November 29, 2008

Let the Sales Begin!

I am a big old pimp for my shop today; do I look good in the fuzzy hat?

Maybe in purple…

In addition to my own shop I also want to highly recommend some items that simply amaze me. Cyber Monday is right around the corner so get with the shopping before these fabulous goodies are all gone!

Favorites from my own shop

Favorites from other shops

Happy shopping, happy sales!

Buy handmade and go green!

November 16, 2008

Beyond Cool

Wowsa, yesterday was great! I chatted with so many different people, handed out tons of cards, discussed the importance of using upcycled material in my designs, saw some family and friends and even sold a few items which had me not only reaching where I wanted to be but exceeding the goals I had set out for the day. WOO HOO!

My Mom did this fair last year and convinced me to give it a go because there was fairly decent traffic and a nice mix of buyers and sellers. She was not wrong! We were lucky enough to request tables right next to each other which was great so we could man each other’s booth when one of us had a need to venture out. Here are the original set ups; we both adjusted placement of materials as the day went on and after doing so both of us got more sales. Coincidence?

I promised to keep everyone updated on the progress of the entertainment center construction as well and Matt certainly got his pallet on yesterday! He located a coffee house in Brighton who was advertising on craigslist that free pallets were available behind the store for anyone to come and snag anytime they like. Some of the reasons he went with that particular one were because he figured they would be sturdy pallets due to the weight they would have to bear as well as a lack of leaked material on the wood which could mean mold or just yucky smells. Other than the aromatic smell of coffee, which if you know us at all is not exactly something we consider a detriment, the wood was mold and smell free.

He was able to acquire a good number of pallets that could be broken down on site (not always possible) and where he did not have to take everything just to get a few good ones (something many places actually required). When I arrived home yesterday he was out on the balcony removing nails and pieces from each other with a bunch of tools.

It took him a good five or six hours to complete everything yesterday from driving over there to completing disassembly but at the end of the day he had a nice stack of lumber drying on the balcony, ready to be planed down.

Since we are attempting to construct this unit completely for free (meaning we do not want to spend any money we have earned from jobs to pay for necessary material needed for construction like hardware, screws, biscuits, glue, paint, etc), as well as reduce the clutter in our apartment, I knew it was time to sell a few more items on craigslist as well. Friday afternoon I posted our old dehumidifier that we still had hanging around from the days of owning a house with a wet-ish basement.

Up until Friday we had been using it as a stand for our bedroom fan; not really operating in the way it should be (plus Matt can just build us a new stand out of pallets right?). Well while he was deconstructing on the balcony, I was in our living room meeting up with a guy who saw the ad on craigslist and came to buy it. Cha-ching. Fifty dollars immediately went into the entertainment center fund and someone who needed it would be putting the dehumidifier to use in its correct function! That will surely acquire a goodly portion, if not all, of the necessary materials we need to finish this baby up.

Matt just wrote up a little something on his pallet retrieval experiences; those who are inclined can read it here.

Based on his calculations we are currently at +$49.18. Yippie!

November 14, 2008

A Haphazard Mish-Mosh of Arbitrary Madness

That, or “this is going to be a whole bunch of random stuff that has nothing in common other than it is all what is going on in my world right now which is sometimes inconsequential but always all over the place”. Guess that title would be a little too long so I’m happy with the one I went with instead. So then let’s get on with the jumbled mess I call my daily world.

First and foremost this is the last time I’ll be pimping to get as many people as possible out to the FUMC Craft Fair in Melrose tomorrow. 645 Main St 9:00 - 1:00.

All my bags

Are packed

I’m ready to go!

Now that the sales will commence and the production of all those upcycled fabrics lessens, we can finally get our house back together. It is going to seem like we have so much space in our teeny apartment and the quilt-like layer of tiny threads all over the carpet will succumb to the vacuum on Sunday during football. Yee-haw!

Recently Charmaine posted a link to a really fun site where I spent some time “yearbooking” myself into a bunch of different time periods. It made me chuckle to see myself in these different eras but what was really funny is that the 1990 photo is scarily too close to my actual yearbook picture from 1991.

How much hairspray would this take?

I always wondered what I would look like with an afro.

To bang or not to bang?

See what I mean? Talk about hairspray, ugh.

Tomorrow Matt is going to hit the road and start acquiring a trunk load of pallets so we can start construction on our entertainment center. It is going to be a whole lot of fun to watch this thing come together. Nothing like acquiring material for free to create an enormous piece of furniture. I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed that it comes out nice because he already has plans to build a bunch of other functional furniture pieces using this free stock of lumber. That should keep him out of trouble for the entire winter and then he and B can bond over manly things like sawdust and planers while S and I bond over shaking our heads at the guys but enjoying the fruits of their labor.

November 10, 2008

Nip Tuck Color

A month or so ago I took the time to update my blog template but I completely forgot about, or rather neglected, my company website. As a company I have a logo, standard font, etc. and the color scheme / layout I had chosen was similar to the old blog -- basic gray background with a cranberry header bar. After I hired Judi FitzPatrick Studios to create a kick ass direct mail postcard image to drum up new wall treatment business, I was inspired to make the change. Here is a screen shot of the original snooze-inducing website that I had been happy with for the past year.

It is not a bad looking site -- streamlined and clean -- but definitely basic.

I am a big believer in the fundamental premise of ‘ask and you shall receive’, along the lines of visualizing what I want and then getting it. When I officially opened my business last fall I announced that my goal for it was to be up and running, fully operational and making a small profit within the first year. I am proud to say that exactly what I asked for happened and I could not be more grateful for the opportunity to work on my own and for myself while delivering the highest of standards to my clients. It has been a fun year of discovering new techniques, realizing where my true passions lie and feeling out where I want the real focus of my company to head.

As a new year begins for Chucka Stone Designs there are things I am asking for, expect to work on and fully intend to get by next fall. Increasing business in faux, publishing and handbags is where I will strongly focus and I plan to scale back on other endeavors like graphic design and jewelry.

Although I do not consider myself a vain person, I feel that when I perceive myself as looking good it makes me feel good as well. I am confident to go out and flirt with the world, to get anything I want. So today I gave a monster facelift to all six pages of my poorly lacking website so it could feel good and assist in helping me tackle the new goals I have set for this year. Click on the screen shot to take a peek at the newly improved Chucka Stone Designs home in cyberspace. She is one well dressed and snazzy company now if I do say so myself!