February 24, 2012

Giveaway Love: The Craft Business Handbook

Hey guys- we've got another awesome giveaway! If you've ever thought of setting up your own online shop, The Craft Business Handbook - The Essential Guide To Making Money from Your Crafts and Handmade Products is an excellent read. The author, Alison McNicol, is offering 5 free Kindle copies of her book to Feeling Stitchy readers!

Alison was kind enough to share a Kindle copy with me, too, and I have to say it is definitely worth your time. She answers all kinds of questions, from the basics of naming your business, photographing your products, and setting up your home office to pricing your goods, marketing them, the pros and cons of advertising, and how to decide to take the next step and expand.

The entire book is written in a really friendly, conversational tone, so don't worry about your eyes glazing over at the technical bits - Alison's book is concise and detailed, but always interesting and inspiring.  The final section of the book contains interviews with crafty business people like Liesl Gibson (Oliver + s), and Emily Peacock (yes that Emily Peacock who creates the beautiful updated needlepoint patterns).

I think this book would be super-helpful to anyone thinking of opening an Etsy or online shop or even anyone considering a booth at local craft fair. The best part is, all of her advice is given based on her own personal experiences, and she doesn't flinch from sharing her failures right along with her successes. Reading it was kind of like settling down for a long talk with your older, wiser craft buddy. (Ok, I'm not saying Alison is old, but you get the idea). :)

So, all that said, are you ready for a giveaway? Again, we are giving away 5 copies of the Kindle (or PC) version of The Craft Business Handbook. If you don't have a Kindle, it's easy to set up a free Kindle reader on your computer or smart phone.

To win, I want you to leave a comment with.... a weird business name. Strange, fun, cheesy - use your imagination and make up something nutty. I'm sure you guys can do that. :) Top 5 names win! Please include your email address so we can contact you. Leave a comment by 9 PM Central Time, on Sunday Feb. 26. Winners will be announced on Monday, Feb. 27.

Edit: 9 PM, Sunday night - comments closed - winners will be announced on Monday. Thanks all! :)


  1. weird business name:
    "horny little stitches"


  2. Bellies, Buttons, & Bling :)

  3. I used to have a studio and the people next door were carpenters called...Chisel Me Timbers. Love it!

    mrspiquante at gmail dot com

  4. "The Meek Monster's Nook"


  5. I had to make a fake company for a marketing class in high school and then do the ads - wait for it - "Joe's Crackless Plumbing - You See Crack and Get Your Money Back"

  6. I would call a business "The Craftinator" so if any stock was to sell out a message will appear next to the product saying "I'll be back"

    My email address is stitch@anigel.net
    Tracy :)

  7. Crafternoon Delights

  8. Buddha's Belly - Belts & Sashes to Stick Out From the Crowd.

    This was fun! Thanks for the chance to win.

  9. i have always dreamed of opening up a gormet ice cream shop called Fancy Pants Creamery

  10. Stitchy-hand

  11. Before I was born, my parents owned a lunchbar, which they called 'Peckish'. Dad painted it pillar-box red so that it would be noticed, and they were very successful with their business, selling lunches to their peckish customers!!

  12. When my sis and I were doing paper crafts, we were Plum Preserves. We "preserved" memories using lots of fun fruity themes. I've also used HeartFelt.

  13. The Sleepy Savant ~ Waking for moments of brilliance. :)
    This looks like a great book, I'm keeping my finders crossed!

  14. I didn't think of this, but my favorite business name was for a hair salon - The Wizard of Ahhhhs.

  15. 1. My Post-Apocalyptic Practice
    2. Unofficial Therapy (retail for you, crafty for me)
    2. Generations of Creativity

    Now you've inspired me to come up with even more names...hmmm...

  16. Hmmm.how about 'stiches r us' thats just cheesy!!!
    Would luv to win this!!

  17. Sleep With The Fishes.....for a fish monger:)


  18. Little Shop of Lobsters.....a seafood restaurant:)

  19. I'd have a sewing emporium called "It's a Crewel World"

    This is a bit 12A rated, but we briefly had a car wash near us that specialised in doing all the cleaning by hand. i.e. no automated processes. The problem was the name and advertising slogan, "Wheelie's Hand Jobs" and claims that boasted they could offer the best hand job in Leeds! I think they had to change their name and advertising after numerous complaints!

    Fingers crossed to win.

  20. Since you said something "nutty"....Squirrel Stitches and Surprises. I will have to check out this book regardless. Looks interesting!!

  21. The obvious groaner I can think of is
    Sew Crewel
    wiredclover at gmail dot com

  22. Landlocked Pirates -- dress up stuff for little boys :-)

  23. I have a tattoo of two koi fish and always thought it would be fun to have a business named Two Koi, to play off the homophone Too Coy. My business mascots would be two cutesy fish (think Japanese style)

  24. I just started an artisan soap and body products business...
    'The Laughing Pear Soap Co.' you can (soon) check out our site at laughingpearsoap.ca

    This book would be such a big help!
    laughingpearsoap at gmail.com

  25. NeedleLot

    Would love to win a copy of the book. thanks.

  26. I've always wanted to set up a craft shop called "Totally Useless". I mean, I love making weird stuff and I completely understand that no one needs a amigurumi King Koopa head mounted on their wall. But it would be fun!

    Or anything with the word Imaginarium is awesome too...like Craft Imaginarium or Imaginarium for Awesome People. I like those too :)

  27. My mother-in-law, Judy, makes fabulous jewelery. The family has been trying to convince her to sell her jewelery, but she's content to make it and give it away as gifts. In our efforts to convince her to sell her jewelery we even came up with a name for her business: "Judy's Bobbles." The kicker here is that her husband's name is Bob ... it's a bit of a funny enuendo. The logo would have to include a cheesy picture of Bob modeling her jewelery somehow to include others in the joke. We thought a funny tag line would help too, but didn't make it that far in the "business plan" :)
    Thanks for this fun opportunity and love the blog!

  28. How about Chaos Connection? A store for, um, whatever!

  29. It's not crafty but I always wanted to open a bagel shop called "Punk Rock Bagel Shop." Everything would be named after punk bands.

  30. I'll be setting up my Etsy shop soon for my lable "Frankenstitchery". It came from my love of old monster movies and combining the words Frankenstein, stitching and Laboratory. The best name I've seen was a hairdresser called "Curl up & dye".


  31. Hello!
    I would like to participate! I am Brazilian and a while I think of starting my own business Craft. A strange name could be Diabolin's Crafts: Crafts diabolical. How about? It would be funny!
    Thank you!
    my address: ale.crochet@gmail.com

  32. Hola estoy encantada de participar ya que nada me gustaria mas que poner mi propio negocio y compartirlo con mi hermana,mi nombre seria MILFRESAS,me gusta por que es dulce como las cosas que hago,un saludo y suerte a tod@s.
    Mi mail:milfresas2011@hotmail.com

  33. I'm going to suggest "Sinistral Stitches," which is actually my identifier on Etsy. Sinistral makes reference to anything left-handed, which is appropriate since I lost my right arm in a skiing accident five years ago. I took up stitching as a time consuming hobby during my extensive recovery, and the fine motor skills required really helped me develop my left-handed writing (I'm not naturally left-handed). Also, "Sinistral" sounds a lot like "sinister," which is appropriate given the sort of things I like to stitch. It also allowed me to use the twitter handle @SinStitch.


  34. I'd love to win a copy of that book. I even have a Kindle to read it on. :)

  35. Bald Welder

    Looks like a great book.

  36. I am inspired by your rave......So my ridiculous idea would be
    "Feeling Cheeeeesy"
    and my email is

    Good luck, very generous of you.....

  37. I think a bike shop called the Cyclepath would be fantastic! sewlovelync@gmail.com

  38. I have a friend who's just registered his business, it's for removing popcorn ceilings.
    He named it The Popcorn Stripper. I can't wait to hear some of the phone calls he's going to get!

  39. My husband often comes up with these in the car, but when put on the spot,is a bit stuck
    A hardware shop called Guys and Dowels
    A butchers called Love Me Tender

    I've always wanted a sewing shop called Pins and Needles

  40. Thread Head. abbey . franklin @ yahoo.com

  41. A footwear store called "Freudian Slippers" (but they also sell other things too).

  42. Using a pun from the pun maater, Piers Anthony, I would call my shop Crewel Lye, selling embroidery and soap.

    cimorene5 at gmail dot com

  43. I thought about opening a cleaning business for awhile and was going to call it "Clean Sweep Cleaning"! I think I liked the name better than I liked the idea of doing all that cleaning!

  44. Lovely Jubbily Chubbily - selling cute accessories for bubbas!

    misswrightdesigns at gmail dot com

  45. What a great giveaway - my weird business name would be 'Stitched Up'

  46. Man, all of these entries are really creative! I've been seriously considering starting an etsy store (so yes, this book would be amazing!) and thinking "custom cuts" (for custom made dresses & clothing). But after reading all of this hilarious entries I'm thinking I need something way more pun-worthy!

  47. Argh, I read the other responses so I have all their names running through my head instead of something neat and original for me. My online name, however, (like a business name) has been Clothdragon for years - meant to invoke images of a cloth hoarding dragon. (It's one of my weaknesses. The other is books and I begin to wonder if I should branch out and create myself another username as Bookdragon.)

    On Etsy I'm Dragonbones because someone already took Clothdragon there and I had trouble coming up with anything else when I was busy pouting about another Clothdragon.

  48. hose for bros- tights for men lofthaena@gmail.com

  49. Bullshifters and if you can't guess what the business is: Manual Transmission/Clutch Repair
    susand1408 at googlemail dot com

  50. 'Fumeuse Fatale'

    It's my flickr name for a reason!
    First off, it embraces my French background : )
    Next, it's obviously a play on 'Femme Fatale'

    I'm very fond of smoking, so 'Fumeuse Fatale' is awesome, because I am female, and smoking is deadly.
    It's taboo


  51. I would name my craft shop
    Crafts and Crochet Shop

    frkfogh at forum dot dk

  52. "Sew Silly" would be cute! Now I wish that I had some silly inspiration so that I could actually have a shop by this name...


  53. The business I'm starting up is called PlayCrafts, but that's not very funny. If I was going to do one that was funny, I'd do Wicked Stitch of the West (I live on the west coast) and sell threads, yarn, and patterns. :)

  54. 'The Store with the very long name hard to remember'

  55. Stichy snitchy!

    estrellitasazules at hotmail dot com :)

  56. My chocolate business is called trufflepiglet :) (PS I tried to comment via my Wordpress account but Blogger won't let me...)