Saturday, December 27, 2008

Heart Me Challenge: 100 Hearts by Jan 1!

Edit: We may not make it to 100 hearts by midnight, but this promotion has been a blast! I've fiddled with the dimensions of your free gift for participating and I feel that they are ready to go. I'll be mailing them out to you tomorrow! Love, x, o, melissa

Friends, my new Etsy shop BlueCakeAndButtercup is a subdivision of my little company Crab Apple Designs.

BlueCakeAndButtercup is dedicated to paper goodies, and I'm thrilled to see that 40 Etsians have "hearted" my shop since I opened it up last month!

So here's the challenge: If we can get it up to 100 hearts by midnight, Jan. 1, I will have a gift for you!!!

Just go to my shop (look around of course, hee hee), and click on "add seller to favorites." Come back here and post a comment with your email address. Just for posting,I will send you a free digital/printable Valentine Owl card and envelope. If we make the goal of 100 hearts, I will send you a code for a 20% off coupon for my shop.

So let's get hearting.

Friday, December 26, 2008

A Free Gift for You!

I am developing a series of download-able stationery sets. Hooray! Currently, the theme is owls but I have a ton of ideas for other themes.

The download set will include 4 different designs of cards and stationery sheets, a sheet of stickers, and an envelope design. Once these designs are downloaded, you can print them out to use or to give as a gift set.

The actual downloads will be in the form of high-quality pdf files. Below they are jpeg files since Blogger won't let me upload pdfs for some reason. Still working on that kink.

Right now, here is what is available for download in the shop: stationery, doodles, and color-your-own goodies, which are blackline drawings that require no color ink and are begging to be painted or colored with crayons, glitter, pastels - endless possibilities!

Here are a few of the "Rainbow" printables for you, my precious reader. If you do download and print them, I would love to know if you find that the colors are true, margins are appropriate, etc. I'll be testing them myself once I'm reunited with my printer.

Here they are:

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Hello, World.

It's been weeks since my last post and so many exciting things have happened:

1) is doing very well, thank you etsy shoppers everywhere!

2) My first show was a success and I am very thankful to Sweetwolf and the folks at UBC Austin for the opportunity. I'm looking forward to lots more in 2009.

3) Working at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar in Austin, Texas is fun for so many reasons. Although I don't work there as a vendor (but rather as production staff) it is a wonderful place to network and just meet great people. This year, the owner of Crystal Works in Austin noticed me making cards during a slow period at the "back desk" and bought them right on the spot. She reports that her customers are enjoying and buying my cards, which is totally thrilling.

Owls are getting lots of attention in the way of custom orders and retail interests. So that's what I'm doing in all my spare time: paper owls, stuffed owls, big owls, small owls, sleepy owls.....

xo melissa

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Lovin on the Kit Cat Clock

I've always loved the Kit Cat Clock. What's not to love? But how do you choose one? Of course, you could be like this cool lady and have them all. Check out KitCatKing for restored vintage Kit Cat Clocks. That is where the image below came from. Also, the Official Kit Cat Website is freakin great.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My first show!

If you're in the area, come downtown off the drag and visit me at my first show at the University Baptist Church at 22nd and Guadalupe! You can also find SweetWolf and StaceyWorld there as well. Hooray!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Holiday Cards Set 1 are Ready!

This card design is simple: 2 hand-carved stamps and 2 colors of pigment ink. The message inside says, "Peace on Earth." If you want to see more pictures, they are in the Blue Cake and Buttercup shop.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Holiday Cards in Process

The floor is covered with tiny bits of paper. This is a sign that I've been snipping, snipping, snipping. I feel like Edward Scissorhands and the shrubs.

So here are some holiday cards in development:

First, the ones on the right started out great, but ended up in the "dud" pile. Mod podge wrinkles stuff. Dang. The ones on the left have promise, but are in need of a better adhesive with all those tiny parts.

I got the notion today that I wanted to do some kind of hand printed cards. So I began by choosing a color scheme. Happily, between Hobby Lobby and Michaels, I found pigment inks to match the colors I wanted.

Then I fiddled around with some sketches for hand carved stamps. I started with a poinsettia-like flower.

Then a few holiday birds. I prefer the two smaller ones, but it was fun making the giant one. For these stamps, I used Mastercarve. The final results are next to the bird stamps. I like the look of the layered inks.

I finally got around to finalizing several designs for Gocco prints, some 2 color and a one-color design. Here's the one-color...although the type may be a 2nd color if I can make it work.

The finished products will be available soon at Blue Cake and Buttercup!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Cupcake Zipper Pouches and More

Hooray for a shop update! Visit the crabappledesign shop to see the growing selection of handmade zipper pouches. Here's a peek:

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have opened a new shop called Blue Cake and Buttercup. This shop is an extension of Crab Apple Designs. These owl cards are just an example of the ongoing updates of yummy paper goodies in the new shop.

Please take a moment to visit BlueCakeAndButtercup and let me know what you think!

xo melissa

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Featured in the Storque!

Today is really my lucky day! One of my little cards was featured in the Etsy Blog, the Storque, in an article about local team events. I'm not sure how all that works, but... I want to thank SweetWolf for letting me know about the mention of CrabAppleDesigns on the Storque. xom

New Stuff in the Shop and a New Shop for Stuff

I want to offer my most sincere thanks to my readers - those of you who post comments (I love comments!) and those of you who stop by for quick visits. Your virtual presence means more to me than I can say with words!

I have exciting news! I have opened a new shop as a little division of Crab Apple Designs. The new shop is called Blue Cake and Buttercup, and is the new home for my vintage-y paper goods. That includes cards, journals, stickers, and whatever else I can dream up. More on Blue Cake and Buttercup later...

My established etsy shop, Crab Apple Designs, now is dedicated to sewn items. Right now, zipper pouches are being added to the shop every day. I'm delighted to have the chance to turn some of my design ideas into actual real-life goodies!

Here are some examples of what is happening behind-the-scenes:

Elsie*Cake's online class inspired me to experiment with embroidery, so the new batch of cupcake pouches have some embroidery elements.

The "lazy daisy" stitch and the "french knot" are easy and fun. Doodle Stitching by Aimee Ray has great instructions for embroidery stitches for beginners.

I love the look of a wide satin stitch when applying applique. My machine was being testy, and creating very puny stitches (see stitches in front of the presserfoot). I was not pleased. I decided to try oiling my machine (it's squeaky, too) and you can see the "after" results behind the presserfoot. Amazing difference! Still squeaking though. I've oiled every moving part, so I'm stumped about that.

The final results with improved oiled machine.

Mushroom appliques are a new addition to the shop. The exciting part about these is that they will have a lovely-adorable-super-cute wooden mushroom charm made by Babz of the famous Craftsty!

Her mushrooms are so perfect. Check out her shop! I love em' so much, that now with the purchase of one my mushroom pouches, you'll get one of her miniature mushrooms.

In other news, I have a snazzy new bag for myself now because a custom order came out too small...but it is the perfect size for me!

I'll keep you updated on the evolution of Blue Cake and Buttercup. Along with a new storefront, a new blog may be adopted - devoted to all things paper-goodness.

Meanwhile, future Crab Apple shop updates will include kitchen goodies - aprons, pot holders, bags, stuffies, and more.

xoxo melissa

Monday, November 17, 2008

More Crafty Goodness

Elsie*Cake's Online Class is so great. It has inspired me to try and re-try all kinds of crafts. Here are some of the results:

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Super Sassy Apron Pattern

I just got this pattern! This is a great website for vintage/out of print patterns.

This amazing picture by Lily of A Block a Day is of one of the aprons from this pattern and I spotted it on Amy Karol of Angry Chicken's apron blog called Tie One On.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ali Edwards December Daily Album

This sounds like a fun project: Creating a December Daily Album by Ali Edwards.

Lots O' Projects

There is SO MUCH excitement/craftiness going on right at this moment. Let me explain. No, let me summarize:

1) My sweet baboo haggled over a 24"x24" guillotine paper cutter at a used office supply store and it is MINE. It cuts book cover stock!

2) I joined Elsiecake's online course and it is awesome already. One project per day is the pace. Yah!

3) I'm working on a customizable wedding planner/journal. It will be listed later this week...if there are any ideas out there about what should be included, please share!

4) New cupcake card sets and holiday cards are in progress.

4a) I'm freaking out over this book that arrived in the mail yesterday: A is for Apron by Nathalie Mornu.

5) Cute Overload has finally done it. After I died, I decided I would like this for lunch:

xo melissa

Friday, November 7, 2008

Win a Very Cute Apron Contest

I know it's been forever since I posted. I spent a week in NYC, then another 2 weeks doing non-crafty work. I'm done now and ready to do some sewing. In my search for an interesting apron pattern, I came across a giveaway offer by onthedotcreations for this super-cute apron:

All you have to do to enter is look at sassyapron's shop and choose your favorite item, then post about it on onthedotcreations's blog.

I'll post more in the next few days: new vintage journals, elsiecake's 6 week online class, and sewing stuff.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

ETC at Maker Faire Austin

What a fun weekend! Beautiful weather and the chance to finally meet fellow Team Etsy Texas (ETC) members. The theme was upcycling, so volunteers led demonstrations and make-and-take activities all weekend. Goodies were handed out, and the surrounding vendors were very inspirational!