tweaks..

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You have no idea how excited I got when I opened these boxes and allll this yarn just busted out – heaven, just heaven – I think John is concerned.

I feel like I’m tweaking and refining and putting systems in place all the time. Things like a special basket for sticky rollers and another for doll cheek blush and freckle pens really and truly make things easier around here in the dollmaking basement. We’ve had to do some physical tweaking here in the basement as of late – new shelving and even more bins to hold our bulk orders of yarns and wool and fabric that have been arriving daily – I feel like I’m in a real live Tetris game.

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So that stuff above becomes this. Ohhh the endless possibilities This rock retaining wall in my back yard is the best yarn dryer in the world – on sunny days it heats up and drys the yarn in a jiffy. These pictures have little to do with this post – I just thought they were neat.

We’ve also had to tweak and have patterns in place on how things are done – how to upload a listing for a doll, how to edit pictures, how to ship, how to process a custom order, etc – this makes things easier for us all when it’s all done in a particular order. This is happening on so many levels – it feels as though Bamboletta is becoming it’s own thing now – it’s an interesting process because I know that all the work that we are doing now is important to the future of thisΒ  little company. Things really changed for me personally just before I took the last batch of customs – it was a light bulb moment where the cliche of ‘Am I running this business or is this business running me?’ hit me like a tonne of bricks.

So – why am I telling you all this? Lol, it feels like many of you have been with me on this for a long time now – it’s like I’m having a cup of tea with you all as I write these thoughts down. I like sharing how this is evolving – my thought processes and where I want things to go – it’s always changing and always growing.

Here are a few changing coming up (to make our process smoother)…

-Uploads will be once a week now – this is so we can dedicate one day to doing working on this instead of having it spread out through the week. It’ll be bigger uploads (around 20- 25 per upload). I’m still going to do newbie and serendipity and international ‘special’ uploadsΒ  -and I thinkΒ  on weeks that those happen I’ll do 2 uploads to spread things out a bit.

– I will no longer accept cheques or money orders. I only get aΒ  few of these per year and I don’t think people realize that it can take up to 3 weeks for a US cheque to clear in Canada. I’ve also had people send US money orders that can’t be cashed outside of the US and cheques not clear (with the 3 week wait – hey – it happens!). Most people end up paying via Paypal anyhow so I’m saving my accountant some hassle and getting rid of this option. That being said – if the only way you can pay is via this method – contact me and we can work something out.

– I’m moving Serendipity Dolls and Auction Benefit Dolls (there will be one next week!) to Hyenacart next week. More info on this to come…

– Last but not least, I think I’m going to be making custom dolls a semi regular thing. The orders that have been coming in have been great and all going well, I’ll be taking orders again. Not sure on the dates (it’ll be months yet) but I’m pretty sure they’ll be happening again!

Have a great week everyone πŸ™‚
xo
Christina

Amber Strocel - May 18, 2010 - 10:02 pm

Oh, man. I love wool. Love. It. That first photo makes me want to just jump on in to one of those boxes. So much fibery loveliness!

Elisa - May 19, 2010 - 1:11 am

So much fun to get a glimpse into your world, Christina (haha, now I’m going to have dreams of you in a giant Tetris game, but with giant bambo’s falling into place!)… It really is special to see your business evolve, and I’m hoping you’ll feel more and more like you’re running your business the way that makes you happy & fulfilled! And EEP! love the blue dreds drying in the sun!

Vera - May 19, 2010 - 4:49 am

Look like a lot of fun! Nice yarn! Good luck!

Robin - May 19, 2010 - 5:27 am

Christina,

I also feel like I should have a cup of tea beside me when I read your blogs, thank-you. Not only for your absolutely divine products but, the details and such that you share with us. Someday, I hope to be brave enough to start up my own little buz and, I enjoy ALL of your encouragement, even if that wasn’t in your thoughts as you wrote ;^)

also, as we keep hoping for a serendipity option, I keep looking for little signs that “today’s the day” ! The latest MUST be your Tetris example (perfect, btw) … my wonderful little family actually got me Tetris for Mother’s Day, they know it helps to clear my cobwebs, maybe a Bambo will be on its way here, after all.

tweaks are a good thing, for sure.

Michelle - May 19, 2010 - 6:11 am

Sounds great to me. You should do whats right for YOU and your company. Not trying to please everyone because there will always be someone that it doesn’t work out for. Good luck!

Erin W. - May 19, 2010 - 6:49 am

There is just so much love and warmth pouring out of your company. I love it! I haven’t purchased a doll yet, but have been watching the last two weeks or so the dolls that have been posted. Last week, my daughter woke up early and crawled up on my bed. She saw your dolls, with pink hair and a strawberry dress and fell in love. She asked for it for her birthday, which is in september. So now, I’ve got to keep my eyes open for what you are uploading. What a sweetheart she was. I went to take a shower and she said “mommy, can I see the dollies again.”

Monique - May 19, 2010 - 7:09 am

Thanks for sharing all that’s going on behind the scenes. It’s great to see so much transparency in a vendor. Hoping all these changes work out well not only for your company, but also for all your families as well. Looking forward to future customs!

Jenifer - May 19, 2010 - 7:50 am

Drooling over the yarn right there with you mama!

Loving your blog and going along on your “journey” ….I hope your little angels bring you as much joy making them as we get having them!

One thought, is auctioning the only way to raise funds? I know when we all bought raffle “tickets” to win the Haiti doll, it raised a serious amount of money. For those of us who love to get involved in a good cause but maybe can’t spend the moola to win an auction, just wondered if any comparisons were done for how much gets raised during auction v raffle? Just a thought I wanted to throw out there while I also enjoy a warm beverage (although it’s coffee, ssshhh! LOL).

Nancy - May 19, 2010 - 9:12 am

So glad to hear that the customs are going well!! They are probably my only chance of getting a doll that looks remotely similar to my daughter, so I hope to score a custom spot one lucky day!

Bruce - May 19, 2010 - 10:14 am

Oh, man. I love wool. Love. It. That first photo makes me want to just jump on in to one of those boxes. So much fibery loveliness!

Tara - May 19, 2010 - 10:49 am

Thank you for taking the time and sharing : )

Susannah - May 19, 2010 - 1:31 pm

I have yet to luck out on ordering yet, but one thing I know, you are an amazing company with your heart and soul and minds pouring into everything you do. You are a rare breed — be proud!

Brenda Bell - May 19, 2010 - 3:38 pm

Christina~ I can’t wait to see how the auction dolls go on hyenacart!! I love looking at all that beautiful hair that will someday be on some of the most beautiful dolls in the world!!!! I hope that these steps will make your life easier and give you a little more time with your family! Love.

Leanne - May 19, 2010 - 4:04 pm

I’m so excited about all the good news!! You’ve got some fabulous ideas, and Bamboletta Dolls is just a dream come true πŸ™‚

Bamboletta Helper - May 19, 2010 - 4:05 pm

The raffles do raise more money but sadly paypal considers it gambling πŸ™ So until Christina can find a way to get around that issue it’s auction dolls

Jamie Hicks - May 19, 2010 - 4:55 pm

I like it that you share with us πŸ™‚ I know a lot of us share with you and enjoy the family feel of bambo as well as the dolls.
The weekly upload sounds like it will be a better chance for all πŸ™‚

Cheryl - May 19, 2010 - 5:07 pm

I so just want to go to your house and roll around in the wool and then fall asleep snuggled up with an upload of twenty Bambolettas…Aaaaahhhhh

Elaine - May 19, 2010 - 6:28 pm

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, and YAY for customs…another chance to get my DD look alike! :o) Oh I can’t wait to see the auctions dolls! I know they will be TDF and since it will be a great cause I will NEED to bid… ;o)

Elaine - May 19, 2010 - 6:29 pm

weird face on my comment…it was supposed to be a smiley face…I have no idea what I typed… πŸ™‚

Ingrid - May 19, 2010 - 7:39 pm

I want to take a swim in your yarn stash. Tweaks are good and essential. Glad you are doing it your way.

Jenifer - May 20, 2010 - 7:47 am

Aw, stinkin’ paypal…that’s a bummer cuz they were so fun. Well, I figured you gals had already thought of it, but threw it out there anyway πŸ˜‰ The auctions are still fun and I still bid up to what I can anyway πŸ™‚ Always for great causes which is a wonderful thing to keep in our hearts these days πŸ™‚

Heather - May 20, 2010 - 1:08 pm

I have a thought about how to get around the raffle/gambling thing. I’ve seen on HC where for example, you pay $2 to “buy” a printable item of some sort that is sent via email, but it also enters you into a drawing for the doll or whatever the item is. I hope that makes sense. It might be worth looking into. I know I probably couldn’t go too high in an auction but I could definitely buy some raffle tickets. πŸ™‚

Jennifer Richard - May 20, 2010 - 3:01 pm

You said it perfectly! What an epiphany! You should be very proud of yourself, your family and your business. It has been a privilege watching your business mature! the struggle to get to where you are now, was all worth it! Your business is a business, and as important as the personal side is, it is business. If it ate you alive, then who would make those GORGEOUS baby-dolls? Who would be the Christmas Elf who lives with Santa? That image may not work for everyone, but it sure works for me! I love my Hattie and my Laia! Thank you

Cara - May 20, 2010 - 4:55 pm

you simply amaze me ……

jennJK - May 20, 2010 - 4:56 pm

Thanks for the update! πŸ™‚ I love the behind-the-scenes stories you share with us It’s fun reading about the bambo process.
That blue yarn drying on your rock wall is beautiful.

Amie*C - May 20, 2010 - 5:03 pm

I love reading your blog entries but they make me wish we were neighbors and I could come over and join in the fun πŸ˜‰ You are amazing and I feel so lucky to have found you…and your dolls. <3 ya lady!

Karen W. - May 20, 2010 - 5:44 pm

If you ever open an east-coast operation, I will be the first in line to work with you. I enjoy your stories, motivation and inspiration! I’ve said it many times — you are really an inspiration to creative, working mamas everywhere. I love the peeks behind-the-scenes and your personal stories. You are all amazing!!

PS. I (heart) that shade of blue yarn! LOVELY!!!

Meli - May 20, 2010 - 6:45 pm

I have my tea right here by me as I read. I definitely understand your need to have things run smoother. It’s like a breath of fresh air when you can figure something out to save a few minutes in the process of doing something.

You and all the sewing mamas are doing a simply amazing job and I can not wait for our first bamboletta doll to arrive. I believe my daughter is going to fall head over heels in love!

We appreciate all the time and love that goes into each and every doll and that is precisely why you have become so popular and sought after. That dedication to details in making something that our precious children play with is unheard of anymore.

I am here for the long haul and will be trying to add more bambos to our family. πŸ™‚

Meli

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