Budget Friendly Paper Crafting Supplies

Crafting requires a lot of supplies and sometimes those supplies can get pretty pricy. When still in the trial stages of crafting no one wants to spend a lot of money on supplies until they know for sure this is something they are going to continue doing. Here are some budget friendly supplies I use and would recommend to other crafters. Make sure to read till the end to know other ways I say money on craft supplies.

Today I am going to share with you my budget friendly paper crafting supplies. These supplies are great if you are looking to have some fun without breaking the bank. They work great for a great price. These supplies are not dollar store supplies. They are actually what I craft with. I know they will one day be upgraded but for know I love them.

Always keep in mind that you should not let your supplies limit you. You can take some cheep craft supplies and make some amazing crafts with them. Everyone has to start somewhere and expensive craft supplies don’t make you a better crafter.

Water Color Paints

Crayola water colors are amazing! They are cheep, pigmented, and easy to use. I don’t plan to ever become a professional watercolorist but for the simple look of water color I highly recommend these. I started with the small 8 primary color set and then upgraded to have some secondary colors as well. The brush that comes with it will shed at first but after a few used it doesn’t shed any more.

The other great thing is that they are non-toxic and washable. The clean up is very easy and if you accidentally drink your paint water (yeah I have done it) you won’t die.

Paper Cutter

Not a necessity but it saves a lot of time. This style of paper cutter comes in many different brands but I really like the flip out roller on this one. It makes cutting 12 inch paper easier. Honestly after getting one of these I would recommend this to any crafter even if they don’t paper craft often. It makes cutting straight 100 times easier and faster. I even use this when I make business cards and make packaging for jewelry.

White Gel Pen

I would recommend specifically the Sakura Gelly Roll white pen. The ink pigment it true white and very opaque. The great thing is they also sell just the white packs of gel pens so if you don’t want all the other colors you don’t have to buy them. These are great pens all around and I love using them for writing, drawing, and adding highlights. The white pen is great for when you create little shapes or creatures with stamps and color them in to add back some white.

Ohuhu Markers

Almost every paper crafter uses Copic markers. They are great alcohol based markers. They blend easily, don’t bleed though the paper, and can be layered. I have a couple and they are great but they are $8 each. Yes one single marker is $8. I do think they are worth the $8 if you are very good at using markers and use them often. Honestly I don’t have that type of talent but I still want that quality of marker.

Ohuhu is the closest to that quality I have found for a great price. Now these markers are not your kids coloring page markers. They are a little pricer but the per marker cost is less than $1. Ohuhu has a couple different styles of markers. They also produce other art supplies that I have not tried yet.

My personal favorite Ohuhu markers are the Dual tip coloring brush pen and fine liner color pens. They have one end hat is a brush pen. This is great for calligraphy, coloring in, making fake paint parks. The other end are a fine tip pen that I love to use for line work and writing. These are water based pens. They are activated by water so they could be used to create a water color effect.

The other Ohuhu maker that is more similar to the Copic markers are the Dual Tip Permanent Markers. These markers have a fine tip and chisel tip. They are alcohol baes so they perform just like the Copic markets would. They are easy to blend, don’t bleed though the paper, and can be layered.

Sticky Notes

Yes! Simple office supply. Sticky notes are great to create masks for stamping. They also work great as simple stencils. It could be just the pop of color your looking for in a layout. They also look cool with washing tape around them to add some personalized notes to a scrap book. I personally like to have a variety of colors. These are also great to keep in the craft room for when you need to make a supply list.

Other ways to save money

Growing your crafting supplies takes time. Don’t feel the need to o out and buy everything all at once. Craft stores always have sales going on so keep an eye out for a sale on what your looking for. Something else to do is only shop from the sale flyer. I am crafting almost every day to create great content for all of you. So I look at the craft store ads and only buy what is on sale.

Another great tip is to look for coupons. Craft stores always have great coupons that are usually 40% to 60% off. Make sure to sign up for email lists, mailing list, and down load craft store apps.

I hope you enjoyed learning how I craft on a budget anomy favorite budget friendly supplies. If your interested on what I am buying and seeing more behind the scenes follow my Instagram . I post stories almost daily showing the behind the scenes of what I am working on. I am also trying to grow my following so that I can do live videos during the week.

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Things to Consider When Starting a DIY Blog

Welcome to part two of the Business of Blogging series. This is an eight part series where I tell you all about the business of blogging and what I have learned along the way. If you are just joining us make sure the go back and start from the beginning so you don’t miss any information or tips. Don’t worry your not far behind all you missed is the introduction and what I wish I knew before starting a blog. Alright lets get started.

I have always been interested in what goes on behind he scenes of blogs, youtube channels, and basically all successful social influencers. I want to know what the typical day looks like for a full time blogger or YouTuber. In my research about DIY and craft bloggers I couldn’t find any posts that talked specifically about the work it takes. They all talked about sharing your crafts, taking good photos, make tutorials and all the other obvious stuff.

Well this post is not like the others. I want to shed some light on all the work that goes in. I am not trying to convince anyone that being a DIY or craft blogger is a bad idea. As a craft blogger I feel like we as craft bloggers have an elevated work load because on top of making the blog post we have to make the project that the post is about. So I am going to start with my biggest tip.

Start in a Specific Niche

What I mean by this is choose a specific style of crafting to start with. This way you can focus on that one crafting category (scrap book, painting, drawing, card making, knitting, crocheting, ect.). I personally to this day struggle with creating content and keeping a consistent audience because I do all types of crafts. By not narrowing down my niche I get overwhelmed with ideas and crafts to make but then struggle to follow through on all those ideas because I get excited on the next thing before I finished the first.

So this year I am going to focusing on narrowing down my niche to a specific type of crafting. By getting specific in your niche you are letting your readers know what you do. Your readers will easily be able to say oh she/he makes cards. Then if they like card making or find your content interesting they will continue to come back. Yes there are other crafter who are all over the place like me so that is how I keep readers coming back but I know I could grow my audience by narrowing my niche. So this brings me to my second point.

WatercolorsStart with what you have

A craft blog is a great reason to learn new skills and share them with your readers but first you need to get readers. So start with what you have. This goes for camera gear, your computer, your work space, and your craft supplies. I think all bloggers think well I don’t have the newest and best camera so I need to get that for my blog but you don’t.I started blogging by taking photos on my iPad. Smart phones have great cameras and they make editing easy because you can do that on your phone as well.

The same goes for craft supplies. Look in your craft supplies and see what you have. Most crafters tend to do one style of crafting a lot more than others. Figure out what you do the most and work from there. I always think of all these great project ideas but I realize I don’t have any of the supplies for them. Just like making a grocery list when thinking of post ideas be looking at the supplies you have and a lot of times you will have great ideas. I noticed the posts I make from supplies I have always turn out better and more successful than the other.

Craft your stash. This will help keep supply cost low. This way when you need to buy something you haven’t spent all your money on craft supplies already. Something else to keep in mind when thinking of your posts is to think about what your going to do with it when its done. You don’t want to spend all this money on supplies for great posts then have random finished projects every where.

Work Work Work

Lets talk business. I am assuming that if you are still reading this you are interested in turning a DIY or craft blog into a career or at least a side hustle. So far we haven’t talked much about treating your blog as your job but don’t worry we are about to get into that. Just keep in mind that I am talking about my personal experiences and that everyones experience will be different.

Starting a blog required full time hours with part time pay.

Honestly the one thing I underestimated was the amount of time the goes into a successful blog.  I knew it was going to be a lot of hard work but I did not realize how much time it truly takes. When starting a blog most bloggers are doing everything them selves. Even some full time bloggers still do every thing for them selves. Therefor your productivity depends entirely on how much time you put into your blog. If you are like me you probably currently have a job that you rely on as your income.

When starting a blog as a business you have to think like a brand (we will get more into this next week). Keeping with the craft theme, Jo Anns store is a business and yes a brand but with in that Jo Anns sells other brands of craft supplies like Cricut for example. Before Cricut can sell any of its products on Jo Anns shelves they must test the product to make sure the crafters buying it will like it. They also have to plan the perfect time to release the product.  That is the same for every single post you put out.

Create a process

Before I put out a tutorial on my YouTube channel or blog there is a lot of prep work that goes in. This will probably be a similar process that you will do for your craft blog. Remember when creating tutorials for your readers that there is never a right or wrong way to make that craft and to encourage creativity. I alway say that my tutorials are just guides to spark ideas in my readers to create something new. Also your readers may not always have access to all the supplies you are using so remember to not use anything that couldn’t be easily substituted with another tool to supply.

My tutorial process generally follows these steps. First I think of the craft I am going to make (this usually involves Pinterest and other research to make sure the craft hasn’t been made a bunch of times already) . I like to draft out my project on my computer making it easier when I go back to create the posts to not forget any information I want my readers to know.

Next I check for my supplies to make sure I have everything I need. Then I will sit and draft out the steps to make the project. After that its time to make the craft. I make sure I have all my supplies, a clear craft space, memory card space, and a charged camera battery. Slowly making the project and taking photos along the way. The photos give my readers a visual of what I am talking about. After that I put my post together.

If I am lucky everything will go to plan but that usually doesn’t happen. There are many times I have to remake the craft because I need a few more photos. In addition to getting content for the blog I also have the think about photos for marketing.

Time ManagementTime Management

Later on in this series we will go into more detail about scheduling blog posts. For now I want to talk about how your post schedule will affect the crafts you make. I feel like there is two main categories of crafters. The ones who like long crafts that could take days or even weeks to make. Then the quick crater who likes fast easy crafts. Personally those are the crafts that I prefer so that is what I make for my blog.

When thinking of your crafts keep in mind the amount of time it takes to make. If it is something that is going to take you days to make it might be a better idea to create a series. Make several posts about the same craft to avoid overwhelming readers. This is also a great way to give readers something to look forward too.

Another thing to keep in mind is the amount of time it takes you to create a post. Personally it takes me a couple hours to create a post. Ultimately it depends on the craft and how much detail I need to go into. The amount of time for the craft and the post all determine how far in advance you need to start your craft. Most bloggers don’t create a post and publish it when their finished. To learn more about creating content and posing schedules make sure to come back for part five of this series.

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Something Terrible Happened

When bloggers, youtubers, and social influencer share their lives they usually only share the good parts. I know personally sometimes I get jealous of how great their life seems but I have to remind myself they are human just like you and me and they too have bad days. They just choose not to share them online.

It was one of those days.

Do you ever have one of those days where you feel like it is just one thing after the next? Well that was my day the other day. I left my house with low tire pressure and ended up having to buy a new tire. There was a nail in my tire and it could not be patched. I know this could happen to anyone but with the holidays money was already tight as is. Oh well I got over it pretty quickly.

Then I went to work on some video footage and my external hard drive would not turn on. I save all of my photos, videos, and blog drafts to an external hard drive. Well hoping it was a problem with the cord or the setting on my computer I went to Apple for help. At the end of this long day I found out it was the hard drive and I would have to take it to a data recovery technician.

This process is very expensive. I am just so sad and mad about this because not only is all of my work on their but personal photos as well. So now I am disappointed about possibly losing all of my personal photos and videos. Then all of the preparation I am doing to keep giving you content while I am on away is lost as well.  

I am going on vacation in a couple weeks so thankfully I still have time to get some things together. Although, I am still going to be missing a lot of content. I appreciate you all and your patience as I try to figure this out.

Take a deep breath and move forward.

I just thought I would show you into the behind the scenes of my life. I am human just like all of you and every day things happen to me as well. Just like everyone else I work hard but sometimes life happens and things get in the way. At the end of the day I remind myself that tomorrow is a good day and to focus on moving forward to better things.

Stuck in a Rut? Check out 5 Simple Steps to Living a Better Life

In today’s world it is common for people to go from having a successful and exciting life to suddenly being in a rut. We often get caught up in the hustle of life and when we finally have a second to breath we are asking ourselves where the hell are we and how did we even get here. I know this from personal experience. If you are a common visitor of my blog you may have realized this as well. I have been trying to write this post for about two months now but I never really could, until today. That is because I have finally gotten out of my rut. So in this post I am going to share with you my 5 simple steps for living a better life and getting out of a rut.

Step 1: Focus on moving forward

I was trying to figure out how I got in a rut in the first place and I realized I wasn’t getting anywhere but when I focused on how to get out I quickly noticed results. This step is going to mean something a little different for everyone but in general, simply change up your routine. This doesn’t have to be anything dramatic small changes make big differences. The key is if you make a small change but it isn’t making a difference try something else until you see results. I know this seems very simple and general but once you have read through all the steps this one should make more sense and have a more specific meaning to you.

Step 2: Set goals

In order to focus on moving forward and making change to get out of your rut you must set a goal. Weather it be big or small by setting a goal you are giving yourself something to work towards. It is important when setting a goal to make it something that is achievable but is not easy. Also make it something specific. General goals are easier to get lazy and give up on.

When I was in a rut I found myself unmotivated and always sitting on the couch watching tv. So I set my first goal to be more productive when getting home from work and not sitting on the couch and watching tv all night. I told myself I had to do five things every night before I could watch tv. So when I got up in the morning I would make a list and put it on the fridge. MY list would usually include cleaning, errands, and general day to day activities I had been slacking on. After a few weeks I realized that my routine had changed and I had reached my goal of being more productive without having to think about it. Which take us into step three.

Step 3: Break Down Your Goals

When setting goals break them down into smaller steps to make them more achievable. Also make sure you set specific guidelines; like the five things before I could watch tv. Everything we do in life has a process when you truly think about it. This should be the same for achieving our goals. If you can achieve your goal in one step then try to add more details or specifications to make it slightly more difficult.

Step 4: Recognize When you have reached your goal

Reaching your goal is going to depend on many different factors but it is important to recognize when you have reached your goal to avoid getting into another rut. Like I said earlier it took me a few weeks to achieve my goal. Giving myself 5 chores a day and sticking to that wasn’t a very challenging goal though. That is ok! I wanted to start myself on an achievable goal that wouldn’t take me long. That particular goal was to get me out of my rut and set a foundation to keep improving life.

Step 5: Set new Goals and Repeat the process

Congratulations! You have successfully achieved your goal. Now it is time to repeat the process, only this time set a new goal. It can be something along the same lines or multiple goals. It could be a goal that will take you years to complete. Just set another goal and work through the steps again. Just remember that your goals may change along the way and not every goal set will be achieved easily or at all.

If you take away anything take away this.

Do one thing a day that will make your life better tomorrow.

Weather it be working out, eating healthy, giving back, waking up earlier. Just do one small thing a day that will make your life better tomorrow because by doing one thing a day over time they are going to add up and amount to something much larger. Okay that seems like something pretty obvious. When you sit down and think about what the one things a day is going to be is when you will notice change. 

I hope this post helps you to achieve your goals and leads you to a better life. I would love to hear all of your goals in the comment section. If you are looking for more motivational posts check out Motivational Monday post or Finding Motivation.

Finding Motivation

Do you ever feel like life is passing you by while you just sit there and watch? Its like your thinking about how day in and day out you do the same thing over and over again. You ask yourself how you let this happen to you, yet you continue the cycle over again until you realize another week has past with no change.

Well that is how I feel. Ever since we moved I have been lacking motivation. I find myself doing the minimum to make it by and when I try to make a change or do something new I eventually resort back to my old ways. I have recognized that I do not like the person I have become but I cannot find the motivation to change it. I feel like I don’t know who I am any more but I also don’t know who I want to be. My hobbies nowadays include going to work, watching tv, cooking, and sleeping.

My biggest wake up call was lack of energy. I found myself sleeping till 10 am and being tired and ready for bed at 9pm. I noticed at 3pm I would start to drag and lose all motivation. I would watch the clock at work as it slowly ticked by. My work progress would dramatically slow down.

So I decided to make a change because I knew I didn’t want to continue to live like that. I noticed my weekends would be full of energy and I would actually break my habit so I knew I needed to keep it up during the week.

I highly recommend this book.

A while ago I actually bought a book called You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero. After I got the book I read a few pages and tossed it to the side. I remember thinking it wasn’t the book for me and decided not to read it. Looking back I realize that at that time I was correct in that moment that it wasn’t the book for me. Now after I found it in a box while unpacking I know it is the book for me. I have read a few chapters and I find myself relating to it a lot. 

It has made me realize that I am afraid to commit to anything because I am afraid of failure. I know that change and success won’t happen over night but I am trying. I highly recommend this book though. It is eye opening and relatable (at least for me). It really makes me think about not only my life currently but in the future. I honestly didn’t think I would be the one to read self help books but I am really enjoying it.

I am enjoying it so much that I have decided to add a new section to my blog called book club. So for those of you who don’t have time to read this book but you really want to you can follow along there. I am going to summarize the book chapter by chapter as I read it. The chapters are pretty short so I may group a couple together. Then hopefully I will keep it up as I continue to read.

Find the book here.