Thursday, December 18, 2008

new listings

I listed a bunch of new necklaces and the first block printed piece today! click here to see them.

I think I have finally figured out the amount of ink I need to apply/amount of pressure I need to use to get the result I want when printing on wood. I've been playing around with this first design for so long that I'm excited to finally now get started on the next one.

Monday, December 15, 2008

zero to 1 in...2 weeks.

I had my first sale on etsy on the weekend, which was really exciting as I had no idea how long it would take, and the whole '0 sales' at the bottom of my profile was distressing.

I've been spending a lot of time in the forums, talking to sellers and learning all their crafty selling tips. There are hundreds of thousands of people on there all day chatting away about their shops! Its a whole etsian world.

I made a few new necklaces that I will be listing on Wednesday. I'm trying hard to fill my shop so it doesn't look so minimal and empty. I'm working on a braided fabric version too.

I also finally made a necklace for myself! I love this grey/neon yellow lace print fabric.

Still working on the block printing. Water-based ink is a huge frustration! It dries so quickly, doesn't seem to take as well to the things I have been printing on, runs and bleeds easily and is generally harder to work with that oil based inks. Oh well, it's a (re-)learning process!

Friday, December 12, 2008

trial and error

I added 2 new necklaces to my shop today which you can see here and here. I also re-photographed most of the necklaces I had previously listed. I took the photos outdoors for the most part, and touched them up in picasa (a new discovery that I LOVE). I'm happier with them this time around, but I'm definitely going to keep experimenting.

Speaking of trial and error I am getting the hang of block printing on wood, which is so much harder than printing on paper! I love the results so much that I'm going to keep trying different things until I get a great result.

I really like the way the printing is uneven at some points, which works really well with the grain of the wood. I am going to keep trying to get a more even result though. (suggestions are welcome!)

Monday, December 8, 2008

pretty paper day

I made many pretty paper ornaments tonight with this tutorial on Design Sponge that April told me about. Fun way to finally use my circle paper punch, as well as the many sheets of amazing double-sided Amy Butler paper I have.

These will probably end up tied onto gifts as the 4 month old kitten running around this apartment has made the idea of a Christmas tree hilariously impossible.

I also (finally) received the wallpaper samples from the Sherwin Williams EasyChange collection that we ended up having to go to Buffalo to request! My plan was to order these from the NYC store and pick it up when we are there later this month but the samples took so long to arrive that there isn't time for that to happen now! Oh well...I'm sort of thinking I'd rather paint now...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

shine a light

It's been really frustrating trying to take good photos of the things I am making. As much as I love my apartment, its undeniably dark, no matter the time of day. Even mid-morning on a sunny day I can't seem to find a place in here to take a clear, bright picture. I'm not happy with the photos I've posted on etsy so far, and have been experimenting with different methods to re-shoot them.

I read a lot of blogs online where etsy users discuss their photography tips and many of them suggested building a lightbox. So, with very basic materials (cardboard box, poster board, tissue paper) and following online instructions, I went about making this.

It turned out OK, but even with 2 bright lights I couldn't manage to get a great photo. Still not enough light! I tried this morning using the lightbox next to a window, to try to capture natural light, and it was better, but not fantastic. I think a lightbox works well mainly for shooting in macro for detail shots, but thats about it.

Many people online have said that they have a similar problem, and have found that taking their photos outdoors is the only solution that works. Not ideal in snowy Toronto, but the results are so much better. So outside I go! Photos are really the most important part of etsy, and I really want to improve mine.

I have tired hands today from carving my first real linocut project in a long time. I'm happy with it and I can't wait to try printing on the many chunks of wood I have waiting. The pattern is from an old piece of fabric from Value Village that I love. I'm planning to do a series of block prints on wood, using petty patterns from vintage fabric.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

first etsy listings (exciting!)

I spent a good portion of the day photographing and listing the first batch of items for my etsy shop.

Click here to check them out!

Barnaby helped with the photo set ups:

Pledge to buy handmade!

I Took The Handmade Pledge!