Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Beginnings are funny things. And time is an interesting construct.

And isn't it strange how the turn of the year makes us want a fresh start?

I'm thinking a lot, not about 2008, but about 2009. I have hopes for it.

I'm thinking about best practices, about priorities and time management. Record keeping.

I'm thinking about goal setting which is a difficult thing for me. I don't like them because I feel a very unpleasant pressure to achieve them.

I'm thinking of my general well-being.
I evaluating the art groups I'm in. How often I should blog.

And things like these.

Latest treasury, midwinter:

Monday, December 29, 2008

pretty in the pictures

The Bead Art Originals Items of the Week are up! Go check them out on the blog! I'm offering a $15 credit toward any second item with the purchase of my Study in Iolite and someone else is offering fruitcake, but you'll have to go look to see who!
And here is some wonderful work from some of the Treasury curators who kindly chose to feature my pieces this week!
That's it! Have a lovely Monday!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

a bit at a time

What to report today? Well, Friday another one of my Treasuries was chosen for the Front Page of Etsy. That's always fun!
And it encouraged me to make another, i think about you, sometimes

I'm trying to make small improvements in my shop. I got a new banner, hopefully a bit of a fresher look.

I made myself a little thank you graphic using a lily that I commission Alison at paintandink to draw for me last year.

I'm currently in the market to get gift certificates designed! That will make it easier to phrase giveaway offers and publicize them! And hopefully make my shop more gift friendly.

Something I'm contemplating is gift wrap and expedited shipping.

On Etsy you're not supposed to sell a listing just for shipping. So what does one do to offer it? I have just put an announcement up that said something like, "If an item is being shipped 1st Class and you want to have it shipped Priority Mail, please purchase but do not pay. Instead, put a note about Priority Mail in notes to seller and wait for a revised invoice via Paypal."

Well and good, but none too smooth. What I'm thinking is that if I offer a gift box/wrap listing someone could buy their earrings and the box and get Priority Mail.

Problem is depending on the piece, I box it anyway. Or bag it.

It's a dilemma!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

hmmm, something else?

No beading for me today.

My cousin asked me to come over for a craft day-- which I thought would be me beading and him doing whatever he wanted of his many crafty interests.

Not what he had in mind! He wanted to show me a bit about polymer clay.

So I got to run the clay through the pasta machine and pick out the colors of the paints and things that we used. It was fun and my bead turned out so much better than the first and last time I tried polymer!

Friday, December 26, 2008

the green project: a beading journal III

I finally get a bit of energy and bead some. The whole thing is taking shape in my mind a bit more firmly.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

family project #1, down

I feel sick seems hardly worth an entry. I just haven't been able to come up with anything else so I made myself finish a project that's been in the works for a bit now.
The baby in our family started 3rd grade this year. He's a collector who loves trains, bike-riding over very long distances (think BRAG) and dead bugs. On one of our railroad track outings we found some turtle shells and I finally got around to combining it with feathers, snake and fish vertebrae and other bits of bone and glass.
I started him an ACEO/ATC collection a while ago and to him goes my very first little card:)
Now I just need to pack it all up and get it in the mail!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

quiet . . .

It always seems to me that our part of the world shuts down this time of year. I feel like a have a second to breathe. We don't celebrate Christmas, so instead of today and tomorrow being ultra-busy, they're ultra quiet. Which suits me. My own little tradition is to wear my PJ's all day and work on whatever I'm working on. A quilt, a dress, a cross-stitched panel-- this year it's my green project. So, maybe I'll have more progress to share!
My quiet mood is reflected a bit in my latest two treasuries. Still live, so check them out!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

the gift of handmade

I was reading this morning about a soaper whose family complained about getting her product as a gift. Apparently they preferred Bath&Body products, without ever having tried hers. Whereupon she wonders if giving handmade is tacky. Huh?

I thought of all the marvelous handmade things I've received over the years. And all the love built into them.

When sistermine and I were little, my aunt and mothermine made most of our clothes. I look at all the snapshots in our family albums and think of all that time and energy and love that went into those clothes. And baby quilts.

Mothermine doesn't sew anymore, and it got to be too much for my aunt as well. She did do alot of crochet and knitting though. I still have some of those things, and cherish them.

When she passed it was spring and till that fall I slept on top of all my bedclothes and under this cotton afghan she made.
A poncho and a cape.
Scarves, some made by my aunt, others by friends.
A friend of the family made this for me. I *adore* the appliques! King sized, hand-quilted.
Sistermine bought this for me. I wear it to RenFaires, and once, to the mall! (That was back when I worked at the mall, although I didn't wear it while I was on the clock.)
This came from a friend out west. We've only met once, but we had a good time!
Pieces of handmade jewelry that loved ones have bought for me.
My cousin made this for me! Love it!
My Dad brought these back from overseas.
My newest handmade labors of love, from a friend I've never met!
This is by no means a comprehensive list. I only shared things others have given me, nothing I've made or bought or traded for myself, and not even everything that I've been given. There's too much.
But I wanted to share the import of a handmade gift. The effect it can have. The specialness. Each piece has a story, and with each use of a piece I think of that story. It's a story of love-- one of the greatest human stories that exists.
dragon by jcarpolymer, felted scarf by ingermaaike, peyote earrings by Sand Fibers

Sunday, December 21, 2008

tonight, I'm pleased

I talk a lot about Etsy on this blog. I love Etsy. It's made it possible for me to do something that I really, really love.

I've also talked about ShopHandmade and for awhile I had a WinkElf badge. I may not have mentioned iCraft, daWanda, ArtFire. Most recently I've been talking about 1000Markets.

And there's so much more out there! I only play around with the sites that seem like they have some promise. As much as I love Etsy, I'm also out for an audience though. As large an audience as I can get.

So while I adore Etsy, I don't want to limit myself to Etsy. The problem is, Etsy is handsdown the biggest show on the road. So I've opened shops on these other venues and . . . . nothing. It's been very sad. I've tried to be patient.

When I started on Etsy it took *weeks* to make the first sale. Three months in I was still at about thirty sales-- and feeling pretty good about it! For December so far, I'm over fifty. So you can see it's a process. It builds.

Since I've started, I've learned so much! My pictures have improved, my techniques, skills and know how has all improved. Still I've yet to break ground with these other sites. Till tonight!

Yay! I had my first sale on 1000Markets. Very cool, as it's my newest endeavor and different enough from Etsy that I'll hopefully be reaching a different market.

Then I got a lovely convo from Katrina at Moods and Appetites. You have to check this out! She's featuring my work along with famous works like Gainsborough's Blue Boy and haute couture by Oscar de la Renta. It really blows me away and you have to see it!

Wearable and art!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

sharing, and can I just wear this?

Sharing my latest Treasury! All the Way Home-- yet another one that I was wholly unprepared for!

Next! I found this site, Vyala-Arts. She's going to show up on my Entrecard soon, but I couldn't wait for you to see!

Do you ever see things, paintings, buildings, sunsets, stained glass windows, ultraviolet lights-- beautiful things-- that you wish you could wear? I love jewelry and the right clothes. I love wearable art, or art to wear, or what ever you want to call it.

I so want to wear this!

Please check out the site, you won't be disappointed!

Friday, December 19, 2008

met the end of year goal

Yup! As I type my Etsy sale counter sits at 300. I'm pretty happy, but I know that I didn't do it by myself! Thanks again to each of my customers! And thanks to Carol Dean Sharpe of SandFibers for pushing me over that particular hill!!!
I hit the Etsy front page again last night! Winklepots' fabulous treasury was up for a few minutes. She did such a fabulous job!

And this is a Treasury of my own:
and that's it for today:)
I'll be away tomorrow. If the hotel room has wi-fi, you'll hear from me. Otherwise, it'll be Sunday!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

wearable art, the rest of the story

Today is the rest of the Wearable Arts Market artists as it currently stands!
14 of us!
As other artists are included in the market I'll be sure to introduce!
I'm making my first beaded sandal/foot thong/ whatever thingy today. Special order!
And I'm only one sale away from my end of year goal! Methinks I'll make it!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

the wearable art market

"Wearable art, also known as Artwear or "art to wear", refers to individually designed pieces of (usually) hand-made clothing or jewelry created as fine or expressive art. While the making of any article of clothing or other wearable object typically involves aesthetic considerations, the term wearable art implies that the work is intended to be accepted as a serious and unique artistic creation or statement. Pieces may be sold and/or exhibited." -- Wikipedia
I adore wearable art. I love art, I love making a statement. I was thrilled to be accepted into the Wearable Art Market at 1000Markets.
Today I want to introduce you to a few of the members-- rather their work!
Come visit the Market and check back tomorrow for a peek at the rest of the group!