{2010, a recap of the year}

Highlights from 2010 ~

In January, Zack and I rang in the new year being residents of Minnesota. We had moved from Michigan just months before but were actually in Michigan for the New Year. I had bought my ticket to Blissdom and was realllllly excited about going to my 1st blog conference. I had added a shop with Big Cartel (but was still selling through Etsy) and couldn’t even come close to predicting with the following months would bring Zack and I // Gussy.

February came and I celebrated by writing my first tutorial post. I had painted my nails for Blissdom and left for Nashville soon after. The next day revealed a HUGE project I sewed for (in)courage. I blogged about the awesome-ness Blissdom brought my way and just a few days later was featuring Where Women Create on my blog. Little did i know I’d be working with WWC on their first conference/handmade market later this year :] I wrote about discussing analytics. This was the start of sharing blog/biz 411 posts.

sadly we must skip through march as all posts have been lost from my switch to WordPress from Blogger {tear}, but I did find this post on when I moved over to WordPress.

April is such a memorable month ♥. I had a “first” with sewing ruffles on notecards. I also wrote my first most-popular to-date post on Etsy vs. Big Cartel {so fun to see the community form through this!!!}. I added a new print to my line of Gussy totes and later wrote a 3-part series on having a handmade business: part 1 {organizing}, part 2 {business tips}, part 3 {Q&A}. A few days later I received this amazing email from a customer. Wristlets were added to the shop, and then — I made MY BIG ANNOUNCEMENT about quitting my day job to sew full time ♥.

In May I met Allison with OMyFamily for cupcakes and we’ve been friends ever since :] Allison’s son, OBaby, was caught inside a Gussy tote bag. The maintenance lady at our apartment complex saw Zack nekkid {hilarious}. The month of May also meant I was getting ready for my first day as a full-time Gussy girl — May 17th is my first day self-employed. {I also wrote about it here and here} The celebratory day **finally** came and I was no longer working for someone else. Zack and I celebrated by a weekend “away” — here’s all the fun stuff we did. May continued to be a big month as I wrote a detailed post on how I quit my day job. I hosted my very first Gussy/Minneapolis meet-up, and was preparing for The Creative Connection here in Minneapolis later this year.

June finally brought warm weather to Minnesota, so Zack and I went on our first of many bike rides. One month had already passed since quitting my day job and I was finding old sewing posters to giggle over. I wrote a post on 3 of my favorite handmade accessories and was on my way to becoming good friends with Lisa Leonard & Jessica of Allora Handmade. I wrote another Q&A post

July is my birthday month! :] On July 5th I celebrated my 25th birthday, so to have fun I posted my favorite things: part 1, part 2, and part 3. These three posts were leading up to a super fun birthday giveaway that I posted here. My parents surprised me {as did Zack for planning it all!} by visiting us for the weekend — yay, happy birthday to me! I received some lovely gifts and wrote another tutorial post. Zack and I had a summer adventure with a trip to Michigan. My favorite bloggy friends guest posted for me while we were away visiting family.

Yay — August! I created my first ever limited-edition headband {it turned out to be super popular — I should have un-named it “limited edition”, haha}. I wrote another biz series, but this time on budgeting: part 1a, part 1b, part 2a, part 2b. The bloggers at LoveFeast hosted a MN meet-up — of course I had to go :] One year had passed since moving to Minnesota from Michigan, and Zack & I **finally** found a new place to live {a few pics are found here}.

September I introduced a new product line for little girls >> Gussy Girl purses and headbands. Gussy Sews had our first booth at a The Creative Connection’s handmade market and I spent a few days with these fabulous business owners/bloggers :] It’s so amazing to see that earlier this year, in May, I had just quit my day job to sew on Gussy full time and was *ironically* available to meet and help plan the team putting on The Creative Connection {conference & handmade market}. God is so good! I ended the month with the official tour of our Minneapolis home.

October brought a photo of my Gussy ruffles & Ree Drummond along with new Vacay totes. And, I met Heather Bailey {and she knew who I was!} I blogged about beings pals with social media and receiving a gorgeous 1916 Singer sewing machine ♥. Pregnancy & Newborn magazine featured Gussy again. Zack and I talked about adopting a dog, and then we found Bauer and added him to our family :] I fell in love with the hair salon in our neighborhood {tell me you understand this dilemma for us curly-haired gals}, and Bauer made his first vlog ;] I went to Relevant {Christian womens blog conference} in Pennsylvania and…

then in November introduced yet another new Gussy product ~ Christmas stockings! The Gussy Sews blog hosted a holiday gift guide {day 1, day 2, day 3} and we revealed our ruffled holiday product line. Red Letter Words created THE MOST FUN ever GUSSY print for my studio. Every day Bauer steals our hearts a bit more {sigh}. I found an Etsy Success email and turned it into a community blog post, went to another blog meet-up event {at Aveda}, and shared pics of our new Gussy tags. I started a fun new series called Remembering Memories and blogged about yet another brick & mortar shop that I love. Bauer recorded another vlog and is really loving the winter snow outside. We decorated for Christmas early since we would be in Michigan over the holiday, and Gussy Sews had their first ad in OK! Magazine. {umm, amazing}

December ~ I started out by sharing how I stay [more] organized with my Gussy folder. I also shared {thanks to my friend, Stephanie} some simple tips to improve your business cards since I’m getting ready to go to Blissdom {again} in January {SO EXCITED!} I made plans to host a Gussy // Grand Rapids, MI meet-up and I wrote a stream of consciousness about my sewing machine. Gussy Sews had their “first” Christmas and shipped 148 packages *just* for the holiday season. Creating Community turned out to be a very successful post idea {click over and read about the community of the Gussy Sews blog & find a friend to connect with.} The Gussy // Grand Rapids, MI meet-up was super fun and we talked for over 2 hours :] We finished with a final Sponsor Feature post which includes a feature/giveaway on our sponsors, as well as posting our 28th Featured Artist for the year.


Putting this recap together has been a lovely reminder of the places I’ve gone, where I’m at now and where I want to go. Our Press page is something I couldn’t have ever dreamed ~ thank you for giving the press something to write about. Praying for a healthy, successful, fun year for 2011. xoxo

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{group giveaway :: December sponsors}

This giveaway is now closed.

Each month, Gussy sponsors have the opportunity to participate in a group feature//giveaway promotion. With the feature option, sponsors can highlight their shop by showing off product. Or, sponsors can pair it with a giveaway item to draw even more attention to their shops.

And you know what? My sponsors rock. They are so great and creative and wonderful to work with. A mondo big T H A N K you to each of them for supporting this blog & my sewing dream.


This is a group giveaway that will run through Sunday afternoon {1/2} — it’s open to the US & Canada, and one winner will win all 12 items! I’ll announce the winner on Monday {1/3}.

To enter in the giveaway –-
Please leave a comment below & say hello.
If you love what you see, consider visiting their shop/blog and saying hello there as well :]


Pocketbaby —

Pocketbaby offers unique baby and toddler clothing with a purpose. Our Snapsuits + Tees are the “Perfect Place to clip your Pacifier!” We are also happy to offer many other useful and fun products that will make a great gift or a special treat for your little one.
giveaway: $15 shop credit

Nourish Baby Organics —

shop * blog
Nourish Baby Organics is a mom owned and operated line of handcrafted organic oils, balms and washes ranging from lavender, coconut, sweet orange and eucalyptus scents. We’re dedicated to providing safe and effective skin care for babies, children and even adults who’s skin could use some extra nourishment. Only the highest quality ingredients are used and all products are 99-100% organic with no toxic chemicals added ever!
giveaway: organic coconut balm

Apearently Sew —

shop * blog
I am a stay at home wife & mommy, new to sewing & blogging, using it as a creative outlet and trying to fund my fabric addiction :]
giveaway: $20 shop credit

Studio Jewel —

shop * blog
I can’t help being creative…it’s just who I am! I create unique, handcrafted modern jewelry that is beautiful and edgy…to make YOU feel good! I Love what I do! I am a wife and mom to 4 amazing kiddos and 2 fur babies!
giveaway: $50 gift certificate

Ahoy Graphics —

shop * blog
I specialize in bringing Etsy shop owner’s creative and unique graphic design and branding needs for today’s market: Etsy Shop, Print, and Social Media Design. A strong brand is invaluable as the battle for customers intensifies day by day. It’s important to spend time investing in researching, defining, and building your brand. After all your brand is the source of a promise to your consumers!

Take your shop out of the stormy seas and into friendly waters today!
giveaway: $25-off design services in the Ahoy! Shop on Etsy

Shaggy Baggy —

Shaggy Baggy offers one of a kind totes made from new and repurposed materials
giveaway: $25 shop credit

Circleline Studio —

circlelinestudio is a shop dedicated to creating fun decals to add a bit of interest to any decor.
giveaway: $20 gift certificate

Quilted Treasures —

shop * blog
We are a Quilt Shop that specializes in Custom Quilt Kits, Minky Cuddle Blankets & Quilt Backings. Our etsy shop features a variety of coordinating fabric bundles perfect for your next quilting or sewing project.
giveaway: It’s a Hoot Just Dots Fat Quarter Bundle ($40 value)

I Sew Lucky —

shop * blog
I Sew Lucky is filled with plush owls made with many fabrics and a selection of sizes and uses. In my shop you will also find sweet little rag dolls :]
giveaway: Small plush owl

The Pleated Polkadot —

shop * blog
My shop is a collection of handmade accessories for the every day girl. wristlets, headbands, hairbows, etc. fun stuff for girls of any age :]
giveaway: polka dot wristlet

Spunk & Sass —

shop * blog
Spunk & Sass is a little handmade jewelry and accessory shop run by two best friends. We offer a wide variety of items for you to add a little “spunk” or “sass” to your everyday outfits.
giveaway: Chrysanthemum Earrings {winner picks color of their choice; 1 pair}

Ahmelie —

shop * blog
Ahmelie: (ah-mah-lee) Industrious One

True to my name’s meaning, my hands have always enjoyed being busy. I la-la-love sewing. I’ve been doing it as long as I can remember and I have a fabric stash to prove it! I love bright colors and vintage prints, I hate throwing away something that might still have useful life and lately I’m obsessed with using my old magazines–watch for my inspired pieces, giving new life to old items.
giveaway: $25 shop credit

Sponsoring Gussy Sews helps me continue my passion for sewing, connecting and sharing my ruffles with you. If you’d like to sponsor this blog // promote your shop or blog, email me at gussysews@gmail.com

There are a few spots open for January. For sponsor testimonials & pricing, click here.

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{creating community: find a friend to connect with}

Yayyyy — have you had a chance to see all the comments left on yesterday’s post, creating community? If not, there are over 140! If you left a comment please feel free to go back and see what people wrote. Maybe you’ll find a blog/shop to connect with? That would be my goal for yesterday’s post ♥ {Consider setting a goal for yourself of clicking over to 5 different shops/blogs? Or, get crazy and visit them all!!! *wink*

When I think of community I think of feeling like I’m sitting with a friend.
Thank you, thank you to all the people that shared so far!
I’m *loving* all that I’ve read.

Here are some blogs I really have connected with lately: enjoying the small things, a beautiful mess, and a holy experience.


[photo credit]

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