This is what Set Up Shop alumni really think… + Registration Final Reminder


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Hey Thrivers!

Just a quick final reminder that registration for the May class of Set Up Shop closes in less than 24 hours.

I’ll be shutting the virtual doors at 9am, on Wednesday April 30th (AEST). Just to help out those of you not in Australia, that time is:

  • 4pm Tuesday in Los Angeles
  • 7pm Tuesday in Toronto
  • Midnight Tuesday in London

Set Up Shop is affordable (less than $100 for the Silver Membership), practical, based on what REALLY works (learnt via my own and others’ trial-and-error actually DOING what I’m teaching you), repeatable (you can go through the lessons over and over again and make progress), always available (I even give you a pdf ebook of the entire content at the end for easy reference), and connects you to a private, supportive community of handmade business owners who really want to make their dream a reality.

I think you’ve heard enough from me about the course… and everything you need to know is on the course page here.

I wanted to leave you with some feedback from a few students that I’ve received recently.

I can tell you how useful, practical, and inspirational the course is till I’m blue in the face… but the true test of quality comes down to what the course alumni think


Set up Shop has been the most productive 30 days I’ve had in my business so far.

It has given me the opportunity to reflect on what I am doing, consolidate and reaffirm what I already do well and give me the push I needed to put into practice processes that will help me to grow my business further.

The daily lessons have been thought provoking and provided me with a clear series of action steps that I was able to work through at my own pace.

These together with the incredible support and shared knowledge provided in the private facebook group have really proven to be incredibly rewarding. I am so glad that I signed up for the course and can’t believe that I even hesitated to do so.

It is a small investment to make for such big benefits.

Thank you Jessica xo

~ Tania Robinson


I have found your course amazing and it has given me the knowledge and courage to do this. The help, knowledge and ongoing support shared by fellow like minded creatives also participating in your course through the facebook page has been invaluable and a source of inspiration.
So thank you Jess for creating this wonderful course and sharing all your know-how with me, I really have appreciated it.
~ Minna Cleggett


Loved this course… Really makes you think about your business & gives you a big kick up the bum to help achieve your goals… Now writing this, I think I need to go over it again so I can see how far I’ve come!!

~ Brianna Murray 


Thanks Jess – so great speaking with you and being a part of your fabulous Create & Thrive e-course.

Participating in the e-course made me feel more connected to a creative community of women and tapping into both yours and their Australian and overseas business experiences, was so enlightening.

It’s great to learn from someone who has done it and is current right now, working in their own creative business too – all from your at home studio/office and on the road too – fab!

Love what you do, mixing it up with your Epheriell jewellery designs, simply beautiful, together with your Create & Thrive business concepts and teaching methods – just so easy to follow with really useful practical information and lots of common sense too.

I am now better equipped to work on and in my business, having shared in the Create & Thrive experience, and I am so looking forward to kicking it up a notch, nurturing my business along and watching it grow.

Thanks for your inspiration, energy and extraordinary desire to help others in the creative industry, to get it right.

~ Colleen Moutsos


This class is awesome. Best investment I’ve made in my business. The private Facebook group is filled with talent and great ideas!

Lisa Palmer 


Register for the May course of Set Up Shop


Jess xx

P.S. Remember one of the May students will win a FREE virtual pass to the Artful Business Conference!

Success Stories ~ An Interview with Ceramicist Camila Prada


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I have been following the work of Camila Prada for about a year now. Her ceramic jars and mugs contain more personality and life than usual. Each even has its own name! She’s also one of those amazing entrepreneurs that WANTS to reach out and say hi to each and every one of her customers. In other words, she’s a person. A funny, driven, incredibly creative person who jumped at the opportunity to share her story with you. I know you’re going to enjoy this interview.

Can you take us on the journey of your creative career path so far?

I went to the Ontario College of Art and Design in Canada not really knowing exactly what I wanted to do, and ended up majoring in Jewellery Design, which was really more like Jewellery Art. We were making tiny sculptural works which were the most beautiful objects. I really loved it. After graduating, I worked for a lot of artists in their studios as an assistant while starting up a little business on my own at the same time. I was doing the craft fair circuit but had zero business skills. After a few years, I felt lost. I was going nowhere. I also saw a trend that scared me: nobody seemed to be creating sustainable businesses selling their work. I looked for a course in ceramic design (which I was always interested in) with a big emphasis on the DESIGN side. I wanted to see if I could find work in a company, then eventually branch out on my own again, with more experience this time, and some money to invest. So I found the only course in the world that specifically trains designers to work for the ceramic industry. I travelled to the UK to study but after graduating, instead of working at a company in house, I did some freelance design work, and eventually started the business I have today.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve overcome so far in your business?

Money mindset. Anything to do with numbers. Not understanding cashflow. Not knowing how or where to outsource parts of my production.
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Maurice – Easily my favorite piece by Camila!

What has been the biggest ‘fist-pump’/successful moment for you so far?

There have been many. Everyday something really bad happens and something really great happens. Getting my first sold-out sale was cool though.

Do you ever have doubts as to your future creative direction? Are there things you yearn to achieve, but haven’t yet found the time for?

Of course! Nobody has time to do everything they dream about, especially when you have a highly creative mind. It just keeps generating more ideas. It’s impossible to physically manifest all that. Doubts are daily and plentiful too. For me, the doubts are more on the business side: “Are these the right product types I should be selling?” “Is my pricing right?” Stuff like that. I manage this by deciding on the most important question to tackle and creating an action plan to test and experiment.

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Bluey – A nice mid-century modern design jar

Are there times when your creativity and inspiration seem to disappear? How do you handle that?

My creativity has never disappeared, no matter how down or depressed I get. I use creativity to get me though the good and the bad. When I’m really happy, I dance around (in my living room) or make something just for fun. When I was really lonely once, I sat down and wrote poetry. It was a good way to express something and get though the emotions.

How do you balance your work with the rest of your life ~ what does a typical day in your life look like?

I don’t balance anything right now. That’s why these interview questions are weeks late. My life looks like someone running around, getting dirty with clay, then staring at a computer screen for many long hours while drinking green juice and peppermint tea.

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Sweet Talker sugar shaker in the foreground and Booty Shakers (for salt and pepper) in the background.

What has been the best marketing move you’ve ever made for your own business?

Getting my work into a weekend newspaper supplement. I highly recommend it. A short email and some tweets (always something relevant) to a journalist can do wonders.

What is one piece of advice you’d like to give fellow makers about running a successful creative business?

Just start. Don’t spend all your time “getting advice” when you are in the beginning stages – because like the creator of WordPress (Matt Mullenweg) said, “The business you start with is not the one you end up with.” You really have to find your own way and the only way to do that is by taking action everyday. Even if it’s one small thing.

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Cat with Half Moons – These are Camila’s newest creations and you actually get to pick their name! She then puts the name you chose on the bottom of your cat. You’ve just adopted a cat jar!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?

Me and this question REALLY don’t get along. LOL! Not just because I don’t know (and consequently feel silly that I can’t answer) but also because of what I said in the answer above. It’s hard not to give a very typical sounding answer to this common question, but I can tell you – I see myself MUCH stronger as a business woman. The money mindset issue I mentioned before will be zapped! I know that because I’m working on this now and I already see results in terms of how I FEEL when I talk about money or make financial decisions.

You can find Camilla online at:

Her shop:



This is Why I Want You to Make Your Dream Come True





I  just got back from spending 2 weeks travelling around Cambodia.

I have been to South-East Asia before… but I’ve never spent so much time in one country, travelling around on the ground between towns and cities.

It was an experience I wish every single person who lives in a developed nation could have.

Why? Because you will realise, in a visceral, fundamental way that you never have before, just how good you’ve got it.

I never truly valued such simple things as clean air, clean streets, and clean waterways before spending time in a country that doesn’t have any of these things.

Truly. I know I’m pretty lucky – and I work hard – to have the life and lifestyle I enjoy. But you know what? A huge part of my success simply comes from being born where I was… and taking advantage of that.

Most people in Cambodia are still so focussed on survival, that they will never get the chance to follow a dream. It is getting better there, slowly – but they face so many fundamental challenges. After all, over 20% of their entire population was killed in the 1970s during the reign of the Khmer Rouge.

I don’t know where you’re sitting as you’re reading this. However, given that you are here, with a internet-connected device, with leisure time and the curiosity about handmade business that has driven you to spend a few precious minutes of your life reading this article… I’m going to assume you are most likely in a developed nation, with a comfortable life. You have clean, safe water. A roof over your head. Healthy, clean food on your table and in your fridge. You have a supermarket nearby. You can walk outside and breathe clean air (I hope!). You’ve probably had a good education. In short – you’re one of the lucky ones, blessed to have been born in a clean, safe, wealthy country – and you’ve got endless possibilities in front of you if you would only reach out and take them.

Are you reaching out and taking them?

Or are you wasting your life just dreaming?

Don’t get me wrong – dreams are vital. Without hopes, dreams and ideas, we would never grow, change, evolve, or strive.

But in the words of the great philosopher + psychologist…


Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action. ~  William James


If you have a dream… don’t ignore it. MAKE IT REALITY.

Turning my own dreams into reality has been the most rewarding part of my life. This is why I’m so passionate about helping YOU do the same. I want you to feel the joy, the strength, the freedom, the fulfillment, the self-esteem, and the power that comes from turning the dream to run your own business (or whatever else you dream) into a reality.

Putting yourself out there and taking the risk to do this is scary. For sure. But as Susan Jeffers says: “feel the fear and do it anyway”.

The more often you take action, the more courage you feel. The more confident you become. Because you realise you CAN do it. You DO have the courage, the smarts, the get-go, and the information you need.

The internet has created a world where no information is farther away than a Google search. Don’t let lack of information hold you back – go out and hunt for it. Search the hills, valleys, and deep ocean trenches of the web until you find what you seek. It’s out there.

Once you have the courage, the passion, and the knowledge… you can make amazing things happen.

Don’t squander this amazing chance you’ve been given. You are one of the lucky few who has the freedom and opportunity to actually follow your dreams.

Don’t live a life of ‘If only’s’.

Live a life of ‘I did’s’.


Write it. Shoot it. Publish it. Crochet it, sauté it, whatever. MAKE. ~ Joss Whedon


If you want to turn your dream of having a successful online handmade business a reality, join us for Set Up Shop – a 30-day e-course where I take you step-by-step through everything you need to know to get a fabulous shop up and running smoothly. You’ll also join over 400 alumni in our private facebook group and gain invaluable support, friendship and understanding from those already turning their dream of having a handmade business into a reality!

Click here to find out more…

Image source: Robin Benad

C&T Recommended Reads – Week 17, 2014

recommended reading week 17

From Megan:

Set Up Shop Registration for the May 2014 Course is Now OPEN (with a juicy bonus)!

Set Up Shop - Take your shop from go to whoa - 2014 2


Hello Thrivers!

Jess here – I’m back from my Cambodian adventure… just in time to open up registration for a May run of Set Up Shop!

I wanted to run Set Up Shop one more time in the first half of 2014 for those of you who missed the February class, because this is the perfect time of year to finally get your online handmade shop up and running smoothly.

The holidays are far behind us, and Christmas is still a long way off. If you’ve got kids, they’re still in school, and if you’ve got a 9-5, there hopefully isn’t anything too massive going on at this time of year.


SO! If you’ve been holding out for the ‘right time’ to take Set Up Shop, I reckon this is it.


Set Up Shop - Take your shop from go to whoa - 2014 3


If you’re new round these ‘ere parts, and don’t know what Set Up Shop offers… head on over here to find out more.


Set Up Shop - Take your shop from go to whoa - 2014


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Registration is open NOW, and closes on April 29th.


BONUS: One of my May students will win a Virtual Pass to the Artful Business Conference!




If you sign up to the May course, you’ll go in the random draw to win this brilliant 2-day virtual conference pass to the premier creative business conference in Australia.

Why a virtual pass? So no matter where you are in the world, you can participate! It’s available to everyone.

This pass is worth $197. Along with myself, speakers at the conference this year include: Karen Gunton, Elle Roberts, Denise Duffield-Thomas, Valerie Khoo, Julia Bickerstaff, Tess McCabe, Lisa Messenger, and Victoria Gibson.

It’s going to be 2 days of amazing practical information, inspiration, and ah-ha moments.


Register for the May course of Set Up Shop now for your chance to be part of it for FREE.



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