New Designs

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I love being busy with shows and sewing.  Fall is my favorite time of the year.  However, January through March are always a much needed slower pace.  A nice break to refocus our weekends around the kids.  I can pick up more sub days to get back in the classroom a little bit.

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AND I was able to be more creative for the fun holidays like Valentine’s Day, St. Pat’s, and Easter.  If these holidays fell during the busy season, nothing new would ever be created.  Love having time to get my embroidery machine working!

Here are some of our new designs that have come about from custom orders, customer ideas, or our own minds.  Just a taste of what is new at Little Bug.  More ideas are in the works.

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Showing Off

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Here is the post that I have been crafting in my mind for months now.  Our notable and exciting show season!

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Now that it’s over I can’t believe how crazy it all was.  With this month of down time (aside from personal, custom, and Etsy orders) I actually miss being so busy I couldn’t think straight.  I like busy.  Surprised?  You shouldn’t be.  I have 2 kids under 3-at least for another couple weeks.  (Not pregnant-Tommy will be 3!)

Show season pretty much starts in August, but then it get a Super Mario fast forward starting in September that doesn’t end until the middle of December.  Like 3-4 day weekends back to back.  Poor Neil.

Our weekday schedule consisted of Neil getting home from work and taking the kids so I could sew.  Sometimes they went adventurous places like McDonald’s Playplace.  Those that know me may be a little shocked to read that I sent my kids to McDonald’s Playplace for two reasons.  #1 I am not a fan of McDonald’s for obvious health reasons.  #2 I have a phobia of public play places (and restrooms) that may or may not be unreasonable.  Reason #2 actually contradicts other feelings I have about kids needing to be exposed to germs so that they can build up immunities to illnesses.  But we will save that debate for another day.

We had a lot of help from Neil’s dad and stepmom as well as my mom during the week.  They would take the kids for the day or come over to play while I hid away in the sewing room.  (It’s actually impossible to hide in there because there is no door and it is the first room you see when you walk into our house.  I need a door.)  And Neil’s mom helped a lot on the weekends when we were so desperate for a date that we would have business dinners that still felt romantic since I was away from the machine.

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In a previous post I talked about doing the Strawberry Swing, a KC indie craft fair.  I raved about how amazing it was to be amongst other handmade vendors.  What I failed to mention was that a new door opened for us at this event.  The door is called Chick Events.  These spunky ladies came up to our booth and strongly encouraged us to become vendors at their event in a little over a month.  They promised us a similar event and feel as this one would also be handmade/vintage goods.  Local artisans.  They were speaking our language.  After a little thought (and a couple phone calls/emails from the Chicks) we were ready to commit.  This would be our biggest show yet.

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The event was held outside in the streets of a lovely shopping area called Park Place that my mom and I frequent often in Leawood, Kansas.  It just happened to be the most beautiful weekend of the year, in my recollection.  That perfect weekend you get between summer and fall that makes you want to be outside no matter what you are doing.  Bring the office outside, bring the classroom outside, bring the kids outside.  You know what I mean.  Anyway, we got it.  And we met some really great people that we will blog about in a future post.

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The Chicks put on a great event.  We knew we wanted to be linked up with them whenever we could be.  It was a match made in Kansas City.  (haha)

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Soon after Chick Events, we were contacted by Holiday Boutique to be a vendor at their show.  This was a big deal.  For two reasons.  #1 My mom and I went to this event every year.  It had become a tradition.  There are two big holiday shows in KC.  Holiday Mart and Holiday Boutique.  There were talks about trying this event out in 2015.  But here they were, contacting us, telling us that they would love to have us at their show.  We didn’t even have to apply.  After about two weeks of debate, we bit.  The debate falls into reason #2, it is expensive to enter these large events.  Before participating in shows I had no idea how expensive.  Message me and I will tell you.  😉

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For this event, I had to call on my good friend Amy Scheuerman to help me decorate my booth.  These booths are serious business.  I was so happy with what she put together and feel fairly certain that I could recreate a similar booth in the future.  But I will probably just call her to come back and help me so I can hang out with her during set up.  Sometimes she brings her cute baby so that always makes things more fun too.  If I could hire Amy to coordinate my entire life and business, I would.  But obviously I can’t afford her.  However, you can hire her to organize your house or decorate.  Her company is called Creative Solutions KC.

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The event is something that we are proud of doing.  We didn’t think we were “there” yet, but we were.  It only made us more sure that we wanted Little Bug to be our creation.  We wanted to make it something that could keep growing and be a product of our vision.  Next year we will apply for Holiday Mart (the bigger of the two) and hope to be accepted.

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We went from Holiday Boutique to another Chick Event.  This was an event of the same idea as the September one.  It was a little longer and inside, but it was a “pop-up marketplace”.  We met even more amazing people and bought some great gifts for ourselves and our friends.

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We sold a lot and chatted a lot.  It is truly wonderful to have someone come up and tell us they bought something from us for a friend or (best of all) for their baby that was coming-and LOOK-here he is!  We love getting to know new families and people that we will see again.  What a dream!

HolidaySwing2014_medres Holiday Swing

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Our last big event of the Christmas season was the Holiday Swing.  Put on by the same wonderful girl, Katie, that puts on the Strawberry Swing.  This one was held in the West Bottoms in KC.  Such a fun area the first weekend of every month if you like vintage and eclectic finds.  Food Truck City and many stores open to shoppers that love supporting local vendors.

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In the middle of all this craziness Neil’s sister, Lea, and her husband, Will, welcomed our cutest and first niece/nephew.  And my sister, Lora, married her husband, Chris.  And Juliet turned 1.  Phew.  Like I said, I love busy.  (Notice I said “I” and not “we”.)

And that pretty much catches you up on our 4th quarter.  What a ride!  Can’t wait to do it again!  If you missed us, no worries, we will be back in the water again soon.

Photo Challenge

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It isn’t a secret that my photography skills are lacking.  I have always loved pictures.  Love looking through them, taking them, smiling and laughing over them, etc.  Growing up my mom didn’t take many.  She still doesn’t, but she always wants me to “send {her} that one”.  Taking pictures, however….not my strong suit.  I want to get better!

20 week challenge

So I made a decision to do a 20 day photo challenge that I found on Pinterest.  (This will not be my first Pinterest inspired challenge.)  I loved the idea to work on getting better.  The challenge would of course be a time suck (turns out I had no idea how much) and require me to post something every day.

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11 days in, I’m loving it.  Obviously, some days needed an extra picture.  I have been going back and forth between two different photography apps in order to teach myself how to edit pics and add text.  It’s a whole new world.

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The first one I used is called Over.  I was lucky enough to snag it awhile ago at Starbucks for their weekly free download.  (LOVE Starbucks)  It is super easy to use and allows you to do a lot of editing that a normal person would want to do.  Now I can edit a pictures pretty quickly.

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However, then I got trailed down a road into “Obaby”.  This is another app from the creators of over that pretty much lets you do a lot more creative things that are baby oriented.  Perfect things for Little Bug.  I think it cost $4.99, but I would recommend it for anyone who has a baby or is pregnant.  I actually think it would be a great gift if you know the person would use it.  A great way to add monthly text onto your growing baby bump or monthly text to document your newborn’s growth.  I just love it.

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The other app I used is called PicLab HD.  This was another freebie from Starbucks (see the theme) that I was lucky enough to snag.  I have no problem paying for an app that I will use, but it’s hard to know before I start playing around in them.  The benefit of this app is that I am able to rotate my text.  I haven’t figured out how to do this on Over.  I assume I can, but I’m not sure.  It seems like a small benefit, but I have had some creations where my text HAD to be rotated in order to look good.

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It’s been a really fun 11 days so far.  I have learned a lot of necessary editing that Little Bug needs.  And I’ve gotten more familiar with Instagram and hashtags as well.

We would love for you to share some of your pictures with us.  Pick a day or two and join in!  If you share you photo, you have a chance to win $15 in Little Bug credit.  (And if you can’t make it this round, there will be more.)  Here’s to always working on making yourself better!

Summer

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Our family LOVES summer. (I know, who doesn’t?)  We are teacher schedule people, so it seriously feels like the same feeling you had when you were a kid.  All of a sudden school is out, and summer is here.

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Since I’ve been staying home for the last year, I didn’t have quite the rush I would normally get at Memorial Day.  Neil has an extended contract since he is a counselor.  Our “family summer” started in the middle of June.  He gets 6 weeks off so I have nothing to complain about there.

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Now that my parents have a lake house at Table Rock, we try to get down there as much as possible.  It isn’t easy with the kids.  Sometimes it feels like too much work just to pack.  As much as we try to have a 2nd set of everything down at the lake, it is hard to leave the house without feeling like we could just as well live out of our car.

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I was so excited to get some new 4th of July designs.  I love getting my kids dressed up.  It’s nice that there are many more patriotic holidays out there for you to double dip your outfits.

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We hope everyone has a relaxing (ha), rejuvenating summer.  Most of all, we hope you get time to snuggle your bugs close and laugh until your face hurts.

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Whale Collection

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We created a large amount of whale onesies for Adel Quilting and Dry Goods.  There were so many that we have deemed them a “collection”.  They are sitting in the shop now, just waiting to be picked up by YOU!  Here are all the different patterns that were created.

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Just let us know if you want any of these recreated for your own little bug.  Of course, for our Iowans out there, just swing by Adel Quilting and Dry Goods for instant gratification!

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Spring!

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It’s here!  We couldn’t be more excited.  All of a sudden we are able to go outside and shed the jackets.  We had a beautiful Saturday in April down at Table Rock Lake near Branson, Missouri.  My sister, Teresa, set up her massage booth next to our Little Bug booth.  It was fun working together.  Plus I was able to steal 5 massage minutes from her.  (My sling is called the Maya sling.  It is amazing; I get asked about it all the time. I LOVE it.  Yes, Juliet is sleeping in there.  Can you see her super cute shape?)

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Our kids are both outdoor lovers like their parents.  It’s amazing how your mood can lift when you get some fresh air and sunshine.  Tommy is hard to photograph at this age.  He doesn’t stop moving.  Do they offer camera classes called “How to Photograph Toddlers”?  They are both wearing the same egg design, just different fabric choices.

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With the warmer weather comes new Little Bug designs and short sleeves!  Yippee!  We are always working on new seasonal apparel.  The first designs we rolled out have to do with our Royals.  Nothing says summer like baseball.  We can’t wait to take Tommy to his first game.

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We also recently made some custom onesies for babies in our life.  This is what we love to do the most!

Look for more designs being added to our Etsy store!