What I've learnt from running my own business

Sunday, 5 August 2018

I started selling my own artwork when I was at university, so after 5 years of building my own business I'd say I've definitely learnt a lot whilst at the same time still experimenting with how to be my own boss! I read a great post by Emma Inks recently on things she wishes she'd known before starting her business and I couldn't of agreed enough - selling products online isn't just as black and white as it sounds. You need many skills to not only set up your business and networking is hugely key, so unfortunately the illusion of creating art all day and making lots of money as you're doing it might be just that for a long time.

I really want to share more about myself as an artist and my own business here on Heartshapedbones so hopefully for other fellow artists wanting to set up their own store this will be helpful! 

you can't just slap art on internet and say 'buy it pls'
Back in the day I would take a photograph of the art print I drew on my bed, put it onto bigcartel and then be really sad when it didn't get tones of people buying it instantly. It's never been that simple, unless you have thousands of followers and you've become a big internet sensation in the online art world. I've found the more effort into selling a piece of art the more genuine interaction it gets, this means from product shots, the quality of the actual photograph and then the networking that follows. You'll spend most of your time  networking whether it be with customers, potential clients, other artists or just making your business known on the internet. never feel like you're 'spamming' too much because with how apps like Instagram and twitter filter what you see, not everyone is seeing your posts.

admin work is just as important 
This applies to running of a blog too, sometimes those days of sitting on your laptop and organising yourself is just as important as they days where you're creating the content. I find hard to make time for the writing side of my blog, but I always feel 10 times better once I've written the posts, answered the emails and done the little bits to my websites that you guys see. When I worked for myself last year I'd spend organised hours doing certain things and the first thing I'd do in a morning was to answer all my emails and do some general admin things like refresh stock, plan how my day would go and also schedule what to share on social medias. 

losing inspiration can mean losing business 
It's so important to be putting out new products but without fueling out prints that have zero passion to them. I find myself in funks sometimes where I feel like I never draw thing for myself anymore, purely because I have to see things as potential products. It does add pressure - but it also means if I stop creating the art I see a drop in my store. Obviously it's so hard to just make yourself have inspiration but I aim to atleast have a new print up every week. 

treat it like a job with planned hours
For the brief months last summer when I worked from home for myself I found the best way to organise myself was to have a spreadsheet that determined what I did every day! It made it more apparent that it was a job, I knew when I could be networking, organising, making art, packaging up prints and also when to have a dinner break. 

you have to do the jobs you really hate
It's just one of those things you have to do, if you ever feel like it's one of those days where you just don't want to talk to people, well tough your business is a reflection of yourself - get up, answer the emails, fix your problems and venture on. Working with clients has always been a part of the job I hate, you can work for people who don't really know what they want and make things ten times harder than things have to be. I love getting commission work and they can be the funniest part of my job, but at the same time working to a deadline for someone can be overly stressful especially if you don't mix well as two creatives. 

its lonely
I recently mentioned in a blog post how lonely being a blogger can get especially as I don't live in the city. Well, the same goes when you're running a business alone! I've currently been working with a few other people and it's felt amazing to interact with other creatives because half of the time I'm sat on my sofa with my headphones in having a little draw. Working on my laptop takes away my attention to other things and whilst I would love to be in the pub catching the sun, I need to be selling myself as a business because you need to put in the effort to reap any rewards. 

you need funds in place before doing anything
I wish I had known this when I was first starting out, but you definitely need a little money in your business first before you start doing anything. Building a site whether you do it yourself or get someone else to do does require a little money to get the best results. Paper, printer, if you're making t-shirts, even if its just a little I recommend saving first before you think to start selling things. 

Until next time guys,

Keep updated with me on social medias:


I've just launched my own independent business so here is my shop too : Witchcrafts
& My sisters Instagram for anyone who loves aspiring photographers: Perfectly Ordinals 

Is it hard to be a fashion blogger when on a budget?

Monday, 30 July 2018

Being an adult is frickin' hard and one thing this lousy year has taught me is budgeting means you can't have everything you want. I can't wait for the day I can stop mentioning in a post how this year has changed me, but things are getting easier and I'm settling into a good place where I think my life needs to be at. Anyway, budgeting! I've kind of never needed to save money and I know that sounds completely foolish. When I graduated university I slipped straight into a comfortable paying job in the city and lived with my ex boyfriend, we split everything and had a comfortable amount left to do with what we wished. We ate out all the time, I bought clothes of course because I worked for a retailer and high street fashion consumes you and we just lived a very fast spending money life. Fast forward to living alone in a small village with bills and rent to pay, I don't think I've treated myself to an item of clothing above £10 in almost 6 months. I get the occasional vintage item from work here and there but apart from that I've not even stepped foot into a shopping complex or a high street store. Not spending has taught me a very big life lesson on prioritising things I need to spend my money on...but also I do think it has stunted my growth as a blogger or influence on the internet because I've not joined in on what trends are boosting people through the roof. Im here in my thrifted dresses whilst others are all about that checker board vans life and if I'm honest it has brought a sense of dread that I'm not growing because I'm not relevant. 

I've had to remind myself that I have to deal with myself away from the internet and not let things like this get to me, so what not better to do than write a post on my thoughts and how I think I can push to a conclusion that you guys might be happy with too!

I'm not really into trends, but it is hard when you see others on the internet in their new rags and not want to find out where it's from or wonder what it'd look like on you! I love following other bloggers because it gives me inspiration for my own looks and opens me up to new styles that I didn't think to explore before. If they're buying new on trend stuff that's probably going to be what I'm after, but at the end of the day after all the bills are paid, I just don't have that spare cash. thrifting or second hand clothing has been a life saver because if I've done enough digging I've been able to find something similar for a lot less money! Whether it be asos marketplace, depop or your local charity shop - it's always worth having a look before waiting for the sales to roll round or spend your rent money on that cute little dress you wanted from lazy oaf. 

I kind of want to agree with the term 'fake it to you make it' but who wants to be untrue to themselves? I'd rather admit and share my ebay finds than pretending I'm wearing on trend items to fit in with the Instagram influencers. 


A huge tip to make you not want to quit styling for a blog is you can return to past outfits or items you've featured before, it doesn't always need to be new! Something I loved a couple of years ago could come straight back into my life and I'd wear it completely different. 

I think that possibly is my biggest fear that you guys are going to get bored of my looks because they're not so on trend or they're not like the other influencers who are climbing up the pole. I love the second hand/vintage style I've been creating on my blog recently and hopefully it's attracting similar minded people who don't care I'm not hugely into brands!

I think once you really get past not feeling like you need to be following a wave or a trend then it takes so much pressure from you. You don't need to spend lots of money to be a blogger, you can blog about the things you have and it makes it no less relevant. Your blog = your life. 

Until next time guys,

Keep updated with me on social medias:


I've just launched my own independent business so here is my shop too : Witchcrafts
& My sisters Instagram for anyone who loves aspiring photographers: Perfectly Ordinals 

Bring the grunge this summer

Thursday, 26 July 2018

Yes Mum I really did just layer up and march out into the boiling hot sun in the darkest outfit imaginable when you said wear something light and appropriate. One of the biggest battles I face with fashion in summer is wanting to go for my comforts but it being too hot to pull them off. I'm a sweaty mess in seconds! I love to layer things, I love dark clothing and above all I love my Nirvana t-shirts which obviously require me to go full grunge. I wanna wear stompy boots and chokers, but then I step out of my front door and a human sized puddle is all that remains. It's a hard life I lead, but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and be your true self despite the weather! 

Grunge fashion has always appealed to me because theres just something really cool and edgy about it. Layering clothes, oversized clothes, band t-shirts, clashing prints - grunge fashion constantly shows it's head in my personal style and for me that is what alternative fashion is. It's being comfortable but looking like you're walked straight out of a gig with that little bit of edge on your shoulder! I clock myself in the mirror and think I dress like a boy sometimes, but I've never felt more confident in some tartan trousers, t-shirt and oversized shirt! It's a look I've worn to work many times because it's just so comfy, but for this post I wanted to step things up a little and wear something that is my version of grunge summer wear. 

This is probably the twelfth t-shirt I've got in my Nirvana collection, but I think it's so interesting and it's actually from Primark! with the classic yellow face print on the front, it also has two cut outs on the shoulders which shows off the cobweb tattoo on my shoulder. I've been in love with Nirvana since I was very young and I couldn't tell you how I even found them. My grandad bought me a bunch of CD's one year including Blink 182 and Good charlotte, everything spiralled from there and I did my research into older bands. I love their music, Heartshaped Box inspired my blog name - but mainly I love their sense of not giving a fuck fashion! I actually mentioned grunge fashion in my dissertation at university and how it's the culture of alternative rock and punk, a dressed down fashion which has stolen my heart. 

Nirvana black t-shirt - primark - mesh polkadot top - h&m - tartan green skirt - eBay - scrappy buckle sandals - boohoo - choker - eBay 

I definitely think one element that has changed in my personal style as I've grown is comfortable is in. I've stopped really caring to over dress or look my best, if I feel comfortable than I succeed at my day so much more. I love summer but I really can't wait for things to start cooling down so I can explore more with layering and just bringing out this side of my style. 

Until next time guys,

Keep updated with me on social medias:


I've just launched my own independent business so here is my shop too : Witchcrafts
& My sisters Instagram for anyone who loves aspiring photographers: Perfectly Ordinals 

Respecting Others

Monday, 23 July 2018

I love it when you shoot photographs unexpectedly and they turn out to probably be your favourite shoot of the summer? Yeah that's me right now. I planned to write a blog post about for once feeling myself in the hot weather and how I'm looking up more than I have done this year, but instead I really wanted to discuss something with a little more consistency. I attended Pride in Hull at the weekend and hell it was one of the best weekends of this year for me. I loved the kindness and happiness I saw all day, I spent the entire time with one of my favourite humans Meg over at Mystic Mogwai  and it just gave me an eye opener into more topics I really want to share on my blog.

 I love fashion and fashion blogs, but sometimes writing about the clothing on my body just leaves me feeling a little half arsed like I've deprived you of some good content. Theres so much more going on in my brain that I want to share so I've been seeing myself steering away from being so basic. I'm not kicking bloggers who do just love talking about what they've been styling, I love to read it...I just want more from my blog right now and to give you guys.

2018 has definitely been the year where I've been challenged. If its not been working out how to do my own bills it's been dating drama or just suffering with very poor mental health. I've taken a kicking and recently I've been struggling with confidence in myself which I've not felt since I was a wee' 15 year old. Some days I wake up, from makeup to clothing everything goes perfect and I feel the bomb! But it's been a really long time since this actually happened for me, I get dressed and feel really uncomfortable with myself and I don't know how to over come that feeling. I feel very unconfident and maybe the only time I have felt a surge of loving myself is through shooting for my blog! It's my own thing and I do it all myself, so I control how I look and this is the perception of myself I want to share. From photographs you're not going to know that this is how I feel, but it's my burden to bear and where I do feel like talking to people about your problems is GREAT, sometimes you deal with your own shit and just get on with it. I'm the only one thats going to be able to love myself entirely, so I need to work out my problems and not let them ooze into the other aspects of my life because it's not needed. Hating myself isn't relevant to me making a super cool drawing or friendships I have, so I've been trying to separate the problems and it has allowed me to feel atleast a little bit more happier. 

I think what this mental health state has taught me is to respect others journeys because everyone is dealing with their own demons. A lot of people don't seem to grasp that others have their own shit on, no ones purposely ignoring you (unless they are then they suck) but sometimes it's hard to be there for someone when you have your own life to power through. 

As someone who works a full time job, blogs, have their own art store and other little projects I find it so hard to bring others into my life. I have a small knit circle of friends I've had since being a teenager and they've naturally just fallen into place with me, so making more time for others can be hard. But I get that this isn't just my problem, for so many others they have their own lives and things just don't get put on pause when you want to go shopping or just get a coffee. Just because someones not talking to you 24/7 doesn't mean that you're no longer friends, it just means you're both got your own things to do and I think this is what being an adult is. Other commitments come first and I've learnt this is where you realise who your 'real' friends are or atleast who is going to be a positive impact on your life. With being on the internet I've made a lot of friends who don't live locally to me, so I have had to come to terms with you just can't be in touch with someone all the time when they're not easily accessible in a sense. 

I think the message I want to get across is just respect other human beings because they can be keeping a lot to themselves. They can come across as happy but be in such a dark place. They're not ignoring you they just feel that much anxiety that day they've had to turn off all the phones and have a film in bed day. Your lifestyle does not reflect theirs, like theirs does not reflect yours. If you like going out every weekend drinking that might not be the case for someone else, just respect their lifestyle and remember to just give someone a break. Don't push someone away if they're being quiet.

POLKA DOT DRESS - Depop (asos) - STRAPPY BUCKLE SANDALS - Boohoo - HEART SUNGLASSES - Home bargains - WATCH - Icewatch - DREAMCATCHER NECKLACE - Blackmoon Jewellery 

Until next time guys,

Keep updated with me on social medias:


I've just launched my own independent business so here is my shop too : Witchcrafts
& My sisters Instagram for anyone who loves aspiring photographers: Perfectly Ordinals 

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