Saturday, April 28, 2012

Summer Plans

Summer is almost here! I am going to have an amazing summer.

Today I am sewing. What did you guys do today?

Friday, April 27, 2012

Shop Update

Lots of new items available in the shop!
I also found (and adore) this rugged gypsy cardigan, all the cables make for a stunning find. It's also made out of 5% rabbit fur!
When I found this sweater I had no idea what to think of it. The odd anime girl is both cute/goth all at once, and I just love her hair barrettes. Truly a one-of-a-kind piece. I feel I could rock it with a black mini skirt, leggings, and goth ankle boots.
What staple vintage pieces do you guys have in your closet, and how do you wear them?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

How To Tie-Dye

Want to give dying a try? Here is all you need to know!
You will need:

  • empty tubs
  • gloves
  • hangers
  • towls

STEP ONE
Grab some tubs, one for each color. For this project, I used Rit dye from Walmart in three colors: red, pink, and blue (that turned out purple, btw). Fill your tubs with 1-2 gallons of HOT water (follow the water per part instruction on your dye)
STEP TWO
Insert color. I just winged it.
STEP THREE
Tie your clothes up and secure with some rubber bands, or simply dip the clothes for a nice gradient wash. If you want deeper colors, let it rest in the dye for 30 minutes.
STEP FOUR
Rinse the extra dye out of your garment in the sink until the water runs mostly clean. Keep wearing your gloves because the dye will still stain you! Then, hang them to dry. I hung mine in the bathroom.
You should wash them by hand the first few times you wear them so the dye will not stain other clothing.
STEP FIVE
Wear, and enjoy.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Indian Kameez

I found two beautiful indian kameez tunic style dresses a few weeks back. I love the loose, draping style, and the tunic is very comfortable to wear. What do you guys think?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Doodles

Another doodle I made at work.
Very Dr. Sues, don't you think?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Giveaway!

//Giveway Now Closed!


Today I'm giving away a little handmade hat in eggplant!
You must be a follower of my blog to win! Please comment one time if you'd like to enter the giveaway :) If you want an extra comment, tweet about my giveaway! Please include a link to your tweet in your second comment. 
The drawing will take place on May 11th, my mother's birthday!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Dye


I tried out tie dye!
It was fun. I wasted a lot of dye because I didn't realize it only takes a little to go a long way!
I tried using blue and pink, but it turns out blue is actually purple if you dilute it enough. I'm not complaining! However, my bathtub is a little purple... 
 I love the colors...and I plan on doing more dyeing experiments!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Dreaming

Just an idea I had for a photo-shoot.




What do you dream of?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Advertising on Etsy


Okay, so you have an Etsy shop, full of wonderful vintage or handmade items. Great job! Now, how to get people to buy your items? Wait, how can they buy your items if they can't find your items?! Before you panic, read this guide, and learn how to market your Etsy items and increase your daily browsing numbers! :)

1) Start a blog. Obvious example, this post! Right now I am inundating your minds my fabulous cute rainbow handmade purse! See how easy that was? hehe...*ahem* In reality, the two main things that will bring people to your blogs (and then let them see your cute items) are
  • Posting tutorials on your blog
  • Linking Up with other blogs
  • Hosting giveaways! 
Blogger has free blogs that are completely customizable and relatively add free. Thats what I use. It may take awhile, but keep posting. You will build up some followers, who may or may not comment, but who ARE reading your posts.

2) Use Pinterest. Pinterest is like the Holy Grail of Etsy marketing. Pin yours and others items. Pinterest is all about creating a dream, so make sure to keep the ratio of yours vs. others items about equal. No one likes a snob that only talks about herself. Discretion is always advised!

*Also, be sure you have permission to pin any other artist's work to your boards! I can't imagine why anyone would care, but Pinterest's user agreement states that you (the user) is held responsible for everything you pin!

3) Have a facebook group. Facebook has millions of people that are just waiting to hear about (and share!) your products. Just don't be one of those annoying people that spam posts to your wall every 15 seconds.
  • I offer my facebook members special discount codes
  • I post my blog posts on my facebook page. 
  • I also put pictures of my handmade items. 
I think only one or maybe two posts daily should be made to your facebook group. Don't spam. I hate spammers. I post only once a day, and it usually consists of only a link to my current tutorial and/or creative endeavor.

The one thing I do like is that on your Etsy personal shop page, you can link directly to your facebook and twitter, so fans of your items can find you easily.

4) Sign up for twitter. Twitter is basically a free-for-all. Post as much (or as little) as you like. I'm very new to twitter, and only post about 3 times a week, but the response and feedback so far has been fun.

5) Use great key words! The key words you put on etsy are, uh, key to people finding your product. Put some thought into them. Do a few searches yourself and see if like items pop up.

6) Don't forget that your photographs are art. I love taking the photographs of my work almost as much as I enjoy actually creating the item. You can showcase your photography on art sites, with a link to the product in the description in case a casual passerby gets curious. I use three main art sites, through there are many, many more.
I use each and every one of these, from blogging to flicker to try and market my product, and it all cost me zero dollars! Yay, more money for fabric!

Anyone else have any advertising-boosting secrets? I'd love to hear them!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Yummy Snack

Remember when I planted these poppies? Look at them now!
But I think they are unhappy. Some of them are falling over. As this is the first thing I've planted, I don't know what is wrong! Any ideas? I water them and I keep them in full light per the instructions! :( I hope they get better, because I love them.

Here is a picture of my snack. I love applesauce, and kiwi is one of my favorite fruits...
Whats your favorite summer snack?

Monday, April 16, 2012

New Glasses!

I love my new glasses! They are very different from my old ones, but I was ready for a change.
Also I have absolutely fallen in love with this hat. Would you believe that I got it at Goodwill for $1? Well, I did. And no, you can't have it. Because I plan on wearing it with everything.
I'm very excited because I have a tripod again! If you didn't know. my other one broke, and I was finally able to buy a new tripod. I'm no longer balancing my camera on books and rocks and cars! Hopefully the quality of my photographs will thus improve... 
What do you guys think about my new look? I'd love to have some feedback!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Photographing People

*This is part two of my "Photographing with Intent to Sell on Etsy" tutorial. Follow this link for part one, photographing inanimate objects.
Photographing people is easy. If you plan on using yourself as a model (as I do) you should invest in a good tripod and a camera remote.

These items will make photographing your merchandise ten hundred times easier. Seriously, when I first started I was balancing my DSLR on rocks and trees and having near-heart attacks as my camera teetered precariously from limbs and other not-so stationary objects. Having a tripod fixes this problem. You can attach your camera to it and swivel it any direction.

The remote just helps you not spend 2+ hours running back and forth to reset your timer. You can just point and click. Streamlines things rather effectively.

Step one: Choosing the Setting

If you are like me, and have next to no photographic (or modeling) skill, you probably want to photograph yourself outside. As I've stated previously, the best time to photograph yourself or others is one hour before sunrise or sunset. If your schedule only permits noon-day photo-shoot fun, stick to the shadows to minimize glare and those awful dark circles that appear in full light.
As you can see, the left photo has a lot of glare and unnecessary shadows on the face, while the picture on the right is more smooth and the light is more evenly distributed.

Step two: Watch your Background 
Silly things can creep into your background when you are using a tripod and you don't realize where it is pointed!
Even if you are using a model, pay close attention to what is behind them. Your backdrop is just as important as your model in conveying the mood and aesthetic of your merchandise.

Trust me, you will die of frustration when every picture you took has a very large grill on the left. Sometimes you can crop the item out, but other times there is no possible way to remove it from the image.

Step three:  Use Photoshop Legitimately 
Ok, okay, I know sometimes I don't follow this rule. But I try. The best thing to remember is not to alter the item you are selling, but only to spice up the background and model to a professionally artistic level.


Step four: Don't forget to have fun and be creative!
Be wild. Do something you've never seen anyone else do! Market your brand with unique photos and people will remember you. I love using my hair to highlight my merchandise.
The possibilities are endless.  Some of my favorite photos are made just by goofing off and having a good time. Never forget to relax and enjoy your art.

Anyone else have any photo tips? Please share!
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