It's been a funny kind of week, I've been doing all those behind the scenes jobs that you know need doing, yet you put them off. The biggest one though, that in truth I have been delaying doing so, was putting Little Kitten Homemade into hibernation. Back in April when I started my 'Grand Plan' I envisaged that I would still make bunting and pretty things to sell on a ready made basis, however, as it turns out, I've actually found that for now and the foreseeable future, Pretty Fabrics and Trims and for my creative kick, designing embroidery patterns and making things for me and my family is what makes me happy I have still retained my Little Kitten Homemade website, just in case I have a change of heart and I have reopened my Etsy shop where the remainder of my ready made Bunting stock is available at a reduced price, so grab a bargain, while you can!
If you'll forgive me though, I thought I would do a little reminiscing........ Little Kitten Homemade was born in 2010, having been a full time mum since 2004, I was feeling the need to grab a little independence, however with Andy in the forces and overseas quite a bit, working for myself seemed the obvious solution. Bunting was just starting to appear in the glossie magazines and having made some for both my children, I thought it would be the ideal product for me. I had just discovered Etsy over the Christmas break and bravely decided to open a shop on the 2nd January with my website closely following. At the time, I believe I was one of the first people to sell hand appliqued bunting and within a couple of weeks, I had my first sale, I was so excited, and then the next one came and so it continued. To be honest I couldn't believe it and soon, what I had envisaged being a hobby business, was actually becoming a full time business.
Over the next 3 years, thousands of flags were appliqued and sewn, it was on the whole such a happy time, although there were moments of sadness. I like many, experienced the odd copycat, which in one respect was quite flattering that they deemed me worth copying, however in truth they were always heart breaking. Not only did I experience and see exact copies of my products, right down to the fabrics, buttons, stitching and embellishments, whole chunks of wording from my product descriptions, terms and conditions and shop policies used in other Etsy shops, I also found people using my photo's of my products and saying that they were theirs......the cheek of it!! All I would say is be inspired but most importantly, be kind, be creative, show integrity and please do not copy!!
Not wishing to dwell, these moments were far out numbered however by the pleasure I had creating my bunting banners and pretty things... here are just a snippet of some of my favourites, starting off with the bunting that I made for Etsy UK to display when they're out and about...
I loved working with some of the most brilliant customers, creating pretty strings of flags to celebrate a new arrivals, to accessorise a newly decorate bedroom or to be hung a party.
I also made hundreds of buntings for bride and grooms across the world, it was such a joy to be involved in their special days!
In 2012, I expanded my product range again to include these pretty hangers, these allowed me to indulge my love of vintage mother of pearl buttons, lace and ribbon.....
and Advent Calendars......I do not think I shall ever forget the Advent Madness of Sept and Oct 2012!!
Other pretties included Family Trees, Sleeps 'till hangers...and the list goes on!
I was extremely honoured to have my work featured on many popular blogs, in magazines .....
and even on TV ( check out Alan Titchmarsh holding my bunting!!!)
Now in fear on this sounding like I have just won an award, to finish, I would just like to say a HUGE thank you to all my customers who entrusted me to make them something, it was a complete honour working with each and everyone one of you and finally, just say that none of this would have been possible without my Mum, who resolutely sewed thousands of metres of bunting with me, to Andy who cooked lots of dinners and to Dad who took charge of all my parcels and school runs, thank you for all your support, I love you all loads!