This was a fun tutorial to put together and I have even included a video (just in case you did not want to read this whole article! And yes I have created a YouTube Channel... very nervous about that! So be kind just in case you leave a comment and critique, LOL!
Yo-Yo's can be used for a lot of projects! Embellishments, backdrops on quilts, and even a full quilt, the possibilities are endless. I love to make them for my garlands that are sold in my shop.
I hope everyone enjoys this tutorial, I had a lot of fun putting it together! Now that I made you all read this post, below is a video with the same information!
First video made EVER, so I apologize for the background sound!
Let me know what you think!
For most, the fall season is the time when we travel from county to county to attend our local Craft Fairs or Farmer’s Markets to show and sell our items we cherish. I LOVE this time of the year; meeting people and having those conversations to me is priceless, and I get to spend some wonderful time with my Sis (I make her come with me to help set up… I know she fully enjoys it, lol)…
But just with anything, there is a part we love and a part we hate… and of course the part that is not enjoyable is what to pack! It is not the same when you go on vacation. When on vacation, if you forget something, you can just go and make a simple purchase… When at a show, forgetting something can really hinder your business profile and sales!!!
I have provided just a few tips to consider and remember when getting your shop packed before your first show of the season…
Your PRODUCTS… well of course you need your products, right! – something to consider though, try to research the show you will be attending. When applying (if there is an application process) make sure they accept all your products and not just certain items… Sometimes the promoters may limit what items you can bring because they do not want to have too many of one item being sold. Also try not to worry about if you sell out with a specific item, make a note for next year and make more for that show.
It is always questioned if your products should have a price tag or not. That is a seller’s preference and I do not think it hinders or helps in sales. I have my pieces priced, however they are set inside the bag or attached to the back of the item. I really like to talk with my customers, this way it always starts a conversation about something.
TABLES and CHAIRS… Whether the venue is inside or outside, you want to make sure they will either provide these times or you have to bring them. NEVER assume just because it is inside they will provide these items. I tend to focus on the table, chairs I always pack just in case! After confirming who will provide you also want to confirm the size of the table, usually either 6 or 8 feet is the norm for all venues. This could help you decide the items or your display you will be bringing.
CANOPY… Such a necessity when the venue is outside. This will hardly ever be provided, so when your show is outside, make the investment. This will help on those brutally hot days and will also help avoid the sun burn you will receive. Yes, I have learned this one the hard way, NOT FUN! You also want to make sure you have proper canopy weights, they are not expensive and are the best investment. It could be a perfectly sunny day however a storm could just pop up and those winds, they can cause a lot of havoc. When purchasing your canopy you could also look in to have sides on it as well. This is just added shade and protection if it should rain.
Your PROPS and SIGNS… Setting up your area is a great feeling and it represents you and your business! Make it shine… A lot of sellers use a tablecloth to cover the table and then they place their items around, while yes I agree, you will see the items, but it does not draw people into their area. You want to create a comfortable and inviting vibe. HEIGHT and LEVELS!!! I use wooden crates that my husband joyfully painted and set them around the table at different heights. I have also found that those items near eye level are key; make them your best-selling product, or your ‘eye catchers’. This technique will help you draw people into your shop…
Your sign should have your business name clearly visible and really nothing else. Your business cards will handle the rest for contact information. And you want to make sure it is hung in an area where everyone will see. When outside I tend to hang it high in the canopy so shoppers away from my area will be able to see it and they will come over… When inside I hang it out front, usually when inside the shopper follow a path and they will be in your area, this is where set up is key to draw them in!
CASH BOX/ CREDIT CARD READER… Oh yes, been there, forgot that!!! It was a funny day…NOT. You want to make sure you go to the bank BEFORE the day of our show so you have proper change for your customers, if they are paying by cash. Most of our customers now-a-days do not carry cash so you want to make sure you take some time to research and invest in a credit card reader.
The top ones available are:
(a) Etsy (if you have a shop)
They all have fees which are very comparable to each other and can run through your phone or tablet, and yes you will need WiFi for them to work, so make sure you have a proper data plan. They all accept the major credit cards i.e. Visa, Master Card, Discover and AMEX. I have the Etsy, PayPal and Amazon and I know these even accept cash as well. This is great for tax time!
NOTE: with our new technology all bank and debit credit cards are now being made with the EMV chip. If you currently have a card reader it will have to be upgraded. Contact your card supplier to learn more and stay up to date. This new technology takes effect on October 1st, 2015.
And then the BASICs or what I like to call ‘EMERGENCY NECESSITIES’!!! These I always keep packed together and they are never removed, prior to the start of my craft showcase season, I always unpack and make sure everything is still there and ready to go!
And finally PRACTICE your set-up… When I started doing my craft showcases, I literally practiced butting my area together, and yes I timed myself as well. While most give you two hours for set up, there have been a few that have given me as little as 45 minutes to set up – yes you break a mean sweat on those!!! The main reason though for doing a practice set up, you will be able to get a vibe of how your area will look and feel. This is what mine looked like when I first started.
I hope this gives you some good items to thibk about before your craft fair season goes into full swing.
If you have any other great tips or ideas, please leave them in the comments. I loive to share!
And as always ENJOY!!!
Made at Home Quilts ...and then some!!!
As a business owner, there is really NEVER enough time in the day to get all our tasks completed on a daily basis... However we also add to our own frustration because we are always finding new techniques to complete our products or even add to our product lines!
And now of course this is what I have done! You Tube has become my obsession lately and from there I have gotten some really great techniques to try when creating my products... and while watching one of my favorite crafters, I saw it... Derwent Inktense Watercolor Pencils on FABRIC!!! Woo Whooo!!!!
As a designer I love creating an item that is both functional and also a different style that expresses the owner, but i am loving the idea that I can now incorporate my ideas into my fabric... I am pressing myself to stay small and keep it specific to certain items to test it out first...
I started playing with the different fabric mediums that can be used. These help the color to not bleed across your fabric.
I have chosen to use a 100% Ivory/White Muslin for the testing process, but I am really liking the look so I think the fabric is a keeper to use within the final designs! There are also MANY fabric mediums to choose from, i.e. Liquitex, Americana, Martha Stewart, Golden, just to name a few. I am even going to try to aloe vera gel technique. I purchase three types just to see how they react on the fabric, I do not want the fabric to get very stiff, and so far with these purchase I am not seeing that happening.
I am in no way an artist, but I know I can get through the basics and loving the colors these produce when blending on the fabric...
Again totally addicted to YouTube, so I have also provided the link to the video that COMPLETELY hooked me in with the possibility this technique can provide. Now she used the Derwent Inktense Blocks (YES will be my next purchase!!!) but wait until you see the item she made, ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS!!!
This video demonstration was recorded during the West Michigan Quilter's Guild's show in October 2014. The instructor is Nancy Roelfsema and she is the President of this Guild Show.
I encourage everyone to check all these videos out, they are amazing at some of the techniques other crafters use and the designs they have created - very INSPIRING for everyone!
Be on the look out for our future designs capturing this technique. until next time everyone, ENJOY!!! And please if you should try this technique or even if you just feel like sharing, leave a comment! I love to see what inspires everyone out there!
Remember - Cover Your World in Fabric!!!
Made at Home Quilts ...and then some!!!
There has always been a debate as to whether to prewash or not to prewash your fabrics prior to sewing or quilting. Just with anything there is an agreement and disagreement with prewashing. After some hours of research on this topic, this is what I have found.
YES, I DO:
NO, I DO NOT:
I am one of those that DO NOT prewash my fabrics prior to sewing/quilting, with minor exceptions. Time is a huge issue for me. I love running my personal business, but I also have to work full time. So my time is VERY limited and I do not want to take away ANY time for washing - that is best for the family and there is enough of that!
Now even though I am on the side of 'I DO NOT' there are some fabrics I will. When designing a quilt from a wall hanging to king size, I will prewash my reds, blues, and purples, just to be safe from dye transfer. For the larger size quilts of course that is an easier process due to the size of the fabrics being washed are by the yard. However for wall hangings, we may be dealing with fabric the size of a scrap, fat quarter or pre-cut. I will also prewash fabrics used in anything Baby I make. There skin is very different from an adult.
Well during my research I have found the perfect solution for that! CLICK HERE to watch a video from Laura Coia on her sewing channel called Sew Very Easy.
Material shrinking is only an issue on some fabrics, and these fabrics I tend to not work with. These fabrics are those novelty type, i.e. terry cloth or chenille). And I have to be honest, I have sewn with them and I now stay AWAY from them...
Finally the chemical debate! Yes I agree they are there in the fabric, but I like the texture and control those chemicals give me. I get a crisper cutting line and I have GREAT control when manipulating the fabric to do what I want it to do! Our industry has changed SO MUCH over the years, that from the bleeding, to shrinkage and the chemicals, it is different now. Manufacturers are conscious of the fact that we are out there and do not wash our fabrics. So they take the necessary steps to prevent these concerns from happening. And let's face it, they make a better product, then we will buy it more!!!
If you are still on the fence of what to do, my best advise is use your best judgement. While I consider myself on one side, I will take the time to check and ensure there will be no issues for my products designed for my customers.
Thanks for stopping by and let me know what side you are on!
Here you will be kept up to date with all the new stitches in the quilting and sewing world, and of course even some information from Made at Home Quilts ...and then some!!! Keep in touch for new products, sales and just some great opinions!!!
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