Thursday, December 11, 2014

Repurposing Decor Items

It’s know secret that I love to have sparkle and bling in my Christmas decorations. I love to change my color scheme at Christmas time too! The last couple of years I’ve  kept the main colors gold and purple and this year I added in some white for a pretty accent as well.  Instead of buying new things to add to my decor this season I decided to get extra creative and repurpose some things that I already had. One thing I love are pretty cake plates and cake stands as they raise things up a level and co-ordinate into many table-scapes and decor settings. You can showcase a special ornament or fill them up with lots of pretty coloured Christmas balls. Basically what ever you like! It’s a great way to get extra use out things that you already have, who doesn’t want to save money at this time of year!

I gathered up some candle holders in different sizes and shapes and got out some of my plates and bowls in various shapes and sizes. I purchased some ‘Gorilla glue’ and went about creating some original cake stands by gluing plates on top of candle holders. It was super easy, the only cost was the glue and I have a pretty collection of stands now to use in my decor. I used white plates with gold edging and a glass bowl so that these can be used year round too, not just at Christmas time!

Here are the stands that I created!

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Here you can see how I used them, some are just positioned for the picture not actually where I have them set up in my home but you get the idea. Well I hope this inspired you and you are able to create some unique pieces for your home as well!

My shop has been very busy this month and I have lots of new products to design. Here are a few of the newer items that I’ve been designing this month. You can visit my shop here  Designs by Shell

Snowman with Christmas Trees Pack Of Gift Tags
Snowman with Christmas Trees Pack Of Gift Tags
 
Birch Trees with Falling Snow Pack Of Gift Tags
Birch Trees with Falling Snow Pack Of Gift Tags
 
New Home Address Personalized Address Labels
New Home Address Personalized Address Labels
 
Weight Lifting Snowman Pack Of Gift Tags
Weight Lifting Snowman Pack Of Gift Tags
 
Bowling Snowman with Saying T-shirts
Bowling Snowman with Saying T-shirts
 
Martial Arts Snowman Ornament
Martial Arts Snowman Ornament
 

Friday, November 28, 2014

On-line Shopping or In-Store

With the popularity of on-line shopping exploding these days do you find yourself taking advantage of it or do you prefer the in-store shopping experience. There are so many advantages of shopping on-line starting with you can shop whenever you choose be it in your pajama’s if the mood hits.

This year I have done more on-line shopping than the previous year! Some because I couldn’t find what I was looking for in-store and some for the uniqueness of the gifts that I wanted to give. I’m not too big on crowds and long line-ups at the check outs so to be able to do some of my shopping from home takes a lot of the stress out of it.

Here are some more great reasons you might find yourself doing your holiday shopping from home.

1. Save time and gas. Driving and idling in traffic is costing you money. Too many trips to the mall and it adds up!

2. Pay conveniently and safely with Paypal. Set up a free account and Paypal will be the go between when you make payments so the merchants can’t see your information.

3. Many on-line shops offer great sales and on-line coupons too! No paper clipping here!

4.Skip the crowds and the long lines. Time is valuable and nobody wants to waste it.

5. On-line stores can offer a much broader variety of merchandise as it doesn’t take up shelf space as it does in brick and mortar stores. Find a unique gift for someone.

6. The hours are endless, the internet never closes! Shop whenever it is convenient for you.

7. Many businesses will ship directly to the recipients of your gift and will add a gift enclosure card for you as well. Save postal costs this way!

Today being Black Friday Zazzle is offering up to 65% off a variety of gift items, apparel, paper products and more until tonight. Use Code: ZAZBLACKDEAL

Snowflake Design New Address Round Stickers
Snowflake Design New Address Round Stickers by
 
Birch Trees Snow Scene Greeting Card
Birch Trees Snow Scene Greeting Card
 
Birch Trees with Falling Snow Christmas Tree Ornaments
Birch Trees with Falling Snow Christmas Tree Ornaments
 
Sparkly Purple Christmas Packages Christmas Tree Ornaments
Sparkly Purple Christmas Packages Christmas Tree Ornaments
 
Purple Sparkly Christmas Decorations Greeting Card
Purple Sparkly Christmas Decorations Greeting Card
 
Blue Stripes Swivel USB 2.0 Flash Drive
Blue Stripes Swivel USB 2.0 Flash Drive
 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Benefits of Volunteering

Volunteering brings about many benefits not only to those being helped but also to the volunteer. I have been involved in volunteer positions consistently through out the years serving in a number of different capacities. Most of the volunteer opportunities that I have served at in the past have been through church. Recently I decided I’d like to give more of my time and help people in the community. I now volunteer one morning a week at a food bank in my area. I find it a different and enriching experience each time I go!

Some of the benefits of volunteering are:

- the connections you make with other individuals, meeting people from all different walks of life and expanding your network!

- volunteering gives you a greater sense of community and helps you really see how blessed you are

- as you volunteer, you meet new people and develop better social skills as well as increasing your self-confidence and self esteem

- helping those in need gives you a better attitude all around which carries over to your everyday life, motivation is good!

- if your volunteer position involves lifting, sorting, a lot of moving around you’ll also benefit physically from it as well, (not so much sitting at the computer or on your couch)

- develop new skills or discover something you are good at and enjoy doing

- volunteering can also benefit your career as you grow and utilize skills that you use. Perhaps you problem solve, are great at organization or a super team player these will all benefit you in the long run

So I hope this sheds a little light on volunteering and spurs you on to volunteer in your community. Helping others always brings blessings and makes you feel good!  Especially during the holiday season when people feel extra pressure to spend more money. Many folks are just trying to feed their families and buy the necessities of life. A little help can go a long way to bring some cheer to a family in need!

Starfish and Ocean Change of Address Square Sticker
Starfish and Ocean Change of Address Sticker
  
Smiling Snowman Christmas Ornaments
Smiling Snowman Christmas Ornaments
  
Turquoise Blossoms Small Gift Bag
Turquoise Blossoms Gift Bag
  
Tall Castles and Buildings Silhouettes Nite Lites
Tall Castles and Buildings Silhouettes Nite Lites
View another
 
  Cozy House Christmas Greetings 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
Cozy House Christmas Greetings 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
 

 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Preparing for the Busy Shopping Season

You’ve probably heard it said, don’t miss the window of opportunity! if you’re just working steady but haven’t started getting your marketing strategy together for the busy holiday season  you just might miss the boat! I’m sure you know that the stores in the malls are already starting to pull out there seasonal and promotional items, holiday and Christmas displays are already popping up in many stores. Big box stores already have Christmas trees and many holiday themed items on their shelves. When people see these it starts the ball rolling and many purchase gifts earlier than expected.  Personally I feel it is way to early for me to see Christmas items in the stores but as an online small business owner I understand that one has to get on board and be preparing our stores and websites for those early shoppers. People are starting their shopping earlier and earlier every year.  Research shows more and more people are shopping online and this is a trend that surely will only increase with the convenience of shopping from the comfort of one’s home! 

Have a plan, this is so important here. Take a look at your inventory and assess what you need to bring in to your store. What are the trends and items that will attract customers to your store front. What will be your big holiday sellers this year? Is there something particular that you want to feature? With millions of online businesses the competition is fierce and just thinking that the customers will come and buy from you without you putting in some big marketing efforts is pretty silly.

If you had your online store last year, review what items sold well for you and what items didn’t move at all. Decide on what new items to add to your inventory and which ones to promote. Use all available social media platforms that you are active in. Just do it subtly, nobody wants to just see a big push of your items, add something of value when you can. Perhaps offer a sale coupon or a contest.

When using Twitter to market your products remember to include appropriate hash tags, like #holidayspecials, #holidaydeals, #blackfriday, etc. This will help when people are searching for shopping deals. If you use Pinterest regularly be sure to create holiday boards that feature your products. Create unique boards like Christmas decor, holiday t-shirts, Christmas kitchen accessories, you get the idea. Also include prices, Pinterest lets you add this! Well I hope this has given you some incentive to get going on your holiday marketing strategy! Don’t leave it too late or you seriously might miss your window of opportunity. The shopper’s will buy elsewhere and you don’t want to miss out on the sales!

Juggling Snowmen Round Pouf
Juggling Snowmen Round Pouf
 
Weight Lifting Snowman Small Christmas Stocking
Weight Lifting Snowman Small Christmas Stocking
 
All is Calm, All is Bright Gold Plated Banner Ornament
All is Calm, All is Bright Gold Plated Banner Ornament
 
Christmas Decorations 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
Christmas Decorations 2 Pound Dark Chocolate Bar Box
 
Pretty Packages Stickers
Pretty Packages Sticker Gift Labels
 
Smiley Snowman in a Pink Hat Tag For Bags
Smiley Snowman Luggage Tag For Bags
 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fall is Upon Us

The nights are getting cooler, the sun is going down earlier and earlier and it’s definitely getting darker too!  A sure sign that we are sliding into the fall months. I like to think of fall as a time of new beginnings. One reason would be the start of a new school year for many, whether it is elementary, high school or University.

Another reason is because this is the time the leaves begin to change to brilliant colors of orange, red and yellow and nature is so beautiful and appealing during this season. Going for interesting hikes and walks with my husband in the cooler temperatures and crisp air is one of my favourite weekend things to do in early fall.

September can also be a time of rethinking routines and goal setting for many. Perhaps reading this will inspire you to sign up for a new class, try a new hiking trail, change up your routine at the gym, start that business you’ve been thinking about, whatever it is I hope you do something new and see great progress this month.

I’ve been working hard on my websites, there is always so much to do with designing, marketing and finding new ways to get my designs and sites seen.  Stop by my store or visit one of my websites, you can find them in the side bar of my blog. You’ll find lots of new items and ideas! 

Zoo Animals with Vines Pillow
Zoo Animals Pillow
 
Love Seashell Design Walnut Cribbage Board
Love Seashell Design Walnut Cribbage Board
 
Cartoon Dog with Paw Prints Wrapping Paper
Cartoon Dog with Paw Prints Wrapping Paper
 
Cartoon Dog Birthday Party Invitation
Cartoon Dog Birthday Party Invitation
 
Dental Design Tooth and Brush Luggage Tags
Dental Design Tooth and Brush Luggage Tag
 
Green Plaid with Chocolate Brown Business Card Template
Green Plaid with Chocolate Brown Business Card Template
 

Friday, August 1, 2014

Bucket List– 7 Places You’ll Want to Travel

Perhaps you’ve had a travel adventure this summer or are still preparing for one. My husband and I have just started travelling and exploring different countries and cultures over the last 5 years or so and once you start it’s hard to stop. There is always another place you want to see, another piece of history to learn about, another country to explore.

Here are some recommended places to put on your bucket list! Some we’ve been to and some we are yet to visit!

1) England

2) Rome,Italy

3) Greece

4) Hawaii

5) Spain

6) Germany

7) PEI

There are so many exciting trips to be taken. So many pictures to snap! Awesome food to be tasted! I think people love to travel for the great experiences and the sense of adventure and possibly the thrill of the unknown. Meeting new people, finding out others experiences and learning how cultures differ from country to country. The airplane flying is not the most favourite of most people but it is tolerated as a means to get to the good stuff! Being comfortable and organized can make this part of travelling much more enjoyable.

Visit this ‘Travel Blog’ and read about some of these places as well as find luggage tags to protect your bags from loss and theft.

Kayaking on the Ocean Travel Bag Tag

 
Purple Bike Pullover

 
Blue Hydrangea Wedding Invitation

 
Vacation Beach Scene Coffee Mugs

 
Funny Giraffe Art Luggage Handle Wrap

 
Pink and Black Leopard Pattern Luggage Handle Wrap

 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Using Paper.li for Marketing

Recently you may have noticed lots of different daily newspapers popping up on Twitter and other social media sites. Perhaps these are new to you and you are wondering what they are about and if they might work for your own marketing.

These papers I had seen showing up but didn’t really know anything about them, how they came together or why one would want to publish one!  I looked into this and last week decided to create a couple of my own to promote my websites and further my marketing efforts.

Paper.li pulls stories, videos, ideas from sources that you authorize by choosing #hashtags on certain subjects that pertain to your newspaper topic. It pulls links together and sets it up in newspaper fashion without you having to scour the net for the information yourself. Unfortunately you can’t really customize the paper too much but you can delete sites or items you don’t like, so it’s good to check the paper when it’s published and be sure there is nothing on there that is offensive or that you don’t approve of.

My first paper.li is called ‘All Things Bridal’ You can check it out to see what paper.li is all about and if this idea appeals to you!

Choose a name for your paper.li that reflects your topic, choose your relevant news sources, choose your keywords wisely and let the paper to the rest for you!

Starfish and Ocean Bridal Shower Custom Invite
Starfish and Ocean Bridal Shower Invite
 
Whimsical Sea Critters Igloo Can Cooler
Whimsical Sea Critters Igloo Can Cooler
 
Blue and Green Floral Design Fingernail Decals
Blue and Green Floral Design Fingernail Decals
 
Spa Party Accessories Favor Box
Spa Party Accessories Favor Box
 
Purple Octopus Pacifier
Purple Octopus Pacifier
 
Under the Sea Girls Birthday Invitation
Under the Sea Girls Birthday Invitation