Sunday, January 18, 2009

Improving Your Etsy Shop

Here is a short excerpt from an article on improving your Etsy sales. It looks like I have some improving to do. How about you?

-Use all the tags available to you.
-Use all five photo slots for each piece.
-Add more views, angles, and close-ups of the pieces.
-Put Canada as a separate shipping destination.
-Check the International postal rates and add them too!
-Add more in the description about how things were made.
-Point them to your profile in your shop announcement.
-Use the title area under the banner for something more than repeating the
shop’s name.
-Add photos of jewelry to the shop banner.
-Crop images to make them square rather than, or in addition to, using the black spacers.
-Join an Etsy team.

Here’s some additional ideas:

Promote off Etsy — blogs, flickr, myspace, post business cards on bulletin boards, twitter
See the
“pimp your shop” article in the shop makeover series in the Storque
See the
listing checklist in The Storque
See the
Seller Handbook in The Storque
See the article on
props and how to style photos in The Storque
See the article on the
art of pricing in The Storque

Friday, January 16, 2009

This Is Where Two Brains Might Be Better

“Creativity is allowing oneself to make mistakes.
Art is knowing which ones to keep.”
William Adams (b. 1934) U.S. financial consultant

Now that's a lofty ideal, huh? In the meantime the bead bloopers go out the car window along I-75 or US-27. Sometimes they get left on bathroom sinks in "superstores" - An ode to their stinkiness. I'll save the ones that are on the cusp (what's a cusp anyway?) in a Gordon Food Service plastic container. Another nod to their generic being. They do sometimes take on a new life from this container when my darling granddaughter is around. Isn't it cool that kids think you're great...even sometimes when YOU know your cool level has left the gate!

Tomorrow begins a new round of torching and creativity. I hope I know which ones to keep this time.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

B&B Here I come!!!

It's offical. At the tone of the time - 12 noon CST - I signed up for the fabulous Bead and Button Show. The charge card took a major hit and I'll be working overtime soon. But with wild abandon I am taking two lampworking classes, a ceramic bead class, and a wax working (bead) class.

Are we feeling a theme of BEADS running through this post? I'm excited. With the exception of the ISGB Gathering (The Lampworking Association) you never get to see as many great beadworkers as you do at Bead and Button. Top it all off with all of the other "to die for" vendors, you'd only see in Tuscon, and it is eye candy overload.

And, Milwaukee...well, it's just a plain nice place to visit.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Metals and Glass

The metalsmith in me often takes over. I mean, that's how I got to glass in the first place. In a decade long ago (maybe two - yikes) I couldn't find the beads I wanted for a piece I was making. I hunted, spent a fortune on gas, and nearly drove all family members over the edge when I insisted on stopping at every bead shop on the way to Grandma's (it's a four hour drive all by itself). Then, I found this class in a town an hour and half away. Yes, I do live in BFE...don't ask.

I took the class. it was at a stained glass shop and they had just gotten the new hot heads by Cindy Jenkins. I was hooked bad. Now I could match the glass to the metal in any color I wanted.

Since the "metals thing" is so close to my heart I've been thinking about doing these rings for a long time. So here is the first I have listed on Etsy. No, I'm not going to publish a tutorial on this. Although I will tell you that I took a great class with Jiro Masuda (see an earlier post) and learned to use a tap and die set. Great fun!. I hope you like the first ring.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Feeling the Seasonal Color

I've been working on a few Valentine related themes lately and it brought to mind this very old cartoon someone gave I thought I'd share it with you.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Should Trudy Attend Bead and Button?

I've got a pile of beads to shoot and I will try and post those tomorrow. I'm already thinking love in the air and Easter bunnies. It's my effort to shoo Winter away fast. In the meantime I've been going over the Bead and Button class catalog and thinking of what fun classes I could sign up for that are in my budget this year.

Ah..., DH would say "What budget?, we didn't budget for THAT!"
"Indeed," I'd say,... if he knew. For now Trudy is dreaming for me so I can plot and plan.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Greetings from North Carolina

A friend in need : - ) !! Thanks Susan. Susan picked up some hollow mandrels I wanted when she was attending Hot Time in the Mountains. A wonderful Asheville event for glass artists held in Asheville, NC. Jeri Warhaftig (Jeribeads) was there and gave a demo on using those wonderful puffy mandrels to blow hollow beads. If you've never used them, trust me, you ought to. I've been using them since they came out and they're prefect. You know the theory "Right tool for the right job." Besides, Jeri and Neil (you see him working the Arrow Springs booth at shows) are just plain nice people. the mandrels come with directions and they make it easy. Consider this a ringing endorsement - BUY THOSE MANDRELS!!!

Also in my package were a few surprises. She knows me well. See the sugar skull patch? How could you not! I'm buying a denim jacket to put it on - YES! And, she must have sensed I was feeling a tad "bummy". She included soap, facial cream, and chex mix. A take care of yourself package if I have ever seen one. I love you too!

Once, at a conference, she handed out these facial masks to us roomies. She also took a picture of me sleeping (snoring) in mine. Ahhhhhhh, friendship.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Chilly Willy ?

I named this bead "Penny Penguin" after my daughter's new puppy (I bet you can guess her name). She's a Bug - no really...besides having all of those puppy traits she's actually a breed now named a Bug. She is a cross between a Pug and a Boston Terrier. They are calling them Bugs. How funny is that? What is even funnier, or rather cuter (sorry Kate) is that to me she looks a lot like Gizmo. Remember the movie about the Gremlins? Well, she's the good one. Fuzzy - good character - climbs like a mountain goat! Maybe I should have made a mountain goat bead...but it's cold outside and penguins come to mind instead. Stay warm everyone. Unless, of course, you're one of those people who is living where it's warm right now and I think you ought to go and stand in the local grocery store freezer for a couple of minutes so you can really feel sympathetic when I start complaining about the piles of white stuff and I don't think penguins are cute anymore. HA HAHAHAHAHA.

Oh, about the title of this piece. Wasn't there a famous penguin named Chilly Willy? I just can not remember where I know that from - a malted or a beverage? Maybe the cold is affecting my brain cells. Oh Yeah, that's the's cold and the brain is in winter hibernation.