Hello Pretty

Hey...How do I become a seller on Hello Pretty?

Calling all local creatives and small business owners - we want YOU! Sign up to become a Hello Pretty seller in a matter on seconds 🕐

Turn your creative passion into an online career. Whats started as a passive side income for many of our sellers have turned into full time, fully successful businesses. Start small, out your designs, arts and crafts out there and see where it takes you. Its such an exciting journey.

We've got three pricing plans for you to choose from. All with different benefits. Have a look through and see which one would suit you best.

  • Simple transparent fees (a variety of options of differing plans)
  • Manage and control your own store 
  • No contracts. Cancel whenever you want
  • Integrate your store with your social media pages, particulary Facebook where you can see your items
  • Hello Pretty has an extensive customer base - seriously, we have a HUGE reach. 
  • Add Google Analytics so you can keep track of sales

5 tips to start an online business, by Natalie of Sugar & Vice

Natalie van Dijk (nee Vice) of Sugar and Vice, always knew two things: that she wanted to run her own business and that she wanted to incorporate her creative talents into this business. The impetus to make this happen eventually came in the form of her retrenchment from a comfortable marketing job in 2014. Rather than acknowledge defeat, Natalie saw this as an opportunity to reinvent herself and make that business idea happen!

Sugar & Vice was started without any funding, handouts or loans. Instead Natalie relied on tenacity, hard work and an uncompromising commitment to her vision to build the brand. All Sugar & Vice products are handmade in Cape Town. The growth and development of the local creative industry is of key importance to the brand.

Starting and managing a business has been a steep learning curve for me and I am always happy to share my experience and learnings with friends, family and acquaintances. The thing is though that it is a very complex question to which the only short answer is, it is complicated and a lot of hard work. But I’ve given this question a lot of thought and condensed it into five points, which I am happy to share here.

Note that this is by no means the comprehensive guide to starting or running a business. This is merely my experience on my particular kind of business (an online shop in the creative industries with a wholesale element).

Over the years I have invested in my own professional learning, growth and development by, among others, doing a mini MBA course in business management, various kinds of training with the Craft and Design Institute (CDI), and courses in graphic design and interior decorating. I’ve worked in marketing, sales and admin roles and all of these have added to my experience in various ways.

1.    Do (A LOT OF) research
This is so important, because you need to know where in the market to position your product or service. Make sure you have a unique selling point – so that you know exactly what sets you apart from similar brands. See what similar products are priced at. Get quotes from all suppliers. Don’t forget about packaging. Find out how much the initial out lay will be and think about how you are going to finance this.

2.    Draw up a business plan
No, you won’t stick to it exactly because theory is one thing and practice is something completely different, but this is an important exercise to get you thinking about your business and how you are going to make it work. Write down your vision and mission statement. Note down what you want to achieve with your business. Include how you will finance things and what your marketing plan is.

3.    Start small
At the beginning I went a bit bananas with the variety of colourways I made my products available in. I should’ve chosen just two colourways to simplify things and to establish my brand. Also, don’t go overboard with spending too much money on stationery and equipment, only get what you absolutely need. You don’t want your cash to be stuck in objects, instead of being available for spending on suppliers/couriers. Don’t make your range too big. I’d advise starting with between five and ten to test the market, and gradually adding on from there.

4.    Do market research
Delve deep here. You need to make sure you know who your customer is, what they like, when they buy, how they like to be communicated with etc. If you do this properly then you will be able to market your products more effectively.

5.    Professional photos
The need for professional photographs cannot be stressed enough. This makes the world of difference. I have uploaded photos of my product to social media that I’ve taken myself and no sales, but as soon as I uploaded a professional photo of the same product, I made a few sales of that item the same day. Photography is definitely worth the financial investment.

This blog post is one in Hello Pretty's guest blog series. Each post is written by a person who is running their online store though South Africa's favourite art, design & craft marketplace.

If you'd like to more view guest posts in this series, and other posts where we interview local businesses, click here.

Wanna write a guest post on Hello Pretty? Email us at info@hellopretty.co.za to find out more.

Giveaway: Wishfull Thinking & Hello Pretty

We're super excited to go live with this giveaway in collaboration with one of our sellers, Wishfull Thinking

Leigh-Ann and her mom Bev design and craft decor for your little one's nursery or bedroom. All of their products are handcrafted and made with the utnmost love. They're hoping to add some sparkle and magic to kid's bedroom decor. And we absolutely love what these two ladies have been creating.

So if you feel like winning this magical unicorn garland then simply head on over to either our Facebook page or Instagram page and get liking. The giveaway will run for a week. Good luck :)
 

Hello Pretty featured on Entrepreneur.com

Hey All,

We thought we'd share this exciting feature with you from Entrepreneur.com, written by Nicole Crampton. It showcases Hello Pretty as one of ten examples to inspire your next business idea 💡💡💡 Thank you Nicole, we are really honoured.

We really are passionate about providing South Africans with a good platform to sell their designs and crafts. We love supporting small and local because this is where communities really develop and grow. Like most of you, we are a small company with 4 people so we really do relate to just how challenging (yet rewarding) doing everything yourselves can be.

So we thought we'd take this opportunity to say thank you for all of the support. We would never be where we are today without our sellers, designers and customers.

We know that starting any kind of business can seem like a daunting prospect but Hello Pretty does all we can to make it super simple and easy. So if you're umming and ahhing about whether you should put yourself out there - we're here to tell you "we'd love to have you"! Please join us at  at this link: http://hellopretty.co.za/sell

Love The HP Team

Hey 👋 HP Seller, Silver Song Jewellery

I am Suzanne Groenewald, jewellery designer and manufacturer of Silver Song Jewellery. I draw my inspiration from the beauty and lure of nature, specifically trees and leaves. I have a fascination with gemstones and love working with unique gems. Most of my pieces are designed around specific gemstones. I work with all kinds of metals but prefer to use silver, for its beautiful colour and character. 

I believe that jewellery is a precious treasure, regardless of the cost or material used. It is something personal and valuable, to be adored and admired. Personally I love to look at all kinds of beautiful jewellery, to admire the workmanship and design of it, to buy it and to make it, to wear it, to hoard it and to share it. I simply love all things about jewellery! Through making jewellery, I hope to share my passion thereof with anyone who wants to look at or buy my pretty shiny things.

Mid last year I took on an exciting new endeavor and opened an online store on Hello Pretty. I did this in order to share my jewellery with a broader audience and I am very happy to be part of the Hello Pretty community! Every jewellery piece that I make is uniquely designed and manufactured by hand. I never stock a large selection, as my focus is on uniqueness and quality, not quantity. Starting this online store has definitely been my business high since it forced me to rethink and reconfirm my design principles and the direction in which I want Silver Song Jewellery to go.

My advice to any new Hello Pretty sellers out there: Go for it! Let no one stop you from doing what you love and from sharing your passion with the world.
 

This blog post is one in Hello Pretty's guest blog series. Each post is written by a person who is running their online store though South Africa's favourite art, design & craft marketplace.

If you'd like to more view guest posts in this series, and other posts where we interview local businesses, click here.

Wanna write a guest post on Hello Pretty? Email us at info@hellopretty.co.za to find out more.

Hey 👋 HP Seller, Apparition Jewellery

My name is Kristin Miles, owner of Apparition Jewellery. I have always been a very creative person, and it's been my dream to have my own store for years.  My parents encouraged me to be creative, and I realised from a young age that is the thing I enjoy most in life.  I enjoy metal music, however I also enjoy pop and classical.  I don't like limiting myself in terms of the creative mediums I can enjoy.

My store was born from this love of the arts and creativity.  I tried my hand at wire jewellery, but it didn't come naturally to me.  I had a few extra supplies lying around after my attempts, so I started putting some earrings together - something I had started doing during my years at college.  When I looked around online for types of jewellery, I noticed that a few of the items I had made were actually chainmaille weaves, and thus my business was born. 

I find immense joy in creating the pieces in my store.  Each is made with love, one ring at a time, to ensure the highest quality and care.  I used to always go buy jewellery in stores, but then you see so many people wearing the same accessories as you!  I feel that, with my business, I can offer something rather unique to people just like me, and allow people to better express their individuality.

I have faced challenges during the short time I've had my business.  I've had people upset that I do the same craft as them and them trying to smear my name.  But you just have to rise above the drama and remember what your own goals are and who you are as a person.  In business, there will always be challenges, but that is just something you need to learn to deal with.  The satisfaction I feel when I create something new that I never made before is just so amazing, and it makes it all worth it.

The highlights for me is that I can just keep growing.  There is so much for me to still learn and so much to try!  There are no limits to what I am capable of, and I can't wait to learn and do more. 

The lows so far have really only been facing the unnecessary drama others cause.  I strongly feel that as crafters and small business owners, we should be supporting and uplifting each other rather than breaking each other down or trying to hamper progress.  There are more than enough people in this world to buy your product, so there is no need to fight or try to hurt each other.

My tips for new sellers is to just go for it!  There is nothing in this world you cannot do or learn.  You are your own limitation.  People will always try to get in your way, but that's an indication that those people should not be in your life.  Surround yourself with loving, supportive people, and just do what you love.  If your craft makes you happy, then go for it.  

This blog post is one in Hello Pretty's guest blog series. Each post is written by a person who is running their online store though South Africa's favourite art, design & craft marketplace.

If you'd like to more view guest posts in this series, and other posts where we interview local businesses, click here.

Wanna write a guest post on Hello Pretty? Email us at info@hellopretty.co.za to find out more.

Hey 👋 HP Seller, actuallyashleigh

Hi, I'm Ashleigh from actuallyashleigh, although pretty much everyone I know calls me Ash. I'm a wife to a wonderfully supportive husband, and a mom (and stepmom) to 3 kids.  I'm also a mom to a Boston terrier, who is by far the neediest child of all! I'm definitely a homebody and I'm so lucky to be able to work from home, it gives me time to draw, garden, cook, fetch kids from school, and do all the other endless things that moms have to fit in. Despite not having a green finger, I love to draw plants, and I'm mad about birds.

I started actuallyashleigh (I love a good tonguetwister!) to make my drawings a bit more functional. I also have an annoying habit of having to cover empty surfaces with some kind of pattern or decoration, so plain white ceramics were a good place to do that. I began by getting some designs printed on transfer sheets, buying a few second hand ceramics, and then cutting and sticking to my heart's content. I found a friendly potter who had a kiln, and soon I had a stash of bowls with my designs on them!  It was so exciting that I carried on, sourcing different ceramic ware and drawing new designs. 

For quite a while it was only friends and family who bought my pieces, and you can only give your stuff as birthday presents for so long. Then I started doing markets and selling my things in shops. And I suddenly had to start producing more to keep up!
My business is still small, as I'm a one-woman band, and I don't mass produce anything, but I'm getting there. I have my stock in a few more outlets now, and a couple big upcoming shows this year. There are new works in progress, and some exciting new ideas in the planning phase.

The challenges include being self-motivated, finding time to take proper stock photos and keeping up with social media posts. As a behind-the-scenes type of person, I find 'selling myself' at markets somewhat nerve-wracking, but you slowly get used to it; and there's actually nothing better than meeting your customers and seeing how happy they are when they buy something they love, that you've made! The highlights of having your own business are obviously the flexible hours, being paid for doing something you enjoy, and for putting in the hours and hard work for no one but yourself.

Any tips I could give for someone starting out is to work out your pricing properly in the beginning - work out a wholesale price, and then double that for your retail price. Don't short-change yourself, and don't underestimate how valuable your time is. If you're doing something you love, you'll automatically be good at it. Market yourself and get out there!

Thanks so much,
Ash

This blog post is one in Hello Pretty's guest blog series. Each post is written by a person who is running their online store though South Africa's favourite art, design & craft marketplace.

If you'd like to more view guest posts in this series, and other posts where we interview local businesses, click here.

Wanna write a guest post on Hello Pretty? Email us at info@hellopretty.co.za to find out more.

Join the Hello Pretty team for a few days

We're hiring! OMG WOW!

We're looking for two or three students (or anyone, really) looking to make a bit of extra holiday money. Starting asap. Roll in, girls & guys!

The job's short-term, probably a total of a few days and pays by the hour (so if you want to work longer days that's 100%. There is a horrifyingly large amount of work to be done). We'll need you for a minimum of 7 hours on each day that you work. We need two or three people.

It is very important that you:

  • Are clued up in fashion, design etc trends.
  • Are friendly. You have to be friendly. We are, and we work best with people who also are.
  • Are good at following instructions.
  • Are able to come through into De Waterkant / Green Point.
  • Are reliable. We cannot even with people who show up late or fail to show up at all.
  • Are computer literate and own (or can borrow) a laptop.
  • Are observant.
  • Are over 15. Please don't make us get a fine.

Is this you? Here's what to do:

  • Email samantha@hellopretty.co.za
  • Make the subject, "Casual employment application: and enter your name and surname here". This is important, and will give us a good sense of whether or not you follow instructions.
  • Send us links to your Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr... basically any online profiles that you have. We want to check out your style.

Don't send me a CV. I'm not interested in your CV - just what you have to say and what you're about.

Looking forward to hearing from you, future co-workers.

Father’s Day With Hello Pretty

It’s not always easy to buy gifts for people, especially men. With Father’s Day just around the corner, I’ve done some searching for you and found some great products on Hello Pretty that any man will love.

Most people wear a watch and I know I can’t go without one. It’s always nice to change it up a bit with a different watch every now and then. I like the black sandalwood watch from Phat Panda and I’m sure dad would love it too.

My father constantly needs a new wallet, this leather wallet from Ranzani Design is perfect. It is thin enough to fit into any pocket and forces you to only take what you need.

You can never go wrong with a good bottle of gin, this gift set from Leg Studios which includes honeycomb coasters, makes for a perfect gift.

If your dad likes gadgets, then this tech slab from JH.made will be perfect for him. All his gadgets can be kept together in one place on a stand.

I love this beard oil combo from the Men at Work Organic Beard Products store. The gift package with three products will spoil your father.

I’ll be placing my order for the tech slab and leather wallet, which my dad will love! 

Image one: watch
Image two: wallet
Image three: gin
Image four: tech slab
Image five:  beard oil combo

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall…

I do sometimes wonder what people did without mirrors long ago. These days we have mirrors everywhere in our homes; from the bedroom to the bathroom and even in the hallway or lounge. They are very handy but also look very pretty in the home.

I love how designers have come up with beautiful designs and ideas for mirrors, they are functional but make great décor pieces too. If you have read my post about clocks on the Hello Pretty blog, you’ll know that I love pieces that have many functions.

There are some beautiful mirrors available on Hello Pretty, that I know will look amazing somewhere in your home. The Hermes inspired leather mirror from Bibi’s Antiques is something very special and unique. If you like something different, go for this one.
This silver round mirror from Exclusive Mirrors will definitely bring a little glamour into your home. I love their abstract mirror as well, this will look good in any hallway.

The antique framed mirrors from Antiques Alive are full of character and will make any space look larger. The details on this copper mirror from Jeli are amazing, I love the rustic feel it gives. 

Image One: Hermes inspired mirror
Image Two: Silver round mirror
Image Three: Abstract mirror
Image Four: Antique framed mirror
Image Five: Copper mirror

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