November Challenge: Make Time To Paint
Holiday Hacks to Make You Look Like You Have Your Shit Together!
Do you have that friend who always has her act together? She never forgets a birthday, she’s the first to RSVP to events, she even gets her Christmas cards out the first week of December. You KNOW she isn’t waiting until the last minute for holiday shopping, AND she checked off her whole gift list before the end of cyber Monday! How the heck does she do it?!?! If you, too, struggle with details like this, I am here to help!
Here are some tips on how to stay on top of all things holiday.
It is a good idea to START NOW! Now is the time to get going! Especially if you are looking to get a custom piece made for your loved ones. Artists need time to get these projects done and if you book your commissioned piece early, they are going to be less rushed on your piece too! You won’t have to pay for rush shipping either.
Make a list--even if you’re waiting for Black Friday to do your purchase, make a list ahead of time. I know that my sister loves puzzles, so I know to keep my eye out for any elaborate puzzles that come across my path. Write down the name of the person, the type of item, and the store you want to get it from. Sign up for that store’s email list so you get first notice of any products, especially if they only have a limited number. You’ll probably get a sign-up discount too! When you sign up for my newsletter, you get a sweet welcome coupon code!
Sending gifts early is especially important this year with all the USPS cuts. Packages are taking longer than expected to be delivered already and it will only get busier the closer we get to the holidays.
There are lots of fun ways to add some festive flair to your holiday wrapping. You can get fun wrapping paper and add cute gift tags or sprigs of nature if it’s for someone local. I like to get butcher paper and decorate my own. I’ll be putting out some Instagram videos to share how I do this soon!
If you’re wanting to go with an eco-friendly option, you can make gift bags out of fabric! My mom made us some and she just used two rectangles of fabric and sewed a hem with a ribbon inside for a draw string. Definitely a good beginners sewing project.
If tape is your enemy and you hate wrapping presents, then see if the places you’re shopping at will gift wrap the items for you! We sure do! For just $6.00 we will wrap your present and write any note you’d like and ship it off to it’s destination. Who needs the paper cuts anyways!?!?!
Let’s be real, the holidays are going to look a little different this year. Many of us will not be traveling to gather with loved ones. Let them know you care with a greeting card!. Tell them what you loved about the holidays you’ve shared with them and how you can’t wait for a raincheck next year.
Want something a little more personalized? You can get a family Christmas card printed. We are offering a very limited number of family holiday card design slots. Sign up for yours here. If you have your heart set on custom holiday cards, now is the time! We can even print out a holiday letter and get your envelopes addressed printed for you--talk about easy! The season is always so hectic, let us handle it for you!
This is my favorite! I have a minor (INTENSE) obsession with the little felty creatures. This year I am trying to start making my own Christmas Village out of my felty critters! We also got a potted tree that we can bring inside for the season and put back outside to continue growing. There are so many types of decorations, it can be overwhelming, but think about your style and values. I love delightful charm and we are trying to find ways to be more ecologically minded so these two elements fit perfectly for our holiday decorations. Do you love opulence? Maybe a tree with all gold ornaments is for you! If you love snarky sayings bust out the punny decor and you are good to go! Whatever your vibe is, my best hack is to think about the types of things you like and go nuts on the sales after Christmas so you get all your items at a discount! Then you can dream about them the rest of the year!
Aftermath: Thank you notes.
Okay, so imagine...Christmas is over. You’ve cleaned up the wreckage and scrubbed out all the candy cane sticky spots off your couch. All you want to do is relax. Oh wait, what is that? The nagging pull of decorum and responsibility?!? Did Aunt Edith get me the candle or the blanket? Who gave your child that toy that sings that you’ve already hid the batteries for? Don’t leave your thank you notes to chance! Keep track of your loved ones generosity with our Thank You Notes and Thank Yule Log(coming soon!)! Never forget a thank you note again!
Whew! How exhausting! I think it's time to sit back with a cozy blanket, some fuzzy slippers, a good book, and a big ol' mug of peppermint hot chocolate!
Behind The Color-Coordinated Coffee Mug
“I don’t know how you do it? I didn’t even have time to brush my teeth!”
This is something that has been said to me on many occasions when I tell people I’ve just started a business before my daughter turned one.
7 Things That Led Me To Opening My Own Watercolor Business
Helloooo folks! Welcome to my new blog. I thought I’d start off the party by sharing a little bit about how Kate Talcott Artistry came to be! I thought about writing my whole long story, but honestly TLDR, I’ve worn a lot of hats before arriving here: teacher, tutor, waitress, librarian etc. What has stayed constant is that I love learning and trying out new things. Watercolor is an artform that teaches me something new every time I pick up the paint brush.
If you’re wanting to learn a new skill or take your hobby to the next level, I’ll be peppering this blog with great tips and tricks for hobbyists and creatives alike. To kick it all off, here is a list of 7 things that led me to starting my watercolor business.
1. My creative drive
I’ve always loved being creative and learning new skills. Whether it was making up plays as a kid, snazzying up a vintage dress for prom, or my affinity for picking up crafty hobbies (friendship bracelets, making iMovies back in the early 2000s, stop motion videos, knitting, felting, scrap booking, hand lettering, quilting etc)--I’ve always like to explore different materials and push the limits to give it my own spin.
2. Workshops and classesI had to learn somehow, right?!?! I took a class at this charming local paper store called Paper Delights with Sarah Simon, also known as The Mint Gardener, and I fell in love with watercolor. I took another class that Sarah was teaching through The Watercolor Summit, where I learned from a ton of different artists and started to learn more about the ephemeral art of watercolor. I was hooked.
3. Lots and lots of practiceOnce I had the basics down, it was all about practice. I would spend hours working on the same leaf stroke shape. I would mix colors to see what hue it made. Finally, I bit the bullet and tried not to wince every time I ‘played around’ on my expensive watercolor paper. I learned more about which supplies I liked and didn’t like.
4.Support from family and friends
Andy, my husband, is the most supportive partner I could ask for, he even decided to join the family biz making it a heck of a lot easier to focus on the painting side of things. I also had great examples--both my parents made big career shifts to follow their passions. My dad went from opera singer, to boat captain, to doctor. My mom went back to school in her 40s to become a teacher. They showed me what it looked like to take brave risks and work hard. My friends and family have also benefited from the honing of my craft. Birthday presents have consisted of pet portraits, silly signs, hand-drawn cards, and more.
5. Tough LoveMy friend Morgan can be credited as the main catalyst for taking my love of watercolor from hobby to business. She is not a woman to mince words. One day she took me aside for one of her famous “kitchen talks” where you speak of VERY SERIOUS THINGS and told me that it was time. “No more playing around,” she said. I had to take it to the next level. She offered me an opportunity to make a design for her Denver based garden store, Birdsall & Co. After seeing photos of my work in her store,an actual tangible product, I was hooked.
6. A can-do attitudeI’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge. Not one to half-ass things, once I made the decision to make my business official we were getting the business license, LLC, and domain name that week. When things started to pick up, I realized that if I wanted this business to grow at the rate I’d hoped, we’d need more manpower. Andy’s marketing background, artistic eye, and keen energy for thorough research and precision makes for an excellent compliment to my planning obsessed, big-ideas brained, creative self.
7. Becoming a momI had always planned on being a stay at home mom. You can imagine my surprise when instead of going to bed in those early sleepless nights, I decided instead that I needed to paint. I found that painting gave me a sense of autonomy and fueled a part of me I didn’t know I needed. That and coffee, coffee also was a main source of fuel. (Let us give a big shout out to my Mr. Coffee--the true hero of this story.) My goal in being a stay at home mom was to be home and care for my daughter. Well, this way, we’re doing both. Andy and I have always valued creating a home that is filled with love, care, and creativity. We love that this business allows us to do just that.
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