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The Blog

Handmade Loves news. Hot off the press.

HoneyBook: My Secret Weapon

By | Product Reviews, Small Business Tips, Tips & Tricks | No Comments
“I’m starting a business!” I blurt out to my mom one day on the phone less than six months after I had my daughter. I can remember the moment. I am cradling my daughter in one arm. My phone is between my chin and my shoulder, and I am pushing a cart at the grocery store. I was having an, “I can do anything” moment. Never mind that I didn’t have time to take a shower, clean the house, take care of myself. I remember thinking, “It will be so easy! Things won’t take me much time. I can do this while she naps and plays. I can squeeze this into my life.” I now chuckle at my naivety.

As you can probably guess, I quickly realized balancing the “ands” in life, including running your own business is not as quick and easy as I thought it was going to be. Nevertheless, I persisted, pulled my greasy hair into a ponytail, and put my head down. Fast forward a couple of years. My business grew to a point where I had time to take care of myself, hire some help, and keep all the balls in the air, but the chaos level was still overwhelming.

As your business grows, your systems do, too. You also experience a natural increase in responsibilities, costs, expenses, and staff. At each step of the way, you have to implement new solutions, systems, book keeping, lists, and strategies to keep you organized and on top of things. Yes, you can have people help you with all these moving parts, but at the end of the day, the buck stops with you. No one will ever care about your business as much as you do, so you have to be the bearer of most (if not all) of the responsibilities including finance, quality control, customer experience, creative and the list can go on and on. If you are like me, you cobble together solutions as you go. Quickbooks for bookkeeping, a spreadsheet for project timelines, Gmail for communication, word docs for proposals, a portfolio to showcase your work, legal documents and contracts. After awhile your head starts to spin. I had all of these forms and systems in place but was still feeling unorganized. And I must tell you, keeping up on paperwork and bookkeeping is not my favorite pastime. All the upkeep was starting to eat into my creative time causing a lot of projects to get caught in the pipeline. All of which were affecting my bottom line.

What if there was an all in one solution to manage these things? What if there was a way to get hours back? What if I actually felt organized for once? Well, I am so excited to announce that I have found the perfect secret weapon: HoneyBook! If you are familiar with Rising Tide Society, you may have heard of HoneyBook. If you aren’t, you should check both out! What Rising Tide Society is to community building, HoneyBook is to productivity. Honeybook is an all-in-one business management tool, and there are so many great applications for it. Let me get down to brass tacks and share my favorite features with you.

Here are my top 5 favorite features included with HoneyBook.

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Don’t Hate, Collaborate

By | Small Business Tips, Tips & Tricks | No Comments
You know the feeling. The one that takes over your rataionl thinking while you are scrolling through social media, or reading an email that showcases someone’s successes. It creeps up, and then bam hits home. Yep, it’s pure, unencumbered jealousy. In these moments, you are also mature enough to realize that your feelings are somewhat irrational. In spite of yourself, you still give them a little thumbs-up or send a congratulations message. First of all, you are not alone. This happens to everyone at some time or another. It’s how you deal with these emotions that matter.

There was a time when something like this could put me into a tailspin of “I can’t. I’m not good enough. I’m too late.” negative self-talk. Of course, that didn’t set up me or my business for success. Then, I came across this quote for the first time:

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Ride The Waves of Life

By | Food For Thought, Mindfulness, Small Business Tips | No Comments

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them – that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” – Lao-Tzu

“Now relax. Go with the flow. Let life take you where you need to be.” Picture me meditating in yoga class, but one eye is open looking around the room at the other people that are sitting in complete stillness absorbing this information with knowing smiles on their faces. It’s like they were saying, “Yeah, Universe. I’ve got this! I am a master at going with the flow.” Inside I can’t help but panic…of course, I want to go with the flow of life. Of course, I want to be a carefree bohemian that is happy to go with the flow. Of course, I want my business to grow organically because people are drawn to what I do. But, all this meditation is making me feel is more pressure and anxiety about how I SHOULD feel.

I leave yoga, go home, and like any good yogi start to reflect upon my practice. I know that I can be tightly wound about certain things and not always the most flexible in my mindset. Instead of playing the victim card, I decide to stop poutin, pull up my big girl yoga pants, and start to search for ways that I too, can reach this enlighted state of going with the flow.

Now, I can’t say that I am a master at it yet, but I am a work in progress. The following paragraphs contain tips that have been helping me relax, let go of control, and trust that the universe (God, higher-self, or whatever you believe in) has my back and has a plan. I am choosing to trust that I am where I am right now for a reason. Hope these tips help you, too.

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Creative Entrepreneur Club

By | Events, Small Business Tips, Tips & Tricks, What's Trending? | 2 Comments

Are you an entrepreneur? Then, join the Creative Entrepreneur Club Facebook group!

“You should totally start a blog. Wait, no actually you should be focusing on building a community on Facebook. And, don’t forget about Instagram. Ok, right. You’ve got this. You can do it all.”

10 min later….

“I’m lost. I’m confused. Where do I start? How do I go about these tasks in a way that saves time and resources?”

This is the dialogue in my head at least 20 times each day. Being a solorpreneur is awesome, but it can also be lonely especially when you are alone with your thoughts and left up to your own devices. If you are like me, you love being independent, making your own decisions and running with your heart. But, sometimes you feel unsure about yourself and business direction.

A lot of times, I would love to ask those that have gone before me how to best go about a task. It’s great if you have a friend that totally gets it. You can meet and talk shop. But, that’s one opinion, and one outlet for sharing ideas and one person can’t be an expert on everything…

Enter the power of a community. I discovered Facebook communities when my daughter was born. She is only three, and yes, I am a latecomer to the world of Facebook groups. I am not much of a mommy playgroup person, so I decided to find a local group in which I could pop in and out of as needed. I was a total observer for months until I got up the courage to type a question and hit post. I was afraid other moms would judge me or even worse ignore my post. But of course, that wasn’t the case. A handful of moms who had experienced what I was going through either offered words of encouragement or suggestions on how to overcome my obstacle. I instantly felt supported! It happened in a matter of minutes. I was astounded at how quickly I could get advice and support at the same time while leveraging the collective knowledge of a group of women experiencing what I was. Slowly I became more active, and you know what? I love giving advice, too. It gives me that warm fuzzy feeling and boosts my self-confidence (oddly!).

So naturally, I am thinking about my own community of creative entrepreneurs. There are 200,000 of you that follow me on Instagram. I know only a fraction of you will ever see this, but what if we can all come together and support one another in a deeper way. I see all of you liking, following, and commenting on each others’ posts and it’s wonderful. But, now I want to create a place for people to share achievements, struggles, and voice opinions. I want us to leverage the collective knowledge and support one another so we can all learn, grow, and thrive as individuals.

So without further ado – please join me on this crazy entrepreneurial journal and join my FB community the, Creative Entrepreneur Club HERE. Let’s band together and rise!

Social Media Cleanse

By | Food For Thought, Small Business Tips, Tips & Tricks | No Comments

“I’ll be [core state] when I have [circumstance].”

Author Jamie Smart presents this equation on the first pages of his book, Clarity. Makes sense:

I’ll be [clean], when I have [a bath].

I’ll be [warm] once I [put clothes on].

But be careful, says Smart. This same equation is also a trick. He calls it “the hidden hamster wheel” and it looks something like this:

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Etsy v. Website

By | Food For Thought, Small Business Tips | 4 Comments

Want a chance to win a FREE WordPress website? Click HERE to enter!



To sell on Etsy or not? That is the question many small business owners face. I have been thinking about it a great deal over the past few months. On the one hand, it is easy to get up and running; you don’t have to worry about setting up payment gateways, secure certificates, or any of the other things you need to think about with a website. On the other hand, you are helping Etsy build their SEO, not your SEO. They don’t make it easy to grow your email list or market to customers, and many people have started to see less and less traffic to their shops.  I started making a chart to compare the two platforms and thought I’d share it with you. Below are my findings:

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