Saturday, 27 November 2010

Price Wars

I'm presently experiencing a real dilema where pricing my products is concerned. I always thought I was charging the correct amount for my handmade goods, especially as I consider them to be unique, excellent quality, one offs and original. I make everything myself, I don't run a sweat shop so things take time. But I'm starting to feel consistently backed into a corner. Only last week at a craft fair a women picked up one of my Crimbo decorations and pointed at the price to her friend.

So do I swallow my pride and drop my prices (considerably)? Or stand my ground and maybe one day people will be happy to pay my prices and really appreciate handmade? Any suggestions? Whats a reasonable amount?

In the meantime I've reduced the prices on my lovely lavender bags

This is available in my Folksy shop

MMMM! What to do? What to do?

Tuesday, 16 November 2010


Crimbo craft fair season is well and truly upon me now, to put it mildly I've basically been working my buns off in order to have well stocked and delicious looking displays. However I have managed to grab a moment today to take some pics of the lovely props I use at craft fairs

I love my tired, old, battered vintage hat boxes. I've had them for over twenty years and once upon a time when I was a really cool art student I used to use them as suit cases, boy did I look cooler than cool. Ha! Ha! Now I use them as attractive storage for my work I also sit them on my tables at craft fairs and I will place my lavender pillows or my bags in them. They really are a stunning feature.


This is my favourite curly metal work bowl which was a present from my mum. I used to use it as a fruit bowl but I don't anymore because I just like looking at it, I usually fill it with baubles at Christmas and that looks super lovely. On my stalls I fill it with pin cushions or Make-Your-Own Kits, I think during these festive fairs I'm going to fill it with my Ogee decorations.

LOOK! What my lovely other half  bought me on Saturday. EEEE!!!!! A gorgeous super stunning Cath Kidston three tier cake stand. As yet I'm not sure what I'm going to display on it- I'm thinking maybe buttons and pins? I know that I love it and I nearly cried when I took it out of the box just at the sheer beauty of it. I feel very lucky!

So wish me luck for tomorrow night- Queen Katherine School, Kendal, Cumbria, 6-9pm. I'm also planning on taking all of my stock so I will be closing  my on-line shops tomorrow for the day.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

So here we are, so close to the big day and a mounting to climb before we get there. Today I've decided to step back, take a good look at what I've made for all my events coming up, see what I've still to finish and write a list. Gulp! I hate writing lists. I once wrote a list that was so long I went into melt down and I decided never to write one again. But because I am extremely busy I fear I have no choice.

So far I've made.......wonderful mini/mini festive bunting. I love all of my Christmas fabrics so I made some bunting using a variety of each of the delicious fabrics! Nom! Nom! I do love my fabric.

I've made slightly larger bunting- with pom-poms and without!! It took me two hours to sew 16 pom-poms by hand on two sets, so as you can see it got the better of me and the third set doesn't have any- this does make it slightly cheaper though!

I couldn't resist making a few table runners. More pom-poms here and lots of applique!

No pom-poms here and this gorgeous table runner is slightly less decorative. My big problem here is that although I am trying to be so organised, with regards to my sewing, my house is getting very neglected. I am hoping to list this in one of my on-line shops which means a very large tidy up so no clutter is in view of the pics. Time is running out but I will do it!

Here is my beautiful collection of finished Ogee textile decorations. I love these and I really hope they sell-my very own design you see so I am extremely proud of them! I'm hoping they get snapped up at some of my craft events but I also want to list a few in my shops- not sure which ones though?

A few unfinished decorations, baubles and trees, in a little piles with possible button embellishments. I do enjoy sorting!

 Once I've sorted which buttons I'm going to use everything gets popped into its own little bag. This is a great tip I've learned from other designers along the way. I used to keep all of my unfinished makes in various untidy piles but no longer and now I'm super efficient!!

A vintage hat box full of finished decorations (sorry you are unable to see the hat box from this photo but you can just make out the lining- mmm think I will take some pics of these). Hooray! This is quite an achievement considering only this weekend we took the ceilings down in the back of the house so that we could install insulation. My daughter has also been off school with a cold, she is 13 now but still needs mum. I also sewed my finger with my sewing machine yesterday I have never achieved this before, nor do I want to do it again. It didn't actually the time,  it did however make a very strange puncturing sort of sound! I'll leave it at that.

So now that I've made these things my list will include- labels, more self-seal bags as I use these when I'm selling small items, maybe order more business cards, take photos for my on-line shops, label and pack everything for craft fairs, invest in some more ribbon, order large envelopes ........too much!

I've also been asked to supply my items to Trade and I have to make up some samples within the next few weeks. Please wish me luck!

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Free Goody Bag with the Purchase of my lovely Hearts Pouch

This is just a quick post. 

Today is the last day for listing for my Applique Hearts and Buttons Bag  on Folksy . I'm not sure if I will relist it simply because I am doing quite a few craft fairs and I might add it to my "craft Fair stock". So for ONE DAY ONLY I am offering a free goody bag of supplies if you PURCHASE my bag.

The goody bag will consist of buttons, needles, a stitch ripper and a pin cushion. I will also add some other mouth watering supplies but that is a secret!!! 

Friday, 5 November 2010

Phew! Time to catch up.

Hello! I'm back, but only very briefly. I have been so busy lately well I should really say sew busy. For the past few months I have spent every waking minute (or it has felt like it)  pinning, cutting, sewing,  doing applique projects and then embellishing everything with buttons or ribbons......I really put my back into it. Literally! I ended up with the worst back ache I have ever encountered. It was all in honour of this wonderful craft fair that I was privileged to be part of- Nostalgia Meets Design!

I'm sorry to say that this is the only image I have from the event. As organised as I try to be such as blogging about craft events beforehand to drum up some interest, when it came down to it I simply ran out of time and steam. When the day came it was actually a relief to sit down for the entire day. I put so much effort into producing beautiful good quality work that I think I wore myself out. Anyway I'll stop twining because it paid off I sold lots of lovely things and I've been asked to supply to Trade! Which is the direction I want to go in.

Here is a taster of what I was selling
A sexy festive table runner! Ooh! La! La!

Lovely lavender pillows. ZZZZZZ!

Funky Gingerbread Men decorations! I know a few other designers are making these but this is my version!

Christmas Tree decorations- these went down very well

Pom-pom bunting.

I also made a few kits basically because every time I do a craft event I always hear somebody saying "Oh! You can make that yourself" This really winds me up! I'm convinced these types of people never go on to actually make anything, or if they try they'll never produce the quality that I strive for!! Not that any body said it at the Nostalgia Meets Design or NMD as us in the know call it. HA! HA! Thats a joke!

I sold Christmas Tree kits and Gingerbread Men kits.

Here we have my Christmas goody bags. They are packed with buttons, bows, a string of eight pom-poms and festive shiny sequins! I'm selling them here  

I shall try to blog more often, as Toyah once said "It's a mystery to me...." how some folks manage to sew, make, produce, then list it all in their on-line shops, blog about their new creations and find the time to be a parent!!! Answers on a post card please!!!!