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New products - INK & LISE

New products

Hi you!

How are you? Fine, I hope. Here in Sweden the kids are counting the days until school ends – 12 more days, in case you wondered, until summer break. That 10 weeks summer vacation that they have earned so well, and that I myself both long for and dread, to be honest. It’s amazing to let them into the freedom of sleeping in and do whatever they want, but also goodbye alone time, and hello kids nagging and fighting. All of you guys who have home schooled your kiddos for months, I bow to thee. Really, I do.

Most of my days are about packing orders, making lettering pads, drawing practice sheets, walking the pup and checking the cats for tics, and that’s pretty alright with me. I still have a list of new stuff that I want to bring into the shop, one of them which I released today, but more of that in a minute. I also have all these ideas of new products that I want to produce myself – weekly and monthly planner pads, different affirmation cards set, tape, new kits, new posters, new cards and so on. At the same time, I’m working with my husband to make online classes and developing some sort of a strategy for my digital products presence. Not to mention the fun clients I want to hunt down and force to hire me… The trick as a business owner is to work both long and short term, I think. Not just one, but both. Either you work them both every day, and decide how many hours you want to spend on each, or you work them different days or weeks. As long as you’re not only working short term to get the money in today, but also make sure you pave the road for bigger results in the future, you’re good. It’s so easy getting caught up in the short term, especially in times like this.

Today my darling husband has joined, he’ll be the head of video making and I love him for that, first on that list is a small practice sheet’s video, as you probably can see above. Rule no 2 of today’s rock your business like a pro-list: Thou shalt not do it all thyself. Really, there’s no way  that you could manage that without loosing a: your mind, b: serious sleep, or by c: fill your days with 95% frustration and 5% fun, instead of the other way around.

Now, if you can’t force the people you sleep with to cut in, then you must surely have friends around who can? I’m telling you, if I had be the only one to figure everything out regarding logistics to most parts of the world, customs declarations, packaging, currency switchers, which printer to choose, paper purchase, client’s emails, auction plugins and so on forever and ever, there would be no Ink & Lise, because I’d crash half way through, if I’d even make it that far. My husbands does all the printing, builds the webpage and fixes the plugins, handles the numbers and supports in a million other ways.

I want to do most of the day to day things on my own, besides the printing, because I don’t have the printers in my office. I update the web page, handle the clients, suppliers and invoices, admin, sales and of course the client work. That’s important to me, I want to be able to handle it on my own. But as soon as there’s big decisions to be made, new ideas to try off, weird logistic things or taxes, we’re a team. And by that I mean that he fixes it, hehe. No wonder I sleep with the guy. And you can tell by the pic I just took that he’s as enthusiastic about this arrangement as I am:

Anyway, that was not what I wanted to talk about – I wanted you, my dear blog reader, to know first of all, like always, that I’m dropping new pens in the shop today! (And by drop I don’t mean dismiss, but more like release, get it? Seriously, writing in a language you haven’t been practicing since college a hundred years ago has, shall we say, its challenges.) Just look:

The German pen producer Stabilo, which here in Sweden at least, is mostly known for their fineliners and highlighters have made a brush pen version of their famous pen 68, and I really really like it!

The tip’s a bit bigger than fine tips like the Pentel Sign Brush Pen, but smaller than the Sakura Koi and definitely smaller than Ecoline Brush Pens. That makes it perfect for beginners who want to draw a bit bigger words – cards, quotes or tags, for instance – but who doesn’t want the really big and soft tips that often are a bit harder to control. The come in sets of 10 and 20 colors, which are waterbased and bright af.

And as you can see, you can create quite the line width dynamic with this tip. Love them! Oh, and you can find them here.

Per usual, you get to know before I tell the rest of the world through instagram. I normally keep the first batch quite small to see if it flies or not, that way, if you don’t want to miss that first batch, it’s a good thing to keep an eye out in here. I’ll post them on instagram this Friday.

Okay, I need to go hug my husband now. See you!

Listen, I’m sorry about being all sell’y at the moment (is that even a word, sell’y? No? But do you understand that I meant that I try to sell a lot? Yes? Ok, good), but I have so many new, fun products in the pipes for you, they just queue up in here and on instagram, you know? Please don’t hate me.

There will be plenty of time for me to take up space, discussing important stuff like my four pillars of areas where I want to change the world – feminism, the environment, body acceptance and stopping the glorification of busy – and wine, obviously. I promise you, this blog will not be short of that, and if you have been following me on instagram you can probably testify to that. But right now there’s just so many things happening, and as I may have the most thrilling, fascinating and lovely personality, I still know that you’re primarily here for the letters.

So on that note, I wanted to give you a quick glimpse of what will be released on Friday, and it’s thanks to you, guys. I try to listen to most of your suggestions and wishes, one of them has been a lettering pad with black paper.

Cool, huh? As my favorite paper brand doesn’t come in colors, I have searched all over for a colored paper that’s:

  • Smooth as silk
  • Uncoated
  • In deep and saturated colors
  • Kind to the environment,

… and that was a handful to incorporate in one product, I tell ya. But I didn’t give up and now I’ve found it! It’s the deepest black, and is certificated by FSC®, EU Ecolabel and it’s Nordic Ecolabel Inspected. And more so, it’s a dream to draw on, totally pampering to all kind of  snobbish and delicate brush pen tips!

I have made a first small batch of pads, size A4+ and A5 – same as my other lettering pads, and I was thinking of making kits with pens suited for the deep black paper, like metallic markers and gel pens and stuff. But you will be able to buy the pads only too, of course, just like the others.

You get to know stuff first!

Now why am I telling you this in here and not on Instagram? Well, you see, the blog will serve as a focus group. I’m going to ask you guys for advice in here, and you will, as a thank you, be the first to know about launches and stuff. I mean, you need some kind of compensation for putting up with all of these rambling thoughts, swears and typos in here, right? And in some cases it could really pay off –  like if you’re interested in a black lettering pad with high quality paper, for example. The first test batch I’ve made is rather small as I only ordered a limited amount of paper in order to try it out. And while I’ll probably keep them in stock forever if you’ll like them as much as I do, it will take some time before I can make the next batch due to delivery time, production and so forth.

So that’s why I’m telling you to keep an eye out this Thursday already. I’ll put them up in the shop at approx 3pm CET, but I won’t shout it out on Instagram until Friday, so you kind of get to be the early bird and the black paper will be your worm. Deal?

Oh, and I’m thinking about calling the kits “welcome to the dark side”. Works, right?

Thank you for communicating your thoughts, feedback and ideas to me. It means the world and it shapes my little shop, so that it’s filled with products that suits YOU, which is kinda the whole point of its existence (besides me getting to pack your orders because that’s like the best thing in the world). So if you got something you want to share, you can either write a comment here or send me an email to hello@inkandlise.com. Instagram DMs are hard for me to keep track of, email’s much better if you want to make sure I read it and respond.

Love ya, and welcome to the dark side!

So, how’s your Monday been so far, dear? Up here at We the North it’s been raining and I have been busy all day packing orders and shipping them off to both US and Europe. Its been fun but I’m still a bit tired from the last couple of weeks where I’ve worked more than usual due to the new site, and when I’m tired I get confused, so it’s been a bit chaotic here in my little office. Ever since the burnout four years ago, I handle stress and fatigue differently than I used to. And by differently, I mean worse. My brain sort of get’s into a “holy shit I’m gonna die I’m gonna die I’m GONNA DIE” mode when pushed just a little bit into the pace and intensity that I used to spend all my working days in before the crash, and that makes up for, well, interesting situations. When things get crowded and I want to speed up and go faster, my brain just shuts down. Okay, not a total shut down, of course, but cognitively I feel lik I lose 70% of my capacity just like that. So weird, one moment I’m on top of the world, loving the pace, the energy and the long to do list, and the next one I can hardly figure out 5+6?

So I have learnt am still learning to hit the breaks before my brain does it for me, because funny as it may seem to have a brain that just walks out of the game when there’s just 10 minutes to go, it’s not my favorite part. It just makes me irritated and I blame myself a bit for pushing myself too hard again. I can feel that my brain doesn’t exactly thrive from it, on the contrary, and I don’t want to end up there because I don’t want to get sick again, because that sure sucked. But the thing is, I used to have such a huge capacity, and I miss it. So it’s a bit of a small grief for me, saying goodbye to my old intense self that could tak on anything. But it won’t come back, so there’s that. Also, I guess that my current capacity is pretty okay too, it’s just the comparison that makes it suck.

BUT what I really wanted to write about was that I made a bunch of new affirmation cards today! They are new in my shop, so I guess I have to introduce them a bit: the Ink & Lise badass affirmation cards are 36 different uplifting, handlettererd little coaches to remind you of your own greatness and help you stand steady in this messy world. They are not the romantic carpe diem versions, on the contrary there are swears on almost every one, so perhaps you don’t want to gift them to your grannie, but more to your sister in crime?

Like most of my paper things, I make them myself. When they’re printed and cut, I sort them which was kind of fun with today’s brain  – I stood for minutes searching for a special bunch of cards. They all looked the same to me, even though you can obviously see that they don’t, and so can I. Now, I can.

Then I cut the corners a bit to get away from that sharp and pointy edges with a corner cutter – yes I really have a machine for cutting corners, haha.

I pack them with a waistband and colors the heart pink. And: finished!

You can put them on the mirror, in your wallet, hand it as a note to your bestie or just draw one every morning to set the right calm, strong and steady queen mode!

And with that said, me and my weird brain wishes you a great Monday.