Posting Schedule

Monday - Design Inspiration
Tuesday - Tips to Know
Wednesday - Website Know-How
Thursday - End of Week Inspiration
Friday - Freebie
Saturday - Weekly Wrap-up

Monday, July 27, 2009

Ophelia's Apothecary Inspiration

Why, oh why, you ask ... was I doing so well at keeping up with the daily posting schedule until sometime last week when things just went poof? I had a huge amount of exposure which has left me stumbling to keep up, and have been working extra late trying to convert all my original files for everything from jewelry display tags to business cards to fit the new cutter plotter - which is working so beautifully! - and then, late last week, in the middle of a big print run, we noticed that there were actually circles being embossed into the paper.

So. Busy? Yup. And trying very hard not to let my frustrations affect others. To all my customers: yes, I'm running a little behind. I'm dedicated to providing you the highest quality possible, so please bear with me.

On the positive side, that huge exposure thing. I was listed in the Etsy Storque as one of the "Top 10 Graphic Designs to Give Your Shop the Edge". How cool is that?! And to make it a double-whammy pleasing thing, there were actually a few comments from past customers that praised me for being "insanely talented" and providing "top notch customer service". I'm honored, and humbled, and still so excited that it's serving as my own brand of inspiration this week.

But on to the real thing ...

Ophelia’s Apothecary -

If you’re looking for inspiration on how to go about making your shop look pro from start to finish, Ophelia’s Apothecary is a prime candidate.

First hitting her store, you’re met with a classic “grunge” banner that is immediately reminiscent of “days of old”. Scrolling down, this old-timey feeling is only enhanced by a combination of absolutely stunning photography (stunning because of its simplicity), and products that are packaged in the same great classic apothecary feel.

Ophelia’s Apothecary labeling uses very minimal art, relying heavily on classic old-typewriter fonts to convey the feeling she wants to carry through her work. Seriously inspirational – what we can all take away from it is that beginning with an idea of the atmosphere we want to create, we can brand our entire shop and products in a clearly cohesive, professional way.

Posted by Lolaness

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

August Trends for Indie Businesses

Do you ever get to look at the people you work with, the projects you work on, and feel truly blessed? Today was busier than ever - at 10 pm I'm just now stopping the packaging of products that were finished printing today - but I also got to sit back and look at my work and my co-conspirators and think ... I've been blessed.

I'll give a quick sneak peek at the "Coming Soon" page for a woman I'm working with who is truly a wonderful lady, whose products are beautiful, and whose determination is inspiring: Warm and Fuzzy Baby.

As we approach August, we approach a seasonal shift that can mean a lot in terms of how we can best present and sale our products. Thoughts of Autumn start creeping in sometime in August, but this tends to be the hottest month of weather for most of the states. This really is a unique time to capture trends and it allows Indie Businesses to play up the best of summer while preparing for cooler fall temperatures.

Whether your small business is focused on handmade clothing, artistic lines of jewelry, or paper goods, there are some specific trends for you to keep an eye on that will prepare you to make the most of your August sales.

Associated Content just published my article on the topic - there's honestly some information here you don't want to miss. Check out the full August Trends for Indie Businesses article. Leave me a comment there or here to let me know what you think, and what you think should be added to the advice :)

Posted by Lolaness

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tweet Heart Art Inspiration

What a Monday. I've more projects lined up than I've ever had before, for which I'm so grateful - especially to all of you who are repeat customers, which just makes me feel wonderful, like I'm really doing something right.

I missed the weekend wrap-up again, but let's look at it this way ... there will be three weeks' goodies to show off this Saturday! And I'm really looking forward to some of the other things I get to share with everyone this week. I hope it's off to a fabulous start for you!

Tweet Heart Wall Art -

Vinyl wall art is just way too cool, on so many levels. I love the fact that it can easily be changed up, but I also absolutely adore that it doesn’t require any toxic paints or materials that will need to be discarded in a very specific manner to have the least environmental impact.

Who thought art could be so eco-friendly?

And on an inspirational level, Tweet Heart Wall Art has it in spades. Her designs are full of clean lines, retro-inspired motifs, and too-cute modern decals like chic chandeliers and sweet silhouettes.

There’s also something to be learned from her shop catalog images. Every single one offers an “in-place” look at her artwork, helping you to visualize how it might actually look inside your own home. This creates an easy-flowing line of products that you can really get into without feeling like you’re dealing with an amateur.

Posted by Lolaness

Friday, July 17, 2009

Fabulous Feature & Friday Freebie

Does it get any cooler than having your work featured in someone's blog? Sure it does! When it's a fellow EcoEtsy Team Member's blog, the honor is double. My Etsy store was featured in Planet Playground's blog today (her eco-friendly Etsy shop can be found here) and I'm all kindsa proud. Thank you, Kristen, for such a wonderful end-of-week gift!

And I've got a gift for all of you ...

I'm an absolute book addict. In my family, though, I'm not alone. At this very moment, there are 5 books on the end of the coffee table. Two of them I've read, three of them my husband's read, and we're trading off. The one thing we're always running short on, though, is bookmarks.

And don't even consider trying to borrow a book - we've all learned the painful lesson that books either never come back or never come back the same. So we horde them, double-deep and stacked on top, in four (at the moment) book cases. Yup. Kinda ridiculous, but we're happy with the arrangement.

So when I was trying to come up with an idea for what sort of graphical goodie I could share this week, I (honestly) glanced over at the husband who was tearing a corner off of a receipt to mark his place in his latest read. Ah-ha! A book lover's set!

This week's freebie is a PDF that contains:
  • 4 Book Plates (maybe we can start lending books out again!)
  • 2 (3/4 size) Bookmarks
  • 2 Corner Bookmarks
You can download the PDF here at my favorite file sharing spot (it's free, I promise, and no you do not have to have an account). It's a fully editable PDF so you can type your info right in all nice and neat before you even print.

Here's a preview of my own finished product. I rounded off the corners of the 3/4 size bookmarks and the book plates, and added eyelets and ribbon to the bookmarks. To make it all thick, I re-purposed a white cardboard shipping envelope. Very nice, if I do say so myself!

Posted by Lolaness

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