As I reflect on the year 2020 I can't help but be saddened by a year that was so difficult, for so many. Yet I feel fortunate. Even though my business came to an abrupt end after the Minneapolis Home and Garden Show, my loss has been minimal compared to the families who have lost loved ones to the Covid 19 virus. The pandemic has forced me to examine what is really important in life. I am blessed to have a support system which allows me to make decisions for myself, and my business.
I miss my family and friends in Canada. I haven't been able to go home since last Christmas. The loneliness is real, but the gratitude is also real. I feel fortunate that I have mostly been able to entertain myself. Many are not so lucky. I have spent my days reading, drawing, painting, and cooking (and drinking a little wine). All things that I have historically not had time to do.
I am sharing some drawings and paintings for you below. I will continue looking for ways to develop my talent and abilities that may never have been discovered had the universe not forced a pause.
During the summer months I was able to swim lengths in the outdoor pool. I found this to be very good for my emotional and physical state. The cold winter months of Minnesota loom large ahead of me. I have never been one to enjoy exercise, but I do recognize my need to stay healthy. So who knows maybe this is the year I will make a change and learn to enjoy working out. Maybe I will do a better job in writing in my journal and my blog. It could happen.
We celebrated two Thanksgivings (Canadian and American) which provided me with all the turkey I could handle for the season. So for Christmas I tried roast duck. We were very pleased with the results and it was a nice change.
To all my customers, family and friends who follow me, and Altogether Anna, I wish for you a happy new year and may you receive many blessings in 2021.
I have really done a poor job of blogging. I am sorry if this is something you like on a website. I find that since I am human something needs to give and unfortunately that tends to be my website. I know I shouldn't let that happen but unfortunately when you are little ... a one woman show, something is usually sacrificed and for me it is my site.
It is very satisfying to design and sew my creations. I also love the interaction with customers when I am at a craft show/pop up location. Even with the products where I am a reseller. People appreciate that I only sell products I believe in. I often say, "it is my name on the business and that means a lot to me. I will never sell you something that I can't endorse." I want customers to love the products they buy from me.
I started sewing Infant Capes when my little "Grandbaby" Peter was born. I learned that snowsuits were no longer acceptable in car suits and this was what was being used as an alternative to blankets. Well from there adults wanted them for themselves. In particular Vikings Fans. Don't you know. After all I do live in Minnesota now. That makes me Italian by birth, a Canadian Citizen and a Permanent Resident of the United States. It does get confusing sometimes when people ask me where I am from. I am often told I have an accent.
Last Mouse Lost is the best fidgit you could ever want for your toddler, preschooler, or school age child. It is a strategy game for children 5 and up. But for everyone else it is like an endless supply of bubble wrap. Parents, Grandparents, Teachers, and counselors have come back to my booth to thank me for introducing them to the item. Watch Peter above as he explores the simple silicone disk. He figures out right away that he can turn it over and do it again and again, and again. Its great for in the car, at a restaurant, on a plane, in a train, at church ... where ever you want your toddler to sit quietly and entertain themselves.
I was recently interviewed for an upcoming Holiday Gift Boutique. This is a short clip of what I said. Part 1 of 5.
Who are you and what do you do?
AltogetherAnna Hand-Made Designs, Kitchen Gadgets, SCRUBBY Soap, Family Game Night Fun … and so much more!
Anna Longo designs and curates an exciting mix of fun and functional products! Anna designs and sells hand-made Blanket Wraps and Capes for infants, toddlers, children, and adults.
Working with Licensed Fleece and designer textiles, Anna creates NFL, NHL, MLBA, and Collegiate Fleece Capes and Blanket Wraps. Anna's differentiation point is the custom sewing services she offers. If you do not see your favorite professional sports team or collegiate team no worries, She will make it for you.
Hand-Made in Minnesota is an integral part of the AltogetherAnna business strategy.
Anna also has a line of hand-made Make Up Remover Cloths.
Just wet the cloth with warm water and remove all of your makeup
… no additional product is needed. Removes waterproof eyeliner, mascara, foundation, and eye shadow. Economical, Reusable, and Environmentally Friendly … wash with like colors and use them repeatedly.
At AltogetherAnna, we carefully design, manufacture, and curate products that help make your life easier. We know how busy you are … we have been there!
All you need is at Altogether Anna (published June 1, 2017 Farmers Market Annex Vendor Newsletter)
Anna Longo brings a wide mix of fun and comfortable products to you! First, she designs and sells handmade blanket wraps and capes for infants, toddler, children, and adults. She also sells fun family games like Tenzi, Slapzi, Last Mouse Lost, Don't Rock the Croc and so many more. Lastly, she has kitchen Gadgets Galore including SCRUBBY Soap, Swedish Dish Cloths, Berry Boxes, Herb Zippers, and Naked Bear Naturals Skin Care products.
Anna has a background in specialty toys and educational products having traveled the world looking for products that are unique and that make a difference in the lives of children and families. It was last fall when she began sewing sports fashion wraps, something that has quickly become, a significant portion of her business.
She joined our market last year. "Being a 'Weekend Warrior' provides me the opportunity to interact with consumers, meet interesting people and have fun on my own terms. I choose the Minneapolis Farmers Market Annex because of the steady flow of traffic. It provides me with a permanent location for the summer and that offers me the ability to build a loyal customer base. Consumers can find me easily (right next to the giant 10 foot Rooster), and come back for new and exciting products because they trust me."
It is the customer; she loves best here at the Annex. “I have met some amazing people who are really loyal to the Farmers Market and they visit weekly.” Last summer a gentleman bought a Tenzi Dice Game from Anna and asked: "Are you Anna? After she said yes, he asked, “Are you Altogether? Cause you seem like you are!” “ I laughed so hard,” said Anna. You too can have a laugh with Anna. Stop by and see all the great games and handmade products sold at Altogether Anna!
651-955-8894 AltogetherAnna.com firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm Anna Longo,