Monday, October 27, 2008

New friends

I was at an Ayla's show yesterday in Columbus, OH, and had a very good time. The show was smaller than expected--there were only ten vendors, including myself--but the customers were wonderful and I enjoyed the day.

In fact, a couple of very sweet jewelry designers pointed out that they had read my blog, and looked at my Etsy site! How very nice!

It's so refreshing to know that people are out there listening. Thanks, ladies!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Living space

I'm on the brink of buying a house with my husband, and finally moving out of the apartment in which we've lived for seven years.

It's a nice ranch, nothing unusual or scary, just a regular house with a long, narrow eighties-style layout. It does have a sweet little pond in the backyard, more of a backwater kind of thing, but there is a muskrat who lives there and it's very nice and will be wonderful to look at.

Those of you who are self-employed will understand when I say that I've decided to make the master bedroom into the office. It overlooks the pond and is larger than the other two bedrooms, and I can't wait to have this space to finally set up my photograph shed and my camera full-time.

I have wanted a space of my own for so very long now. I've never been able to decorate anything fully, or to put my own spin on things, and to be able to create my own little world to retreat to is what I look forward to most. I can't believe I'll finally be able to put up all of the pictures that I want to, and I can't wait to be able to pick out flooring and make things mine.

Because that's what it's about--creating our own cave, where we can live and grow and (perhaps) raise a family. I'm really aware that this is a huge, scary step, but at the same time I'm completely excited.

This article was so intriguing (and yet sad, too); it's about artists who lived in apartments above Carnegie Hall, and how their apartments are being bought out and turned into educational halls. The community of people who have lived there for so long is disappearing, which is sad; but it's also incredibly intriguing to look into the rooms of talented, creative people. I love seeing what they've done with their own spaces. I love the spirit of art that inhabits their rooms.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A weekend of activity

The weekend is full already, and it hasn't even started. I'm hoping to have time to work on some new things. I've made a few bracelets and finished the commission piece, and I hope to share pics soon. Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Setting the pace

After several days of being distracted by unusual things, I finally managed to work on both the website and new Etsy listings today.

I've experimented again with taking photos, and I'm hoping that these represent a step forward...

There's a particular look to a lot of Etsy photos, and while I'm still learning, I think I've managed to take some adequate pics in this session. I hope I can work out a nice, foolproof method.

I've been working on a commission, too, which has been rather exciting. I haven't done one in ages, and the person who commissioned it gave me free rein, which was even more exciting. I've used a Green Girl pendant in it and will be posting pics when the matching earrings are finally finished.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Still prepping for the show

On Saturday I'll be at Molten Obsession's West Michigan Bead Expo. I've been going through all of my inventory again and making plans.

I'm happy to say that I've pulled a big box of pearl strands out from under my desk and finally processed and priced them for the show. I was intending on using them for my own projects, but I finally decided that I can always find more closeout pearls, and I should just go ahead and sell them. I bagged some up as well for my dollar bags.

Doing these shows has been an interesting experience. On the one hand, I had expected experienced beaders to be the most interested in the dollar bags and strands that I have, as the prices are below wholesale. But I've found that experienced beaders see the bins of dollar bags and just keep walking. They don't take the time to see how the prices compare, and I think I can understand that--I would probably not be tempted by little bags of beads either. On the other hand, the new beaders who are attracted by beads in dollar bags don't always understand that the prices are very good.

I feel like I'm in a bit of a catch-22, honestly. I thought that selling closeout beads would be a really great niche, and that people would respond to the great prices positively, but I wonder if I'm presenting it properly, because it doesn't seem like I'm getting the reaction I expected. Then again, what ever does?

Monday, October 6, 2008


Over the weekend, I topped off my eBay store and filled it to the brim with fun things. I've also put together the auction lots for the next month or two, which is probably one of my favorite parts of selling beads. I mean, I love sorting the beads more than making the jewelry on some days, hee!

I really want to make certain that I'm totally tricked out for the show on Saturday in Grand Rapids. To that end, I'll be going through all of the merchandise with a fine-toothed comb. I have a box of freshwater pearl strands that I've never priced, and I'll be putting the vintage Czech necklaces out, too. This means printing new signs, sorting, and pricing are all on this week's list.

I'm also determined to add to my Etsy shop this week as well. It's very interesting to see that the Day of the Dead bracelet has gotten so many hearts and views already. I think I'm going to get some more of the skull charms and make a line of earrings, too.

For eBay, I rely on the search engine. For Etsy, it seems like it's better to rely on listing continuously, and having a few really funky niche items.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A fun day selling

Today was very enjoyable. I was a vendor at the Bead Bonanza in Southfield, MI, and I was reminded of how long I've been buying and selling beads. Not only did I chat with many of my bead friends, but I also waited on a woman who said I was the first person she ever purchased beads from at a bead show, and she was very gracious and said I was really nice.

The wheel turns round and round. I'm happy that she remembered me positively, and it was so wonderful to talk to people I've known for years. Even though vendors only see each other at shows (usually), there is this nice feeling of brotherhood that you develop over time.

It was a very nice experience. Yay for beads!