Thursday, June 30, 2011

Fourth of July sneak peak

I've been working on a few Fourth of July pieces this week, including a bunch of Fourth of July themed button earrings, which will be my free giveaway with all orders during the month of July.  Here are a few pictures of my progress this week.  I'm planning to list them by the end of the week so they'll be ready to go July 1st.  I'll have my other item up shortly, too.

Now that I have my gluing tray back in action, I'll be working on more button earrings and button magnets in the near future.  I already have 8 more earring pairs in other assorted colors ready to be glued.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

June happenings

I took pictures of a few non-craft related things have been going on this month to share with everyone.

Right before we left Iowa, my master's degree diploma arrived in the mail.  That was a really nice surprise.  I figured it would take at least a couple more months.

When my mom and grandma were in town last week, my grandma bought me and Jake a year membership to the Milwaukee Art Museum as a graduation present.  While we were there, we also had to check out the restaurant and the gift shop.  Jake and I have already been back once so no worries that this membership will actually be used for viewing the art there haha.

Angel has to come up to the main floor of the house at least a couple times a day for her food and water.  She was reluctant at first, but she's coming up more often now.

Angel hasn't discovered the sun coming in on the porch and living room floors in the morning yet.  I'm hoping that she does at some point.

Finally, here's a shot at part of our walk in pantry that is now somewhat organized.

I'm working on an in progress crafty post for later this week.  Stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

getting back in the listing routine

Even though I set up my light box this past week, I'm still completely out of my creating, photographing, and listing routine.  Thankfully I still have a small stash of pieces that I created before we moved so as long as I can keep up a little motivation, I can keep listing until I get my creative routine a little better established.

I got a new button charm bracelet up last night.

It's available here.  I'm pretty happy with the purple shades in the pictures.  I have a couple more button charm bracelets from my little button charm bracelet making frenzy this spring that I'll be listing over the next month.  Both are green.  As always, if there's anything else you'd like to see, let me know.

My biggest concentration the next couple weeks will be to make button stud earrings for Christmas in July.  I'm also planning to make some earrings with my new Domino beads that I showed off here.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

treasury round up

I found my work in one gorgeous treasury this week.  Milla (MGLdesign) included my Beaded Bracelet - Emerald City in her Emerald City treasury.  I love this color!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Saturday Link List

Welcome to this week's edition of my link list.  Enjoy!

How to Use Google Alerts for Niche Marketing by Jeffrey Neal
I don't even remember how I came across this hub, but it's a really neat idea.  I'm really not familiar with Google Alerts.  Even if I were, I never would have thought to use it like this before.  It's a great way to follow the latest information about specific products that you make on Etsy, topics for hubs/blogs/etc. that you write about, and so many other things.

How could I resist posting this one, right?  The materials are inexpensive, and the process is pretty straight forward.  This would be a wonderful gift for a mom or pretty much any female in your family.  You can get adventurous and make a whole bouquet.  They would be wonderful for a wedding, too.

I know that there are not a lot of readers here that make pottery, but there are a lot of great photo tips here that anyone using product photography will be able to carry over for their own work.  Among other things, this post considers backgrounds, angles, and lighting.  I really want one of those tabletop tripods now!

Tara has lots of great tutorials on her blog, including a number of recipes.  I've been trying to post a lot of summer time recipes, but I'm switching it up this week with her chili.  Lately I've been using white kidney beans instead of garbanzos for my homemade hummus, which has been amazing.  When I saw that this recipe included white kidney beans, I had to keep reading.  With the addition of chicken, garlic, and onions, what more to do you need?

Those of us who have been following Duni's blog the last few years are really excited that she finally opened up an Etsy shop late 2010.  You can see it here.  Duni shares some great promotional tips in this post, including a couple web sites that I had not visited before.  I know that we can all use some inspiration when it comes to promoting.  Thanks Duni!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

June EtsyBloggers Featured Seller

The EtsyBloggers featured seller for June is tamdoll.  I honestly don't know her very well because she isn't very active on our Etsy forum, but she has a neat shop.  Of course she has a blog, too, which you can visit by clicking here.  She has a lot of fun with fabric making jewelry, dolls, and bags.  She has patterns available for a couple of her dolls, too.  Here are a few of my favorite items from her shop.

A lot of my teammates have featured these little hearts this month, too, but I can see why.  They are really adorable.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

July EBW Challenge Entry

Even though this was a crazy month to create, photograph, and list a challenge entry, I didn't want to pass up the Sizzling Sunshine and Soothing Water theme.  One of the aspects of this challenge was that we had to base our entry off of a specific photo.  I really wanted to use one of my own photos, and I really wanted it to include sand as well.  I'm a huge fan of the Indiana and Michigan Dunes and was disappointed that I didn't have a photo that really fit this theme.  The last time I was there, it was pretty overcast, and I don't have any other digital dunes photos.  But I found another one that worked perfectly.  This is me in Honduras in early January 2008 on a cruise excursion.  I love how you can see the sand right through the water.

I was also inspired by this photo from our honeymoon in Hawaii Dec 06/Jan 07.

Some of you may remember this post with a lot of the beads that I used for this piece.  I also used the new cream and yellow seed beads that I posted about here and some seed beads from my regular stash.

I created a right angle weave base.  I haven't done a lot of multi-row right angle weave pieces, but it's pretty straight forward.  I added a second later of right angle weave embellishment, which is when I added the shells.  The third and final layer was the real challenge for me because I'd really never attempted anything freeform with beadweaving.  I'm pretty pleased with the result.

I have to mention that I got inspiration for this shot from Cheryl of littlestonedesign (see this example).  The weight and general structure of this cuff made it tough for me to use some of my regular poses.

I know that there weren't any shells in either of my pictures, but I felt like the piece needed something besides seed beads.  The color of these shells fit perfectly with the sunshine component of this theme.  The metal sun button also fit well.

I'm not planning to make more cuffs like this any time soon.  If I do, they'll be simpler embellished right angle weave cuffs.  This was still a lot of fun, though.  Some of you may know that I often think of myself as creative but don't think of myself as an artist.  I feel like I actually created a little piece of art for this challenge.

You can purchase my challenge piece here.  Voting will be the beginning of July.  I'll have more details about it when it gets closer.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

our new house

A lot of people have requested pictures of our new house so I finally took a break from unpacking, cleaning, and socializing yesterday to take some.  I hope you enjoy this break in our regularly scheduled programming to see a little peak into what has been a huge aspect of my life lately.

The basketball hoop came with the house.

The little window next to the back door is an old milk delivery system.

Most of the inside of the house is still complete chaos, but I took a couple pictures of it for now.  We have a beautiful four season front porch that came with the curtains.

Of course one of the areas of the house that I had to create some order in right away was the kitchen.  I haven't even used the stove yet, but I already used the food processor to make hummus for a picnic.

Lots of people have been asking me specifically about Angel, which is very sweet.  All things considered, she's adjusting to the new house pretty well.  She loves hanging out in the basement.  Of course she found some of the plastic bags that came with our new TV.  Why sit on the floor alone when you can sit with a bag?

I finished my July EBW Challenge piece before we moved and am finally listing it this week.  Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

treasury round up

We're still in the process of getting settled into our new house, which honestly will probably take at least a couple more weeks.  I'm out of my beading and blogging routines entirely.  But I'm going to make every effort to start photographing new pieces again and share pictures of other recent happenings, too.  This week will still probably be light on the blogging, but bear with me!

In the mean time, I have been included in a couple new treasuries this past week.  Please check out the awesome curators who included my work in their collections!

Emmalee (EmmaleeShallenberger) included my Beaded Bracelet - The Leafy Series - Fall Autumn in her Sunburst treasury.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Saturday Link List

Welcome to this week's edition of my link list.  Enjoy!

I promise that I will not feature posts from How About Orange every week, but it's tough because Jessica has so many awesome things over there.  She recently created a free printable business card template.  I love argyle so I couldn't resist including this.  Even if you don't need business cards, these would be really cute to use for coupons or other promotional stuff for a shop.

Laurie has put together an amazing collection of cardboard box projects to make at home with your kids.  As long as you have boxes, you will never be bored again on a rainy day.  I came across this while I was still collecting boxes for our recent move and had to laugh.  I never want to see boxes again, but this is still a lot of fun.  A lot of these would be awesome additions to daycares, preschools, and kindergarten classrooms, too.

Laura hosted a wonderful tutorial on her blog for these notebook bags.  This is a great, inexpensive project to do with kids and makes a wonderful teacher gift.

For those of you who, like me, were fans of French silk chocolate pie back in the days of raw egg desserts, this is a great alternative without any raw eggs.  I love chocolate in about any form so I knew that I wouldn't be disappointed with this recipe, but it really does taste like a French silk pie.  I made this for Thanksgiving a couple years ago, and it was a big hit.  It's a wonderful summer dessert, too, because it doesn't involve any baking.

I know that we all need inspiration on this topic regularly.  As most of you already know, I do a lot of my beading in the living room and will never have one space dedicated solely to my crafting.  However, I'm doing my best to keep the organization methods from our condo in our new house.  My pictures will never look like this, but I will have some organization stuff up here again at some point.  For now, check out Kim's great post about it.

Friday, June 17, 2011