Monday, January 26, 2009

Undiscovered shop!

Aren't these little earrings adorable? I loved them when I first saw them! :-) These little beauties belong to Paige's Beaded Designs - Unique Jewelry and Accessories for Teens. If these are meant for teens, I don't know how they would feel to see an old person like me wearing them instead! I really would wear these too! :-) :-)

Here is where you can find Paige's Beaded Designs on Artfire:

She only has a few items up in her shop right now but they are super cute!

Oh my goodness! I love to look for and look at all kinds of amulet bags. This came up on my search on Artfire tonight. This is called Native American Maiden Amulet/Spirit/Medicine Bag and was made with glass seed beads and lined with deer skin. If anything, this is worth to look at! The seller, Forbesfarm, has all kinds of neat stuff in her shop and I'm really impressed! She has a really nice price range and an awesome selection. Here is her shop so you can check it out yourself:

So there are my two undiscovered shops this time around. If you're a seller that has had very little or no sales at all (like myself) and would like to be featured here, please let me know! You can post a comment here, send me an email or look for me on Etsy or Artfire. :-) :-)

Take care,

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Free Form Crochet/Knitting

I am so tired! I'm actually really *really* tempted to do this tomorrow but I know that if I put it off that it will never get done. :-)

I just came home from spending two days at a free form workshop with Prudence Mapstone. :-) :-) Oh my gosh, it was so much fun! I've known Prudence for a few years and have been playing with freeform for as long as I've known her, but to see the familiar garments and any new garments that she's created is just the neatest thing ever. I get so much inspiration and a new energy from each piece. Plus the other ladies in the class and I all have the same excitement - you can feel it in the air... a bit of nervous energy at first, then you get to know the ladies sitting near you... then you start walking around getting new ideas and letting those creative juices going. Your hands no longer work as fast as your brain comes up with ideas! Then you find out that the 2 or three ladies next to you are feeling the same... then as you get up to stretch your legs, you find out that the rest of the class is the same way!

Prudence will continue her classes tomorrow and on Saturday but I need to get things ready for my son's birthday party on Saturday... so I could only do the two days. I did have a great time though and it was so much fun seeing Prudence again and meeting new friends. :-)

Okay, so what am I going to do with my new found creative energy of freeform? Probably what I do every other time. I scrumble my heart out to add to my the growing stack of scrumbles that I've made in the past. I really don't know why I can't finish something in freeform... I just have so much fun making the smaller pieces and just can't see how I'm going to put it all together. I also am not sure what I want to make with all of my pieces either... a shawl? jacket? purse? Oh! I don't know. There may be enough to make all of them... I just somehow have to get over this no-finish syndrome I guess. :-) :-)

Okay, I want to give a quick update on the free bracelet contest before I forget. I have 9 entries so far but no sales. I've been working on updating a few of my pictures in my shops so I hope this will make the bracelets look a little more appealing. :-) :-) So let's just keep getting the word out and hopefully I'll be giving away a free bracelet soon! :-) :-)

Take care,

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Do you want to win a bracelet?

Okay, so here it is. I need to get my little bracelets out to new homes and I really hope that this contest will get this going. :-) :-) I want to make a bracelet in the winner's choice of colors. :-)

I need your help to get the word out that bead crochet is not dead! Bead crochet is beautiful, fun and a heck of a lot less expensive than diamonds! :-) :-) If any of you know me personally, you will know that bragging about my work is very out of character, but I do think my bracelets are pretty and are worth the price I've given them. I want to find people that agree with me and want to take one (or more) home. :-)

So, here are the details...

I have 15 bracelets currently for sale on Etsy right now and 10 more that I haven't posted yet. I want to sell these bracelets! :-) :-) For every 5 bracelets that find their way to new homes, I'll make a custom bracelet for a lucky winner. Here is how you can qualify:

Post a comment or send me an email - whatever you feel like doing - and let me know that you are getting the word out! Post about bead crochet (and maybe a link to my Etsy or Artfire shops) on your blogs, Twitter, write across your forehead or whatever feels right to you to let people know that crochet - especially bead crochet - is alive and kicking! :-) I've been told that bead crochet is dead, I have to prove that these people are wrong. I've been asked to sell my bracelets for below my material cost, but I think they're worth more!

So send me your name and email address and for every 5 bracelets sold, I'll pull a name out for a custom bracelet. Let me know how you're getting the word out. Did you post to a Yahoo group? Which one? :-) Did you blog about it? Send me the link. :-) :-)

This contest will go on for another month and will end on February 28th, 2009. One free bracelet per person - sorry that you can't win twice. I'll email winner as each 5th bracelet is sold to ask for color preferences. I can only work with what I can afford so please no super expensive bead requests like sterling silver, karate gold, natural stone or crystal beads. I will do my best to work with what you would like for your bracelet. :-)

Let's get going! :-)


Friday, January 16, 2009

Meet Painted Pete

I was in the Etsy chat in the 5 minute featured seller this morning and met an artist that has some incredible items! This talented guy is Painted Pete! He has a nice selection of items in his shop. He's a talented painter, sculptor, wrought iron artist. Check out these items!
The first one above is called Gravity. He has another one in blue colors. I love the colors and shading and it's such a simple concept that he makes work so well! If I had the money, I'd get the red one so quickly. I have no idea where I would hang it, but it's just so cool! :-) Here's a link so you can look at his other pictures.
The middle one pictures above is one of his shrunken heads. I have to admit that this one makes me squirm. It's kind of creepy but I can't stop looking at it! It would be a great Halloween decoration, or if your house is like mine, then it would be a good decoration for the office all year long! :-) I know my husband would totally love it, but I just can't scrape the money together for this one. Even if it creeps me out, it's so unique and would fit way too well with our office decor that I'd love to have it! Here's a link so you can look at the pictures from other angles and get the ordering information:
The last one above is probably my favorite. I love the look for wrought iron and I wish I had started decorating with some wrought iron pieces for my home so I could continue adding pieces like this one. I may try to fit in a piece here or there but for now all I can do is wish. :-) Here is the link to the piece above if you're interested in more information:
Since I can't afford to make any purchases myself, I know that I can at the very least help another artisan hopefully get their first sale. :-) I find so many neat items that I'd love to get... but I'd need to win the lotto to be able to afford it all! :-) :-)
So keep checking in to see what other treasures I find. I try really hard to find the ones working on their first sales so if you want to be featured here, send me an email, make a comment... just get a hold of me any way you can! :-) :-)
Take care,

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bead Crochet

I was in a chat room in Etsy a few days ago hoping to find a trade of a bracelet or two for some basic necessity items like soap or shampoo. Since I want to support the crafting and handmade community as much as possible and I can't really afford these kind of luxuries right now, I really wanted to give a few of my bracelets to someone that would appreciate it and give it a good home. :-)

Well, what ended up happening was some negotiating for bead crochet lessons for soap and making a custom bracelet for some yarn. :-) :-) I'm very pleased with the outcome, but it still does not give my babies a new home. But I just think it's funny how instead of reducing my ever growing inventory of bracelets, I end up teaching others how to make their own. :-) :-)

So here I am continuing to work hard to promote these little bracelets with hopes that someone will appreciate their value and buy one (or two or more!) :-) :-) But I'm finding that more and more people want to learn to make their own. So should I try to concentrate on teaching instead? I've taught a few people to bead crochet through email before so I know I can do it, but really... how much would a person be willing to pay for an on-line bead crochet lesson?

Any thoughts or ideas? :-)


Monday, January 12, 2009

Undiscovered Shops

Okay, so I was looking for some crochet items in Artfire this morning and found a shop that had some incredible stuff! Here is my favorite:

This is a hand painted, Blue and Gold Macaw ploymer clay pendant. Isn't it cute? I originally found ArtisticJen when I clicked on a cute little crochet purse that was listed in Artfire. I was oohing and aahing when I found this pendant. I'm such a bird brain that it really stood out for me. :-) I'd love the shop even more if she had a Timneh African Grey pendant or even a Nanday conure (hint, hint Jen!), but she does have others that are really neat.

Here is Jen's description:

Product Description:
his pendant is a painted Blue and Gold Macaw. The painting was done right onto the clay and sealed for protection. The back is covered with a matching clay cane in a feathery pattern.

It measures 1 3/4" across.

All beads are hand created by me. They are then baked and handed sanded before I apply 2-3 coats of an acrylic finish to them, also all done by hand.

Shipping is thru First Class mail. Insurance is optional, but highly recommended.Canadian orders are shipped thru First Class mail.

If you want to look at more of ArtisticJen's items, click on the link below:

I fell in love with this little lady right away. What a lucky crafter to find a model to show off her items - and willing to work at such a young age. :-) :-)

This little hat is available from sweetbabybowtique on Etsy. Her shop is filled with little jewels like this. This one is called Crochet Baby Beanie Hat Grosgrain Big Bow- RED.

I'm really surprised that these baby hats haven't started selling sooner. She has 18 items total but no sales. Her prices are not bad considering the kind of work that goes into each little treasure. Here is sweetbabybowtique's description for the hat pictured above:

This adorable baby beanie hat was created using our 1 1/2" grosgrain ribbon to created this 4" big bow. Bow is attached to an alligator pinch clip for easy removal, so in the future your little one can wear just the bow alone too!

Hat fits ages newborn to about 12 months of age best.

Here is a link to this shop:

Okay, so there they are! :-) One undiscovered shop from each, Artfire and Etsy, with hopes to get something going for these shops. Take a look around - you never know what you'll run in to! :-) :-)

Take care,

Saturday, January 10, 2009

To learn or to create?

I have no idea if anyone else has had this problem, but I'd love to hear from you if you do... I've been getting so little sleep lately that I'm tired even in my dreams! I had a dream last night where all I wanted to do was stay in bed and sleep. So I woke up exhausted. But as soon as I heard my 4 year old moving around in his bed through the monitor, I knew that I'd have him cuddling with me for a few minutes before getting up. :-) :-) That's my favorite time of day and I want to make sure I'm awake for that. :-) :-)

So I've been working on so much lately... so much but then so little too! I've been working on trying to get my bead crochet bracelets 'out there' by trying to network like crazy. I've been learning about Twitter, posting on places like Etsy and Artfire, I've been adding listings to new shops like Buy It Sell It and Silkfair. I've been reading a lot too... learning about Google Analytics and even set my Artfire shop up. But I have no idea how I did it because I haven't been able to do that with Etsy or Silkfair - and I know that both have it available. I set up my Google account to use Google check out though I'm not sure if I did it correctly, but it's a good thing that I'm in the habit of checking everything at least once a day just in case I actually do make a sale. :-)

So with all of that I've been ignoring my bead crochet. I don't mean to because I have so many ideas going on in my head that I can't get my hands to move fast enough to get them all started. It's a good thing that I keep a sketch book on hand at all times or else I'd forget before they can be created. :-) :-) The past couple days have been especially hard because I've been itching so badly to create that I've been trading sleep for creating time. I'm please with my few crazy ideas and have even altered my original ideas for new ones. :-) The lack of sleep though does play around with my eyes so when I look at my piece again when I'm a little more awake, I can see that my color choices were not the best. :-) :-) But that is easy to fix with the next one - I just want to make that first sample. :-) :-)

Okay, I'm done here for now. I have another idea going around my head but I need to make lunch for the 4 year old first. Then maybe read a comic book or two to relax. :-) :-) My son has been going nuts over the Star Wars Clone Wars cartoons - and now we're reading the comics. They're not as fun as Captain Underpants, but they're still fun. :-)

Take care,

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Artfire Shop

Store not available

I'm on Artfire now! :-) I keep hearing how Artfire is so much better than Etsy... we'll give it some time to see how true that is. I've started off with the 10 items max that it allows with the free account and if I can make a couple sales, then maybe I'll just yank the plug out of my Etsy account and just sell there.

I'll just have to see what works. Promoting is so time consuming and so hard... it takes up so much time on the computer and that is the part that kills me. I really don't know what else to do. I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed and hope the little bit I can do will help. :-)

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New item posted on Etsy

I posted another Javanese face bead necklace on Etsy today!

Here is the link:

It's really cute because this little guy has a face on each side! So this necklace does not really have a 'wrong side'. :-) :-) No matter how you put on the necklace, he will always be facing the outside. :-) :-)

I decided to make the necklace with pleather - the fake leather - not only to keep costs down to make this little treasure more affordable, but pleather seems to wear a little longer than regular leather. At least in my experience, I've always had leather necklaces get brittle and break or kind of crumble apart after a little while. This is especially true if you wear the necklace during the summer when it's warm....

Even if this little guy falls apart with normal wear, I will replace the pleather with more pleather or real leather if you prefer. :-) :-)

Take care,