The crate from Marrakech has arrived. It came in the afternoon in a very unromantic OCS white van. The crate was damaged and opened. In the top was a mysterious animal skin bag and I feared some of my shipment had been nicked.
I gingerly unpacked to find everything there but when I came to unwrap the very last piece it was shattered. It was the bol sur pied.
But I had all the sets of plates
And the tagine pot, a proper one which sits on the fire on top of the stove and ought not go in the oven. So with trepidation, now or never, I cooked a beef tagine hoping that I had properly understood how to use it.
By the end of the cooking the tagine pot and I had made friends, we understood each other and worked together
With the aid of cheap red wine and my Fes bowls from two decades ago we had supper. That little candlestick to the left of the bottle, that is the gift that warms the deal and makes the connection between the seller and the customer.
This is where I bought them and that is Mourad who fell for this green Tamgroute pottery and has filled his shop in the souk in Marrakech with it. He is adding up how much money he wants.
Tamgroute is on the edge of the Sahara, the glaze is an ancient Berber recipe known to seven families of potters Tamgroute pots are crudely made, full of lumps and bumps, it wobbles atrociously, the glazes come out differently from plate to plate, there is little control of the process
The sun dries the clay ready to work
There are plenty of kiln deaths
Not to mention the transport deaths
But the result, the difference it makes to use things made by hand, things with another life embedded in them, somehow that elevates the mundane task of cooking and eating. It has a feel good factor which pushes out the mean bits of living which makes the indulgence of time and money to acquire it really worthwhile.
Their perfection lies in their imperfection, if you understand that you understand what handmade is about.
You didn’t get to go to Morocco, I did, so I’m sharing some of the stuff
The old bit of the coastal town of Essaouira is hunched up next to the fishing harbour and within its walls, in a back alley, these steps
Poor nations recycle
This door is in the kind of backstreet you get travel insurance for .
That blue is fly blue.
The Victorians used it in larders and potting sheds to unwelcome flies
The Atlantic slaps Morocco really hard at this point
It’s always windy and the sea boils
A real working fishing boat harbour
When you start to slow, because you are on holiday you start to notice, and see the patterns in things. Your eye starts to say:” You know what? The world, and things that man has crafted are so often beautiful “
Even lunch is beautiful ( and yes that is a fly and no, he was not alone)
So goodbye Essaouira and back in the taxi to Marrakech .
That taxi driver had seemed so well-informed and civilised but when we hit the Marrakech rush hour he proved a complete shit. He left no room for error: pedestrians, donkey carts and scooters were shown less consideration than lorries. He was like an incensed blue-bottle outraged that anyone should think they could share the road with him. “No horn,no job” was his mantra. Our route was flanked by people making internationally understood gestures at him.
On the way out to Essaouira he had stopped to allow us to take pictures of the goats feeding on the leaves and fruits of the Argan trees Thats him picking up some Argan nuts
Sweet goats aren’t they? Wonderful photo opportunity.
But, but… look closely behind each goat that’s blue baler twine isn’t it? There were two goat herds with them and they expected tips for the photo. The tree was unmissable by the side of the road and why were all the goats on the road side of this tree ?
Nothing is as it seems in Morocco, everything has to be thought about twice.
It’s no good minding that tourists are used.
It is a country of change.
The tourists want it to stay picaresque and traditional and easily accessible by Easy Jet, so it does its best to oblige.
You see Marrakesh roof tops, the old and the new
Where are we now? In the Ben Youssef Medersa in Marrakech
God that is complex
Now we are in the nineteenth century Palais Bahia much of which was built for a very fat Vizier
I suppose he just lay fatly on his couch and stared at his beautiful ceilings
Strong stuff, like Turkish delight you can only take so much, before it cloys
This is by way of a palate cleanser from the souk
And this is to remind ourselves of reality.
Disgusting but colourful.
I hate to tell you this but this is Casablanca
Yes really, I am sorry
And this is the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca
Yes but post dates the film
It was built over six years finished in 1993 and 35,000 craftsmen were involved
Now back to Marrakech, but to the new town which is ugly noisy and filthy and favoured by the rich who live in gated communities of exclusive nothingness .
The honourable exception being Yves St Laurent who lived in the former house of the French artist Jacques Majorelle and restored the magical garden which is now kept by the foundation.
It’s not all Yves St Laurent styling, the palm trees do belong
and the light struts its stuff
Now one last trip, this time into the High Atlas , then I will leave you in peace
Proper Berber land
And a market
So what did I buy?
Well this is what he was selling,vintage Berber stuff ( it matched up with stuff displayed in the Berber museum in Marrakech)
So I bought myself this, so that I could pound my spices in the same bowl as another woman from a very different harder life, did sixty years ago. Its made from cedar and is as hard as nails.
And there is more I have a crate coming …
If you beg me I will show you, but at the moment it’s still bumping its way by road to London (at least, I hope it is) Otherwise its a job for Interpol
First impressions matter so pimp your homepage.
The Look you Need
Look at all these websites, all professionally generated with a corporate feel. That is not the way to go. You want to look individual.
You want to look personal, one-off.
Flashy effects such as scrolling pictures look corporate and distract. People have come for craft. Craft is about contemplation
Your site should quietly offer clarity and lovely things. Thats it, nothing more.
Do nothing because that’s what other sites do.
When people buy craft they are buying two things: the craftsman’s way of life and the crafts piece.
That means you have two things to sell, two routes to take on your home page.
Here a maker takes the product route . It is beautifully simple, it gambles on the viewer being sufficiently attracted to the product displayed to click-through to find more and buy something
Here the maker plays the craftsman / lifestyle card beautifully. This is the central picture on his homepage .
The hope of the maker route is that the visitor will want to plug into the romance of the craftsman’s life by buying a piece of their work. You are hoping for an emotional connection which will predispose the visitor to search for something they can buy.
The risk of this approach is that the visitor may be impatient to see the product and see pictures of the maker as an unnecessary diversion.
Of course you can mix the two approaches but if you do, you spread the appeal, but dilute the power of your message.
If what you are doing is complicated, you need to explain your offer on your homepage. But keep it simple.
Focus & Organise
You cannot have a decent homepage unless you are completely clear what you want it to achieve.
The visitor has arrived, they are looking at that first page. What do you want them to do next?
There should only be text, image and links which lead to your chosen goal.
All communication has to be swift. Your visitors have butterfly minds, they alight very briefly, you have to be quick to catch them.
Say who you are and what you do.
If your work covers different areas offer defined pathways into each area. Mixing media makes a site look like a jumble sale, get it sorted so the visitor arrives and chooses.
Answer the questions your visitors came with. Think from the outside in. What you need to cover depends on what you are offering . Essentially your job is not to persuade people to buy but to offer sufficient information for them to make a decision.
It’s fine to have scroll down on your homepage but make sure the main whack of communication is on that first frame, also that it is obvious there is more to see by scrolling.
Every single word on your Home page has to earn its living.
Cut the inane ”wood is perfect or special for any occasion” the sort of thing that sounds good but means nothing
Don’t tell visitors why they need your stuff as in “the perfect wedding present”. They are already open to having it or they wouldn’t be visiting your website.
Don’t balance out sentences. Good web copy is staccato. Visitors are not committed to reading your every word but the fewer there are, the closer they will be to reading it all.
Watch out for a dodgy stance like those Christmas round robins which change person. Don’t use “we” you are not BMW. “We” to you sounds stronger, but to the visitor it sounds evasive.
Don’t self praise, it’s not going to work
Clarity is hugely reassuring to buyers It makes them feel you are someone who knows what they are doing and are easy to deal with and honest.
You can explain yourself in very few words here the main text is simply
” Carol Saunderson
An Artist in the Landscape.
Abstract Landscape Painter, Rural Dweller, Lover of Modernist Art and Design”
Nothing showy but enough to place the artist. It’s a bit repetitive but it makes sure we get it and the repetition is in different parts of the page. The simplicity and calm gets us ready to look at her pictures.
Too Many Links
The cost of putting zillions of links is your visitor blithely goes off in your least desired direction.
Forget about getting up the rankings by having lots of links, just stay around and you rise like scum. Chasing rankings is something that is sold hard by the marketeers but that’s what they are selling. But don’t bother, two seconds later and the rules change and you have slithered back down. Much better make sure that when a visitor does arrive they are herded firmly in the direction you wish.
Don’t link with social sites on your homepage that benefits only the owners of those sites. Of course they tell you to but it is simply a way in which to lose your sale and boost their visitors.
Web surfers jump about like scalded cats hitting links because they caught their eye, so what if they follow you on Twitter, that is not going to fill the fridge is it?
Before you consider images, consider space. Books have great big margins so that they are comfortable to read, websites are the same.
Space > calm
Calm > contemplation
Contemplation > desire
If you were selling printer ink you don’t need space, you need low prices and an instant sale mechanism. If you are selling a piece of craft you need to slow the world down, make it feel rested and offer your lovely object. Space and pictures of nature, the craftsman lost in the creative process are your workhorses,
Mind your images don’t clutter your page, keep it all carefully focused. Home pages are about sacrifice, less is certainly more.
Revisit Rejuvenate Rethink
Every time you up load product you should take a long hard look at your home page. Is it still the best you can do?
For web designers look at http://www.redgreenblue.co.uk/ 5-6 pages, with no shop, costs from £250 They made the first two pictured in this post
Free starter web host look at http://www.create.net/ Brighton based and so far only heard postive things about them
Critical Eye Offer
If you would like a private review of your website’s home page then fill in the contact form . Its £15 a throw. I will take a quick look, make sure that I have something useful to say, then email you a Paypal request for payment which means you can use your credit or debit card Once your money is my money I will send you a brilliant email explaining the changes I think you should make.
But give me your comments here, the same as usual as you often say things which make the post better.
How ever perfect your workspace
However beautifully equipped you are
You are on your own when it comes to creativity
You can’t buy it
You can’t learn it
Its the Elephant in your workroom
Do Craftspeople need to be creative?
Nope, you don’t. Lots aren’t
Enjoyment in making things does not make you creative. Many craftspeople are attracted to repetition and want nothing more than to run quietly along in their groove. Their skills increase over time and they can have a good business producing well crafted objects ”The public wants it, I make it” They may introduce variations in terms of new colour-ways or sizes but they see no reason to reinvent the wheel.
However there is a different sort of crafts person, the artist-craftsman, who is driven by the desire to make something more and more exceptional. These run on creative energy, they are volatile and vulnerable to its whims. Their heart is always in the next piece. This article is for you guys
Accept that creativity is destructive and wasteful
Creativity wastes huge amounts of time. You just have to accept that most good ideas turnout to be bad ones. But you have to try them out to find out if they are any good.
Be careful not to dismiss try outs too quickly.
You are trying to reproduce something in your head. There will be a disappointing gap between the imagined and the real, but the result could be truly worthwhile even though it is not what you meant
Many creatives run on a depressive cycle, the low tending to herald a creative surge.
You need to accept that and block any negative actions at your low point.
Its pointless to drive on through a low, better take a break, it just needs waiting out, not fighting, as your subconscious brain is really busy. The low is a way of allowing it to concentrate.
Think of creativity as a lover; when it arrives you drop everything and serve it . It is an opportunity.
When you are making and you have a ‘what if ?’ thought, let it in, try it out, expect disappointment, but it just might open a different door ‘by misdirections finding directions out’ that leads to a real step forward
Don’t judge, just get on with it
Judging needs different skills than creating and its really important to give your new born space and respect
American creativity business coach Tom Monahan said that you shouldn’t try to test the validity of an idea in its fragile early stages, all new ideas have flaws. If you judge too quickly you drag down the whole creative process. Look for what is good about it
Your judgement can be behind the creative curve. Sometimes American Expressionist painter Philip Guston found himself painting what he had destroyed five years earlier because when it first appeared he was not ready to accept it.
Yeah this is the bit you think I can’t deliver but I can, watch me. Some of it might be placebo stuff ( you think it helps so it does)
Here’s some wacky stuff. try to break out of the norm it helps to unrestrict the mind . So an oddly lined notebook frees you up.
Absolute silence hinders creativity, research shows coffee shop noise at no higher than 70 decibels is perfect. You can get it here and I have been using it to write this and its great.
Research also shows that dimming the lights makes you feel safe so more ready to take risks
Don’t take responsibility for creative outcomes –let your imagination entertain you, with something unexpected.
Let projects stew, don’t try and think about solutions directly. They have a way of growing in the dark.
Trying to control and direct deadens what you are trying to achieve. For Gods sake forget the need to sell that’s the cyanide pill of creativity.
You can’t grow as a artist-craftsman without exposing yourself to visual stimulus and Nature alone will not do. You are not a gardener, you are making something man made.
You must expose yourself to the past of your speciality and the contemporary best makers.
You also need to be contrary. If you respond to nature, then walk the city streets. Leave your comfort zone. Bump start your thoughts.
Go to the exhibitions that leave you spaced out and mystified, that make you feel as if you are in a vacuum of something bigger than you.
Seek out unexpected experiences, altering daily routines, abandoning the well travelled neural pathways
Do as many courses as you can afford, adding new techniques to your skill set.
Creativity belongs right across your work. Its not just about product but also about marketing, display, websites; the whole gamut.
Being creatively driven means you assume that everything you touch is up for improvement, you need to look and re look. Sometimes you change something and realise it was better before. That is the cost of always trying to drive things forward.
You must spend time trying to come up with the right questions. What do you need to sort? Forget the solution achieve absolute clarity on the problem. Also look for the assumptions and challenge them.
Here’s an example:
A maker’s problem is they need to create a reliable low cost market stall product to add to their product mix
They examine the fundamentals of that task. One of the assumptions is that the new product must use low cost materials. But what if you turned that on its head and used high cost materials but very little labour so you could make ten in an hour instead of five? Suddenly your creative energy is working in a new and exciting place.
Lone maker and Creativity
Business works with creative teams. Craftspeople mostly don’t have that comfort.
Do not ask your friends and family for opinions, they are terribly unlikely to be truthful or informed.
Seek friendships ( proper ones) with other craftspeople and artists, but paddle your own canoe.
Be an understanding and sympathetic boss to yourself .
Dismiss self doubt on principle.
If you spent all day trying out a new idea that didn’t work consider you had a particularly hard working day, when things work out it feels like play. Just don’t turn it into a melodrama of failure. Its just another working day.
How is it for You?
Creativity makes me hungry, distracted, thirsty, cold, wound up.
I like to approach it at arms length, I collect elements for a post in my ipad notes. I don’t bother about form or headings I just jam it down. I don’t read any of it until I can’t think of any more.
Then I read the stuff and try to see what sections would contain what I have. Then off to Google images to see what could work .
Then its out of creative and into judgement mode putting it all together.
What about you, how do you work it?
Want to see how you come out on a creativity test then try this one
Listen to artist Philip Guston talking for two mins on video about how his paintings emerge here
Check out what sort of crafts person stereotype you think you are here
Twitter is a flighty beast so your first task is to master it
So respect it
Decide what you want it to do
Recognise what your readers want from it
If you secretly think Twitter is for air heads Think again. It’s where you keep abreast of the world when you are in a hurry. It has levels, but much is deadly serious eg @BBC Breaking News. It’s a place for people power; a place to vent; a place to inform and a place to be funny. It often works as a sign post to what is worthwhile and of interest. It’s egalitarian. So stop being snooty and try to get good at it.
What do you want Twitter to do for you?
Companionship and advice of other crafters
Keep my existing buyers connected
Persuade local people to come and buy
Have a say on issues that matter to me and my work
Drive people to my online selling place
Can Twitter supply?
Twitter can do all of the above but you must hone some of your posts to your goals and keep reasonably focused.
Readers do not entirely share your goals. They really don’t want to read about your product daily but if they find you good company they will accept a thin trickle of your self promotion.
Think of Twitter as a social event. You can’t walk up to your target tell them what you want them to hear and walk away. You have to do all the chit-chat to slip in the core message, otherwise they will avoid you in future
It’s not about big follower numbers, it’s about the quality and suitability of your audience.
Some people follow you only to get you to follow them. No actual reading of tweets is happening.
Some are robot triggered ( set up to follow anyone who uses their target word in a message)
If you seem to be posting into a deathly void, don’t despair. Twitter is an iceberg. Most people read and don’t respond unless they are personally addressed
Some people just use Twitter as a way of reading your latest blog posts expecting you to post the link.
Growth will just happen. Add your Twitter address here and there, but never on your online shop. Never ever send people away from your shop.
Twitter is fickle. It is low commitment. Your task is attention seeking, while seeming not to be.
Frankly don’t bother, life is too short
Twitter’s job for the craftsman is to be a kind of rope bridge slung across the abyss to keep your business in focus for customers and fellow craftspeople. If it feels helpful, it probably is
Tweeting dos and don’ts
Be outspoken. Share your real opinions, not just fluffy pink kitty chat.
You want to be remembered and nice is bland is unmemorable.
If people feel akin to you they will respond to your product.
React, be current. As in Good morning…
Don’t run endless @ conversations which exclude
Happy Tweet when drunk but never ever Anti ones
If a tiny corner of your mind says maybe this is a bit risky then Listen and do not send
Never picture product without price and dimension
Assume people will want to know. That confidence spreads to buyers
Questions work well and draw in the lurking silent
Don’t offer a diet of undigested links
Twitter needs to be instant gratification
Loose the offers and freebies for followers
You make great stuff so act as if you do
Don’t re-tweet other people’s praise of you
It’s already out there in the Tweetisphere doing good
Re-tweeting it looks needy and boastful
Do punch over your weight on who you follow so you will learn to Tweet well
Don’t follow for a follow that is defeatist.
Check their tweets, only follow if they amuse and interest you
Don’t hog people’s timeline or they will get sick of you
Don’t make those awful Follow Friday lists
Why would your followers check them out because you list them, you are not the Dali Lama.
Use Twitter in its own right, as an end in itself, not as a clearing station
Don’t link up with Facebook, keep it live
Don’t welcome new followers, just reply if they tweet you
as those welcome lists look self-congratulatory and are a waste of your followers ‘ time
The core sell on Twitter is to direct followers to new stock online
“Fantastic collection of knitted teapots ready now (link)”
No gushing with !!! No little girly meaningless xxx because it is inane and insincere.
Here is a good Twitter slice You have from (bottom) question, then selling, then being current
Here is a totally brilliant Twitter slice, brilliant because its me
From bottom up
You have opinion and being current
then personal engagement,
then intro of the product( ie my advice)
then the disingenuous repeating of the pitch
Hopefully it is gently done and recognising that my Tweets should seem a mirror of me
Eg of a great Tweet : “gloriously melting pig cheeks” @NigelSlater it has the man and his message
Another Tweet hero is @hannahmcandrew a Scottish slipware potter with her “flip, fliperty, flip” she has constructed an accident prone, potter struggling to keep abreast of the demands and difficulties of her craft. Which is a wonderful pretext for showing us lots of product. She is very weak on dimensions and price though
Now you know how to add that vital T you need a couple handyman tricks to maintain your account
follow @support as that tells you when Twitter is sick and updates you on changes
If your Twitter is hacked
CHANGE your PASSWORD immediately
You do that by clicking on the Gear icon on the top right of your screen
Click Password from the menu on the left and put in new password
If your account has been suspended because Twitter suspects you were hacked,
visit Twitter support to fill out a form to regain access.
Once you regain control of your account Delete the spurious posts
you delete them by going to your Profile, hovering over the offending tweet and clicking Delete
Do everything you can to warn people what has happened so that you can minimise the damage and tell them how to put it right if they are infected by clicking on the phishing link
Do I Have to Tweet?
Actually no you don’t.
If you get it right and enjoy it, then do, but it’s really for good writers so if you are a great craftsperson and a useless writer then walk away from Twitter
Doing it badly will not help you at all.
You can’t Tweet for Success you can only Tweet for a bit more attention and its “softly, softly, catchee monkey” all the way.
Now that should be your Twitter all sorted if you have more questions then ask away in the comments.
If you want to know where Tweeting fits in read this post Online brick by brick
This is the stuff I say over and over again when you ask me to take a look at your online shop.
If you have a suspicion your online shop needs a bit of attention
Heres your toolbox:
Take good pictures ( yeah, yeah, you know that) Anything less than good, is a total waste of everyone’s time
Your lead picture must make it obvious what the product is, so if its five cards for the price, fan to show five
Don’t be too arty . Pictures, are tiny before click-through, so less styling, more product
Don’t ruin the look of your pictures with clumsy mean-spirited watermarks
This is the cool way to keep tabs on your pictures
At least one pic should be product in use I have to see the necklace worn, to know how it falls
Don’t take pictures that date so no snowy backgardens. Unless you’re keen to show how long its been unsold
The first two words are crucial as the headline gets shortened before click-through
Don’t duplicate what the picture tells the viewer in the headline
Here, the fact that it is a handkerchief, has been entirely lost.
The headline only tells us what the picture does
Keep text short, people are skimming
Don’t say anything that people can see for themselves
You must have size and what it is made of
A brief bit of attitude breaks you out of the pack
The Cameron hankie seller says ‘Keep them close to your heart in your top pocket, or blow your nose all over their face to make yourself feel much better!’
Write as if purchase is a foregone conclusion, no loser statements like “ pop in again sometime“
Don’t suggest use, as in ” a perfect wedding gift” as that limits, not extends, your market
Please no “smoke free, pet free, anthrax free”
Don’t emphasise packaging or insurance It does not reassure, it reminds buyers of risks
The word unique is banned and ! is on the suspicious objects list
Don’t go into how its made detail because it suggests to customers that they could make it themselves
Don’t complicate by offering custom-made options.
Remember that people click-through on several items so repeat yourself as little as possible
Don’t say anything apologetic or amateur
such as “my nan taught me to crochet, I have always liked making things” (Clearly not money)
Do not mention any medical problems
Don’t try to be the reader’s best friend
Don’t direct the visitor anywhere else of yours online. They are at your shop, let them buy
Every word on your online site should be there to sell, your profile is no exception
Buyers respond to a confident talented expert. It is a commercial transaction
“Hello my name is …I am a wife, mother, nana and an obsessive crafter…I am self-taught which has resulted in numerous mistakes, but hey you know what they say ” you have to break a few eggs to make an omelette”. I persevere and more often than not I am pleased with the results”
I promise its not made up. It sounds like Alcoholics Anonymous. It makes out that the maker is an obsessive hit and miss amateur.
How are you getting on? Ready to face a few more running repairs?
My advice on pricing is here Pricing for Failure
Round prices up, no odd amounts, that’s for supermarkets
Consider doing dollars on Etsy for the US market and £ on Folksy
Never put SOLD OUT as that suggests mass production.
Dont make postage free, make it inexpensive and simple
Don’t put off international buyers unnecessarily by making them contact you
Hide some of the postage cost in the item price
It is easy to loose a sale mid process if the postage cost looks greedy or out of proportion to the purchase value
You may be able to charge a flat rate across your buyers and come out smiling
The US are used to high postal charges.
Take a view on compensation. Sometimes it is better to reimburse for lost packages rather than always pay for the track and insure route. Undeliverable post mostly comes back to sender in the end.
Signed for can be a nightmare for the recipient
Consider using Royal Mail online to print out postage but you need to buy postal scales and ask at the post office for a roll of Customs Declaration labels.
Sales don’t help See Special Offers and other Disasters
Don’t put in vouchers or freebie gifts with your deliveries. It makes the buyer feel they over paid.
Don’t plague your buyers, they are busy people.
Reams of conditions are pointless. Don’t try to manage a complaint before its happened
When something goes wrong be generous, suppress your suspicions. If the mistake is yours, say so and apologise.
Give yourself time to respond to orders. You will not always be in a position to post immediately
Don’t try to prove you are honest and trustworthy, it looks suspicious
You need to offer unity of product Split your offer into different shops if it doesn’t sit comfortably together.
You need a recognisable style running through your work, you can change themes by offering collections
Clear out non-sellers regularly The ones that in your heart you know don’t cut it. It should be your show case and far too public a place to cheap off your second-rate.
Regularly review the way you make your list searchable. Kill categories with less than three entries
Pay attention how you upload new product. You need that first page to reflect your general offer.
Here the gift tokens have been uploaded en bloc and so dominate the product
Some advice given by the site may benefit the site owner’s interests more than yours.
If they suggest free postage or lots of mutual liking and treasuries between sellers what is that really doing for you?
Promotion of your shop on their site essentially promotes them more than you. If you ask a customer where did you buy that? They say Etsy / Folksy etc not you. All the e-commerce sites are leaky. There are trap doors all over the place where your customer vanishes to another shop.
Using these outlets is a step toward your own website which will not be leaky. See Online Brick by Brick
Thats it !
Goodness what an improvement. Do recommend this garage to your fellow car owners
By the way if you want to get Handmade Lives emailed Extra Pickings then sign up
Also if you want a proper private review of your Empire think about a £50 Meal Deal ( its me, but you pay)
There is something I want you to do.
So I am going to show you lots of pictures of Pandas
This is you, a lonely craftsperson trying to make your way in a world
where people seem keen to keep their money in their pockets
Sometimes it feels like you are not winning and you could do with some help
What if you could get some help for free,
that would be amusing and easy to understand
and would only waste your time to make you smile
but would sometimes be helpful
And would make you feel less isolated and not the only craftsperson facing difficulties
So this thing that I am suggesting, you would give it a try wouldn’t you?
It’s really quite nice
In fact it definitely is
Its called Extra Pickings
It comes to your mail box
It has the pick of Handmade Lives’ contributions
Which have not appeared here
As you have better things to do than chase round after Handmade Lives all day to see what I said
So what do you need to do ?
Just click here and Extra Pickings will be yours
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