Alternative jewelry for a sustainable beauty

T’Danes is a shop that sells 100% handmade. They make authentic and unique jewelry using a paper mache technique. We were thrilled to meet Diana Berisha-Mahmuti, the owner of T’Danes through the 100% Handcrafted online competition. She talks about passion, business, creativity and awareness – all the ingredients of an artisan’s soul.

The 100% Handcrafted Online Competition is powered by Melltoo, a mobile marketplace that allows artisans and handcrafters to sell on mobile and to share their passion with a larger audience.

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Question 1

Through passion and dedication and lots of love for what I do. Loving your work is the key ‘ingredient’ in order to keep it going and aiming to go far.

Question 2

At times it appears that too much effort has been put on my work and much more on promoting it, which can wear you off, but I was taught that persistence always pays off. Looking forward to that day 🙂 To raise awareness and remind others that handmade and handcrafted work doesn’t result in a material thing only – it is love-coated and ‘sprinkled’ with pieces of artisans soul.

Infography 2

Question 3

To set the goals and never loose the creative mojo, to learn about business plans and get familiar with the needs and demands for my product.

Question 4

Yes, just starting to learn more about m-commerce since living in an Internet-hooked-era it’s another way of getting your stuff done.

Question 5

Being exposed in any way possible is a very valuable matter to any small business and aspiring artisan – Melltoo has possibilities and tools to promote and act as a bridging point, helping the expansion.

Question 6

Appreciate and praise anyone that has whatever skills and desire to make art – that would make you an art-lover and connoisseur as well. The more we are – the happier world would become 😀

Question 7

Keep it real and simple. Life is beautiful!

Vote for T'Danës

Where can we find T’Danës ?

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/Danushe5

ANANASA – Handmade Marketplace: http://www.ananasa.com/stores/tdanes

IDEYNA – Handmade Marketplace: http://www.ideyna.com/shop/crafty-dust.html

http://www.melltoo.com

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Make my shoes dream!

Sarah Bhatti is an Artist based in Dubai who makes custom painted shoes. She finds inspiration in everyday life but also through famous artists like Van Gogh. We were thrilled to meet her through the 100% Handcrafted online competition. She reveals to us in this interview how she creates something different each time, every pair is original and unique.

The 100% Handcrafted Online Competition is powered by Melltoo, a mobile marketplace that allows artisans and handcrafters to sell on mobile and to share their passion with a larger audience.

Question 1

Being an Artist is the best thing that ever happened to me. Since the beginning, I have always enjoyed drawing and painting, but I never thought of becoming an artist and an entrepreneur, i didn’t choose Art but Art chose me.

I tried a lot of handcraft techniques in the beginning, after I set my heart on custom made shoes. I always wanted to work in a different and unique medium; to do something not everyone else was doing… then I came across the idea of making custom painted shoes. So I decided to make my own (and first!) pair of custom shoes, Give it a try and see the response. Much to my surprise, everyone else loved it and orders started to come in.

I believe one should not have restrictions in art and experiment … I am a great believer in custom made work, where I can combine my love for Art and Shoes!.

Bhatti_Sarah_music_painting

Question 2

Just Start. Don’t be scared of failure, in the end at least you tried. Never give up on your dreams. Work Hard, Stay inspired, keep trying New Things and Success will find you.

Question 3

Selling, marketing, photographing the products all by yourself, customer expectations and end result. You’re always at the edge, and you have to be up to the mark all the time. Being an artist, one must continue to innovate and be at one’s creative best to satisfy customers and yourself too… Also to get my customers to believe that my product is 100% durable and washable and all the designs are hand painted. You might get criticized; best thing to do is to take in the criticism to improve yourself but not to bring your morale down… Be open to everything that comes your way… And think positive.

Question 4

Yes. That could be a milestone.

Question 5

I believe Melltoo can give my business more exposure and credibility.

Question 6

Support local and independent Artists and crafters. Buy Hand-made!

Question 7

Never waste your talent, do what you love to do. And Be Creative.

VOTE FOR SARAH'S ART

Where can we find Sarah’s Art?

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sarabhatti.art

Instagram: http://instagram.com/sarahbhattiart

ARTE – Artisans of the Emirates : http://www.arte.ae (ARTE)

The Artisans of the Emirates are based in Dubai and run Art & Craft markets (every 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Friday of every month) featuring exclusive, locally handmade products.

http://www.melltoo.com

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A golden hand in a plastic bottle

Paul Mercer is the founder of Intentions Aromatherapy, products that are produced using organic and paraben free cosmetic bases. We were thrilled to meet him through the 100% Handcrafted online competition. He shares with us in this interview how he created a full range of handmade oils in Dubai for those who want to change their daily routines and to discover something new.

The 100% Handcrafted Online Competition is powered by Melltoo, a mobile marketplace that allows artisans and handcrafters to sell on mobile and to share their passion with a larger audience.

Aramatherapy

Question 1

question 2 paul

Question 3

Montage paul 1-3

Question 4

Question 5

Question 6 paul

Question 7

Vote for Intentions -6

Where can we find Intention?

Website: http://intentionsdubai.weebly.com

Instagram: http://instagram.com/igtgcc

Twitter: https://twitter.com/intentionsdubai

ARTE – Artisans of the Emirates : http://www.arte.ae (ARTE)

The Artisans of the Emirates are based in Dubai and run Art & Craft markets (every 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Friday of every month) featuring exclusive, locally handmade products.

Melltoo: http://www.melltoo.com

http://www.melltoo.com

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Where creativity and tradition meet

Manta & Rebozo is a Mexican initiative that promotes the creative, economic, and social freedom of indigenous artisan women in Mexico. Its mission is to preserve the traditions of dress and accessory making in small villages by creating a for profit trademark that supports the sale of their products under fair trade standards. We were thrilled to meet Manta & Rebozo at 100% Handcrafted online competition. They reveal to us in this interview how they managed to bring colors of Mexico to Dubai.

The 100% Handcrafted Online Competition is powered by Melltoo, a mobile marketplace that allows artisans and handcrafters to sell on mobile and to share their passion with a larger audience.

Question 1

By working hard and being passionate for my dream which is to start my own business, shared with my role as a full-time Mom and helping the needy in my country… all these things together

Question 2

Try and try is the key to success, never give up.

Question 3

Lack of appreciation of the handcraft and the amazing work of the artisan; that it’s not just work, they are expressing their world on their masterpieces.

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Question 4

Yes we are working on it. Our goal is to share the colors and culture of Mexico with the Middle East.

Question 5

Exposure! Any sort of exposure of work of my amazing artisans is a plus for the artisans.

Question 6

I would just like to explain who we are. Manta & Rebozo celebrates the beauty of Mexican handcrafts by finding harmonic balance between traditional and contemporary. We manage a wide range of products including unique and pretty, baby/children/adult garments, accessories and silver jewellery. All products are made by groups of Mexican artisans who aim at conserving and strengthening their traditional artisan techniques.

Question 7

TRADITIONAL

Vote for Manta and Robozo

Where can we find Manta & Rebozo?

Website : http://www.mantarebozo.com

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/MantaRebozo

From 20th May until 19th June we can find Manta & Rebozo at Dubai Festival City – Mezzanine Level – Ikea side Everyday from 10am to 10pm

http://www.melltoo.com

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The Incredible Crafty Dust

Hana’a Bou Nasr Ltayf is a crafty mom of twin toddlers. She holds degrees in Architecture, Philosophy, History of Art and Business. Before her start-up ‘Crafty Dust’, she had a career in construction and industrial manufacturing. Today she specializes in turning creative craft ideas into professionally designed decorative objects, gifts, and souvenirs. We were thrilled to meet her through a 100% Handcrafted online competition. She reveals to us in this interview how she decided to take her hobby to the next level.

The 100% Handcrafted Online Competition is powered by Melltoo, a mobile marketplace that allows artisans and handcrafters to sell on mobile and to share their passion with a larger audience.

Question 1

I’ve been crafty as far back as I can remember, making greeting cards & surprise gifts for my parents and siblings from scraps of paper, used up tissue rolls and empty match boxes. I owe most of it to my mom’s genes, for she is quite the artist and by far the craftiest person I know.

As an Architecture student I secretly preferred designing objects to designing buildings; and although my professional career took off in construction and industrial manufacturing, I always longed to make things with my hands.

When my children arrived almost 3 years ago, I took a break from work to be a full-time mom. And with the little time I had in between the feeds, the diaper changes, and the night wakings, I thought seriously about starting my own professional crafts business. I had the technical know-how and manufacturing network to make it happen, and working from home provided me with the flexibility to work around my children’s schedule.

So when my children finally started nursery school, I randomly decided to make greeting cards for personal use. Upon suggestion from my brother, who thought my work looked good enough to sell, I did my research on the greeting card industry, sent out some emails with pictures… and to my delight, got my first order from an international bookstore chain within a few days! That was 6 months ago, and that’s how Crafty Dust began – with a purchase order for cards.

Since then, one thing has led to another and my product line is evolving as I continue to experiment, explore, and chase opportunities that come my way.

MelltooMarket crafty dust 2

Question 2

Starting a crafts business doesn’t need a lot of money. It has a low barrier to entry because of the relatively low investment required and anyone can do it from the comfort of their own home. Nowadays there are various online platforms as well as physical markets that facilitate selling handmade crafts. However, things get tricky when you decide you want to increase your sales volume and turn your love for crafts into a registered, serious, full-time business. Unless you have the funds to set up your own shop and are willing to take the risk single-handedly, the better option would be to sell your products through existing retail stores and online platforms that already have the traffic. (Expect to be up against some harsh contract terms if you choose this option). But other ways to make money from crafts do exist: some through teaching, some by selling only the design, and others by publishing articles or books about it. Overall, hard work and hardships are expected like in the starting of any new business no matter what the industry.

Question 3

My first challenge as a Handcrafter is understanding that although the handcrafted design process is a personal one, the end product is to be sold to other people. Therefore it’s really about them and what they need and value; and not so much about what the designer thinks or believes is valuable.

My second challenge is accepting that many products will not sell or gain interest. It may take a while before one may become a success or a best-seller, so until then it’s all trial and error.

My third challenge is to find the right venues with the audience that is willing to buy my creations. Given the diverse population in the UAE, targeting the right community is not always easy.

Question 4

This is the first time such an opportunity has come my way, so I would definitely like to try it out. You never know… M-commerce could become the next best way to sell given how the concept of buying and selling has evolved over the recent years from the physical to the virtual store.

Question 5

I think Melltoo can give my business more exposure and visibility, which is crucial for my start-up.

Question 6

The most interesting and important creations (in any field) I think, are discovered by accident – when trying to do one thing leads to another and you persevere along the way.

Question 7

design mot de la fin-3

‘Thank You’… for your interest and for taking the time to read about me, my thoughts, and my business.

Vote for Crafty DUST-12

Where can we find Crafty Dust ?

Website : http://craftydust.webs.com

Facebook : http://www.facebook.com/craftydust

IDEYNA – Handmade Marketplace : http://www.ideyna.com/shop/crafty-dust.html

ARTE – Artisans of the Emirates : http://www.arte.ae (ARTE)

The Artisans of the Emirates are based in Dubai and run Art & Craft markets (every 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Friday of every month) featuring exclusive, locally handmade products.

And coming soon on Melltoo…

http://www.melltoo.com

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What does she hide in her bag?

Patty Gay is a French/Filipino woman born in the Philippines. She is interested in painting on canvas and porcelain, travel, interior design, cooking and entertaining. She is the creator of DROP-IT Bag Organizer. We were thrilled to meet her through the 100% Handcrafted online competition. She reveals to us in this interview what she dropped in her bag. Here’s the story of how the idea of a handmade bag organizer came about in February 2009.

Patty question 1

Passion! This comes as a result if you engage in something that you genuinely love. Since the beginning I’ve always been very fascinated with colors, forms, texture and the fun of combining these elements to create something that is truly meaningful. The first time I participated in arts and crafts exhibitions was in early 2000, where I sold ‘bits and bobs’ and some random creations, ranging from decorated gift baskets, hand-painted porcelains, jewelry, door signs, etc. In 2009 out of sheer frustration of always forgetting something every time I’d switch bags, I designed and stitched a bag organizer with lots of pockets for my mobile phone, pens, driving license, make-up purse, i-pad, wallet, keys, etc. The organizer went inside my regular handbag and when I’d change bags I simply moved the organizer. It worked! Friends and family loved the idea so I decided to introduce the product at ARTE where it became an instant success. ‘DROP-IT’ became a registered brand in 2010. To this date we continue to create and develop quality products that make sense. For as long as our clients say, ‘it’s a Good Idea’ we know we matter.

Patty question 2

Be original, do not copy. Take inspirations from people you admire and the things that attract you but let your true creative spirit come to life. This is the only way to sustainability. Persevere. It took me years of hard work, trials and errors, before finally coming up with products that made sense to both men and women. Above all, value your clients and fellow artisans. True satisfaction is when you create something and people actually appreciate your work, otherwise you miss the purpose.

Melltoomarket

Patty question 3

As a regular artisan you are pretty much a one-man-show. You are the designer, tailor, merchandiser, accounts, sales person, everything rolled into one! Sometimes it’s hard to switch to ‘production’ when you are on creative mode. Nowadays, markets are saturated with so many ‘weekend jewellery designers’. I am not completely in the jewelry segment so it’s less of a concern for me, however I speak on behalf of talented designers I know who suffer because of the emergence of copy cats. Markets usually take place on weekends. When you have a husband who travels frequently, a daughter who goes to school, you always look forward to spending the weekends relaxing together as a family. If you sign up for 2 markets, that’s 2 weekends gone.

Patty question 4

Yes. This seems to be the way forward.

Patty question 5

Why? Melltoo offers a very smart way of communicating to my clients. Melltoo is helpful for both buyers and sellers. Because it’s mobile phone-base, it’s quick and efficient. My clients can reach me when they need to – anytime, anywhere. It’s simply amazing! It’s like managing my own retail shop. And it’s FREE!

Patty question 6

Keep life balance, it’s the key to happiness.

Patty question 7

As we all know, technology is evolving at an amazing speed and we are living a fast-paced existence. We should find time to take a pause and appreciate the wonderful things around us. It’s easy to get trapped with all the high-tech gadgets and advanced applications but just like most things in life – consume in moderation.

Melltoo

Where can we find Patty ?

Website : http://www.goodideasdubai.com

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/patty.gay109?ref=hl

Melltoo Market : http://www.melltoo.com

Keep calm and type #goodideas on melltoo and you will find Patty’s M-Store

ARTE – Artisans of the Emirates : http://www.arte.ae (ARTE)

The Artisans of the Emirates are based in Dubai and run bi-monthly Art & Craft markets which feature exclusive, locally handmade products.

VOTE FOR PATTY By Liking this page

http://www.melltoo.com

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Selling a Used Car in Dubai – Step 1: How to Value Your Car

How to Sell a Used Car in Dubai, UAE

A step-by-step guide for selling your car for the best price

Used Car For Sale

Step 1: How to value your car

Before you are ready to put your car on sale, you have to determine the market value first. There are a number of ways to do this.

Blue Book Value and Dealer Valuations

There is no such thing as ‘blue book value when selling your car in Dubai. There are a few businesses and websites that will propose to buy your car for cash. Don’t expect to get fair market value from them. For the most part, these businesses will squeeze you and give you the lowest possible price for your car. They have to make money afterall.

The same thing applies to dealers who are are a poor option if you want to get the best valuation for your car. They will offer you a ridiculous price and depress you! Authorized dealers are no better, they are just a bit politer and smarter in getting you to resell your lovely car to them. In some cases, authorized dealers will even make you pay for a valuation (up to 300 dhs) before they give you an estimated price on your car. The good news is, if you accept their offer, the valuation fee is waived.

Online Car Valuation

The other option for determining the value of your car are online valuation sites such as:

www.vehiclecheck.ae – they give you an online valuation of your car in few minutes

uae.sellanycar.com – they seem to be giving very low prices for cars

http://dubaicarprices.com/  – they seem to be accurate…following a 20-15-15 depreciation model

These sites should give you some idea of the ballpark value for your car. Their price range reflects what you should expect when dealing with potential buyers and accounts for the kilometerage you have on your car. However, these sites would require a vehicle inspection before they give you a final price. This estimate also assumes that the vehicle has GCC specifications and is not purchased outside and imported to Dubai.

The DIY approach to valuing your car

I recommend the Do-It-Yourself valuation. A simple way to value your car is the 20-15-15 model (20-10-10 model for Japanese cars).

Let’s say you bought your car for 100,000 dhs. Expect a hefty 20-25% depreciation the first year depending on the model and condition of the car. The second year would be 10-15%, again depending on the condition of the car. Be aware that good agency maintenance increases the resale value of your car. It is, in fact, an investment for future resale. Do not neglect this.

Valuation Example: 2011 Mercedes C200

Original purchase price = 100,000 dhs

First year depreciation 20% = 20,000 dhs

Resale price in 2012 = 80,000 dhs

Second year depreciation 10%

Resale price in 2013 = 72,000 dhs

Third year depreciation 10%

Resale price in 2014 = 64,800 dhs

Another way to value your car is to look at dealer showroom prices of current year models and pre-owned models and going prices on classified websites, such as cars.com, autotrader.com, or dubizzle etc. Of course, my recommendation is that you use our app, Melltoo, for iOS and Android to research the going price and to post your car for sale.

Please be careful when doing price research to compare apples with apples. Many cars in Dubai are used cars imported from other countries and have very little documentation. In many cases, these cars have a “salvage” title in their own country. Don’t be fooled.

Determining the correct valuation for your car is important when putting your car up for sale. If you don’t know how much the market value for your car is, it is much harder for you to negotiate a sale and you are likely to sell for less than what your car is worth (or not sell  because you are asking for too much).

Once you’ve figured out how much to sell your car for, download Melltoo for iOS and Android and post it for sale on the app!