Octo-Cuteness

I learned the basics to crocheting at a very young age. Everything after that has been self taught. It is one of my favorite things to do. On any given evening I can often be found sitting in my spot on the sofa next to my husband and youngest son working on something.

My newest project are these wonderfully cute Amigurumi Octopus.

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In the last week I’ve made more than a dozen in a few different sizes. The first few going to my children, and my niece, as many of the things I make do. I’m working to build up stock of these. The Holidays soon will arrive. And these make the perfect stocking stuffers. Building stock will also allow me to ship fast and have time for the custom color requests I’m sure will come.

I have become skilled enough to free hand crochet these (free hand crochet means not counting stiches), because of this and just the overall handmade nature no two will ever be exactly the same.

I have chosen to call them “Peewee the pint size Octopus & Friends”.

This is Peewee!

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Peewee of course was the first I made, and I have claimed him as my own. Though I’ve made a few more just like him. I’m even running a “Like & Share” giveaway for him on my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/jerseygypsypeddler/

Quick go enter! Its open to everyone till August 1st, just follow the 3 steps in the pinned post at the top of our page.

Or Shop our Etsy Store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/JerseyGypsyEtsyShop

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I have it in my mind to possibly write a set of short stories for Peewee (Early Emergent Readers), asking my Mom to illustrate for me. To which she has agreed, this feeds my inspiration.

Regard!

An Interview

Question: How do you describe JerseyGypsy?

Answer: JerseyGypsy is a one stop gift shop. A handmade emporium of quality goods at a good price. A place to get custom things you wont find in the mall.

Question: What sets you apart from other gift shops?

Answer: Unlike many other shops, I am not a one hit wonder. For example someone that only makes bags, has mostly only bags or someone that only makes candles has mostly only candles. I not only offer everything from bags, and candles, to skirts and jewelry. I make it all myself, this makes me stand out from the rest and also keeps costs low as I’m not buying things and than marking them up.

Question: The term “Gypsy” is believed to be an offensive term to the Romany community. How do you feel about this?

Answer: We are decades away from that. Todays generation uses this word to describe a free spirited person, a wanderer. I myself am not of the Romany people today but I have roots there and I grew up very poor, going to craft shows with my mother to sell her “goods”. We collected cans to put gas in the car. I have been cast out and bullied for this type of lifestyle. I have struggled, so to be honest I understand more of what it is to be a Gypsy than anyone that tells me “Gypsy” is a “derogatory word.

Question: Where do you hope to be with your business in the next few years?

Answer: I really hope to have a brick and mortar store. My Esty shop does well, I have a following on Twitter, Instagram, and even Facebook fans. I am building a website, I hope to have launched in a few months, and I am expanding into new things weekly. Most recently I’ve begun candle favors and after the 1st day of listing I have an order for a bride in California.

Question: What is your biggest challenge?

Answer: I’m am a very creative and driven person. I am very organized. I research and plan things out. Really my only challenge right now is funding. I started this out of pocket and still use sales to fund myself. So I’ve yet to see any real profit that I can bank away. If I had the funds to buy all the things I needed at once I would be able to list more and turn a faster bigger profit.

Question: What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far?

Answer: (*sigh) In my pursuit to have more reach to the public and get my name and products out there. I allowed myself to be taken advantage of buy 4 different businesses/business people. By agreeing on “consignment” with them.  I was, to put it bluntly robbed blind. I estimate between them all I have lost over $5000.00. The lesson I learned was “Trust your gut. Speak up for yourself, and create a deal that works for you.” I’m not stupid I knew with one of them that I was getting the short end of the stick but the opportunity to reach more people was greater to me and so I allowed it,  until it became all to clear I was making less than $1 on my items and they were making $10. With the other 2 they just never paid me, flat out stole. And with 4th deal (again I should have listened to my gut it screamed not to do it) I was again flat out robbed.

Question: What is one thing you would like everyone to know?

Answer: I am a business women. I work 7 days a week. I work 60 plus hours a week. This is my job. What I do deserves the same amount of respect as anyone else that works.

 

 

 

 

January 1st A Whole New Year

I have a “Love Hate” relationship with January.

Ill start with the hate. I hate the Un-Christmasing I have to do. Not the work of it but the emptiness it leaves behind. The house feels so empty and almost un-cheerful for a week or so afterwards.

I hate that January, for me , here in Jersey, rolls out that a long, cold, dead and dreary winter lies ahead. Nearly six months until the warmth of the sun will warm my skin.

Now for the Love of it. Okay, honestly only like of it.

I like that there is a feeling of hopefulness at the new year. That I can say to myself “this year…(insert whatever dream or goals here)”. That the full blank calendar calls out to be filled in.

I like that January is a time for me to organize (I LOVE to organize) and plan things, for my life and in my home. Most people spring clean, not me I do it now. I clean up and out with the old. I reassess things like friendships and dump people that bring me down, to the full point of burning bridges so they may never be crossed again. I take January as a time to gift onto myself what I need to make it another year.

Now I am very content with my life in many ways, 75% of it lies on the side of “no need to change anything here, husband, kids, home…” But there is still that 25% left for me, and I have a hope to see dreams realized, and goals met. For example the hope and dream I have for my business. Not only to create more and reach farther but what I set out in print, and blogged about only a few months ago.

https://jerseygypsypeddler.wordpress.com/2015/06/21/having-a-dream/

So here’s to January, may she be a great new start for all of us!

Hello-January-J12

https://www.facebook.com/jerseygypsypeddler/

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JerseyGypsyEtsyShop?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Regards!

Oh Well…

Today I bought a lottery ticket, just a $10.00 scratch ticket. Not something I ever do as I find it a waste of money and I do not ever waste money. I’m a see a penny pick it up (even in traffic) kinda girl.

Now, I of course had no illusions of winning, nothing more than a it sure would be nice thought about it. And I of course won nothing, basically wasted the $10.00, as I knew I would, which I now wish to kick myself in the ass.

$10.00?! Renee! What are you crazy??? That’s 3 gallons of milk! With a buck left over.

But they say you have to play to win and I took a chance.

More Than Wanting

Today I want my own store badly. More than yesterday, its a longing, a plaguing on my soul.

Its the kind of day where the want is not satisfied, by maybe, or hopefully in time.

It is not okay that it may not happen. I can see this shop of my hopes and dreams, I can feel it with my heart.

Its hard when you now all the aspects of something, when you’ve given into finding a place and picturing it before, the money to fund it. there is a store for sale just up the road, on a main highway, and old garden center, its been empty for years now, I want it I know its perfect (with a lil work of course). I ache when I pass it. I can see the windows filled like Id have them…

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Some days the dream is very heavy and consumes all of me, that’s today…

https://jerseygypsypeddler.wordpress.com/2015/06/21/having-a-dream/

https://www.facebook.com/jerseygypsypeddler

Regards!

Wanderlust

So often when I talk of the places I want to see, to travel to. People always ask “why?”

Why there? I can never answer to their satisfaction.

How do you describe a feeling, a longing, a need?

Maybe their question is stemmed more from my choice of places?

Salem, Massachusetts

Niagara Falls

Deadwood South Dakota

Mount Rushmore National Park

New Mexico

and my number one place, top of my list, a bucket list must…

Redwood National Forest CA.

Now of course this is merely just a few of the places I wish to travel to.

I guess it seems a bit odd, rather random. And why not Pairs or Italy, like so many other people speak of wanting to see.

Again, I cant explain. Perhaps, I wish to travel, yet stay close to home. Or that I feel there is no need to go so far away when there’s so much here to see (same difference really right?). I guess any number of reasons could be given for “why”.

But…I wish to travel to these places by car, towing a small camper. A camper that I was able to get for next to nothing and took years resorting. And to stop and see all I can see along the way. I want to take my time, and stop often. I want for it to be a journey and not a trip.

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/229863514/wanderlust-charm-bracelet?ref=shop_home_active_5

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Now I sit and wait for my other wanderlust charms to arrive, an old tin can camper, a take joy in the journey, a “camping” sign, ect ect ect…

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JerseyGypsyEtsyShop?ref=hdr_shop_menu

https://www.facebook.com/jerseygypsypeddler

Regards!

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Setting July Goals

I like to set goals. Real reachable goals.

I always have a plan. I am always making a plan.

But I’m not Clark Griswold…

I’m not stupid. Life has taught me a thing or two.

And I have become a “plan for the worst, hope for the best” kind of person.

As the month of June comes to an end. I start to set my goals for July. Knowing full well what I hope for and what I will get are two very different things and those unforeseen things almost always pop up. Hey, I’m a realist. I get it, retail is hit or miss. Even I don’t shop often. But I still have set a goal for myself, for my stores.

An average sales goal, broken down to a daily amount and a total for the month.

$20.00 a day. That simple. Average sales for the month of July totaling $20.00 a day.

There are 31 days in the month of July and this totals $$620.00 for the month. This amount, is double what I’ve been making.  This amount will make July my first bankable profit month. Covering all rental, fee, and supply costs and money left to put in the bank.

This shouldn’t be hard right. Between my Etsy shop and rental store front space? Well…again retail is tricky.

I think its a good goal, whether I reach it or not. Ill give it my all. Ill promote and push, and even pray.

It’s only a hat a day! Or any other number of ways you can break it down.

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JerseyGypsyEtsyShop?ref=hdr_shop_menu

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https://www.facebook.com/jerseygypsypeddler

Regards!