August 8, 2018

☀ Back-to-School Special! ☀





Special offer for our Subscribers!
It's time for parents to take a break!
 

We are pleased to offer FREE SHIPPING
on orders over $50
 USD


At checkout use code: SUB-FREE-SHIP-2018
For best results copy and paste the above code in the coupon entry box during checkout.

Limited to 1 use per customer.
Good til August 31st, 2018.
For U.S. orders only.

 

Even though this offer is not available to our international customers, we do have something for you as well.
1 free Mold for every $10 ordered.
(Before subtotal.)
To use: Select your choice of free molds by entering the SKU# into the "Note" entry when you place your order. (International orders only.)
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July 26, 2018

Molds. Not just your everyday craft supply!


Dear Subscribers,

Have you noticed how fast time is passing? Before you know it, it will be Fall already! Are you ready for everything cooler weather and all that comes with it? Treats! Parties! and Fun! Do you have the molds to make those gifts, candy treats, party favors and fun projects for the kids and family? If you take a little time to update your molds, you'll be ready for all the Fall festivities!

So after you get your molds in the mail, you are going to be so excited to get started. So be sure to stock-up with your favorite clays, paints, or other castings of your choice. Most people use Polymer clay with our molds, but you are not limited to just clay. Check out our castings page to learn more about materials you can use to cast in our molds HERE.

Please take the time to sit back and enjoy this issue of My Molds!

All the best,
Marjorie with Mad About Molds

News that Inspires Imagination by Mad About Molds!


Visit us at www.MadAboutMolds.com 
 Stop by and say Hello!

 Molds. Not just your everyday craft supply. 






 The Mental Blocks to Creative Thinking 

Whether you’re trying to solve a tough problem, start a business, get attention for that business or write an interesting article, creative thinking is crucial. The process boils down to changing your perspective and seeing things differently than you currently do.
People like to call this “thinking outside of the box,” which is the wrong way to look at it. Just like Neo needed to understand that “there is no spoon” in the film The Matrix, you need to realize “there is no box” to step outside of.
You create your own imaginary boxes simply by living life and accepting certain things as “real” when they are just as illusory as the beliefs of a paranoid delusional. The difference is, enough people agree that certain man-made concepts are “real,” so you’re viewed as “normal.” This is good for society overall, but it’s that sort of unquestioning consensus that inhibits your natural creative abilities.
So, rather than looking for ways to inspire creativity, you should just realize the truth. You’re already capable of creative thinking at all times, but you have to strip away the imaginary mental blocks (or boxes) that you’ve picked up along the way to wherever you are today.
I like to keep this list of common ways we suppress our natural creative abilities nearby when I get stuck. It helps me realize that the barriers to a good idea are truly all in my head.

1. Trying to Find the “Right” Answer

One of the worst aspects of formal education is the focus on the correct answer to a particular question or problem. While this approach helps us function in society, it hurts creative thinking because real-life issues are ambiguous. There’s often more than one “correct” answer, and the second one you come up with might be better than the first.
Many of the following mental blocks can be turned around to reveal ways to find more than one answer to any given problem. Try reframing the issue in several different ways in order to prompt different answers, and embrace answering inherently ambiguous questions in several different ways.

2. Logical Thinking

Not only is real life ambiguous, it’s often illogical to the point of madness. While critical thinking skills based on logic are one of our main strengths in evaluating the feasibility of a creative idea, it’s often the enemy of truly innovative thoughts in the first place.
One of the best ways to escape the constraints of your own logical mind is to think metaphorically. One of the reasons why metaphors work so well in communications is that we accept them as true without thinking about it. When you realize that “truth” is often symbolic, you’ll often find that you are actually free to come up with alternatives.

3. Following Rules

One way to view creative thinking is to look at it as a destructive force. You’re tearing away the often arbitrary rules that others have set for you, and asking either “why” or “why not” whenever confronted with the way “everyone” does things.
This is easier said than done, since people will often defend the rules they follow even in the face of evidence that the rule doesn’t work. People love to celebrate rebels like Richard Branson, but few seem brave enough to emulate him. Quit worshipping rule breakers and start breaking some rules.

4. Being Practical

Like logic, practicality is hugely important when it comes to execution but often stifles innovative ideas before they can properly blossom. Don’t allow the editor into the same room with your inner artist.
Try not to evaluate the actual feasibility of an approach until you’ve allowed it to exist on its own for a bit. Spend time asking “what if” as often as possible, and simply allow your imagination to go where it wants. You might just find yourself discovering a crazy idea that’s so insanely practical that no one’s thought of it before.

5. Play is Not Work

Allowing your mind to be at play is perhaps the most effective way to stimulate creative thinking, and yet many people disassociate play from work. These days, the people who can come up with great ideas and solutions are the most economically rewarded, while worker bees are often employed for the benefit of the creative thinkers.
You’ve heard the expression “work hard and play hard.” All you have to realize is that they’re the same thing to a creative thinker.

6. That’s Not My Job

In an era of hyper-specialization, it’s those who happily explore completely unrelated areas of life and knowledge who best see that everything is related. This goes back to what ad man Carl Ally said about creative persons—they want to be know-it-alls.
Sure, you’ve got to know the specialized stuff in your field, but if you view yourself as an explorer rather than a highly-specialized cog in the machine, you’ll run circles around the technical master in the success department.

7. Being a “Serious” Person

Most of what keeps us civilized boils down to conformity, consistency, shared values, and yes, thinking about things the same way everyone else does. There’s nothing wrong with that necessarily, but if you can mentally accept that it’s actually nothing more than groupthink that helps a society function, you can then give yourself permission to turn everything that’s accepted upside down and shake out the illusions.
Leaders from Egyptian pharaohs to Chinese emperors and European royalty have consulted with fools, or court jesters, when faced with tough problems. The persona of the fool allowed the truth to be told, without the usual ramifications that might come with speaking blasphemy or challenging ingrained social conventions. Give yourself permission to be a fool and see things for what they really are.

8. Avoiding Ambiguity

We rationally realize that most every situation is ambiguous to some degree. And although dividing complex situations into black and white boxes can lead to disaster, we still do it. It’s an innate characteristic of human psychology to desire certainty, but it’s the creative thinker who rejects the false comfort of clarity when it’s not really appropriate.
Ambiguity is your friend if you’re looking to innovate. The fact that most people are uncomfortable exploring uncertainty gives you an advantage, as long as you can embrace ambiguity rather than run from it.

9. Being Wrong is Bad

We hate being wrong, and yet mistakes often teach us the most. Thomas Edison was wrong 1,800 times before getting the light bulb right. Edison’s greatest strength was that he was not afraid to be wrong.
The best thing we do is learn from our mistakes, but we have to free ourselves to make mistakes in the first place. Just try out your ideas and see what happens, take what you learn, and try something else. Ask yourself, what’s the worst that can happen if I’m wrong? You’ll often find the benefits of being wrong greatly outweigh the ramifications.

10. I’m Not Creative

Denying your own creativity is like denying you’re a human being. We’re all limitlessly creative, but only to the extent that we realize that we create our own limits with the way we think. If you tell yourself you’re not creative, it becomes true. Stop that.
In that sense, awakening your own creativity is similar to the path reported by those who seek spiritual enlightenment. You’re already enlightened, just like you’re already creative, but you have to strip away all of your delusions before you can see it. Acknowledge that you’re inherently creative, and then start tearing down the other barriers you’ve allowed to be created in your mind.






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July 1, 2016

☀ We are Now MOBILE FRIENDLY! ☀

News that Inspires Imagination! The Preferred Place for Clay Push Molds. Issue of My Molds Newsletter.

We are Now MOBILE FRIENDLY!

We are excited to announce that our mobile website is up and running!

A responsive mobile friendly website is perfect for all of you mobile shoppers, who love to either shop on the go or sit in your favorite comfy chair and relax while making your selections. Mobile browsing has exceeded desktop Internet usage and consumers say they won't come back if it's not available. So we just want to let you know, that we are thinking ahead so we don't turn any of our valuable customers away! 


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News that Inspires Imagination by Mad About Molds!
 



 
Visit us at www.MadAboutMolds.com 
 Stop by and say Hello!
 

 
 I could make that! 
 You worked your fingers to the bone preparing original designs for THE SHOW! Ignoring the aches, pains, and weariness - you set up, put on your friendliest smile - and greeted the public. Then "she" happened by.

You knew she was out there, somewhere in the crowd. The shopper who sorts through your items and casually states to her friend, within earshot ... "I could make that".

The standard PC (Professional Crafter) reply is usually, "Yes, but will you have the time?"

Many of the craft shoppers are able to go home and re-create your items. Hobby crafting is widely prevalent and now more than ever hobbyists are creating designer looks for home decor and gifts quite easily. The hobbyist is also capable of finding shortcuts if time is tight. There are TV craft shows, kits, books, magazines, e-zines, free patterns, classes, websites and more, all dedicated to teaching crafts and supplying new ideas and how-to's. A big part of that is time-saving products, tips, and techniques.

Many of the shoppers are at the shows for ideas, not necessarily to purchase. It's a fun atmosphere, and it's hard to resist the lure of all those fresh and original designs. So, where does this leave the Personal Crafter, serving up ideas instead of sales?

To some extent, yes. If you have an item for sale, chances are it will be copied eventually. But, what if we turned that around? 

Patterns, kits, demos, general supplies, The creation of a more interactive shopping experience. The same idea behind a makeover at the department store. The large stores aren't giving away product, time, and services without the expectation of making a sale and gaining future purchases, in return. The same principle can work for craft sales.

If a customer is obviously interested in copying your items, you might as well get a sale out of it, because they already have your idea. Encourage them to purchase the item to learn more, or sell them a kit or a pattern and supplies to make it themselves. If they purchase your item with the intention of manufacturing it, no problem, by the time they get it on the market you will have moved on to other things.

Get your customers involved in your demos, have them try the craft themselves. That way you are not only entertaining and teaching, but your customer then has an investment in your demo , and a sense of obligation to make a purchase. Demos are better attempted if you have more than one person working the booth, or you may ignore customers and lose potential sales.

If you have time between customers, working on your craft not only demonstrates your art, but re-enforces the point that your work is handcrafted by the artist - You.

***IDEAS :

Another option would be to keep a few kits in the back, out of sight. Then when our "I could make that" shopper arrives, show her some kits.

Supplies at the retail craft shops are pricey : Have a basket of economically priced pre-cut, pre-drilled wood shapes that could be purchased then painted for ornaments and wreaths, holiday decor, and inexpensive gifts.

Or doll blanks to be used in creating gift package decorations and ornaments. Pre-made bows, pinecones... the list of options is endless.

Sell instruction/pattern sheets and supplies.

Find out where the upcoming shows will be in your area, and have a local show schedule available for sale.

**NOTE: Read your contract, check with the show promoter, shop owner, or craft mall owner before placing pre-packaged items , kits, or items of any kind that might be deemed questionable in your booth.

Turn the "I could make that" shopper into your customer by offering them what they are interested in. Crafts projects are promoted as something that anyone can do, and a great many are doing. It's no wonder that sometimes a somewhat antagonistic relationship evolves between the Professional Crafter, and the customer who is also a crafter.

The " I could make that" shopper is your customer and fellow craft enthusiast, who probably doesn't realize that her comment is interpreted as rudeness. Make use of her craft expertise and point out the quality of your work, the time, labor, and materials involved. Don't assume that your customers will automatically recognize the effort that goes into your work, or even that you created it yourself. I can recall several incidents of customers turning to look at me in amazement when they realized that I created everything in my booth. "You actually made ALL that yourself?!"

It may not be easy, especially when you are exhausted and it feels like you have reached your last nerve - But artisans must be salespeople too.

 



 



 
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Let's build something great together!
 


 
 
 Contact Us!                                        
 
 
 
 

Fun Links:
 
 
  

 

Contact Us!

 Comments Welcomed!
 How are we doing?
 Let us know what you are thinking!
 
Website

The Preferred Place for Clay Push Molds!
 
When it comes to service, we break the mold!
Thank You!
Copyright © 2016 Mad About Molds, All rights reserved.
Subscribe  |  Unsubscribe  |  Forward  |  Update Profile  |  Archive

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Feel free to send this newsletter to a friend. If you received this newsletter from a friend feel free to sign up for our newsletter. We don't want to lose touch with you! We will not sell, trade or give away your personal information or email address.