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Archive for the ‘Craft Business’ Category

Creative time.  Tax time.  Time to make those computers and printers work for what they cost.

I’ve been working on a big drop-off for The Farmer’s Daughter.  I’ve got dozens of magnets and dozens of candles for the owners to stock their shelves.  I’m in the home stretch, ready to send an e-mail to the owners telling them I’ll be coming by tomorrow with the motherload of product.

Oops, I ran out of burning instruction labels, and I also misspelled Patchouli on the front candle labels.  No worries, I’ll just print some more.  Except all of a sudden my laptop doesn’t recognize my printer.

Hello, I introduced you two years ago.  Why do you ignore each other?  Did one of you do something to make the other angry?

I’m not angry at either of you.  I love you, my darling laptop, and you, my trusty printer.  In the threesome we have going here I’d say you, Printer, are causing the most trouble.  I need you, trusty printer!  Forget about whatever gripes you have with the laptop.  Perform for me!  I’m the one you love!  I’m the one who needs you!

I tried to stay calm and be understanding.  I clicked everything I could to help the printer along, but to no avail.  The stubborn little booger wouldn’t budge.  There will be no printing tonight.  There will be no product drop-off at the store tomorrow.

Do you ever find yourself in a situation and the perfect song comes into your head to reflect that moment?  It happens to me all the time.  When I realized my printer wasn’t going to help me my mind starting singing a song from 1979.  It’s like I was trying to get my printer to feel sorry for me and work for me, via telekinesis.

Printer, you left me, just when I needed you most.  Please come back.

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This time of year seems especially boring after the myriad of festivities during the holiday season.  The only thing to think about during these cold days is…taxes.

But wait – doing tax work this time of year makes things less boring for me.  I’ve been getting my business spreadsheets perfected so I can submit the 2015 sales taxes due now, and also submit the numbers to my tax man (Husby).  Comparing income and expenses inspires me to get ready for the 2016 craft season.  I want to organize Craftland.  It’s time to order supplies.  It’s time to build inventory.  It’s a new page in the continuing adventures of Auntie B.

So what if it’s cold outside?  I don’t have to go outside to melt wax.  So what if I’m snowed in?  As long as I have bottle caps I’ll have plenty to do inside.

Taxes?  They’re an inevitable pain.  Winter?  It’s cold and dark and colorless.  Lots of people curse both taxes and wintertime, but both motivate me to get going on a new year of crafting.  I guess that’s what people refer to as the silver lining.

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OK, so I’m here tonight thinking I can relax but I totally can’t.  If I sound really chaotic and twirly it’s because I am.  Ack!

I don’t know if you’ve noticed the new additions to my blog sidebar.  Check them out.  Right there, to the right of where you’re reading.  I have a cool little slide show of some things I make and sell, and I also added links to the two shops where you can find my wares, as well as to my Etsy shop.  I’ve been at The Farmer’s Daughter for several years with nice success, and I just started a working relationship with Gumball Collective this month.  I’m very excited about selling to a new market and will be interested to see what I can offer in that neighborhood.

With two brick and mortar shops to stock, an Etsy shop to stock and three shows coming up in a mere three weeks I’ve gone completely mad trying to figure out which venue needs what kind of inventory.  I start something and forget about the other thing.  I pick up on that thing and remember I didn’t do something else.

But here’s the thing.  I have some new magnets that I know you’ll love.  OK, maybe you won’t love them.  Maybe you’ll even be offended by them.  I don’t care though, because…it’s art, man.

Take, for example, this insensitive piece:

Seriously? You’re making fun of mental disorders now?

Or hey, how about some swearing?

Wouldn’t you say the same thing?

I know!  I’ve gone completely insane, and plus very confused as to where these magnets should be shown.

I’m going to come clean.  These magnets, no matter how offensive or profane they may be will be offered, eventually, everywhere I show products.  There will be other magnets too, because the possibilities for magnets are limitless.  And right  now I don’t even have links to the magnets shown here (in case you are so insensitive or brash to actually want one) because they’re not even on sale at my Etsy shop just yet.  However, they will be, and soon.  Like, tomorrow.

All of you people shopping online, keep an eye on my Etsy shop for the additions coming in the next couple of weeks.  For those of you shopping in White Bear Lake, MN  check out  The Farmer’s Daughter.  If you’re in Northeast Minneapolis, MN visit  Gumball Collective.

Seriously, no matter how mental I get I’ll make sure these venues have some things you’ll love.

Now, back to your sanely-paced regularly scheduled programming.

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So here’s the thing.  I’m having a little fit of pique these days and it’s frustrating me to no end.  I can’t seem to motivate myself to do anything more than the bare basics of survival.  You know, eating, some sleeping (not enough, of course), keeping my abode clear of dust bunnies, and earning a living.  My writing has come to a standstill, and that’s even counting e-mails to people, commenting on blogs I might have time to read, and responding to comments on my blog, much less blogging or writing for pure pleasure.  It’s a disgrace and I feel like Dobby, wanting to beat myself about the head and neck for not living up to my potential.

Dobby is not living up to his potential. Dobby must punish himself!

What can lift me up?  I know ~ this weekend I’ll be at the Cannon Falls Wine and Art Festival showing my wares.  I’m really looking forward to it, and I have a lot of candles, drink charms and magnets to show the world.  And don’t even doubt the whole world will be there.  It’s a great show with a ton of artists and a whole bunch of local wineries offering samples of their delicious wines.  I even got a haircut for the event!

Hannah’s Bend Park during the Cannon Falls Wine and Art Festival. So much fun!

I’m looking forward to hobnobbing with customers and fellow vendors, eating some good food and listening to music.  I’ll go into the weekend with a spectacular attitude that will ground me into my crafty business.  When that happens everything else seems to fall into place.  Who wouldn’t be energized by a weekend in a beautiful park by the river, meandering along a path of lovely artwork and delightful wines?  Plus, I know spending some time close up with my products and the people who enjoy them (and will hopefully buy them) will give me a boost of energy to push me out of my funk.  I’ll have more energy than I’ve had in a while and will be free once again ~ I’ll feel like Dobby, getting his sock to freedom.

 

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Oh, the things I can get done in the dark hours when I know I don’t have to get up with the birds the next day.  I listen to the chime of the mantel clock strike a late hour as I’ve just finished producing, pricing, and recording a load of inventory for a drop at a gift shop that’s been waiting for my goods for three months.  If I were going to the day job tomorrow I’d have been in bed hours ago, probably tossing and turning with thoughts of how I could better spend my time.

The calendar flips its days, weeks and months to the finish line when I can say goodbye to the day job.  It’s all I can think about these days.  To spend time in this life exactly how I want to seems to be my purpose.  Nothing specific, just my whim.  How glorious that will be.

I’ve been avoiding writing lately, and I can’t really understand why.  It’s not that I don’t have time; I do have some, enough, yet I’ve been avoiding it.  Maybe it’s because that’s all I want to do, and the snippets of time afforded me only tease and torment.  Or maybe I don’t really want to write at all.  I haven’t figured it out yet.  But here I am in the silence of the night, fulfilled with what I accomplished without a solid bedtime, writing.

Day after tomorrow I’ll be going to the family cottage for the holiday weekend, and I’m taking my laptop with me.  Some of my family members might smirk at my bringing technology to the rustic nature of the cottage, but I’m not the only one bringing things to smirk at.  Enough said, eh Charlotte?  Perhaps I’ll find some time between roasting stale Peeps (a new delicacy Charlotte is going to try with Easter leftovers) and cleaning out boats and cottage rooms to return to my work in progress, rewriting/editing the first draft of the novel I wrote last November.

Such ramblings I have when I can relish the dark summer night.  Bear with me, for there may be more to come.  My blogging may take a turn, or continue to wane; one never knows.  I’m just getting in practice for that time when all I have to listen to is my whim.

Serene Muskie Bay

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