10 Awesome Resources for Creative Business Owners & Vendors

Bah.  I hate August.  People are not sprucing up their homes but instead are buying their kids new clothes,  spending money on school supplies, and trying to get back into their regular routines instead of sprucing up their homes.  Seriously, where are people’s priorities?  But come September folks start thinking about getting ready for the holidays and fluffing up their nests for guests and family to visit.  I am trying to remember and enjoy this little lull in business.

To gear up for the busy holiday season ahead I thought I would share some of my favorite resources for fine-tuning my business lady skillz.  Here are my top 10 resources for creative businesses and vendors in antique malls.  Or just crafty and creative people in general.

  Jeanne Oliver Online Courses

When I was a vendor at Vintage Market Days last year a fellow vendor, Cottage 960, told me about Jeanne Oliver’s website and my jaw dropped .  How did I not know about this amazing resource?  Jeanne’s website is jam packed full of hands-on videos for creative peeps.  Some of them are free and some of them have a fee but all are worth the time to watch.

creative business

Here are a couple of gateway drug videos to get you officially hooked on her website.

Free Business Video { Markets & Shows }

Building a Creatively Made Business

Creativity Takes Courage (Free)

creative business

creative business

If you are a vendor in an Antique Mall Selling in an Antique Mall: A Beginner’s Guide is an eBook on Amazon that is a great read.  At only $2.99 any vendor, seasoned or newbie, will come away with new information for running their business.

creative business

Look for local opportunities to network with other creative businesses and vendors in your area.  If you are in OKC Indie Trunk Show is hosting a workshop for vendors and guess who is teaching the social media session?  If you don’t know of any local groups ask other vendors or the owner of your store if there are any Facebook Groups or Meet-Ups you can join to sharpen your creative pencil with others who love the same things you do.

creative business

Booth Crush is a vendor-centric blog and a FUN Facebook Page to follow to get inspiration from other booths and business tips.

creative business

When out treasure hunting I use First Dibs, Etsy, and Ebay to look up the value of items on my iPhone as I shop.  Many times I can quickly see if something is in demand and what the markings mean.  Keep these bookmarked so you refer to them often.

creative business

Handmadeology is a great website for crafty how-tos, tips for Etsy sellers, Marketing tips, Blogging tips, Interviews, Product photography, and tons more.  Some of their videos have a small fee but most do not.  This website is mainly centered around Etsy but there are still tons of great takeaways if you don’t sell on Etsy.

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Craftsy.com is the mecca of online  creative classes with courses on everything from cooking to knitting.  Warning:  they have an app.  Don’t download it.  Unless you want to knit your whole back to school wardrobe then feel free.  I had to delete mine because I found myself totally immersed in free Craftsy videos at a ridiculous rate.

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Lastly, for some blatant self pimping, if you paint furniture in antique malls or even for fun you NEED My eBook.  Get all of the knowledge and insider-secrets from professional furniture painters in one book!

What are your favorite resources for getting your creative juices flowing?  Share ‘em with us!

creative business

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Preventing Stretch Marks with Essential Oils

I am approaching the home stretch in my pregnancy and since this is my second rodeo I know a few things to expect: heartburn, sleepless nights (like that’s gonna change!), spending half my day in the restroom, and dreadful stretch marks.  Last time I didn’t get any stretch marks until the last couple of weeks in my pregnancy.  I was thankful they were super low on my stomach and weren’t terrible but they were still there.  I was devastated because I used all of those drug store oils and creams.   When someone tells you stretch marks are hereditary – don’t believe them!  My mom never had them with 3 kids and I still got them!

This time around I am taking matters into my own hands and I am making my own stretch mark cream.

 

stretch marks

Back in July I had a Young Living Essential Oils class at my house because I felt like I have been taking too much Tylenol and Benadryl.   Honestly  I am missing enjoying a glass of wine to occasionally relax!  After all of the great things I had heard about essential oils I wanted to learn more.  I ordered the Everyday Oils kit and have been using them for tons of stuff, such as a sleep aid and taking detox baths for me and my 4-year.  I also bust my oils out when I feel like anxiety is kicking my butt.   I put some oils in my diffuser to help me calm the heck down.

For this stretch mark cream you will need:

1 Cup of Organic & Unrefined Coconut Oil

1 Tablespoon of Vitamin E Oil (more on what specific kind below)

15 drops of Young Living Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is extremely nourishing and can heal cuts, bumps, cracked skin, and prevent and minimize stretch marks.

15 drops of Frankincense Essential Oil

Frankincense may be valuable for reducing or minimizing the formation of scar tissue. It is also wonderful for the skin and prevention of wrinkles.

stretch marks

When I purchased my Vitamin E OilI bought the highest strength at 32,000 IU and looked at the label to see how much carrier oil was contained in the package.  You need very little carrier oil in the Vitamin E because you are adding your own carrier oil with Coconut Oil.  Vitamin E can be used to prevent stretch marks as well as to get rid of existing ones. It encourages elasticity of the skin. As the skin becomes more elastic, it can be stretched more easily.  Vitamin E can be found in many skin care products due to it’s anti aging and regenerative capabilities.  You will have left over Vitamin E Oil after you make your cream and you can find 10 ways to use it here.

stretch marks

Using an electric mixer, combine all of the ingredients and beat for 5 minutes.  The consistency will be whipped and similar to lotion.

stretch marks

This recipe fits perfectly in a 1/2 pint mason jar.  What a sweet gift for an expectant Mom at a baby shower.  It probably depends on the friend because some people might be offended by getting stretch mark cream as a gift!  Make sure it’s a close friend and someone who enjoys natural remedies or handmade gifts!

stretch marks

I can’t wait to see what other concoctions I can come up with using my Essential Oils!  I am planning on making my own diaper rash cream.  My 4-year old tends to get really rashy during the summer and I have been putting coconut oil and lavender in his baths and it immediately clears up his little bottom and legs.  I also soak in a similar bath but I throw in some Stress Away and Peace and Calming in exchange for a glass of wine. =)

PS:  I don’t sell Young Living or anything.  The person who taught my class, Angela, would be happy to help you with your Essential Oils questions or if you are local, she can host a class.  Here is her website is here or you can email her at mosesangela3(at)yahoo.com.

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$10 DIY Weathered Wood Finish Table Runner

Thank you for all of the birthday wishes yesterday!  I turned 33 years old and approached 33 weeks in my pregnancy!  I ate at all of my favorite restaurants yesterday and had dessert with every meal.  A pregnant lady’s dream and I didn’t feel bad about it!

Last week when I revealed my dining room table makeover I got tons of questions about the weathered wood table runner featured in the room!  Restoration Hardware has made a weathered wood driftwood finish so popular lately and I have been dying to hack their technique. This little project was so simple to make and made a huge impact on the table I can’t wait for you to try it out for yourself!

weathered wood

First of all, let’s address an obvious question – who decided table runners should be made of fabric?  Don’t they adorn tabletops?  Where food is consumed?  And kids sit?  A wooden table runner fixes a lot of those problems plus gives some nice texture and a place to prop items up for added dimension to your table.

weathered wood

First, have a piece of wood cut to any size you want for your table.  I bought this laminated pine and had about 12 inches cut off of the standard length of 72 inches.  Did you know that Home Depot does free single cuts?  Take advantage of this service and have them cut it to size in the store instead of dragging it home and bugging your hubs to cut it for you.

weathered wood

Laminated pine was a good choice because it was super cheap and it is made of real pine but considered “laminated” because 2 inch pieces of pine are glued together to make one large piece of wood.  The cuts in the wood gave a butcher block effect and lots of interest once I painted it.

When deciding what wood to purchase for this project consider the grain of the wood and make sure it’s something you  want to enhance with this technique.

weathered wood

I chose to paint the runner in Trophy, a gorgeous dark gray color, to give a weathered wood finish.

weathered wood

I mixed 1 tablespoon of Trophy with 3 tablespoons of water so when I brushed it on it applied similar to a stain rather than an opaque paint.

weathered wood

Once I painted the entire surface I sealed it with Hemp Oil.  It protects the painted finish and enhances the color.  If the runner starts looking dull down the road I can always wipe on another coat of Hemp Oil.  Hemp Oil is one of my favorite finishes of all-time.  If I paint a piece with Milk Paint 99% of the time I seal it with Hemp Oil. I also talk a lot about hemp oil in my book.  I love it so much I want to rub it on my body.  Mmmmm… Think it would make a good stretch mark cream?  Ha!

weathered wood

Instead of using Trophy I think Curio would also make an beautiful walnut finish runner like I painted these picture frames.  Artissimo and Luckett’s Green would also be fun colors to make a runner out of.  Would it be weird to have a different wooden runner for each month of the year?

weathered wood

The runner in Trophy tied my dining room chairs in and as a bonus I have my kitchen island painted in Trophy as well!

weathered wood

This project is so simple and perfect for upcoming holidays.  I can see my Thanksgiving feast being spread out on this runner or finger foods during football games.  It’s like a mini-stage for the food display!

weathered wood

What do you think about the weathered wood driftwood trend?

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Color Palette {The Best Whites}

I’ve been working on my laundry room these last few weeks.  It’s a slow go with a little here and a little there, but it’s getting done.  I have finished the trim and doors {Sherwin Williams Dover White}, and so that leads me into today’s post.

A question that I get quite often, and something that seems to frustrate people, is about white paint.  If you hit up any home improvement store you’re bound to find hundreds of colors that claim to be some form of white.  And with every color palette a different white that will look good.  So, here are a few of my favorites…

color palette

White Dove-Benjamin Moore

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Simply White-Benjamin Moore

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Dune White-Benjamin Moore

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Picket Fence-Martha Stewart

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Antique White-Behr

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Honeymilk-Valspar

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Dover White-Sherwin Williams

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Alabaster-Sherwin Williams

Remember, these are just a few of my favorites and every one of them will not always look good with your paint color.  You always need to put your wall color or furnishings next to the white to make sure it doesn’t come off looking yellow, blue, or pink…yes, they do have those undertones and with the right color they’ll show it!  If you’re still looking for more paint ideas, visit my Color Pinterest board for more ideas.

color palette

 

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