Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Weekly Artist Feature!

Hello, everyone!
Well, it's that time again - this week's featured artist is TheBeadedHound! Cathy and her husband are wonderful supporters of hounds in need...awesome!!

The Beaded Hound combines my love of handcrafting beautiful jewelry and aiding rescued hounds. My husband and I have been full time fosters for The American Black and Tan Coonhound Rescue for over two years now; while I have been handcrafting jewelry for over 10. It just seemed natural to combine the two together and donate a portion of each sale to the rescue.

Right now one of my favorite items in the shop is a necklace I called “Beached”. It’s a fun combination of glass, gemstones, shell and chain.

So cool - thank you for the wonderful work you do, Cathy!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Goodness, it's been a while!

Hello, everyone! It's been a while since my last post...we're in House Renovation Land, and this past weekend, my husband and I went with several friends to the Highland Games on Loon Mountain! Lots of fun to be had at this three-day festival, even for us non-Scots! Amongst my personal favorites:

1. Albannach: this band is seriously rockin'. Lots of drums, lots of bagpipes, lots of Scottish pride. Their performance was full of surprises and action - they jump, spin, and dance around on the stage in a way that engages the audience in the manner of true performers. If you're ever given the chance to see them, don't pass it up!
2. Scottish Heavy Athletics: Ever been curious about the guys who are somehow able to walk across a field carrying 100-pound stones in each hand? Or lobbing logs across said field? Well, my curiosity was satisfied this weekend as we witnessed men trained in the art of Heavy Athletics astound us with their strength and sheer will. Again, something amazing to be witnessed.
3. Haggis-free Scottish Meat Pies: Yum.
4. Bagpipes: Hooray! I love bagpipe music. We heard bagpipes throughout the entire festival. There were several bagpipe bands as well as random bagpipe players being judged in contests. As we left this morning, a piper in full regalia was walking up and down our street, piping us all home.

When we got home, I re-listed the popular Dainty Daisies earrings at the outlet store:

They're popular, cute, and only $2/pair!

Thanks for reading, everyone, and see you next time!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Shop of the Week!

Hello, folks!

Well, it's that time again - this week's feature artist is the lovely Kat of Etsy's H2OWorks!

I've been a professional graphic designer for the past 7 years. Before that I was an interior designer, so I guess you could say design work is in my nature. I also am a 'professional amateur' photographer. 98% of the graphic items in my shop I have either shot the image or created from scratch on my computer, sometimes using my photographs.
Favorite Materials:
My wonderful Olympus camera, otherwise known as "My Baby", My Dell computer, Photoshop! Photoshop! Photoshop!, and my imagination. :O)
 Favorite Shop Items:
 Including the above Architectonic Print...
Thanks, Kat - you rock!!!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Well then!

Hi, folks!

Well, here in New England, the weather has been absolutely beautiful. Hardly a cloud in the sky for the past seven days! At times like this, I should be weeding the garden and getting it ready for the winter. However, I've been working a lot (which is good) and spending a lot of time relaxing (which is even better).

Anna and I went to see Taking Woodstock yesterday:

The movie was long.  Really long. It was more of a coming-of-age movie than a comedy, which was how it was billed in the commercials. It didn't spend much time on the concert; most of its focus was on the people around the concert. I would have liked to see more plot expansion and more depth in the movie's characters. There is so much to fit into a movie about Woodstock, though, that I'm sure it's difficult to prioritize.
However, that isn't to say it was terrible. It was definitely worth the $7.50 we paid to get in (thank you, matinee prices at Hollywood Hits!). The adorable Dimitri Martin was able to remain convincingly doe-eyed and innocent, even in the face of his first acid trip (a scene we maybe could have done without, suggested Anna. I concur). Eugene Levy and Emile Hirsch were both good, too - who could resist Eugene Levy, though? 
On no basis whatsoever, I give the movie 3.5 out of 5 stars. :-)


And now, here are a couple of items we sold and relisted:

A truly amazing handmade item. This Tibetan pressed silver-plated bookmark holds a surprise - seven pure rock crystal beads, for starters. Silver-plated, ball-ended head pins. A celestial motif.

At the bottom of the bookmark, though, is its crowning glory: a luminous, vintage, blue Venetian glass teardrop. The teardrop is almost 1.5cm long. Its origins are unclear, but it is likely to have come from an estate sale or a forgotten storeroom.

The bookmark itself is over 12 cm long, although we can't imagine that you'll want to keep it in a book for very long!
These are much like our Olive You More earrings, except that the components are silver and a cooooooooool blue!

Gorgeous, silver-plated kidney wires measuring a whopping 1-7/8" by themselves! Added on are ice blue, painted glass beads flanked by acrylic seed beads.

Whimsical sophistication at its best!

Comes boxed or bagged and ready to gift - free - as with all our items.

And finally, I'm working on a bunch of new pieces for Sisters We Three, a delightful new consignment shop in Newburyport, MA. I am privileged to be selling my work there along with 167 other artists and artisans. We're gearing up for the holiday season! If you're in the neighborhood, make sure to stop by - they have some great deals there!
Thanks for reading, and see you next time!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Etsy Artist Feature: JessiJewels!

Hello to everyone! This entry is the first in what will be a continuing series of features of Etsy sellers and crafters who sell their wares on the Internet.

Jessi owns JessiJewels, a shop on Etsy featuring all kinds of goodies, from affordable jewelry and stationery to felted items! Check out this pumpkin:

Jessi also runs the SuperStar BNR in Etsy's Promotions forum. This BNR enables Etsians to support each other through promotions, sales, and lots of fun!

my name is jessica (or jessi as family & friends like to call me)

i live in a small town in connecticut with my husband of 8 1/2 years and our kitty cat.
we have a small apartment that is half filled with all my crafting supplies. i love to make cards, jewelry, do needle & wet felting, rubber stamping, crocheting, scrapbooks and anything else i can either learn by family, friends or good ol' youtube. ;) i love searching for and using vintage beads and findings and turning then into ooak pieces. i also love working with natural stone, crystal, wood and so on. if i had to pick just one favorite from my shop... i think i'd go with the "frutti pebbles felted necklace" because it's one the first pieces i created using some felted beads that i made myself. 

 Thanks, Jessi! You rock!

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Nip in the Air.

Wow, it's back-to-school time again! Actually, it's perfect weather for a walk, which is why I've posted some pictures to share with you!

This is one of the big, black walnut trees in the graveyard across the street from our house. I love the way the light plays among the leaves at this time of year.

This is the little cove down the street. I'm not sure what its name is. This is the largest amount of boats that has been in this safe little harbor in quite some time.

Also, check out one of our great back-to-school bookmarks:

This terrific bookmark is 6" of beauty ready to keep you company time and time again as you dive into your favorite tome. 5 freshwater coin pearls, a shade of dark purple mother-of-pearl, are the dominant feature of this piece. Additionally, you will find four lovely, clear rock crystal beads peeking out from behind the pearls. Handmade. All findings are durable alloy.

And over at the outlet store:

These metallic acrylic beads are totally funky! They came from a vintage necklace and are various in size. We think there are about 30 - 40 beads in this set. The clarity in the shiny ones is so good, you can actually see Jen taking the picture! LOL!
Great for an ultra-snazzy craft project!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Perfect Day.

This day is perfect. So perfect, in fact, that it's a perfect day to take product shots for some Fall earrings I've created! I'm not going to show them yet, though. :)

Instead, here's something that just sold yesterday:
A modest set of vintage dichroic beads. We relisted it...but there aren't many left! This turned out to be more popular than we thought it would be. We're thinking of turning the Outlet shop into a partly-destash shop. We'll see where that goes, but I'll bet it'd be pretty successful!

Also popular is this Rooster Pendant:
This guy is flying off the shelves. Some of the roosters don't stand up very well. People don't seem to mind that, though - who could resist the draw of a giant, lampwork glass rooster hanging around your neck? I have one. They're a great conversation piece.

 Everything in the shop right now is on sale until Monday - 75% off! Huzzah!

Thanks for reading. :)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble. And 1:1.618.

 Today is several days into the city water ban. We are boiling water for things like washing dishes. The hope is that it won't last too much longer (i.e. we can stop boiling as of tomorrow). Whoops - there's the kettle!

Also, went to acupuncture today. It's always so relaxing, I end up trying not to fall asleep on the table! The table is made by a company called Golden Ratio Woodworks. I know nothing about them beyond that. The name just cracks me up. It seems to me that they are destined to succeed with a name like that, which is probably why they chose it.

When I was in college, I had a classmate who actually exceeded the perfect ratio. She was as beautiful as you could imagine. When I told my cousin about it, she laughed: "How can you climb to the top of the mountain and keep going up?" But there it was. Somebody had taken her measurements and everything. Amazing!

We've got this lovely piece of artwork in our bedroom made by Donna Amero, an artist at Local Colors. It features half of a nautilus shell that has been polished so that the stripes are gone and the lovely, shiny shell patina has been enabled to show through. I've seen the perfect ratio superimposed onto nautilus shells, and I figure that this may be the closest thing to perfection we have in our quirky little house. Actually, our house is quirkily perfect.

Thanks for reading, and see you next time!

Monday, August 24, 2009

So here we are again.

My goodness, it's been since July 20th, 2008 since my last blog posting? How insane! The Top 10 Books list needs to be changed, I think.

Beyond that, here's what's going on at our house:

1. Our bathroom is in the act of moving upstairs. This means that our bathroom downstairs is going to turn into part of the kitchen, which will gain a lot of space. This also means that our toilet is behind a tarp. The logistics of this could be construed as awkward, but we've figured out a system: while one of us uses the toilet, the other will subtlely turn up the sound on the television. This eliminates the need for either of us to pretend to be in the Happy Place which, for me, is anywhere with a completed bathroom.

But seriously, the new john is looking lovely - the room is 10x10, the bathtub is in, we've got the tiles ready and waiting, and the sink is in the living room ready to be installed. Pics to come after completion!

2. We've got a kitty named Milkshake. She's 2 years old and a complete marshmallow. She'll come up to anyone who enters the house, sniff their hands, and ask to be petted. Right now, she is lounging on the bed and looking up at me every once in a while with green eyes.

3. We're making plans to have the attic finished off. That will be my new craft space. Yay!

4. The hydrangeas we planted last year, while not blooming profusely this year, have doubled in size thanks to the unseasonably profuse rains that took place throughout June. Hopefully, there will be a balance of foliage and flowers next year!

In other news, my Etsy shop is having a 75% off sale until August 31st!

And, I've opened an outlet:
At this particular shop, everything is $5 or less! Hooray!

Thank you for reading, and see you next time!