Author: Geri Jewitt


Camp OMHG Party Pack

Summer is here and with it comes pool parties, barbeques, outdoor celebrations and camp (of course!).  Those of us with creative businesses often find the summer to be a bit slower and a great time to catch up on all those pesky tasks that we can’t seem to find the time for during the busy seasons, but are also super busy with our personal lives.

Earlier this month, I submitted some Camp OMHG Merit Badges (you can, too until July 31st – they’re so much fun!) and I thought it would be fun to incorporate them into your summer plans, in case you haven’t gotten your biz off the ground yet, or are maybe still in the planning stages.

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Camp OMHG Party Pack: Invitation + Recipe Card printable


Teamwork is important part of your creative biz, but there are some fun things to do at home that will also hone this skill and get you more accustomed to working & playing with others!

Why not have a potluck party?  You can create a menu and ask folks to create their favourite recipe and bring it with them!  This not only helps you out, but includes others and gives them an important task while sharing something of value to the whole.

You can download these Party Invitations which indicates what type of dish you’d like for them to bring.  For added fun, as well as helping you deal with delegating and giving a little bit of control away (a VERY important skill to have with your own biz!), include these Recipe Cards and ask your guests to write down their dish on them and bring it along to the party… you can even do a recipe swap and share once everyone’s gathered to further the exercise!

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Camp OMHG Party Pack: Cupcake Toppers download + print

We all work really hard in our creative businesses and are often reluctant to share more than we need to for fear of giving away our edge, but I have found that sharing just because you want to or can often brings great (and usually unexpected) rewards.  Are they always financial or a direct and apparent gain to your biz?  Often not, but they are rewarding in their own way.

A great (and risk-free) way of sharing with absolutely no expectation of any reciprocal gain is to give social media shout-outs to other creatives, whether it’s a product or service you’re liking or something they’ve pinned or announced on Facebook.  Try not to simply retweet something, but add a helpful or encouraging note!  Go and make a blogger’s day by commenting or share a particular post that you like.  You don’t have to go overboard; but try to get out there and give kudos to your fellow creatives, suppliers or assistants; trust me – it feels great!

If you’re not quite ready to get out there and try to share selflessly in your biz just yet, why not try this simple exercise at home and see if it opens anything up:

Bake your favourite cupcake recipe (you know how we LOVE cupcakes here!), add these fun Toppers or Flags and GIVE THEM AWAY to someone who makes your life easier or consistently makes you smile on a daily basis; your local post-office clerk, librarian, grocery store cashier, bank teller, children’s teacher, fellow creative… you get the point.

Try making it someone outside of your friends and family and for no other reason than to be generous and make their day!  Add a little handwritten personal note for extra points…

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Camp OMHG Celebration Stickers | download + Print


We all have barriers that we’d just love to bust through, whether they are self-imposed, placed in front of us by meanies or outside forces or are a life-lesson just waiting to be learned.

When we do bust through, it’s important to acknowledge & celebrate that achievement, then simply incorporate into our daily lives and move on!

Sometimes we don’t really know how to acknowledge it in a productive and healthy way, but here’s a fun option:

Try to bust through a barrier or hurdle each week, whether in your creative business or in your personal life and mark the occasion on the calendar with these fun Barrier Buster Stickers!  I’ve laid them out to work perfectly on these blank labels from Paper Source, but you can also simply print out the entire sheet onto a label sheet and punch them out individually (a 1-1/4″ round punch works great!)

It’s not a contest, but the more stickers you earn, the more confident you will become in taking on those challenges – remember when you were a kid and got a sticker for each chore you completed?  Same premise – you’re simply bustin’ through adult chores!

I hope you have as much fun with these exercises as I have had creating the bling for them and that by doing them in your personal life, it helps you to some day incorporate them into your creative business.

You can download all of the files by either clicking on the individual images, on the links above or here:

We’d love to hear and see what you do with this party pack + ways to help us be better teamwork troopers, selfless sharers and barrier busters-share your ideas in the comments! 

Printable Blog Post Planner + Marketing Worksheet

Blog Post Planner + Marketing Worksheet by The Languid Lion

Marketing can be a tricky and time-consuming venture when you’re the owner of a creative business; I mean, you’ve got orders to fill, products to make, services to provide, books to keep…But, it’s an important tool and skill to develop that will help get you and your business out there and recognized.

One of the easiest, fastest and cost-effective way to promote yourself and your business is by having a blog. Sure, it can take a little more of your time and add a couple of items to your To-Do-List, but once you get it going, it can soon be not only a great marketing tool, but from my experience, keep those creative juices flowing!

Since I started my blog a little over a year and a half ago, I’ve kept a steady but simple marketing practice with all of my posts once I’ve published them, which includes the following:

1) Get a Bitly account: it’s free and not only keeps track of all of your posts & their activity, but it also offers your readers (and anyone who wants to share them) a short + sweet link url… very handy!

2) Share the post with your social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.) and in a summary email to your Newsletter list.

psssst… remember to resize your image to 404px x 404px for your Facebook Page; those are the dimensions it will automatically resize a post to in your Timeline, often distorting any image that isn’t already that size… a Milestone post image should be 844px x 404px! Check out Aeolidia’s guide to styling your Facebook page for more info.

3) Add an awesome image: it makes it easier for folks to pin it (if that’s what you want to do)! Adding the “Pin It” button will also help folks pin things more responsibly…

4) Have Share It buttons or links to make it easier for your readers to do some of the marketing for you by sharing it on their own.

5) Tweet it to your target audience + communities.

Blog Post Planner + Marketing Worksheet by The Languid Lion

And to keep it all organized? I created this planner + marketing worksheet very early on in my blogging days to not only help me market my posts, but to also help flesh out any ideas for posts I might have… and now I’m sharing it with you!

I can tell you that I have found it supremely useful + I love kicking it old school writing up my posts like I wrote up my story outlines back in the day 😉

I hope these tips and the worksheet help you market your blog posts as much as they’ve helped me!

To get your free Blog Post Planner + Marketing Worksheet, simple click here or on the banner just below + have fun earning your Camp OMHG blogging badge!

Blog Post Planner + Marketing Worksheet DOWNLOAD

Our OMHG Journey: A Lion’s Tale & “A Petit Story”

Our OMHG Journey: A Lion's Tale & A Petit Story

Starting your own handmade or creative business can be an exciting & scary thing.  There are lots of things to research, many steps to take and a sea of information out there.  It can be incredibly daunting, especially if you’re tackling it alone or that your friends & family, while being loving & supportive, don’t (or simply can’t) always offer the best advice or make you feel understood.  Wouldn’t it be great to have a wonderful community of fellow creatives out there that can guide you, inform you, support you, help you & understand you?

Well, here’s a tale of two creatives that found each other through this wonderful community, nurtured a budding friendship through collaborations and ended up creating a wonderful new brand for a new handmade business!

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When Alison Butler of The Petit Cadeau blog first approached me to collaborate with her on an #OMHG guestpost a little over a year ago, I was an incredibly shy blogging & social media newbie.  I had recently become a transcriptionist for the #OMHG chats (to my utter surprise) & I was so taken aback that someone wanted to collaborate with me (with glee, of course) that I actually had to read her email a couple of times.  I happily agreed, the post was a community success, and thus began a wonderful relationship that we both have Jessika, Oh My! Handmade Goodness, and the wonderful #OMHG chats to thank for.

“One Thursday afternoon in 2012 during an #omhg chat, someone mentioned a virtual cupcake party (the general topic of cupcakes seems to arise during #omhg chats quite frequently, actually!) and I thought, “wow, it would be a great idea to have a virtual celebration like that”.  I had a delicious recipe, but needed something else to make the post special. Geri was a regular participant at #omhg chats, and I knew she was a graphic designer, so I decided to ask her if she would be interested in creating some cupcake toppers to share – she said yes!”

Since Alison’s blog often focuses on gift-giving (The Petit Cadeau means “small gift” in French), I thought it would be fun to have her do a guestpost (my first & who better than someone I knew and trusted!) on my own blog with a wedding-themed paper DIY. She graciously accepted & offered a few ideas that she thought would work well for my audience, settling on the handmade wrapping paper post which proved to be very popular.

“Like many OMHG participants, Geri and I followed each other on Twitter, sharing virtual ideas and posts. In the Summer of 2012, I launched the Handmade Marathon on my blog – featuring 26 unique handmade products and the creative minds behind those handmade products (one for each of the 26 miles of a marathon).  After the application deadline, I received a heartfelt e-mail from Geri apologizing for missing the deadline and wishing me luck with the project. While reading her e-mail, I thought, “how could Geri be involved”? I came up with the idea of a Christmas Wish List & Geri designed a printable that I featured at the bottom of each Marathon participant post.”

While Alison was busy with this awesome project, she touched base with me during the summer about a new brand for her blog.  She had a lot of ideas which had been percolating for awhile, but was extremely busy with her blog, life & not quite ready to make such a big leap.  I kept a tentative open spot for her in my schedule and suggested she take her time and let me know when she was ready.  While I was new to the blogging scene, I’ve been a freelance designer for over 5 years, but Alison didn’t have access to any of my portfolio or past work as I hadn’t yet integrated it into my site.  I can’t say how honoured I was that she would choose me for such an important part of her journey, as we had really only nurtured our relationship online and with our respective blogs as a base.

“I actually contacted Geri way back in June 2012 (before Handmade Marathon) to get an idea of her prices for a logo re-design.  I wasn’t quite ready yet, but I was gathering information.  It was a natural choice for me to approach Geri – because of our relationship through OMHG, and our collaborations, there was a foundation of trust and I loved the fact that she has “gone rogue from corporate” to work for herself.  It just felt right.  In December, I contacted her again and told her I thought I was ready to start the process in the New Year – I gathered inspiration – design elements that I liked from other logos/blogs and took a deep breath.  Committing to a new logo and a rebrand was a HUGE decision for me.  I cannot begin to tell you how many times I second-guessed myself – I knew that I really wanted to redesign, but I was scared of the unknown.  Geri asked me to fill out a detailed questionnaire to bring some of my wild thoughts together.  There was a LOT of positive self-talk – I wrote these exact works to Geri at the beginning of the process:  I have to say, this is a HUGE leap for me – moving forward with this really makes things REAL and I’m freaking out a bit, but also super excited.   I know you’re going to do an awesome job, but it’s all just so unknown for me right now – a little scary and it means I’m actually moving forward with my business instead of just “planning” and “thinking”. EEK!”

We got started on Alison’s branding project fairly quickly and I have to say that she was a dream client.  Even though she lives in Nova Scotia and I live in Ontario, the miles (or kilometers, for us here in Canada) didn’t seem to make a difference.  We shared many emails & a few Skype conversations.  She had clear ideas about what she wanted and she wasn’t afraid to ask questions or tell me straight up her opinion of things.

“Geri was really easy to work with.  She explained things to me in ways that were easy to understand.  She guided me through my thought process when I asked for help.  I felt that she wanted me to be 100% happy with the end result – and I am! So far, the blog has been updated and redesigned using my new logo and branding elements, and I’m in the process of launching my online shop.  I’m positively beaming over the feedback from readers about the new look.”

The Petit Cadeau Brand Board

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I’m over the moon to have been given this opportunity and to have made such a valuable connection with Alison.  Would the result of our working together been so successful had we not become so connected through our continued collaborations and growing friendship?  I’m not so sure, but thankfully I don’t have to wonder!

I can’t thank Jessika enough for creating this wonderful community.  Without her vision, constantly upbeat cheerleading & tireless commitment, Alison & I wouldn’t have found each other, or had a platform for which to further our collaborative efforts, ultimately leading to Alison making such a big leap of faith and furthering her plans of opening up her own creative shop in the summer.  We’ve both not only gained a wonderful friend (we hope to meet in person very soon!), but have each ventured out of our comfort zones knowing that we had the support and integrity that is fostered within the #OMHG community.

Do you have an #OMHG story to share or an online connection that has helped you grow your business? Share with us in the comments!