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Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Behind the scenes - March

After a relatively quiet January and February the orders are starting to build up again. I can definitely tell that wedding season is beginning! So I have mostly been making up orders and doing trips to the post office.

I sold my 50th travel journal with Australia on the front. That's a lot of people taking my journals to Australia! And I sold my 100th wedding card. Over half have been Bruges design. I love to think of happy brides and grooms receiving a card I have made.

Since my travel journals are so popular I thought I'd introduce a new one, designed especially for giving as a wedding gift. The new honeymoon journal has a map heart with any location and personalised text underneath.

As well as making making making, I did find time for a few other things. I revamped my newsletter, moving to a new fortnightly email. The plan is to have two concise emails rather than one long newsletter with everything in. I'm hoping that one can be about new products added to the shop that month, and one can focus on wider stationery or handmade news. If you're interested, you can sign up here!

I also created some new packaging for my notebooks and journals. I'd been thinking about how to update it for a while, as a simple paper band was looking a bit boring. I now use a label tied on with orange ribbon, and I'm really pleased with it so far.

And I've been shopping again! I found an amazing atlas on ebay. It's still sitting on the chair in my workroom as I'm a little scared to cut it up. But I keep telling myself that it will look beautiful made into journals and be so much more loved than a dusty old atlas kept in someone's loft. I bought some more glue too. I feel like I say that every month - I use a lot of glue!

I'm taking a break over the Easter weekend so my shops are shut for a few days, but they'll be open again on Tuesday 7 April.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

New notebook packaging

Packaging can really make a good product. I like to keep mine pretty simple, but I know that it is really important to get right. I had been thinking about how to improve my notebook packaging for a while, then I won a giveaway by Claireabelle Makes and bagged myself 100 business cards from Myprint247. I already had plenty of business cards so I decided to be more creative and use my prize to update the packaging for my handmade notebooks.

I wanted to use a long thin label, so designed my business cards to be cut in two across the middle. So each business cards makes two notebook labels. I kept the text very generic, so that they are suitable for all the different notebooks I make.

After cutting each business card in two I punched a hole on each end so that they could be tied round a notebook. I decided to use a bright orange ribbon to match my branding.

What do you think? I love it, and it's just that little bit different and more creative than a simple paper band that I had before.

Want a notebook? Shop here.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

10 things to put in your journal

Got a journal but not sure what to put in it? Here are my top 10 things to include in your journal. Oh, and if you're looking for a really nice handmade journal take a look at my shop!

1. Photos. Don't be scared to cut them up and just include the little bits you want. Arrange them artistically. Write on them. Give people speech bubbles. Use them in a way that helps you remember.

2. Tickets. Wherever you go make sure you keep the tickets. Whether it's a day out at the zoo or an evening at the theatre most places still use paper tickets. They're great because they capture the what, where and when really easily. You could even add pay and display car park tickets.

3. Quotes. If someone has made you laugh capture what they said. If your gran got confused and came out with something hilarious that had you all in stitches write it down. If your children ask the daftest questions write them down. I love saving quotes as a way of remembering people and the good times we've had. When I re-read them I can remember exactly where we were when they said it. Little moments that could so easily be forgotten.

4. Invitations. If you get invited to a party, wedding or christening stick the invitation in your journal. Or cut out just a little bit of it to include. You don't have to write pages about the event, including the invitation and maybe one or two highlights will be plenty to help you remember.

5. Postcards. Wherever you go pick up a postcard. Underneath or on the back briefly write when you went and who you were with. It's a really simple way to ensure no trip is forgotten.
6. Cards. Stick in special cards you've received and want to keep. Maybe your first mother's day card or one from your husband for that big anniversary.

7. Stamps. If you travel abroad purchase some of the local stamps to add to your journal. It's a way of taking home a little bit of the culture.

8. Lists. It could be a bucket list of all the things you want to try, a list of 10 things you want to achieve this year, places you want to visit or people you'd like to keep in touch with. You could just write them all together as a list, or give each item its own page to come back to and fill in later.

9. Business cards. Lots of shops and restaurants have little business cards you can take away, so if you've been somewhere nice pop one in your bag to add to your journal.

10. Drawings. Illustrate your journal with doodles and pictures. You don't have to be a great artist, just do a little sketch of something you'd like to remember. Great if you didn't get chance to take a photo at the time.

Inspired to start your journal? Take a look at my shop and I can make one just for you.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Personalised honeymoon journal wedding gift

If you're looking for an extra special wedding gift you'll love the new journal I've just added to the shop. It would make such a personal present.

This journal is personalised with the bride and groom's names and the date of the wedding. And you can choose the location on the map heart, whether that's where they met, where they are getting married or their honeymoon destination. Each journal is made to order and is a really unique wedding present.

The pages are made from a beautifully thick 100% recycled paper that is made in the UK. They are stitched together and trimmed to size by hand for a truly handmade journal.


Special memories from the honeymoon could be jotted down in this journal, along with photos and mementos such as plane tickets or restaurant receipts. Or it could be used as a wedding guest book or album. Pop over to my Folksy shop if you'd like to buy one.

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Handmade favourites - kraft stationery

I am totally loving kraft card at the moment. I used to be a huge fan of bright white card and this is all I would use for my stationery. Whilst I still think white looks very clean and stylish I love the trend for kraft card at the moment. It has a very different, rustic feel to it. If you haven't seen my new kraft greetings cards you can browse them in the shop here. And I've chosen a selection of my favourite handmade stationery designers who love using kraft paper for their products. Everything is handmade in the UK and available to buy online (links below).

White lovebirds wrapping paper by All Wrapped Up by Alice
Smile greetings card by Katie Leamon
Floral lined kraft notebook by Charlotte Macey
Pack of pretty kraft tags by Peach Wolfe Paper Co

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