Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Zwzzy! Your treasury received the most votes in this month's challenge. Thank you to everyone who participated and voted. I hope you all enjoy a holiday party as lovely as the one in this treasury! Peek into Zwzzy's shop in the Rat Spotlight.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Santa Arrives TODAY!!

Santa just called...

He's taken a bit of time out of his busy holiday schedule to ask us to remind you about our Lab Rats Team Christmas Party

Today at 7PM EST in the Etsy Virtual Labs!!

Secret Santa unveiling too...

Happy Holidays!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mosaic Monday

Rhinestone Reconstructed Brooch by hedgehoganandrabbit
ANY COLOR Glitter Kitty Ears by AnEnchantedNotion

How Do You Celebrate Treasury Finalists

Congratulations to our finalists - Zwzzy, HeatherJaneDesign, 
PoppySeedCats, and Rolyzcreations!

Check out all these beauties and then vote for your favorite.

Cranberry Party by Zwzzy

My Christmas by HeatherJaneDesign

LabRats are Getting Ready for Christmas by PoppySeedCats

A Blue and White Holiday Season by Rolyzcreations

Vote for your Favorite Treasury!
Cranberry Party by Zwzzy
My Christmas by HeatherJaneDesign
LabRats Are Getting Ready for Christmas by PoppySeedCats
A Blue and White Holiday Season by Rolyzcreations

pollcode.com free polls

Friday, December 10, 2010

Feature Friday!

Please extend a warm welcome to fellow Lab Rat, Mary of hoganfe

Where can we find you?

Either outback Alaska or Texas

1) Please tell us about yourself, your shop and what brought you to the Etsy community.

Wife, homeschool mom, designer with a fabric addiction.

I started offering my designs on ebay in the boutique community & when I heard about Etsy I ran (yes ran!) over to see this new handmade community - I was instantly at home!

My Etsy teams have been a huge help in learning how to improve my shop & I have made some terrific friends.

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

Coffee first :-)

Emails & convos

My fitness workout

Home school throughout the day (after coffee!)

Laundry & housework


Design Time (yay!)

3) Name your top 3:

Books…Historical mysteries


TV…The Mentalist

Web sites…


4.) What are your top 3 shops on Etsy?

Love Waterrose, Polestar & kandiceinwonderland

5.) What projects are you currently working on?

Lots of holiday customs & keeping up with regular orders.
I have been adding a new fabric bin design to my shop weekly - check back often!

6.) What plans to do you have for your shop over the next year (and beyond)?
Keeping my shop stocked with the cutest clutches for bridesmaids sets & adding more adorable fabric bins.

7.) What suggestions/tips would you offer to someone who sells on Etsy? (to a new or established shop)

Join an etsy team & make treasuries in your spare time.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Mosaic Monday - Pretty Pastels

Blue Bird Natural Linen Fabric Organizer by hoganfe
Iced Lace Necklace in Vintage Fabric and Silver by itsastitch
Pink Sock Monkey by funkisockmunki
Small Journal by nightowlcraftworks

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Treasury Challenge: How Do You Celebrate?

Purple Bear Feltie Christmas Decoration by SuzyJaneB
For this month's treasury challenge, I want to know how you celebrate the holiday season! Do you transform your home into a winter wonderland? Is it all about finding the perfect gift? Maybe it's the weather or the food that makes the season special. Whatever it is, make a treasury to share the joy! Here are the rules:
  1. Use at least 8 Lab Rat members. You can use our members list in the sidebar.
  2. Include "Treasury Challenge" in the title of your treasury
  3. Tag your treasury with "labratsteam"
  4. Tag your treasury with "labratchallenge"
  5. Tag your treasury with "celebrate" and "holiday"
  6. Link back to this post to encourage others to participate
  7. Leave a comment on this post with a link to your treasury for official entry
  8. Promote & have fun!
Get your entries in by the 11th and we'll pick out the top treasuries to go up for a vote. One lucky winner will be featured in our Rat Spotlight!  A few extra tips to make your treasury front page friendly - include a variety of items with a range of prices, don't include yourself, tag your treasuries, and keep in mind this month's merchandising notes. Head to the Treasury to get started or read up on how to make a treasury first. Either way - make the Lab Rats proud. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wednesday Night Holiday Show Recap

Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who came out to participate and support our teammates during this trunk show. I had so much fun hosting and presenting these great offers. I would certainly call our 2nd Annual Holiday Trunk Show a success!

You can check out here the offers from Tuesday. If you missed out tonight, here are the great deals that were presented:

SevenSails offered up 10% off using the code "TrunkSale"

Yarnabees has a Trunk Sale Section set up and marked down for you to shop! She's also offering buy 2 get one free on any of her patterns.

Squier let us know that we can buy 2 ACEOs and get 1 free or spend $50 or more to get a free ACEO. All you have to do is mention Trunk Show and the ACEO you would like free in the message to seller.

EvenAndy was offering 10% off in her shop using "TRUNK"

1022SeaShellAve has a great deal of 50% Off in her Holiday Ornament section already marked down.

MollysMuses has 15% off with the code LabRats for her photography shop.

NightowlCraftworks hopped on cam to share with us their 25% off with the code "SQUEAKSANDHOOTS"

BrieLeGrandFromage had us all drooling over her goodies with 10% off with the code "TRUNK"

ScrapHappieAZ is offering 20% off in both of her shops including PeaPodRay with the code "TRUNK"

Zwzzy has fabulous vintage fashions for you to shop with the code "LABRATS" for 20% Off.

Tree and Sap has 20% off their bath and body products with the code "TRUNK"

AVI Designs is offering us free shipping on her beautiful and intricate jewelry.

4GetMeNotTreasures let's you shop with 20% off using code "LRTRUNK2010"

A few more offers showed up at the end of the night!

Senioritis is offering 20% off until Friday with code "HOWNOWBROWNCOW"

LaAlicia has 10% off purses with the code "TRUNK10"

If you were there and didn't get to present your offer, let us know in the comments below! Again, these offers won't last long. Take advantage while they are still available! Happy Shopping and Happy Holidays.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tuesday Night Holiday Show Recap

Thank you to everyone who came out to our first night of the Lab Rats Holiday Trunk Show! I was happy to see so many new and familiar faces. In case you missed it (or  need to remember those codes) here is a recap!

Laurie's Custom Creations offered free shipping and 15% off with code "TRUNKSHOW"

AVI Designs was offering up free shipping for all her items.

ForsythiaHill had a great deal of 20% off with the code "TRUNK" for her vintage items.

JackTheManAboutTown offered 20% off with the code "TRUNK."

Birdcage Cards has 10% off everything (excluding gift certificates) with the code "TRUNKET"

PoppySeedCats got on cam to offer us 10% off with code "TRUNKCAT" as well as a free super mini kitty!

Squier is offering a buy 2 get one ACEO free deal or if you spend $50+ you get a free ACEO. Be sure to check out her website as well as her Etsy shop for offerings.

BySaraLynn has a sale section as well as 10% off using the code "TRUNK"

And AuntKarensCreations is offering 50% off purses found in the Trunk Show section of her shop.

Take advantage of these offers while they last. Some sellers are keeping their codes up for hours, others for a few days. There will be a whole new line-up for tomorrow night's show at 8pm EST in the Virtual Labs so be sure to stop by for more deals!

Life of an Item with Ocasiocasa

Hello everyone. I’m Dale Ocasio, of ocasiocasa (pronounced
oh-KAH-see-oh KAH-sah). Casa, meaning house or home in spanish, and is
where we do our creating. Jeff, my husband, has been playing with
masking tape art for a while now. He sculpts with it and applies it to
three dimensional objects like glass bottles or, very recently, began
reclaiming dolls with it.

Like Calli, our butterfly art doll. She is one of two art dolls we
have up on Etsy right now.

The idea of using pre-loved dolls as a canvas for masking tape art
came about by bouncing ideas off of each other one morning. We weren’t
really looking for something new to do. It kind of went like this:
“Oh, you know what would be neat? Do what we do to a bottle, but on a
doll instead.” We both smiled, and it stuck.

The masking tape part is all Jeff’s work. It’s the first layer to be
applied. He’ll start with a general idea in his head, but most of the
design happens while he laying the bits of tape to the surface,
sometimes wadding long strips of it, sometimes twisting it, to give it
its shape.
Here are a couple of dolls at the taping stage.

Once the taping is finished, we apply layers of wood glue, sanding
before each new layer, then paint, and last, add a clear protective
Theses dolls are being glued.

This doll is in the process of being painted.

Calli’s cloth body was hand painted with acrylic paint and her
butterfly wings were made from a photograph of mine, of a real
butterfly. I glued the inkjet photo paper to some chipboard, painted
the backside and applied several coats of glue to the front and back
to stiffen the wings and protect the photo.

Holes were punched out prior making the wings stiff so that I could
sew, by hand, the wings to the back of her cloth body.

We recently showed the dolls, at an art show, for the first time. It
was awesome to see everyone’s reaction to them. This is Patterson,
during his first outing. He had a great time.

And here is a video showing a bit of the taping process on one of our
bottles. I recorded it using an app on my iphone called qik video. I
always meant to add narration, but since that wasn’t happening all on
its own, I just added a bit of music and some text to briefly explain
some details. It was fun, and we hope to do more of these soon.


I’d like to thank everyone for allowing me to ramble and ‘show and
tell’ and I look forward to reading more about the lives of some of
your items. :-)


Monday, November 29, 2010

Mosaic Monday

small silver christmas star stampings by Caracrass
Christmas Stocking Trio in three colors by auntkarenscreations
Small Black and White Pet Turtleneck by giggles
Scroll Tree Note Card Set by BirdcageCards

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Trunk Show is This Week!

Remember to join us this week Tuesday, Nov 30th and Wednesday, Dec 1st at 8pm EST for our Annual Holiday Show in the Virtual Labs. You can find us there in the Moon Room. Each night we will have a unique line up filled with our members offering great deals for your holiday shopping. Anyone can attend so spread the word and invite your friends. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Introducing......... Our newest members for November!

Our team is growing and we cherish each member! We are happy to welcome our newest members by introducing them to the entire team. Here is our opportunity to meet our new teammates, make new friends and help one another in our endeavor to make our shops better.

Lets give a big Lab Rats Team welcome to our newest members!


1. What is your given name? (If you are only comfortable giving your first name that is fine.)
My given name is Mae

2. How long have you been on Etsy (includes the time you were NOT a seller).
I have been on Etsy for 2 years
3. How long has your shop been open?
My shop has been up and running for 1 1/2 years

4. Which item in your shop is your favorite?
One of my favorites is my pearl dangle earrings.

5. What do you enjoy doing when not creating for your shop?
I enjoy going to the movies,Aquariums,concerts,Museums ,to name a few. :)

6. What question would you like to ask your new teammates?
What is the easiest way to take great photos for you shop? What is the best way to promote your shop to get results ?
1. What is your given name? (If you are only comfortable giving your first name that is fine.)
 My name is Debra Vacaro. I am an artist who currently enjoys knitting creative hats.

2. How long have you been on Etsy (includes the time you were NOT a seller).
 I discovered Etsy in August of 2009

3. How long has your shop been open?
 I opened my shop on Sept. 11, 2009.

4. Which item in your shop is your favorite?
My favorite item is always the last one I post. I love creating each creature and I become instantly fond of him when he is completed. Call me kooky but I kiss each one goodbye and be good!

5. What do you enjoy doing when not creating for your shop?
I love the outdoors, travel, birding, board games - our family is a bit competitive. Settler's of Cataan is our latest obsession.

6. What question would you like to ask your new teammates?
I don't really have a question just a great big thanks for letting me be a part of this great team. I look forward to knowing your shops and items.


1. What is your given name? (If you are only comfortable giving your first name that is fine.)
Rebecca English

2. How long have you been on Etsy (includes the time you were NOT a seller).
Immediately began setting up my shop a few days after I discovered it! Sept. 19, 2010

3. How long has your shop been open?
1st Item listed on Oct 12

4. Which item in your shop is your favorite?
My Unisex Maize and Brick Red Optical Eyeglasses Tie.

5. What do you enjoy doing when not creating for your shop?
I love to photograph and write for my blog forsythiahill.blogspot.com and am a hardcore garden/nature nut and couponer!

6. What question would you like to ask your new teammates?
I would love to know what each teammate sells and somehow get to know everyone!
What do you sell and how the heck do I get to know so many people on Lab Rats!! ?

1. What is your given name? (If you are only comfortable giving your first name that is fine.)
Jan Yuill

2. How long have you been on Etsy (includes the time you were NOT a seller).
I have been on etsy for 3 years

3. How long has your shop been open?
1 year but became really active in my shop since June of this year.

4. Which item in your shop is your favorite?
My favorate is my green with evy cuff.

5. What do you enjoy doing when not creating for your shop?
I love to Cook. My family for years have been trying to get me to go to culinary arts school.

6. What question would you like to ask your new teammates?
What is the best way to get more traffic to my sight?


1. What is your given name? (If you are only comfortable giving your first name that is fine.)
My name is Suzy
2. How long have you been on Etsy (includes the time you were NOT a seller).
I've been on Etsy, since Feb 2010

3. How long has your shop been open?
10 months

4. Which item in your shop is your favorite?
I like the 'Love' Marionette the most, she has attitude :-)

5. What do you enjoy doing when not creating for your shop?When I am not creating for my shop I am painting murals, its actually my main business (http://www.make-a-scene.nl/)

6. What question would you like to ask your new teammates?
Not sure there is just one question I would like to ask my team mates! It would probably have to be, how do they keep themselves motivated and inspired?

Welcome to team Lab Rats! We all look forward to seeing you and getting to know you even better!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Life of an Item with BlueberryShoes

The Empress Headband

The ribbon is actually vintage and I found it at my favorite thrift shop up north in Minnesota. That's basically where I buy all of my supplies. They're vintage and never picked over. Perfection, really. When I find ribbon, I automatically put it up to my head, just like it sits in the picture. I see if it looks pretty as a head piece. If it does, it's a must have.

I made the basic headband part late one night (couldn't sleep and the vision of it moved me to get up and get to work). Then when I put it around my head I automatically thought of the Empress from Neverending Story. She's one of my favorite fantasy characters of all time, and I was stoked to pay my homage to her. The pearls really added some mystery and femininity.

It was a very fun piece to make and felt SO right when it was finished. Taking the pics for the listing photos was also a cool experience. I have a fascination with snow queens, and that's also a big part of the piece. Starkness that could almost give you a chill. That's what I wanted the photos to get across.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

And the Gift Guide Treasury Challenge Winner Is...

RolyzCreations! Congratulations on a great treasury that captivated our voters to become the clear winner. As always, thank you to everyone who created these beautiful treasuries, wonderful items, and everyone who voted. RolyzCreations' shop will be in our Rat Spotlight for the next month, so check it out!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Life of an Item with MrooArt

Hello, I'm Shannon Dybvig of Mroo Art! I live in a gnome-filled apartment in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. I mostly draw and sculpt and am heavily influenced by fantasy, science fiction, surrealism, and comic arts. In my shop I carry an assortment of original polymer clay creatures and dragons, original art necklaces, print-based magnets, original drawings, prints, and greeting cards.

My drawing process can start in a couple of ways. If I'm only concept building, I work in my sketchbook and the results are usually half-formed people and a variety of mark-making - often an art of its own right, but at the same time not really "finished" works. When seeking to create a "finished" piece, I usually start off with a mood or concept and an idea for a pose for a figure - I use the human body as a vehicle for exploring emotions and concepts relating to interpersonal and internal relationships.

For my Fall Faery piece I was in a bit of a glum mood when I started working on it and the body position followed fairly quickly. I think the image speaks for itself better than I do in text, so I'll spare you any more exposition on the ideation process. I lay down some quick pencil work first, to get the energy of the mood down, and then I go in with a few details.

I try to get most of the details cleared up during the inking and coloring processes so the energy of the mood isn't lost. Previously when I've detailed the piece too much at the pencil stage the final piece ends up not being particularly emotive because the mark-making is so different when you're going over lines you've already made instead of making new ones.

For this piece I used my glass dip pen with Private Reserve ink. The lines that come from that pen lend themselves to the feeling of this piece, and the ink has a lovely fluidity to it - it's a very thick and luxurious ink. After I inked the piece I scanned it, cleaned up any smudges, and printed it on bristol paper for coloring. I sometimes color on the same sheet as I do my linework, but I didn't in this instance for two reasons: the paper I worked on does not respond well to my coloring methods (Copic Sketch art markers and water color) and the Private Reserve ink doesn't react kindly to my Copics either. I haven't tried it with the water colors.

I don't have a photo of it, but I worked out the colors of the faery on a small scrap of bristol to make sure I liked them before using them on the lines. The background was made on a piece of water color paper using, unsurprisingly, water colors. I scanned the two separately and joined them in my photo editing program (GIMP).

Here is a video showing a good portion of the inking and coloring processes (silent for your continued listening-to-something-else pleasure). The footage in this video originally lasted nearly an hour (I think, it may have been more?), but it has been condensed down to just over two minutes.

The final step is print-testing. Print-testing involves printing the image with different color adjustments and aligning the piece to the paper correctly (my printer has become a little wonky about proper alignment in its age).

I have two types of paper I print on - my greeting cards and my normal print size. They take the ink slightly differently from each other, so I have to test how the image prints on each and adjust the values of the image accordingly. For nearly every print/card I make I have two different files for the two papers. Print-testing can take printing the image just once or 10+ times! Luckily this piece only took a few tests before it was production-ready.

So, there you have it! That's how I make a print/card from start to finish. The final piece can be found here (the 8x10 version will be posted soon, I got a little distracted by another project!).

Monday, November 15, 2010

Gift Guide Treasury Challenge Finalists

From all the amazing gift guides submitted, we have a final four. Congratulations to MollysMuses, RolyzCreations, MrooArt, and PixieDustFineries! Be sure to vote for your favorite this week. The winner will be featured in our Rat Spotlight.

Christmas Party Girl by MollysMuses

Which gift guide treasury is your favorite?
Christmas Party Girl by MollysMuses
Gifts on a Budget by Rolyzcreations
Holiday Warmth by MrooArt
A Blue Christmas by PixieDustFineries

pollcode.com free polls

Mosaic Monday

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Happy Sales-Ready Holidays

If you haven't been following along with the Holiday Boot Camp, there's still time to catch up! Admin and Lab Rat member daniellexo has posted a week-by-week guide to get every seller in a state of ready-for-the-holidays fitness. Fortunately this workout doesn't involve a single crunch or push-up!

For more help, check out additional seasonal resources:
Merchandising for the Holidays
Offering Services (gift wrapping, gift certificates, shipping upgrades)
Holiday Rush checklist

Friday, November 12, 2010

Feature Friday - lauriescustomcreations

Please say hello to our Feature Friday artist, Laurie Magoon

Where we can find you on the web?

the necklace that started it all

Etsy Shop - http://www.etsy.com/shop/lauriescustomcreate

Webpage - http://www.lauriescustomcreations.com

Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/LauriesCustomCreations

Blog: - http://lauriescustomcreations-laurie.blogspot.com/

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

Let's see...I'm 29 (30 next month), been married for 8 years, have 2 cats (Flutter and Slick), am considered disabled due to bone deformities in my feet...I love studying the Bible, music, reading, sewing, and other crafty pursuits.

I got started in this whole jewelry endeavor because of 2 things: a broken pair of earrings and a dress. I needed to fix the fishhook part of a pair of earrings, and I had this dress that didn't have a necklace to go with it.

While I was getting the replacement fishhooks and pliers to fix the earrings, I saw these beads that would go just awesomely with my dress. So I picked them up along with the earring fixings and headed home.

Once I finished that necklace, I decided to post it on my Facebook page where I'd been posting pictures of my sewing projects. I had so many compliments and questions of "Are you making jewelry to sell now? You should!" that I thought I'd try my hand at making & selling jewelry.

Bought a few books, watched a few videos online, and voila, I was making jewelry. A friend of mine mentioned Etsy to me as a place she looked at for inspiration. When I checked it out, I was hooked. A few days later I opened my shop with 1 item...which has now slowly grown to about 40.

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

I can't say I have a very typical day...I'm usually up by around 8:30. First thing I do is check my email to see if I had a sale, then check Craftopolis and Craftcult and reset my item view on Craftcult. Then I'm off to Etsy to check the few promotion threads that I've started participating in. Then it's time to get up, get dressed, give the little cat her kitty milk (yes, they make "milk" that's special for cats to digest) and eat breakfast.

After that the days vary...sometimes it's straight to my desk to start creating, or if I have a buildup of made-but-not-photographed items I may set up for taking pictures. Then it's back to the recliner end of the couch to put my feet up, check the forum threads again, work on editing pictures and listing items.

Somewhere in the middle of doing all that comes lunch, waking up my husband (who has an unusual sleep schedule), making doctor's appointments and trying to arrange the cat so she doesn't inhibit my ability to type.

A couple evenings a week I play piano as an accompanist for a vocal teacher, and teach a few piano lessons myself. Then I check my email again before going to bed, cuddle up with the cat and head off to sleep.

3.) Name your top 3 of each of the following:

Books - Bible, the Dune series by Frank Herbert & his son Brian Herbert, and Pride & Prejudice

Music - I have really eclectic tastes...I like everything from Mozart & Bach to 80's to some country. About the only things I can't stand are rap and heavy metal.

Movies - A&E's Pride & Prejudice, Sci-Fi's Dune & Children of Dune, and The Interpreter

TV Shows - Star Trek Next Generation, Star Trek Voyager, Alias

Websites - Etsy, Fanfiction.net, Facebook

4.) What are your top 3 favorite shops on Etsy?

There's no way I could pick just 3...there's too many talented people on Etsy.

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

I'd love to be making at least 1 sale a week

6.) What projects are you currently working on?

I bought a bunch of beads from an Etsy jewelry artist who is slowly selling off her bead stash, and my projects right now revolve around using the beads I got from her. Some of the things I'm working with are black onyx, freshwater pearls of different colors, and some beautiful colors of Swarovski crystal pearls.

7.) What suggestions/tips would you offer to someone new to Etsy?

GO TO THE VIRTUAL LABS!!!! Not only will you get great tips on things to improve your shop and your Etsy experience as a whole, you'll meet wonderful people who can really become friends, even if you never meet in actuality. The support of the people who are in the labs is a great resource, especially when you're really new and feel like you have no idea what you're doing.