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New Design for World Otter Day

Currently, there are thirteen species of otters worldwide. All of them are monitored and five of the thirteen are endangered. World Otter Day (International Otter Awareness Day) is a day to celebrate otters around the world. Held on the last Wednesday of May, you can spend the day visiting otters in the zoo, reading about otters, or donating to the International Otter Survival Fund. Here at Otter Things™, I decided to release a new design for the otter fan.

Otter Things™ has a presence on social media and I do my best to post often. Like many, I use emojis and emoticons in posts but I couldn’t find any of an otter. I realized that otters weren’t represented in the character world like cats, dogs, or even unicorns :(.

My new design is great for those that <3 otters. Emottercon is a play on the word emoticon (a representation of a facial expression created by typing a sequence of characters in sending email) and the illustration of an otter using various font characters.

I just couldn’t wait until the end of May to release this design, so you can buy yours starting today. Now you have a great t-shirt to wear while you celebrate World Otter Day. I’ll be showing mine off on Twitter and Facebook. I’d love for you to post pics as well.

Have a Happy World Otter Day.

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Making Some Otter Changes: Part Two

All of my products at Otter Things™ are printed as soon as the customer orders them. Because of that, each product is printed especially for you when you order.

When I was developing my shop, I was thrilled to find a company for my printing needs. Printful, the company that prints my designs, uses multiple brands for apparel lines. In the past I chose American Apparel® for my designs because they were made in America, the quality of clothing was nice, and the material was soft and comfy.

Unfortunately, American Apparel® went bankrupt and their clothing was no longer available. This meant that I had to find another brand for my Otter Things™ line of clothing. I’ll admit that I panicked for a couple of hours.

After some deep breathing and a lot of research, I was able to select worthwhile alternatives for my store. There are specific things that I look for in my apparel brands: quality, cost, and availability.

Quality

When I buy a shirt or hoodie, I want the item to last. Poor quality, like loose stitchery, is a huge turnoff. I also like soft materials, like ring-spun combed cotton. They are more appealing against the skin.

Along with material and workmanship, the fit is another important factor of quality. The cut of a t-shirt can vary between brands and between styles of a single brand.

Cost

No one wants to pay $30 for a t-shirt. If the cost of the blank shirt is expensive, the cost of the final product will be expensive. I always try to find a reasonably priced brand.

Availability

When it comes to putting my designs on apparel, I prefer using more than black and white styles. Reds, blues, and greens make some of the designs pop, and give my customers a chance to vary their wardrobe.

After ordering samples of various t-shirts and hoodies, I finally narrowed it down to the companies that I will utilize for my apparel line.

My line of t-shirts will include Bell+Canvas® brand apparel. The shirts are 100% combed and ring-spun cotton and very soft. The unisex style fits both men and women like a well-loved classic.

The color selection is similar to American Apparel®, but the fit is nicer. The bottom hem falls a little lower for better coverage. I am also able to offer sizes up to 4XL. Let’s face it, not everyone is a size 2.

Hoodies will come from Gildan® and are also an improvement over my previous style. Plush feel without bulk, make the hoodies cozy. Also available up to 4XL, they come in a greater range of colors.

My newest product, baby onesies, will still be available. The Rabbit Skins® brand from LAT Apparel® is made of 100% combed ring-spun cotton. They also have reinforced three snap closures and lap shoulders for easy changing, because wee otter fans wriggle a lot.

So what does all of this mean for you, the customer? Well, my products are still available for purchase, they are softer, fit better, and best of all they are less expensive. My cost for using these new products has gone down so I am passing that cost right on to you. Hey, you deserve it.

I hope my new style of apparel will meet your approval. I do aim to please. I will continue to add more designs and colors as they become available. In the meantime, you otter be checking them out.

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Making Some Otter Changes: Part One

Some of you may have bought my illustrations on products from CafePress or Zazzle. First of all, thank you. I started my creations because I had a hard time finding otter paraphernalia in stores or on the web. It means a lot to me to know that I am able to provide items for other otter lovers in the world. Second, I am making some changes to what you can find at those shops.

I used my CafePress and Zazzle stores as a jumping off point. They are great outlets for designers that don’t want to worry about having their own site, and just want to have some fun designing. Well, I am moving on to building my brand and have my own shop. I still have fun, but it is also a business. I want more control over my designs, products, and marketing than these outlets will allow. So, some of my designs will no longer be available at my CafePress and Zazzle shops.

I am in the process of removing designs from these sites but they will still be available here at Otter Things. It will be a slow process, but eventually, Otter Things will be the only outlet for my designs, including my I Otter Be® line. What does this mean for you, the customer? Well, one otter outlet to rule them all, special Otter Things discounts, and improved quality of printing are just a few of the changes you will see.

When you shop at Otter Things you are guaranteed that you are buying one of my illustrations. Other outlets sell illustrated wares by other creators, and sometimes if can be difficult to tell if you are getting an Otter Things original. I Otter Be® is my registered trademark for my line of illustrations with my cute and active otter. Don’t be fooled by impostors. Soon they will only be available through this site.

Having all of my designs in one spot also makes it easier for you. I cut out the middle man and deal directly with my customers. Let’s face it, wouldn’t you rather purchase a painting or music from the original artist, as opposed to some shop unrelated to the creator? It’s like buying a painting from Monet or a Concerto from Handel.

Since I don’t have someone else selling my designs and taking a percentage, I can make the products more affordable for you. I am also able to offer special discounts directly to my customers. You can receive a 10% discount just for signing up for the Otter Things Newsletter. This quarterly email keeps you up to date with any changes I make, including new design releases and special sales.



Quality products are very important to me. With the aide of Printful, I can offer my customers great apparel and printed designs. Printful uses Kornit and Brother GT 381 printers for all Direct to Garment (DTG) printing. DTG gives me photo quality printing in a wide range of colors compared to screen printing. This gives me the flexibility to create unlimited otter designs. The printed colors are bright and true, and hold up to repeated washings.

I will work as quickly as possible to make the transition, but if you don’t see one of my designs that you spotted elsewhere, please be patient, I am working on it. Better yet, email me and let me know what you are looking for.

Have an otterly fantastic day!

 

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Otter Changes Coming Soon

Every year I reassess how the store is running and tweak something here or there. This is a normal process of business. At the end of last year, I reviewed sales of various products, both here at Otter Things and at my other sales outlets. I also research new products and possible new designs.

With recent apparel industry changes and sales reports on my various designs and products, I will have to make some major changes at Otter Things. Now, hold on to your hats, gang. You will still be able to buy all of my otter designs on apparel, mugs, and totes. In fact, most of the changes won’t be visible at all but help me run my business more effectively.

Some changes will be a little more noticeable and I want to update you prior to the changes going into effect. Over the next few weeks I will be posting about these changes, so check my blog frequently. For your convenience, you can sign up for posts delivered to your inbox.



Change can be difficult, but I would like to make it as seamless as possible and as always keep you informed with otter news.

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Some Otter Things on Twitter

It’s the New Year and Otter Things is another year older. On January 4, my little otter empire turned 6. As a special treat, I gave it a Twitter profile. Yup, otter and bird are together at last!

In the past, all the news from Otter Things showed up here on the blog, and then I started the Facebook Page. I had my own author Twitter account, but I am sure some of you don’t want to hear the ramblings of a children’s author, and some of my writing colleges and fans don’t want to be inundated with cute otter pictures—of course, I don’t see why not.

The new Otter Things Twitter profile will allow me to keep all the Otter Things fans up to date with sales, new designs, new products, and the aforementioned cute otter pics. So follow it on Twitter.

ot-twitter-handle

If Twitter isn’t your thing, you can still get information from the other sources, but if you truly want all the nitty-gritty, sign up for the newsletter. This quarterly letter comes straight to your inbox and has information that others won’t get, like special sales and fun facts about what I Otter Be® doing at Otter Things.

Otter things are always happening at Otter Things, and it’s a great place for otter lovers to get otter wares.

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Gobble Up Savings

As each day passes, we get a little closer to the holidays. Soon you will be noshing on turkey and sweet potatoes. Before you know it, Black Friday will be here—and you thought Halloween was scary.

Of course, Black Friday isn’t the only day you can save on buying gifts. You get a whole weekend of special shopping days. That’s why I am sending you a very special treat for five days, a discount of 10% off all products at Otter Things*, this Thursday November 24 – Monday November 28. Simply use coupon code “GOBBLE” at the checkout.

Thanksgiving Thursday

This is a day to be thankful for all you have. I am incredibly thankful for all of my fans and customers, so you should benefit by having the discount this day.

Black Friday

Everyone seems to be having a sale on Friday, so why not Otter Things. Of course, you can only find my select designs at Otter Things, so why go to any otter store.

Small Business Saturday

I am a very small business, one employee. In fact, I am only 5 foot 3. I may be small, but I have a big heart and I love my customers. I strive to give you the best service. If you have any questions, just ask.

Turkey Sandwich Sunday

If you still have leftovers, this is the day to finish them. Have a nice turkey sandwich while you shop at Otter Things. Just don’t get crumbs in the keyboard.

Cyber Monday

Many have to go back to work this day, but Otter Things is technically open 24/7, so you can shop whenever you want. You can buy otter wares right after you wake from your turkey coma, on your bus commute to work, or even in the bathroom—I’ll just assume you’re brushing your teeth.

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Don’t Forget Shipping

Now, before I wish you a Happy Turkey Day, I want to make sure you get your Otter Things gifts before Christmas. You will want to shop early. I have plenty of shipping options; so, check out the graphic below to make sure you ship it in time.

otter-xmas-shipping-dates

 

So, take a little time to gobble up some savings and get some otter shopping done.

happy-thanksgiving

*Discount valid from 11/24/2016 – 11/28/2016. Discount applies to your full cart total prior to any applicable taxes, cannot be used in conjunction with other coupons.

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Posting Otter Things Up

At the request of one of my customers, I am adding posters to the Otter Things™ product line. I always considered this option, but I just hadn’t gotten around to it. Well, here they come.

The posters are available in two sizes, 12 x 16 inches and 18 x 24 inches. Printed on thick, durable, matte paper, the illustrations are rich and defined. The paper is also archival and acid-free, printed right here, in the USA.

I will be adding the designs on a limited basis. Since the illustration is printed at a larger size, I want to make sure that each and every one is perfect for printing. If there is a particular design you can’t wait to have decorating your wall, contact me so I can add that to the list of requests.

Check Out Posters

 

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Something for Your Little Otter Lover

Otter lovers come in all shapes and sizes. They also come in all ages, which is why I have added onesies to my product line.

Baby Onesie Ad

Shop Onesies

Wee otter lovers deserve to show off their passion for something just as cute as them. Babies can crawl, cruise, or just curl up for a nap in uniquely illustrated onesies.

Consider one that shows off your baby does well. My I Otter Be® Sleeping design fits that bill well.

Choose Options

I will be adding more designs as time goes on, so keep up to date with the new arrivals by signing up to my blog.

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New Design for Otter Lovers

I’ve added a new design for my shop and I just wanted to share it with you. I create more than just my I Otter Be® line of clothing and wares. Yeah, I like to mix it up a bit and sometimes it takes me to a fun, creative place. That is exactly where this design is from.

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This simple stylized line drawing shows the fluidity of otters swimming among some aquatic plants. I have been working on this design for a while. I wanted it to be simple and fun. It is currently available in T-shirts for men and women, and also mugs.

15 ounce mug

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With sizes to fit almost every figure, and a variety of colors, you can show off how much you love otters, and they are all made in the USA. Check them out and let me know what you thing.

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March Madness – I’ts Not Too Late

It is not too late to get your otter apparel for the month of March. Consider an I Otter Be Radical t-shirt for Pi day.

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If you want to keep from being pinched on St. Patrick’s Day, you might want to get something in green. You could also show your Irish pride with an I Otter Be Irish mug. You can fill it with your favorite morning brew, or maybe something stronger.

mug_11oz_handle on right_mockup

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Don’t wait too long to order. It would be irrational and unlucky.