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The Final Part of March Meet the Maker!

Well done if you've got this far through these blog posts! I really enjoyed delving into the business and going behind the scenes a bit more - hope you did too.

The second post is here:

Day 21 - Materials

Today ‘Materials’ is the prompt for #marchmeetthemaker. I think this beautiful image from my wonderful stockist sums up my inspirational materials - nature - and my product materials - paper - perfectly in one shot!

Most of my products are made from paper and I am still a massive fan of keeping things written down on paper and not digitally. I love snail mail and gifting proper wrapped up presents. It might seem old school, but that’s me!

Did you know all the paper I use for my wrap and cards is FSC certified? All of my paper products are recyclable and I’m currently looking into getting my wrap made from recycled paper too.

Day 22 - Mistake/Lesson

Todays prompt for #marchmeetthemaker is ‘Mistake/Lesson.’ My biggest mistake is comparison. I think most, if not all, designers, creators, artists, and some business owners, look at what others are doing too much and instead of realising that there’s room for us all out there, we end up comparing ourselves, thinking we should be doing better, doing things like others or just generally thinking we should change. We also compare our successes without knowing what’s going on behind the scenes, compare our one-year-old company to ten year success stories thinking we should be in the same place, and just generally not giving ourselves enough credit. The quotes ‘comparison is the thief of all joy’ [Theodore Roosevelt] comes to mind for me, and ‘Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle or end’. So I’ve used my own here today ‘You are exactly where you need to be…’ as a reminder to not compare, to live in the moment, to enjoy your art and that there is room for every single creator out there as long as you are creating from the heart…

Day 23 - Product Range

Product Range. I wanted to show a collection on a range of products today. I love it when a pattern or design can be applied to a range of things. Here’s the Meadow range as paper goods, fabric, and homewares. It’s such a versatile design and I think it looks great on anything! Perfect for Spring and the sunny days ahead. Let me know which is your favourite!

Day 24 - Milestone

Todays prompt for #marchmeetthemaker is ‘Milestone’. The one I’m about to achieve in April is being 6 years old! I still remember nervously opening up an Etsy shop wondering if anyone would buy anything as if it were yesterday - can’t believe how quickly it has gone! What a dream, what a milestone, what a ride! Thank you everyone! I always celebrate loads in April, so please join me in lots of offers, giveaways and fun. Sign up to my newsletter to find out more or keep an eye out here for further details and party plans in April!

Day 25 - Workspace

When a designer has a laptop… our workspace is anywhere! Lounge, bed, sofa, desk, outside!… wherever you feel creative that day.

Day 25 of #marchmeetthemaker is Workspace - and mine is everywhere!!

Day 26/27 - Free!

Day 28 - Low Stock

I hand make my candles and reed diffusers as I wanted to make an exclusive, collectable set. I wanted the products to be sustainable, avoid waste and I wanted to know exactly where I was getting my materials from (I get them from another small business in the UK!) I wanted to create seasonal sets that people could update and refresh their homes with. I get very excited by the changing seasons so bringing the scents of Spring indoors is so lovely and I’m hoping future seasonal ranges will evoke these feelings too. Do you update your home for the changing seasons too? The prompt for #marchmeetthemaker today is Low Stock. I only have 9 reed diffusers left and 10 candles for Spring - be sure not to miss out!

Day 29 - New vs. Old

New vs. Old for #marchmeetthemaker today. Running down the middle of this selection of photos are the first designs I ever sold on Etsy, a personalised Christening invite and Thank You card set. When the business turned 5 last year I revisited the design and created some new things based on the originals - this was so much fun! I called the range Garden Party (which summed up celebrating my business birthday perfectly!) and the wraps and cards are still selling in the shop today! The old designs were very floral based, and of course the new ones were too, but with the added additions of teacups and saucers and other flower holding vessels - in true garden party style! I think the key difference is confidence. I feel my first designs were totally floral based as I was too scared to be free with any other illustration so it’s a nice comparison to see the new designs being more my style and with less formal floral placement. What differences do you see in the designs?

Last Day - Looking Forward

Wow the last day of #marchmeetthemaker! What did you think of this months posts? I hope you got a good insight into what Christine Gardner Design is all about - and maybe a little bit more about me too! I have enjoyed it lots and would like to know what your favourite bits were so I can share some more with you going forward. I’ve loved looking at the different aspects of the business, what I stand for, and showing you some of the things I get up to.

So ‘Looking Forward’ is todays prompt. I would like to continue doing the same with my business - creating little pieces of joy. Spreading happiness, kindness, creativity and celebration with you all and giving you lots of lovely things that you can use to do the same with!

I love pattern and would put my patterns on absolutely loads of things if I could but I do have a love of paper and stationery so will continue to do that - maybe get it on fabric soon which is a dream.

I will continue to get stocked in beautiful stores up and down the UK and overseas (like the one in the picture - how gorgeous?!), maybe have my own shop one day with a little corner that I can design in and another corner to run workshops for others who want to get creative.

I’ll continue to expand my ranges (a new male range is coming in May!) and continue to grow existing ones. Make new seasonal fragrance and home products and expand on products for these too.

A LOT basically! I like to keep busy and coming up with ideas is my favourite so I’ll never be short of things to do in the future!

Thanks for getting to the end of this post and #marchmeetthemaker2022 - if you did! Thank you to @joannehawker for the prompts and inspiration - go check out her work too, it’s very cool!

📷 : for

Thank you for reading! What a fun month! Hope you enjoyed it too. Christine

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