Friday Featured Favorites: Wicker and Wonderful

I… love… baskets. I don’t know what it is about baskets that makes them so appealing to me, they’re just fun!

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So naturally I was pleased to find the Etsy shop JGBaskets, with a wonderful variety of baskets. And when I say variety, I mean Variety!

The basket on the left is a mail basket. She also has stair baskets, bread baskets, napkin baskets and wall baskets (all of which are worth looking at!)

Jan, the owner of the shop, got started about 28 years ago, when she decided to get a kit and make herself a basket. Apparently, her first basket wasn’t a roaring success, but she kept at it until, as you can see, she got fantastic results!

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Besides selling on Etsy, Jan sells her baskets at art shows. As well as weaving, she’s tried her hand at cross stitch, macramé, quilting, crochet and rug hooking. What really impresses me is that she runs her Etsy shop on the side, and works as a surgical technologist and surgical assistant during the day.

I really enjoyed featuring this shop today. I kept running into it, and seeing different, fun baskets every time. I love the simple, beautiful look and I look forward to coming back to see what else she has. By the way, she has some really fun Easter baskets you have to check out!

Once again, the shop is JGBaskets.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sarah

Favorites of the Week

I’ve been having fun finding fun things on Etsy, so I thought I’d feature one of my favorites of my favorites from every day of the week (I hope that sentence made sense)

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Monday

I keep seeing needle felting things that are absolutely wonderful. But to the left is a wonderful pink lamby that I totally fell in love with.

You can find this lamb, along with cute little bunnies, cats and dogs on the Etsy shop:

FeltTale. Check it out, it’s so much fun!

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Tuesday –

This wonderful, beautiful bird can be found on the Etsy shop:

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You can find a variety of things on this shop, including more birds and animals, flowers and scenes, fruit and figures.

It’s a lot of fun to look at, and the beautiful bird on the left is just the beginning! It’s definitely worth taking a look!

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Wednesday –

Another thing I noticed I’ve been liking a lot on Etsy, and I’d love to have, is pressed flowers or dried flowers. And the gorgeous necklace on the left is one of my favorites!

You can find this on the Etsy shop:

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I loved looking at this shop because there always seems to be something new and beautiful, and you even get to choose what color you want in some cases!

il_570xn-1187047353_b4xlThursday

And then there are these absolutely wonderful Pysanka eggs! Seriously, you have to check out this shop because it is so amazing!

You can find these etched chicken eggs on the Etsy shop:

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I might even have to contact the shop owner and find out if they do quail eggs, because those are so cute!

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Friday –

What I’ve discovered about Etsy is that it wouldn’t be Etsy without some wonderful vintage shops.

To the left are some beautiful vintage tins, with lovely flowers on them. We have a collection of tins (somewhere) but I just love these! You can find them, among many more beautiful vintage items, on the shop:

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il_570xn-915897127_67lvSaturday (because I just wanted to feature this item)

I’ve also slowly realized I like bike things. Bike scarves, bike paintings, and then there’s this bike pillow. I love it! It even has birds!

You can find this – one among many fun and unique pillows for any style – on the shop:

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You have to take a look at these shops! They are all, individually, unique and fun. Looking back at them, they supply a great look at all the shops you can find on Etsy, from vintage to handmade and completely original. I had a lot of fun putting together this blog post.

And I hope everyone had a great week – and more importantly, will have a great weekend!

See you next week!

Sarah

 

Friday Featured Favorites: Designs by Diane

The shop I’ll be featuring today, DianesDesignsbyDiane, I discovered through the Etsy forums. What especially struck me was the happy, nice personality of the lady that runs it, Diane. I thought: “Wow, she must have a fun shop!” and I was right.

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And similarly, when I saw her shop, I found the personality inviting, charming and open.

As you can see with the fun picture on the left, her cards have a simplistic, amusing style that’s totally unique.

Diane’s career in art started when she drew a picture for a friend’s birthday. It was so popular, her friend got about 40 orders! (I think that’s a great way to start a business)

Diane’s work is shown in art shows and she used to own a shop. Sadly, her shop was destroyed in an earthquake.

Diane heard about Etsy through an artsy niece, and opened her shop in 2010, though didn’t keep it up until recently when she was laid off from her regular job. She admits the situation is a little scary, but with the support of her husband and Lord willing, she thinks a door will be opening soon. Even while I was talking with her, she made her first sale since reopening!

il_570xn-1132268380_ks92It goes without saying that I loved looking around at her shop. What struck me just now, when I was looking for some of the pictures to feature, was that there seems to be endless possibility to what Diane could do, since she’s making the cards completely from scratch!

She has several cute little angels, as well as animals, like the owls to the left.

Many of the cards are blank, or can have a small message, making it very customizable!

Besides the wonderful cards, Diane has several dolls that look amazingly like her illustrations. Here’s a Link to one of my favorites.

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This picture to the left is totally my favorite so far!!!

I loved checking out this shop, as I’m sure you will too!

Here’s a link to her Etsy shop, DianesDesignsbyDiane

And a link to her Blog, here on WordPress.

If you want to see more shops we feature here on occasional Fridays (hopefully a little more often than we’ve done recently) just follow our blog!

Hope everyone has a great Friday and weekend!

Sarah

Friday Featured Favorites: Redo

(I wrote this blog post – like… a month ago, and discovered recently that I hadn’t published it! Terrible mistake, considering the featured shop 🙂 )

I found a really fun shop a while ago…

and then I lost it. Fortunately, I found it again, and today I will feature it! This shop is known as VintageRedo, operated by Pamela.

il_570xn-733919732_skv2What caught my eye and made me want to feature this shop? First of all, I liked the art. Then, I love how Pam remakes something old – not only new – but she seems to completely reinvent it!

I’ve been looking around Etsy recently, and realizing that there is a lot of interesting retro/vintage things to find there. We’ve even discovered lots of stuff that we have, so apparently we could start up our own vintage shop!

I saw the art here on this shop, as shown on the left, and I really liked it. It’s surprising, unique and pretty.

I contacted Pam, thrilled to be featuring such a fun shop. I was especially interested to find out how she got started doing this art.

Apparently, she started when she was a young girl, and she always loved making jewelry. Her first project was using her grandmother’s buttons and jewelry to make a picture.

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Pam started her Etsy shop because, as she put it, “I’m an empty nester“. It turned into more of a business because of her love of jewelry and, as she puts it, a girl can only wear so much jewelry.

I asked her what her favorite era of history is. The Victorian era is one of her favorites, but she also specified the last 10 years of the 19th Century (also known as the Gay Nineties) as a favorite because of their intricate and beautiful buttons.

I looked up the Gay Nineties for myself, to see more about this era, and the buttons – among other things – are quite amazing.

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I found it difficult to figure out what photos to use from this shop, to capture the beauty Pam creates, so I definitely recommend you check out this vintage shop!

There are several necklaces and brooches, and I love all of the beautiful art pieces she created out of the jewelry!

Once again, the name of this shop is:

VintageRedo

I hope everyone’s December is going well so far, and everyone’s weekend is great!

Sarah

Friday Featured Favorites: In the Air

Yesterday was Abigail’s birthday, so I thought I’d feature her shop today. She almost always has something new on her shop, so it’s pretty easy.

il_570xn-1049625978_db4vToday I’m going to highlight Abigail’s wonderful new Hot Air Balloon selection, from cards to earrings.

It was actually a pretty simple idea. When Abigail said she was going to make hot air balloon earrings, I could picture how they’d look pretty easily.

But that’s where creativity steps in and throws you for a loop. I imagined Abigail’s Hot Air Balloon Ephemeral Earrings looking totally different – simpler, with starker colors. And I didn’t quite picture the actual design looking the way it does.

il_570xn-1048503974_tqm6Fascinating how one’s brain works differently!

Anyway, I love Abigail’s Hot Air Balloon Earrings! They’re very elegant and ephemeral, and she has several different designs. Here’s a link to my personal favorite of her Hot Air Balloons.

Abigail also made some really fun Hot Air Balloon Greeting Cards. They turned out very nicely!

il_570xn-1049589956_gkx8I was curious to see how the card on the left would turn out, because of the paper she picked, which is basically a picture of some tree branches and the clear blue sky (definitely a picture that would bring hot air balloons to mind). I’ve always wanted to use those papers, but I’ve never figured out what I can do with it.

To see what Abigail’s done with this interesting paper, and more details on the beautiful card itself, just follow this link!

I think Abigail’s Hot Air Balloon creations fit the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, which is starting (tomorrow?). Both the cards and her ephemeral earrings are very Fiesta-like, and the colors are vivid, reflecting New Mexico’s own, individual personality.

Also, there’s a sale! Abigail has a discount on all her Hot Air Balloon items during the Balloon Fiesta (which, if I remember correctly, is for the next couple weeks, much to our dog’s terror). If you’re coming in to visit and see the balloons in person, even better!

Here’s a link to Abigail’s awesome Etsy shop, TheRaisinFairy, where you can find her beautiful Balloon items, as well as all the other amazing things she makes. I invite you to take a look!

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sarah

 

P.S. I had this blog post all ready, minus the photos. I didn’t mean to be publishing it this late! Still, it is Friday here for another 15 minutes 🙂 Have a great weekend!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday Featured Favorites: Like Stars

The first word that came to mind when I found this Etsy shop was: Perfect. Naturally, nothing’s perfect, but sometimes you find something that’s exactly right, and this time I discovered it on the Etsy shop: ForestsOfWildflowers.

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I really like this shop because of how delicate it is, and, like the Wedding Hair Vine on the left, might be raindrops or stars, or even baby’s breath flowers falling from her hair. It’s elegant, ephemeral and sort of quiet, if that makes sense.

I actually thought this shop seemed a lot like Abigail’s, with her lovely Ephemeral Earrings. It has the same delicacy.

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ForestsOfWildflowers is a fairly new Etsy shop, opening in 2015, run by Paige. She’s only a few sales away from 50 – which is amazingly wonderful and inspiring!

I got to talk with Paige, and asked a few questions. I generally try to think of something unusual, and somehow related to the shop. But I also try to change it up a little.

Among what we talked about was what her favorite color is to work with. Many of her creations are originally white and metallic, which, as she points out, is very chic. She also mentioned she has several colored hair vines coming up that she’s excited about.

I asked Paige what she would sell if she opened another Etsy shop (a new favorite question of mine, since there always seems to be something else you could start an Etsy shop on). She said she’d sell the mountains and mountains of beads she has. She apparently goes in to clean but ends up creating a new piece out of the things she meant to put away. I certainly know how that is!

il_570xn-906089329_mqfqI always try to make sure I have one question that’s almost completely unrelated to Etsy, to find out more about the person behind these wonderful shops.

So I asked Paige what is her favorite recreational activity. She’s always loved reading, and finds it a good way to get away from things.

She also has a labrador, named Samson (who sounds adorable, but just because anything doggy is adorable). She and her husband walk or play with Samson, or just sit on the couch and relax.

I really enjoyed featuring this shop, and I’m sorry this blog post is basically over. I invite you to take a look, since it’s really, really fun to look around this beautiful shop.

Here’s a link to Paige’s Etsy shop, ForestsOfWildflowers (I love that name!)

Hope you have a great weekend!

Sarah

 

Burlap and Autumn

I just realized I haven’t done a blog post about my latest listing! So, here I am to show you the first of my Autumn items.

IMG_1509  I was just about to get some different Autumn fabric, which I wasn’t really sure about. Then I caught site of some interesting burlap, with Autumnal happiness written all over it:

Autumn, Harvest, Fall Time, Give Thanks” as well as leaves and sunflowers.

I decided there was no better time to explore the craze of burlap than fall-time.

I was pretty sure of what I wanted to make out of the burlap – either pillows, unusual wreaths, table runners, bags or even banners. I decided to go with pillows. I almost went with square accenting pillows, since the pattern is definitely square. Then I decided it would be fun and different to do round pillows.

IMG_1514So, I found some nice contrasting brown fabric and cut out three Autumnal pillows.

I have to admit,  I really like the way they turned out. They’re kind of elegant. (and, unfortunately, the photos don’t do them justice! I just couldn’t quite get the angle right)

So, I pulled out a little of our fall décor – scarecrows and some ribbon – and took some photos. The pillows really seemed to pull it together. It added a bit of proper, furniture-ish decoration, which apparently we lack.

This is only my first Autumnal item for my shop. I thought I’d have tons of golden leaves and fat pumpkins running around in various forms, but I’m not sure that will happen. However, coming up for my shop: a skirt, a possible front door banner thingy and an Autumnal looking bag!

For the time being, here is my Burlap Autumn Pillow!  I invite you to take a look.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sarah

Friday Featured Thread: Social Media

I didn’t really expect to feature too many threads from the Etsy forums, but in this case I thought this thread ought to be featured. Although, right off, I should say you should just check out the thread for yourself.

The very nice Etsy people occasionally do Q&As on the forums, and this time it was all about using social media and all that confusing stuff. This time around I realized I could ask my own question, so I did, and got a wonderful answer. So, I’ll feature the answer Jessica, from Etsy, gave me, among a few others.

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Basically, I asked what would be the best way to attract attention on social media, and how to get people to look at your products.

I loved the answer she gave, and it has truly inspired me:

“…I would suggest thinking of your social media presence as an extension of how you view your brand. Social media is a great way to tell a broader story about your creative process: what inspires you? What makes your products unique? If you think of your social posts as telling a story about your work, you may find it easier to come up with posts (rather than just using social media to ‘sell’ your product)…”

The next question, and answer, I found very helpful was from Michelle, owner of the Etsy shop Trendy Hedgehog. She uses Instagram, but they have apparently made recent changes that make it harder for people to promote their business. I was interested in this question because Hannah uses Instagram, and I’ll be trying it soon too (really, I have set up an account!)

The answer Jessica gave was: “…Look at the posts you’ve done to see which ones have generated the most engagement (likes and comments) from your followers. You can use tools like Iconosquare to help determine your most popular posts. The more your followers engage with your posts, the more likely they are to be seen. By know what draws the most attention, you can do more of the same type.”

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The next question, from the owner of the Etsy shop StoneLush, was also related to Instagram. The question was if there was a place that could keep track of which hashtags work best for likes/followers. The answer was as follows:

“…You can research the popularity of hashtags on Instagram by going to the Explore tab, type the term in the search bar and selecting tags. You’ll see the number of posts associated with that hashtag under each result. You could try this for each category you use…”

Iconosquare was again mentioned, so I guess this is something I should check out.

I took a final look at the questions, and found one I have been wondering about. This one is from REupped (which I sadly could not find)

The question was whether or not discount promotions and coupons worked on Etsy for drawing business, and which social medias would allow coupons and giveaways. Here’s the answer:

“Many sellers have found success using coupons and giveaways to driver up traffic and sales in their shops. You can post about discounts and giveaways on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other social channels, and there is no fee to do so. You may find this Seller Handbook helpful, it’s full of tips for boosting sales with coupon codes.

I found these questions I highlighted helpful, especially since social media isn’t really my strong point. So, I’m off to check out a few of the things mentioned here, as well as look at the thread again.

Again, if you’re selling online, like we are, I’d definitely suggest you take a look at this thread. It’s long and helpful, and totally awesome that the Etsy people – as I always refer to them – took their time to do this. There was a whole team of them helping out in the case!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! I’ll probably be back pretty soon to show my latest creation, soon to appear on my shop, or else talk about quinoa

Happy Friday!

Sarah

Medallions and Paisley Flowers!

I can’t believe it – I almost forgot!

I made a couple new listings recently! They’re different (again) since I’m still trying to figure out what works.

il_570xn-1020771522_pf0eI’ve been meaning to try seat belt covers, but for some reason never got around to doing it.

As I think I’ve mentioned before, I got a wonderful gift card for my birthday, and with it, among other things, I got half a yard each of blue-green fabric and pink flowery fabric, both flannel.

I always imagined making the seat belt covers out of regular cotton. But my Mum very sensibly pointed out that something softer would feel nicer. So I took a look at the flannel fabric.

Fortunately, there are a lot of very fun, beautiful flannel fabrics. There’s a lot of variety, including puppy paws, which attracted my attention. For the time being, I like the pretty medallions and flowers.

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These were really fun to make, and they’re very soft. I managed to get five out of the fabric I got, which seemed like a good amount for a test.

I can’t decide which one I like better, but I think I like them equally.

I love the pink and blue one, on the right, and it reminds me of a garden, or just something flowery.

The blue and green one I just think looks cool – like a pool in hot summer or, as I mentioned in the description of it on my shop, it looks like a tropical beach. I actually looked up tropical beaches, just to be sure of the description, and the colors are surprisingly the same!

Here’s a link to my Blue and Green Medallion Seat Belt Covers. And a link to my Paisley and Flowery Seat Belt Cover. I invite you to take a look

So there we go, and I got it out before Saturday. Barely.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Sarah

 

 

 

Friday Featured Favorites: Personality!

I ran into some more shops, so I thought it would be fun to feature a few today (probably to catch up with forgetting to feature shops for the last few weeks)

il_570xn-1003623544_2el1The first shop I want to feature is really fun. The shop’s name is BlackBerryBookArt and you can find items like the one on the left on this shop.

The owner of the shop started doing book folding for a school project, and then decided to start an Etsy shop.

I was amazed when I saw this shop, partially because this is the first time I’ve ever seen it.

It makes a wonderful and unique gift or décor, with a possibly infinite amount of potential!

I encourage you to take a look at this shop, because there are a lot of fun and beautiful things to see here. I just had to do the owl because I always seem to do the owls.

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The next Etsy shop I’d like to feature is called GiftsandTalents and an item on this shop is featured on the right.

Apparently my theme is birds. I love birds, and I love the two little birds on this Wedding Guest Book Box. It’s the perfect combination of whimsical, rustic, cute and charming.

Also featured on this shop are several boxes like these, with so much variety you have to take a look at it for yourself, and some beautiful burlap wreaths. I was very interested to see the wreaths, because I have a burlap canvas, and I’m trying to figure out what I want to do with it.

il_570xn-811197950_bi15Last but not least, the beautiful Etsy shop CustomPortraitArt. Please, please take a look at this shop! It is so much fun! One painting is featured on the left, and I just had to do this one because it’s a Goldie and they’re always the best dogs!

You have to take a look at this shop because there always seems to be something new to see. There are lots of wonderful doggies and kitties and house portraits and other portraits.

It’s just so much fun, and this shop has a lot of wonderful personality. Hey, I just figured out what to title this post!

So, I’ve introduced you to three wonderful, exciting Etsy shops brimming with personality. Once again, I invite you to take a look.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Coming up……. refreshment for the hot days ahead.

Sarah