Friday, July 27, 2012

Treasury Friday

Ooops yesterday got away from me.  So here are two beautiful ones for today!


'Mint and Peach' by KidOBabyAccesories


rose photograph - "sene...
$32.00

Extra High Waist Bottom swim...
$52.00

infinity scarf cowl handdyed...
$13.95

Seaglass Sea Glass Necklace ...
$35.00

Mint Peach Geometric Necklac...
$19.50

Peach and Mint Heart Cupcake...
$6.50

Madame Butterfly Tea Cookies...
$11.50

Mint green seaside boardwalk...
$30.00

Cross Stitch Embroidery Neck...
$49.00

25 MINT GREEN Hang Tag, Gift...
$2.00

Flamingo love, Print 4x6 in...
$5.50

NERD ALERT / Mint 80s Green ...
$24.00

50 Peach Large Hearts plus D...
$4.00

Sale - Tile Coasters - Mint...
$9.00

5 decorative clothes pins in...
$6.25

She's a Peach... Adelaid...
$46.00

 

'Day dreams by the sea...' by mainelydwyers


Oh Jellyfish, Jellyfish... S...
$33.00

Antique Compass Men's Ti...
$12.00

The Mermaid's Starfish L...
$35.00

Edible Sugar Fan Coral - Bea...
$63.00

Shell Collar - Real Sea She...
$19.00

Clam Shell Sea Shell Pendant...
$75.00

Sea Shell Sachet Scented Bea...
$5.25

Sea Shell Seashell Earrings ...
$25.00

Reserved for Gina. Peach co...
$30.00

Beach Earrings mother of pea...
$16.00

Coral branch and Keishi Pear...
$85.00

sea shell watercolor archiva...
$15.00

Set of Two Coastal Fabric St...
$64.00

Antique Wooden Steamship Mod...
$36.00

Sea Urchin sterling silver m...
$75.00

Felted purse cosmetic brown...
$54.00

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

How To Make Handmade Earring Cards

I like to give a personal touch to my items whenever possible.  Lately it was really bothering me that my earrings were just kind've in the gift boxes with so much space surrounding them.  I pack them well but it just bothered me the way they were floating around in there.  So I decided to make some earring cards to put in them.  You can do it one of two ways.  You can do just one flat card or you can do cards that you fold in half to use at shows and displays and such.  I apologize for the photos as it's pretty dark here now.  But hey when the writing bug strikes I gotta get to it.

Step #1 would be to find a suitable template to use.  You will need one for business cards and you will need the tall version.  Avery has a few available online.  And you may choose to use the precut cards available as well.  Me I just use heavyweight card stock.  For measurement sake the folded ones don't need much formatting.  I used a bunch of different photos and variations to see how they came out.  Normally I'd use regular copy paper for samples but I wanted to show you what they would like look folded and such.





#2  Depending on the size of your box you may need to adjust your cards.  Business cards come in a standard size and if I simply printed them as is they would be too big.  So simply hitting enter a few times and putting the photo down further and the text up higher makes it easier.  So when you go to measure and cut them for the smaller size you won't be nipping any bits off.  This is where your samples come in too so you can see exactly how they'll fit in your box and what adjustments you need to do.  Are you photos too large and look weird with the earrings on it, are they up too high and your cutting them off?  You have the chance to edit before putting it on your good stock.

#2 With a paper cutter cut out your your cards.  I used scissors and let me tell you I cannot cut a straight line to save my life.  I cut like a drunk monkey.  So it's a must for me.


#3 Next you want to punch holes.  First, this part is very important, get the earrings you want to use and put them on the card to see where they fall.  You don't want to cover your logo.  Since some hang lower, some might be posts etc. it's nice to have different cards for each as you may need to adjust your cards.  But for sure your holes will be in different spots.  If you have a pair of big bauble earrings and you spaced them like I did here they might be too close together and not fit.  So be sure to measure for each set.  I made mine at 3/4 and 1 1/4.  I simply used a tack and a corrugated cardboard box to punch into.




And that's it!  It's really pretty simple once you play around a bit.  Use your first few sheets to muck around with different formatting and photos and sizes.  And these work well for business cards too.  For earrings only I will just use these instead of being wasteful and including a business card also.







Marketing Yourself Update

For those of you who have not read marketing yourself in print  please do!  It is really paying off.  As you know I am always very honest with my readers and I have not gained any sales from this...yet.  Tracking my views there is very low interest in regards to traffic thus far.  In fact the traffic to my shop was so low from this I was really quite disappointed.  Over a total of two days it was less than 20 total views from my area.

That being said I have made the front page of not one but two local papers!  I have something for my portfolio and I am developing a name for myself.  The happiness and excitement alone are huge to me.  Even if it didn't result in one sale I now own copies of my creations in bright vibrant color gracing the front page of two local newspapers.  I currently have a bunch of copies splayed all over the studio bookshelf.  That to me is a gigantic honor.  And one that will keep me smiling for a long time to come.  

There is another more spiritual element to this for me.  I guess that's a good way to explain it.  When you are doing something where you are essentially following your heart that takes years and no income there is an immense amount of faith needed.  I worked for 2.5 years on this without ever taking a single pay check all the while dumping what money I did have into the business.  And you will have many days where that faith will waver.  If you are on the right path you will get glimmers of shining light urging you to continue on.  Little breadcrumbs on the path of darkness if you will.  These signs are paramount to me.  They stand for something bigger than myself.  Something edging me to continue on.  In one word.  VALIDATION.




One of the most important things to remember is word of mouth holds a lot of weight.  So now when someone happens across a business card I've left in a local establishment or a customer shares with a friend where they bought a piece they may remember those printed articles.  Voila instant credibility.  There is a very real element to the fact that when you are recognized by a publication there is that thought that "well then it must be good".  You have been given the stamp of approval.

Also remember your online presence is extremely important in today's market.  Most papers are online  so you are getting an extra search engine boost as well!  You never know where that can take you or who might find it. And don't forget social media.  All the people out there sharing your story.  That was how I found out this morning.  My friend sitting next to me signed into facebook and said "hey did you see this?"  I had been tagged by another friend and customer who had attached the article.  Had she not shared it on her facebook I never would've known!  And you know how social media is.  Word carries fast!  

Front page part deux:  http://trivalleycentral.com


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Use Caution!

I was happily working on a nest today while sitting on the couch.  One of the wires was a bit on the short side so I was really trying to keep it taught.  I was pulling on it with a lot of force with my pliers and they slipped off the end.  I hit myself square in the eye and got a bit of a puffy cut.  I cracked myself hard enough that it was like being elbowed.  I know because I got quite a shiner being in the wrong place at the wrong time when I was young and my step brother and sister were fighting.  I was calmly sitting on the couch while they were pummeling each other as usual and got a major elbow to the eye.  So I was not even involved but yet I was the one holding peas on my face.

I stopped for a moment and felt my eye.  It was still there and my heart had stopped a moment.  I sat there and thanked whoever was looking out for me that I didn't do major damage.  I was pulling so hard I could've ended up with pliers impaled in my eyeball had it been a half inch closer.  I ended up with a puffy eye and cut right on the brow bone.  Scary stuff!  Now I know why they always say to use eye protection no matter what!
 

Friday, July 20, 2012

Local Kid Makes Good!

Earlier I talked about marketing yourself in print and I am back to update!  I had the opportunity to interview with local reporter Eric Mungenast on my business and feature in Birds and Blooms. 

I had initially contacted the paper about a month ago to share my news and Eric contacted me recently for the interview.  I went into the local CVS to pick up a copy as Eric said it was due to run Friday.  I stood there with tears welling up in my eyes as starting back at me on the front page were my nests.  Front page!  Yes, yes you know how I am.  I get all weepy and sentimental.  But being grateful and humbled are never bad qualities to have.

Extra extra read all about it!  A big thanks again to reporter Eric Mungenast.



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