Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Count Down is On

The biggest problem I have with having a home business is that I work best under pressure. Which is just another way of saying I procrastinate so much that unless I have a dead line its often hard for me to finish a project. Yes, you may laugh at me. That's why during my school days I often made deals with myself like, "I can't watch this show tonight unless I finish my math homework first."

Well now I'm facing that big and fun deadline that every artists faces when they do shows - the countdown to opening day!

If it seems like I've talked about the Saturday Market season starting a lot - that's because I have! It's my main focus right now. And considering I'm down to 10 days - it should be!

My original plan was to spend all month working on things for the season, and then my nephews were born on the 11th of this month instead of the 10th of next month! Needless to say the whole first part of my month was completely taken up and saturated with baby stuff! Now I'm still a little split with my focus (how can I not be? They are so cute!!!) but I think I'm just about ready.

The most important things are done. The canopy is on it's way in the mail from Amazon, I've bought most of the displays I need, and if I don't get the rest in time that's ok, I'll just improvise and have it for the next week!

The biggest thing left on my plate is changing over some of my tagging system. While I'm dreading the monotony of that, I have started a few pieces at time with the items I've been listing these last few days. I think I'll probably go down to the red box while my hubby is gone this weekend and rent a movie to watch while I do the rest of the tags.

Friday, April 23, 2010

A Big Texas Welcome

I love the Etsy Bloggers Team! I don't always get to participate as much as I would like, but when I have these are some of the most wonderful gals around. Recently we did a journal swap! I had a really bad month and wasn't able to complete mine (barely started it) but fortunately my partner understood. Look what I got!

This journal was made by Erica of Nico Designs. I had a lot of fun reading what she wrote and looking at her cute little pictures she drew for me! Definitely not my forte, I can't really draw and I've always wanted to, so it always extra impresses me when other people can!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Not so Crafty...

I haven't done much crafting this week. After my nephews were born last Sunday I kinda just crashed. I think I had been running on adrenaline for most of the week. I didn't crash as hard as I normally would though - so that just proves that I really am getting stronger! Woohoo!

Anyway, when I haven't been at the hospital this week I've been at home and either asleep, reading to relax, or spending some time with my poor hubby so he doesn't feel quite so abandoned. Poor guy! With me being sick he's gotten pretty used to be being home the majority of the time, and it worries him when I'm gone too much. It'll definitely be an adjustment for both of us assuming I'm able to go back to work this by the end of the year.

I'm sure I'll be back to my normal crafty self before long though! And if I'm going to put down my beads and various other crafts, adorable nephews are a good reason!

I'm going to spend the day at the hospital keeping Becca company today. Since she ended up in the hospital early there were a lot of things that they didn't manage to get done around the house to prepare for the boys. So John and the Grandma's are going to do some work today.

Oh, and while I'm talking about Becca, she's doing a lot better :) Healing quickly from her c-section. So that's great!

AND I should finally get a chance to hold my nephews today! Don't worry - I'll get pictures :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

My Nephews Are Here!

Little Ian has a strong grip already! I figured this was the most appropriate picture for my jewelry blog since you can see my beadwoven ring on the hand he's gripping! For the rest of the pictures, and to meet little Rowan, go here.

Needless to say - the blanket didn't get done in time :P

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Crocheting Frenzy

I believe I've mentioned recently that my sister in law is in the hospital with complications with her pregnancy. They are hoping that they can keep her healthy enough to avoid having to take the twins out for another two weeks, but it's still going to be early! Why does that mean a crocheting frenzy?

Well my Mom and I decided to make the matching blankets for the boys. Her's was finished a while ago, partially because she had a lot of time to work on it while she was up north with my dying Granny. I, being the slower crocheter, and having other projects going too, have been plugging alone on my blanket.

I thought I had a month left. Now it's any time in the next two weeks! I have a feeling I won't get the blanket done in time, but I want to try and get it done as soon as possible! Of course, spending time helping out with their two year old, and running errands, and all that other stuff is cutting into my time crocheting!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Motivation Time

One thing that I've wondered (and tried not to worry about) is how I'll manage my shop and all that when I go back to working. Our goal has been for me to go back to work (or at least start looking) by the end of the summer right? Well I've figured that's going to be hard on me physically and I've been planning on trying to get stronger, but there's still been that small part of me that's worried about keeping up.

Well, the last two days have been really long. I've been at the hospital with my brother and his wife (you can read about it here) so I've been gone just as much as I would be if I was working (I was there for 8 hours yesterday). And...I'm discovering that I'm finding the motivation to get the things I need to done in and around being gone. I'm pretty tired, and I haven't listed anything in the last couple days, but I've been working to still eat healthy, I've been blogging, and I've made sure to spend some quality time connecting with my hubby every day.

It's definitely cutting in to my crafty time and my chatty time, but it's good to see that I'm finding the motivation to get things done :)

Friday, April 9, 2010

Come Vote for Us!

It's time again to vote for the Etsy Bead Weavers Challenge! I'm in this one too :) I'm number 29 - but don't feel obligated to vote for me - just go vote for your favorite!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Decision Made

I mentioned recently that I was trying to decide what to do with my Artfire account, should I stay pro or go basic? I may have only mentioned this only recently, but it's honestly been something that I've been struggling to decide for awhile now. I don't have stellar sales in either my etsy or artfire shops, but etsy is costing me less, and it only costs me if I make a sale or I chose to list. I like that.

I've also discovered that splitting my focus really doesn't work. I mean, I'd like to be able to equally promote both shops, but it usually ends up I'm focusing on one or the other. Which sometimes works, and other times just drives me nuts as I wish for more hours in the day where I can promote, create, and take care of the rest of life!

There are many things I dislike about Etsy, many things I like about Artfire, but it comes down to money in the end. And, to be honest, connections. I've made a lot more friends on Etsy, and if I'm going to focus on one shop, I'd rather focus on the one where I've made those friendships.

So I'm taking my Artfire account basic. I am going to keep it, and I'll work on it occasionally when I'm happy with where I'm on Etsy, but I honestly have a LOT of things I want to work on with my Etsy shop and the decision to just focus on that is a major relief! Especially when you consider I also have one consignment shop, would still like to find more of those, and I'm going to be doing the Saturday Markets this summer...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring Fling

One question I hear over and over again in artists interviews is, "Where do you find your inspiration?" It's a question that I personally have struggled to answer because it changes so much depending on what piece I'm working on! For me many of my creations are simply born from the beads in my stash or that I find in the store, but others have a much more complex story.

For my newest necklace, "Spring Fling," it started in two separate places. When I bought the leaf beads I was planning on using them in a necklace, but I had no idea how or where. They got put in a bead box for when I had time to use them to create something. That's the hoarder in me, I'll often buy beads just against future use, without a real plan in mind!

Next came this month's challenge "Light as a Breeze" with the Etsy Bead Weavers. I immediately knew that this was the perfect time to pull out these fun leaf beads!

I already had the blue beads that matched perfectly, so I went to the store to pick up some yellow beads. Some how I managed to pick up size 15 beads instead of the 12's that I usually use. Which means my original beading pattern got thrown out the window.

This was a good thing!

I was really frustrated at first, but I decided to find a way to use the beads I had bought, and I'm much happier with the necklace I came up with than with what I first envisioned!

Mention this blog and I'll give you $15 off your purchase of this necklace (and any accompanying items) in my etsy shop.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Crafty ADD #31

It's the start of another week - and more crafty stuff to report! Woohoo!


I was a bad girl and did not get anywhere near as much done on this as I should of. That's because I was really focused on the two jewelry projects below. I have one more that I REALLY need to get done, but as soon as I'm done with that I'm going to have to bust out the mad crocheting skills...

Cross Stitch

I think I only worked on this one day this week. But it was an important day! I added purple! Always a landmark day right?


The butterfly is finally finished! Well...almost... *sigh* I still need a proper pin back for it. Haven't found one in the right size yet. This little bugger took me HOURS longer than I think it should have :P I can't even begin to tell you how many problems it caused...in fact...I don't think I'll even try :P The good news is as soon as I find a pin back it's going on my back pack that I carry everywhere! Yay for a beady project for me! To show off!

This is my challenge piece for the Etsy Bead Weavers monthly challenge. It's what I've spent the last three days working on (when I could). I'll tell you more about it tomorrow. It deserves it's own blog post :)

Craft on!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Getting Ready for the Summer

It's that time of year! I'm getting ready for doing the summer bazaars and there is so much to do! The biggest problem is finding a tent. I found one I LOVE (not the one pictured) but it's twice as much as I was hoping to pay. *sigh* The one pictured is a good price though. I need to do more research :)

Tonight I'll be meeting with John, my brother and partner, to make plans for the bazaars. And just so he can know what to expect. I have experience doing this and he doesn't, so I'm sure we'll have tons to talk about!

On top of buying a tent I need to buy another table, fabric for covering the tables, and some new displays. *whew* Lots to do and lots to spend up front, but I'm confident about earning it back this summer :)

I'm really excited! Can you tell?

Friday, April 2, 2010

Congrats to March's Winners!

Welcome to April! I didn't get a chance to announce the winners from the monthly contest yesterday - but maybe that's a good thing since it was April Fools?

Just a reminder of how this works: I track every comment that I receive on my blog. Then, at the end of the month, the top three commentators win prizes! Whoever wins one month is not eligible the next month to win, so sometimes it's not actually the top commentator who wins that month, because I want to give everyone a chance!

Whenever I put up a collection of my latest works promoted I give people a chance to earn extra entry's towards my commentators contest. Those extra entries are in parenthesis.

This month things are just a wee bit different - I had a 4 way tie for 3rd place so I'm not going to be awarding that one this month. Sorry - I just couldn't do that many winners! So we just have a top two this month. And now for our winners!

1st - Beadwright - 8
2nd - Splendid Litle Stars - 7

Now to show off some of their stuff!

And now for the fun numbers :)

Top Commentator: This Month - 13 Last Month - 13
Total Commentators: This Month 48 - Last Month - 203
Total Comments: This Month - 98- Last Month - 256

Hehe - my numbers were a little inflated last month. Although I'll be honest - I'm so tired right now I can't for the life of me remember why! Let's just say I spent all day going to doctors appointments or running errands. None of the appointments were bad (mostly just maintenance, ya know, checking in) but it took all day. As soon as I notify the winners I'm going to go make myself a cup of tea and curl up with a book - I don't even want to bead tonight!


About a month ago I featured Luna's Baublebilities and in return she featured me! Isn't that sweet? Here's her spotlight...