A new podcast episode with elise gets crafty!


Last month I chatted with Elise for her ELISE GETS CRAFTY podcast, and it was such a great call! Like, so good. At one point Elise mentioned feeling like she wanted to take notes on what we were chatting about, and I totally felt the same way. So what did we discuss? Five things we’ve learned about running an online business. We each shared a few things, but my top three favorites from what I shared are:

– it’s never too late to try something new with your business

– why an editorial calendar is important for my blogging success

– when to ask for help

Of course I elaborate on each of these things in the podcast, so be sure to listen along by clicking here.

ALSO SUPER EXCITING: Elise and I co-authored an ebook, Building a Business: how to dream, plan, make, sell and share your online shop, which launched Monday. It is packed full of information that covers the last two years of our businesses, is 114 pages in content and over 37k words. The full table of contents is available here. There are no photos in our ebook (gasp!), just pure encouragement, advice, and many personalized experiences. We also interviewed a few follow bloggers/entrepreneurs and are happy to include advice from Myquillyn Smith, Lisa Leonard, and GraceLaced!

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Building a Business eBook :: now available!

building a business ebook maggie whitley elise blaha cripe

A couple years ago I received an email from Elise Blaha Cripe with an invitation to co-author an eBook that would share our experiences as handmade shop owners & entrepreneurs. At the time, I had recently finished a 31-days series on the topic (Handmade Business in 31 Days), and although I had written 31 different posts relating to the topic, I had hardly dug into what I’ve learned over the last seven years. I was thrilled to hear from Elise, and of course I said yes :) I knew there was more to share and this was the perfect opportunity to fully elaborate.

I have admired Elise for a very long time. Her businesses are run differently differently than mine, and that’s what makes our eBook a well-rounded compilation of our creative journeys.

building a business ebook maggie whitley elise blaha cripe

Building a Business: how to dream, plan, make, sell and share your online shop is overflowing with inspiration, advice, experiences, and resource links. Together we have written over 37,000 words with the .PDF being 114 pages.

We’ve organized the eBook into six parts, and included a BONUS section on “balancing” work and parenthood. Click here to view the table of contents and purchase our 114 page eBook for $12.

building a business ebook maggie whitley elise blaha cripe

The ebook is available in three different formats: .pdf, .mobi and .epub. Read it on your tablet or mobile device, or print it out and use the margins to make notes. (Thank you Alexandra Rae Design’s for your help with the file formatting!)

I hope you’ll take a peek! Inspiration is all around you.

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A new podcast episode!

I recently recorded a podcast with Jen & Danielle of She Percolates and we had a great conversation chatting about the various ways my businesses have changed over the years, including unemployment, childcare help, starting a book club, and future projects! It is a great episode, and it was so fun to reminisce over the last seven years.

We also talked about success, including what defines success for me personally and why it’s important to not compare yourself to your neighbor. Click the play button above to listen, or click here for a direct link to the podcast & show notes. Oh, and here’s a list of previous She Percolates podcast episodes. Have a great weekend!

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The difference between Gussy Sews & Caroline-made.

caroline made gussy sews maggie whitley

I received a really great question on Instagram the other day about my two shops, and I thought it was so good that I’m going to answer it here on my blog.

What is the difference between Gussy Sews & Caroline-made?

Gussy Sews is my original handmade shop, the one I started almost seven years ago when we were living in Detroit. Nearly all of the products under this name include our signature ruffle, something I added back in the early stages as a way to set my handmade products apart from other shops/designs. I love the softness the ruffle adds to each product and that they are hand-ruffled (meaning I don’t use a Ruffle Foot on my machine to gather the material). Gussy Sews is an outward example of “you can learn and do hard things” inspiration. The fabrics I use are mostly quilting cotton, are full of color & vibrancy, and carry a cheerful vibe. Gussy Sews’ tagline: bright, colorful tote bags & accessories.

Caroline-made is the “big sister” shop to Gussy Sews and began in 2014. I had a vision for this shop for years prior to launching early last year, so it was a real dream to bring it to fruition while still living in Los Angeles. My goal with CM is to create a product that carries sophistication in it’s designs, while continuing to embrace my love for color. Simple differences, like stitching a suede label to the front side of each product and using (gorgeous) metal YKK zippers have been so fun. I use exclusive designer fabrics, something I absolutely love offering. Caroline-made’s tagline: pretty accessories for the modern, sophisticated gal. By the way, Caroline is my middle name and holds much of my inspiration for opening this shop.

caroline made gussy sews maggie whitley

The differences between the shop are small but mighty, for sure. I’m so glad a reader asked for more information because I totally agree, what sets Gussy Sews apart from Caroline-made may be unclear at first glance, but the overall aesthetic is hugely different.

Here are two more Cliff Notes differences: Gussy Sews features ruffles and a crazy (fun) amount of color, Caroline-made is a gorgeous mix of sophistication and style.

And in case you’re curious, I’ve written even more about my handmade story here, including how I learned how to sew, the moves my family has experienced (MI, MN, CA), and traveling to Tanzania, Africa with Compassion International in 2012.

PS. One of the products featured in this post will be released exclusively to my email newsletter community — exciting! To learn WHEN and HOW to buy, along with general Gussy Sews & Caroline-made shop updates, join here:

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