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  • What goes into creating the Winter Celebration (and Box!)

    November 13, 2023 4 min lesen. 1 Kommentar

    Hi lovely Collective members,

    I hope you had a wonderful November so far! I've been leaning heavily into the coziness this fall – lots of evenings snuggled up under my favorite wool blanket on our couch with a candle lit, a soft WIP on my lap, finishing up final seasons of some of our favorite TV shows. (Which, for the most part were disappointing, sigh!)

    As busy as this time of the year is, it also feels a little gentler this year than last. I'm not sure what it is - am I better prepared? (Now I probably jinxed it...) Is life with a four year old easier than with a three year old? (Yes, definitely, if you ask me.) Is it just luck? (I'll take it!)

    Which is really lovely because it means I can actually look forward to something we've made a bit of a tradition here at Making Stories – our Winter Celebration. We close out the year with a non-religious calendar of sorts that opens its doors on December 1 and runs through December 10. Every day, we send out an email with a little something – a riddle, a giveaway, a gift.

    It's our way to say thank you to everyone who has supported us during this year, and to finish it up with something festive. Now, this year will be the last time that we'll run the Winter Celebration the same way, so I thought it might be nice to chat a little about what all goes into it and why I feel the need to change it up for 2024!

    You see, over the last four ... five? years, ever since we started the Winter Celebration, it's expanded from year to year. What started out as a "let's just send an email every day" went to "we're adding an extra blog to the website for each door" to "a physical box with items to open every day alongside the virtual doors would be nice". All of which were lovely additions, and I don't regret them one bit, but it's gotten to a point where it's a LOT. A lot to coordinate and set up and post about and publish on the website.

    Every year in October, early November, I start a list with ideas for the Winter Celebration. I like to have a mix of riddles and recipes, giveaways and gifts in there, and I try to balance them out so that there's not the same thing behind two subsequent doors.

    From that "blank" list that looks a bit like: Day 1 - Riddle, Day 2 - Discount code, Day 3 - Reciped... I start filling it in. I ask our fabulous team for their favorite festive recipes, I google riddles, I create discount codes.

    Slowly, the list is filled with content. Some of the days require a bit more setup than others: I like putting the recipes into a lovely layout and a PDF so that you can print them out and get started on them right away.

    Once I have all the content together, I head over to Shopify, our webshop platform, and create a new blog for this year's Winter Celebration. I add a post for every day, with a little greeting and that day's riddle / giveaway / discount code / downloadable gift / ...

    I also create a blog thumbnail for every day using Canva so that the blog looks nice and neat. Last, but not least, all the blog posts are scheduled so that they go live on midnight the day of their door!

    Next up: Emails! We always have a separate email list for our Winter Celebration (which you can sign up for here!) I write and schedule a short email for every day that takes you to the blog on our website where you "open" the virtual door for the day. To round it out, I add the Winter Celebration Email List to our newsletter to let people know how to sign up for it.

    This is the digital version – the work for the Winter Celebration Box started way earlier in the year, in the spring, when I started curating the gifts and products that would make their way eventually into a beautifully packaged box.

    Researching, testing, ordering 10 products that are produced by small businesses, fit the budget that I set myself, are available in the quantities I need them in and the timeline we're working with has been quite challenging. It's so much fun getting to explore new makers' work and I love how it's all come together – but it's also a lot of juggling timelines and communication!

    I love all this work - but also, it's a lot. So this year, we'll have our 10 day long Winter Celebration the last time – next year will look different. I don't yet know how – festive boxes? A shorter winter countdown? Just a pattern gift from us to you? We'll see. I'll enjoy the heck out of this year, and I hope you will too!

    1 Antwort

    Mel
    Mel

    November 13, 2023

    This is my second year of the Making Stories winter celebration Box.
    I can say I loved my first so much I got it this year as well.
    What I liked, if that can help you, was the cohesive style everything had, the products you chose, even when they are not knitting goodies.
    Everything you picked was wel thought, and great quality.
    I did another advent at the same time, and I really wished i didn’t get that one, and had yours for longer.
    I really hope you will create something like that next year, different, easier for you, but still great.
    I made 3 advents for friends this year, and it requires a lot of work and thought, even if it’s for friends.I appreciate your work even more now.
    So glad I stumbled upon yours :-)

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