May 21st Paper Bead Workshop

Here is the advert for my new paper bead workshop. Just a simple, basic introduction to making paper beads from alsorts of papers that you have around the house. So no expensive outlay.

During the session I will show you how to cut, roll and finish some paper beads. You will use your paper beads to make a bracelet with a clasp and charm to take home. I am really looking forward to this. And the beauty of holding my own workshops is that if they do get fully booked I will be able to hold more at later dates and times.

So please contact me if you are interested even if you can’t make the advertised date.

paper bead flyer

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Craft Fair Gorleston

Yes, I know, another craft fair!  I keep saying ‘no more’ but there is always the hope that  someone special sees you, or buys one of your items.  So I will try again.  This time I am hopefully having 2 tables.  One table with things to sell and one table demonstrating how my items are made, with my partner showing how he finishes them. I will be selling some of my rag bags along with my decorated and lined woven paper baskets.  There will also be information on some of my classes.

craft fair table 2

craft fair table 1

My table, in two halves!! (Photographed by my grand daughter Louise)I will have a cloth with a Tina’s Rag Bag banner on it. And I have lots of other items to replenish the table if I sell anything.

I think most of us crafters  make the mistake of thinking that everyone knows what’s involved with our different crafts, but they don’t.  If it looks like ….. it must be made like ….., so it should be the same price as …..!  Even if someone has spent maybe hours, lots of love and thought, skills and experience in producing a one of a kind item. People seem to forget that handmade means a unique item, no two are the same, EVER.  If it is properly handmade, its impossible. A little kink here, a little mistake there.  My motto is ‘its never perfect if its handmade with love’ and I stand by that.  My items are individually made by my own hands, therefore I would like customers to appreciate what I have made, regardless. If they don’t craft themselves they don’t have any idea of  how much time, experience and thought goes into a hand crafted item, let alone the worry and apprehension of showing them and hoping that everyone likes what we have made as much as we do.

So with my tables at the craft fair I hope to:

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show how to change these

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Into these

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Into small corn dollies

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Which when stained and decorated with ribbon and Norfolk grown lavendar can be a pretty little decoration.

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Or with time, patience and skill can be turned into something like this.

Anyway, the craft fair is next Thursday.

craft fair poster

I do hope that some of you reading this blog are local to me and will be able to come along.  If you can, please talk to me and let me know that you are reading my blog, that would be absolutely great.  The internet seems so impersonal.

So, after my disappointment with the Yarmouth venue I am keeping my fingers crossed with this fair, and I hope that someone comes along and appreciates what I do and can help me in my endeavour to carry on being self employed, doing something that I love and to be  able to enspire other people to have a go.

 

What to call them? Win one of my baskets.

Well, I won’t say much about the ‘Craft Fair’ that I attended……..but the up side was quite a few people took my craft workshop brochures and business cards and I have had a few enquiries.  Fingers crossed they will become bookings.

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Practice stall in my studio

As I couldn’t do much leading up to the craft fair, regarding marketing, advertising etc for myself, I now can without any conflict of interests.  I will be going all out with a change of strategy starting next week, and if all goes well it might give my little business the lift it needs and deserves.  I am not going to give up now……….

In the meantime I have added a page to my website called ‘items for sale’ .  As I am enjoying making the paper weaving so much, and they are so practical and pretty,  I am going to be selling them on my website.  If not I am going to be over run with them!

If there is anyone out there who would give me the opportunity of another outlet i.e craft shop on a hight street or equivalent I would love to hear from you.  I have samples that I can send you.  Please check out my items for sale and email me through my website.

Competition

So now to the title of this post: ‘What to call them?’.  I found at the craft fair that alot of people walked past because, as one lady said, they thought they were bought wicker baskets that had just been decorated.  A big compliment to the craft but not to all the work I had put in.  So can anyone think of a name I can use for these items?

‘Paper weaving’ seems to denote the weaving with strips of paper that we did at school.

‘Paper Wicker’ denotes the coiled brown paper product that you can buy to weave with.

I need something that will give the message that they are handmade from newspapers, and they are a recycled item.

The prize for the title I choose will be this basket with a lid that is decorated with pearl beads, beads, lace and yoyo flower, with a recycled fabric lining that can be removed for washing.

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Rules

  • I will research the name you suggest and if it is not being used anywhere else it will be placed in the competition.
  • The competition will end on July 25th.  I will post on my blog July 30th the name I will be using for my items.
  • Email your entry to tinasragbag@hotmail.co.uk  with the heading ‘Competition’.  Or use the contact page on my website.
  • The winner will be contacted  July 26th.

Thats it

I look forward to any suggestions, when you do a craft you know what is involved but trying to explain to ‘non-crafters’ in just a few words, especially for advertising,  is impossible.

 

Whatever happened to the ‘Craft Fair’?

I decided to do one, just to  show the tax man I was making a little money, instead of all outgoings on lovely things like fabric and embellishments from my savings!!!  I took into account that nobody has alot of money these days so spent the last few weeks making small items like fabric brooches and doorhangers.  Put in a few of my bags, mainly for show, printed a whole load of my craft and sewing class brochures, in the hope that someone would take one.  And got quite excited about what would happen, did i have enough stock, was it good enough to sell, would people like what i had made.  It was all in the unknown…………………………

A few of my brooches for the fair

A few of my brooches for the fair

It was AWFUL!  Lots of people but no-one buying.  And to say it was a craft fair, well, I wouldn’t.  Nowadays apparently, a craft fair incorporates bought in jewellery, gifts and wrapping paper from the £1 shop, and the occasional knitting that someone has done over the year and can’t think of what else to do with it so sells it for pennies.  (I have probably upset alot of people, I love to knit too and I know how long it takes to make a jumper)! So I have spent 3 weeks and 5 hours worrying about it  with nothing to show for it.  Except………………

First lesson learnt, don’t do another one!

I did sell a few things to family and friends whilst practicing setting my stall up in the frontroom, so at least I did make my table money.

Small over the body rag bag

Small over the body rag bag

So, again I say, what happened to the Craft Fair?  I so wish for the time, like in the 70’s (ooops show my age!) when people went out of their way to buy something  handmade, appreciated the uniqueness and the time it had taken to make and expected to pay a sensible price to the person who had put love and care into their items.

Still, now that it is over I can spend time on the important things, like making my website pretty and inviting, doing the  handouts and time tables for my classes,  and writing lots and lots of letters to prospective venues ready for the new year! And then spend the rest of the time on what I love to do,  making things in my litte shed!