Friday, August 26, 2011

Wake up and smell the coffee Miss Pickle!

This landed on my doorstep today and boy did I wake up and smell the coffee!

I have known this day was coming for quite some time, but I must admit that this morning when I finally saw it there, it actually felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. A decision HAD to be made once and for all!

What the hell is this British twit going on about I hear you ask. A hint – these are boxes and boxes of frames that I have to fill with lot’s and lot’s of scrumptious Cheeky Pickle designs, and  to be finished in time for the Christmas markets....the question I have been shying away from for quite some time now is “HOW” on earth am I going to be able to do it?

Since starting my Facebook page, October of last year, Cheeky Pickle has gone from (as my husband USED to call it) a “hobby business” to quite a profitable little enterprise. Slowly over the last ten months my “fan numbers” have increased and with that, sales have started to creep up also, which don’t get me wrong, is bloody fantastic and I'm on cloud cuckoo land!

My dream of working from home, being able to look after my children, do something I LOVE....AND make money from it has finally come true. However, over the last five months I have seen a massive increase in my custom orders, and in all honesty I am now struggling to keep up with the constant demand. The truth of the matter is, I, like lots of little Facebook businesses and WHAM’s out there am one person and one person only. I won’t list all the things all us FB businesses have to do all in a day, as I really don’t want to appear ungrateful. But let’s just say that at the moment, the little child free time I have is being spent - 80% e mails and 20% physically making, designing and crafting. Which doesn't seem to make much sense to me. What do you think??

O.K, I know what you are all thinking “here we go, another one who thinks she’s got too big for her boots and no longer needs to do custom orders” My answer to you is... far from it! As I’ve said before, I really do LOVE custom orders. They stretch my mind, make me think about doing things I haven’t thought about doing before and push me out of my comfort zone, all of which I have my gorgeous customers to thank. And I have to add at this point, that I have “cyber met” (if that’s a real phrase, probably is now a days!) some of the nicest people through facebook, customers and business page holders alike.

Let’s just say I haven’t got too big for my boots, rather, my boots are starting to feel a little heavy at the moment!

With Christmas markets around the corner and Christmas items to design, make and stock up on, I have had to make the huge decision of PUTTING ON HOLD custom orders for the next couple of months. There, I said it quickly, so it wouldn’t hurt too much (like pulling off a plaster!!)

I hope you can understand where I’m coming from with this and are not too disappointed with me. I’m pretty good at multi tasking, but like most mums out there, I’m certainly not Superwoman.

 As the great Arnie once said – “I’ll be back”, but in the meantime, I will hold a few pre Christmas Facebook and Madeit sales. Hopefully with plenty of new and exciting designs for you to buy. Also look out for a newly designed website, where, fingers crossed, you will also be able to purchase my goodies.

Please keep following me on Facebook as this is where i will be showing off all my new ideas there first.

Finally (thanks for staying with me, i know i do go on a bit...)Thanks to all of you for your continued support, it's so lovely when, as a business, you post something on FB and get all these instant, lovely, positive, supportive posts in return. It's what has helped me get more confident in what i do and in return, has helped me produce better and better designs.

Thank you!


  1. great post Ali and well said I must say! My sales have started to creep up recently which is fabulous but I must admit I'm starting to struggle to keep up with my orders now too. However, I will soldier on for now as you are my inspiration that I can do it and I can manage my time efficiently. I think being realistic about what you can manage is definitely a good thing and what you are doing is a great idea. No matter what though, I totally agree that making some money whilst being at home with your bubs is a perfect arrangement. Can't wait to see the website too. Good luck honey!

  2. Thanks George. I'm just panicking at the moment as i know just how long market preparations can take. I have two really big ones in Nov and Jan. Both of which i know i could easily sell out. I did this one last year just before XMas and people were queing up to buy stuff, it was manic. I could say no to the markets but they really are good ones and they are very, very hard to get into. So i certainly don't want to annoy and mess them around! I also found it really hard to work in the school holidays around the children being home full time and there was that constant guilt of not playing with them. Greta is also going for an op in September, so i will be out of action for two weeks then.. I will go back to the custom orders most definitely, but i must try different avenues at the moment until i get past the XMas crazy period. I don't know about you but i find orders quite stressful. My customers are just lovely and always say they are willing to wait for what i design. But if i look and see a list of 20 orders, i feel really bad that all these people are having to wait for me to pull my finger out! I am loving all this though George. Good Luck with it all and keep getting those numbers up. Like i said in the blog, the more you do the better your work gets. xxxxx

  3. Good on you! Do what you need to do to get on top of things, it also means you are focusing on showcasing designs that are 'your' style and not just your customer's taste which can sometimes be different to the vision you have for your business. People will wait, your work is brilliant!

  4. Thanks for that. It's good to hear positive comments from other business pages. Well i suppose we shall have to wait and see what happens now i'm the captain of my own ship. Sink or swim, what do you think???