Remember to Breathe

Remember to Breathe

*This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if you choose to click on them and/or make a purchase*

Breathing is definitely NOT overrated.  I lost most of November to a sinus infection, and while sinus infections are nothing new to me, this one added a new twist: asthma exacerbation.  My “mild” asthma became much less so, and pretty much any type of exertion left me breathless.  This was especially annoying considering I live on the third floor, so just taking the stairs was an adventure.  Add some truly excruciating joint pain to the mix and you may begin to understand why I haven’t been a very happy camper.  Writing and typing are difficult when you have shooting pains in your elbow and your fingers are too stiff and sore to hold a pen.  I have a speech-to-text program that I like to use for “writing” down my thoughts, but even talking was too much exertion for my poor lungs.  So I haven’t been able to get much work done on my book, let alone anything else.

*BreatheAir Purifiers for AsthmaBreathe*

It’s extremely frustrating for me to not be able to do the things I want to do.  I don’t like being told I can’t do something, and my body has been telling me “nope” for several weeks now.  (Yes, I’ve seen a doctor.  Yes, I’m much better, thus why I’m actually able to write this now.)  I’ve been forced to slow down, take it easy, relax… and I hate it.  Patience is not one of my virtues.  But it’s given me a lot of time to think.

*The Power of Breath: The Art of Breathing Well for Harmony, Happiness, and HealthBreathe Better Feel BetterBreathing Space: Living and Working at a Comfortable Pace in a Sped-Up Society*

Obviously, the book I’m writing is much on my mind.  Make that books.  As I do my research and go over my notes, I realize this is a much more ambitious project than I originally thought.  The good thing is that just makes me more excited about it.  The bad thing is that excitement makes the frustration of not being able to work on it worse.  I’ve had to constantly remind myself to just take a deep breath and let it go.

*“Take a Deep Breath” by V Sharp Multon*
from: Imagekind-Artwork from independent artists

Since writing wasn’t working, I ended up doing a lot of reading and listening to audiobooks.  I must admit, I love self-help books.  I love how they can make me think about my life, hopes, and dreams, and get me enthused about them all over again.  One that I recently finished and highly recommend is Jen Sincero’s *You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life*.  I have the audiobook version, which she reads herself.  I really like her style, though it’s quite different from the usual fare.  She can be crass and vulgar (she was in a band called Crotch, that should really explain a lot right there) but to me anyway, that makes her seem more real and approachable.  I’m seriously considering investing in one of her coaching programs.

You can check out some of the quotes from You Are a Badass on Goodreads, but there were two that I want to share in this post:

“Life often turns to shit before it turns to shinola.”

“Birthing your dreams is like… giving birth.  Conceiving the idea is the fun part (hopefully), then you go through insane amounts of fear and excitement and dreaming and planning and vomiting and growing and thinking you’re crazy and thinking you’re awesome and stretching and shape shifting until you’re practically unrecognizable to everyone, even your own self.”

Following your dreams is not an easy path.  As the saying goes, if it was easy everyone would do it.  I’ve never been pregnant, but I’ve been around enough pregnant women to recognize the truth of the second quote.  I know that following my dreams has changed me considerably from the person I was a decade ago.  It’s been a pretty wild ride, but I’m not about to get off the roller coaster.

What I found incredibly interesting and enlightening was the chapter containing the first quote.  By really going for your dreams, you are basically trying to completely change your reality, but your reality doesn’t want to change, so it throws a tantrum like a threenager.  It’s like Murphy’s Law on steroids and crack.  But it also means you’re on the right track.  So the sinus infection, my asthma now requiring a daily inhaler, the joint pain I’ll be seeing a Rheumatologist about in January, all but one of the headlights on my car going out, the flash drive with all my notes and references for the book getting corrupted (talk about leaving me breathless!), my laptop BSODing, my credit score tanking because I couldn’t pay my bills and my creditors were breathing down my neck, and what seems like a million other little setbacks are all because I’m finally on my way to making my dreams my new reality.  I’m going to believe that anyway, it helps me to breathe easier. 🙂

Now, back to MY book.  I think strategic planning is extremely important for any business, but it’s also extremely different for a one-person business than it is for a corporation.  First of all, you ARE your business.  You eat, sleep, and yes, breathe it.  It’s very difficult for an artist to detach themselves from their art, as we pour our hearts and souls into each piece we make.  So you’re not just planning for your business, you’re planning for your LIFE.  Because of that, I will be incorporating not only the knowledge I’ve gleaned from my studies on corporate strategic planning, but also from the variety of self-development and life coaching books I’ve read.  I’ll try to keep my rah-rah cheerleader tendencies to a minimum, and because I always put “none of the above” for my religious affiliation, you won’t be seeing any mentions of a specific religion.  This book is about you, your business, and your dreams.

*Breathing Freely: Celebrating the Imperfect LifeTake Their Breath Away: How Imaginative Service Creates Devoted Customers*

I’m also using the material I’m creating to take a good hard look at my own business.  These last few weeks have given me a lot of time to think and dream and figure out what it is I really want.  I’ll be doing a post about my BIG dream later, but there are three things that I want my business to be about: freedom, creativity, and passion, not only for myself, but for every small creative business.  Painting the Big Picture of Your Creative Business will be all about discovering the passion behind your business and creating the freedom you want in your life.

*Breathing on Your OwnA Deep Breath of Life: Daily Inspiration for Heart-Centered LivingBreathing In, Breathing Out: Keeping a Writer's Notebook *

For me, part of the freedom I want to create for myself and my business is the freedom from worry about money.  Besides the sickness and pain, another thing keeping me from writing is the necessity to try and find ways to make enough money to pay the bills.  Time spent listing items on eBay and Etsy or researching events I can vend at is time spent away from working on my book.  This is one reason I created the Indiegogo campaign, to raise funds so I could work on the book without financial distractions.  The campaign ends today (December 18), and I am nowhere near reaching the goal for the first book, let alone all ten.  So I’ve been looking at other ways to make some passive income, and that’s why I’ve signed up to be an affiliate for some of my favorite companies and websites, like *eBay*, *Amazon*, *Groupon*, *Better World Books*, and *Jo-Ann.com*.  Then I went a little nuts…

*Asthma FreeDarth Vader Breathing Device*

*Asthma For DummiesThe Art of Breathing: Thirty Simple Exercises for Improving Your Performance and Well-BeingThe Breathing BookLet Your Spirit Breathe: Living a Peace-Filled Life*

*Take a Deep BreathWhy Is It So Hard to Breathe?: A First Look at AsthmaBreathing Space: Twelve Lessons for the Modern Woman*

Yeah, I went a little overboard.  You can see them all on the Referrals and Recommendations page (still a work in progress, but let me know if you have issues with any of the links or you can’t find what you’re looking for).  As you’ve probably figured out by now, I am putting an asterisk on either side of any affiliate link.  This ensures that it’s completely obvious that it’s an affiliate link, and also helps me to find them when I’m done writing a post if I don’t put the links in as I go.  And links without the asterisks are non-affiliated.  Anyway, I’ll be seeing how these do and likely will pare them down in the coming months.  I’ll also be doing some specific posts giving more details and reviews of certain products and services, and using some to illustrate some of the other posts I have planned.  Speaking of which, you can get a sneak preview of possible themes by checking out my Pinterest boards.  I’ve been adding products I find on Etsy for each of these “vision boards” in hopes of giving those sellers a bit of extra exposure, plus I may use some of them for illustrative purposes like I did in my last post.  Note that I have no affiliation with these Etsy shops and am not receiving any compensation for sharing their products.  I just think they’re neat and I want to help other artists and small businesses like myself.  Of course, I will add my own products to these boards as I make them, as there are dozens of inspirations running through my head thanks to this process.  “Vision boards” indeed.

*AFI Breathe Spiral Notebook *

I’ve also been looking at other ways to express my creativity and passion.  Several years ago, I set up a Zazzle store that I called Badly Drawn Designs, a play on the Jessica Rabbit quote I play at the beginning of my shows for The Cape Radio and the fact that all my designs are text-based.  I haven’t added anything to it in years, but it’s still generating a little bit of income for me.  I have an Excel spreadsheet with hundreds of other ideas, so I really want to start creating these again, especially now that I have PhotoShop.  Here is my most popular product of all time (42 sold so far!):

*See more Badly Drawn Designs*
*Make your own t-shirts online at zazzle.com*

I’m also using PhotoShop to create images like the one at the top of this post.  The background image is from Pixabay, a site of royalty free, public domain images that can be used for commercial purposes.  I add the word art, using fonts from dafont.com which are also free for commercial use (not all of them are, so make sure you look for ones that are public domain or 100% free).  I really do enjoy playing around with fonts and words, and I’m thinking of creating word art images for sale in my Etsy shop.  These would be digital downloads, so another great source of put-it-up-and-forget-it income.  What do you think of this one?

JustKeepBreathing

You’re probably wondering how this all fits with the rest of my business.  Remember those three words I mentioned earlier?  Freedom, creativity, and passion.  The affiliate links offer me the freedom to work on other things while still potentially generating income, and the companies and websites I choose are ones I am passionate about, related to creativity, or speak to one of my other passions, like helping small business owners and saving the world (even if it’s just *feeding animals at a shelter*… it all adds up to a better world eventually).  Badly Drawn Designs gives me the freedom to create something without having to reproduce or ship it myself.  I’ve always had a passion for words, and playing with fonts and images provides a creative outlet.  I love making jewelry and sewing, but it’s not always possible for me to do so.  And of course, writing Painting the Big Picture of Your Creative Business gives me the freedom to creatively share one of my passions: reworking big business concepts for one-person businesses.

So much of the literature available to us “little guys” seems to be based on our desire to either become one of the big guys or sell our business to them.  But what if that’s not our goal?  A lot of small, creative business people just want to keep their business something they can handle on their own, maybe with a little bit of help now and then, but they don’t have any desire to deal with employees or investors or IPOs.  I am designing Painting the Big Picture of Your Creative Business for the individual artist and crafter who wants to define success on their own terms.  Strategic planning can help you whether you want to make a million dollars a year or just want to help put food on the table.  In fact, I would say that strategic planning is vital to the success of your business, however you define success.  And it doesn’t have to be hard, or confusing, or frustrating.  It can be an extremely fun process!  Plus, you can pre-order today for as little as $5, so what do you have to lose?  Take a deep breath and click that Contribute Now button. 😉

*Breathe for Life: How to Reduce Stress & Enhance Your FitnessBreathe In, Breathe Out: Inhale Energy and Exhale Stress by Guiding and Controlling Your Breathing*

I couldn’t resist adding one last thing… who knew bad breath could be so cute??  🙂

Giant Microbes Bad Breath Microbe

*Giant Microbes Bad Breath Microbe*
from: StuffedAnimals.com























Reorganization

Sorry folks, I’m caught up in reorganizing my studio and just didn’t have time to list the new rainbow products and finish up my colorful Five By Fives today.  You’ll just have to wait until Tuesday, when I’ll have a chance to do so.

I’ve decided to extend the  Christmas in July Sale in my Etsy shop through Tuesday, which means the coupon code will get turned off sometime Wednesday morning when I get up and start processing any orders before I get ready to leave for Ohio.  Orders placed after Tuesday, July 24th, won’t be shipped until August 1st, after I get back.  So if you’re thinking about ordering, please do so by Tuesday and use the coupon code RCIJ25 to get 25% off your order.

Remember, this code works on gift certificates too, so if you think you might want to buy something later (I still have TONS of stuff to put up) grab a gift certificate at a discounted price now!  I have $5, $25, and $100 gift certificates available, so they’d  actually cost you $3.75, $18.75, and $75, respectively.  And of course, you’ll have the full face value of the gift certificate to redeem any time you want, since they never expire.

Admittedly, I’m a little desperate for cash right now, and any orders are greatly appreciated! 🙂  So seriously, take advantage of the discount to get a gift certificate if you don’t see anything else you want, because there is definitely more coming once I get back from Ohio!

I’m taking this weekend off to spend time with Lorne and our friends, and Monday I’ll be buried in a paper for my marketing class, so it will be Tuesday before I can add any new products for you.  For now, check out the rainbow products I currently have listed in my Etsy shop:

I better get back to reorganizing my studio, since I only have about two hours to get it done!  Well, mostly done.  I know I still need some things from Ohio to get it completely organized, but this is a pretty good start.  I’ll have pictures for you when it’s all done in August. 🙂

Thanks so much, and see you Tuesday!

The Final Countdown – 8…

Eight days left in my IndieGoGo campaign and today I bring you a version of “The Final Countdown” played on a Kazookeylele – part kazoo, part ukulele, and part toy piano.  I think it’s an epic example of rewondering and was made by Stuart Crouts.  Check out his youtube page for more awesome songs played on this instrument and others!

 

Thankfully, eight stands for 80’s today, regarding the temperature outside.  We have a forecasted high of 87 with thunderstorms rolling in this afternoon, so I might be able to get back into the studio later today.  I love the sound of the rain on the roof while I’m working!  The rain will also wash away some of this pollen that’s been kicking my ass.  The foliage in the area loved all the sunshine we’ve been getting.  It’s pretty to look at, but it’s out to kill me, I swear.  Thank goodness for allergy medications!  And thank goodness for Throat Coat tea.  Hot tea when it’s in the 90’s may not sound like a great idea, but my throat is very grateful for it.

The rest of the forecast over the next 8 days looks much more bearable, and we should only need the A/C for another day or two.  I’ll be playing catch up this weekend and working very hard all next week to get more new products made and posted.  I’ve been updating the quantity available for each of the items up in my Etsy shop.  I have more necklaces to list, but not the full array of pictures I usually post.  I may just start posting them with what I do have and go back and add in the additional pictures later.  Several of the ones not on Etsy yet can be seen in the gallery.

I’m up to 20 votes at http://www.missionsmallbusiness.com and need 230 more in order for my application to be considered, so if you have a Facebook account, please click that link, log in, search for Rewondered, and click the vote button.  You only have to do it once but I need the votes by June 30th.

And of course, please continue to help get my IndieGoGo campaign noticed.  Instructions are laid out in my Day 10 post.  Or just go to http://www.indiegogo.com/rewondered1 and make a contribution!  You can use PayPal or any major credit or debit card.  Even $5 would be a major help, as every little bit counts.  Thank you for your support!

The Final Countdown – 10…

We’re down to ten days left in my IndieGoGo campaign, and I couldn’t resist posting this video:

 

Okay, now that I have that out of my system…

I started this campaign on IndieGoGo because I really don’t have a lot of other choices.  I am a college student trying to survive on student loans, and all the hundreds (yes, hundreds) of resumes and applications I’ve sent out over the past year to get a “real” job have met with next to zero response.  Next week I’ll “celebrate” three years since I got laid off my last full-time job, and since then I’ve worked one temporary, part-time job which lasted about two months, and I’ve had three interviews with companies I’ve never heard from again.  My amazing fiance and roommates keep a roof over my head and food on the table, but I hate feeling like I’m not contributing to the household.  I need my business to be successful enough to cover my personal bills and help out where I can.  I don’t have the credit or collateral to get a business loan and I’ve maxed out my credit cards.  I don’t have any rich relatives or friends to borrow money from and I’m not running the type of business that angel investors even consider.

I’m not telling you this as a sob story, just explaining why I’m trying the crowdfunding route.  I’ve been fairly consistently selling a few things over the last few months, but it’s just been enough to cover my costs of selling, such as all the various fees, shipping costs, and keeping my websites up.  I need to sell more items, but that involves more fees, specific equipment to sell at events such as a canopy and displays, advertising, more supplies to make more items, etc.  I just don’t have the money for that.  I have tons of supplies sitting in storage that I can’t access because they’re 750 miles away from where I live.  I know I can make this business work, but it’s all too true that it takes money to make money.

So I turned to IndieGoGo.  I have ten days left to get the $430 I still need to reach my initial $500 goal.  I still have hope that it can happen, but I’ll need help getting the word out, as I’m still not showing up anywhere on IndieGoGo’s site.  Those of you who have followed the instructions laid out in my No News and Good News post managed to get the majority of my stats tripled in just one week.  Thank you!  But it’s not over until it’s over, so I’ll repost the ways y’all can help here:

  • Go to http://www.indiegogo.com/rewondered1. Each view counts toward my “Gogofactor” so go take a look!
  • Under my video there is a box that says “Share this campaign.” Do any or all of the following:
    • Click on the heart to add my campaign to your favorites. You may need to create an account on IndieGoGo to do this, I’m not sure.
    • If you have Facebook, click on the “Like” button. It will ask you if you want to post it on your Facebook and you don’t have to, but it would be awesome if you did!
    • If you have Twitter, click on the “Tweet” button. It will pop up with a pre-filled message and link to the campaign, so you can just send it as is or change up the message. “Wondie said I had to tweet this” is fine. 😛
    • If you have Google+, click on the “g+” button. Again, you don’t have to actually post it on your Google+ but it would be awesome if you did!
    • If you have a website or blog and wouldn’t mind posting the nifty little widget you see at top right of this one, click the “Embed” button for the iframe code to use.
    • If you use Outlook and want to email this to some friends, click the “email” button and Outlook will pop up with a pre-filled message, you just have to add in email address to the “To” section. Of course, you can change the message to make it more personal to whoever you are sending it to.
  • Above the video are several tabs. Click on the “Comment” tab and write something nice like “Good luck!” or “Wondie is awesome!” Whatever you want, just keep it clean, okay? 😉
  • Make a contribution, even if it’s only $5. See my post on how to make a contribution if you have any questions, and my post on how and when you’ll get your perks.
  • Go to my Facebook page, my Twitter, and my website and click the link to the campaign there. Views from other social sites count, so ask people to click on any links you post, too.

Yesterday, I added a ton of pictures to the gallery of necklaces and bracelets that you can choose from for the $20 Recreate perk, instead of a custom made one.  Any of these can also be altered (add or change charms, for example) or I can make something similar in different colors.  These are available on a first come, first served basis, as many are one of a kind or limited editions.  You can also choose any of the bags or pillows shown in the gallery, and I’ll be adding pictures of more of those later.

I’m also considering adding up to three more perks (the maximum allowed is twelve and I have nine up there now).  I’ve got a few ideas, but I’m open to suggestions if you have any.

Now, I’m going to ask for your help for one more thing that has nothing to do with my IndieGoGo campaign.  As I mentioned at the end of yesterday’s post, I’m looking at applying for a grant that requires 250 people to log in using their Facebook accounts and “like” my business before they’ll even consider my application.  I found out I can start collecting those likes before I finish my application, and right now I’m up to 12 votes.  Here’s how it works:

  • You must have a Facebook account
  • Go to http://www.missionsmallbusiness.com
  • Click the “Log In & Support” button and log in using your Facebook account
  • Search for Rewondered and click the “Vote” button
  • That’s it, you’re done!  You only need to vote once!

I’m hoping to get more new products up later today, but it’s going to be a scorcher here and my third floor studio doesn’t have air conditioning, so I might not be able to work in here too long today or tomorrow.  We shall see how it goes!

Once again, I thank you all for your support and help getting my IndieGoGo campaign noticed.  Yes, there will be 9 more posts over the next 9 days.  Shall I find a fun “Final Countdown” video for each one? 😛

Going For It

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about and looking into crowdfunding for Rewondered.  And I’ve decided to go for it.  I’m going to use Indiegogo because I like the way they do things and the whole system is easy to navigate.  I’m still working on my pitch video, but I should be taking the campaign live by next week.  I thought I’d give you guys a preview of what I have planned.  Below is the copy that will appear on Indiegogo once my campaign goes live:

***

Repurpose – What are we doing here?

The purpose of this campaign is to allow Rewondered to introduce new product lines and wedding designs, many of which use repurposed materials.

Rewondered – What is Rewondered?

Rewondered is a one-woman handmade fashion business specializing in items for anyone who wants to express their style in a distinctive and unconventional fashion.

When I decided to start my own business, I wanted it express my creativity, as well as do some small part to save the world (I’m not a superhero in real life, but I play one online). I started designing jewelry using a variety of new and used materials, old broken pieces, found objects, leftover craft supplies, and anything else I thought was interesting. I try to reuse and recycle as much as possible, thus keeping perfectly good objects out of the landfills. I love taking something that could be considered “junk” and “rewondering” it into something… well, wonderful.

I have been planning to expand my product lines for some time, but Rewondered took a bit of a back seat when I relocated to New Hampshire last summer. However, I now have a studio set up and I’m ready to start bringing my ideas to life. I’m getting married in August, and plan to make as much of the attire and decorations for the wedding as possible, so these designs will also be incorporated into my new product lines. In addition, I’m planning to start a line of “rewondered” wedding and prom dresses. I would love to create one-of-a-kind pieces for other brides and special occasions. A once-in-a-lifetime day deserves a once-in-a-lifetime dress!

Request – How Can You Help?

My campaign here on Indiegogo respectfully requests your assistance in helping me get these product lines made and available for sale. I think everyone deserves to express their own distinctive style however they wish, and it’s my goal to provide them with products that can help them do so. I love doing custom work, and particularly look forward to helping brides bring their vision of their perfect wedding to life.

There are several phases to my plans for Rewondered, and this campaign’s goal is to raise money for the first phase, at least. Additional funds raised will allow me to implement additional phases. All money raised will go toward Rewondered’s expansion plans and operating expenses. If I don’t reach my fund-raising goal, I’ll implement as much as I can and any leftover monies will pay for things like listing fees and supplies.

Reveal – Phase 1

I’ll be adding pictures to the gallery of my new designs as I get them done.  Here are just a few of the new product ideas I’m working on: earrings, bracelets, corset jewelry, corsets and waist cinchers, shrugs and jackets, skirts, tutus and petticoats, bustles and overskirts, vests, jabots and neckties, fabric and paper flowers, brooch bouquets, boutonnieres, framed text-based art prints, veils, fascinators, wedding favors, decorations, key chains, photo booth props, “flair” (buttons or pins), and tote bags. Posting 500 new products on Etsy will cost me $100 for listing fees and one year of my online store subscription is about $240. I will need ink for my printer, labels, cardstock, and plastic bags to create tags and packaging, as well as mailing supplies. I’m estimating another $160 for these. Total Reveal phase: $500.

Reclaim – Phase 2

When I moved to New Hampshire, most of my supplies were put into storage in Ohio. This includes tons of old jewelry and beads, scrapbooking paper and embellishments, clothing (including some formal dresses), fabric, miscellaneous craft supplies, and some furniture that I could use in my studio. Phase 2 is reclaiming these supplies and moving them from Ohio to New Hampshire. I am estimating this will cost around $500. Total Reclaim phase: $500. Total of Reveal + Reclaim phases: $1000.

Reconnect – Phase 3

The next phase is connecting to my customers in person. My goal is to have a table or booth at at least one convention, festival, or fair each month. I would love to return to Ba-Con, which is at the end of June. I am estimating that vending fees and travel will cost approximately $350. I am planning on appearing once a month (June-October) at the Concord Arts Market. This will cost me $200, plus I will be required to have a 10×10 canopy and 25-pound weights for each leg, which I found on Amazon for $188. I’ll be looking for things I can buy used and/or repurpose for displays, such as garment racks, wire cubes, jewelry displays, hangers, and mannequins. I’m not sure exactly what I need until I figure out what products I want to take to the shows, so I’ll estimate $262 just to bring me to an even $1000 for this phase. Total Reconnect phase: $1000. Total of Reveal + Reclaim + Reconnect phases: $2000.

Redesign – Phase 4

This is where I implement the Rewondered Wedding Dress product line. Three adjustable dress forms (small, medium, and large), will give me the ability to customize to a wide range of sizes. These will cost around $300. A portable washing machine that I can use to dye fabrics will cost about $100. I’ll need a supply of wedding dresses I can alter, so a $500 shopping spree at various thrift stores should net me 5-10 dresses to start with. I’ll also need additional material, trims and embellishments, thread, zippers, etc. so I’m adding another $500 for supplies. Total of Redesign phase: $1400. Total of Reveal + Reclaim + Reconnect + Redesign phases: $3400.

Rediscover – Phase 5

While all of the above will help me get my name out there, I’ll still need to do some advertising. I want to become a Lifetime Member of OffbeatBride.com ($50) and get listed as a vendor for one year ($345). I’ve received some good traffic from Facebook and Google ads, so I’d like to try spending $100 a month on each for six months ($1200). Total of Rediscover phase: $1595. Total of Reveal + Reclaim + Reconnect + Redesign + Rediscover phases: $4995

Repercussions – What will fully funding this campaign accomplish?

What this will do for me is get my business off its training wheels and riding down the big hill without fear. My dream is to run Rewondered full-time and actually make a living at it.

What this will do for my customers is get them something uniquely “them” at an affordable price. Those who own my necklaces often get complimented on them. And those who get one of my Rewondered Wedding Dresses can be confident that they are getting a truly unique dress, custom designed to their taste and style, and they’re not breaking the budget to get it!

What this will do for the world is keep more items out of landfills. I will also be offering designs to various charities that I believe in, which they can auction off for their cause, as well as creating special signature pieces where the proceeds will go to a specific charity.

What this will do for you….

Rewards – What’s in it for you?

Ah yes, the perks! First of all, everyone who contributes at least $5 will be Regarded and receive a special thank you tweet from @Rewondered on Twitter or a thank you post on Rewondered’s Facebook Page, as well as their name listed on a special thank you page on my website. Everyone who contributes at least $10 will receive a $25 gift certificate which they can Redeem in my Etsy shop or online store.

Then we get into the items I will custom make for you.

  • For a $20 contribution, you can choose a necklace or a bracelet, custom made for you with up to 20 charms or beaded sections.
  • For a $25 contribution, I will send you an autographed 8×10 from my photo shoot last December, and a 2-minute recording of me reading from one of the erotica stories by Teresa Noelle Roberts.
  • For a $50 contribution, you can choose between a custom made Rewondered skirt or floor-length tutu, or a 75-piece photo booth prop package, consisting of new, repurposed and handmade items.
  • For a $100 contribution, you can choose either two bouquets or two centerpieces, custom made from a variety of materials such as fabric, paper, brooches, beads, wire, or whatever else your imagination can think up.  I’ll work with you to make something truly “you”-nique.
  • For a $500 contribution, you will be one of the first to get a customized Rewondered Wedding Dress (or other formal attire) or a customized Cosplay Outfit or costume of your choice.
  • For $4995 (and thus funding all 5 phases) I will Rewonder your entire wedding. This includes ensembles for the wedding party, such as dresses, jackets, vests, veils or fascinators, headbands or other hair accessories, jabots or neckties, and jewelry. It also includes bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces and other decorations, wedding favors, invitations, and programs. I am restricting this to ONE person, with a wedding party of no more than ten people, a guest list of no more than 200, and a wedding date of no earlier than October 2012. You also must agree to provide pictures of your wedding and allow me to use them for promotional purposes (so be sure to discuss that with your photographer, or get some really good candids).  I will also be posting on my blog about my progress on what I’m making for your wedding.  Here is your chance for a handmade wedding, using as many repurposed materials as possible, for a bargain price!

Redistribute – How else can you help?

One great way to help is to spread the word about my campaign to everyone you know through Facebook, Twitter, email, or however else you want to communicate.

Another is to contribute your unwanted jewelry, craft and sewing supplies, fabric, trims and embellishments, clothing, wedding and prom dresses, costume pieces, curtains, blankets, home decorations, and any other items you think might be useful to me. I don’t care if it’s broken, ripped, or out of style! Do you have a 10×10 canopy you’re not using? Something that will make a good display piece? Adjustable dress forms, portable washing machine, sewing machine, or serger? Things I could use to make the perks I’ve mentioned? If you live within a 2-3 hours of Hillsborough, NH or along the route between there and Columbus, OH, I can arrange to pick things up. Otherwise, talk to me about arrangements for shipping.

You can also check out the products I currently have for sale in my Etsy shop and online store. Feel free to pin the stuff you like on Pinterest or share it on Facebook or Twitter! Also check out my website, like my Facebook page, follow me on Twitter and Pinterest, and subscribe to my blog.

And don’t forget to use the Indiegogo share tools!

Thank you for taking a look at my campaign, and thank you for your contribution (monetary or otherwise).  I very much appreciate it!

***

The phases I’ve described are also my Road Map to Success and exactly where I want my business to go.  I’m excited about it!

So what do you think?  I tried to come up with some interesting perks (like me reading erotica – fans of my radio show will get a kick out of that idea, I’m sure) as well as a good mixture of things to choose from.  Which one interests you?

Words of Wondie and The One Hit Wonder Project: Money (That’s What I Want)

As mentioned previously, I postponed the posting of the Friday, February 10th entry because it was my birthday.  I’ve had a fairly relaxing weekend in celebration of turning yet another year older, so I’m just now getting to posting the project I had chosen for Friday.  My inspiration is a song by Barrett Strong that reached #23 on the Hot 100 in 1960, and also answers the question “What do you want for your birthday?”  Money (That’s What I Want).

Rainbow and Gold Dollar Sign and Money Bags "Money (That's What I Want)" Necklace - Part of The One Hit Wonder Project

Rainbow and Gold Dollar Sign and Money Bags "Money (That's What I Want)" Necklace - Part of The One Hit Wonder Project

I generally have a hard time answering the “What do you want for your birthday?” question.  I love gifts, don’t get me wrong, but I tend to be rather pragmatic and ask for something I need or just say “You don’t have to get me anything.”  And this annoys people who want to get me something fun and frivolous, something I really want, rather than something I really need.

But here’s what I really want, more than anything: a successful business where I can be creative and do what I love.  This isn’t something that can be wrapped up, tied with a bow, and handed over to me.  This is something that I need to work on and build up and operate myself.  What I really need to make it all happen is money.  I need to pay for listing fees and website hosting and advertising, just for a start.  I want to take my items to conventions, which requires money for booth/table rental, travel, hotel, and displays.  I want to expand into other products, which requires money for supplies and tools.  It seems like everything I want, requires money.

I’m thinking about trying some Crowdfunding, but I’m really not sure what to offer other than products or gift certificates.  I’d be interested in getting a business loan but I don’t have anything other than my inventory to offer as collateral, and at least the one bank I checked with needed more than that.  I’d love an angel investor but I don’t want to give up any equity and my type of business is of no interest to the usual venture capitalist.

So how do I get more money?  Well, sales would be nice. 😛  Have you looked through my Etsy shop and main store?  Don’t forget the coupon code FEBRUARY10 will get you 10% off your purchase in either one!  I also am happy to do custom work and I am always adding new products, so if you don’t see anything you want now, you can request a custom order or purchase a gift certificate to use later (or give to someone else).  Or if you just want to throw money at me, you can Chip In if you have a PayPal account.

If you’re in the same no money boat as I am, but still want to help out someway, here’s an idea.  Go through your old jewelry, clothing, craft supplies, small toys, junk collections, etc. and send me what you don’t want anymore.  I may be weird, but a box of “junk” is a fun gift for me!  I love pawing through it and seeing the possibilities.  Speaking of weird, one thing I’d really like to get my hands on is a bunch of the metal pieces from hanging file folders.  I have a use for them, honest!

And here’s an idea that won’t cost you a dime: share links to my products, website, blog, etc.  The more people who see my products, the more chance I have of making a sale.

I want to thank everyone who has supported me as I’ve gotten this venture off the ground once again.  I’ve received a great deal of encouragement and I am eternally grateful to everyone who has stood by me and cheered me on.

Oh, and yes, I did have a good birthday.  My Spousal Equivalent took me out to dinner and when we got home,  my roommate had purchased two birthday cakes for me, because she couldn’t decide on just one (one was Black Forest, the other was Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup).  I spent the weekend alternating between being lazy and getting some work done, sleeping in, taking naps, and playing a new video game that I’m really excited about.  I had an amazing outpouring of birthday wishes on my Facebook and other sites I frequent, and my phone was going crazy with calls and text messages.  I love my life, and the people in it!

 

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