Craftyguider grows up

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!

#twift = twitter gift

I’ve made so many good friends on twitter since I joined in April.   Some I hope to meet.   Others may cross my path at some point.   No one who I would ever avoid.

As I was struggling to stay awake last night after Guides, I had a light bulb moment.   I was looking through a Christmas gift catalogue and saw something that I thought would be a perfect present for one of my twitter friends if I actually knew her in ‘real’ life.   Then I thought, why don’t I just go ahead and do it?   I could tweet details of Christmas gifts that I would choose for people – no expense to me, it’s just for fun, but it shows I’m thinking of them and it’s the thought that counts.   It couldn’t be something I couldn’t afford though.   I would love to give people diamonds, cars and exotic holidays, as well as the gift of World peace, but an amusing mug, box of chocolates or a hat, scarf and gloves are more in my price bracket.

I will start thinking about my Christmas twifts and hope to tweet some soon.   If anyone would like to join me, use the hashtag #twift and I look forward to reading some of your ideas for people.

And if you are a squillionaire, feel free to tweet me a house #twift with my own personal craft suite, or even better, just DM me with your credit card details and I’ll help myself.

Christmas Craft Fair

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.

Little and often

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.

Hello blog, bye bye website, hello again

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.

Hello

This is my first blog entry.   Just like my first tweet, I’ve deliberated long and hard about my first words of wisdom.   So many fabulous blogs are out there: experts in money saving, people showing their makes of the day, what they’ve bought this week, self improvement tips and the like.   What should I do with my blog?

Should I introduce myself?   Hi, I’m Louise.   I have two craftyguidelets age 2 and 4 and a Mr Craftyguider husband.   I love crafting and have a growing webshop selling cards and sewn bits to raise money for the Guide unit I run.   Sounds like a bad personal ad (especially mentioning the husband!).

(The website has met with a rather terminal but temporary setback, but I’m still here accepting orders and commissions!)

Money saving tip?   Root around your cupboards and see what you can do with what you’ve got rather than buying something new.

What I’ve made today?   Some biscuits and bread with my girls, some soup, and currently some Bolognese sauce.   Oh, and my first ever Suffolk puff hairclip.

What I’ve bought this week?   Some fab buttons, some material to finish a bag commission for a twitter friend to use at her school, and some cakes for a treat.

Self improvement tip?   Don’t work out your first blog post standing next to the chocolate drawer.

I think what I’ll do is just go with the flow.   I’ll try and blog at least once a week and see how it goes.   I may become an expert in something, or I may just be a jack of all trades.   I’ll try and include some pictures, perhaps a few funny anecdotes and a tutorial or two.   We’ll just have to see how it pans out.

As for my first tweet?   After all that thought and preparation, I can’t remember what I wrote.   This blog entry will eventually drift out of memory too.   The first of many to come which will evolve the same way as my twitter account has done.