Wednesday, 2 October 2013

in conversation with Tegan Rose from Ink & Spindle

Lara (left) and Teegs (right) from Ink & Spindle

Tegan Rose is one-beautiful half of the dynamic duo that is Ink & Spindle*; one of this country’s top bespoke screen printing businesses, and a true success story for any small business creative aiming to follow a sustainable and ethical path.

Tegan, call her Teegs, started her career as an art teacher, and discovered she liked the art making and teaching more than the department and rules. A chance meeting led her to her now business partner, Lara Cameron, and the start of a beautiful business that has grown and flourished since it's beginning five years ago.

Ink & Spindle hand screen print organic sustainable fabric, using designs that are organic and nature-based, with modern interpretations and stunning colourways. But this is not all that the pair do! Teegs and Lara are eager to share their passion for sustainable and ethical business with others by sharing their story and experiences with interns as well as their 'competitors'; other creatives and makers.

Being naturally generous, Teegs is back in her heart-home town of Byron Bay for a short while (after sailing a pirate ship from Melbourne. Yep. It's true. She's the daughter of pirates!), and can’t wait to share with you her insights into small business, staying sustainable and ethical, collaborations and partnerships, a view into the fabric and fashion industry, as well as how to stay connected to your true journey and build a work/life balance that makes you contented and fulfilled.

This talk will be an informal night, with questions being answered along the way. Teegs has a broad knowledge on pricing, wholesaling, markets and trade shows, as well as collaborating with others (collaborations include NancyBird Accessories and Matt bags), open studio days, running a Pozible campaign, applying for grants and much more. Ask the question and she’s sure to know the answer!

There’ll be cake (did I mention Teegs’ brother is a chef….), conversation, new friendships and beautiful connections made on the night. Please bring along some business cards to share with others. 

*please please go and visit the Ink & Spindle website, it's such an amazing site with fabulous features, including colour matching their designs and base cloth. I find I&S to be a youthful, vibrant partnership with forward thinking in their business aspect, combined with a heart-felt and honest approach, honouring traditional skills and environmental concerns. 

Conversation with Teegs from Ink & Spindle - Wednesday 9th October, 6.30-8.30pm. Held at Byron Lifestyle store and coffee shop, 109 Johnson St, Byron Bay. $45. Bookings essential - book online here

Thursday, 5 September 2013

how sharing your authentic story will increase your customers

If you're a maker, creative or artist, people want to know about what you do and how you do it. They want to be part of your creative story - to enjoy the passion that you feel while doing what you do.

Social media, Instagram and blogs particularly, are an excellent way to share your authentic story -

what, why and how you do what you do. 

While you share your story, you increase your audience and followings. Being true and authentic to you, and to your story, brings an audience that connects with you.

When someone connects with you as an artist or creative, they are more likely to buy from you, rather than from someone they haven't connected with.

One of the ways to build a strong loyal following, your own audience, is to share yourself with them in a real way. Not give away all your secrets or piles of dirty laundry. But to let them sneak inside your studio, to see works in progress and ideas that are coming to fruition. People love to be part of your journey - that way they feel they've helped it along the way, and are more likely to support and buy from you.

Are you writing a book? Share small details of the writing process, where you write and how.
Are you a painter? Show us your tools and your studio 'mess', as well as the pieces you're working on.
Are you a designer? We love to see the new drawings and designs you've come up with, and your sketchbook with ideas and scribbles along the way.

What you do and why you do it are appealing to your audience. They want to share in your story. So please share your story with us!

We will share the ins and outs of Instagram, blogging and online story sharing through our creative talks; starting with our Instagram session on 19th September. Bookings are essential for this talk.

 * these images are from Jo's Instagram feed. There's even a video of her beautiful Heidelberg printing press magic. What a beautiful way to see a glimpse into Olive and the Volcano studio days.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

more than just pretty pictures - why I think you *need* to come to our Instagram talk

I just realised that the freaking amazing thing about Instagram is that it's a whole lot more than itself.

When I talk to people, who are my Instagram friends, and my real-life friends, they get what I'm talking about. You might not be an Instagram person, so I wanted to explain it a little more to you. What Instagram really is!

Yesterday someone said to me that Instagram is for the kids, she meant teenagers. And yeah, for sure IG is for the kids, the teenagers. But so much more than that. Oh golly. SO.MUCH.MORE.

This is why I think you *need* to come along to our IG talk. Some of the reasons anyway. I'd be here forever if I shared all the reasons. So I'm narrowing to the main reasons. Mostly they come from what I get out of my personal experience with IG, and from what I've seen other people get out of it. And what we all put it.

1. It's fun. So fun. Part of the best ever. But there's no horrible initiation rituals, there's only a whole lot of lovin'. For sure. Don't believe me? Join up to IG now and find out for yourself.

2. You'll meet people. Yep, like old fashioned penpals. Except you can say good night to these people with sweet thoughtful and lovely messages, and someone on the other side of the world will get it when they wake up in the morning. Or even your friend up the road who you haven't run into for a few days.

3. Every single day you'll be inspired. Not only by the amazing beautiful interesting unusual stunning images that people share - from everywhere, all over, all walks of life and all parts of the world - but by what you put into it. By what you give. It makes me think about my daily adventures in an excellent way. I want to share the beautiful in my life with others, and that makes me *see* it more clearly. {And no, it's not about ignoring the mess of life, or hiding the truth, or pretending we're all superhumans. It's about seeing the beauty in everyday}.

4. You'll get some great contacts that may or may not turn into customers / clients / collaborators / connections / cool fun people (that one yep, the cool fun people bit will happen for sure!).

5. People will support you. Having a bad day - let people know and they'll send you love. I know it - it's happened to me. A simple heart and x from one of my IG friends is sometimes the biggest thing that gets me going. There'll also be a lot of love for things you make. People are supportive and friendly and caring and sharing.

6. You have a record anywhere you carry your phone of all those inspiring things you do and make. You can show people what cool stuff you do and make. You can keep a collection for yourself, in a really cool and easy to access spot, of the cool-eo stuff you make, do, see....

Ok. There's a start. Why I really really do think you need to come along and hear all about IG. For me, I've been loving seeing all the flowers blooming across the world - I never get to have peonies in my house as they don't like the heat, but ah ha - I can see them on IG by those who share with me. And woah - the stunning, simply spectacular magnolias that are flowering all up and down the east coast right now (but not in my garden), oh just too good.

Please send questions or comments. I know some of you may not be IG converts, but I'm on a mission to help us all find the beauty-full in every day and share that with our IG friends.

Ready to sign up? Book here for our workshop.  

*All of these images are used with kindest thanks from the IG stream of Ally, IG Sapa, who blogs over here at everyday miracles. Check out her Instagram feed for so much more than floral love.

Instagram for Creative Business with Leah Deighton

Since it’s launch in October 2010, Instagram has fast become one of the top social media platforms to share and connect with like-minded creatives, as well as being a space for businesses of all sizes to promote and sell their brand/story.

With over 100million users worldwide, Instagram is not something to ignore as a silly app for your phone. This is big business that can create success for small business!

Our guest speaker for this, our first of the new Creative Business Talks, is Leah Deighton. A local to the Northern Rivers region, Leah runs an online store (sangthebird) selling beautifully curated handcrafted products, and is a full time mum to her little ones. Through her magical Instagram feed, Leah shares her days with the world. Her images show the love of her home, of handcrafted items and joy in making, and of the simple moments of spending time with her children and loved ones. With her humble yet heartfelt images, Leah has gained interest world-wide through her Instagram pictures and been featured on The Times blog, ‘Flow’ print magazine and many other features on Instagram and online sites, as well as made life-long connections.

This session will run you through the basics of how to use Instagram, what apps to use to edit your images, and most importantly how to make Instagram become one of the biggest marketing tools for your small business. Using tips and techniques that Leah has learned through her own Instagram journey, you’ll find how to discover your audience and make connections, as well as see the beauty in your everyday story. We’ll even have a little photo session for you to practice your own Instragram image-making!

We have designed this talk to be suitable for beginners, and also to help the more experienced Instagrammers take their feeds to a new level. In our experience, Instagram can make a difference to your creative business in more ways than you might have imagined.

Both of us at Creative Business Talks (Ellie and Jo) use our Instagram accounts to share the story of our brand (which is our lifestyle), and connect with customers, both new and existing, as well as media and promotion opportunities. We gather daily inspiration through the meaningful connections we’ve made through this smart-phone app. 

*images used with thanks from Leah, from her Instagram feed.