Saturday, March 28, 2009

Barbie trading cards tote bag is almost done

My Barbie trading cards tote bag is almost done. I thought the hardest part of this project was applying the clear vinyl contact paper to both sides of the cards...and then I started sewing!
Bias trim is so unforgiving. It shows every stitch hole...especially if you have to rip seams and do a side over. Fortunately, that didn't happen. I took my time and made sure my sides were lined up properly.
The bottom of the tote is now my biggest challenge. First I had to apply some clear scotch tape to line up the bottom with the sides. Then I was able to start sewing. I didn't even get to round a corner...and I hate sewing corners...before I realized the corners won't fit into my sewing machine! The bag is too stiff. And I don't want to smash it down just to sew it.
My thought is, worst case scenario, the bottom half will become a no-sew, hot glue project. I do worry about the bag holding together however. I'd rather sew.
So, in the meantime, I've e-mailed my Aunt Laurie for the answer. She works on those recycled Capri Sun tote bags. I imagine she has encountered the same problem. And I'm sure she'll have my answer.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Photographer's tip: Build a light box!

So, I know all my products deserve better pictures, but I never really knew how to go about it. I'm only as good as my Kodak Easy Share camera, right?

Well, today another Etsian in the Forums told me to "work on your photos". My reaction was:

1. I would have appreciated more instruction than that!
2. It pissed me off enough to go looking for answers.

So I came across this photographer's blog

For approx. $10 I can build a mini photo studio!

I'll be updating my blog with my construction efforts over the next week.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Fancy Cozy Kitchen Covers Are Available

My fancy cozy kitchen covers are simply small appliance covers that are sewn using multicolored quilted fabrics. These wonderful premium fabrics are all double sided. So, it's like getting two sets of appliance covers in one!

All my fancy covers can be found at

I just signed on with ArtFire

I read DaisyLeeDesigns recent blog about her being an ArtFire user. This wasn't the first time that I had heard about them. I bookmarked ArtFire's site when I learned about them in the Etsy Forums.

Today I signed on as a FREE ArtFire seller. I noticed there was a level where you pay to use the site, but I haven't committed to that level.

My sales are almost non-existent on Etsy right now. Yesterday I had a "wake-up" e-mail from another Etsy user who told me I have to promote off-site (meaning Etsy). She said when she stopped promoting off Etsy, all her sales dried up. I also read in the Forums that Etsy is only concerned about its sellers...they don't make it their business to find us buyers. I believe that.

So far I've added two items to my Art Fire Store. When I logged out, I was able to see both of those items immediately on the Home Page! Nice. I'm impressed.

.....It's later in the day. My toaster cover had 2 views today. Not bad.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Fun Pictures of Summer

Let Me Show You Summer!

Summer at Geneva-On-The-Lake, Ohio.

Summerfest in Warren, Ohio

These are pictures of our local Trumbull Art Gallery's annual Summerfest. It's an event sponsored and created by local artists. They volunteer their time to work with children in creating colorful costumes for the kickoff parade in June.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

No-sew bedroom netting canopy

This no-sew netting canopy worked up in about one hour. I purchased a dozen yards of yellow tulle, but didn't need to use all of it.
I measured and then cut 3 pieces of 100 inch tulle sections.
Then at the top of each tulle section, starting in the middle, I cut a line 16 inches long - so now I had two pieces to grab and tie onto my straw wreath. I tied all three sections onto the wreath. And I fluffed up the part that got tied, on top of the wreath, to look like a tulle flower.
Next, I found a yellow ribbon that I had saved. I cut 3 sections, about 22 inches long for each. I tied them on too!
The last part involved me hot gluing greenery and flowers onto the wreath.
Then my husband hung the canopy. He had to screw it into a beam in the ceiling because my daughter pulled it down within 1 minute the first time!( She's a toddler.)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Barbie Doll Trading Cards Project update no. 2

While working on my Barbie trading cards tote/purse today, It occurred to me that I'm not actually "clearing out" trash, but creating more of it! Especially since I had to buy supplies to make this project - clear contact paper, bias tapes, and a few more Barbie doll trading cards from e-bay...all to make a trashion project...Maybe it's not the most eco friendly, "green" project I could come up with...oh, well. It'll be practical and look nice!

Today Show Ribbon Organization Idea Put to Use

Sunday, March 15, 2009

My Barbie trading cards trashion project is under way!

I love a good trashion project! I'm finally beginning work on my Barbie trading cards trashion tote bag/purse.
I have had these Barbie trading cards since the late 1980s...moved them with me everywhere I went...across the country twice...I'm so glad to finally be able to show them off in a different kind of USEFUL way.
I'm simply using clear contact paper to adhere my trading cards together.
I ran out of clear contact paper after making one panel...I've used this clear contact paper for other projects involving brochures and newspaper pages. So I ran to Target today and bought more contact paper.
I think this roll of contact paper can be used to cover at least 3 - 4 various sizes of papers.
My first project was to cover a Wicked newspaper ad and turn it into a purse. The purse sold in about 2 weeks. I am still kicking myself that I didn't buy up 20 copies of the Cleveland Plain Dealer that day! That ad was amazing.
The second project involved Geneva-On-The-Lake, Ohio brochures and converting two of them into placemats for our kitchen table.
The 3rd project is my Barbie tote, which I was only able to make one side panel with. So I ran and bought another roll.
I'll ad more pictures of my progress as I continue this week.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Peruvian Blue Opal them!

I discovered Peruvian blue opal gemstones by accident. I first fell in love with green apple chrysoprase heart shaped briolettes...but they're pricey! So, I did a search on blue gemstones, and came across these from Uncommonbeads on
Uncommonbeads sold me 10 for about $3.00. They selected beads at random. I was able to make two pairs of earrings with about 8 gemstone beads. I had two beads left that didn't quite match in tone, so I e-mailed Uncommonbeads and asked them to do an exchange for me if I paid all shipping costs. To my surprise, they said, "How about if I just send you a few more, no extra charge?" Heck, yah!
I'm still in awe of this brilliant blue color every time I look at them.
I've priced my earrings to sell quickly...kind-of surprised they haven't already. If not, they'll make wonderful Christmas gifts.

Layaway service is now available

Call it a move to counter recession/depression economics...I am now offering layaway service on any item in my Etsy store.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Color and Form

It occurred to me while looking at one of my favorite items on Etsy that color and form are extremely important in a listing. Pictures need to "pop" with color.
This favorite item I'm talking about is Lynn Cardwell's 4 pottery bowls. Each one is a different color. They sold in one day after being showcased yesterday on the Etsy home page.
So, I'm going to go back to the drawing board and re-photograph my creations. My objective will be to maximize the color in each piece.
This will be an interesting topic to chart progress.