Sunday, August 30, 2009

Rooting Rosemary and Preparing the Greenhouse


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Three days ago, I took twelve cuttings from the rosemary bush in the front yard of our rental house. The plant was already well-established when we moved in, so I do not think it would survive an uprooting and re-potting, therefore, I took the cuttings. I followed the directions verbatim from a plant nursery that I found online, and I'll be danged if my cuttings are looking like they are dying. I'm going to give them a few more days to see if they suddenly perk up, but I'm doubting that they will. If they don't, I'll give twelve more cuttings a shot. If those die, I'll just buy a few plants from a nursery when the season starts next year.

On the greenhouse front, I'm still gathering supplies. I have many new seedlings starting for the winter for my indoor container garden. I'm still in the process of finding larger pots for re-potting time. My dad used to have an entire workshop full of old plastic pots from plants that he planted years ago, but his barn burned down several summers ago and all the pots went up with it. I'm hoping to hit up the End of the Summer sale at Walmart here soon to see if I can get some gardening supplies for fairly cheap.

The big plan is to either have a raised garden in 2010 (if we get our own house and property), or to make a huge container garden in the backyard (if we are still in this rental next summer). We have plenty of room in the backyard here now since our landlord came over and cut down a lot of our trees and shrubs. However, I can't plant an actual garden because the backyard is a 2 inch load of topsoil over an asphalt parking lot. Our grass barely survives, so container garden, it will have to be.

For now, however, I need to get the Lil' Lady down for her afternoon nap, and then I'll be preparing some more of my products labels. Stay in touch!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Featured Artist: Dongedy


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1. When and why did you start crafting?

I'm a french photographer. I began photographing tiny-people last year, when I was looking for an idea for greeting cards for one of my customers (I've own my own advertising agency). I found it funny and decided to open my own shop at Etsy to share them.

2. What do you enjoy most about your crafting?

Imagining new mini-worlds . Often, when I find a fruit, a book, a bottle, I try to imagine how tiny people could interact with the item.

3. How did you find out about Etsy and why did you start selling there?

I discovered Etsy when I opened a shop for my mother who creates wedding favors. I found this website incredible and decided to open my own shop too!

4. What is the hardest thing to do for your shop or you dislike the most about selling online?

At the beginning, it was hard trying to understand all the ways I could promote my artwork, but now, that's ok. I think I spend too much time promoting for few results, but I hope I'll have more sales soon ;)

5. Do you rely on Etsy to help pay bills or is it mainly for fun & extra spending money?

At the moment, it's for fun, but I'd like if it could become part of my day-to-day job because I love doing that!

6. Have you tried or do you sell in offline shops? Do you enjoy that more or less than Etsy & why?

I tried on Dawanda too... I'm a newbie in both shops, but I think that Etsy can give me more.

7. Where else can you be found online?

at Redbubble, Dawanda and Zazzle, Flickr.


Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
dongedyframe.etsy.com

Friday, August 21, 2009

Featured Artist: Tracey Rediker of Red Linc Art


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My name is Tracey Rediker and I have been an artist for as long as I can remember. I love working on my own and with my children at my side creating their own masterpieces. For years I have created art for the homes of my friends and family but had never considered selling it for fear of rejection. Etsy, with its inexpensive start-up costs and easy promotions, has been a great way for me to get my work out there. My art tends to be interpreted as dark though i see it as introspective. It is generally figurative or natural in content.



1. When and why did you start crafting?

I started my training in oil painting when I was 8 and have dipped my brush in lots of tester pots since. I opened my shop to sell my handmade greeting cards which I illustrate and assemble myself. love trying out all different forms of expression which is why my shop has such a variety of items available. Knitting is probably my most recent form of expression.

2. What do you enjoy most about your crafting?

I enjoy creating something new out of nothing. I love being able to put a spotlight on things that others may not notice and give emotion to inanimate objects.

3. How did you find out about Etsy and why did you start selling there?

A friend was successfully selling her crocheted shawls on the site and suggested it would be a good venue for my wares. i figured for the low start up costs it was worth a try.

4. What is the hardest thing to do for your shop or you dislike the most about selling on-line?

I am having trouble finding time to create and to keep up with my on-line promotions. I also find it frustrating that the sales are so inconsistent.

5. Do you rely on Etsy to help pay bills or is it mainly for fun & extra spending money?

My goal is to pay for the material costs of creating my art, though it would be nice to be able to have an actual income from it!

6. Have you tried or do you sell in offline shops? Do you enjoy that more or less than Etsy & why?

I have my greeting cards available in some local shops in my area and I had some paintings on display available for sale as well. The personal level of rejection when things don't sell in those venues is much more painful then on-line where you rarely meet your customer. Though the joy of seeing them purchase an item with excitement cannot be matched.

7. Where else can you be found on-line?

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Eatontown-NJ/Red-Linc-Design-by-Tracey-Rediker/91698714501

Twitter: http://www,twitter.com/redlinc

Blogger: http://jello84.blogspot.com

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
redlinc.etsy.com

Friday, August 14, 2009

Featured Artist: Erin Mycroft of Rock Fern Designs


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My name is Erin and I'm a graduate student studying forest ecology. I have a passion for nature and the outdoors, and am grateful that I can use my education to further the education of the world about important issues such as conservation, climate change, and biodiversity. My other passion is crafting - I spend my summers at a remote research station, where I knit and crochet up a storm - making a new sweater, hat, or pair of socks - and teaching others to do the same. When back at school in the winter, I turn to jewelry-making! My Etsy shop is filled with elegant testaments to the inspiration of nature: http://rockfern.etsy.com.

1. When and why did you start crafting?

Crafty roots run in my family - both of my Grandmothers were avid sewers, as was my Mom. I learned to knit and crochet at the age of seven, and sew possibly earlier than that. Those women are the inspiration for some of my more unique pieces, such as my crocheted and woven bracelets and necklaces: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=23228793.
2. What do you enjoy most about your crafting?

I love crafting because it allows me to use my hands. I'm a really tactile person, and am constantly touching things (I'm the girl that's wandering through the store touching ALL the fabrics). Crafting give me a creative escape, and forces me to slow down while I'm doing it. I love the feeling of making a beautiful piece and being incredibly proud of creating it with my own two hands!

3. How did you find out about Etsy and why did you start selling there?

I've always had an entrepreneurial spirit; both my parents had own their own businesses. It's been a dream of mine since I was small to do the same.

When I started jewelery making, I would give jewelery to friends as gifts. However, the jewelery quickly started accumulating faster than I could give it away! It also became an expensive hobby. At the same time, a close friend introduced me to the Etsy community, and suggested I open a shop. What a great find - I love Etsy, and all the artistic talent it has to offer! I can spend hours browsing through all of the wonderful handmade and vintage items.

Opening my Etsy shop has fulfilled a bit of my entrepreneurial dream - now only if I could finish school and do this forever!

4. What is the hardest thing to do for your shop or you dislike the most about selling online?

I think I miss face-to-face contact. Etsy takes a lot of my time - however it is also a lot of fun - and can be addictive! But above all, I think I would like to meet my customers face-to-face, and get to know the person who will be wearing my art!

5. Do you rely on Etsy to help pay bills or is it mainly for fun & extra spending money?

Right now, Etsy helps me to recoup the costs of my crafting habits :) However, I have a small amount of profits tucked away in another bank account that I will use for my fiance and I to go traveling! We'd like to go to West Africa.

6. Have you tried or do you sell in offline shops? Do you enjoy that more or less than Etsy & why?

I haven't tried selling in offline shops, but I am currently preparing a proposal for some nearby boutiques to see if they are willing to carry my jewelry.

7. Where else can you be found online?

I just started a blog! I'm hoping to find more time to update it later in the summer :) There will be giveaways and great discounts on my products, as well as features from other Etsy sellers. Feel free to check it out: http://www.rockferndesigns.blogspot.com


Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
rockfern.etsy.com

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Featured Artist: Kym Tolson of Hypnotransformations


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My new blog feature was due to begin tomorrow, but since I will be leaving early in the morning and will not be returning until late in the evening, I will begin the new schedule one day early. Today, I present Kym Tolson of Hypnotransformations.

* * * * * * * * *

My name is Kym Tolson. I am a Hypnotherapist certified by the National Board for Certified Clinical Hypnotherapists. My hypnotherapy sessions are available as a CD or as an mp3 download. The hypnosis sessions allow you to be hypnotized whenever you have a spare hour to spend transforming your life.

1. When and why did you start crafting?

I actually have two shops on ETSY one for my pottery and one for my hypnosis CD and mp3 business. I started making pottery during the mid-90's and I became a hypnotherapist about five years ago.

2. What do you enjoy most about your crafting?

My favorite part is getting feedback about all the wonderful changes my hypnosis session make in people's lives. It actually makes my day =)

3. How did you find out about Etsy and why did you start selling there?

My sister told me about ETSY she is also a potter and started selling on ETSY about six months before I did.

4. What is the hardest thing to do for your shop or you dislike the most about selling online?

The hardest thing is actually recording my hypnosis sessions. I do literally make them at home and sometimes it's hard to get a quality recording. Recently, I got some really great software that allows me to edit the recordings more.

5. Do you rely on Etsy to help pay bills or is it mainly for fun & extra spending money?

The money I make from ETSY goes right into my travel fund. I have always had a strong desire to see other parts of the world and other cultures. So far, I've been able to go to Mexico. I'm planning to travel to Nicaragua in November.

6. Have you tried or do you sell in offline shops? Do you enjoy that more or less than Etsy? Why?

I haven't tried to sell offline.

7. Where else can you be found online?

Artfire, 1000 markets, Zibbet, Bonanzle, and Shop Handmade.
I also have a blog at www.hypnotransformations.blogspot.com

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
hypnotransformations.etsy.com

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Joint Pain


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As I sit here early this morning, I realize that it has now been over two weeks since I have been able to make any jewelry. Every time I grip my pliers, pain shoots through every joint in my hands, wrists, and elbows. Tylenol doesn't help. Heating pads and hot salt soaks help some, but they don't make it go away permanently. Even typing is making my fingers hurt slightly. I really do not know what to do. Jewelry is my only creative outlet right now. Granted, I'm not making any money at it right now. I've not made single sale since November last year, even with me promoting it full-time now. I really don't want to quit at it, since not only is it my only outlet right now, but I also have jars and jars of rings, beads, and cabochons stored in my studio. I really think my husband would kill me if I gave it up since we have so much money tied up in my supplies.

I really just don't know what to do right now. I'm staying at home with my child, and she's getting full-time mom, but I feel that I need to be bringing in some money somehow.

For the time being, my shop will remain open. I am unable to restock it, so if anything happens to sell out, it's gone for a while. I have a few items I could list, but I'm not sure if I want to even bother.

For some, I'm going to go work in my garden and find some peace. Everyone have a good day.