Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cleaning out my closet?

Hey everyone! I know I've been a little M.I.A., but I have been soo busy with work, side projects & the Holidays that I just haven't managed to find the time!! One of my New Year's resolutions is definitely going to be to keep up with my blog/Twitter/Facebook accounts better! :)

I wanted to take a break from talking about Lady Fleur and tell you about my Closet Sale idea! I had a MAJOR cleanup campaign last night and took out SO much clothes from my closet. Lots of them even still had tags!! Yikes! I always bring my clothes to Goodwill, but I feel like it's such a shame to let my nicer, hardly (if ever) worn clothes sell for 25 cents (mostly because I feel guilty that I paid for all this stuff and never even wore it)! We do have a place here called Plato's Closet that buys gently used, name brand clothing, but I've always had a bad experience with them! Even for new items with tags, they would try to offer me $3!! No sir! For that, I'd much rather give it away to someone that needs it. I've seen several other blogs do something like this and they seem to be pretty successful with it - I've even bought a dress from one before!

Just a few of the items I can think of off the top of my head are a pair of Abercrombie jeans I wore twice (literally), a beautiful black French Connection dress I wore maybe 3 times, lots of Ann Taylor, The Limited & Express tops (many with tags), and enough Forever 21 clothes to open a store! I was also thinking of getting rid of some purses/wallets, mostly Coach, if people were interested.

I was thinking that the easiest way to do it would be to post pictures of the items with a description, the original price I paid for them (or at least a close guesstimate,) and a suggested price, and let people contact me if they're interested! For payment, I would send out PayPal invoices so people can securely pay by credit card.

So what's your opinion of Blog Sales? Would you purchase something from me that you liked? Would a PayPal invoice and confirmed shipping make you feel confident enough to buy something from me, or is there a better way of going about it? Let me know! :)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

My First Show

As I mentioned in my previous post, I was preparing for my first craft show last Tuesday for a local woman's club's annual fundraiser event. I was so nervous & anxious for it, but I'm so glad I had the opportunity. The show turned out great - I learned so much, met some great people, and was one of the top sellers! I was certain that we were going to forget something, but we were actually well prepared! I know there's a few more things I need to get (ie, a BANNER!), but I did get lots of compliments on my table setup.

I was able to borrow a 1/2 mannequin from my day job to display how the shirts fit, and that was a HUGE help. I will definitely be investing in one of my own now. I tried to maximize the table space by using trays & cake stands to creatively display the shirts & notecards. I had some of my freelance designs on display as well, as well as an email sign up list & of course my business cards. Prices were displayed on the table as well as on some handmade tags I made for the shirts (that came out sooo cute, by the way!) Besides the sales, I made some great contacts, including a lady that runs a local gift shop that was interested in carrying my stuff!

Some of the surprises from the show were that the notecards weren't as big of a seller as I expected them to be. They really are my favorite item, and lots of people thought they were really cute, but I just couldn't make the sale on them! If you have any feedback on this, let me know, because it was kind of driving me crazy!! If there's something I need to adjust about them to make them more appealing, I would definitely like to know! Another surprise was that my new floral design was actually the biggest seller! I thought for sure the fleur de lis would be the big seller with the shirts, but they showed me! Everyone went nuts for the floral shirts!

So all in all, the show went well & I am so eager to do another one soon! I've been keeping my eyes open for opportunities and in the meantime I will be fine tuning my display and stocking up on my inventory!

In related news, I started a Facebook page for Lady Fleur and added lots more pictures from the show, so go check it out and add me! :) I also created a Twitter account that I'll be updating regularly with news & special promos, so I hope you'll follow me there as well! I'm excited about what's to come for Lady Fleur Designs, so thanks for all of your support!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Friday, November 6, 2009

Exciting Things Happening!

Do you ever go through a period where it seems like *everything* is going wrong and *nothing* seems to go your way?? Well I was definitely feeling that way these past couple of months - not really in a horrible I-can't-take-this-anymore kind of way, but more so a can't-a-sister-catch-a-break kind of way. Know what I mean?? Well, I'm glad to say that it seems like my hard work is starting to pay off and my luck may finally be turning around! *cross fingers*

First of all, I was given a wonderful opportunity to do my first showing of my Lady Fleur Design products this upcoming Tuesday, November 10th at Broadmoor United Methodist here in Baton Rouge. The GFWC Lagniappe Woman's Club is putting on their annual fundraiser event, "Fun Food & Fashion" and I will have my very own table! :) I've never done anything like this, so I am nervous, anxious, and very excited about the opportunity! I *love* Christmas markets (or any kind of market for that matter), so I think this will be loads of fun! I hope even if I don't make a whole lot of sales that it will at least be some good exposure for the brand. Baby steps, right? So if you're reading this Wednesday, November 11th and you saw me at the Market yesterday, welcome and thanks for your support! I hope you'll leave a message and say hi! :)

In other news, my work just got a whole lot easier, thanks to my brand new iMac! I was really struggling with my teensie tiny, slightly ancient laptop, so this really couldn't come at a better time. I know it will be so much easier to be productive and get organized with a newer, faster and bigger machine. I've had so many projects on my to-do list for the past few months, but I just couldn't find the motivation to come home and work on my poor old snail-paced laptop with its tiny screen and the tendency to crash *just* before I hit the save button. EVERY. TIME. I know good things are to come now for Lady Fleur Designs, so make sure to check back often! :)

Well, I'm off to prepare for Market (and admire my beautiful computer some more)! Hope you all have a great weekend!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Weekend Rewind: Fun AND Productivity??

So, as it turns out, I had a wonderful weekend full of fun and productivity! I wasn't sure those two could go hand in hand, but somehow I made it work this weekend! Friday night I hunkered down with my websites - finishing up and finally publishing my main website (, and adding all of my new products & pictures to both my BigCartel and Etsy websites. I had to have an impromptu photo shoot to take some pictures of myself in the new shirts, since lots of people wanted to see how they fit. I kind of hate the idea of having pictures of myself all over my website (YIKES!), so those may not last long... I am thinking of cropping my head off and just using the shirt portion of the pictures! Haha.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I made a switch to BigCartel because lots of my clients were having trouble with the Etsy check out process. However, I decided that I was not ready to part with my Etsy website or the awesome community that comes with it, so I will be maintaining both for now! So feel free to order from whichever one you feel more comfortable with! :) I will be using my main website as a portal that will have all of the details about Lady Fleur Designs, my contact info, and links to my shops & blog. WHEW! Hope this isn't too confusing, but I sure feel more organized now and glad to finally have it all up and running!

Saturday I went to Hollydays, an awesome Christmas market held at the Baton Rouge River Center by Junior League of Baton Rouge. There were some pretty amazing vendors from all over the South. I found some great inspiration AND picked up lots of Christmas presents (as well as a few things for myself!), so I was really happy with my day there! Sunday we somehow woke up in time to make the 7:30am mass (I don't think I've EVER been to mass that early!), so we had the rest of the day to enjoy some BBQ, football, and family! Oh yeah, and the Saints won big time! What more could you ask for??

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Coconut Mango Sticky Rice

A little late, but as promised, here is the recipe for Coconut Mango Sticky Rice. I got the original recipe from this video, but I have re-written it to make it easier to follow and print out for later! It is VERY sweet, so feel free to adjust the sugar and coconut milk to your liking if you want to tone it down a bit. This dish is to DIE for and you'll really have to hold yourself back from going for seconds... and possibly thirds! It is served as a Thai Dessert, but I still make it with dinner paired with something to offset the sweet taste. When I originally mentioned this dish, I had made it for dinner one night with Ground Chicken Lettuce Wraps, and they really went well together! This dish also has a beautiful presentation and is surprisingly easy to make, so I think it would be a great way to impress your guests!! Try it out and let me know what you think!

Coconut Mango Sticky Rice (Serves 2-4)

1 cup Sushi Rice (This was the easiest for me to find - I bought it at Whole Foods and it was very affordable. You can also use Thai Sweet Rice which can be found at most Asian food stores)
1 3/4 cup Water
1 Ripe Mango (substitute frozen mango when not in season, but fresh is definitely the best way to go!)
1 can Coconut Milk (I go for the Light, as Coconut Milk is very fattening!)
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Tsp. Salt
Shredded Coconut

Put Sushi Rice in a heavy saucepan and add 1 cup cold water. Let soak for 30 minutes to soften the rice - this is important, so don't skimp on this step!! While the rice is soaking, whisk together 1/2 cup of the coconut milk, 1/4 cup of brown sugar, and 1/2 tsp of salt until sugar dissolves. You can also chop the mango at this point into small cubes.

After the rice is done soaking, add the other 3/4 cup of water and 1/4 cup of coconut milk as well as 1 Tbs. of shredded coconut. Stir and bring to simmer over medium heat. You can then turn the heat down to low, cover the pot, and let simmer for 15 more minutes.

After the 15 minutes, your rice should be soft and sticky. Slowly stir in the coconut mixture you prepared earlier with a fork. It will look kind of soupy at this stage, but just let it sit covered for about 15 more minutes and it will thicken up. In the meantime, you can toast some shredded coconut in a pan in the oven until its a medium brown color. The crunchy sweet coconut over the rice is a really great addition - it's my favorite part actually!

Now you are ready to serve! Spoon the rice onto your plate and arrange the mango around it. Top with your toasted coconut, and voila! Sometimes I'll added Sesame Seeds as well for a little more presentation and crunch. You should now have an impressively beautiful and delicious dish!

Sneak Peek: Florals

Here's a sneak peak of my new designs that I am printing today. [Please excuse the awful photo - it was taken with my phone!] I got some great Bella shirts to print on, including a super-soft heather tee in a great lavender color & an awesome black burnout v-neck that I'm pretty sure everyone will love! I hope to have them ready to order on my site by Monday, so check back soon! :)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The BIG[Cartel] Move

Well, unfortunately I have not found the success I was hoping for on Etsy. I love the community and the website as a whole, but my customers have expressed several issues with the long and confusing check out process, and I have to agree. It makes sense if you are familiar with the site, but otherwise it's just plain confusing! I haven't made ANY sales through Etsy, although several people have emailed to place orders with me directly, so I'm pretty certain the problem is with the check out process. I'm sad to leave, but I have been looking for another way to make my merchandise more readily available to my customers online, and I think I've found it! Big Cartel is a great e-commerce site geared towards artists that I think will offer what me and my customers are looking for! The new layout is easier to navigate, and checkout is a breeze! I have added my original Lady Fleur shirts and Stationery sets to the site already, and I have some new designs that will be up shortly as well, so I hope you'll check it out at, spread the word, and let me know what you think! Thanks! :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Living Room Re-Do

If you've been reading my blog, you know I've been struggling with my awkward little living room. It had an identity crisis for quite a while, since I just could not seem to stick with a theme. However, I think I finally got it! I had a mild painting disaster a few weeks ago - in a brave stupid moment, I bought two gallons of paint thinking FOR SURE this is the right shade of blue I'm looking for. Instead, I ended up with a hideous shade of minty-aqua highlighter blue that would have looked great in any 10 year old girl's bedroom in the 60's. After painting half the wall that color trying to convince myself it wasn't that bad and 6 other sample shades later, I finally found the right shade! Well actually, my boyfriend picked it out. I think the actual conversation went something like this:

BF: "Well... since everything is coming out too dark or too bright, why don't you just get a white with a blue tint to it?"

ME: "Oh... Yeah... Well, let me think about it. That might work, but I'm not sure..."

Because the LAST thing I wanted was for him to have that bullet on me! "Don't you remember when I had to pick the wall color because you couldn't figure it out??" Ugh! Eventually I conceded though, and I hate to say it, but he was right. It was exactly what I was looking for. So, yes, I'm a professional graphic designer and my boyfriend had to pick out paint colors for me... I am highly ashamed.

After the painting, I retired my old couches and brought these brown super comfy microfiber couches out of my boyfriend's storage. I bought a few pillows, moved my desk to the back corner, and voila! :) I have a few finishing touches to make (I need something over the sofa & some other decorations), but I think it's finally getting there!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Transition Pieces for Fall

Even though it is roughly 93 degrees here today, I have already started thinking about the fall! Here in the Deep South, we know fall is coming because there's a tropical depression in the Pacific and football season is right around the corner, but everywhere else in the country you can spot the impending season change at the stores who have begun bringing in their "transition" pieces. Let me tell you, I LOVE transition pieces! Mostly because they will actually become my winter pieces as well, since it doesn't get all that cold here - but also because they are so versatile and fun to play with! Mixing, matching, and finding new ways to incorporate these pieces can be like a fun little game every morning from here until the cold sets in! So here are some of my favorite new transition pieces and fall trends I've spotted - as always, let me know what you think!

  • 1. The Stitched Bomber Jacket from Charlotte Russe ($32.99) would be a perfect transitional jacket to throw over any top as the evenings get cooler. Comes in Matte Faux Leather in Brown with a mock neck and 3/4 sleeves. So cute!
  • 2. Throw that Bomber Jacket over a cute sleeveless top in jewel toned colors or patterns, like this Chain Strap Top for only $17.80 at Forever21!
  • 3. Strappy caged heels are the perfect sexy way to transition your footwear into fall! Check out these great Python Gladiator Platforms at Charlotte Russe for $32.99
  • 4. & 5. A skinny belt in a fun, eye catching color is a great way to hold an open cardigan together! Try this awesome Pleat Trim Sweater Cardigan in Black or Coral from Forever21 for $24.80 paired with this Teal belt on sale now at The Limited for only $9.99!
  • 6. I think scarves are my absolute favorite accessory! Try one in bold, bright colors worn over a solid top to keep the summer alive a little longer! Here's a great Bold Paisley Scarf for $8.80 at Forever21
  • Friday, August 7, 2009

    Quick & Easy Chicken Pad Thai

    Last night for some reason I got this crazy craving for Chicken Pad Thai. Of course, I didn't have any of the ingredients lying around, nor did I have any idea how to make Chicken Pad Thai, so I started Googling. I found a recipe and made a list and headed to the grocery store. I was prepared to make my own Pad Thai sauce with Tamarind Paste, Fish Sauce, Chili Sauce, & Brown Sugar, but I found this amazing little concoction in the International section at Whole Foods:

    It was much cheaper than buying all of those ingredients that I probably wouldn't use very often, and I made sure to check the ingredient list to compare it to the authentic Pad Thai recipes I found on the internet (they're all there!), so I decided to try it out. I was so impressed! My Pad Thai dish turned out just as delicious as any Thai restaurant I've ever been to! It was quick and easy, and it made a perfect 2-serving dish. I mostly followed the recipe on the back of the jar, but I added my own twist. Check out my recipe below, with my very scientific measurements. NOTE: I like my Pad Thai with a peanut-y flavor, so feel free to exclude the Peanut Sauce or Chopped Peanuts if you don't.

    Quick & Easy Chicken Pad Thai (Serves 2)

  • 1/3 Package (14 oz.) Stir-Fry Rice Noodles
  • 6 Tbs. Pad Thai Sauce
  • About 4 oz. Cubed Chicken (feel free to substitute shrimp, pork, beef, or tofu)
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbs. Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Tbs. Peanut Sauce
  • 2 Tbs. Chopped Peanuts
  • Bean Sprouts (to your liking - I put about a handful)
  • Chives, chopped (to your liking)
  • Cilantro (to your liking)
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (to your liking)
  • A few slices of lime for garnish

    Start out by bringing about 4 cups of water to a boil in a sauce pan or small pot. Once water reaches boiling, remove from heat and immerse your noodles. You don't want to over cook the noodles - remember, you will be stir frying them later! Let noodles sit in hot water for 8-10 minutes. When they're done, drain and rinse with cool water. While noodles are sitting, Heat 1 Tbs. Vegetable Oil in a large non-stick pan or wok. Scramble egg and put to the side for later. Meanwhile, I chopped my Garlic, Chives, Cilantro, & Peanuts so all of my ingredients were ready to go for the quick stir-frying process. Once the egg is removed from the pan, add 2 Tbs Vegetable Oil and Chopped Garlic and heat on high until fragrant. Add Chicken and cook thoroughly. By the time the chicken is done, so should your noodles. Add the drained and rinsed noodles to the pan. Stir in 6 Tbs. of Stir Fry Sauce, and 1 Tbs. Peanut Sauce (if desired) and stir fry for about 2 minutes. Add in Bean Sprouts, Chives & Chopped Peanuts to your liking and stir fry for another minute. If you like your Pad Thai with a little kick (I do!), add in some Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (the Pad Thai sauce is pretty mild). Remove from heat and garnish with cilantro and lime. Serve and enjoy!
  • Friday, July 31, 2009

    Amazing Art

    I saw these amazing paintings at a jazz bar in New Orleans last weekend and had to share. It may be difficult to tell from the photographs (it was pretty dark and smokey in there!), but the letters are created with duct tape that has been painted over in bright colors. Unfortunately, I don't know who the artist is, but I could not stop staring at the pieces' interesting texture and bold colors all night! Makes me want to pull out a fresh canvas and some duct tape ad get to it. It would make an amazing focal piece for my living room - I just need to find the right quote for it now. How inspiring!

    Wednesday, July 29, 2009

    Bargain Huntin'

    Ladies, listen up! I found a great new website last week called Celebrity Looks for Less that's a must-bookmark for any girl who's a fashionista at heart but doesn't have the pocketbook for it. It inspired me to do some of my own bargain fashion hunting, so I've been online shopping for a few days now. Quick fact about me: I'm a compulsive buyer! To curb my shopping appetite, I often trick myself out of buying things by doing a little something I call "faux shopping." This is a little crazy, but bear with me - I'll spend some time browsing the website and adding items liberally to my shopping cart, but when I'm done I'll click out of the website instead of hitting the checkout button. It may sound a little nutso, but it works! Too many times have I cleaned out my closet only to find several items with tags still on them that I've forgotten about because I just picked them up out of impulse. However, I broke my no-real-shopping rule yesterday and went to the mall in search of some jean shorts and cute sandals for my beach trip this weekend. I remembered all the cute things from Charlotte Russe on Celebrity Looks, so I decided to stop in. I'll be honest with you - in the past I have not been a big fan of C.R. I found most of their fabrics to be pretty low quality and the items I would buy would not last more than a few washes. I am all for a bargain, but I'd rather spend a little more on a quality item than waste money on something that will fall apart! But don't rule them out just yet - I think they have turned over a new leaf! Let me tell you, I was really impressed with their new merchandise. They have some great new looks, awesome shoes, and the material seems to have vastly improved. They are definitely worth a second look! Here's some of my favorite finds and check back soon for more:

    I had to have this Floral Flutter Top because it was oh-so soft and silky to the touch and has some great colors in it (I even see hints of Purple & Gold, so I may even be able to pull it off for LSU Football Season!) - great for day or night wear:

    Almost bought this adorable Satin Floral Shift, but was turned off that it wasn't lined and was 100% polyester (sorry, I'm picky) - otherwise I loved the pattern and the black zipper down the back almost made me forget about the plethora o' polyester. I went back and forth on this one and am still thinking about it, so I may just have to go back for it:

    And wouldn't these Strappy Booties look great with that dress?? So sassy!

    Thursday, July 23, 2009

    Rompin' around

    So, the one fashion trend I said I would never ever cave to is The Romper. I thought, how could this possibly be cute/sexy/stylish in any way or in any situation?? I had these when I was 9. Some had bad floral patterns that allowed me to seamlessly blend in with my grandmother's curtains. I had one that came with a cream crochet dress to wear over it, and I often accessorized it with a choker and jelly flats. Seriously. There is absolutely nothing fashionable about this!

    But then...I started seeing them on the streets. Some were as hideous as I had imagined.... but some were kind of cute. They just started to look so COMFORTABLE and effortless... And then one day, I saw one labeled as a bathing suit coverup at a department store. It was made of a light jersey material in turquoise and it had a shirred tube top with pretty brightly colored embroidery across the top. And it was on clearance. I thought, hmmm... could this be a possible loophole to my no-rompers-ever rule?? So I tried it on. And I kind of liked it. I actually really liked it, but I didn't buy it because I felt bad about how much I had trashed them!! Now, I'm really regretting it and have been frantically scouring the internet for the perfect romper, which I think I just found at Net-A-Porter:

    This Shay Todd white cotton romper would be PERFECT as a bathing suit cover-up, and could even be re-purposed for an afternoon on the town. What more could you want?? So what's your verdict on rompers - fun or fug?

    Friday, July 17, 2009

    OH. MY. GOD.

    I want NEED this chair!!

    Donations? Anyone?? :)

    Image via Etsy seller ReclaimTheThrone, who has lots of other gorgeous pieces worth checking out.

    My Schizophrenic Living Room

    As I discussed yesterday, I just can't decide on what I want to do with my living room! To start off with, it's a very awkward shape. It's long and narrow:

    (Sorry for the awful picture) The rug is the one I mentioned in the previous post that I am thinking of using in the guest room. I was not too fond of the colors for my living room area, and it was just too light for such a high traffic area and a destructive dog, so I bought a new one in a mossy/grassy green to go with my newest color scheme (pictures coming soon). The beige leather couches were a hand-me-down from my dad, but I am doing away with those as well. The new ones I'm inheriting are chocolate brown microfiber. Neither of these are what I would necessarily pick for myself, but like I said, they were free... so they will do for now! The TV-to-couch placement is super awkward, but I can't think of a better layout. I'm just so tired of looking at it, but I am desperate for a unified looking living room! I think I need a new perspective. Any suggestions?? HELP!

    Thursday, July 16, 2009

    Office Space

    I helped my mom paint a couple of rooms in her house this weekend, and ever since I have been contemplating some updates I want to make to my own home. I purchased my condo about a year ago as new construction, so my walls were blank! I have painted my bedroom and have gathered ideas for the other rooms, but it has been a slow process making time and saving money. But I think I've finally picked out the desk & chair I want in my office/guest room from CB2:


    I haven't decided on wall colors yet, but I have a great rug with large, bright colored flowers in orange, lime, and yellow with bold black outlines that I want to use in the room. I want to incorporate the rug in the decor, but I don't want anything too bright on the walls because it is a smaller room. Any suggestions?

    As for the living room, I think I've *finally* settled on a color scheme! I have been going back and forth, so I haven't painted the walls yet for fear that I will change my mind. I think I've made up my mind this time, though...

    What do you think? I plan on painting the walls the light blue color, and I purchased a beautiful green rug the other day that would fit in perfectly with this color scheme! Ahh, home improvement is SO exciting!

    Wednesday, July 15, 2009


    I finally set up my Etsy storefront last week and am sooo excited about it! I am eager for my first sale, but am having fun figuring out how to promote it and make it better in the meantime. After all, my degree is in Advertising, so that side of this venture is just as fun to me! So far, I have spread the word on here, Twitter, Facebook, and by emailing friends and family.

    I have also been trying to get more involved in the Etsy community by venturing into the forums. Wow - this might be a new addiction! It's so much fun to go through and read what everyone has to say. I've gotten lots of great advice and have found lots of cool sellers that I may never have known about if I hadn't been reading the forums.

    I have figured out that I need to add more items to my shop to give customers more options. I am steadily working on that and hope to add more merchandise in the next week. I also got some great advice to try buying a few things so I can build some feedback and people would be more likely to see me as a trusted seller. So my homework is to do some Etsy shopping!

    I also want to invest in a good printer for my stationery. I have been looking at the Epson Artisan series. Any reviews of this or other suggestions? I'd love to hear other stationery designers' opinions on this. I've heard that InkJet can smear, and that these printers go through ink like crazy, but LazerJet is sooo expensive! Of course, I want to create a quality product, but the LazerJet expense is too much for me at the moment. How do you print your stationery? At home on an InkJet or LaserJet, or do you send it off? I'd love to know!

    Good luck fellow Etsy-ers and I'll be updating you on my progress soon!

    Wednesday, July 8, 2009

    Fresh Ideas

    Summer is fully in swing! We're experiencing record highs here in Louisiana and I've officially traded in my jeans (yes, I get to wear jeans to work - jealous?) for skirts and dresses. It's been a challenge lately to pick out my wardrobe from day to day while trying to avoid pants all together, but I just can't stand them in this heat! In turn, I've been in search of loose, summery tops as well, and it has me thinking of some new ideas for Lady Fleur. One of my current personal trends is loose fitting, airy v-necks with a fun print, like this one from Forever 21:

    I'm currently working on a new design for this style shirt, which I am thinking of printing on an American Apparel or Bella ladies' v-neck. Let me know what you think!

    Some other projects in the works:

  • Onesies, Blankets, & Bibs
  • Girls' Tees
  • Ladies' Racerback Tanks
  • Ladies' Dolman Tees

    I'd love some feedback on these new ideas! Designs to come, so check back soon!
  • Tuesday, July 7, 2009

    Stationery Sets Now In!

    I'm so excited - the Lady Fleur stationery sets are now in! I'm really happy with how they turned out:

    These textured linen note cards are uniquely double-sided for two great options rolled into one - white with lavender Fleur de Lis design on one side, lavender with white design on the other. The set of 12 comes with matching lavender envelopes, and would make a great gift or addition to your own stationery collection!

    Don't forget, the Original Lady Fleur Tees are still available too! These are printed on one of my absolute favorite shirts by Bella - the Cotton Spandex Crew Neck. I think it will become your instant favorite as well, with it's great fit and super-soft material! Right now, they are available in purple and gold on white and gold on black - stock up for football season, which is right around the corner!

    Wednesday, February 18, 2009

    Taking off & making time

    I'm constantly on the look out for any advice I can get on the process of starting a small business. I just so happened to come across THREE great articles this morning - looks like it's my lucky day! They are all related to Etsy, the popular handmade item marketplace, but all are relevant to any business just taking off. This one and this one come from Design*Sponge guest blogger abbey goes design hunting about two great Etsy businesses. This one comes straight from the regular Etsy blog feature, Quit Your Day Job, and is a great look into taking the leap into a small business venture during these scary economic times. All great inspiring reads to start the day off!

    As for me, my biggest challenge so far has been setting enough time aside to get things done for Lady Fleur while maintaining a full time job and various freelance projects at the same time. I think time management is a challenge for any business owner (and non-business owners for that matter!), and there really is not one solution that is right for everyone. It seems the key is finding what works for you. As for me, I know my solution has to be something that keeps me organized and motivated at the same time. Clutter is my enemy, and I get too overwhelmed to accomplish anything when I'm not organized. Enemy #2 is laziness. I'm a huge procrastinator and I will find every excuse imaginable to put off doing what needs to be done, so sometimes I need an extra push to keep me motivated. I've found what works for me is checklists. I feel organized by having everything I need to do written out, and checking off completed tasks gives me a sense of accomplishment that keeps me motivated. So there we go - organized AND motivated! Perfect, right? Not quite. I found that just writing down what I need to do TODAY doesn't quite take care of the motivation for my long-term goals as much as I'd like it to. What I've turned to for this is my handy Gmail calendar. My calendar is my lifeline. I have it emailed to me every morning in case I forget to look at it (because I do that sometimes - remember to write down appointments but forget to look at my calendar...) so I know for sure what I have set out for the day ahead. My newest trick is sitting down at the beginning of the week and scheduling specific steps towards my long-term goals. This is a variation of an idea I got from a HOW Design magazine article in January about using your calendar to schedule steps to achieving your marketing and self-promotion goals. They even have a great calendar you can download with their "Marketing To-Do List"a already laid out for you! It's really helped me get a grip on what I can actively do right now to work towards my long term goals, and that really gives me a deeper sense of accomplishment that keeps me focused on the big picture as well. So now, I have three ingredients in my personal recipe for time management success - organization, motivation, and focus! What's yours?

    Wednesday, February 11, 2009

    Love is in the air

    The week is just flying by - I hardly realized it was already Wednesday. That's a good thing though, because I am oh so anxious for it to be Valentine's Day. Mostly for the cute cards and the chance to bake these delicious red velvet cupcakes I found on the Better Homes & Gardens website:

    Aren't they too cute? I knew I wanted to make something red velvet, but I really liked the extra touch of the heart shaped cookie on top of this one. I'll let you know how they turn out.

    The holiday also has me itching to make some homemade gifts for my friends and family. I've seen so many cute ideas these past few days, but I'm really liking a few that I found on Design*Sponge (my favorite daily read) this morning from The Purl Bee. These Fabric Window Valentines and Valentine Heart Pins look so easy and fun to make - not to mention they are adorable!

    Monday, February 9, 2009

    Welcome to Lady Fleur Designs!

    I must confess, I'm totally new to this whole blogging phenomenon, so bear with me through these first couple of awkward posts - I promise they will get better! :)

    My name is Cristina, and Lady Fleur Designs is my developing brand for stationery, apparel, gifts and general design services. I am a graphic designer from the beautiful city of New Orleans, LA. I graduated from Louisiana State University about a year and a half ago and I am still living in Baton Rouge. It's really a great place to be as a young adult - it seems to be constantly growing and developing. I'm very excited to be here to experience all the positive changes and additions to the city while still being close to home (New Orleans is just an hour away). It's like I'm growing along with the city! That's pretty much what I have laid out for this blog - I want to share with you what it means to be a young designer in an up-and-coming city. I have to admit, it's tough at times! Sometimes it feels like a lot of people just don't appreciate design. It's hard to find a job that pays the bills (I saw a listing on CraigsList the other day for a full-time graphic design position that paid minimum wage!! I know of fast food restaurants that pay better than that!), and at the same time allows you the creative freedom to grow as a designer. As for me, I know a traditional 9-5 cubicle job is just not my thing. I have a great job right now as an Art Director at a small silk screen shop in town. It's a lot of fun, and it doesn't leave me so drained at the end of the day that I can't focus on my side projects like Lady Fleur, so I am really blessed in that aspect. I really love what I'm working on right now with Lady Fleur and hope I can expand it to what I want it to be. Starting your own business is a scary venture - I feel very green right now, like there's so much I have to learn. Hopefully, this will also help me meet others like me, who have been through this process, or are currently going through it. Feel free to leave a comment or shoot me an e-mail if that's you!

    Anyway, I feel like I'm rambling... I wanted to leave you with a little inspiration I received in my inbox this morning from BCBGMaxAzria for their Valentine jewelry line. Clean, simple designs with sweet sayings - I am so lusting over the charm necklace right now!

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