Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Mean People Suck

I've been seeing a trend lately among other bloggers, social media users and commenters and frankly, it needs to stop. Maybe it's because it's winter and everyone is cranky without their vitamin D. I'd love to give these folks the benefit of the doubt here. But it seems that there is so much negativity going around right now and lashing out at others that it's become common place. Even if you aren't a kid, cyber bullying is still a real thing.

When I read comments about someone being attacked for something they posted. Their belief in a certain religion, a certain hobby, dieting. It just makes me sad. There is absolutely no reason to attack someone because your opinion differs from theirs. None. Period. It's not even a discussion, it's the way it is kids.

Recently I have read posts about someone being verbally berated for learning to love the body they are in, for people being bashed over their religious beliefs, for people being harassed over their healthy and non-self destructive hobbies and for people who try to help others but get swept up in the competitive world of blogging and owning an online shop. Is this really how someone wants to represent themselves to others? As a bully. As someone who likes to hide behind an anonymous post and spray hate all over someone else. That persons lifestyle does not affect your own. If you don't like what they have to say, you don't have to read them. It's commonsense.

They don't believe in your religion, live and let live and do unto others my friends. They can sort it out with whatever higher power they choose when their time comes.

They have a hobby you find strange? So what. Is it affecting your personally? No? Then stop it.

They have an online shop and work from home knitting, sewing or whatever? Stop telling them to go to work and find a real job. Stay at home moms work hard. Daycare is expensive and most people work JUST TO PAY FOR DAYCARE. Some people have medical problems you may not be aware of and they don't plaster all over the Internet. Some people have depression and anxiety issues.

The point is, you don't know. Keeping your opinion to yourself is usually the best course of action here. Especially if you are about to be insensitive, ignorant, judgmental, rude...you get it. It's like Mad Libs for mean kids. Insert your own negative action [here].

Stop bringing each other down and stop competing. It's life. It's not a race and riding your high horse all the way to finish line doesn't get you a prize at the end.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Sponsor Sew Do Something!

New on the Blog! Sponsor ads. You can check it out on the Sponsor page or by clicking here.

Accepting ads for blogs, shops and whatever it is that you want linked back to! And for all new ads using code NEW will get you 50% off of your ad space. Super deal.

Please consider a spot on the blog. See the left side....that's all for you.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Weekly Recap

This was a fairly light week as far as creating for me. I wish I could have done more but there was a lot of administrative and behind the scenes work going on this week. You know, all of the intangible time-sucking things that you have to do because you are a one person show.

Don't get me wrong. Some of this time suckers are fun. Like message boards and pics. And some of them are tedious and necessary like researching new postage rates, pricing supplies, registering for tax id numbers, setting up income and expense charts. You know, THAT stuff.

As a special note. Postage rates are increasing on January 27. Please keep that in mind when ordering from the shop. I have not yet increased my rates, so order while you can save some money. Especially all of you International folks! US rates are doubling for International shipping.

Molly wants to tell everyone to have a great weekend and stay warm! It's cold here in Chesapeake and there's actually snow to which she says: "I am not amused." So Molly will be snuggled up in blankets until this passes!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Things I Love Thursday - Dangle Bracelets

I've decided to start a new feature here on the blog showcasing items I love. And I am not talking about things I bought at Target. I am talking small online business handmade items. I have always loved Etsy and its array of amazing items that you don't see in big box stores. Things that weren't cranked out of a factory. Things that say: There aren't many of me. I'm special. I represent things you like. I represent YOU.

And now that I've learned about Storenvy it opens up a second venue for finding unique pieces that I love to own. The new Thursday feature will showcase items that I own, use and adore. Pieces I chose myself and purchased. Not items that I was asked to review. I am not gaining anything here by sharing these items and shops with you. I just simply love their handmade sweetness.

My first pick are dangle bracelets. I am not very big on wearing bracelets. I can't wear them on my right hand. And a lot of times I find they irritate me when I wear then on my left. If I try to type they get in the way. Or they are too big. I have a small wrist and most things are way to big for me. I also like jewelry that is dainty, petite and unobtrusive. I know some of you love a big loud piece but I feel overpowered and uncomfortable in statement jewelry.

The dangle bracelets I've been wearing are from Melli's Trinkets. I had seen her post several of them for promotion in our Storenvy group on Facebook and I adored them. They just looked fun and simple. They weren't trying to hard to be seen, they just had personality all on their own.

What makes this different from other bracelets I've worn? Well for starters it's the weight. These bracelets are light so they aren't rolling up and down my arm every time I move. The pearls are small enough that my wrist isn't overwhelmed by a chunky bead. And the pearls spread out if I am typing so they aren't all poking into my skin. They also come with a long leader chain so that I can completely adjust it to my tiny wrists.

I've even worn them both together without wanting to rip them off after five minutes.

Another thing I love about them is the construction. I have had bracelets similar to these in the past and I was not happy with them. From what I have learned there is a classic and textbook way to make these where the pin is fished through the bead and left with a bit of a leg on it once it is wrapped through the bracelet's chain. This leaves the bead dangling a little further from the chain and also leaves the end of the pin exposed. I wear a lot of knits and this has caused a lot of snagging to my shirts and sweaters. Melli's method is to not have a leg on the pin and to wrap the end of the pin as closely into the bead as she can. This keeps the bead close to the chain and I have yet to have a snag.

Did I mention they're reasonably priced too? Depending on the type of bead she uses, these little beauties are between $10 - $15. Frankly, I think that's a steal. And they are her best sellers. You can find her shop by clicking on this link Melli's Trinkets. I recommend checking out her shop and her other items and maybe picking up a dangle bracelet for yourself. You'll love it!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

I Love Blythe

My newest obsession are Blythe Dolls. Well, I guess I shouldn't exactly say new. I've been telling my husband about them and looking at them for months now. What is new is that now I own some. OK, I own four. And I love them. All of the pics in today's blog are showing three of my girls and all of the dresses are made by me and have sold or are for sale in my shops.

What are Blythe Dolls? Well, for those of you who aren't familiar I will give you a little run down. In 1972, a USA toy company called Kenner (now Hasbro) produced a doll with a small sized body and big color changing eyes. The eyes change color and position with the pull of a string. Kenner sold the dolls for about a year but sales were low and they were deemed to scary for children.

People who owned and collected the dolls had a special love for them and took beautiful pictures showing the dolls in various outfits and situations. In 2000, a photo book was published showing off Blythe and in 2001 a Japanese company called Takara started producing the dolls again. These are not for kids to play with. The dolls are expensive and many are limited edition.

What makes them so special? What makes anything special? The love people have for it. As opposed to Barbie, Blythe is much more customizable. There are many artists out there who do face customization. From matting the skin so that it isn't so shiny, changing the eye-chips, changing eyelashes, carving noses, mouths and expressions and adding make-up, freckles and lipstick. The dolls come with a plastic saran hair texture like most all dolls do. Typically they have pretty awful haircuts. Many people care for their hair, recut and style it. There are also methods for re-rooting their hair so that you can use different materials and colors. I haven't yet attempted a re-root but I have been using Mohair wigs. They're fun, colored and curly. I do plan on customizing some of my dolls. Two are already customized.

Another big deal with the Blythe dolls is fashion. Which I am happy to announce I am taking part in. Lately I've been a bit tired and burnt out from making purses. I feel limited in creativity with them and I don't think they leave me, personally, a lot of room to think outside the box and really add creativity to them. I tend to make purses that I want to carry and everything I make looks like something in my closet. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I feel I have a fun, quirky and enjoyable taste. But I am just a bit over making them. So I have started making dresses and clothing for Blythe. And I love it.

The tiny details that I can put into a garment are fascinating to me. I love making a beautiful dress that is outside of my style. It's easy for me to be more creative because I'm no longer thinking, would I want to be seen carrying this? I just couldn't ever break myself from that.

The dresses I've been making are quite honestly, fabulous. My knowledge of construction and my sewing ability from making so many bags has added skills and techniques to my range of knowledge that I didn't even realize were there. I immediately jumped right into the most complex dresses I could. And they were easy and adorable. Right now I am in love with a drop waisted peter pan collar dress. And I'm not the only one. I have yet to have one sit in the shop for more than 24 hours. Which is exciting to me. Very exciting because I love when people love my art.

I understand that a lot of people find them creepy but if you take the time to google more about the Blythe dolls and look at some of the photogroups on Flickr you will start to see the beauty and enjoyment in them. I hope to bring you all more great pics of my girls and many more beautiful outfits and dresses for yours!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Who Likes Starbucks? Enter to Win a Gift Card!

I know you all love your Starbucks. I also know some of you can't get through the day without it.

Well guess what? Kendall from Songbirds & Buttons is having a giveaway for a $40 Starbucks Gift Card!

Below is a nice note from Kendall and your opportunity to the giveaway!

Good Luck!!!

Hey all! As you know - I have some amazing sponsors. Each month we ban together and pitch in to get you an awesome prize. This month we decided to do a Starbucks gift card. Why? Because I've been on a serious Starbucks kick(thanks Kimberly)and I wanted you to join in on the fun. I bet you're wondering just how much of a gift card we're talkin' here. Well, how does $40 sound? That my friends will buy a LOT of coffee - maybe even a cute mug or two!

So what are you waiting for? 
Enter using the Rafflecopter below:
 a Rafflecopter giveaway  Photobucket

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Projects For the Start of 2013

I've been a busy bee lately. I have been working on custom orders since Thanksgiving. I do love working on custom orders but they were just taking up so much of my time that I couldn't work on anything new for the shop. I hadn't added anything new since sometime in late October or early November. Well! I finally finished up the last of the custom orders and was able to start on some of my long list of projects this week.

I was also able to use my new camera to take pics. It's an 18 megapixel camera that does so many things I doubt I will ever use all of the features. That does't diminish its awesomeness though. I tried out a new backdrop method and it was the perfect piece to the puzzle. The pics came out beautiful and professional looking and the white backdrop was perfect for adding my watermark in Photoshop.

Everything shown below is now listed in the shop. You can click on the link or click the SHOP button above.