Friday, May 28, 2010

iCandy - A Creative Mint

A little pretty today, to celebrate the end of the week!

One of my favorite blogs and go to place for beautiful and inspiring images is a creative mint. Leslie, the artist behind it, shares her projects, ideas and inspiration through breathtaking collages of pictures and color palettes. All her photos are also available on her Flickr stream so if you have some time, I encourage you to check it out, it's worth it!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Treasure Hunting on Etsy

My learning curve in all things Etsy has become increasingly steeper in the last few weeks. Especially since opening my shop and joining the Dutch and European Street teams, I have been discovering new things everyday! Treasuries, what they are, who makes them and what for, is just one of them.
So, what is the Treasury? It's an ever-changing, member-curated shopping gallery of handpicked items. Members can feature their favorite items, items selected on a theme or just whatever they like. Etsy’s staff (“Admin”) often choose whole or partial exceptional Treasury lists to promote to the featured, handpicked items on Etsy’s home page. 

They are a lot of fun to make and the more you make, the better and prettier they get! I try to make them as beautiful and cohesive as possible and my primary goal is to promote quality items from European sellers and fellow teammates.
I have also had a few items featured in a treasury last week and one of them actually made it to the front page, which was super exciting! Plus, I got a million views on my shop and tons of hearts!!

I am currently featured in 5 treasuries and I am keeping my fingers crossed that one of them will end up on the front page again, bringing in all those new viewers that might not otherwise find b*lota! And wouldn't that be a shame?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Meet me at the fair!

My first fair! I finally received the confirmation from the organizers that I can join in the Sunday Market on the 6th of June. Not only will it be a great experience selling my things to the public but a lot of Etsy sellers will be present so I'll get to meet them all!

There is a lot to prepare and get done before the big day, though. I need to make more bags, mage price tags, decide on table decor and props, packaging, etc, etc. Luckily with the fair season kicking off, there are tons of blog posts about fairs and how to prepare for them, checklists and helpful tips! I have made a round-up of some of the resources available in case that, like me, you are getting ready to attend your first fair:

 - 10 tips for a craft show booth, Going Home to Roost 
 - Let's make a list: craft fair preps, Dutch Handmade  
So, wish me luck and if you are in the area, be sure to join us at the Sunday Market at the Westergasfabriek! We look forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Making your own fabric labels

When I started thinking about setting up my business and starting to sell my bags and pillows, one of the things I started looking for were labels. Labeling your work will help people recognize your products, making it easy for them to find your shop or website and refer you to their friends.

I wanted something simple and smart looking, with my logo and shop url. I wasn't ready, however, to invest a lot of money and end up stuck with 500 labels. What if I want to change the logo, or the colors?

So I turned to the Internet and found a few tutorials on how to make your own fabric labels!

I ended up using a combination of this tutorial by Allyson Hill and this one by Bonnie from Going Home to Roost:
First I created my logo/label using Photoshop. Then, with Word's Envelopes and Labels, played around with the format, number of rows and columns per sheet. It's important to know how you are going to used them so that you have enough space between them. I wanted to be able to use them individually or double sided.

When I was happy with the format, I hit print. You may want to test it first on paper, to check the size of the labels and make sure the image is sharp enough. I had to go back to Photoshop and adjust my logo a few times until I got it right.
Finally, I was ready to print my labels onto fabric, cut them up and following the manufacturer's instructions, apply them to my items. Easy peasy!

For the eco-conscious crafter, check out this blog post from Crafting a Green World. It has some good ideas on how to make your labels greener!

There are tons of tutorials and resources out there so  take your time, have a look and choose the one that works for you. 

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Grand opening!

My Etsy shop is open! After weeks of preparation, sewing, fretting and stressing, I finally started listing.

It's been really exciting, and I keep going back to check the number of views, number of hearts, or just to look at the pretty pictures! 

It is taking me a some time to list all the items I made for this batch so expect a few more things in the coming days and keep checking the shop or my fan page for updates!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


I have been really busy setting up my Etsy shop Etsy shop and I am thisclose to start listing but until I do, here are a few pretty things I spotted online in the last few days!