Q&A Part 1: Process of hiring a Seamstress, Purchasing Wholesale, Steps to Starting a Business

In this video I talk about: Process of hiring a Seamstress, Making Patterns from Scratch, Etsy, Building my Website, Marketing, Steps to start a Business, Purchasing Wholesale, and Why Skirts??? If you have more questions list them below and I’ll answer them in a future video.

Follow me to Fashion School

A few weeks ago I went to Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD) to pick up my brother who attends the school.  The Seniors just finished their collections and it is now on display in the fashion building.  This was such an inspiring place to be.  The fashion students are so extremely talented and so blessed to be able to learn so much about fashion in school.  I wanted to share this trip with you and hope that you will fins a piece in the video that will inspire you. After this trip, I came home with a list of things I wanted to create.  You all know that I love to share my ideas with you so I’d love it if you shared with me. Comment below and let me know which was your favorite garment and why it inspired you.

From Small to Successful Handmade Business

So a lot of you that follow my blog own a business where you actually hand make your products to sell to your customers.  Sometimes we all get into that slump where we need someone or something to inspire us.  A few weeks ago my friend and I decided to take a road trip to Richmond, VA and while there we found this store that was so inspiring. I decided to vlog the trip because I wanted you all to be inspired as well. The vlog that I filmed shows that we all are starting small now, but with hard work and determination we can eventually grow our business, hire employees, and open a store front. Wouldn’t that be a dream?!  It may be hard to believe it now, but the world is at our feet.  It sounds cliché, but we can have anything we want if we believe we can. How so?  If I believe I can own my own business, I will do my research, network, connect with small business owners, and do any and everything I can to get myself there.  You cannot go anywhere with just a thought. Have a plan. Take some action.  We can do it!  Let’s get inspired.

What inspires you?  Where do you go for inspiration?  Comment below and share your thoughts with all of us. We’d love to hear from you.

I Got my Nose Pierced!

muave1I have always always always wanted my nose pierced, but being in the military for so many years, I wasn’t able to do so. But now that I’m fully out, I finally jumped the gun.  So my brother and I went to Richmond, VA in search for a nice, sanitary place to get my piercing done.  We first went into to Lucky 13 and they have the worst customer service ever.  The guy who was doing the piercing was so rude and pushy. He did not make me comfortable at all.  So naturally, I walked straight out of there. I walked across the street to Enigma Studios and the guy who pierced my nose was the best.  He was so nice and made me so comfortable that I am going back in a few months to get another piercing. His information is listed below just incase you are in the Richmond, VA area.

So a bit about me:
I have ZERO tattoos.
I hate needles
I feel the need to inspect the area to see how the needles are sanitized.
I have an extreme low tolerance to pain.
I ask a million and one questions about how they go about placing piercings
Piercings and tattoos are so out of my character
The whole time I was laying on the table, I was asking myself “Why am I here?”
I watched over 20 videos on YouTube about different experience people have had with their nose piercing

About my piercing:
From 1-10 for pain, it was a 2.
It felt like a tiny pinch
The entire process took 2 minutes
The piercer (what do you call the guy that does the piercing?) was so extremely nice
It feels slightly sore a few days after you get the piercing but it’s not bad at all
It takes 3-4 months to heal
And I love it!

Do you have any piercings?  If so where? Comment below and tell me about your experience. I’d love to hear all about it.

Enigma Studios
Ryan Norton aka Huey
1813 West Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23220
804-353-8161

How I Started my Clothing Line, Got into my 1st Store, & Fabric Show

Ok, so here is the long awaited video…..

Back on Novemeber 1st, 2014 I launched my clothing line; TJ Sewer, LLC.  I started out working on my own, but as time went on, my business started picking up so I decided to hire help.  In the video I tell you all about my experience at my first textile show, how I started my business, what type of people I hired to help me grow even more and my role in my business as of now.  In this video, I also talked about my experience in getting contacted by my first store. This video was recorded last month, so my clothing has been in a store for about a month now.  I will do a future video on my experience thus far and how you can get into a store yourself.  If you have any other questions that I did not answer in this video, comment below. I’d love to do another video to answer all of your questions.

Preparing for the Holidays

Hi all!
The best time of the year is here and my kids are so ready to get this house decorated for the holidays.  The tree(s) have to go up, the lights and wreaths have to be hung, and the Christmas knick knacks have to be placed around each room.
ladAs with every year, my husband is in charge of hanging the lights and garland outdoors. When he received this ladder from the DIY Outlet, he was like a kid in a candy store. LOL!
lad1We already have a ladder, but this is definitely an upgrade from the one we already own.  While “playing” with the ladder, he discovered that it was really a 3-in-1.  With the first set up, we adjusted the ladder to reach the top of the roof. This is great for cleaning out your gutters and of course, hanging those Christmas lights this season.  The locking mechanisms in the ladder make it safe and durable to go pretty high.
lad2In this 2nd setup, we adjusted the ladder to look like any normal household ladder.  This is great if you need to paint around your home or if you need to change out light bulbs you can’t possibly reach. (Excuse all the dirt and leaves. LOL! My husband decided that it was time to clean the gutters since he was finally able to reach them.)
lad3Lastly, this setup is great when space is limited. You can use this in tight spaces where most ladders or step stools wouldn’t fit safely.  The rubber contact on the bottom allows for greater slip resistance.  And as with all three setups, this overall ladder, is extremely lightweight and can be broken down for easy storage.

You can find this ladder and other great tools for you home at theDIYOutlet.com.  If the guy in your life is like mine, you can definitely find some great Christmas gifts for him here.

So when do you plan on decorating for the holidays?

Thank you DIY Outlet for sponsoring this post.
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Thrift Haul

Hi everyone. So I recently went thrifting and found some great things. I’m super excited to share it with you all and hopefully if you don’t thrift, I’ll inspire you to start.  So in the past few years, thrifting has gotten really popular and so thrift stores have ridiculously started to raise their prices on the things that were DONATED to them. (I’m really mad about that if you can’t tell.) I don’t understand why they do that, but I guess it’s all business.  So, with the things that I purchased, I plan to either make some alterations or do a slight makeover to create something that is currently on trend.  If you follow me on Instagram @cheapbutchic, you will have seen one item I’ve already made over. Anyhow, let’s get started with the haul.

Ok. so when you first see this, you may be slightly scared and think, “What the heck was she thinking?” Well, the number one rule when thrifting is that you must think outside the box.  If you sew, you can take your thrifting up a whole new level because you can recreate and alter your finds. I bought this for $8.99 because I was inspired by this years hottest trend; the sleeveless trench coat. thrifthaul4Here is my inspiration: karla11 I love the way Ashley from FabEllis styled her sleeveless trench coat. ash1 My next thrifted find was this gray wool skirt.  The price for this skirt was $3.99. Wool skirts are a must have for Fall and Winter. This is such a classic piece and it’s must have for cooler weather because it keeps your bum warm.  I plan to shorten it to make it a bit more chic. thrifthaul1Here is my inspiration: Blake+Lively+Cinema+Society+BlackBerry+Bold+zI-FOU1F8eXl

My next thrifted item that I purchased was this long jean skirt. The price for this skirt was $4.99. I do plan on make some minor changes to this skirt as well…well, just a bit of shortening and distressing. thrifthaulHere is my inspiration: jeanskirt1So ofcourse I had to save the best for last.  The retail price on this coat is $220 found HERE. The price for this coat was $29.99, but I paid $22 because my thrift store has a sale every Monday.  This jacket looks brand new and it’s just plain beautiful! No alterations will be made on this coat because it’s perfect as is. I’ll just be dropping it off at my local dry cleaners as with all the rest of these clothes. thrifthaul3Here is my inspiration: plus-size-trench-coatWhat do you think about my finds?  Have you been thrifting lately? If so let me know what you’ve found. I’d love to hear.  Also if you haven’t been thrifting or never been, I hope I’ve inspired you. name

Get Ready With Me: OOTD Photos

As a fashion blogger you always have to make sure that everything is perfect and appealing for your viewers.  A lot goes into being a blogger that a lot of people just don’t know about. I need to a “Behind the Scenes” post!  Comment below if you would like to see what it takes to becoming a blogger. Anyhow, because I don’t have a team of people helping me get my hair and makeup ready for my Outfit of the Day (OOTD) photos that I must take, I have to do it myself.  And trust me…I need it! LOL!
So today, I wanted to show you how I apply my makeup.  As far as my skin, I have dry, sensitive skin? If you do, comment below so that I don’t feel alone because I feel like everyone has oily skin and not me.  I have really bad exzema too. I had in on my both my cheeks so bad and I was so embarrassed to go to my classes. I finally figured out how to tame it and I haven’t had a flare up on my face for a year now. Yay!
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Products Used:
Lips: Smith’s Minted Rose Lip Balm
NYX Lip liner in Nude Truffle
Rimmel Kate Moss #17

Skin Complexion: Philosophy’s Hope in a Jar Sunscreen & Moisturizer
Philosophy’s The Present Invisible Skin Perfector & Primer
Philosophy’s Hope in a Jar A to Z Cream
MAC Pro Longwear Concealer

Contour: Sephora Mattifying Compact Foundation in Deep

Highlight: Benefit’s Watt’s Up Highlighter in Soft Focus

Bronzer: Tarte Amazonian Clay Bronzer in Park Ave Princess

Eyebrows: Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade
Nuance Brow Kit
ELF Eyebrow Treat & Tame in Deep

Eyes: Sephora Mattifying Compact Foundation in Deep
NYX Dance the Tides
Rimmel The Max Bold Curves Extreme Volume & Lift Mascara
Loreal Voluminous False Fiber Lashes
MAC Blacktrack
Loreal Linear Intense Felt Tip Eyeliner

Blush: NYX Cream Blush in Natural

Thanks for stopping by!

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Healthy Eats: Veggies, Water, Protein

So lately my husband and I have been trying to transition our bad dieting into a healthy type of lifestyle. We’ve cut out a whole lot of carbs and focused more on eating a ton of veggies and adding a protein to every meal in our diet.  As far as our workout, we work out about 5 times/ week.  This is definitely nothing new to me because I’ve been trying to lose weight since I gave birth to my kids and being in the military, you have to make sure you are fitness ready.  It’s a long and hard process, but nothing worth having is easy right?
heI decided to document what we’ve been eating and give you notes on each meal.  I hope that it will help those of you trying to live a healthy lifestyle as well and also those of you trying to lose weight.

LEMON WATER
waterSo the very first thing I do in the morning is fix myself some lemon water.  Research states that lemon water is a natural energizer, it balances your immune system and your pH.  Lemon water also flushes out unwanted materials from your body and is excellent for weight loss.  There are so many other benefits that proves that it is overall great for your health.

GREEN SMOOTHIE

green Green smoothies are amazing!  I eat this most days for breakfast along with eating a boiled egg for added protein.  It may sound disgusting to those that don’t find spinach too appetizing in a smoothie, but you have to try it, if you haven’t already.  These smoothies are not only great for weight loss, but excellent for your skin, nails, and hair.  There are so many natural nutrients with this drink that makes it difficult for me to pass up.  Train yourself to drink it with less and less honey as a sweetener. Honey is beneficial as well, but eliminating a lot of sugar out of your diet will help in the loss of weight.

Ingredients: Spinach, Strawberries, Blueberries, orange, Carrots, Coconut Oil, Chia Seeds, Water, Honey (optional)

TUNA SALAD

tuna salad

No, this is not your typical tuna salad. This is definitely a healthier version of that. It had loads of veggies and protein and the bright colors and textures make it fun to eat.  Tuna has been named a super food because it is a lean protein and is packed with nutrients like vitamin B12, vitamin D, calcium, iron and we cannot forget about our Omega 3’s which are good for the heart.

Salad Base Ingredients: Salad Greens, Bell Peppers, Cherry Tomatoes, Cucumber, Boiled Egg
Tuna Salad: Canned Tuna, Avocado (Mayo Substitute), dash of salt and pepper

CHICKEN STIR-FRY

quinoa

You probably wouldn’t think that chicken stir-fry could be healthy right.  Well, when eating healthy you have to be creative and find alternative options for the fattier foods.  For the oil that we cooked the chicken and veggies in, we used safflower oil. Safflower oil is becoming more and more popular in the weight loss world.  The benefits include: Reduction in cholesterol and blood sugar levels, it enhances hair growth, and nourishes dry skin.  For those of us trying to lose weight, this oil has Omega 6 in it, which helps to reduce belly fat if used regularly.

Ingredients: Chicken, Frozen Stir-Fry Veggies, Water Chestnuts, Safflower Oil, Dash of Salt & Pepper
Base: Quinoa

If you enjoyed my Healthy Eats post and would like to see more, comment below and let me know and I’ll continue. I was also thinking of including a few healthy eats vids from time to time. Let me know your thoughts.
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Concrete Jungle

So this past weekend, I had the time of my life while visiting NY.  I went to celebrate my birthday with my younger brother and my husband. This is not my first time going, but we did have a few first time experiences.  This is sort of like my NY trip diary.  Just in case you were planning on going in the future, these are the things that we did during our trip and you may want to try as well. So first I must say, please excuse the quality of some of the photos. They were taken with an iphone and I could not adjust the size so that it would be clearer.

Saturday, July 12, 2014
Besides walking Times Square like every tourist should experience, we went to watch my first Broadway show.  We watched the most amazing “The Lion King”. It is definitely on my list of Top 20 most beautiful things I’ve ever seen in my entire life. The details and work that was put into this show was impeccable. It was definitely jaw dropping.  The tickets may seem expensive for some, but I promise you, every single penny is well worth this show.
lionkingtheatreLK_Zebra_HiRes_500px2_159803Sunday, July 13, 2014
We did enjoy a few great restaurants, but this one in particular was quite different. It was called “Rice to Riches” and all they sold was different flavored rice pudding.  It’s a place that is definitely unique and cannot be found anywhere else. Not too many people like rice pudding, but I do. They had to many different flavors to try. I ordered the cheesecake flavor and let me tell you, it was mouthwatering.  This dish that the rice comes in is also very modern and unique. I loved everything about this place.
Rice-To-Riches-Restaurant-1
rice-to-riches

cn_image_size_rice-to-riches-new-york-cityny5Another great spot was the famous Sprinkles Cupcakes. I have to be honest, their cupcakes are not the best. I’ve had better, but this place was unique because they off the worlds first cupcake ATM.  Sounds crazy right? The ATM dispenses cupcakes 24 hours. You can choose whatever cupcake you want, pay with your credit card, and outcomes a nicely packaged Sprinkles Cupcake.
Cupcake_ATM_NYC_SprinklesSprinkles Cupcake ATM New York City 4032414CupcakeZM01.jpgSpeaking of cupcakes, Baked by Melissa was pretty cute as well. They offer bite size cupcakes that literally melt in your mouth. Each one is a $1 and worth every penny.
baked-by-melissacupcakes2_600Coming off the food subject, my husband and I are fans of a show called Oddities. It’s a strange show filmed in a store titled Obscura. Basically what they sell are extremely odd things that you would not think to purchase like human teeth, animal bones, stuffed hyena, etc. To me, it’s more a like a gothic type store. Since we watch on television, we figured that we would actually like to go to the store itself. It was weird. Even the salespeople were different. They were very nice though.
obscura-antiquesimage
Monday, July 14, 2014

Happy Birthday to me! On Monday I woke up super early to get myself ready for the Wendy show. If you get a chance to go, make sure you go! It was extremely fun! It was like a party during the commercials. People were twerking and making their knees touch their elbows….LOL!  They even chose my brother to be apart of a dance contest. LOL! And hands down…he won! LOL! It was great. So I am definitely a fan of the show and being in the audience was an experience within itself. A few people surprised me with pictures they took if me while I was in the Wendy audience.
ny6ny7This is a picture of me with Wendy’s hype man. He did an excellent job. His job was to keep the party going. And that he did!
ny1After the show, we went to eat and we did a bit of shopping and ofcourse I could not go home without going to the garment district. Now let me warn you, if you love fabric, you will literally have a heart attack if you go. I needed an oxygen tank. LOL! I went to several shops. Most of them seemed the same. Some stuck out to me and that’s where I spent most of my money. And let me tell how excited I was to go into Mood Fabrics. Just to walk down the aisles where the Project Runway cast were able to come was literally a dream. It was great.  It was expensive but great.
160474037_1a04036f54ny3fashion1_slide-859feb38b3a2fa07649abb4bfe2d2e5e0a06fd85-s6-c30101_76856106-05431008Doesn’t it seem overwhelming?! It was so much fabric. I’m so glad I don’t live near here because I would literally go broke. The fashion/ garment district is dream place for every designer or seamstress. This is a must see if you are in NY. Well, I hope that you enjoyed my diary. My Wendy Williams OOTD will be posting soon, along with my outfits that I wore during my 3 days stay there. They are several posts to follow so hope you’re up for it.

Thanks for stopping by. XOXO
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