Category Archives: VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY

BAGETTES UPDATE

Thanks to Zoom, BAGETTES met twice a month during 2020.  We encouraged one another with show and tell, tips and tricks, pattern testing and challenges. We also shared via our Facebook group.  In the summer, we were able to meet safely outside twice to share supplies and see things in the flesh. This ability to work together and connect on a regular basis made a significant impact on our emotional well-being during a difficult year.  We plan to carry on and we are currently working on two new patterns for 2021 release. We have begun a series of bags recognizing our grandmothers. There are two so far; a French grand-mère, RYLEY and an Icelandic grandmother, AMMA. It seems we are diverse and there is more to come.
 
FUNDRAISING
An ART TOTE challenge using our wine tote pattern resulted in the completion of 10 unique, art-inspired, wine totes. These totes were featured in an online auction in July and resulted in proceeds of $1167.70.  We felt that the items that went to BB&B were our best yet and despite the difficult times, many bags and pouches were sold. 
 
ONLINE PATTERN SALES
With so many bag makers at home, 2020 was a great year for the BAGETTES’ pattern store on Etsy. https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/UJAMAABAGETTES
A few milestones were met and passed that allowed us to raise a cheer.
  • Four new patterns were released in 2020 and reception to those patterns was very exciting thanks to some help from our strongest supporter, Emmaline Bags of Spruce Grove, Alberta. When Janelle puts BAGETTES in her newsletter that goes to 25,000 bag makers, visits to our shop and sales sky rocket.
  • As of this writing, 1350 copies of our patterns were sold in 2020 – 53% of those sales were from our new patterns.
  • Revenue for 2020 passed the $10,000 mark in early December and continues to climb. This revenue is gross – does not take into account cost of supplies, fees, or taxes.
  • The first Etsy sale was on December 31, 2019. Since then, more than 1620 patterns have sold in the shop. This includes 42 copies of Backpack Bundle which is 3 patterns but is counted as one sale in the count. 
  • More than 400 shoppers have favourited our shop.  This affects the search dynamics sending more shoppers to our store. 
  • Ratings of our patterns remain five-star with almost 70 reviews.
  • We rebranded with a new banner and logo thanks to the support of Vancouver Island artist Anvil Island Design. In January we plan to do a formal launch of this new brand with a virtual party – aka sale.
If you have UJAMAA friends who share a common handmade endeavour, we strongly encourage you to try this form of meeting and sharing. Your group need not be formal. No one needs to be in charge other than to schedule and book the zoom nor does there need to be any high degree of organizing. Just get together virtually to work on your chosen interest, share ideas and patterns, chat, connect. You might be surprised at what may happen.

HANDCRAFTS UPDATE

COME JOIN US
Attention all Handcrafters – we have created a new Facebook Group just for us. It is called UJAMAA MAKERS YYC. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/2683255965337330

This Facebook group is intended to build community and provide support and ideas for our Handcraft Community in order to produce products for BAGS, BABIES & BEYOND. We will be posting links and files for our Custodian reports and links to projects you might be interested in. We are hoping you will post photos of what you are currently making and add content you would like to see on the page. We also would like to go live with the Rooms features so we can get together to do some projects.

RESOURCES and FEEDBACK
Every year custodians review what sold and what was held over. You can find specifics on the website – http://ujamaagrandmas.com/handcrafts/resources/ – and review the type of product you are interested in making.
Or read the all inclusive document 2020 BB&B feedback
These resources will also be available on the new UJAMAA MAKERS YYC Facebook page.

2021 FABRIC & YARN SALE

  • All the UJAMAA GRANDMAS storage homes are holding pre-sales of donations two years old or older as there is limited capacity for them to accept much more.
  • The short term remedy is to organize a Sale restricted to the current donations and postpone the traditional Annual Sale format until 2022.
  • The Sale space needs to be cost effective and large enough to meet the COVID-19 guidelines.
  • February 2021 or March 2021 is proposed at the Magic of Christmas warehouse location #1 – 4416 5 Street NE, Calgary
  • Nothing is definite until the Venue and the Sale dates are confirmed and both are still in the negotiation phase.
  • The Sale may be revenue neutral but other local charities would benefit and the storage homes would be emptied.
  • The Sale cannot materialize without volunteers so please send your contact information to fabricsale@ujamaagrandmas.com if are willing to help.

Thank you in advance for any help you give.

Good health and much happiness to everyone in 2021.

NOMINATING COMMITTEE

Please note that the Board is looking for one or two Members to join the Nominating Committee. This committee would help find individuals to fill the two vacant positions on the current Board (ie. the Events Liaison plus a Member at Large).

If you are interested in being on the Nominating Committee, or in filling the Board position of either the Events Liaison or Member at Large, please contact message@ujamaagrandmas.com and your email will be forwarded to the appropriate person.