Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Spreader of Love Award



One of my beloved etsybloggers, Unique Commodities, bestowed upon me the Spreader of Love Award. I couldn't not put this up on my blog - I know, that's a double negative, but you know what I mean. Even though Unique is going through some hard time, you can always count on her friendly outlook in the weekly promo threads. So let me say thanks for sharing your love with us!

With these awards, there's always rules, and these are:
1-Post a copy of the award on your blog post
2-Mention who gave you the award
3-Pass the award on to 6 others
4-Leave a message on their blog letting them know the honor has been bestowed upon them

Now, I'm not good at passing these awards on to others, but I think this one is special. I haven't noticed it on many blogs, so if you've received this already, please forgive me. I'd like to mention:

1. Lily at Tulip's Treasure Box
2. Ruthie at Rose Works Jewelry
3. Kathy at A Cozy Life
4. Sandra at Joey & Aleethea
5. Stormy {:-D
6. Miesmama

Sunday, December 28, 2008

clean up at The Artisans Shoppe

Have you seen the latest soap offerings on The Artisans Shoppe?




Over at The Copper Cauldron, our favorite witch has mixed up a brew of Absolute Lavender soap! It's a moisturizing and lathering bar, and has a sprinkling of dried lavender on top. Looks delicious!










If you love taking a bath, Red Leaf Bath and Body shop is offering a new Bubble Bath Dough. I kid you not! As her instructions: "Just rub a golf ball sized portion in your hands under a running bath faucet, and your tub begins to fill with wonderful scents and lots of bubbles." Sounds like a lot of fun!










And for the chocolate lover, check out The Spotted Cow's Chocoholics Unite Sugar Scrub. This combination of whipped soap and sugar will sweeten any user!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Scott Wade's Dirty Car Art

Check this out:



His website is HERE

BookMooch - new life for old books

Do you belong to a book club?
Are you an avid reader, who doesn't always use the library?

Yes, I am a librarian, and I buy books. There, I've said it. I love to be surrounded by books. My instincts are to pass most of my books along to friends and family - to let others enjoy them as much as I have.

Do you feel the same? If you do, you might be interested in a website I found, called BookMooch.
- illustration credit, Andrice Arp, courtesy of BookMooch.com

It's real simple. Just make an inventory of books, at least 10, that you would be willing to mail to others. That's one point for you. Every book you giving away earns you a point. Every book you receive from your wishlist take away a point.

Within the first hour, I had two books people wanted!
Interested? Come to BookMooch and sign up.



- Logo artwork courtesy of BookMooch.com

Friday, December 26, 2008

Etsy Artisan Interview: C Line Creations

Jess from CLineCreations is a new artist on the internet. She opened her Etsy shop just about two months ago, and offers Chinese watercolors and knotting, all of which are very beautiful. When I went to Jess's blog, I was so thrilled! She is willing to instruct others in the art of Chinese brush painting, and has a step by step tutorial. I'm so happy she found my blog - hope you stop by her site, and give some Etsy love!
  • What's the name of your Etsy shop?
My Etsy shop, C Line Creations, can be found at www.CLineCreations.etsy.com. The name comes from the fact that I create all my paintings and knotting in my apartment off of the (C) subway line in Brooklyn.

  • What types of products do you sell?
I sell original Chinese brush paintings and Chinese knottings. Chinese brush painting is done on rice paper with watercolor paints and special horsehair brushes. Chinese knotting uses one continuous round string to create each intricate, ornamental knot.

  • Are selling your products a full-time job, or do you have an additional occupation, outside the home?
I do have an additional occupation, but I’m hoping to be able to spend more time on painting and knotting soon. Being one of the featured “quit your day job” sellers may be a bit of a reach, but a girl can always dream…

  • What is your favorite item in your shop today?





Right now, this large mountain scene painting is my favorite item listed. I loved painting it, and it really became exactly what I had envisioned when I began.





  • How did you find out about Etsy? Were you a buyer before a seller?
I was thinking of trying to sell some of my paintings in consignment shops, and started doing google searches to see if there were any nearby. I ended up finding an individual Etsy seller’s page, and discovered Etsy. I signed up primarily to be a seller, but ended up buying before I had my 1st sale – there’s just so much cool stuff on Etsy!
  • Are you involved with any of the Etsy teams?
I recently joined theNewNew York Street Team, and met a few of them at the Brooklyn flea one Sunday. I’m really excited to get more involved, and hopefully I’ll be able to do some events with them once I have everything set up.
  • We are all looking for good marketing advice. What's the best tip or trick you can share with us?
The best advice I can give so far, as I’m fairly new to Etsy, is that other Etsians are a fantastic resource. Post in the forums, chat, blog, whatever you prefer – just find ways to interact with your fellow crafters and build up a network (I’m still just getting started!). They’re not only a great place to find advice and information, but they are often buyers as well!
  • Are there additional venues where you sell your work?
I have listed a few items on shophandmade.com to see whether that brings more exposure, but I’m mainly concentrating on Etsy. I hope to eventually branch out into craft fairs and other venues, but for now, I’m just going to see where Etsy brings me.

  • Over the years, what materials and mediums have you worked with? What's your favorite?
Besides Chinese brush painting, I’ve also dabbled in charcoal drawings and oil painting. I stuck with Chinese brush painting though, because I just seemed to have a knack for it. Besides, the cultural aspect was also hugely appealing to me – that I could not only create art but also something with a deeper cultural meaning.
  • Everyone knows images are important when selling on the internet. What's your procedure for taking photos of your products? Do you have any tips on taking better photographs?
It took me awhile to figure out photos – for the first set of items I listed, I’ve had 3 completely different sets of pictures! Now, I make sure I take pictures during the day when there is natural light. For knottings, I’ll use the macro setting to get clear close-ups from different angles. For paintings, I hang them on the wall and photograph that wall. And of course, you have to make sure that your camera is steady when you’re taking pictures – there’s nothing worse than a blurry photo on an item you might have bought otherwise!

  • Do you have an online photo storage site, where we can see more about you and your surroundings?
I don’t right now, but I’m considering joining Flickr in the near future.
  • Where can people find out more about you - do you have a blog, website, instant messaging account?
I do have a blog and a twitter, both fairly new.


OK, my pick. This is something that Jess finished not too long ago as a Christmas present and I think it's just beautiful:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Santa's Big Day

Whether you believe in him or not, everybody knows December 24th is Santa's Big Day. Here's six pieces of Etsy artwork to celebrate Santa:



  • From Donna Pool:
Vintage Santa Pocket Mirror Christmas Ornament









  • From HeathersCustomSewing:

Santa on Mint- Vintage Style Adult Waist Apron









  • From AKeepersJackpot:

Letter to Santa Pendant and Choker Necklace









  • From stormydesign:

Santa Ornament










  • From macaroniandglue:

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town -- Sassy Vintage-Inspired Christmas Cards -- Boxed Set of 8







  • From flightsofwhimzy:

Winter-Kin Santa Needle Felted Necklace

Monday, December 22, 2008

Did you StumbleUpon It?

Has anybody else run across StumbleUpon? I've just signed up and it's a blast to use.

StumbleUpon is an interactive search engine that "learns" what you’re interested in, and helps find other sites more to your liking. How does it work?
To start with, go to the StumbleUpon website and create an account (no charge.) There are 500 topics to select from, and you can choose as many interests as you like.
Next, download the toolbar and start stumbling!


Every time you click the Stumble button on your toolbar, it brings up a new screen: a web page, video, blog, or photo that matches your personal interests.


You can also bookmark a site you’re currently looking at. Just click the thumbs up icon, and it will automatically save the site to your profile page. An easy way of saving favorites!

Don’t like the site? Give it a thumbs down!

Anyone who has a blog must be some kind of writer or editor. So here's your chance to evaluate the sites you visit. Along with your review, you have to tell whether it’s an adult site or not, which keeps the service kid-friendly.

Another thing that StumbleUpon offers is sharing your finds with friends. I know I'm always cutting and pasting urls for people. With StumbleUpon, you can send an interesting site with a click on the mouse to other members. For non-members, just add an email address.

I’m thinking this could be another way of drawing viewers to your homepage or blog. So go ahead - try this out. And add your blog to the mix! Do you already have a StumbleUpon account? - I’d love to hear some personal experiences.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Santa's Workshop at MGP

The Museum of The Great Plains, in Lawton, Oklahoma, has a special treat for the community this weekend. The Science Matters mobile museum arrived Thursday night, and will be parked in the Museum's parking lot all weekend, avaiable FREE to the public.

On Saturday, staff members decided to join in the fun, and had Santa's Workshop open inside the museum, for children of all ages!


There was stamping and card making, bow tying, decorating cookies, toy soldier painting, and stringing beads for a bracelet.

You guessed it, I volunteered to help out with the jewelry making!

Let me tell you - the supplies are very simple, and you can do this at any crafting arena. All you need are:
  • beads - I chose 6/0 seed beads
  • memory wire
  • two pliers - one to cut the wire (side cutters), and another to twist the wire (round nose)











Because wire is always sharp, and I didn't want anyone to hurt themselves, I cut the wire and twisted one end. Then it was given to the "jewelers" to start stringing.


When they got their beads on the wire, I twisted the opposite end to finish.


I found I had as many grownups making bracelets as I did children!

So if you live in Oklahoma, you might think of making a trip over the Ferris Ave and visit the Museum of the Great Plains, in Elmer Thomas Park this afternoon. There's a Christmas party Sunday! Join in the festivities, and go into the mobile museum before the vehicle shuts down at 5:00 this afternoon.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Etsybloggers Carnival: December 22, 2008

Growing up in a Jewish household, I never had any Christmas traditions **teehee*

I could tell you all about lighting the candles at Chanukah,
singing songs ♪♫♫♪♫♪♫ and playing games...

but I do have some Christmas traditions, with my new husband.


The first year we lived together, I went out and bought a crystal heart,
exactly like the one above. And ever since, I’ve bought one special Hallmark
ornament every year to hang on our tree.

Etsy Artisan Interview: LanyardLady

After Cherin stopped by Stroll Through Storyland one day, she volunteered to participate in my Friday artisan interview. Sure thing, I said - and I'm glad I did. Here's someone who works fulltime and beads for pleasure. And you've gotta love her beadwork. She's got a great eye for color and seems to me a very down-to-earth, compassionate person. You can currently find her lanyards on Etsy, as well as ebay and flickr - I'm sure you won't be disappointed.
  • What's the name of your Etsy shop?




  • What types of products do you sell?
imaginative handmade beaded lanyards, plus occasional necklaces and bracelets

  • What is your favorite item in your shop today?
My favorite lanyard is LIGHTS OUT, so named because it would surely glow in the dark! It reflects my love of color, pattern and whimsy!












  • How did you find out about Etsy? Where you a buyer before a seller?
I found out about Etsy from a fellow beader. I was a seller before I became a buyer. This Christmas I purchased all-handmade gifts from Etsy for my friends and co-workers!

  • Are there additional venues where you sell your work?
eBay, Artfire
  • Are you involved with any of the Etsy teams?
Not at the moment.
  • Everyone knows images are important when selling on the internet. What's your procedure for taking photos of your products? Do you have any tips on taking better photographs?
Because my schedule means I have to take most of my photos indoors, I struggled to find a background that was eye-catching but didn't overly detract from my designs. I actually tried making my own lightbox (a disaster!); cutting open a Clorox bottle and using that; draping lanyards over a white Wedgwood vase that my daughter gave me; a cork tile ... the list goes on and on. One night I borrowed some of my husband's sheet music and was pleased with the results, so I've stuck with that. I think it's important to show the item from many angles and levels, and to show overall pictures as well as detail shots.
  • Over the years, what materials and mediums have you worked with? What's your favorite?
I have worked with glass, lampwork glass, metal, fiber, acrylic, stone and polymer clay. My favorite media are glass and polymer clay—if it's high quality.

  • Do you have an online photo storage site, where we can see more about you and your surroundings?
I have a flickr gallery at http://www.flickr.com/photos/lanyardladybeads/

  • Are selling your products a full-time job, or do you have an additional occupation, outside the home?
I work full time as director of creative services at a university. I bead for enjoyment, relaxation, and mental health therapy!
  • We are all looking for good marketing advice. What's the best tip or trick you can share with us?
Establish a brand for your shop/items and carry it through in all your marketing. What does your business represent? What is the personality of your products? What makes them appealing and distinctive? How will they make your buyers feel?

  • Where can people find out more about you - do you have a blog, website, instant messaging account?
I have a blog

  • OK, my turn to answer a question! What is storybeader's favorite item for sale in your Etsy shop?

I love Cherin's lanyards, and think they're a great idea. In fact, I had someone ask me at a craft fair recently if I made necklaces for name badges - now I know their proper name! My favorite lanyard is her green natural looking piece called Olive Garden!



Sunday, December 14, 2008

Book Review: Scheherazade Goes West

The author of this book, Fatema Mernissi, is a professor of sociology at the University of Mohammed V in Rabat, Morocco. She tells of her personal findings relating to the literature of Scheherazade.

I felt the book was a bit scattered, and couldn't decide why she had written it. She does share some of Scheherazade's individual stories, but mostly talks about eastern feminism and Muslin literature. Scholars familiar with Muslim storytelling will probably enjoy the book more than general readers like myself. I did enjoy Mernissi's research and accounts on Scheherazade, and the history of One thousand and one nights.

The story of One thousand and one nights is about a Persian queen who betrays her king, Shahrayar, with a man servant. The king kills them both, and in revenge, marries a virgin every night, killing the young woman in the morning. So who was Scheherazade? She was the daughter of the king's "Vizier," who decides to save her country women by marrying the king. She stays alive by keeping the king interested in her nightly storytelling.

Interesting concept, eh?

Friday, December 12, 2008

Etsy Artisan Interview: PurrPrints

Etsy has to be the premier selling site for animal lovers! I interview Beaded Tail last week, and want to introduced you to Becca from PurrPrints this week. Most of her artwork is cat oriented. I noticed in looking through her shop that she designed some fused glass pendants for another Etsy artist (Artistic Flair). I think that is so neat! PurrPrints also had a very interesting way of finding out about Etsy - read all about it!
  • What's the name of your Etsy shop?

  • What types of products do you sell?
Cat-themed art, cards, magnets, key chains, cell charms, and necklaces, plus a few items of non-cat-themed art. I'm always working on coming up with new things too--right now I'm working on making one of a kind cat tags, for instance.

  • Are you involved with any of the Etsy teams?
Probably too many--I'm a bit of a teams addict really--I'm involved with EtsyBloggers, EFA (Etsy For Animals), CFE (Cruelty Free Etsyians) , BluegrassEtsy, and SquidEtsy

  • What is your favorite item in your shop today?
Oh gosh that is always a tough question for me--probably either


Sabrina and friends



or Syd and the Blueberry Tree.




  • How did you find out about Etsy? Were you a buyer before a seller?
I found out about etsy through the black apple's blog--I got drawn in first as a buyer through Alchemy, but quickly became interested in selling as well.
  • Are selling your products a full-time job, or do you have an additional occupation, outside the home?
I'm also currently a full time student pursuing my PhD in Rhetoric and Composition, which involves teaching writing classes at my local university and helping to administer our university writing center.

  • Over the years, what materials and mediums have you worked with? What's your favorite?

I've worked with too many mediums to list without boring everyone to tears (I took plenty of art classes); my current faves are pen and ink work on paper and digital painting (like regular painting, but with digital strokes and, best of all, no paint mess to clean up at the end of the day).

  • Are there additional venues where you sell your work?
Yes, I sell my designs on stuff I can't (yet) make at zazzle.com/purrprints and cafepress.com/purrprints (things like tees, clocks, etc.)

  • Everyone knows images are important when selling on the internet. What's your procedure for taking photos of your products? Do you have any tips on taking better photographs?
Um, marry a professional photographer? Actually, that hasn't worked out ideally for me--I still end up taking most of my own pics--so scratch that. My biggest suggestion is to get a lightbox, learn to love the macro setting on your camera, and play around with different props, positions, and backgrounds.

  • We are all looking for good marketing advice. What's the best tip or trick you can share with us?
Umm...to only take marketing advice from people who are able to make enough off this stuff to do it full time? ;) No, all kidding aside, I'd say experimentation + common sense has worked the best for me--I try something, see if it works, and stop what doesn't and continue what does. It's a trial and error process.
  • Do you have an online photo storage site, where we can see more about you and your surroundings?
I'd be embarrassed to have people see my surroundings to be honest--I'm terribly messy--I'll spend time I could be spending tidying on my blog or the forums. However I do have a flikr account under the name "ryarianne" and I always welcome meeting new people, though I'll admit I'm still a little awkward on using flikr's services.

  • Where can people find out more about you - do you have a blog, website, instant messaging account?
Yes--I spend waaay too much time online. The best source of info on me is my blog, purrprints.blogspot.com--I post info on my sales and giveaways there too--and pictures of my cats who I (unsurprisingly) adore. I also co-run EstyGiveaways (etsygiveaways.com) a free way to find out about and publicize etsy related giveaways. Additionally, besides the other places already mentioned earlier (etsy, cafepress, and zazzle), you can find info about me at squidoo.com/purrprints.

OK, my turn to answer a question! What is storybeader's favorite item for sale in your Etsy shop?

My favorite out of the PurrPrints shop is Floppy Cat - a 8" x 10" print that depicts a cat so well: on her back with her legs in the air. Simply and sweet! It's printed with archival inks on archival epson ultra premium matte paper - something that I, being an archivist, takes seriously!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...