Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ideas and Buttons!

It is a beautiful, warmer day today, accented by the lovely sound of the snow melting away into nothingness... Spring is on its way! :) Thank God!

I created some new rings yesterday, and wanted to share them with you... what do you think?




I had a lot of fun making these, and they'll be up on my Etsy shop soon!

I've also been toying with an idea lately... would anyone be interested in a blog where there is a craft each week, complete with instructions and area where you can post/discuss your craft when done?

Let me know, I'm trying to find out if there is an interest for such a blog!

Thanks!!! :)

Friday, February 26, 2010

The Birth of Ideas

So, yesterday, we had to go to the shelter next door because they were painting ours. We were over there from 8:30am until about 5:30pm... but, it was good down time for me to work on a couple of sketches of ACEO ideas! I only had a blue ball point pen with me, but I had a good time, regardless. There is something... calming about simply sitting and sketching once again... reminds me of simpler times.

There were two twin boys running around the shelter, and they both had coats with a rocket ship design on them, so that inspired me to make this sketch...



Then, keeping with the steampunk affinity I've had as of late, I decided to make this sketch... can't wait to turn it into a quality ACEO!



Then, I had an idea for a nice, calm kitchen-table/coffee sort of thing... so I sketched this out. My husband suggested I lower the table, enlargen the window, and pehraps draw an ocean scene outside... or maybe even a moonlit night. We'll see what I can come up with!



Finally, you'll see how the view of the side/back yard looked a little bit ago... and yes, the snow is still falling... I'm so glad my husband finally grabbed me batteries for my camera!

TGIF every one!!!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Sorry- no photos!

Regretably, my digital camera's batteries have officially run out. Hopefully, hopefully my husband will remember to bring some batteries home from work tonight, so this won't cripple me.

Alas, today we have a blog entry with no photos... boring? Somewhat, perhaps. But! I baked brownies today in cupcake tins... that was fun. They came out so round and cute... I'd take a picture, obviously, but you know...

Also a little upset. An order I placed from an Etsy seller was supposed to arrive already, and still hasn't. I have been trying to communicate with the seller to no avail. I really hope they contact me soon... I'd hate to miss the item I paid for and have to leave negative feedback...

Oh well, I suppose that's it for now. Off to try and remain chipper even in the dull rain. Good day every one!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Creative Inspiration

Hello, and Happy Monday!

So, I know that every one who creates garners their inspiration from somewhere... wether it be music, the sky, family, or street signs...



I was just going through my pictures folder and I found one titled "Inspiration". I have a lot of photos pulled from around the world wide web, and I've no idea anylonger from whence they came, but they are a constant source of inspiration for me.



If any of these happen to be YOUR work, fret not... I am merely showcasing your talent here on my blog, because I appreciate it so much that I've added it to my personal folder.

What inspires you? My friend makes origami earrings from mangas! Another person I know makes soda can tab bracelets.

Inspiration is every where... all you need to do is look. And never stop creating!!!




OH!!! AND a BIG congrats to Jammatun! for winning mine and Luv Ewe Knits blog giveaway!!! She won those wonderful, quality, versatile face cloths! Way to go!!!

More giveaways to come soon, so keep checking!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

When You Can't Name Your Art...

Ever make something that you're VERY happy with, but you just can't seem to figure out a good name for it?

Well, that has happened to me... tonight, I finished my first two steampunk-inspired ACEOs... and, I think they turned out fantastic. I really dig them, a lot.

I'm ready to put them up on Etsy and share them with the world, but I can't think of a good name for either one! I mean, there's always song lyrics... "Time is On My Side" or "Time Keeps on Slipping Into the Future"... but those are... expected? I don't know... I want something a little more unique, to show the one-of-a-kindness of the cards themselves.

So, here are my two latest creations... can anyone out there help me with a name for either, or both of these cards? If so, you will get the appropriate mention for naming the card(s) in the respective Etsy listing. No good answer will be ignored, and all will be considered.

Please, if you have any ideas, post away!!! :) And thanks.

1.)


2.)


Oh, and don't forget to enter my giveaway, which ends tomorrow night! Enter HERE!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Steampunk?

So, I was reading blogs yesterday, and I came across this! Well, after thoroughly reading the blog, and researching the shop, a definite love for what is known as "Steampunk" began!

Take a moment and look up Steampunk on Wikipedia... or, better yet, get straight to the point and read about the art/design part of it here!

When I was in college, I used to make sculptures with melted straws, adding elements of mechanical/metal whatever-I-could-find that I thought was asthetically pleasing. To find that there are many others who do similar stuff, and there's even a NAME for it... I was very happy, to say the least.

Since then, I've been looking at stuff all over Etsy, Ebay, and the web. I really do love the style, and I invite you all to research it on your own, if you haven't a clue what it's about.

However, if you DO have a clue what it's about... take a look at this here, a barrette I made last night inspired by Steampunk. Now, it isn't necessarily clocks and gears, but it does have broken pieces of a cell phone... so, does it constitute Steampunk to you?



Also, don't forget to enter the Giveaway for a $40.00 value wonderful prize!!! Enter HERE!!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

WONDERFUL Giveaway!!!

Hello, friends! Today I am hosting a really great giveaway, sponsored by Lynette from LuvEweKnits!

I recently received an amazing hat from her, which I have completely fallen in love with, and it has become my favorite hat. Not only is it super warm, but it's very versatile... it's cute, fun, and I can wear it basically with anything, and not feel bored. I truly love this hat, and am very grateful that I found her Etsy shop. Here, take a look at my hat! I even let my baby model it :)




After I fell in love with my hat, I knew I just had to feature her on my blog. AND to make it better, she agreed to have a giveaway, so one of you lucky winners will also fall in love with her wonderful work! :)

Here is the feature:

Which do you like to do more, knit or crochet? Why?

It's funny; I learned both as a child, but really hated knitting. I didn't use either one very often until young adulthood, and then picked up crochet, which I adored, and got to be really fast at, and fairly skilled.

Then a couple years ago, I joined a Stitch-n-Bitch group and became jealous of the beautiful knitted items my new friends were making. I decided I would learn again to knit no matter what, and I did. I re-taught myself, and I continue to add new techniques and tricks. I've become a pretty fast knitter now, too, and I can honestly say, I love knitting now, probably more than crochet. I just love the softness and the variety of things I can do with it, and the rhythm is meditative for me.

I also enjoy knitting on the knitting machine, though not nearly as much as by hand.


How did you first learn to knit?

The first time I learned I was about six years old. My great Grandmother had incredible patience and taught me. It didn't really stick, and she and my mother both re-taught me a few times through childhood. I just wanted to be stitching like they were when we would visit Gramma and sit on her 'davenport' together. I eventually just picked up crochet projects and other needlework to work on while they stitched. Through the years they taught me needlepoint, embroidery, sewing and quilting, too.

What is your current inspiration?

I find inspiration everywhere I look and everywhere I go. Yarns and fibers inspire me, knitting books and patterns, you tube videos, I just want to learn more techniques, fondle more yarns, and make beautiful things. Sometimes I am inspired by my environment, nature, color, or people I meet or know, or love.

Do you do any other crafts? Which ones?

Yes, many! I don't have time to do them all anymore, but I also sew, quilt, rubber stamp, scrapbook, one stroke paint, embroider, paper craft and bead!

I love to learn new things, and having several skills in my back pocket helps me to be more creative, and combine media. For example, I'm working on several knitted felted bags right now that include sewn reinforced linings, zippers, and embellishments with beading, embroidery and needlefelting.


How did you begin on Etsy? Has it been profitable for you so far?

I started my Etsy shop in November 2009. It's been a slow start so far, but I have learned loads of great information about how to present my shop and how to promote it by attending the Virtual Labs. I've been working on my photography, improving my titles and tags, and adding more items to the shop as often as I can. I'm also doing a lot of promoting now, using Facebook and Twitter, and my new blog. I feel it's normal to take some time to build up a foundation and make my business name known before sales start to become regular.

What's the favorite item in your shop right now?

My favorite item in the shop right now would have to be the charcoal felted children's boot slippers. I love all the felted slippers, they're so much fun to make. You knit up what looks like really huge slippers, and they felt down so neatly to the perfect size and they're so cute! The felted slippers are my kid's favorite, some like the boot style, some the clog style, and some of them have had multiple pairs.

Where did you come up with your shop name?

It was difficult! I wanted something sweet, but not too cute, something memorable, and preferably something unique. Also, I needed it not to match anything in my state, since I am registered as a business. It took a bit of trial and error, but I've grown to like my business name quite a lot.

Have you found Twitter to be helpful?

Yes, definitely! Twitter has been really helpful to increase views in my Etsy shop, on treasuries I make, on my Facebook Fan page, and on my blog. Every new set of eyes opens a whole new network of people, so I count on Twitter to get my name and my work out there.

What advice would you give to someone looking to start selling their homemade wares on line?

Learn how to take good photos, don't under price your goods, and definitely use social networking to promote your work. Be real and let people see your personality, not just your promotions. Most of all, LOVE what you do, be passionate about it. It's infectious! Also, it takes awhile to get going, don't be disappointed if sales don't start off with a bang. Make sure you set a budget for yourself on what to spend for listing and advertising, and stick to it.

Tell us about the item up for grabs for the give away.

The item up for grabs for the giveaway is a set of ten Organic Cotton Crocheted Facecloths in Marshmallow. It was the first project I did for my new blog, 99 Balls of Yarn. The cloths are round, about 5 inches across, and can be used for face cloths, removing makeup, baby washcloths, or even as coasters. The marshmallow color is neutral to match any d├ęcor, and they are unisex! The cloths are all hand crocheted by me. The organic yarn means no chemicals against your face or baby's skin. This set of ten is a double set, and has a retail value of $40.

Lynette Connors
Luv Ewe Knits

So there you have it, folks! Now I bet you're wondering how you can enter this fantastic giveaway?

All you have to do is visit Lynette's Etsy shop HERE and report back here, telling us in a comment which is YOUR favorite item! It's that easy!

For extra entries, visit Lynette's blog 99 Balls of Yarn and become a follower, then come back here, post on this entry, and tell us that you've become a follower!

This giveaway will last from today (Feb 8) until Monday, Feb 22. That's two whole weeks! Plenty of time to get your comments in, and win those wonderful face cloths!

Enjoy, and Happy Monday, every one!!!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Hello, and T.G.I.F.!!!

Today has been a pretty creative day thus far... even though, for some reason, my wonderful son Kyle has decided it is National Get-On-Mommy's-Nerves in Any Way Possible Day, but heck... he's adorable, and days like this are par for the course. At least I've gotten a bit done. Here he is, being his cute self.



I've been working on a pretty drop-stitch scarf recently, and managed to get a bit more of that done... I enjoy the drop-stitch pattern because it works up quickly, and turns out very pretty. :)



I also managed to fix up the pink barrette I've been working on, and I like it better than I did. I'm going to list it on my Etsy today, at long last. I tend to be a perfectionist about things I make... I'm way too critical sometimes, but I think this turned out nice.



I've also been featured in 2 treasuries today by the wonderful women of the DAWG Group! Go check them out, comment, and click away!

Pink Tea and Sunshine Treasury!

Who Let The DAWGS Out Treasury!

Remember, this is the day that the Lord has made, so rejoice and be glad in it! :) Happy Friday every one!!!

And stay posted, a VERY COOL give away is coming this weekend!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thursday Creative Traffic

Welcome back every one for today's installment of Thursday's Creative Traffic!

Today we're going to look at a site that I just found out about. I am sure it's already received a lot of traffic, so you should definitely check it out... it's a great site!

What am I talking about? Why, it's animoto.com!

This animoto site allows you to upload your very own pictures, put them to music (yours or theirs), and then it makes a video of them, for free! You get to make as many as you want, 30 seconds long. If you want a longer video, you can pay... but for advertising your Etsy wares, a 30 second video is perfect. It's comprehensive, not over-done, and no two videos are ever the same...

Seriously, take a look... you'll be glad you did!

Oh, and you can see the video I made last night right here!

Happy Thursday every one!!!

I wish to thank ZionShore for posting about this site!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Whatever Wednesday!

Ok, so I'm allowing myself some freedom here... I've now decided that Wednesdays from hence forth will be "Whatever Wednesdays"... which means, basically, that I can post about anything I want, NOT just crafts. I generally love to keep my blog about crafts and Etsy, but once in a while there ARE other things to post about, and from now on, I'll leave them to Wednesdays! :)



I posted on a thread on Etsy today, titled "What Makes You Keep Going?"
You can view that here.

I was kind of bummed recently that the things I was making for Etsy (which I love, by the way) seemed to be falling by the wayside. I'd make something, fall in love with how it turned out, then post it on Etsy and... nothing. No hearts, no sales. And that was rather discouraging, especially when you want to be recognized for a good job (we all do!).

Well, it turns out that I've come to the conclusion, after reading every one's comments on the thread, that the sheer fact that Etsy exists, allowing us to post our items that ordinarily would not be seen by anyone, is in itself a wonderful thing. Wether we sell or not, we are learning, gaining exposure, finding friends, and sharing our work with the world.

And that is priceless. :)

Happy Wednesday, every one!!!