Monday, November 12, 2012

Strategy for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

I've decided to really try an participate in the upcoming Black Friday and Cyber Monday foray.  Frankly, I typically just depend on the "Holiday Spirit" and a few online sales to get my site numbers up.  But I think it's time I offer my customers something more.  
Here's my strategy.  I'm going to offer Free Gift Wrapping, Free Gift Card, and Free Gift 2nd Party Shipping.  I'm also going to offer, for a price, Upgraded Shipping.  
After all, that would entice me if I were trying to find a gift online.  
After doing some Etsy Blog and Forum reading, I realized that tweaking some of my photos may not be a bad idea either. Some of those photos were taken 4 years ago, with a fairly cheap digital camera.  Why not put my best foot, and onesie, forward.  
As if that weren't enough, I keep getting requests to do more and more breeds of dogs.  Hey, I'm thankful.  My only problem is that there aren't enough hours in a day.  
My dogs are overrunning Rhoadworks.  Somehow I need to work them into their own little niche.  I'm thinking that an upscale Pet Boutique may be interested in selling them.  
After Thanksgiving, and Christmas..and when those extra hours show up.. I'll pop my head in a few dog boutiques and give my Dogs a whirl.    Here are my latest..
  Yes.. I do a kitty here and there.  

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Craft Fair Memories

I am going to be in a craft fair in November, and I'm so excited.  Currently, I do all my sales off my Rhoadworks.Etsy site.  And I am addicted to checking my email, and touching base with my customers via email.  After all these years (6 years plus) I still love the process of designing on the computer, printing, cutting out, and pressing.  But..
I miss the personal contact with customers.  There's nothing like sitting behind a table of your wears and watching people stroll by.  As it happens, some of my designs are humorous.

To see folks smile or giggle at my designs is like getting a pat on the back for me.
When someone says "Awh! That's adorable.", they've just given me confirmation that what I'm doing is worthwhile.

If any of you reading this are thinking about getting into business with what you've created.  Try selling it at craft fairs first.  It's a good, and inexpensive way to get feedback on your product.  I made the mistake of starting out with my own web page.  Most of the time it's wasted money, and not necessary.
I can't say enough good things about Etsy.  After hearing "what store do you sell these in?" over and over, I decided to sell on line.  And I actually do sell my onesies in a few gift shops.  I continue to be amazed at how far reaching my market is.  I've sold to customers, through Etsy, to England, Australia, Canada, and even Hong Kong and Mayalsia.

November can't get here quick enough.  I'm ready to set up my table, put out my onesies and enjoy the show.  The sales are so simple.  Customers like what they see, hand you some money, and you literally hand them their order.  No shipping envelopes or postage.  I can't wait.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Just Two Cute

I was inspired to do a Batman and Robin themed onesie set.  Needless to say the Batman part was easy.  But I never really paid much attention to what Robin wore.  Sorry Robin.  So, when I looked up images, I was happy to find out how very simple it was.
That black circle with a large capital R inside it, isn't that easy to do.  Most R fonts look lopsided inside a circle.  So, I basically made an R myself.

When the simple iconic designs are put on my black and red onesies, they come to life.  And how cute they are together.  

I wish I had a set of little twins to put them in.  (Not to raise.. just to photograph..ha)

Here is the set along with my other Twin designs.  I hope my customers like them, because I sure enjoyed making them.
 Twins are just TWO cute
Like these? Then check out the rest of my twin designs on my site.  

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Cinco de Mayo Story plus one more Dog.

Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone.  I remember on this day, in years past, arrangements would be made to meet all our friends at the nearest Mexican restaurant.  We'd gather to talk, party and drink Margarita's.  I know there is a much more historic meaning to this day.  Especially if you're of Mexican descent.  Interesting how society markets holidays. 
Several years ago, I decided to make a Cinco de Mayo design to put on my onesies.  I used my little baby face, added a mustache on him, and put the Mexican flag in the background.  I thought it looked cute.  For a couple of years I sold the design pretty well. 

Then one year a customer bought the design, but asked if I'd correct the flag.  The color sequence should be Green, White, then Red.  Mine was Red, White, Green.  Seems I'd been selling (and my customers had been buying) a Cinco de Mayo design with the French Flag on it!    How embarrassing.  
I immediately corrected the flag.  This year I offered my design about two weeks before May 5th.  I sold exactly zero.  You never know..  Maybe I should change the flag back??

Speaking of all things French.  I recently got a request from a customer to do a French Bulldog.  What a cute breed.  I did some research and found that these pups come in several different color variations.  
My customer sent me a picture of her French Bulldog.  He was black and so cute.  It was really fun working on him.  
Now I want to get busy and do another one.  Maybe a white one.  Or two tone.. anyway, here's how he turned out.  

Monday, April 2, 2012

Rhoadworks Welcomes it's first Cat!

It had to happen. You can't have Dogs without Cats.  I really don't know what I was waiting for.  Finally, a customer requested that I do a cat design for her.  I thought a cat would be somewhat more difficult to do than a dog.  What was I thinking?  Cats don't vary as much as dogs do.  There are no Miniature, Standard, or Toy cats. (are there?)  Cats  ears are typically always pointed and up. Not so with dogs.   
When I finished with my Tabby cat, I was thrilled.  I loved it.  I really can't wait to do more.  My hope is that all the cat lovers will find me.  
I have to mention my newest dog.  A Jack Russell terrier.  He turned out so cute.  There are SO many dog breeds out there. Seems as I get one breed done, I realize how many there are left to do.
I met a new friend yesterday while doing yard work.  She has three Lhasa Apso's. (am I spelling that right?)  
While she was talking to me, I was thinking "I haven't done a Lhasa yet!!"  And each of her dogs were a completely different color.  Which one to choose?  Always a problem.
Again, I have to thank my customers for their inspiration.  And thanks for being patient as I decide which kitty or doggie to do next. 


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Etsy Kids Welcomes Rhoadworks

I'm now part of a new group of artisans, Etsy Kids.  This group specializes in all things hand made for children and babies.  A perfect fit for me. 
One of the stores welcomed me into the group today  The store is called Kookie Critters.  If you need a great gift for a soon to be snaggle tooth child, this is the place to go.
Sherman The Tooth Fairy PillowThese little "critters" are adorable.  And they can be customize, too.
There several adorable designs to choose from.  Sherman (pictured) is just one.  Check them out at
I'm going to spend the rest of the afternoon working on a couple of donation projects.  One is for Breast Cancer awareness (Giveaway for the Cure on Etsy Kids) and the other is a Yorkie rescue (  Both, very good causes. 
Here are two designs that were asked for by customers.  The Cockapoo I originally did in Black.  She asked for a Brown Cockapoo, and I love it.                       The Poop Happens is sold on a white onesie and the "Poop" is Black.  But to make it show up on the requested Brown onesie, I did it in a 'poopy' green.  Now I like it better than the original!  Thank you to all my imaginative customers!                                    

Sunday, March 11, 2012

I Wish I were a Salesman

It's gotten to the point where my supply is much greater than the demand. In other words, I need more sales.

There are people out there that possess a quality that I wish I had. Namely, Guts. Why is it that I can draw, paint, turn a ramdom idea into a product, and produce a fairly nice online store. But when it comes to facing someone and asking them to buy my product. I'm guttless.

In the beginning, my sister and I used to sell our onesies at craft shows. We set up our onesie display and spent a couple of days watching the public parade by. Moms, Dads, Grandparents, Aunt and Uncles loved our designs. I'm proud to say that we always out sold everyone around us. And we always had a steady group of people stopping to look and laugh at some of our more humorous sayings. (Poop Happens and Night, Night, See you in Two Hours!).

At the time I thought selling our wares would always be easy. The computer is wonderful. I've truly loved selling my onesies through my online store. It's frankly amazing.

But nothing beats a brick and mortor store. Where people can come in, pick up, touch, and feel my garments. I do have my onesies and tees in several stores and gift shops. And to get them in more stores it means I need to physically walk in and talk to some buyers and owners. Why is that so hard for me?

I love my product. Is the fear of rejection so scary? Yes...for me it is.

I think that every artist whether they admit it or not has a part of them in their work. So a rejection of their work is, in a small way, a personal rejection.

So, wish me luck. I'm going to try and put myself out there this Spring. After all, they say when one window closes, another one opens.

Here are some of my latest designs.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Fresh New Year = Fresh Designs

Happy New Year everyone!  Am I the only one who is SO HAPPY the Holidays are over?!  This year we traveled, and parts of the Holidays were hectic.  Don't get me wrong..I loved seeing grand kids and family.  But boy was I glad to get home to my boring routine.  I'm sure it won't be long before I'm complaining about that very routine!
I actually feel like it is a fresh new year. Spring is a great thing to look forward to. And everyday it gets closer.   I feel inspired to come up with new designs, and ideas.  There are always going to be a handful of designs that seem to me timeless.  But I want to come up with a few more top sellers.
There are a sprinkle of holidays coming up.  Valentines Day and Easter.  Then Mother's Day and Father's Day. I'm going to dust off the designs for these holidays and bring them out early.
Oh..I almost forgot!  And this is important.  Because of the sales of my Dog Brother and Sister sales, I am able to donate $206.00 to the SPCA!  I can't tell you how happy that makes me feel.  Paying the bills that keep my site afloat is nice.  And frankly, using some of the profit to buy an airline ticket here and there is great.  But being able to donate to a good cause, makes it all worth while.
Thank you to all my customers for that.  Everyone enjoy this fresh new year!