Crazy [hair] week
WOW, I can't believe I've gone so long without blogging! This is quite unlike me. But I have a good excuse: I've been incredibly busy (and have some pictures to prove it!)
Last week was an eventful one for us. We went LIVE with our new website and within minutes of the announcement the sign-ups and orders started rolling in. We are so thrilled and thankful for the warm response our MODKID sewing patterns are getting.
I worked tirelessly managing orders all week and finishing up the editing on the patterns. A special thanks (with lots of hugs & kisses) to all my pattern testers for your hard work and dedication. I seriously couldn't have done this without you girls (and I will dedicate an upcoming post to the beautiful pieces you created.)
But it wasn't all work and no play last week. We had some fun moments too. On Thursday Sydney had "crazy hair day" at school so we had to get up extra early that morning to prepare this wacky concoction on top of her head:
Don't ask me where my focus was that morning. It was 7 am when I took this next picture and I am NOT a morning person.
On Friday, the girls helped me pick fabric and trims for a new pillow for their cousin, Asja, who turns 9 today! HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ASJA! I think this turned out so sweet! We used a baby wale cord that I had bought ages ago at Joann's and paired it up with two of my new aqua Andalucia jacquard ribbons, the Aqua Mod Dots and the Aqua Mod Blooms. Check it out:
We were also visited by UPS, FedEx and the mailman quite often last week, which was a fun distraction for sure. Among the packages we received was this sweet gift from my pal, Paula. I absolutely love the frames and immediately found the perfect pictures to put in them. Thanks, Paula!!
I also received a gorgeous print I purchased on Etsy a couple of weeks ago from an outstanding Canadian dollmaker. I fell in love with this doll the minute I saw her (I admit, it was mostly because I thought the resemblance to my Sophie was uncanny) but since I couldn't afford the price tag on the doll, I convoed the seller and asked if she could make me an 8" x 10 " print of Lulu. She agreed and here she is. She was sweet enough to send me a smaller print of a different doll that kinda looks like Sydney, so I can't wait to frame these and put them up in my office...
And last, but certainly not least, I received some Mezzanine restrikes from Michael Miller. These are just the ones that went back to the mill for color tweaks & such. There's more where this came from but I just wanted to give you another little sneak... (a full reveal is still in the works.)
PHEW, so that was last week! This week it's been all about patterns. I sent the electronic files to my print vendor on Monday and proofs came back yesterday. I told them I wanted to be involved in every little step of the process and approve every inch before going on press, to which they said they were actually thrilled about. Apparently they encounter a lot more mistakes on press when the customer doesn't take such an active role in the approval process... works for me!
Here are the proofs I received. They were absolutely flawless! The color was so brilliant... not a stitch (oh, wait... pixel?) out of place!
The pattern sheet proofs looked awesome too. I actually got a tad teary eyed when I saw them all spread out like this. I felt like I had given birth all over again! LOL!
I also received some folded mock-ups to check for page placement & such.
I'm scheduled to go in for a press check later on this week and I absolutely cannot wait! I wonder if they'll let me take a camera into the press room? This is old school for me. Back in the day, when I worked in the marketing field down in FL, I did hundreds of press checks, some of them at 3 a.m. (wearing my flannel PJ bottoms and coffee in hand!) So I know exactly what sort of things to look for. I have my lupe ready! :)
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Crazy [hair] week
Monday, March 16, 2009
And... we're LIVE!
Jon and I have been working around the clock to get our website finalized. We gave ourselves a Sunday-night deadline to get the WHOLESALE portion working properly and the order forms, pricing structures, shipping tiers, etc. all worked out. Well, we went LIVE last night with only 4 minutes to spare till midnight! WOOHOO!
The sewing patterns are not available for retail purchase at this point since they are still in production, so if you are a consumer you will not be able to view pricing or place orders. But you are welcome to navigate through the site and check out the details on each pattern. They will be ready for purchase in approximately 6 weeks. (I will post a list of retailers as soon as I compile it!)
However, if you are a retailer or distributor interested in carrying MODKID Sewing Patterns in your store, you can apply for a wholesale account by filling out an easy form after clicking on the WHOLESALE link at the top of the page. After approval, you can place a pre-order on our secure site.
Emails went out last night to those of you who asked to be put on the mailing list. They included a link to a PDF Order Form just in case you prefer to FAX in your order instead of placing it online. If you'd like a copy of this form, please request one at firstname.lastname@example.org (wholesale inquiries only, please!)
On a somewhat unrelated note, so glad so many of you agree with me about the Facebook vs. Twitter dilemma. I don't feel like an odd man out anymore, LOL! I've had such fun reading through your comments. And speaking of the power of Twitter, last night my tweeps bailed me out big time. There were a few minor kinks on the site (some links that didn't work, etc.) and my sweet tweeps -- well, at least those that were up at 2 a.m. with me -- did a little site testing and lotsa cheerleading and by golly we got it all worked out! I *heart* Twitter!
Friday, March 13, 2009
I'm sorry I've neglected you so. I've been a lousy "friend" this past year or so we've been together. I have no excuses except that I don't really "get you." I haven't spent the time needed to get to know you better and understand what makes you tick. I don't know the difference between "wall-to-wall" and "superwall." I have no idea what a "little green patch" is and I don't know what to do with all these snowballs people keep throwing at me. Where do they go? Do I throw them back? Should I build a fort?
I do have one little teeny confession to make. There is a reason why I haven't been around and why I haven't updated my profile info and my photo albums and why I haven't joined any fan pages or groups. I've been seeing someone else. I'll just come right out and say it. Twitter is so much fun and much less complicated. And as far a social media sites go, Twitter can kick your butt any day! (oops, sorry. I realize that was a tad harsh, but hey, the truth hurts.)
See, my life right now is so full and complicated that I need something simple and quick to help me communicate my thoughts to others. Twitter is simple and quick. I can reach hundreds of followers with one little click and when I've needed opinions or assistance the response has been overwhelming and instantaneous. I like that. Twitter is easy to navigate and update, link to and promote anything. With one simple tweet I can reach far beyond my inner circle of friends. And if I need to post pictures or talk about something in greater length, I have my blog. :)
So, I won't drag this out any longer. I guess the point of this letter is for me to say that I'd still like to be "friends" with you and I won't sever any ties right now but please don't expect me to hang out all day sending "virtual drinks" to my "friends"... frankly, I'd much rather have a real one! ;)
If you need me, you know where I'll be... with my tweeps:
Friday, March 06, 2009
BREATHE! I can finally breathe. Except for my little escapade to Chicago for our anniversary last weekend, my life in the past few weeks has been caught up in a whirlwind of technical writing, mechanical drawings, company branding, test sewing, production quotes, legal paperwork and lots and lots of time-consuming details that come along with launching your own brand of sewing patterns. I've totally neglected my household duties and pretty much been operating on very little sleep and lots of caffeine and sugar (yah, a picture of health I am NOT!)
However, a wonderful sense of completion came over me last night as I packaged up the last couple of patterns for my testers. After I returned from the post office this morning I did something I hadn't done in so, sooo long: I took a nap on the couch. Sydney must've known that I needed the rest because she just played quietly beside me... not a peep from her (at least for the first 10 minutes!) Ahhh! What a great feeling!
So, you wanna see the fruits of my labor? I know I already gave you a sneak peek of Kyoko (Pattern #3), but here is the full reveal!
Sydney and I had a blast shooting the cover of Kyoko. She was so excited that she got to wear my chopsticks in her hair. Did I ever mention that these chopsticks are some of my favorite sewing tools? Maybe I haven't mentioned it here on the blog, but I definitely talked about it here.
Kyoko is an Asian-inspired pattern that features a criss-cross bodice with two sleeve length options and a very full stripwork skirt also with two length options. A sweet obi-style sash pulls everything together and finishes the "look." Of course, Kyoko can also be worn without the obi for a more loose-fitted casual look.
The pants Sydney is wearing with her Kyoko top are part of Pattern #5 (still in the development stages). I call these the Sophie 3-Way Pants because I will take my favorite basic pant pattern and show you how to make 3 totally different hem details. This version features an inverted pleat on the outseam made of a contrasting fabric. The other 2 versions I'll keep to myself for now until I'm ready to fully reveal the pattern. :)
Pattern #4 is called Emma... a sweet name for a very sweet 3-piece set.
This easy-to-sew 3-piece set is as sweet and dainty as a pixie! The jumper-style top is light and airy for the warmer months and perfect for layering on cooler months. The skirt is extra full with 8 petal-shaped panels for maximum twirl power and looks just as great layered over tights or leggings. A cute little purse with felt petal details is the perfect accessory to finish off the look.
This was another fun photoshoot. Sydney loves this outfit and just couldn't stop twirling. The skirt is so soft and girlie! Even Sophie got in on the action and modeled the sample I made in her size (which was actually my first prototype... I made a couple of tweaks to it before making the final piece!) In case I haven't mentioned this before, Sophie is not much into modeling... it's not really "her thing", but she says she loves this top and wanted to get her picture wearing it, so hey, I'm not complaining! ;)
The little petal purse also underwent a couple of minor transformations... the first prototype is the one in the back made form Valori Wells fabric and the final sample is the one in the front made with my Flora fabric.
So, as I mentioned above, these last 2 patterns are off to the testers one last time for a final "once-over" then they are off to print. I can hardly contain my excitement! If all goes as planned, these should be available for purchase in about 6 weeks! WOOOHOOO!
NOTE: if you are a retailer or a distributor and would like to be added to our mailing list for pattern pre-orders, please contact me at info@modkidboutique. We will be sending out order forms in the next couple of weeks!
Check them out! Little maids all in a row...
PS... thanks so much for all the wonderful comments on my Quick Quilts article. You guys are all so supportive and sweet! :)
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
Quick Quilts #100
Excuse me while I squeal! If you follow me on Twitter you already know of my frantic search for the elusive new issue of Quick Quilts magazine that features a 2-page spread on yours truly. I tweeted from my local Barnes & Noble last Friday morning, then from Borders, then from Joann's and even from my local grocery store. No one had it. I was so bummed. I even tweeted when I failed to find it at the big Borders in Chicago last Saturday.
And yes, I am getting complimentary copies from the editor, Lisa (who, by the way, just gave birth to an adorable baby boy and still took time out of her busy schedule to email me electronic copies of the spread... so sweet!) but I just wanted to, you know, walk by a busy magazine section, casually pick up the issue and just go "well, will you look at that?!"
I'm sure you've already figured out that I finally found it. Yep, I went to Walmart this morning to pick up a couple of things and there it was! I almost didn't believe it and there was no one around for me to proudly shriek to, well, except for Sydney. I shoved the mag in her face (even pointing out the picture of her in the top) and her response was "UGH! Is it lunchtime yet?" Oh well. I'm super excited nevertheless. My first magazine appearance!
Sorry for the many pictures... I couldn't help myself! The article talks a little about my background, my inspiration for Andalucia and future projects. It even includes a link to a free quilt pattern! If your local stores don't carry Quick Quilts and you'd like to subscribe to the magazine, here is their link: http://www.quiltmag.com/ And here's a link to the super sweet, very simple to make FREE quilt pattern designed by Miranda Stewart: Moorish Tapestry
Monday, March 02, 2009
I'm feeling quite blue this morning (but in a good way!). I started seeing quite a few color parallels as I was editing my photos so I thought it was time for a wacky-fun blog posting.
(Photo courtesy of Caroline Devoy.)
The ribbons you see above are fresh in from the manufacturer and ready to be worked into some happy little spring-time projects. The top two are from Jessica Jones and the bottom 4 are mine. But check out how well Jessica's aqua/chocolate bloom ribbon coordinates with my aqua/chocolate birdie damask! If anyone out there makes something using these 2 together, please share a picture!
These ribbons are the new jacquard collection available by the yard and by the roll at jcarolinecreative. I'm just giddy to get some of my Andalucia designs in the aqua colorway... and I know a lot of you out there are too, based on the amount of daily requests I get! ;) The kiwi/greens in these ribbons will be a perfect match to the kiwi colorways in Andalucia and the little splashes of pink will match the Petal colorways, so have fun with them! (I'm thinking: Easter!)
The color blue has followed me around this past weekend too. Jon and I celebrated our 9-year anniversary (yes, this time we didn't forget it!) in the windy city, sans kids! WOOHOO! We dropped off the girls at my in-laws' place in Chicago then checked into the Wyndham near the Magnificent Mile. Those of you who follow me on Twitter got my tweets from the Apple Store, where Jon & I drooled over the latest & greatest, and later from Borders where I tried to find the elusive issue of Quick Quilts featuring my article (I still haven't found it, by the way! haha!)
After window shopping in sub-zero temperatures (brrrr!) we headed out to Greek Islands. Jon wore a blue shirt & jacket... and we had blue menus.
And even our Greek waiter with the sexy Greek accent wore blue... OPA!
(haha, check out the guy in the back!)
After dinner we caught a late showing of the ... you guessed it: Blue Man Group!
All this talk of blue is making me really crave Spring/Summer weather, how 'bout you? But since I can't have that right now, I'll be content with listening to this song over & over again this morning (the Weimaraner in that video looks exactly like the one Jon & I used to have in FL years ago! His name was Blu. I miss him.)