Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Be the Lucky Winner

Some sayings I believe. Check out those shops if you like inspirational word decor. I want to talk about it a little in the context of my life and work right now. My Kickstarter is off to a slower start than I imagined, and that had me down a little yesterday. Before ever launching the project, I envisioned it going out in the Kickstarter email and getting amazing support from all kinds of people. I never even considered what it would look like if Kickstarter did nothing to promote it and it was all up to me. If I had considered that, I would have built an email newsletter list. If you have a business but no email newsletter opt-in, change that now. You don't know when you will need it. Even if you have no newsletter to send out, start preparing your list of people who have given their permission for such a time as this. I have over 6500 people who have bought from me on Etsy and almost 1,000 on Craftsy. I could have a huge email list. By this time next year, I will have a huge email list. There are more projects coming - like maybe a book - and I will need to get the word out.
My friend Amber over at One Shabby Chick - a very popular sewing blog because she sews amazing stuff and shares it - is having a great giveaway. I want to link you to the giveaway, and say thanks to Amber. You can earn extra entries into the giveaway by pledging on my kickstarter, yay! The pledges are coming in. We love contests, don't we?
The Kickstarter project is not a contest for me. It's not like I am asking people to vote for something I made so I can have the honor of being the best. I am asking people to contribute toward the significant expansion of my business. And it's not simply a contribution. People who back my project are getting rewards equal to the full value of their pledge. I provide excellent products. I believe in the patterns and the sewn items I make. I use them myself.  I actually make tangible, valuable products.
Why do I want to expand? There are a few people in my neighborhood who would love to sew for me and get paid. They have things like insurance, groceries, and power bills. I had a business coaching session a while back in which the coach, Maria Marsala, encouraged me to think about the day when my business could help other people by providing jobs. I think it's time for that. My own family has needs that require a bigger business to fulfill them. I think the printed patterns and the sewing notions lines are the right way for me to expand right now. So don't vote for my project, back it! Encourage your friends who don't sew to back it. Facebook has been a great way to spread the word beyond our sewing circles. Just copy the link to the kickstarter page and paste it to your status on Facebook. Or after pledging, there should be a prompt on Kickstarter for you to share on Facebook too. You, my blog readers, are some of the most supportive and giving people I know. Many of you have already pledged support. Thank you! I wanted to put this out there in case there is a lesson in it for someone in the future.
Connect with me personally on Facebook and/or connect with my business page on Facebook. Join me, and let's rock this thing. I really want to show Kickstarter that this little sewing business can make it even without their newsletter.

Friday, October 19, 2012

StudioCherie on Kickstarter

This is my big news. My Kickstarter campaign. If you have never heard of Kickstarter, I think you may become enchanted with it as I have. It is a place to go to support fellow business owners as they expand. I have supported everything from musical art projects to marshmallows. And now it's the place I chose to reach out for funding to expand my business. I think you will love my new printed sewing patterns and I hope a lot of you will back my project at the $12 level to gain access to these patterns as they launch. No one else will be able to buy them one at a time. They are meant for quilt shops. If you make luggage tags by the ton the way I do, there is a huge time saver for you there too.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Been a long time

Duffle Line up with me
Originally uploaded by studiocherie
There are big things in the works here. It's not that I don't have anything to say. I have been working from 9AM to 10PM most days. I do break for yoga and the occasional walk in the woods. Here is the short list of what is happening:
* new patterns being worked on (as always) Backpacks are still next.
* I've made 3 or 4 things that were not on the list of patterns to produce, but now they are. Maybe I should call that off-road sewing. Fun, small projects.
* I have an intern! Yay. She deserves her own blog post.
* I have a fabulous local graphic designer working up new pattern covers for me. I am reformatting my patterns into a fun, booklet format and packaging them for quilt shops. The luggage tags pattern is done and Sew EZ Too in Spokane will be carrying them this week. This is a big project and I am really excited about reaching a new audience in the quilt shops. I have been selling wholesale patterns in my Etsy store for a couple of years, but these are upgraded versions.
* To go along with the above, I am applying to Quilt Market for the Spring show in Portland.
* I am getting ready to package notions to go along with my patterns. Usually my zippers are custom sizes and colors. I am going to start selling those. I have another line of notions that I won't tell about until they launch, but I am excited about it.
* In the Spring, you will see my iPad case pattern and the Kindle Fire and Nexus Patterns, all 3 together bundled in the Simplicity catalog.
* My next 2 patterns for Simplicity will be furniture patterns!
* And a couple other things I am not ready to share.
I will try to be better at keeping in touch here. I do appreciate you being here.