Sew, What's Up

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The Sew What’s New Archive

This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: Helz
Date: 07-21-2004, 06:23 AM (1 of 14)
This website is brilliant!
I cant believe Ive just found a whole community of people who like to talk about things I do!!
Its great reading about everyone businesses etc, and realising some of you are in the same sort of position I am

The reason I would love some advice, honest please!, I have launched an online store of my own, selling work I design and make, Its only been online for a couple of months and Ive been advised that orders wont come in for a while yet, but Id really appreciate some opinions, from people who sew!, on what you think of the website and whats on it.

I havnt launched all my ranges yet so theres not an awful lot of products on there, but again I would really appreciate any advice or comments.

Helzx x
Love Helz
User: Helz
Member since: 07-14-2004
Total posts: 21
From: Holly Berry
Date: 07-21-2004, 08:13 AM (2 of 14)
Hey, I liked your web site. I'm not a great judge of these things, but what I saw was good. I loved your fabrics. Did you take your own pictures? As far as pricing I don't know how to convert it to American. Your doing what I only dream about, having your own web site. :USA:
Holly Berry
User: Holly Berry
Member since: 09-10-2003
Total posts: 77
From: Helz
Date: 07-21-2004, 08:34 AM (3 of 14)
Thank you very much!Its so important to get feedback and I must admit Ive been working so hard on it for so long its become my little baby!
I did take my own photos, and they took such a long time!.
I graduated last year from my degree in England and im a total beliver in following your dreams!, this is what I wanted to do for so long but its such hard work, and finances are not!good at the moment!.
Thank you again for your reply, it means alot

Love Helz xx
Love Helz
User: Helz
Member since: 07-14-2004
Total posts: 21
From: akire
Date: 07-21-2004, 09:56 AM (4 of 14)
Hey there...just checked out the site, it looks really eye catching, and I love the 'reconstructed' (i hope i got that right) line, great texture. You seem to have a unique look and I think that will help attract an audience. My only other input, from someone who loves surfing and knows what cathces my particular eye, is movement on a site. I am so visual, and i am always caught by movement..doesn't have to be much, one site I saw just had a doodle of a person on a bench telling about the site and the persons eyes were blinking, another had a sort of yo-yo affect on their cursor, anyway...just thought I'd throw that in there from a site design point of view. It can be very subtle so as not to annoy, just a gimic I guess...but gets me everytime.

The site looks very unique, good luck and congrats.
User: akire
Member since: 03-06-2001
Total posts: 61
From: Helz
Date: 07-21-2004, 10:48 AM (5 of 14)
thanks that is a great help, and its brilliant to have that sort of advice, I know exactly what you mean about no movement, the problem Ive had is that Ive got very limited knowledge of website design, but after you post I emailed my uncle straight away to put in a request!!
Its great to know you liked the reconstructed range aswell, I worry people cant properly see the technique etc from the phots but obviously you can!
Thanks so much again
Look out for my moving something one day soon!

Love Helz xx
Love Helz
User: Helz
Member since: 07-14-2004
Total posts: 21
From: Linda in Colorado
Date: 07-21-2004, 01:52 PM (6 of 14)
Just got back from visiting your site! GREAT!

I was particularaly interested in the reconstructed fabrics. What a lot of time that must take you! And what a good way to use fabrics!

Looking forward to seeing more!
User: Linda in Colorado
Member since: 03-27-2000
Total posts: 102
From: weB2cats
Date: 07-22-2004, 10:21 AM (7 of 14)
Out of interest, I have been studying about web page design, too. The first thing to get people to visit a site is the time it takes them to download . Your site was a bit slow, but in fairness, I am still on a dial-up system and that could be why.

I loved your choice of colors for the background. Very pleasant and always a nice "girlie" color. The name "Helbent" had me thinking of you-know-where, of course. And I have no idea what "Pinnies" means. But then, I live here and not there.

I loved the multiple pictures in their separated boxes idea. However, when I moved the curser to the picture...nothing. You may want to change that so that viewers can click on your pictures for an instant enlargement of the item. That's the place to also list fiber content, size dimensions, all relevant info.

The top of each page could be headed with a picture. Print is more interesting to read if a picture, design, idea is displayed. Most web pages I seen show the placement of the credit card info at the bottom of the page rather than in the top or middle sections. Kind of like the final action to be taken (for the viewer).

All the white spaces should be filled with pictures for surfers. We tend to view before reading and everything about the business is better left to some other "about us" section. If I'm surfing with a desire to buy I just want to "see" what's for sale and how much. Then I may go into the informative stuff/pitch.

If you browse eBay, you can go into the section that talks about "the seller's other things" and their site will give you some ideas possibly, too.

All in all, you've done a decent job with your site. Did you do all the webpage design and submission work yourself? There is so much that goes into a business other than the parts you really want to concentrate on.

I may take some classes in the fall that deal with webpage design at the local community college. I'd like to know how to do my own pages and I'm still confused about much. I know my weaknesses and I'd rather get some professional training.

Good luck on your site. I'll check it out from time to time for ideas!
User: weB2cats
Member since: 11-07-2002
Total posts: 232
From: LeapFrog Libby
Date: 07-23-2004, 12:58 PM (8 of 14)
I am convinced that you need something on your home page to insure that browsers understand that the fabric design (or print)is part of the creation as well as the construction of the item..I did not find that until the third or fourth screen I looked at..
Something like " Helbent Creations are created from fabrics also designedand printed right here in the Helbent Studios for your appreciation.."Before I realized that , I had decided your prices were too high.. But when I understood that the fabric was your creation as well as the finished item, well, that made a difference as far as the prices were concerned..:bg: :whacky: :bg: :cool:
Sew With Love
User: LeapFrog Libby
Member since: 05-01-2002
Total posts: 2022
From: akire
Date: 07-27-2004, 06:50 AM (9 of 14)
I wanted to find an example of the movement I mentioned...there are two examples on this site. On the first page there is movement with the cursor, which might be annoying for some because its all over the place, but when you enter there is just movement of a small butterfly on the top of the page. Somehow, for me, it just makes the pages more lively. has the same cursor movement, then some great movement with two little old lady doodles when you enter the message board.
Anyway...just thought I'd share that. :bluewink:
User: akire
Member since: 03-06-2001
Total posts: 61
From: rose074
Date: 07-28-2004, 12:56 AM (10 of 14)
Hey Helz-

Welcome to the boards!! I think your site is great. I especially think your beach huts are adorable.

I feel that you have a sellable product and your prices are reasonable. All you need to do it get it marketed to the correct demographic and you'll be all set.

Good luck, and please stick with us, we'd love to have you around.
Danelle in Tri-Cities Washington
User: rose074
Member since: 12-23-2000
Total posts: 73
From: blackie
Date: 07-28-2004, 02:04 AM (11 of 14)
I love your site! It is very sweet and professional looking.

As far as movement (often called flash) goes I have a slightly different opinion than expressed here. My husband is a web designer and tends to dislike flash and I agree with him. It is not accessible for disabled people (people using a screen reader or accessibility tools who can't see the site). It also uses up bandwidth and thus takes up time to load. And most importantly flash is sometimes associated with nonprofessional designs and can look very tacky. I think your site looks very classic and sweet the way it is, without any "moveable" parts.

I echo weB2cats' idea of being able to click on the products on the landing page. This is called an image map and would probably make your customers happy.

Great work! Thanks for sharing.

- Kelly
see the mundane life of a housewife.
User: blackie
Member since: 03-31-2004
Total posts: 594
From: Helz
Date: 07-28-2004, 05:35 AM (12 of 14)
Thank you so much

All this feedback is so helpful, especially as its from people who know what they're talking about!

I have to say blackie I agree with you on the whole movement etc can look a little 'tacky', especially if its not a professional web designer carrying it out. Im fairly limited on what im personally able to do , but Ive definetly taken on board the homepage click through idea, I have to agree if I see something I like I want to see it straight away!.

And thanks rose, im certainly going to keep coming on here, its just so great if I have a little problem before I could only really look in books etc and now I can actually ask real! people!and they actually reply!!:shock:

Again thanks very much for all your feedback

Love Helz:bluesmile
Love Helz
User: Helz
Member since: 07-14-2004
Total posts: 21
From: MaryW
Date: 07-28-2004, 08:38 AM (13 of 14)
Hi Helz. Love your ideas. I agree about the flash thing, also pinnies is not a word I have heard before. Better to call them something we can all understand.

I also agree with Libby about the fabric creation part, you must state this up front so people understand just how creative you really are. Your prices should also be in US $.

I am sure you have heard more than you want to by now, but I think your site is very nicely done. It has a clean, calm feel about it. Go for it and please, feel free to come back anytime. :bluesmile
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: AdvaP
Date: 08-30-2004, 08:01 PM (14 of 14)
Your website is lovely and professional, and the designs are gorgeous.
I guess marketing is your issue right now. I hope to see more items, like light comforters, sheets and pillow cases, table runners, placemats, etc. to go with the items you already have. I love your printed fabrics, especially the circles for the bedroom, and the strawberries for the kitchen.
Good luck.

Adva Price
User: AdvaP
Member since: 10-15-2000
Total posts: 325
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