All change….

It’s been a funny couple of weeks, lots of on and off drama around here, a rare weekend away for M and I, without the kids (our last was back in 2009), a birthday (mine) and of course a daily reminder of just how small any problems we might have are in comparison to the horrific happenings in Japan.

Work has been quite erratic, I haven’t had much time to sit and sew, although there are quite a few things nearly finished and some general updates I’ve never mentioned.  Above is my desk today with the current open project in the bottom corner, most of you regular readers will know what this is.

I’ve been busy packing up orders between the mayhem

I realised I’ve never shown the final photos of the new batch of little birds, which are now listed, here

and on Folksy.

Also, quite exciting news (for me anyway), I’ve finally moved hosting companies for my website.  Essentially I’ve abandoned MrSite and defected to Create.net, I don’t want to get into a slagging off session but there was a lot I was personally unhappy with, so I simply decided to move.  The main problem for me was the customer service and the many bugs, in fact I still have an open query that obviously isn’t ever going to be answered; in fairness I should mention that they are going out of their way to rectify this problem plus there is a new product due out soon, but for me this is too little, too late.

The immediate good things I notice at Create are:

  • Fabulous customer service, all questions so far have been answered quickly and efficiently.
  • The ability to have shop items in more than one category (so in SALE and another category such as Lavender Bags) with a simple tick of a box, no having to double list and manually edit the stock counter.
  • The ability to hide products so re-listing them at a later date is much easier.
  • Restricting the country for purchase to the UK only in the checkout.  In MrS Pro (which you need if you require a stock counter), payment is processed via PayPal’s pages who have an annoying drop down to choose a country which you can’t remove or restrict, this was really a problem for me as I only ship to the UK without prior arrangement.
  • Very easily customizable template and colours.  You can change the text, colour and template without loosing any of the ‘bits’ (I’m sure that’s a technical term, LOL ;)) you’ve set such as background and header, plus change them back again at a whim with no problems.  I’m fickle, I like to play around with my site a lot, I found in MrS lots of things reverted back to the basic template when all I wanted to do was change the text, so I’d have to re-set them all again.
  • I’m generally loving the shop back area in Create, there are so many things you can turn on or off and to get the exact shop functions you would like and although I haven’t tried them yet, being able to do offer codes etc is going to be great.

I could go on but you may fall asleep, I should say you can also do a 30 day free trial which is a huge bonus plus you pay monthly, not yearly, so you can leave whenever you wish.  Are there any downsides?  Well, yes, to checkout out customers are asked for full address details before going through to PayPal (oh and you can use many other payment gateway).  Personally I hate this as to me the whole point of paying by PP is to avoid filling in forms, I may loose a few of my single lavender bag customers and they are my best sellers.  Also, I struggled to find a template I really liked, my taste is quite minimal and funky for websites so some of the details just weren’t right but it’s all workable.  A biggie for me is that I’ve dropped off the Google UK search for ‘lavender bags’ where I used to be up there on page 2, now I’m no-where to be seen, M suggests this is because all the old links created over the past 2 years to my pages and products are now broken, something I hadn’t thought about 😦

I still have a huge amount of tweaking to do, including a new front page and lots of photos to re-take but I just needed to get it live.  I could be changing the details for many months yet so if you do take a look around, please excuse an mistakes 🙂

Lastly, on a slightly random note,  I need to apologise to all you lovely Blogger friends, I can’t leave comments at the moment, no idea why.  I write one, submit it, it disappears with no error message so I assume it’s gone on it’s merry way but when I check back later it’s not there; it’s been sucked into a blogger black hole and I’m afraid this may have been happening for some time before I noticed.  I tweeted about it and found I am not the only person with this problem, I’ve tried logging in/out, refreshing my laptop, using a different browser but nope, not working, so please don’t think I’m ignoring you, I just don’t know what to do to fix it (BTW, this is only a problem on blogger blogs where the comment is left at the bottom of the page, for those who have a separate pop up window, I can still say ‘hello’).

Very wordy today and not many photos so here’s another ‘nearly finished if I just pull my finger out and get on with it’ product, again you regulars will know what it is 🙂