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Pattern Directory One Thimble Issue 1-13

Do you need to click through a zillion folders to remember where you saved the PDF you *need* for this Christmas custom order?  Does the idea of neatly organised PDF’s make you smile? Do you love OT but struggle to remember which issue had which pattern?  If you’ve answered YES to these questions then you’re going to love this reminder of one of our most popular blog posts … updated!


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Backdrops & Backgrounds for handmade photography

I’ve been wondering where to start this series … Then I realised it has to start with backdrops and backgrounds.

Now if you’re a little further along in your handmade photography journey, you might be thinking, oh I know this already, but stay with me … or skip to the end for some tips on backdrops.

Picking the perfect background for your handmade photos

When I first started photographing my handmade items I didn’t really give much thought to backgrounds.

I’m embarrassed to say that some of these photos below (…shame … the one in front of the washing machine) were photos I actually used, in my listings on made it and etsy, when I first started sewing to sell.

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Photo Fortnight

You know that feeling when you’ve sewn something AMAZING, but when you share a photo of it with your bestie, or in a group or use it for your handmade business’s social media, nobody is as smitten as you are.  The frustrating thing is you KNOW that if they could see it in real life, they’d be excited too.

Over the next fortnight I’m going to be sharing tips, tricks, blog posts and links to help your photos live up to your sewing!!!!

Photo Fortnight - let's start at the beginning


Here’s a run down on what we’ll be covering.  I’ll update with links as the posts go live!


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Finding new markets for your handmade products

Finding new markets for your handmade products

You started your handmade business with the encouragement of your friends and family.  You paid for a pretty logo, planned your range, agonised over pricing and spent longer than you care to admit daydreaming about how “doing what you love” was going to be the key to financial security.  The only problem is, most weeks you’re not hearing the merry ring of sales notifications on your mobile, you’re hearing crickets.  

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Top Tips for Dealing with Loneliness when working from home

If it makes you happy
It can’t be that bad
If it makes you happy
Then why the hell are you so sad

–  extract from Sheryl Crow song “If it makes you happy”

Working from home doing what I love has been my big dream for … well close to forever, but at times loneliness has threatened to turn something that makes me so happy on its head.  In case this is something you’ve struggled with too, I thought I’d share the tips that work for me.

Top Tips for dealing with loneliness

1. Make time to see your existing friends.
It can be difficult to prioritise downtime when you work from home, but it’s important to maintain healthy relationships outside of your business. If your existing friends have no interest in your business even better!
Catching up with them will give you a reality check and help you remember that your business is not the be all and end all!
2. Network locally.
Find a local crafting or business group and go along to their meetings. Discussing your business with others in “real life” is very different to only networking online for your business. If you can’t find a group like this consider reaching out to local people you know “online” and starting one with them.
3. Network online.
This is good for you and your business. You can help each other promote your businesses and can serve as “back up plans” for each others businesses if you’re forced to take time off unexpectedly.
4. Have set working hours as much as possible.
Don’t work all the time. It is a temptation to do, “just one more thing” at all hours of the day and night when you work from home, but this can damage your relationships within your immediate family. If you were working for someone else you’d never stand for them keeping you at the office and away from your loved ones all day and all night, so don’t do that to yourself.
5. Take your work out of the house.
Go to a cafe or park to plan or answer emails. Changing your environment can help you feel revived, can spark new ideas and fuel your creativity.
6. Have background noise while working.
Listening to a podcast or playing music can make you feel you’re not alone all the time.
7. Be a good friend.
Remember to check in with others in similar situations.  Being there for someone else and understanding that you’re not alone in feeling this way can help you feel less isolated.
8. Collaborate with others on a side project.
Take part in a showcase or charity auction where you have the opportunity to work with others towards a
“greater good”. It’s a fabulous way to reach out to people you wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to get to know.
9. Skype or phone someone you’ve met online.
Its a totally different experience to communicate directly rather than just via keyboard with someone you’ve met online. It can help you get to know them even better.


If you’ve got other tips or thoughts on dealing with loneliness when you work from home I’d love to hear!


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