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Made for kids, by a kid – Handmade Monster Scarves by Gauge!

One of my favorite things about homeschooling has been how Gauge has been able to pursue his passions & come up with new ways to learn on his own – like becoming an entrepreneur.

It all started last year, when he was still in school, and he told me about an idea he had for a monster product he wanted to make – kid size monster scarves with mouths for pockets to keep your hands warm while you wait on the bus, or between throwing snowballs. But with being in school, and then homework, we never had time to really suss it out. Over the summer, when we started homeschooling (since I was pregnant, we started in July to get a headstart for the inevitable break when she arrived and those days when we just wouldn’t feel like doing school work with a new baby in the house) he mentioned again his monster idea. A few weeks later, he sketched up a design and showed it to me, and we brainstormed how to convert it into an actual product.

Then the fun stuff started! His first prototype, he sewed the mouths in backwards. His second, he wasn’t happy with how the teeth were sewn into the mouths, and his third, he didn’t like his eye stitching. All part of the learning process. He got upset when he discovered how hard creating a new product from scratch was – but learned how to channel his frustration into action to resolve the issue at hand.

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By his next round of monster scarves, he had worked out pretty much all the kinks and was whizzing through a scarf or two a day!

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This was a great opportunity for many lessons, besides sewing. He learned about pricing for profit, structuring a sustainable business model around his products since they are seasonal, future planning, budgeting, measuring, graphing sales, targeting a demographic of potential customers, creating a marketing campaign, writing product copy, utilizing keywords to maximize SEO (search engine optimization), projecting ROI (return on investment), taxes and so much more. Skills he would most likely never have learned in public school, but that will aid him in a variety of professions. (plus taxes, why don’t they teach taxes in public schools?!)

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The end result? One proud, accomplished, educated, driven, hardworking, enthusiastic, passionate little person who isn’t afraid to follow his dreams, set goals, and is dedicated to working hard every day to make things happen and learn through life.

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Now, thanks to all his hard work, he is launching his first ever product line into the world at age 11 – kid size monster scarves! I listed them in my shop, and you can check out his work here. Thank you so much to everyone who cheered him on through social media as we posted photos of his progress – you have NO idea how happy you made him, how much you encouraged him, and how proud he is thanks to all of your support!

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500 Monsters in 2016 – Update!

So I totally failed at the weekly updates, oops! So here is my 3.5 week update, haha! Between custom ordered Mon-stors (get yours here!) and working on lots and lots of stuffies for a huge promo launching next week, I am up to 24/500 Monsters. Not where I want to beΒ but I do have 20 stuffies and some Mon-stors on my table in various stages of production – waiting on tags so I can complete the majority of them! I’m at just about 5% of my goal which is no where near where I want to be right now, so here’s to the hustle! I’m hoping to get to 15% of my goal by the end of February. Wish me luck!

And for a visual update – a goody-goody gallery of monsters!

There is ONE surprise mini monster missing from this count because I didn’t photograph it before I sent it off to it’s new home. Oops! But other than that, there’s the cuties from this month!

I’ll post another update soon! (hopefully, in one week, lol!)

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500 Monsters in 2016: Week 1 Progress

My monster making goal for 2016 is to make atΒ least 500 monsters total. Last year and the year before, I made just over 350 each year, so it’s quite the inflation from previous years – but also as my first year relying 100% on my monster making income to pay rent, bills and buy food, I felt like I definitely needed a much loftier goal. (Muchly much more loftier).

To hold myself accountable and visually record the process, I decided to upload photos each week of the year showing what I completed! Unfortunately, since this was the first week, not much to show besides a custom-ish monster (get your own here!) for Elva E. and a purple Mon-stor I’ll be listing in my shop next week.

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That’s all for this week! Check back on the 14th to see how many more monsters I’ve made and how much closer I am to my goal!

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Maker Made Monday – Lee Wolfe Pottery

Today’s Maker Made Monday feature is Lee Wolfe Pottery – who I also discovered from the #madeinasheville hashtag on Instagram!

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Can I just get a collective “WOW!” for these awesome poppy platters & bowls? Once I get my own place again, I’m totally saving up for a set of these!

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Every piece she makes is just gorgeous, from the organic, hand crafted shapes to the vibrant, food safe glazes & even the styling of her images is just breathtakingly lovely!

 

If you want to see more of Lee Wolfe’ wondrous work, visit her shop, Instagram or Facebook page.

What maker are you currently loving? Share their shop in the comments & they may just be featured next week!