Punch with Judy - Happy New Year 2012
PUNCH WITH JUDY - HAPPY NEW YEAR 2012 NEWSLETTER
HAPPY NEW YEAR to everyone!
Out goes 2011 and in comes 2012. We always welcome in a New Year with so many hopes and aspirations for the future as we strive for what we expect to be a wonderful year ahead. Did you stay up to watch the clock at midnight?
I trust you all have enjoyed a wonderful Christmas and had some time with your loved ones, family members and friends. Santa been good to you? John and I have a Nespresso from the whole family as for my entire life I haven't enjoyed coffee but my taste buds changed a short while ago and I now love a cup of good coffee. I also received the complete series of "The Mentalist", my favourite TV Show. Refer to my blog: http://punchwithjudy.blogspot.com/ for more of my excitement.
The last few days we have enjoyed the company of our entire family visiting so there's been much laughter and sharing. The grandchildren are now all teenagers apart from 3 year old Hunter.
So, as we enjoy their company, we feel very fortunate for a wonderful family and beautiful home/farm to share allowing us so many wonderful memories. I shall add some more to my blog asap. The grandchildren kept us alive to see the New Year in with their antics.
May John and I wish each and everyone of you a very Happy New Year and may it bring all that you dream of plus more. Thank you so very much for your support during 2011, both at the shows and online. We have many new adventures to share in 2012 so hope you will continue to be part of all we do.
HAPPY NEW YEAR and continue to enjoy a safe holiday period.
1. YEAR IN REVIEW
2011 was really a repeat of 2010, attending 13 Shows Nationally, conducting Hands-On Classes, presently Daily Seminars, demonstrating new products at the Discovery Desk and having Sandra Chandler (Just Curves) from USA and Bill and Leonie West (Westalee Design Rulers) as guests on our show stands. Liz and Penny continued to help us on the show stands travelling to each State and we introduced Karen to you at the Brisbane October Show. It was at this show that we "trialled" a new idea of demonstrating new products on the half hour each hour of the day on a separate stand, calling it "Nifty Notions". This was received by those attending the show with great enthusiasm and we've decided to repeat the format during the 2012 circuit.
The Show Schedule for 2012 is on my website.
The Mail Order conti nued to grow and in today's economic climate I'm extremely pleased with it due to your continued support. Thank you.
The e-Newsletter "Into Craft" was commenced and I'm proud to say I've had a regular column in those issues. You may read them on http://www.intocraft.com.au/ where you will also find other interesting crafty editorials and projects. Into Craft is from the organizers of the shows we attend and congratulations to Expertise Events for keeping in touch with show visitors on a monthly basis rather than just once or twice a year when their show is held in that State.
We held another successful Machine Embroidery Retreat in September as well as two new Online Courses. See further down.
2. BEST SELLERS IN 2011
We have had many continued successes such as the Curve Master Presser Foot, our Pleat Makers, Fasturn Turning Tools, Westalee Design Products and, of course, our Punchneedles, but there have also been several other new products that have proved very popular.
Forever favourites include the Bendable Bright Light, Sew Slip 11, Ott-Lites, Texture Magic and Mylar Embroidery Sheets and CDs. It amazes me just how many Stencil Burners we continue to sell, year after year.
Clover has once again been streets ahead of any other brand in quantity of sales and several new products from Clover have been readily accepted as essential tools and accessories. Their Kanzashi Flower Makers were a runaway success for them as had been their previous similar products.
Sewline 's new Needle Threader especially made for FINE Needles most definitely needs a mention. Designed for fine needles (Sizes 9 - 12) and it's ever so easy to use.
Bag patterns continued to be very strong sellers and we've supported many brands of miscellaneous patterns too. The most popular ones during 2011 came from StudioKat Designs again, though a few from By Annie, Lazy Girl Designs, Sewphisti-Cats and Purse-O-Nality sold extremely well.
In the Machine Embroidery CD's, a new brand we introduced has been very popular. 1-2-3- Embroidery, so please take a peep at their range if you have youngsters to sew for. Jenny Haskins Designs still sell very well and Jenny keeps offering so many to choose from that it makes it difficult to decide.
3. MOST REWARDING & BEST MEMORIES FOR 2011
Most Rewarding Accomplishment for 2011: Without doubt, the two new Online Courses held during 2011. The students have been fantastic and the friendships made together with the support for each other has been most rewarding. We've all loved the journey, so much so, that most are "staying on" for the same classes in 2012.
Best Achievement for 2011: Surviving so well in harsh economic times for retailers. Thank you to our supporters. I would also have to add writing editorials and "how-to-do-its" for various sources, but, in particular, for http://www.intocraft.com.au/ which I hope you will be continue to be so interested in.
Best Technical Achievement for 2011: Not only regular Blogs, but now offering you both Facebook and Twitter. Yes, I'm tweeting! Allows those who wish to keep up with our antics may do so with a choice! See the very end of this Newsletter to be able to join me in any one or all of those.
Best Farm Accomplishment for 2011: Setting up a 40ft container to house the little emu chicks. Refer to one on my Blogs during August. Must also add John's new ride-on lawn mower as being his "therapy" when he arrives home from Shows for its speed and efficiency of keeping our acreage tidy. Though I've threatened to put P Plates on it after he ran into my clothesline and broke it - says it goes too fast but he didn't know he'd hit it!
Best Memory for 2011: The thrill of winning the Best Large Stand Award at the Brisbane Craft Expo in March. Also seeing our new Punch with Judy Banner high above our stand for the first time at the Craft & Quilt Fair at Darling Harbour, Sydney in June. Visitors walked in the entrance, turned their eyes left and there it was as high as ever hanging from the mezzanine's balcony above our stand.
Worst Memory for 2011: Without any shadow of doubt the computer problems I experienced ALL year after purchasing a new computer in January and issue were not resolved until November! Between HP, Nortons and Microsoft, I think I've learnt more than most ever should need to. It has been "trying" but those three companies are to be commended in their persistence and helpfulness. My patience and endurance were most certainly put to the extreme test. I was just unlucky I'm quite sure!
Most Thanks for 2011: When I looked at what I'd written for this in 2010, it is virtually "ditto". I couldn't continue doing the exhaustive show circuit if it weren't for the help of my good friend Liz. We joke that we are Laurel and Hardy and at times I'm sure we simply survive on our good nature, humour and friendship, because we're both a pair of old crocks with aches and pains that we don't deserve! To Penny who is always there for the asking and she's just as bad with those creaks. John, well, I don't know how he's survived 2011 at all, particularly, those Sunday night packups. We just keep hoping he'll improve once he's had his 2nd hip replaced. I have some excellent friends who constantly become my bouncing wall; knowing who you are yourselves, thanks. To Sandy for continuing to travel constantly from USA to be our International Guest on our show stands.
To Gary and Judy from Expertise Events who stage the shows we exhibit at for again staging excellent shows during the year. Gary has been particularly supportive of many ideas I've thrown around and together we've accomplished some new milestones with more planned. Thanks, even though I realize it's a two-way street.
Adrienne, my webmaster: you have no idea just how much she does for my website and this year continued to be with many mountains to overcome, but we did it proudly and hopefully efficiently for you, the most important part of our business. Early 2012 you will see a little facelift to our website's entry pages too. A big thank you.
My staff at home keep the home fires burning in my absence and continue to work together most efficiently and with a very friendly, helpful attitude which I hope you feel comes through those phone calls. They all try so hard to please you and look after your needs. They have to, as the Queen Bee, they know it's "off with their heads" if they don't!
Every January we conduct our website's birthday sale which runs for the entire month. This is JUST FOR YOU! Make sure you visit the website daily as each day we give a new offer and you wouldn't want to miss out, would you?
JANUARY is our Website's 11th BIRTHDAY but you get the presents!
PLUS, everyone who places an ONLINE ORDER during January, goes into our Lucky Draw for the Grand Prize of an Open-Order to the value of $150.00 for a spending spree. Runner-Up $100.00 and Third Prize $50.00.
Commences today, so visit the website now. 1st January through to 31st January, 2012 - we are offering some real summer holiday bargains and the whole month is just a lot of fun. Hope you're part of it. Just click on the Blue Birthday Cake each day.
Please remember that we hold all orders till February to send to save you postage, UNLESS you ask for individual postings. Also, DO NOT place daily specials into your Wish List until the end of the month since each day's special offer closes at midnight daily. Full details on the Birthday Page.
The Westalee Mystery Sampler Quilt course commenced in February and went all through the year until November. We had over 165 students participating, many of whom completed their quilt top and so many more soon to be completed. Course starts again on February 1st 2012, so maybe you'd like to join us? Click here for more information and note this quilt is designed to be made using your stash!
The other was a course on quilting with curves using the Curve Master Presser Foot. "Curvers" enjoyed 6 monthly lessons and were led through a wide variety of brilliant ideas using curves and sewing them with the Curve Master. Another course commences on 1st May 2012.
Another Pleat Maker Online Course was completed and shall be repeated again in 2012, date to be fixed. These have been so well received, you really should consider doing same. The most common misconception is that you need to be in front of the computer at a given time each week or month. Not so. You view your lesson in your own time and work at your own pace.
Many students expressed "reviews" for me as if talking to anyone who was considering doing an online course. One said it all for most, so with her kind permission, I shall repeat it here. Maia completed the Curve Master Online Course, but her words could relate to any I offer, I hope.
"OK, you want to learn how to use your Curve Master foot but you do not believe it can be done online. Take it from me that you can! I had my doubts about e-learning as I had not tried it before but when we started I found
The notes we were sent were very clear and if we had trouble interpreting Judy was always ready to translate.
The online video was in many ways better than watching a person demonstrate as we could ALL see close up. It is very detailed and you can watch it as many times as you need.
Your fellow curvers are an invaluable resource. When we started the screams of frustration were travelling at the speed of light over the cyber waves. But these were humourous frustrations which gave us all a chance to laugh, relax and then get back into learning a new skill.
Because you have plenty of time every one can comment on each person's progress via our chat group photos -and again- if you have trouble up-loading help is at hand.
Better than a day class where you reach a point, go home, work unfinished and with no support group you take forever to finish or your started with enthusiasm project becomes a UFO (or a permanent WIP)
I could find lots more positive things to say but this, I hope, gives you a general idea that Yes online classes do work and are fun at the same time. You are not isolated as someone is always at the other end of a computer. Go for it - Maia Butler"
I have more in line for release during 2012 plus I have taken a big step and have decided to offer some "Webinars". Now, if you're not familiar with this new term, it's like a 30 min or 60 min presentation like a slide show but interactive with voice by the presenter and questions at various times from those participating who have enrolled. It is FREE and my way of giving you the opportunity to see some new products demonstrated, just in case you are not able to attend shows or don't wish to wait a whole year till one comes into your State. I hope you will enjoy and participate as it is a huge undertaking for me both in time and expense. If you wish to email me any ideas of subjects you'd like covered I shall try to oblige if I receive definite persuasions on topics. That's if I can, of course! When I'm ready, I shall be inviting you to participate, so please be patient whilst I prepare some presentations.
6. WHAT'S NEW
A reminder that I do constantly update the What's New? section even when I'm on the road, so please do keep checking there as I don't always get the opportunity to advise you via a Newsletter. There are numerous new products having been added in the last month that you certainly will have your eyes opened if you haven't visited What's New? for some time.
7. JUDY'S BLOG
I have posted regularly via my blog all year so I urge you to subscribe so as when I have something to share you are immediately informed via an email rather than randomly checking in from time to time. http://punchwithjudy.blogspot.com
8. NEW YEAR'S THOUGHTS
1. May you ALWAYS make the right move
2. May your cup runneth over with love
3. May you always find shelter from any storm
4. May you remain good looking and looking good
5. May you find the perfect diet for body and soul
6. May you have as much fun as you can before someone makes you stop
7. May the worst thing that happens to you come in slobbery pink and furry tan
8. May you manage to MAKE time for time out
9. May all the new folks you meet be interesting and kind
10. May you always know when to walk away and when to run!
11. May your friends and family always bring you joy
12. Good health, good fortune and happiness for you and your loved ones.
9. WISE WORDS FOR 2012
Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
10. 40 PIECES OF ADVICE
A friend sent me a Power Point Presentation of the above but because it is 3 MB and in such format, I was unable to include it here. It is beautiful, the music majestic, photos superb and is just so appropriate for a New Year's Newsletter. I KNOW I'm letting myself in for disaster (because my Newsletter's Subscribers' list is so large) in suggesting that if you wish to email me I'm happy to send you the PPS as an email attachment. Let's see how we go because it has some of the best advice I've ever read.
MAY 2012 BRING YOU HAPPINESS AND ALL THAT YOU MAY WISH FOR.
I HOPE YOU ACHIEVE SOME SUCCESS (however you may wish to determine what success is) BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY, I WISH YOU HEALTH & HAPPINESS.
Till next time,