Next week is the third annual Central Carolina Yarn Crawl! Seven local yarn shops work together to create a fun weekend for their yarn and fiber enthusiasts. And this year is the first year that I will have my own hand-dyed yarns on display for the crawl.
This all means that I have had quite a lesson in presentation over the last few weeks. First, it forced me to officially design my logo:
Then, once I had my logo, I had to design my business card. I wanted to have a dual-purpose card so I created the hang-tags for my products on the back of the cards:
The fiber and yarns are dyed, washed, dried, and rehanked. I then used these marketing materials to package my braids and hanks. It took days to pull it all together. But in the end, without these graphics, I would not look as professional. I know this because of my recent visit to Staples.
I sent some items off to print at Staples. While I was there, another woman was working with the printer station to create an ad. She was displeased with how her materials were coming out. She did not appreciate the presentation. She really wanted a blue background, and was not articulating her wants or needs to the young lady helping her. She was just wanting something more and better and had no idea how to get her imagination to print out. Meanwhile, another associate came to help me and she gathered up my materials and commented on how much she liked my flyers and fiber bands. “It all came out looking very nice! Did you design it yourself?” And, of course, the lady with her blue background snapped her head around to see my work. “Canva.” I replied.
I saw Canva all over Pinterest, and I must say, I clicked on that Pin and never looked back. I love it! I can generate very nice graphics for content, flyers, logos, business cards, and so so much more! I even created a Fiber Menu for advertising with knitting groups. I have a free account, and I have paid a couple of times for layouts. Just today, I created my 2018 Fall Collection. I wanted this to preserve the collection, but also to use for Instagram. It takes my whole line up a notch and keeps me looking good on Instagram and WordPress. I can now officially say, I cannot do any of these without Canva.
While I am building this business, I am learning a lot more than I realized from the outset. First, I have the actual business of fiber which keeps me learning something new every time I work with it. I also have a lot to learn about business in general. Throw in technology over all of that. I won’t be able to succeed without learning more in each of those segments. Technology today offers someone like me infinite possibilities on ways to promote my new little business and ways to enhance productivity and administration. Canva helps me with marketing. Asana helps me with productivity and project management. I’ll post someday about that, too. None of this existed ten years ago. My hope is that if I use the right tools the right way, my little business will be sustainable for me. That’s all I really want.
For this week, I am concentrating on getting to the Yarn Crawl. I am posting and telling everyone I know about it. Depending on my sales, it means I will be able to order more yarn to be able to approach another LYS in the future.
I suspect it is time for me to sit down and spell out my creative business plan. Events like the Crawl have me busy and focused. My better sense says that I have to balance more to diversify in order to grow my business and keep me moving forward. One step at a time.