The other day when I was visiting my new to me Tweet Deck, I saw that a few famous bloggers were lamenting the haters, the people (other bloggers) that seemingly did not like that they were getting paid for what they do (and what they do well). Blogging is an interesting industry and it may be the only one that another blogger (person in their field) would feel the ‘why not me?’ syndrome. If you are one of those I feel you, I do. I read a very heartfelt blog post the other day from a blogger that had been blogging since 2007 and she was wondering why she wasn’t making money blogging when she was spending hours upon hours editing her photographs. In that same breath of venting she also mentioned that she did not like to do DIY, did not care for photography, food, fashion, etc. If she was going to write commentary on life she had no unique voice, she was neither charming, funny nor anything specific, she did not have a niche. Here’s my secret dear blogger (or aspiring blogger), it is the ‘information super highway’, if you want to make it as a blogger you need to give the world something they can’t find elsewhere. No, it is not impossible. The blogging climate has changed considerably since I started, I am the first one to admit that it is incredibly difficult to get your blog noticed these days, it is a hugely saturated market, BUT what do you have to offer that is different than what is out there? Here’s another tip, you don’t need to blog–gasp! No, really, if you can’t find time to blog on a regular basis, if you find yourself dreading blogging don’t do it, find another medium that you can’t stay away from be it Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, Dribble, Flickr, etc. When you love something it will be effortless and not feel like a chore.
Those ‘famous’ bloggers are also successful because of time, the way the internet works is that it notices that a blog/site has a plethora of information on ‘x’ subject, it has a lot of comments making it even more relevant, the internet ‘spiders’ will crawl for what is the most relevant information. If these famous bloggers have been blogging for years they are unfortunately going to come up more often than a blog that just started writing about the same subject. So write about something that hasn’t been written about, write about something obscure/different that you love that is not easily found now on the interwebs. There are a handful of blogs that are superb with truly original content and it breaks my heart that they aren’t at the top of the heap too, but it’s a 5% club folks, don’t take it personally, keep plugging away but only if it makes your heart sing. I personally am the reluctant blogger, I don’t blog to be a blogger, which I have always said sounds awful like a ‘bad jogger’. I blog because I am addicted, blogging has saved me from dark places and lifted me to lighter ones, it is my exercise and discipline. It connects me to the wide world around me which makes me feel richer. I am not saying if a company wanted to sponsor posts here I would tell them to kick rocks barefoot, not at all, I am just saying that I have not built this space for that, I built it for you and you are what makes me feel like a success. When I started my first blog my husband gave me the most forlorn statistic of how many views the average blog gets (and that was 6 years ago), it was something very bleak. I don’t even read my stats, it’s not quantity but quality that I am after. BUT if you are determined to make your fortune from blogging, than don’t give up, just be original and invest in your blog like you would any new business, brand it to the nines, find a name that is clever, easy to remember and unforgettable, post on a regular basis and don’t give up, because you will know you are doing your dream if it doesn’t feel like work, if it is effortless and the only thing holding you back is more time to do it. If you have specific questions, don’t be afraid to ask them, I am here for you.
I was emailing one of my cyber friends last night (that is a person that I don’t know in ‘real life’ but have become friendly via the interwebs) and mentioned that I have SO many new items to reveal for the shop. I seriously went on a little spree, but in my defense I need to be gearing up for holiday now, as holiday nearly killed me last year, I was seriously so not prepared. For those that have shops/products this is the time when you need to be sending out your press kits to print magazines (they work on 3-6 month lead times). Me? No, I have not designed a press kit, nor can I even fathom doing so right now, do you know how long it takes me to make even the most minute decisions? Ages. When I do I will photograph it and you will get a glimpse when I finish (maybe in the new year?) I was a fashion publicist for ions before I got into graphic design + branding (I have lived a long life), but what I know about fashion PR does not necessarily translate to what I am doing now. Once I launch the apothecary + accessories I will be on sure footing but this totally odd concept of Stationery Stamps and the like, well it’s a hard sell. My outreach to blogs the other day made me feel about *this* big. The most humiliating outreach was a girl with a now popular blog that had emailed me years ago to feature her line on my former blogs (I had two fairly large ones) which I did and she didn’t even write me back. The internet is not always diplomatic, no she is not on vacation and I doubt it went to spam. I am assuming she doesn’t remember hocking her line before it got popular and that I had a hand in getting her there. She is now on my mental ‘black list’. You want to know what added salt to the wound? Twitter recently recommended her as a ‘like you’ suggestion. Like heck she’s not, I wanted to yell at the Twitter bots, I would never ignore anyone that ever helped me out, ever. BUT back to your press kit for print media, it’s a simple premise really (even if you can’t put together cohesive sentences) you should be able to answer these questions: WHO / WHAT / WHERE / WHEN / WHY. Once you do answer these simple questions put it on sheet of paper add your line sheet with RETAIL pricing and send it off to the editor of your favorite magazine. Okay, I know you have more questions, but that will have to be for another lesson, you haven’t even put together your press kit right? Once you do than we can talk and hopefully you will get it together much sooner than I will.
P.S. The cardstock shown is limited edition double-sided stock, jet black on one side, bright white on the other, clever! You can get it here while supplies last.
The ubiquitous antler makes its appearance in the shop. These and a few other woodland inspired designs were supposed to be in my first round of stamps but room was at a premium and they lost out to calligraphy sentiments, sorry little antler stamp. I gave a peek of them in my stamp storage post and the emails came flooding in wanting to know when it would be in the shop. I am slow going with the photos and editing so it seemed like ‘one day’ was going to be my best answer, but I got inspired and did some product photography for a few hours and now you can pick your stamp up here. I use these a lot for my personal stationery, I think they fit where I am at in my life right now–the deep country. I know antlers are a trendy motif but they are so good so I am happy to be able to offer them to you!
The tiny hand-printed gold heart stationery is one of our best sellers hands down, people like tiny, me probably more than most. Handling a stamp that diminutive in size is difficult at best, I like to make things easy for our clients. I tried multiple variations of heart sizes before I settled on this big heart. It has a nice weight to it and when you stamp has an almost wood type/silk screen effect to it. You can dress it up or down and each time it will give you a beautiful impression. I found it didn’t want to print as opaque as I would have liked on the muslin bags, but on paper it is sublime. I have had it for a few months now using it for the shipping boxes and such and it has handled like the champ that it is. I am not sure if I am going to keep it in the line or keep it for myself, only time will tell. If you would like yours you can grab it while it’s still in the shop– get your big heart hand stamp here.
P.S. And yes indeed, this is our tiny heart enlarged!
This has been a much requested tutorial and for such an easy process it was surprisingly a lot of steps to photograph! I assure you this is the easiest way that I have found to be able to stamp an impression in the middle of my stationery flat. I tried other equipment made specifically for stamping in the center of your cardstock, but found it a little complicated. I am also of the camp that believes less is more, if I don’t need to purchase any special equipment I won’t. So let’s gather our simple supplies. You will want to have the following supplies at your ready, we are going to create a template:
Piece of blank paper larger than the cardstock you want to center stamp on.
Writing utensil, preferably a pencil in case you make a mistake and need to erase.
The cardstock size you want to be able to center stamp on.
Neatly trace your chosen cardstock onto your paper. You are going to be using your template over and over again so if you want to use a weightier paper or even a thin cardstock as your template by all means go ahead.
Remove your chosen cardstock and there you have the very beginning of your template, which I know just looks like a penciled rectangle, but it shall become much more with a little tweak.
Now comes the hard part (I jest). Find the center and draw a vertical 1″-2″ line. You have now created your center guidleline!
Ink your stamp, put your chosen cardstock on top of your template and you will see your center guideline clearly. Gently, but firmly press your stamp where in the center you would like your artwork to be, lift up (do not rock or jiggle). You should have a beautiful + centered impression!
ALTERNATE GUIDELINE CREATION OPTION:
For those of you who don’t want to use a ruler to find the center, just bend your cardstock in half and then use the folded center crease to create your guideline.
As always if you have any questions just ask them in the comments and I am happy to answer away.