"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a Gift"

Friday, December 17, 2010

Holiday Hustle


I feel like I've been slacking off on my blog updates. I always try to blog at least once a week but it has been hard with the Christmas rush. I still have cards to mail out and more presents to buy. We just barely put up our tree!

Tomorrow is the 2nd Christmas craft show with the local Etsy team. I have decided not to participate in this one. I think I am going to wait until February to participate in another craft fair.

I've been getting inquiries in my shop for Christmas related purchases. Customers requesting to change a stone color or alter an item. It has been fun working with them to create an item they are happy with. It makes me want to start doing more custom orders. I really enjoy the customer interaction.

One more week until Christmas, can you believe it?!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Birthday Time!


Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday to Meeeeee, Happy Birthday to Meeeeeeeeee! That's all I wanted to say today! I had a great day, one of my better birthdays:)

Friday, December 3, 2010

My First Craft Show Experience and Other Stuff


It's been a couple of weeks since I blogged, things have been so hectic with the holiday season. Last Saturday I participated in my first craft show with the local Etsy team. It was a great experience! I only made 1 sale but not very many people sold that day. Most of the people that showed up were more interested in seeing the antique train display upstairs and of course Santa. I learn A LOT and asked so many questions. When I first arrived I immediately noticed how professional other seller's tables look. I kind of wanted to bolt out the door with my little crappy looking card table, plastic green tablecloth, and trays of jewelry. But I made do and everyone there was so nice and the customers were very friendly and had nice compliments:D I lost out on a couple of sales because I didn't accept credit card but I did give them my business card. That is one thing I am looking into is a credit card reader. I read on the Etsy forums of a slick new card reader that you plug into your cell phone called SQUARE UP. Here is the website: https://squareup.com/ Right now it only runs on iPhone and Droid phones.

Overall I had a great time at the craft fair and would definitely do it again in the near future. There is another Christmas show coming up on the 18th which I am thinking about doing but not sure yet. I am more prepared now, I made my own necklace stand and bought a cheap ring display. I have attached a pic of the necklace display. I used an old canvas painting and painted it over with acrylic paint and then I added eyehooks on top to hold the necklaces.

Things are starting to pick up again in my Etsy shop. I had a great October but then things started to slow down for a couple of weeks as my attention focused more on the craft show. One thing that helps keep me motivated is using all the money I earn in my shop to buy goodies off Etsy. I get to buy stuff for myself and my family that I wouldn't have considered buying before I started selling. Also, I want to keep the energy flowing to support the handmade community. I am going to start reviewing some of my favorite items in future posts. Until next time!:D

Friday, November 19, 2010

My New Favorite Tool!


I stopped by JoAnne's on my lunch break earlier and found the best tool ever! It's a Fiskar's 1 inch circle hand punch. This is the PERFECT tool to punch paper images for my bottle cap pendants. And the punch is very smooth and clean, no snags or anything. Yay, no more tracing images around a quarter! I don't usually work with paper or scrapbooking so I didn't know this type of thing existed. There were other shapes and sizes available too. I only paid a little over 5 bucks for it with a 40% off coupon. Great deal!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Preparing for Show


Wow I can't believe it's the middle of November already! These last few months always seem to go by fast. Last blog entry I talked about attending the house party event. It was a nice experience and I learned a few things. I ended up selling 5 items within 2 hours and so did my sister but she made a lot more money than I did because she sold her items in sets. I admit I wasn't prepared and didn't bring my best stuff. I sold mostly my wire wrapped rings and got the most compliments on my bottle cap pendants. There were 4 other sellers there besides us and about 20 to 25 guests showed up. The host got her free coffeemaker but didn't give a presentation on it like I thought she was gonna do. Overall it was a good learning experience and we got to munch on desserts and drink coffee! I would definitely do something like this again in the future. I also highly recommend houseparty.com and think it is an excellent opportunity to get free gifts while throwing a themed party:)

The house party experience has given me the courage to sign up and participate in our local Etsy team Christmas craft show. There will be 2 events but I only signed up for the first one to see how it goes, there are about a dozen of us signed up so far. It will be on Saturday Nov. 27th so I only have 2 weeks to prepare, what was I thinking?! So I probably won't have much time to post new items in my shop and I'm sure it will suffer a little because of it. I'm nervous and excited about participating in the show. I'll be observing other sellers and taking a lot of mental notes because that is how I learn best. And then using what I learn to figure out a way I can incorporate that into what works best for me. Gotta go crank out those items, have a great weekend everyone!:)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Houseparty.com, ever heard of it?


Tomorrow afternoon I am attending one of those themed houseparty events. The host needed a jewelry seller and found me on Etsy through the "shop local" section. I'm not very familiar with these events but I've heard it was a lot of fun so I said yes but asked if I could bring my sister because I don't feel comfortable going by myself and she said yes the more the merrier. So hopefully I will get some exposure tomorrow afternoon. I'll post my experience to let you all know how it went.

The houseparty theme tomorrow is sponsored by Hamilton Beach and the host gets a free coffee maker set in exchange for demonstrating the coffeemaker. What a great incentive to throw a party! If any of you are interested in knowing more about these events the website is http://houseparty.com/

Friday, October 29, 2010

Fangtastic Friday


I can't believe how much better I feel now that I am not sick anymore! I swear the stomach flu I had was the worst ever. I even lost a few pounds but not anymore because now I can't stop eating! I'm munching on some chips and salsa and a sugar cookie as we speak.

Today I noticed that I lost 2 shop hearts. My first reaction was "Wha wha what did I do wrong?! Did I offend someone?!" So then I went to the Etsy forums and did a search on "missing shop hearts" and sure as s**t there was an announcement that said Etsy was "cleaning up all closed and banned accounts". WHEW indeed.

I don't have much time to work on my shop this weekend because I have 2 parties to attend tomorrow and then I am taking my son trick or treating on Sunday. He wanted to be a magician this year and picked out his own magician "mad hatter" hat at the Halloween store, it was so cute! HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYONE!!!:D

Friday, October 22, 2010

Takin' It Easy


TGIF everyone! This week has been rough as all of us have been sick, my son throwing up 3 seperate times in massive amounts:( He is in good spirits but still no appetite yet but I make sure he is drinking plenty of liquids.

I'm also falling so behind at work which means I have to cut back on my social networking during work hours (hopefully my boss won't stumble upon reading this!). Wouldn't it be nice to be one of those "quit your dayjob" success stories on Etsy! My shop is doing pretty decent but it doesn't pay the bills and I can't afford to lose my day job because I have a family to support. Plus I need to get more sleep! I am usually on the computer late at night because that is the only time I have to myself. So basically I need to self discipline myself and create a strict schedule during the week or else I am going to have a major breakdown *SIGH*

This weekend I am going to try and learn how to make wood chip pendants:) I saw this feature on my husband's MAKE magazine on how to make wood chip buttons so I am going to use that as a guide. I wonder where I can legally chop down a branch? The ones I have on my tree at home are still a bit small.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A Peeq At Fashion


A couple of weeks ago I submitted a test blog and was chosen to be a blogger for a new blog on Wordpress called "A Peeq At Fashion". They are affiliated with the game Pennydrop on Facebook. Basically, I just blog about my opinions on anything related to fashion trends or brands. It is a really neat opportunity for me to blog for others and to experience a different kind of audience. As a blogger, I will periodically receive gift cards from their partnered affiliates. I just received a True Religion (my absolute favorite brand of jeans!) gift certificate as a welcome:D I think this will be really fun and we are free to blog about whatever just as long as it is fashion related. Here is the link to my first blog entry entitled "Why Are Jeans So Popular" It was also the blog entry I submitted as my test blog:) I probably won't write quite as much going forward, it seems most of the entries from other bloggers are only a paragraph long.

http://blog.sneakpeeq.com/2010/10/18/why-are-jeans-so-popular/

Friday, October 15, 2010

Hidden Treasures


Today I had some time to kill on my lunch break so I stopped by Shopko which is a discount store similar to Target or Walmart. They were actually having a huge sale on jewelry so I went over to check it out mostly to find pieces that I can break apart and re-create into my own design. I found a wooden stretch bracelet set that I could use to make wire wrap rings. I also found 2 earring 6 pack sets that have charms that I could use to make necklaces. This is a great alternative to buying parts at the craft store or online because it is inexpensive and it also gives you more creative options. Definitely one of my favorite ways to create stuff! So that is what I am going to be working on this weekend. I also ordered some more of the popular charms that I have used such as the fine silver lotus, brass imprinted charms, and fairy charms. Still waiting for my business cards to come, it has been weeks.

Tomorrow I attend my first virtual lab meeting with the Ifsteam, that should be fun:) It is scheduled for 1 hour and conducted in a chat room type of environment. I will post my experience after it is done.

I will stop here. I am so extremely out of it right now because I am sick and took a Benadryl an hour ago to control my extreme runny nose and sneezing. Good-Night:D

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Great Book to Get You Inspired


I first read Handmade Nation by Faythe Levine & Cortney Heimerl when I was just starting out on my shop. The book reads like a documentary featuring artisans from around the United States. Each segment/chapter centers around an artist from each region such as the Northeast, Southeast, Northwest, etc. What I like most about this book besides the colorful crafty pics is the story behind each artist's journey to success. It is kind of like a compilation of Etsy's "Quit My Day Job" features. Handmade Nation has also been filmed as a documentary so if you don't have the patience to read the book then check it out on Amazon video on demand. I think I'm gonna watch it this weekend.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Thinking Local


This week I finally made myself apply for the local Etsy street team in my city. I guess the whole Twitter Bot fiasco made me rethink where I should be promoting my items. I'll still be using Twitter but will delete/block all spam accounts. The local street team (Idaho Indie Works) participates in local craft fairs/festivals and they have a boutique downtown. I was invited to participate in First Thursday which is a monthly event showcasing shops and galleries in downtown Boise. I had to decline because of a time conflict with work. Plus I wasn't quite ready yet. But I will be participating in the one next month. I am excited but kinda nervous because I don't know what I am doing but I have a month to prepare and ask lots of questions:) This is a big step for me because I feel more comfortable hiding behind my computer!

I have decided not to open up another Facebook account at this time. It is too much for me to handle all these social networking sites in addition to being a Mommy and having a full time job. My son always comes first!:D So instead I will "share" new items once a week on my regular FB account. I also made it to where anyone who views my profile will see the "My Etsy" tab and links to my blog & shop. This is a nice feature to have for people who happen to view my profile that are not on my friends list since my profile is set to private.

Everything is happening so fast. I am actually surprised that I am putting so much effort into all of this. It started out as a fun hobby and now it has turned into this mini side business. I have learned so much in the past 3 months but I know there is still so much more to learn!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ro-Ro-Ro Robotics!


Today I found out on the Etsy forums that a lot of my Twitter views are actually from some automated program called a "Twitter Bot". I kind of figured something was weird when I first post an item and then I instantly get like 20 or so views! I guess deep down I thought maybe the views were real:/ This kind of makes me not want to use Twitter as much anymore. I mean how many of my followers are actually real people? I'm going to go ahead and open up a separate Facebook page account for my shop. I am very familiar with Facebook and I am on there most often so it seems like the best thing to do. I originally wanted to wait for awhile because I wanted to give it a fair amount of commitment. Another lesson learned! I will post a link to my new FB page as soon as I get it created, hopefully some of you will follow me over there:)

http://mashable.com/2009/08/06/twitter-bots/

Monday, October 4, 2010

Happy October, Lovely Fall, Theme Blogs


Happy October everyone!:D Fall is my favorite time of year, I love the colors and there is just this vibe of calm after the excitement of summer. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, here is their official website: http://www.nbcam.org/ It is also the month of Halloween which is my favorite holiday because it's so fun and imaginative:D I am excited to start making holiday themed items. I am going to try and make stuff that people can still wear after the holiday is over. The attached pic is my first attempt at a holiday themed item.

I made 2 sales on Friday:D I'm starting to see repeat items being purchased. My necklaces seem to be the most popular, especially my charm themed necklaces. I will definitely focus more on this type of item.

I am going to attempt to start writing theme blogs at least once a week. This will help motivate me to write more and put some consistency in my blog. Hopefully it will also be interesting enough for you guys to check it out each week:) I will be doing this every Friday. It will either be a product or website review or a topic that I am interested in that I want share. Have a great week everyone:D

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Love to Learn


I have always been the type of person that loves to learn new things, I have a very curious nature. The good part about this is that it makes me more open minded and well rounded. The downside is that I can be so indecisive and I get bored very easily. I just looked through my shop today and had to laugh at how many different types of things are in there. I wonder sometimes if I will ever find my niche. I'm sure it will come in time. But for now I will just keep on trying out new things. After seeing all the cool knitted items when I was working on my last treasury, I now have this strong desire to learn how to knit! I've always wanted to learn but never had the patience. It is so strange because all the beading that I have been doing has taught me patience in completing a project so now I think I might be ready to finally learn how to knit, lol.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Treasury I Created for the Indie Free Spirits Team


Good morning everyone! Last night I created my first treasury for the ifsteam, it was a lot of fun and I wish I could buy everything on there! I especially like the green crochet mary jane shoes and book necklace:) Creating treasuries for the team gets your shop mini featured on the ifsteam blog. Have a great day:D

http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4ca18fea0d0c6d91b728d99a/heading-into-fall-indie-style

Monday, September 27, 2010

*HUGE CLEARANCE SALE IN MY SHOP*:D


Hi everyone, I have decided to clear out most of my older pieces by offering huge clearance discounts. Come by and check it out. If you guys could pass this information along to your followers too I would really appreciate it!:) Thanks and have a great day!:D

http://www.etsy.com/shop/JKarma3

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Working with Sterling Silver Wire


Hello folks, today I got my 22 gauge sterling silver wire that I ordered off Ebay. I ordered 5 feet and thought I was going to get quite a bit but when I opened the package I was like "This is it?!" I was only able to make 4 wire wrapped rings! I kept 1 for myself and will list the other 3 in my shop tomorrow. I really love the quality of sterling silver, much better than the copper and aluminum wires that I have been using! My only complaint is that I bought the "half hard" wire which was not very easy to wire wrap and caused my fingertips to become very sore:( It kinda hurts to type right now actually, lol. Next time I will buy the "dead soft" version and see how much better it is. Until next time!:D

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I Just Joined the Indie Free Spirits Etsy Team:)


Just a quick update, I am now a member of the Indie Free Spirits Team on Etsy:) I am excited to to work with the team! I think it will give my shop some good exposure in reaching my target audience. One of the things we get to do is create treasuries to promote the team. So from time to time I will be creating treasuries with items from members of the team. The nice thing about being on a team is that I still have my level of independence but with the added support of a team:)

I have also decided NOT to create a 2nd shop so bye-bye Trashy Treasures, lol. I asked a question in the Etsy forum about the pros/cons of opening a 2nd shop and the majority of the people think it is best to just stick with one shop and open a section for upcycled items. They said it was a lot of work handling 2 shops. Right now it would be impossible to juggle another shop since I have a day job as well!
indiefreespirits

Monday, September 20, 2010

Recycle/Upcycle Anyone?



Happy Monday, my favorite day of the week, WHATEVER! I had a pretty busy weekend so I didn't have time to make anything new. I participated in an autism awareness race on Saturday, a cause that is very near and dear to my heart because my 7 year old son has autism. All proceeds go to help educate, inform, and raise awareness to this rapidly growing disorder!

My 20% off everything in my shop promo was a bust but I did have a couple of people mention that they will purchase in the near future when they have the money:) I finally decided that I am for sure going to open up another shop and sell strictly recycled/upcycled items. Don't know yet if I am going to call it Trashy Treasures but that is my top choice:) I really enjoy "refurbishing" old items and making them into something new but I don't think it fits with the new creations that I am selling in my shop. Another plus is that my husband likes to take stuff apart and create new things, he loves his Make magazine, lol, so this could actually become a joint venture:)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Hey Look What I Just Made=D




Check it out you guys, I just made this recycled soda can tab bracelet just like the one Kristen Stewart from Twilight wears. It was very easy to make, I just went on youtube and watched the tutorial. The only material you need are the soda can tabs and an old cut up t-shirt. I cut up an old orange t-shirt of my son's and yanked off 7 tabs from the empty soda cans I found lying around the house. It took me less than 10 minutes to make! I want to open up another shop to JUST sell recycled items, that would be so much fun! I would call it "Trashy Treasures" lol. If you guys are interested in making one of these bracelets the youtube video is called "Bracelet in style of Kristen Stewart". Here is the link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJZEgU2ZkyY

Until next time!:)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I Love a Good Bargain




I can't believe it is practically Fall already! One of my favorite seasons:) Last Friday I stopped by an antique mall to check out the goods and see if there was anything worth buying that I could take apart and re-create. Well there wasn't and everything was kinda pricey. I think a better place to go would have been a thrift store. Later on that day I stopped by a coffee shop that sells very cute things and ran across some handmade jewelry. I asked the girl at the counter about it and she said that they do buy handmade jewelry and then handed me the owner's business card to contact. I am far from ready to talk to any shop owner about buying my stuff but it is nice to know that I have that option if I decide to try this in the future:)

I did some experimenting on polymer clay. Check out the rings I made in the pic. Yeah I know, kinda irregular in some parts. But these are just testers. I usually end up giving away my tester pieces as part of my free gift with purchase.

I also got some great deals on higher quality charms and gemstones that I am going to work on this weekend. If anyone knows of a good website that sells good quality materials for cheap, I would really love to know about it!

New items I posted this week are charm necklaces. It helps me to get more stuff made when I have a theme to work on each week:) I posted 3 new ones and will post 2 more tomorrow. Good night Blogland...zzzzzz

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

You Break It, You Buy It


Today I went to the library to pay off a fine to replace a book that I returned with bad water damage. They originally wanted me to fork over 27 bucks but when I got there they let me off easy with a $10.00 fine and even let me keep the damaged book. So now I own this book "The Big Ass Book of Crafts" by Mark Montano. I'll admit I didn't like the book at first. I just skimmed through it and let it sit in my car for weeks. But now that it is mine to keep I really like it, LOL. Maybe I was meant to keep this book for inspiration or something. There is definitely a lot of crafts to try out. Things like how to make your own lip balm and facial scrub to stationary and envelopes made out of recycled magazine pages. There are even some weird crafts such as making a paper weight out of a baby doll head...yeah I wouldn't want to try that one either.

Thank you to those that wished me well when I was sick:) My ears are still ringing! But at least the vertigo is gone. This week has been kinda rough because I am trying to catch up at work from being out sick for 2 days last week.

I hope I was able to follow everyone back that followed me on the blog hops. It gets hard for me to keep track sometimes because blog hops are so fast paced! I'll probably only do it twice a week for now. I do find it to be a very useful networking tool. A blogger this week actually asked me a question on an item in my shop.

I haven't had time check in at the Etsy forums at all this week, I think I'll go there right now! Until next time...

Friday, August 27, 2010

This Week


Happy Friday or for me SICK FRIDAY. I got a sudden case of vertigo a few days ago and have been in bed sick and puking for the past 2 days! I slept most of the day yesterday but feeling a little better today, at least I can sit up without the room spinning. My son started 2nd grade on Wednesday, what a big boy, I can't believe how time flies! He had a great first day and hopefully it will be a great year:)

Even though I wasn't able to do anything for the past 3 days I did make another sale:) I was surprised because it was one of my older pieces. This peace medallion pendant necklace. This shows me the importance of TAGS when listing items. She may have did a search for peace signs and found my item. Overall I have been averaging about 1 sale a week which is enough to motivate me to keep going:)

I have been playing around with origami projects and seeing how I can incorporate them in my shop. Maybe I can mix some origami projects with my jewelry and sell them as a set.

Hopefully I will recover enough this weekend to crank out more items! Thanks to all of you who left me great positive comments on my blog, I read them all and really appreciate them!!!:D

Monday, August 23, 2010

BNR on Etsy


This is fun you guys. If you have an Etsy shop you can "BNR" or buy and replace through a treasury. Basically you purchase an item from a treasury that is participating in a BNR sale and the curator will replace the item you purchased with an item from your own shop so that someone else will be able to purchase your item from the treasury. I decided to try it today and I purchased these cute crayon shaped stars for my son. Here is the link to the treasury that I am participating in.

http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4c72bdfeb9e98eef2bd0077f/a-cake-walk-bnr-6-sales#4c72cda8fb0d6d916f725556

There are plenty of other ones, just do a search for BNR in the treasuries. What a great way to help each other out:)

22 Traits of Successful and Happy Bloggers

I thought this article was really helpful. I tried to use the link button but it doesn't work. Does anyone know how to link sites on a blog post? Do I need to use a different format? Thanks. Here is the link to the article I also copied the article below from the site:

http://www.inkrebels.com/insp/22-traits-of-successful-and-happy-bloggers/

Every blogger wants to be successful and happy, right? For new bloggers, it can seem like such an uphill battle to get visitors and comments on your blog. You spend so much time writing the perfect article, but then sometimes it feels like it just gets lost in the blogosphere, never to be read by anyone. However, I can promise you, if you just keep going and focus on improving your skills every week, you will start to see progress.

When we first started this blog, for example, I remember being so impatient about it all. Whenever I would get antsy about not seeing results, Richard always reminded me of the process we had to go through. He would always say, “baby steps.” The energy it takes to work on your blog is very similar to a rocket. A rocket will use about 80% of its energy and power to get off the ground, and then use only about 20% to keep going. It’s like being an entrepreneur. You will do a lot of work on the front end without seeing any results, but then once it takes off, you’ll be able to consistently see progress slowly but surely.

There are some things you can do to make the journey on your road to being a successful and happy blogger easier for you. It involves tweaking your mindset and attitude. For some people, this mindset comes naturally, for others, like me, it’s a process like everything else. Here are some traits of successful and happy bloggers. I hope this helps you along the way!

Successful And Happy Bloggers Have…


Belief – In my opinion, one of the biggest reasons every successful and happy blogger is where he or she is today is because they believed they could get there. If you don’t believe in yourself, you don’t give yourself much room to grow.

Passion – If we aren’t passionate about what we are doing, we should stop doing it. I believe that 100%. If you aren’t passionate about your blogging, why are you forcing yourself to do it in the first place? The passion has to be there for it all to click.

Winner’s Mindset – It is so important to attack blogging like you would a sport. You must have an “I’ll do whatever it takes” attitude and be willing to back that up with hard work and perseverance.



Thick Skin – Wow, it took me a while to learn this one. The Internet is not always nice, but that’s ok, you can use that fuel to move you further ahead!

Appreciation For Your Readers – To me, readers come first. Period. Without our readers, we wouldn’t be here. It seems like a no brainer, but I think some people still don’t realize this. Appreciate and love your readers.

Creativity – Since you want to produce original, helpful, consistent content, it’s important to be able to tap into your creativity. This post can help you do that – 20 Ways to Stimulate Your Own Creativity




Successful And Happy Bloggers Must Be A Good…


Proofreader – I read my articles at least ten times before publishing them. It’s important to follow the accepted spelling and grammar rules. Successful bloggers are also meticulous editors.

Researcher – It’s all about the research. You want to know your topic and know it well. Sometimes it takes longer to research a topic than it does to write about it.

Connector in the Community – I’m specifically referring to social media. As a blogger, it is important to connect with your readers effectively in social media. You want to give back to the community by providing useful information, not always just blasting them with your latest post.



Communicator – It’s critical that your thoughts and what you are trying to communicate actually get to your reader in the way you intended. Communication can be tough because sometimes humor and little sayings that might make sense to you only confuse your reader. This is an important skill to develop.

Optimizer – Being a good optimizer is very important. I am blown away by the amount of time that Richard spends optimizing our sites. He is constantly tweaking this and that to make them faster and better for our readers.

Successful And Happy Bloggers Know They Need To Be…

Humble and Polite – Humility and politeness go a long way in blogging and in life. Smart and savvy bloggers know this.

Open-Minded – It’s important to listen to new ideas from your mentors, friends and readers, no matter how crazy they may sound in the beginning. You never know.



Accountable – Mean what you say and say what you mean. That is how credibility and trust is built online. Be accountable to yourself and your readers.

Helpful – Somewhere along the way, a reader is going to ask you a question. Do your very best to be responsive and helpful. I know what it’s like to be overwhelmed with questions, but nobody is expecting you to be superhuman. Just do your very best, that is what’s important.

Patient – “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” – I had this quote in a fortune cookie of mine about a year ago, and I’ve kept in on my desk ever since as a reminder. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts in blogging. You just have to buckle down and do the work.



Committed – There will be ups and downs in your blogging. You will have good days and bad days. You will have days when you just want to quit it all. Your commitment will carry you on those “off” days. Commitment is critical to our success.

Authentic and Honest – It’s important for your readers to see you as an authentic and honest human being. You lose credibility when you fake it. I think whoever coined that phrase, “fake it till you make it” was way off base.



Successful And Happy Bloggers Also…


Have the Ability to Follow Through on a Task – Being able to complete a task is very important in blogging and in life. Follow through is one of the simplest yet most challenging traits a blogger has to have.

Have the Willingness to Adapt to New Technology – The blogging environment can change very quickly. It’s important to keep up and stay sharp, if you don’t, you may feel like you are being left in the dust.

Value Your Own Originality – Successful bloggers know that the “experts” aren’t always right. Some rules can and should be broken every now and then.




And last but not least…


Successful and happy bloggers NEVER GIVE UP out of frustration or desperation! They always maintain a sense of hope and optimism! Of course, there are always exceptions. Sometimes ending a blog is part of a well thought out strategy, but think twice before quitting out of impatience or anger, no matter how you might feel in that moment. Instead, draw on the strength of your blogging friends, or heck, tweet me at @adamsconsulting and I’ll talk you off that ledge!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Metal Stamping Practice



I finally got a chance to test out my metal stamping kit. The hardest part seems to be centering the letters. Also it seems like you need to have extreme upper body strength to use the punching tool that comes with the letter/number bits so I ended up using a hammer to finish the silver one since the metal on that one is much harder. For the silver one I blackened the letters with a permanent black marker and them wiped off the excess with a baby wipe. The brass metal charm was a lot easier to punch through because the metal was softer. I didn't color that one with a marker since it is a natural metal that wasn't chemically processed like the silver one and I wanted to keep it natural looking. I hope to get better with lots of practice! The silver charms were really cheap and on sale so I will be practicing on those.

I made a few more items this weekend that I will post in my shop throughout the week. I want to try posting at least 1 item every day so that my stuff continually gets on the "recently listed" page. I guess if I make it a routine I will be motivated to keep things going. I'm so bad with time management! I think I *might* be ready to do my first blog giveaway within the next couple of weeks. My son starts school next week so that will give me time on the 2 Fridays I have off a month to work on that kind of stuff. Hope everyone has a great week, until next time!:)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Testing Out This Blog Hopping Thing


I've been really curious about this blog hopping thing that I see some of you guys are doing so I decided to check it out for myself. What a neat idea to get people to check out your blog. I already added my link to a few blog hopping sites and got one nice response so far. I'm gonna go check out a few blogs before turning in. I'm posting a few blog hopping site buttons on my blog (bottom of page, right hand column) in case anyone is interested. Button will say "New Friend Friday" or something like that. Confusing at first but I'm catching on! Hope to meet some great new bloggers soon:)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Shop Sections


Last week I found out that you can have shop sections on Etsy. I always thought we only had to sell what we specialized in our shop but it turns out that we can have different sections in our shop and sell other things. We are allowed up to 10 different shop sections. This is great news because I have some supplies that I no longer want to use. I've also been thinking about making handmade origami envelopes with matching notecards or stationary.

I put 3 new items up in my shop yesterday. I might put this stone pendant with owl charm up tomorrow. I just don't know what kind of rock it is, I got it at some gemstone show. I thought maybe bloodstone but the green on this one is too light and the red looks like it was dyed. I would like to puchase a gemstone manual guide.

Well I am off to bed. I am so exhausted. I haven't done much this week. My lack of sleep has finally caught on to me. Until next time...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

My First Etsy Treasury


I finally created my first treasury on Etsy, it is a little depressing and morbid, maybe I was in Friday 13th mode. Here is the link, let me know what you guys think:

http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4c650eb6ed3e8eefde8bbc7c/love-hurts?index=0

Working on the treasury was addicting and fun and I got a chance to look through some awesome items and shops. I will definitely create more treasuries in the future, like maybe later tonight, lol.

I haven't done much the past few days, I was having internet problems so I finally just put my internet settings back to default and it is working okay now.

I finally got my metal stamp kit in the mail! I used it yesterday and it works great except I pretty much suck at centering the letters. I'm sure I'll get better but will take A LOT of practice. I will post a pic next time.

Today I will concentrate on bracelets. I got some nice semi-precious stone beads on sale last week. I like to add metal charms to them so my challenge today is finding the right metal charm to fit the stone colors.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I Finally Get the Twitter Craze



Okay everyone I decided to re-activate my Twitter account and basically just use it to promote my shop. I'll definitely follow you if you follow me:

http://twitter.com/KimN1216

I highly recommend getting a Twitter account if you haven't done so, there is A LOT of traffic so you get a huge amount of exposure. I tweeted an item last night and then a few seconds later checked my shop and there were already 20 new views! I thought I would be bothered by the manic environment but so far not at all.

In other news, I made another sale today! I just listed the item last night and I am not sure if she found me on Twitter or Etsy but I am grateful for the sale:) I am posting a couple of pics of the charm necklace she bought. This is one of my favorites, I actually wear one that I made for myself but with an IMAGINE charm instead of DREAM. The peridot drop was originally used to represent my son's birthstone.

I am learning so much from all of you and also from my own mistakes. Like for instance putting out jewelry that I would actually wear or buy. I think in the beginning it was all about what I thought looked good but I wouldn't necessarily wear them. Yet another tweak in the system.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Happy Birthday Kohen!


I just wanted to mention a very Happy Birthday to my son Kohen who turns 7 today!:) I love him with all my heart, he inspires me everyday to become a better person. I am going to take him out later today to this new indoor inflatables play center, he is beyond excited!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Lovin' My New Etsy Purchase:)


Just wanted to give a shout out to an awesome Etsy seller and my fellow blogging buddy Jessica from Shizuka Urusai. I received my very cute pencil pouch in the mail today that I had ordered from her shop. The patterns (inside and out) were adorable! The pouch itself is very well constructed and the detail stitching is perfect:) I am going to use it to store a few pens, my iPod Nano, a couple of memory card readers, and some hair bands. I highly recommend her shop!:) Go check it out if you get the chance, there are a lot of cute things on there:)

Friday, August 6, 2010

What a wirlwind of a week

Happy Friday everyone! I made 3 more sales this week but they were all from people I know, LOL. There are 4 more people that I know who are considering a purchase. I am very grateful and hope this will help other buyers have more confidence in my jewelry. The lady I sold my first item to really likes the owl earrings and the free gifts I sent along with it. She even said she would purchase again with me in the future. I asked her to leave feedback but she hasn't yet.

I read a comment in one of the forums this week that I thought was cool. She said "everyone is on here (at Etsy) for a different reason." How true is that?! I am not really selling my stuff on Etsy for the money, although it is nice and will definitely help my current situation. I am doing this because I have never had a job in my life that I truely enjoyed or that made me feel good about myself. I have worked for a great company for over 10 years but somewhere along the line I think I lost some belief in myself, I'm just burnt out. Okay enough of my ramblings!

I ordered a metal stamping kit yesterday for around $15.00, it was the cheapest one I could find so I hope it is not some piece of shit. I love the look of handstamped jewlery, can't wait to try it! I have 2 new wire wrapped rings listed and for sure will make a some new stuff this weekend. Tomorrow is Kohen's birthday party at the lake, he is so excited! Have a great weekend all!:)


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Handmade Marketplace - great reference book



I ordered this book a couple month ago on Amazon.com when I was just thinking about entering into the handmade biz. I highly recommend it for anyone just starting out or needing some new ideas on how to put yourself out there. It has great references that are very current. I am going to look over it again now that I have my shop set up and in a semi-promotion mode. There's another book that I reserved from the library and picking up later today, I will blog about it once I get a chance to look through it.

Okidoki tokidoki



I am totally digging this compact mirror from tokidoki, it is so cute! I saw it in the latest Sephora catalog I got in the mail yesterday.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Need to get more organized

I'm starting to get a little overwhelmed. I think I am socially maxed out this week. This is the first real week that I have been promoting my shop and I am just zig zagging all over the place. I just need to slow down and pace myself and find some sort of direction.

Everyone I know now knows about my Etsy shop after my announcement on Facebook that I sold my first item. They have all been so extremely supportive and I am grateful for the people in my life.

I am thinking of revamping some things in my shop and putting out more wearable items. I like my recycled juice caps but I think it is more a work of art than wearable jewelry. I will leave them up on Flickr to show my work but probably replace them on Etsy.

This weekend is Kohen's birthday party so I won't have much time to make stuff. I'll focus on rings and maybe do some charm necklaces. Until next time!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

My First Giveaway

Hi everyone, I am doing my first giveaway through another blogger. Contest starts today and ends August 10th which is also my son Kohen's 7th birthday!:) If interested, check out her blog for more info. I will post this on Etsy forum as well. Have a great day:)

http://megankayden.blogspot.com/

Monday, August 2, 2010

I sold my first item this morning!


I'm so happy I sold my first item this morning! These cute copper colored owl earrings that I just made yesterday. I'll always remember this moment, lol. Thank you Carol Peterson in Florida! I will probably make more of these but different variation. Hope everyone is having a great Monday:)

Finished Juice Bottle Cap Pendants





I just made 2 of these juice bottle cap pendants. I used metal charms for the dangles. The praying angel was originally supposed to be a dangley but the connector on top of her head fell off so I added a "hope" charm and glued the angel beside it which I think worked out pretty well. On the back side I glued a decorative brad. Then I sealed everything with a clear laquer.

Yesterday I did sell a few of my bottle cap necklaces. All the bottle cap necklaces that I brought out there had some imperfections to it so I only sold them for a dollar. I also found out that one of my sisters is also making jewelry so we along with my other sister are going to get craft booth at some farmer's market when we have enough inventory. It is only $30.00 a day so not bad at all.

Well I guess I better get to sleep, work tomorrow:( Maybe I can make a couple more easy pieces before I turn in. Good night everyone:)

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Pay day = trip to the craft store

Today is payday so I took a trip to the Hobby Lobby. They had a 50% off sale on metal parts and charms so I decided to stock up on supplies. I got a bunch of stuff but ended up paying a little over $40.00 which was way more than I wanted to spend today! I get so addicted, it is like I am in a trance when I look through stuff. Tomorrow my parents are having a yard sale. I'm gonna bring some of my bottle cap pendants that didn't turn out so well and try to sell them for a dollar. This weekend I am gonna focus on necklaces/pendants. Hope everyone has a great weekend!:)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

What do you guys think of this idea?


Is it just me or is everyone getting code gibberish when they are uploading their pics? Well here is a photo of something I am thinking of making. It is a juice bottle cap that I painted with acrylic paint and stuck an eyelet hook on it to make a pendant. I painted the inside and outside with colors that would look good together. I'm thinking of putting a wire wrapped jewel and hang it on the end of the eyelet hook where the green part is. On the back brown side I'm thinking of painting a pic of a mushroom or lotus flower. Just a simple image. Then seal everything with a clear lacquer and pair it with a leather cord or silver ball chain. I like things that have dual purposes, hence the double sided pendant idea, woohoo! So what do you all think? Crazy or good idea? Think I should change anything?

PS: Notice my lovely tumbled stone ring, just used E6000 glue and a ring base. I don't think I am going to put these in my shop though until I know for sure the stone won't fall off.

My Little Family






Just sharing some pics of my family:) My hubby John (we're not technically married but I call him my hubby;) and our son Kohen who will be 7 years old next month (Aug 10). Kohen is my life, he has made me become a much better person. Being a mom is the best job in the world!