What comes first: the handmade object or the product?

It's a condundrum that occurred to us after chatting with Amina Haswell of Prairie Breeze Brooms in Winnipeg. Haswell overflows with creative ideas when she's designing new collections. But as she told Corinna over the phone recently, when it comes down to it, some of her broom designs simply require too much production time to be priced anywhere near what most people will pay. So when it comes to finalizing her lineups, she narrows things down to where quality, craft and beauty meet value — the sweet spot for a product line that will sell. (Scroll down to read the full interview.)

How this process unfolds is different for everyone, but it's an important consideration to keep in mind, especially if you're looking to grow your business, increase your profits or find more downtime in your life.

Speaking of downtime, we appreciated the tip from Workshop member Laurie Dolhan on how she's slowed down her multitasking brain and learned to develop more focus. Check that out below, too. Plus, we've rounded up some options for custom branded packaging in Canada — without giant price tags or huge order numbers.

Happy Halloween! As always, let us know what you think and what topics you'd like us to cover next. We love to hear from you.

Yours in making,

Co-founders Corinna vanGerwen and Kat Tancock

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