Busy Season… Take a Deep Breath, and Email Me!

I’m a business owner (mom, wife and a bunch of other things) and sometimes I get overwhelmed. How about you?

I’ve said this before in a post but I love learning, so I’ve been reading many books lately and the one I’m currently reading has been giving me some great motivational support at a time when things are loading up and getting busy.

So I’m going to share one of my favorite points from my most recent read:

“Most of us go through life as failures because we are waiting for the ‘time to be right’ to start doing something worthwhile. Do not wait. The time will never be “just right”. Start where you stand, work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.” (Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill, 2005)

So here is where I start!  I’ve been thinking about this idea for awhile now, but I’m starting.  I love to teach, counsel, help and see other’s grow – in whatever part of life or business it may be.

You are a busy and growing photographer/creative/artist/designer (insert own description).  I want to help!  Do you have questions about what to do with your prints and packaging?  Do you wonder how you can make a better impression on your clients so you can get more bookings? Do you not even know where to begin to look like you have it all together?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, email us at hello@kraftandjute.com and say HELP!  Ask us your questions, my team and I here to help/teach/counsel.  I’ve thought about putting together a formal type of program for this, but right now I’m just Starting Where I Stand!

Let me know if I can help!  Or if this type of service is valuable, wasteful, or a pipe dream!

Jumping In,

Melisa

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You Learn From Everywhere

I know what my answer would of been years ago in my late teens…yeah right! If it wasn’t something that appeared to be directly related to what it was I was involved in at that exact moment, then it was a waste of time.

Fast forward a few years (not going to tell you how many, but enough!) and WHAM-O! I learn from all over the place, most of the time in the least expected place.  And I love it!

Continue reading “You Learn From Everywhere”

Recycled and Eco-Friendly? What it means when you buy from Kraft & Jute

“Recycled Content” – what does it mean when you order from Kraft & Jute?  We had to investigate to get a real answer to this question.  Initially, our paper was recycled content, but it had a variable quality. Sometimes we received really thick paper that horrified our printers and other times we received more of an ugly gray color that horrified us.
In an effort to maintain consistency for our customers, we elected to purchase our supplies with a measure of regular color and appearance.

This quality of our kraft paper is vigin paper – it provides the consistent brown color, and the fiber content and thickness is more regular.  It also means it is just that – virgin paper.  So while we recycle and repurpose as close to 100% of our scrap papers as possible, it starts as virgin kraft paper.

Our other product line uses a corrugated kraft paper.  Our line of corrugated print sleeves and keepsake boxes are made from nearly 100% recycled paper and materials.  The jute (which encompasses our burlap) is an all-natural fiber that is
actually biodegradable – and even edible, if you are so inclined!

Our use of jute products helps to keep industries in struggling economies viable, and promotes the use of natural products.  We are an eco-friendly company and our motto is to be Simple and Beautiful, and to only create with products that fit into our natural vision for our company.  It’s a good choice for our environment, for our customers, and for our work.

We’re always striving to find new ways to use the most natural, eco-smart materials, processes, and resources in our production.  The result is products that convey our natural theme and help to promote healthy choices for our environment and our community.  We hope you love them just as much as we do!

See our latest, going out to Freedom Acts

Today we completed an order for Freedom Acts, an organization working to end human trafficking in Ireland.  Won’t you take a minute today to check out their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FreedomActs and give them your support?  Let’s do what we can to protect all children, everywhere.

And also check out the presentation packets and CD sleeves we produced for them.  We hope they love them as much as we loved making them!

Check out the Tiny Lights auction this weekend!

Kraft & Jute is pleased to participate as a sponsor of the Tiny Lights auction, starting this Friday and continuing to May 28.  The auction is designed for Professional and Amateur photographers, and we have contributed a basket of our naturally-inspired Kraft & Jute goodies valued at $100 for the event. 

If you don’t already know about Tiny Lights (and we hope you will check them out!), let us share this from the Tiny Lights website: 

The
Tiny Light Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides professional
photography for children and families that have been faced with a life-altering
diagnosis.
 

We provide families with the lasting
memories through the amazing art of
photography.  With the help of many
photographers throughout Canada, we are able to provide families with photos
that they can share.

We love the work this group does, and hope that you will enjoy joining the fun of the auction, and in becoming a friend of Tiny Lights, as well!

Check out the auction here, starting Friday:  https://www.facebook.com/TinyLight

We’ll be shopping for some great deals, how about you?

Kraft & Jute and Inspire Photo Seminar

Less than a week away, the #Inspire Photo Seminar begins on February 11 in Sturbridge, MA.  Kraft & Jute is pleased to provide a $250 gift basket for one special winner at the Workshop.  If you’ll be there, send us a tweet, and look for our special goody basket when you arrive.  We hope you win the $250 gift certificate for your favorite Kraft & Jute items!

Inspire Photo Seminar

What does Groundhog Day have to do with my business?

You’re a photographer.  Does Groundhog Day have anything to do with your business?   Well, maybe not… but maybe it does!  The holiday is possibly based on Candlemas Day, which predicts whether the year will drag on with a second winter or just one.  Essentially, that big weather-predicting rodent is influenced by light; a clear winter sun causes his shadow to appear, and portends six more weeks of winter for the rest of us.  Which seems a little backward, wouldn’t you say?  But the important point is, it’s light that makes the season for him.  And is there anything that has more influence than finding that elusive perfect light for your work?  There may be a thousand blogs and posts about light, light, light.  Sunrise light, sunset light, it’s too brief, and there’s no way to control it.  But when you do capture it, it can be awe-inspiring.  Just like the Groundhog, we’re hoping for the perfect light but totally at the mercy of nature when our scheduled time arrives!

Of course, here in Pennsylvania, we’re personally acquainted with Punxsutawney Phil, and we’re always hoping that February 2nd is cloudy.  A cloudy day means no shadow, and no shadow means the end of winter!  As much as we love it, winter has been known to hang around here into May, so we’re happy if it wraps up by the end of March.

What’s the other connection between Groundhog Day and your business?  Groundhog Day has become a term that means re-living an experience until you learn to do it right.  Have you ever had a session that you wish you could go back in time and totally re-do?  That’s when a good Groundhog Day would be handy.  With that in mind, perhaps it’s smart to take the first week of February to re-think the experiences from last year that proved extra challenging, and think about how to not repeat them this year.  What plans can you make now that will assure better results for 2013?  Even after a great year, there’s always room for reflection and improvement.  Consider making Groundhog Day your day to re-think, re-organize, and re-plan.  Affirm your best practices, and change up the ones that aren’t your best.

Good luck, Groundhoggers!  We’re mentally reviewing our standard operating procedures, personal and professional, right now.  If you’re doing the same, feel free to share your thoughts with us on our facebook page.  We’re always ready to learn from our friends!  And from that pesky Groundhog, too!

Upgrade to Water Shield Glossy Discs

Hello friends!

Just wanted to give you all an update on the NEW type of discs that we will be carrying from now on! As it turns out the CD’s we have been offering were discontinued by the manufacturer. Bummer? We think not! Instead we have upgraded our CD’s and DVD’s to Water Shield Glossy discs. This kind of disc gives your images a nice shine AND they are waterproof! Looking at them from the picture below, it’s hard to tell the difference unless you have an actual disc in your hand. On the left is the old disc and on the right is the new Water Shield Glossy Disc. They do cost a little more on our end but we aren’t passing that onto our customers. Keep an eye out for these if you order discs in the next month or so and as always, enjoy!Disc Photo

Left: Old Matte Disc  | Right: New Water Shield Glossy Disc