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Friday, 31 October 2014

CRAFT BUSINESS/WORKING BITES: Craft Stalls... Eating a Healthy Balanced Diet Whilst Working.

Today is the last post of Craft Business month here on the blog... I hope you have found things useful so far? I am planning to revisit the topic again in the future, so please feel free to add a comment below this post to give me feedback and ideas for future posts you would like to read about.
 
So I wanted to talk a little bit about the importance of eating a healthy diet when you are vending at a show... something I have only learned to do over time, but something I should have started with!
 
When you prepare for a show, what are the things you think about the most? Product, display, marketing? Yes, if you are like me you have most everything under control, it's only when the clock hits 11 o'clock the first show morning that you realise once again you haven't packed a lunch... off you go to the nearest food booth (if you can find someone to stand on you stall for 5-10 minutes) and buy the biggest, but easiest thing to eat... if you are lucky and working a up-market craft show then you might eat a gourmet burger, or a fancy salad... but more than likely you are eating the easiest sandwich, cake or packet of crisps you can find... this, as I say is all if you can find someone to stand in for you. 
 
What are the implications of not eating, or not eating well;
  • Tiredness, leading to lack of focus.
  • Embarrassment over the noises your tummy is making (and to put it politely wind).
  • Headaches.
  • Low mood.
What does this mean? Potentially this could lead to a fall in sales throughout the day... if you are not feeling 100%, then you cannot work at 100%.
 
Why a balanced diet will help;
  • Energy - a balanced diet should provide you with enough energy to complete the day without that flat feeling at 3pm.
  • Focus - eating the right foods will help stimulate the mind and might make you more fired-up for the sales patter required.
  • Feeling happy - eating well puts you in a better mood.
So how do you find time to make delicious well balanced food to take with you? Well it is all in the planning (something I constantly strive for) and something that is definitely worth making time in your schedule to produce.
 
Now I'm no chef, but I do cook and so I thought this might be an opportunity to share with you some recipes under a new category for the blog, entitled WORKING BITES. I'm going to start initial posts throughout November as our blog focus... leading up to the holidays this might also help you come up with some new ideas for lunch and snacks at your busiest production time.
 
What will we be focusing on?
  1. Foods with longer releasing energy.
  2. Lower calorie treats.
  3. Balancing the food groups.
  4. and as an aside I will be testing dairy free recipes (as that is my own personal allergy).
We will also be looking at:
  1. Food storage.
  2. Store Cupboard essentials.
  3. Make-now-eat-later ideas.
I'm really looking forward to this chapter on the blog... I hope you will join me.

Have a wonderful day... Sara x

Thursday, 30 October 2014

REVIEW: Craft A Creative Business by Fiona Pullen.


Publisher: Search Press*
Edition: BC Paperback / softback
Publication: 23 October 2014
ISBN 13/EAN: 9781782210528
Illustrations: 50
Pages: 240
RRP Price: £12.99
 
 

Successful craft business owner Fiona Pullen, owner of the Sewing Directory, explains how to turn a pastime, skill and talent into a fulfilling and rewarding commercial success. Anyone wanting to turn their hobby, craft or art skills into a successful business should read this clear, accessible and thorough guide.

A complete must-read guide for anyone wanting to turn their hobby, craft or art skills into a successful business. Covering everything you ever wanted to know, Fiona gives clear, simple advice on the importance of identifying markets, focusing on a USP, assessing the competition, making sure the price is right and setting goals. The book includes sections on product photography, branding. and legal matters. The book has particular emphasis on online selling, with detailed information on markets, blogging, using social media and the importance of analytics and SEO (search engine optimisation). Information on offline selling is included too, with notes on selling at craft fairs, trade fairs and markets, selling through retail outlets, running courses and workshops, and featuring work in the media. "The Craft & Hobby Association UK (CHA-UK) highly recommends Craft a Creative Business as a must read for anybody starting-up or working in the craft industry! It gives you insightful knowledge, helpful hints and tips written in an easy to read format by the incredible Fiona Pullen." Craig De Souza, CHA-UK
• A simple guide that covers effective ways of setting up and running a craft business
• High profile author with an active social media network and many followers
• Popular subject, with the internet making it easier now to set up businesses
• A fantastic reference book and user guide, tailored to craftspeople and artists
 
 
Image from book.
My review... This book is the meat and potatoes of the issues you need to understand before you start your creative business. It covers the basics in self-employment, legal matters, branding, marketing and selling. I like how it sets out those issues and helps you to create goals and checklists to help your progression. It also carries heaps of useful links (not just UK based) and a few examples of trading businesses.
 
Image from book.

There is a lovely section on social media (which for quick technology change may become dated sooner than you think, but still worth every word of type), which talks your though various platforms, how to use them and suggested ways of marketing your products through them.
 
I really like this business book and definitely recommend it.
 
If you are thinking of starting your own craft business, here are some more links I recommend researching:
Have a wonderful day... Sara x

P.S. Don't forget our giveaway for 2 copies of this book!
 
http://sarastexturecrafts.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/giveaways

This is a sponsored review by Sara's Texture Crafts*.
 
CREDITS
Thank you to Search Press for allowing me to review this book.

* Disclaimer – This book was gifted to me for review by Search Press. They offered no monetary compensation for the review or to bias my opinion and none was taken. All of the above review is my own and my opinions should be taken as such. 
 
If you would like me to consider your product or book for review, please contact me for further details, or see the relevant information provided on the Reviews Page.

SHOP UPDATE: Pick and Mix is Here!


Yes, the pick and mix you have been hearing all about on my podcasts is finally here!
 
Pick and Mix is your way of selecting the small amounts of textural fibres and yarns in wool and silk that you want for your projects. Prices start from just 2g amounts, so the world is your oyster... have as much or as little as you like.
 
These items are great for; felt making, paper making, spinning, textile arts and more!
 
I am continuing to work on new colourways of fleece, wool tops and silks to top this up, so please keep checking back.
 
Find everything you need at www.sarastexturecrafts.com

Have a wonderful day... Sara x

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Artist Blows Knitting Glass!

Artist Carol Milne @knits with glass'. Source: Collossal.
I was catching up on blogs the other day when I came across this stunning piece of glass art by Carol Milne. I am awestruck by the hours of work this piece must have taken... aren't you? Fabulous! I thought it was well worth sharing here on the blog.
 
What is your favourite piece of art that nods to the knitting craft? Please share a link below in the comments section.


Have a wonderful day... Sara x

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