Sunday, July 22, 2012

Farewell tsd blog

Hey yall! I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend. I just wanted to let you know that I have decided that juggling 3 blogs of my own is just too much for my organized self. I thought by creating TSD - a separate blog for my indie biz/blog 101 posts that it would help keep me organized but I was wrong.

 So, if you would like to keep up with shop updates, tutorials & such. Along with what I regularly post on my main blog. Please follow me on Live.Laugh.L0ve. because that is where everything will be from now on.

Thank you all for your support on this journey.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

What it takes to own an indie biz - Your Heart

Catch up on the series here.

So we have gone over most things that it takes to own and indie biz. But this is the most important one to understand I think. Just what exactly it takes if you are absolutely serious about this. If you are really looking to quit your job or run your business while you stay at home with the kids.

You have to understand that owning an indie biz take your heart.

What do I mean by that? It means your heart goes into ever product you make. Every website you design. Every new sign that is painted. Every clutch that is sewn. Every subway art that is made. Your heart goes into each one of those products and your customers will see that. They will see just how much you love what you do.

Your heart goes into the design you want for the shop. The photos and descriptions you put up. The promoting you do. Your heart goes into every item you package. It's like a little piece of you is going to someone else. Because you know that your heart went into everything you did.

All the time spent.
All the items made.
All the pictures taken.
All the promoting.
It's all worth it in the end.

Because your heart is in it and you love what you do.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

What it takes to own an indie biz - Determination

If you are just now joining us for this series you can see all the posts here.

Owning an indie biz takes alot of determination. Knowing what you want and going after it. It takes focus and discipline. You have to work hard and keep going even with things are going smoothly. You have to want your indie biz to succeed. You have to have the determination to do so.

I have faltered a couple of times in this.
When sales aren't high.
My creativity seems at a standstill.
I just get down that nothing seems to be going the way I want it.

But my determination and drive to own an indie biz and have it succeed, keeps me going.
It pulls me out of my funk.
It reminds me I can do this.

I am determined to give everything I have in me, into my shop. Every long night. Ever promotion. Every new product. Every order.

Is all driven my one word.


Monday, July 9, 2012

Shop update - Prints & more prints!

Happy Monday! I hope everyone's weekend was wonderful!
Today's shop update today is brought to you with prints.

I have two new ones in the shop & I also finished two custom prints this weekend.
First I'll show you the two custom digital prints that I did.

The two ladies I made these for were so sweet and it was really fun to play around and design something unique for them!

Now the new prints in the shop.
First up we have...

Next up is...

Be the light digital print file

You can find both of these new prints under the prints section in my shop.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Showcase Saturday - Take The Cannoli

Oh how I have a beautiful shop to show you today. I met Nat during one of our Golden Tribe meetings. I completely adore her & her blog. She has an amazing personality, a wonderful heart and is talented all the way! She owns a beautiful shop called Take The Cannoli.

She creates hand stitched items that make my heart go pitter patter.
Every single one she has ever put in her shop I have fell in love with.
You can absolutely tell that she loves what she does.

Here are a few of my favorites!

You're my favorite found here.

This true love one found here is absolutely beautiful!

This one found here called hope steals my heart away.

What is your favorite item from her shop?

Friday, July 6, 2012

What it takes to own an indie biz - helpful sites & tips

I have hand selected five posts that I have helped me tremendously from other indie biz owners.
No one has all the answers.
But with everyone sharing tips - it is extremely helpful.


1. Don't be afraid to fail. This is the biggest one. Because there are going to be some products that just don't sale as good as other's or don't sale at all - which makes you wonder what went wrong. But don't be afraid of it because it shows you what your customers like and what they don't.

2. Take & break. If you are going to own an indie biz, taking breaks is needed. It gives yourself time to think of new ideas, make new products and most of all it gives you time to let your creativity soar.

3. Give it your all. Don't go into it with half a heart. Throw yourself into your indie biz. Let your customers see that you love what you make and that you are good at it. That the products are dear to your heart.


This post about becoming an expert in your field by Gussy Sews

I love this post by The Wonder Forest on getting started.

This series on defining success on Neathering Our Fest's blog may help you understand what success means to you.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Shop update - Prints

I hope you all had a wonderful fourth of July yesterday.
I am extending the code to work until midnight tonight.
Use code fourthofJuly to get 20% off in the shop.

I have two new digital prints in the shop.
First one is.

Just keep breathing - Find out all the details about it here.

Second one is.
Reflection of him - find out all the details about it here.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

What it takes to own an indie biz - Motivation

Yesterday we talked about the time that goes into owning an indie biz.
Today we are going to talk about the motivation needed.
Because we all need motivation.
Someone to encourage us and well motivate us on what we are doing.
Pushing us a little harder. Bouncing ideas off of.

My husband is excellent at being my motivator.
I show him all of my ideas.
Every product I make.

He makes me think.
He compliments them.
Tells me where they could improve.
When I mess up and get frustrated - he's there to tell me it's going to be okay and try again.

You need someone who is going to motivate you. Because while we have these ideas and dreams and goals bouncing around in our heads, it's easy to get side tracked or frustrated that something isn't going your way and make us second guess ourselves. Find someone who will motivate you.

It will pay off.

Who motivates you when you get in a slump?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What it takes to own an indie biz - Time

Time. We never have enough of it do we? We have to learn to balance our time between everything that we do. Especially when you are trying to run an indie biz because there is so much time that goes into it. I'm going to break it down for you because it took me awhile to grasp this and to set times for me to do everything that needed to get done.

Factor in the time it takes to make your products. This can take anywhere from 10 minutes to a couple of hours. I always try to work on shop items during the boys quiet time or when they are asleep at night because that is when I can focus best.

Taking pictures. I try to do this right after the product is made that way I don't forget to take the picture because yes I have done this before. If I can't do it right after I will do it the next morning when I can use some good sunlight.

Editing your pictures. I always edit my pictures. Cropping them to make them perfect. Watermarking them. Resizing them. Thankfully I can do this anytime of the day but it is another thing that does take awhile to do.

Listing your items & writing descriptions. This isn't too bad if you are only putting one or two products in the shop at that time, but if you have a good amount - this is going to take some time.

Promoting. Putting the word out about your shop or products or both. Takes time. Thank heavens for social media sites and smart phones. I can easily do this from my phone. But regardless - it is time that goes into it.

These are just a few things. This doesn't include the packaging it up. Running to the post office. To the store for more packaging supplies. So before you jump head long into it - remember all of this. Because you are going to be doing it all. ;)

Monday, July 2, 2012

New series - What it takes to own an indie biz

This is a new series here on The Spontaneous Designer where I, along with a few other ladies are going to be sharing what it takes to own an indie biz. There is more that goes into it then most people think and I am excited to share this new series with you. I want you to understand what goes into what an indie biz owner does.

Weather you are looking to start your own business or you are a buyer. It will be beneficial to both getting to see what goes on behind the scenes and what it really takes.

Day one - starts tomorrow so be on the lookout. :)

I hope you all had a great weekend and have a wonderful Monday!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

What happens when you become a blogger

Ever wonder what life is like when you become a blogger?
Really you don't think much will change.
But it does.

Social Media - becomes your bff. Literally you are all over it. Keeping up with the people you follow and posting your own things. Conversations that make you laugh and ones that make you cry {good way people}.

Comments & e-mails - happen quite often. You are commenting on other blogs. Your readers are leaving comments for you. E-mails start rolling in and before you know it your inbox looks like a disaster. But it's fun. ;)

Pictures - oh lord. You take pictures of everything right down to snapping a picture of yourself before you go to bed and posting it. You start learning how to take "proper" pictures and edit them. Your significant other and/or children start looking at you like your crazy because you just took a picture of a burger and fries. Well, your instagram peeps had to see it of course.

You blog - You write your own blog posts how ever often you like and guest post for others. Scheduling posts ahead of time and writing down post ideas.

Inspiration - Your inspiration goes into over drive because now you have to make this and share it with your lovely followers because well they just have to see it and possibly make it themselves.

Caught up - you can get caught up in the land of blogging so us bloggers try and keep this in check. it's a hard line to walk but we somehow manage.

Really - you find yourself doing things or noticing things you normally wouldn't and you want to share it, blog about it, snap a picture of it.

What has changed sense YOU became a blogger?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Five Tips on Tuesday - Descriptions

Today I wanted to venture into the land of describing your items.
Let's be honest. I'm more inclined to buy something handmade when the description is detailed and catchy.
For instance, this to me is no fun and doesn't really catch my attention:

Pink heart necklace.
Sterling silver chain.
24" long.
Ships in 2 days.

Okay awesome. You gave me what I wanted to know.
But sense it is handmade I want to know more.
I want to know why you made it. I did an etsy lab that talked about telling a story with your description.
That's a great idea if you can tell a story and one I highly agree with.
But maybe you don't have a story.
But you made it for a reason.

So tell us why. I pulled this straight from my shop.

"I designed this necklace because It is something I believe in. It also comes from my favorite scripture. "For we walk by faith, not by sight." 2 Corinthians 5.7
- This necklace has one metal disc with the words walk by faith stamped on it with a small cross in the corner.
- The chain is silver plated and is 18" long.
- The necklace will ship within 2-3 days after purchase has been made and payment has been received."

I told you why I designed it in the first place. 
Then I gave you the details.
That's what I like to see. :)

So next time you are trying to figure out how to describe your items. Thinks about these five tips.
  • Why did you design it? Did you make it for a dear friend, family member, loved one? Is it a favorite bible verse or you loved the way the fabrics blended together? 
  • Tell a story with it. Paint a picture of the item that just captures the buyer and makes them want to own that product.
  • Be detailed. What kind of chain it is. Fabric. Yarn. What size it is. As a buyer I want to know these things.
  • Let the buyer know how long it's going to take to ship. If i need something buy the end of the week and it takes 5 days to ship I need to know that before buying it.
  • Name your product. Seriously - have fun with it. I actually need to change a few of these my self. For instance red rose ring doesn't sound near as cute as put a ring on it - rose style. and yes that is beyonce's song put a ring on it. hehe. 
Simple as that.
And have fun with it.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Shop products update

Blah. I know.
This is the second Monday in a row that I haven't had new products added to the shop!
Well, there is a reason.
Because next Monday I am having a ton of products to the shop - all

& I want to say hello to all of my new followers!
I am so happy to have you here!
To learn more about this blog you can check that out here.
Happy Monday yall!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Tutorial Thursday - blog layout

So you have this super cute header {This tutorial can be used for a blog header as well} but want the rest of your blog to match the colors. I'm about to show you a super quick and easy way to do this.

Login & click on your blog name. {this is using the new blogger interface}

Then proceed to click on Template. {On the left side bar}

One the template you have pops up click on customize.

Then click on advanced & wa - la start changing colors.

Just go through all of the links between the two blue lines I have put in the next picture and change the colors however you want them and to your liking. One your done click apply to blog in the top right corner.

That's it! Now you have pretty colors to match your pretty header! :)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

How to use passionfruit ads

I highly recommend if you are going to offer ads on your blogs to use passionfruit ads. It is so much more organized! It is also super easy to set up & I'm about to show you how. For the record I don't use passionfruit on here right now because I don't have ad spots yet but I use it on my other blog and that is the blog name you are seeing in the pictures below {Live.Laugh.L0ve.}

Sign up if you haven't already and then go ahead and sign in.

Click on my sites & add a new site. Then proceed to fill in the info!

You will then have a dashboard where it shows your basic things. Click on your site name on the right.

You will be directed to another page where you will see more things in detail and be able to start putting your ad spots together and accept ad spots.

To create an ad size. Click on site setup and the top of the screen and then click on define ad spot.

Click on ad a spot. Then fill out all of the information and save ad spot. Do this for each ad space you would like to offer.

Then click on your ad shop at the top of the page and copy the code and place it on your sponsor page so people can purchase and ad.

Then click on Displaying ads and copy each code and put the codes in your sidebar.

You can create promo codes by clicking on site setup - promo codes. Ad promo code.

You can view all ad details by clicking on ads at the top of the page and you can view all payment history by clicking on Cash Money.

And not only is it super easy. Jason is super helpful, so if you get lost or need help still don't be afraid to ask him! Now - go set up your passionfruit ads and start selling! :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Five Tips on Tuesday - Pictures

Today I wanted to reveal my secret about pictures. Before you run away you don't have to have a fancy super awesome camera for this.  In fact I take all of my pictures on my cell phone.  Yes you read that right - my android cell phone is where all the picture taking action goes down.  While I wish I did have a fancy super awesome camera, I don't so I learned how to use my phone camera the best I could.  I'm going to share a few tips with yall today!

For up close pictures use the manual button.  Auto just doesn't always cut it and you can't take a picture like the one below on your phone on auto - at least you can't on my phone.

Angle it up. If one angle isn't working for you try another one.  You'll be surprised at what that slight move will do for your picture.

Snap it near a window.  Natural lighting is the best lighting.  If you can't go outside or don't want to - take your pictures near a window.  Let that natural light stream through.

Point and shoot from far away using the sun. Line up your camera with the person or object farthest from you. Get your camera as close to the closest person or object that you can. Then start raising your camera higher and angling it down until the sun catches just right, then click!

I used no special effects to get the water droplets. That was all point and shoot from a distance.

Point and shoot from closeup using the sun. For a close up. Focus on the object or person farthest from you {which shouldn't be to far} Get eye level with whatever or whoever you are taking a picture of and click. Angle your camera just slightly until you can tell the sun is having an affect on the picture and then click! This is what you get.

Again no special effects done to this. This was simply point and shoot.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Showcase Saturday - Gussy Sews

I have mentioned Gussy before on this little blog. She is the one who gave me the inspiration to have new shop items each week. Actually she inspires me quite a bit. Her blog is extremely motivating and I just love her as a person! She is honest and kind-hearted and incredibly talented. I hope to one day have her as my mentor.

Gussy literally sews some of the most adorable ruffly products I have ever seen!! I own one of her wristlets and I love it! As a matter of fact I believe I need this one as well!

I mean really. Look at those colors!! Hello beautiful! I also want this large zip pouch.


I am in love with blue and orange right now. She really does do beautiful work!!

Speaking blue. I need this wallet.


Look at the pure beauty of this wallet! Ruffles - check. Button closer - check. Beautiful colors - check. I really don't think a wallet gets any cuter or more perfect that that!

Now you have seen just how talented Gussy is and you know you are drooling over these products! Go check out her shop and get your shop on and then follow her blog because she truly is wonderful!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Blogging 101 - Sponsors part 2

Okay - so you know what you want to offer.
You have sponsors weather you asked or the flocked to you.
Now what do you do?

Do everything you say you're going to. If you say your going to give social media shoutouts - do it. If you are allowing your sponsors to guest post - let them. Don't say you are giving your sponsors something and then not following through with it. No one likes that at all.

Sponsor other blogs. I am definitely not going to tell you that the other blogs you sponsor need to be bigger bloggers because that's not always true. This is what I can tell you.

  • Some of the most traffic I have gotten comes from blogs that are barely bigger than mine. They are smaller so they have more time to promote you, show you off and truly get to know you! So just because you see smaller size numbers, see what they have to offer first it may surprise you.
  • Bigger blogs are always great but can be expensive. But I won a giveaway and won a small ad space on Casey's blog and I was apart of her group giveaway & I gained 28 new followers in 2 days. That's not included the followers I gained on twitter from that. So sponsoring big blogs does have it's perks too!
Promote, promote, promote. Show your sponsors off. Blog posts, social media. Let your readers know about them! After all they are paying you to do just that.

Stay in touch. E-mail your sponsors. Get to know them. I have found that I can promote my sponsors much better when I e-mail them and find out things about them. When I follow their blogs and social media sites. It gives me a feel for who they are and in turn I help promote them better!

What advice do you have for sponsoring? Share with me!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Tutorial Thursday // Creating a button

Today I am going to show you the Nine steps to create a button.
Don't run away because there is nine steps.
I promise it is very easy.

One. Go to and upload a photo or color of your choice background.

Two. Resize your image to 200x200. {Make sure keep proportions is unchecked.}

Three. Click on frames. Simple Edge. Push thickness on the outer color all the way to the left..

Four. Select the box next to the inner color and choose a color.

Five. Go to shapes. Geometric shapes. Select whatever shape you like - I used the first one. {You do not have to do this step. I just like doing it when I use a picture as a background.}

Six. Choose a color for your shape and place it on your button. Resize it as you need.

Seven. Click the font tab. Choose a font & a color.

Eight. Type in the name you want on it and place it on your button. {if you are using a shape place it in the shape}

Nine. Go back to the top tab. Click resize. Resize it back to 200x200 {the border made it bigger} and save your button.

TA-DA!! Now you have a blog button!
See really isn't as bad as it seems.
The more you play around with it - the better at it you will get!