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New Etsy listings!!

I’m now selling these super cute twin sets of pillowcases in my Etsy store! They’re 500 thread count, 100% cotton pillowcases (nothing but the best for you guys!!) designed and printed in sunny Brisbane, Australia (by meeeeee). I currently have these four designs and if they’re a hit I’ll design some more. Over the coming months I’m going to be experimenting with lots of different products and adding more and more listing to my store. If you have any requests please let me know and I’ll do my best to make them a reality for you!!

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What do you think? Let me know in the comments which one is your favourite!

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Neeeeewwwww business (yes, another business!)

NEW BUSINESS!!!!

Yeeesssssss

Another business.

You’d think that running a design studio, a charity, an online shop and wrangling a toddler would be enough for hubby and I, but we decided tho start yet another business.

But we’re the same people that arranged a 3 day wedding in less than 4 months.

And got married, went on a 1 month honeymoon, moved house 3 times and bought and renovated a house and had a baby while running the aforementioned businesses, all in the space of a year.

I think we’ll be OK!

Our new business is called Brisbane Custom Signs and it is a printing and signage business. We’ve purchased a large format Roland printer and it’s basically the best thing ever.

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Isn’t she beautiful? ❤️

We can print large-format signs, posters, vinyl banners, A-frams, corflutes, pull up banners, car stickers and full vinyl car wraps, bumper stickers, and sticker sheets.

Here’s my wonderful husband hard at work trimming a 1 meter wall sticker (yes we have a 1 meter guillotine – actually it’s longer than that!)

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And here’s a video I made about my new baby. As you can tell I’m a wee bit excited!! (And yes I know I’m acting like the printer is my second child and that is because it basically is! ha!)

So please check out our new website and like our Facebook page. And let us know if you need any printing – we’d be happy to help!

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My New Graphic Design Website!

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Yaaaaaayyyyyy!!! I am so excited to announce that I have a brand new website for my graphic design business!!!  It took about two months of both myself and my husband working on it in the evenings and every spare second that we had, and I’m so proud to say that it is finished! (Well, not really, as websites are never really ‘finished’ there will always be updates and refinements, but it’s finished for now at least, and I’m ready to show it off to the world.

As part of the website re-design we wrote and designed an ebook titled "10 things you can do in your business today to create a conscious and ethical impact" that you can download for free from the new website.

Do you know what it’s like to have a website that you’re unhappy with? It’s frustrating and embarrassing (especially when you do web design as part of your job like I do!) I put together my website in a hurry when I first started my business because I was keen to get something up and running so I could start marketing and start bringing in clients. It was just a temporary I said. I’d work on a better website in my spare time. But it never happened, and a year later I still had the same website! I had very limited spare time and I was getting enough work so it wasn’t a priority for me to change it.

We hired a professional photographer to do a photoshoot so that we'd have professional photos to put on the new website

But a couple of months ago I started working with a mentor who really pushed me to update my branding and re-do my website. So I finally made the website re-design a priority and now I have a brand new website (and a brand new website identity!) For too long I have looked just like every other graphic designer out there. But I’ve gotten really clear on who my dream clients are and I have created a new website that is specifically targeted to them. Flik Graphic Design is boutique design studio for purpose-driven entrepreneurs. We work with business owners that are really passionate about what they do. We specialise in feminine branding and graphic design for established businesses. Some examples of the kinds of businesses we work with are photographers, health professionals, and other service-based businesses, as well as ethically-sourced jewellery and homewares retailers, cruelty-free and natural cosmetic brands, and plant-based hospitality businesses.

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2015 Year in Review

I had another MASSIVE year in 2015! Some highlights included:

1. Moved into our new house
In January we said goodbye to our inner city apartment and then renovated and moved into our new house in the suburbs. Yes, I was moving house and renovating while heavily pregnant and I would not recommend it! But all the nesting hormones certainly helped!

2. Had a baby
After an epic 4 day labour, I gave birth to my beautiful little baby girl Charlotte on the 17th of April 2015. This was definitely the highlight of my year! Being mum to a newborn has definitely been the most challenging, exhausting, intense experience of my life, but it has also been an amazing, rewarding, life-changing experience.

3. Anniversary holiday on Stradbroke Island
For our one year wedding anniversary, we headed back to Stradbroke Island which is where Chay proposed. This time we had a little baby with us!

miss_flik4. Woodford Folk Festival
We took Charlotte to her very first music festival and she LOVED it! She was still a little young for most of the kids activities, but she loved dancing to the live music. She got so excited at the start of the closing ceremony, that she tired herself out and ended up missing most of it because she fell asleep!

5. Maternity leave
For 2015 I was on maternity leave from my business while I focused on being a great mum. It was really hard for me to take a step back from my business, so I ended up working part time. Find a balance between my two roles as a mum and business owner was something I really struggled with, but it forced me to re-evaulate my business, so I’m now working smarter and getting more done in less time!

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Printed Invitations

Should you print your own invitations or have them printed professionally?

Not sure whether you should print your own invitations or have them printed professionally? Here’s a run down of the advantages and disadvantages of both options!

Price
Firstly lets have a look at cost. Professional printing is more expensive right? Not necessarily. Once you add up the cost of specialty paper, plus the cost of printer ink, it might actually be more expensive. On the other hand, if your invitation isn’t going to use very much ink and you don’t spend too much money on paper, it might be cheaper. It really just depends on your individual setup.

Time & Convenience
Professional printing is easy because all the work is done for you, but it can take a few weeks for your invitations to arrive. On the other hand, if you do your own invitations you have to buy all the supplies and to take care of the printing, trimming, and troubleshooting. You have to figure out which paper is going to work with your printer, and figure out how to set it up so you don’t end up with paper jams and other issues.

printed-invitation-professional-vs-homeQuality
This is where professional printing comes out on top. Professional printing undoubtedly produces better quality results than home printing. Have a look at the comparison photo on the left. Both invitations are black ink printed on kraft paper, the one on the left is printed on a high-end consumer grade bubble jet printer, the invitation on the right is printed on a commercial digital printer. See how much blacker the professional invitation looks? This is because the ink in the home printer is water based and sinks into the paper, while the ink on the professional printer is (usually) made from soy wax so it’s sits on the surface of the paper. But home prints can do a pretty good job too, and may be more than adequate for your particular project.

Specialty Printing
When you print at home you’re limited to using RGB or CMYK inks, which means that you can’t achieve some of the cool colours that require special printers. For example, most printers can’t print white ink, you need a special white ink printer in order to be able to do this. Likewise, home printers can’t do cool effects like metallic ink/foil, embossing or letterpress – all of these require specialist printers too.

Free printable posters to brighten up your office

Here’s some free printable posters to brighten up your home or office!

Whether you stick them on the wall, or pop them in a frame, these posters will inject a little bit of positivity into your life. They are A4 (210x297mm) size, which is the standard paper size in most printers. To print them out, simply click on an image and it will open up the printable version of the image. Right click on the image and choose ‘Save as…’ this will save the image on your computer. You can then open it up and print it out!

If you use them, please send me a picture, I’d love to see what you’ve done with them!

Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans

Print

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Selling on Etsy – Tips & Tricks

1. Know your market

Who is your target market? Are they on Etsy? Look at your competitors. What are they doing? Are their prices similar to yours? If your products are more expensive, are you demonstrating that you offer better value for money? What makes your business stand out?

2. Have great looking product photos

Great product photography should be your number one priority. You don’t need to hire a professional photographer, but make sure your photos are clear and bright. This well really help your products stand out and make your shop look professional.

3. Focus on excellent customer service

Reply to messages promptly and politely. If a customer is unhappy, address their concerns and fix the problem – even if it’s not your fault or it leaves you  My Birthday Status for Whatsapp unfairly out of pocket. If you make a mistake, say sorry. Good customer relations can go a long way. Your best advertising will always be the word of mouth from happy customers.

4. Reward your customers

Show appreciation to your customers by adding little extras to their order. This could be in the form of a small gift or sample, a hand written note, a discount voucher and lovely packaging.

My favourite Skillshare tutorials for creatives

I’m a HUGE fan of Skillshare (and self-education in general). Here’s a round-up of my favourite Skillshare tutorials for creatives:

An Online Skillshare Class by Tanner Christensen

An Online Skillshare Class by Courtney Eliseo

An Online Skillshare questions to ask your boyfriend Class by Mary Kate McDevitt

An Online Skillshare Class by Geri Coady

Not a member of SkillShare? You can sign up here.

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Gratitude Jar

What’s a Gratitude Jar?

I started a Gratitude Jar at the start of the year as one of my new years resolutions, and it’s one of the best things I have ever done.

All you have to do is take a moment each day to write down something that you are grateful for and put it in a jar. It’s a great exercise, because it forces you to be mindful of the positive things that happen throughout your day.  And when you’re having a particularly bad day, you can have a look at all the positive things that have happened to you.

To make your own Gratitude Jar all you need is:

  • An old jar
  • Scrapes paper to write on
  • Ribbon and a label to decorate (optional)
  • Gratitude

But I don’t have anything to be grateful for!

Really? The simple fact that you’re reading this, means that you either have (or have access to) a computer with internet, which means you have electricity, and you’re probably sitting on a pretty comfy chair too. You can find an almost infinite number of things to be grateful for by focusing on the little things that you usually take for granted. A few examples of some of my own gratitude’s include:

  • Didn’t have to wait in line at the coffee shop! And my soy latte tasted AMAZING!
  • Enjoyed a delicious Eggplant Rollatini for dinner tonight!
  • Relaxing Friday night eating home made popcorn and watching a movie with my husband.

Do you have a gratitude jar? If so, has it had a positive effect on your attitude or outlook on life? Please tell me about it in the comments!

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