Thursday, April 30, 2009

Etsy Shops/Items I Adore -- Some More of My Favorites from ETSY

More favorites to share with you this week...

I'm going to be a grandmother for the first time later this year and awhile ago found this beautiful rocker from irrationalartscom, a fellow Pacific Northwest artisan. Hand Painted Seattle Skyline Rocker would be a perfect addition to any home, but especially one which is welcoming new life! The price is $200.00 which is more than reasonable for this one of a kind work of art.

Candles are usually burning while I work at the screen, read, sew, cross-stitch, watch whatever I'm watching on the TV while stretched out (that is when it's not watching me!). Another Pacific Northwest favorite shop of mine is RusticCandles from Port Orchard, WA. The shop is full of wonderful, aromatic soy candles. The 8-ounce size will burn approximately 50 hours. Wicks are lead free and soy burns cleaner than other blends of wax. The prices are a bargain! $7.00 for an 8-ounce jar candle. That's 14 cents for every hour of scented bliss! The scent of lavendar is so relaxing so my personal pick at the moment is "English Lavendar 8 oz Soy Candle".

Finally, MagnetGames is a brand new shop at Etsy (April 21, 2009) which also happens to be homebased here in the Pacific Northwest. I was cruising through Alchemy requests and found this gem last night. MagnetGames' offerings include magnets made from beads of some favorite computer and other games, like PacMan, Ms. PacMan, Sudoku, Mario, etc. I want Ms. PacMan for my fridge and another one for my cubie at work! The prices are reduced to help introduce this new shop. The PacMan Magnet Set is $15.00 and there are add-ons to most that are very reasonably priced. The PacMan and Ms. PacMan Add On is currently $2.50. There is even a Tic Tac Toe magnet set for $12.00. Toooo cute!!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Free Pattern Wednesday -- Father's Day Will Be Here Soon!

Good morning (or afternoon or evening)! Father's Day is right around the corner and while some of us have lost our dads, there are those of you who are searching for a different type of gift to make for Dad this year.

This simple Chinese symbol with backstitching and border free cross-stitch pattern represents the English word "Father". It is done in 2 colors, is simple enough for a beginner and could be completed in less than a weekend. It is 50x50 stitches so can either be mounted and framed, used on a pillow or to embellish something you already have in mind.


As always with free patterns I offer, you are free to give or sell your finished cross-stitch item or share the link to this blog article. Please do not add this pattern to your collection or claim it as your own. It would be lovely if you credit me with the design, but not absolutely necessary.

If you have something custom in mind for Father's Day or any upcoming holiday that you would like to begin now, I am always open to the possibility of creating a custom pattern just for you. To make a request, click this link. To see my already created Chinese Symbol/Kanji cross-stitch patterns, you are always welcome to visit me at my Etsy site, DPeaGreen Designs.

Here are some books that share more about needlework with an Oriental theme.




Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Quick Tip Tuesday -- Can I Schedule My Blog Post For Later?

Yes! I was wondering the same thing about Blogger when I received a newsletter sharing news about a new scheduler to publish blogs at a specific time/day. I searched Blogger Help and didn't find anything. It doesn't mean there isn't help though. In the Help Forum, I found exactly that!

I'm a newbie at disciplining myself to keep up with one blog and post every day (well, except for Saturday, my break day). The idea of keeping up with more than one is a bit daunting for me at this point .

For those who have more than one blog, I will share the information about new PostLater farther down this article.

If, like me, you are using Blogger, here is how t
o schedule your post to publish at a later date and/or time:

Create a New Post. Once the page opens, look fo
r the "Post Options" link:


A box opens which show Options. Change the date and/or time in the fill-in boxes on the lower right:



That's all it takes!

NOTE: remember to change the date and time you want to publish before you begin typing the new blog. Changing it later won't stop Blogger from publishing it as soon as you click on the "Publish" button if you change it after entering text. The blog will still publish at your scheduled time as well. In other words, if you use TwitterFeed or one of the other services to feed Twitter and other micro-blogs, you may publish notice of the new blog entry two times -- once when you first click "Publish" and once again when it has been scheduled. This may not be a bad thing if, like me, you don't update more than a few items or times during a day.

If you publish more than one blog and do several updates each day to one or more of them, the new PostLater service looks like it might be a one stop shop to schedule all postings from one location. It not only supports all the major blogging platforms but also supports micro-blogging sites like Twitter.

For those of us who often post several new items from our various shops at one time, instead of inundating our followers with everything at once, wouldn't it be nice to send notices at pre-scheduled times throughout the day?

Monday, April 27, 2009

It's Not Your MaMa's Cross-Stitch ...

I was browsing for some cross-stitch books with a different and newer view and found three absolute gems for those who would like to learn cross-stitch or start a new project yet are looking for a subject that is fun or irreverent or more up to date than most patterns available.

Subversive Cross Stitch is a collection of patterns from Julie Jackson. I just love her shop, subversivejewels, on Etsy! There she offers jewelry and accessories made from her designs, as well as other items. Then there is her website where you can purchase kits or patterns.

Stitch Graffiti ... from Heather Holland-Daly is another book full of new and different cross-stitch ideas. Lots of ideas for getting started, the supplies one needs and updated, different themes on more traditional ideas.

Not Your Mama's Stitching: The Cool and Creative Way to Stitch It To 'Em from Kate Shoup Welsh not only covers cross-stitch but also new ideas for embroidery, needle punch, crewel and needlepoint. With chapter titles like, "Back Stitch to the Future," "Wear Me Out: Stitching You Can Wear," and "Present Tents: Nifty Needlecraft Gifts", how can this read not be absolutely a joy as well as informative?

Soooo, if you're ready for something new to inspire you to put needle and thread to your canvas of choice, one of these great reads and reference books might just be the thing to rev your create juices!



Then there are my Chinese Symbol/Kanji cross-stitch designs available in my Etsy shop which are new, unique, very reasonably priced and can be sent to you free of shipping charges by email. If you don't find exactly what you're looking for in my inventory, I can custom create a symbol or two or three, etc., based on your favorite word(s)! Convo me and let's talk.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

My First Custom Cross-Stitch Pattern ...


I just received and completed my first custom order for a cross-stitch pattern through Alchemy. What a fun project! Shameless promotion it may be but I wanted to share a picture of the completed project with you because I'm pleased with how it turned out and how much my customer liked it. Here is her feedback:

"
Thank you so much for the custom order! I love the pattern. She was very quick at making it, and she asked lots of questions to make sure I got exactly what I wanted. Very professional seller, will buy from again!"

Convo me at my shop if you have a project you've wanted to do but can't find the exact pattern you have in mind. Together we can create a pattern that you will enjoy working to completion.

Friday, April 24, 2009

DPeaGreenDesigns -- My Cross-Stitch Patterns


The majority of patterns in my Etsy Shop are cross-stitch designs of Chinese symbols/Kanji words with and without borders like these pictured here:



These Chinese symbols are the basis for many of modern-day Japanese Kanji. We see them as tattoos, used in sumi and watercolor paintings, and more and more are being used in various medium as modern day art.

As simple as the designs of each, there does seem to be a mystery about each that is exciting to explore. What drew me to these to use in cross-stitch is just that -- the simplicity and the mystery.

Very popular as body art for those who are younger than me, the boomer, I was thinking how so many of our creative arts are being adopted by the younger, up and coming generation. Some were taught like I was -- at my grandmother's and mother's knees from about age 5 (to keep me distracted and out of their hair!) -- but so many young women and men (remember Rosey Grier and his needlepoint? Google him, if not...) have developed an interest in crafting and want to teach themselves.

Since I share an interest in these wonderful symbols and their meanings, as well as have cross-stitched for years, I thought what a wonderful way to bring something elegant but easy for a beginner and yet interesting enough for the experienced cross-stitch aficionado to market. It took me awhile to develop a quality pattern and include "how to" instructions that will help any beginner, yet also be a refresher for a stitcher coming back to the art after a hiatus. I believe I've accomplished this with the added benefit of being able to instantly deliver a pattern by email in "pdf" format small enough be received without fuss.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Etsy Shops I Adore -- Check Them Out!!


One of my favorite things to do as an Etsy member is to cruise the forums, find an active thread and begin at the beginning reading every post to see what others have to say and what is working for other sellers. Over the weekend, I found a great thread that was started by Timothy Adams of Timothy Adams Design about tips and suggestions for networking and exposure.

While reading, I found two shops that contained items that widened my smile to a grin of pure delight!

Flying Buttons which is chock full of amazing and fun handmade buttons turned into wonderful hair accessories, jewelry and other items.

My favorite is "The Owl Nerds and their Dysfunctional Boss-Giant Paperclip/Bookmark Organizers-Fabric Covered Buttons". These paperclip/bookmarks are just perfect for co-workers or fellow bookworms! At $5.50 for the set of 4, who wouldn't want at least one set? The difficult part would be to figure out which to keep and which to gift to another!!

UglyBaby is another current favorite shop. Her specialty is shower art and there are several pieces I have marked to purchase one day soon.

The favorite right now is "Shower Art - Wild About Him". From the description of what exactly shower art is -- "shower art is waterproof art you can hang in your shower with a suction cup. Or anywhere else." The price is $18.00 which is more than fair for a piece of what is truly "art" that can decorate the inside of your shower, the front of your fridge or have a place of honor in your cubie at work.

I hope you enjoy these and will share some of your favorites with me. I love seeing all the new shops, artist and entrepreneurs and what each is so talented at creating!

Have a great Thursday!
Diane

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A Fan Quilt Block Pattern For You -- FREE



A free Quilt Block Pattern for you created by me :). Includes suggested fabric list, a photo, chart showing placement of the various templates and the templates: http://tinyurl.com/cgfj32.


Please feel free to link here so that others can enjoy and use this pattern but please don’t publish it elsewhere. If you want to, please ask permission and link back to either my Etsy shop (http://dpeagreendesigns.etsy.com/) or my blog (http://dpeagreendesigns.blogspot.com/). You are free to sell a completed block or quilt that you create and call it your own. If you want to give me credit, it would be lovely but not required.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

If You Are New To Etsy or Want To Increase Traffic To Your Etsy Shop ...


I recently found a thread in the Etsy communities where Etsyans were sharing tips and found a great site with lots of "easy to do" tips for newbies to Etsy, as well as lots of information for those who have been around awhile and are exploring other avenues to market their art and handmade crafts. Timothy Adam Designs has shared a ton of suggestions, tips and tricks to help each of us create a successful Etsy shop to share and sell our wares. His newest offering is "Handmadeology, the science of homemade".

Check out Etsy 101, the first in a series of "how to" videos on becoming an Etsy seller. More are planned and I'm looking forward to learning more from each.

In addition to Etsy 101, Tim's site includes valuable information on Twitter, Art Fire, Google Analytics, adding an Etsy mini to your Facebook site, and some great photography tips. It looks like it will be a "one stop shop" for helping any artist/crafter learn how to set up shop and market his/her offerings.

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