This is from my newsletter which I have just sent out .... not on the mailing list? Stay up to date with what's happening by signing up right over there on the left hand side of this page!
How do you start a newsletter in these times?
Whilst I know that many people will be able to sew a great deal whilst we are all at home for the foreseeable future I also know that, for a lot of people, money is going to be tight. Both my husband and I are self-employed and even though the Government have now outlined their support for the self-employed it won’t really help us much.
I have been slow to announce what I am going to do regarding my longarming business because I just didn’t know. Like hundreds and thousands of people across the country, I was waiting in limbo to see when schools were going to shut. When that announcement finally came I had to prepare my girls, one who was very upset the other not so much! And since then things have changed a pace.
Then there was the announcement on Monday night and it did at least bring some clarity – we are all to stay at home as much as possible. Luckily my studio is at home so I could still theoretically work. But would I be irresponsible to ask people to go out to the Post Office to send me their quilt tops? If they are going out for essential food supplies anyway is it OK to pop to the Post Office? Could they do prepaid at home and visit a local letterbox on their daily walk? Could they use a courier company for contactless collection? These questions and a thousand more are circling around my head. As someone who may be able to get some work throughout this crisis I really need to and so I have decided what to do.
This is what I have come up with:
- For the duration of the stay at home period I will still offer longarm quilting to people
- Quilts top are to be sent to me by any method customers feel safe using
- All design consultations will be done online
- Payment will be made direct into my bank account once the quilt is finished
- I will return the quilt to you by post and confirm the tracking number once it is sent
To be honest, this is the way a vast majority of my customers work with me already and it works very well.
My teaching and demonstration work obviously dried up over night at the beginning of last week and so I have been thinking of alternative ways of being able to offer something online. I have seen many people, who are more technically savvy than me, already releasing a slew of classes and programmes and feel somewhat left behind. I am going to have to learn, along with a large number of people, to work in different ways and wondered if there would be any interest in online content, be it FB Live, IGTV, tutorials or classes? For teaching purposes or just as somewhere to build community through these strangest of times.
I would love to know your thoughts on this and also hear how you are getting by or systems you are putting in place on order to get through this crisis financially.
Stay safe and well and, most of all, sane!
The other thing we have to contend with is a new addition to our family - she arrived 2 weeks ago today and has added an extra layer of chaos to our already turned upside down world. Will she be a help or a hindrance through these times? The jury it still out!!