26th May 2020
Its a very strange World at the moment with lots of uncertainty. The strange way a virus can bring the whole world to standstill, I hope everyone is safe & well and my thoughts are with those who have had love ones affected and have lost loved ones too.
Im missing the workshops and events we would have been doing from Easter and throught the summer, many have been transferred to next year, the 2021 diary is starting to fill up. Im glad I can still supply craft materials and kits via online sales and I now stand at a local pub 3 days a week, as lock down starts to lift a little its good to see the children and see them choose their own products. Im blessed I have regular customers who send me photographs of their makes and also request new products, Im just waiting to find out when I can start to replan workshops and parties.
We managed to get ourselves on the big screens in Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle for the first too weeks in May, This was part of Ocean Outdoor's SME funding, not something I would ever imagine doing and it was quite emotional seeing my little business on the screen outside Trinity in Leeds, sadly I couldnt travel to the other locations.
If nothing else Lockdown has taught me whats important in life and through the support from my customers has give me the passion to carry on and plan for lots of workshops when the time to start again comes,
I wish you all well and please keep safe.
6th April 2020
Its Our 10th Birthday
So today marks 10 Years since I officially launched Angels & Butterflies
To say it’s a totally different business to the part time hobby I started is so very true & now my passion & addiction.
Originally an outlet to sell my jewellery makes online & at events as a hobby.
For 5 full years I played with the business & did lots of events, some good some not so good !! Made a few wrong decisions whilst juggling a full time job, I opened my first studio part time & part time working, to move on semi part time then full time to the 2nd studio for 4 1/2 years with numerous workshops, parties & still doing events, Oct 2017 was a turning point & I became fully self employed & moved the business forward to were it is now, although I took the decision to move out of the studio in October 2019 & go mobile, most of all I’m still loving what I do,
I have a fabulous team of Angels on hand when I need extra hands, we laugh, we have fun & I love them all so very much my little Angel Family. My portfolio of corporate clients is growing & I’m blessed over the last 3 years to have worked at some amazing events with awesome people. I have built partnerships with local businesses to work together & I’m thankful to them for putting up with me !
Most of all a massive thank you to my customers - everyone who has been to a party, event, workshop or bought a product, you have let me help to
& Make Memories
Please carry on spreading the word, recommending what we do, commenting, sharing & recommending, every little helps.
Thank you all for your support, please stay safe as my heads buzzing with plans for more workshops I can wait to be back when we take off the ⏸ button. I’m glad I can help create smiles even at a distance for the moment.
3rd April 2020
I feel this blog is a little out of the ordinary as We are currently in the middle of a World Wide Pandemic with the Corona virus. Its very strange times we are currently living in, the UK is currently in lockdown with only essentail travel. My thoughts are with Customers, Family and Friends whereever they are in the World. I Wish you all safe & healthy times. For the Angel Team we had a great year ahead with lots in the 2020 Diary. Sadly I seem to spend my time rubbing things out. Hopefully its just the pause button thats been pressed, and we will be back when its safe to do so. In the meantime I have set up office in the garage and Im currently busy with online sales to keep things going, as well as catching up with much needed admin. The stock purchased for Easter workshops has be made into Kits for people to purchase check out our boredom busters in our shop http://www.angelsandbutterflies.co.uk/studioshop/cat_1641648-Boredom-Busters.html
I have had many of my local customers purchase for the children who are regulars at my workshops so its lovely to know Im still creating smiles, even if its from a distance. I love when I have pictures sent to me too. My corporate clients are also trying to think outside of the box and always like to challenge me and push me out of my comfort zone, so they have had me recording videos of some of our activities, not something I like to do and you should see some of the outtakes, but I've had a go, they can be found over on my you tube channel (yes get me!!! I have a channel) https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC02yQU3Ge5-BVyXijo-VyZw
I hope you like my videos and have ago at making the crafts, I'd love to see your creations, please post your pictures on our facebook page www.facebook.com/angelsandbutterflies.com
Please Stay Safe, Healthy and most of all positive
Debbie & The Angel Team
23rd January 2020
I tell myself I will write a blog more often then find I forget and another few months go by,
2019 was a fantastic year for Team Angel. We made lots of new contacts, training, most of all we worked in some amazing places, met some great people and created lots of smiles with new customers and familiar faces too whilst having fun, which all leads to a job well done. We worked with lots of corporate clients, made tonnes of slime, worked at some events that we may never get the opportuity to work again includng the UCI Cycling World Championships in September when they came to Harrogate, which made us very proud to have fun with people not only from yorkshire, the UK but all over the World too, So a massive thank goes to the Welcome to Yorkshire eam for inviting us along to keep everyone occupied, and a big thank you to all my corporate clients especially Arriva & Mercury Retail. We worked not only in Yorkshire, over the summer & school hols we were in The North East too. From Kids Clubs to Trade stands, Events, Fundays, Music Festivals, Parties and Workshops.
I was humbled to be nominated for a few awards including Child Friendly Leeds and Yorkshire Choice Business Awards (Customer Services & Business Woman) - shameless plug not to late to vote on this one https://www.yorkshirechoiceawards.co.uk/votehere
voting closes on the 1st Feburary.
so 2020 the creative planning is in process, my mind is buzzing with ideas and plans I cant wait to booking the next lot of workshops and the events are filling up, with some of our regualar ones already in there, Would you believe we are already booked for Christmas Eve, The next big event is Crufts so lots of doggie themed gifts going into the shop,
I hope to see you all again during 2020 and thank everyone for giving me the opportunity to Create Smiles and have fun, whilst making memories, I say it all the time I have the best job in the World,
7th November 2019
All I can say is Wow, this year has been awesome so far and theres still 2 months left. A lot of changes for Angels & Butterflies, all for the good, the biggest being taking the decision to close the studio, the plan was too close in February 2020 when the lease was up, it just came a little earlier with a change to the building circumstances, so at the moment we are mobile and have all our stock and materials in a storage unit, so its a little strange and still getting my head around everything after 41/2 years in the studio, its not a move backwards and we certainly arnt going anyway, as the business is evolving and moving forward at a fantastic speed, 2019 has been awesome and 2020 is set to be fantastic,
We announced on the 1st November on our facebook page the incorporation of our sister company Smiles & Fun cic. Smiles & Fun is a not for profit company run on funding to provide subsidised and free workshops in the comminity. We are so pleased the regulator passed our plans and although not much will happen til 2020, theres lots going on in the background,
So Halloween & 1/2 term what can I say it was awesome and I have to give a massive thanks to my team of Angels I couldnt have pulled it off without them. We spent 3 days with Arriva North East & Yorkshire promoting their new bus routes and making Sime, 2 Parties at the Black Bull on Hull road York, One of our regular events and looking forward to being back there. Cielo Coffee shop is one of our regular events every thurs during the school hols we offer a drop in session, and MercuryRetail employed us to run a Halloween Craft session too,
Christmas plans are happening with lots of pop up shops and workshops from Pompom Wreaths to Elf School
We hope to see you all soon
31st August 2019
Feeling Accomplished yet a tad tired
Yesterday was my last workshop of the 6 week hols
It’s been an awesome Summer
Here’s a little summary of what The team has been up to
Workshops included Rock Painting, Sand Art, Slime, various Paper Crafts, Jewellery, Fairy Houses, Masks, Crowns, Badges, Puppets, canvas art
Space, Super Heroes, Princesses, Pirates, Faries, Harry Potter, Seaside, Unicorns, Mermaids, Dragons, Gardens, Ugly Dolls,
I’ve Worked with
Cielo, Lets Go Teesvalley, Darlington Council, Help for Heroes, Leeds Foster Services, Leeds Breeze, St Gemmas, Castleford Library, York Explore Libraries, Mercury Retail, Hensall Heart, Arriva, Haven, Pinderfields Hospital, Blaydon
Workshop Locations have include
The Studio, Darlington, York, Castleford, Peterlee, Newcastle, Garforth, Leeds, Sunderland, Middlesbrough, Wakefield, Whitley Bay, Hensall, Cleethorpes
I’d like to say thank you to everyone who came & created at one of our workshops or events, all my customers & clients
To My Angels - Brontë, Mollie, Emily, Sophie, Erin for all your help & support, your all awesome
Thank you again to everyone for letting me Create Smiles & Have Fun
4th July 2019
Happy Independence Day to all My American Friends and Customers I hope you enjoy your celebrations.
Its such long time since I've written a blog post so here goes......
Theres lots happening at Butterfly HQ after a difficult few year personally
2017 Nearly Broke Me
2018 Made me look at things differently
2019 Im back bigger better & brighter, this is my year to shine
So whats happening for those who follow my facebook page you will have seen lots of what I've been up to with my team of Angels, We have lots of new partnerships and have been working very hard in some amazing places, Our Corporate clients are growing including Help For Heroes, I recently visited their Rehabilitation centre in Catterick as part of their Bake for Heros Launch, I'll post the presss release, I was very humbled to be part of the day and work alongside veterans and also to see how the funds are used. Im working at The Great Yorkshire show next week with Welcome to Yorkshire and Help For Heroes and if all goes well I'll be announcing a new partnership.
Im also working to develop my disability workshops and have recently completed Autism awareness training with the lovely Helen at the Jigsaw Tree check out their website at http://thejigsawtree.org/
Im also working with Scope to obtain their Quality Mark,
Lots of changes in the way we work and lots more too come I have a very big announcement to make soon too
28th March 2016
Its our Birthday !!! A Double Celebration
28th March sees our 1st Birthday in the studio and 6th of April 6th Birthday of Angels & Butterflies
So whats happened in the last year ....
We have increased the sellers, tutors and classes in the studio as well as new stock including the Kids Bee Happy sand Art Range and excitingly the Disney range they launched on the 1st February. I've worked for other direct sales companies before but this is the most friendly, flexible and the products are so much fun, my team has grown with people seeing how much fun I have whilst working. Sally Tears is the head of direct sales and we get on like a house on fire, maybe its because shes a Yorkshire Girl too. The product has opened so many more doors for me including working with Midland Railway every weds during the school holiday. Running workshops in various locations including Rowley Poleys at Brighouse,
With a little event management thrown in too, with Events at the Plough Inn and Garforth Christmas Market,.
I've worked with some amazing people including the Apire Group and Jo who I visit as she as MS and Eplilepsy and unable to manage my stairs,
March saw us at Crufts again its a working holiday but an event I love and will be applying to be back next in 2017, I caught up with family, friends, returning customers, new customers and plenty of furry visitors too.
On the 20th March we were at the Askham Bryan Lambing day with sand art & sheep theme crafts, it was a very busy day and even my dad lent a hand at one point, we cant wait for the next event there,
In the studio since opening we have celebrated 51 parties, creating everything from 3 year olds with fairy doors to 14 year olds with Decoupage, trinket boxes still remain our most popular party craft.
We were honoured to be nominated in the Yorkshire Choice Awards for Independent Retailer and Customer Services awards and find out next week, we also have nominations in the Whats for Little ones awards under the following categories
* Best Local Activity for Children aged 5-12
*Most Outstanding Activity Leader for Children aged 5-12
* Best New Activity for Children...
* Best Childrens Party Entertainment
Please vote for us,
We will be running a week long celebration in the studio to celebrate a year in the studio and six years with Angels & Butterflies. Check out our facebook page www.facebook.com/angelsandbutterfliesdesigns
The Year couldnt be possible without a few massive Thank You's
My Building Buddies from Scream Hair Studio
My customers old, returning and new,
Everyone who has attended or taught a workshop with us
All the children who have celebrated or helped celebrate at our craft parties,
Everyone who has shared, tweeted or spread the word about our little studio
Lucy for stepping in & running parties in my abscence
To everyone who has left us fabulous reviews
Bronte for being my right hand girl
Izzy, Lauren, Em & Sophie for helping out at bigger events,
Catherine for being my sounding block & listening, for your cheerful texts and being my friend,
My Dad for being proud of me and giving me help and support,
My Angels for watching over me, Mum & Grandma Mary
Thanks to everyone for being there and making this work for me, January and February last year was a time i'd rather forget and was a big risk taking the studio forward, one im starting to see has paid off and cant remember when I last said I love My Job
Look out for a week of give aways, competitions & special offers on our facebook page www.facebook.com/angelsandbutterfiesdesigns
I cant believe its nearly a year since I last wrote a blog post, so much has happened with the studio since opening and its been such a busy time,
We have moved the studio furniture around a few times and think we have got it just about right now,
With Childrens Parties and Workshops we have welcomed so many people through the door in 2015 and hope we will see those people again and welcome more new visitors too. The workshop programmes are expanding and a wide range of skills are now being offered,
we also ran a few events of our own as well and now actively running events at the Plough Inn Burton Salmon where my cousin is the landlord, Garforth Christmas Lights was a great success despite the dreadful weather, infact we are looking at extending over 2 days for this year.
We are excitingly filling the diary with workshops, parties and events,
In July we became Independant consultants for Kids Bee Happy Sand Art, which is now offered as workshops, a party option and the products can be purchased instore too
along with my partner in crime Cal we had a welcome weekend away with friends, last weekend, it was time for me to be out of my comfort zone and dress up with a downton abbey themed evening, so posh frock, heels & curls. Cal can be seen on our stall at some of our events,
We have so much exciting news to tell you about and we wanted to finalise things before we set this news letter, So here goes......We have been away at Crufts, our second year and we had a fabulous time, we met Lesley Nichol from Downton on the Medical Aert Dogs Stand, We were blessed with so many repeat customers from all corners of the World who came to find us from last year, plus many more new customers, a fabulous time was had with such lovely people Cal & myself Chatted, Laughed & Cried with so many people. We cant wait for next year, The website will be updated soon with the new product range.We are moving ....
yes that's right we have a fab new studio opening on the 28th March. we have a much bigger property on the 1st Floor of 10 Main Street Garforth, Scream Hair Studio will occupy the ground floor too, its all very exciting and we hope you will pop and see us, we have the Grand Opening on the 28th March.
New Tutors we now have on board a number of tutors teaching some amazing workshops at the studio, Rachel - Knitting & Crochet John - Art Karen - Sewing Anthea - Felting Nic & Lisa - Card Making
Saturday 28th March 9.30am - 4.30pm We would like to invite you to our Grand Opening loads of special opening offers and Princess Elsa will be making an appearance throughout the day with goodies for the little ones, Hope you can make it
We would also like to hear from you ......... What do you want to learn ? Do you want to book a party ? Are you looking for Craft Supplies ? Are you looking for a Special Gift ? Let us know we would love to help
Well How excited are we to annouce we have opened our own studio in Garforth. We will be running workshops and selling our products, handmade products from some amazing sellers, gifts, sentimental bags and some craft supplies,
9th June 2014
Seller in the spot light at Fabrication, today on what would of been my Mum's 70th Birthday - one of my Angels, we set up our window display in fabrication for seller in the spot light. Each of the sellers gets a window of their own for the week to promote their products, it was emotional setting it up and picking the products to go in the window.
Im really excited to announce, I am working with my business Angels & Butterflies in conjunction with Mecca Bingo going back after a 12 year break to event organisation, The events are at 3 locations in the Leeds area to run shopping nights, Pamper Evenings plus loads more different events and more locations to come, and obviously showcase the A&B range, plus my new venture as an independant Arbonne consultant.
I have spent time with Mecca Management putting my business degree to use to look at the locations, customer demographics & numbers, marketing etc to find the right nights and to showcase local businesses and help them build a customer base.
October 13th 2013
This time last Year ........
A Year ago today after a few emails I ventured into a shop called Fabrication with a bag full of my handmade jewellery under my arm. It was with a few nerves & anxiety, as I didn’t really know what to expect and wondering if my products would be good enough to be alongside some amazingly talented people. Could I really do this.....
My friends were surprised at my nerves and lack of confidence even though I had been running my business for just over 2 years, this was a new venture for me and a little unknown as Dawn had only got the keys 4 days before the shop was due to open so on entering to set up my display things were a little hectic with just a day to the grand opening, I usually go with instinct and it felt right, no one looked at my designs and showed me the door so all was good. I signed up initially for 8 weeks to see how it went. A Year on & I am so glad that I decided to contact Dawn Wood and ask if I could rent space and be part of the Social Enterprise scheme called Fabrication,
As a social enterprise Scheme it enables sellers to sell within a City Centre Location. All the work is by local crafters and makers with the sellers managing the hours by volountering, as we all sell each other’s work it means I have learnt so much about others crafts too and still get a kick on entering the shop and seeing new items and new sellers in the shop. Plus im paying much less than an average craft fair stall to cover my rent and have my designs on display for 7 days a week, Initially we had a 6 month lease and for a few weeks in April things were a little uncertain until the Light decided we should stay and extended our lease for 12 months.
For me it wasn't ever about making massive sales and as long as I was covering my costs I was happy, it was more about growing as person and a business and having a city centre location to sell my products and to be able to tell people where they could see and purchase my designs. Although I would love my own shop it’s just not financially viable maybe one day in the meantime fabrication gives me the opportunity to be part of a shop.
I have learnt so much since last October and sell alongside some amazingly talented people that I can call my friends. I have grown as a person and learnt so much, plus I’m happy to say my sales have been very good too although profits tend to get spent on more beads. It also enabled me to test the market with new designs to see what sells & what doesn't and get advice/feedback from other crafters and share myexperiences too. I am happy to be part of what is now referred to as the “Fab Family”
For those that know me well I’ve had a difficult couple of year with illness and being able to switch off the outside world and focus on the shop for a few hours has been so helpful, I want to personally thank Dawn & the rest of the “fab family” for their help, friendship and support.
I am so looking forward to the next year. Please visit the shop we are in the Light Leeds, I’m sure you will love it as much as I do. There is something for everyone and it’s lovely to see so many returning customers.