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Here We Are

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I stringed the individual deadlines very closely. Reading the dates is really to make sure I am on time to get the work done and I didn’t quite feel year 2014 has ended. I had my eyes fixed on the timeline, following each date scheduled for to-do items, arrival of the next shipment, expected date of arrival of the delivered packages to my customers.

However, the arrival of the Lunar New Year is something that almost everyone around me will constantly remind me. We focus alot on getting our home ready for the Lunar New Year, whether or not we get guests. We must spring clean and we really clean every corner of the house and move items out of our storage areas to declutter and clean the hard-to-reach spots. While doing all the above, I was also jotting down the various happenings that I want to share with all of you in this space.

I am happy with what took place for Queenbels in year 2014. We didn’t do exceptionally well but we kept up with the previous year’s performance. There were a few unexpected situations that had me struggled abit between adhering to the house rules and to keep the particular few customers happy. I can only say, house rules are important if I want to keep this business running for many more years to come.

Remember the kids apparel that I have launched around March 2014? The subsequent designs and quality were totally out of the specifications and I decided that I will take a break on kids apparel until I find something good again. I rather not do than to bring in something that spoils my shop’s name. My apologies to my lovely customers who were eagerly looking out for the next selection. Sorry for the disappointment. I hope you had found something you like for your little ones, in the other brands outside that I have recommended.

On our main business, lady apparel, we began to place our emphasize on bringing you the most gorgeous work-appropriate blouses in year 2014. Blouses that have the versatility to double up as a weekend outfit with easy change of bottom pieces and shoes.

The return of the Whimsical Selections were champagne-popping excitements. Until now as I am typing this, I am still beaming with joy that I brought these fantasy, eye-catching prints back to Queenbels. You can read here and here on my covers on both selections.

Whimsical Selections I and II

For ladies who love our dresses, I make sure you have a good range to select from too.

My handsew with love projects made good progress. I did an upsize to two new sizes; kisslock mini clutch bag and kisslock clutch bag.

Handsew with Love_Happy Mint Ruby Daisy Preorder 1

Handsew with Love Kisslock Purse + Mini Clutch Bag + Clutch Bag

Pre-orders came in very quickly for the clutch bags. There were pre-orders of sets of a kisslock purse and a kisslock clutch bag. I was extremely overjoyed with the positive response and I remembered I had to take a few days off from the shop to complete all the pre-orders on time.

Happy Petals Kisslock Purse and The Good Fortune Kisslock Clutch Bag Peony Kisslock Purse + Clutch Bag Ruby Kisslock Purse and Clutch Bag

Shortly after, I progressed to a new size which is between the mini clutch bag and the clutch bag; the kisslock mini clutch bag size two. At the same time, I upgraded the fabric quality of the purse interior, which I wanted to do early last year but I had constraints. To overcome the constraints, I had to do a necessary adjustment across all sizes.

Baby Blue Dot Daisy Kisslock Purse + Lucky Clover Kisslock Mini Clutch Bag

Baby Blue Dot Daisy Kisslock Purse + Lucky Clover Kisslock Mini Clutch Bag size two

I did a price adjustment.

A close regular customer asked me this: “Are you paying yourself?” My reply was: “Do you mean monetary payback? If yes, ya, I pay myself a token.” Making money was not what I had started with when I did my first kisslock purse.

The very observant ones knew I was really paying myself a token. Some were very frank with me. They had actually attempted at making the kisslocks themselves and gave up after making the interior. And emphasized that given the amount of work, effort and time involved, they will never sell their pieces at the old (lower) prices I was selling.

To be honest, I was pretty afraid of doing an upward price adjustment. Very few see the good fabric quality I had chosen, the work and effort put in. I was prepared to see a significant drop in the pre-orders. When the price adjustment took effect, there were a handful who pre-ordered quite a number especially during festive season, never make enquiries again and never spoken a word about my handsew with love kisslocks. There was a slight dent in my morale.

Luckily the majority stayed with me and pre-ordered even more than usual. I know this is their way to show their support and I was very, very, thankful and grateful. Thank you very much.

I continue to acquire more new fabric prints to produce my handsew with love kisslock products.

Merry Dots Kisslock Purse Lucky Clover Kisslock Purse in Tangerine Baby Blue Dot Daisy Kisslock Purse
The Sassy Pink Kisslock Purse Red Dot Daisy Kisslock Purse Happy Rainbow Petals Kisslock Purse

I was inspired to do a theme launch too. The Friendship Kisslock Purse.

The Friendship Kisslock Purse

About two weeks before we wrapped up for Lunar New Year, I finally found a fabric print that I have a feel for, that I want to do for 2015 Lunar New Year Edition. I squeezed in time to complete two sets of Happiness in Full Blooms Kisslock Purse and Kisslock Mini Clutch Bag size two. Totally worth the time when one set was sold within an hour of launch.

Happiness in Full Blooms Kisslock Purse and Mini Clutch Bag

Happiness in Full Blooms Kisslock Purse and Mini Kisslock Clutch Bag size two

Thank you very much for loving my handsew with love kisslock products. Thank you for willing to buy and use what I have made.

Today is Day 12 of Lunar New Year 2015. Celebration stretches for fifteen days and I hereby once more, wishes all who celebrates, Happy Lunar New Year 2015!

Happy-Lunar-New-Year-2015

Business resumes in the shop tomorrow ie 3 March 2015. It is going to be a short week though as I still need abit of time to wrap up the back-office work. I am setting new shopping hours in the shop which will take effect 10 March 2015. Stay on our Facebook page for instant updates.

Cheers,
Shirley

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You Have Come A Long Way

“You have come a long way.”

On the morning of Queenbels’ 4th birthday, a Facebook friend and also a customer left this comment on our Facebook page. This comment had me took in a deep breath and breathe out.

She is one of the long-time people who saw me on my wordpress days to an e-commerce webstore and to now a brick and mortar shop. Thank you to all who left birthday wishes for Queenbels on our facebook page. I read every single comment.

Prosperous Ever After

Four years is not a relative long time for a business. I have to discount the first two years of juggling it with a full-time job. To be very honest, I wasn’t very on the ball with the operation. I had a full-time profession and I am sure no employer wants a half-hearted employee. I was paid to do a service for the company and I had to keep up with the high standards at all times.

Doing what I am doing now isn’t some great 5-years plan I set up. I have never thought of running my own business before this. I thought I would marry a man I love, set up a family, have kids and become a homemaker. I am not saying that going down this path is something less achieving or anything less, so please don’t get me wrong. Somehow things just happen, unexpected.

My husband will know this very well. In fact he said he never knew I could sell something. I am not a fantastic talker by the way. Sometimes he will tease me: “Oh got people buy things from you ah.” Oh well.

It took a certain level of courage to cut away a stable good paying job. I didn’t want to think too hard too much. Now, if you want to run a business properly and see results, you have to be in the game, playing it. You cannot just stand one side and watch the game happen. The same goes if I work for others. Putting in effort to learn the ropes may not warrant a promotion but at least I was building up my skills steadily. At least technically I was sound. With a sound background, I will be able to set sail should opportunities come knocking.

So, if you are not doing something that you like very much now or have huge dreams for the future, don’t belittle whatever you are doing now to put food on the table. Trust me, you will bring that piece of life experience with you to your next venture and it will help you greatly.

Cheers,
Shirley

Rush Hour

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It was a crazy and stressful procurement trip. That was the shortest notice I ever got before I hopped on a plane.

The samples for 2nd quarter of 2013 were finally ready. I just have to fly there to look at the real pieces. I am extremely happy with the designs, the fabrics employed and the workmanship. The spectrum of colours is beautiful and attractive. I am keeping my fingers crossed that all the designs that I have selected, materialise.

The shipment schedule is the next challenge. The new designs may not come in big batches. If need be, new designs will be shipped as and when they are ready. So please stay with me on our Facebook page for instant updates on new arrivals.

A new selection of accessories are now in store. Bag charms are my favourite and the new bangle designs are gorgeous. I have also selected a wrap that I really like. More pictures will be posted on our Facebook page.

New Accessories Are Now In Store

New Accessories Are Now In Store

Cinderella Pumpkin Carriage Bag Charm

Cinderella Pumpkin Carriage Bag Charm

Cinderella Pumpkin Carriage Bag Charm in Salmon

Cinderella Pumpkin Carriage Bag Charm in Salmon

Mandarin Panel Wrap

Mandarin Panel Wrap

I have picked up all the designs that are available for restocks. However, the quantity is really scarce. Some designs are restocked with only one piece. So do grab these restocks before everything gets sold out.

Lace n Puff Hem Dress in Light Gold

Lace n Puff Hem Dress in Light Gold

Pleats n Curls Chiffon Dress in Cream

Pleats n Curls Chiffon Dress in Cream

Don’t go away. New designs will hit our showroom in no time.

Cheers,
Shirley

Style File on Lunar New Year 2013

Before and during the Lunar New Year, I had shared snapshots of the ongoings on my home front and the outfits I put together, on our Facebook page and on Instagram (@queenbels).

I went pink this year, including a pair of pink colour shoes which I have yet share a photo of it.

Pleated Collar Ruffles Chiffon Dress in Pink Violet

Pleated Collar Ruffles Chiffon Dress in Pink Violet

What I Wore On Lunar New Year Day 1

What I Wore On Lunar New Year Day 1

You may find the Pleated Collar Ruffles Chiffon Dress foreign because I have not share any photos of this dress on the social media.

The Pleated Collar Ruffles Chiffon Dress was a complete sell-out. Every piece was sold very quickly each time I put up a new piece. I only managed to capture a snapshot of this beautiful number just before it was grabbed by a lovely regular customer.  This dress comes in pink violet and camel. I have secured a limited quantity restock for the camel colour. I hope I can do a restock on the pink violet colour too. I will keep everyone updated on the restock status on the Facebook page, so stay tuned.

Checks Peplum Blouse in Pink/White

Checks Peplum Blouse in Pink/White

What I Wore On Lunar New Year Day 3

What I Wore On Lunar New Year Day 3

Checks Peplum Blouse was first introduced last year at one of our mini bazaars. This pretty blouse comes in pink/white checks and blue/white checks. I couldn’t find a bottom piece that fits me so I didn’t have a chance to put on this blouse earlier. I was so happy when my favourite basic apparel store did a restock of this leggings pants in new series of colours. The shade of pink on the leggings pants is almost the same as the shade of pink on my blouse and the size fits! A restock was done on the Checks Peplum Blouse and is still available for purchase in our private showroom.

The Lunar New Year is celebrated for fifteen days. You will see me in more gorgeous Queenbels apparels for this Lunar New Year. Stay with us on our Facebook page and Instagram @queenbels for new snapshots.

The showroom is open today for you to shop your Valentine’s Day dresses. I see you!

Book your private shopping session at shop@queenbels.com.sg now.

Cheers,
Shirley

新春快乐!

Happy-Lunar-New-Year-2013

新春快乐!

过年咯!
谢谢大家一直以来的支持。
在此祝贺大家,新春快乐,万事如意!

恭喜恭喜!

No Shipping Dates: 8 – 12 February 2013 (both dates inclusive).

All shipping resume on 13 February 2013.

The showroom will be open on 13 February 2013 for you to shop your Valentine’s Day dresses.

Cheers,
Shirley

New Designs Are Now In Store

After much racing heart beats and almost insomnia nights, the flight that carried the new designs finally landed and the gorgeous dresses and blouses made their grand entrance to the showroom this morning.

I will be posting photos of the new designs on Facebook progressively, so start stalking our Facebook page now so that you don’t miss the gorgeous dresses and blouses coming up.

Pre-Lunar New Year Shopping Hours:

Monday to Friday
12pm to 7pm
from now on till 7 February 2013

New Designs Are Now In Store

New Designs Are Now In Store

Book your private shopping session at shop@queenbels.com.sg now.

Cheers,
Shirley

When I Was Sixteen… And Now

“You must be a Literature student, or like Jane Austen very much.”

I can’t remember the exact words but these are the gist of a comment made by a lovely customer when she set her sight on our Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress.

I have a soft spot for long skirts and dresses. When I was sixteen, I thought I would look pretty and all fairy looking like in long skirt or dress flowing along with the wind, while my mum got very worried that my long skirt or dress would get stepped on and torn when I alighted from the bus.

Picture that?

That was when I was sixteen.

Sometimes I wonder if I also wanted to look like Cinderella or Snow White subconsciously. Remember their attires in the storybooks? Long dresses with puff sleeves.

The one dress that left the deepest impression in me is a long dress with puff sleeves in mini checks that I bought at a bazaar in my teens. It has a gathered scoop neckline complete with a ribbon in the centre. I shouldn’t have clear that away from my wardrobe. I can’t find a similar dress over the years. If only mobile phones with cameras were available at that time, I will have a photo of it now.

I have pretty much bring that part of my teenage dressing dreams into adulthood and the selections I am presenting in Queenbels.

This is how the Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress made her way into my selection. Available in colours of peach and apple green.

The clever use of smaller pleats below the neckline and bigger pleats below the bust has created the look of an empire cut, minus the cut-in below the bust. The puff sleeves are complete with gathered hems and hidden seams.

Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress in Peach

Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress in Peach

Apple green is such a refreshing and pleasing colour to the eye. If you want to start adding pastel colours to your wardrobe, this is a nice colour to begin with.

Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress in Apple Green

Chiffon Puff Sleeves Dress in Apple Green

Guess what colour did I keep?

Cheers,
Shirley

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