Posted on Leave a comment

My Etsy 2020 Gift Guide

No doubt 2020 has been a difficult year for many independent artists. Many of them sell on Etsy so here’s my guide to the artists I know on Etsy and some of my favourites from their ranges.

Tree Rex Christmas card

Citrus Bunn specialises in quirky pun based illustrations. The Tree Rex is one of hers and my best sellers.
Look out too for Moled Wine and Polar Beer, also available as coasters.

Jessica Hogarth specialises in coastal scenes but also her London designs are fabulous and so evocative at Christmas.

Alison Hullyer does fabulous Christmas cards but she also does the most beautiful tea towels and coasters. This goldfinch teatowel is one of my favourites.

Amanda Loverseed’s designs are well known and her cross stitch kits would make the ultimate gift for your craft friends. Here’s the cut thru Nativity Cross Stitch Kit but there are lots more to choose from.

If you love stationery and notebooks (and let’s face it you can never have too many!) then you’ll love Klara Hawkins notebooks. Here is a set of two A6 Boho Birds Notebooks but they also come in A5 sizes too.

Wrendale Designs are always popular in my shop and with the fabrics they make there are some beautiful creations on Etsy including this robin mask.

If you like Fabrics and home furnishings then you’ll love Karen Tye Bentley’s designs on fabric. The Sugar and Spice range is a lovely range.

Kate Mawsley does some of the most delicate illustrations you’ll find and as everyone needs a Christmas mug I think this was a great find. Exquisitely called ‘Little Bits of Christmas‘ this is a quality Dunoon mug.

And as if that’s not enough there’s a fabulous Etsy guide to the best Christmas Cards available.

Please note I am an Etsy affiliate and may receive reward if you purchase anything through one of my links but this is at no cost to you. All opinions within this article are my own.

Posted on Leave a comment

Flamingo Paperie FAQs

Flamingo Paperie FAQs

I thought you might find it useful to see some of the most common Flamingo Paperie FAQs that I get asked. Of course if you have any other questions please just ask.

Flamingo Paperie FAQs

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS FOR PROSPECTIVE INDEPENDENT FLAMINGO PAPERIE PARTNERS

Q: How much does it cost to join?
A:We have three Special Offer Starter Packs, priced at £45 for PACK1, £95 for PACK2 and £200 for PACK3. For further information, please see the Join Me section on our website.

Q: Can I register to be an Independent Flamingo Paperie Partner over the phone?
A: No, please register online.

Q: Does my agreement need to be signed by my sponsor?
A: No it is not essential.

Q: Can my daughter (who is 17) become a Flamingo Partner?
A: No, you have to be at least 18 to become a Flamingo Partner.

Q: Do I have to be VAT registered if I would like to become an Independent Flamingo Paperie Partner?
A: No, you only need to register for VAT when your ‘taxable supplies’ exceed the statutory limit – currently £85,000.

Q: Can I place an order for extra items when I join?
A: Yes you may order extra items and we will ship everything together provided the total is under the statutory limit of £200 that you can spend with us in your first seven days.

Q: How long will it take for my Starter Pack to arrive?
A: We will normally ship your Starter Pack the day after receiving payment. We ship on a next day delivery basis to addresses on the UK mainland except the Highlands of Scotland where deliveries normally take 2-3 days.

Q: Do you require a minimum amount to be spent in order to use a debit/credit card?
A: No.

Q: How much will I pay for delivery of my orders?
A: We have the following two rates:

  1. A flat rate of £6 (incl VAT), regardless of the order size, for a next day courier service (from shipping date).
  2. A Letterbox Card Pack rate of £3 (incl. VAT) which is for up to 25 greetings cards only. This pack will be sent via Royal Mail and is specially designed to fit through an average letterbox; delivery will be one to two days (from shipping date). We know that there is always going to be a need to place last minute orders and this Letterbox Card Pack will allow you to make those emergency top up card orders to keep your customers happy and give you tighter control of your business.

Q: How long do orders take to arrive?
A: We will ship your order no later than the 4th working day after receipt. However, please note that there are some areas within the UK where it is not possible to have your order delivered on the next working day.

Q: Can I advertise on the internet or in publications?
A: Any advertising or promotion, direct or indirect, must be approved by one of the company directors. Permission to advertise on internet trading sites such as eBay is always refused. When Partners advertise without our authority, there is a real danger that, inadvertently, claims are made about our proposition which misrepresent the offer and do not comply with the statutory notices that someone promoting a direct selling business needs to adhere to. There is also an issue of artist’s copyright where images are used without permission. It is in the interests of the Company, and all Independent Flamingo Paperie Partners, for the Company to protect its brand and reputation. As far as the internet is concerned, all Partner activity must therefore be influenced by the principles set out in our Fact Sheet 2: Principles for use of the internet.

Q: Can I sell to shops?
A: In the UK, we operate only as a direct selling business and do not supply any retail outlets, although as a company we are approached regularly by shop proprietors. We think that sales through shops would create conflict between distribution channels and we make a clear statement in our literature that our products are available exclusively through Independent Flamingo Partners who operate a direct to consumer service, with the exception of our guest range from Emotional Rescue that can also be found in retail outlets. If you are outside of the UK please see Sell Flamingo Paperie greeting cards internationally

Q: Is there a minimum order?
A: No, you may order as much or as little as you want.

Q: Do I have to order every month?
A: No, you order whenever you want. There are no requirements to reach monthly sales targets unless you wish to earn extra bonuses. We have Partners who join for the sole purpose of fundraising for their chosen charity for three months a year and we have Partners who, from day one, structure their business to take full advantage of all the reward benefits extra sales can bring.

Q: Do I have to purchase a specific amount of products each month?
A: No, you can order as much or as little as you wish. To qualify for bonus payments, however, you need to meet the volume criteria in the months in which you wish to be paid bonuses.

So now you’ve read all the Flamingo Paperie FAQs – are you ready to join me?

Posted on 1 Comment

Easter cards why do we send them?

Flamingo Paperie Easter cards

When was the first Easter card sent?

According to Wikipedia people sent the first Easter cards just over 100 years ago at the very end of the 19th Century. At this time people tended to send postcards. Initially you could only write the address on the back of the postcard, along side the stamp. Postcard senders had to write on the front meaning that the illustration had to allow space for the writing. This changed in the early 1900s when the back of the postcard was split more like we see today.

What sort of cards did Victorians send?

Early images on Easter postcards and cards included the Easter bunny, sheep, flowers, eggs and often young girls who were a symbol of luck and hope. Easter carries a message of hope and new life so now we also might include butterflies and spring images, particularly in the Northern Hemisphere where Easter and Spring coincide. In Australia you might find an Easter Bilby instead of a bunny.

Where did the Easter bunny come from?

Flamingo Paperie Easter Wishes greeting card

It’s generally accepted that the Easter bunny originated in the 1700s in Germany. He was originally an ‘egg-laying hare’. German Lutherans took the tradition to America with them. Then, like so many things, once the Americans are doing it, we’re all doing it!

What are Easter cards all about?

There’s no doubt that Easter cards have their origin in Christianity. Relating to Jesus’ resurrection and the hope of new life, this is where most of our Easter images have their basis. It’s understandable that Easter cards were at their peak during the First World War. Then also the Second World War as people faced life and death situations and an uncertain future. Following the Second World War Easter cards declined and fewer are sent now than then. However, they are still very popular. With Mothers Day just 3 weeks before Easter it’s interesting to note that Mothers Day is the third largest card sending occasion in the calendar year, with Easter in fifth place.

Why send an Easter card?

Whether you are a Christian or not, sending any card at any time can lift someone’s spirits. There is a reason why the Greeting Card Association has as it’s industry tagline ‘send a card, deliver a smile’. That’s exactly what sending a card can do. While Easter may move its date each year it will always fall in Spring here in the UK. After an often cold, harsh winter here in the Outer Hebrides I know I love to see cards with flowers, animals, butterflies and eggs, heralding a new season with summer not far away.

Whatever your faith or none, an Easter card can bring hope and encouragement in tough times. Or perhaps just a reminder of what a beautiful world we live in.

So go on, make someone smile and send a few Easter cards this year!

If you’re looking for other ideas for Easter then I’ve made some suggestions here.

If you’re a busy person who’s a bit short of spare time to choose some Easter cards then I’ve put together a bundle for you.

Posted on Leave a comment

Art of Gift Wrapping — Shiho Masuda

art of gift wrapping

Last month, I was invited to have a live interview to talk about my career as a gift wrapping designer at a local TV show in Hawaii. We talked about how I started my career and what projects I’ve been working on, then at the mid-point of the show, the interviewer asked me, “Why is the art of gift wrapping important?”
Image 1.jpg

To answer this question was important to me because that’s where my passion lies.

The art of gift wrapping is important because it helps us build an emotional connection with others. If hiding the content (gift) is all you want, putting it in a paper bag will do a fine job.

You want to wrap your gift in a beautiful presentation because you care about the recipients and want to express your feelings of appreciation, love and/or joy for them. The act of gift wrapping maybe physical but the real reason of doing so is emotional.

The art of gift wrapping is about building relationships and keeping connections with people important in your life.

In the world of internet and social media in which everyone focused on developing online interactions, taking the time to create something beautiful with your hands is a meaningful and heartfelt way to communicate with others.

I’ve been creating the art of gift wrapping for years for my family, friends and clients and the reactions I get from them are always priceless. Imagine instead of just a cookie-cutter mall wrapped gift, your friends and family will get these…

And this is why I’m passionate about teaching and sharing ideas of the art of gift wrapping so that you can reconnect with your loved ones through the beautiful art created by hand.

Just in time for the holiday season, this is an excellent way to start preparing your personal gifts. There are some awesome ways that you can tailor-make how you present those gifts to the people you love.

P.S. My new online course will help you do just that and it’ll be available next week at a very low price just for you for the holiday season. 😊 It’ll help you to learn and create the art of gift wrapping for your friends and family so that you can really “wow” them!

via How to Create More Intimacy and Build Better Relationships through the Art of Gifting — Shiho Masuda

If you love the art of gift wrapping then you can now get a monthly deluxe box of coordinated gift wrapping materials delivered straight to your door from Cards and Gift Wrap.