Monday, July 16, 2018

Goodbye CafePress, Hello Printful

Sometimes you have to take a chance on something new. Since 2003 I had a shop (ok, multiple) on CafePress. At the time it was a pretty revolutionary thing. You could upload your design, put it on items, carry no inventory and make money doing it. For the first few years this worked great. Any amount over the base price was your profit no matter how the customer found you.
A few years ago, they changed their commission structure to a flat 10% of your sale. You could raise the amount of your commission based on a few factors, but one of the main ones was of getting followers and following other designers. After seeing tiny commission for an item that cost the customer $25.00 I had decided I had enough, I needed to find another print on demand business.
I had heard of Society6 and Zazzle but wasn't impressed with them or the others like it. I was looking around on YouTube and kept seeing Printful pop up. I was intrigued but skeptical. I looked into it further and decided to try it out.
I really like the way they handle things down to the packaging. You can put your black and white logo on the packing slips and the envelopes/boxes that they use to ship. So it looks like it's coming from your online store and not a third party printer. I also like the integration to Etsy, all I have to do is link my store, upload my designs, select the products and once you sync, the item will automatically be dumped into your Drafts on Etsy where you can finalize it.
Another cool feature is you can buy from your own shop at a discounted rate and also order samples. I set up some items a few months ago and haven't really promoted it but I have had a few sales. I'm not going to depend on this for my income or anything but it's a nice option. Anyone that is into designing full time should look into it. Oh, and they integrate with tons of sites, not just Etsy. Shopify, BigCommerce and even Ebay are a few of them. There are also detailed video tutorials on setting everything up.
One aspect I was confused about was the payment structure. Printful allows you to have a "Wallet" which you can load money into. When someone places an order the money is taken from the wallet/your paypal account/your bank card to pay for the initial order. Your profit comes from whatever store platform you use. For example. One of my t-shirts is priced at $25.00, the base price for the shirt is $17.00 so Printful charges me the $17.00 for the shirt and everything else is handled through Etsy. I get the full $25.00+shipping but you just have to subtract the initial $17.00. It isn't clearly spelled out but once I got my first order I figured it out pretty quickly. $8.00+ profit is much better than the dollar or less I was getting from CafePress.
I haven't ordered a sample yet as of the time of this post, but I am planning on it very soon. Once I do I will review it.
Happy Crafting!

Monday, June 25, 2018

Update: The Magic Knot

Sorry it's been so long again! Summer is finally here so things are only a tiny bit less hectic in our house. I'm going to enjoy every minute of it because very soon my youngest will be off to Kindergarten!
Anyway- that's not why you're here. You're probably here because you want more information about the magic knot that I used in my Rainbow Dash Blanket. I wanted to update because I had read a lot of other crocheters were having issues with the knots coming undone.
I'm happy to report that almost 2 years later (OMG!) that the blanket is still in pretty good shape. There were a couple of spots where I had to reknot the yarn-which was not fun. But all in all it was OK. My biggest gripe with the magic knot is, well- the knots. Depending on where you join the yarn and how good you are at pulling the knot tight it can get unsightly. I tried my hardest to hide the color changes but sometimes they are unavoidable. I also made a Draculaura blanket using the same technique. it was A LOT larger than Rainbow Dash and it took a long time, but it would've taken me 3x longer if I had to deal with sewing ends in.
My advice is this. practice with the technique a lot, it can be tricky to get it down at first and you don't want to be playing around with it on a commissioned project or something you want to sell down the line.
Once you practice- do it more. Seriously make a whole chain of weird ass color changes just to get a good feel for it, play around with where in the stitches you join your yarn so you can hide the knot.
Do a swatch. An actual swatch, probably 20x20 stitches with some color changes so you can you guessed it, practice some more.
Once you get the hang of it you'll be a pro. As long as you're pulling tight enough your yarn shouldn't break. There are a bunch of tutorials on YouTube to help you out as well!

Here's Draculaura so you can see how massive she was! It was over a year ago that I made her but I believe the graph was 180x100 if you zoom in you can see some of the knots.

Happy Crafting!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Birth Stats Redesign!

So after a few years of having my Birth Stats on my Etsy shop, and after one glaring issue was brought to my attention I have done a redesign of them.

Now, instead of the lbs and ounces reading as 7.11 they are separated and easier, and more importantly, correct.

So here they are!

I also have these for older children that include their favorite things

All of these designs can be purchased on my Etsy shop! and for a limited time you can get a discount! Any of my blog readers/facebook/insta followers can just enter the code STAT15 to receive 15% off your order of one! This offer is good until 2/1/18!