Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: Country Side


Summer is here. Are you planning for a little trip this summer?

I will be right here, not going anywhere as my day job is a seasonal job which required me to work during the summer. That's okay. Statutory holidays and weekends are plenty days off for me.

But if I can take a little trip, I'd love to go to a country side.
Enjoy the fresh air. Enjoy the homemade goodies, and simply far away from computer.

Enjoy these handmade finds on Etsy:

1st row from the left:

English Rose Record Cabinet by PeggithasPieces


2nd row from the left:

queen of the woods by whichgoose

Flower Hair Pins . Sunshine by Paper and Ribbons

Lemon Nougat by calabasascandyco

Monday, June 28, 2010

Winner of Angela Kay Designs' Giveaway

I had a blast hosting last week giveaway. The prize is just too cute, perfect for sweet little girl.

Congratulations
to Julie (#97) for winning Angela Kay Design's apron. You have 48 hours to response after being contacted.

Thanks again to all of you for entering. Enter the current contest here.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Giveaway: A Pair of Earrings from Tbeads

This week, you'll get a chance to win this pair of African Hancarved Bead Earrings generously sponsored by Tbeads.


Black and white handcarved and handpainted bone beads with smaller disk shaped wooden beads above and below. Casual everyday earrings.

I encourage you to read Tracey's 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 the 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 Tbeads 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.
  • Like my Facebook FB and you earn another entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Share or Comment on my FB page under this giveaway announcement to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here providing me with your FB name. OR 'Like' the giveaway announcement on my FB page to earn 1 entry. Provide me with your FB name.
  • 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 Tbeads shop and earn 10 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on July 3rd, 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, July 4th 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, June 26, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Tbeads

What a better way to start celebrating Canada Day than featuring one of our great Canadian artists?

Meet Tracey of Tbeads from Winnipeg. Her works focus on handmade wire wrapped jewelry with semi precious beads, glass and crystal - necklaces, pendants, bracelets, rings and earrings - warm, natural, earthy and beautiful.


Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
Accountant by day, jewelry maker by night! I make rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings with wire and stone mostly. It amazes me that these basic elements are so beautiful and multidimensional. I especially enjoy the colour, depth, variety and weight of stone. My family has been involved with my Etsy shop - providing lots of encouragement. My talented husband takes the pictures and even built a light box to get them just right. My son helps with shipping and contributes ideas towards design.


Which part of creation process that you like to do the most?
I find designing the most challenging and the most irritating and the most rewarding. But I also enjoy learning new skills - although I haven't taken any classes - for me its all trial and error, trying to translate what I see in my mind's eye into a finished piece. Lately I have been working mostly on perfecting spirals and hammering wire. What I love the very most is when something goes wildly different from where I thought it was going and by some miracle it works.


What is your favourite item in your shop?
My favourite item is this ring:

I love the warmth of the bronze wire against the sparkle of the fire agates. I think the combination of bronze and orange is unique and feels special to me. Another of my favourites is this necklace:


My mother gave me a vintage string of black beads that I took apart and made into several pieces that are now in my shop. She was so inspired that she has been buying up all the jewelry at the local thrift shop - and giving them to me! I am not sure what to do with them all... yet


What is your best seller?
I am pretty new to selling online - I haven't been selling long enough to discern a pattern. I especially love to make the rings, but I understand that they can be hard to sell online because of the sizing. I have been putting the ring sizes in, but I plan to to add in the inside dimensions so people can measure their finger with a measuring tape or a string.


What is your goal for 2010? And are you on the right track?
My first shop goal for 2010 was to create and post a new item every day. And my second goal was to build my shop inventory to 150 items. Now I am looking at some of the older posts and applying what I have learned in the forums about cropping pictures and tagging. I also did a craft show and plan to do another one in the fall. I feel like I have learned so much since I opened my shop on December 19, 2009! I have had so many people give me comments and even had a full critique. To me its all about learning and growing and sharing and I am definitely on the right track there.


Way to go Tracey! I admire your work and your dedication to learn more each and every day.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's giveaway!


Friday, June 25, 2010

Creation of the Week: Let's Celebrate

Just want to quickly share with you some of my cards that I made over the weekend.

This airplane card is inpired by a collegue's request; and of course I have to make a duplicate.



Unfortunately, there is only one of this card. The good news is that this cute frog card is available at my shop.


And who can resist cute pink bird made of felt? Handcut and handstitched by me, just another reason why handmade card is extra special.

Any party to attend this week?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Be in His Shoes



A moment in an elevator, the three of us (DH, Ethan and I), as we were in the elevator heading up to our apartment suite or down to the underground parking, is never a dull moment.

One day, as I got my knee down giving Ethan a hug in the elevator, he pointed to the arrow signs located at the top corner of the elevator doors and said 'ayow'. I looked up to see where he was pointing at and I realized, being small and short and having to look up at most times are not fun. I looked at my DH for example and I realized that this is how he has been seeing his dad standing tall.

I can imagine this is hard on him trying to make conversation to us, or any other adults. It just feels that there is a big distance between us. Mind you, I'm not that tall, but still...

That day I learned that I need to get into his level when I'm having conversation with him, to narrow that gap of a distance. Sometimes we just need to be reminded of little things we can do for our little one who is growing up too fast.

What did you learn from your little one?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Giveaway Winners: Baby Chick Designs and TheNight Jar

I didn't get a chance to announce the winner of Baby Chick Designs' fine art print last week so I'll do it this time. And believe it or not, Katie (#95) is the winner AGAIN! Twice in a row, you go girl!

And Grace (#39) is the winner of TheNightjar's giveaway.

Congratulations to both of you!


Thanks again to all of you for entering. The current contest is on.

Please note that the artists do the drawing, not me.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Giveaway: Girl's Apron from Angela Kay Designs

Did you get a chance to take a look at yesterday's post, the Saturday Artisan featuring Angela Kay Designs? Well, I encourage you to read Angela's profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

Angela is generously sponsoring this week giveaway. A lucky winner will win this beautiful Boutique Girls's Child Toddler Apron dress Alexander Hendry and Amy Butler (2T-5T).


This is an adorable girl's apron to wear while cooking goodies with mom or to wear around the town with cute jeans and t-shirt! They tie around the neck and waist. The materials I use are all high quality. Made from Leila and Ben's pattern from Etsy.

Main body of apron is made with Alexander Henry Apples and Pears fabric and the neck and ties are made with Amy Butler Cherry Full Moon Polka Dot fabric.

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.
  • 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.
  • Like my Facebook Fanpage and you earn another entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Share or Comment on my FB page under this giveaway announcement to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here providing me with your FB name, or Like it to earn 1 entry. Provide me with your FB name.
  • 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 Angela Kay Designs and earn 5 entries for each purchase. Don't forget letting us know by leaving comments :-)
Contest starts now and ends on June 26th, 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 27th 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, June 19, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Angela Kay Designs

Meet this week Saturday Artisan, Angela of Angela Kay Designs.

You know that I'm all about cuteness and this store is all about it!

Once you're at her shop, it's hard not to say 'awww' everytime you make a click.

In her own words,

I was inspired to own my first sewing machine after the birth of my daughter... Little Miss Ava. After teaching myself to sew and countless hours I put into my obession with beautiful fabric, I decided to open my business and share my obession with others who love beautiful fabrics.


I offer unique aprons for women and children, as well as a multipurpose clutch to be used by all women.


My favorite item in the store is my clutch. I love that it is an accessory that can be used by any woman to dress up their wardrobe... nothing like a pretty clutch to add a little fun to an outfit. I designed it with mommies in mind because I really disliked carrying the typical boring diaper/wipes bags. This is the perfect trendy item to carry diapers/wipes. Mommies stop me whenever I pull it out:)


My favorite tool has to be my sewing machine! Because I had to teach myself to sew, it has been the best machine for the sewing novice.


My bestseller is the Alexander Henry Apples and Pear apron. It is a darling print that brings color and fun to the baking experience.


So what are you waiting for? Hop over to Angela Kay Designs and I'll be sure you'll find something for the cute girls (and boys) you have. And what the heck, YOU deserves to get a beautiful pouch, a trendy accessories that is a must have.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Creation of the Week: Bountiful Flowers


I have been busy making cards, as you can tell.


And I just LOVE making cards with flowers. Flowers here. Flowers there.


And yet....I still can't get enough of them.
This weekend I'll be busy working on custom orders. However, this time I'll be working on boys' cards. I'll be sure to share with you once I've done them.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Featured at Indie Craft Corner




Hey all!! We're in the mid-week, and mid-year already! Where does the time go??

I'm pleased to share that I'm featured on Indie Craft Corner today. Please drop by and say hello.


Not only that you will find out a bit more about me, you'll find more wonderful artists there as well.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: All Cuteness


This week Spotted Tuesday is all about cuteness. Guess what I found in Etsy? All these cute handmade items.

1st row from the left:


Canvas Growth Chart by GiraffesandStuff


2nd row from the left:

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Giveaway Bird Talking Print from TheNightjar

This week giveaway is sponsored by TheNightJar,
Win:

Bird Talking (Limited Edition)

A little bird guy "talking" with thought bubbles...in the background there is an old barn and a small bird perched on top of the barn also talking.

This is a high quality limited edition print of my original mixed media painting of the same name. It is printed on Somerset Enhanced Velvet 225 Archival paper. The size of the overall paper is 8.50 inches by 11 inches and the image itself is 7x9" inches.

I encourage you to read Tarra's profile featured yesterday and get inspired!

And if you love birds just like I do, you'll love her shop!

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 TheNightjar 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.
  • Like my Facebook FB and you earn another entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Share or Comment on my FB page under this giveaway announcement to earn 2 entries. Leave two separate comments here providing me with your FB name.
  • 'Like' this giveaway announcement on my FB page to earn 1 entry. Provide me with your FB name.
  • 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 TheNightjar 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 19th, 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 20th 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, June 12, 2010

Saturday Artisan: TheNightjar


Meet Tarra, the artist behind TheNightjar, a shop full of high quality affordable fine art, original paintings, prints, needle felted creations and hand crafted unique jewelry that includes pendants, pins, and one of a kind items.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
I am a painter- have been my whole life and i also make jewelry and needle felted creatures. When I am not in my studio or tending my shop I teach college level art and take care of my three year old twins.

Which part of creation process that you like to do the most?
Formulation before i have to "finish" the painting- when i start a new painting anything is possible and then somewhere towards the end it is difficult to know how to end the painting.

Could you share on how your organize your products, we all can use a little tips here and there in this department?
I try to group according to what i am selling and not necessarily by color. So if I have a number of felt creatures I try to put them all together, my prints together and all paintings together and all jewelry together

What is your favorite item in your shop?
My Victorian pendant necklace with a miniature painting of a Swallow




What is your best seller?
A toss up between my Dandelion print and my fuzzy felt pendant...however any miniature painting that i frame tends to disappear quickly.


How does your day go in general?
Up at 6:30, check Etsy, 7 AM take care of kids, go to gym and take kids drop off in childcare, feed kids and play, nap for kids and then I check Etsy shop again, work, paint , internet work until kids wake up, if I have childcare I paint more in my studio, then feed kids at night, check shop again and then when the kids go to bed I get to needlefelt while I listen to music (favorite part of the day).


Do you have a favourite Etsy seller?
So many quality artists are on Etsy that just one is hard t name....swanbones, groundwork, redvelvet,gretchenmist, pogoshop to name a few gems.

What inspires you?
Mostly dreams but also watching nature closely. Before I had children I watched birds and collected them when I found them. Much to my husbands dismay I would freeze them and take them out to paint when I needed a still life subject. I have a stunningly beautiful Cedar Waxwing in my freezer who had flown into our front living room window. I also have a tiny Bewicks wren… and my mascot Armadillo for my studio- but he is taxidermied. I also have a giant collection of nests, my hummingbird nest is my favorite.

What is your goal for 2010? And are you on the right track?
double sales- so far so good!

What is your favourite tool that you cannot live without?
A dentists scraping tool I use for details in some paintings.

How do you promote your shop?
Treasuries, blogs and also the gallery that shows my work in downtown Oakland ...no Twitter- i just dont like it! (but i am trying to)

Anything else you would like to share?
I just lost my really cool 20 year old three legged cat, Sweet Pea- she was so terrific and i miss her but now I still have her brother, Spartacus who is also 20.


Love her shop already? Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Whistler Trip


I cannot believe that it has been 2 weeks since the time we took a little trip to Whistler, BC. It was the long weekend, Victoria day. It was a last minute decision that we wanted to go up to Whistler and stayed there overnight.

Ethan had a blast! And I'm busy chasing him.


It was such a pleasant trip. It's what we needed, a time to gateaway just the three of us and without breaking the bank.


The weather was not at its best, but hey, it's not what matter the most!


And how often do you encounter wildlife in your life? I don't think visiting them at the zoo counts :-)

This is the highlight of our trip: seeing a bear with its 2 cubs. Fascinating!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Spotted Tuesday: Have a Great Day

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, I wish you a Great and Marvelous day. Take a moment to breath if your life is a hectic and to appreciate that we have another day to live. Life is too short. Be grateful of today that we're here.


1st row from the left:

Magritte Nicked My Bike by MayLuk

Custom ceramic wedding cake topper by orlydesign

Original wood box - Flower angel by mimmaart


2nd row from the left:

Mini postage stamp note cards by paperleaves

Dryer Pillow Sheets Sachet Keep Calm and Recycle by zJayne

Pocket Mirror - MARY POPPINS by littlepinkplum

Giveaway Winner of Owl Plush from Fuzzy Muffinsetsy

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

She picked the winner through random generator and the lucky one is......
Congratulations Katie (#51)!
You won the cute owl plush from Fuzzy Muffins! *so jealous* but a BIG congrats to you!

Thanks again to all of you for entering the contest.

Giveaway: Fine Art Print from Baby Chick Designs


This week giveaway is sponsored by babychickdesigns.
Win:

Your choice of 8x10 or 8x8 beautiful Art Print!

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 them 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 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.
  • Like my Facebook FB and you earn another entry. Let me know your FB username please.
  • Refer your friends to babychickdesigns' Facebook page, then leave a comment letting us know you did.
  • 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 babychickdesigns 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 12th, 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 13th 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, June 5, 2010

Saturday Artisan: Baby Chick Designs


Wonderful Saturday Artisan this week is Baby Chick Designs. If you're planning to decorate little one's room, then you may want to visit this great shop to get something special and personalized.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
We make canvas wall art, fine art prints, and growth charts for nurseries and children’s bedrooms/playrooms. My mother is the artist and I handle all of the business side of things! When I was re-decorating my little girl’s room, my mother decided to make some watercolors for her. They were these beautiful barnyard animals designs (which is now our Barnyard Animal Collection.) I knew right away that we should go into business and make these designs available for other families to enjoy at an affordable price.

What is your favourite item in your shop?

My favorite item in our shop right now is the “Safari Giraffe Growth Chart.” This is also one of the most popular designs and the fine art print and canvas wall art Giraffe sells well too!

What is your best seller?

Our best sellers are the Safari Animals Collection, Butterflies with Flowers Collection, and the Transportation Collection. We make our collections in 3’s…so people tend to buy all three designs in a collection for their children’s rooms.

What is your goal for 2010? And are you on the right track?

Our goal for 2010 is to have 10 total collections available for purchase. I think we can make it to nine of those! It is important to have a variety of art for our shop…so people can have lots to choose from. Since it takes my mother 2 months to make a collection, it’s not as fast as other handmade sellers.

What is your favourite tool that you cannot live without?

We just bought a grommet machine for our growth charts…that we cannot live without!

How do you promote your shop?

Facebook, Twitter, my blog, being active in the Etsy forums, and word of mouth!

Any advice for others running their on-line shop?

Communication, fast shipping, and good photos are key! Since you are not in front of the customer to sell your work, these things have to be a priority!

Saving money is important, tell us one thing that you do to save money?

We do all of our own shipping, we buy shipping supplies only when needed, and we’ve negotiate good prices with our vendors!

Any tutorial that you’d like to share, pretty please?

Take quality photos of your work in natural light, then edit them in Picasa, a free software program that you can download to your computer. Use the lightening, highlighting, and shadow features to tweak the photos for the best possible photo.



Here are ways to be in touch with Baby Chick Designs:
Website: http://www.babychickdesigns.com/
Shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/babychickdesigns
Twitter: http://twitter.com/babychickdesign
Facebook Fan: http://www.facebook.com/BabyChickDesigns

Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway!