Monday, November 29, 2010

Happy Birthday Shelly

Happy Birthday Shelly! 
This couldn't be a better time of year to visit Shelly's etsy shop.  She sells cards printed from her pen and ink illustrations and has quite a nice collection for the holidays.  She keeps a blog too, you can check it out here.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me!

Today is my birthday, and since it is my job to announce everyone else's birthdays... I'm also announcing my own. My name is Shelley and that is me in the middle above wearing the fun hat.  I have 2 shops on Etsy because I'm so obsessed with sewing that one just isn't enough.  Besides being part of the Fest Team, I'm also in the Hollywood Craft Mafia.  It would be a great birthday gift for me if you could take a quick peak at either (or both) of my shops.
http://kitschyaprons.com or one of my blogs, this one, this one or this one.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Handmade Holidays

Every year I make an Advent Calendar for my grandson.

 Of course this means I need to get the calendar to him prior to the beginning of December and since they do not live here his mother tries to make a trip just around the end of November to be able to pick up the calendar. This year because of our extensive camping trips she made an last minute decision to come up this week! I was caught off guard because I had not made the Calendar, purchased the gifts or even thought of how I was going to make it this year!  Now since I try always to reduce-re use- recycle I save many things, so I ran to my 'random stuff' bin to see what I had enough of to make the calendar and there were enough cat food cans.

 So after I washed and bleached the cans I proceeded to get my 'craft stuff' bin out and I ended up covering the cans with craft foam

 and then applied some foam holiday stickers around them and some festive pipe cleaners for little lid handles.

 I applied some hot glue to keep the lids on until he opens them but all in all for a last-minute project I think it came out pretty good ...and except for the candy (left over from Halloween) and toys that I put inside the cans, everything else I used to make this I had in my supply closet. and that made me happy!
What's your Handmade Holiday's project?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I recently found out you could find out if you are being mentioned on the web by hearing about Social Mention. That's how I found out that I was featured in someones blog. You just plug in your shop name and let it bring up everything. It will show you all Tweets, Facebook pages and Blogs that you are mentioned in.

I was surprised to find out I was mentioned on someones Facebook page because she was happy I used her in a treasury and wanted her friends to know. Also there were two blogs! Wow, blogs! I commented on both blogs and thanked them immediately for including me. I was featured in beautiful treasuries on their blogs! How cool! Way too cool!!! I had to learn how to do that! I wanted the thrill of making an Etsy Treasury, publishing it on my blog and experiencing someone finding it and being happy like I was.

Visit my blog BajunaJewelry and I will show you how you can get a treasury on your blog too!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Happy {belated} Birthday Cynthia

We all hope that Cynthia had a birthday as fabulous as she is!

Please check out Cynthia's fabulous art Chapelgate Lane Mosaics by nuccynthia on Etsy

Friday, November 12, 2010

Share time:

Using is the one of the simplest ways to get your business records organized. I have already heard of many Etsy shop owners that actually do use the Outright program to run their small businesses and are pretty happy about it.

Getting started is actually pretty simple:
Record your income.
Track your business deductions
Prepare for estimated and end of year taxes
See how your business is doing

And if you are working with a bookkeeper you can Add them to your books so they can manage records and prepare taxes with you.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Meet Janet of Magartsypartycrafts:

Who are you?
I am a very Christ-centered spiritual person who went to the University of Florida for Art and married my high school sweetie. We raised three competitive swimmers and for 18 years I became a die-hard YMCA volunteer who decided to integrate my artwork into my life and to never be a "starving artist". I did everything from designing meet t-shirts, staging large fundraisers and parties, cooking food by myself for large swim meets or 500 triathletes for our Triathlons as well as trucking up to Ohio and Penn State for Big 10's always bringing "artwork" to work on wherever I was. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune blood disorder and suffered through rounds of chemo, IVIG and steroid therapies for 15 years until I had blood allergy testing that showed I was allergic to soy. Once I discovered how many items and medications I was ingesting that had soy in it, from gum to chocolate to bread, and I eliminated it from my diet.It was almost miraculous how I recovered! Now I bake my own bread and tortillas, dehydrate my fruits, make my own beef jerky and cook from scratch. So Life is Grand!

What do you create?
I work in a variety of mediums and have been blessed with the ability to create in most of them. On Etsy, I create one of a kind custom Wedding and Beach Wedding Seashell Bouquets, Boutonnieres and Decor to Table Numbers, Tags and Programs as well Stained Glass and Mosaic pieces. I had no idea when I started selling on Etsy last year that I would be specializing in Wedding and Beach Wedding items. I just learned over the years to never say no to a request even if I have not made it before. So I say yes to all requests and then figure out how to create them. Replying to Alchemy Requests really helped me to make unique artwork for customers looking for specific items and then I started to build up a portfolio of pieces that I could list on Etsy and then things really took off.

How did you come about your store name?
I honestly had no idea what I was going to sell on Etsy when I joined, so just came up with a name that combined what I do Art - Party - Crafts. Now that I have found my niche, I would love to rename my store, but alas...that is against Etsy policy.

What is your favorite tool?
Other than my computer, my Dremel drill press. You should have seen me drilling shells with my battery powered Riobi. A fly on the wall would have had many laughs. For a $40 investment I turned my Dremel tool into a drill press and my life became nirvana. Now I can drill anything and everything.

What is your favorite material to work with?
I love to work with glass and tile, especially when I tumble them in my rock tumbler and then incorporate them in my large pieces. I have done some large stained glass crosses for some local churches combining watercolored paper under the glass and then finished the perimeter with irregular tumbled glass. This combination of unlikely materials into a completed piece lets me create at a very organic and uncontrived level which allows me to freelance with my materials.

What is your life like outside of Etsy?
I have 3 grown children, 2 grand babes and one due any day. My life circles around them, but I work at my art 14 hours a day and love the intertwining of working from home allows me. My grand babes are 9 months and 2 1/2 and they think nothing of sitting on the floor in my Etsy room playing with shells and sea urchins, raffia and ribbon or a container of tumbled glass. They would pick sitting on my lap while I list on Etsy over playing with toys. I brought my own kids up that way since I have always worked from home with them at my feet, or while sitting at their swim meets.
What is your favorite feature on Etsy?
My favorite feature on Etsy is the ability to rearrange the items in your shop. It allows you to arrange your items and show them in their best light instead of in the order they were listed.

What do you enjoy "window shopping" on Etsy on your free time?
I love to see the creativity and ingenuity of other artists, so I tend to click on unique items and it always teaches me something new that I can use in my own work. It is really a quick education and really broadens your artistic mind.

Is there on online "tool" that you like to use?
I find that the best selling feature is timely and immediate response to all questions and my camera is the perfect tool to keep customers up to date on the creation of their order, for color selection, and to send them a photo of the finished product before shipping. This really builds a good personal relationship that usually leads to more orders, as well.

What other interests do you have?
My husband and I are avid bikers, but not the kind that wears matching sports attire or does wheelies on a Harley. We are proud beach cruiser bikers with me sporting a big fat seat and a basket. We take 10-12 mile rides on the weekends along our Legacy bike trails or along the beaches and we love it.

Where in Florida do you live?
I have lived in Sarasota since age 10, that's all I am going to tell you. Long enough. I always wanted to move back to Massachusetts where I lived as a young child, but now I am so thankful I live here in this beautiful state. I have grown to love the casual lifestyle and the warm temperatures as well as the best beaches in Florida.

Could you recommend a fun activity near your Fl home that other members might enjoy?
We have awesome boating and fishing, so we go often and catch
dinner when we can. It is not that unusual for us to go out in my father in law's boat and come back with a mackerel or grouper and cook it up for dinner. When we can we head to the Keys for lobster season and catch our share of mahi-mahi.

Funny story, this summer we were fishing a reef and I got a bite and started to reel it in. All of a sudden I had a tug and could not get the yellow tail I hooked up to the surface. Everyone in the boat teased me that I had snagged the bottom and I started to believe it, especially when my line came up with no hook. About an hour later, my husband struggled with a huge grouper. We got him in the boat and into the ice chest. When he checked on him a few minutes later, my husband was, like , you are not going to believe this...he just spit up your yellow tail! There it was with my line and hook still in it's mouth. What are the chances of that in open water in the Atlantic!

What are some other sites to find out more about you and your art?
I have had an Ebay store for a few years and have 4,563 sales and 100% positive feedback. I am very proud of that.

Where would you go if you had a time machine and why?
 I would go to Heaven and sit down with God and ask him the 100 questions I have stored up in my heart...

What is the craziest thing you have ever done? 
More dangerous than crazy. When I was 16 I was riding my bike on a busy road in a bikini with Dr. Sholl's shoes in one hand and a Slurpee in the other. A driver waved me across the road and a drunk driver pulled around her and hit me. My head hit the windshield, my foot went through the drivers window and then I skidded down the road after hitting my head on the pavement. If you don't think that would make you a spiritual person, nothing will.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Happy Birthday Patricia

Happy Birthday Patricia! 
Check out Patricia's work on Etsy user id patriciavalery she is an independent clothing designer and her work is FABULOUS!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

October Challenge Winner!

It's Delicate Adornments - whose Black and Green Silk Necklace captured the most votes this month! The prize is a choice of an interview on the blog, or an Etsy Mini posted for the rest of the month! Congrats!

Now for the November Challenge Theme: Yellow Topaz or Flower Power Baby! Post your entries here before November 16th. Click here for link to post your entries.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Marketing vs. Spam

Marketing your business online matters
 — and never more than during the big holiday shopping season!

Social media is a great way to build
solid relationships and make your business more visible, and you can start right now, even if you're
just jumping on the bandwagon with a
new blog, Facebook or Twitter account.

Read on for some great tips on quick,
easy ways to use social media to promote your business without being spammy!

Links We Love:

Crafting Your Online Presence

A Free Video Class- Sister Diane Teaching Social Marketing from I Heart Art

         Submitted by Guest Blogger and Member:

         Crystal@ Star & Crossbones