Sunday, 5 February 2017

2017 What to do first?

As well you know, to say last year was incredibly difficult is an understatement. January has passed by in a haze and already it's February and I haven't done a thing! So what's new for 2017?

First off I decided that I don't want to make lavender bags at the moment, I can only make them at the studio and it's been difficult getting down there in between the practicalities of dealing with losing my parents. So there is a big big sale happening at the Etsy shop, half price on lavender bags, many prints and discontinued items. (I'm sorry no birds, I have no stock!)

I'm thinking big thunks about the business and about where I want it to go and what I want it to be in the future. I'm in a difficult place to make decisions now, both in an emotional sense and from a business point of view, so my approach has been cautious and advice from my friend has been that I should just aim to get by this year. However, you know me, I want more than just getting by.

I've been feeling like my business has been coasting these past few years, I got comfortable and then uncomfortable with being comfortable. Shaking things up last year doing bird a day was amazing... I want to do that again soon when my head is in a better place. Kickstarter in 2015 was another high point so finger crossed I will be doing another this year, albeit on a smaller scale. (and involving penguins!) needs some serious TLC and prehaps a move to another platform since my current webhost isn't really doing it for me. I need to decide if having my own webshop is something I should do again and am investigating new avenues including setting up on tictail to see how that one works, it has a nice clean feel which I like alot, so far just a few products are available on there but more will be coming soon.

As usual I want to do everything all at once! But I am listening to advice and applying the brakes a little so I don't go off half cocked!

So as you can see, 2017 has started in a cloud of uncertainty but I think I can see through the fog a little and hopefully things will start to brighten up again soon.

As ever, thank you for your support


Monday, 31 October 2016

Taking Custom orders again

 I'm taking custom orders again, I'm considering them on a case by case basis so don't be offended if I say no, drop me a message if you want a custom order, you can contact me through my Etsy store or my email

Also... if you hadn't noticed it's Christmas soon so it's quite likely I'll stop taking custom orders soon so if you do want something get a wiggle on.
Here are some of my recent custom birds.

European Goldfinch... our Goldfinches aren't as flashy as those across the pond and are a bit more red faced and embarrassed by the attention!

Goldcrest... This one's back and wings are so lovely and that little mowhawk... so cute!

In July I lost my parents in a car accident, I lost 4 members of my family in one go that day, it's been difficult to say the least. Nothing feels quite real. There is no normal at the moment so until we can work out what the new normal is things will be up in the air, Christmas will be hard especially but I have to keep going because the self employed don't get compassionate leave and my emergency resources are tapped.

Thank you everyone for your messages of support and for keeping me going.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

I'm Back... Sort of...

You may have noticed that for a while from the end of July until just recently I closed my shops. At the end of July I lost both my parents unexpectedly and just couldn't work, things have been very hard but I felt it was time to try and grasp a bit of normality and come back to work. Thank you to everyone for your words of support and encouragement in this difficult time.

I have reopened my Etsy shop with a limited range and am only doing custom orders with long time frames and that I feel I can do, I don't know how long I will be working like this but I will make sure to let you know when things are back to normal or if anything changes.

In other news I just wanted to give you a heads up that Rainbow Doodle Bird goodies are now very limited in numbers, I only have 5 mugs, 4 notebooks and 4 totes left, Tea Towels are still plentiful and all rainbow doodle bird goodies are on special offer right now so if you were planning to get some early Christmas gifts in now's the time to do it!

And finally...
Had things been different this year I would have been announcing my 2nd Kickstarter project. As many of you found me through Kickstarter I'd like to introduce you to my friend Tina Mammoser, a wonderful artist and the person who introduced me to Kickstarter. Her 3rd project to date is in it's final 24 hours. Please take a look and share if you can't pledge... all those shares make a difference to us arty types and cost nothing! I really want Tina to succeed as she has been so good looking after me recently and so open in sharing her Kickstarter experience and knowledge with people.

Best Wishes

Monday, 27 June 2016

Hi Folks... It's been exactly a year since you amazing people helped me fund my rainbow doodle birds project. It's been a crazy year both personally and professionally and I'm still reeling from it all. I feel very grateful to everyone who helped make it happen so thank you again for your support. 
The Tea Towel That Started It All
The Tea Towel That Started It All

To celebrate the anniversary I have decided to have a doodle birds sale... I still have a few tea towels and mugs left and very limited numbers of tote bags as well as some prints and notebooks. You can grab them up here in My Shop. Prices have already been adjusted no need for coupon codes.
The Studio
The Studio
So this last year... I got a studio, I learned a bit about screen printing, I took up ceramics as a hobby, I made penguins, I did a project to make a bird every day for a month... I started planning for my next Kickstarter! (watch this space hopefully coming later this year barring anymore disasters!)
Bird a Day Project
Bird a Day Project
I've got to know quite a few of you through Facebook and Instagram over the last year and it constantly amazes me how great everyone has been and how you're still interested in my silly adventures. Thank you again, I can't wait to turn my next idea into another project (keep your eyes peeled for more updates!)
All the Best

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Another Month Gone! Ennui, websites and newsletters!

This year is just flying by... I had plans which I wrote down then lost, then found again and now can't make head nor tail of. Surprisingly in these plans was absolutely nothing about making a bird a day or holding auctions... or should that be unsurprisingly as I'm not the most organised person in the world!

The good news is the Feltmeupdesigns Newsletter has now got over 100 subscribers, you can join up here on my website. The newsletter gives you automatic entry into all my giveaways so you will never miss one and subscribers get discount codes for my shop delivered straight to their inboxes!

Now I have found the plan I am hoping to get back on track with things, I've been to the studio this week for the first time properly in 2 weeks and I am nearly on top of my gallery orders. Since closing down my Inkmeup shop I still haven't re photographed all my prints so that's priority one. Many of them I only have one of so they are going into my Etsy Shop where stock control is easier.

Priority 2 is rephotographing everything, updating all my product listings and having a cull of products that just don't sell anymore. This is a hard one for me, I'm incredibly attached to some of the designs but I need to be realistic and if they aren't selling I need to move on. It's also hard on another level as since the beginning of 2014 I am basically making everything to order, so to rephotograph things they need making first.

I've started slowly with prints and the big owls, you get some funny looks walking through the woods with an owl and a camera!

My website is also in dire need of an update and I am looking around for other options to my webstore. The hardest part of running this business is having to be a jack of all trades, you have to be maker, photographer, designer, accountant, web designer... and a hundred other things which totally get in the way of the fun stuff!

If you've been following me a while you'll know this year has been a tough one for me, so I bit the bullet and went to the Doctors, waiting on some test results but the verdict is they will all be negative and I have stress related depression (again). I've struggled with depression my whole life so it's a blow to be back here again, I'm hoping that things will improve as the summer arrives and the weather improves so I can be at the studio more. The leaking roof at the studio really was a blow, not being able to use the space as intended for so long was heart breaking and really put a dent in my plans. Fingers crossed it's fixed now and I can move on.
 I'm hoping to launch some new designs next month... watch this space for updates!

Saturday, 7 May 2016

Blue tit Giveaway

I've been a busy little bird over at the Felt Shack, Printing blue tits on notebooks and prints on vintage music paper. My facebook page is about to tip over to 7000 followers (which is very exciting!) so I am celebrating with a giveaway. Head on over to Facebook giveaway  for a chance to win a blue tit goody bag, with prints, a note book and a baby blue tit.

If you don't have facebook you can still enter by leaving a comment on this blog post or signing up for my newsletter here:

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Bird a Day Challenge Auctions

Bird a Day Challenge Auctions

If you been paying attention you'll know that I've had an exciting month here at Felt Towers, at the beginning of March I set myself a challenge to create a bird a day. The rules were simple, each bird had to be needle felted on to a 3 cm felt bead and take no more than 1 hour to make and I had to make one every day for the whole of March. Having made the birds I then had to make sure to photograph and blog each one in turn.

As you can see, I made it through all 31 days! It was a challenge but I didn't miss a day and in the end I had 31 beautiful birds and had learned a lot. You can read about my experience in my Final Thoughts post.
To end the challenge I have decided to auction the birds (except for one which I made for my mum for Mother's Day!) with 5% of the proceeds going to the RSPB to help then continue with the great work they do to preserve Britain's countryside to make a better home for nature and protect our birds and wildlife.

The auction goes live at 7pm on Sunday 10th March (UK time) and will run for 7 days (lots of time to pick your favourites and bid!) you can find all the listings here . Each bird shall be accompanied by it's own individual Certificate of Authenticity, signed by the artist (me) and numbered with the day it was made on.

I'll be around to answer any questions you might have (even the silly ones like if you were a cupcake what would you be? The answer's salted caramel and choc chip BTW) and you can email or facebook me if you have any queries.
Thanks for reading, I hope to see you at the auction