New Website is on Its Way

The train is really rolling on this now. We have less than a month to move things to the new server. I can’t make any promises on how much will be available at the initial move to the server. It’s just me working on this massive project so it will take some time.

The upside is this will fix the sidebar issues the website has been experiencing.

I will also be doing a lot of backend work to make inventory management and other aspects of the shop a little more mainstream and easier/faster for me to manage so that everything can stay up to date. Right now I have two systems for this but I want to merge them together. This is the part that will take the longest. It means a total reconstruction in order to implement all the other features the second system has been using.

Because of that requiring so much time, I will be focusing on the main website first as it will take the least amount of time.

Please hang in there while this major construction is going on. Let me know if you have any questions or have suggestions.

New Website Coming Soon and RavenCon 2017

Some time has passed since I put this website together and for those few years it has served well. But now I think it’s time to graduate to a new system. Currently I’m working on doing the same for my blog website as its expiration is in a couple of weeks. Once that is done, I will begin doing the same for Beloved Doll Designs.

What exactly is going to happen?

Well, for starters, we will be moving servers. This will mean that when the time comes, the website will be down for a short spell while domains and such are moved. A new design and structure will come about. This will also solve the problem our side menu has been experiencing that for some reason I can’t get fixed in this current system. This new system is one I’ll be programming myself so if anything gets funky I will be able to fix it.

Current content will be moved over, including the shop. New items will be added to the shop after this update and migration are complete. I will also be adding some things on the back-end that will help me to track inventory a lot faster and easier.

Also, the weekend of April 28, I will be at Ravencon 2017 in Williamsburg, VA in the Artist Alley. Hope to see you there!

New Manga Section in the Shop

Good evening, everyone!

I wanted to make a quick announcement that manga books are now available in our shop! There are more than twenty books available. Take a look and take home one (or ten, we don’t judge!). If there is a book you are looking for, let me know and I’ll look into it.

Site Under Maintenance

Hi all! Beloved Doll Designs website is still under major maintenance. It is not yet known how much longer this will take but we are working diligently to get everything back up and running. The shop is up and fully functional and will be unaffected by the work being done to the rest of the website. Another announcement will be made once things are finished.

Thank you for your patience!

Scheduled Down Time for Website

This evening, the Beloved Doll Designs website will be mostly down for maintenance. However, the shop will remain up and running. Downtime will begin in about seven hours after the time of this posting.

Conventions, Manga and Websites

Ok, technically just one website.

Our backend had a major issue where several features had to be shut down and removed. The major issue caused the whole Beloved Doll Designs website, except for the shop, to shut down and not load, giving visitors a blank page. Said features were removed and the website loaded back up. Those who have visited the Beloved Doll Designs website before will notice many things are missing, including our events calendar and the slider on the front page.

Unfortunately getting these features back will require some time to get them back in and working. In light of this, we will be taking this opportunity to make some changes around the website.

One of the new things that will come is an official art commissions page. Art commissions have been available for some time but it’s time it had its own official page to provide information and samples.

Another new thing that will come is a selection of manga books for the shop. I’ll be testing the waters in this field and will start with a few titles.

In other news, this weekend I will be in the Artist Alley at Ravencon. There are two more shows lined up and I’m waiting to hear back about a third one.

Some weeks back I was in the Artist Alley on Friday at Fur the More. I have several photos that I’d like to get posted soon and will do so once time allows. Once the photos are up I will update the Beloved Doll Designs Facebook page to let everyone know when the photos are available for viewing.

Any orders that come through will ship out on Monday when I return from Ravencon. Hope to see you there!

New Prints in the Shop

The time has finally arrived! Several new prints have been added to the online store. Tons more will be coming but this is a good start. These prints also give you a glimpse of the characters we will be having in our series.

Buy a print or two (or three, who am I tell you how many you’re allowed to have?)!

Shop Work

For the past few weeks, I have been working on the Beloved Doll Designs online Shop.

The other pre-programmed system came with some issues that were making shopping, especially check out, problematic. It was also limited where it required me to make multiple entries for a product that came in different sizes. After getting a report from a buyer the issues they were having, I decided it was time to fix this.

The new shop is built on custom programming I’m doing myself. There’s still work to be done and products to be added but it is at a point where it is functional now. You can go into the shop and make purchases.

While the system is built with my programming, the actual check out process is run through PayPal. Did you know? You can still buy from the shop without having a PayPal account.  I am just using it as a platform to process payments online.

This major change will require me to update the FAQ page so I will likely be working on that in a day or two.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I will be working on adding the rest of the products to the shop. Once that is done, I will be doing more back end programming for the shop and will tweak the design of the shop a little more.

Happy shopping!

OmegaCon 2014 Photos and Results

OmegaCon 2014 was this weekend. I know I have only been to two cons but this definitely is the best! So let’s get down to the nitty gritty and talk about what went on and get to showing some photos.

I had more time to work on my table display (and didn’t run out of tape this time!) this round so my table looks way better than it did for CHS OtakuFest 2014.

OmegaCon 2014 1

Beloved Doll Designs table display on Saturday for OmegaCon 2014.

I was able to get my prints up this time annnnnnd I got a little sign with my business name on it! Products were expanded as well. I had added many more keychain designs, sketches, crochet pony mini plushes, pony dolls, more sprites, a few DVDs, a bunch of MLP stuff, some Pokemon cards and displayed the buttons differently.

Now I didn’t do Friday as having a place to stay for the con was tricky. However, after hearing folks talk about how hopping the con was on Friday, I wish I had been there!! So maybe next year I’ll be able to do all three days, or at the least do Friday and Saturday.

Obviously the display still needs work but it is way better than the last show. Sales were a lot better, too. Didn’t so as much as I’d like to have but it was decent.

Saturday was fairly busy with several folks being present. A lot of cosplayers were walking around (whereas Sunday didn’t have very many). I was able to get a few of the cosplayers photographed on Saturday so below are their photos.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayers at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayers at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

Cosplayer at OmegaCon 2014.

I had a great time talking to everyone and even got to learn a few new things such as a couple of anime cons to try to get in as well as a couple of new anime and manga to check out.

The experience itself was mostly good but let’s do the not so pretty stuff first.

It was FREEZING cold in there! I wish I had a jacket with me. My toes were numb and I was shivering pretty much the entire time. And the floor was water all over it so my stuff, as well as other vendors’ stuff, were getting wet and ruined from all the water. Later on, I found out that the vendor area was placed on an ice rink at the venue and the area was supposed to have different flooring than what it ended up with. The OmegaCon staff are aware of those issues and they have plans on making corrections next year so that these things won’t happen again.

My ProPay machine decided it was going to crash on me so I couldn’t accept credit cards at the show. That really sucked because I got it to help with those payments regardless of internet status (which was super unstable). I have to get in contact with ProPay to find out what is going on and to get it fixed because I need this thing to work.

For the upsides, it was great to have folks who helped me transport things to and from the car. It was a decent walking distance and the boxes were heavy so I give a huge kudos to the guys who had to endure that and helped me out big time.

I was impressed with how many folks showed up considering that this was OmegaCon’s only second year. I wish I was present for Friday as that sounded like there was even more people. Hearing about the growth rate of the show, I’m excited for next year.

For Sunday, I slightly changed up the table display.

Beloved Doll Designs table display on Sunday at OmegaCon

Beloved Doll Designs table display on Sunday at OmegaCon

I had the bookmarks sprayed out like a fan. The cup didn’t seem to help them much. I also put the Pokemon cards up on one of the shelves to make it easier to see them. That seemed to help. The crochet plushes were taken out of the bowl so they were easier to see as well. I was able to find a spot to put the price list finally.

More changes will done on future displays for sure. Surprisingly none of the keychains went home with anyone. There is always next time.

Unrelated to the OmegaCon show, I am looking at doing some changes around here on the website. The shop section will be getting a do over in it’s setup and programming. Also an art gallery will be added as there’s been a lot of requests for that. I’ll be taking the business stuff and putting them in their own corner away from all the anime stuff so give the two some separation. I will be holding off adding more stuff to the shop until the restructure is done. No point in adding products in twice. Services will be expanded to include more custom work, too.

If anyone has any photos or videos that were taken at OmegaCon, or have written reviews, please send them my way. I’d love to see them!

Picking Up a New Website

Beloved Doll Designs is picking up a new website!

Technically, the website isn’t new. It’s actually among the oldest and one of the longest-running websites on the internet. Secret Trance will be joining our branch!

We’ve begun work to refresh the design and to update the programming. Our to-do list is about a mile long but it will be well-worth it to breathe new life into this website.

Secret Trance is a website that started back on January 11, 1997 as a fan website under a different name. Then it evolved into a community website where visitors could send in their own pictures and stories. In 2002, it evolved again to becoming more interactive and visitors could log in with their own accounts and submit their material live. In 2005, it got a name change to what it is now and continued to grow in its capabilities.

The main focus of the website is to provide a drama-free environment for artists to share their creations with others and to form friendships among each other. Games were included to enhance the experience for registered members, known as trancers.

While the release date of the fresh new look of Secret Trance is unknown, we will be keeping everyone informed of the progress in the News Section on the website. Stay tuned!