning the stall on Saturday. I might even make the ‘little and often’ club badge as my on-stall crafting project. As a Guide leader, I promise that I will do my best which is what I’ll do, and I’ll wear my badge with pride.
As mentioned in my previous debut blog entry, my website died. Well, not so much died, but was deleted by my husband. Accidentally. With no back up. And he’s a professional website person.
He was trying to set up my blog so I could tweet about my fundraising website, craftyguider.com. This was not as straightforward as it seemed, and one misread web link later, the website was no more.
Rather than resort to murder, crying or the vodka bottle, I was quite calm. I knew that I’d have to re-enter 119 greetings card details plus cushions, bunting, Guide badges and more all over again from scratch, but husband is still alive, no tears were shed and the vodka remains in the cupboard.
As the joint web shop/blog thing wasn’t working, I have now got craftyguiderblog.com (where you is reading this right now!) and a brand new, upgraded, wonderful, all singing, all dancing (but non-blogging) craftyguider.com web shop. I love it. Lots and lots and lots and lots. It is a proper shop now and I feel all professional. Husband has spent ages re-entering most of the details, and I’ve been in trying to flesh out the descriptions and tidy it up.
There is a still lot to do. Probably about 100 cards still to go on properly, and several new products are in the queue to be listed. But it’s there. And so is the blog. And so is the husband.