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  • 5 ways to accessorize your graphic tees

    Do you love a nice, comfy, graphic tee? They are my lifeline. My closet consists of few other tops and I'm going to explain why. T-shirts are a necessity for most people. You can buy them blank or printed. They come in just about every color under the sun and in some shades of those colors too. You can go with a crewneck or v neck, and sometimes a deep v neck. Maybe you prefer a regular cotton tee or a blend, or in the most recent years you can also get a super comfy soft style or triblend, and athletic materials as well. They can be stand alone or paired with a kimono, cardigan, or hoodie. There are just so many ways you can wear a t-shirt for most occasions. Here are my top 5 ways to accessorize a blank or graphic tee. Jewelry. Whether its just earrings, or the ears, neck, and wrist, jewelry is always a great accessory. Maybe it adds a pop of color, maybe it coordinates your outfit, there is something about jewelry, even the simplest pieces, that can make a girl feel good about herself. Jewelry also comes in so many styles itself, and it can set the mood for something very casual to a little more elegant. Layers. Grab a denim jacket, a kimono or cardigan, or even your favorite sweatshirt and pair it over your tee. Not only does this add a layer for comfort, but it is easily removed if it is too much. These items can also help dress up or dress down your tee. Think of your favorite t-shirt. Now think of it with your favorite denim jacket vs your favorite leather jacket. The appearance can change drastically by just switching out that one piece. Bags and billfolds. These might not be quite as fun or cute as the others, but there is nothing better than a basic bag that will work for any occasion and matches most of the clothes in your closet. Think simple, neutral, and versatility. Shoes. Like jewelry, what you wear on your feet can set the look you want. And casual sneakers can be just as dressed up as flats these days. Headwear. Wear whats in season and don't be afraid to step outside the box. Do you own a million baseball hats or are you more of a sun hat kind of gal? This can be a fun way to accessorize depending if you are going to your favorite game, concert, or wedding. If you aren't sure, stay neutral and simple, and that will not only be easier to match but will go with more as well. Shoes. From a magnitude of colors to patterns and styles, I like to stay with what's comfy, and that varies season to season. Again, staying with neutrals will allow more versatility, but have fun and play around with what's in your closet. Don't be afraid to play around with the items you already own. Try a neutral tee under your blazer next time you need to look sophisticated but add comfort. Pair it with that maxi skirt you aren't really sure what else to wear it with. The best thing about a t-shirt, is it can be paired with just about anything!

  • Price VS Cost and the role value plays

    Most of us think as price and cost as the same thing and in technical terms, they can be. However, there is actually a difference. Price is the amount of money we pay for a product. Cost is the amount of money needed to produce that product. Price. The amount of money we pay for a product. It is one of the first things we look at when we are buying, comparing, or making a product. The sole focus is the dollar amount when we think of price. Cost. The amount of money needed to produce a product. This can include supplies, manufacturing, labor, overhead, shipping, packaging, and the list goes on and on. Then we add in the value of that item to get the selling price. Let me explain why value is important. If we only consider the price of an item, we don't take into consideration the value that item holds. Maybe it is something we need to survive such as food or clothing. Maybe it is something we want like a gift or a nice, relaxing, vacation. Maybe it is something useful like a tool, furniture, or a car. Someone who has access to public transportation or able to walk to work, the grocery store, or the bank may not place as much value on a car as someone who lives in the middle of nowhere and has to drive to get where they are going. Someone who places little value on looks may not feel makeup is worth purchasing or may feel that clothes can be plain and no name brands as long as they are clean and comfy, while someone who values appearance may want name brands, makeup, jewelry, handbags, etc. Some people may place value on a more expensive item dependent on the longevity of a product. When my son was much younger, I purchased his socks at Walmart because they were just socks. Walmart was close buy, they were inexpensive, and who cares what they looked like because they were just socks. As he started to get a little older though, he could wear holes in them faster than I could buy them. So my package of $10 socks now became a bimonthly purchase because they just didn't withstand the wear at that point in his life. So I started purchasing Nike socks. Even though one pair of Nike socks was the same price as the whole package from Walmart, the Nike socks would last years compared to weeks. So the cheap socks in the long run were actually more expensive. The reason custom or personalized items cost more than standard items, is because of the extra time it takes to make and the value that items holds. It is now a one of the kind item, made or customized to the needs of the customer or for the recipient that no one or few others will have. Some people are perfectly ok with purchasing an item from a big box store, knowing it was mass produced and has little uniqueness. Others love having something hand made or hand painted because of the uniqueness it contains or the fact that they know it was made or designed by the hands of people they know vs a machine doing all of the work. Where we place value is typically the factor in where we shop and how much we spend. We are more likely to spend more money on a jacket that we can wear the next 5 years than we are on a bar of soap that will last a month. We are more likely to spend more money on a pair of shoes that are comfortable and put less strain on our body than we are a pair of dress shoes we will need for a day. What is valuable to one person won't be to another. It should play an important role in making your decision on the price you are willing to pay for an item.

  • Let's talk pricing!

    Unfortunately, just like everything else in the world these days, our prices are going up. I recently joined a conversation in one of the business groups I belong to. Members were talking about price, and most were talking about the fact they hate having to raise pricing for customers. A few said they were not bothered by it and actually liked it. And while yes, we would all love to make more money, the reality of raising prices these days is merely to survive, not to get a raise or take a fancy trip or stuff our savings. And while I would like to make more money and not raise pricing, realistically that's not an option, and I am so grateful for customers who understand the market and that not a thing has gone untouched by the price hikes lately. And for that, thank you!! It is important for any business, no matter how big or small, to understand their cost of doing business. I see the posts day after day of people selling items but have no idea what their costs are, overhead, or labor rates. They are solely basing their prices off of what someone else is telling them they are selling a similar product for. Or the conversations of individuals who claim they have no overhead. I can only think of a few businesses that would have very little overhead, such as a computer or cell phone, and internet service or cell phone provider. And maybe those are shared expenses between business and personal use, but there is still overhead. I try to keep my pricing models as simple as possible, and you can find the basics under services on my website. While custom work is harder to price, as it seems no two orders are ever exactly alike, there is a basic model I follow. Not only does it cover the supplies to make the order, but it also covers time to make the products, ordering products, artwork, invoicing, communicating with the customer, packaging, and sometimes delivery. It also includes a markup based on my monthly expenses to cover things like insurance, utilities, equipment, repairs, advertising, donations, and all the costs associated with running a business month after month. Sometimes the pricing model doesn't quite meet community standards, and I can raise or lower the price slightly to fit those needs. Why do one off's cost so much? The simple answer is it takes the same amount of time to communicate with the customer, the same amount of time to design, load equipment, purchase supplies, and so on. But instead of dividing those working hours by a larger amount of product, you're only dividing those costs by 1. Or a few. The best prices always come from meeting those price breaks. Sometimes it's less expensive to order a few more of an item and meet a price break than to pay more for less items. I also do this when ordering product. Sometimes a case is better priced, sometimes just one more item qualifies for free shipping. It's important to do the math for the best prices. The other thing to consider when it comes to pricing is the value. And by this, I mean, is it worth paying more money for an item that will last a longer amount of time vs. paying less for an item that you will have to replace frequently. And the only way to know the value is to know your needs. I used to buy my son Nike socks because they lasted a lot longer than the ones I was buying at Walmart. They cost more upfront, but because they lasted so much longer, it was actually less expensive to buy the Nike socks even though the upfront expense was more. I often think of this in my business with purchasing a banner vs a sign. If you only need signage for a day or two, a banner most likely will be the best option as they are not made to be outdoors for long lengths of time and cost less when comparing equivalent sizes and prints. Wind certainly does them no favors. But if you need something more permanent, especially when exposed to the elements, a metal sign with prints made to withstand the UV rays is the better option. While it will cost more, it will last years before fading and most likely the blank with last much longer and can be reused with new designs and lettering for quite some time. While the banner would cost less, the elements most likely would destroy it and would need replaced probably monthly at the very least. You can always extend their life by adding a wood blank behind them to protect them from the wind, or take them down when not needed, and so on, but they will still deteriorate at a much faster rate. A good printer will be able to help you decide which options are the best for your needs and budget. Sometimes as a printer, I have to cut costs to meet a customer's budget. But I will always give you alternative ways to get as close to what you want within your price range. Sometimes you want what you want and are willing to pay the price and sometimes the price is more important than the actual design. Again, that value is based on your wants and needs as a customer. Hopefully this has given all of you some insight into pricing on the business end of things. Remember as business owners, we are also consumers and don't enjoy price increases or having to pay more to get what we want and need either. We have to know our numbers and how to cut costs when possible, to get you the best pricing we can.

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  • Custom Embroidery, screen printing, and signage


  • Midwest Leather and Thread | Midwest Ink Co.

    Midwest Leather and Thread Welcome to our wholesale site!! While most of the wholesale items we offer are apparel and headwear, we occasionally have tumblers and accessories as well. Need to make your order special? No problem, we can use your existing logo or file to fulfill your wholesale order for a small fee. Please checkout our artwork specifications here . No logo? We can help with that as well with our artwork services . Apply Now

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