Getting organized with Craftybase

UPDATE!!! I have so many referrals I would love to share the wealth. If you are so inclined please leave a comment on this post with your referral code. If you are looking for a referral code check the comment section and choose one of the codes that are posted there. Then when you get your own code please feel free to come back and leave it in the comment section.

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In theory I like to be organized. I’ve struggled with keeping track of my inventory and limiting the time it takes me to price out items. Over the last 3 years I’ve tried a couple different programs but most weren’t user friendly or were too labour intensive. Come on people this sleep deprived Mum needs something easy to use that doesn’t require a lot of brain power. Lets face it, after 2 kids I’ve lost most of my brain cells and what few I have left seem to be used for things like remembering all the words to Disney songs and figuring out ways to trick my kids into early bedtimes. A couple months ago I discovered Craftybase and my life got a whole lot easier! It connects to Etsy directly to make managing orders, inventory and things that have shipped easier. So here is an overview of my favourite parts of it.

Tracking Expenses

  • When I put an invoice in for any materials it takes into account all shipping and taxes and applies a portion of those fees to each of my items to the price reflects the true cost of the item
  • I can quickly go back and find any invoice without sifting through a pile of paper or digging through my email
  • Keeps track of all my Etsy listing fees
  • When I’m adding a new invoice if I have purchased an item before I can link to it easily so I don’t have to add all the info again

Inventory

  • Shows me exactly what I have in stock with little thumb nail pictures which is fun for project planning
  • With the Pro version it will also tell me about low stock levels
  • It reminds me how much my inventory is worth (oh wait this feature reminds me I need to stop buying fabric so maybe I don’t like this feature)
  • Fully searchable with tons of options to help find the material I’m looking for

Projects (This by far is my favourite feature)

  • This section lets you build your project using the specific materials from your Inventory, taking into account your time and then gives you suggested prices for your products including various sale venues like Etsy, Market or Wholesale.
  • You can then make ‘batches’ of this product which then adjusts your inventory to reflect the product you just used
  • You can copy ‘recipes’ or what you use in a product to make things quicker and then just change your variations. This is very useful for all the eye pillows I make. I copy the recipe and then just change the outer fabric case.
  • This section also links to previous sales, how many you have in stock, previous sales, other fees associated with the item (listing fees for example) and current Etsy listings that you have for the item

Orders

  • Lists all your orders for items
  • Links automatically to Etsy orders but it is also easy to add orders from other venues (I wish it linked up with other sites like Paypal and Ebay)
  • You can quickly see what orders haven’t been paid for or haven’t been shipped

To top it all off this site gives you an overview of your cash flow, helpful reports for improving your business and an amazing contact list! I was going to take a bunch of screenshots to show you more of how it looks but Craftybase has already made an amazing tour and you can check it out here: https://craftybase.com/site/features

Overall Pros:

  • Keeps me organized easily
  • Has made me really evaluate how much products should be priced at
  • I can access it from any computer anywhere

Overall Cons:

  • Setting it up was a bit time consuming since I have a couple years of product to add but by doing little chunks at a time I feel like it is doable
  • It only links up with Etsy to download transactions. The rest of your transactions you have to input by hand.

PLUS their customer service is hands down amazing. I had an issue when I was using a trial of it and they were on top of keeping me updated with their estimated fix time on it (it was a global issue and they were working with Etsy to fix it). They were super friendly and encourage you to reach out and ask them exactly how to use their product.

There are 2 different versions, crafter and Pro. Crafter is $7.99/month and Pro is $12.99/month but if you use a referral link like this one (http://craftybase.com/ref/e0bd28b9you get 10% off per month AND if you continue to refer other’s you will get an additional 10% off more each month until you have a free subscription! So go ahead and click on my referral link and sign up for a free trial! If you like it sign up and you are already saving 10%.  I compared the price of craftybase to other online tracking programs and found that it is comparable or cheaper with the added feature of having the crafter in mind.

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Please note: I am not paid for this review (although if you use my referral link I will get a discount). I just really, really, really like this program and I think it is worth every penny to keep my business organized.

 

My Mind is blown!

Hi! I’m about to blow your mind. Ok maybe a lot of you won’t feel this way. I know my fellow fabric enthusiasts will agree that this is the bee’s knees. Unless they have already seen it before then you may think I’m just late to the party. Story of my life. Ok so here goes!

There is this website called Palette Builder 2.1. On this site you upload a photo of anything. Fabric, a piece of art, your face or whatever! I chose this photo:

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Look at that cute face! Once uploaded this is the magic part. It spits out this!

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It tells you what Kona solid colour matches the picture! No more guessing! I always end up ordering a variety of fabric in the hopes that I can get it close. This is my new favourite tool!  Go play! Upload a million photos just for fun (I did)!

Fabric Monday – Fabricworm

I’ve spent a lot of time on the Fabricworm website over the years but I haven’t actually purchased from them. They always have a amazing selection of fabrics but their prices aren’t always as good as I can get elsewhere. I don’t mind spending a little more on fabric if I can get the selection that I want with stellar customer service but sometimes the bottom line forces me to shop elsewhere. Anyways, Fabricworm had some organic fabric that I needed for an order which is still coming into stock in other shops so I took the plunge! Their website is easy to navigate and has great search capabilities.

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Birch Organics (Lt – Rt): Up Up and Away Shroom, Pinwheels, Elk Teal, Elk Multi, Skinny Chev Orange and Orange

This whole order was for the Elk Multi and the orange skinny chev. The elk have been sold out for a bit. I’ve had people contacting me trying to find out if I had any to part with (which I didn’t). I’m excited to have more of these guys back in stock. I got the elk in Teal as well because the teal is so pretty! I would love to work completely with organics but the market to sell these isn’t that big. People have a hard enough time paying a fair price for a quilt let alone the additional price of organics on top of that. Someday!

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Alison Glass, Sunprint Collection X and Plus (Lt to Rt) Grass, Clementine, Stone, Ocean and Camellia

This next collection I added to my order for some pops of colour.

Alison Glass, Sun Print Collection X and Plus (Lt – Rt) Grass, Clementine, Stone, Ocean and Camellia

I’m a bit disappointed in the grass. I looks more dirty yellow in person than something that reminds me of grass. The Camellia is much brighter pink in person and I love it!

This last fabric is a bit controversial. In the quilting world it seems to be very black in white on the materials that make up the top and back of a quilt. Cotton. 100% cotton preferably high quality cotton. BUT I’ve seen some working with some linen/cotton blends mixed in. So I got this.

IMG_9411Momo, Linen Mochi Solids in Putty. I’m excited to use this in a quilt. It is  70% cotton 30 % Linen blend.It feels thicker and scratchier than plain cotton but I know how lovely linen is once broken in.   So exciting! (ducking and hiding from the purists)

12 in 12 – Katie’s Quilt

I’m including this quilt in my 12 in 12 even though it was started well before April (or 2014) started. Finishing a project is very satisfying especially if it has taken a very, very, very long time.

This Quilt was a wedding present for Brad and Katie when they got married in 2012. Yep 2012. To be fair they knew it was going to be late because Katie and I hadn’t even discussed real fabric choices until after the wedding. I ordered the fabric in the Fall 2012. So this quilt took me about 1.5 years. YIKES! Yes we are still friends.

Katie requested a Dresden Plate quilt. Here is a truth. I had no clue what she was talking about when she requested it. I had to google that. What kind of quilter am I? I hope they don’t kick me out of the club. Just kidding there isn’t a club. Wait is there club?

This quilt has taught me soooo much about quilting. I think my seam ripper spent more time on this project than all the other projects combined.

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Katie picked out this lovely bundle of fabric from The Intrepid Thread which has started a whole line of other purchases from The Intrepid Thread.  large print

I for sure learned that I need to figure out how much fabric I need for a project before starting. Good thing when I ran out I still could find more of the fabric which is a small miracle because it took me soooo long to cut the quilt from the purchase date.

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Look! There’s Chars still in my tummy! That feels like a lifetime ago. Aren’t the fabrics beautiful?

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This quilt taught me a lot about chain sewing. So much quicker, easier and less thread.

62792_576216669083511_1831650275_nI still don’t have feeling in my finger tips from ironing these little suckers. Just kidding, kind of.

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I also learned that you should do a test block just in case. Like just in case your plates look flat and that they will work but in reality they don’t.

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Just in case you make all the plates without checking and then have to take one ray out of each plate. Yep Rippy and I spent a lot of time together when I discovered that little mix up.

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Ahh look at that! It works! I found a new stitch on my machine for attaching the centers. Who knew I had a blanket stitch? Not me!

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I think I delayed on this quilt a bit because I was intimidated by the size. It’s a King. I wasn’t sure I could quilt that sucker on my machine. So I did some research and I learned how to quilt as you go.

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So I quilted each block onto squares of batting the size of the block without backing. Then stitched the blocks together and then added the back. That way I only had to quilt straight lines on my machine. The only draw back is you don’t get the beautiful quilting on they back.

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Just lines but still pretty. I also learned that quilting as you go makes your quilt smaller soooo I had to add a border which I think looks amazing.

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Congratulations Brad and Katie on your marriage almost 2 years late!

 

Fabric Monday – Hawthorne Thread Haul

I shouldn’t be allowed to fabric shop online when I’m stressed. Or mad. I probably shouldn’t be allowed to fabric shop unsupervised. This is one of the last fun orders I’m allowed to put in for the year. It’s only May and I’ve been cut off! There is a good reason which I’m very excited about but I can’t share with you yet. The only way I can put in more fun orders like this is if I get a huge increase in quilt orders. Which I am happy to say seems to be happening. I have a Christmas order already!!!

I’ve declared this the summer of the dress! I have a hard time finding a dress that fits well. I just don’t get it, Fat Bottomed Girls are suppose to make this rocking world go around but they forgot to make dresses that fit us well. Either the top is too big and the dress doesn’t fit over my hips or it fits my hips but the top is way too big. I have cut the skirt liner out of so many dresses because the bottom actually fits but the designers put in a hip hugging skirt underneath and that is always too small. So I’m going to attempt to make a bunch of my own and I picked 4 fabrics but I’m not completely sure I will use each one in a dress.

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Art Gallery Fabrics, Urban Mod, Roundabout by in Night

I kind of really like those crazy circles!

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Alison Glass, Sun Print Feathers, Feathers in Rouge

I’ve been eyeing these feathers for awhile for a dress. I can already picture it in my head. Now to find a dress pattern that matches that vision.

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Pat Bravo, Essentials, Illusion in Dust

I’m not too sure if this pattern is just too much for a dress or not. I may sit on this one for a bit. I may have been better off getting this one in a knit if it came that way.

This next one I really love but I’m a little hesitant to make it a dress. Is it too much? Is it too old lady? It would make an awesome quilt back if it doesn’t make it into a dress.

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Art Gallery Fabrics, Floressence, Meadow Aroma in Splash

 

So the whole point of this order was to purchase some voile for the dresses. It is lighter weight and has a better drape. Everything else in the order was to fill the box so that my shipping costs were spread out over more fabric. Somehow I neglected to actually buy and voile. I put it in my cart and took it out. I thought I had left one in but I guess I didn’t. OPPS! So here is the rest of my fill the box order.

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Sweet as Honey Collection (Lt-Rt) Bee Sweet in Morning, Cherished Deer in Bergamot, Honey House in Peach, Orchard Blossom in Autumn and Orchard Blossom in Spring

 

 

I’ve been wanting some of this collection since before it came out. I love it even more in person! Bonnie Christine is spot on with this line. The colours are fabulous. I wish I had bought more!!!

I feel like this fabric needs to go into a very geometric quilt.

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Camelot Cottons House Designer, Penelope Collection (Lt – Rt) Greek Cross in Aqua, Waves in Aqua, Galley in Aqua and Baubles in Aqua

I was drawn to the above fabric because of the colours. The waves remind me of a chevron that I had before that I loved. The fabric just seemed so fresh and fun.

Next up we have Poppies! I know a particular someone out there is now thinking ‘what can I get Amanda to make for me with this?’. The answer is Anything you can dream of!

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Beth Studley, Meadow collection (Lt – Rt) Poppies in White, Stripe in Teal and Poppies in Gray

I fell in love with the gray poppies and then I had to add the white poppies and then you need a coordinate just in case. Right?

Ok these next ones are so pretty and soft!

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Pat Bravo, Essentials Collection (Lt – Rt) Passionate Spirit in Mist, Passionate Spirit in Salmon and Passionate Spirit in Teal

 

Are they a damask? I love the tiny repeat of the ornate bit. I love these!  The colours are perfect for the quilt I’m planning for Char Char. I can’t wait to start working on it!!

IMG_9387Next up we have some intersecting circles.

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Michael Miller House Designer, Mod Basics Collection (Lt – Rt) Tile Pile in Canary, Tile Pile in Dirt and Tile Pile in Sunset

Love these! The dirt and canary are so pretty but that sunset is amazing. It’s just the right colour of orange. Not in your face and not too washed out.

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I love fabric mail!