Three months. Three crazy months since I’ve blogged. That means I am definitely failing on one of my 2015 business resolutions of blogging 52 times this year. I actually have so many topics and things I’ve been wanting to share, but when it comes down to it, clients come first and blogging doesn’t. I definitely want to share the projects we’ve been working on, so I am rededicating myself to my resolution, and will definitely have to step my game up to make it to 52 this year!
I have so much to share with you! First of all, if you’re following along on Instagram, you know that we are vacationing at the Gulf right now! This week-long vacation gives us a chance to recharge and reevaluate for the next steps for our journey as small business owners! And boy, have we been scheming!
Let’s start with what we’ve been up to, at the beach and in the business!
May. Madness. March (about the last time I blogged) to May ended up being one of the craziest seasons ever. It completed our first full year of small business ownership and we finally realized that we do actually have a limit to how many brides we can take on in one month and not live a completely insane life. More on this later, but the best part about #maymadness is that I have a ton of beautiful things to show you. I hope all of my May Brides had the best wedding day ever, and when I am talking about #maymadness, I didn’t have bridezillas on my hand… every single one of them was kind, amazing, and thankful. If they had been bridezillas…. I wouldn’t be blogging about it. I’d be curled up under a kitchen cabinet somewhere still. May brides had impeccable style and let me have a ton of creative freedom and fun! I also really molded my wedding design style and what I really loved in a wedding invitation design along the way! I truly love nothing more than a good fancy font, combined with clean design and a touch of florals along the way! You’ll see a combination of those things in every May design. We also did some pretty fancy chalkboard programs to compliment the designs!
Encourage Huntsville. Another contributing factor to #maymadness was the fact that we have more than just wedding invitation design going on! I really hope that you are following our journey with Encourage Huntsville, which has just blown my whole mind! What started as just a hand lettering tester class is officially catching fire in Huntsville, and I am so excited about all of the new workshops coming! I hope you’ll sign up for the newsletter on the Encourage website. It’s the best way to be the first to find out about new workshops! We don’t have a blog specifically for Encourage at this time, but it’s definitely something on our short list.
Salt + Paperie hosted three workshops with Encourage Huntsville in May, and has one happening next week for chalk! You can still purchase a seat through Encourage Huntsville until Sunday!
We will have photos up from our Handlettering 101 classes soon, but here some from our Sips & Scripts at Stem and Stein, and our Mini Handlettering at the Interior Marketplace. Also, jump in on our monthly lettering challenge on Instagram for handlettering, and check out our friend Michelle of Just Crumbs first workshop here!
The Social Hype. And the last thing is that we started up a new business in order to focus more on small business branding and social media management. It’s called The Social Hype! And we sadly haven’t been able to focus much time on the website or instagram at this point because of how busy we were! The website will be updated soon, but here’s our logo and a logo project for Ashley’s Creative Catering that we worked on!
With all that being said, we are going to be making some in-house changes beginning when we return from vacation, to be more efficient and hopefully cut-down on mistakes and mishaps. With so many projects happening in May, I became acutely aware of how human I really am. We are not above mistakes, and because we are only human, we never will be. Of course, we want to try more than anything to minimize the mistakes! We do count on our customer to assume that we have made mistakes and urge sharing of proofs before we go to print.
More than anything, we are expanding our horizons, but at the same time, narrowing our focus. Hence the name of the blog, I can do anything, but not everything.
Get to it, what’s changing?
1. We are no longer going to be offering photography from Salt + Paperie. Most people know I second shoot for Erin Lindsey Images, and that’s still going to be the case! However, photo sessions, editing and the whole process is definitely a time consumer for me. I mean, I have numerous friends that do it full-time so of course it is, right? We have so many photographer friends that are so talented that we would rather send you to them instead of having you take a back-seat to my other custom projects. We want to focus on what we know, and that’s paper & design! Email me for my preferred photographer list!
2. We are going to have to say no. Yikes! So scary for a small business owner to say no. I am naturally a “yes” person because I don’t want to disappoint, and because most projects sound genuinely fun to me. However, we worked at least 25 out of 31 evenings in May, and well, that’s just not healthy. By the end of May, both my husband (who works a full-time job) and I were feeling really close to burnt out. And we are much too new in this game to be burnt out! As much as I want to take on every project, it just can’t happen. We will do our best to match up with brides that are in-line with our brand and really have a desire for custom design and we are going to have clear-cut schedules for deadlines for us and our brides. Clear expectations make everyone happy! For our “no”, this also will include most last minute requests, that end up making others who gave the appropriate amount of time have to wait longer than they should have to.
3. We still want to say yes! We are going to begin offering some of our most popular wedding, birthday and baby designs combined with other new designs to the Online Shop for a quicker editing process and generally quicker turnaround. We realize that sometimes, time just slips by and the send-out date for invitations is imminent. We also realize that quality and human contact is important too. We want to do both! Look for all the designs to hit the shop 6/22.
4. We won’t be able to take on every bride’s day-of items. I feel like this is our biggest change! Because of the timeline for most programs, place cards and other “day-of” items, we are going to begin to require adding them at the time of the custom invitation quote. Previously, I had tried to focus on one thing at a time, to make sure we didn’t get overwhelmed by the details that come from the invitation quoting process. As much as I adore having full sets of invitation suites (Save the Dates to food cards) it’s the short turnaround time for the day of items that leave us the most stressed. Currently, we don’t hear about day-of items until a month before, so we don’t have time scheduled to design them and have moved on to designing another bridal suite for several months down the road, thus pushing everything back to be able to fit it in. We definitely want to design them! We love wedding branding more than you know. Let’s chat early on so we can make it happen!
5. We are going to share time with Encourage, The Social Hype and Salt & Paperie. All three of these businesses are something we are passionate about for completely different reasons! We definitely are not “quitting” Salt & Paperie…no way, no how. But we will have a limit to our paper jobs, as previous talked about, in order to allow time for the branding clients and preparation for the Encourage Workshops! Scheduling is our biggest challenge, because there are only 24 hours in a day! Our goal is to do better about meeting and exceeding delivery times on all accounts.
6. We are going to continue to add to our online shop! As hard as it is to break through the very saturated market, fighting against the many “one-spot” cards and mass marketed designs, we are going to continue to find our niche in our online shop. I think I might have struck a little bit of a chord with our koozie post from the beach. We literally made these for us, and family and friends, but it’s really really exciting that you guys wanted them too! Four fun colors are already into production! We’ve also got some new paper designs headed that way, including the gold foil print from the top of the blog! We are going to have some other teaser photos on Instagram, but look for the limited quantity cards and prints to hit the shop on 6/8!
That’s all I have for now! I’m hoping to continue to post a few more blogs while I’m at the beach, but no promises as that’s not what true vacationing is about! Check our #seglerkindofsummer for pictures from our trip!