Friday, October 14, 2011

Help My Eco Business get a Grant to Expand

I decided to post about my trying to win a $25,000 grant from Intuit's Love a Local Business Program. The grant is given every month, but the voting goes in three month cycles, so businesses can expand on their votes. The ending date for this cycle is December 31, 2011. There's no sign up to vote, and you only need to vote once. If you vote, you should put your name or business name in the space provided before your comment (otherwise it looks like I'm voting for myself multiple times and the votes are kicked out).

So what would I use this grant for? I could pay more people to make plarn for me which, in turn, would free up crazy amounts of time to crochet and design and enable me to make more product available. Having multiple people making plarn would also benefit them, as they will be making extra money AND make a small dent in the number of plastic bags floating around in landfills. I would also be able to pay a seamstress in order to offer more bags that are lined.

So, with all that said, I'd so appreciate your vote for my business. Here's the direct link:

Thanks so much!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Emmy Gift Lounge Excitement Wrap-Up -- Part 2

As promised, here's Part 2 of my wrap-up. Better late than never!

The Gift Lounge wasn't just a ball of excitement for me, but also for my fellow artisans. Here are some of their shots. :)

Jeff Probst w/ Sweet Stellas

Rico Rodriguez w/ AJ Sweet Soap

Maria Canals-Barrera w/ Atutudes

Wes Ramsey w/ Fancy Designs

Beverley Mitchell w/ Bellaroma

The Artisan Group table at the 2011 GBK Emmy Gift Lounge

View all the pictures on The Artisan Group Facebook page.

Here's a list of all the display participants where you should consider doing some of your holiday shopping from: :)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Saving Some Money on Detergent

One of the things that I've done for my family to save money is make my own laundry detergent and dishwasher detergent.  Now, I have tried making my own liquid soap (which looked quite gelatinous - read more practice needed), and also toothpaste which I got way too much salt in, so more practice needed there, too.  BUT, the two things that are a major savings to the family are the detergents.

There are a number of recipes on the web, but I'll share the ones that I find the easiest (both are powder).

Laundry Detergent
2 cups grated soap (I use Ivory)
1 cup washing soda (You can find Arm & Hammer Washing Soda in some grocery stores)
1 cup borax

Easy peasy - Use a couple of tablespoons for a load, or more if you've got a large load washer like me.  I also like to triple the recipe so I don't have to make it as often.  I've got two boys and a husband who create lots of laundry.

I store the detergent in a large plastic container, the kind you put left-overs in.

Cost: About $.03/load vs. about $.30/load of commercial detergent.

Dishwasher Detergent
1 cup washing soda
1 cup borax
1/2 cup salt
1/2 cup citric acid

Use 1 Tbsp per load.

Ok, I cheat on this one and skip the citric acid.  I put vinegar in the compartment where the JetDry goes instead.

I store this in an old large peanut butter jar, and keep it handy under the sink.

I hope these little things help!  You'll notice a difference in your pocket, for sure.

Cost: You'll get double the loads and save around $.05/load for a few minutes of work.

Want more money saving ideas?  Click the icon below!

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