I started with something easy... packaging. My packaging, I thought, needed some sprucing. I wanted to maintain something recyclable, or at least mostly recyclable, so anything plastic was out. I settled on greens and florals as representative of growth and expansion, and my husband had a brilliant idea to include a scratch off ticket with every package shipped. One out of 25 will include a code for $75 off a single purchase. I'm excited to see who the first recipient will be, as they've started to roll out with purchases placed last month. For customers: be sure to remove the gold sticker to dispose separately before adding the box to your recyclables.
The earliest change I made, which some may recall, was that retired lessons would no longer be re-released on their brief, bi-yearly basis, and they had a final hoorah early last year before enjoying their senior years permanently ensconced in storage. There are a couple reasons I retire lessons frequently: 1) 600 lessons listed at once (even 100 lessons) can be overwhelming, for both my website and the viewer and 2) I try to keep designs consistent with what's popular, so what's available creates a cohesive collection for those who are looking for projects in which to invest their time and money. If you are interested in any lessons, I always recommend purchasing them as soon as possible, as lessons are retired every few months. Then, later in the year, we saw the end of the Tuesday Tutorial Treasure Hunts. These became an unfortunate victim of my chronic illness, though I still hope to offer them on an occasional basis.
Now, the next change may not be a popular one, but I feel it's a necessary one. Due to some mental and physical difficulties these past three years, I've had to prioritize my energy in ways no longer serving me. While I've greatly enjoyed offering the Tutorial Membership Discount Program these past five years, I'm afraid this current year is the last, at least for the foreseeable future, and will not be renewed this fall. COVID has caused a great shift in priorities for many, rightfully so, and tutorials are no longer in demand as they once were. There was some talk of this in January of 2022, as I began to see the decline in demand set in, but wanted to see through one final year, with some of the best lessons (I think) I've offered yet.
While I have always loved creating lessons, and have amassed more than 600 comprehensive designs over the last thirteen years, including a detailed six-part workshop, I can sadly no longer dedicate the time involved in the production of lessons for the price of the membership, as consistent monthly releases are (deservedly) time-consuming and becoming difficult for me to maintain. My chronic fatigue now limits what work in which I can indulge. I've found, these past several months, I've had very little time to invest in original creations due to the promised commitments of the membership which has, sadly, grown less popular and, as a result, is now financially prohibitive. Unfortunately, there's no way to guarantee enough interest in the membership to move forward with it this fall. It has been such an amazing program to offer, and I'm so glad to have been able to offer it for as long as I was able.
If by some chance, my health and energy greatly improves these next several months, I'll be happy to revisit the idea. Otherwise, I will definitely do my best to continue to offer new lessons when possible, and would like to return to YouTube with free designs if my energy allows, but as it stands now, once this membership concludes in August, lessons will likely be much fewer in number and frequency. However, hopefully this means I will have the time and energy to focus on new original creations and my shop may finally be filled with wearable goodies once more! This prospect fills me with a tremendous amount of joy, as I've missed having the opportunity to offer one-of-a-kind creations. I hope to even invest time in a couple personal bead embroidery projects, in which I haven't indulged in more than two years!
I understand many will be disappointed that the retired lessons are, or will be, gone forever (including those which are slated for retirement this year), and that the membership will not be renewed this September, as has been the routine these last five wonderful years. But I truly hope you'll stick around to see what's still to come. There will certainly be occasional new lessons, possibly treasure hunts, as well as live chat tutorials in my Facebook group and also, perhaps on YouTube. And lots and lots (if things go according to plan) of new jewelry to share. I'm very excited for what's still to come!
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