Sunday, May 30, 2010

Giveaway: Owl Plushie by Fuzzy Muffins


This week giveaway is sponsored by Fuzzy Muffins.

Win this cutest owl plush!


I encourage you to read her profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

There are so many ways to win.
Please make sure you leave a separate comment for every entry.

How to enter to win:

Mandatory entry:

Extra entries (only qualify once mandatory entry is fulfilled):
  • Earn 2 entries - Go to yesterday's post to get to know her more.
Leave a comment there (yesterday's post) on at least one the following: what you learn from her interview, what you want to see more on her shop and why, or any constructive feedbacks are always appreciated.

Come back here and leave 2 comments that you did, to ensure your entries are counted.
  • Heart her shop and earn an entry. Simply let us know your Etsy username.
  • Follow my blog and you earn another entry. If you're already a follower, you still get an entry, just says you're following already.
  • Become my Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Tweet about this giveaway, add "@adorebynat" in your tweet. Each tweet worths one entry and you can tweet each day until the end of the contest (a maximum of one tweet per day is counted). That's a total of 7 entries!
  • Blog about this giveaway to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here please providing me with the link to your post.
  • Purchase an item from Fuzzy Mufffins shop or my shop and earn 5 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on June 5th, 2010. Contest opens worldwide.

Don't forget to leave me your e-mail address. Entries without contact information will be disqualified. Entries that do not follow the rules will be disqualified. Contest winner will be drawn on Sunday, June 6th by a random number generator, by the artist. Winner must respond within 48 hours after being contacted otherwise another winner will be randomly selected.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Fuzzy Muffins



Meet this sweet gal, Emily, the artist behind everything- is-cute shop: Fuzzy Muffins.

Read on to learn more about what makes her happy and successful at the same time.


Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?

I'm a third year communication design student at the University of North Texas with a passion for typography and 1970's color palettes. I started sewing plushies as a stress release in the summer of 2008 and realized soon thereafter that I did NOT have enough space to keep them all forever. Fuzzy Muffins started out lacking any sort of cohesion, but I think I've finally discovered my style and a definable Fuzzy Muffin style. I've also discovered that fleece is absolutely magical.

What is your favourite item in your shop?

My favourite items have to be my elephant plushies. I've never considered myself a sucker for elephants, but those little guys captured my heart with their floppy ears. The first elephant I ever made actually sold was a little hard to part with, but a little boy fell in love with him at a craft show and I knew he would give my plushie a great home.


What is your best seller?

My owls seem to be a big hit lately. I've gotten a lot of requests for custom order owls locally, and I haven't quite figured out if there's a correlation between the love of the animal and being a Texan.


How does your day go in general?

After being awakened by a hungry cat, I'm usually pretty swamped between design classes and my design internship. Early mornings and late nights are my trademark, unfortunately. However, the times I manage to set aside for sewing are normally my favorite. Unlike a design project, I can begin and finish a plushie within a few hours! It's such a great feeling to have a tactile finished product.



What inspires you?

I'm inspired by 1960's and 1970's graphic design and color palettes. Of course, most of my creatures are inspired by real life animals; there's no need to reinvent the wheel, right? As a child, I always hated dolls and loved my stuffed animals, so I suppose I've always had a love for plushies!


What is your favourite tool that you cannot live without?

I absolutely cannot live without my seam ripper. Surprisingly, it makes an awesome safety eye hole-maker, and of course, helps me get my fabric tags into an animal when I've completely forgotten! Seam rippers are the perfect tool for the forgetful.

How do you promote your shop?

I am active in a few forums and blogs, maintain a facebook and twitter page, and, my favorite, take part in local craft shows! The best way to get your name out there is to actually get OUT there! If you're in the DFW area, keep a lookout for me.

Any advice for a newbie running his or her on-line shop?

Just keep on creating! Post your new items one at a time, divided by a few hours to a day to be sure your creations are showing up on top! If you post in a big clump, they get buried pretty quickly.

Anything else you would like to share?

Follow your dreams. I never thought I would end up doing everything I love — graphic design and crafting, and surviving off of it! It really is possible. Next step: east coast.


Now....don't you love them or love them? :-)

Stayed-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway cause Emily is generous that she will send one of her plushies to the lucky one.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Creation of the Week - Lovely Tree Tags


Aren't they just adorable? Trees can be adorable, don't you know? :-0) So colorful which reminds us that summer is just around the corner. The little bird peeping simply add cuteness to it.

Check them out at my shop!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: Have Fun Like a Kid


This week Spotted Tuesday is inspired by things surround me for the past 2 years or so: TOYS!! Since we have Ethan in our life, toys are unavoidable. They actually are fun and it's a good reminder to be like a child once a while, to forget about our troubles and just be a kid.

Hope you enjoy looking at these finds.

1st row from the left:

Wooden Fairy Doll
by theenchantedcupboard

Alphabet tumbler by monicapharr

Building block soap by NakedGarden


2nd row from the left:

ZEBRA Cork Necklace by uncorked

Hippi VW Beetle by jessejanese

Red and Aqua Love print by frecklesfairytales





Monday, May 24, 2010

Winner of Sparrowgraphic's Giveaway

Thank you so much Edina and Daryle, for sponsoring last week's giveaway.

They picked the winner through random generator and the lucky one is......
Congratulations Sarah (#27)!
You won 5 graphic sheets from sparrowgraphic. Have a great time selecting your graphics! It's not an easy one, I'd tell you cause all graphics are so darn cute! I know cause I won sparrowgraphic's giveaway once. :-)

Thanks again to all of you for entering the contest.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Creation of the Week - Scrapbook Shadow Box


I spent my last Saturday working on this special project: a scrapbook shadow box with sweet 16 as the theme.

A good colleague of mine was planning for her daughter's 16th birthday. She wanted to give her a card but it's not just any card. It has to be special. So what's better than a keepsake scrapbook layout in a shadow box where she can have it displayed in her bedroom, right? :-)

I used glittered purple paper as the background, did my stitching as usual and dropped a few flowers here and there. I also added a pocket for extra photos. These photos were adhered to tags and what is so neat about this is that each member of the family can write a little message to the sweet 16 gal at the back of the tags. The messages are hidden so they can be private messages if need be.

I'm happy with the result and so is my customer (and her family).

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: Through Glasses


If you noticed, there was no Spotted Tuesday last week. I took a much needed break among finishing a couple of custom orders.


But my Spotted Tuesday is back!!!


This week I found these beautiful findings and how I wish I could have them all! But hey, I might get some of these. You will be surprised on how affordable they are. Best of all, they are handmade!


Find it out yourselves and do not forget to let me know if you do end up getting some for yourselves.



1st row from the left:

Opal Lights by billiesblueboutique



2nd row from the left:

Pair of milk glass dried moss topiaries by MissMossy

Wood and Fused Glass Ring by joybeadworks

Instant Collection Milk Glass Bud Vases by HomeSpunStyle



Thanks for dropping by!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Winner of Tinymade's Giveaway

Thank you so much Kelli, for sponsoring last week's giveaway.

Kelli picked the winner through random generator and the lucky one is...... Congratulations Hayley (#16)! You won the $20 gift certificate to spend at Tinymade's shop. Now your 2 boys can look as cute as the little girl :-) Happy shopping!

Thanks again to all of you for entering the contest. You can enter the current contest sponsored by Sparrowgraphic here.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Giveaway: 5 Graphic Sheets from Sparrowgraphic

This week giveaway is sponsored by Sparrowgraphic: 5 (five) graphic sheets of your choice.

If you are a jewelry maker, and are particularly specializing in scrabble and tile pendant, then you know that you need to win these awesome images.

Or if you are a papercrafter like me, you'll find these images are too cute to pass by. Get the creativity juice of yours flowing!

I encourage you to read their profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

There are so many ways to win.
Please make sure you leave a separate comment for every entry.

How to enter to win:

Mandatory entry:

Extra entries (only qualify once mandatory entry is fulfilled):
  • Earn 2 entries - Go to yesterday's post to get to know her more.
Leave a comment there (yesterday's post) on at least one the following: what you learn from their interview, what you want to see more on their shop and why, or any constructive feedbacks are always appreciated.

Come back here and leave 2 comments that you did, to ensure your entries are counted.
  • Heart their shop and earn an entry. Simply let me know your Etsy username.
  • Follow my blog and you earn another entry. If you're already a follower, you still get an entry, just says you're following already.
  • Become my Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Tweet about this giveaway, add "@adorebynat" in your tweet. Each tweet worths one entry and you can tweet each day until the end of the contest (a maximum of one tweet per day is counted). That's a total of 7 entries!
  • Blog about this giveaway to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here please providing me with the link to your post.
  • Purchase an item from Sparrowgraphic or my shop and earn 5 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on May 22th, 2010. Contest opens worldwide.

Don't forget to leave me your e-mail address. Entries without contact information will be disqualified. Entries that do not follow the rules will be disqualified. Contest winner will be drawn on Sunday, May 23th by a random number generator, by the artist. Winner must respond within 48 hours after being contacted otherwise another winner will be randomly selected.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Sparrowgraphic


Remember about my post about winning a giveaway and what I made with that fabulous gift? Read here. I also dropped a hint there. Lol.

This week Saturday Artisan is Sparrowgraphic, run by a duo: Edina and Daryle. I just LOVE their graphics, simply fabulous!

Find out who does what and how well they work together to make Sparrowgraphic happens. It's worth to mention that Edina is not just the artist behind Sparrowgraphic but she is also one talented and busy girl running 3 (three) jewelry Etsy: sweetsurrenderjewels, whitelotus, and modwedding.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make? (Answered by Edina)

I grew up in a small town in Europe and spent much of my childhood outdoors playing in nature.
My artistic leanings surfaced early in life and i explored many mediums such as pottery and drawing. I developed a passion for fine art and illustration and the urge to create led me to pursue a degree in Design after high school.

After graduating with a Bachelor of Design I immediately landed a job in a corporate in-house studio. At times I felt restricted in my creativity and the long hours and stress were beginning to take their toll so I needed a creative outlet that would allow me to tune out the daily grind.

I began to work as a freelance designer part-time and also began to create jewelry. One thing led to another and I quit my day job…I have been creating ever since.

I feel that I was born to be an entrepreneur. I’m a strong believer that if you really want to do something you love, you figure out a way to do it and you learn along the way. After being in that corporate environment for 7 years, I realized that I wanted to be my own boss!
By seeing what I did not want to do, I figured out what I did want to do, if that makes sense.
So now my life consists of making jewelery full time (and sometimes more). When I get a chance I create these graphics using my design skills and it really lets me explore my artistic senses with a different medium. Sometimes I even use the graphics as a way to wind down after a full days work with my jewelery.

How does your day go in general? (Answered by Edina)

My boyfriend Daryle (the one who actually runs SparrowGraphics) and I have a full house with our 3 rescue dogs, 2 guinuie pigs and 2 mice.

My day normally starts with breakfast prep for furry ones while having our coffee in our PJ's. I check my emails and answer important voicemails from my jewelry business before I start anything else.

It keeps me busy during the day while creating for wholesale orders from galleries and boutiques all over the country (Canada and a little bit in The States).

Though I don't typically tackle the day to day events of Sparrowgraphics on Etsy (Daryle is my grunt worker for that) I design new digital sheets for the shop. This is a great way for me to wind down at the end of the day and it keeps the shop going with new, fresh material for our customers.

What inspires you? (Answered by Edina)

Much of my work is about form and colours found in nature. When I am out in nature I am constantly being bombarded with ideas and inspirations I see around me. I can't tell you how many times I'm out taking the dogs for a walk that something with hit me and I just have to come home and act on it. But sometimes getting into the city and seeing the hustle and bustle of every day city life triggers my more "urban" side. We live just on the edge of the city (Toronto) so when I go into the city for supplies or to hang out with friends I see things all the time that trigger my senses. Being an animal lover they are also a huge inspiration for me.

Any advice for a newbie running his or her on-line shop? (Answered by Edina and Daryle)

The best thing you can do for your shop is have nice, clear pictures. When a potential customer is looking at a bad picture of a product I think it can immediately turn them off. When you're dealing with anything online the only thing you have is a visual to promote your product so it has to look good. Clear and crisp pictures go a long way. With SparrowGraphics its easy because all we need to do is put up a screen shot of the graphics sheet we're selling but with my other jewelry shops if I didn't have nice pictures I could easily lose customers very quickly.
Also, have patience. When you first put up your shop (on Etsy or anywhere else) you're not going to get immediately noticed. You need to put in some work on how you present your products (be as detailed as you can) and once the ball starts rolling keep with it. The more work you put into it, the more you'll get out of it.

What is your favourite item in your shop? (Answered by Daryle)

Easily my favorite graphics sheet we sell is our St. Patty's Day Celtic image sheet. I know St. Patty's Day has come and gone but my background is Irish and I wear my shamrocks year round with pride!! I told Edina I wanted an Irish themed sheet way back at Christmas so St. Patrick's Day was a great excuse to push her to get it done. It turned out great and it was quite popular leading up to March 17. I'm finally going to take a stab at making a sheet myself. We've had a few requests for sports teams related graphics so I thought that would be a great way to get my feet wet. It won't be all that creative (just plunking some logos onto a sheet) but I figure it has the least amount of screw-up-ability (is that a word)? So who knows, I might have a new favorite soon enough. :)

What is your best seller? (Answered by Daryle)

We organize our sheets by number so its easier to find them when we're filling an order. Obviously, the lower the number a sheet has, the longer we've had that particular sheet in stock. When I took over the shop back in the summer of 2009 it took me a while to figure out what numbers each sheet had. Once I got the hang of things it was easier for me to notice which sheets were more popular. So its funny because to answer the question of what is our best seller there are two of them and they both were created around the same time by Edina. Our "Charming Critters" and "Vibrant Fauna and Flora" sheets are numbered 30 and 31 respectively. And they are easily our most consistently ordered sheets. In fact, they are usually ordered both at the same time by our customers. I can see the similarities in Edina's inspirations of each of them so that's probably a good reason why. But its kind of ironic to see how out of 80+ original ideas (currently) the two most popular were both done one after another.


Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway!

Friday, May 14, 2010

5 Spot Sale


It has been a while I haven't done any sale. If you're looking for a father's day card, a birthday card, gift tags, or decoupaged clothespin clips then mark it:
tomorrow, Saturday, May 15th only!

Spend $5 in a participating shop and receive a $5 gift certificate toward your next purchase of $10 or more!

See the EtsyGreetingsTeam blog for all participating shops.

I hope I'll see you in my shop tomorrow :-)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Creation of the Week: Patchy Patch

I'm all about using paper scraps up to tiny pieces. I think it's because I love papers so much and I hate throwing them in a waste bin.

A while back I posted how I use these scrap papers to the fullest here. This time, I'd like to share beautiful cards made of scrap papers.



I had so much fun making these patchy patch cards. Each scrap paper was stitched to the other as I imagined myself quilting. :-)
These cards are not available in my shop, sadly. They are one-of-a-kinds and are part of the recent wholesale order I was working on. Nevertheless, I'm planning to make a few more of these patchy patch cards as afterall... I have a LOT of scrap papers.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Winner of Gilliauna's Giveaway

Thank you so much Zoie, for sponsoring last week's giveaway.

Zoie picked the winner through random generator and the lucky one is...... Congratulations fisiwoman (#65)! You won the $20 gift certificate to spend at Gilliauna's shop. Happy shopping!

Thanks again to all of you for entering the contest. You can enter the current contest sponsored by Tinymade here.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Giveaway $20 Gift Certificate from Tinymade


Fantastic giveaway this week, just like any other weeks here on my blog.

This week giveaway is sponsored by Tinymade: a $20 gift certificate to spend at Tinymade shop.

She is one busy mom and yet is still able to make the time to make beautiful dresses for little ones. I encourage you to read her profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

There are so ways to win.
Please make sure you leave a separate comment for every entry.

How to enter to win:

Mandatory entry:

Extra entries (only qualify once mandatory entry is fulfilled):
  • Earn 2 entries - Go to yesterday's post to get to know her more.
Leave a comment there (yesterday's post) on at least one the following: what you learn from her interview, what you want to see more on her shop and why, or any constructive feedbacks are always appreciated.

Come back here and leave 2 comments that you did, to ensure your entries are counted.
  • Heart her shop and earn an entry. Simply let me know your Etsy username.
  • Follow my blog and you earn another entry. If you're already a follower, you still get an entry, just says you're following already.
  • Become her Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Become my Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Tweet about this giveaway, add "@adorebynat" in your tweet. Each tweet worths one entry and you can tweet each day until the end of the contest (a maximum of one tweet per day is counted). That's a total of 7 entries!
  • Blog about this giveaway to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here please providing me with the link to your post.
  • Purchase an item from Tinymade or my shop and earn 5 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on May 15th, 2010. Contest opens worldwide.

Don't forget to leave me your e-mail address. Entries without contact information will be disqualified. Entries that do not follow the rules will be disqualified. Contest winner will be drawn on Sunday, May 16th by a random number generator, by the artist. Winner must respond within 48 hours after being contacted otherwise another winner will be randomly selected.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Saturday Artisan: TinyMade


This week Saturday Artisan is Kelli, a proud owner and talented designer of tinymade. Tinymade offers a selection of adorable children clothings. Plus, Kelli accepts custom orders which means she even personalizes her work to meet your need!

To all moms of young ones out there: I think you'll thank me for finding this awesome shop for you..that is if you stumbled upon my humbled blog. Well actually, Kelli found me. Lol! How am I glad she did.

I personally fall in love with everything that she has in her shop. It's unfortunate that I don't have a girl of my own...but hey, Kelli make clothes for boys too! Oh Yeah, she is that good!!


Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
I am a wife to a wonderful man, a sweetheart from college. I am also a stay at home mother of 4 energetic children ages 7, 5, 4 and 2 (two boys and two girls). During my spare time I love to make things, whether they are to eat, wear, or just be pretty.

I have been a crafter for as long as I can remember….even back to the days of crocheting in Girl Scouts. These days I have focused on sewing, really due to my lack of spare time!

What is your favourite item in your shop?
I love my coordinating outfits. (Not any one in particular). I love my children to be able to coordinate without having to wear to exact same outfit. They are, after all, very different individuals.


How does your day go in general?
I wake up around 6/6:30 to get a cup of coffee and check emails before the kiddos wake up. Then around 7, sometimes sooner if I hear a little pitter patter upstairs, the running begins. I get everyone ready for the day, one 1st grader, 2 preschoolers and a toddler. We are out the door around 7:45 for school drop off. When I get back I do my household chores/errands. After lunch during naptime/quiet time I will start to press fabric/cut patterns for new items. Then we are off to pick up our 1st grader and gymnastics, soccer and cub scouts (depending on the day). Dinner, bath and bedtime finish the day by 7:30. After I clean things up a bit I FINALLY have my sewing time. My husband usually has work to finish from his day so he does computer work while I sew and we chat and catch up a bit then. It’s NICE.


Do you have a favourite Etsy seller?
Oh, soo many to choose from. I love artists that upcycle. I know it is so trendy now, but it really interests me. The other day I stumbled upon a clock made from a bicycle wheel at pixelthis. I ‘d love to start doing a little upcycling myself. I’ll add it to my GROWING list of “to do’s”!


What inspires you?
My inspiration comes from my children. My 4yo daughter’s face lights up when she puts on a dress I made for her for the first time. She thanks me and tells me what she likes best about it. My 7yo son is really interested in what I am doing and has started drawing monsters for boys tshirts. (I have made some for them that they wear all the time!) He is a budding entrepreneur, telling me all the things he’d like to make and sell. My 2yo daughter puts on a new dress and spins singing “I’m a pincess, cindalela….cindalela”. My 5yo, well, he is just waiting for me to make more monster tshirts for him to wear!


How do you promote your shop?
My children are my local advertisement. We have gotten so many compliments when we are out. A few local customers have become my best customers!


During this recession time, tell us one thing that you do to save money?
We have gone a little greener….better for the planet and the wallet. We have turned to cloth! I made cloth napkins and tissues. We use reuseable cloth baggies for lunches, instead of plastic baggies. I bring my own bags to the grocery store. I make my own cleaners from natural products. After we move this spring we are hoping to have a big garden to feed all these growing children!

Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway. Sweet Kelli is sponsoring a giveaway. Now check out her shop!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Creation of the Week - Father's Day Cards

Happy Friday, everyone!

Mother's day is this Sunday, which is the day after tomorrow. Time flies, doesn't it?

By the way, did you get a card yet for your Mom? I know I am. I hope you get a nice handmade card for this special woman.

Now, don't forget about the dads.... I have started making Father's Day Cards. This year, Father's day falls on June 20, 2010. Factoring the shipping time, we have about a month to get these cards going.

This card will be listed on my shop shortly.


Dad, you're someone to look up to,
no matter how tall I've grown


This card is in my shop.


He didn't tell me how to live;
he lived,
and let me watch him do it


More to come. You can join my FB fanpage to get the latest update or simply go to my shop to it out.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: Ocean Breeze


I'm sitting by the beach, sipping pina colada while watching little one playing making sandcastle with his dad. The breeze....ahh...so refreshing!


Oh wait! I'm just daydreaming now. Lol. But it certainly can become a reality, don't you think? Afterall, that dream is not so much to ask.


In the meantime, I invite you to pleasurely enjoy the beauty of these findings.


1st row from the left:

Knobby Urchin Bead by humblebeads


Seahorse pair by karmelidesigns


Shabby Cottage Decor by SignsofVintage



2nd row from the left:

Seaside Vacation by BethanyRoseDesigns


Silver Octopus Necklace with Flowers by ReneeLoughlin


Monday, May 3, 2010

Winner of Briole's Giveaway

Thank you so much Heather, for sponsoring last week's giveaway. I think we all had fantastic time. Heather picked the winner through random generator and the lucky one is......

Congratulations Samy (#26)! You won the $20 gift certificate to spend at Briole's shop. Happy shopping!

Thanks again to all of you for entering the contest. You can enter the current contest sponsored by Gilliauna here.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Giveaway $20 Gift Certificate from Gilliauna


This week giveaway is sponsored by Gilliauna: a $20 gift certificate to spend at Gilliauna shop.


I encourage you to read her profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

There are so ways to win.
Please make sure you leave a separate comment for every entry.

How to enter to win:

Mandatory entry:

Extra entries (only qualify once mandatory entry is fulfilled):
  • Earn 2 entries - Go to yesterday's post to get to know her more.
Leave a comment there (yesterday's post) on at least one the following: what you learn from her interview, what you want to see more on her shop and why, or any constructive feedbacks are always appreciated.

Come back here and leave 2 comments that you did, to ensure your entries are counted.
  • Heart her shop and earn an entry. Simply let me know your Etsy username.
  • Follow my blog and you earn another entry. If you're already a follower, you still get an entry, just says you're following already.
  • Become her Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Become my Facebook Fan and you earn another entry. If you're a fan already, you'll also get an entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Tweet about this giveaway, add "@adorebynat" in your tweet. Each tweet worths one entry and you can tweet each day until the end of the contest (a maximum of one tweet per day is counted). That's a total of 7 entries!
  • Blog about this giveaway to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here please providing me with the link to your post.
  • Purchase an item from Gilliauna or my shop and earn 5 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on May 8th, 2010. Contest opens worldwide.

Don't forget to leave me your e-mail address. Entries without contact information will be disqualified. Entries that do not follow the rules will be disqualified. Contest winner will be drawn on Sunday, May 9th by a random number generator, by the artist. Winner must respond within 48 hours after being contacted otherwise another winner will be randomly selected.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Gilliauna


Meet this week Saturday Artisan, Zoie of Gilliauna, a talented artist that doesn't live too far from me and what a small world that we yet met through Etsy.

She has so much advise to share and they're GREAT advise! Find ways to promote your products effectively without breaking the bank. I have been doing work and they're surely helping me.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
I'm a self-taught jewelry designer in Vancouver, BC who works with a friend (Leal in Seattle, WA) to run a budding online business, Bits n Beads by Gilliauna

I create colorful, quality jewelry that's carefully designed to be affordable (and wearable!) for the everyday woman.

I use a variety of different types of beads and styles in my work in order to create a unique and colorful style and personality for each piece. I often use vintage beads in my work, as well, and feel that doing so often can lend a uniqueness to a piece that you can't otherwise find.

What is your favourite item in your shop?
My favorite changes daily. Sometimes hourly! At this exact moment, it's one of our newest pieces. A bracelet made of mother of pearl, coral and aventurine.


What is your best seller?
It's hard to say. I've sold a wide variety of different pieces since starting out on Etsy and there doesn't seem to be a trend there towards any one category. As far as individual pieces go, I'd have to say this one: Between online and offline, it's definitely resonated as a favorite for my customers.

How does your day go in general?
I get up in the morning and sit down at the computer to get my online time in. Usually about an hour or so where I work solely on the laptop without interruption. I'll then go take a shower, make breakfast, go for my morning walk, etc. If I have errands to run, I'll get those done too. In the afternoon, I sit down and create, take product pictures, work on getting things organized or some other task that's creative related but doesn't involve the computer. In the evening I package up orders then get on the computer to do more of the online tasks that keep things running smoothly.


Do you have a favourite Etsy seller?
I have lots and LOTS of favorite Etsy sellers. As for personality and a wonderful person -behind- the shops, tho, I'd have to go with Loren at FruitOfTheBloom, Jo Ann at Pottery123 and Lori at Dean Dyment Studios. Each of these women are wonderful, talented and supportive people that are friendly and have terrific personalities to boot. I'm honored (and it's a pleasure) to know each of them.

What inspires you?
I believe that the colors that surround us add an extra level of beauty and richness to each and every day of our lives. There are many times when color isn't just seen, it's experienced through more than one or even all of the senses and even the emotions.

Colors can lift you up, calm you down. Make you happy or sad. People often feel as if certain colors have a flavor, scent or "feel" to them.

It's color and the sensations and emotions that they create that are my inspiration in my work. I absolutely LOVE working with color and I love the idea that I can add extra color into the lives of those that wear the jewelry I've made. I feel that it's my way to reach out to others and make each of their days just a little brighter and a little more enjoyable.

What is your goal for 2010?
I'm working on building up a loyal, steady customer base. We (Leal and I) just started selling online in October of 2009, so we haven't even been up and running six months yet. Over the year, I'd like to develop a relationship and rapport with return customers as well as garner the interest of new ones. We're working on this by taking efforts to become more visible both on and off the handmade marketplace.

What is your favourite tool that you cannot live without?
I have a pair of old jewelry pliers that use to belong to my father. I swiped them out of his tool box a little over a decade ago. I love them. The quality and craftsmanship of these pliers is far better than those you can buy in today's market.

How do you promote your shop?
We do a little of everything. A little bit of (inexpensive) paid advertising. Plus a Facebook Fan Page plus Twitter. Plus free advertising wherever we can find it.

Any advice for a newbie running his or her on-line shop?
My best advice is that everyone gets frustrated and discouraged when you're setting up an online business. Don't let that feeling get in your way. Work -through it- and keep on plugging along at what you've set your end goals as. You'll get there, and in time that feeling will lift and you'll be better for having worked through it rather than letting it keep you down.

During this recession time, tell us one thing that you do to save money?
I shop around **a lot** for my supplies, searching for the best prices I can find. I also do a lot of shopping for supplies to recycle and re-purpose at places that give back to the community like the Salvation Army, GoodWill and local church-ran thrifts.

Anything else you would like to share? I absolutely adore working with a customer to create custom, personalized pieces especially for them or for their loved ones. Some of the pieces I'm most proud of were commissioned in this manner. I'm always happy to take inquiries and answer questions.

Any tutorial that you’d like to share, pretty please?
You can find the occasional tutorials on our Live Journal blog.


Be sure to stay tuned for tomorrow's giveaway sponsored by Gilliauna.