Recently, I was trying to put together a barber themed party. Pinterest is of course the go to site for party planning and creativity, but it has gotten so intimidating and much of what is shown is so costly.
Finding inexpensive ideas for parties is very hard! One idea however looked cool, easy and cheap at the same time. Clicking through brought me to MomsandCrafters and a quick email exchange with Menucha convinced me that she would be a perfect fit for a CardCash blog feature. Beautiful fun and easy crafting, all with savvy savings. Meet Menucha and her site, MomsandCrafters.com.
Rachel: Welcome to the CardCash blog. I can’t help but love your creative ideas on your blog. Who is your typical reader on MomsandCrafters?
Menucha: My main audience is the millennial mom. A typical mom reading my blog is overwhelmed, strapped for cash, and has too much to do. This can be because she is helping to support her family, housekeeping, and/or taking care of the kids. She could just go and go and before she knows it, the whole day passes and she barely had time to go to the bathroom.
The goal on my blog is to give this mom a creative break without spending a lot and getting out. She can sit down to craft and 10 minutes later she can be finished. If your kids enjoy it, I encourage moms to do simple crafts with their children too.
I try to encourage moms to embrace their imperfection. Mothers are so overwhelmed and I want them to be able to come online to my blog and get a boost of encouragement. Like somebody who’s telling them,
“You can. You’re great. You’re doing a great job. Do something for yourself. Take a break and find a creative outlet.”
That’s my goal. That’s why I don’t share recipes for gourmet meals because another mom like me sees it and feels stupid about herself. What I am going to share is an easy inexpensive dinner idea, or just something fun like a pretty garnish or a cookie because it’s yummy. And yeah, I speak about coffee, because a mother like me survives on that ;).
Rachel: Your website has some really creative crafts and ideas, where do you get your inspiration from?
Menucha: Most of the ideas I think of myself, but sometimes I’ll see something somewhere and it will inspire me. I have spent so many hours on Pinterest so I can’t say I never picked something up or was inspired by a pin.
For example, I’m sure you’ve seen nail polish tutorials where people pour some nail polish into water and a few colors to marbleize them, and then dip their nails into it. I saw that, and thought that it would be so cool for crafts. So I did it with some beads and that was really amazing – it resembled gems for way way less!
I was pretty much one of the originators of crafting with nail polish. This is one of the first crafts on my blog, it’s from three years ago. Since I posted it, the nail polish crafting scene exploded. I see nail polish crafts everywhere.
Rachel: Wow, that sounds super original! How many people come a month to see your newest blog post?
Menucha: My traffic ranges but it’s at the average of 150,000 views a month but it has gone as high as 300,000.
Rachel: Wow! Would you recommend blogging as a source of income?
Menucha: Blogging is something that you can earn money from and it’s a business that requires very little initial monetary investment. But it’s a lot of hard work, like anyone starting a business can tell you. Another thing is that you have to have something original to bring to the table.
Being your own boss has advantages and disadvantages as well. When I was in labor, I was busy emailing a friend, “Hey, I’m in labor. I had a sponsor post due tomorrow. Can you help?” A few hours after the baby was born, when I was settled into my room, I was going through a sponsored post. Two weeks later I was fully back in business.
Rachel: That sounds like a real responsibility, what made you think of starting a blog?
Menucha: I originally started a blog to promote my handmade jewelry business. The turning point was that one day I read online that you can actually monetize a blog. That was the turning point. Eventually, I gave up my jewelry making business and focused fully on building a blog. There was a lot of wasted time because I didn’t know what I was doing.
In the beginning, I started doing a craft tutorials here and there. At one point I realized that if I don’t get really serious about this, I’m going to have to go to work! So I upped my game and started networking. And that’s when I discovered that I could just have a blog and it’s been awesome.
Rachel: What made you think about starting a blog on crafting?
Menucha: Well, I’m a mom and I’m a crafter and it sort of evolved.
I also love creating things and saving money instead of simply buying it.
When I started, I just had my first child and I was following a lot of deal blogs, but there were no craft blogs meant specifically for moms. Taking an honest look back, I did not realize how much work that entails.
Rachel: Tell us your secret, how do you manage a blog and 2 kids?
Menucha: When M’s home, it’s pretty much impossible. That is why we sent him to daycare this year. Also, I think a lot of it is self-forgiveness. Again, I try embracing the idea of imperfection. If the house is a mess, it’s okay, it will be clean by the weekend.
For example I took a video and it had part of my hand in it. I was going to redo it, but it was a very hectic time so I thought, “It’s okay”. I put it out there, and that was one of my most successful videos. It had maybe like 20,000 or 30,000 views.
But in general, I do like to balance my tasks according to what I could do with him around. One thing that I’ve been doing a lot more is drawing. So when I draw my adult coloring pages then.
Rachel: Do you draw them yourself?
Menucha: I draw them myself, yes.
Rachel: That’s really cool.
Menucha: Yes. I sketch in pencil. I outline it with a variety of drawing pens in different shapes and sizes. I scan it, clean it up, vectorize it so that it’s sharp, and cool, and professional looking.
I used to always doodle and draw. I had actually given it up and I couldn’t draw anymore, for a while, because of tendonitis and then I decided to just try it again when the coloring trend became big.
I love coffee and creating a coffee themed coloring page just made sense. To my surprise, the coffee coloring printables went crazy viral. I was getting thousand of hits a day from that. It was downloaded over 6000 times!
Rachel: What are your best saving tips that you could share with the audience?
Menucha: First of all, I love crafting out of items that I already have on hand or creating items that I would have to pay way more for in the store.
Second of all, I like to think ahead – to always be a step ahead because when you have to buy things as you need them. And I’m talking everything. I’m talking groceries. Even buying boots now for next year.
Thirdly, think twice before you buy it. Don’t buy when you’re overwhelmed and don’t buy under pressure. That’s why I love shopping online! You could leave it in your cart for the day and then either forget it or if you still remember it, you can go back and take another look.
In general, I like to know what my price point is for different items. It’s also helpful to know how much you need of each item and keep stock. There’s some food that you’re always going to use and it never goes bad: Pasta, tomato sauce, stuff like that. Stock up when it’s on sale.
Fourth of all, forgive yourself. If you’re going out to eat with your husband and you really can’t afford it now. Can you justify going out to eat with your husband? Yes, because it’s cheaper than therapy. You know what I mean? It does sounds extreme, but free yourself in that way. Healthy breaks are necessary for all of us.
Rachel: Anything else you’d like to share with us?
Menucha: I always try to encourage my blog readers to put things in perspective. Yes, your toddler is screaming and supper wasn’t made and your boss is expecting you to work tonight, but it will pass and you will get over that hump. It won’t last forever so enjoy the joys of motherhood and keep on saving and crafting!
Want to start crafting already? Here are some craft ideas that can be done easily and on the cheap!