Skull and Cross Buns

wamc_jan13_promo_scb So, can you guess what this website sells? You’ll never guess and that’s one of the best things about small independent businesses. This fabulous website is the brainchild of the very lovely and very talented Emily Fox. Emily sells hand carved stamps and designs, but not just any ordinary designs, some really fun animals, words, bunting and seasonal stamps. All lovingly hand carved by her fair hands!

I was asked by Emily to come up with a design for a website that matched her unique and quirky style. We had a great palette of pinks and greys to work with. Emily was keen to have a neutral website which allowed the products to shine through, but was also fun and not too serious.

I used a combination of washi tape patterns in the pale pink and we introduced a new fancy font to add some interest to the design along with a lovely duck blue colour to add some zing!

The website was designed using the fabulous create.net platform and I think the simplicity of the layout and the design really works and I am thrilled with the results. The new site has had such lovely feedback on the official Skull and Cross Buns facebook page. Go over ‘like’ immediately (please) and be sure to visit the website and get yourself some proper fabulous stamps.

website_template_skullcrossbuns

Inaugural #SBS event with Theo Paphitis – BBC Dragon

On the 30th of March all the winners of Small Business Sunday (#SBS) initiative started by Theo Paphitis were invited to a special event at Edgbaston Cricket Ground.

I dragged the lovely Mr Crayons along with me and the equally lovely Gabriella Buckingham of Moobaacluck also hitched a ride with us.

We arrived at the venue, the newly refurbished stadium with 4 minutes to spare. After a quick look at the Chromobile (very subtle shiny chrome car parked in the forecourt) we entered the conference room. The whole place was already buzzing with plenty of people in the conference room mingling, chatting, drinking and munching on sarnies. We were all given name badges which had our real names and also our twitter names, which was basically better for me. A lot of the time mingling was spent staring at people’s chests, which Mr C found rather interesting.

We managed to find my crew, which was Jo of 3 blonde bears, Kyleigh of Kyleigh Papercuts, Heidi of Giddykipper (Mrs Kipperchops) and Liza of Lizajdesign. We also met up with many other lovely people, sadly I didn’t manage to get pictures of everyone – but you have to trust me when I say they were as lovely and charming as they are on twitter! At one point the man of the moment made a brief appearance but quickly left again when we started to swarm in his direction.

After some time chatting, we were asked to go into the other conference room. We managed to find seats in the second row (best for heckling) and the event was off to a flying start. There was a live feed of tweets on the big screen which made for an interesting timeline. Every time one of our group got a tweet on the screen there was a loud – whoop!

We were introduced to Kypros Kyprianou – Ryman’s CEO. Then Theo took the floor. He spoke and was on stage for nearly 2.5 hours – fuelled by beer and a good sense of humour. We were shown a new official SBS website which was produced by a fellow SBS winner and also a new official badge (see pictures below). Theo was very charming, amusing and very generous with his time especially during the Q&A session. Even though he was ‘told off’ a few times for going over the time, he took as many questions as he could.

There was a quick free bar break while we went through individual official pictures, by alphabetical order. As a W I was in for a bit of a wait. Mr C suggested that next time I start my business name with an A. The wait wasn’t too bad as we were watered and I also got a chance to catch up with a few other SBS winners – though not as many as I would have liked.

When my turn finally came to have my photo with Theo, I told him that my husband had approved a cheeky kiss, and he very kindly obliged – although he did tell me that he was going to get into a lot of trouble for it! We then had our photo taken and I left very happy and fully certified.

We left Birmingham at around 17:30 and get back to Peterborough for 19:15, in time for a lovely meal at our fav Indian restaurant. By that point in the day Gabs, Mr Crayons and I realised that we had not eaten more than half a sandwich each all day! Needless to say the dinner was delicious.

What an amazing day, big thanks must go to Mr Crayons for being our chauffeur and being so supportive and lovely throughout the whole day. I think he’s a keeper.

Official Press Release to follow shortly.

SBS preparations and accessories

Unless you have been living under a rock recently, you will know that I have mentioned Small Business Sunday (#SBS) a few times. I have received my tickets for the winners event on the 30th and I am beyond excited at getting to meet more of the winners of this unique group of people/businesses, all under the eye of the charming Dragon.

The other week I wrote to the lovely and very talented Marna of www.littleadesigns.com to commission a special SBS rosette that I could wear to the event. I gave Marna details of my proposed outfit* (reserve the right to change mind – again) and this morning I received the most beautifully presented package. I love that the branding all matched so beautifully (I am a self-confessed branding snob). I particularly loved the postcard for a make-your-own rosette. I am really looking forward to showing it off at the meeting and telling everyone who designed and made it with such care and attention to detail. What a clever lady!

I have also treated myself to some Spot UV business cards designed and produced especially for the event – there’s a sneaky preview below. I shall be handing them out on the 30th, so if you see me and I haven’t already forced one into your hand, please do ask 😉

Press Release: SBS

-FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-

Local Business to Participate in Small Business Sunday Event Organised by Theo Paphitis of BBC’s Dragon’s Den.

Who Ate My Crayons, a local business based outside of Peterborough, will be joining Theo Paphitis of BBC’s Dragon’s Den at a networking event in Birmingham this March after being selected as one of his six favourite small businesses in a weekly Twitter event.

Mr. Paphitis selected Who Ate My Crayons last January and tweeted his selection to his 223,000 followers. “I was thrilled when I saw the tweets coming in congratulating me on being chosen,” says Tia Lush, owner of Who Ate My Crayons. “It was a complete surprise, as it was only my second attempt in the contest. The website visit statistics went through the roof. I couldn’t believe it.”

After the contest, Ms. Lush created an SBS ‘badge’ for her website to celebrate the win. Other people saw it and asked if she could design them a similar badge for their own websites. She soon became the unofficial badge designer for SBS, through word of mouth and recommendation from other SBS winners.

“I have been delighted to have helped each winner, and have donated all the proceeds from the badge work to charity,” says Ms. Lush. “So far, we have raised over £500,which has been donated to charities such as the Japan Tsunami Appeal and NewLife Charity.”

She continues: “I think it’s wonderful that such a successful businessman can show his support to UK-based businesses by taking time out of his Sunday evening to organise this event. Through my win, I have connected with other SBS winners and have gained valuable new clients and leads, all through the power of Twitter. I’m looking forward to attending the event on March 30th, and meeting the other members of this unique club.”

-END-

About Who Ate My Crayons Ltd
Who Ate My Crayons is a graphic and website design agency. It is run by designer Tia Lush. Tia has over 12+ years in the media and advertising industry, predominately in London. She comes from a fine arts background, so has always been drawn to the creative side of business. Her clients range from large corporations to individuals starting their own businesses.

Twitter #SBS web badges

I was lucky to have been chosen for a #SBS (Small Business Sunday) re-tweet by Theo Paphitis (BBC Dragon – Dragon’s Den) on 23 January 2011. It has brought me lots of new opportunities and lots of lovely new followers and associates on twitter.

Since then there have been new members to the SBS club each week and I have been fortunate enough to have produced some website badges for some of them to help promote their ‘win’. Below are some examples of the SBS badges.

If you would like one it only costs a mere £10 and all proceeds will be donated to a chosen charity, so far the following amounts have been donated to the following charities:

March/April 2011 – British Red Cross Japan Appeal – £71.25
April/May/June – Christchurch Earthquake Appeal : New Zealand Government – £90.00
June/July 2011 – New Life Charity – £80.00
August 2011 – Retail Trust – £135.00
Sept/Nov 2011 – Children in Need – £130
Dec 2011 to Feb 2012 – Cystic Fibrosis Trust – £50
To Date – Collecting for www.niamhsnextstep.com

Artwork is as a transparent .PNG and can colours can be branded and tailored to your company colours.

Here is a selection of some newly updated badges for my lovely clients incorporating the new ‘official’ SBS logo but keeping the Crayon/Client’s distinctive branding.

Sketch for Japan

The very lovely team at PiddleyPix tweeted about a unique offer the other day. Order an A6 sketch of anything you want (within reason) for only £10, £8 of which will be donated to British Red Cross Japan Appeal.

I sent off an email with some photos and this is the result. Isn’t it brilliant? What a wonderful way to show your support and get something very special in return.

Please visit piddleypix and order your sketch NOW!

I am also doing my bit, and selling some paper crafts and cards, all the proceeds to the same cause. So if you are feeling generous please check out my site as well 😉

Everyone loves a Superhero

Well, at least I know that lovely Mummy blogger Jen from Mum in the Madhouse loves her Superhero, he also happens to be MadDad, her husband.

Jen saw my Batman insipired ‘Kapow’ card a while back and asked me to come up with a design for MadDad. Her detailed spec involved him being her ‘Superhero’ and that was it.

I had an idea for a retro style font and some super powered stars. I hope MadDad likes it!

Following a quick tweet, @sewjustinesew has asked me to create a similar design for her Superhero. I am rather excited, I think I am going to experiment with colour – watch this space!

**Update – 3 Feb 2011**
Colour Superhero version can now be seen in my ‘Hommage to Handmade’ section.

Twitter Small Business Sunday #sbs

For those of you who are on twitter and who also follow Dragon’s Den star Theo Paphitis will be aware that every Sunday between 17:00 and 19:30 he offers small businesses the opportunity to promote themselves to him and in turn he ReTweets your tweet to his 82,000+ followers. Firstly, what a great idea and secondly it shouldn’t surprise me that Theo offers his time and generously helps support small and home-grown businesses in his own unique way.

This is my second week of trying out for the #sbs. I tweeted Theo at around 6pm with my short summary and my URL. I think it helps to have the URL so that people have something to click onto straight away to see what you are all about. Anyway, so I sent my tweet, did bath and bedtime with the little Crayons and promptly got distracted with doing some copy writing for Mr. Crayon’s StopForumSpam website and then a bit of overdue artwork framing (another glamorous Sunday evening at Crayons HQ).

It wasn’t until later when I logged into twitter that I saw all the messages of congratulations from my lovely followers and also complete strangers! What a lovely surprise. I am still dealing with all the lovely supportive messages that are pouring in and doing it all with a huge smile on my face.

I would like to thank Theo for chosing me, and I would like to congratulate my fellow #sbs club members this week. They are @artyglobe, @CotswoldNature, @LesleyKemp, @m2mmirrors, @TwentySevenWed.

I wish for us all a wonderfully busy week ahead!

Thanks also to @ShelliBobbins who was on the ball and took an instant twitter screenshot!

Inkling Prints labels and Button bears

You are getting two topics for the price of one in today’s post.

The very talented designer and illustrator Kiran (@InklingPrints) ordered some printed round labels the other day. I was really looking forward to seeing the artwork she was supplying as her work is just gorgeous. I wasn’t disappointed. There are some designs that just ‘work’ and this is definitely one of them. I have been allowed to show you a sneaky preview of the labels…nice heh?

I have a four year old birthday party to go to on Saturday and I always try and buy handmade when it comes to gifts. I recently commissioned a Holly Fairy and Ben Elf for the little Crayons from Amanda at Handmade by Button and thanks to the power of facebook and the birthday boy’s Mummy’s statuses, I knew what his favourite characters were. So, on Wednesday night I sent @giantbutton a message asking (aka pleading) to see if she could knock up a special commission. A couple of hours later, a homage to Brave Captain Barnacles was cut, sewn and finished! Now that’s what I call exceptional customer service.