This giveaway is closed! Congratulations to the winner!
When I posted my popular cash envelope template post in January 2010, I hadn’t even considered how far it would take me. I was simply sharing a little template to make budgeting easier for those of us who had discovered the benefits of quitting the credit card habit. However, once the post went viral, the requests to purchase pre-made sets started pouring in. I was astounded at the number of requests and started thinking about the possibility of opening up an Etsy shop to fulfill those requests and speed me on my way to paying off my student loans.
A year later, in January 2011, I finally took the plunge and opened up a little corner of Kelleigh Ratzlaff Designs on Etsy where I sell an updated and unique version of my cash envelope sets with laminated papers and customized tabs.
I have learned a lot over the last year and a half! What a massive understatement that is, too! I’m still learning about small business and the importance of marketing and branding in the handmade product world. So, when I was contacted by Avery and it’s partner, Red Sky PR, to test out their new line of Customizable Marketing Solutions, I was thrilled! It was about time that I got serious about “branding” my product and my store.
I received a huge box filled with goodies to play with, test out and give my honest opinion of. There were two-sided tags, round labels, oval labels, labels for bottles, shelf tags, bag toppers and more. I was amazed at the number of customizable products Avery has come up with in the last few years. Back in the day (when I worked in an office), I only thought of printable address labels and business cards when I heard the name Avery. However, my eyes were opened (cue the singing angels) and my mind started swirling with possibilities.
The first task, however, was figuring out how to customize these goodies so that I could use them on my own product. I will admit that at first I attempted to do it all myself using my mad Illustrator and Photoshop skillz. That worked okay, but it gave me a bit of a headache.
My next idea was to actually use Avery’s online Design and Print program. Duh. Seriously. I can’t even believe how easy it was to customize my label. I uploaded a digital paper that I wanted to use as the background (mostly for color and just a bit of texture) and then uploaded my little “K” monogram. Then, I typed in my text and used the online tools to change the color of my type and align my design.
When I clicked “Print” the software created a PDF that opened up in Adobe Reader. The key there is to leave it as it is. I messed with the settings and totally screwed things up, so DON’T mess with the settings. Hee, hee! I printed a test onto plain copy paper, then put my test sheet behind the sheet of labels and held it up to the light to make sure everything aligned just right. It did!
Then, I put my sheet up labels face down in my printer and printed the real thing.
The totally COOL thing is that the design software lets me transfer that same design onto a different type of label. I don’t have to upload my digital paper or monogram again. I simply choose a new label by typing the number into the field or selecting from the drop-down menu. I chose some tags and then modified my design a bit to suit my purposes. The tags are two sided cardstock, so I took advantage of designing on both sides!
The tags came with strings, so I went ahead and attached my tag right to my envelopes. So stinkin’ cool! My customer can cut the string and hand it to a friend like a business card!
My “packaging” is pretty functional, but now it is more customized. Instead of just using tape to close the bubble wrap, I can use my custom sticker!
I must say that I am the MOST excited about those custom stickers!! Ah, its the little things that make me happy!
As a mom, I can see a lot more uses for the fun goodies I received in my box. I’m looking forward to labeling shelves (think closets) and toy bins. Both boys have birthday parties this summer, so I’m going to be adding a cool design to the bag toppers and filling the cellophane bags that came with them with candy! My husband, who is also a small business owner, has plans to enlist my services to create signage for his office, too! There are seriously so many things I can do with Avery’s Customizable Marketing Solutions!
I was walking through Walmart the other day and I saw some packages of Avery labels (these cool new ones) in the office aisle, however you can win your own huge box of goodies right here on my blog!
Just leave a comment here on my blog to be entered for a chance to win a shipment of 10 packages of Avery’s Customizable Marketing line of products.
Due to shipping restraints, this giveaway is open to US residents only. I will choose a winner on Wednesday, June 20th. Please send your friends here to this post to enter as well! I’d love more opportunities to review products, and the more comments my post receives, the better my chances of being chosen again!
Avery has a Facebook Page, plus they are running a totally cool Brand It contest where they are giving away $4500 in cash and prizes to help small business owners and DIYers! If you sell handmade products online, then you will definitely want to check out that contest!!
Want more inspiration? Find Avery at:
- and check out the Brand It Contest Gallery on Facebook and vote for your favorite design! In fact, you can get started designing your label using Avery’s online software, then enter the contest (and enter this giveaway!!) for an opportunity to see your label in print!
Disclosure: I received a ginormous package of Avery products to play with, courtesy of Avery and Red Sky PR. All reviews are honest and not paid for! I’m seriously excited about continuing to brand my Etsy store with the help of Avery’s Customizable Marketing line of products!! I might even enter that cool Brand It Contest!!