I changed my font at scrappinblogs.blogspot.com

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010!!

Well, the big day has come and gone for another year! I was finished my shopping by the end of November - not sure how that happened but it was nice not having to fight the crowds this year - that just ain't my thing! Now we're trying to figure out what to do with turkey left overs - my 5 year old son doesn't eat meat and my 17 year old daughter, my husband and I aren't really fans of turkey either (this is a "cook once a year deal") so I guess I'll be making a big pot of soup. It was only a 7lb turkey, but it had a lot of meat on it!

We decided to get a pal for our older male cat, Buster, so today, we drove out to the North Thompson area (Darfield) and picked up the cutest barn kitten from a family my husband met while doing inspections. (Adam is a Building Inspector for the TNRD - Thompson Nicola Regional District). It's a Calico cat and I believe it's female, but we'll know for sure when we take her to the vet. We've decided to name her Jazmine - Jaz for short. This name will come in handy if "she" turns out to be a "he" -  although most Calicos are female, there are occasionally male ones, so we can change it to Jazz or Jazzy. Anyway, she's adorable and if she stops moving long enough I'll post a picture. So far, Buster seems to be ok with the new addition (no hissing or growling) but we're keeping them separated for a few days until they get used to each other's smell. Buster adopted us when we had our other cat, a spayed female named Tigger. She didn't like him at first but they accepted each other soon enough. Tigger died in 2006 (she was 17) and Buster has been without a feline companion since then. We'll see how it goes.  

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Benefits of Being Organized!

I really find that my creativity drags when things are disorganized in my studio. Who feels like creating when you can't find what you're looking for and nothing is where you thought it was? Fortunately, I don't have any more shows lined up for this year so now is a great time to get organized! Unfortunately, I've decided to do a major studio overhaul again so it's turned into a really BIG job!

I'm really excited about the "finished project" though, once I have everything in place again. Of course, while moving things around and around in the studio I keep coming across stuff that I started working on but, for whatever reason, it got put aside at some point and then I forgot about it - oops! Anyway, "cleaning house" is a great way to get your creative juices flowing and I'm feeling revitalized already!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!

We've finally had "some" snow here in Kamloops so it's beginning to look more "Christmasy"  here but man, I could sure do without the Arctic Outflow wind we have over BC right now. It drops the temperature a good 10 degrees lower than it actually is (they don't call it Wind Chill for nothing) Brrrr..... Makes you extra thankful to have a warm house to live in, that's for sure!

In honour of the upcoming holiday I've also added some "Christmas" flavour to my blog with a new template from Scrappin' Blogs  What do you think? The hardest part was deciding which background to choose! Knowing me, I'm sure I'll try out a few more in the coming months. LOL!

Now, I really should get back to working on re-organizing my studio. It should be done by now, but my son was home sick from school all last week and I didn't get around to doing much of that. I did manage to get a second table in there (who doesn't need more workspace) and now I just have to decide if I want to move my sewing table in too - but that means I have to move one of my shelves out. I can do that but there would be a lot more work involved!! LOL I do like the idea of having my work area confined to the same room though i.e. I can leave things in progress and just close the door if necessary. My son was excited to see the extra table in the studio too - now he has a craft spot too! Yes, like his older sister before him, I've turned my son into a crafter - yeah! Just doing my part to keep the craft industry going!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

CRAFT SHOW UPDATE, ETC...

I did my one and only craft show for the year a week ago Sunday and it went well considering the economy right now. I'm not planning to do any more shows this year as I'm really needing a break after dealing with my husband's health crisis over the Summer. I'm happy to report that he's continuing to do really well and he's been back at work full-time now. When you live with a chronic illness (25+ years) you never know what the future holds but we are SO grateful to still have him here with us and thank God for the many blessings we've received, this year especially.

As for me, I suppose my immune system was really rundown after the stress of the Summer and the move and everything. Right after my son started Kindergarten in September I got a cold. I then caught another one at the beginning of October (my son too) and I was sick for the entire month! So much for getting any work done! Here it is mid-November and I've still got a lingering little cough that comes and goes. Ugh, I've never been sick for this long in my life and it really put a damper on my creativity, I can tell you. So, lesson learned the hard way, I've decided to take it easy for the rest of the year and just get re-organized and take my time working on all the ideas I want to make for next year.

Every year since I started doing craft shows (14+ years now) I've taken a notebook with me so I could write down my impressions of each show before, during and afterwards. Even if I'm busy I still try to make a point of writing things down. This has proven to be an invaluable tool for my business. It allows me to review the show once I get home so I can go over it and remember "what worked" and "what didn't." I also comment on my set up and how the display worked for me and my customers, any comments I hear, any requests I get or items people are looking for that I don't have. I write down things about my booth location, who was around me selling (often you will have the same sellers around your space year after year so it's good to remind yourself what they had so you don't compete). I write down what I liked and didn't like about the show in general and how things could be improved. I also write down things I don't want to sell (other people have similar stuff) and also, I write ideas for things that I do want to sell next time that I didn't see at the show.

There were quite a few things I wanted to make this year but I just didn't get around to it or I started them and I just didn't get them finished in time. I had two items that no one was selling that I "know" would have gone like hot cakes - if I'd finished them in time! Well, I've got a good leg up on next years sales!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Making a list...or rather, make that list! LOL

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I'm kind of obsessed with list making and organizing things. I'm really not sure where that comes from, since according to my older sister, Debbie, I was a real slob when I was younger (well,not really, she was just a whole lot "fussier" than me, that's all LOL). I really do like things to be organized though, mainly so I know exactly "what" I have and "where" it's located. It's been challenging keeping organized since we've moved around quite a bit and each time we move I need to pack and unpack and reorganize again. It's a great way to "re-visit" your stuff though! It was providence really that my very first job in the corporate world involved working in a departmental file room of a large municipality - it was a big job with lots and lots of files to keep track of but I loved it!

An example of one of the lists I keep is a database I created that lists every movie my husband and I own (all 680 of them at last count). It's not just an alphabetical listing, but includes whether it's VHS or DVD and if it's original or taped from tv. Then, of course, they are shelved alphabetically and according to type as well so you can find what you are looking for easily.

Of course, since I'm a craftaholic, you can appreciate that after 15+ years of operating a business at home I've accumulated a "few" craft supplies - I won't embarass myself telling you exactly how many craft supplies I do have, lets just say it's "A WHOLE LOT". So in order to keep track of it all I have a database which list all the supplies I've bought, what I paid for them (per item), where I bought them from and how many of each (that reminds me, I need to do another inventory soon). I also have a database for all my sewing patterns (wow, do I really own 348 sewing patterns?) and painting/craft books. I have a spreadsheet type list for giftware I have created that shows how many of each item I have, the price of each item and how many I've sold. It automatically calculates the total value of stock on hand as well as the value of stock sold too, etc. I take this list shows and it helps me keep track of how many things I brought with me, their prices, etc. The "list" of lists goes on and on!

My most extensive craft list would have to be my cross stitch database that I created to keep track of all the cross stitch magazines and books I own. Cross stitch is really the first craft I became obsessed with about 28 years ago now and I still love it. Since that obsession began, I've bought magazines and books over the years with designs I'd love to make. Honestly, I know I'll probably never live long enough to make them all but...who cares! LOL My cross stitch database is the most detailed list as it not only lists each magazine or book but the patterns in each with details about each pattern. This way, if I needed a pattern with say, a heart in it, I can search using "heart" and it would tell me every magazine or book I have that has patterns with a heart in it! That way I don't have to search through as many magazines/books! Not that I don't enjoy looking through all my books, but I tend to get caught up in looking at all the designs and not keeping on track about what I was looking for in the first place. It's not a bad thing really, but a time waster that's ok when you have the time but not very helpful when you're supposed to be doing something else! LOL

C'est la vie (That's life!)

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Monday, November 8, 2010

FREE SHIPPING TO USA & CANADA !

Hi Everyone,

Just a quick note to let you know that we're offering FREE SHIPPING TO THE USA & CANADA for the entire month of November in our Artfire studio! Please drop in and check it out. We'll be adding some new items weekly.

Favourite Things Gift Studio

or shop with our Rapid Cart link:




Cheryl

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Happy Fall Y'all!

Well, here it is October already and the Christmas craft fair season is just around the corner. The weather here in Kamloops has been really weird lately - all year really - but we're having a little heat wave again. My air conditioner kicked in last night too, it was that warm in the house!

Fall really signals a change, so that's what I've decided to do this year when I closed my own domain website and started moving my giftware over to an ArtFire Studio. I'm really excited about this and I'm slowly getting things uploaded there. I also found a bunch of things that I need to photograph so I'll be doing that in the coming weeks and then uploading them to my studio.

As time permits, I'm also developing a whole new line of giftware items. Watch for the new stuff....coming soon!

Enjoy the changing of the seasons and Happy Crafting!

Cheryl

Monday, September 27, 2010

Check out my ArtFire Studio!

Well, we're changing things up a bit here at Favourite Things Gift Studio. After a lot of consideration, I've decided to close my domain website and move all of my giftware items into an ArtFire Studio. This is the best venue for me right now, and I'm really excited to get everything uploaded and ready for the upcoming holiday shopping season! Please be sure to change your bookmarks to the new website for Favourite Things Gift Studio.


ArtFire - Buy Handmade - Sell Handmade

Friday, September 24, 2010

Changes coming....

Well, it's been a long time since I've posted any updates. Unfortunately, at the end of June, my husband had a major health emergency (due to a chronic health issue he's had for 25 years). We almost lost him twice and he had to spend three weeks in the hospital, so my business has been on the back burner up until now. Fortunately, by the grace of God, all the wonderful health care professionals in our community and major prayers from so many people, he made it through and is recovering quite nicely. He's just started back to work last week and it's going well. We're so grateful for all the blessings we've received.

Now that I've got the time, I've decided to make some changes to my website. I'm not going to say "specifically" what those changes will be, but I'm hoping that everyone will enjoy the changes I'm making. Watch for a new and exciting venue for all my customers to shop from - with more of the things you love and some new and exciting things too!

Stay tuned!

Cheryl

Friday, June 18, 2010

Updated look for my blog!

Well, if you've visited by blog before you might notice that I've changed something....the background colour has gone from black to beige! I love the look of the black but I always wondered if some people might find it hard to read - white writing on black background is a little hard on the eyes, I must admit. So I'll try this for a while until I get sick of it too and change to something new - I'm a Gemini, what can I say!!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl

Thursday, May 27, 2010

What craft supplies are YOU looking for?

I mentioned in a previous post that I've been searching for craft supplies so I can create some new items I want to make. When I started my business back in 1995 (good grief, was it really that long ago?!), it used to be quite easy to find suppliers for everything I needed. Now it's really become difficult in the past seven years - especially if you're looking for a Canadian Supplier. And you think you're annoyed at the retail stores when you can't get something?! LOL It often isn't much better at the wholesaler level either.

I used to have two really good wholesale suppliers for wood - which I'm sure you can appreciate I use a LOT of in the production of my ornaments. Between the two of them, I could basically get everything I needed and it was great. Unfortunately, they both closed within a year of each other - actually, one was bought by another company and no longer carries craft supplies and the other one was bought by a company in the USA and moved their operations south. UGH! This severely threw a wrench in my business and has forced me to re-think what I'm doing. I now have to decide whether or not I still want to continue using wood.

I have no problem buying from the USA - I've done it off and on over the years when I wanted something that I couldn't get in Canada yet. Even paying the exchange rate/shipping/duty, I could still get supplies cheaper than I could in Canada - retail price in the USA is basically the wholesale price in Canada. Now, you'd think that today, with the Canadian dollar at par (or almost) with the US Dollar, it would be an even better deal importing from the USA. There's one big problem now - SHIPPING COSTS!! Wood is heavy, but regardless of that, I can't justify buying $200 worth of product and paying $100+ to ship it to Canada!! Ouch!! It's not the suppliers fault - it's the "extras" that shippers add to things. Like fuel surcharges. I know the price of gas has gone up, but when you're charging the same "surcharge" on every package you ship, you can't tell me they aren't making a killing with a truck load of items to deliver. 


Anyway, I'm really considering changing the medium I work with to something more readily available in Canada. Either that or I'll become a wood wholesaler myself!!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl  

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Is it April already?!!!

....that can't be right?! I really don't know where the time goes anymore. It's so easy to get caught up in creating and family and life in general that before you know it half a month has flown by!

I've been busy, so I haven't updated as recently as I would have liked to. I always have "a lot of irons in the fire." Maybe that's a Gemini thing or insanity or just me, I don't know! Since I wear almost all the hats at Favourite Things Gift Studio as well as looking after my family (including homeschooling my teenage daughter), I often don't get to everything on my TO DO list as quickly as I'd like. At least I don't have to do the bookkeeping anymore. No offense to anyone who enjoys playing with numbers but bookkeeping is so boring to me. I can do it, but there's nothing creative about it so it's just another chore for me - one I gladly passed on to my husband Adam, who's also my business partner. He has to have something else to do besides schlepp my stock to shows! Poor man.


I'm working on a few new things for this year. Finding suppliers for what I need is a big hassle though. I'm sure most crafters can relate to finding something you want to create but you can't find the supplies you need. Or worse, you can only find some things. It's so annoying - and I have access to wholesale! UGH! I finally got an Import number, so I may try to solve this problem myself and not rely on wholesale distributers anymore. I'll keep you posted.

Back to the studio!

Cheryl

Friday, February 19, 2010

Reorganizing the Studio.....Again!!!

I guess I must be a glutton for punishment because I'm reorganizing my studio space AGAIN!!! Actually, I really do like to organize things (yeah, I'm weird) and after working in my new studio set up last Fall I realized that I'd like to make some changes. Sometimes, you don't know if you will like a space until you work in it!

I'm really not doing anything major, just shifting a few things around to make the space more efficient and workable for me - for now. Being a Gemini though, I know I'll change it around again to something else once I get tired of the "new" set up. I just can't help it.

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Saturday, February 6, 2010

If you're into Sure Cuts a Lot software....

be sure to check out the great SVG files at:



Lots of free files too!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl

Merry Christmas 2010!!

Well, the big day has come and gone for another year! I was finished my shopping by the end of November - not sure how that happened but it was nice not having to fight the crowds this year - that just ain't my thing! Now we're trying to figure out what to do with turkey left overs - my 5 year old son doesn't eat meat and my 17 year old daughter, my husband and I aren't really fans of turkey either (this is a "cook once a year deal") so I guess I'll be making a big pot of soup. It was only a 7lb turkey, but it had a lot of meat on it!

We decided to get a pal for our older male cat, Buster, so today, we drove out to the North Thompson area (Darfield) and picked up the cutest barn kitten from a family my husband met while doing inspections. (Adam is a Building Inspector for the TNRD - Thompson Nicola Regional District). It's a Calico cat and I believe it's female, but we'll know for sure when we take her to the vet. We've decided to name her Jazmine - Jaz for short. This name will come in handy if "she" turns out to be a "he" -  although most Calicos are female, there are occasionally male ones, so we can change it to Jazz or Jazzy. Anyway, she's adorable and if she stops moving long enough I'll post a picture. So far, Buster seems to be ok with the new addition (no hissing or growling) but we're keeping them separated for a few days until they get used to each other's smell. Buster adopted us when we had our other cat, a spayed female named Tigger. She didn't like him at first but they accepted each other soon enough. Tigger died in 2006 (she was 17) and Buster has been without a feline companion since then. We'll see how it goes.  

The Benefits of Being Organized!

I really find that my creativity drags when things are disorganized in my studio. Who feels like creating when you can't find what you're looking for and nothing is where you thought it was? Fortunately, I don't have any more shows lined up for this year so now is a great time to get organized! Unfortunately, I've decided to do a major studio overhaul again so it's turned into a really BIG job!

I'm really excited about the "finished project" though, once I have everything in place again. Of course, while moving things around and around in the studio I keep coming across stuff that I started working on but, for whatever reason, it got put aside at some point and then I forgot about it - oops! Anyway, "cleaning house" is a great way to get your creative juices flowing and I'm feeling revitalized already!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!

We've finally had "some" snow here in Kamloops so it's beginning to look more "Christmasy"  here but man, I could sure do without the Arctic Outflow wind we have over BC right now. It drops the temperature a good 10 degrees lower than it actually is (they don't call it Wind Chill for nothing) Brrrr..... Makes you extra thankful to have a warm house to live in, that's for sure!

In honour of the upcoming holiday I've also added some "Christmas" flavour to my blog with a new template from Scrappin' Blogs  What do you think? The hardest part was deciding which background to choose! Knowing me, I'm sure I'll try out a few more in the coming months. LOL!

Now, I really should get back to working on re-organizing my studio. It should be done by now, but my son was home sick from school all last week and I didn't get around to doing much of that. I did manage to get a second table in there (who doesn't need more workspace) and now I just have to decide if I want to move my sewing table in too - but that means I have to move one of my shelves out. I can do that but there would be a lot more work involved!! LOL I do like the idea of having my work area confined to the same room though i.e. I can leave things in progress and just close the door if necessary. My son was excited to see the extra table in the studio too - now he has a craft spot too! Yes, like his older sister before him, I've turned my son into a crafter - yeah! Just doing my part to keep the craft industry going!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

CRAFT SHOW UPDATE, ETC...

I did my one and only craft show for the year a week ago Sunday and it went well considering the economy right now. I'm not planning to do any more shows this year as I'm really needing a break after dealing with my husband's health crisis over the Summer. I'm happy to report that he's continuing to do really well and he's been back at work full-time now. When you live with a chronic illness (25+ years) you never know what the future holds but we are SO grateful to still have him here with us and thank God for the many blessings we've received, this year especially.

As for me, I suppose my immune system was really rundown after the stress of the Summer and the move and everything. Right after my son started Kindergarten in September I got a cold. I then caught another one at the beginning of October (my son too) and I was sick for the entire month! So much for getting any work done! Here it is mid-November and I've still got a lingering little cough that comes and goes. Ugh, I've never been sick for this long in my life and it really put a damper on my creativity, I can tell you. So, lesson learned the hard way, I've decided to take it easy for the rest of the year and just get re-organized and take my time working on all the ideas I want to make for next year.

Every year since I started doing craft shows (14+ years now) I've taken a notebook with me so I could write down my impressions of each show before, during and afterwards. Even if I'm busy I still try to make a point of writing things down. This has proven to be an invaluable tool for my business. It allows me to review the show once I get home so I can go over it and remember "what worked" and "what didn't." I also comment on my set up and how the display worked for me and my customers, any comments I hear, any requests I get or items people are looking for that I don't have. I write down things about my booth location, who was around me selling (often you will have the same sellers around your space year after year so it's good to remind yourself what they had so you don't compete). I write down what I liked and didn't like about the show in general and how things could be improved. I also write down things I don't want to sell (other people have similar stuff) and also, I write ideas for things that I do want to sell next time that I didn't see at the show.

There were quite a few things I wanted to make this year but I just didn't get around to it or I started them and I just didn't get them finished in time. I had two items that no one was selling that I "know" would have gone like hot cakes - if I'd finished them in time! Well, I've got a good leg up on next years sales!

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

Making a list...or rather, make that list! LOL

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I'm kind of obsessed with list making and organizing things. I'm really not sure where that comes from, since according to my older sister, Debbie, I was a real slob when I was younger (well,not really, she was just a whole lot "fussier" than me, that's all LOL). I really do like things to be organized though, mainly so I know exactly "what" I have and "where" it's located. It's been challenging keeping organized since we've moved around quite a bit and each time we move I need to pack and unpack and reorganize again. It's a great way to "re-visit" your stuff though! It was providence really that my very first job in the corporate world involved working in a departmental file room of a large municipality - it was a big job with lots and lots of files to keep track of but I loved it!

An example of one of the lists I keep is a database I created that lists every movie my husband and I own (all 680 of them at last count). It's not just an alphabetical listing, but includes whether it's VHS or DVD and if it's original or taped from tv. Then, of course, they are shelved alphabetically and according to type as well so you can find what you are looking for easily.

Of course, since I'm a craftaholic, you can appreciate that after 15+ years of operating a business at home I've accumulated a "few" craft supplies - I won't embarass myself telling you exactly how many craft supplies I do have, lets just say it's "A WHOLE LOT". So in order to keep track of it all I have a database which list all the supplies I've bought, what I paid for them (per item), where I bought them from and how many of each (that reminds me, I need to do another inventory soon). I also have a database for all my sewing patterns (wow, do I really own 348 sewing patterns?) and painting/craft books. I have a spreadsheet type list for giftware I have created that shows how many of each item I have, the price of each item and how many I've sold. It automatically calculates the total value of stock on hand as well as the value of stock sold too, etc. I take this list shows and it helps me keep track of how many things I brought with me, their prices, etc. The "list" of lists goes on and on!

My most extensive craft list would have to be my cross stitch database that I created to keep track of all the cross stitch magazines and books I own. Cross stitch is really the first craft I became obsessed with about 28 years ago now and I still love it. Since that obsession began, I've bought magazines and books over the years with designs I'd love to make. Honestly, I know I'll probably never live long enough to make them all but...who cares! LOL My cross stitch database is the most detailed list as it not only lists each magazine or book but the patterns in each with details about each pattern. This way, if I needed a pattern with say, a heart in it, I can search using "heart" and it would tell me every magazine or book I have that has patterns with a heart in it! That way I don't have to search through as many magazines/books! Not that I don't enjoy looking through all my books, but I tend to get caught up in looking at all the designs and not keeping on track about what I was looking for in the first place. It's not a bad thing really, but a time waster that's ok when you have the time but not very helpful when you're supposed to be doing something else! LOL

C'est la vie (That's life!)

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

FREE SHIPPING TO USA & CANADA !

Hi Everyone,

Just a quick note to let you know that we're offering FREE SHIPPING TO THE USA & CANADA for the entire month of November in our Artfire studio! Please drop in and check it out. We'll be adding some new items weekly.

Favourite Things Gift Studio

or shop with our Rapid Cart link:




Cheryl

Happy Fall Y'all!

Well, here it is October already and the Christmas craft fair season is just around the corner. The weather here in Kamloops has been really weird lately - all year really - but we're having a little heat wave again. My air conditioner kicked in last night too, it was that warm in the house!

Fall really signals a change, so that's what I've decided to do this year when I closed my own domain website and started moving my giftware over to an ArtFire Studio. I'm really excited about this and I'm slowly getting things uploaded there. I also found a bunch of things that I need to photograph so I'll be doing that in the coming weeks and then uploading them to my studio.

As time permits, I'm also developing a whole new line of giftware items. Watch for the new stuff....coming soon!

Enjoy the changing of the seasons and Happy Crafting!

Cheryl

Check out my ArtFire Studio!

Well, we're changing things up a bit here at Favourite Things Gift Studio. After a lot of consideration, I've decided to close my domain website and move all of my giftware items into an ArtFire Studio. This is the best venue for me right now, and I'm really excited to get everything uploaded and ready for the upcoming holiday shopping season! Please be sure to change your bookmarks to the new website for Favourite Things Gift Studio.


ArtFire - Buy Handmade - Sell Handmade

Changes coming....

Well, it's been a long time since I've posted any updates. Unfortunately, at the end of June, my husband had a major health emergency (due to a chronic health issue he's had for 25 years). We almost lost him twice and he had to spend three weeks in the hospital, so my business has been on the back burner up until now. Fortunately, by the grace of God, all the wonderful health care professionals in our community and major prayers from so many people, he made it through and is recovering quite nicely. He's just started back to work last week and it's going well. We're so grateful for all the blessings we've received.

Now that I've got the time, I've decided to make some changes to my website. I'm not going to say "specifically" what those changes will be, but I'm hoping that everyone will enjoy the changes I'm making. Watch for a new and exciting venue for all my customers to shop from - with more of the things you love and some new and exciting things too!

Stay tuned!

Cheryl

Updated look for my blog!

Well, if you've visited by blog before you might notice that I've changed something....the background colour has gone from black to beige! I love the look of the black but I always wondered if some people might find it hard to read - white writing on black background is a little hard on the eyes, I must admit. So I'll try this for a while until I get sick of it too and change to something new - I'm a Gemini, what can I say!!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl

What craft supplies are YOU looking for?

I mentioned in a previous post that I've been searching for craft supplies so I can create some new items I want to make. When I started my business back in 1995 (good grief, was it really that long ago?!), it used to be quite easy to find suppliers for everything I needed. Now it's really become difficult in the past seven years - especially if you're looking for a Canadian Supplier. And you think you're annoyed at the retail stores when you can't get something?! LOL It often isn't much better at the wholesaler level either.

I used to have two really good wholesale suppliers for wood - which I'm sure you can appreciate I use a LOT of in the production of my ornaments. Between the two of them, I could basically get everything I needed and it was great. Unfortunately, they both closed within a year of each other - actually, one was bought by another company and no longer carries craft supplies and the other one was bought by a company in the USA and moved their operations south. UGH! This severely threw a wrench in my business and has forced me to re-think what I'm doing. I now have to decide whether or not I still want to continue using wood.

I have no problem buying from the USA - I've done it off and on over the years when I wanted something that I couldn't get in Canada yet. Even paying the exchange rate/shipping/duty, I could still get supplies cheaper than I could in Canada - retail price in the USA is basically the wholesale price in Canada. Now, you'd think that today, with the Canadian dollar at par (or almost) with the US Dollar, it would be an even better deal importing from the USA. There's one big problem now - SHIPPING COSTS!! Wood is heavy, but regardless of that, I can't justify buying $200 worth of product and paying $100+ to ship it to Canada!! Ouch!! It's not the suppliers fault - it's the "extras" that shippers add to things. Like fuel surcharges. I know the price of gas has gone up, but when you're charging the same "surcharge" on every package you ship, you can't tell me they aren't making a killing with a truck load of items to deliver. 


Anyway, I'm really considering changing the medium I work with to something more readily available in Canada. Either that or I'll become a wood wholesaler myself!!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl  

Is it April already?!!!

....that can't be right?! I really don't know where the time goes anymore. It's so easy to get caught up in creating and family and life in general that before you know it half a month has flown by!

I've been busy, so I haven't updated as recently as I would have liked to. I always have "a lot of irons in the fire." Maybe that's a Gemini thing or insanity or just me, I don't know! Since I wear almost all the hats at Favourite Things Gift Studio as well as looking after my family (including homeschooling my teenage daughter), I often don't get to everything on my TO DO list as quickly as I'd like. At least I don't have to do the bookkeeping anymore. No offense to anyone who enjoys playing with numbers but bookkeeping is so boring to me. I can do it, but there's nothing creative about it so it's just another chore for me - one I gladly passed on to my husband Adam, who's also my business partner. He has to have something else to do besides schlepp my stock to shows! Poor man.


I'm working on a few new things for this year. Finding suppliers for what I need is a big hassle though. I'm sure most crafters can relate to finding something you want to create but you can't find the supplies you need. Or worse, you can only find some things. It's so annoying - and I have access to wholesale! UGH! I finally got an Import number, so I may try to solve this problem myself and not rely on wholesale distributers anymore. I'll keep you posted.

Back to the studio!

Cheryl

Reorganizing the Studio.....Again!!!

I guess I must be a glutton for punishment because I'm reorganizing my studio space AGAIN!!! Actually, I really do like to organize things (yeah, I'm weird) and after working in my new studio set up last Fall I realized that I'd like to make some changes. Sometimes, you don't know if you will like a space until you work in it!

I'm really not doing anything major, just shifting a few things around to make the space more efficient and workable for me - for now. Being a Gemini though, I know I'll change it around again to something else once I get tired of the "new" set up. I just can't help it.

Happy Crafting!
Cheryl

If you're into Sure Cuts a Lot software....

be sure to check out the great SVG files at:



Lots of free files too!

Happy Crafting!

Cheryl