Friday, September 18, 2009
I just wanted to take a couple of minutes to let you all know what is going on with me, with Jay, and with the Shoppe. First of all...YES! We are still here, and we're still taking orders. We are about to enter our busy season with Christmas just 14 weeks away (hard to believe, isn't it?), and we are gearing up!
Secondly, thanks to so many who have asked about Jay and his health. He is doing great. For the most part, we have things pretty much regulated, but every now and then we have an episode. Everything is under control, and he's doing well. Plus, he's on vacation this week!
No vacation for me, though. After five very long unemployed months, I am finally back to work. I started working August 28 at a new local place in town, but found out quickly that wasn't going to work for me. Way too many hours, not enough money, and I never felt comfortable working there. So...today I started a new job! The schedule is much better (no more 15 hour days!) and the rewards much greater. Not just better money, but I already know some of the people, so I'm more comfortable immediately. Plus, it is a faith-based company, so no more questionable ethical decisions to make.
I apologize for not updating more frequently, as I had promised. I had hoped the first job would be a little more flexible and still make it possible for me to take care of the shoppe. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case, but again, that is changing now with this new employer. I will begin updating again regularly. I like to hear what interests you, and love to hear feedback. If there is something you are looking for, or questions that you have, feel free to contact me anytime at email@example.com You can follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl or call (817) 846-1642. I look forward to hearing from you!
Monday, August 31, 2009
Since this is the fifth Monday of the month, today is $5 Monday. Many of the ETC crafters are participating by offering items for $5 in their shops. There are a lot of great deals going on today, and we're participating, too.
You can check out our $5 items in our shop, or type "ETC5" into the search box on the Etsy homepage for all participating items. Happy shopping!
Friday, August 28, 2009
At the same time, I was having some medical issues of my own. I have a very unique condition which, when under a great amount of stress, causes my hands to swell. Most times, the swelling is minimal, and, while uncomfortable, I am still able to function. On very rare occasions, the swelling becomes too great to function. Such was the case over the last few weeks. It is predominantly brought on by stress, and I have to assume it was a combination of looking for a job, Jay's troubles, and everyday life that caused this particular flare up.
My condition, which is extremely rare (it affects only about .6% of the population, and how mine manifests itself is even more rare), is under control now, and the really fantastic news is I am starting a new job today! Both Jay and I are still fully committed to SJ Candle Shoppe, but we are not in a position right now for it to be our sole source of income. Thankfully, it has helped get us through this extremely rocky time, and we appreciate our loyal followers!
I will begin updating regularly started immediately, now that things are back to normal. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, our show schedule will probably change now that I have a job. I'll be sure to keep the schedule updated as quickly as possible. Thank you all again for your support. You have really made the last several months more bearable and enjoyable!
Friday, August 14, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
The organization that will benefit from the fundraiser is Saving Shelter Pets. You can read more about their cause on their website. Check back Sunday morning for a link to all of the Etsy shops participating.
For help with your fundraiser, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
I LOVE football!! Not only is it an exciting game to watch, but along with football comes Fall. Although it is my favorite season, Fall always makes me a little homesick. Back home in Michigan, fall is when the leaves begin to change, the air turns cooler, and everyone and everything starts to settle in for the winter.
I remember going to the apple orchard, drinking fresh-pressed cider and eating warm cake donuts. Fall also makes me think of caramel apples, candy corn, and bonfires. School buses, pencils, and sweaters. New friends, new adventures, new beginnings.
Even though I have been in Texas for twelve years, I will always consider Michigan home. What fond memories do you have of Fall? Of home?
Saturday, August 8, 2009
I emailed the main twibs genius to make sure I didn't have to do anything special whenever I add something to Etsy. The good news is, once it is linked up, one feeds automatically from the other, easy cheesy.
And that, my friends, is a beautiful thing! Check out the splendor here on my twibs page!
Friday, August 7, 2009
And just because I noticed this picture cut off my head, here's a picture of my face. Hopefully, it's less creepy!
(Please excuse the bare walls and window. I just started using this room as my office, and it's not decorated yet!) I would love to hear any money-saving tips you use. Feel free to share!
Thursday, August 6, 2009
- Sketch Customs Clothing
- Caroline Creates
- Knitty Knitty Bang Bang
- Annie's Powder Room
- SJ Candle Shoppe
The group is growing, and we have many great things in the works. If you're not following the team blog, you can check it out here. The contest is still going on, so you have a chance to win if you sign up as a follower. More info about the contest is here. You can view all items for the team by searching "Team Fort Worth" on Etsy.
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Gallery Art Cafe
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Friday, July 31, 2009
The new August schedule is up. Check the sidebar for dates. Also, I've added more events to the Etsy Fort Worth blog. You can check the schedule here.
Also, I had to make some changes to the newsletter, and the first one was sent this evening. I decided it would be better to go out before the 1st. That's because there is a special promotion announced in the newsletter that begins on the first.
If you'd like to subscribe to the newsletter, either complete the info on the Contact Us page here or send us an email to email@example.com.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Also, you can follow our promos, news, etc throughout the month on Twitter @TXshoppegirl.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Overall, it was a good day to "talk shop," meet new people, and stay out of the heat! I'll be sure to post some pictures as soon as I get them downloaded from my Blackberry.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Thursday night, of course, was the Etsy Fort Worth meeting. After the meeting, my mind was spinning, and I started writing down a bunch of ideas that I had. Some ideas are for our shoppe, and some are for the group. I ended up working so long that I didn't go to sleep until five in the morning! Of course, I think the giant caramel latte that I drank had something to do with that.
Then, Friday night I spent some time at my friend Cass' house. We hadn't seen each other for a few months, so I ended up staying there until 3 am! Still, I swore I was going to get up at 5 and go out to Grapevine Market, just as I've been doing every Saturday.
At 7:45, Jay was finally able to wake me. Obviously, I was just too drained to wake up. I even slept through two alarms! Regardless, I was glad I got to spend the day with him. He was off today, so after we made lunch, we went to the mall and a movie.
The mall was fun. We're not usually mall people, but we were walking around and found an embroidery shop. We stopped to talk to them about getting new shirts done, and they are going to give us some really great prices. We also stopped at the cookie place to get something to drink. The girl behind the counter asked what soy candles were, because Jay was wearing his shirt with our logo on it. We explained to her what we do and why it is different. Then I gave her my card, because she said her mom is a candle "freak."
So even on a day we weren't really "working," we made two contacts. That, plus getting to spend time with my husband were enough to make it a great lazy Saturday.
Friday, July 24, 2009
Shastinalynn + her guest, Sarah
Danica (FlowerBedHead) posted some good pics on our team blog. She's going to forward a few on to me. For once I remembered to bring my camera, but forgot my SD card! I'll be sure to post the pics when Danica sends them. Meanwhile, keep checking the team blog for more great info about the team.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
I have a meeting with the Etsy Fort Worth team tomorrow evening. I am looking forward to meeting many of our fellow etsians and "putting our heads together" on how we can get the word out about our group. We are having a contest for those who follow our team blog. Many of the artists are contributing to a gift basket that one lucky follower will win. You can see the details on this thread, and you can follow our team blog here. I'll have more info, pictures and follow up after our meeting tomorrow.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Instead, I turned to the oft-neglected laundry basket. I got four loads done before I had to call it quits. I decided I had earned some fun time, so I set about catching up on some of the blogs I follow. I'm hoping that some day soon I will have a beautifully designed blog with lots and lots of followers.
I also got caught up on some Etsy news, plus our Fort Worth street team tidbits. We are having a contest for followers of our blog (the team blog, that is). The details are in the Etsy forum, here. Please check out the blog and my fellow Fort Worth artists. There is some real talent in this group!
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Today was another hot one. The day started out nice, with a cool breeze, and only about 76 degrees or so. All that was forgotten, though, when the temperatures climbed to 100+ around noon. It certainly wasn't the hottest day we've had, but that's easy to forget when you're "in the heat of it."
Even still, I had a great time. I talked to a lot of people, sold some things, and will do it all over again on Thursday. Hope to see you there!
Friday, July 17, 2009
I have several shelves of discontinued items that I am ready to clear out. I've added a clearance page to the website, with some nice discounts. The recipes are our same high-quality soy candle recipes. In most cases, only the packaging has changed. In some cases, the scents are discontinued. Either way, we don't have room for them on our shelves anymore!
Check out the clearance page of the website, and help us make room for more great things to come!
Thursday, July 16, 2009
I was also invited to participate in a new market today. Keller started a farmers' market a couple of weeks ago, and the market director was in Grapevine today. I'm going to check out the website, and may try to participate. Of course I will keep this blog and the website updated with any changes.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
When you host an event, you'll get 10% of order totals toward free product. Plus, you'll get one item at 50% off. You can choose to host your party in your own home or online. If you choose to host in your home (or venue of your choice), I will bring all of my items, and you and your guests can sniff to your hearts' content. I will have additional inventory on hand, and you and your guests should be able to take most of your items at that time (excluding any custom orders, of course).
If you choose to host an online party, I will set up a special page on the website where you will direct your shoppers. Each of your guests will have the items shipped directly to their home, and you will still get credit for the orders.
If you have any questions about the Hostess Program, or to host your own event, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, July 13, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Make sure you're "in the know" by signing up to receive our newsletter before August 1. Just go to the Contact Us page on the website to be added to our customer list. If you're in the area, you can also sign up at any of our local shows. You'll get 1-2 newsletters per month, plus an additional email for a special gift during your birthday month. (no SPAM - I promise!!)
Saturday, July 11, 2009
I went to Grapevine Market today, and it turned into a really good day. The weather was comfortable until just after noon, when it started to reach 100. Thankfully, the Market is only open until 2 every Thursday and Saturday, so it wasn't long before we were packing up to leave. I was even told I had "the best smelling booth" there!
I still plan to list some sample packs, both on Etsy and on the regular site, so be sure to check back for those items. I will have monthly specials beginning in August, and all orders ship out within 2 business days in most cases. Shipping is via USPS Priority Mail, which usually arrives in 2-3 business days.
I spoke with a woman at the Market today who wanted to place a large Soapsicle order for her daughter's birthday. I think they would also make a great stocking stuffer, and it's not too early to start thinking about Christmas! If I can help you with your party or wedding favors, or fundraising needs, please email me at email@example.com .
Friday, July 10, 2009
I've been trying to get together with my sister, Stephanie, and tonight is the only night we are both available. Tomorrow is Grapevine Market, after which I will continue working on the site. I hope to have the entire cart operational by the end of the weekend, so check back Monday to see the changes take effect.
As always, you can email me with any questions you have at firstname.lastname@example.org or use the Contact Us form on the website.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
I had been asked about adding bath and body goods to our line for the last several months. I kept reassuring our customers that I was working on recipes, and that we would have some new additions soon. I was thrilled when Jay and I were both able to attend a bath & body class at one of our favorite suppliers a couple of months ago. (Although Jay assured me I would be the point person for the B&B..."I'm not telling people I make soap and bubble bath.")
So the big day arrived, and we got to the showroom early (!!!). The instructor arrived late, and spent the majority of the class plugging her newly-published book. She then proceeded to tell a story about a lotion she made that failed miserably. She ended the story by saying, "This is the lotion we're going to make today."
Umm...huh? Jay and I glanced across our work stations at each other, and I shrugged. We gathered our ingredients, mixed everything together, and stick-blended our little hearts out. We blended for a really long time, without the lotion achieving the "whipped" texture it was supposed to. Then the instructor mentioned we may not get that texture right away. She suggested we take it home and let it rest, assuring us it would be a beautiful rich lotion in the morning.
We went on to try our hand at the sugar scrub, which we partially finished before our class time was up. Jay and I took our half-finished batches of scrub home and played with the recipe a little (we didn't have one of the oils on hand, so we had to substitute).
The next morning, we went to check on our lotion, very excited about what we had concocted. Of course, by now you've probably already guessed that the lotion was a big flop. We tried everything short of standing on our heads to try to get this lotion to set like it was supposed to...nothing.
After that debacle, aside from being furious, I put it to rest. I shoved the lotions and the scrubs in the back of our supplies, and went on my merry way. I researched online, tried a few things, but couldn't come up with something that I loved.
Then, last night, I found the courage to try the scrubs. I came across them several days ago and wasn't sure what to do with them. I've been having problems with ingrown hairs after I shave my legs, so I thought I would try using the scrub to see if the exfoliation would help. Lo and behold...it worked beautifully! Even tonight, I don't have any stubble, and my legs still feel remarkably smooth.
I am so thrilled that the scrubs turned out. It makes me a little bummed that I didn't try them sooner, but now that I know I have a good recipe, I plan to make more...and soon!
I'm going to be listing sample packs of our goodies on Etsy, hopefully beginning tomorrow. I will group a sample of the scrub with some bath salts, a small bar of soap, a small bath bomb, and possibly a tart melt or two. Check out the shop here, and look for the scrub and other bath goodies on the full site soon www.sjcandleshoppe.com
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Also, I have decided, for the time being, not to participate in Trade Days of Waxahachie. I wanted to give it a fair shot, but it is a very new show, and its quite a drive. For the traffic that we saw the last time we were there, it's hard to justify a permanent booth there at this time.
The good news is, through October 17, Grapevine Market will take place every Thursday and Saturday. The Market has actually been going on since mid-April, but we haven't taken advantage of it. I have talked to a number of vendors at the Market, and they all have had success there. The advantage to this is that I know I have a show lined up every week for the next three months!
After mid-October, the holiday show season will be in full swing. I will, of course, continue updating the blog and the website as I book shows. Do you know a can't miss show in your area? What are your favorite things to shop for at an open-air market? Please share!
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Tart Melts with Warmer
Soapsicle Set~ 1 Soapsicle with cloth in your choice of color
Group Photo~ Reed Diffuser, Candle Trio, Tart Melt, Soapsicle Set
Monday, July 6, 2009
You can find the full Spring 2009 Fragrance List on the home page of our website www.sjcandleshoppe.com
Saturday, July 4, 2009
I took some time today to get our Etsy shop up and running again. I am now part of the Etsy Fort Worth team. The Team has meetings and shows together periodically, so that's something else to look forward to soon. I've already listed a few items in the shop. If you see something you like, you can purchase it directly through Etsy. That way, you won't have to wait until I get the shopping cart up on the full site. We accept PayPal or personal check through Etsy.
I'm going to start ingredient profiles here on the blog. Basically, I will take one ingredient - let's say shea butter - and then discuss all the benefits of shea butter. We can talk about any ingredient you'd like, so if there is something candle or bath/body related that you have a question about, let me know. I'll do the research and then share it with all of our readers.
As always, please let me know if there is something you would like to see, either on the Etsy site, the full website, or here on the blog. Thanks for supporting us as we grow!
Friday, July 3, 2009
It's that urge to throw stuff together that prompts us to create our signature line. Jay and I had so much fun at the supplier last week, that we spent nearly three hours there! We mixed fragrances until I didn't think my nose could handle it anymore! In doing so, we came up with several combinations that we really like, and we want to share those with you. We decided, since these are our own creations, that these will be our new signature line.
We'll still have all your old favorites (Pumpkin Pie Spice, anyone?), and we'll keep trying to track down those duplicates for you, but the signature scents will be uniquely ours. We hope you love them, and we look forward to their website debut soon.
Diana has won a 16 oz candle from our top eight fragrances. Congrats, Diana! I will be emailing you soon with your scent choices. For next month's drawing, you can get extra entries by 1) leaving a comment on any post from this blog, 2) subscribing to this blog, 3) attending one of our shows and signing up in person, or 4) visiting our website www.sjcandleshoppe.com and signing up as a customer through the Contact Us page.
We hope you have had a chance to check out our new website. Please let us know what you think. If you have any suggestions, questions, or special requests, you can contact us through the site or email me directly at email@example.com
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
I can't tell you how thrilled I am that it is finally available. I will still be updating here regularly. In fact, this site will be updated daily beginning today. The other site will evolve some too, but here is where you should look for the day-to-day workings of the shoppe.
Once again, thanks to everyone who has encouraged us over the last several months. We look forward to branching out and meeting many more candle fanatics like us. Be sure to check out the new site and let us know what you think. www.sjcandleshoppe.com
Sunday, June 21, 2009
As always, you can follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl or email me with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
So, here's where you can find us in the coming weeks:
Trade Days USA @ Texas Motor Speedway - Fort Worth, TX
Trade Days of Waxahachie @ Ellis County Expo Center - Waxahachie, TX
We'll be, hopefully, filling in more dates as we find more shows. Be sure to stop by and say "hi" if you're at a show where we're exhibiting.
Monday, June 15, 2009
What I have been doing in the meantime, besides getting well, is researching recipes. In the coming weeks, you'll be seeing a new lotion formula, lip balm, and a sugar scrub. Don't forget to check back often to find out when these goodies will make their debuts.
As always, and especially now that I'm not using Facebook, you can follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl or subscribe to this blog. My next show is this weekend, when I'll be debuting my new logo at Trade Days USA. Check us out in booth F1, Saturday and Sunday from 9am-5pm.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
The result of all of this was a day that was spent doing very little. The up side is that I feel very rested, and look forward to getting a lot accomplished tomorrow.
This is what our back fence looks like after two panels were blown down by the wind. Excuse the tall grass. Today was also the day the lawn man was supposed to come out, but it was a little too wet for that!
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
As for upcoming shows, I will (tentatively) be at Grapevine Market this Thursday and Saturday. I am just waiting to be approved as a vendor. Next weekend I will be at Trade Days USA at Texas Motor Speedway. ( www.tradedaysusa.com ) I am in booth F1 down the main row. I'm looking for some more shows to fill out my summer, and will update as I book shows.
I also got another request for lotion tonight, so I will be working on that recipe next. I've been wanting to try a few that I've found, so this is a good opportunity. Hopefully, I'll have some ready for July as well.
Remember, you can stay updated by subscribing to this blog or by following me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl
Thursday, June 4, 2009
This weekend, I'll be at Trade Days of Waxahachie. The hours are Saturday 9-5 and Sunday 9-4. They have only been re-open a few months, so this weekend they are having a Grand Opening celebration. There will be a band, children's activities, and 100+ vendors out to celebrate. I will be set up in booth #1; be sure to come say hello if you're in the area.
I will be tweeting from the show; you can follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
I can't wait to try this one! Remember, if there is something you want to see, please leave a comment or email me at email@example.com. You can always follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl. Also, look for the grand opening of our website soon: www.sjcandleshoppe.com
I will post another blog entry at 11:00pm tonight Central Time, announcing the winners. I will also have details of a batch of soap I have just finished, along with some pictures of the soap.
Don't forget to check back here tonight for the winners!
Monday, June 1, 2009
As a reminder, there are (2) items. The first is a large candle. It's the same one as the green candle in my profile picture. The second winner will receive a bar of soap and some fizzing bath salts. Come back tomorrow to see the results.
Now, on to our next show. This weekend, I plan to be at Trade Days of Waxahachie. I was scheduled to be there a couple of months ago, but there was a death in the family, so I had to cancel. I look forward to trying this one, as it is a relatively new show. Hopefully, they are already building a following, and I'll be able to meet some more great people. To find out more about this show, including a schedule of upcoming dates, check out their website: www.tradedaysofwaxahachie.com Hope to see you there!
Saturday, May 30, 2009
We are in booth #30, just to the left of the front gate. Be sure to stick around for the HUGE fireworks display around 9. Last night's was great! Hope to see many of you there!
Friday, May 29, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Same glass bottle, but this time, the oil comes in a seperate bottle. That way, if all you need is the oil, we just pull that bottle out and you're good to go. (I should mention here that each of these includes a fresh set of reeds. They're not pictured bc they don't fit in the box!) Better.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
I had a batch of soap curing, but I waited too long to take it out of the soap form and it got too hard. When I tried to take it out of the form, I ended up splitting the soap in half! I'm going to have to figure out how to salvage what is left, or else I just got stuck with 3 pounds of passionfruit tea soap!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Instead, I spent 8 hours inside on my new laptop. I've been looking up recipes, researching ingredients, and watching old shows I had on the Tivo. So here's a look at what's coming up:
I also hope to have the website up and running within the next few weeks. Somehow I have not found the time to get the pictures taken. Once those are done, we'll have it hosted; you'll find the site at www.sjcandleshoppe.com
That's all I have for tonight. Don't forget the first giveaway will be June 2. You can enter by either 1) subscribing to the blog or 2) leaving a comment on one of my posts.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
2) I have also decided to do two give-aways each month. One giveaway will be for a candle product, and the other will be for a soap or bath product. Some of the giveaways will be for subscribers only, so make sure you are signed up to follow me here on the blog.
Remember, you can also follow me on Twitter @TXshoppegirl.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Don't forget we are at Trade Days USA this weekend. Saturday and Sunday 8-5 at Texas Motor Speedway in North Fort Worth. You can find us in booth F1.
Next weekend we will be at Kellerfest in Keller, Texas. Keller is just North-East of Fort Worth. I won't know our booth number until we check in on Friday, but will update as soon as I can. The hours for Kellerfest are: Friday 5pm-11pm; Saturday 10am-11pm; Sunday 1pm-7pm.
Remember, you can contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @TXshoppegirl We hope to see you soon!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
WE HAVE A WHOLESALE ACCOUNT!!! I am so excited about this; it seems like I have been working on this for so long. I kept getting my hopes up, then nothing would happen. See, just about every show that I've done, whether a high school craft show, trade show, or just talking to people about our business, I always have people ask about buying wholesale. I've even had a few that looked really promising, but then nothing would come of it. I was getting so frustrated, and wondering if I could really make it happen. Well, today, it happened!
We still have to work out a lot of the details, but this is so encouraging.
Gotta run, have a pot of Leather and one of Lime Vanilla Royal on the stove.
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Over the next several days, I will be setting up a lot of the content of the site. I'll keep a list of scents in stock, as well as new products we're working on. As a sneak peek, here's what I just finished:
This is a trial batch of Carrot Veggie Soap, made with real carrots and good-for-you oils. I'm trying to come up with a catchy name, but so far I'm coming up blank. If you come up with something I love, maybe I'll send you a free bar, so...suggest something!!
We're also trying to determine what other products people are looking for. Of course everything that we make will be environmentally-conscious. We do it because that is what people are looking for, but also because it is important to us. If you have any suggestions or questions about our shoppe, our products, or US, please comment. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter @TXshoppegirl.