30 Sep 2016

Prepare For Craft Fair Season






Layout

  • Make sure your booth looks attractive, stand back and look at it as if you were a customer approaching. Ask yourself would you stop and look?!
  • Display your products at different levels to create interest.
  • Make sure your items are visible so your customers don't have to route. 

Service 

  • Take business cards with you and your customers will know how to find you again.
  • Ask people to sign your mailing to receive your newsletter.
  • Offer a free gift if customers spend over a certain amount or a discount off their next order or purchase off you. 
  • Be friendly and chatty to anyone who comes up to your stall because even if they don't buy from you they will remember you. 
  • Another tip is to take card payments, you can download an app to your iPad or phone to help you with that, I use PayPal. 

Products/Prices 

  • Take with you your best selling products and any new one items you have made.
  • Take something to cover your target customers budget. If your products are price between £25 and £100 take products that range, because if you take your most expensive items you could lose some potential sales. 
  • Wrap your items in beautiful packaging this will leave a lasting impression and encourage repeat business. 

Hope This Helps!

D'Atra Paris
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28 Sep 2016

My New Addiction: Planning

I finally took the plunge and bought myself a Happy Planner, I purchased the Big Happy Planner so I can use it to plan my work and personal life schedule.  I have been watching Plan With Me videos on YouTube for a couple of years now and have always wanted my own planner to decorate with stickers.

As I have the Large Happy Planner it can be difficult to find stickers to fit it. As I'm in the UK shipping is just so expensive that I don't buy stickers from Etsy and I tend to use the free printables  you can find online. (I will have a blog post coming up with links to some of the websites I use to get my free printables).

I have started designing my own stickers and I was thinking of sharing them on my blog so you can use them too, for free. 

Let me know if that's something you would like.

D'Atra Paris
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This is where I purchased my Happy Planner: https://www.stuff4crafts.com/


26 Sep 2016

Autumn Date Night Ideas



  1. Have a romantic meal at home, make an Autumn theme recipe.
  2. A walk in the park. 
  3. A bonfire at a friends who has a fire pit.
  4. Go for a meal at a country pub. 
  5. Snuggle up at watch a film. (The Holiday).
  6. Have a friend date, go for coffee.
  7. Go with a friend to look round a market or a craft fair, make a day of it and have lunch.
  8. Go out for a coffee with a fellow blogger and work on a blog collab. 
  9. Go for a drive. 
  10. Make mulled wine and play a game like monopoly or something you like. 
Let me know if you give any of these a try! 

D'Atra Paris
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23 Sep 2016

Prepare For The Christmas Rush - Production - Part 3



Production 

The final part of my getting prepared for Christmas series is production. 

First decide when you want or need your stock to be ready, I like mine to be up in my shop by the 1st October then I have enough time to ship internationally and catch the early Christmas shoppers. Pick a date that suits your needs.

Products 

If you followed along with the series you will have you materials and supplies ready to start production. Set yourself goals for the week or even day depending on how you like to work, you could say you want to produce 100 brush rolls in 3 days. This will help you to keep on schedule with you stock.

Pre Christmas Sale 

Sell off your stock that isn't selling as well this will give you more space to list items in your shop and boost your sales.

Listings

Take good photos of your items, you could even add a Christmas background. Make sure you work out your prices correctly so you are making a profit. I work out how much my materials (including shipping and packaging) are and how much time it takes me and that gives me my break even price, then I add my profit on top.

Hope this helps you prepare for your Christmas rush.

D'Atra Paris
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21 Sep 2016

My Top Ten Tips To Stay Positive


I know what it like to feel down in the dumps and have no motivation, it can be difficult to cope with. Whether you suffered a set back, lost someone you love or are feeling like you have no purpose many of us experience that feeling and it can be hard to shake. I have put together a post that might help you get you mojo back.





1.  Look on the bright side - Sounds so cheesy but it does really work. If you going through a tough situation find the silver lining. For example if you are having a financially difficult month then look at it like your learning to budget and think of creative ways to make what you have go along way. When your out of your financial situation you will look back and feel like you have achieved something and learnt a life lesson.

2. Positive Quotes - Read some positive quotes on Pinterest when your feeling low, if you find one you like write it down and read it every morning, you could even print it off and put it in a frame and on your wall.

3. Give yourself a break - If your down in the dumps sometime you can make it worse by stressing about how your feeling, try not to stress as it can make it worse. (Have a pamper day)


4. Let it go - May be its not a situation that's making you feel low but a person, if you have tried your best then all you can do is walk away, don't let someone dampen your sparkle.

5. Eat Well - What your eating can have an effect on your mood, if you eat crap you will feel crap.

Stay Tuned For An Upcoming Blog 
6. Get up on the right side of the bed - Start your morning off positively and your your day will follow on in the same way. I have heard that making your bed in the morning can have positive effect on your day.

7. Get into a routine - Getting into a routine can help your mood, you could start doing little things and work on adding to your routine as you go along. Maybe get up a certain time and have breakfast at a certain time.

8. Do something that makes you happy - Take some time out to do something that you love, even if it's just for half an hour.

9. Go for a walk - Going for a walk can blow away the cob webs and give you a different perspective on a situation.

10. Tomorrow's another day - Take it a day at a time.

D'Atra Paris
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19 Sep 2016

Autumn Bucket List




  1. Go to bonfire 
  2. Go to a Halloween party
  3. Eat treacle 
  4. Make Black Peas 
  5. Make an Autumn DIY
  6. Plant some Autumn flowers in my garden 
  7. Buy some Autum decor
  8. Made some homemade mulled wine.
  9. Go for a walk everyday 
  10. Family day out 

Whats On Yours?

D'Atra Paris
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16 Sep 2016

Prepare For The Christmas Rush - Marketing - Part 2






Marketing 

1. Social Media 

- Pre-plan you social media posts this will take the stress off you during the busy period, take your photos, create your posts so they are ready to be uploaded. You could even create a schedule for your social media posts. 

- Blog Posts, write your blog posts, take your photos and schedule them for uploading. I use an editorial calendar and during the months running up to Christmas I schedule them up till Christmas day, then its one less thing to worry about.

2. Craft Fairs 

- You maybe planning of doing a few craft fairs during the Christmas season, get the dates in your diary and start planning what your going to be taking and any display props, price lists or any other bits you will need to take with you. I will have a blog post specifically about craft fairs coming soon. 

Part 3 will be published on Friday covering Production.

D'Atra Paris 
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14 Sep 2016

5 Things I Love About Autumn



Autumn is my favourite season, so I thought it would be fun to make a list of some of my favourite Autumn things and things to do.
  1. Going for a walk; I love the colour of the leaves in Autumn also I love watch my garden change from green to the Reds, Browns and Oranges. 
  2. Food ; Autumn food is amazing, I love soups and stews and I love to make them from scratch and it's a welcome change from Summer salads and bbqs. 
  3. Outdoor Clothing; Wardrobe change over time, I dig out my Autumn wardrobe, my coat, scarf and gloves and my favourite pair of boots (which should probably be replaced! I love them too much).
  4. Having the fire on; In our old house we had a fireplace and I loved having it on in the colder weather made the house so cosy. We moved into a new house last year which doesn't have a fireplace so I might have to invest in an electric one to create the same effect.
  5. Autumn DIYs; This is so fun to do, make things that you can use around your house that add to your Autumn decor. I have a few tutorials coming up showing what I like to make. 

What are your favourite things about Autumn?

D'Atra Paris
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9 Sep 2016

Prepare For The Christmas Rush - Planning - Part 1


If you have your an on line business or any business then you know how hectic the Christmas season can be. I have put together a series of blog posts to help you prepare for the upcoming holiday season. Hopefully there will be some tips and tricks you can apply to your business. 



Planning 

Planning for the Christmas season is a bit part of making sure your business runs as smoothly as possible. 


1. Research & Product Planning 

- My first tip is to do your research, look at what you sold last year in terms of what you maybe sold out on and what didn't sell so well.
- Look at current trends, for example; last year the film Frozen was very popular among girls so I planned a Christmas gift range using the Frozen theme. 
- Make a note of your findings as this information will help you when you come to designing your product range. 

2. Dates 

- Go through your diary and mark in some deadlines. For example; Christmas Stock release date, last international shipping date. you can also mark the dates of your January sales.
- Look at your processing times, i make my own products so if i make something to order and I have a week processing time i will have to make sure i leave enough time before the last shipping date. 
- Look at your mail couriers time schedules on line this will give you an idea for your shipping dates. 

3. Plan Extra Services 

- Are you going to offer a free gift? gift wrapping? a discount? if so being to get your plan for that together, plan what discount you are going to offer, advertise your gift wrapping earlier as many people shop early for Christmas. 

4. Products and Prices 

- Using the information you collected from your research begin to plan what products your going to sell and set your prices.
- You can also think about the amount of stock you want to make, for example; if last year you sold 50 bars of soap and you sold out make 100 this year. if you don't sell them all you can add them to your January sale. 

5. Materials and Supplies  

- Once you have planed your products start to get your supplies ordered, make sure you order enough supplies to last you as you don't want any delays buy waiting for deliveries of extra materials. 
- While your ordering your materials and supplies, you can also order your shipping packaging, if your offering a gift wrap service get your gift wrapping in stock. If you buy it now they usually have discounts on as some of the paper is from last year. 

That's all my planning tips! Part Two will cover your Christmas Marketing! ( Next Friday)

D'Atra Paris
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7 Sep 2016

English Paper Piecing Tutorial

English Paper Piecing is so much fun to do and it's on of those crafts that you can do in front of the TV or on the go. I have put together a blog showing you the basics on how to do English Paper Piecing and what you can use it for, as well as a few hints and tips.




What you will need:

Scraps of fabric (any size will do)
Scissors
Hexagon Template
Paper Clip
Needle and Thread

Step One:  Cut out your paper hexagons, the larger your hexagons the bigger your scraps of fabric will need to be, so if you have small scraps of fabric that you want to use up use a smaller hexagon.



Step Two:  Cut your fabric into squares make sure you cover all the hexagon with a small flap on the back so it can be tacked into place.

Step Three: Use a paper clip to hold your paper template to your fabric this will help you to tack the fabric into place. Thread your needle and make a small knot in your thread, baste the fabric into position around the template. (Repeat this step until you have as many hexagons as you want, then you can do step for in one go)



Step Four: Press the hexagon to flatten and make your edges look crisp.  I use a little spray starch to set the edges.

Step Five: Paper piecing is like a jigsaw place your hexagons where you want them and sew them together.



Ideas For What You Can Make

1. Cushion Covers
2. Quilts
3. Wall Coverings
4. Applique
5. Handbags

Tip: When I have small scraps of fabric I make hexagons as I go then when I'm in the mood I just stitch them together. I organise them by colour so they are easy to find and I know what I have more of or what I can match if I want to make something.


D'Atra Paris
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5 Sep 2016

Handmade Heywood: Product Of The Month (Halloween)


Just a quick blog to share some of the new products in my shop this month. October is fast approaching which is my favourite month! 
However its kind of the start of the party season, with Halloween so i have made some items to get your Halloween party started. 


Ghosts and Pumpkins

Pumpkins and Ghosts

The Pictures are linked so if you like anything it will take you to my shop where you can browse the rest off the collection.

D'Atra Paris
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2 Sep 2016

Sewing Inspiration Tips





From time to time many of us suffer from loss of inspiration, not knowing what to sew or create.  I have many a time sat at my sewing machine and have not created anything because I'm not inspired. I have put together a blog post on someways we can get past our creators block. 

My first suggestion would be magazines when I am feeling particularly uninspired I head down to my local WHSmiths and pick up a sewing magazine, have a read through and if I see something I want to make I give it a try or even put my own creative spin on it. 

Another idea is going to have to be Pintrest I regularly use Pinterst to get inspiration, whether its a small project I want to do or a large project there are so many ideas its bound to spark up my imagination. 

Sometimes we can get creators block because of situations we have going on in our lives, if your felling particularly stress or overwhelmed this can effect your creativity, what I like to do when I'm feeling like that is go for a walk, see some friends or do something else I enjoy like potter in my garden. 

I have also had those times when I have sat down to sew I have all my fabric and my sewing machine at the ready and I have no idea what to make but I am in the mood to sew. I usually look through my wardrobe when this happens, and I can usually come up with something to make that I don't have or that could do with replacing. 


Hope This Helps!

D'Atra Paris
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