3 benefits of using my Cricut for my business
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cricut. All opinions are 100% mine.
If you are long time reader of my blog and follower of my business, you know that Cricut has been a huge champion of mine. They were my first corporate partnership almost six years ago. Their values of creativity, kindness, and encouragement of a DIY way of life resonate with me professionally and personally. Yes, this post was paid for by Cricut – BUT – as my real life friends and family would tell you, I love my Cricuts. LOVE them.
In the past 9 years of creating one-of-a-kind events for my clients, it’s the small details that get me most excited. Yes, the lighting and the flowers often make the biggest impact on a room, although those things won’t be packed away in your Wedding Box that you bring down from the attic every year on your anniversary. Those items won’t be framed by your kids to hang on their gallery walls (if gallery walls are still en vogue 40 years from now). It’s these handmade, personalized, tangible items that live on after an event. Whether it’s the goodie bags from a Bat Mitzvah or welcome sign at a wedding, I’ve created numerous event details for my clients with my Cricut that they have treasured.
The three biggest advantages of using my Cricut machines (because who are we kidding, I own four. It’s an obsession) are the ability to quickly create mock-ups, the variety of materials I can work with, and the profitability of by-passing third party vendors. Let’s dive into those.
By-passing third party vendors
In the event design world, a lot of what I design isn’t created in-house. We hire a professional lighting team to install the uplights, rent the linens from a linen company, and work with stationery designers for your paper goods. Some things – like the personalized details that ultimately make your event YOURS – are created in-house on my Cricut.
Let’s talk about time for a second. Say I want to create signage for a wedding that coordinates with the invitations, the linens, and their wedding website. With a third party vendor, my time would be spent sending them artwork files, color swatches, approving digital mock-ups, and paying invoices. With my Cricut, I can spend that time actually creating the item for my clients, giving it my undivided attention to detail, troubleshooting as I go, and finally saving money by not having to pay a third party vendor to create what the Cricut gives me (and my team) the ability to create in-house.
Now, I’m going to tell you about the riveting world of minimums. Minimums are quantities that third-party vendors set to make their production efficient and profitable. Ever try to order 5 printed t-shirts? Or just a few custom bags? It’s almost impossible. Minimums often start at the 25, 50, or even 100 pieces that need to be ordered for the printer to even take on your project. With the Cricut, I can create pieces in-house for clients in any quantity they need.
These signs were created using white vinyl and the print-then-cut feature on my Cricut Maker. The flowers on the welcome sign matched the flowers on the envelope liner of their invitations.
Photo by Anèe Atelier
Leads me to #2…
Ability to Create Mock-ups
One-of-a-kind event details are often shown to clients via digital mock-ups. I use photoshop and illustrator to create a digital representation of what the final piece will look like. This works wonderfully for a lot of different pieces (and especially in this time of Covid), although to be able to hold a few options in your hand is what can really sell an idea to a client. Using my Cricut, I can show the client table numbers in three color options of the actual, tangible, table number at our design meeting. I don’t have to pay for samples from a third party vendor or wait for those samples to arrive. We all like immediacy these days, yes? I want to place an online order and get it in two days. This is what I strive for with my clients. The Cricut products let me show you mock-ups of details of your event in real life – making the meeting more fun and your decision process easier.
The Variety of Materials and Techniques
If I listed all of the materials I could cut with a Cricut Maker, this blog post would be so long you’d be like…”byeeeeee.” Then add on the techniques that are available besides cutting: scoring, perforation, foil press, iron-on, influsible ink, and I’ve got myself one unstoppable array of products to let my creativity go wild. Want invitations made of cardboard? I got you. How about 100 perfectly cut and sized hexagons for an escort card display? Let’s do it. Oh, and you want just a few custom shirts for your best girlfriends? Yep, I can do that too.
We are only limited by sturdiness of materials and our imagination.
Below are my favorite items that we’ve designed in-house on my Cricut for past clients:
Photo by Zoe Rain Photo
Photo by Inbal Sivan Photography
Photo by Jonica Moore Photography
Events and Covid-19
Gosh, this is a weird time. Who would have thought a month ago that so many parts of the country wouldn’t be allowed to have events, see their loved ones, or even play in a playground? To keep each other safe, especially our most vulnerable neighbors, I 110% support the social distancing and closures of non-essential business. For me, this means two things: 1) many events have been postponed, and 2) I’m technically not allowed to go into the studio. As you can imagine, my bank account is taking a hit. The income that I usually depend on in the Spring is gone. It’s a hard time, although this post isn’t about me, it’s about YOU.
All of you wonderful people and clients who have been meticulously planning and designing once-in-a-lifetime celebrations. I FEEL FOR YOU. I’m here for you. Having to postpone your wedding or your son or daughter’s mitzvah is heartbreaking. You might be sad, angry, confused, and hurt. But the thing is – you aren’t in it alone. You have me. Your trusted event designer and florist. I’m working diligently with my current clients to accomplish the following through this covid-19 crisis:
- Postpone your events.
- Temporarily cancel our policies for fees regarding rescheduled events. No extra fees will be applied. Each client’s payments will be used towards their new date.
- Redesign for free, if necessary. The floral supply line has been insanely disrupted and we aren’t sure when it will be fully back online. This means we’ll be making a game plan in case we have to relay on all local flower farms for 2020 events. Luckily, here in the lower Hudson Valley we have amazing flower farms.
For prospective clients, I’m offering some specials. Because of all of the social distancing restrictions, my Spring sales are way down. 2021 couples and mitzvah parents: THIS IS THE TIME TO BOOK. Anyone who books me for floral design and/or event design by April 30th will get:
- A free bridal bouquet or a $250 credit towards your final bill
- 5% off of the delivery, set-up, and breakdown fees
No Floral Foam
Here’s the honest truth: the majority of florists create their arrangements in foam. At the end of your reception, all of the flowers, along with the non-biodegradable and carcinogenic foam, goes into the trash. Before you think it, no, it doesn’t lessen the value of paying for flowers because most of them are thrown out after your wedding. The flowers served their purpose of being beautiful during your wedding, now their job is done. But that doesn’t mean they should be tossed in the dumpster with poison foam.
Florists create an obscene amount of garbage. All of the flowers are delivered to us in cardboard boxes. Vases and candle holders come shipped in boxes surrounded by styrofoam packing material. Every 25 stem bunch of roses has two plastic sleeves and four pieces of cardboard. It gets overwhelming.
A small thing all of us florists can do is try our best to not use floral foam. Floral foam is incredibly harmful to the environment. It’s carcinogenic and non-biodegradable. For as long as time, it was used as a florist’s main source of water for the flowers. For some situations, it’s necessary. But for a lot of designs, there are other mechanics that we can use that are reusable and better for the earth.
I’ve tried in the last few years to avoid using floral foam if possible. I’ll design something, like these compotes, with the precursor thought that I don’t want to use foam. I’ll design installations, like the La Croix one below, knowing that I would prefer to use chicken wire and water tubes instead of foam. Without foam, installations are actually a lot lighter and airier. We can get a loose, natural look without having to depend on where the foam is to put the flowers.
This entry way design was created without foam as well. It’s amazing what some chicken wire and water tubes can accomplish! The chicken wire and tubes can be reused – thus saving the environment and saving us money. Win-win.
This chuppah below was foam free as well. A lot of flowers, especially for short events like indoor weddings, will last throughout the night without a direct water source. You’d be amazed how long a well-hydrated rose or carnation can look out of water for six hours.
I employ all of my fellow florists to try and go without floral foam for your next event. Try to think of designs that won’t need floral foam in the first place. We here at Michelle Edgemont Design try our best to make smart choices for the environment. Hell, I even started carrying a reusable straw in my purse because those new, hip, paper ones fall apart.