Tag Archives: creative

August Stamp of the Month (SOTM): What a Hoot!

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Prepare for “owl” the fall festivities with this hoot of a stamp set.

Fall will be swooping in before we know it, and there is no better way to welcome in crispy breezes and falling leaves than with the August Stamp of the Month, What a Hoot! When you place an order of $50 or more, these festive fowl can join your aviary for only $5! The quirky owls in this adorable stamp set will add an endearing element to any craft. You can even dress them up in costumes and wish your friends a “Happy ‘Owl’oween”! Whatever the occasion, these feathered friends are sure to make a hoot in your neck of the woods.

Set of 17 stamps are included in this month's kit!

Set of 17 stamps are included in this month’s kit!

Wish your friends a “Happy ‘Owl’oween” with our August STOM set!

Wish your friends a “Happy ‘Owl’oween” with our August STOM set!

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 Hope you enjoyed the creations by several creative CTMH consultants. And if you need more ideas, just visit the website and browse through all the great samples in our online book.

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Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the new Annual Inspirations idea book!

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After months of anticipation, Annual Inspirations has arrived at last.

The art-filled pages are now available for your viewing pleasure! Peruse the gold mine of new products, ranging from the new Cut Above™ line to the ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Markers, and admire the gorgeous artwork that dances across the pages. With additions such as 5 new colors and 9 new My Reflections™ paper packets, this idea book is overflowing with artistic inspiration and surging with products fit to make any crafter’s heart swoon. So go ahead, fall in love with the new idea book. We promise the plunge will be well worth your time. Just click on the cover photo below to visit my website and browse through nearly 200 pages filled with new products and fresh ideas.

2014-15 Annual Inspirations Idea Book

The Annual Inspirations Idea Book will take us through the next 12 months with 2 Seasonal Expressions editions – one in December and another in March.

Enter a new world of crafting possibilities with the launch of our latest idea book.

There are 9 new Paper Collections, a new line called Cut Above, new Designer Decor, 3 new My Crush Albums, 5 new Picture My Life Kits, Base & Bling, a new line from our My Creations section,  and lots of new embellishments to dress up your projects.  I have been working very hard on new projects using the latest stamps and papers along with fun kits you will be able to purchase.If you would like your very own hard copy of the Annual Inspiration Idea Book, please fill in the contact form below with your name and email address, and tell me in the comment box how many books you would like.

 

FREE Stamp of the Month Give-Away

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Screen shot 2014-07-07 at 7.23.20 PMAlready 8 days into July and I am feeling so excited about our July Stamp of the Month stamp set that I have decided to give one of these sets away. FREE stamps??? Yes! Normally, you can purchase any of the Stamp of the Month (SOTM) sets for $17.95 without a qualifying purchase. Or with any $50 order, you can purchase the SOTM for just $5.00= that’s a wonderful deal either way. But I have an even better special for some lucky person who places one of the first 15 orders for JUST $10.00 by joining my July Online Gathering. That’s right… be one of the 1st 15 people to place at least a $10.00 order and your name will go into a drawing through Rafflecopter.com Your FREE SOTM will come directly from me and will NOT be part of your online order, so I must be able to get your physical address as well as your email address.

Screen shot 2014-07-08 at 2.20.54 PMTo be entered into the drawing, simply go shopping on my website. You can use the Close To My Heart link located at the top in the right side column, or click HERE to go directly to the correct page with the Join link on my website.

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Once you have placed your order and submitted payment, you need to send me an email to: jewelsofkingwood@gmail.com letting me know you completed an order. Deadline for placing orders for this give-away is July 30th, 2014. I will check all order dates and identify the 15 lucky customers who placed orders within the time limitations and enter their names into a drawing using RaffleCopter.com Each person entered will be notified via email and will also receive a screenshot of the actual Rafflecopter.com results of the drawing. I will send an email to the winner, who will have 24 hours to respond with their email address. If I don’t get a reply back from that person within 24 hours, I will hold another drawing with the remaining names and follow the same steps until I do get a reply from the winning entry.

Good luck and enjoy this shopping Give-Away challenge!

~The Jewels of Kingwood

The Price is Right!

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In the past few weeks I’ve seen many inquiries on social media sites about selling crafts and artwork. How do I determine how much my work is worth? If I am asked about selling my work, how much should I charge? And, “where is the best place to sell my work?”

pricing your workPriced 2 Sell

As an art and graphic design teacher and a professor for college courses in visual communication, one of the topics I cover with my students is how to make a living as an artist/designer. You need to know how to determine the “cost of goods sold”, how to conduct enough research to know about your target market, and, in order to price your art realistically, you must understand and respect how the art business works and how collectors or other clients/customers shop and make purchase.

Steps 4 Success

First step is to objectively evaluate the significance and quality of your art in relation to other similar art or design work. Next, honestly assess your accomplishments and determine how they position you in relation to others doing similar work. These tasks can be tricky and difficult but very important to succeeding in your chosen field. This can also apply to anyone selling handcrafted items. You have to ask yourself, “are you ready to do your homework, ask questions, and stand up to the unsuccessful attempts or time frames that don’t equal your expectations.

price-is-rightPart of the homework or research that must be done, is making sure you understand the common mistakes that artists and designers make when setting prices. Perhaps the most significant error is the tendency to focus too much attention on only that segment of the market area that pertains to you and too little attention on the rest, or even worse, dismissing the rest as irrelevant. If you let this happen, your asking prices may make sense to you and to your inner circle, but make little sense to the overall target market or audience you hope to attract. The more aware you are of the big picture, of what others are creating, how it’s being priced and marketed, and who’s buying what for how much and why, the better prepared you are to price your art sensibly.

So how do you price sensibly and realistically? At the most fundamental level, you must be able to make a fact-based case for what your art is worth. You certainly know how to explain what it means from a personal standpoint, but if a collector asks, can you explain it equally well from a financial standpoint? Convincing people that your art is worth what it’s priced and is therefore OK to own is an essential part of completing sales. This is especially true when buyers are on the fence, not familiar with your work, or just starting out as collectors.

In the world of selling, all reputable and established artists and designers are prepared to explain their asking prices to anyone who asks. This is how the business end works.


 If you’re just starting out and have not sold very much, pricing your work based on time, labor, and cost of materials is often the best way to go. Set yourself a sensible hourly wage, add the cost of materials, and make that your asking price. If materials cost $50 and you take 20 hours to make the art at $15 per hour, then you price it at $350.

Here are some of the ideas and advice I usually give my own students related to selling their work or services to clients.

  1. All items whether they are services or finished product, will vary in price depending on your target market, what format you are using to market your goods, if it is being sold online or in a brick and mortar store, etc.
  2. Supply and demand is crucial- if you want to make money selling your work, make something that people want or need, and that no one else is making or has done.
  3. Always keep in mind your cost of goods sold especially if you are going to run this as a business and claim the expenses and income on your taxes.

Good rule of thumb… there are 2 different options used by most artists and one of these might work for you…

OPTION #1:

Calculate your costs for materials and multiply that by 3, then add your cost for shipping and processing (this should include not only the postage but also the cost to package the item for shipping) and this would be the selling price. If you advertise this price, you would state FREE shipping and often that is more enticing to a buyer even though you know it is included- they think they are getting Free Shipping-lol

thankyou cards1For example, the set of 6 thank you notes shown to the left use paper from a paper pack, a single “just married” acrylix® stamp and another stamp from a Stamp of the Month Kit, a fancy die cut edger from a set of 4 metal dies, an archival stamp pad, alcohol markers and a blending marker, as well as 6 cards and 6 envelops from a set of 12. I cannot use the actual cost for the supplies because I am not using those just for these 6 cards so I calculate my supplies based on a percentage of what I used from my supply stash. For this example, let’s say my supplies/materials  cost is $3.00 x 3 = $9.00.  Next, you add the shipping and processing which includes a 6″ x 9″ padded envelope for $1.00 and postage for $2.00 for a total sales price of $12.00.

OPTION #2: 

Calculate your costs for materials, and then what you would charge per hour for labor, add those together for the sales price and then advertise what the shipping cost would be.

For example- same card set, cost= $3.00, labor takes you 2 hours x an hourly wage of say… $10/hr which will equal a total sales price of $23.00, then advertise a shipping price of $3.00. Many times this option equals a higher selling price, so then you can give a discount and advertise a special sale while still getting a good price for your work. People are often convinced to buy something when it is “ON SALE” or discounted because they think they are getting a bargain. Advertise a coupon code for a specific time period, or a discount for a package deal or bundle, etc.

Don’t sell yourself short- your work is worth it and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. You wouldn’t ask a beautician who does your hair for a better price or a discount, and you wouldn’t ask an interior designer for a lower price or discount… you are earning a living wage and need to let people know you are in business and what you earn helps put food on the table and pays the bills. Hope this helps! I know this is probably more than you wanted to hear, but it has helped many of my students go on to earn a pretty decent wage or salary for what they make.

No matter how you set your prices, be competitive. Remember… you’re in competition with other artists/designers. Every time a client or customer buys a piece of art or a design you have created, that’s one less piece that they’re going to buy from someone else. Naturally, you want to maximize the number of pieces that are purchased from you so always check for comparable goods and pricing- in other words, check out prices for similar work posted online in places like ETSY, Goodsmiths, or on business related Facebook pages .

 

‘Til next time… happy scrappin’   ~The Jewels of Kingwood

Note: Excerpts from “Price Your Art”, http://artbusiness.com

Father’s Day – 1 week away

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Last Minute Father’s Day Card Ideas

Seems hard to believe that I have been absent from my blog for almost a month. After being so busy with my son’s wedding and then a much needed vacation, I am back in the studio making memories again! Some of you have been asking for ideas to use for making your own Father’s Day cards. So I whipped up a few this past week and had so much fun I thought I would share the cards with my followers and friends. Hope you enjoy and that you are inspired to make a card for your dad- remember his big day is Sunday, June 15th.

~ The Jewels of Kingwood

 

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Her children shall rise up and call her blessed…

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Screen shot 2014-04-30 at 3.55.45 PMTo all the Jewels out there who have been blessed with children…

Have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

      ~ The Jewels of Kingwood

FREE To Be Me with Close to My Heart

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I am so excited to share with you what’s happening in May and how I am here to help you celebrate National Scrapbooking Month!  Close To My Heart has done it again with a brand new campaign for May called  “Free To Be Me.”

Just so you know, this is DAY 2 of our incredible journey this month and throughout the entire month of May, when you spend at least $50 or more with your Close To My Heart consultant (which BTW just happens to be “yours truly”), you qualify for the exclusive “Free To Be Me” paper collection for only $5. Not only that, CTMH fans also know when you spend $50 or more, you qualify for the Stamp of the Month for only $5 as well. YES! Both the promotion and the stamp of the month are only $5 each! You are gonna just love the papers in this pack- the picture on My Website and video clip below doesn’t do this paper justice. I was very impressed when my paper packs arrived… can I hear a “shout out” for simply G.O.R.G.E.O.U.S??? And I am not saying this because I am a CTMH consultant… I am sending this from my viewpoint as a seasoned paper crafter! The quality and feel of this paper is could be referred to as a paper crafter’s delight!

Free to Be Me for the Month of May

Free to Be Me for the Month of May

FREE To Be Me Papers

FREE To Be Me Papers

Here’s what comes in the fantastic Free To Be Me collection:

 

6 – Free To Be Me B&T Duo’s Papers (pattern paper)
2 – UV-coated, Designed Teal Card Stock Sheets (pattern with resist surface)
2 – UV-coated, Designed Red Card Stock Sheets (pattern with resist surface)
2 – UV-coated, Designed Gold Card Stock Sheets (pattern with resist surface)
1 – White Feather Print Vellum Sheet
1 – Gold Foil Polka-dot Vellum Sheet

So what can YOU do with this fun and fabulous paper collection?
FREE To Be Me Project and Workshop Guide

FREE To Be Me Project and Workshop Guide – Ask Me for your copy today!

>>>>> Close To My Heart has provided consultants with a PDF link for our qualifying customers which includes a 12-page Workshop guide showing how to make two great 2-page layouts and three fun cards. Once you’ve placed your qualifying order with me, I’ll send that special PDF file to you in an email!
>>>>> Use the variety of papers to create a mini album; you can use the sample list of materials that follows or make an album using the paper collection without ordering the stamp set or any additional supplies. Simply use any stamps you desire or stickers and make it your own design.
  • Two sheets of White Daisy card stock
  • All The Details Acrylix® stamp set
  • 2″ x 3 1/2″ acrylic block
  • Lagoon Exclusive Inks® stamp pad
  • Hollyhock Exclusive Inks® stamp pad
  • Goldrush Exclusive Inks® stamp pad
  • Pear Exclusive Inks® stamp pad
  • Twilight Exclusive Inks® stamp pad
Other helpful tools include a corner rounder, a few circle punches, and a basic hole punch in addition to your regular crafting tools and adhesives. If you create the album pages using the “Free to Be Me” May Promotional Pack, there would be 10 spreads total.

Are you excited yet? Ready – Set – GO… jump in and start creating great memories! Here’s your chance; let yourself go, color outside the lines and get out of that box so you too, can be – FREE To Be Me and share the memories! Can’t wait to see what you come up with so please feel free to share and make comments here so we can all see what each of you has been up to.

See y’all tomorrow with another excursion on our month long adventure to celebrate National Scrapbooking Month

~ Kathy with The Jewels of Kingwood

A Place for Everything… and Everything in its Place

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Another favorite Website that we follow on our Facebook feed is Hometalk. You would be amazed at all the great jewels and nuggets of knowledge that people share on that site. Everyday we find something new and since our focus for January is Organization, here are some great ideas we just had to share.

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Clicking on the Photo will take you to the Website for detailed info and pictures to follow for using accordion folders for organizing

 

This first nugget is an idea that some of you may already do to keep your files organized but we thought there might be others who had no idea about this type of file system for important papers. Accordion folders have been around for some time and we’ve used them to organize our business invoices and receipts, but this idea takes it a step further. To read the article details in full, just click on the link below.

http://www.hometalk.com/2859479/must-read-tip-how-to-organize-product-manuals-and-warranties

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Clicking on the photo will take you to the Website for the Printable Planner files

Similar to Pinterest, Hometalk sets up their site with boards curated by a variety of people. One really great example, that is loaded with all sorts of great “pins” focused on organizing your home, is this board: http://www.hometalk.com/b/1014593/organizing

We perused various pins on this board and found some awesome tips to help us organize our own workspace and homes. Some of favorite picks included a free printable planner for 2014, 11 Ways to Organize with Binders, and The Best Organizing Advice You’ll Ever Get.

Just follow the link above or click on each photo to explore all the knowledge nuggets everyone has shared on this board. If you have some advice or organization tips to share, please add a comment below and tell us all out your methods for keeping your life organized.

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Clicking on the photo will take you to the Website for more info on Organizing

Are you tired of the mess and clutter? Need to downsize and trim the clutter from your life?  If so, then you will love all these goodies we have to share from other bloggers. Great tips for storing movies, music, organizing teaching files and lessons, bills, and just about anything you have that needs a place for exploring later.

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Clicking on the photo will take you to the Website for more info on Organizing

          

P.S. Though some of the information from this helpful blogs may be old- 2013, we still found the tips and methods relevant for 2014.

Passion for Rubber Stampin’ ?

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Screen shot 2014-01-02 at 5.07.30 PMEver wonder where some people get their rubber stamps for all the cards and scrapbook pages they create? During the month of December we wandered around various social media pages and found some great companies. After visiting their websites, we decided we just had to share our finds with our followers. One of the best Rubber Stamp companies, offering unique and “priced right” stamps and kits, is Unity Stamp Company. If you do any stampin’ or have thought about trying out this fun creative avenue, then you just gotta check them out.

They have great designs, plenty of examples done by other creative artists, kits, and super sales. If you follow them on Facebook, you will get all the notifications when they have a sale or a giveaway. We actually one a prize from a recent giveaway and I will be sharing what we created later this month as promised.

The newest releases and kits, along with a fantastic sale, are the focus this week so be sure to visit their page, give them a “like” and share the news with others. This is one way we can all support local and small businesses. Here is the link to their FB page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Unity-Stamp-Company/103252399709382

Hope you enjoy their cute ideas and designs as much as we do. Have fun exploring

 ~The Jewels of Kingwood

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Welcome Home to The Jewels of Kingwood…

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Screen shot 2013-05-30 at 4.18.35 PMSo glad you decided to stop by for a visit. The Jewels of Kingwood are artists and crafters who love making meaning through art and celebrating the jewels in our lives that create lasting memories. We make custom creations including greeting cards, jewelry, home decor, and accessories.

In addition we will provide a link to our storefront where you can purchase the items we make as well as supplies and digital files for sale.

Other great features you will find at The Jewels of Kingwood include an area where we will showcase the work of guest artists and crafters, links to other blogs and anything else arts and crafts related we think you would be interested in. Each month we will feature techniques, tips, and/or informative tutorials. If there is a topic you are interested in or would like more information about tools, supplies, or equipment, please let us know in the comments.

We will do our best to help you explore and discover how you too can make lasting memories with the jewels in life! Please share our page, visit our Facebook and Pinterest pages, and follow us on our creative journey. Feel free to PIN anything you find on our site and if you decide to share something from The Jewels of Kingwood on your page or blog, we would appreciate a link back to our site.