Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A RAK! and The Warrior (Worrier?) Queen Rides Again!

How about that! I won! In my last post I wrote about Pam Callagahan's blog Ideas for Scrapbookers and her invitation to followers to show how their styles have evolved. I left a comment on her blog and I was rewarded by winning a Random Act of Kindness. How lovely! Thank you so much Pam.

This was actually a week or so ago and I've been very remiss in getting back here to thank Pam publicly. So, I must apologise for that Pam.

I've been quite busy sifting through all sorts of information about starting an on-line home-business and I've made some progress ... well ... that is ... I have a name for the business and an ABN number (Australian Business Number).

Really there is so much information out there that it's hard to know what's relevant and what's not; what's good advice and what's misleading; what to do, what not to do.

See this guy? I've been going around with a similar expression on my face for quite a few weeks now.

Occasionally ... a lot ... I'm engulfed with self-doubt. I mean ... I'm a teacher-librarian ... what do I know about running a business? Well ... I know a teen-tiny bit I suppose. But ... is it enough? And ... do I have the skills to produce what potential clients may want?
I guess there's only one way to find out ...

and so ... in true Warrior Queen, Boadicea (who's name was actually Boudica) style .... I'll carry on.  

I do have the skeleton of a website started ... well it's only in my head at the moment, but I hope to have it live on the web very soon.

Watch this space.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Scrapbooking Style

I've just been over at  Ideas for Scrapbookers where Pam Callaghan has been discussing and showing how her scrapbooking style has evolved.

Her invitation to followers to show how their styles have evolved got me thinking about when I first started scrapbooking. My first project was a scrapbook of my son's first 21 years. You will see from my last post that this has been a somewhat lengthy process, but it does show how my ideas about scrapbooking have changed and how my style has evolved.

To begin with I thought that I had to use every single photo that I possessed of my son's first 21 years for this scrapbook. Believe me that is a lot of photos! Consequently my first pages were cluttered and it's difficult for the eye to know where to look first.

A little further on in my scrapbooking journey my pages had a more organised feel to them, but still too many pictures on the one page I think.

This would probably have been more successful as a double page spread, but I hadn't discovered the concept of double page spreads at that stage. 

However ...

... eventually ... discover them I did, and it's a technique I use quite a bit now.

Later still, I started to realise that it was a futile exercise to try to use every photo for this particular scrapbook and began thinking about other projects that I could do to use the left over photos. For example, I have enough Cubs and Scouts photos for a complete scrapbook and maybe I could do one on the holidays my son and I took when he was a boy.

Another thing I now like to do is create the page layouts on background papers and then slip them onto the album page. I find this a better technique than scrapping straight onto the album page itself, because if I mess up it's less expensive to replace the paper as opposed to replacing an actual album page.

These last two pictures are from a small 7x7 album I recently completed for a friend. The style is very much in keeping with my "less is more" philosophy.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

A Conversation with My Self.

The following is a conversation I had with myself this week

Self: "The first Scrapbook I ever started was an album of my son's first 21 years. He's 26 now ... in fact ... he'll be 27 in a couple of months."

Other Self: "What did he think of it?"

Self:  "Well ... he hasn't seen it yet." 

Other Self: "Why?" 

Self: "Well ... because I haven't finished it yet."

Other Self: "What!  It was started almost 6years ago, for goodness sake!! "

Self: "I know ...  hopeless."

Other Self : "Yet here you are thinking you can have a successful business creating scrapbooks for other people. You know what ... I think the prospect of having to wait 6 years for a completed album could possibly cause potential clients to look elsewhere ... just a thought ...

Self: "But there's always been so much else to do ... hobbies are what you do when everything else is done ... and ... well ... everything else is never done."

Other Self: "So ... if everything else is never done, how are you going to create albums for other people in under 6 years!!? I mean ... I suspect potential clients would want an album completed in something more like ...  well ... under 6 weeks!

Self: "Okay ... I'm giving up Scrapbooking as a hobby."

Other Self: "Well ... that's what I call giving up without a fight."

Self: "No wait ... I'm not giving up Scrapbooking! It's just not a hobby anymore ... it's my livelihood!!!

Believe me ... it's amazing how much I've achieved since I began thinking of Scrapbooking as a business rather than simply as a hobby. 

I can actually sit down and work at my craft without feeling guilty. Sure ... I'm working on a personal project at the moment, so of course not making any money. But the time I spend on this I view as well spent, as I'm bringing my skills up to date and perfecting my style and technique. 

Very soon I'll be ready to go out into the world.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

What's in a Name?

"What's in a name? 
That which we call a rose, 
By any other name would smell as sweet." ~  Shakespeare.

I've been a tad worried since I created this blog and decided to call it Nettie's Nook.

Firstly it struck me that the word "nook"  meaning a corner or recess is a bit outdated ... archaic even.

But then ... I decided that it was okay, because it conjures up an image of peace, contentment, big comfy armchairs, cosy fireplaces ... that sort of thing. So, hopefully, these lovely, positive images should  entice people to visit, right?

But then ... I got to thinking ... about graffiti ...  someone who was so inclined could add one (or two,depending on his/her spelling ability) certain letters and in a nano-second completely change the meaning and intent of the word.
Oh dear ... I mean ... I don't think that could happen here in the blogosphere ... could it?
And then ... good grief! ... What have I titled my first post? "A Baby is Conceived", for goodness sake!

So embarrassing ... and for days I haven't been able to bring myself back here. I'd have to delete the blog and start again with a different, more suitable name.

But ... I love alliteration ... my other blog is called Nettie's Notes. I also love rhyming words and ... "Contact Nettie's Nook for your next Scrapbook," ... has a nice ring to it.
After a while I began to get over the embarrassment and started to see the humour here.

So ... I've decided throw caution to the wind and stick with Nettie's Nook.

After all what is in a name? 

My sister (who has been saddled with a nickname since the day she was born) loves this quote ... Perfectly nice people get stuck with dreadful nicknames, often for their whole lives...."The Evening Star".....Larry McMurtry

Friday, April 2, 2010

A Baby is Conceived

I have been Scrapbooking for a few years now and have often wished I could do it for a living ... but being, until recently, a full-time teacher, I had very little energy left at the end of the week to do my own projects, let alone create albums for other people.

During the past 18 months things have changed for me and I now have more spare time. So, I've decided to see if I can create and make a success of a home-based scrapbooking business.

I discovered an ebook called How to Make Money Scrapbooking via a link posted by scrapbook_diva whom I follow on Twitter. I think it's an absolutely wonderful resource and it has given me the confidence to go ahead and give it my best shot.

I read the whole 91 pages of "How to Make Money Scrapbooking" in one sitting and was greatly inspired.

This is what I've done so far:

As said earlier, I have been scrapbooking for a few years and have in that time collected many of the tools and accoutrements required to make great pages. But ... I had moved house twice in 18 months and all of these things were still packed away in boxes. So my first task was to unpack it all, do an inventory and then re-sort it so that I could easily find things.

The next thing I needed was a practical space in which to work. I had already bought a couple of paper storage cabinets, but I didn't have a work table. At this stage I have absolutely no spare money, so I had to make do with what I could find in the garage and elsewhere around the house.

My storage cabinets were used to make a work bench - exactly the right height for me.

The bench part is the table-top from one of 2 trestle tables whose trestles mysteriously disappeared a few years ago. I knew that if I kept those table-tops for long enough they would come in handy one day!

I created a second bench by laying the other trestle table-top across my plastic crates of teaching resources, which I'm not using at the moment.

Voila! Two problems solved in one fell swoop. But it's a bit unsightly so ...

This is how I solved the problem of unsightliness ... and ...

Ta dah! The spare bedroom is now the studio of .... well ... I still have to think of a quirky, catchy name for my new business.

I've just completed a small wedding scrapbook and I'm ready to send it off. It's a gift for a friend, so no money to be made from it, but it has helped me to re-hone my skills.

I have also been looking into what needs to be done with regards to registering my business and applying for an ABN number.
Brett McFall's book is fabulous. I don't think I would have had the courage to try this without having read it. So, thank you very much Brett for creating such an inspiring and useful resource. I am so pleased to have it.

This is what I will buy with the first $1000 I make from my new business.

Wish me luck.