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!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

New Journals in the Shop

I am so so excited about these journals. I love every step in the process of creating them, from hunting down vintage and other cool accessories to punching and binding papers together.

These 2 journals are part of my latest creations.

The first is a vintage bingo card journal. The green bingo card covers were a glorious find. They are super-thick, stitched together cardboard with sliding windows over the numbers. A mis-matched green paint job covers what once was (likely) an advertisement. A glue spot is on the back of every card. I'm betting it was applied to keep the stitches in place. These cards have a lovely vintage feel. I decided that this was not the kind of journal I would want to use up, so it is bound with 2 binder rings for versatility. I used a standard 2 hole punch to set it up. A cool old-school library book card and pocket are on the inside of the cover. Finally, I found the best drawing paper I could get through an engineering company that sells paper for drafting. This is some seriously good paper.

The rainbow dot journal is a member of my "paint card, paint chip, paint sample" exploration phase. The colors and weight of those cards is so satisfying. The price is right. Putting the colors together is theraputic. What could be better than that? I've laminated these covers to protect the collage and keep the journal nice and clean. This one is more demur - 30 pages of the same high-quality drawing paper and a half-inch spiral binding. Squeezing more paper into this guy would make it hard to manuver. At 5"x7", this sketchbook is very portable.

Stay tuned for pictures and thoughts on this weekend's Maker Faire!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fun Halloween Skull Jewelry

Is anyone interested in a fun candy, glowy or glittery skull pendant, pin or magnet in time for Halloween? I have a bunch of excellent candy skulls in the shop, just waiting for a home! I'll be leaving town on Oct. 25 (NY, NY!) and won't return until after Halloween, so now's the time to acquire one!

I want to do this stuff!

1) Cute-ify a funky old desk and set it up in my kitchen. For instance, this awesome refurb from J.Caroline's blog:

2) Sock Monkeys! Target has cool socks right now that would make some badass monkeys. Here's a sweet tutorial on Urban Threads for making a stripey sock monkey. I think mine will be wearing buttons.

3) Finally, this is a project that really speaks to me: Week in the Life Project from Ali Edwards's blog { A }. The idea is to take pictures every day and record the lovely things that happen on ordinary days that should be remembered, or as Ali says, "document the imperfect normalness of your existence." Cool. Specifically, I want to create my own version of Ali's mixed-up-mini notebook thingy as a way to get started. I'll post a picture of what my first attempt looks like! xo melissa

Saturday, October 11, 2008

More Vintage Stickers

Now that my airmail sticker craftiness has been satisfied, it's time to do something with my juicy collection of vintage milk caps. Now in the shop, Vintage Milk Cap Stickers!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I Heart Vintage Image Madness! And a Journal to Love.

Oh boy, it is really tricky and discouraging sometimes figuring out this whole "how can I use images?" issue. Recently, I bought a set of digital images of scanned vintage milk caps and was very put off by the excessive restrictions on use of the images. I ended up just amassing my own collection and scanning them to use in my crafty business. I understand about not selling electronic images you purchase or mass distributing them, but not being able to use them in crafty-business is such a bummer.

So then you can understand how thrilled I was to come across the vintage graphic store, "Vintage Image Madness." Here is an example of why I heart them - a quote from their FAQ:

"I am an artist and want to sell the artwork I make using your products. May I? Yes! I am an artist too and love helping out my fellow artists. Please feel free to sell your artwork using any of our products. I appreciate you noting Vintage Image Madness as a source for your images whenever possible."

The image prices are very reasonable and the awesome option of $25.00 for a month of unlimited downloads is really an amazing deal. I'm hooked. Each month, a free image is offered on the site as well, like this little gem:

My first hand-made journal is in the shop, and I'm very delighted with how it came out. I used a variety of old papers and kraft cover stock. I love kraft paper everything right now. It is so choice, as Ferris would say. Anyway, I also used one of my cherished old-timey clock flash cards as the cover decoration. This was my first project with my new Zutter Bind-it-All. If you would just give this journal some love by visiting it and hearting it, we would be so delighted. xo melissa

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sunday, October 5, 2008

First Monday Promotion by Etsy Texas Crafters

The Etsy Texas Crafters group is so great - they do SO much to support etsians in our state. One of the very cool things they do is recruit sellers to offer a promotion in their shops on the first Monday of each month. That's tomorrow! Here's the link to the etsy forum post with a list of all of the participating sellers and the special sales they are offering. It's impressive!

Also, ETC will have a booth at the upcoming Maker Faire in Austin. Here's what that's all about:

Vintage Paper Doll Note Cards!

I am way too excited about these babies. What you see here is so-super-cute note cards that were hand-made (by me of course!) from my personal collection of vintage paper dolls. My favorites are the sweet retro dresses for little girls - just like this! They're in the shop if they suit you! xo melissa