Monday, May 30, 2011

Swapped to Slideshare from Google Docs

Thought I would swap to using SlideShare for my online document storage as:
-  there seems to be no community on Google Docs and,
-  since communicating with people 'in the real world' everyone is using it +
-  I always end up there when hunting down templates etc.

Took 10 mins to setup (looks and feels great; still more to do to optimise share) - I popped a widget/link into this blog (see column on RHS) in 2 secs. However, way too big, tried to reduce in the code but beyond my brainsmarts. Not wasting time sorting it out - so really sorry for the ugly look. :) 

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Streamline & automate your biz (whilst ironing): Multi-tasking at its best!

Any body hate ironing as much as I do? I've worked out how to make it more pleasurable (if there is such a thing) Listen to a podcast on a subject such as 'automating your small business'. Yes you still get interrupted by the little ones and have 50 attempts at listening but hey your pause button is worth a $million.

I have never heard of these guys - Brandon & Matt (US), they run a 40-45min session and once they get over some waffle in the first episode, THEY ARE FANTASTIC.

Here is the link to Automate my Small Business. I have landed you directly on their podcast page. Scroll to the bottom and listen from the start episode #1 til you get the feel for them. They encourage free sharing so ENJOY.

(Ms ironing lady is top of my list for first recruit when luk beautifood is launched; oh how I have missed her since being an @ home 'mum')

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

briefs + building my external team.

Head down, tail up writing briefs today for a new product, new packaging (range #2) & new accountant or to use the right biz term - an outsourced CFO!
Tho i have prepared all my figures/spreadsheets, biz plan and model I need someone who is an expert to identify the weakness, find more opportunities and keep me on track, & introduce me to the right people & services. It feels good working on the backend.  I have been reading and listening to Marc Peskett (partner via and like what he says. Down side - his firm is Melbourne based.... not sure this is an issue in this day and age with SKYPE, online 'gotomeetings', shareslide/google docs and cloud accounting so readily available.

pretty little pots for warmer days...?
There is some creativity happening too -  I have a beautiful mood board taking shape for the new range. Love visuals to create a brief inspires me. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

feels like Christmas - I can allocate posts to a page!

As i have mentioned previously I have been struggling with creating a Wordpress blog - I don't care what anyone says it is not intuitive like a blogger or anything apple or even a ppt presso.  Yes I am experimenting (even bought the Premium Linen $68 template to get a clean. stylish. look) and after many an hour 'doodling' whilst watching TV (The wedding, Q&A etc) I have finally got the gist except for allocating posts to pages.

After searching WP help, WP forum, U-Tube, Google I gave in and used what people think is probably the 'norm' ask HOW to in a WP forum. And guess what - I got an answer in a couple of days so can't wait to experiment one evening.

So, if you are building a WP blog from scratch, this maybe of use to you...
to file posts against a page in the menu

Monday, May 16, 2011


Woke to 2 sick kids - so my plans for my 5hr kid free day have gone out the window. Guess that just re-inforces why I am doing this 'Style - a - life" (more like family!) business.

Things have been progressing OK over the last few weeks. On the positive side - several people have contacted (off the online pages) & me and told me how much they love what I am doing - woohoo.

On the negative side - it seems the lab is full till July / August so I can't get final stage work done on my lippy range which means it will be tight for a Summer launch. My manufacturer is really sorry as they are down staff in a specialised area so it not easy to fill the position.

Saying this - it will make me work on a solution. a) Good enough is close enough....and start now on my presell strategy. b) seek a second contract manufacturer & a launch with a different range c) or go with the flow! 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

sourcing a cosmetic contract manufacturer

Knowing very little about the industry I was about to step into I needed to put my detective cap on to find out who were the best manufactures of cosmetics in Australia and who could meet my needs for MOQ, natural product, take a concept formulation to production, in-house lab, inventory management etc.

As outlined in my biz plan, i did the bench top development of my lippie range so I could create an innovative concept without being led or blinkered by cosmetic chemists - ie many formulations are 'stock std' with a 'brand make over' to highlight a new potent beneficial ingredient. This meant I did extensive online research of ingredients, their attributes, skin benefits and performance & compatibility.

From finding the ingredient suppliers (base oils & waxes, actives, colours, flavours)  I tapped into expert knowledge on who the best manufactures of cosmetics are in Australia. All I had to do then was start calling & emailing but to kick off the project 2 key things needed doing:

1) Create my brief of exactly what I wanted made, and
2) Get a NDA (non disclosure agreement/confidentiality doc) prepared and signed before I shared any info. (it helps if one of your best friends is a lawyer!)

I have attached both these documents so you can see what I did:
Contract Manufacturer Brief (contains just the heading for data I included not my hard work!)
Reciprocal NDA -  shows that the relationship I want to enter is a partnership.

From there it was a site visit to meet the people, see facility, understand capabilities.....make a decision

Happy reading!

bench top concept development of makeup made from skin delicious foods 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

How sweet!

Over 100 page views by visitors this afternoon and evening. This is really interesting research! 

What a lovely day - complete biz plan posted

It's a really good feeling to have finally posted my completed business plan, in doing so I have a little secret to share with you. It's written on the last page + inserted here. :) 

Click here for link to google docs to view live file.  Or go to Facebook: click here for facebook album
See pages 80 to 94 (end)

Taken from my last page.....