Thursday, April 30, 2009

my favorite colors for spring

spring has sprung! especially here in florida, where it's already getting to 85 degrees F everyday, the fresh air of spring is filling our thirsting lungs :)

so it's time to talk about the best colors for spring. i have to admit, i love PINK! my philosophy: "for every occasion, there is a shade of pink to match". for spring, i love pale pinks and bubble gum pinks.

and to go along with the pink?? why, green of course! but not just any green, grass green. bubble gum pink with grass green just reminds me of a watermelon - juicy :)

that being said, check out my newest kari bag:

and the matching wristlet:

if you can believe it, the striped fabric used to be a pair of pants. that's right, pants. much better when used for handbags, agreed? :)

hope spring is coming around for you!


Monday, April 20, 2009

Etsy For Charity!

recently while shopping, i have come across quite a few shops that give at least a portion of their proceeds to charity. some i have already partaken in, but there are a bunch out there that need representation. so here's what i'm gonna do. i'm setting up a sidebar item dedicated to Etsy shops that give to charity. check back often to see the latest adds!

if YOU are an Etsy shop that donates part of your proceeds to charity, please contact me so i can add you!


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Avatar Stratergery

i suppose i should preface this by saying that there are three general schools of thought when choosing an avatar picture for an etsy shop:

1) a picture of myself, ie. the artist, which i have been using for awhile - it might make people click if they think you are pretty, plus you don't have to change it ever, unless you drastically change something about yourself, but then again, how would they know?

2) a picture of my logo - good for cohesion between etsy, blogging, twitter, etc. and my product logo. basically the ultimate way to brand your line - plus you dont need to change it unless you change your logo.

3) a picture of a product i sell - probably will make people click if it is a well-photographed item that is interesting and they want to buy it. the downside is that it really should be something that i sell in my shop, so if i sell that item, i need to change out my avatar, thus causing a break in the cohesion of my avatar over time.

well today decided to take that risk. i changed my avatar on etsy from my black and white profile pic shown above to be a product that i carry in my shop (the ever-popular texas tote):

and now we wait...and see if this causes more clicks from the forums and other places. i know this gem would make me click! what about you?


Thursday, April 9, 2009

my top three simple sewing tips

as i was sewing last night, i realized that i have really evolved as a seamstess over the years. of course there are areas where i can improve, but otherwise, being mostly self-taught, i realized that there are three basic things that all sewers need to know.

here are my top three simple tips for making sewing easier:

1) press your fabric. no, don't iron it! ironing is a back and forth motion, pressing is laying or folding the fabric how you want it, and then laying the iron on it for a few seconds. by running the iron back and forth (ironing), you will push and pull the fabric with the iron, causing your fabric to deform from how you laid it. by pressing your fabric, especially the folds and pleats, you will have a much easier time sewing along them, and won't have to use as many pins...

2)...which brings me to pinning your fabric. i think that many sewers find pinning to be overrated. pin everything! it keeps all the layers of fabric together, straight, and avoids shifting under the presser-foot. remember to remove each pin as you come towards it with the needle, lest you hit it with the needle: this can cause the pin to bend and (worse) the needle to break. sometimes, when i am using a very large width stitch, i will sew carefully over the pins...

3) ...and when would i use a very large width stitch? if you like pleats and layers, the best thing to do is to baste them in place. the word "basting" takes me back to when i would read the little house on the prairie books, when the ingalls girls would baste by hand then hand off the garment to their mother to machine-sew. nowadays, many machines have a basting stitch that is simply a very wide width stitch that can be set to a loose tension. the concept is to first press and pin your garment, then baste the garment along a pleated area or area that has many layers. this way as you work with it more, it will already have that area set in place, regardless of what your future steps are for the rest of the garment. just keep in mind that basting is not for seams!

well i hope this helped and did not confuse! remember : press, pin, baste!

now, go get sewing!


Monday, April 6, 2009

Craft Show Preparation

it's time to really kick it in gear for the craft show on april 25th!

i figured out today that i have 13 evenings and 2 full days available until the show to sew and get everything else (signs, pricing, gather displays, etc) ready for the show. the good thing is that i made my lists:
"still need to sew"
"still need to do"
"still need to buy"
"what to bring"
hopefully being organized will help me "keep calm and carry on" instead of "now panic and freak out"!

fortunately, i have a wonderful friend (i just typed "wonderfriend", so from now on she will be known as my wonderfriend!), who i have mentioned before, named Diana, that was a real trooper this weekend and helped me fill in many holes on my "still need to buy list". it was mostly items for the display, and i dragged her all over town saturday morning to countless yard sales, 3 thrift shops, the dollar store, and finally to Joann fabrics. she was then rewarded with a nap, while i was rewarded with a large iced coffee and an afternoon of sewing :)

back to the lists: i've organized it all in excel, with a place for a checkmark as i buy stuff and as we pack up the car the night before the show. here's a taste:

as you can see, i have 2 sub-"kits" that i have deemed the "oh sh*t" kit (lest something go horribly wrong, like rain-arg!), and the "cash kit" (for all of the business-y type stuff, plus the cash).

now all i have to do is get to sewing! yarg! :D


Press Alert!

more press, y'all!

mini-mocs has mentioned my Hawaii Holdall on their blog as a fab escape from the winter blues in Michigan, where they are located.

here's a screenshot:

thanks! :)