Monday, November 9, 2009

Oilcloth Girls

Last night I went to bed thinking about what a great community I have surrounded myself with, and I that know just how lucky I am to have all of my dear friends.  There's my wonderful homeschool mammas, neighbors, and my crafty girlfriends. Over the years I have chatted about a lot about these lovely people, but I don't know if I have ever told you all about my Oilcloth Posse, the two wonderful ladies that I have gotten to know via Etsy.  Other oilcloth fanatics, like me, that make wonderfully constructed and innovative products.  Their ideas are truly original and I think that it is high time you get to know them--if you don't already!  

The first to add vinyl letters to uniquely personalize oilcloth, how smart is she? 

The best oilcloth lunch bags on earth!  

For some of us making oilcloth goods is a passion. It's not just a job, or a stupid "friendly competition"... code for "I am farming your shop for my next product." The great thing about us is that we respect each other, and each others product lines.  Although I have a really great lunch bag pattern that one of my stitchers and I spent weeks developing, I don't make lunch bags--I don't make them because Rick Rack Queen makes great ones!  Instead, I sell RRQ's lunch totes at my craft shows.  Karen doesn't make splat mats or party banners because she likes mine and respects me enough not to steal my products.  Instead, she sells them on her super cute website, Lilybella, where you can find specially designed party banners that I make just for her customers.  

What is truly great about knowing these ladies is not just professional respect, but the support we give one another. Over the years we have comforted each other when others have taken our ideas and called them theirs. And, unfortunately, it has happened to each of us in turn. We have bailed each other out with emergency shipments of oilcloth so deadlines could be met.  Just the other day, one of the gals asked me if I could send her a certain oilcloth so she wouldn't have to buy elsewhere.  That is good business and wonderful friendship.  

Now don't get me wrong, I am not so foolish to think that everyone is going to be this friendly. I do know business is business.  But I tell you what, I don't have trouble sleeping at night. I go to bed with a clear head and a kind heart, with no need to ask for forgiveness. So, this holiday season please support my dear and kind oilcloth friends, Lilybella Boutique and Rick Rack Queen.  Between the three of us, we've got your holiday gift list covered!!!  


Dawn Anderson said...

Great, classy post Kelly! I'll be sure to let everyone I know to shop all 3 of you this season.

Carol said...

YOU are my oilcloth rockstar! I love that we have the "friendship" that we have rather than some petty competition. It's all about respect for people, respect in business and just plain old being nice. You have bailed my behind out of many jams and you have my undying gratitude.
aka rickrackqueen

Allison "Big Al" Espino said...

You're business model has always been an inspiration to me, as well as your willingness to share ideas and goals. I do think you can be competitive in business, but maintain your integrity. I could copy people's products all day long, but it would not give me the sense of accomplishment that I get in bearing a new idea and seeing it grow. Ultimately, the creative juices are what keeps me going. Thanks so much for being there for me as well, when I needed anything. I appreciate you and continue to look to you as a great role model in our business.