Getting the word out about your craft business is an essential element in selling your merchandise. Now-a-days if you want to sell your goods online you have to be inventive in finding ways to advertise your items without having to pay a lot of money. Your hard-earned dollars should be used to get more supplies rather than paying for advertisement on Etsy, Google and Facebook. But if you have the money to spare they are great sources for you. Since we are fairly new to this business and money is always tight we elected to just create pages on the social media sites, post updates and tweets and even requested articles to be written on some of the Crafting websites. Yes, it is a lot of work to create accounts on the major social media websites as well as keeping them updated but in the end it will be worth it when you sell more items, get feedback from buyers and your fellow artists.
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Vendors at Festivals – We will be participating in our first festival as a vendor this month! This is both exciting and terrifying at the same time. We have been working our fingers to the bone the last two months creating new items to sell and for the next two weeks we will be getting everything organized to set-up our tent. Of course, we have to buy the tent first. And we have been researching the most cost-effective canopy tents that meet the commercial-grade requirements of most craft shows. We are starting out with a 10×10 canopy tent with sidewalls that is supposed to be easy to set-up. Sadly, we have to stick with a white canvas top as it seems to be the most popular color. Personally, I would prefer a dark pink or dark green top but in order to participate in more shows in the future we have to buy the one that will fit in with the most shows. I am sure I will write more about my tent experience after this show.
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Working with seed beads is hard work and time-consuming. The results of your labor can be very satisfying. I don’t like to work with seed beads because they are so small and it is difficult to work with them as my eyes are getting bad and my hands don’t want to cooperate very well. But if I work on them when I am relaxed and in a creative mood the results have been stupendous. I also recommend that you use a clean white cloth under your working area as seed beads have a tendency to fall from your hands, flip off the wire and generally make a nuisance of themselves. And, of course, when stringing seed beads you really want to start by using the thin gauge wire. I haven’t done the needle and string method yet so I can’t say that it is any better. The jewelry created using seed beads looks delicate and quite lovely. Granted, I would rather work with at least 4mm beads but I wanted a different kind of look for my pieces and I wanted to create some choker necklaces and anklets.
What I have done is take twice the length of wire that I would normally use, a small handful of 4mm beads as well as the seed beads and strung them together in a circular pattern. For instance, bend the wire in half, place a 4mm bead then three, four or five seed beads on either side. Then string another 4mm bead through one side and cross the other side through the same bead. Gently pull the two sides of the wire apart and when you have it fully extended you will have a circle of beads Continue reading “Working With Seed Beads”
Working on your crafts requires space as well as time. While we are traveling around the Florida in our RV we have had to more creative than usual about how, when and where we do them. My mom is the crochet person and she can sit on the little couch while watching TV and do her crocheting. The problem comes with storage of her supplies and the finished products after they are made. I make bead and wire jewelry I have to do on the bed in the back of the RV. Again, the challenge is where to store the supplies and my finished products. There is not a lot of room for three women, their clothes, food, and other stuff let along our crafting supplies. We have had to compromise on where we keep our things and are trying to develop good habits of putting everything back where it belongs when we are done for the day. We use a lot of hard, square plastic bins and boxes to store things. Our crafting materials are stored inside our RV while our finished products have to be stored inside our minivan.
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What do you do when the creative mood strikes you? If it is at an inconvenient time like when you have children or grandchildren running around wanting your attention then that is not a good time to have a creative mood unless it involves entertaining them. But if you do not have any distractions and you have a large block of time you can go “all in” and create as many things as you can until you run out of material or your body will not allow you to go any further. This past weekend was one of those times for me. I pulled out all of my bead and wire stuff and decided that I would make some earrings. Continue reading “When the Creative Mood Strikes”