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20 March 2009 @ 08:57 am
3/20 Bento #108 & Giveaway!  
4/1/09 -  UPDATE: CONTEST CLOSED :  I will announce the winner this evening!
Good Luck Everyone!

TGIF bento for CDC today. He's always so happy on Fridays,lol. He got mac & cheese with mini chicken apple sausages in the thermos to keep it hot. Cold mac & cheese just doesn't cut it. In a side car there is the last of the lemonaid jello with TGIF carrots. I finally used my letter cutters, they are great! They are tiny, 3/4 inch tall, perfect bento size. I got them from William Sonoma on sale cheep! He also got a grape skewer, carrot stars and 2 girl scout cookies (thin mints, my favorite!)

Check this out, I'm doing a give away here. I'm still making cool bag and belt sets and they are really piling up, (I can't help myself, they are so fun to make,lol). So far no one has bought any of my sets, so I decided to do a give away. All you have to do to enter is check out my sets for sale and leave a comment there  (http://jewelmaker.livejournal.com/20866.html ). Give me some feed back on them, likes, dislikes, constructive criticism etc. Hopefully I can get some hints on what to do to make them more desirable so I can sell some. Call it market research :D. You have until March 31st to enter and I will do a random drawing on April 1st and announce the winner.

This is the prize
This is my medium sized bag that will hold a two tier box and a large side car box.
Current Mood: hopefulhopeful
laurabento on March 20th, 2009 09:45 pm (UTC)
Hi jewelmaker! I'm not entering the giveaway cuz I wanna give someone else a chance so I'm putting my comment here. I can't believe nobody has bought any of your bags. Didn't paisleypirate buy one of your bags? For me, it's because of the price. Maybe you can have a sale or swap them for some cool bento items? I think maybe you just need to advertise more and this giveaway is a great way to get more exposure! Some more neutral/manly prints would be cool. And some more colorful ones for kids. Maybe you can offer to make custom ones for people with their names on it or something. hope that helps :)
jewelmaker on March 21st, 2009 04:09 pm (UTC)
Hi laurabento,
thanks for the input. Yea, I will probably have to lower the price. I guess being a professional artist I realize the value of my time and I'm used to getting paid well for it. When I figured my prices I really lowered my rate per hour but I guess not enough for something like this. People are so use to seeing bags for $1 or $2 that they just can't get over it and realize the value of a handcrafted one of a kind item. That's ok though. I'll lower the price some and if they still don't sell they will make great gifts and swap items. I did do a swap with paisley pirate for one of her awesome boxes! Thanks again for your input :D
paiselypirate on March 21st, 2009 06:44 am (UTC)
Ooo that's a lovely bag = )

Perhaps you should consider offering to just sell the bag rather than the bag and belt sets- I know that when I first looked I saw that it was 35 dollars or so and I didn't realize that it was for the bag, belt, AND bento box all at once (it took me a few minutes to sort that out) Maybe people who would otherwise be purchasing your bags are confused about this as well?

And I personally enjoy the more modern and colorful fabrics as opposed to the more traditionally asian styled ones, but these are all parts of a personal aesthetic and I know lots of people who would love the bags that you have made, so I'm not sure what you can do with that 2 cents.

I think just some more advertising would help too, have you looked at projectwonderful.com ? you can buy very cheap advertising (just a few cents at the cheapest) for all kinds of websites. The rates depend on the website and the traffic and how many other bidders there are on a space, but it's a very effective tool for advertising, and very easy to use.
jewelmaker on March 21st, 2009 04:16 pm (UTC)
hi paielypirate, I did consider selling just the bag and belt without the box, but I thought they would be a little more desirable with the box and they are very inexpensive. I do have a few sets that don't have a box. I also should make my descriptions and prices easier to figure out. Thanks for the info. I will look for some more modern fabrics and some kawaii stuff too. I'll check out the projectwonderful thing. I'm not really trying to do this to make a big profit or anything, just having fun making the bags and thought I could fund my bento addiction a little, lol. Looking forward to my boxes! :D
sewcr8zy on April 30th, 2009 01:06 am (UTC)
Bento Sets
I really love your bento , bag and belt sets and would like to purchase one from you. Will you make any more of the Crane print? I really love that pattern or any Japanese print with purples and gold, too. Please let me know how I can purchase a set from you!
thanks! Faith
jewelmaker on April 30th, 2009 03:14 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Hi Faith,
Thanks, I'm so glad you like my sets! Yes I can make another Crane and Iris set. I have everything to make it and the box too. That set is $35 plus $5 shipping. Let me know if you want it. I could make it this weekend and send it out next week. I take paypal at jewels@mcn.org. I look forward to hearing from you. :)
sewcr8zy on April 30th, 2009 04:01 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Don't know if my reply was sent here or not from my email. I do want the Crane and Iris set with the velvet. Do you have the fabric for that? Let me know and I'll pay via PayPal the $40.00. Thanks so much!
jewelmaker on April 30th, 2009 04:29 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Hi Faith, yes i have the fabric for the Crane & Iris with the velvet trim. When you make the payment please specify in the email which set you want. Thanks! I'll get that made this weekend and out to you by Monday.
sewcr8zy on April 30th, 2009 05:16 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Great! I just went on to Paypal and sent the money for it! Thanks Again!

Do you and your hubby have a store downtown Mendocino? I think I have been there and really loved your jewelry!!
Beautiful pieces!!

jewelmaker on April 30th, 2009 05:55 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Thanks Faith, I got the payment. Yes we do have a gallery in Mendocino. That's so cool that you have been there! I'm glad you like our work. Thanks! I'll let you know when I ship it out.
sewcr8zy on May 15th, 2009 01:14 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Was wondering when you will be sending out the Bento set that I purchased from you? I still have not received it. Thanks!
jewelmaker on April 30th, 2009 03:16 am (UTC)
Re: Bento Sets
Oh yea I do still have enough of the purple kanji fabric too if you want that one.
ext_176602 on March 21st, 2009 05:05 pm (UTC)
I really like that dragon bag - beautiful!
hippie_mamabear on March 21st, 2009 08:18 pm (UTC)
Your bags really are gorgeous, and look to be well-made. However, i agree that it's the price that's off-putting about them. A friend of mine offered hand-made dice bags for our gaming group, which were a bit narrower, but taller than your bento bags, at $7 each. She could hardly make them fast enough. The quality of the fabric she used and her workmanship was about the same as yours, with the same drawstring set-up. Also, hers were reversible, which might be a selling point if you put in a contrasting fabric as a liner.
(Anonymous) on March 21st, 2009 10:47 pm (UTC)
Your bento bags
I think that, considering they include the bento box, that the prices are fair.

Have you thought about opening an etsy.com store? I think maybe you're just not getting enough traffic to your own blog site.

(Anonymous) on March 22nd, 2009 01:44 am (UTC)
Carolyn G
OMG that is the cutest bag. I would love to win it!

carogonza1 (at) yahoo (dot) com
pink_discordia on March 25th, 2009 06:12 pm (UTC)
Arg I thought I commented days ago!
Hello there. I will echo every one's price comments. I think that they are totally worth the price; you have an amazing eye for colors and patterns! I like to sew and I feel like I could make one these and I have a hard time buying things that I can make. Keep it up though b/c you are good at this! Maybe you can make one with a hidden PUL liner to guard against spills. (I always have spills b/c I suck lol.)
sarchix on March 27th, 2009 03:53 pm (UTC)
WOW, these are awesome!

I might just have to order some... Mother's day is coming up and I've also gotten my Mom into bento too.

Even though the first one (with the Velvet) is very pretty, I'm not sure its the perfect fabric for bento. The crane fabric is PERFECT!
(Anonymous) on March 27th, 2009 07:05 pm (UTC)
bento contest
Your craftsmanship is exquisite! The velvet one looks like it would not be long-lived. As a daily lunch packer I would be interested more in the regular cotton ones. Maybe each one should have a "loaded" and "unloaded" price for bag alone or with contents etc. I really like the straps with buttons!!
(Anonymous) on March 29th, 2009 03:29 pm (UTC)
double comment
I commented in your "shop" too but I want to make sure I'm entered in the contest :)
I think a giveaway is a great idea to increase your exposure.
Also have you considered listing these on Etsy, creating an etsy shop, etc?
People could search for them more easily and might be more likely to accidentally stumble upon them.
Maybe you could also have a gallery of different fabrics available that you could make into bags upon request.
Also maybe a really "young" looking bag with some kind of cartoonish motif might go over well. It seems like many bento enthusiasts are into that aspect of Japanese culture as well.

onlycancan ta hotmail tod com

(Anonymous) on March 29th, 2009 06:01 pm (UTC)
I didn't know about your site til I saw a pointer to today's contest. Putting several of your kids on my wishlist.
dcp67 on March 31st, 2009 12:08 am (UTC)
Beautiful bags
I really love the variety of fabric you are using and I especially like the coordinating button on the bento straps of a few. The plum bag is really beautiful. They are all lovely. I am very surprised you haven't sold any of these. Hopefully the word is out now!