Friday is Spring Fair Day

On Friday I am taking a little road trip to Crystal Lake. I will be a vendor at the Immanuel Lutheran Spring Spotlight Craft/Vendor Fair on Friday, March 3 from 6 to 9 pm. The fair will be held at 300 Pathway Ct, Crystal Lake, IL.

Artists include:

  • Avallon’s Voice
  • Baby Bree Creations
  • Daniez Designz
  • Dirt Tribe
  • Ginspiration
  • Gramma’s Treasures
  • Home D’ecor and Sports Signs
  • Joyous Occasions
  • Lilypad Lights
  • Madgically Made Baby

  • Maike’s Marvels
  • Mar’s Homemade Caramel Corn
  • Nonie’s Bees
  • Norwex
  • Special Soaps
  • Sunshine Greetings
  • Sylverwear
  • The Headband Girl
  • The Magic Slipper

Vendors include:

  • Arbonne International
  • Baird & Warner
  • Damsel in Defense
  • Dave’s Sealcoating
  • Faith Lutheran High School
  • It Works!
  • Juice Plus+
  • Le Petit Marché

  • LuLaRoe
  • Mary Kay
  • Pampered Chef
  • PNC Chiropratic
  • Pink Zebra
  • Tastefully Simple
  • Tupperware
  • Usborne Books

This is a new-to-me show so I am looking forward to meeting new people and getting to know Crystal Lakers.

Valentine’s Week

Last week’s excuse to celebrate love was fun.

I made some loving food in heart-shaped muffin forms.

My Valentine came from Stumble & Relish, along with a delicious bath bomb.

A friend and I strolled along Dempster where I picked up new treasures from Crowded Closet and Secret Treasures. The top will serve well for neckshots.

 

We also stopped by Hewn and Chocolatier Piron for Valentine goodies.

I swung by Michaels to pick up new storage and was hit with Easter right away.

St. Patrick’s day is nigh as well, which will make me upload Shamrock Angel soon.

I had an eye on these scrapbook boxes but needed to explore other ways to transport my swarm and angels and frosties, so I browsed online for solutions until checking these boxes out in the store.

They happened to be on sale, hooray! It’s a great change from the non-weather proof shipping boxes I had recycled before.

I am using foam craft sheets as inserts, which will help keep my creations stable as I sift through layers to get customers the color and style they want when I haven’t hung all my pieces at a fair.

My old boxes wouldn’t close over the dragonfly squiggles, so this closed lid pleases me a lot.

I am excited to use these at the 2 upcoming shows, the Spring Craft Fair in Crystal Lake and Affair of the Arts in Spring Grove.

It’s been beautiful spring weather, and though I was felled with a bug over the weekend I enjoyed the sunshine in my windows and birds chirping.

Now plants are peeking through in February, which is strange.

The rays make for fun window shoots.

I’m uploading pendants, bangles, angels, earrings and other pieces as fast as I can.

Learning Jigoshop has been interesting, and changing the theme fixed a huge sidebar problem that didn’t seem to be solvable for a few weeks.

I am also applying to future shows, and crossing fingers for this one.

One Art Show Application site had me frustrated with rejection, but then this year I decided to try a new show, and I actually got a lovely green check mark! The BLING show will be in November.

Here’s to not giving up and believing in opportunity. Stay confident that you are in exactly the right place at the right time, and do what you can, with what you have, where you are. It might get you featured in a magazine!

Seussian Studiotime

I’ve done a lot of uploading and tweaking wordpress for the shop, and while I have plenty of pieces in stock, I was itching to get back into the studio again.

This brush needed to be taken out of its misery too!

My rainbow collection garnered a custom Valentine order, which I cheerfully fulfilled.

These are off to new homes.

I also recreated the infinity pendant that came out of a Now That’s a Jig! playdate.

My original version was snapped up right away, so here is this brighter pendant.

A bangle I created last year turned out to be too small, and then my customer asked to have it embellished with birthstone beads to represent her family.

So I set out to Dave’s Rock Shop and Ayla’s Originals to get the right gemstones.

The bigger size bangle called for a new mandrel.

Then I layed out the stones.

Stringing took a full afternoon, as most of these tiered bangles do.

I love the look of them though.

I donated a few keychains to worthy causes.

Some will pop up in various fundraisers throughout the year.

I also made a Seuss-inspired pendant for Chiaravalle Montessori School’s “Oh The Places You’ll Go”-themed Spring Benefit.

Dr. Seuss is one of my favorite authors and I own his full collection, including the Dutch books I grew up with. So I wiggled together a whimsical wire form to reflect the Seussian landscape.

I took a cue from “Oh the Places You’ll Go” and drew some lines in the pastel colors of the book onto tissue paper. Of course there had to be a nod to the message of the book on the back.

Now my spirit is restored and I can get back to the mundaner tasks of business management and planning. I multitask during product uploads, and ponder the places my business will go.

Main-Dempster Mile fun

I am easing out of hibernation and it is safe (no longer too cold) to take angel out and about on my adventures.

Evanston’s Main-Dempster mile is full of fun adventures. Squeezebox has the right idea with these postcards.

I had tacos for charity on the day of the Woman’s March, and later went to La Principal again with friends.

A few weeks later Brothers K collected funds for the ACLU.

My frosty is still hanging out at Rolf’s Auto Care, where I took my car for service.

We rewarded ourselves with some Sketchbook beer after a Hip Circle workout.

Stumble & Relish’s lovely card selection, along with my stash of Curly Girl Design’s Love Delivered subscription has me writing a postcard on Sundays.

I got to sample SPARK Syrup with Prosecco on Thursday and picked up some earrings I couldn’t resist.

Vivian Visser explained the process and inspiration behind her beautiful creations during an Artist talk at Cultivate.

This wonderful show is up through the end of the month.

It is always neat to see who shadows interact with art work on the wall.

I attended a few recent The Collage Cafe workshops, and loved the glowing woman who emerged from the last Grown*UP Girls Club session.

My vision boards will be shown when they manifest.

Then I was introduced to Bullet Journaling at Hip Circle Studio.

Next weekend I hope to explore Evanston’s Black-owned Businesses during Tour de Noir.

There’s always something fun to do in Evanston.

Bead Counting

Last week I shopped for some birthstones at Dave’s Down to Earth Rock Shop and at Ayla’s Originals. Ayla’s had a wonderful vintage bead sale and I couldn’t resist picking up a  sparkly iridescent strand.

Then I made a pact with myself to inventory what I have at home. I always gravitate toward the same colors, so I had to ensure that what I have is sufficient rather than giving in to temptation.

I also need to update my spreadsheets with what is still on hand after a few years, so much counting ensued.

When I went to the Bead & Button Show I had a list of colors and types of beads I could buy. I also had a current photo of my bead rack in the camera for reference. Over two days I made my way through my stash and identified beads that I had not yet learned names of in 2011.

Clearly I have plenty in my stash to keep me busy, but it is still wonderful to peruse bead stores, fondle the strands, and learn more about unique gemstones and bead artisans.

Right now my mission is to make a dent in the beads I have and post those creations onto the shop.

I also need to get the birthstone bangle completed that started this inventory session in the first place.

What are your favorite gems?

WebShopping

I am busy loading products to the shop and working on tweaking some of the emails that follow the order.

Plugins and embedded php shortcodes are a whole different interface than the HTML I learned in 2000.

Still, the store should be functional enough for you to get your Valentine on (in spite of one pesky sidebar I need to remove).

I needed some rainbow therapy during the longest two weeks that impacted so many people.

So I made some hearts to cope with the events that I could not control.

Somehow making these pieces gives me peace.

The Love Wins heart got sold right after posting, but the full rainbow collection is up.

I am also continuing to add to the angels that are in the catalog right now.

A Spring theme with flowers of all kinds is also in the works.

The most time consuming part is getting all the pendant neckshots, especially since those shoots are daylight-dependent and it’s been a bit dreary lately, alternated by too much sunshine.

Then there’s the cropping and resizing, but being on Etsy gave me lots of practice to where I can listen to podcasts during this process.

I look forward to making some progress this week so you have the full range of my inventory.

Wishing you much love and joy as we navigate interesting times.

Desiderata

I am working on my shop, and with all the turmoil in the news I have no head space to draft a blog right now, so Max Ehrmann will have to do for this week.

Desiderata by Max Ehrmann

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.

But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.

But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Whose words sustain your soul right now?