I SURVIVED ANOTHER HOLIDAY SHOPPING SEASON!
In 2012 I was so busy with sewing orders that I was not able to take a day off for about 8 weeks between November and December. In 2013 the craziness started two weeks before Halloween and didn't end until a week after Christmas. I had to lengthen my sewing/shipping time for handmade orders to 10 days and I BARELY kept up with that deadline.
My point in talking about this is that I just want to say THANK YOU to everybody who made an order in that period of time. Except for one special nutcase, all of my customers during this period of time were AWESOME. Nobody complained about ordering deadlines. Nobody ordered an item at the last minute and demanded I sew and ship it within 24 hours. Compared to the customers of other handmade sellers I know, this is amazing. It allowed me to stay sane through the crazy workload.
Now on to the updates for 2014!
My business is still in an awkward stage where even though I can barely keep up with the workload for part of the year I still can't afford to hire anybody to help me out. My goal for this year is to sell a lot more clothing in the spring and summer than I have in past years. I will be cranking out as many tank top, dress, and skirt designs as possible between now and July. If I can raise my spring and summer sales, then hopefully I can start thinking about hiring some help for the fall and winter busy season.
I will also need to continue raising the prices on my hoodies. Unlike the other handmade items on my website, the hoodies are priced a bit too low for the amount of time that it takes for me to sew them. I'm not sure how much I will raise the prices but the big increase will not happen until the end of the summer. Prices should stay about the same for the first six months of the year. I do not have plans to increase prices on any other items, but I may increase some prices by small increments (around $2) if the cost of my fabric keeps rising.
That's it for the boring pricing stuff! Here is what to expect for the Spring and Summer Line...
New versions of current dress and tank top designs like this:
New versions of shorts and leggings like this:
I am almost done with the first few Spring/Summer items and I will hopefully have them available by next week.
Here are my tentative plans for Halloween, Fall and Winter 2014...
Lots of new Harley Quinn items like this for Halloween:
For Fall I will make some new sweater dresses and cardigans, assuming I can get enough new patterns finished in time. I don't have any examples of what they will look like because I have not made those styles before.
And of course, lots of new hoodies. I have tons of ideas for new men's hoodies and women's corset hoodies, and I want to introduce a cropped hoodie similar to the ones I made several years ago when I was experimenting with different hoodie lining options. I also finally found a source for good faux leather fabric so expect to see some faux leather in some of the new hoodie designs!
Lastly, this year I am going to introduce a few new ways for people to keep up with my new designs. Facebook is giving me less and less exposure because I am refusing to pay them hundreds of dollars for my posts to reach my fans. So on top of my blog, Pinterest, and Instagram, I will be making a Twitter account and starting a monthly email newsletter. I should have done these things years ago but... what can I say, there's only one of me running this business! If only I could just train my cat to run all my social media accounts.
Too bad her favorite thing to do is simultaneously sleep and prevent me from sewing.