Monday, August 31, 2009

My jewelry Place

I was so excited when I was contacted by the owner of "My Jewelry Place", a jewelry shop in Chesapeake City, Maryland. They wanted to sell some of my bracelets in the shop and would I be interested? You bet I was interested! So I ordered new supplies and made up a special sample order of 24 bracelets. This was my first wholesale order so it was pretty exciting! I just mailed the package off today and am thrilled at the fact that the owner found me on Etsy and at the prospect of being sold in a real live store as well as my Etsy shop.

If anyone is in the Chesapeake City area stop by and check out the shop. It looks lovely from the website. I'm tempted to drive down and visit myself but it would be kind of a looong drive!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Etsy Seller Feature Kitchen Stitchen

Today's Etsy Seller Feature is on Kristi Wyckoff of Kitchen Stitchen. Kristi is based in Grayslake, IL and has a line of "kitchen linens and accessories for the discriminating and fashion conscious cook".
Kristi created Kitchen Stichen after she noticed that there was a derth of kitchen items that were both fasionable and functional (her creations are right up my alley!). There aren't too many stores that specialize soleley in kitchen linens and Kristi's pocket potholders are pretty unique!

Apple Patch Placemats

Kristi describes herself as having always been around needle and thread, patterns and pins. A stay-at-home mom of a 5 yr old girl and an 4 yr old boy she also teaches dance classes while the kids are at pre-school and tries to fit her sewing in whenever she can.

Golden Stories - Set of 2 Children's Fabric Napkins

She loves to be in the kitchen baking and cooking, but don't do as much as she'd like "because of all the clean up".
Fresh Squeezed Pocket Potholder

Kristi's favorite item in her Etsy shop is the pocket potholder which is a cross between a potholder and and oven mitt. The pocket potholder does the job of both without the slipperyness of a potholder or the bulkyness of an overmitt. They're just so convenient and functional.
Apples and Pears Casserole Carrier

Here are a couple questions I asked Kristi:

Where do you find your inspiration?
I find inspiration everywhere, but mostly in the fabric designs. It is fun to sit down and look through fabrics and combinations when it is time to buy. But really the designs come from anywhere. I saw a pillow style I liked and have it down in my mental notebook to try out a similar design at a placemat soon.

What do yo love about your Etsy business?
I love that I get to sew, that I get to create items for other people to use and love and that I can put my own personality into everything I make.
Mod Birds Linen Apron

Kristi's Tips for Etsy Sellers:

I would say to start with a real plan. I have another shop which was my first. I didn't do research into what I was making and as it turns out, the market was saturated for bags! I also didn't realize that I'd get bored and frustrated making bags. They are a lot of work with little return. Also, find a niche. Whether a type of item or a type of style that is unique to you, you should distinguish yourself from others on Etsy.
Striped Cherries Tea Towel

Kristi can be found at the below:

Etsy - and
Facebook -
Twitter - kristiwyckoff

Kristi loves to make custom items, as she finds it so much more enjoyable to make something knowing it is specifically for someone.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

English Summer Pudding

On my recent trip to England my sister and I spent a couple days in Yorkshire visiting family friends who have an amazing vegetable garden. We picked our own veggies for lunch and dinner and one night we decided to make a summer pudding because of the abundance of berries in their garden. We used white currants, red currents, black currants and raspberries. The more raspberries and redcurrants you use, the brighter the color will be. I would avoid using strawberries, as they lose their color and don't really have a strong enough flavor.

Summer Pudding is quick, easy and delicious and will forever make me nostalgic for English summers. The trick is to use slightly stale bread which will hold together better and to leave the whole thing in the fridge overnight, however because ours was an impromptu summer pudding we used day old bread and only refrigerated for a few hours - hence the falling apart look. I can assure you it tasted delicious though!

The following quantities are rather an estimate on my part as we didn't use a recipe but I doubt you would have any problems trying to recreate it

2lb mixed fresh berries, eg raspberries, redcurrants, blackberries
1/4 water
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
8 or so slices good quality thin sliced white bread, stale
Cream for serving

First combine the white currants, red currents, black currants with the water and sugar in a small saucepan and leave on a gentle heat, stirring occasionally, until the berries start to soften and the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and add more sugar if too sour and add the raspberries.

Next Remove the crusts from the bread and cut a piece to fit the bottom of a pudding basin or bowl. Use the remaining slices to line the sides of the bowl reserving a couple slices to use for a lid.

Pour the berries into the bowl with the juices as well, and top with the final layer of bread, cutting to fit. Press down on the pudding until the juices rise to the top, covering the bread. Place a saucer, small plate on top of the pudding (try and find one that fits more or less exactly the width of the bowl), put a weight or something heavy on top, and refrigerate overnight.

When you are ready to serve place a serving plate on top of the pudding and turn both over together until the pudding falls out.
Serve with some fresh cream

Monday, August 24, 2009

Just reached over 50 sales at my Etsy Shop!

Hi Everyone!

I just reached over 50 sales at my Etsy Shop and had to share the good news! To celebrate I will be offering a 20% discount on any 1 item in my Etsy Shop if you write "50" in the message to buyer when you check out!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Etsy Bows Finds

Every now and then I love a girlie bow for some cute whimsical fashion fun, but if you've browsed my Etsy shop you've probably realized this already : )
Here are some of my favorite Etsy "bow" finds....
Custom Dots and Stripes Swing Dress With Velvet Tie Bow by Audrey and Grace
Romantic Satin Ring Bearer Pillow by Romancing Juliet
Black Zipper Hair Band by Venetia Jewelry
Kawaii Kitsch Pink Polka Dot Earrings by Venetia Jewelry
Bow Choker by HMS Latex
Bow Handbag by Raquel Trevisi
Baby Hat With Bow by Nancys Needles and Pens
Bow-tie Double Strand Swarovski Fireball Ivory Pearl Stretch Bracelet by Venetia Jewelry

Had to sprinkle a few of my own in there as of course they are some of my faves!

Friday, August 21, 2009

End of Summer Giveaway - Hot Pink Persimmon Cabochon Stud Earrings

Enter here to win a pair of Hot Pink Persimmon Cabochon Stud Earrings!

These cute as a button flower earrings are sure to lift your mood and compliment your outfit  and will work with Fall's floral trend! They are the perfect versatile accessory  and can be worn to work, on a night on the town or running errands - and they can be yours free! 

Here is some info about the earrings:

The earrings are made from vintage plastic cabochons with high quality surgical steel and nickel free posts safe for those sensitive ears. 

The persimmon flower measures approx 15mm
Also available 
 to purchase in pale pink  at my Etsy Shop 
The earrings you receive will have never been worn.
All you have to do to enter is follow the instructions below:
  • Prize: Hot Pink Persimmon Cabochon Stud Earrings
  • Prize Value:  $ 5.99 
  • How Many Winners: 1
  • End Date: 0 9 / 04 
  • Can Be Won: World Wide!
  • Prize From: Venetia Jewelry
Giveaway rules: ♥ Visit my Etsy Shop, then leave a comment on this post of which item from Venetia Jewelry is your favorite ♥ For a second entry become a fan of Venetia Jewelry on Facebook ♥ For a 3rd entry follow VenetiaJewelry on Twitter ♥  For a 4th entry follow my blog ♥
Entries will be accepted now through Friday September 4th, 2009. ♥ The lucky winner will be notified by email.

Good luck!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Etsy Seller Feature Plushism

Today's Etsy Seller feature is on Nico from Plushism handmade, POF (Products Of Favor). I discovered Nico while browsing Etsy and fell in love with her cute camera cases.

Pink Felt Camera Case
Lomo Candy Zipper Pouch

Nico is a a freelance Graphic designer and Illustrator based in Singapore, where she enjoys the sun and green city life. As a child Nico learned to sew from her seamstress mom and used to make outfits for her barbie dolls. She later developed a love of felt and cameras which inspired her to combine the two and make felted camera cases.
Hungry Skippy Zipper Pouch

Felt Phone Case for Iphone
Fantastical Camera Zipper Pouch

She loves to customize her camera cases so contact her for a personalized case!
Polka Dot Zipper Pouch

What Nico loves most about Etsy is making new online friends and getting to know other Etsy sellers who share her passion for crafting. She love the sense of accomplishment she gets when she finishes aproduct and receives positive feedback. 

Nico can be found at the below:
Plushism Etsy shop
Plushism Blog
Plushism Facebook group

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I've Been Nominated for a Blog Star Award!

I  just received my first blog award from Tara at KMT Graphic Design - thanks Tara! Im super excited as I havent been blogging long only a few months. I feel like now I should step my blogging game up a bit! The Blog Star award is for the blogstress with less than 3 years of blogging but one of the next generation of super bloggers, and I would like to return the favor and nominate a few of my favorite bloggers  who keep me busy reading and procrastinating : )

Little Bird Too -
The Ardent Sparrow -
Chic Infinity -
The Wooly Mammoth -


 How it works is if you have been nominated for this award, you must pay it forward! The rules are, you must post an acceptance speech on your blog (feel free to thank the academy!) and then nominate as many other blogs as you wish. and, if you have been nominated, feel free to post the above award proudly on your blog! 

Sunday, August 16, 2009


I made these headbands over 6 months ago but I never got around to taking photos (I have to find a time when my boyfriend and I are both home and its sunny and I can convince him to take pics of me)

They are gold and silver grosgrain ribbon which I stitched onto a stretchy hair elastic to make them easy to get on and off. I think I will be wearing them a lot this fall and winter as they are a fun hair accessory. I will also be making some for my Etsy shop so look out for them this week 
Okay off to watch Mad Men now : )

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Fresh Lemon Lime Sorbet

Sorbet is one of my favorite desserts especially this time of year when all I want is to feel cool. I recently acquired and ice cream maker and have been busy experimenting with ice creams, frozen yogurts and sorbets but so far this is my favorite.

3 cups granulated sugar
3 cups water
2/14 cups of freshly squeezed lemon and lime juice ( I recommend getting a juicer it took me forever to squeeze all those lemons and limes by hand)
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon and lime zest

First I made a simple syrup.Combine the sugar and water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil over a medium high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the sugar dissolves (3-5 minutes). Cool completely (you cant have anything hot going into the ice cream maker).

When cool and the lemon/lime juice and lemon/lime zest and stir. Pour the mixture into the freezer bowl and turn on the ice cream maker and let mix for about 30 minutes. To get a firmer consistency I then transfered the sorbet into an air tight container and placed in the freezer for a couple hours or until I want to eat it : )

To serve I topped with some frozen berries

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

My New Stamp

In an effort to jazz up my packaging I ordered a custom Venetia Jewelry stamp. I plan to use it to stamp the outside of the packages I send and also for Venetia Jewelry related correspondence. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out... what do you do to make your packaging special?

Announcing the winner of Favorably Fashioned's Giveaway

The winner of a set of 12 gorgeous handmade note cards & envelopes made by Etsy seller Favorably Fashioned is Kelly F!

Kelly F said...
The custom black and white damask cards are beautiful!

wordsmoveme at gmail dot com

August 10, 2009 10:22 AM

Congratulations Kelly, Michele @ Favorably Fashioned will contact you to get your details.

Stay tuned for my next giveaway coming soon!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Etsy Woven Treasures

Summer days makes me think of straw hats and raffia bags - here are my Etsy woven treasures finds.
Custom Palm Leaf Fan Wedding Programs by
Soothe Handmade Facial Soap with Aloe, Oat Straw, and Kukui Nut Oil by
Crave a more natural way to cleanse your combination skin? Give this facial bar a try.
The Skipper - Mini Wide Brim Straw Hat by
Everything mini is cute - including you summer hat!
The Urban Line - Casual Sophisticated Shoulder Bag with Leather Strap by
Perfect as a beach bag or a carry on for your summer vaca
Turquoise Raffia Necklace by
This would make a great statement necklace layered over a causual tee
Fatima Clutch by
This woven straw clutch comes from Ghana
Yellow Native Earrings by
Pine Needle Bracelet by

Friday, August 7, 2009

How To Photograph Your Product to Enhance Your Online Sales in 4 Easy Steps

This is an article I found written by Natalie Norton who has recently spent a lot of time perusing Etsy photos.

Here are some tips anyone with ANY camera can begin using today to improve the quality of their shots for online sales.

1. Turn Off the Flash
Start by turning off your flash. 9 times out of 10 glare (caused by the flash) on your product is going to make the image look amateur and as a result lower the buyer's confidence in the quality of the product as a whole. Wait until daytime, turn out any lights in the room, and pull a table up close to a window or doorway. Photograph your product there in the soft difused light. Diffused light isn't only flattering light for skin tones and face shapes, it's just as powerful a photographic tool on your pretty product.

2. Remove Distracting Elements
I can't even believe that I'm forced to point this out. Sheesh people. :) Remove anything from the photograph that doesn't add directly to the feel/concept of the image as a whole. Obviously this includes any kind of mess or clutter that is in no way related to the product, but also, this applies to elements you're tempted to add to the image just for the sake of creativity. I know it's our tendency to attempt to grab the buyer's attention by utelizing our creativity to create a "catchy" image. Remember: 99.9% of the time what we think is going to be "catchy" ends up being a turn off to buyers as it simply looks cluttered and distracting. Not to say that there's no good in staging. . .

3. Utilize Simple Staging.
Simply placing your product on a piece of glare free fabric (or paper) can be sufficient. A a simple complimentary pattern may add a little punch without feeling too busy. Having a model wear the product (if applicable) rather than just photographing it lying lifeless on a table can add dynamic. The trick is to attempt to be creative without getting out of control. Your product should be the focus of the image.

The rule of thumb should be, if your staging is distracting from your product, or if your eye isn't immediately drawn to your product, but first drifts to another part of the image, then you need to back off of the staging. Be sure to get an outsider's opinion. Sometimes we get so caught up in the concept we're going for as photographers that our judgment can become clouded.

4. Employ Creative Use of Depth of Field to Highlight Product Detail
Use a low aperture to create a shallow depth of field to highlight the elements that make your product special. Since people can't physically handle your product, you've got to make sure you show them everything there is to show. . . including the details. If you're not familiar with controling depth of field check out this article from the DPS archives or simply switch your camera over to Aperture Priority and make sure your aperture (fstop) is dialed down to the lowest possible number your lens allows.