Four Things Every Home Based Gift Basket Business Owner Should Consider

A home based gift basket business can be a rewarding and profitable experience, or it can suck up all of your finances, time, and energy like an evil black hole. Since you want it to be the former experience, take time to plan in the beginning. Here are four things that every owner of a home based gift basket business should think about.

Supplies

The supplies that you buy can go a long way towards making or breaking you. Since you are a home based gift basket business, most of your cash flow is probably going into supplies. This is especially true when you are just starting and need to buy a hot glue gun, cellophane, shredded paper, containers, and items to put in the baskets without know how fast the merchandise will move. Start small and don't buy more than you can comfortably store and afford. It's better to grow in the future than to start too big in the beginning.

Focus

Another thing you should consider is what you want to focus on. Although you may feel like billing yourself as the gift maker for every occasion, this is not practical. You only have a limited amount of money to spend on advertising, a limited amount of time, and a limited space for all of your supplies. Focusing on one area can give you the most return for the money. In the future when you can afford a warehouse and employees (if you choose to go this route) you can broaden your base.

One thing many home based gift basket businesses do is focus on corporate clients. People such as realtors need gifts regularly, and you may want to specializing in offering customizable and personal corporate gifts. If you want to deal more with the public, you might start by focusing on the holidays such as Valentine's Day and Christmas. Or you could advertise yourself as the best maker of gifts given to the parents of newborns. Specializing on one thing does not mean that you can't make baskets for all occasions, just that you focus your energy on targeting the best customers.

Sales

Since you don't have a retail front, you'll need to be especially proactive to secure sales. Networking is very important and you can never be shy about letting people know what you do for a living. You may benefit from joining the Chamber of Commerce or a business referral group.

The internet is another way to make sales. Even if you are focusing on local sales it is good to have a website so that people can look at samples and place orders online. Having a website doesn't have to be too expensive, but you'll either have to learn to do it all yourself or hire someone that you trust.

Commitment

Finally, think about how much commitment you want to put into your home based gift basket business. Do you want to stay at home, or are you hoping to move to a warehouse …

How to Start a Gift Basket Business From Home on a Shoestring Budget

Opening a gift basket business in your home can be one of the easiest ways to enjoy doing something you love, while making a nice profit for yourself. According to a recent government study, the home gift basket business is growing by leaps and bounds. If you have a creative mind, and like the idea of selecting unique items for gift baskets that make people happy, then this is a great business idea for you.

Learning how to start a gift basket business begins with coming up with cool ideas for creating gift baskets at home. To make this task easier for you, remember that most gift baskets have a theme like:

*Anniversary

*Baby Shower

*Birthday

*Christmas

*Easter

*Get Well

*Mother’s Day

*Retirement

*Thank You

*Valentines Day

*Wedding

When you start out with a theme, this makes it very easy for you to begin finding items that can go inside the basket. Keep in mind that you can buy the same items for each basket that shares the same theme. You can add little touches to make it more personalized for a particular recipient when required.

If you have trouble coming up with ideas for making gift baskets, you can go online and visit various sites that feature them. Use these as guides to making your own unique creations. Once your imagination has been sparked, you should have no trouble coming up with ideas.

Okay, now since you are going to be making this a profitable business venture, you need to switch hats for a moment and think like a small business person. You will need to find customers for your baskets, which means you need to set up a marketing system that works well.

If you already have a large network of family and friends, this is a great way to market yourself without having to spend much money. You can create some attractive brochures using your home computer, make up some sample baskets and take pictures of them, and include the photos in your brochure. Be sure to give your business a catchy name.

Hand out your brochures and let everyone know that you can make any type of basket for their special occasions. You may begin to get inquiries and orders right away.

If you don’t have the advantage of a large personal network, you can still get your business going relatively easy. Go ahead and name your business and make up the brochures. You should also set up a simple website to display samples of your baskets. Be sure to put the website address on the brochures.

Go out and visit small gift shops, beauty salons, doctors offices and other small businesses in your area. Ask if you can leave a few brochures with them. When people are waiting around at the counter, or for their appointment, they’ll see your brochures and take one home. This can get the ball rolling for you fast.

There are a few other things you need to know in order …

Want to Achieve That Vintage Style Look in Your Home? – Vintage Wallpaper Is the Key!

The most crucial element when considering vintage style is to find a style that best matches your personality and likes. You may need to put in some valuable research time searching for vintage items such as furniture, ornaments & accessories. Perhaps the best advice is to start hunting in local antique stores, vintage shops, flea markets, and even online stores. Keep in mind to be patient when you are looking for vintage items and antiques as it can take some time to find that perfect piece, but the wait is almost always worth it, as you will achieve that much desired unique style in your own home. The quality of the items should be assessed carefully but one of the best things about vintage and antique items is the quality of craftsmanship meaning that they are often created with such quality that they can really stand the test of time, as well as being a great investment for the future.

There are several key areas that you should consider when styling your vintage home. There are chairs & sofas, storage furniture, tables, crockery, glasses, cushions, vintage bedding, and of course the delightful vintage wallpaper. If you want to achieve that vintage style look in your home, then vintage wallpaper is one of the most important areas for you to consider.

Vintage wallpaper holds such an important role in the vintage look and nowadays there are so many different varieties and styles available meaning that instead of leaving your wall plain and bare, you have the option of adding more elegance and style to the room simply by applying some vintage style wallpaper.

The many varieties of vintage wallpaper are truly endless, some of the more popular varieties such as vintage floral wallpaper can really bring back the original theme of the style as well as nostalgic memories from your childhood! Rose wallpaper is also very en-vogue at the moment and comes in a huge variety of patterns and colour options to suit any interior design scheme. The wonders of modern technology and the digital age mean that you can source both modern versions and also genuine vintage samples very easily online and from the comfort of your own home. Indeed quite often samples can be ordered from online stores and be with you in a matter of days giving you the confidence in making your final choice. You can purchase some of the best Vintage Wallpaper or remakes of the original patterns from specialist online stores and also some of the bigger stores such as Amazon, Etsy and eBay, where often a bargain can be had!

So, what can you do to emphasise vintage style in your home decoration?

Windows walls and fireplaces can be framed with wallpaper to create a beautiful feature wall, which acts as a focal point and draws the eye to the feature that you would like to show. There are so many different patterns of Vintage Wallpaper, from the floral to geometric shapes as well …

How Can I Display My Antique Diecast Model Cars at Home?

Collections are a great pastime; However, if you've been at it for awhile, you'll start to realize that you lose the space in your home to boxes and boxes of antique collectibles. If you've found that you have no space for your collection it may be time to find a nice way to display it in your home. Below you will find a few great ideas that can take your collection of diecast model cars from a boxed nuisance to a fun treasure for everyone to see.

Dust Be Gone

One of the most common problems that collectors have when trying to display their Diecast Model Cars is the collection of dust. Dust easily gets in and on their collectibles making displaying them more of a chore than a fun experience. If this is a problem for you, there are solutions that will easily remedy the problem.

Display Cases

There are some places you can go and purchase display cases that are designed for collectible toys. You can often see these displays in toy stores in the Barbie section where the most popular items are. Ordering these display cases allows you to put your collection wherever you'd like. The cases are clear all around making it visible to all however it is completely enclosed warding off that dust.

Glass Cases with Lighting

Another great way to display your Diecast Model Cars in your home is to invest in a glass case. They are sold in different sizes and some of them are equipped with lighting that makes it easier to see your toys.

China Cabinets

Your grandma's china cabinet idea for displaying her fine china is another great solution that collectors of diecast model cars can try. If you have a decent china cabinet you can place your toys on the shelves. Since the cabinet doors are glass, they can make a great focal point in your living or dining room area.

Book Shelves

If you don't mind the dust too much, there is always the option to display your Diecast Model Cars on a bookshelf. There are plenty of shelving arrangements now that have different sized shelves making it easy for you to customize your display the way you want to. Book shelves are already great display pieces and can be stored in any room in your house.

Designate a Room

If your Diecast Model Cars are still in their original packaging and you intend to resell them at a later date than you will need to preserve them appropriately. Instead of taking them out of the boxes, you might consider designating a room or area where you can easily display the toys. For instance, if you have an attic or basement, add a few shelves that can mount to the wall. Place your toy boxes on the shelves for an easy display area.

When displaying your Diecast Model Cars please keep in mind that they must maintain their quality in order to maintain its value. Therefore you should …

Victorian Style Home Design and Its Remarkable Exterior

As you can probably guess, the term 'Victorian architecture' comes from the reign of Queen Victoria in the United Kingdom from mid-1837 until the beginning of 1901. During that time the British used to name the architectural styles after the monarch ruling in this period. So this tendency in architecture originates from Britain but it was spread in other countries, even other continents. In the past royalty was very fond of art and different influences from unfamiliar and therefore interesting cultures. This is why this particular style combines elements from the Middle East and Asia. It is believed that the Victorian style was conveyed in other countries by English architects who emigrated to the four cardinal points of the world taking their knowledge of what's in trend at home to the new destination they wend their way to. That's the reason why Victorian homes can be seen in Australia, Canada, the USA, New Zealand, etc. At that time, the communication and transportation industry were already developed to such an extent that information could travel faster so as news for what's fashionable in other remote locations.

The Victorian period overlaps the Industrial Revolution, meaning technology development. This surely contributed to the more complex elements of home design at the time. There are very typical traits of a house that is built on this style which are strongly distinctive. The first thing that might draw your attention when seeing such a home is the sort of tower-looking part of the roof, which is often present. Another part of the roof is steeply pitched and built as different parts and not as a whole, so it does not have a regular shape. Usually, the gable faces the front of a house, not the sides of it. But as the roof is divided to many parts, some gables might be turned sideways. The walls are intended not to have a smooth effect, so they are built of textured shingles. Asymmetry was probably honored during the period since the whole house is constructed with such an idea in mind. Starting from the front, the porch might spread along one side of the house and have detailed ornaments on the railing. Dormers are also very typical. Bay windows that lay outward of the main level of the construction are also quite common. Such houses are usually built of wood and have two stores. The exterior of a Victorian home as above described is very easy to recognizable.

Believe it or not, Victorian style home design is still found interesting and appealing by many. There are houses that are constructed to look that way with a few modern touches here and there. They actually have a kind of romantic appearance and can turn into the pride of any neighborhood. Nowadays, the very existence of them preserves the spirit of the past, making the property unique and remarkable. From the outside it may look like taken out of a history book, but from the inside they can be …

Jewelry Armoires Have Many Uses Around The Home

Jewelry armoires are a great way to store your valuable jewelry. They can keep it safe from intruders, sticky fingers and little ones who would rather play with mommy's toys than their own. But they also add a lot of style to the home, and there are many choices for where to put them. If your master bedroom is large enough, you will probably want to keep it there, but a small or over crowded bedroom does not have to prevent you from having the armoire you want to keep your jewelry and other precious items in.

If the hallway is wide enough, the armoire can be set outside the master bedroom. This makes it convenient to access if you are dressing. If you do set the armoire outside of the bedroom, get a model that has a mirror built into the lid on the top. This will keep you from having to run back and forth to see which piece of jewelry looks best with a particular dress or suit.

Jewelry armoires can also be placed in the master bathroom if you have the room in there for it. This is a good idea when there are little children in the home that spend a lot of time in mommy and daddy's bedroom. You can close it off and keep it a little safer. Be sure not to place it next to the bath tub or shower, however, because the humidity from the bath and shower can damage wood over time. This works best in a bathroom that has two separate areas for dressing and bathing.

Armoires can also be placed in a walk in closet for easy access and more security. They will not be in easy view if repair or maintenance people are around, and they are tucked away from little hands, too. You can also put your armoire in a spare bedroom if that will allow you to get a larger one for all of your jewelry.

Jewelry armoires are also a good place to store keepsakes, gold coins, precious photographs and even lingerie. The large drawers on the bottom are handy for bangle bracelets, jewelry that you keep in a box or other larger items that you do not want sitting out. If you keep your armoire sitting in the hallway outside of your room, you can put some photographs or a picture of flowers on top of it to make it less conspicuous.

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Benefits of Getting a Product on Home Shopping Channels

Getting a product on QVC (or getting a product on HSN or other home shopping networks) is a goal for many companies and / or inventors. In fact, for many companies or products, it's one of the biggest steps they can take.

But why is this so? Especially in this day and age of mass media and websites, where something like television is seemingly diminished. Why is it such an overriding goal to be on home shopping channels?

The answers are several, and I'll go over a few huge benefits to getting your product on TV.

The first benefit, obviously, is massive exposure. QVC, HSN, and other home shopping networks comprise some of the largest television networks on the planet, and have an eager, enthusiastic audience. While much commercial television has seen a steep decline over the past decade, the home shopping networks remain both relevant and strong. Their audiences have favorite hosts, favorite product types, and are regular viewers. And most importantly, they have money to spend.

The second benefit is a huge influx of sales. This huge audience that the home shopping networks command is an audience that buys. Hundreds or (even thousands) of sales per segment are quite common. In fact, there's no single sales tool quite as effective as a slot on a home shopping channel (plus, don't forget that all the home shopping networks have massive websites as well, and do online marketing quite well – I just got a " check out these offers "e-mail from QVC as I'm typing this.)

Another side benefit to all of this exposure is being seen by specific, important people – like buyers for chains. Don't think for one minute that buyers from retail chains aren't watching home shopping channels. They are watching, and this often gives them insight on not only new products, but also what type of products audiences respond to best. Getting your product into a retail chain can be hard, but if you are on QVC (et al) first, it becomes a lot easier.

So we have exposure and sales, the two most important aspects to most companies. What else is there? How about a chance to hone your own sales skills and pitch? When YOU are on camera, you are doing the selling (with help from the host, of course). But this really lets you show your sales chops, and your enthusiasm for your product. I realize not everyone will embrace this part, but for a certain type of entrepreneur, this kind of selling can be invaluable.

To wrap this up, the simple premise is this: Getting a product on TV can be richly rewarding, in more ways than one.

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Hot Dog Stand Recipe – You Can Make Yummy Stadium Style Hot Dogs Right at Home

I made hot dogs the same way pretty much for years. They were always okay, but nothing to brag about. I think maybe in the back of my mind, the lowly wiener was just not important enough to warrant creative input from my imaginative culinary side. Then one day, I decided to try something different.

As a youngster, I was taught to boil the wiener in water, put it in a bun, and squirt various condiments on top. But as I grew and advanced in culinary skills, I knew there had to be a way to improve on this method of cooking a hot dog.

Things that go great with hot dogs are: potato chips, baked beans, coleslaw, or potato salad.

This method of cooking the lowly wiener is now a regular thing around my house. My family loves them, and they really are good. Here's what you'll need:

* All beef wieners (you can eat that other "stuff" if you want, we only eat beef wieners; we also prefer bun length)
* Soft buns (you want fresh buns here, not stale, although you can steam stale buns back to life if you insist on using old bread – I have other uses for old bread such as Bread Pudding with Amaretto Sauce)
* Hot dog relish
* Sauerkraut
* Diced onions
* Mustard and ketchup
* Kraft shredded mexican style four cheese blend
* Hot dog chili sauce (Castleberry's is our favorite)
* Laura's homemade cole slaw
* Butter
* Tin foil
* Crock-pot
* Cast iron skillet

Now, you do not have to do everything the same way I do it. I am letting everyone know how I do it, and you can adjust as you see fit.

Please note the hot dogs need to spend some time in the crock-pot in order to be good, and the steaming method I mention below is great. Plan properly so the dog packets get to warm and meld inside their "packet" in the hot crock-pot. I usually make the dogs and allow them 45 minutes to an hour in the crock.

  1. About an hour before dinner, turn the crock-pot on low and let it get warm.
  2. Heat up the iron skillet, and add a tablespoon of butter.
  3. Fry the beef wieners in the iron skillet.
  4. When they have a good "fry" on the outside, sort of like you get if you grill them, remove and place inside of a fresh non-stale soft bun (I am very particular about my bread being soft and fresh)
  5. Immediately wrap the assembled bun and wiener in tin foil, sealing all edges.
  6. Place in crock-pot.
  7. Repeat with remaining buns and wieners.
  8. Cover the crock-pot and leave it alone.
  9. Heat up the chili in the microwave or on the stove.
  10. Prepare the other condiments.
  11. Get everything on the table, including drinks, chips, dip, whatever.
  12. Then get out one assembled dog at a time for each diner, keeping the rest in the crock-pot with lid on to

Work From Home Business: Coupon Publishing

Are you looking for a way to use your skills as a salesperson or as a desktop publisher to start-up a new business? I might have one idea here that is worth a closer look.

Somehow, about every six weeks, a neat, orderly booklet with coupons to the local auto shop, the pizza place, the veterinarian, the beauty shop, the local florist and a home cleaning service show up on my front door. I use the $ 5 pizza coupons and maybe the $ 5 off an oil change and lube without ever thinking about how this booklet came to be. So I found out!

Well, someone in my town is an entrepreneur, sells the ads, creates graphic designs for the ads, has the local printer involved and uses retired seniors to walk around the neighborhood passing out the 20 to 30 coupon booklet.

What this person does is she sells ad space in the booklet for literally pennies per coupon making sure to never have two of the same business types in print at the same time. I see many of these coupons again and again which tells me they must be working!

This lady guarantees a certain number of booklets will be distributed and charges her customers by the 1,000 coupons. Part of the distribution is door-to-door but I see some of them in a small rack at the local grocery store too.

I did some research and found that there is a lot of information on the Internet about going into the coupon business. Most of what I read was positive. There is advice on color combinations for the coupons that are less expensive than other color combinations (I did not know that) and that printers are very competitive when it comes to bidding on this type of work.

Now the question remains can you sell the ads? Most business owners are going to be receptive to your sales call. Hand to them a color sample of a coupon. It is likely they have purchased a similar coupon ad in the past. The business owner will want a written assurance that you will distribute the number you promise so make that guarantee a strong selling point.

Your advertising fees are collected upfront so there is very little business capitalization required. Make sure the printer is paid and set aside some funds for those door-to-door seniors.

You can even purchase a mailing list or addresses by zip code and get into the bulk mailing business. Those business owners you approach would, if asked, likely say that you are doing them a favor since they do not have the time or expertise to do this on their own.

The online experts agree that the most difficult part is selling space for the very first issue. Make sure to include in your advertising contract the specific number of hand delivered or mailed booklets, that no two similar business will be in the same booklet and that each coupon will be …