Monday, November 30, 2009

Mosaic Monday: Silver and Gold

It's the last day of November! Hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving and is revved up for the Holidays (I know I am)! I'm going to have some fun with themes this month, and each week will be inspired by a song. I'll kick things off with my Grandfather's favorite, Silver and Gold.

1) Let Go by Paperbullet
2) Grey and Mustard Ponytail Holders by zomoandbara
3) Gold and Peal Bird's Nest Ring by laurabailliedesigns
4) Blue Bird of Happiness by yarnabees
5) Dolce Silver Glitter Shoes from AgelessThings
6) The Casino Necklace by lushboutique
7) Grey Circles Notecard by EvenAndy
8) Gold Fusion Christmas Bow by Advancewing

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

And The Nominees Are...

Thanks so much to everyone who entered our Team Challenge: Glistening Snow and Mistletoe. Each entry was gorgeous and I was so happy to see that a good number of them sold!

Since we didn't get quite as many entries as we were hoping for, we are doing a top 4 (instead of 5), and here they are!


And there you have it! Our top 4 (and I promise I did not score my earrings - that was all the other 2 judges!). There is a poll on the top of the sidebar that will be open for the next 10 days (it will close Dec. 5th at 12pm EST). ALL are welcome to vote on it! And remember, the winner will receive a 4-day ad on craftcult, paid for by the judges of this.

Thanks again for entering, and Happy Thanksgiving, Americans!

Wishlist Wednesday - Angie from Cantrix Jewelry!

Hi everyone! LushBoutique here with another great Wishlist Wednesday list from one of our fabulous members.

Today's featured member is the fabulous Angie of CantrixJewelry.

Her first pick is from larimeloom. Angie says, "I love the versatility of this dress. She shows 4 ways to wear it, and I'm sure you could think of more. It's so pretty and feminine, and in jersey you know it must be SUPER comfortable!" (I agree. AH-DORABLE.)

I am head over heels in love with this necklace from briguysgirls, and I don't know why I don't just buy it for myself! These real leaves dipped in precious metals in my new obsession and if I could have a million of them, I probably would. I love how this one is layered with the pearl. It could be worn with just about every outfit!

I am a knitter and a spinner so I love just about anything made out of wool. Who knew it could make such beautiful art? This painting from SunflowerWoolArt would look so great anywhere in my house, especially in my craft room (which is overflowing with yarn and fiber!)

I love wearing post earrings. These earrings from tigerlillyshop are the perfect size and the color is gorgeous. I also love that the fabric is iridescent. I want these in every color!

Last but not least, something for the kitties. My husband and I are joking (but kind of seriously) about getting a couple of these from whiskerkisses for our cats to wear in a photo for out Christmas cards. I have a tie like this that I like to put on my cats whenever I have the chance. They look so cute and funny with them on!

Thank you Angie from Cantrix and Cantrix Jewelry. Have a fabulous Thanksgiving everyone, and good luck this weekend!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Mosaic Tuesday: Because This Week Is Wonky

I did actually make this yesterday, but my day was so crazy, what with the Trunk Show (which was fun!) and such, that I am posting this today.

Theme: Earth

A large collection of just some rats who are having deals this week! Look around in all the shops for great Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals abound.

Also letting you guys know two more things:

1) We will be annoucing the top 5 for the Team Challenge tomorrow afternoon/evening!

2) We will not be updating the blog/twitter Thurs-Sat, enjoy the holiday with friends and family (since the team is mostly American)!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Feature Friday - Shelley from EvenAndy

Feature Friday - On a Monday because my internet still doesn't work at home! :)

Shelley from EvenAndy is our current Featured Lab Rats Team member.

My name is Shelley Worsham. I just moved to Brooklyn, NY from Boston. I am a stay at home mom with a very active 9 month old. Before becoming a stay at home mom, I was a Chemist and Pathology Technologist. I just recently started exploring my creative side. I enjoy making stationery and paper products. When I got the nerve to share my work, I decided that Etsy would be a great environment for sharing. When my son was first born, I decided that I needed something to do during the day while he slept. I decided that I wanted to learn the Adobe Creative Programs (Illustrator, Photoshop, inDesign, Flash). As I started to learn, I became extremely interested in creating things. My husband is an Art Director and he would honestly critique my work. I just love doing it.

I get ideas through things around me. They come from things I read, from things I saw while taking walks with my son, from things I saw on television, or from a song that I heard. I normally start my day around 5AM. I start printing out things and preparing them to be photographed. My normal day is filled with forum chats, taking pictures, posting items, tweeting, looking for promotion sites, completing orders (if applicable), and attending virtual labs. I get this done during my son's naptime. I also do a lot of work (designing) at night when everyone is asleep.

I think that my items are for those people who still like receiving and sending mail. It is for the person that likes the personal aspect of writing out a letter.

3 Favorite Books: Great Gatsby (F. Scott Fitzgerald), Beloved (Toni Morrison), Things Fall Apart (Chinua Achebe)

3 Favorite Songs: Yesterday (Beatles), No Women, No Cry (Bob Marley), Imagine (John Lennon)

3 Favorite Television Shows: Seinfeld, Desperate Housewives, The Biggest Loser

3 Favorite Websites:,,,

In a year, I hope that my shop will be more visible. I hope to have steady sales (at least one a day). I want at least 150 items available at all times to give customers a large selection.

I am currently working on reorganizing my shop. I was recently told that I should separate my items into flat and folded cards. I am currently in the process of doing just that.

If I could have one superpower it would be regeneration. That would be great to know that no matter what, I would be like brand new.

Thank you to Shelley and to all of you for being patient with me (at least I haven't received any angry e-mails) while I finalize unpacking in the new house and getting the internet going. The guys from CableOne are coming out today, so hopefully, everything will be as right as rain once again.

Here's one last item from Shelley's beautiful shop:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Trunk Show Information

This was sent out as an e-mail, but I'm posting it here, too!

Gallery in the Virtual Labs
7pm (EST)
Monday, November 23

A trunk show, in real life, is when a group of crafters get together and have a small show for people they invite or whoever happens to come by and see. It works almost the same in the virtual labs, only... well, it's virtual!

I'd advise coming around 15-30 minutes early, and getting settled, and start chatting up your deals and what you will be offering. Invite EVERYONE. The more eyes, the more likely a sale.

Which brings me to my next point, think up some kind of discount or sale to offer to people in attendance. Free shipping, BOGO, 10%/15%/25%/however much percent off. It'll be a great way to encourage multiple sales and make people want to stay and buy more.

What will you actually do? Well, I will be allowing other members to to on their webcam (but PLEASE REMEMBER to wear headphones, you get horrible echo if you don't!). If you don't have one, that's totally ok, you don't need one. I just feel like it makes it a little easier to communicate! We will be taking turns, probably in a 5-10 minute frame, of showing off items (via item cards) and you will explain what sale is being offered, who it would be a great gift for and if there are any other items in your shop that would go well with it.

If you're offering discounts in the trunk show, I don't really advise against changing the listing, in case other buyers are in your shop and they might get a deal on not knowing. If someone is interested, my best advice, is just to refund them back through paypal. If you're offering BOGO, either select an item everyone will get (a free gift sort of deal) or tell them to pick out an item and reserve it for them.

Feel free to announce in your shop the Lab Rat Trunk Show, I will be! I WOULD wait until maybe Saturday evening or Sunday afternoon to announce it, or else people may wait and get a discount rather than just buy the item. I've gone ahead and typed up and example, if you'd like to just copy and paste:

Looking for some great holiday gifts, along with some holiday sales?
Come to the Etsy Virtual Labs Monday, November 23 at 7pm (EST)
Art, jewelry, baby items, paper goods, crochet, vintage and so much more!
Everyone is welcome!
Look for the Gallery, in black.

Here, is an example, of what you might do, should you attend:
- prior to, talk it up with everyone (in person, on twitter, on your blog, facebook, in your shop).
- Enter room, about 20 minutes early. Chat with everyone about the 15% off all items you have going on tonight.
- itsa turns cam on, selects you to go.
- you annouce your sale, give a link to your shop, and soon, people start putting in item cards from your shop.
- you mention something would make a great gift for those ever elusive teenagers or a Mother In Law.
- someone sees something they want, they purchase it. (yay!)
- you (after doing the happy sale dance, it's required) refund them the 15% back through paypal.
- you pick the next person to go!
- No sale? Bummer. But you still get to pick the next person.

If you have any other question, don't hesitate to ask! Nothing is too silly or stupid.

Can't wait, hope you can make it!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wishlist Wednesday - Lynn from TexasBeadz

Hi everyone! LushBoutique here with another great Wishlist Wednesday list from one of our fabulous members.

Today's featured member is Lynn of TexasBeadz

Lynn's first pick is from BijouxOdalisque. She says, "This woman creates masterpieces with tiny jewels hand selecting the colors, placing them every so perfectly. If you look at the shop, each piece is very unique and you could just scoop them all up and take them home. Now would they go with my denims and flip flops, probably not, but every once in a while this casual soul has to wear her pretties.

Our fellow Rat, WhiteThistleDesign, is an amazing talent! She creates designs from very high end fabrics and makes bags, pillows and now has a Bridal division creating the most amazing ring bearer pillows. If I had an entire page, I will tell you all her talents and you would be blown away. This is most definitely a woman to be admired.

I have been on a labradorite kick for some time and these haunt me. Heck, Lynn, just break down and buy them! LittleBug is very innovative and creative and works non stop on her shop, photo work and designs. I just love to keep watching to see what she thinks up next!

EcoChic is a newbie Rat but long time Etsian from Dallas YeeeHaw! She is an art director so the creative juices ooooze thru her veins. Everything she picks up turn in to fabulously creative items, mostly from recycled or repurposed goods. Can you imagine sitting and folding magazine paper for days on end?? So very patient and talented.

I'm saddened that I can only select 5 favorites because my list is a mile long. Polestar has to be in my top 5 and in fact, I just featured her in my blog as an artist to be admired. Polestar is climbing to the top very fast with 1493 sales in just a little over a year.

So when my ship comes in, I win the lottery or we strike oil (or better yet, gold) these top 5 will be well looked after! I hope you enjoy looking at their fabulous finds as much as I do."

Thank you Lynn from TexasBeadz! Have a great week everyone!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mosaic Monday: Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost

I have been looking at places far off from here, day-dreaming about seeing the world. This mosaic monday is inspired by travel!

1) The Flight Bag by ohvotrecoeur
2) 99 luftballoons by WorksInProgress
3) Harbor Patrol Bathtub Toy by mountaineercountry
4) Glass Art Necklace by somavenus
5) Little Pink Houses by SunshineandRavioli
6) Postcard Ring by itsastitch

Happy trails!

An Apology and My Weekend without the Internet

Hello all -

As some of you may have noticed, I did not do my weekly Feature Friday post this past week. The reason is that I did not have the internet beginning about Thursday mid-morning at home. I still don't have the internet, so I wasn't able to post it over the weekend either. Hopefully, the cable company will be able to fix my internet either tomorrow or Wednesday. Ah, the joys of moving into a new house and having the internet switched over and it not working and the cable company being completely booked and being too busy at work to do the posting there.....*sigh*

Anyway, I'd like to apologize to everyone about missing the Feature Friday post, and especially to EvenAndy, who was going to be the featured person. I will be featuring EvenAndy this next Friday, Nov. 20th.

Allison (Allysattic)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Lab Rats In The Storque!

Hey guys! I was so proud and excited to see our team made it into Etsy Find's: The A-Team, which showcases a few teams and some upcoming events/discounts they have going on.

We will be having a trunk show in the Virtual Labs on Monday, November 23 at 7pm, so be sure to come by, as this is FANTASTIC promotion for it! Sure to be some buyers in the house (myself being one of them).

Congratulations, team!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Some Notes

Hello! Just a few quick notes for you all.

-Meeting tonight! 7:30pm (EST) Shop Critiques in the Sky Room. Come if you're able to - I'll try to get to as many shops as I can =)

-Challenge! We only have a few entries for the Team Challenge, so I wanted to remind/make sure everyone is aware. There are 9 days left to enter, here is where you can read up on/leave your entry. Great stuff, so far!

-News! The lovely, wonderful and talented lushboutique is now our 3rd team "captain" (I don't know what we're officially supposed to be), but she will be taking over Wish list Wednesdays from here on out. Yay! And thanks so much to everyone who has extended their services/help to me. I'm TERRIBLE at asking for help, so it's truly appreciated. I plan on adding another one or two leaders to the team to run other things, so just sit tight and keep your eyes peeled.

-Open a second shop? Great! Just let me know and I will add it to the group, no need to fill out the application again.

-Etsy Team Profile Update. We now have some stricter rules for applying and some more links to check out on our profile if you haven't seen them yet. I love when rats recommend others, just make sure they read through the profile page first!

Thanks and hope to see some of you tonight!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wishlist Wednesday - Toni from rctees

Hi everyone! Allysattic here with another great Wishlist Wednesday list from one of our fabulous members and also an announcement.

Jenni of lushboutique has graciously accepted the task of heading up the Wishlist Wednesday postings on the blog beginning next Wednesday. Malarie will still be going Mosaic Mondays, and I will still be doing Feature Fridays.

Onto the Wednesday Wishlist! Today's featured member is Toni of rctees.

Toni's first item is from another of our great members, 1022SeaShellAve. Toni writes that "I love anything “beach” so when I found 1022SeaShellAve I knew I had found a friend. Kim has amazing original, hand painted seashells. I am already the proud owner of one of her shells and now I have my eye on this beauty for my ’09 Christmas ornament, the Golden Sea, wall ornament." This beauty is titled "Golden Sea View (2) Authentic Hand Painted Sea Shell Art Decoration".

The second item on Toni's wishlist is from another one of our member shops, zwzzy. Thsi dress, titled "Gothic Black Vintage Sexy Olga Maxi Slip" caught her eye because "I love old fashion and Zwzzy has a great eye for truly amazing vintage. I would absolutely love to have this sexy black slip gown…but not half as much as my hubby would love it. – hehe Wonderful shop!!"

Toni's third wishlist item is something to help her work through the loss of "my friend of 10 years, my kitty Marcus. Searching pet portraits I found sharonlamb. Her work is unbelievable and her prices are very affordable."

This listing is titled "Commission Pet painting Life Like custom Pet Portrait Of Your Cat Dog Horse Bunny". What a great way to memoralize a beloved pet!

The next item on the list is this great vintage emerald ring offered by SmallsbySunny. This "18K Gold Vintage Emerald Ring" is on Toni's list because "I’m a big fan of the emerald and because this is a vintage setting, to me it is even more attractive." Toni's trying to "figure out how to share this “discretely” with hubby. Any ideas?? haha."  :)

And, last, but not least, is this fifth item on Toni's wishlist, a great handpainted mug by houseofharriet titled "Amsterdam cats - Big Handpainted Mug - Free shipping." Toni writes that "Being a lover of cats (and dogs) and also a coffee connoisseur, I’ve had my eye on this lovely since day one. Houseofharriet’s Amsterdam cats mug is something that I could treat myself with and not feel one ounce of guilt. I simply love it!!"

Thanks for yet another great Wishlist Wednesday! Have a great day everyone.

And, if I were to put together a wishlist of my own for this week, I could include this tote by Toni at rctees in my list:

Friday, November 6, 2009

Feature Friday - Allison from Allysattic

Hello everybody! I was surprised to pull my own name out of the "hat" this week for the Feature Friday feature. I honestly almost put my name back in (seriously, like 30 minutes of thinking about it), then I thought, "well, everyone's going to have a turn eventually and you may as well just talk about yourself now and get it over with".  :)

So, here goes:

1. Tell us a bit about yourself, your shop, and what brought you to the Etsy community.

I am a small-town (about 12,000 people) Idaho gal. I was raised on a farm (yes, we grew potatoes sometimes!) and have been around animals and agriculture all my life. I am a very versitile person: I can drive any kind of farm machinery there is, deliver baby cows in the middle of the night (ew, I know), play the piano, crochet doilies, etc, etc, etc. I currently work at Idaho State University as an Administrative Assistant and I'm looking forward to my early retirement. My husband James is pursuing a Master's Degree in Nuclear Engineering, so I'm relatively confident that I won't have to work once he begins to. yay! As some of you know, James and I recently bought a home and have moved us, our boys Gabriel and Benjamin, Buff (the dog), Gary (the cat), various fish, furniture and about a billion boxes these past two weeks.

The only shop I really have anything going in right now is Allysattic. This shop offers glass tile pendants, similar to the scrabble ones that can be found on Etsy. I actually saw someone else making these and thought, well, I can do that, and "Wall-ah". I first joined the Etsy community in 2007, but I didn't do anything with it until late April of this year. I'm kicking myself now. I've always been a dreamer, and am always exploring new things. Etsy is a great way to offer one's "wares" to the world, and I was looking for an on-line venue.

2. Walk us through a typical day in your life.

I wake up every morning at 6:00 am. I'm the kind of person who does not use the snooze button on the alarm. If it is a workday, I get myself ready for work, then I wake up my 7 year old (Gabriel) and have him start getting ready for school, then I wake up my 3 year old (Benjamin) and get him ready for daycare. After that, I kick James (my third child, hehe) out of bed. I load everyone in the car and off we go. I drop Gabe off at school, Ben at the daycare, and James at the library or engineering building. Then I go to work. I'm lucky that James has the time to mail orders for me during the day if needed.

During work, I try to keep up on Etsy, attend a few Virtual Labs (very secretly, of course), answer convos, relist, etc. After work, I pick everyone up, go home, make dinner, bathe the kids if they need it, read stories, and put them in bed. Then, if I'm not too tired, I'll try to make a few things.

On Saturdays and Sundays, I try to take a few pictures of new items, and I also try to take it a bit easy. We go to local parks and arcades and do things as a family.

3. What market (group of people) do you see your items being for?

I originally thought my items are for the younger crowd, tweens and teens; but I've been surprised in that people of all ages like these glass pendants. When I was doing the weekly Artisan's Fair shows in a neighboring city, folks of all ages would stop and look at the pendants. Most of those who stop would buy one or several. :)

4. Name your top three:

- Books
Anything by Mark Twain
Anything by Anne Lamott (especially Bird by Bird)
Poetry by Billy Collins
(That was so hard. I'm an avid reader. I have 5 bookshelves in my home full of books that I've read at least once and you should see my shopping cart on!)

Brooks and Dunn
Yo-Yo Ma

-Movies or Television Shows
Napoleon Dynamite (If you want to get an idea of what small town Idaho is like, watch this one. Seriously.)
Project Runway

CNN News

5. Where do you hope your shop will be in a year?

I hope my shop is still going in a year. :)  I have little monthly goals that I set for myself, and I must be setting my goals too low because I keep doing better than them, so that's good. I'm hoping that I will be able to get my second shop really going in a year. It's really, really sad. So sad I'm not even going to tell you the name of it. hehe

6. What is one of your favorite shops on Etsy?

Really? Oh man, of my favorite shops right NOW (I have so many) is IMHDesigns. I love bags and clutches. And these are fabulous.

7. What projects are you currently working on?

I'm currently getting ready for an Artisan's Holiday Fair coming up on Nov. 20th and 21st. I'm so far behind where I wanted to be in terms of inventory it's ridiculous. I need to stop unpacking and make stuff, but in order to live, I need to unpack. Oh, the irony.

8. If I could have one superpower - what would it be?

Ok, I don't want to sound all "Miss America-ish" or whatever, but I would want the power to fix whatever people needed. Like you have cancer? Fixed. Need water in Africa? No prob. Lost your job? Let's get you one. Now, regularly, that may not be a super power, but I would want my fixes to be permanent. That would truely be super. Where I come from, you try to fix stuff once so you don't have to worry about it again. I know that's VERY rare, but eh.


And maybe a nice handbag. :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wishlist Wednesday: Malarie of itsastitch/spookychandelier

Hey guys! I know it kind of seems like I am hogging the spotlight here, but we had some hiccups with today's original poster, I'm going to throw up my (current) top 5 favorite things from Etsy that I wish so badly I could buy.

Lately, I have had a real obsession with vintage shoes, and these Tan Oxford Platforms from mellowdayss are no exception. The would look adorable with a little jumper and tights, after a few sales, I'm pretty sure I'm going to snatch these up!

  So, I am a pretty big geek, as is my boyfriend. When I stumbled on these nom nom cat dishes my basic reaction was: DO WANT. All of gabizoidal's things are super cute, and I have loved her shop for quite sometime. I have two of these on my Christmas list!
I always feel kind of silly considering buying jewelry on Etsy, but there are so many different styles out there that I know I SHOULDN'T feel silly. paintedmetal has created these effing GORGEOUS relic stacking rings in mixed metals. I can imagine wearing these, pretty much, every day. With everything. Everywhere.

So, after hearing that carolhannah (designer on this season of Project Runway) was on Etsy, I, like any other semi-savvy watcher, searched for it. And her clothes are A-FREAKIN-DORABLE. It was pretty much love at first site when I saw her Bookstore Browing Dress. This has MALARIE written all over it, I would wear this with above shoes and rings and be the cutest in town.

Until Etsy, I never really thought about how I would decorate my wedding. I just assumed I would settle for things, because "my style" didn't exist. Well. HOLD THE PHONE. It does now. bunnywithatoolbelt totally understands how to design for someone a little more offbeat, her giraffe Bride and Groom cake toppers are so perfect for me, it hurts. I have them hearted, and everytime they sell, I go and re-heart the new listing. I hope she is still making them in a few years when I can actually buy them!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Notes From The Meeting: Social Networking; Facebook

Continuing with our notes from our last Virtual Lab meeting, this week we are going to review Facebook. I consider facebook to be the inbetween step of twitter and a blog. It's a little more in-depth than twitter, but not as much as a blog. It allows you to upload photos into albums, and give direct updates about your work/life to your fans.

First things first, you will need a personal account before you can have a business fan page. If you already have a personal page, you're good to go. If not, click on that picture and get started on your personal page! If you prefer privacy, just sign up but don't load any pictures/info.

Alright, you have your personal page - now onto the business!
This is what the top of the business page will look like, click on the picture to go write to the page to create one. This page has an overview, and steps on creating the page. It's super helpful and easy to understand.

MichMade (who has over 200 fans) gives this tip on gaining fans: Friends, friends friends! Add your friends as fans, have them comment on your photos and page, so their comments will appear in their friend's feeds, allowing more people to see you. Soon their friends will fan you, and so on and so on. To turn fans into buyers, MichMade gives a code to all new fans for a 15% discount in her shop - she says this has worked great for her.

Now you have some fans, it's time to upload some pictures! Decide what pictures you are going to upload, and make some albums. My recommendation is to choose the best photos you have and upload those.

If you can, take alternative photos to what are in your shop. Give them something additional to look at. If not, choose the absolute best photo of your item and post those. Make sure your captions link to the item it shows or your store.

Having a business page allows you to send an update to all of your friends. This is a wonderful feature to use when you are having a sale, giveaway or are going to be at a local show. It alerts everyone you sent it to, it's basically a newsletter for your fans! Extremely useful. Just don't go overboard with sending them out, you'll lose fans.

SimplyInvitingCards shares the love and uses her fan page to list an item she loves from etsy every Monday-Friday. Doing this is not only quite nice, but she says more often than not, the seller she features will become a fan of her page and other sellers will fan her in hopes to have their items featured, too!

Use your photos to show exclusive views of new items you will be adding, and having photos of your works in progress is a great idea, too!

Don't be shy - if you are in a gift guide, front page, the storque, or a gorgeous treasury, show your fans! Everyone loves to share your excitement.

I would recommend keeping your personal and professional pages separate. Feel free to upload pictures of you wearing your creations, at a craft show or making things, but I would keep photos of you at a party or your cats on your personal page - it could turn off potential buyers.

Use those note to buyers! I include links to my blog, twitter, and facebook. I have gained fans this way, saying they were interested in future deals I may have.

Keep it professional, and update frequently without spamming. Have nice photos and interact!

Have more tips? Tell us in the comments! And feel free to link to your facebook fan page's there, too.