Clutch-Me.Com

Learn. Make. Sell. All about clutches.

Clutches from HCMC, Viet Nam

Hi everyone!  It’s been a month since I’ve blogged, but as you all know too well, life happens.  🙂

It’s been a very, very busy time of the year for me and the family.  Two of my kids had their birthdays and that means me making egg-free cakes since my oldest son has an egg allergy.   I love many things about Ho Chi Minh City, my temporary home for another 2 years, but the one thing I detest is the shopping.  😦  It’s terribly inconvenient.  Just finding vanilla extract took trips to three different stores, and after giving up, my dear friend Dutch friend Zita had some to spare for me!  Thank goodness for friends and neighbors in this expat community.  Target and Costco would make a killing in this town.  🙂

Hayley turned 6! She wanted a princess castle cake.

I found tips from amazing bloggers on the Internet to make this cake.  I could not find any grocery stores that sold ice cream cones here!  My husband flagged down a street vendor who was selling ice cream and bought them off of him.  I made  fondant out of strawberry flavored marshmallows.   The best thing?  My son could enjoy this cake along with all the kids without fear of an allergic reaction.

Ethan (second from left) turned 10! He had a party at the house and invited 4 of his friends over for a swim party.

He finally outgrew the “theme” cake. Since one of his friends has an allergy to food coloring(?), his egg-free cake was plain with sprinkles to make the number. Simple!

I have also continued to do my weekly visits to my Grandma, who does relatively well for her old age.  I am very thankful for the visits and the many talks that I have with her.  Nothing brings me more joy than to see her smile, like she is in the pic below.  Her eyes absolutely light up when my kids are around.  Sometimes I go by myself, and sometimes I’ll bring one or two of the kids with me.  The bumpy trip in traffic has made my middle child prone to carsickness.  Noah hurled coming home from one trip and when Hayley looked over, she vomited as well.  Lucky for Ethan’s quick reaction, he bolted up and managed to avoid the calamity.  And he was seated in between them!

Ethan taking a nap at his Great Gram’s. 🙂

My Grandma’s health is off-and-on but not as precarious as she was last October.  She has a keen mind and still runs the show.  We try to make her comfortable and happy.  She only asks for visits and a little money to donate to the local temple.  She gives me fruit (mango, pomelo, guava) every time I come and visit.  She also tells me to stay out of the sun, which is quite impossible with three active kids.  Not to worry, I use SPF 50 on them and myself every day.

I had time to go to a trade show where local artisans showcased their talent.  I was most impressed by the emerging rice art displayed there.  Below are artwork made by a local firm that employed disabled people.  The director was a young lady who just recently graduated from university and started her own company!  Her employees use rice that has been roasted to different shades to meticulously create the designs.  The rice is adhered by a proprietary eco-friendly glue.  It was really striking artwork.  I was really impressed with this young visionary who found her passion while at the same create jobs for those who often have a next-to-impossible task of finding suitable employment.

The Mac Daddy – Steve Jobs.

Rice grains close up.

The eternal beauty of Marilyn Monroe.

An aficionado’s item.

Whatever little time I had left, I had to do more errands.  On a trip to get my daughter a toy cell phone for her birthday, I saw some cute clutches sold in local accessories shops in downtown Ho Chi Minh City.  They do not allow photography but I had to break the rule and whip out my point-and-click and snapped some candid shots!

Coin clutches at a local HCMC shop. The owl is too cute!

Fancier evening clutches at another shop.

The Union Jack one was awesome! Would have been great for the Diamond Jubilee.  The pleated navy one was very well made.

Completely adorable!  The owl here was a knitted design.  Genius!

School is out so I will be busy with the kids every day.  My youngest sister is also here visiting for 7 weeks so it’s full at our house.  I can only work once the kids are in bed at 8pm.  Most of you with young kids may be experiencing the same thing that I am:  how to keep the kids busy and how to limit their time on electronics!  We have a couple of trips planned:  South Korea for 5 days and the US (NJ, IL, IN, and WI) for 2 weeks.  I think the travel and jet lag will really age me and test my patience, but traveling is a nice problem to have!

Until next time, I will update the tutorial in some key measurements.  You already know how to adjust the measurements and how to make your own pattern from my bonus tutorial, but I will make a permanent change since I like the fuller look of clutches.  As always, I will let you all know about it here first.  So if you haven’t already done so, subscribe to get the email update when that happens.  The update will be free for all of you who bought the clutch tutorial.  For your convenience, it’s the same password as was sent to you when you bought the tutorial.

Lastly, I’ve had 5 versions of a clutch for the 12×3.5 frame but I haven’t found a way to make it easy to make, so it might entail a new tutorial for that size bag, altogether.  I will give it one more attempt before doing a whole new and different tutorial for that size alone.  I have been working on different patterns and sewing steps to simplify it while making the template printable from your desktop printer without any scaling.  Just print and go like the other tutorials.  I’m not quite there yet.

Until next time, I hope you all are having an enjoyable summer.  Remember to wear sunscreen!  🙂  ~Winn

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June 17, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Mother’s Day clutches

Check out my latest album.  This one honors the mom on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 13th.  Other than this one special day to celebrate mom, we often hear “Hi, MOM!” when TV cameras hone in on someone who’s on TV for the first time.  Why is it that our first instinct when caught in the big lights of TV cameras is to wave and scream “Hi, Mom?”  I’d like to think that the excitement of the deer-in-the-headlights feeling takes us to our core, to what’s important, and in many cases it’s the mom.  🙂  Why don’t we say “Hi dad?”  We do, but just in the minority.  The majority amongst us have the most contact with their mothers and feel closest to despite dad’s increased involvement in child rearing.

So you all know I support and honor women.  Whether you are a mom yourself, or yet to be, or are perfectly content with being aunty, this album’s for you!  I’m sure you’ll find several clutches in here for your shopping list.

Mother’s Day clutches album.

As for me, I’ve got a busy week ahead with my husband on yet another business trip.  My oldest is turning 10 (egad!) on Friday and another birthday party to attend… then Mother’s Day.  My wish is to wiggle my nose so that all my bills are paid, my piles of papers magically fly into the right folders in the filing cabinet, and I have time to get a leg wax and pedicure.  I’m looking kinda like a … sasquatch.  TMI?  😉  Well, one of those wishes will come true!

Have a great week and Happy Mother’s Day this weekend to all the moms out there!

~Winn

May 7, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Tips for your digital camera

I get asked questions about how to improve many shop’s listings and product photos.  I have helped several shops make improvements on their photos and their sales have increased.  While my talent in photography lies in close-ups of jewelry, I continually work on developing my other skills.

One of my favorite shots from my jewelry shop. So sparkly.

However, I currently only use a simple point-and-click digital camera that is about 7 years old.  It’s a little dented and is not fancy but does the trick.   It’s not doing justice to my wide shots, in low-light conditions, or shots with any movement since I have no shutter speed to work with but for a straightforward, non-moving target, I get a lot out of an old cheap camera.

Sometimes I can time it right and get an "action" shot.

I use iPhoto on my Mac to straighten, sharpen, brighten the shadows and the overall exposure.  Sometimes, all I need to do is hit the “Enhance” button and instant improvements are done!  However, if I start with an out-of-focus, badly lit shot, there’s not much I can do.  But here’s a sample of where a little straightening (ok, a lot), cropping and better exposure can improve a terrible photo.

Before. I was laying on my side trying to snap the view. Makes you kinda dizzy...

After

For your clutch shop, I recommend taking time to set up the shot before you snap.  In fact, the majority of your effort should be spent on setting up the shot with the right lighting, backdrop, and positioning.  Here’s one of my favorite shots of my clutch kits.

I sell a lot of these kits because it's a good clutch, but also due to the photo. It's a good angle and shows off the clutch well with good focus on the subject. You can even see the texture of the fabric.

I just ran across an article on camera tips so click on the pic below to get to that article.  I hope it’ll help you in your picture taking!

Click to read full article.

If you’ve got any good tips, I would love to hear them!

~Winn

May 2, 2012 Posted by | Helpful Tips | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How part-time employment benefits mothers and children

“Working Moms” vs. “Stay-at-Home Moms”.  Can we all just agree that those are nonsense titles for both groups of women? Why?  ALL moms work.

These Mommy Wars have got to stop.  And thanks for Hilary Rosen and Ann Romney, we are all back in the same boxing ring.  This blog writer has hit this whole thing right on the head.

         

Is it just me or do both of these women look alike?  (When I was little and first immigrated to the US, I thought all white people looked alike.  You know, just like how people think all Asians look alike?  LOL  🙂 )  Sisters.  They are probably more alike than they are different.

This whole bit of silliness is just a non-issue that the media has stirred up.  Want proof?

1- Hilary said clumsily that Ann Romney “never worked a day in her life.”  Hilary then had to clarify her “poorly chosen” words.

2- Then Ann answered this as ” …an early birthday present for someone to be critical of me as a mother…”.  Ann then had to clarify her own controversial “birthday” boon.

3- Then the Dems and President had to issue statements to denounce Hilary and the GOPs jumped in with their statements, but you can now also get a Made-in-the-USA travel mug to prove it!

It must be election season, which seems to last 3 years….  So where do I want to go with all this???  No, not politics.  I’ve been looking for research that I had read (but neglected to file), and I finally found it.  (This post has been almost 2 years in the making trying to find that research!)  When I had quit my corporate career to have babies and raise them, I immediately did what most soon-to-be moms did:  I read lots of books such as how to get them to sleep, what happens in each trimester, the pluses and minuses of Baby Einstein videos and classical music in the womb …

Then I read a research report summary in the USA Today that in effect said:  children of mothers who were employed outside the home viewed them as more competent in the traditional masculine jobs than children of housewives.  Moreover, these girls performed better academically and had greater success in their careers.

What???  And here I’ve been lucky enough to make the decision to stay at home on my husband’s income to start our family and raise our children and to find out that my efforts may make my children view me as less competentI am the one who entered the marriage with more tools than my husband.  I had my own tool box with a cordless drill.  He doesn’t even pre-drill, for goodness sakes!  He didn’t even own a leveler or stud finder.  (Insert your own “find a stud” joke here :)) Or hammer.  I better stop before I emasculate him any further, which I don’t mean to do, but as I tell my children:  we all have our own strengths and interests.

Here’s what the research showed in a nutshell.  Before you jump to conclusions, bear in mind that the research only showed overall picture and there are exceptions to everything.  Every family is different as is every child.  I’m going to focus on the daughter and mom, because my business motto is “Putting Women in Business” after all, but overall:

  • Whether or not the mom was employed had a bigger effect on daughters than sons.  Sons of full-time homemakers did not view their moms as any less competent then sons of working moms.  But daughters are a different story!  Daughters of employed moms were more likely to view their working mom as more competent than daughters of full-time mothers.
  • Mother’s employment status mainly has positive effects on both boys and girls.  Whether married or single, when moms are employed, girls view moms as more competent and therefore they have a higher sense of self and ability which translates to more independence, asking more questions, being more comfortable in leadership roles, and having higher academic performance and test scores.
  • Mom’s employment also increased mom’s overall well-being due to social/professional support, increased perception of control of their lives, and ability to earn a wage.  This overall well-being in employed mothers resulted in an authoritative parenting style over two other parenting styles (permissive and authoritarian), which meant kids were less likely to act out or have behavioral problems.
  • When mom works, dad participates more in household and child rearing tasks.  The dad’s increased involvement in the home and children meant that kids had less traditional views of the “male”/ “female” roles/activities in the home.  His involvement increased the impact that employed mothers had a daughters even more so.
  • So it boils down to mom’s employment – whether full-time, part-time, or at home.  Employment benefited the mom, the children (the biggest impact on the daughter) and the family. 

So what about me and my choice to stay home and raise my kids?  Did I screw myself by giving up that career, the earnings, the sense of self only to have my daughter think that I’m not as competent?  Will she view all full-time moms without a paid job as less competent?

The research results seems to suggest that in order for children to view their moms as competent, mothers had to be working.  But since I chose to stay home and raise them, how do I show them this?  For little kids, “work” usually means seeing a parent getting dressed in a suit, uniform, or work clothes of some sort and heading out because mommy has to “go to work”.  Just like it’s drilled into them when Daddies do this on a daily basis and they hear “Bye!  Have a great day at work” or “Daddy is going to work”.  They know Daddy is working.  Full-time moms?  She does everything but it’s never said that “Mommy’s going to work”.  So to me, I think verbiage has some role in forming that mindset as well.  But since I chose not to have a paid job outside the home, I figured that I could show my kids my competency, by working at home – paid or unpaid.  Whatever that needed to be done that I could do, I would do and let them see me doing it.   I would use the verbiage as well.  So when I did things, I put a name to it.

"What are you doing up there on that ladder Mommy?"
Me: "Just working honey. I'm painting the walls so they look nice."

"What are you putting in the walls Mommy?"
Me: "Oh, I'm just getting some work done. I'm installing these finials to hold up the curtain that I sewed. It blocks out the sun and keeps Noah's room cool."

"Mommy, why are you putting those up?!?"
Me: "It's quite a bit of work punkin' but I put these shelves and drawers up so I can organize my clothes better."

And interestingly, there is a slew of research survey findings that say that more and more women would prefer to work part-time rather than full-time.

Given the reality of finding part-time work, it’s no wonder that only 1/4 of all women can work part-time.  I’ve long said that part-time work is a fallacy.  We all know how the woman in the office who works only part-time for 3 days a week is viewed.  We also all know how her office peers begin to rely less on her because she’s only there for 3 days a week.  This scenario is not a good long-term situation for anyone.

I am not presenting an argument for work outside the home or work inside the home.  Both have value and are valued differently by all women.  Those who are lucky enough to have the choice not to have paid outside work and can subsist on one income, like me, can make that choice.  Even if one can afford to subsist on one income, if a woman wants to continue her career, then I support that as well.  I really believe that if moms (and dads) are fulfilled, then that is what is good for the family and child(ren).

But in having made my decision to raise my kids and upon reading this research, I really wanted both my daughter and sons to see value in work, in overcoming challenges, in breaking a sweat.  Aside from whatever work that needed to be done, I decided to start my own home business that was flexible so I could raise my 3 kids.  I have found that even though my first few businesses were unsuccessful, it gave me an outlet to do something creative.  Fast forward 11 years later, I have a thriving business that I truly love because of my customers who I consider to be my peers (though virtual).  I get that social and professional support.  And I find that by supporting other women by promoting their businesses on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or via my Sellers list, I get that back in spades.  I have dear customers who convo me (Etsy’s email feature) from time-to-time just to say hi and check in on me, my kids, or my grandma.  How blessed am I???   Very.  Very.

And in the midst of all this dervish activity of keeping the house, raising kids, and doing all the work are 3 kids who have heard and seen me work.  Whether I was paid or unpaid was – and is – irrelevant to them.  I still get dressed every day for work Monday – Friday and they see that.  (Getting dressed, doing the hair and makeup helps to put me into that mindset as well.)  They also helped me out when I needed to do my daily post office runs.  They helped carried the packages and let me tell you, my local USPS folks new my kids very well.  They, too, got into the habit of saying “Are you guys helping Mommy work today?”

It’s hard to believe that my businesses started based on reading this research over 10 years ago!  Much like you when you are done making that clutch, I take a lot of pride in my work and derive a lot of satisfaction from it.  That is why the motto has never been “Selling purse frames, one at a time”.  That doesn’t sound bad but my aim has been to help other women derive satisfaction and joy in finding a skill they can do.  There are untold women who have skills but can’t find a job or know what business to open.  Many businesses require a lot of capital and banks are tighter than the corset on Dita Von Teese!  So while I didn’t change the world or even nudged it by a little, I hope that my work in putting many women (maybe even you!) to work has benefited them, their children, and their families.

Whether you make some side income making clutches or doing another skill or craft, how have you found part-time work of benefit either to you or your family?

April 23, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Cups and Clutches – 2012 ACM Awards

I just did an album on the Facebook fanpage featuring some clutches that I paired with some of the best-dressed looks at the 2012 ACM Awards.  Some of you may know that I lived in Oklahoma City for a short time.  I loved my time there and still say “y’all” and “all y’all”.  🙂  Anywho, out of the six lovely ladies on the list, three are either from or live in Oklahoma.  Biased?  No, it just happens that many in country music have their roots or homes in Oklahoma: Vince Gill, Woody Guthrie, Garth Brooks, Ronnie Dunn, Roy Clark, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith (I loved the Red Solo Cup performance).  Of course there are the ladies: Carrie Underwood, Reba McIntire, Miranda Lambert, Trisha Yearwood and a whole lot more.

Speaking of red Solo cups, that company was just bought for $1 billion dollars.  Niiiice!  They make a lot more than those red cups, but that is impressive.  And guess what made it through my move from NJ to Viet Nam?

Yes, Pax made the move, but you knew that. But look at what's on my kitchen counter? LOL! Look it!!! 🙂

We’ve been using the same batch that we bought at Costco for over 8 months now and they last a long, long time.

Head on over to the Facebook fanpage for a look of my top six looks.  Enjoy!

If you like what you see, please "like" and feel free to share.

April 2, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Paypal is throwing down with Square — and YOU benefit!

Exciting news!  Paypal is going to introduce their own mobile paying device that will be similar to Square.  Please note:  SquareUp.com is the domain name that the company “Square Inc.” or “Square” uses.  SquareUp, Square Up, Square up, and Square are all used through the media interchangeably.  They really should just change their main domain to Square.com.  I don’t know why they are doing the reverse and directing it all to SquareUp.com … anyways … just my humble opinion.  🙂

It is not yet known what features it will offer beyond those of Square, however, Paypal will have a lower transaction fee thereby undercutting what Square is currently charging.

Will Square answer back by lowering their transaction charge rate as well?  It’s yet to be seen, but this is very good news for small business owners, mom and pop shops, and those of you selling your clutches at arts and crafts fairs and bazaars.  It will be ubiquitous and your customers will be able to pay you with their credit cards.  You will be able to accept credit cards easily without any start-up or ongoing maintenance costs!

Check out the article.

More companies offering mobile payment devices means lower charges you'll have to pay!

Since Paypal is the #1 online credit card payment processor in the world, this news is huge.  The public trust is there with paying via Paypal’s secure encrypted network.  So for Paypal to come out with this mobile paying device, the adoption rate will be high.  It will probably link up with your existing Paypal accounts and you’ll have all your payments at one source.  This is seriously going to effect Square and I anticipate them doing something to mitigate this.

If you haven’t used Square already – a free device – I would like to poke a hot poker and get you to try it out.  Did I mention it’s free?  🙂  You can grow your business and craft fairs, school and church sales, home hostess parties ….

Oh, and it’s free..  🙂

March 15, 2012 Posted by | Helpful Tips | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Cleaner, crisper WhileBabyNaps.com shop for your orders

I’ve finally got my web store redesigned.  Come take a look!

With this new re-design, I’ve been able to incorporate a direct link to clutch handbag makers on my Sellers list.  This will allow me to drive more traffic to handbag makers who have clutches – ready for sale – that are made using my fine purse frames.   Many visit my web store and love the idea of making a clutch, but many more just want instant gratification and to buy one.  And I haven’t made them to sell for years so I’m happy to pass on my referrals.  It’s a “win-win”:  I keep my visitors happy and my clutch makers can get a sale!  If you are interested in becoming a seller, convo me and I’ll walk you through the process.

I hope you will find this layout and theme much more appealing and easier to navigate.  Please note that most of what I sell at my Etsy shop is also sold here; however, as I’ve had this shop first for professional handbag makers, I sell up to 500 of any single frame.  I have added DIY clutch kits since I also get Google hits on this website from the general public as well.

Kits are sold based on geography due to the shipping restrictions for Gutermann glue.

As you will see, the volume discounts are the exact same at both shops and I only sell at wholesale pricing.  The floor price is the highest discount given for that particular size or style.  So whether a customer buys 500 or 1000 frames, they get the same per unit discount since the floor price is the 500 level.  Floor price for Gutermann glue is for 6 tubes.  There is no middle man.

42% is the highest discount given for this frame.

Lastly, I combine ship.  When you buy 2+items, I will combine the shipping and refund you any excess shipping charge over $1.  Shipping for items over 200 will be more economical for you using UPS Ground.  That will take longer than USPS Priority Mail, but it will be a lot less cheaper.  I have used customers’ business shipping accounts to ship with FedEx and DHL, too, and that’s not a problem at all.

Please take a look and if you catch any edits, let me know.  I do all the writing and coding and I might not have caught them all behind the scenes … 🙂

March 12, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Oscar(R) gowns and clutches

OMG, if you guys could see my site stats during the Academy Awards show!  It looks like ALL of you are watching it ‘cuz you can hear a cricket chirp on this blog.  🙂

I was inspired by the colors, textures, cuts and styles of the many beautiful women.  So of course, some clutches came to mind while I was watching the show.  Yes, they telecast it here live as well.  It’s the only awards show that I can watch on TV live in Viet Nam.  All other shows like the Golden Globes(R) and Grammys(R) are not televised here so I watch it on my Mac via a live stream that I dig on the net to find. I watch zero sports and ALL awards shows (Country Music, Emmy, People’s Choice… all of it).  Eye candy.

As a huge movie fan, the Oscars is the biggest night for me.  I love seeing the film clips, hearing the speeches, watching the “In Memoriam” piece (hey, wasn’t Esperanza Spalding great?)… hey pretty much all of it.

So here are a few of my favorite gowns for various reasons along with some clutches that popped into mind.  They are not meant to go with these gowns rather I’ve paired them with clutches whose characteristics are evoked by the gowns featured.   Check out the gowns and I hope they will inspire you to create some great clutches for the spring and bridal seasons!

Click on the images for a bigger view.  Please note that all photos are courtesy of Getty Images.

Louise Roe.

Best contrast (black blunt hair, white dress, red lips). Clutch by http://www.etsy.com/shop/pennyroyalty

Rooney Mara.  First movie in ages that I had to fast forward through a scene because I couldn’t stomach it.

Michelle Williams slays me in every film she’s in.  Time for a comedy, Michelle!

Best beading. Clutch by http://www.etsy.com/shop/ClutchChic

Octavia Spencer looks amazing!  Have you seen “The Help”?  It’ll stay with you long past the viewing.

Jane Seymour looks amazing at any age!

Best bejeweling (bedazzlin'!) Clutch by http://www.etsy.com/shop/BelleJouJou

I love this woman more than the dress, but the bejeweling brings some sparkle to an odd-colored gown.  Miss her as Sookie!

Best spring - green. Clutch by http://www.etsy.com/shop/AnOrangeBlossomBag

Viola Davis.  Granted I haven’t seen Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady but Viola was incredible in The Help.  She is equally stunning in this green color, especially with her au naturel red hair!  🙂

Best simplicity. Clutch by http://www.etsy.com/shop/MadeByPoppet

Gwyneth Paltrow.  My favorite look for this body type.  Both the cape and floral embellishment enhance the simplicity in the dress and clutch without overpowering either.

The fun is over.  Until the next Oscars!  🙂

February 27, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Go” – Updated Clutch PDF is up.

Ok, guys.  It’s up and running.  As per my last post, the updated PDF is up.  Again, this is FREE to those of you who’ve bought the clutch PDF tutorial before.  Please note that this is NOT free for those who bought different PDFs like the Reversible Patchwork bag or the Snappy Wallet Clutch(TM) as those are entirely different tutorials.

Click here to get to the post.  Enter your password and start your download.

Get to the latest PDF version through here! Enter your password.

With this new major update of the main tutorial, you will learn how to make a clutch with a seam (my preferred way that will show your great craftsmanship and will work with any fabric) and without a bottom seam (great for quick easy work or for non-directional fabrics).  It also incorporates a short-cut, an entirely different way to finish the clutch so that it will reduce the wrinkling and is a bit quicker to do when you are making a lot of clutches.  I also have pictures on how to glue it into the frame.

I spent over a hundred hours re-doing this.  This is all free to you as long as you have your password.

What if you don’t have your password?  (eg. computer crashed, laptop stolen, forgot to print out the email that was sent to you, emptied the email in your trash…) Please buy the $5 password resend listing at my shop and give me your original purchase date of the PDF and Paypal buyer account so that I know you had bought it back in 2009, 2010, 2011 or earlier this year in 2012.  If you cannot retrieve this, then you will need to buy it again.

Please consider this as fair since I’ve explicitly told you to keep your password.  I value my customers so much and spend so much time on this $8 tutorial without getting additional pay each time, so please don’t email me and say that it’s unfair that you have to pay $5 to retrieve your password especially when my email’s subject line is “PLEASE KEEP/PRINT! $5 charge to resend it in the future “. I do all this while my kids are at school and after I put them to bed at 8pm. Also, please consider the following:

*All other tutorials show you how to make 1 size clutch – I offer how to make ANY size clutch with 2 distinct tutorials for the same price.
*They only offer 1 pattern and I offer 6 patterns.
*They are priced $8+ and mine is also at $8.
*Other tutorials and kits prohibit you from setting up a shop on Etsy or go into business. Mine do not. In fact, I actively promote and try to find buyers for my clutch makers.

*I could’ve made separate listings and charges for every new template.  All other PDFs show you how to make 1 clutch in 1 size only.

*I could’ve made a completely new listing and charge for a new tutorial “Now learn how to make a clutch without a bottom seam” for $8 like other sellers have right now.

Every time I add new templates/updates, over 500 of you get on and download.  So there is value to what I provide to you far beyond the initial $8 that you paid for.

I still get customers who bought this $8 tutorial in 2009 when there were 3 templates. They got another 3 templates for free. Could I have charged them by making an entirely new listings for each one? Sure.  But I didn’t. They also contacted me with “What’s my password”?  I have sold hundreds of these. How do I know who bought and who didn’t? Sometimes, the person contacted me used their spouse’s Paypal account and I have to search for that. Before Etsy co-mingled the accounts, you would have multiple usernames and it was bought under a “purchase” account which was different from their “seller” account. Multiply this by 100+ people. Every time.

This is what I think my value is: it takes time for me to retrieve their records and then email the password. So it’s $5. It’s also a deterrent from all the emails that come because when people know it’s going to cost them $5, they’ll print out a hard copy and keep it. I’ve had people whose computers crashed, laptops stolen, email lost in the the junk mail, accidental deletions, you name it.

So, sorry that I’m on my soapbox.  I’m officially off.  🙂  Thank goodness:  it gets dizzying from the lack of oxygen standing up high on soapboxes!

I want to encourage you to try the tips and the “Shortcut” option that is in this new tutorial.  This is after years of making clutches…  Try it with just 1 clutch and see what you think.  Ever since I’ve done it this way, my clutches are not wrinkly and the bulkiness from the interface doesn’t affect how I insert it into the frame.  It goes in easily.  I love it.

I’m working on a template for the 12×3.5 frame that will print out – without scaling- on regular desktop 8.5×11 paper. This will also be free as long as you have your password. This will take a week or so. Why? I make the design, sew it, refine it, make new adjustments, sew that, refine that, and so on … and then rework the template to fit your 8.5×11 papers.  Who wants in?  🙂
Cheers and happy sewing!

~Winn

February 22, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Coming this week: PDF revision for the clutch tutorial – free update with your password

I like to think I’m ahead of the guys over at Rovio who make Angry Birds.  Do you know how they give you free updates such as “Ham ‘O Ween” as long as you purchased the original Angry Birds?  Except when it’s completely new and different, like Angry Birds Rio, then you have to buy that new game.

So where am I going with this, other than you all now know that I play Angry Birds?  Well, I just updated the clutch tutorial and wanted to let you all know first!  I’ll be back with a post when it’s updated on this blog, but it’s coming out this week.  PLEASE wait until I say “go” to download.  It’s not up yet so I don’t want you to waste your time.  🙂

The hard copies will not be available for another week.  We have to send it to our guy, a professional printer.  He uses 70# ultra-white paper.  His ink is incredible.  The booklet is so thick that we have to use a commercial stapler to staple it together!  Yes, every booklet is cut and assembled by hand.  As always, the tutorial and templates are formatted to be printed on regular 8.5×11 without any need for you to rescale.  You just click on the links, download and print.

I have been working really hard to incorporate some of the hints that I have blogged about here.  I have rewritten almost 80% of the entire tutorial and I have 95% new pictures that are bigger and more detailed.   What I’ve written in the new updated tutorial are basically the shortcuts and time-saving tips that I employ in making clutches myself.  I think they will help you.

What you will get with this update:

*Tips to improve your craftsmanship and productivity.

*2 options on how to make a clutch:  with a bottom seam (my favorite way), and without a bottom seam (makes for quick work and good for smaller clutches)

*A shortcut that will minimize the wrinkling of the fabric and allows for easier insertion into the frame

*Pictures on how to insert the frame

*Tips on what interface to use

Take a peek:

More pics, more tips, and learn how to make a clutch in 2 ways!

The new updated tutorial has also been formatted as a booklet as was before.  This was designed so that it will allow you to flip each page per step and not take up a lot of space at your sewing table.

How do you get this update?  If you bought the PDF tutorial, you were sent the password with your order.  It’s a really detailed (some say long-winded) email saying “Keep your password” as all updates to this tutorial and templates are free as long as you have your password and if you don’t have your password for any reason, it will cost you $5 to resend it.  So I hope you heeded it.

If your laptop was stolen (yes, that happened to a customer last week), it crashed and you didn’t back it up (PCs all the time…), you lost it or for any other reason, then order this listing shown here:

This is only for previous buyers who need their password.

These updates, revisions, and new templates are always free to you as long as you keep your password!  I am working on a template for the 12×3.5 size frame.  It’ll be a big bag – perfect for winter and overnights – and I’m trying to make sure the template can be printed out without any scaling on regular desktop 8.5×11 printer paper.  Quite the task since the 10×3 required splitting it into 2!  🙂

So be on the lookout and I’ll be back to give you all the “go”.

Warmly-

Winn

February 20, 2012 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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