Sunday, October 19, 2008

As Ready As I'll Ever Be

Fabric Collection
Originally uploaded by magscrafts
I have been working for months to try to launch a line of bags that I would have available in multiple fabric choices. I started by ordering some fabrics in much larger quantities than I generally bought at a time. This was a bit scary as I wanted to order things I thought people would like, but try to avoid ordering fabrics that were being used everywhere. All this while considering that I could be left with the whole batch if I did not choose correctly, and that I wanted to be free to add new fabrics and discontinue old ones.

One thing I did not know before buying wholesale was that it sometimes takes a very long time for orders to arrive. For many of my supply sources I can get replenished in a week or less, but that is not true from the fabric wholesale houses.

Finally last week my last batch arrived! I have a whole list of bags I want to offer, but have only made a few so far in any of the fabric collection. I decided I need to just dive in with what I have, and add more items as I get samples made. If I wait until every last thing is ready, I will never move forward.

I am pretty excited to offer my laptop sleeves, which will be made to order based on customer supplied measurements. I also have eyeglass cases in the whole line of fabrics!

I made a new page on my website to show the available fabrics and styles, which I will be updating as new models are ready!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Kick My Butt Please and Get Me Out of This Funk!

I have been in a funk and I am not sure why that is or how to snap myself out of it. Perhaps I need a swift kick in the butt!

Some of it might be because of a generally super stressed out feeling I have had lately. (See my blog post about it here. )

Some of it I think is the work that it on the top of my pile to work on. I had a number of items to make where someone else had chosen the materials, and then I was told "no rush". So, since I had no sense of having a deadline, and the materials were not necessarily calling out to me, nothing spurred me to action. These were at the top of my list, so I got no joy when I worked on something else because these were sitting there making me feel guilty. Jobs #2 and #3 on the list were repairs of someone else's work, which were not calling out to me joyfully either.

I read this thread on etsy today, about being true to yourself, even if it means you might miss out on making a sale. The original poster was saying that she never made stuff in Fall colors because those colors do not inspire her. I can be inspired by almost any color. I have lately been accepting any work I can get just to keep some money coming in and with hopes of growing my business. At the moment, though I feel like I am not inspired by anything. I wonder, do I want my business to grow in directions that leave me feeling so deflated?

I know I can find joy in projects that are not of epoch proportions- I can make some earrings where the materials call out to me and I love the results, or even put together simple projects that make me smile for a minute, and hopefully these things will find a home where they can make someone else smile. So it is not necessary for my to make my business grow away from simple projects- more that I have to figure out what direction I need it to take.

OK, this blog was supposed to be about us being accountable, so here is my kick Maggie's butt plan:

  1. I will finish projects 1,2 and 3 on my pile- o- stuff to do, so they stop mocking me and making me feel like crap. This will happen TODAY and they will go to the post office where I can't hear them anymore. UPDATE: I finished all three projects today (10/13), but when I went to drop them at the post office, the big bin for the APC was jammed shut! So they can mock me from their boxes for one more night.

  2. I will clean my jewelry work area by Wednesday afternoon. I think less clutter will help my attitude immensely. I felt so much better sewing once I organized that are more.

  3. I will solve my ink colorfastness problem for my Magsbags line and get at least one prototype bag made by Friday.
  4. I will sneak in some work this week on something I have no intention of selling but I just want to make for the fun of it.

I will try to come back and add updates in the comments section...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The birth of a logo

MagsBags Logo Mosaic
Originally uploaded by mornindew2822
So it starts out with Maggie saying "Hey, can you draw?" Followed by a story about her reeling mind while she's driving home from the market- She's got all sorts of ideas, she's going to get moving on the reusable shopping bags she's wanted to make for a while now. Can I draw a logo for her?

Heck yes! I've got absolutely nothing crafty on deck today and it's a rare quiet moment in the house. She wanted something with the earth and/or the symbol for recycling- I got an idea instantly. I showed her my initial concept and she said it was just what she was picturing! The photo mosaic above depicts the evolution of the MagsBags (great name btw, Maggie!) logo from concept to 2 of her 3 final options.

Posted below is the winning logo design. I think it is clean and crisp and represents her products well- cute and practical reusable shopping bags that are environmentally responsible!*

*I think her grand plan may include other products down the line which will offer us some green boutique style. Made -at least in part- with either vintage fabrics or sustainable/renewable resources and are recyclable/reusable.

Keep your eye out for what comes next!

Monday, October 6, 2008

It All Started with Grocery Shopping

I did a massive grocery shopping this morning, and as I drove home with my purchases, I got depressed about the fact that they were packed in way too many plastic bags. For reasons I cannot comprehend, my local grocery clerks seem to pack only about 2 items per bag, unless it is canned goods, then they cram in so many the bag splits and the cans roll away across the parking lot!

Anyway, for months I have had plans in the works to make some shopping bags, but today's experienced made me resolve to do it and do it as soon as possible! By the time I got home, my mind was swimming with ideas for this new line of environmentally friendly bags. Ideas include bags meant to replace disposable items like grocery bags, and also bags made with recycled or sustainable materials. My mind is still reeling with the possibilities!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The holidays are coming! Part 3

Ornaments Mosaic
Originally uploaded by mornindew2822
As promised, another little glimpse into the crafts I am working on in preparation for the coming holiday season. I've created 9 new ornaments this year- using genuine seashells and sea life that are perfect for any coastal holiday decor!

The collection includes lavender, green and rare English Channel sea urchins, white pencil and white amored starfish, pearl abalone shells, sand dollars and two different kissing ball style ornaments. The ornaments are elegantly adorned with Swarovski crystals, sheer ribbons and pearl embellishments.

View slideshow

Available now at