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Friday, September 30, 2011

Blog posts direct to Twitter - a success!

Yesterday, I found a very useful post on Crafty Mummy's blog:


In it, she talks about her checklist of things she does after she writes a post.
On her share list - she mentioned that her posts are automatically set to be published on Twitter!


As you can imagine - having just set up my Twitter account and currently trying to figure out how to use it - I followed her instructions to set this up to try.

  •  Click on My Account at the top of your page (in Blogger - not sure if it's the same in Wordpress or others)
  • Click on Feedburner, and your feed title (title of your blog)
  • Then click on the tab that says Publicize
  • Then 'Socialise' at the left side
  • Add your twitter account - then activate it at the bottom of that page
  • Voila - you're done!
Now all my posts automatically get tweeted on my twitter account.

This morning my post calling for guest post tutorials was automatically 'tweeted'. Then within minutes - one of my lovely (14) followers on twitter replied and we chatted and orgainsed for her to do a guest post on my blog - instantly right there on twitter!!!

I have to say I was REALLY excited that I used Twitter to organise something!! 

Yippee for small successes and enjoying every one of them! Every small win motivates me onwards and makes me imagine bigger bigger wins and successes in the future!

Do you enjoy your small achievements and successes?

Are your posts set to automatically feed to your Twitter account?




Calling for guest post tutorials!

If you've been following my blog lately, you may know that Fridays is Guest Post Tutorial day.

We've had some amazing guest posts, most recently Rikka from Richochet and Away showed us how to




Then there was this beautiful back to school dress from Adithis Amma Sews:



How to make a ribbon organiser from Ellen at Creative Passage:



And how to strip furniture from Straight Stitches:




These guest posts are proving to be very popular - and are being featured on some of the larger sites like Craftgossip, Freeneedle and One Pretty Thing.


I do have some guest posts scheduled, but am looking for more.

If you are interested in taking part here on Creating my way to Success ( and using this opportunity to plug your blog /website/ or shop in the process - I'm happy for you to add that to your post)

Then leave me a comment here,

or email me direct on:


I'm happy to look at any kind of crafty tutorial - from sewing to woodwork, crocheting and paper crafts - and anything else you can come up with!

Remember Halloween and Christmas are coming up too - and I've plans afoot for big tutorial features for the holiday seasons!



I look forward to hearing from you! I'm happy that my blog has grown to a level now that I can promote others too!
(if you're interested my blog visitor stats can be found here.)





Hope you all have a wonderful Friday!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pinterest

I've finally got myself a pinterest account!


I've seen it mentioned all over the place, and also noticed that I've had some traffic to my blog from people pinning my things! Which is very flattering!

Anyway - I realised this week how useful Pinterest could be!  When I'm browsing around blogs and websites and see something I like and want to remember - I generally stick it in favourites on my computer toolbar.  As a result, I now have HUGE lists in favourites - which unfortunately get forgotten.  I also made notes of things I want to make, or sites I want to revisit in my paper diary - or worse still on scrap bits of paper.

My husband is always telling me that I need to learn to use the computer more instead of using pencil and paper for my lists and plans etc, so all of this got me thinking, and that this is exactly what Pinterest is for!

I know, I know, I'm a bit slow on the uptake and it seems that most people have realised this long before me!

Anyway - I've set up my account and have just been pinning some of the things I had in my favourites. The only folder I've set up so far is "things I want to make".  I'm hoping now that having these things in one place - with photos, that I'll get around to making them!
I should at least be reminded of them more often as I'll browse through them when I 'pin' new things!

I see that you can follow people on pinterest and see what things inspire them too!  I think this is a brilliant way to discover more great ideas and get more inspiration!

So if you're on pinterest yourself then feel free to:


Follow Me on Pinterest 

And let me know so I can follow you back!

I feel like a kid with a new toy!  It's like browsing through a new glossy magazine of all the things I love!


How to make an iPod/MP3 player holder for exercising in 5 steps and 15 mins





A lot of people like to listen to their music when exercising. 
I've seen some fancy armband holders for them  - but there's no need to buy one if you have an old t-shirt! Why not make your own - for free!



Here's how in 5 simple steps and no more than 15 mins!

1. Take an old t-shirt or knit fabric top, scissors and a tape measure

2. Measure around your upper arm:


And the length of your iPod or MP3 player plus 3cm (1.2") on either side.

3. Cut a piece of t-shirt material,
Width = same as the measurement around your arm
Height = 2x the measurement you took of your iPod/MP3 player

If you cut from the bottom hem of the t-shirt then that side is already finished!

4. Turn and stitch the other long end (opposite the hem) to neaten

Then fold the rectangle in half - right sides together and unfinished raw edges together.
Pin and stitch.





5. Turn the tube you have made right side out:

Then push half the tube up inside itself to form a pocket for your music player


Slide up onto your arm, pop in your music player and get started on your workout!!


You could even make different colours to suit your workout clothes!!



For the downloadable PDF version of this tutorial, click here.

For more easy sewing tutorials of
5 steps in just 15 mins - click here!

And for 150+ more clothes upcycling projects go here:






Of course this project doesn't have to be made from an old t-shirt - you could choose some gorgoeus new knit fabric - and for a great selection there's no better place to visit than
The Fabric Fairy



I'll be linking this post to many of the fabulous linky parties whose pretty buttons are on the bottom of this page. And also our creative spaces.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Facebook and Twitter - do you use both?


This red lily bloomed in our garden this week.  I love this flower - but it's the only one we have. It only flowers once every two years, so I wanted to share it!


But this flower has nothing to do with the topic of this post (sorry!).  Let me get to that!

I'm slowly beginning to use Facebook more - and this week I even 'tweeted' a few times!
Ok ok, so I'm a bit behind the times. I don't have an iPhone and don't regularly use social media.
However through my blog I'm starting to see how they are something I really want to start making more of.

I think in life, we have different circles of friends. Those who share different interest with us. For example we may have friends who also have kids the same age as our own, and spend time with them doing family activities.  Then there may be the friends we go to the gym with, or perhaps a book club where we meet with a group of people to discuss what we're reading.

For me - the more I get into my blog and sewing, the more I realise that my circle of friends who share these interests are online and scattered all over the world, and facebook and twitter are how to keep in touch with them and get to know them more.  I love that I've found people who share my interests and can appreciate me getting excited about something I've sewn - or when I've discovered how to tweak a tiny bit of my blog by learning a piece of html code.


I do tell my other friends about my successes - and try to show them things I've made - but they're only interested in as far as it's mine - they're not into sewing or blogging.  As these elements become increasingly important in my life - and become what I want to make something of in terms of a business or 'job' , I'm wanting more and more to connect with like-minded people and share my experiences.


As I use social media more - it poses this question for me - why have both a facebook and twitter account?   Do most people use either one or the other?  I see you can connect your facebook and twitter accounts. But why do that and not just use one or the other?

Is it simply because some of your friends may use one but not the other - so it's a way to communicate with everyone at once?


Of course I've read lots about the advantages of social media sites in promoting your blog and for marketing purposes.  Naturally as I want to grow my blog into a profitable business, I want to be able to do this.  I was recently reading an article from the Traffic Generation Cafe about how to get traffic from Twitter.  It was interesting reading how there is a limit on Twitter as to the number of people you can follow in relation to the number of people following you.  Apparently you can get banned from twitter for following too many people!!  Who knew!

You can follow up to 2000 people with no problems, but then once you go over that, you can follow only 10% more than your number of followers!

Now since I'm only following 37 people, I'm not likely to have this problem - nor do I want to.  I can't bring myself to randomly follow hundreds of people on twitter who I don't know, even if they do have similar interests to me.  Maybe in time my circle will grow that big - but hopefully it will be of people who are genuinely interested in each other.  Or is this naive of me?

Does this mean I'm not ruthless enough - or focussed enough perhaps on making my hobby a business?  How can I keep it all personal and grow my blog massively to a profitable size at the same time?  I'm doing this because I love it - but I know I have to push the boundaries and go beyond my comfort zone to turn my hobby into a business.

However - I think it's important to keep on enjoying what I do - and not get too caught up in statistics,  followers and the like. 

As with everything in life - it's all about finding the right balance!



And finding the fun and enjoyment of every aspect of what I'm doing!


How about you? Do you use facebook and twitter? One or the other or both?  And how do you use it?

What are your thoughts on pushing to build your list of followers to help promote your business or website?

I'd love to know your thoughts and experiences!




Creating Success Around the World - featuring Alicia from Aussie Cards for Sale

Welcome to

Creating Success around the World
The worldwide blog hop tour, that introduces you to creative people from all corners of the globe.


Creating my way to Sucess
 


Every Wednesday our hosts on each continent will introduce you to someone new whose creativity is inspiring!
 
Here's how you can take this worldwide tour with us:
 
You can follow all the hosts to support them and keep up to date with the fabulous posts they will share every week.  Then if you are inspired to join, just link up your own blog to make some new international friends.
Remember to leave us a comment when you follow us so we can follow you back!
And of course we'd love if you added our button to your site to help spread the word!
 
 
Today's featured guest is..Alicia from Aussie Cards For Sale
in
Tamworth, NSW Australia
 


Hi my name is Alicia, I am 31 years old and I live on a small property near Tamworth, NSW. I am a Primary School teacher, teaching casually and am married to my husband Ben.  Between the two of us we have lots of pets to look after. I like to make hand-made greeting cards and you can see my creations on my blog at http://alicia-timetocreate.blogspot.com/


My website www.aussiecardsforsale.com has been going for a year now.  The cards on the website sell for $5.95 and are all hand-made.  We currently have 18 Australian designers who sell their cards at Aussie Cards for Sale. Many of our designers publish their designs in Australian Stamping, Scrapbooking and Card-Making magazines and are members of Design Teams for popular stamping companies. I feel proud to say we have some of the best card-makers in Australia at Aussie Cards for Sale!  You can find a great range of cards on the site, and we do special orders for clients who require a personalized card.

Many card-makers have expressed interest in selling their cards online which has led me to create another website recently www.handmadecardsforsale.com
This website is open to all card-makers over the world that are looking for a free online space to advertise the cards they have for sale.  It is free to become a member and free to advertise your cards.  If you are interested in selling your cards online head on over to www.handmadecardsforsale.com and get listing your cards straight away!



 I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Jill for giving me this opportunity to reach an audience I otherwise may not have reached. I also want to thank you for reading! If you are needing to purchase a card, why not head on over to www.aussiecardsforsale.com and give us a go! Our postage costs are very minimal...the cards are packaged with the utmost care and there is always freebies going too!
 
Finally I thought I would show you just a small selection of what we have for sale at www.aussiecardsforsale.com please hop on over and see the rest of our collection. New cards are uploaded regularly.






------------------------------------------------------


Thanks so much Alicia - Her site has some beautiful cards - and I love that they are Aussie Made!
Do go and take a look:

 
Now that you've seen the talent here in Australasia, here are your hosts for the other continents:

 
Make sure you visit them all to see the inspiration and creative people
every corner of the world has to offer:
 
Europe - Yaga @ The Shiny Bubble
The Americas - Suzy @ Suzy's Artsy Craftsy Sitcom
Asia - Janelle @ Of Pinks and Fairy Tales
South America - Dolly @ Marya Mariyah
 



 
And don't forget to add your own link below!  It's all about meeting new friends worldwide!



Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Learning HTML

In my quest to grow my blog and make it into a profitable business that I can run from home, I have decided to learn some html.
As I've been learning more about my blog - particularly the presentation, I've found myself learning small snippets of html to 'tweak' the templates that you get on blogger.

For example I learnt recently how to add borders to the photos in my posts by just changing a small part of the html for each photo.


And just this last week - how to make a photo gallery page using html code.

So I thought it was time to put a bit more structure into my knowledge since websites is the area I've chosen to pursue as a 'business'.

I did a search and found that there are several free online html courses, so this is my starting point.

The one I've chosen to start with is:


My plan is to take a lesson a day and to try to implement and really use what I'm learning to try and get the most out of the course and hopefully improve my blog in the process.
Today I just looked at the introduction and lesson 1, In which I learned what html actually stands for:

H = Hyper
T = Text
M = Mark up
L = Language

I also learned that your webpages may look different in different browsers.  I have Internet Explorer and Google Chrome myself, but not Firefox.  My website looks the same in both of my browsers, but I wonder if there are any differences in Firefox?

How about you?  Have you learnt any html to help with your website design?  Or do you just use the templates provided with blogger or another webhost?

Does anyone have an html course to recommend?
I'd love to hear from anyone who has done one of these courses and what your thoughts were on it!

As I work through the course - I will be sure to post about what I'm learning!


More Pencil and Notebook folders and PDF tutorials revamped

This week I've been making a couple of my Pencil and Notebook folders for upcoming boys birthdays.
I found the V8 cars and comic strip fabric in the charity shop and couldn't resist!

The front of the folders:


And the back:

One with a plain inside:

And the other with more comic strips on the inside:

It's tricky to handmade a gift for boys turning 9, but I think these will be ok!


Now I was recently asked for conversions of the measurements on my Pencil and Notebook folder tutorial, so I've been doing a little revamping!

All the tutorials for which I have made PDF downloadable versions available I have now added measurements in inches as well as cm, and I've published them all on Google docs - so it's a simple click away to download them (for free of course) onto your computer!

The link is on each post: here are the ones available as PDF's:
(Click on the photos to go to the post)

Pencil and Notebook Folders
Pencil and Notebook Folders

Insulated Lunch Bag
Insulated Lunch Bag

Bed Pockets
Bed Pockets

Jewellery Bags
Jewellery Bags





Hanging Hair Tie Holder
Hanging Hair Tie Holder

Furry Animal Backpacks
Furry Animal Backpacks

Fabric Pie or Pizza Box
Fabric Pie or Pizza Box

Pencil Case
Pencil Case



So that's some of my housekeeping done (or should that be blogkeeping?)

If anyone has any more requests or suggestions for tutorials or indeed any part of my blog then do please ask! I'm always looking for ways to improve my work!
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