Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Cradle's Search for America's Best Baby Boutique

Sweet Dreams Designs has been entered into The Cradle's Search for America's Best Baby Boutique! Click the link to vote for us - it only take a minute to fill out the form. It is probably a long shot as there are hundreds if not millions of boutiques that will probably enter, but how cool would it be to be featured in Pregnancy magazine? PLUS, each person who nominates Sweet Dreams Designs will be entered to win a $3000 celebrity gift basket from Jewels and Pinstripes! Here's a little more info about the contest:
The Cradle is searching for America's Best Baby Boutique! We want to find the best of the best, and honor those shops that go above and beyond baby basics!
The winning boutique will be featured on TheCradle.com and in Pregnancy magazine.
Boutique owners, employees, and customers, nominate your favorite boutique and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a Celebrity BUMP Bag from Jewels and Pinstripes worth more than $3,000!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Eat this, not that

Unless you are dieting - you MUST give these a try! Jason and I are actually trying to eat healthy these days, but I could no resist these at the grocery yesterday. No bake Reese's Dessert Bars! Yummmmm.....

I made them while Jason was at a friend's house watching the Auburn and Alabama games and had to try my best not to eat them all while he was gone!

On the business front, I was able to get a ton of orders ready to ship out today. A few of them were ready in time to make Saturday's mail, but the rest will be shipped out on Monday.

Stay tuned to the website and blog - I will be marking several items on sale in the next week or so!

Also - good news! Order tracking has been fixed and all orders placed after Sept. 25 will be tracked. That's all for tonight....might go snag one more dessert bar before bed! Yeah, that's healthy alright....

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Depths of Despair No More!

Without going into too much depressing detail, I have truly been in the dumps this past week. I don't know what got me there - could be a combination of things - but I know what got me out....


I think I had been so cooped up in my sewing room trying to crank out orders just as fast as I can.....without drowning.....that I had just gotten too overwhelmed. Last night I took a little break and had a quick dinner with the girls at Surin 280 -Thai....yummy. Anyway, I think it is just what I needed to get me back in gear.

Today, I finished my "to do" list by 3pm! I am officially on schedule to have all current orders out the door by the end of the week. Well most of them at least. I'm picking up from Judy tomorrow, so after some final touches, all of you that have outstanding orders will be fulfilled! A few exceptions...but I feel confident that by next week almost everyone will be happy!

On another note - PLEASE join me on Twitter! I really didn't get this site at first, but boy is it fantastic for networking and ADDICTIVE!

Ok, off to watch Lipstick Jungle! Back to work tomorrow! I am trying to learn to have a break once in a while so I dont go completely insane. :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


4T "R" $20
Originally uploaded by jasongarner
Click here to view photos, prices and sizes for available remaining sample sale items!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Hang 'em high! Another Room Revamp

I got new drapes back in July after visiting a friend's house which had been completely redecorated sparing no cost! We finally got them hung this weekend! I, on the other hand, must "spare cost", so though these curtains were not custom made and are not made of dupioni silk like I wish they were, I think they turned out nicely and really did wonders for the room.

I had to get out an issue of Traditional Home magazine to prove to my husband that you are supposed to hang your curtains this high these days! I have watched enough HGTV to know that! It really does make the room look bigger and taller and "grander".

This room was supposed to be our dining room, but we switched the dining room and the formal living. I guess you would say this is our formal living room, but it really serves absolutely no purpose. At least it has pretty curtains now! They actually came from JCPenney.com and the rods and clips come from Lowes.

Next step is to re-cover the chairs in the fabric pictured below. It is from the Amy Butler Nigella collection which is a home decor sateen.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Pettiskirt Halloween Costumes are Here!

Pettiskirt Halloween Costumes are now at Sweet Dreams Designs for a limited time! Much more reasonably priced than many competitor prices as well. Top is not included but can be added for a small additional charge! Get ready for Trick or Treating and please allow 2 weeks for delivery! These would make awesome photos!

Friday, September 12, 2008

New Appliqued Birthday Dress

August 08 - 007
Originally uploaded by lesteal624
I just did this dress for a customer recently and realized I didn't have any birthday dresses for girls on the site! Time to change that....check this one out!

If you're scared, say you're scared!

Ok, I'm scared! Take a look at this monster of a machine that I got today! Wow - if I wasn't "for real" before, I am now. This 10 year old Yamata Serger came from a factory that closed down a while back. It is up and running like a charm and makes a BEAUtiful stitch! This baby's gonna cut my time in half for sure. No more stitching, then trimming, then coverstitching. This does it all in one step and at about a million stitches a minute! no......Not really, but it is super fast. In order to make room for it, please check out my pitiful computer work station:

Yes, that is a TV tray....seriously.

Right now, this is set up in our basement. Jason is going to love coming home and finding that his playroom has turned into a sweat shop! I have made room for it in the sewing room, but we were unable to get it up the two flights of stairs. Jason will love that as well! Now, I just need a for real computer desk.....I'd like to find an antique table that needs a paint job for about $25. Until then, I'm here hunched over this lovely TV tray in a chair that makes my buns ache.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Spring Fabrics in and Sample Sale

This was one of those mornings I got up and said...."I need to blog". I think "vent" would be a more appropriate word, but before I get to that I have a few updates.

This Sunday, September 14th from 2pm - 5pm I will be holding Sweet Dreams Designs' first ever Sample Sale at my home. I'll be selling off the samples used at shows this season as well as seasons past. There will be fall items as well as items from last summer and a few items from seasons past. I will also have some items from Thirtyone gifts (more samples) that I will be selling - all at a discounted price.

If you are in the Birmingham metro area or just feel like making the drive - please send me an email requesting directions: anna@sweet-dreams-designs.net

Second update worth mentioning is, I JUST opened my huge box of brand new fabrics for the Spring 2009 line and they are so beautiful! I absolutely can't wait to get started on the new designs. Judy has already made a couple of pieces and I have one completed outfit here that I have finished. My goal is to have most everything (at least one sample of each) ready for a photoshoot in early-mid October. I have already contacted April at Once in Every Life and we are going to work together again on the Spring photoshoot - yea!

Now onto the venting:

Before I can get started on the Spring line I must finish up 20 online orders (6 of which must be finished before the 25th). In addition, I had three parties this past week - all with a very good turnout and large party totals. On top of that I still have two parties from early August that are not quite finished yet. Needless to say I am really covered up in orders!

Am I complaining? NO! Absolutely NOT! However, I am a little overwhelmed! The response to the Fall line has been out of this world - more than I ever expected. Also, my website is really making its name these days. I am getting more hits and more orders than ever before which is fantastic! I also have more wholesale applications than ever, which is something I just can't take on right now. I have had to turn down every new application that has come in lately due to the fact that I just don't have the resources to produce enough for the wholesale accounts. I will begin accepting wholesale accounts in the spring when the line is put together and I can breathe again! It is really too late in the season to continue pushing out fall at wholesale anyway.

So, all that being said I have really got to get busy. This week has already been a doozie and it is only Wednesday....with a March of Dimes committee meeting at my house this evening, my new industrial serger (yea!) being delivered tomorrow, preparation for the Sample Sale on Friday and Saturday and the actual sale on Sunday - it doesn't look like things are going to slow down anytime soon!

I have really begun to notice the work of God in this business. Though I don't thank him nearly enough I know all of the success that has been achieved this far is because I asked Him for it - and boy did he deliver!

Ok - I feel better now - off to the sewing machine!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Handpainted Children's Clothing - Dresses & Jon Jons!

I've written about my mother in law before, and if you read it you know how talented she is! She came in town again this week to help and visit and while she was here we finally got around to doing something we have talked about forever! I had bought several knit cotton dresses and jon jons (in the hopes to monogram and applique them for Cottontails Village - more about that later). Anyway, we have been talking about doing some hand painting on them and decided to experiment this week. When I saw WE I mean SHE - I am NOT a painter!

Anyway, she did one jon jon and one dress and they are so pretty I am going to have a hard time parting with them IF I decide to! It took about an hour to do each one and they look just like something out of a children's book. They are better than any I have ever seen at craft fairs or online too. I was checking out a seller on ebay who sells the exact dresses with little Auburn or Alabama cheerleaders on them for about $50 each - her painting doesn't even hold a candle to that of my mother in law! (That sounded ugly, didn't it - I didn't mean it that way, but when you're good, you're GOOD!) See for yourself:
Though I say I may have a hard time parting with these, if there is anything you would like painted on a dress or jon jon she WILL take requests! I have jon jons in sizes 3 months - 24 months and dresses in sizes 3 months - 10Y.

In the Garden Again

One of my first posts featured pictures I had taken of our back yard on a pretty day - that was a little over a year ago if you can believe it! I had just quit my job at Boatright. (I failed to write a post on my one year anniversary of my new full time job! It would have been a good one!)

Anyway, yesterday the weather was so nice - brisk almost. So, I took my camera outside and took a few pictures of our roses that are blooming.

These are some Zinnias that I planted from seed I collected TWO years ago from dead flower heads! I was so impressed with how they turned out. I am going to plant a BUNCH more this year. I put the seeds in pots first and then transplanted them to the garden when they were hardy enough. I'm going to start a little earlier this year.

And, last but not least - I LOVE this picture of Bella! She always looks so regal, but I like the way this one turned out best - maybe its her backdrop. Actually, she looks kind of sad or mad in this pic! Gotta love that face.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Jackson in his Auburn Jon Jon

You saw the Auburn Jon Jon that I made for my friend Erin's nephew on a hanger....here is it in action! I am always so happy to see my outfits on the child they are made for and this is no exception. They are always so much cuter on the children! Here is Jackson of Montgomery, Alabama in Auburn tailgating this past weekend....