Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Burlap Bnner for $1

Y'all know I'm crafty and love to save money, so here is a cool little DIY on how I made my own burlap wedding banner for about $1 (using coupons of course)! This was for my wedding table, and was super simple. The thing I love about this project was there was NO sewing, NO painting, and it was CHEAP :)

What you'll need to make a burlap banner for about $1
  1. 2 sheets of burlap scrap booking paper
  2. inkjet printer
  3. 3 sheets of red felt paper
  4. pinking shears
  5. hole punch
  6. spray glue
  7. twine

Lets get started making your own burlap banner!

Step One: Print out the template using black ink. Cut out outlines using pinking shears.
Burlap Banner Template 1
Burlap Banner Template 2

Step Two: Hand trim a quarter inch of red felt around each letter. I just free styled it and wasn't super picky.
Step Three: Flip your letters upside down and spray mount somewhere you don't glue on everything. Center the burlap cutouts and rub firmly on the felt for a permanent bond.
Step Four: Hole punch the corners of each triangle.
Step Five: Thread twine through your holes and hang accordingly.
For our flowers we picked up a bucketful of fresh cut flowers the day before and tied up all of our arrangements using twine. Everything looked gorgeous, but didn't cost us a fortune.

How To Make A Marquee Sign

Luckily for me, I had most of these materials on hand when I wanted to make a display sign for my business. I designed my marquee sign as a frame, so I could use interchangeable posters depending on the season.

Here is what you'll need for this DIY project:
  1. large sturdy frame
  2. built in mat liner or extra reinforced mat board liner cut to fit
  3. 1x2 boards
  4. drill with 1/2 inch paddle bit
  5. plastic bulb string lights (purchased my at Big Lots)
  6. 2 large panels, 1 for poster to stick to, and 1 for back of frame (I got a big sheet of paneling from Lowe's and had them cut it for free)
  7. hot glue gun
  8. air nail gun (or small screws)
  9. picture hanging tabs and wire
  10. custom printed posters
  11. Velcro 
  12. White paint & foam brush

Let's get started making your marquee display sign!

Step One: Gather all of your supplies. Measure how large your opening needs to be for your poster. We measured the length of our lights and created equal space on the mat with a pencil so we would know where to drill the holes.

Step Two: Drill hole using half inch paddle bit from the front so you will get a cleaner hole.
Step Three: Remove the plastic bulb from the lights. Push the lights into holes and pop the plastic bulb back into place to keep it secure.

Step Four: Never lay the frame down on the bulbs. Situate it at an angle where you can hot glue the tape around the cord to keep the bulbs in place.

Step Five: Cut your wooden panel a little bit larger than the mat opening and glue it into place (this is the board that you will hang your poster on and will be seen from the front). Cut your 1x2 boards and place them on the outer edge of the frame. Staple or glue them to frame without splitting the frame.We only used 1x2s on the sides of the frame and left the top and bottom open for hanging the sign and the extension cord. To hang the sign we screwed picture hangers to the left and right corners directly on the frame and used the appropriate weight of chain to hold the weight of the sign.

Step Six: Cut your second white panel to fit flush with your 1x2s on the back side of your frame so that your sign will look neat and clean from the inside of your store.We used an air nail gun to staple it in place. We also used a foam paint brush and quickly painted the edges of the 1x2s white so that it all matched from the side.

Step Seven: Add double stick Velcro to the four corners of the white panel and install your custom printed sign.
Congratulations on making a really cool (and cheap) sign!
Here is a look at our sign from the outside of our Soap Shop in Chattanooga! Good Fortune Soap makes natural handmade soaps, organic skin care, and invites you to make your own perfume!

2014 Update...So much has happened!

As you know, it's been almost a year since we last updated this blog. We've opened a new store at 2644 Broad Street and updated our shopping platform, which includes a new blog, to make checking out much easier.

Whether stocking up on our best selling soaps or dashing in for a therapeutic massage at our Chattanooga Spa, our new store is really your one-stop-shop for all your skin-care needs.

We'll keep posting cool DIY blogs here, but please check out what's been going on this year:
We purchased VivVere Living Candles: Soy Candles with a Purpose
Gifts That Give Back: VivVere  donates milk to a child in need
Our Chattanooga Spa now offers Organic Facials
Enter to Win: Write any review & you'll be entered to win 1 of 4 gift certificates
Chattanooga's Best Massage: Meet Carolyn Kittle, LMT our new massage therapist

Thanks for everything, and keep checking both blogs for more updates!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Thankful For Our Many Blessings!

Thanksgiving and Christmas quickly passed me by as I was busier than ever in my new retail world. However feelings of love and blessings were with me the entire time. Today is January 1st, and I'm finally making myself sit down, and share some of the great things that have happened this Holiday season.

Cleveland Bradley Business Incubator Production Facility
For starters we survived the incredibly big move from the Cleveland Business Incubator to our new retail location at 2644 Broad Street, Chattanooga, TN. We loved the incubator so much, and it was sad to leave our friends, but change is essential to thrive!

We moved 3 years worth of production over 4 days, and reopened the store only a few short days later. We hustled this year, and I'm so glad we survived!

I (Jennifer) am the crazy one who believed it could all be done before Thanksgiving, and started the ball rolling, but I can't take all the credit for the hard work!  
NEW LOCATION: 2644 Broad Street, Chattanooga, TN 37408

Mom: AKA super woman!
My mom took the day off to help with our flower beds, and even worked in the pouring rain. Now that is real dedication! Thanks Mom! 

Howell: VP of Awesome
Howell earned The VP of Awesome as his business title, and has been my rock. He networked the phones & music, did plumbing, moved heavy stuff, and even ran the shop for me. He definitely won husband of the year!

I've enjoyed building my own displays and create a cozy home for my wonderful products. I love having an idea, and seeing it come to life in 3-D.  I'm also glad that we shot our mini documentary to show our vision for the new store!

Jennifer: Jack of all trades!
Felicia and Julie packed, moved, cleaned, organized, and continue to drive from Cleveland to Chattanooga every week. They are essential to Good Fortune, and I couldn't have done it without them. They are strong women for their willing spirits, and putting up with all my crazy ideas! 

Felicia and I at our Grand Opening!
Shuptrine's Gold Leaf and Fine Art Gallery

I'm also thankful for our parents and family for lending us trucks, trailers, and furniture for the store. We're blessed to have such supportive families who are also great customers!

Our new neighbors are just icing on the cake! Alan and Bonnie Shuptrine went above and beyond to get our space ready for us to move into by November. They moved their gorgeous paintings and antiques, added a bathroom, and did countless other bonuses so that we would be comfortable in our new space! We are grateful to call our landlords our friends!

Finally we are thankful for all of our customers. You guys have been just as excited to see the new store, and try the new products. We love to see your faces come in the door and hear your stories about using our products. It is really cool to create products you believe in, and know others love them too!

Happy New Year. We love you all & wish you a Blessed and prosperous 2014!
The new bulk refill station with Green Cleaners for the home.

Good Fortune Soap: Chattanooga's Green Clean Store

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Grand Opening - Good Fortune Soap: Chattanooga’s Green Clean Store

Chattanooga native, Jennifer Strain, is expanding her manufacturing and Internet business to South Broad Street to create Chattanooga’s first and only Green Clean Store.
Jennifer has been producing handmade natural soap and body products since 2006, and is excited to open an interactive retail space where customers can blend their own custom essential oils and body products, while also learning about ingredients. The Green Clean Store will feature all of Good Fortune Soap’s products and gift sets, while also launching a new line of organic based facial products, and a bulk refill station for home cleaners.

According to Jennifer, “You can bring your own jug and refill (non-toxic) laundry soap and cleaner, or buy natural ingredients to make your own. You can also refill your lotions, washes, and home sprays, and reuse the same bottle each time. We are eliminating waste and making earth-friendly products affordable and attainable.”

Good Fortune Soap has been selling their products at the Chattanooga Market for years, and has developed a huge following in Chattanooga. This is the perfect time for Good Fortune Soap to settle down in Chattanooga, and offer a home base for their customers. Jennifer invites you to, “Take a seat at the essential oil bar and experience all of the useful and delightful products for men, women, and children. Everyone is welcome at The Green Clean Store.“

Wash your troubles away isn’t just our slogan, but it is also our mission. We want to inspire our customers to live purposively, think green, and pay it forward.

Please join us!
Grand Opening This Week. (November 22-23: Friday 10 am-6 pm & Saturday 10 am-6 pm)
Regular Store Hours. (Wednesday-Saturday 10 am-6 pm, closed Monday-Tuesday)
Holiday Open House on Shop Small Saturday-Multiple vendors, discounts, prizes (November 30: Saturday 10 am-6 pm)

Good Fortune Soap: Chattanooga’s Green Clean Store
2644 Broad Street
Chattanooga, TN 37408 

(Located next to Shuptrine’s Gold Leaf Gallery & Ace Hardware)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

New Store Campaign is Launched, Watch our Video!

Chattanooga, Here We Come!

Click the image below to watch our video and support our campaign.

Our GRAND OPENING will be November 21-22nd!
Our new address is 2644 Broad Street • Chattanooga, TN 37408

We will be located between Downtown and Lookout Mountain. We are on the left side of Broad Street, right before the Ace Hardware.

We look forward to seeing you then.

Friday, October 11, 2013

We did NOT sell Good Fortune!

In fact, we are planning on growing!

First of all, I want to thank you for your continued support!

I have been very transparent about my business journey, our ingredients, the mission to create stellar body products with positive messages, and have even shared my not so fortunate moments.

Most of you know that we tried selling the business, and the deal fell through at the last minute. Yes, that was really difficult, but in honesty, it gave us a new passion and sparked new ideas to do business differently.

We are currently planning to open our own brick and mortar store in Chattanooga (hopefully) soon. We want to be Chattanooga's first and only Green Clean Store! Fingers crossed....we are still in the planning stages!

We hope to launch a crowd funding campaign soon, and we'll need your support!

Our loyal online customers will benefit from our new products which will be available soon after the store launches. Our wholesale customers will benefit from our fast turnaround from being in our new location, new employees to serve you better, and a multitude of great things to come.

We hope you enjoy our new soap video series highlighting all of our natural soaps and natural skincare products individually.

Please leave us feedback and keep in touch! —Jennifer Strain & The Good Fortune Crew!