Friday, January 31, 2014

Crawling to the weekend with Caterpillars!

Hello Hello!

It's friday again and they keep coming so fast, there's nothing quite like a regular blog post to track time with and for noticing how quickly those hours run out. Too scary. So on that note I am going to be super speedy today.

The new product this week is a Valentine spesh, A Love Bug Ladybird Cushions which are available right now on facebook by PM and soon in the Not On The High Street Shop and Etsy shop.

And the new fabric pattern of the week is Crawling Caterpillar which I have taken from the children's birthday age cards that were freshly designed this week. I really like this one as it's perfect for any little person's room!

Hope you all have a cosy weekends which seem to stretch.......

Friday, January 24, 2014

My studio, my week, my new friday fabric, print and cards!

Clearing out the desk towards the weekend is always a good feeling but this week I have cleared out my studio as well, re-arranged the furniture and made it much more functional with the help of some very low tech cereal boxes cut in half, you maybe laughing but I've never found a better system to house so many card designs in such a little space with extra love for it being free!

This weeks new Friday fabric is a called 'Mushroom Forest' which is available to view & buy here ! I totally love toadstools and mushrooms and will be adding a more 'grown up' toadstool design to the range at some point this year too.

This weeks new products are an A3 Alphabet Ladybird Print for the littlies learning their ABC's and Valentine's Day cards for anyone. I think I am going to send a whole load this year, I feel like spreading the love! You can buy them here if you are still looking for yours :-)

I hope you've had a splendid week and will shortly be doing a hop, skip and jump into the weekend. See you next time, Fran x

Friday, January 17, 2014

Fabric Friday!

Some of you will have seen this fabric design before and a few of you will have purchased it and made these cute little critters for your half pints to play with already. Either way it's a great one for me to make available on Spoonflower as I've never released any of my DIY FQ makes before on their site and it's always good to try new things. It's a simple sewing project where you can see quick results and bound to come in useful at home whilst hopefully still looking cute when they are left lying around!

If you purchase this fabric from spoonflower one FQ design will cost around £7 ish (depending on the exact exchange rate) and it makes all 6 bugs. You will need backing fabric etc to complete the project and if that's all you buy you will escape customs fees, which is a bit of a hop, skip and a jump itself.

 Happy Making and HAPPY WEEKEND! 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

How rude of me not to blog since August! 
I think my New Years Resolution should be to blog more....

A little reflecting and remembering
of what halfpinthome got up to in 2013.

In January when I was planning the projects I wanted to do last year I really wasn't sure where it was going to take me. I could never have imagined a year could make such a difference. It's true I've worked hard but I am sure some where along the way I've had a magical hand or two to help me....

Picture of personalised cushions by halfpinthome!

In February I got my brave on and approached Emily, a publisher I met at Bar Lane studios about a little idea I had and work began on the first Mini Make book. So very exciting indeed but as with everything new there is a steep learning curve that just can't be avoided! In between creating and designing the spreads with Emily halfpinthome commissions and pattern designs continued and another brave decision to apply for Not On The High Street was made!

March marched onwards and work on the first Mini Make book continued. I set up the halfpinthome esty shop properly and sent that all important e-mail to Not On The high street. 

Pictures above and below are  of 'makes' designed
for the first Mini Make Book

April came and went in a blur of happy but busy, being accepted to Not On The High Street and somehow feeling overwhelmed with tasks and lists of things to do! It was halfpinthome's 1st facebook birthday and work on the first Mini Makes book still continued....

 May was fun (lots of doodling, sketching and designing) preparing new cushion designs, notebooks, and cards plus taking some design work for other people. (Which is something I have actually enjoyed so much this year!)

June was an intense breath of fresh air, the closer you get to crunch time the less those silly things get in the way, speed decision making was key and it was all about focus. (Insert many a pun about focusing my camera lens here - and me wondering why I find it so hard to take good photos!) The halfpinthome Noths shop was finally ready to go live (double whoop)and the first Mini Makes book was finally published too. Not to mention the Made in York craft fair. It was all such a huge relief to have these things achieved by now!

And if I'd been thinking that I was busy then..... July was the calm before the storm and I spent time catching up on all the design jobs I had put to one side in preperation for the summer holidays, when work would inevitably have to slow down. It was also about fulfilling Not On the High Street orders which felt super cool (still does) and this was also the when I planned the Mini Makes Christmas Activity Advent Calendar!  

August was the most scary flying by the seat of my pants month ever, the Mini Makes Advent book had to be complete before the end of the holidays and the kids were off with me for the full six weeks, bar the odd day with the Grandma and Nana! I've never had to balance so much work and so much play before and 'challenge' is the only word to describe it! Soooo many early mornings, late nights and replying to e-mails in the middle of the night when I woke up but at this point I couldn't have felt more thankful that I had already learnt more than a few valuable lessons whilst designing the first one. It made the whole process a lot faster! 

What I took away from this was don't combine BIG work projects with childcare, they are not compatible and mummy guilt is a terrible thing! But I made it through and the first wholesale order even went out to Stockeld Park who were showcasing halfpinthome for the winter season too!

September was so very good. Routine ruled and after being so immersed in the second Mini Makes book for the last few weeks of the holidays the designs were all ready to roll out to other halfpinthome goodies and feedback for Mini Makes Advent was back from  editor Emily. So Work began on the amendments and designs continued in between on new buntings, new bug cushion, new cards There was also a day trip to the NOTHS 'Make, Do & Meet' (one of the most nerve wrecking things ever!) and there was also a rather crazy toadstool cushion giveaway!

October swept me off my feet and halfpinthome had never been so busy with sewing orders. Now the design work was all finished for this year Christmas it was lovely to stitch away and complete an enormous amount of custom makes including all the popular penguin cushions. There was also the first ever hph 'Market Night' which I can't thank you all enough for purchasing hph at it and it broke the record for the height of 'happy post' being sent in one day! Good times!


November was all about the packing pixie, getting organised in time for the rest of the Christmas sales and selling a ridiculous amount of Mini Makes Advent. I am not sure quite how it was possible for so many of you to buy it but it's been totally amazing that so many of you did! Thank you! It was also full of more wholesale orders and stockists with the the lovely Blossom Street Gallery in York and The Mostyn Gallery, Wales amongst others. There was also a rather fabulous foxy cushion collaboration with illustrator Josh Hurley! (still available if you love foxes here!)

December (really, already?) proved to me that hph is growing in so many ways. Such a different story to this time last year, when others had more faith in me than I had in myself, although I wouldn't change any part of how it's become what it is today! Just before the new year I hopped onto Spoonflowers' Hot Sellers list which was a very 'hoorah' moment AND of course the DEC charity raffle, which rised £2,538, a seriously good end to the year.... 

Besides feeling like I can really see direction for halfpinthome as most of the year is already mapped out with projects and plans and never forgetting how lucky I am to be able to do what I do I have meet some truly amazing people this year. On facebook, through NOTHS, and people who I've worked with but can now call friends. So many also on their journey's doing brilliant things and being so talented and inspirational. On a good or bad day there's nothing quite like company! 

With that in mind I will thank you all so very very much for the support and said company throughout 2013, comments and likes on facebook and twitter, at Made In York or via online sales and facebook groups. I am so excited about the year ahead and I hope I can make as many of you and your half pints as happy this coming year as I did last year. 

2014 will be all about MORE mini makes, nursery prints, personalised family prints, craft kits and cushions plus a couple of special collaborations which are top secret for now and a website, which is top of my list, after the accounts!  

I am so looking forward to all the lovely times ahead..... and I am so glad I looked back to all the lovely times I've had!

Happy 2014 You Lovely Lot x