Category Archives: Blog

Craft Show Tips from a Total Beginer, part Deux

Okay so I have a few more pointers after Sunday’s Dash and Dawdle:

— Credit Cards are your Good Friends
Half of my sales were charged onto credit cards. No, I couldn’t process them on site, but I took the customers address, phone number and ID info and hoped for the best. Every one of them went through fine.  I love Authorize.net, you sign up with them and you can very easily enter the CC info when you get home.  I would say to get a ‘knuckle buster” (why is it called that???) so you can use the whole carbon receipts — makes you look more legit I think. I couldn’t find one on Craigslist and the only new ones I found were $30 and up so I just write the CC number down on my copy of the receipt and promised to shred it later which seemed fine to the 10 or so people who used credit cards with us.
If I wouldn’t have accepted CCs this weekend I woulnd’t have even made back my booth fee. You would be reading a post from a very sad Amanda today if that had happened.

— Mailing lists are your Best Friends.
Lots of people asked me if they could sign up for our mailing list. The answer sadly was  ‘no’ because I didn’t think to bring a sign up sheet for one. Now, why do you need addresses for interested parties? Because you can send them postcards, coupons, show dates, and thank you notes for coming to your booth. I did get a few addresses for people who ordered tags or used CCs so i sent them thank you notes with a coupon inside the card. They liked our stuff then, they have to like our stuff even more with a discount right??!!??  Email addresses are great and yes I should have had a sign up sheet for those too, but physical addresses that are willingly given are  worth their weight in gold. Here I have a stack of postcards for a Dec. show at a coffee house that I need to send to Albuquerque residents. If I had just had a sign up sheet this weekend I could have those addressed right now ready to mail next month!

I stole this cool photo of the start line for the 5K run from my friend Christina. While I stood in my booth drinking coffee with half and half, eating scones and decorated cookies (basically getting fatter by the minute!) Christina and her dog Max ran the 5K in great time. There was even a huge hill to run! I would have never of made it. Yes, I do run everyday but keep in mind that my average is 2.22 miles in 35 minutes which is a good try, but laughable!

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This leads me to my thrid and finaly tip for the day:

— Stuffing your face because you are nervous is bad.
You will be mad at yourself the next day and it won’t help your sales. I know that leaves very few other stress realving options since scotch, finger nail biting, smoking, and hair pulling are not really good options either, but try deep breathing. I really can’t totally blame myself for this one since Flying Star had their booth right next to ours and they were giving out free food which was great for the runners, not so great for yours truely 😉 Point is, find a way to manage your nerves and you will have so much more fun.

Dash and Dawdle Love

We didn’t dash and we didn’t dawdle, but I am sure tired today after the Doggie Dash and Dawdle a the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta Park yesterday!

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(check Cessie out in the bottom right hand corner– she had a blast until she tried to kill a black dog that was 4 times bigger than her! Then she was in time out for the rest of the day)

We met the nicest people (dog people always are right?) and saw the sweetest dogs. I have to say I was disappointed about one thing: I didn’t see a single Setter! That’s all I wanted to see, preferably an Irish Setter but I would have settled for ANY Setter. Not one. Come on Albuquerque! Is there no Setter love here?  I have been really wanting one since I started reading Lucky Fiona’s blog — she also happens to make Dog collars that are very cool, very different from mine, but very cool none the less — She has 3 gorgeous Setters yet Albuquerque doesn’t seem to have a single one. What is up with that???

I was nervous and way busy so I didn’t get great photos, which was really my only regret of the day. We had so much fun, but boy, I have never been so tired! I think it was from spending so much time playing with the doggies, I am getting too old to be bending over all day long!

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The Balloon Fiesta Park is beautiful already, but with thousands of dogs running around it was even cooler.  I can’t wait to see what kind of response our online shop gets from this show. Shockingly we have only had 2 orders from Albuquerque so far so I hope this show got our name out there to all the doggie mommas and daddies out here!

The best part of the day was seeing all the local rescues. So many animals are in need and this was a great benefit for them. I only wish we could have done more.

I did learn a few more things to add to my Craft Show Tips, more on that tomorrow….

Meet Meru…

hound dog, Meru

She is a stunning hound from Utah. Her momma Pamela was nice enough to send me this pic of Meru from a hike they took together.  She is so beautiful! She reminds me of Etta if Etta were a hound. And what a beautiful coat! I just wanna pet her SO bad.

Pamela says all of Meru's friends are jealous of her new collar. I wonder if they are GREEN with envy… hehe.

Rhapsody in Blue Dog Collar

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Today I was inspired. KNME had a show on about young composers and musicians and I was so moved while watching it that I think I came up with a new super cool collar design. Fittingly, I named it “Rhapsody in Blue”.

I’ve been waiting to make a Limited Edition Collar in a boyish color. I just couldn’t find a fabric that moved me. Then this : linen colored with blue polkadot flowers. Perfection. Then I hand beaded the petals with the tiniest beads, they look so delicate, but really they aren’t I had to run the collar through all the buckles after I beaded it, didn’t effect the beads. Then I ran the sewing machine over them to sew it to the webbing and not a one flew off. Awesome. It will work on Cessie even though she is constantly scratching around her collar. rhapsody in blue dog collar

I think I will make 25 ‘Rhapsodys” so get them while you can. They will be on Etsy for $22.50.
rhapsody in blue dog collar

Doggie Dash and Dawdle Nervousness

I am feeling the crunch more than usual lately, but it is for a good cause. On Nov. 2 we will have a super cool booth at the 26th Annual Doggie Dash and Dawdle at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta Park. The Dash benifits New Mexico Animal Humane, which in my opinion is the best animal shelter in town.

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 I am super excited to be part of this, but super nervous too! I can't sleep because I keep having thoughts like

"What if I don't take enough product to sell and I run out?"

"What if I don't sell anything at all?"

"What if I can't make my booth cool enough?"

"What if I oversleep and miss the whole thing?"

and on and on. Last night Auggie managed to sleep almost the ENTIRE night, which is awesome for him, but his momma was up being a worry wart till 1 am. And not up watching TV or surfing the Internet, I mean up, wide awake in my bed — which is totally the worst.

There is going to be 3,000 people at the Doggie Dash and Dawdle which is the biggest show I have ever done.  Gosh, I am getting butterflies just thinking about it.

My sister Paula interviewed me yesterday for her school project. She asked me what my weapon of choise would be if I were a super hero. I said and eye linner and a sewing hook. I don't feel much like a superhero right now, but I am hoping to turn into one so I can get ready for Nov. 2.  Weapons of choice for that day? A big smile ( that I won't be able to help having because I get to see so many super cool dogs there!) and 100 collars and Leashes. Mimi Green would be proud of that.

Doggie Couture, “Adorn Me”

The whole reason that Mimi Green started was because I didn’t have a collar beautiful enough to suit my Cecilia. I made her one with super cool scraps that I had and 2 vintage buttons, remember?

My mother in law gave me the nicest gift of jars and jars of vintage buttons last month — these are fantastic buttons, they even got Dan excited!  The more I played with them the more I realized that they belonged on a collar, a beautiful, wonderful collar.
Well I think Dan realized it first, but that’s what is great about him, we are always on the same page.

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Here is a peek at “Adorn me #1”  a little piece of Mimi Green Couture for your dog

It is a size medium and there is only one of these in the world.

It is going to be in my etsy store very soon, I can’t wait to get it off to one special dog. And I can’t wait to show you more one of a kind collars that these buttons inspire.

Tijeras Open Air Market LOVE , XO

I wasn’t sure what to expect from the Tijeras Open Air Market. The list of artists looked impressive, but I wasn’t sure if being so far away would be good for drawing a crowd. I was so wrong. We were there yesterday on a slow day (the weather was yucky in town) and the crowd was still phenomenal.
Shoppers seemed so happy to be there and were ready to shop. I felt like they did, I was in such a good mood just for being there. The landscape is stunning in Tijeras and it felt so good to get out of the city and into the fresh, clean air in the mountains.

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This was the awesome view from my booth. The booths are already set up, and if you do more than one day you can just put the canvas walls down and leave your tables on site. Makes set up so much easier!
Anna King is the owner of Just Imagine Gallery and the Tijeras Open Air Market. She was an absolute joy to work with — not like other gallery owners I have encountered in my time! In fact half the day went by without me even knowing she was the owner.  I guess I was looking for an uptight, upset, pushy person walking around and instead the owner was so easy going, doing the hula-hoop with another artist! This was a much needed breath of fresh air!  (Please excuse me if you are a gallery owner. I’m sure you aren’t all nervous, pretentious people, but I have had some bad experiences with the gallery folk being down to earth)

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Here is my sis Paula working hard for Mimi Green.
The morning didn’t start out so well, but Paula saved the day. First I got up an hour late, we arrived with 20 minutes to set up, and then all my ideas for how I was going to hang the photos fell apart. Finally Paula thought out of the box and made them all hang from the rope we were using as a clothes line (which was Kim’s fantastic idea!) We only got to hang like half of the photos I framed and matted, but that was okay because if I had been there alone none of them would have been hung! Paula was awesome, a natural.
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Kim came over Friday and helped me figure out displays. She made this super cool one in the basket. Key fobs are hanging from the sides and there are collar and leash sets inside. Noah pained the frames for me– I thought he did such a good job! I love how he takes interest in my silly projects.
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I got to give treats to a super cute Chow named Chewbacca and a gorgeous standard poodle named Poodle;) And I sold lots of tags, collars, and 1 key fab and bought two perfumes from the Laughing Turtle Soap Co. —  They make fantastic body products that are all natural which means I can use them which makes me super happy!

All in all a fantastic day. I can’t wait till next year so I can sign up early and do all the Tijeras Open Air Markets. They start in May and run till Oct.