Clutch-Me.Com

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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

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

New Twitter promotions and 20% OFF Joann’s!

Hey guys!

Another promotion on Twitter featuring some amazing clutches for sale by various sellers who use my fine purse frames.

Check these out before they are sold out!  Of course, the sellers will be happy to custom-make one for you!

Another group of amazing clutches!

Also, if you haven’t already signed up at Joann.com, you should really do it because:

*It’s free.

*You get coupons sent to your inbox.

*You can print the coupons out from your desktop printer.

There is currently a 20% OFF TOTAL PURCHASE (!).  I save these to stock up on supplies and materials.

Email subscription for coupons!

Go get yours!

September 16, 2011 Posted by | SALES and PROMOTIONS | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fabric shopping for fall!

With fall around the corner in the US, you might want to get ahead of the curve and get your Fall Collection planned out.  I see that many of you have already started your fall lines by ordering Gutermann glue and purse frames.  Next is the fabric!

As I’ve mentioned in my many previous posts, I will be looking for fabrics while residing here in Viet Nam for my short 2.5 years!  And good news guys … I’ve hit the mother-load!  Let me explain.

The traffic here consists of pedestrian, bicycles, automobiles, motorcycles, and about 50% of the entire traffic is motorbikes or motor-scooters.  They are not as powerful as the motorcycle, and are similar to the branded Vespas that you would see in Europe, for example.  This picture captures it all beautifully:

You've got it all in here. Loose rules that can leave you wondering just how everyone manages to make it from one side to the other!

That said, my husband’s employer provides our family with a rental car and driver.  There’s no way expats can take the test and drive over here (especially when we are only here for a short period of time).  In addition, vehicles are prohibitively expensive.  Whatever you would pay for in the US for your vehicle, double that price for here!

And to get to my original point of this post – the fabric – it turns out that our driver used to fix sewing machines and knows ALL the fabric mills in the city!!!  🙂

When the kids are attending school in August, I will be able to shop in earnest.  I’m so excited to see the silks, cottons, and hand-embroidered fabrics.  This place is Etsy come to real life:  all are handmade by artisans!

Here’s a pic I snapped of one fabric shop.  Look at the variety!

Every inch is covered with all kinds of fabric imaginable!

Like you going through the bolts at Joanne’s, I will have to dig through to find the designs and styles that are really magnificent and remarkable!  I generally hate shopping but I can spend all day looking at fabric.

Here’s how shopping can look like over here — barely enough room through maneuver through but it’s worth the hunt!

The bazaar! Shoppers are very gracious but the sellers are quite pushy! All Westerners and expats have virtual targets on their face$!

So head out and start your journey for fabrics for your clutches.  With new offerings for fall, this is a great way to freshen up your shop to prevent it from being too stale:  give your customers a reason to take another look!

1.  Plan out your Fall collection and colors.  Read Vogue, Marie Claire, Lucky, InStyle … any of the national magazines and find the trends that are being reported.  What clutches can you sell that will compliment your buyers’ fall palettes? Last I heard, lace is in for this fall.

2. Start your fabric search and look for the colors and fabric designs that you want for your Fall Collection.   Remember to save fabrics with big, bold designs for your bigger clutches and bags.  The fabrics with smaller motifs can be used for the smaller clutches, wallets and coin purses.

3.  Go back to your stock of fabric and pull from those any remnants that can compliment as well.  I only throw the smallest of my fabric away.   I keep it all!  I use the smallest pieces that I can no longer find for use in the Snappy(TM) Wallet Clutch:  the ID pocket needs only a tiny rectangle of beloved fabric!  I also use slightly bigger pieces as lining for my coin purse clutches!

4.  Lay out your frames and mix and match inner and outer fabrics with the different frames.  This allows you to visually see what your boutique or online shop will look like when you’re done.  You will see where you may be short on one size purse frame or short on a certain fabric, and you will have time to buy as needed.

Shops that have a cohesive and strong aesthetic really do well.  Shops that offer willy-nilly don’t do as well, because the customers get confused.  Brand identity is so important and critical to shops.  Shops that stick to what they are good at and that exhibit great craftsmanship do really well.

And remember to take good pics!  If it takes you 3 minutes to take a good picture of each clutch, remember that 2 minutes of 45 seconds of that should be spent setting up the shot: lighting, positioning, focusing …. and then snap!  I see lots of clutches that are shot poorly.  Why spend all your time and effort in making the clutch only to ruin the chances of selling it by having a bad photo?

For those of you who own your own boutique or sell in your local boutique, spend the time to have it displayed in a nice case with good lighting.  Have the display ones be the ones that customers can touch and feel and open, but be sure to sell them the unopened and tissue-wrapped one.  After the display sample has been handled, remember to wipe off fingerprints and lightly dust the fabric.

Hope your summer is going well!  Oh …. one last thing!  Pax is here!  He’s been here for a week and has adjusted splendidly.  Just like in NJ, Pax hops in the van when we go shopping!  (Pax gets to stay in the van with the AC on with our driver while the kids and I run in to get groceries.)  Everywhere we go, every day and every time that I walk him, he gets attention!  He’s a superstar here.  His breed (goldendoodle) is non-existent here.  I don’t even think anyone has even seen a poodle, much less a golden doodle.  So they ask:

*Is he a goat?

*Do you perm his hair?

*Where is he from?

The van is usually surrounded by 4-6 people looking at Pax!  I feel like I’ve got Lindsey Lohan or some other starlet in there!  🙂  LOL.  And everyone who comes in contact with him just loves him to pieces.  Everything just seemed to fall into place upon Pax’s arrival.  That loud sound of exhaling?  That’s me!  Here’s a pic of Hayley with Pax.

Pax petered out after our morning walk. It's cooler here than the current heatwave in the US! He loves lounging on Hayley and on the cold tile floor.

That’s all for now.  I’ll be back soon!

~Winn

July 24, 2011 Posted by | Helpful Tips, WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Literally stopping to smell the flowers!

Just wanted to wish you all a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!

Wherever you are, I hope you will take the long weekend to enjoy it with your loved ones.  Put your sewing, cutting, stitching, and gluing down and go out and have fun!  The mind needs a rest from the work and you’ll need to recharge to get your creativity juices back when you return!

I stopped to smell the flowers today.  Briefly, at lunchtime … but I stopped!  🙂

Here are some pics of my peonies that finally bloomed after 3 years of planting.  They are from a grower in Bernardsville, NJ who imported them in from China years ago.  She has the greatest variety of peonies in the US.  She’s an amazing grower and turned her acres into a peony garden.  Check her out at http://peonysenvy.com/.  Kathleen has been instrumental in teaching me about peonies.  She was gracious enough to let my 3 kids run around her massive garden and swing on the giant tire swing.

Her varieties are more expensive than your Home Depot brand and take 3 years to bloom.  But they require no work other than the initial amending of the soil when you first put them in.  At the end of the fall, I just snip the entire plant down to the last inch and watch them grow back the next year.  The best part?  They are deer resistant!  And I get deer all year round — they’ll come right up and to my front yard into my gardens!

My peonies last about 6 weeks, compared to other big box shop peonies that last only 2 weeks.  I get vases of fresh cut flowers for about 2 months!  YAY 🙂

So here are some pics to inspire you to get out and smell the flowers.  And yes, I’m pimping out Pax again in these pics.  He’s just too cute and is so photogenic!

This side is starting to bloom!

My rhododendrons made their mark this year! These were from CostCo 3 years ago!

Peonies, lilac, and marigolds!

Lilacs smell wonderful!

Right side showing some beautiful color!

Left side beds. I planted 23 herbaceous peonies, 120 Asiatic lilies, and 5 flats of marigolds!

Another shot of the front floral beds. Got the vase to cut some lilacs!


I only cut enough for my small vase from TJ Maxx! I like to leave as many blooms out as I can so that I don't completely denude my front gardens. I cut the older blooms first and fill it up as I go.

Two of my favorite Ps: Pax and Peonies!

Lilacs from my "rescued" lilac bush. It was on its deathbed 3 years ago, but has since recovered to give me fragrant blooms for several weeks! 🙂

Hope these flowers give you all inspiration for fabrics and designs for late spring and summer clutches!  Joann’s will have its GREAT sale so take a look at their fabrics this weekend and take advantage of their sales.  Don’t forget your coupon for 50% off one cut of fabric!

Have a wonderful weekend!

~Winn

May 27, 2011 Posted by | WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , , , | 11 Comments

Getting back on track …

Thank you, to all of you who sent me messages of concern.  I really appreciate your heartfelt thoughts.  It’s been quite a challenge this week.  And, amazingly, no one canceled their orders.

Just wanted to let you all know that all orders that came in this week have been shipped.  I got back on track working nights to get them all out.

In the next couple of weeks, I will be:

1.  introducing several new purse frame sizes

2.  launching PurseFramesOutlet.Etsy.com

3. introducing a new trademarked finish (if that all works out…)  🙂

So thank you for your enduring support.

BTW, HUGE sale at Joann’s.  March 25-27.  Go stock up!

 

Have a great weekend!  ~ Winn

Joanns 25% on Your Total In-Store Purchase + Free Shipping Online!

 

March 25, 2011 Posted by | SALES and PROMOTIONS, WhileBabyNaps General Updates | , , | 3 Comments

   

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