Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Back in the Studio

 I was talking with with a shop keeper who may be carrying my wares. She brought up the possibility of making scarves in colors the fashion industry has chosen to feature this spring. Have you seen them?

I googled Spring fashion colors, or something like that, and came up with the same set of colors on sites like Fashion Trend Setters, Pantone Fashion and Home,  and College Fashion. Some colors I like: "Honeysuckle", for example, "Peapod", and "Regatta"--- but not necessarily together!

I thought I would give it a try, though, and see what I came up with.
Here are two samples I would particularly like your opinion on, as they are way outside my usual color choices. Please don't be afraid to be honest.

What do you think?

The colors are more electric than the photo shows.

How about this one? I brightened the photo up a bit too much; It's not quite so electric.

The Show Comes Down

The show of my silk paintings at the Vashon Tea Shop drew raves! People stopped me on the street to tell me how much they enjoyed my work!

 I left paper and pens on the tables and encouraged people to write their own stories of Loving and post them on the wall.

Tonight I took down the paintings and saved the Love stories. I wonder if I should put the paintings and stories together into a little book?

Here is my beautiful brave mother, out of the house for the first time in almost two months after breaking a bone in a fall. At 86, she's full time caretaker for my 87 year old father. She is amazing! 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Business Plan at Last!

Have you ever had the rug pulled out from under you just when you felt like you were ready to launch a dream?  Perhaps you just started college  or a new job, only to find yourself pregnant, the father gone, and no energy to keep going? Or finally living in a decent house with a room for a studio, and lose your job? Or...the list goes on.

You go underground for awhile, take care of the family, and put the dream on hold for months or years. You take a stab at creating the business you dream of and even try to write a business plan, but get stymied by things like "identifying your target market" or "projecting an income".

It's like being pruned just when you think you are about to bloom.

Take heart. Like the tree that has been pruned, your root system is deepening and strengthening. The day will come when at last you have the support you need to bring that dream, that vision, into reality.

For me, that means having a business plan that helps me to define my vision, to set real goals, and to have some idea of how I will get where I want to go with it. After years of struggling, at last the business plan process has been demystified for me! I begin to understand cash flow. I know how to think about how much inventory to create, and how to project my expenses.  I have a sense of who my ideal client is. I know what I need to do next and what I need to learn next.

A correction from my last post: Monique's business is
 Plan Right Meeting & Event Management
(not just Plan Right, as I had it at first) 

Monday, March 21, 2011

WACASH Graduation

Elli Allison is sitting on the table
Eli Allison is one of the most together people I know. When she showed me her spread sheet on Excel, with all her products and when she planned to sell what for how much and for what profit, I finally understood business plans. Thank you Eli!

Thursday we graduated from the 8 week Business Development Training program through WACASH(Washington Community Alliance for Self Help). We've been on a journey together, 30 of us, defining our businesses, learning the bare bones of cash flow, learning how to put together a business plan, beginning to understand marketing, and much more!
Rene of Pueo Designs

We each had 30 seconds to tell an audience of about 100 what our business is, who it serves, and what makes it unique. I was blown away by the leaps my classmates have made, even since the week before!--and the element of service that permeated all of our business thinking.

Eli is revolutionizing auto repair by empowering people, especially women, to understand or even repair their own cars. She will offer classes, teach and advise, or do the repair.

 Rene, of Pueo designs, creates one of a kind hand knitted or crocheted scarves that reflect her client's personality. Pueo is a small rare owl in Hawaii.

Monique of  Plan Right Meeting
 and Event Management
Monique is an event planner. She enjoys planning events for  families, small enterprises, or big companies. She wants to build community by employing small local companies to provide for the events she plans.

This group of people is one of the most intelligent, creative, and courageous groups I've been involved with! I don't want to lose any of them. I want to be a part of everyone's growth, cheering when each person passes a milestone.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Print Making and Dragon Painting

Allyssa is painting an airplane and sun on mylar, using watercolor paints, to print on wet paper.

This child is glazing his dragon, trusting that the colors he chose will fire close to what he is expecting. They look nothing like the teacher told him they will! I can't wait to see what it looks like fired!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sacred Moment Seminar on Marketing

Carla, Sharon Rommell, me, and Michelle
One of the best things about Seminars and workshops is meeting people who are simpatico.
Here are some fantastic people who want to market their businesses in a way that serves people with compassion, rather than always asking "What's in it for me?"

Carla is an artist who has found that she can connect with people deeply and actually help them with their lives while painting their portraits.

Sharon is an amazing woman and a life coach.

Me...well, you know me.

Michelle is a recovering perfectionist, who helps people trapped by their own perfectionism to order their lives in a more relaxed and productive way.

All this wonderful input from Sacred Moment, and great tips from the WACASH program I'm taking in Seattle got shoved aside last week, as my 86 year old parents ran into some rough spots and needed more of my help. It looks as though I will be caught up in helping them to heal for awhile, and some business stuff will have to take back seat.

You may not see me here or online as often for awhile, but I WILL BE BACK!