Monday, February 4, 2013

Building Creative Kids

Artist Girl

My 11-year-old daughter has been involved in almost everything I create.  I've always called her "artist girl" because she has an artistic streak (she even gets purple highlights in her hair!) 

And now, as I do my mind mapping and pull plans together, I can't imagine not involving her.  To help her evolve her own thriving business that intertwines with mine.  We create together and we will now be putting it out into the world together.  I teach her basic skills and she puts her own artist girl spin on it.

I'm thinking what better way to develop real life skills like teaching, marketing and website design?  She's a hands on learner and launching this business will use her talents and strengths while also emphasizing commitment, craftsmanship, dedication and excellent customer service.

Helping my daughter create a business will also show her that making money, working together and building a business can be FUN.  

So, this weekend we put together plans to participate in a craft fair at a local elementary school.  She will be selling earrings that she made, note cards from her artwork, duct tape rose pens (which are really fabulous!) and possibly art kits.  We're working out the details of what her "product line" is and we're also focusing on professional quality.

Here are some of the steps we've taken so far:  

Developed product line:  Handmade earrings, note card artwork prints, duct tape rose pens, art kits and whatever else we come up with between now and then.

Made products:  We had a creative weekend and she made prototypes of some of what she'll be selling at the fair, as did I for my own booth.  

Registered for craft fair:  I went into our local Craigslist and looked for events and saw that a local elementary school is having a craft fair in April.  This gives us time to plan and produce!  I requested an application and am signing us up.

Registered Domain Name:  My daughter selected a name for her site and we registered it using  She chose "" which as it turns out, is a premium domain name and cost $1,500.00. So, I asked if she wanted to use "artistgirls" or "artistgurl"  She went with the latter cause she's independent like that.  is born! We signed up for 1 year of web hosting on using Website Builder.  It was about $37.00 to launch it as they're having a $1.00 per month sale.

Designed Web Page: My daughter chose a template, uploaded photos of her artwork and I showed her how to place them in the page.  She also wrote some text. The photo above is actually her that she decided to use as her banner.

Planned for Content:  We've been talking about what she would like to include on her site.  So far, it's video tutorials, information for other kids on cool art stuff, and selling her products.

Planned her first video tutorial:  She's going to make a video on how she makes her duct-tape roses.

Practiced making videos using I-Movie:  We made a goofy little homevideo to practice our editing skills.  We danced with puppets and the puppy, quoted lines from "The Princess Bride" and sang Teletubbies songs.  It was pretty wild, but hey! that's how I encourage creativity to begin with, by doing wacky, spontaneous stuff.

Purchasing Supplies:  We're figuring out what we need to have.  We're working on ordering prints from Vistaprint but having some issues with the pricing totals and I'll need to call them on that. I'm also plan to order business cards from them as well if I can work out the kinks.  We're thinking and will be making lists when we decide on more of what we want to include.

Next Steps:
Ordering a "Square" to collect credit card payments (We're planning for big purchases :)

Piloting Quickbooks to track our expenses and income (yes she'll be learning about how money works and budgeting it as well.)

Look at online shopping cart possibilities (if you know of any good ones, please share!)

Figuring out the Vistaprint debacle (if you know a better place to get card prints made, please share that too!)

Registering with Paypal to collect online payments

Shooting and Editing the first video tutorial
Doing what we most love-making art!!!

The process of starting a business is the same for a kid as it is for an adult. Follow our progress and see what we're learning, building and creating together.  It might just help you with what you're creating too.



Kelly D said...

Thank you all who posted your comments on FB. I've heard from a couple people who tried to post here that comments weren't accepted. I just tried myself from my phone and it didn't accept it. I'm hoping I've resolved the issue now...

shannon said...

I like this Kelly. Great ideas that you have shared and more importantly you are spending quality time with your daughter. I will read further posts!

Kelly D said...

Shannon, yes! Being creative together is one of the things that bonds us. As Marisa moves out of lemonade stand age, we need to kick it up a notch. I love that she's learning real life business skills-many of which I'm learning right along with her!

Hali said...

Kelly - this is so amazing!! Congratulations to you and your sweet ArtistGurl! What a brilliant idea and collaboration.

Kelly D said...

Thanks Hali! It's an adventure. Marisa is now also adding a service line to her offerings-more on that to come!

Anonymous said...

You are doing something wonderful that she will remember the rest of her life and pass on to her own children. Go You!! Cinda

Kelly D said...

I hope so Cinda!