{ Small Business Saturday }

26 Nov

Happy Small Business Saturday y’all! I know our family is planning to make a big deal of shopping local this year-is yours? There are so many lovely wonderful local businesses.  Take a look at what we’ve been doing lately 🙂


I couldn’t be happier with my businesses this year, and I’m thankful for all the people that are choosing to support them. The reality is with the two separate companies its been hard to keep up. Our Mama Always Said shop does sometimes get neglected in favor of our supplies store Fleuriste. Haven’t checked it out? Everything shown in the picture above and below is sold there as a supply.


I’m having a blast this holiday season stocking both shops.  Consider having a look if you need holiday gifts.  You can also us the “Shop Local” feature on Etsy to narrow search results down to local shops. Have you checked it out? Its a great way to get into your local market.



You’re Kidding Me Right?!

16 Sep

In the past I used this blog as not only shameless self-promotion but also a way to try to help other small businesses learn from my experiences.  I’ve tried to grow as an entrepreneur and help others, because, let’s be honest-I didn’t know who or what to ask when I was gettin’ started!  I decided recently though that I feel BEST when I get to rant and rave about whatever I want to. I attribute this 95% to the fact that I work at home, alone, all day every day 7 days a week.  I talk out loud to my dogs y’all.

They listen, more or less. Honestly I think they’re just waiting for me to say something that is or sounds like any of the following words-“cheese”, “park”, “walk” or “cookies”. Those words all mean happy things to them and so long as there’s a chance I may say one of those blessed words they do listen.  But I digress.

I read something today that really pissed me off. And maybe I’m crazy but I just really had a hard time relating. I was reading Entrepreneurs magazine and they were chronicling the internet’s youngest millionaires. That’s all well and good. Then they started chronicling “regular” people. They talked about a little kid that started selling candles to buy his skateboards, and his little business took off and he even gets his labels printed on big giant rolls now and had another company to do production.  That to me is totally awesome. That’s the kind of grass roots business I love to see. Probably because that’s the kind of business I have SO THERE.  Now when I come to the next article, its talking about some guys that did something I can’t remember. And I can’t remember it because the only sentence I DO remember went something like this, “….with a measly $70,000 in start-up funds they patched together their beginner website”.  UMMMMMMMM.  I’m sorry did we say SEVENTY THOUSAND DOLLARS?!

I think that’s the point at which I realized that Entrepreneur magazine and I have very little in common. While they did chronicle one small entrepreneur like myself the majority of the articles are about pretty big companies. Start ups that are worth millions of dollars now.  And I honestly cannot relate. I’m so far away from a million dollars that it might as well be mars haha.

So WHERE are all the magazines about small entrepreneurs? Where are they?! I know there are tons of blogs but I want to see a real life magazine I could pick up and learn about what things small businesses did to really get it going, like $1 at a time. One trip to JoAnn, one craft show.  I mean this is where small business starts:


That is a craft show table my friends haha.  That’s where it all started for me! But I want to hear about moms who sew at night while their babies are sleeping, dads who come home and build cool stuff in the garage after work, folks who pick vintage furniture from their shabby Detroit apartments. Whatever it is, if its small, I wanna hear about it!  I have determined about myself I really cannot relate to the companies who start up with “a measly 70K”. Poor things, it must have been a really rough time.. Holy crap, if anyone out there is listening and wants to give me 70K then please feel free 🙂


Night lovies! Thanks for listening to the rant 🙂

Branching Out….weddings here we come!

12 Jul

Mama Always Said has always been ALL about little girls, but we are branching out lovelies!  The advent of our supply shop Fleuriste brought about tons of brides as customers. The natural progression from there was to gear Mama Always Said towards brides as well. I’ve just started adding shoe clips to the site and will be adding more items as fast as I can. Check out some shots from our recent photo shoot for the wedding stuffs—-enjoy!

This is our giant shredded lace flower, available here on the supply site Fleuriste.

Punk rock skull appliques available here on the site.

Fluff flowers available on the flowers page of our site here.

More teasers to come soon! Happy shopping!!

Movin’ on Up….and Out

23 Apr

I pride myself on knowing a lot of my customers personally. I remember people and kids and things we’ve talked about.  I hear about family drama and crazy kids and all sorts of things-and I love it!  I finally have some news for YOU guys!

We are moving out of the mall, April 30, in a week.  Our mall kiosk has been an amazing experience for nearly a year and a half. Our business has grown and grown some more and continued to grow, all thanks to our great customers.  But with growing come growing pains, and we’re experiencing that right now.  Here’s what I mean:

1) Our kiosk is about 100 square feet, and we’ve got it jam packed. Our business is to the point where taking the next step means offering things like craft classes and birthday parties. We can’t do that in a kiosk.  We don’t want to do it in individual homes, we need space

2) Our sister company, Fleuriste Craft Supply, has grown a shocking amount in the year since we started it. Literally it keeps me busier than the kiosk. We pack and ship orders 6 days a week and the post office folks know me by name. When I only bring in 10 packages they make fun of me for bringing in a “light load”. This is a fantastic thing. I’m shocked and grateful. I have craft supply shipments arriving nearly every day at this point-its insane! That business too is at the point where I’ve literally outgrown my home office and have to move into the basement to get more square feet as we expand.

What these goals and growth have led me to conclude is that the mall kiosk is no longer a large enough space for our business.

Take a look:

Jam packed. Totally jam packed.  So the facts are that April 30th we’ll be moving out to find a bigger space to accommodate BOTH our businesses. That way whether you like to buy it ready-made or do-it-yourself you can still have fun in our store.  We can do craft classes and tutorials and birthday parties. We can do SO much more than we do now.

Why even move out until we actually find a space, you ask? In order to get the best deal on rent (which is super high anyways in a mall setting), you need to sign a year lease or more.  We’re working with a couple local shopping centers to narrow down some spaces we’ve already found and like.  If we sign on for a year we may miss out on those spaces. So this means we’ll be on hiatus for probably 4-8 months while we find the best space and build it into our store.  I’m so sorry we won’t be present at the mall, but be assured they’re working closely with us to help us potentially find a fit right here again!

You can always still find us at craft shows and via our website. I’m working hard to get nearly everything onto that site and we’ll be sending out a free shipping coupon code via our newsletter and facebook fan page.  Find that on there or call me if you need ANYTHING! (720) 883-5662.  You all know we love you, and we couldn’t have done this year and a half without you.

We’re VERY excited for what the future will bring, a little sad to close up the kiosk chapter of our lives. But glad that we’re closing it so we can continue to grow. We’re clearancing out many of our items until we move April 30. Come into the store to find great deals on everything.  If you don’t get our newsletter you can sign up here, we’ll send out a big grand opening party invite once we secure a space.

Happy Easter, from the Mama Always Said Family (AM and Jason)

Procrastination…..and more.

17 Apr

So we have NOT done our taxes, which is why I don’t have something awesomer to post about today 🙂 Aside from my spring cleaning kick I’m working on taxes tonight. Well they’re due tomorrow so yeah.  I opened up my office closet today and realized it needs an overhaul! Our whole house really needs one so I started reading organizing blogs to get myself pumped. You’ve already seen my halfway done office redo.  Check out the closet, my next project:

I mean I’ve even got random house decorations in there! What the hay!

I’ve been reading the awesome blog IHeartOrganizing to get ideas. I’ll keep y’all updated. Wish me luck on the dreaded taxes UGH!

A Lazy Thursday

14 Apr

I guess I shouldn’t really call it lazy, I’ve got a boatload of things to do today. But when I look at the photos I took of Wyatt (our dog) I feel like “lazy” really does describe it well!  Sometimes I wonder what to write about, and I think how much I love to read about the spaces people do their job in. I LOVE LOVE LOVE to see other peoples’ workspaces.  But I’ve already written about mine this week! So I thought I’d settle for a little bit of “here’s what I do all day” and then some super fun exciting news towards the end.

Lots in store for today, got lots of product to make for our retail kiosk out at Park Meadows. I’ve even got my materials stacked and ready to go!

I’m lovin’ the already lined alligator clips! They save me SO so much time. Want some for yourself? Find them in our shop here. Enough shameless self promotion. Moving on.

Want to know what the top three most essential things are for any small business? There they are right above this sentence. Without those 3 things I would be, well, dead.

I love sending out orders. Love it! But I hate when they’re totally ready except one or two missing items. That’s what all these packages are.  Got to get those out today!

I am a huge maker of lists. I finally dragged this super huge paper home from the office to make a giant to do list pad for myself. Cheap, not super cute, but it does work! And I do get more done because of it. Speaking of which our spring cleaning and redecorating continues.  Check out some of my favorite parts of the house!

We added this in the bedroom and I love the romantic flavor it has.  Plus hydrangeas are my favorite so it makes me smile to wake up to those.  We worked on the living room too, and as you can tell from the photos, Wyatt HATES to have his picture taken.

The next couple are pretty much the same, except for the dog. Keep an eye on him 😉

And finally……

That look was so pitiful I had to move on away from him. Back to the office for some work, with a passing glance to my favorite sign 😉

Packing orders today and sending off product to my favorite modeling agency, Ellie Bean. We send stuff, we get back free photos, everyone is happy! Want your child to model and get free stuff? Want to send your products off and get free photos? Check out Ellie Bean here. They’re the best. You get everything back within a week and its totally awesome. Here’s what we’re sending for owner Alexi’s daughter.

And finally some awesome cool news! There’s a whole print magazine that’s published quarterly called Specialty Retail Report.  Its pretty awesome and I read it online all the time before we opened our first kiosk.  Well somehow they found out about us and wrote a whole two page spread in their Spring 2011 edition. I’m SO EXCITED! You can read the online version here but I had to take photos of the ACTUAL magazine to show you too. Yayyyyyyy! I think this is even more exciting than being in CNN Money Small Business.

We’re even in the table of contents!!!!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHH!

With an Ellie Bean photo of course. This is Marley, ask for her. She’s an amazing model!

That’s enough excitement for me today 🙂  Enjoy your Thursday and I hope y’all have some awesome plans for the weekend coming up!

Spring Cleaning Accomplished-Part One

11 Apr

So I’m not totally done with my office spring cleaning, not by a long shot. But I compiled a whole list of things to do to my office last week and  I actually did get a lot of it done! I thought I’d chronicle it here. Maybe it’ll give you some ideas for fun ways to organize!  Our office sees a lot of action: I store all my goodies there, pack all my orders, sew, glue, stitch and more.  It all happens in a 10×10 space!  Needless to say, we have things stacked EVERYWHERE.  It was looking so cluttered, I had to do something!

After hauling out four GIGANTIC bags of garbage I’m feeling a little better. Check it out!

I always keep my rhinestone color chart handy, easy for reordering!

Row one of these great clear storage boxes I got from uline. It was the best price on the web even with the shipping!  I needed so many I saved up for a couple months and spent about $600 to totally outfit the office with these things, but they make packing orders and avoiding errors much easier!

Obviously we have color charts galore! There’s the one for our wholesale rolled silk rosettes, available via our Fleuriste Supply Shop.

I also got the idea to hang my threads on the actual wall from an organizing blog, love it!

The mailing station got a major overhaul. I had invoices everywhere! Now my handy wire stacking baskets from Target keep paid invoices, shipping invoices, and last month’s invoices all in one place.

We have oodles of silk flowers, I mean literally GOBS! These bins are all over my office

These ones hold are 30 some colors of wholesale acrylic rhinestone buttons, all shapes and sizes!

Getting orders ready to pack, glue gun at the ready!

I needed an easy way to store my stretch elastic but also know immediately if I had a color or not. These multi-sized glass jars from Hobby Lobby were half off!

So I’m about halfway done with the office and my ideas 🙂  Keep an eye out as I chronicle the rest of the spring cleaning-and get to a little cleaning of your own!

Here’s a last look around the whole room 🙂