Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Goals, Simplifying, Snipping, Sewing and Selling


It's Spring! (Finally.) It was a long Winter with plenty of time to think and plan. We have new goals. Weekly goals to keep us on track. Goals are good. They are a great motivator when you 'just don't feel like it'. They also provide some accountability...if you tell someone else about your goals, that is. “Gie” got us moving in the right direction. “Ok, ladies, we need some goals!” She did some figuring. (After all she is our numbers-girl.) So far so good. We've been sticking to our numbers...mostly. We're almost on track with our overall goal. But, without goals, where would we be? Not as far along as we are now.

We've decided to streamline and simplify. Not only our individual products, but our list of products as well. Beginning last summer we started selling our Market Bags. Remember our Doppio Petite. Say, what? Right. Our names are simpler now. Our products are streamlined. We took the wonderful basic design of the Petite and stayed simple. As a result we were able to price it so it's affordable for the average girl. (Ok, no one is average in our estimation! We are all amazingly and uniquely created.) Anyway, win-win, right? In addition to our Market bag, we've just recently started making the City bag. Still made from coffee bean burlap and repurposed fabrics, but in a simple crossbody design.

We're also very excited to soon be releasing our new green home d├ęcor products! You'll be able to add some burlap flair to your home with diengie re-pillows (pillow covers) and table runners, in addition to our current coaster sets. Cottage, traditional, country french, tuscan, modern? Our burlap fabrics make a great accent to just about any type of decorating style. Our re-pillows and table runners will debut at the July 21 Bellissimo Art Show at Gervasi Vineyard. Make sure you are one of the first to see our new products! Mark your calendars now for Bellissimo at Gervasi on Sunday, July 21. After the art show we will list our new products in our Etsy shop.

Wholesale is the name of the game this year. We've been blessed with wholesale orders coming in lately—enough to keep the three of us busy. (We're hoping for more orders to keep more than just us busy!) God continues to surprise us with orders.  Really.  The orders we've gotten so far are not even avenues we have pursued--or considered pursuing!   He is teaching us to continue to rely on Him for direction and success in our business. And, most of the orders we have gotten have come as a result of someone passing our name along...knowing someone with a shop that would be great for our products. We are so blessed with friends who love Diengie just as much as we do. We love our friends. Without your support, prayers, marketing and business we wouldn't be where we are today. Thank you.

Stay tuned for more updates and insider info!  Visit our website at diengie.com

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Momentum

The momentum is building...slowly. We are working to get geared up and get back in the game. We took a break for a move and a wedding--both events very much worth the time spent! Angie is happily married--celebrating with a memorable and unique ceremony and reception. And, now all three Diengie girls are (finally) in the same city. It has been 5 long years of long distances separating our families and challenging business operations. Throughout those years we were successful in sales and were very excited to gain so many customers who love our bags. Now that we are in the same city we are ready to pick up where we left off and continue on. The possibilities for Diengie grew with that move. We are working on a complete line of products which will become our traveling set which will make doing home shows this year a bit simpler. Our next goal is to start stocking up on merchandise. Our shop has been very quiet over the past few months. That should start changing soon. After that we plan to produce as many of our accessories as possible with the hope of selling to wholesale customers. So, with all these plans we are quickly realizing we will need more hands to get the work done. It is exciting and scary to think about hiring people to do piece work for Diengie. Wow! It really makes it feel like we are making headway. In addition to all of this we are also having our website overhauled by friend Jamie Stahler. He brings web, print and marketing experience to the table. All of which will greatly increase Diengie's potential. Soon our new website will be up and running. The modern design will help us pull more customers and we will also be able to sell directly from our site. We will let you know when it's time to check out the final product. Until then, please continue to pray for us. We are doing more than just building a business. Our dream is to grow a business that will support a ministry. Your prayers and support are very important to us at Diengie. Until next time...

heiDI, karEN and anGIE
DIENGIE DESIGNS

Friday, February 27, 2009

Is that a diengie bag?

We had our first Diengie Purse Party on February 20 and it was a huge success! It was exciting getting ready for the party, yet very nerve-wracking. You know what they say about first impressions. . .well, we wanted our first party to be a big hit! We planned and prepared and took care in setting up our 'shop' in Angie's house. Then, our guests started to arrive, and kept arriving, and arriving. Angie's home was soon filled to capacity and our party was off to a great start. As I mentioned, we are rookies at this purse party scene, but not the women at our party. Oh no, they knew what to do. They went straight for the bags and snagged any and all that caught their eye. Now I may be biased, but I think for many it was love at first sight! Soon after, our shoppers were wanting to complete their purchases. We newbies had to ask them to slow it down and let us catch up. Their zeal was a huge compliment to us. We then sat them all down, pulled out our brag book and told them about our baby--diengie. It was a brief intro, but we hope it conveyed our hearts which are now totally entwined with this business which dreams of becoming a ministry. Ok, on with the sales. . . With a diengie bag or two hanging from their forearms, they lined up to become a diengie bag owner. When we saw the line of customers--well, wow! What else could we say? Needless to say, we were pleasantly surprised at our sales for the evening and with the number of people who attended.


After the party, still basking in the glow of our bright success, we got a call from a friend who had been at the party that evening. After leaving Angie's house she had gone to a movie--carrying her diengie bag. While there someone asked, "Is that a diengie bag? I have one too!". Well, our friend was surprised and happy for us that our name was spreading. As for us, well, that was the icing on the cake for that evening! Since our business was born we have dreamed about diengie being a household name. Ok, so we're not there yet, but here we come!


If you are interested in attending the next Diengie purse party in Canton, OH watch for emails in your inbox. If you are not on our email list ask us to add you. Email us at diengie@diengie.com.


Don't forget to visit our shop at http://diengiedesigns.etsy.com/

Monday, September 15, 2008

Change is in the air...

hhhhWell, the hot and sunny summer days have given way to cooler temperatures... at least for today. Fall is in the air! I can't say I am a very big fan of the changes that autumn brings...cooler days and chilly nights (I'm always cold so I like the weather hot!), the kids back in school (I love to have the kids at home thank you very much!), and everything that was green turning to brown (I love the green of summer).
hhhhChange is in the air. It could be that to me Fall means change. Maybe change is what I am always opposed to (not so much the season)... at least at first anyway. For change to come, things usually have to get shaken a bit! Just like the leaves falling off of the trees and being scattered everywhere...All of our neat little piles and lists, and the way we do things have to be shaken up or re-thought. And at times it feels like we just have to throw it all away and start over again. But really, for change to come we have to take what is good from the past and use it as a foundation to build on in the future.
hhhhDiengie is experiencing some growing pains in this season. Already outgrowing our new studio space and questions about how to produce more product at a faster rate are main concerns right now. Not sure how to make the dreams inside of us reality, we just keep plugging along- one bag at a time. Slow but sure. Steady wins the race!
hhhhYou see, its not really just about making bags. Oh, yes, we love making bags. And that is the work that God has given us to do... but it is just the tip of the iceberg... the small beginning. There is so much more. More vision. A bigger picture.
hhhhThere is usually lots more iceberg under water than iceberg that is visible above the water. Diengie is a lot like that. You may see only that we make bags. And that is true. But there is so much more. More to come. More in our hearts. More to the picture.
hhhhWe have a dream. A really scary big dream! At least for us it is. Please stay tuned in the weeks and months to come. We will begin to reveal parts of the iceberg that lie 'under the water'! Unveiling our dream is a little risky... a little unsettling. If the dream stays hidden, it is seemingly protected. If no one knows the dream... no one can say, "It can't be done!". But uncovering the dream means taking a risk. So bear with us as we prepare to let you in to 'see' the bigger picture- why we do what we do- what motivates us.
hhhhIn the meantime remember with me that change is GOOD! And change has to be embraced for your dreams to be realized!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Diengie Summer Newsletter—August 2008

For diengie, summer has come with some transitions. By the end of summer each of us will have moved to a new home. This means our main studio has relocated and we have had to take some time off from diengie to get settled. Now we are getting back into the swing of things and are ready to release our next three designs. We have two new bags in our Green Bean collection! The Doppio Meta and Doppio Terzo, made from coffee bean bags. And, a third bag called The Page, made from recycled linens.

The Doppio Meta—Italian for half double—our reversible purse, is about half the size of and is patterned after our Doppio Petite. It is a must have! We love its size and style. It’s perfect for carrying your everyday needs—wallet, keys, phone, checkbook, small makeup bag, etc. Bag dimensions: 17" wide x 9" tall x 6" deep. Includes button closure and key loop.

The Doppio Terzo—Italian for a third double—our smallest reversible tote, is about a third of the size of and is patterned after our Doppio Grande. It is just right for your favorite book and journal. It would also be great as a purse or a ‘just the basics’ diaper bag. Bag dimensions: 13" wide x 11" tall x 5" deep.

The Page is our ultra-organized messenger featuring 5 pockets, two 'scrunchie' cup/water bottle holders and key clip on the inside. The outside has 3 pockets, large flap with easy magnetic closure and an adjustable strap with cell phone pocket. Also comes with a zippered wristlet. . .for all the small things you need to carry. We think the Page would be great as a purse, school bag or diaper bag. If you use the Page as a diaper bag, we suggest using the wristlet for mom's stuff. Just pull it out of the bag when going out without baby. Your purse is always packed--no changing purses! This bag is made with all recycled and refreshed fabrics. Measures approx. 12" wide, 14" tall, and 4" deep.

Speaking of change. . .We at diengie are gearing up to do more about the continuing problem of plastic grocery bags and their effect on the environment. In addition to using our own reusable shopping bags every time we shop, we would like to challenge all of you to use reusable shopping bags too. Below are just a few reasons to stop being a plastic shopping bag consumer:

“Plastic bags are not biodegradable. They clog waterways, spoil the landscape, and end up in landfills where they may take 1,000 years or more to break down into ever smaller particles that continue to pollute the soil and water. Plastic bags also pose a serious danger to birds and marine mammals that often mistake them for food. Thousands die each year after swallowing or choking on discarded plastic bags. Finally, producing plastic bags requires millions of gallons of petroleum that could be used for transportation or heating.”

quote found at: http://environment.about.com/od/reducingwaste/a/no_plastic_bags.htm

Here are some hints to help make using your own shopping bags easier:

1. Keep your shopping bags together and in an obvious place—near your front door, in the car, etc.—so they are easy to remember on your way out the door.
2. Generally, for a week’s worth of groceries, for a family of five, you will need about 4-6 reusable grocery bags, depending on the size of the bags.
3. Before checking out at the register make sure to tell the cashier that you have your own bags.
4. Reuse plastic and/or paper bags at the store. (Please RECYCLE them if you don’t plan to reuse! Some stores have recycling bins just for plastic bags.)

Stay tuned to find out our next step in reducing plastic bag use in our community. Please check out the website link above to learn more about plastic bags and their impact on the environment.

Shop online at http://diengiedesigns.etsy.com and visit our website at http://diengie.com. More designs are on the drawing board. . .check back often. And, we will soon have more Doppio Grandes and Doppio Petites in our shop!

Go green, in style!
heiDI, karEN, anGIE

Friday, June 13, 2008

Moving news!

This is a busy time for the three of us who make up Diengie. We are in the middle of moving! One of us just recently moved...another will move at the end of this month. The third will be moving in the next couple of months. That means our studio will be moving too. Oh my, its a little overwhelming just thinking about that! It takes a lot of fabric and coffee bean bags to make all those doppios! But we will have a larger space once we do get moved, so it will be worth all the effort it will take to tear down and set up again. We are thinking of ways to get more organized so that our process is more efficient and we can create more great bags. Moving to a new place and space is like getting a fresh start... and we are ready! Ch...Ch...Ch...Changes!
Wonder what interesting new changes are in store for Diengie? Stay tuned to find out.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

New Products



We have been busy designing some new products here in the studio. Just a few days ago two new items were released and listed in our Etsy shop... the Peaberry Pouch and the Latte Loop. They're just a couple of fun accessories to use with your Doppio Petite or Doppio Grande. We use the scraps left over from making the Doppios to create these newest additions. See if you can find one, or both, made from the same fabric as your Doppio bag. Our soon to be released 'new and improved Doppios will include a fabric loop for hanging your Latte Loop in your bag, and a pocket just the right size for the Peaberry Pouch!

Designing new products is one of my favorite things to do. Its exhilarating to picture a bag, or a pouch, or a key loop in my mind and then watch as it comes to life during the design and prototyping process. I just have this insatiable need to create! Designing one thing and having it turn out well only makes me want to create more... and I am off again! This does make it a bit trying to keep the shop stocked with our popular items- since designing new ones is much more fun! I know... I know... balance is the key here. I have to be content with the sameness of making bags over and over - but I live for the days when I take a "creating" break. It does help that just about every bag we make is created from different fabric combinations. I don't know how I would push myself to make twenty... or one hundred of the exact same bag! Guess I'm not cut out for the assembly line... rather make OOAKs (one of a kinds)any day!

Watch for more new designs... two of us have been creating lately! Next month we will be releasing two new purses to add to our 'Green Bean' Collection.