Saturday, December 26, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
I hope everyone is having a good week!
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Of course now is the worst time to do this. Orders are coming in for the holidays, I need to stock my own shop and people are requesting my presence at shows. The days seem to be flying by and the majority of thoughts in my head center around Beowulf, Espanol and mathematical functions. My brain is really resisting the above mentioned topics by the way.
So the things that will be different around here that you may want to be aware of:
- I am not going to do a giveaway on this blog every month.
- Shipping will be slower as I do not have the ability to get to the post office each day.
- Orders will take about 4 times as long as they used to. Orders are only available for stores that carry BeBe Babies.
- I will not be committing to any shows until further notice.
- Emails may not be answered for 24 hours or more.
- I don't know when or what dolls I will have available the rest of this year. Join my mailing list if you want to be informed when new dolls are listed especially since I will not be taking orders.
Whew it feels good to get those commitments off my shoulders even though just reading them gives me anxiety. I value good customer service and to me that means fast and available. I feel like I am taking those very things about my business away. But maybe good customer service is also good communication which I am hoping is counter acting what is being taken away. Sigh.
I appreciate every ones support and hope you will continue to support BeBe Babies until we are back to normal.
And now since that was depressing here is a picture of me bribing my nephew with mini m&ms because he wouldn't put or keep on his costume.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Anyhoo while I was camped on my futon for never ending days on end the only thing I really felt like doing was drawing (oh and cuddling with Maisy). Here are my doodles (do you see Maisy in there?).
I can never make this many awesome doodles without wanting to then create a 3-D plush version. I don't get these opportunities very often. It seems like most of my life I am doing something, making something, saying something, living somewhere just to please anybody but myself. It's these times, when I make something just because I want to, that I remember what this is really all about. Frankly it makes me damn pleased with myself.
Meet this dude.
The special thing about this guy is I created him completely on the futon. That means no sewing machine. That's right I HAND SEWED him and all his pieces. Do you see him up in the bottom left hand corner on my doodle page?
He is made of a mustardy (not a word I know) yellow upholstery fabric from my epic stash that is rarely tapped into. His boom box, headphones, teeth and tongue are all felt and his mouth is embroidered with floss. I drew on his eyes and eyebrows. He has wired poseable arms and the boom box is movable.
There's something about the happiness and hopeful-ness of his face that really cheers me up. And I need that lately. Things are tough these days. Most of the time I really want to hole up on a futon and sew up some of my doodles while my Mom whips me up some chicken noodle soup. But alas there are people to please. It was a delicious illness while it lasted......
Monday, October 12, 2009
I was planning to get the little witches listed tonight but with getting a cold and my camera batteries dying it is going to have to wait another day. I really don't have time to be working on dolls right now but if I don't get these gals adopted I will have to save them until next year. They all came out so cute and I have been dying to show them to everyone but I keep being delayed by homework and life. I had wanted to create some kind of cool backdrop/set up to take pictures of them in but I just don't think it is going to be in the cards for me this year.
So here is a preview! I hope you like them! Look for them tomorrow on ebay! Happy Halloween! More pictures here.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
School is a whole 'nother weird feeling. First of all I am going to Lane Community College and when I was in my junior year of high school I transferred to Lane's adult high school program. I ultimately received my high school diploma at Lane. The program no longer exists which is a shame because I loved it! I went on to attend Lane for a couple more years taking college courses but never finishing any degree. The point I am getting at is many moons ago I spent several years at this school.
Being on campus has brought back a whole lot of memories good and bad. I remember eating in the cafeteria with my now ex-husband. I remember working out in the gym with my cousin who I rarely see any more. I remember selling Mary Kay in the cafeteria (I know crazy right). I used to wheel this giant suitcase of cosmetics all over campus...it was (and still is) slightly embarrassing. Lucky for me I am going to have two more years to create some new hopefully good memories....
My piece is dedicated to my Momma.
Friday, September 25, 2009
It is kind of funny though that our computer systems were down for most of the afternoon due to construction workers out front hitting a line or a power surge or something. That type of occurrence rarely happens but when it does it normally heightens every ones excitement: "will we get to go home?" "how long do we get to play solitaire and wander the halls?" but for me it just made the afternoon drag by. I actually would have rather been doing work so the time would have passed faster.
I had all these plans for a super celebration tonight and while I still will celebrate my lovely monthly curse hit me this morning and it has made me feel like not being seen. The thought of sweat pants and my new recliner sound much more appealing. The occasion must be marked though...it really is a big day....it really is the end of something big and the beginning of something bigger. I am sooo ready...I am more ready for this change then I have ever been ready for something in my life.
School starts next week! Oh boy oh boy!
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
The point I am trying to make right up front is I just think that people feel there is information or secrets they have to pay to learn. It is just simply not the case. If you have the time and know where to look you can find all of this information for free. When you are starting a business, especially one you are trying to profit or live off of, thinking about all expenditures is very important.
This is my number one tip above all else: Think About What You Purchase For Your Business!
Don't make rash purchases in the name of increasing your sales. The slogan "you have to spend money to make money" is true but only if you spend the money in a well thought out constructive way. And how do you know it is constructive? Make sure that you can measure the benefit of the purchase. Make sure you have searched for the best possible price for the quality. Keep track of what you spend and what you make that way you can justify buying promo items or how to books. If you see yourself spending all your profit on things you might not need at that moment cut them out or source a cheaper supplier.
Okay now that that is out of the way here are my tips for creating a successful Etsy shop (please note I do not consider myself an expert and I too am still learning/improving):
1. Read the Etsy forums! Like I said above I spend most of my time in the "Business" section but there are many other topics to explore. I can't even begin to tell you all the free information that has actually helped my shop increase sales.
2. Renew you listings! This works especially well for me because I have a hard time keeping a large stock in my shop. If you want a more comprehensive explanation of what renewing means and how it can benefit you please visit the Something Blue Blog. Her post titled The Esty Experiment is awesome! And free!!!
3. Most suggestions you will hear over and over are "make sure your shop has great photos, informative descriptions, complete policies and a catchy banner". My tip to make sure you have done these things right is to look at your shop like you are the customer. When you shop for something online, or especially Etsy, what do you look for in a listing? I look for:
- good pictures where I can see the item from all sides (and inside if it's a bag).
- what size is it?
- what is it made of?
Things that immediately turn me off:
- very few items listed (which translates to me as a poor selection)
- bad pictures (especially blurry or the product is displayed on something dirty or distracting)
4. Join an Etsy team! This is a great idea to help you find people that have been there and done that. There are teams for just about everything and every location. I am a member of the Plushteam and have learned more than I could ever imagine from them.
5. Social network! Ok I will admit I was slow and dragging my feet on this one too. I still don't use these sites (twitter, facebook, myspace, etc) to their full potential and I know it. Part of my problem is I don't have time to be on them and I don't have a fancy Internet phone so I can't do it at a red light. The last thing I want to do after work is sit on my home computer social networking. However every now and then I come across a great idea that reminds me why these sites can be such a benefit.
I am not going to write a lot about social networking because like I said I don't do it enough but I read this post in the Etsy forums a while ago and I have saved it to try in the future. I wanted to share this info just to make the point that there are many ways to use these sites if you know how....aaaaand there are plenty of people that will share their info with you for free.
The post is by Haut Totes and involves a Twitter promotion. I love Haut Totes posts because she has a wealth of info and shares it freely. Another great one by her is entitled "Yes You Can!!" and is about this very topic (tips for success on Etsy).
For now those are my top tips...I hope this has been beneficial to someone! And if you find yourself purchasing a tutorial more power to you and congrats to the seller. I just thought I would point out that there are so many resources and people out there that are sharing a wealth of free info and we should all be so thankful. I know I am!
Monday, September 21, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
The pictures are made from popsicle sticks, acrylic paint, clear plastic, paper and scrapbook embellishments.
All of the other props in the pictures (crib, toys, etc) I already had but I did make him the pillows and blanket because the set I made previously was very girly. Anyhoo I had a lot of fun making this little "stage" and I have already thought of a bunch of things I would like to add (like a floor and more furniture). I am wondering if this might be a new obsession...
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
As a matter of fact if you knew me when I was growing up (heck if you know me now) customer service would be the last place anyone would expect me to be because I hate people...okay I don't hate ALL people but you will catch me saying I do on most days. Usually I will mutter it after being yelled at on the phone while other times I will scream it as I walk through the door after work. And all this anger and hatred has wore me down.
It's funny how society as a whole recognizes that verbal abuse by a spouse, parent or anyone in life can wear a person down until they feel the way they are being told they are (stupid, fat, ugly) but the same people will unleash on customer service reps, cashiers, etc. It really is sad. Some of these people, myself included, work in these positions for years....imagine the effect on someone.
I didn't mean to write such a downer post but after hitting the craft store on my lunch break and watching a women bawl out a young cashier because a pad of paper was on sale and didn't qualify for the coupon (which would only be a difference of about a dollar) I was well feeling down. I always want to say to these people (the yellers) "do you really think this young girl gives a flying fig about your paper?", "do you think with her minimum wages she goes home at night and frets over your discount?", "she doesn't even make the damn decisions!". Do people really not get this?
I would never yell at a customer service rep (ok once I did get a little heated at Comcast but that's another story and a torn up backyard). I would just like to beg of you people out in the public remember that when you call your insurance company or you go to the craft store it is a human being you are talking to. A human being that probably has nothing to do with the company's decisions and doesn't really care anyway. They are trying to make a buck, feed their family and not go postal in the process. There is a reason it is called going postal by the way...and it's not the stiff, scratchy uniforms and the smell of pee (although that might be part of it).
PS...I am soooo excited to be starting school.... :)
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Recently someone added me on Flickr as a contact and I must admit I rarely investigate people that add me on Flickr, Myspace or Facebook (unless I think I might know them in real life). But for some reason I was checking out this person's contacts and there were some damn fine ones in there! Like Cally Jane Studios...I mean for crying out loud I could hardly find a favorite picture. Aaand I can not figure out if she actually sells these wonderful illustrations so I will be asking for sure! I did find her blog though.
I waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaant these two!!
It just kept getting better. Look at these amazing, tiny wood dolls by DandelionFair! I thought they were clay at first which didn't seem as intriguing but as soon as I realized they were wood I jumped for joy! There is just not enough wood dolls/toys out in the world. My favorite is this little mermaid. Christine their creator has a blog too which is when....hold the phone....I realized I have seen this artists work before! I remember her bears! There is nothing like rediscovering a favorite artist. And now I have just spent the last hour going through all her pictures and deciding which dolls I would buy should a money tree sprout in my front yard. I bet you want to see too??? Well then head to her website for adoption info!
To keep the mini theme going I then found these amazing miniatures by PetitPlat. They remind me so much of re ments but of course are better because someone actually hand makes them. Lucky for us she has an Etsy shop where her creations are also made into earrings and rings. How cute is that?
And to get you in the Halloween spirit here is another one. Oh and did I mention she has a blog and website too?
Alright peeps I have to stop! No more for today or I will get nothing else done. I like doing this though so maybe I will make it a feature...but it won't be on Fridays...it will be whenever I feel like it so there! :)
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
And if you have any other ideas on how to find new baby doll lovers let me know!! :)
Monday, September 7, 2009
The table next to us was also full of treasures I wanted to bring home. But with my Mom constantly reminding me of "not spending my profit" I didn't get anything. The table was full of Laura Hacker's sasquatches. They were the most unique sasquatches I have ever seen. They also had some very cute brightly colored sock monkeys for adoption. You can find Laura's work on Etsy at The Love Tree.