Sunday, December 16, 2007

From local to international, a talented Jeweler

Her name is Pippit Carlington

- How did you get started ?
The very first jewelry I ever made was when I was about 15 (some walnut shell necklaces on mousetail cord), and then I didn't really start making jewelry intensively until after my son was about 9 months old and I was thinking about what I wanted to do as my career. I began selling my work on the street and bringing home an average of $75.00/day. Back then I used much more casual materials such as wood, and copper and brass wire, so the prices of my pieces were anywhere from $5-$20.00. It was the early 80s and the economy was thriving, so I could come home with a sale from most anywhere I went. I used to carry some jewelry with me all the time and it seemed to sell itself. Then I took classes in beadweaving, and learned metalsmithing in the years that followed, and became licensed in the year 2000. I got my first computer then too and began learning about online selling, first on Ebay, then Etsy, SmashingDarling, and Mindt. I was well into my forties when I started my first blog. It took some getting used to since I had not grown up with all this technology and was used to selling my work at shows and in stores and galleries.


- Where are you from?: I'm originally from Baltimore, Maryland, but moved to Atlanta, GA. when I was 13 and have lived in the geberal vicinity ever since.

- Are your creations limited editions or unique?: Some of my creations are limited editions and some are completely one-of-a-kind, but for the most part no two are exactly alike, but they follow a particular line with variations on a theme.

- How long have you been doing it?: I've been making jewelry seriously for almost 23 years.

- Are you a professional artist or is this a hobby?: I am definitely a professional artist. This work is my life, and everything I do centers around it. I love making my pieces, but am also very aware that I need to sell them too, and I try to strike a balance between what I want to make and what I think I can sell at which venues. I have at times had to make the business decision to stop making certain types of jewelry because however much I liked it, it was just piling up in a heap with no love from the buyers.

- What inspires you? I am inspired by nature and various indigenous cultures. I like to take core design elements that are a throwback to more primitive times and tribes and put a fine jewelry twist on them. I use elements of Native American work, Balinese, African, Indian, Mexican, Mayan, and others, melded into a multicultural style I call "Contemporary Tribal".

- What is your favorite piece (that you still have for sale) and why?: That's really a toss-up between these two:
Early Budding Vine Bracelet
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=5203953


Hint at Something Deeper
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=5742564


Both have a realism that gives the viewer a sense of the living thing and it's essence. My best work achieves the goal of capturing the life force of the piece and is more like an animal than an inanimate object.

- How do you promote your work?: I promote my work in 3 blogs, in several online stores, with business cards, posting my link in any forum I think contains potential buyers, in a print ad coming out in Ornament Magazine in October, December, and March, and by word of mouth to just about everyone I meet in the course of my day. I have also promoted it through shows. When I go to a restaurant I leave a business card for the waitress or hand one to her, and anytime I see someone wearing jewelry and it looks like they might like what I create I strike up a conversation and refer them to my Etsy store.

- Where are you showing your work?: Currently my work is on
Etsy , SmashingDarling , and soon at Mindt

Starting in November some of it can be found at:
Vix Emporium
5009 Baltimore Ave.
Philadelphia PA 19143
215-471-7700
If you live in that area, be sure to drop by and hold it in your hands!
http://vixemporium.com

- What is your favorite material?: I don't have just one favorite material, but I love colorful and intense gemstones, Sterling and Fine silver, Gold, and Copper. I also like wood, bone, horn, glass, antler, and Ivory.

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started?: I wish I had known how much of a financial investment it took to start up a business like this. I started with an initial investment of around $5,000, but if I had it to do over again I would have sought funding of at least $20,000.
- Do you have any advice for fellow artists?:
Buy the best supplies you can afford, and do your homework to get a feel for where your work will be received best; don't just sell anywhere, but ask people how well similar things sell when deciding which shows to enter, which galleries to place your things in, etc...
Don't be afraid to ask these questions and if people are offended, that's their problem, ask anyway. It is your right to know these things for the good of your business.
I recently asked the local Indie Craft Experience organizers here in Atlanta whether the venue they had chosen was going to be good because it didn't strike me as a place where the customers would have enough money to spend. I did not want to risk a venue where I would have nobody but browsers and no serious buyers. It was a legitimate question, and it would have been a great opportunity for her to tell me about the features and benefits of her annual show, but instead of just answering my question she was offended and responded back with a tart remark about "just where exactly do you think the right location would be for MY Craft Fair" and she said that last year they had a "big turnout" at that location.
I then asked her whether the kind of jewelry I sell in this particular price-range sold well last year and whether by big turnout she meant number of people showing up or if she meant a good ratio of buyers for the number that showed up, but she had already turned me off by that time. I felt that anybody who were truly professional would understand that artists doing this for a living need to know these things and weigh the pros and cons carefully as to where and how much money and time to invest. Having been in the industry as long as I have, I read her defensive stance as a weakness of the venue for higher-priced upscale jewelry, otherwise she would have no reason to be defensive, but instead would have been bubbling over with enthusiasm about the prospect of a big yield this year.

I have learned that walking on eggshells and hoping for the best can cause a lot more damage than asking the right questions beforehand so that you can make your resources go as far as they can. Some people take directness as rudeness, but they are two entirely different things. Remember that you have the right to know all the details when you're being asked to spend your hard-earned money, just as you do when buying a household appliance, a house or a car. A realtor would not sell too many houses if she marched off in a huff each time a potential buyer asked about the structural soundness of a house, and it would be foolhardy for the buyer not to ask for fear she would be insulted and ultimately end up with a huge irreparable and costly mistake.

- Anything else you'd like to add?:
Keep developing yourself as an artist and don't settle for what's easy and safe. Innovation comes from making paths, rather than following them.

Visit Pippit's blog: http://artlifenewsblog.blogspot.com/

Thank you for all your insightful advice.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Sharing your heart between Koln and Brazil

To be Brazilian
Living in a tropical paradise
surrounded by stimulating colors and brightness.
Keeping alive the joy and spontaneity of a child.
CONTASBRASIL wants to bring the unique feeling of living in Brazil to every corner of the world.
Exotic, joyful and irresistible.
Impossible not to be enchanted
by the colors and shapes of Brazil.

Also available, funky Doll bags.

ContasBrasil - more than just jewelry


Since 2005, the brazilian Suzy Wortberg designs in Cologne custom jewelry together with two artists from her native country, Bebê de Soares and Ana Vilas Boas. Brazil meets Europe. Where different cultures meet, ideas spring up. Contrasts produce exciting new concepts. Jewelry is the expression of personality. Thus all ContasBrasil products are handmade, unique pieces, developed with a taste for things special. Inspired by the Brazilian light, it's many-sided culture and the countless riches of the Brazilian soil. Motivated by the desire of bringing people the unique feeling of life in Brazil.
and definitely, she manages to do so .

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Wonderful Sunflowers, just like Van Gogh


Let's meet George McKim a talented artist, who is virtusoes in many media.

Wonderful Sunflowers, just like Van Gogh


Where are you from?

I was born and grew up in Wilmington, NC, USA. For the past 15 years I have lived in Raleigh, NC with my wife Betty, my two adult children Edward and Devin who are twins, our golden retriever Sophie and our cat with a 'tude, Woodstock.


How did yo get into arts?

I studied art in college and have a Masters Degree in Painting and Drawing. My artwork has been shown in galleries and museums in my region. My day job is working as a pre-press graphic artist for a printing company and I make my art in my "spare time".

Since I was a kid I have always drawn pictures and painted. I like the freedom of expression of art and have always enjoyed painting.


This shop features paintings and collages that are mostly abstract, which George has been doing for the past two years and a range of realist artworks in the form of Linoleum Cut Prints. If you want something at a really affordable price , I would suggest his wonderful little note cards.

The artist accepts commissions also.

Here are some blog articles featuring his artworks:

http://backwoodscreations.blogspot.com/2007/12/george-mckim-printer-painter-visionary.html
http://coconutpalmdesigns.blogspot.com/2007/12/featured-artist-george-mckim.html

Friday, December 7, 2007

designing in sterling silver

SignatureSterling specializes in designing sterling silver beaded jewelry - bracelets, earrings, and necklaces.
She says
"
I use primarily sterling silver - not silverplated unless noted - for all silver beads, spacers, charms, findings, toggles, etc. I also use color and texture with genuine Swarovski crystals/pearls, lampwork beads, Czech glass, and semiprecious stones. My line of Buckeye (Ohio State) jewelry also features life-like lampwork buckeye beads.

Committed to high quality in supplies and design, I am a SRAJD (#1111), Self-Representing Artist Jewelry Designer."

You'll also find her at signature-sterling.blogspot.com

Her jewels are for sale in her etsy shop

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Buttons for the nerds!

Nerds around the world, Unite!
Great buttons have arrived with quirky , exciting and silly messages for us to look fab, always.
I am just showcasing a little selection, but who knows what Liz Staley will come up with next?
In the meantime, let's hear what she has o say about her and her motivations
"I grew up in Baltimore, but am now living in Greenville, NC. My mom got me into arts and crafts when I was really little (I wanted to help her paint ceramics when I was a baby, so she'd give me a paintbrush, a cup of water, and a rubber ducky. Took me awhile to figure out that it's supposed to change colors when you paint it though!). Ever since then I've loved to draw and create things.

Now, I love doing art, crocheting, and am getting into making ACEO cards and sewing. I've been crocheting and drawing for years. I also love to make button pins. I tend to go on what I like to call "craft binges", where I'll make a whole bunch of a certain thing, so if you see long stretches of buttons or crocheted items in my listings, you'll know I've been on one!

My hobbies when I'm not creating things are watching anime, playing tabletop role-playing games (Dungeons and Dragons; Big Eyes, Small Mouth; D20 Modern, West End Games' D6 System, etc), building web-pages, and playing on GaiaOnline[dot]com. I also have a gallery on DeviantArt and Flickr, both of which you can find with the user name lizstaley as well.

I find that I really enjoy blogging abou tmy crafts as well! You can visit my blog at http://livewirechick.blogspot.com

In addition, I also write and illustrate a story that I publish to the web, and have been working on since I was a senior in high school. It's gone through many, many versions and updates, and I'm eventually thinking about having it published. You can check that out at http://www.oap-studios.com/akaryuu

Oh, and I'm an emote junkie, so... BE WARNED!!
"


Lots of fun :)

Leche Vitrines



An array if Rings I have designed and fabrictaed lately

Friday, November 30, 2007

Bananas for cheeky monkeys?

No! Just great and fun bags for elegant ladies :)

Just one girl and a very loved sewing machine -- that is all there is to Banana Showcase. I have been a crafter since I was a very little girl. I love to make things with my hands and now having people use the things I make is so exciting. I have sewn since I was a teen but recently discovered that purses are so fun to create. I also love visiting thrift stores so you will find that some of my bags are created from vintage fabrics or other vintage clothing items that have been repurposed to become purses

Banana Showcase welcomes custom orders!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Crafty Moose

Let's meet the designer.

I have been crafting for as long as I can remember. I am self-taught and have enjoyed painting, needlework, quilting, polymer clay and jewelry making. Most recently, I have found myself drawn to beads and have returned to the art of french beaded flowers. I enjoy making original, one-of-a-kind butterflies & dragonflies. I am also introducing a new line of one-of-a-kind beaded art dolls and suncatchers. Custom requests are welcome.

All my items are lovingly created in a smoke-free, pet-free environment.

The name Craftymoose came about because of my love of crafts and my husband's love of moose. My avatar is the head of a 4'+ tall moose I made him one Christmas!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

From Eva handmade with love

Here is a little blurb about Eva , who showcases her happy little creations. All made in the cute little studio that her amazing boyfriend built for her.
Nostasgic of the past, her creations evoque things from a long gone past and vintage.

~* Jewelry *~
All items are glass, stone, crystal, pearl or metal beads unless otherwise stated. The metals I use are: .925 Sterling Silver, Silver plated, silver-tone basemetal, gold-toned basemetal and surgical steel.

~* Sewn Crafts *~
All items are hand/machine sewn using quality fabrics and materials.

~* Bath Products *~
All products are made by hand in small batches. Only the finest natural ingredients and essential oils are used. Flavored items such as lipbalms will occasionally contain popular scents and flavors not achievable by all-natural methods, and so I will use natural-derived, food grade, man-made ingredients. I will ALWAYS state in an items description wether these are used.

~* Photography and Art *~
All photography is taken with either my wonderful digital or SLR camera in and around my hometown of Hanson, surrounding cities of south shore Massachusetts and while vacationing.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

In the Woods and Beyond

Bonjour to MaryAnn Anderson, artist extraordinaire.

- How did you get started ? I started BackwoodsCreations 2 years ago on a par ttime basis. I was painting and then one day made a cat. The lightbulb went on and just developed from there.

Are your creations seasonal? My fabric sculpted animals are year around creations. I also do fabric and mixed media collages as well as starting some fiber jewelry.

- How long have you been doing it? I have always been making something since I was a little girl. About 40 years experience in some form of sewing, painting and just generally putting stuff together that is either decorative or functional.
- Are you a professional or is this a hobby? This is now my fulltime occupation so it is my profession.
- What inspires you? I live in a very rural area in Maine. Outside of my window I can see a multitude of animals and plant life. When I see that the interconnectedness of nature and how we live and view ourselves and what is important to us is what is a big source of inspiration. There are so many layers of perception that can change on regular basis but those core values remain the same.
- How do you promote your business? Online I promote my business by blogging and flickr groups. I also participate in challenges like the 90 Features in 90 days that is happening on etsy. I am working on my own website to also sell off from. Though there are alot of tempting already established venues out there. I have almost finished a business plan that will help keep me focused and keep my business growing in the year 2008.

- Where are you showing/selling your work? I show and sell my work at a gallery in Skowhegan called Spiralworks. I have yet to move beyond that to other brick and morter stores. I will be pounding the pavement to change that after the holidays.

- What is your favorite product and why? Oh that is really difficult to say. Each has such a special meaning and place in my heart. They all are created individually so the personalities make each one special.

- Do you have any advice for fellow sellers ?
Really look at how much it costs to produce your items for time and materials and price appropriately. I think that alot of sellers, hobbyist or not, underprice their items.

- Will I get a discount or freebies?
I have put some kind of freebies in those boxes I ship to patrons who have bought several of my items all at once or someone who is a repeat customer.

- Any advice for looking fab?
Pictures! I am still working on my technique and do not take consistantly take a good picture. But pictures are so important. Nice tight shots of product at a different angles. I hate seeing a shot of an item surrounded by lots of space.

- Will it make my life easier and more stylish when using your products?
It may not make your life easier but definately more fulfilling and stylish. Plus some of my items I donate a percentage of the sales to charity of the month chosen by EFA (Etsy for Animals) so you would be helping a good cause.

- If you were an object, what would you be?
A tree so I could be with the birds, animals and the seasons.

- Anything else you'd like to add? Don't second guess yourself just do it. If it doesn't work try a different tactic to get the result you want. Don't put to much stock in what other people think or don't think of your stuff. Find your niche and go for it!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Darjeeling Darling. Lovely Books bound by hand

Let's meet Michael Gresh, owner of Darjeeling paper.
An exclusive interview by Kalicat

- How did you get started ? I started bookbinding years ago as a hobby of sorts, never planning on using it as a means of making a living. Then, I met my beautiful girlfriend Demeree (you can see her work at http://demigodstudio.etsy.com ) and everything changed. As she's quite the crafty gal, it got me thinking about how I could contribute to the vause. And BAM! Darjeeling paper, Ltd was born.

- Are your creations seasonal? My work is great for any season! I try to incorporate the time of year into my works whenever I can, but most of my books are more of the annual type. Or maybe they're everygreen. I can't remember.

- How long have you been doing it? I started Darjeeling paper in August of 2007 but have been making books for close to 5 years now. So, not very long. I'm a spring chicken to the business.

- Are you a professional or is this a hobby? I'd like to consider myself a professional, but this will alwats be a hobby for me. When you find yourself doign what you love, and loving what you do, it's hard to call it "work".

- What inspires you? The world around me, really. I try to incorporate my life and experiences into my works as much as possible. The tricky part is finding a way to combine all those elements without going too crazy. There's a fine line between "ecclectic" and "insane".

- How do you promote your business? ANY WAY I CAN! From blogs to advertising spots to craft shows, right down to passing out my business card to everyone I meet. I live for this stuff, and it shows.

- Where are you showing/selling your work? My work is currently available at the Craftsman House Gallery in St. Petersburg, FL. I also showcase my work on Etsy, Trunkt, and will soon be selling my wares on Mintd and DaWanda.

- What is your favorite product and why? My blank journals, hands down. So many possibilities are available with a blank journal. It's like an artist making his own blank canvas.

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started? Don't stop pressing the book until it's dry!

- Do you have any advice for fellow sellers? BE PATIENT. Don't expect everyone to flock to your site in one day. You have to stick with it to win. And for God's Sake, ADVERTISE!

- Will I get a discount or freebies? If you buy one of my books, I'll throw in a paint chip card holder. I've got nearly every color in the spectrum, and they're a great way of toting your cards in a fun and handmade way!

- Any advice for looking fab? If you want to look good this year, get yourself some of the wonderful jewelry available on Etsy! There are many to choose from, but the best are the ones involved in the 90 Features in 90 Days thread. Check them out!

- Will it make my life easier and more stylish when using your products? Absolutely! Nothing's sexier than someone who carries around their own journal. Someone who you spot on the train or at the coffee shop jotting down lyrics or poems or some thought of the day that they just had.

- If you were an object, what would you be? I'd be that old t-shirt you just can never get rid of. The one you've had since high school that never goes out of style.

- Anything else you'd like to add? Nah, that's about it. Love, Peace and a Polar Fleece everyone!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Charmed by Kirsten


Kirsten, is a newcomer to the scene who is enjoying quite a success already.

- How did you get started ?
I started selling pocket stones a few years ago on my own website, but it didn't go over too well. Last February I went to a flea market with a friend and picked up some stone beads. I started putting them on cords and it was all downhill from there! I set up my Etsy store in March.

- Where are you from?
Northern California, born and bred.
- Are your creations limited editions or unique?
I never re-make something unless someone specifically requests it. So in theory, yes, they are all one of a kind pieces. If you're crushed that something sold and you really wanted it, I'll do my best to make it again for you!

- How long have you been doing it?
I learned how to macrame when I was 11 years old, but never did it beyond that learning process. I randomly recalled how to do it this May, and have been expanding the idea ever since. Earrings are just all random as well. A friend of mine showed me how to loop a headpin properly, and the rest is me guessing.

- Are you a professional artist or is this a hobby?
Can I be a professional hobbiest? Or an artistic lallygagger? I would like this to be a profession, but I am just starting out!

- What inspires you?
Colors, shapes, seasons, music. Ideas for what to make slam into my head and demand to become physical.

- What is your favorite piece and why?
I've tried answering this before, and I really don't know. If I make something that strikes my soul (or whatever, that sounds so dramatic!) I will keep it for myself!

- How do you promote your work?
Many many online communities. I also make things for my family and friends and give them a good deal as long as they promise to hand my card to anyone who even seems remotely interested!

- Where are you showing your work?
Just online currently. I recently featured my work at a jewelry party and it was quite a success!

- What is your favorite material?
Kyanite. I am madly madly in love with kyanite! There is something about that stone that just resonates with me.

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started?
Don't put everything up on your website at once! Practice your technique before offering it for sale. You WILL get better, and your old stuff WILL be very embarrassing!

- Do you have any advice for fellow artists?
Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Etsy is easy to list on, yes, but your items will always look more impressive in person!

- Anything else you'd like to add?
I think you covered it well! :D

- Her site : http://www.earthcharms.etsy.com
- Her blog : http://www.earth-charms.blogspot.com

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Can a Cat ever be Lazy?

Well, there are so many talented Purring Cats around. Me, CATherine, kaliCAT, and now even a lazyCAT, or shall I say several Lazy Cats?
Lazycat is the name of a little business run by Allison, Stasia, & Kelly

- How did you get started?
We love to crochet! We made so many gifts for friends and family, we decide to try to sell them somewhere, and Etsy seemed like a great place!

- Where are you from?
We are all from the Great Lakes area, and met in Ann Arbor, MI. Kelly lives in Philadelphia now, but is moving back to A2 very soon!

- Are your creations limited editions or unique?
There is the occasional limited edition jewelry piece--if one item is really beloved by a customer, we will try to make something similar. However, most items are unique.

- How long have you been doing it?
We joined Etsy in 1/07--we had done 1 craft show before then, so about 1 year.

- Are you a professional artist or is this a hobby?
We really want to make this a viable side-business, but we all have full-time jobs (doctors and researchers) so we give it as much time as we can. It helps to have 3 people!

- What is your favorite piece and why?
Pasadena Necklace and Earrings Set

It was a very technically challenging piece, and we are so happy with how well it came out!

- How do you promote your work?
On Etsy (treasuries and forums), on our blog, via friends and family, and through our consignment contract with a store in town. We are hoping to expand our consignment/wholesale projects.

- Where are you showing your work?
Etsy, Suwanee Springs (Ann Arbor, MI)

- What is your favorite material?
Carnelian

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started?
This is hard, but believe in yourself and your designs!

- If you were an object, what would that be?
Does a cat count? :)

lazycat gifts

Friday, November 16, 2007

Sincerly Yours

Vanessa Kimball is the creative graphic designer behind lovely digital works.

- How did you get started ?
• I one day realized that this would be a wonderful outlet for my talent. I love the art community.

- Where are you from?
• Minnesota

- Are your creations limited editions or unique?
• Right now my creations are limited editions. I just started designing for my etsy shop, and since it was around the holiday season, I only have holiday stationery. I do also create etsy banners for anyone that is interested.

- How long have you been doing it?
• I've started designing for etsy in October, however I've been doing graphic design work for about 3 years, and I've been an artist my whole life.

- What inspires you?
• Other designers inspire me. Design tv shows or magazines inspire me. Trends inspire me as well as vintage. Some times a day of shopping can inspire me, when you see what's going on in the graphic world. As a graphic designer I can never look at items that surround me as they are, I have to analyse them and look at them in a graphic manner. I can't even open a menu at a restaurant without critiquing it or getting graphic design ideas from it.

- Are you a professional artist or is this a hobby?
• I'm a professional Graphic Designer

- What is your favorite piece and why?
• My favorite piece in my store is my reindeer card. I really like how it's put together and how the envelope compliments it so well. I also love the patterned paper that I found to complete the piece.

- How do you promote your work?
• The best way I can promote my work is by networking the best I can.

- What is your favorite material?
• My favorite material to work with is my mac computer. :)

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started?
• I'm not sure what advice I wish I knew when I got started. Everything is a learning experience, and I'm ok with trial and error.

- Do you have any advice for fellow artists?
• My advice to fellow artists is work together the best you can to promote each other. Collaboration is powerful.

http://vanessakimball.etsy.com/
http://vanessakimball.blogspot.com/

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Sweet Irie

Meet the brain behind Sweetirie, located in Pineland. What is the meaning of your shop's name?
Established in 2005, the Sweet Irie name came about from the newest addition to my family; my kitten, Irie.
Her name means, supreme joy; quite fitting! She is the light of my life and the inspiration for my jewelry, as she likes to help me work! Although I have to admit, she isn't much help! She loved to play with the jewelry and balls of hemp I once used; stringing it all over the house. Needless to say, she now has her own stash of 'toys' lying around.

What do you enjoy creating?
I have moved on from making hemp jewelry and create the beautiful handmade beaded designs you will see throughout this store. I do hope you enjoy!

The designer also loves custom work:
"I cater to your individual needs and will custom design any project right down to the color, size, and style of your beads. Your satisfaction is my #1 priority!! If you're not happy, I'm not happy!!" the shop http://sweetirie.etsy.com
http://www.sweetirieoriginals.blogspot.com
http://www.myspace.com/shellmonster

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

In the Bag

In the bags, there are also some jewels...
Owner of Bagitup4me talks about their creations.



Brought up in the vivid sights and sounds of Manhattan's art community,I have always been mesmerized by small pieces of everyday life which most people don't realize have the potential for becoming wearable art.






My creations incorporate elements from bygone eras into original designs. Using my collection of vintage buttons, rich fabric and other findings from various parts of the world, I try to explore the use of shapes and colors to capture an era or evoke an emotion.




There has been a gradual and natural evolution in my work, from hand-painted leather belts to three dimensional mosaics to tapestry bags. When designing tapestry bags, I enjoy working with shapes: simple rectangular shapes rich in color and texture and adorned with vintaged pieces.






The colors I select: mustard, black, red, orange and olive green, among others, are reminiscent of the 1920's and 1930's. From serious to whimsical my creations are correct for every occasion: season after season and can be worn morning, noon or night.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Stone Age


Meet the designer of Berry Patch Designs.


"I love to combine the varying colors and textures of the natural world. There are so many feelings and places to love about our world!

The materials I use in my jewelry are those that remind me of those places and feelings: turquoise, jasper and agate in their infinite varieties, other semiprecious gems, like amazonite's soft greens, garnet's rich wine colors, bronzite's gold-flecked chocolate depths. High quality man-made glass and metal beads join in the visual symphony; they have their own brightness and feelings to contribute.

Hearing and seeing that people enjoy wearing my jewelry is one of the best things about designing jewelry.

in addition to http://berrypatchdesigns.etsy.com/, visit my "alter-ego" and "alternate reality" shop:
http://www.undercurrent.etsy.com/


New designs are always in the works. I love designing jewelry and work constantly to develop new skills and improve existing ones. "

Monday, November 12, 2007

Jewelry and Gifts



Here is Staci and she is an artist living and growing in the San Francisco Bay Area.


She says"


I hope you enjoy my work as much as I enjoyed making it."


Staci Rose Designs - all pieces are original, hand-made, and one of a kind: Original Oil Paintings, Handmade Jewelry, Decorated Picture Frames and Mirrors, Judaica, and more great gift ideas! Custom orders welcome! Just contact her.



Be sure to visit Staci Rose Designs Blog for updated information on her work!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Funky, Stylish and Unusual

Let's meet Amanda Giesler, a talented student from Canada.

- How did you get started ?
I've really been crafty my whole life ~ I remember stringing beads so that I could have a beaded curtain for my room. :) Then through high school friends and boy friend became a priority. It wasn't until my 3rd year of university that I started crafting again. I found a wiki tutorial for making notebooks, and I loved it!! Then I was inspired by a friends necklace (http://pinkkiwi.etsy.com/ / http://jellybeans.etsy.com/ ) to make my button bracelets ~ and I haven't stopped since! She was also introduced me to Etsy and made me want to open up shop.

- Where are you from?
I'm from Verner, Ontario, Canada. This is a really small town, mostly french, and my parents own a tourist camp (now shut down) about 10 min out of town. So I grew up on around 100 acres of country / fields, on the river. It was great, but it really didn't offer me any opportunities to further my education (I'm a science geek), so I moved to Hamilton to go to McMaster for my second year of University. I'm now finishing up my 5th year (co-op program added on an extra year), writing my thesis and getting ready to do my Master's / PhD.

- Are your creations limited editions or unique?
All of my creations are one of a kind. I have a limited amount of paper, embellishments and buttons in any one colour or design, so I can't reproduce any of my items exactly the same.

- How long have you been doing it?

I've only been making bracelets and notebooks for a little over a year. When I was younger, I drew a lot, played with beads, made wreaths and dolls and such.

- Are you a professional artist or is this a hobby?
This is really just a hobby ~ I'm a full time student and nerd. :P

- What inspires you?
My friend (http://jellybeans.etsy.com/), all of my supplies (beads, paper, embellishments) and random things, like the smell of coffee, the cloud in the sky or the play of light on water.

- What is your favorite piece (that you still have for sale) and why?
My favourite things change with my mood. But right now, my favourite item is "tip-toe through the tulips" chain and beaded bracelet (http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=7848146
). I spent quite a bit of time on this getting it just right, and it looks soooooo pretty on. I love how the chain makes soft music when you move. And the colours are just gorgeous!

- How do you promote your work?

Through my blog (ulixis.blogspot.com), the forums occasionally (asking for trades), weloveetsy.com, indiepublic.com and facebook on occasion, family and friends. I really need to promote more, but I'm so busy with school...

- Where are you showing your work?
My items are only for sale on etsy, though I try to post pictures on my blog, weloveetsy, indiepublic and facebook.

- What is your favorite material?
Beads, paper and buttons... they are all sooooo pretty.

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started?
I can't think of anything off the top of my head ~ I had a lot of good advice from my friend, from wiki and from the forums.. I knew I had to be patient and promote. I do wish promoting was less time consuming though... Oh, I wish I had learned about trading and contests sooner!

- Do you have any advice for fellow artists?
Be patient and promote, promote, promote ~ oh, and take good pictures, that's key! Browse through the etsy forums for trades, games and contests ~ they're a great way to build your reputation and make friends!

- If you were an object, what would that be?
Probably a knife ~ I have a sharp sense of humor, and can be nasty if I'm in a bad mood ~ but I'm also very useful and multi-purpose.. I help people as much as I can.

- Anything else you'd like to add?
Not that I can think of... just that I love Etsy ~ it's such a great community. I'd also like to thank everyone who has given me the opportunity to participate (and win) in various contests!

- Her site: http://ulixis.etsy.com/
- Her blog: http://ulixis.blogspot.com/

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Not far from Dali's Museum, an artist...

...called Mary Hamilton. She is a figurative artist working in watercolors. Her she is, talking about her and her artworks.

How did I get started - Ever since I remember I have been artistic, loved to draw and paint. Majored in Art in college, but needed to find work that paid a dependable salary, so I did not do art for a long time. It's funny, but something was definitely missing in my life that I didn't realize until I was able to take up painting again. In 1996, I started painting again in oils and eventually migrated to watercolors. I have consistently taken classes and workshops since that time, and I have been lucky enough to sell my paintings since then.

Where am I from - I live in the St. Petersburg/Tampa, Florida area, but I am from Colorado and spend 3 months there every year.

Am I a professional artist or is this a hobby? I enter shows in the professional category, and I try to paint every day.

What inspires me - The natural beauty of God's creation, especially water (lakes, rivers, oceans, waterfalls) and the effect of light on the water. Sunrise and sunset. Babies of all kinds. Shore birds. Being around other artists. Books and magazines about art.

What is my favorite piece - Don't know that I have just one favorite. I like to see the kids adopted out into happy homes, and I like something about most all of them, or I will go back in and change them eventually.

How do I promote my work - Etsy is my favorite new tool. I also have my new blog and a website that needs revising as well as belonging to various guilds, one of which has a website. Entering shows also is promotion in a way.

Where am I showing my work - Locations in Florida: Grecko Grill in Madeira Beach, TST Title Company in Palm Harbor, Artists Guild Gallery in Holmes Beach are three long-term locations.
I show every year at the Glenwood Springs Fall Art Show in Glenwood Springs, CO and at the Alpine Artists Holiday in Ouray, CO. I will be at Also at Pioneer Park in Dunedin, FL on Nov. 24, Dec. 17, 2007 Jan. 26 and Feb. 23 2008, as well as other locations throughout the year (2008).

What is my favorite material - paint

Do I have any advice for fellow artists - Don't give up. Keep on painting. Paint what you love. Practice, practice practice. (Nothing new)

If I were an object I would be the sky

Thank you Mary for your time.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Are you ready to get noticed?

Handmade jewels made with Wire. The designer and artist says:

"I was born and partially raised in NB Canada, I fell in love at the tender age of eight when as a christmas gift my grandparents gave me a large beading kit from then on I was always making some form of jewelry or another.
I still very much love making jewelry the only thing thats changed is my range of materials from plastic stretch cord and plastic pony beads to sterling silver and precious stones.

Recently I have realized as an artist you can't completely limit your materials and be happy for to long and I have many ideas for fresh and unique designs using a variety of materials.

Each piece of Jewelry I make is an extension of myself to you, there's no mass produced here just pieces that are as unique and special as you are."
Find her creations here

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Maman et Moi Boutique

- How did you get started ?
About 2 years ago I saw a program on T.V. which featured a lady making aprons - I thought to myself I could do as well as that if not better. So - I ventured in, made up some aprons and took them to an upscale boutique. As it turned out I sold 70 aprons the first year.

- How long have you been doing it?
I have been making aprons for over 2 years. Before that I made upholstered doll furniture and doll clothes for the American Girl Dolls. I did this for over 10 years.
I also sold these in a couple of boutiques and was quite successful

- Are you a professional or is this a hobby? Because I do sell in boutiques I consider myself a professional.

- How do you promote your business? My promotions consist of selling in the boutique, Etsy store, my blog and word of mouth. I have done quite a bit of custom work through referrals.

- What inpires you? I do enjoy making the aprons - I love selecting the designer fabric and ribbons. i also love making baby items and toddler skirts but find the diversification in sewing requires being pulled in too many diections.


- What is your favorite product? My bib with cute retro airplane print or the orange funky monkey.

- Do you have more products for Mom or for toddlers? Aprons for money and toddlers are my focus

- Are your creations seasonal? No, I make aprons for adults and toddlers year round.

- What advice you wish someone had told you when you started? Focus on what you do best. Every new idea and executing it takes a lot of new energy ...

- Will I get a discount or freebies?
I always include a little gift with each order.



- Will it make my life easier and more stylish when using your products?
Goodness yes!! ... just putting on a cute apron makes any dinner turn out better, makes cleaning your house go faster, makes you feel and look oh, so pretty. Why would you want to miss out on that!

- Anything else you'd like to add?
Be confident in your own creations, your own ideas and do the best you can with the time you have and laugh and have fun along the way. Thanks , hope this helps.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Thanks to Grandma!

Ja ja ja, is a team of 2 sisters who enjoy sewing.
Ja Ja Ja makes fabulous, fabric purses and bags, from recycled, new, old and vintage fabrics. The bags are unique, one of a kind, and made very well. Each bag has its own history or story, which they will share with you.

The business was founded about seven years ago. Their grandmother had taught them to sew as they were growing up. Their clothes were always made at home. They both share a love of creating,designing,recycling,and unique fabrics.

They source fabrics from yard sales,estate sales,antique shows,thrift shops, Ebay, fabric stores and wonderful donations. Recycling used fabric and embellishments is very important to the creation of the bags, as ja ja ja enjoy giving new life to an old coat with stains and tears,

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

A love of Antiques

Here is a little selection from Wander Lust n Pixie Dust .
The owner says:

"I love antique and vintage everything. Clothing, jewelry, linens, textiles, anything beveled, books, ephemera, you name it. The older the better.

In my spare time I like to dabble in all things crafty. I've recently begun a blog of my own where I love to share bits and pieces of the buried treasure I've collected over the years.
Check it out : http://wanderlustnpixiedust.typepad.com/ In advance, welcome to my world... "

.. pity she (or he?) only seems to ship in the USA

Monday, November 5, 2007

North Pole, not far from Santa

...is the home of Kuddlesbugzthreadz.
If someone knows about Cold, it is Toni, the owner and mother of 16 months old (at the moment) twin girls! So, trust her as she will know how to keep your little ones warm, and in style.
Her items are practical, functional, and are made just for you!
What I like about her shop is that, for once, there is as many choices for little girls as little boys. Yes, I know... I do have 2 little boys, so my opinion is biased.

It gets VERY cold in the winter...-50 degrees F! The winters do get long, but it is absolutely breath taking up there in Alaska! The summer days are amazing with such long days!

Toni loves being a mom. How does she manage to handle a business and 2 little girls is a mystery, but in teh Land of elves and reeinderrs, everything is possible. She says "I never knew I had so much love in me until I became a mother! They are my so precious! "

And they are the inspiration for KuddleBugz Threadz! With the need in Fairbanks for warm baby items, Tony felt a tug at her heart to use her talents to help other mom's! Tori and Trista inspired the name "KuddleBugz", they are truly little kuddlebugz!

All products are made with the finest quality fabrics! Custom orders welcomed! Gift Certificates also available!

Don't see the size you need in her shop? No worries! Just contact her and she will be more than happy to make it in JUST YOUR SIZE!!!

http://kuddlebugzthreadz.blogspot.com/

Sunday, November 4, 2007

A figurative artist, Paulette Insall

Meet Paulette Insall, a talented figurative artist

Paulette uses Mixed Media to create artwokrs evocative of fairy tales illustrations.
Mainly portraits of young women, her work is able to cast a spell on the viewer by combining texture and a richness of colors.

Paulette has been creative from a very young age. From making knotted bracelets and hair accessories as a child to taking photos for her high school year book when she was older. She never thought of herself as an artist until a few years ago. For many years she dreamed of painting, but could never bring herself to pick up a paint brush until October of 2006. That's when her love of creating stories with paint and paper began.

These days when she’s not busy entertaining her very busy four year old son, you will find her stealing any moment she can in her home studio pouring her thoughts and emotions out into the visual stories she creates through her art.

Her art prints are very affordable, and she also has greeting cards that you can use for any occasions.

Learn more about Paulette and what she likes in her blog http://www.pauletteinsall.com/blog

more work on her site http://www.pauletteinsall.com/

some videos http://www.youtube.com/pinsall
to join her mailing list, visit
http://visitor.constantcontact.com/optin.jsp?m=1101685454160&ea=

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