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Three Years of Sian Shrimpton Design & Illustration

Shop News | Stickers, Postcards & Christmas!

There has been a lot going on in the shop since the last time I posted, so I thought it was a good time to update you on the exciting goings-on around here.

Three Years of Sian Shrimpton Design & Illustration

Third Business Birthday

First of all, on October 3rd, I celebrated three years as a freelancer and three years since I opened my Etsy shop. It doesn’t feel as long as 3 years at all. When I first started this little venture, I had no idea what direction I’d be taking it in. I had a few ideas, some of them I haven’t even had the chance to work on yet but there is still time. Some of the things I have worked on, however, have surprised me. I never thought I’d create enamel pins, for example, I never thought I’d run TWO successful Kickstarter Campaigns (more on that later!) If you’ve supported my business at all over the last 3 years, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Every like, comment, share, cheerleading message and purchase means the absolute world to me.

Sian Shrimpton Design - Keep Going Postcard

Postcards & Stickers

I have a few new products in the shop, one of those is a collection of new postcards and the option to buy the hand-lettered postcards individually rather than as part of a set. There are plenty of cute colourful Penguin postcards, perfect to send a little note to a friend or to pop on your noticeboard to cheer you up in the end.

I also now have stickers! If you had told ten-year-old me that I’d be making stickers, notepads and postcards as part of my job, I’m not sure I would have coped. 30-something me is also finding it hard to comprehend that this is my job sometimes.

There are Penguin stickers and my favourite of the hand-lettered pieces, “keep going” all available now, with a few more to come once I have sent out the Kickstarter rewards.

Kickstarter update

On the subject of Kickstarter, the campaign was a success! It ended at 151% funded which was fantastic. I had my doubts as the campaign went on because a few pledgers cancelled or changed their pledge to a smaller amount. I understand why you would cancel or change a pledge, however, I feared the campaign wouldn’t get to fully funded, let alone to the stretch goals! Everyone surprised me though, and I shouldn’t have doubted it! I did reach the first stretch goal, albeit after reducing it slightly and there are two lovely Penguin pin designs in production as I type this!

Christmas!

Sorry if it really is too early to be talking about the c-word but the organised among you have already been asking me about Christmas so…I’m sorry!

As you can possibly tell, there is a lot going on in the shop at the moment and I have a lot of new products, with more to come soon! This does mean that there have been no brand new Christmas themed designs, for this year. I did create two brand new designs for Christmas wrapping paper last year and looking back at my Instagram and blog, I didn’t even promote said wrapping paper! Doh! These are back in the shop for this Christmas and there are plenty of my older designs for Christmas cards and tags in the shop too.

Keep a lookout for a few new and exciting products coming to the shop in the next couple of weeks. If you missed out on the Kickstarter pins, if there any leftovers, they’ll be added to both my website and Etsy Shops. They’ll make the perfect for little gifts or a treat for yourself and I also have a few super-secret products to add soon, including a very exciting collaboration.

Penguin Desk Calendar 2020

Shop News | Kickstarter Campaign, Penguin Calendar 2020 and Surprise Boxes

Hello Hello! Long time no blog! How have you been? I’ve wanted to update the blog for a while now but other things have always jumped in the way. Life is busy, work has been busy and then I became out of practice and didn’t know where to pick up again after a long hiatus. So here we are, I plan on starting with monthly shop updates, because although I try to promote everything on social media, you might miss something and I don’t want that happening! Then I’ll try to punctuate those updates with useful little updates about my work, my process or some of your frequently asked questions. If you have any questions or things you’d like to know about, please comment below or pop me a message and I’ll add it to the list. So what have I been up to…?

Up & Away Penguin Enamel Pin Kickstarter Campaign – Only 6 days left! 

Right at the end of August, I launched a Kickstarter Campaign to raise funds to create a new collection of penguin enamel pins. The initial goal is for a design based on one of the my favourite penguin drawings, Penguin floating away on a bunch of colourful balloons. I have planned a couple of stretch goals, including one that is slightly festive, some stickers and a cartwheeling and dancing penguin pin.

The campaign has been a bit slower than I thought it might be and after 2 weeks, I decided to change around the stretch goals. I didn’t do this lightly, however I feared that we wouldn’t reach the first stretch goal as it was a big leap, so I made the slightly festive, penguin with all the gifts pin, the first stretch goal and felt a lot more positive that I’d get to that first stretch goal. 

Penguin Enamel Pin Kickstarter Campaign

After a couple of slow weeks, the campaign is doing so well. At the time of posting, it is at 138% funded with only 6 days left. This means that (all being well) the up & away pins will be produced and I only need £51 of pledges to get to that first stretch goal! 

If you haven’t seen the campaign yet, you can read more about it and pledge for a copy of the final designs here. 

Penguin Desk Calendar 2020 – available for pre-order now!

The best-selling* Penguin desk calendars are back for 2020! I’m so excited about these!

This is the fourth year in a row that I’ve designed a little penguin desk calendar to cheer up your desk all year long and after a shaky start with a bit of creative block, I’m so pleased with how these calendars look this time. They remain the same A7 size that they have always been and the little wooden stands are back for the 2nd year running. The actual calendar is 13 pages (one month per page with a front cover) and sits comfortably in the wooden stand. You can opt to buy the calendar with or without a wooden stand if you already have one or if you’d like to pop the pages in your diary, scrapbook or on your notice board each month. The options and uses are endless!

The calendars are now available for pre-order, and they will be printed in time for dispatch at the beginning of October, so you won’t have to wait long.

*best-selling: these have been my best selling product for the last three years

Penguin Desk Calendar 2020I have also updated the Academic wall planners for 2019-20, there is a Penguin version and a minimal version. I’ve added the option to print it on my studio printer for you, this time after a few you requested that option. As always, there’s the downloadable version too. The updated 2020 versions will be available at the beginning of October.

Surprise Boxes

This is something that I’ve wanted to arrange for a while. I love the thought of a little surprise in the mail, and as my product range grows and as we approach that lovely festive time at the end of the year (it is coming, I’m sorry! I won’t mention the C word in September though!) it seems like the perfect time to start offering these surprise boxes.

There are a few options:
Small surprise box – You pay £5 and receive a surprise selection of notecards, stickers, postcards to the value of about £7.
Large surprise box – You pay £10 and receive a surprise selection of enamel pins, stickers, postcards, notepad, notecards and/or calendar to the value of about £15.
Greeting card surprise box – You receive 5 greeting cards for the price of 4. You’ll receive at least 3 birthday cards and 2 other notecards for any occasion.

These can be customised slightly if you have a favourite colour, design or if you have a special occasion coming up, you simply need to write me a comment at check out and I’ll see what I can add to your surprise box. If you need a wedding card for example, as part of your greeting card surprise box, I have a couple of options that I could add. I want these to be a surprise but I also want you to love what you receive. Christmas themed products will only be included as a special request, they won’t be automatically included around Christmas time.

So there we have it, my first update in a while and I’ve been busy! There is a lot more to come, I have a few more plans to work on before this year is up. Next month, I celebrate 3 years of self employment, and I hope to have a lot of those plans ready to reveal then.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, if you have any questions or suggestions for blog posts, I’d love to hear them. Let’s hope this is the start of more regular blogging from here on out. 

Penguin Enamel Pin Kickstarter Campaign Sketch

The Story behind my Penguin Enamel Pin Kickstarter Campaign

Penguin Enamel Pin Kickstarter Campaign Sketch

If you’ve followed my work for a little while, you’ll know that I created a little Penguin Character a while ago. Penguin has featured on all sorts of products, he started off on his own calendar in 2017, which formed the start of my freelance career and Etsy Shop. Since then, I’ve created a second Calendar for 2018, Christmas cards, Birthday cards and a little enamel pin, which was quite popular!

Whilst preparing for Christmas 2017, I really wanted to create a few more products featuring my little Penguin and created Christmas cards for the occasion but for a few different reasons, I couldn’t branch out into different products. As Christmas approached, I had the idea that I could create a Kickstarter Campaign to raise the funds for these new products but as Christmas was so near, I knew I had run out of time. Christmas came and went and that idea was put towards the end of my to-do list and almost forgotten in the busy-ness that is Christmas time for a small business.

Fast forward to April this year and whilst planning out my work for the month, the perfect opportunity arose to launch my Kickstarter Campaign – World Penguin Day on April 25th!

Now, if you are unaware, Penguin is my little office assistant, he sits on my desk, making me smile, keeps me in order and doesn’t do too much else! He is a firm believer in my productivity, getting all the cool stuff done and having an ice day!

So, the products that I have designed for this Kickstarter Campaign are based on this. First of all there is a cute enamel pin, where Penguin is carrying his trusty pencil with the words “Get cool stuff done” on it. There is also a notepad and pencil set, and a few different colour variations of my original penguin enamel pin.

Penguin Notepad, Pencil and Enamel Pin Set

I launched the Kickstarter Campaign on 25th April and in the matter of a few days, the original target was met! I am still in shock to be honest.

If you’re unfamiliar with Kickstarter, it is a website where creatives can raise funds for creative projects through people pledging to support them. People who pledge can opt for a reward in return for their pledge and so in my case, you could opt for the new pin design, a notepad and pencil set or the new colour variations of the original pin design. Kickstarter is all or nothing, so I put in a target of £260 for the “Get Cool Stuff Done” Pin and if I didn’t reach that target, no money would be taken from you, and the project wouldn’t go ahead. However, the target was reached within the first few days and I’d created stretch goals to be able to create the notepad & pencil and the new colour variations, which have also been reached. As I’ve reached all of these targets, is likely to go ahead, the money will be transferred to me at the end of the campaign and I can get these new products manufactured! All fingers crossed that everything goes well at the end of the campaign.

The campaign has just over a week left and at 339% funded at the moment, it is highly likely that these new products will be produced, which is so exciting! This also means that there is just over a week for you to be able to pledge towards the campaign to ensure you get your flippers on one of these new products before anyone else.

Simply pop over to my Kickstarter campaign here and select the reward that you’d like.

If you’ve already pledged, I just wanted to say thank you so so much for your support so far, this process has been a great learning curve for me and has been so far out of my comfort zone but your support has made it all well worth it, so Thank You again and I look forward to sending out all of the rewards once they are all made.