Everyday, millions of people are discovering the joys of shopping handmade. IAMTHELAB is dedicated to showcasing the best of modern handmade from around the world. But that’s just a small part of what the LAB is all about. If you’re a maker, I want to make sure that you are getting your piece of the handmade pie. IAMTHELAB has as its core mission a deep committment to helping the handmade community utilize every resource available to encourage folks to think handmade first.
Let me help you create your own Handmade Trifecta: a great shop, a vibrant blog and social media presence. I will be featuring the best creative finds to help you build a custom web experience that will keep your customers coming back for more. From templates to fonts, and a ton of amazing creative resources in between, you’ll find what you need to build your best web presence. I want to inspire you to create and encourage you to grow.
One of the most unique features of IAMTHELAB is our Handmade Directory. The Directory is designed to not only make it easier to find amazing handmade goods, it’s also a way for bloggers and makers to connect and collaborate. It’s the web’s only multi-platform handmade directory. Your find makers in 6 categories and bloggers from the style, design, craft and fashion universe all in one place. The Handmade Directory is a member only part of IAMTHELAB. You can learn more it below.
Learn more about all of our LAB services and features, then submit your modern handmade shop for a LAB post below.
IAMTHELAB is your personal creative laboratory. After all, you are the lab of your own experiment, the petri dish of you own experience. Together, we can create great things.
Latest LAB News: October 2014
For October, the LAB is transitioning over to our Fall logo and getting ready to promote tons of modern handmade goods for the season. Look for our LAB Picks, some really great new makers and interviews with artists and designers from around the globe. We have a few LAB Partners that are ready to showcase their seasonal offerings, as well as a few projects that you’ll want to get involved with.
There’s one more feature that I’m super excited about. At the top of the LAB there is a new LAB News Ticker. This cool feature allows me to share hot finds from all over the web. My LAB Partners will be offering exclusive discounts and giveaways there, and I’m offering an opportunity for more makers to join them. A continuous flow of fab handmade goodness? Yes!
Be reserving your spot up there, you’ll be able to share and promote an item from your shop, once a week, for the next 12 weeks. (Please see my Submission guidelines below for details regarding the type of items we promote on the LAB.) I’m especially looking for artists and makers willing to offer exclusive discounts to LAB readers, creating discount codes with ‘LAB’ incorporated. Also, if you are hosting a giveaway or contest, that would be great to share as well. The cost for the 12 weeks of this unique advertising opportunity is $60 or $5 a week. Click below to reserve your spot. With LAB readership growing at a brisk pace, I’m glad to offer another way for you to showcase your modern handmade goodness
You’re an handmaker, trying to make your mark on the web. There’s so many things to do: build a brand, start a web shop, branch out into social media and conquer blogging. With all the options and the ups & downs, isn’t it nice to know that, when you need support, it’s here for you? Here’s what I can help you with:
- Branding: I can help you design and execute your brand identity. Let me share my years of experience in branding and marketing to help you create an identity that is a true representation of Brand:You.
- Social Media: There are some great ways to expand your influence via social media. The online creative community is an amazing resource. I can help you use your time wisely and make the most of the web.
- Blogging: It’s one of the most underused aspects of influence for an online business. Quite frankly, it scares some of us. I can help you devise a blogging program that won’t turn into a time vacuum. Plus, there are tons of free resources that you can use to build the blog of your dreams. Let me help you find what you need to make your blogging dreams come true.
- Moral Support: Sometimes you just need to know that you are special, amazing and doing exactly what you need to be doing. I’ve got 20+ years of experience helping people reach their potential with positive support and reinforcement. When you need a little pep in your creative steps, I’m your virtual cheerleader.
I provide consultation in 90 minute increments at $50. Feel free to drop me a line with your questions here.
When I got in touch with Brett, I was looking for practical social media advice for my situation. One can get lost with the one size fits all info on the internet. As a handmaking soloprenuer, I have specific needs. Brett saw to the heart (he knows us) and had great suggestions I could put into practice immediately. Not only that, but he is a supportive ally and crusader for handmakers everywhere.
Jenn Romero of Unurth:
Welcome to the LAB’s Handmade Directory! If you’re looking for the best handmade goods from around the web, this is the place for you. Our goal is to build the web’s first mulit-platform directory of makers. But this is more than just a catalog of pretty things. The Handmade Directory is designed to help makers and bloggers work together to promote and share the beauty of handmade goods around the web.
If you are a maker with an online shop, you are welcome to join us in the Handmade Directory. The Directory is open to makers of all kinds, all genres and all platforms. Your stay in the Directory is for permanent, with a one time fee (see below). Each maker entry includes:
- Banner: Introduce yourself with a custom header.
- Slider: Your own personal slider, with up to 5 images of your handmade goods.
- Biography: Tell the community about yourself.
- Links: We include links to your shop and your social media accounts.
- Ads: Give bloggers the opportunity to work with you as an advertiser.
- Ad Budget: This is your monthly advertising budget.
- Additional Opportunities: Let bloggers know that you are open to working with them.
See a sample entry here and here. I will work with you to design the banner and ads (if you don’t already have them) and will help you decide which additional opportunities fit your handmade business.
We are looking to build a network of bloggers who love and support the handmade community. Our goal is to help you find great makers to promote and share on your blogs, as well as to find ways to generate a little extra income to support your blogging efforts. Each blogger entry includes:
- Banner: Introduce your blog with a custom header.
- Slider: Your own personal slider, with up to 5 images, showcasing a selection of posts from your blog.
- Biography: Tell the handmade community about yourself and your blog.
- Links: We include links to your social media accounts
- Ads: Let your potential advertising partners know what size ads you accept.
- Ad cost: This is your monthly advertising fee.
- Additional Opportunities: Let makers know that you are open to working with them.
What if you are a blogger and a maker? Can you have two entries in the Handmade Directory? Yes you can! I have a special combo deal just for you creative folks who do both.
Each member of the Handmade Directory has the opportunity to join our Referral program. For every new member you recommend, the LAB will give you a $5 reward, payable at the end of every month! We’ll give you a special code that you can share with your friends and family who have online shops or blogs. All they have to do is enter your code when they check out on PayPal and I’ll do the rest.
I can’t wait to see how this project grows. Hopefully, the Handmade Directory will become a great place to find handmade goods from around the world, while helping makers and bloggers to continue doing what makes them such an important aspect of the creative community.
*I will correspond with you after you purchase in 12 hours or less. Handmade Directory purchases are non-refundable.
For instance, if you sign up for 6 months, you’ll get two opportunities to share a full shop update for two seasons. Updating your shop with new handmade goodness for spring? Just send me a note and we’ll work together to create a full report on your latest offerings. I’ll also share your promotions on the LAB’s social media channels. When you sign up for one year, you get the option to create up to 4 posts. These posts are in addition to any other posts that I personally produce that might feature your work. Plus, we have a new internal advertising system that allows me to share very stylish pop-ups on the LAB, highlighting items from your shop. These pop-ups will be directly linked to the items on display. And I’m sure you’ve seen our new LAB News & Notes new ticker. Your promotions will appear up there too!
There are currently 8 LAB Partner spaces available. Because of the unique nature of this program, I am only looking for makers and artists that fit the current aesthetic of IAMTHELAB.com: modern and contemporary handmade goods.
Unsure you qualify? Just drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call at 415.779.5107 before you purchase. If you’ve been featured on the LAB in the past year, you automatically qualify to be a LAB Partner. Choose your plan below. I look forward to working with you as we promote handmade.*
I was fortunate enough to have Brett from the LAB discover my work in early 2012. And as a result of a very generous feature on the LAB, site my shop got a great (and much needed) spike in traffic. Following that I have jumped at any opportunity to partner with the LAB to engage in social media, giveaways and advertising. Brett is passionate about the handmade community. He really wants all us creators and makers to succeed and find our niche.
*LAB Partner promotions are subject to the same guidelines as LAB Submissions. Please refer to the LAB Submission page for more information. IAMTHELAB.com does not promote any holidays or holiday-related events or items. IAMTHELAB.com focuses on seasonal handmade goods with the goal of promoting a handmade lifestyle year round. The LAB Partner fee is non-refundable so, if you have questions, please contact me at the number and email address mentioned above and I’ll be glad to help. Thanks!
Would you like to see your handmade or handcrafted goods on the LAB? I tend to feature handmade goods with a more modern or contemporary aesthetic. If you would like to get an idea of what we’ve featured, please check the Categories, found in the Features menu right up there at the top of the page. I am always on the lookout for the latest and the best of the handmade community. If you think your shop fits the bill, here are a few submission guidelines.
- You must have an online shop that I can link your images to. My goal is to help you reach as many people as possible with your handiwork and to help you make a living as a handmaker.
- Images need to be at least 845 pixels wide. The height isn’t as important as the width. The images should be the best quality you can get. I do push all my images to Pinterest and other social media platforms. If you don’t want you work on Pinterest, please let me know. I’ve found that by linking the images to your shop and then pushing them to Pinterest, traffic to the shops of my featured artists takes a nice leap, which is always good in my book.
- What I don’t accept: any religious, political or nationalistic images or items of any kind. I promote artists from around the world and don’t live my life with artificial lines drawn on a map. Also, no holidays are promoted on the LAB. Instead, I like to promote seasons. I want people to see handmade as a lifestyle, not dictated by the commercialism that drives the mass-produced goods market.
- Yes, you can be on the LAB again & again. If you get new goodies in your shop and want to share, by all means drop me a line!
- If you have a Handmade Trifecta (a great blog, sweet shop and well-estabished social media presence), I definitely want to feature you. Please mention that in your email.
- If your item is a good fit for the LAB, I will respond to you within 24 hours of your submission.
To get started, just email use the form below. If it’s a go, I will be in touch as soon as I can with a date for your post. Thanks and enjoy your time with me in the LAB.
If you’ve hung out in the LAB for any period of time, you’ve heard me singing the same song over and over again: If you’re a handmaker, you need a blog. I’ve shown you stats of artists who’ve watched their web traffic explode because of blogging, bringing fresh fans to their handmade shops. I’ve also showcased some pretty amazing blogs along the way, in the hopes that they will inspire you to make blogging a part of your Handmade Trifecta.
Yet, I know that some of you really want to add a blog to your handmade strategy, but you can’t seem to figure out how. You know you want something attractive, functional and easy to maintain, but getting there is the challenge. Well, that’s all about to change. Introducing the LAB Blog Build. Let the LAB build you the perfect WordPress.org blog for your Handmade Trifecta.
What do you get with a LAB Blog Build? I’m glad you asked. Here’s what you’ll receive:
- Basic Theme Modification: Starting with your self-hosted WordPress.org installation, I will find a theme and modify it to fit your blogging needs. I have a list of great templates that I prefer to use from some very talented designers including Wpshower, Elmastudio, Blog Milk, Wpexplorer and Dessign, to name a few. However, I’ll be more than glad to use a template of your choice.
- Plugins Selection: There are a billion WordPress plugins out there and it can be really challenging to find the perfect set for your blog. Let me do the dirty work for you. I’ll find them, install them and show you how they work.
- Branding & Graphic Design: You’ll want your blog to coordinate with your online shop and social media, so I’ll design the right graphics to pull your Handmade Trifecta all together.
- Etsy Shop Integration: With some simple modifications and a plugin or two, we’ll give your Etsy shop a new source of exposure by integrating it into your blog.
- Post Layout Options: One of the biggest obstacles to regular blogging is trying to figure out what to blog about and how. I’ll help you with some layout options that will give your posts a touch of razzamatazz and pizzazz.
- Social Media Management: Integrating your social media is absolutely essential. I’ll make sure that you are all connected and that your blog posts automatically find their way to Twitter, Facebook and beyond.
- 1 Year Free Handmade Directory Post: Just to make sure that folks know you’ve joined the world of blogging, I’ve tossed in a 1 year stay in the Handmade Directory .
- Support: The build also comes with 6 months of email and phone support.
Your LAB Blog Build should take 4 weeks or less to complete and at just $1500, is a great deal and the perfect way to get your blog up and running. Looking for a web host? I have a great recommendation for you. Let’s talk: Got questions? Drop me a note at email@example.com with ‘LAB E-Commerce Build’ or call at 415.779.5107.
*LAB Blog Build purchases are non-refundable. This service is for WordPress.org blogs only.
Long time friend of the LAB, “G” Roslie wanted to resurrect her dormant blog. We modified the perfect theme from Elmastudio to give her gorgeous blog new life. We loved how the blog turned out, and so did “G”:
Brett, I LOVE my new site, thank you!
Ready to be remembered? A well-made logo can help you stand out from the crowded handmade crowd. Let the LAB design and incorporate a complete branding package for your handmade business. From shop headers to business cards, design and implement your branding all over the place, including your social media.
Our Brand Build service includes:
- Logo Design: Starting with your self-hosted WordPress.org installation, I will find a theme and modify it to fit your blogging needs. I have a list of great templates that I prefer to use from some very talented designers including Wpshower, Elmastudio, Blog Milk, Wpexplorer and Dessign, to name a few. However, I’ll be more than glad to use a template of your choice.
- E-commerce Branding: We’ll make sure that all of your social media accounts are in synch with your new branding.
- Business Cards: You’ll want your blog to coordinate with your online shop and social media, so I’ll design the right graphics to pull your Handmade Trifecta all together.
- Marketing Materials: With some simple modifications and a plugin or two, we’ll give your Etsy shop a new source of exposure by integrating it into your blog.
- Social Media Branding: One of the biggest obstacles to regular blogging is trying to figure out what to blog about and how. I’ll help you with some layout options that will give your posts a touch of razzamatazz and pizzazz.
Your LAB Brand Build should take 2 weeks or less to complete and costs just $1000. The LAB will work with you during the entire process, ensuring that your vision and our skills will produce the perfect brand identity for your handmade business. Got questions? Drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘LAB E-Commerce Build’ or call at 415.779.5107.
*LAB Blog Build purchases are non-refundable. This service is for WordPress.org blogs only.
Kimberley McCullough’s gorgeous handmade jewelry deserved a special touch and her personalized, brand new logo has been a real hit with her customers:
I am so excited! The logo looks great! All ready for my upcoming shows! Thank you thank you thank you!
Allison Velazquez needed a new logo for her complete e-commerce overhaul that is just as elegant and refined as she is:
Brett is amazing at his craft and he did a excellent job on my logo, which has already had an impact on the look of my web site. Thank you Brett for excellent work!
Are you ready to make the leap? Perhaps you’ve outgrown your Etsy shop and you’re ready for less fees and more control? Or you’re starting from scratch and want something that’s uniquely yours? Let the LAB help you build the e-commerce shop that’s right for your handmade business.
Whether its Big Cartel, Shopify, Squarespace or one of the many other platforms, the LAB has built some pretty cool shops and we want to do the same for you.
What do you get with a LAB E-Commerce Build? Here’s what you’ll receive:
- Shop Configuration: We’ll work together to select the best platform for your online business. There are some really great options out there (including a few free ones) and we’ll comb through them to find the right fit for you.
- Theme & Plugin Selection: Some e-commerce providers, like Shopify, offer apps that can really help you stay organized and connected with your customers. The LAB will help you find the plugins that will make running your shop as easy as possible
- Branding Intergration: We’ll incorporate your pre-existing branding throughout your new shop. If you need new branding, start here.
- Etsy Shop Integration: Where possible, we’ll give your Etsy shop a new source of exposure by integrating it into your new shop.
- Product Transfer: The E-Commerce Build comes with up to 50 product transfers.
- Social Media Management: Integrating your social media is absolutely essential. I’ll make sure that you are all connected and that your new customers can automatically find their way to Twitter, Facebook and beyond.
- Blog Intergration: Were applicable, we’ll connect your blog to your new shop.
- Support: The build also comes with 2 months of email and phone support.
- Handmade Directory: If your shop features handmade goods, you’ll have a one year spot in the Handmade Directory waiting for you.
Your LAB E-Commerce Build should take 4 weeks or less to complete and at just $650, is a great deal and the perfect way to get your new shop up and running. Got questions? Drop me a note at email@example.com with ‘LAB E-Commerce Build’ or call at 415.779.5107.
Allison Velazquez needed a brand new e-commerce shop for her splendid online wedding boutique. We went with Shopify, creating a fabulous new shop.:
Brett made sure every detail was taken care of. My logo is perfect for my website. I recommend Brett for anyone who wants excellent service.
G Roslie has designed a great eco-friendly & modern collection celebrating Hawaii. We decided to go with Squarespace and the results are phenomenal.:
I love Brett & his company IAMTHELAB! I started 3 labels at various stages while knowing Brett and he has helped me with my website, e-commerce & blog build exactly to my specifications. He’s so easy going and ‘gets’ your aesthetic immediately which makes it for an easy & fun partner to work with! – G Roslie