What’s in a name? If the extent of my agonizing over whether or not to change my online business name is any gauge, then a name is pretty darn important!
Last month, I made a big change in my online business. I made the decision to re-brand my business using my own name, and I hired a graphic designer to make a logo that suited my business. I’m very pleased with the work my designer did for me, and I’m pleased that my business name is consistent locally and online.
I have three main reasons for changing my business name, and here they are:
My official business name, the one that I use on my tax return and on any official paperwork is “Elaine Searer, Sewing & Alterations”. I chose that name, not because it’s cute or catchy, but because it’s free. In Pennsylvania, I do not have to pay a fee to use my own name as my business name. If I choose a fictitious name (like My Grandma Sews), then I have to pay to file that fictitious name with my state.
Because I never paid to use the name My Grandma Sews, it wasn’t really mine. I had no legal claim to it, and if another businessperson wanted to go into business using that name, I would have no recourse to stop them or to protect my use of that name. I considered it highly unlikely that I would ever get into a business fight with anyone wanting to use that name, but just the same, the possibility was there that I could work to build a brand and then have it snatched from me. Some people might ask why I didn’t just register that name. I could have done that, but I’m already operating a successful local sewing and alterations business under a different name…you guessed it! Elaine Searer Sewing & Alterations. What are the chances that my local customers would ever begin to refer to my business by a fictitious name? Slim to none.
The last reason is just that the word “grandma” was not the image I wanted to portray to my online customers. I like being a grandma, but I was concerned that the using the word “grandma” would make potential customers think “old-fashioned”. While I do consider my choice of patterns and projects to be classics, I do not consider them old-fashioned!
My other concern is that while the word “grandma” seemed cute to use for a business that makes children’s items, it would not suit me if I decided to list items in my shop that are not for children.With the help of my graphic designer, I made the decision to brand myself with the business name that I already own and use: Elaine Searer Sewing & Alterations.
Some people have mentioned that they miss My Grandma Sews, and I miss that name a bit myself. I am, however, convinced that I made the right decision for me and my growing business.
If you’d like to see the rest of my new graphics, please visit me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elainesearersewing and www.facebook.com/groups/elainesearer and my Etsy shop at www.elainesearer.etsy.com .
Now that you know that a car seat poncho could help to keep your child warm and safe this winter, I want to share some details about the fleece car seat ponchos hand-crafted by me, Elaine Searer.First of all, the name “car seat poncho” doesn’t tell the whole story. These ponchos are great for traveling, but they are also warm, comfy, and easy to wear for other cold weather activities. The ponchos are made from two layers of anti-pill fleece, making them a soft, warm alternative to a winter coat. They can be layered over sweatshirts or sweaters or other jackets. These ponchos are especially convenient for those kids who don’t like to wear coats.
A car seat poncho is perfect for children of all ages who travel in car seats. You can see in the photo above that the snap-front poncho is just right for this eight-month-old. The poncho goes over the car seat buckles so nothing interferes with the child’s safety. Hand slits make it possible for children to hold a book, snack, or toy in the car, too. My handcrafted car seat ponchos are not just for girls. The style is gender neutral, and the fabric choices allow for customization to anyone’s preferences. Here’s a snap front infant sized poncho in a print that would be suitable for boys or girls. The snap front ponchos close with color coordinated plastic snaps from KAMsnaps. The fleece ponchos that I make are great for those moms who like to carry or wear their babies close to them. The poncho does not interfere with the carrier, but still provides warmth for the baby. My ponchos are carefully handcrafted using only anti-pill fleece, and the generous size range can allow you to purchase one poncho that can be worn for two or more years by your favorite little one.
The zipper front ponchos are made with a sturdy nylon coil or molded plastic two-way jacket zipper and include a zipper tab cover at the top to prevent the zipper from rubbing sensitive chins.
The ponchos come in a wide range of sizes and are priced according to size. Please visit my Etsy shop for more information at www.elainesearer.etsy.com.
I also invite you to join my Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/elainesearer where I post lots of pictures, news about fabrics and sales, and other fun stuff.
Keep your little one warm and safe this winter with a hand-crafted fleece poncho. All of my children’s items meet CPSC safety requirements.
Here in Pennsylvania, we’re still enjoying summer weather with temperatures in the high 80s, but these warm summer days will soon be a memory. When the temperatures start to fall, how can you keep your little ones warm and safe for fall and winter traveling?
You may need to swap out that heavy winter coat for a cozy car seat poncho.
Until a few years ago, I had no idea that buckling an infant or child into a car seat while he is wearing a winter coat is not safe. A puffy winter coat will prevent the car seat straps from fastening tightly enough to keep a little one safe. Here’s an article from Consumer Reports that explains exactly what can happen when a child is buckled into his car seat while wearing his winter coat. (Consumer Reports article)
A car seat poncho can be worn on a child over the car seat buckles rather than under them. The poncho drapes over the back of the car seat, and the front of the poncho covers the child keeping him or her warm and cozy while in the car.
Last winter when I found this pattern designed by Stitch Upon a Time, I knew I needed to make one for my granddaughter Aaliyah. Her parents were already putting safety first and buckling her into her car seat without her coat. They used a common technique which was to remove her jacket when she got in the car and then cover her over with it. The problem with that was that the coat would often slip off onto the floor.
I made her a car seat poncho, and she and her parents loved it! I used two layers of anti-pill fleece for comfort and warmth. The poncho zips up the front and includes a hood. I added hand slits so that Aaliyah can hold a book or toy. She liked it so much that I decided to offer these for sale on my Facebook page and in my Etsy shop this fall.
I’ve got lots of beautiful fleece fabric, and I’ll be listing the ponchos on Facebook and Etsy in the next couple of weeks. The ponchos that I’m making range in size from 3-6 months to size 8, and they aren’t just for traveling in the car. They are perfect for other fall and winter activities. If you’d like more information on prices and fabrics and how to place an order, please “like” my Facebook page so you won’t miss their debut.
The ponchos meet CPCS safety requirements for children.
I want to send a special thank you to my grandchildren, Aaliyah and Jayden who modeled the ponchos last Sunday when it was ninety degrees here in Pennsylvania. Don’t worry, we didn’t keep them on them for more than a few minutes!
Enjoy the rest of summer because Old Man Winter’s on his way!