Welcome to the eighteenth issue of the Carolyn Hasenfratz Design and Carolyn's Stamp Store email newsletter, where you'll find articles and news for entrepreneurs, artists, craftspeople, and other creative people!
Some Commentary on Current Events
This is a time in our history, not only in the United States where I live but in many places all over the world when our thoughts are often occupied with economic uncertainty. Some have chosen to deal with the resulting anxiety by being passive and demanding that "they" do something to alleviate the situation. I've lived long enough to learn the hard fact of life that with the possible exception of a spouse, a parent or other close family member, no one else on this planet cares about what happens to you as much as you do. It's unrealistic to expect others to work harder for your own benefit than you are willing. If they appear to do so, it's because they are getting something in return that takes precedence over your welfare - power, perhaps?
This newsletter is billed as being for creative people. Usually creative people are categorized as visual artists, performing artists, writers and the like. Entrepreneurs are also creative people. If you think of a new product or a better way of doing something or see a need that no one else if filling, you are being creative. In some circles, being an entrepreneur is not only creative, it's downright subversive, because it promotes independence.
If you are blessed with the ability to create (and I believe everyone is to at least some degree), you have a built-in outlet for relieving your angst and you don't have to wait for someone else to act unless it's your own choice. Rejoice! When you exercise your creativity you are improving your own mental health because it always feels better to be in control of your own fate than to be helpless to the whims of others - and you are also doing something tangible to ameliorate the underlying situation. From the start this newsletter has been dedicated to helping you run your business better, save money or create something. You might consider these activities to be more than something you engage in to improve your own life - they are a duty to your fellow citizens! There are some working hard to motivate those who have nothing to contribute (or choose not to) to destroy the hard work of others. I believe our duty is to create instead - that's the reason that our creator, whoever you consider that to be, bestowed on us some of the power that was employed to bring us and the world we live in into existence.
Made in the USA
Readers of this newsletter and customers of Carolyn's Stamp Store live all over the world. I want people in every country to prosper. I don't subscribe to the view that if someone else has something, I necessarily have to have less - economics doesn't work like that. Business people in general WANT consumers to be able to afford their products, particularly people like me who sell something that is discretionary and not a necessity to live. Since I live in the USA, naturally the economic health of my own country is of primary interest. Although my store is a small one-person operation and can only make a tiny impact, I have always believed that it's better to do something than nothing, so I have made an effort to include as many American-made products in my catalog as possible. I don't think it's healthy to export all of our manufacturing overseas. It's not in our interests to lose the technology and skills. We need a diversity of jobs here. Everyone can't work at a chain store or a casino! There are always exceptions, but I believe that products made in the USA are less likely to be unsafe and the manufacturing process on average is much less harmful to the environment than in some other countries, due to our heavy regulations and litigious culture.
If you browse my product offerings you will see that not every product is made in the USA. There are situations where I have not yet found an American-made source. There are other instances in which I made an inquiry to the company to find out where their products were made and I was deceived and won't be reordering when the stock runs out. If I know the country of origin, I will list it in the description so you can make your own decision on how to spend your money.
I have recently added new U.S. made products from the following companies:
If you are a U.S. manufacturer, here are some web sites on which you can get listings to promote your business:
And don't forget the free directory I built for wholesalers, retailers and event promoters located in communities on Route 66 - www.sell66stuff.com!
Route 66 Sightings Released
Ghost Town Press announces the release of Route 66 Sightings, a collection of images from the portfolios of roadside photographers Jerry McClanahan, Jim Ross, and Shellee Graham. This beautiful coffee table book defines the Route 66 experience, telling the story of the road through six galleries of stunning photographs, each with its own tale to tell. Spanning thirty years, Sightings is a culmination of their individual and collective efforts as writers, photographers, and advocates of the legendary highway.
McClanahan and Ross are both accomplished highway historians and are widely published as photographers and writers.
Graham, whose Route 66 photo exhibition toured the US for over a decade, has been photographing the Mother Road since 1990. All three are multiple award winners.
"Sightings" will be available through the publisher, at local and on-line bookstores, and at gift shops along Route 66.
You are invited to attend a book signing at POPS in Arcadia, Oklahoma on October 29, 2011 from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm!
Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store:
Faux Postage Extravaganza
In this tutorial, you will learn to make Faux Postage using Faux Postage frames from the Carolyn's Stamp Store catalog. The finished simulated postage stamps can be used alone to decorate your mail or in a variety of projects including cards, shadow boxes and more.
Click here for Faux Postage Extravaganza.
If you prefer a multimedia version, click here!
Until next time,
Would you like to sign up for my newsletter so you can be notified when I have new products, articles, project ideas, or news to share with you?
Some Previous Newsletter Issues:
Volume 1, Number 3 - New Client Web Site Launched, Rubber Stamp Winner, Rubber Stamped Pillow Box Tutorial, Some Favorite Recipes
Volume 1, Number 4 - Upcoming Show Opening at Art St. Louis, Carolyn's "State of Your Web Site" Address
Volume 1, Number 5 - I Have Entered the Blogosphere, Does Banner Advertising Still Work?, Featured Craft Project: Petroglyph Card
Volume 1, Number 6 - Fall Art Walk, My Entry Into Social Media, Connections '08, Take One a Day For a Healthy Web Site, Featured Craft Project: Rubber Stamped Floral Mosaic Card
Volume 2, Number 1 - New Route 66 Association of Missouri Blog, Discovery Light, How to Install Google Sitemaps on Your Web Site, Show Off Your Art and Craft Projects, Carolyn's Stamp Store Wholesale Pricing, Featured Craft Project: Rubber Stamped Muslin Bag
Volume 2, Number 2 - The Green Issue, Content is Valuable: Repurpose It With Technology, What if you could choose to pay less?, Online Forms: Green, with Benefits, Featured Craft Project: Recycled Car Seat Bead Earrings
Volume 2, Number 3 - Send a Free Personalized Father's Day eCard, Software is Knowledge: Organize Your Collection, Carolyn's Stamp Store is on Facebook and Amazon.com, New Products Added to Carolyn's Stamp Store,
Featured Craft Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Retro Interlocking Card
Volume 2, Number 4 - Make this Holiday Personal, Get Your Emails Delivered, Finding Shows for Exhibiting Your Art and Crafts, New Recipes Added to Melt and Pour Soap Recipe Web Page, Carolyn's Stamp Store Adds New Designs to Catalog, New Addition to Pattern Library, Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Thank You Card
Volume 2, Number 5 - Webinar Wednesdays 1st Edition, "Help! I'm using so many applications I'm losing track of them all!", Tidbits from Carolyn's Inbox, Create an Indoor Water Garden, Carolyn's Stamp Store Adds New Products to Catalog, Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Convertible Necklaces
Volume 2, Number 6 - Webinar Wednesdays 4th Edition, Tidbits from Carolyn's Inbox, New Client Web Site Launched, Three Route 66 Web Sites Relaunched, Money Saving Ideas for Budget Conscious Crafters
Volume 3, Number 1 - Come See Me at Crestwood Court This Saturday, Who is in control of your online reputation?, Strategic Use of Social Network Applications, Route 66 Association of Missouri 21st Annual Motor Tour, The last thing I need is another hobby - so why am I starting a new one?, Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Small Journal With Pockets
Volume 3, Number 2 - Send a free Halloween eCard!, Design Influences Perception, Social Network Applications Cater to Deep Human Urges, Two Friends With New Ventures, Upcoming Webinar: Living in the Multi-Channel Mix, Upcoming Route 66 Association of Missouri Events, Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Card With Squares
Volume 3, Number 3 - Holiday Gift Suggestions, Webinar Resources Launches Mobile Christmas Storybook, Mobile Device Apps - Make the Outdoors More Fun and Bring New Customers to Your Business, Carolyn's Stamp Store Has It's First Ever Sale!, Carolyn's Stamp Store Adds New Products to Catalog and Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Inchies Holiday Card Holder Garland
Volume 3, Number 4 - Why Small Businesses Should Engage in Content Marketing, Haven't Taken the Social Media Plunge Yet?, What Are You Doing For Your Mobile Customers?, Tidbits from Carolyn's Inbox, Lots of Things to Do on Route 66, Webinar Wednesdays 2011 Series, Featured Project from Carolyn's Stamp Store: Making Printable Backgrounds for Stamping, Paper Crafts and Scrapbooking
Volume 3, Number 5 - QR Codes are Popping Up All Over, Carolyn's Trip to Amarillo, Webinar Resources Announces New Web Site Designed for Businesses Marketing on Route 66, Webinar Wednesdays - Blending Print and Mobile to Deliver Engaging Experiences