Craft Badges

I got my button badge maker out today for the first time in 2 years.

I thought I’d try and use Canva to make a template for the designs (in circles) and I just about managed it.

The text ones I had to shrink down a bit once I figured out they were just a smidgeon too big.

But I just used old designs/ patterns I had already made on Canva previously.

They’re a bit naff but I was more bothered about the size of the templates and whether I’d measured them right.

I like the marbled ones the best!

I’m annoyed that I have to use the white plastic backing bits that came with the badge maker. I bought a little pack of the metal ones and they look and feel much better, but they don’t fit properly in the maker…even though they’re technically the same size!

But, I shall use up the plastic ones I suppose!

I think I need to design some more with crafting in mind.

Like My Fabric Stash, My Knitting Stash, My Wool Stash etc.

I’m still playing around with getting the sizing right for them. But it’s fun for something different.

It took an embarrassingly long time yesterday to figure it out though. I forgot which way to put the metal pieces!

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A Quick Catch-Up!

Been a while since I looked at my goals for May and I gotta say I’m well ahead! As of Friday 21st May, this is where I am at…

Etsy

I’ve finished most of the behind the scenes Etsy stuff like FAQs and shop policies and stuff. Just concentrating on creating the listings to go in the shop right now. I’m working my way through chapters I have planned out, as I plan on publishing a paperback through Amazon KDP at the same time as launching the shop properly.

Things will just need to be re-sized and Etsy listing ‘photos’ made. Not super difficult stuff, but SO time consuming.

I have 2 listings mostly made. I want to get 5 -10 ready when I open the shop. And I have the pages ready for another 2 or 3 listings.

RedBubble

RedBubble – I have uploaded 118 designs so far. Which is awesome considering this time last week I had about 79 and last Saturday was a total write off thanks to a bad back, as well as HOURS, literal HOURS spent on upgrading my computer’s operating systems.

I don’t think I’ll make 200 by the end of the month, but 100 was a big goal and I’m glad to have reached that goal!

Medium

I wanted to write and publish 5 articles for Medium. Check! Done! And I have the drafts for 10 more…I’m doing a 12 month post series and I have January – April already published. I just haven’t had the time to finish the rest, but for about 8 or 9 of the posts, I have the lists written out just need to add a bit more content!

And yes…I joined the Partner Program!

I made money too…hold on! 4 CENTS! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

But it works! I wrote 5 articles and left it a week or two. I haven’t really promoted anything or joined any in house publications like you should to get seen on Medium. Basically I did nothing and still made money. So, I’m fired up to get writing in earnest now!

And on the topic of joining things, I joined SkillShare and I’m loving watching the videos on graphic design, especially Procreate and Affinity Designer!

AND I did join up to Spoonflower and another UK fabric Print on Demand supplier, but honestly I haven’t done anything with these either. It’s getting all the files ready in different formats for each site that I can see being a huge headache. But, I suppose once it’s done, that’s it!

General

Did I make another font? Nope!

Did I sign up to Creative Fabrica as a seller? Nope.

Did I make any digital stickers? Nope…but I have ideas for that.

And out of the original 10 things to do in May, did I sign up for my own self hosted website? Yes, but it’s not live and I need to work on it quite a bit more before it is.

AND NOW FOR THE CRAFT GOALS….

I’ll give you a clue…it’s all NOPE!

I did some cross stitch and that’s about it!

Really busy and still loving the creativity that is spewing out of me like a volcano recently. There’s a cool image…a volcano spewing out craft items like fabric, wool, paints…

Music

I’ve been listening to a lot of stuff in the background too. Heard of a group called Sofi Tukker? If you’re in the UK, you’ll recognise a song called Drinkee, it’s in an advert (for the AA I think) with a puppet dog and a fan. I quite like Drinkee, it’s catchy!

There’s also a song called Batshit which I’ve just found, but I’m loving the aesthetic of the costumes in the desert…90s inspired bright colours with a woman basically just singing ‘Batshit…Batshit…Batshit Crazy…’

If you’re bored or want to listen to something new…check it out! 🙂

Canva Gal

I finally got the Canva Pro account a week or two ago and I’m loving it!

Who knew being able to export a PNG with a transparent background could lead to the possibility of creating this little fella here?

Isn’t he a cutie?! All made with their free stock media too…

And I like the fact that you can choose which page to export too. Oh and the curved text feature.

Which allows me to create this lil lady here…

And there’s even a way to share copies of files without changing the ‘Master’ copy. That part is genius.

If you’re not great with the technical elements to design then Canva is a great place to start- they have free option too, just less flexibility with the free option.

I’ve been playing with fonts too and uploading them into Canva. I wish there was some way of categorising or sorting them once you’ve uploaded them, that would be helpful. Like, having different branding sections of the upload page, but oh well. You can’t have everything!

Not quite at the sell your font level yet…but this is a vast improvement from my first one a few posts ago, right?!

The kerning is a little off. Kerning. I love that word, it means the spacing between the letters (I think!).

Goals for May

I started this little blog in January 2021.

I intended it to be a record of my crafty creations, both good and bad, and I thought it would consist of knitting, crochet and sewing finished objects and patterns, links to sites I like, Youtubers I follow etc. Maybe some daily life thrown in, recipes, baking, new crafts, that kind of thing.

And it started off that way, for sure, but it has been a bit deathly quiet on here for the last 6 weeks or so because I got such a sudden burst of energy at the end of March, that pretty much most of my craft projects got put aside and I haven’t even thought about them, let alone worked on them!!

I am still working on my Neon Fair Isle knitted bag, I did a few rows about a fortnight ago and that was that. I read a book called I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi (spoiler, no he won’t as I don’t invest in stocks and shares!) and I did a couple of cross-stitch projects…that’s it for the crafting!

But crafting is really another way to talk about your creativity and oh boy have I been creative lately!

A couple of posts ago I talked about making by own fonts with Calligraphr, I’ve since got an app called ifontmaker which is much easier and quicker to create a font – I’m not exactly graphic designer level yet, but it’s a fun side hobby.

I’ve signed up for a Medium account (the writing platform) and I’m getting my profile sorted and stuff like that before I sign up with their partner program. And then of course I need to start writing articles, but that parts the easy bit for me, I’m quite a fast typer and once I’m in the zone, the words just flow.

I’ve been using Procreate and Photoshop a lot as I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, I realise that for designing icons and simple pictures for my RedBubble shop I need to look at creating vector designs, so I bought the Affinity Design app whilst it was half price (it might still be, so have a look if you want to snag a bargain) and the free app Vectornator.

Both have pros and cons and I’m still getting my head around vectors and paths and nodes etc. It’s hard for me because I have no design experience AT ALL! But it’s fun…is it the challenge that’s fun? I don’t know (God knows the drawings don’t look fun – so far I managed a vector heart and a button!).

I signed up to RedBubble and now I like the idea of the Print On Demand type of passive income so much I’m seriously thinking of joining other sites too.

I would love to make repeat pattern designs for sites like Spoonflower and other specifically fabric based printing sites. I need a little more practice at it, but it’s nothing extra really, especially since you can sell the same designs across different platforms.

I opened an Etsy store too for something I have seen for ages and thought I would be good at but just never got around, or got motivated to do before…and that is digital downloads. I know I’ve posted a few simple freebies here on this blog before, but the ones I would sell on Etsy would be far superior! I’ve signed up to Creative Fabrica to buy fonts that I can use commercially, and I now have a Canva Pro account.

That’s all to come though because I want to do something at the same time as creating printables which is…

…putting them into a book! I joined Amazon KDP and am thinking of putting the printables into a book that can be photocopied by the buyer. So, you buy the paperback book which is in either A4 or US Letter size, the reader then photocopies the worksheets as they need so they don’t have to write in their book (which they could always do too of course).

I’m having a few issues here. The biggest of which is deciding which software program to use to create them with. Canva, Microsoft Word or PowerPoint, Google Docs, Apple Pages…and then I need a commercial license and there’s the fonts too which need to have commercial license/ permission to use them. If I make an e-book then the fonts are typically embedded into the e-book software, right? But so many font licenses have clauses against embedding…argh it’s a minefield, it really is!

BUT, once I get all that figured out, the actual creation process will take no time at all, especially since once the printables are made, I will be able to make bundles of them for Etsy, sell them separately AND put them in the book.

I could even open a Gumroad or Creative Fabrica store and sell the printables there too.

So, there are a lot of things going on and in my mind, but it’s getting the right licenses etc before it’s full steam ahead.

Saying that, I do have a few goals for this month.

  1. Upload 200 designs to RedBubble in total (I have 74 so far) and weed out any ones I don’t like anymore or that could be improved.
  2. Finish all back end Etsy stuff and have 5 printables listed in the store.
  3. Actually create the printables that will go in the Etsy store and the book! Decide on which software to use!
  4. Write 5 articles for Medium – finish my profile and sign up to Partner Program.
  5. Sign up to a fabric printing Print On Demand company eg Spoonflower.
  6. Sign up to Skillshare and use their free trial to have a look at vector drawings, digital designs and creating my own fonts
  7. Try and make a font good enough to sell…might not manage this one!
  8. Sign up to Creative Fabrica as a seller…need to apply for this so need a portfolio of places first e.g. Yes I have a RedBubble, but what else? Woolly Orbit Pinterest is only just up and running!
  9. Think about a ‘proper’ website where I can put affiliate links etc.
  10. Create digital stickers – maybe to sell and maybe to put on here for free!

Not very crafty goals are they?!

So here’s a few to stay on top of things (and hopefully make a bit of room!)

  1. Finish Neon Fair Isle Bag – knitted about 2/3 so far, only the second half to finish knitting and sew together
  2. Start The Testaments book by Margaret Atwood – once I read this, I will have all my books on my bookshelf
  3. Do some more on my knitted orange jumper
  4. Cut out the fabric pieces for a denim rucksack I want to sew…I may need some more fabric, but we’ll see how much I have first!
  5. Leather handbag…all cut out, dyed, oiled, ready to sew…it’s on my shelf ready. Started this a year ago, so we’ll see if I still remember how to do saddle stitch!

Phew! That’s about enough for May I think! And this blog post which is about 3 times what I normally write! If you got this far, well done!

Lot’s to do, lot’s to create, lot’s to dream!

Hope you have a lot make too in May!

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Just so you can see my skills with vector drawing…below is about my level of skill – not perfect, but it’s a start, right?!

THIS BUTTON IS MY FIRST EVER VECTOR DRAWING!!!!!

WoollyOrbit2000.redbubble.com

Have a good weekend and go do something nice for yourself – have a cup of tea, bake a cake, sew yourself something…do something creative!! xx

My First Font! (It’s quite bad!!)

Isn’t it funny how you start with one idea or purpose in mind and then end up with something totally different! Like, you start down one path and end up going in a completely different direction.

I’ve been looking at a lot of things to do with digital downloads and design software lately, getting to grips with design tools and elements and trying to figure out vectors for drawing and designing (I have NO graphic design experience or qualifications whatsoever by the way).

And then one day, after watching so many design videos on Youtube, I found a few videos about making your own fonts and I was hooked.

There are a few options as to how to make your own font, I should add I’m only looking at free ones or maybe pay a few pounds for an app. I’m not looking to spend thousands on professional design software!

There are apps such as ifontmaker or there’s Calligraphr. Which is what I used.

You sign up for a free account (or you can buy a paid one which gives you more characters to choose from – the free version only gives you 75 characters which isn’t very much, so if you wanted to make fonts to sell, then you would have to create a few more characters than 75).

Then you download a template, import the template into an app such as Procreate, which is what I used, write your letters or characters, export as a PNG and reupload it back to Calligraphr, mess around a bit with spacing and letter height and then create your font.

Once you download your font from Calligraphr, you can add it to your design software, I uploaded mine to my Canva account and I wrote the page below in Canva.

Now, this might sound like a lot of back and forth, it certainly looks it when I come to write all this out, but believe me it’s not. The whole process was quick and easy and a lot of fun.

But I now realise how terrible my handwriting is!! :O

Proving I had NO IDEA what to write when making this!!

And the pictures are my hand drawings from Procreate too. I can’t believe how the last month has been WHOOSH of technical stuff.

I dont know where this saying comes from but I feel it’s appropriate for me right now:

‘I didn’t know what I didn’t know!’

Want to have a go at creating your own font? Head over to Calligraphr it’s really easy.

You could create a birthday card or type a letter for someone if you wanted. Maybe even make an e-book with it. Or even sell it if it was any good.

Most Important Tasks Printable

Yep, I’ve been creating again. This time something useful, a printable to help organise your day.

What is the most important thing you need to do today?

Instead of getting bogged down with all the little nothings of the day, this time focus on what you REALLY need to get done today.

I’ve kept it simple as I prefer more space to actually write stuff, as opposed to lots of decorations which take up room (I have big handwriting so I need more room lol!).

And I drew the trees on Procreate. Next I need to learn vectors so I can scale up any pictures I draw properly, I did just download Affinity Designer this week which does vectors…then soon I’ll be on my way to making graphics and digital stickers for my blog.

Affinity Designer looks like it’s a step up from procreate though…I’m still getting my head around nodes and paths!

Anyway, if this is useful to you, great! If not…well, then don’t download it!

Simple but useful!

And here’s the PDF for you to download (for personal use ONLY as usual).