Thursday, April 26, 2012

Spring Sale Sneak Peek!

And here's a little something extra that I plan to offer with the cards at the Salem Etsy Team Spring Sale:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Custom Project

Hello!  I had the pleasure of having a custom project this week, and wanted to share it.  I was contacted by a very nice lady who wanted a personalized bookmark and gift envelope to give to a dear friend who is retiring from her job with a university library.  What better gift for a library employee than a bookmark?!  She asked for pink and purple larkspur, but apart from that, gave me free reign with the design.

I decided that instead of doing the traditional three-flower bookmark, I would go with the collage-style on this one.  I think it's time to update some of my listings, this being one of them, so I was glad to be able to have this project to use as a showcase for the new-and-improved personalized bookmarks!

I used a cute little dark purple verbena there in the left corner of the bookmark, and a couple of cornflowers, in addition to the larkspur flowers.  I like the contrast of the deep purple with the vibrant dark pink here!  Notice that on the seal for the envelope, I used a pressed flower like I did with a previous custom order a couple of months ago.  I really like this!  It really ties in the pressed flower bookmark to the gift envelope.

Also, I mentioned this in my last post, but I am excited to be a part of the upcoming Salem Etsy Team Spring sale on May 5th!

I have never done a public craft sale like this before- my one and only experience was at a private sale in someone's home.  I am thrilled to have this opportunity to get my feet wet with craft sales!  The venue is smaller and more intimate than the larger-scale craft fairs, which is great for a newbie like me!  I have been crafting like crazy to bulk up my inventory, and I promise I will share some previews of those items soon!  I have been too busy making cards and bookmarks to take pictures of them, but will try to do some of that in the next few days.  I will be away this weekend, but am hoping to take a couple of days off work next week to finish getting ready for the sale.  SO much to do and so little time...and I want to make sure I am well prepared!  Know what the hardest thing has been so far?  This is so silly...but finding a decent tablecloth for my table!  I have not been able to find one in the color I want, and I am starting to get frustrated!  I've checked the usual discount stores, but may have to bite the bullet and head to Bed, Bath and Beyond to see what they have.

Check back in a few days for some pictures of my newest cards and bookmarks, and a twist on the cards I plan to sell at the sale!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

More Birthday Stuff, and An Upcoming Event

My daughter had another birthday party to go to this weekend- another friend from her dance classes.  Apparently, we now have a reputation with these girls to uphold- we are the "cool card givers"!  Since I have not repeated a card type for this group of girls, the pressure is on to come up with something new for each girl's birthday.  At first it was easy- I did the exploding box card for the first one back in December, then followed up with a never-ending card in February (which apparently I did not get a picture of), a slide card in March, and then last weekend, a different type of slide card.  I was a bit at a loss what to do for this one, until I remembered a card that my BFF Kendra did a couple of years ago and sent to me.  I emailed her and described it, and she informed me that it was called a waterfall card and that I could find a video tutorial on YouTube on how to do it.  I did find the video, as well as this tutorial, and it turns out that it is really quite easy to make!

When you pull the tab down, each of the decorated panels flips and cascades one by one, which is probably why it's called a waterfall card.  It's very cute, and pretty easy to do, once you get the hang of it!  Meredith decorated the inside with a paper flower as well.
I also made a bookmark for the birthday girl, which I posted about previously.  Since we had two birthdays a week apart, I made both bookmarks at the same time.  Both girls seemed to like them.

Now for an exciting announcement!  I am going to be taking part in the Salem Etsy Team's Spring Craft Show next month- my first real craft show!  There will be a variety of craft and vintage vendors there, and I am really looking forward to meeting to some of the other Salem Etsy sellers!  Now, I just need to have stuff to sell at this show- so I have some crafting to do!  I've been working on cards this weekend, and will post a preview of some of these later in the week.  Also on my agenda is to make some more collage-style bookmarks, and perhaps some gift envelopes to go along with them.  I am focusing on Mothers Day products, but also plan to make a few Father's Day and graduation items as well.  Time is short, however- the sale is May 5th, which is less than 3 weeks away.  Time to get busy!  Be sure to check back and see what I'm making, because I will have lots to share in the next couple of weeks!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Some Birthday Stuff, and a Thank You Card

What a busy time of year!  Though I have wanted to start working on some new stuff for my shop, I have not had time.  Instead, this week I have focused on some stuff for specific events taking place.  My daughter has 2 birthday parties in 2 weeks, so I made bookmarks for both birthday girls.  I have so far made one card, and will be doing the other one this week, because that party is coming up next weekend.  Here are the bookmarks:

I neglected to get photos of the reverse, which I need to remember to do more often!  Alisha's had a really neat blue and teal washi paper with white and red geometric flowers on the back.  Coral's has a pink and orange floral print on the reverse.

I have not made a card yet for Coral, as hers is the birthday party coming up next weekend, but here is the one I did for Alisha:

This is a slide card, similar to the one I did for the slide card swap last year.  The only difference is that I oriented the card so that it slides to the side instead of from the top and bottom.  I like how it turned out..however, I have to say that this type of card is a huge pain to make!  The slide mechanism is difficult to manage, and it really took a long time to assemble.  Besides that, I had to have my daughter show her friend how to open it without messing it all up, and that is just a bit more trouble than it is worth.  I was happy to do the card and glad that it worked out well, but am not anxious do to another on in this design again.

I also did a thank you card this weekend, for my husband to send to his best friend's parents, as they are going to lend us their beach house in a couple of weeks so that we can celebrate our 18th anniverary there.  I can't wait!  They are letting us stay at the house for incredibly cheap, so we wanted to send a nice card.  I had some washi paper I was dying to use, so here is what I did with it:

The colors are not looking great on my computer because I took these pics in the evening when the light was not very good, so I apologize for that.  The card base is actually a deep burgundy red, and the next layer is a deep olive green, though it looks more teal here.  I embossed the sentiment on an off-white piece of paper that I cut out with a Spellbinder die on my Big shot.

Next week I really hope to have more to show that is shop-ready.  There is a local craft fair coming up on the first weekend in May for my local Etsy team, and I would really love to participate!  I just have to make sure I have some good, fresh inventory, since it is the weekend before Mother's Day.  Guess I will have to get busy in the next couple of weeks!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Bookmark Giveaway!

Just a quick note that I wanted to pass on!  Elizabeth Loupas,  the author for whom I did the big custom project, is doing a giveaway of three of the bookmarks I made for her.  Enter the drawing today and she will be choosing the winners tomorrow, which is the release day of her new book, The Flower Reader.  Enter by leaving a comment on her blog here:

Sunday, April 1, 2012

New Bookmarks!

Well, I took a few weeks off from making bookmarks after my last big custom project.  The break gave me a chance to think ahead to some new designs, and how I might take what I learned from my project and apply it to new products in my shop.  Life has been busy these last few weeks- we just finished spring break here, which is busy in its own way, and finally today I had some time to play with some new designs.  One of these days, I need to go through my flower inventory and reorder some stuff that I ran out of, but for the time being, I still have plenty to work with.  I took the collage concept that I used on the bookmarks I did for Elizabeth Loupas, and applied it a little differently here.  For one thing, I used coordinating patterned papers on the reverse sides.  For another, I did not use ivy leaves, just flowers on these.  Also, I did not limit myself to natural flowers- I used a few dyed ones (well, one at least), and that enabled me to use some colors that I might not normally use.  I like the results!  I was able to use some gorgeous new paper that I got the other day, and also some fantastic teal satin ribbon, which is a color I have not been able to find previously.  My daughter and I went shopping up in the Portland area the other day, and we visited a paper store up there, which is where I got both the paper and the ribbon.  I love both!

Here are the four new bookmarks I made today- all are listed in my Etsy shop:

  It was fun to get back into making bookmarks again!  With spring now here, I am excited about restocking my shop with fresh new designs!

Also today, I made a couple of bookmarks for friends of my daughter who have birthdays coming up.  Both are friends from dance, and will be having parties in the next couple of weeks.  I have enjoyed making personalized bookmarks for her other dance friends' birthdays in the last few months, so seem to be working my way through the group of girls- don't want to leave anyone out!  Here are the two I did today:

I hope they like them!  I will be doing cards for them as well, but didn't have time today.

I am glad to be over the hurdle of having the first bookmarks done for the spring season, and now am motivated to get some more done in preparation for Mother's Day.  As it is already the first of April, there is not much time!  I'll be working on that in the next couple of weeks, so stay tuned for some new stuff!