Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy Friday

It's been a busy week here at Buttercup Central. Yesterday I had my application accepted at Designer Sphere. I've been working lately at getting Buttercup Ink ready to venture out into the big world of wholesale and this will be a great tool for me to use to connect with retailers. It's basically an online wholesale trade fair where retailers register and get to meet new designers across Australia who are offering wholesale.

My goal is to get Buttercup Ink products in 10 retail outlets across Australia by Christmas. Fingers crossed!

There's just soooo much to think about with wholesale. Pricing, shipping, payment terms, minimum orders, blah, blah, blah! With the help of Megan at Craft MBA and her eBook on wholesale and trade fairs along with countless other books, website and people I'm about 95% there.

Anyway, the sun is out and I'm meeting some of the fab girls in my Mothers' Group for a chit chat and play date with the kids. My month end and delightful Excel spreadsheets can wait until tomorrow! Before the playing commences though, Gabriel has to go get his 12 month immunisations. Poor baby.

Hope everyone has a great weekend. Anything interesting happening?

V xx

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Daily reminder

A girlfriend just sent this to me... all very true!

Hope you're all having a sunny day!

V xx

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


I need to buy a birthday present for a friends little boy who is about to turn 6. When we were back in Scotland at Christmas he was into Star Wars and Indiana Jones! Would love to support a fellow Etsy or madeit seller. Any ideas?

V xx

Monday, July 26, 2010

Happy birthday to me!

So it's my birthday today and has so far been spent in the doctors waiting room with a snotty, sick baby! Why do they even bother giving you an appointment time?!?!

Anyway, I had a great birthday weekend that involved some birthday drinks with friends and babies then we sent all the men home with the kids and had some girls cocktails! Hmmm - those French Matrini's were delish! Yesterday there was a party with Bubbles the Magician, bouncy castle and lots of cake! I should clarify that it wasn't for me but for my beautiful little neighbour who turned 3! The afternoon was spent on my couch with some books. As many of you will know, I'm a bit of a bookworm so a Sunday on the couch while the boys are outside in the garden is my idea of heaven! I finished One Day by David Nicholls for my book group and really enjoyed it then had a flick though some birthday books - How to Bake a Business and Handmade in Melbourne - thanks C! My boys got me a a beautiful bunch of flowers and a Kobo eReader. I do love having books displayed on my bookshelf and will still buy some 'real' books but I love the convenience of the eReader. Plus, it came with 100 free books! A lot are classics that I've just never gotten round to reading so now I've no excuse! Bring on War and Peace! Although if I ever actually finish it I'll be buying a copy for my bookshelf as a little trophy!

The rest of the day involved (lots of) birthday chocolate tart and the MasterChef grand finale! Bliss!

How was your weekend?

V xx

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Warm summer days with jazz and wine

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I'd been working on a branding project for a summer event in Victoria... It's now gone live on the website so I can finally share it with you all!

It's for the Riverboats Jazz Food and Wine Festival up on the Murray River in Echuca. Nothing beats a warm summers day with some good food and wine and live jazz in the background!

It was such a great project to work on - can't wait for the event in Feb. Any excuse for a weekend in the country!

V xx

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

'It's my Birthday' SALE!

It's my birthday next week and I'd like for all my blog friends and Facebook fans to join in the celebrations! I'm offering 30% off ALL Buttercup Ink products in both my Etsy and Madeit shops.

Just enter 2010 BIRTHDAY SALE in the message to seller at checkout to receive the discount.

I'll refund 30% of the total cost, excluding shipping, to you via PayPal as soon as I receive your order. Offer ends midnight 31st July, AEST.

V xx

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Stationery swap

Amanda over at Calico & Co. is doing a stationery swap. I'm so excited to see what lovely paper delights I'll be getting in the post! Sign up here.

Old family photos

A while back I got my dad to send me some old family photos as I want to create a family history wall in our lounge. I haven't got around to actually displaying them as I've not found any frames I really like. I'm also waiting on my mum to send me the ones from her side of the family.

Living in Australia, we very much want Gabriel to have a strong connection with our home and his extended family and I think there's no better way than displaying them in our family area where we get to see them everyday. It's a pity that in this digital world we have all our photos on iPods and computers but forget to display them.

I've really enjoyed looking through them this morning and so wanted to share them with you...

Gran and Grandad McKechnie on their wedding day

My dad, his sister, mum and dad

My dad and Aunt Myra with their gran

My dad on his first day of school, 1954

My grandad. This photo has been in my parents living room for as long as I can remember.
I love it! He looks so strong and handsome.
My grandad, far left, with his 5 sisters and brother.

My beautiful mum and dad on their wedding day with my cousin, 1977.
My mum and dad on their wedding day with their families. My mums parents on the left and my dads dad and aunt on the right. My gran McKechnie passed away when my dad was young.

Friday, July 16, 2010

New stamp!

I received my custom Buttercup Ink stamp this week and I just love it! I'm running out of things to stamp. I've started using a paper belly band and cotton twine to package my note cards and the stamp looks great on them! I'm using it on the back of my notepads too and will use it on paper bags at my upcoming fair. It's a really cost effective and creative way to get my logo out there for the public to see!

V xx

Getting organised

I think it's the case with many creatives but record keeping and general finance stuff is NOT one of my strengths! I just never seem to be able to keep everything in order! When it comes to an Excel spreadsheet or designing a new product I know which one I'm going to choose! So with the start of the new financial year I've decided to get organised.

One of my main issues was how to tackle receiving payments in different currencies with all my Etsy payments in US $. I've also want to keep seperate records for Etsy, Madeit, wholesale/craft fairs and also Vari Longmuir Design for wedding stationery projects, corporate branding, etc. to see exactly where my profit is coming from each month. I've now got a MEGA spreadsheet with tabs for each area of business and then a summary tab so I should (fingers crossed!) be sorted. I just need to remember and actually fill them in at the end of the month! With PayPal and Etsy, I can download my transactions for the month which is great and saves me time but Madeit doesn't yet have that feature which leaves more room for my personal error!

In the mission to get to super organised, I've created some items to help - seems a much easier task when you have pretty stationery! My To Do List, Babysitter Notes, Weekly Planner and Outfit Planner are now available on Etsy and Madeit as downloadable pdfs. All hard copy notepads will be available in the coming week.

So now we can all get our homes in check - no excuses!

Happy Friday!

V xx

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Buttercup Ink on Style Collective

Another great blog post about my quote prints. Thanks Amanda!

V xx

Monday, July 12, 2010

I love Melbourne in winter!

What a great, relaxing weekend! Melbourne weather reminds me of Glasgow sometime - rainy, dull and windy one day then bright, sunny and fresh the next! Yesterday was one of those bright, winter days. It went something like this...

A trip into the city to have a snoop round the Design Market at Fed Sq. Loved it! Only in Melbourne would you get a market in a multi story car park with a DJ and food on a Sunday afternoon! There was also another market on - MARKit @ Fed Square in The Atrium that I didn't know about. Beautiful jewellery and fabrics.

We wandered along to the NGV for a look in their gift shop. They have so many fab gift ideas and LOTS of books! I could spend a week there quite happily! The European Masters exhibition is on at the moment and they have the most amazing installation on the front facade of the building. Check out the pics below. I'm always blown away by the amazing features they have during the major exhibition. The art deco arch a few year back was unbelievable.

V xx

Friday, July 9, 2010

Friday again! Where has the week gone?

Can't believe it's Friday again! It's been a busy week in the Longmuir house. It didn't help that G was up all night on Wednesday - think it's the fault of another little jaggy tooth. But his daddy got up with him (thanks!) and they ended up on the couch watching the World Cup semi final at 5am! He's definitely his fathers son. Can't help but think they'd discussed this prior to bedtime! "Right daddy, I'll cry and make a fuss... Then you can look like husband/daddy of the year and let mummy sleep... Then we can take my blanket and watch the soccer in the living room!"

I added a few new products, here and here, to my Etsy and Madeit shops. I'm adding to my generic items to give me more stock to sell at the Business by Design Market in August. One of my lovely girlfriends is always suggesting new products to add to my collection. When I said I'm going to start paying her she said that she just keeps getting me to make the things she wants to buy! Keep the suggestions coming, C!

One of her brain-waves was bookmarks as she is currently using a gas bill. Bills are something I DO NOT want to see every time I go to bed and open my book! So rather than putting a little promo postcard in with my orders, I've started including a few bookmarks. A gentle little reminder of all the paper goodness available at Buttercup Ink and practical too!

I also completed a great rebranding project that I've been working on for a fab summer festival in Victoria. I'll share the finished result with you all next week!

Looking forward to a nice quiet weekend with my boys. Think we'll take a trip into the city on Sunday and check out the Melbourne Design Market at Fed Sq. Look at some of the beautiful images from previous markets! Love the Alice in Wonerland'esque tea cup lamps!

Have a wonderful weekend!


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Vintage books

So the hunt for my display items for my market stall started today. I didn't find any suitcases I liked. The ones I found just looked old and tired - not vintage! Made me think of Del Boy from Only Fools and Horses, selling 'nicked gear' in a suitcase out the back of a car. Not really the look I was going for!
I did, however, find some great old books! Mixed with some from my own bookshelf they look pretty good. What do you think?

I've pulled together some items I had around the house and started laying them out. Got a long way to go and a lot of product to make but I can already get a glimps of what the finished display will look like.

V xx

Monday, July 5, 2010

My first market!

A few months back I put myself forward for a photographic exhibition that Small Business Victoria are running as part of their Energise Enterprise event. The exhibition called "The Designers" showcases small businesses within Victoria that have design as a key element and will be on show in The Atrium at Federation Square from 6 - 14 August then moving around regional locations.

Unfortunately, I didn't make the final cut but was excited when I received a call to say that the committee really liked my business and would like to extend an invitation for me to take part in their Business by Design Market to be held in Fed Square on Friday 13 August!

I've been wanting to take the leap into markets but just haven't had the time to sit down and plan it as I know their is sooooooooo much prep involved in just one day!

So I'm jumping in at the deep end and taking part! I've been having a think about my display and would love to use some vintage suitcases or picnic hampers as part of my stall to show my products. Here are a few I love. There are some great op shops in my area so going to have a look around and see what little treasures I can find!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Emergency Cards

Ever find yourself about to go to a party and realising that you've not got a card yet! I've always been guilty of this and would rather face the embarrassment of showing up empty handed than with one from the petrol station! Here's where Buttercup Ink comes to the rescue. I've just added a set of 16 'Emergency Cards' to my Etsy and Madeit shops. Each set includes 4 birthday cards, 4 new home cards, 4 thank you cards and 4 congratulations cards. There are 4 different colour schemes too which are gender neutral so you'll never be caught out again!

V xx

Friday, July 2, 2010

Itz Fitz!

I just adore these yarn wreaths made by Itz Fitz! They're so tactile. I'd love to display one on my front door for everyone to see but I'm frightened it'd get ruined by the weather!

Happy Friday!

V xx

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Miti Mota

My pick from papernstitch for today is Miti Mota. I love her knitwear - especially the cowls. I've recently just chopped all my hair off - felt to 'mumsy' with the long, boring hair! - so think I'll need to purchase one of these as I'm getting a very cold neck here in Melbourne!

The felt beads are fab too!

V xx