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Tuesday, 31 January 2012

What better way to end the month...

What better way to end the month...than with a giveaway!

If you haven't seen it throughout January then I do apologise!

The giveaway itself was really simple, the person who was showing as my top facebook fan on facebook by today would win this gorgeous fleecey buttoned cushion

The cushion itself was made with two pieces of pink fleece that was hand cut and hand sewn with a range of buttons on the right corner. The overall cushion was 23cm x 21cm and filled with soft toy filling.

I chose to do this kind of giveaway as it was a way of engaging with my fans without making them share my stuff all over the place and spam other people. I think it worked really well as I've had some lovely comments and chats with people.

The lucky winner was Sara Lewis who just pipped Sarah Barry to the post!
So, moving on to February!

As January's competition was a hit I've decided to run one in February too but moving my attention to twitter.
So whoever CrowdBooster says is my top retweeter on the 29th February will receive a prize.

Now I haven't decided on what the prize will be for this one yet but thinking something felty!

Anyways, will keep everyone posted throughout the month so everyone hopefully gets to see it and take part :)

Good luck everyone :D

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Bobble mad!

Sorry I've been a bit quiet on the blog front of late, been getting stuck into an invitation order then goingmad for felt hair accessories! Handmade Monday from 1st Unique Gifts reminded me that I needed to show everyone what I've been doing to keep me so occupied!

First the invites...

Leanne's been a regular customer since July so when she asked me to make her some custom made birthday invitations I was really happy to do them. They took a bit of designing as I had a mental block on the 4 then found my glitter stash and all was well again.
Saying that, they took me 3 nights to finish as I was so shattered from work in the day I found it difficult to concentrate for too long.
Very happy with the finished results though :)

Especially as they're a bit different with the way they fold

Leanne even suggested I put stickers on the back to advertise where they'd been made. How cool is that?

I've also been going a bit felt hair accessories mad which is a good thing as Sara put a mammoth order in for 6 headbands, 2 snap clips and 2 bobbles!
Here's half of the order so far...

And here's some other bobbles and things I've been making

And after a suggestion from Ros and my friend Stacey here's the gift set...

Friday, 6 January 2012

2012 Notable Special Days in the UK

So, I've been thinking about all the different events that my lovely customers may need items for but once I got through the main ones (Christmas, Valentine's Day, Halloween, Easter etc) I starting struggling so done some research and here's a full list!


1st January - New Years Day
6th January - Epiphany
23rd January - Chinese New Year (year of the Rabbit)
25th January - Burns Night in Scotland and St Dwynwen's Day in Wales


2nd February - Candlemas Day
14th February - Valentine's Day
29th February - Leap Day


1st March - St David's Day in Wales
5th March - St Piran's Day in Cornwall
12th March - Commonwealth Day
17th March - St Patrick's Day in Ireland
18th March - Mothering Sunday and Simnel Sunday
20th March - Spring Equinox
25th March - Clocks go forward British Summer Time begins


1st April - April Fools Day and Palm Sunday
5th April - Maundy Thursday
6th April - Good Friday
8th April - Easter Sunday
9th April - Easter Monday
21st April - Shrove Tuesday / Pancake Day and Queen's Birthday
23rd April - St George's Day in England


1st May - May Day
7th May - Bank Holiday
17th May - Ascension Day for Christians
27th May - Pentecost / Whitsuntide for Christians


2nd June - Coronation Day
4th June - Whit Monday and Bank Holiday
5th June - The Queen's Diamond Jubilee and Bank Holiday
17th June - Father's Day
24th June - Midsummer's Day


5th July - Tynwald Day in Isle Of Mann
12th July - Orange Men's Day in Northern Ireland
15th July - St Swithin's Day


1st August - Lammas Day and Yorkshire Day
27th August - Bank Holiday


23rd September - Autumnal equinox


28th October - British Summer Time ends and clocks go back 1 hour
31st October - Halloween


1st November - All Saints Day for Christians
2nd November - All Souls Day for Christians
5th November - Guy Fawkes / Bonfire Night
11th November - Remembrance / Armistice Day
30th November - St Andrew's Day in Scotland


2nd December - Start of Advent for Christians
21st December - Winter Solstice
25th December - Christmas Day
26th December - Boxing Day and St Stephen's Day
31st December - Hogmanay

And there you have it, if you want any items for these events you've only got to ask as I take custom orders too.

And if you have any celebrations you'd like me to add to my list let me know


Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Plans for 2012

So we're 4 days into 2012 and seems I've pulled some muscle fibres in my back that I didn't know about over a month ago and now it's a lot of muscle fibres and everything is rather painful! But onwards and upwards, it won't last forever so thought I'd use this opportunity to tell you about my plans for 2012...

New products
As you may have seen, I've started working with felt a lot recently. Started with brooches and recently designed some felt wall / door hangings too. The next in the felt range is going to be A4 sized felt cushions. I've got a lion design and a giant initial design coming up soon. But I'm also looking at felt cushions shaped like certain things too e.g. a ladybird. Hoping to have those sorted for the end of January so keep an eye out for them.
I'm also going to be having some lessons on how to use my sewing machine in the next few weeks so will be looking at different things I can make once I have the know how!

Craft Fairs
I am very aware that last year I was adamant I wasn't doing any more craft fairs, however with the inclusion of new products that I could make in advance and sell there and then, I've paid £10 to have a premium listing on so people can find me as a stallholder on there. Going to have to be selective about which events I attend but think events where children are involved will be my best bet. Just need to figure out how to find out about local events at schools...

I don't have a budget for marketing as I work full time and am in the process of saving for some important stuffs however...I've purchased a kodak printer which is much more economical on ink so I can start to design, print and distribute my own flyers! I've got a few different designs in mind but need to spend some time to put them together! Any other hints and tips on cheap or even free marketing are always appreciated!

Other castle news
I'll be honest, I haven't thought past the next 3 months as I'm never sure what direction I'll go in considering nearly 12 months ago I set up the business selling cards!
However, I will be finding and publishing a list of events over the next 12 months that people may want products for. Not just the main stream ones but religious events, events in other parts of the UK such as Burns night

Sarah and I have a few plans for Crafty-Bitz in 2012, probably the biggest thing is for themed showcases. So not online craft fairs but showcases of your products based on a theme. The first one will be a Valentine's Day theme but we need to work the details out in the next week or so and then we'll let everyone know how they can take part.

For those who know about Creative Connections CRAFTfest, in November I was a team leader co-ordinator, for the March CRAFTfest however, I have a bit of a different role for a few reasons.
1. Signing up and submitting all the info you need to sell is much easier as it's being done from a single website
2. As it's much easier there isn't a need for 5 team leaders

So my role this time will be to co-ordinate between Creative Connections, Crafty-Bitz and the contacts we have made with The Craft Network and Handmade For You UK. Not exactly sure what that involves yet but still, something new and exciting!

I think that't pretty much all I can tell you about right now but as always, will let you know as soon as anything else pops up!

Happy New Year everyone and hope you can make 2012 into everything you want it to be!