Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Scarecrowin' it Up!

This past Sunday I worked a booth at my local Scarecrow Festival. What the heck is a Scarecrow Festival, you ask? Well, it's basically a harvest festival with lots of great crafts, art, and local food. And, of course, there's a scarecrow competition!

I unfortunately wasn't able to go around and take any pictures of the other booths or the scarecrows, but here are some shots of my fall-themed table. You may also recognize that adorable apple/pumpkin garland that I had posted about here.

Because I didn't get any scarecrow pics to share with you guys, here are some cute scarecrow-themed items I found on Etsy:

Fall Scarecrow Goats Milk Soap by Barr of Soap

Scarecrow Polymer Clay Buttons by Digitsdesigns

Pumpkin Scarecrow Brooch by Designsbloom
Lil' Scarecrow Costume by Yaya Papaya
Scarecrow Handmade Figurine by Trina's Clay Creations
Hand Painted Gourd Scarecrow by From Grams House
 I hope you all enjoyed those adorable scarecrows and please be sure to check out all of these great shops!

Has anyone else gone to a harvest festival lately? Did any of them have themes like our Scarecrow Festival?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Adorable (and Easy!) Fall Garland

Wow, it feels like it's been a million years since I've last posted! Things have been crazy around here because my boyfriend's mom was visiting from California so we were out doing things and showing her around.

I've also been busy the past two evenings working on this adorable Fall Garland that I found at A Glimpse Inside. If you're looking for new ideas for fun craft projects or just want inspiration for your own decorating and crafting adventures, you need to check out Allison's blog...definitely worth the visit!

Now, getting back to my venture into garland-making. I spent a bit of time last night cutting the pieces, painting them, and assembling the pumpkins and apples (for detailed instructions, visit her tutorial). I was getting pretty sleepy, so I decided to save the actual hanging until the next day.

So a little while ago I strung my little apples and pumpkins onto some twine and hung it across the windows in my living-room. It took a bit of maneuvering to get them just how I wanted, but I'm really happy with the finished product:

Here is a closer view of the apple:

For the pumpkin, I ended up making some short and fat and others a bit taller and more narrow.

I then topped it off with some bows to distract from the thumbtacks that I used to hang the garland. For the ends, I just used leftover twine and tied it into bows. For the others, I actually cut strips from an old pair of brown linen shorts that had ripped awhile back. I'm so glad I was able to find another use for the material!

There you have it, my cutesy, country Fall Garland! I love it, and I still can't believe I was able to make it for under 5 bucks!

Here's the price breakdown:
Toilet paper and paper towel rolls: FREE
Twine: FREE (I already had it at home)
Paint: Both colors for a total of about $3
Brown linen material: FREE

You guys should definitely try out this project (or any of the others on A Glimpse Inside). Have fun!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Workspace Inspiration

First off, thanks to everyone who stopped by and shared my enthusiasm about setting up a studio. It's so nice to hear that other people get as excited about this stuff as I do!  :)

I've been doing a bit of research for how I want to set up my studio and what I ultimately want it to look like. As promised, I'm sharing a bit of inspiration with you today (and possibly more to come, depending on how long it takes to actually get the space up and running...we'll see).

I love the way this room flows, with a workstation island centrally placed and tons of storage all around.

If I could get my hands on a cabinet like this, there would be no end to the organizing I could do!

Ah, I love love love the style of this room! The colors are so pretty and classy!

I would love to paint a few chairs and create decorations for the shelves to brighten up the room like they did here:

I have this really cute dresser that I snagged for 5 bucks at a garage sale this summer, and I'm definitely planning on creating some nifty, organized drawers like this.

I won't be able to create a custom chandelier for my craft studio, but it's so pretty I just had to include it!

I love the idea of painting a cabinet for pretty storage spaces! I'll have to look into some cute stamps as embellishments  ;)

I hope you all enjoyed this bit of inspiration and please be sure to send me any links you may have for more ideas! I'm sure it will be awhile before I get my studio fully decorated, so any pictures you can share to keep me motivated would be most appreciated ;)

Now I'm off to get our apartment ready for my boyfriend's mom, who is visiting from California!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Studio on the Horizon!

Yesterday while my boyfriend and I were driving home from New Paltz after dropping off some candles and then gorging ourselves on Indian food, I was talking (yet again) about how I would LOVE to have a room that I could dedicate as my studio for making candles. I'm one of those people that is so easily affected by my environment and I also love to be super organized, so working out of our tiny apartment has been a challenge.

Then my boyfriend mentioned that there's an extra room in the main house of the building we rent from.I'm not sure why neither of us ever thought of this before, but it would be perfect for a studio! No one ever uses this extra room, it's practically right outside my front door, and our landlord is so cool about us using the space.

I was so excited about the prospect of having my own workspace that we went and took a look at the room as soon as we got home. Right now it's a mess because it's full of random things people have been storing, but I'm sure with one whirlwind weekend of cleaning and organizing, I can get it in tip-top shape.

Ah, I am so unbelievably psyched! I can't wait to: 1. clean it  2. organize it  3. decorate it and FINALLY  4. work in it. I'm hoping I can get started on it next week, so I'll be sure to keep you all updated! I'll also be researching some inspiration for decorating and will be posting those soon too. Yaaay!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Blog Showcase!

This morning I checked my blog to find that my new friend Jillian has posted a showcase of my Teacup Collection on her blog Arts, Writing, and Running...Oh My. Thanks so much for featuring me, Jillian! It's so exciting to see other people get as excited about my work as I do creating them :)

Be sure to check out her blog, she's a lot of fun to read and such a nice person! Her artwork and cards are just adorable...I love the colors and themes, they're perfect for any occasion or just an everyday treat for yourself.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

F-- F-- F-- Feels Like Fall

This past weekend was sort of like a last hurrah of summer. The weather was warm and sunny (for the most part) and perfect for all of the Labor Day bbqs that were going down.

But today is chilly and crisp, serving as a reminder that fall is on its way. This afternoon was the first time this season that I've had to go home on my lunch break to grab a sweater because it was so chilly!

Because I'm a total nut when it comes to anything autumn-themed and since the weather today seems to be just calling for it, I decided to browse on Etsy for some unique pieces.

Here are some great FALL FINDS UNDER $10:

Autumn Acorn Earrings Czech Glass and Copper by Sarahlibbey

Fall Harvest Pumpkins, Dishwasher Reminder Magnet by Terrills Tiles

Fall Leaves Note Cards by Creative Lily

Maple Leaf Charm Earrings by JeweledFibers

Autumn Fairy Print by WhiteStagArt

Candy Caramel Apple Lip Balm by Givin' Me Lip

Rust Embroidered Felt Pumpkin Decoration by Primitive Season

Chocolate Brown Fingerless Gloves by English Charm

I hope these nifty fall finds helped to put you in the mood for the cool weather ahead!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Friday = Farmers Market

Every Friday, my town has a Farmers Market where local farmers, crafters, and anyone else can sell their wares. The awesome thing about it is that they don't charge a vendor fee, so it allows us vendors to be able to set  up a table every week without the worry of losing money if sales happen to be slow.

Coincidentally, the Farmers Market is held near the Town Hall, which is practically in my backyard so this has been really great for us...we literally just walk out our door and have a plethora of local produce, baked goods, and crafts right at our fingertips!

Here's one VERY happy customer with a gorgeous gourd grown right here in Hobart.

My friend Catarina and her daughter Emily also sold their homemade Swedish cinnamon buns, fresh from the oven (literally!).

And what Farmers Market would be complete without homemade pies, and local maple syrup and honey? Yum!

In anticipation of the coming Autumn, our friend Dave is now selling his pumpkins, grown right on the same property as my office (my boyfriend and I will be taking a trip over to the pumpkin patch real soon to grab some for ourselves...can't wait!)

We also had some really great crafters this week, offering a nice variety in addition to all of the produce and homemade foods.

Yesterday was also my first time selling at the Farmers Market, and it was a ton of fun! Here am I with some of my happy customers.

We were even lucky enough to enjoy the music of a local guitarist and a brass ensemble. It brought even more life to the already friendly and cheerful atmosphere.

The past few weeks, it's been so much fun to shop at the Farmers Market but it's even more fun to sell there! It's a perfect opportunity to catch up with people I don't see very often and allows the town to just enjoy each other's company. And, of course, it goes without saying that it's wonderful to be able to buy local produce and goods rather than having to shop at the "big box" stores.

Our Farmers Market is still in its first year and already we've seen a great response from the community. I hope you guys enjoyed this little peek into my town. Do you have any Farmers Markets or similar events that you enjoy visiting in your town?

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Attention Etsyians!

One of the many reasons I love Etsy is because their listing fees are so dang low. Awhile back, I had helped my Mom to set-up her own vintage clothing site on Ebay and I remember being appalled at how high their fees were and they didn't even provide a great site to make up for it! There's very little design options on Ebay, it's often a pain in the butt to get listings up, and if you ever happen to have a problem with one of your listings it's near impossible to get any assistance.

So when we finally discovered Etsy, it was a breath of fresh air, to say the least. I am in love with most every feature on Etsy, and my only real complaint is that sales have been slow, but I honestly feel like the economy is more to blame for that.

When I first started this blog and was looking around at other blogs, I came across someone posting about a site called Zibbet. While I love Etsy and am thoroughly happy with my shop there, I decided to check out Zibbet just for the heck of it. It's almost exactly the same as Etsy in all of its basic features...except it's FREE! Now, for all I know, everyone else already uses Zibbet and I've just been out of the loop but I am so freaking excited about the fact that I can post my candles, the same as I do on Etsy, without being charged any fees. My Zibbet shop looks almost identical to my Etsy shop, which is great for me because I happen to like the clean design they use. The process of listing items is also just as simple and intuitive as it is on Etsy, and Zibbet also has a Blog and Community where you can find all sorts of helpful information to make your shop extra kick-a**.

I think it's also really exciting to be using Zibbet now because they're still a fairly new company (began in February, 2009) and are constantly updating and improving their system. In fact, just this past week they launched a bunch of new features like a searchable "Sale" section, which allows sellers to mark an item as being "on sale" and then targeting buyers to that item. If you haven't done so yet, check out Zibbet. What the heck, go crazy and try it out for awhile...it's not like it's gonna cost you anything!

I was reading an interview with Jonathan Peacock, the CEO of Zibbet and came across this really great quote: "Without a doubt you have to be fully convinced in your own heart that what you do has value and to never stop believing that." You said it, Mr. Peacock! This kind of perspective has been so important to me in starting my own small business and I know it will continue to be invaluable as I work on growing bigger and better. Hopefully you guys can also find the value in those words and believe in what you do. 

If you do decide to mosey on over to Zibbet, please also take a moment to check out my shop, and feel free to post a link to your Zibbet shop if you'd like me to check it out as well.

Happy Thursday, guys...we're almost at our 3-day weekend!