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February 18, 2014

"drumroll...." (visualize clark griswald)

My hubby helped pick the winner from a number in a hat and the winner is.....

I'll be in touch with you about a product of your choice from Lulu's Mimi!!!

Thank you for participating and supporting local and small business!

February 10, 2014

lulu's mimi and a giveaway

Hello from snowy Pennsylvania! We got yet another snow storm yesterday- but it's gorgeous and after spending an afternoon this weekend reigniting my ski love, I am thankful that it's still winter.

Today I am happy to be writing about another small business from a friend of mine, Lindsay Gaines, from Juniata College.  We were basketball teammates there and after college both happened to moved to the great state of North Carolina, where she now resides.  Lindsay is a fellow blogger, new mom to a precious little boy, and starter of a business called Lulu's Mimi, an out-of-home business that features things "homemade with love". 

Part of my intention to introducing a small business is not only to feature great products, but also to capture a bit about the person behind it.  By getting to know these people a little better, the item bought from that business is a little more meaningful, and in our culture, isn't it great to put a face behind a product? 

^^Lindsay sporting one of her most popular items, a chevron scarf^^

So, here's a bit of the email interview:

1. What inspired you to start making items to sell?
My inspiration actually stemmed from blogging.  I started reading blogs consistently and noticed that many of the blogs I was reading were primarily sewing/tutorial type posts.  Once I started navigating Pinterest, I decided I could do those things. So, on Black Friday two years ago my mother talked me into buying a sewing machine and here I am.  I have to add that I sewed with my grandmother as a child/teen so I had some experience with it prior to this, but hadn't done anything in over a decade before becoming inspired by what I saw out there.  Coincidentally, this also inspired my blog.

2. What has been your most popular item(s)?
My most popular items are definitely baby items: car seat covers, burp cloths, bibs, and diaper clutches. Many people like to give them as gifts and everyone loves receiving them.  My scarves are really popular as well, particularly the chevron pattern.  My favorite thing though is when people contact me asking me if I can make something.  That's how I started making car seat covers!

3. Do you sell at local craft fairs or just out of your home?
 I do sell at local craft fairs.  I even had my crafts in a store front here in town for a little over a year.  I sell a lot through my Facebook page.  I really enjoy doing craft fairs because it allows me to connect with other vendors and I've always been a small business/craft fair junkie so I love the atmosphere.

4. What has been the hardest thing about having a small business?
Right now the hardest thing about having a small business is finding the time to sew with a little one in the house.  However, I also have the hardest time getting to the post office.  I don't know what it is about that place!

5. What other thoughts do you have on buying locally/small businesses? 
I try very hard to buy local/small as often as I can.  If I can't do that, I at least try to purchase goods made in America.  At one point in my life I had a hard time paying the extra you might pay for locally made goods, but then I started making my own things and realized the time, effort, and love that goes into creating.  That's the best part of shopping small; each item is unique and created with someone's hands quite possibly while they were balancing life with a new baby or raising money for a dream vacation...  I love that everything has a story.

6. Where did the name "Lulu's Mimi" come from?
My grandmother is the one that taught me the basics of sewing.  Growing up she and I made aprons, duffel bags, blankets, even prom dresses together.  She is a very talented woman who happens to be my grandmother and, more importantly, one of my very best friends.  It is really important to me that I keep this legacy alive in my family (I'm extremely sentimental) so I'm so proud to carry on the tradition of creating clothing and gifts.  One of my nicknames is Lulu and I call my grandmother Mimi hence the name: Lulu's Mimi.  I'm considering changing my blog to the same name so that everything flows cohesively in the event that this small business could become more than a hobby at some point in my life.

So, without further ado, there are a couple different ways to see Lindsay's products:
Blog: Here
Blog FB page: Here
Lulu's Mimi FB page: Here

She does take custom orders through her facebook page, and also said that she has some things already made, ready to send out. So check it out!

Annnnd one of you lucky readers 
will win any item of your choice from Lulu's Mimi (free shipping too!). 
So, if you have a baby, an upcoming baby shower, or need a stylish scarf, just enter a comment below listing a small business that you patron and why you go there.  Enter by next Monday, February 17, where the winner will be chosen at random.

**Good luck and thanks for supporting small businesses!!**

February 3, 2014

thoughts on pinterest

This is the third day I've woken up feeling the fresh beating of a head cold, combined with fever, the occassional aches and chills, and the dread of just being awake today. It. is. miserable.
Since I can sleep no longer, and I sound like a bulldog when I breath, I am confined to the couch today, checking email and hopefully getting into a Twilight movie marathon later....(fingers crossed!)

On my web roaming this morning, I've found myself over on Pinterest (surprise, surprise) and started to wonder why my page of home ideas and style ideas differs so much from my actual closet and home? 
(or what I imagine our future home to be, since we are in this state of transition).  

I found myself wondering:
Is it that Pinterest is this "safe place" for me to pin things that I like, but in reality would never actually wear/display/show off?
Does this mean that my digital personality is different from the real life me?
Or is it just a place that we put things we like, but can't afford in real life, so that's why my real clothing and home don't look that way?

Probably a good combination of all of these questions.  I am not rich.  And I don't intend to spend unnecessary boatloads of money on myself or my home.  And of course I probably pin things that look great on a skinny model, but on me, maybe not so great. 
But, I do know that I pin things that I am attracted to.  I pin "my style" for sure. And while these may be bolder looks that I wear or different looks that I would normally have in the home, they are all pictures of things that I do, in fact, like looking at and enjoy.  They do describe me in some way.
And my guess is that maybe I'm a little reserved when it comes to wearing those fake glasses that I pinned, just because I don't need glasses and I'm embarrassed to purchase them and then tell people they are fake (truth be told, I already own fake glasses!), but good riddence to being reserved- I'm about to enter my fourth decade in this world (30?!), isn't it time I stop worrying about feeling embarrassed?

Life is too short to not express yourself, or to be too concerned with what others think, or even caging yourself into what you think you should be. 
Cheers to YOU!

*have a great week*