BonneyBird – Marcato’s display

This morning I drove off up the road to see Rachel at BonneyBird to update and tidy my display. I may pay her a commission to sell my goods but it’s still my responsibility to make sure everything is looking ok, she is happy and there are enough jewellery items and choices on display.

How could you not want to see what’s inside with an entrance that looks like this?

When I went overseas late last year I invoiced her a small box worth so she had enough to keep it full – or top up if she sold that much – and today I got that box out to have a look.
There were only 3 pieces left in it. Woo!

My display is now tidy and fresh, with all items on the table. I re-arranged things and have a few ideas to zip it up another notch later on. Namely making it more of a pink and white display, with some extra height. When I called in the other day Rachel had placed a mirror on the table which was awesome as I had not thought of supplying one. The only problem here, it was for sale, so if sold, there was nothing for my potential buyers to check out how a necklace might look. So I delivered one of my own. I have my banner on the wall behind, and while I like it, I feel it is a little bland, and would like to update it. It hangs wonky, but I know how to fix that. And then I can update it. Banner wise, is to get a vertical banner for markets.

Last night I went off to a garden birthday party and several things happened. My name was thrown around a bit with some of the guests not believing my name really is Jennifer Hawkins. Miss Australia, you say? no no no, Miss Universe thank you very much.
But the important bits, 1) Rachel was there and said I had sold something else that very morning, 2) I got lots of compliments on the necklace I was wearing, 3) another customer was wearing her necklace which was getting lots of attention and I hence got the compliments and 4) a friend asked me how much a certain item was she had seen on Facebook and said she was very interested in it as a gift (and has since said ‘Sold’ for delivery this week).
To say I am happy is an understatement. My new cards, flyers and the car magnet will be arriving this week ready for the big fair on Saturday, so there will be more pictures later. And I am super excited about seeing how they look!

Til then, keep creative
Jen 🙂

Power points.. and more storage.

Of the electrical type, not for presentations.
My sewing desk is a huge heavy weight, old style computer desk. You know the type, adjustable height, pole hole for the monitor to sit on, and internal bank of power points. Well, just 4, but that’s usually enough with computers of old.
My table is placed against the wall, set at my height. The monitor pole has long gone, and I have to forfeit two plugs for ‘house’ items. Well, I shouldn’t complain, one is for the Internet, which without, I wouldn’t be able to do this.
The other two are mine to use.
During my tidy up and focussing on having less junk, I’ve allocated one plug for a double adapter housing both sewing machines and the other has an extension cord – with double adapter attached. On this I have my iPod speaker and most probably the laptop charger or what ever else is needed. Lights maybe.

On the other wall, under all the lovely storage I made for my props is another single power point. I usually put the camera battery charger on this as it’s out of the way. But with wanting the light tent to be set up there, I had to work something out.
A double adapter for both my light poles, which can stay with that power point. And be used for battery charger, kiln, heat gun… whatever is required. I’m not going to be using the kiln or heat gun at the same time as the light tent and the charger can wait a day or two if needed. (I do like to charge it straight away otherwise it gets forgotten and is not good when I need it).

My next step in the room, is to figure out a way to store the market things slightly better to cater for the other few boxes I have. I’m already liking the big space in the middle of the room instead of tables and boxes everywhere.

We shall see. I’ll get back to my photo editing ready to upload onto the website. It’s all about bags today.

Art Trail 2014

The website for Crag and this years Art trail is up and running. There are plenty of things to fix, add, and improve, but the basics are organised.
If you follow the link it takes you straight to the Exhibition page.
I have noticed a few issues using my iPad but on mum’s laptop it was fine.
There is an old picture of mum there, and in the open studios section I will also be with mum.
More information as and when I get it.

Link to Crag page

Jen

New ideas, new inspirations

I relieved a book the other day – it only took 3 months to get here, my fault, but all sorted with thanks to a lovely friend – I can’t wait to start trying some of the ideas in there.

Sewing,

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clay,

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And shrinky plastic are the new things I can play with.

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Looking forward to playing, very soon.
Jennifer 🙂

Portable Beading, take 2

Some time ago I wrote a post about portable beading and how I made up a container with everything I needed. Well I’ve changed it. For something better.

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I found this basket in a second hand shop and thought it would be perfect for my needs. It is more than perfect, it fits my container I will be using brilliantly. And if I need to take a beading mat it is simple to take the other portable beading kit. I will also be getting one of those half size mats, perfect for bracelet sized pieces to put in my basket.
This basket has handles on the side, but I though this would upset the contents so I found an old belt and looped it through to make a handle in the top.

The storage container I was given at Christmas will work well I thought. Not just well, I sized it up, and it is exactly the right width to sit nicely on the bottom of the basket. This will then hold all the bits and pieces, findings, like pins and clasps, ear hooks and spacers. The beads and wires I want to take will go into snap lock bags. A purse I made will hold all my pliers – so they don’t get caught on anything, and I may just include a notepad and pen.

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As you can see, I haven’t fully filled it yet. The pill holder currently has some ear hooks, jump rings and crimps. The rings and crimps will stay in this set up while the bigger items will go into the other container. The loose bags are for any beads and wire, and the cute little stripy bag has my pliers in it.
Next time I take it away I will get a picture of it all packed up to show you.

I took this set up to the last market I did, well most of it. All I was doing were memory wire bracelets, but the basket worked well. It will be for any portable beading and a repair kit/boredom killer for the markets. If I am able to shorten a chain, or add a few extra loops while they are waiting it can make the sale. Especially as a lot of the visitors are from out of town.

Ideally it will be always ready to go, and I just have to add my beads and tough pliers if required.

Can your craft be portable? How do you organise it? Does it work?
I’d love to hear from you,
Jennifer 🙂

Advertising and markets

Today was the first of the Woodbridge Summer Markets. They’re actually the Community markets but they only run for 6 mnths over the best weather Tassie has to offer. They have two markets a month the second and fourth Sunday of the month. For those of us who have numerous other markets to attend it can be a bit of a juggle deciding which place is better.
Woodbridge has been good to me. Even though I only started last year I regularly did better there than at Snug or the Kingston ones I attended with more people. Go figure. And I am a true local to the area having grown up here and living not even 10 mins away, this is the easy choice.

Today’s market stall… Simple with only a few items. Very bare compared to what I normally do.

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Looking back at the picture, it is very ’empty’ but something was working in my favour. Three of my necklaces walked out the door, two of them being worn! That is the best thing. When a customer loves it enough and just has to wear it then and there.

At the end of the markets for summer this year there was some discord with the manager. While he is a decent bloke, and a damn good cook (he makes breads right there in the hall, and does the lunches for the cafe) he often has so many things going on and misses working on the important things. Like stall holder comfort. He was leaving us to our own devices and while we are all adults, he is supposed to be in charge and know what is going on. Sadly, that was/is not the case. He had just taken over when I arrived last year and from all accounts the previous manager was a pocket rocket, and it ran like clockwork. So he has big shoes to fill. Makes it rather hard. And from when I spoke to him this week, I think also not good at delegating or asking for help, maybe not even good at accepting when he needs it.

I think I jumped on him a bit too hard, getting the feeling he thought I wanted to take over. Not the case at all. While I’m sure I could do it, I don’t want that stress. I just brought up that not many people knew the market was starting and that I wanted to help out with organising the inside stall holders. I left him the comment that if he wants any help to just ask. Today, only half the tables were filled, which was my concern after speaking with him.
My neighbour in the hall today and I then jumped on him again later, poor guy, I think he’s freaked now, and brought up a few more issues. Maybe we should just leave him alone. But the market can be really really good and for all us regulars as well the locals like myself, want it to be that way again. After all, the world class Peppermint Bay is just a 50m walk away and we get many visitors from there each market. We want to keep that

I asked him if I could take some pictures as I wanted to start up an FB page for the market to help with getting it out there. He was fine, actually very happy and asked me to forward the pictures to him for use in some colour posters he wants to get done.
I’m then approached by a man later in the afternoon who said he was with the local community paper and if I didn’t mind could he use my pictures as for some reason he had forgotten his camera and was doing a sort piece on the market. All good, and I will be putting in a link for the page while I’m at it, and gave him my business card…now let’s just hope they both like the pictures I took.
Some of the pictures..

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(I just a mini freak out. As I finished uploading pictures the iPad had a fit and closed down, and on logging back in I couldn’t find this gem of a post. It’s alright though, he was hiding)

Looking forward to the next market and the summer ahead. It was a beautiful day, full of sunshine and lovely people :-).
For those on FB, the new page is Woodbridge Community Market with the profile pic a sigh saying Woodbridge hall… Very original I know. I have to find a better picture though.

Have a great day 🙂
Jennifer

P.s. the advertising part of the heading… lol, I almost forgot. I am getting my first advertisement worded up for the Westwinds newsletter which is distributed all over the channel area including Kingston. The newsletter is the size of an A4 sheet folded in half and generally quite thick. I am looking at a half page ad. Good exposure and it lasts for the whole month. Cheap too.

Markets, websites, blogs and beading

Lots of bits-of-stuff in this post.

Markets. I now have to make a few more decisions on which markets to attend.
The new market I applied for. Rejected. But they have me on their waiting list, which in itself poses another problem. if they ring, it is likely to be within 24-48 hours of the market being on. Really short notice, and crunch time for decisions.
I do understand, even though it is not good news. For most people, jewellery is lumped into one big pile. Regardless of what techniques and style you use, for the uninitiated, it all looks the same. Like scrap booking does to me. Although I have figured out some vague differences. I would like to know of it were my photos, the jewellery or if she even looked at my existing website. The letter, well, email, was a stock standard response, thanks but no thanks. None of the, we have 100 jewellery stalls and you didn’t make this round. That is partly what I want to know.
Mum and I have decided that we will both go and check out the first market -which, surprise surprise, coincides with the first Woodbridge market – have a chat with the organisers and see what they have there. We’re going to do a tag team thing, by setting up the day before and then looking after the others’ shop while they are away. This way we can chat with the organiser and find out more.

Websites. As you know I have my vista print one which while good, and I do love it, has a very non user friendly shopping cart. And it is not cheap, I am still paying for the extras even if I don’t use them. I have been looking around for something else and I think I’ve found it.
For somewhat less than I am paying now I get a whole lot of things, plus a really cool shopping cart and check out system.
As it is also a stand alone website I am not competing with a whole menagerie of other “shops” like you do on places like Etsy and Madeit. I’m just competing with the whole Internet… Hmm, the difference is what? exactly.
I will be sharing the link once I’m done, and if you could please have a browse and ‘pretend’ to buy something (by all means, purchase something for real, I certainly won’t complain) and let me know how it feels and looks.

Beading. I know I said that when I needed something to do I would reach into my UFO basket and make something. Well my mojo has gone further than that, add to that a little bit of feeling sorry for myself, and trying to work out a few a lot of things, I haven’t done much lately and probably won’t for a bit either.

Blogs. Back to vista print, I started a blog there with my website and then came over to WordPress to play, (Nothing has changed since I’ve been at school, I’m still out on my own here). There are lots of blog posts about my craft and beading so while I get some things sorted out I will be ‘reblogging’ some of those posts here. Take note, that my writing style has changed a bit since then, so it will probably read differently to this.

Thanks for coming along and I hope to be back soon with more creations.
Jennifer 🙂

Funky fabric flowers and bags

The other day I received lots of goodies in the mail, and while I said I was going to play, I did, just with other stuff. All the beads are still on the table. I didn’t put them away either.
I played with my fabric flowers instead.

Earlier this year a friend sent me some flowers she had made herself. Just because. They are gorgeous, and pretty in pinks and reds, all floral. But they needed a little blinging up. They sat in my sewing drawer until I knew just what to do.
Then, it hit me. I had finished my first evening bag … Enter pictures please.

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(oops, they’re sideways, sorry) And I now knew exactly what to do with them.
So I blinged them up with a bit of ribbon and some beads and buttons.

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Now my only problem is, should I make a feminine necklace with chain and pearls, a bib necklace with 3 or more of them, a couple of evening bags, or one with a full flower garden on it…??

Below is a mini tutorial of how I finished the flowers.

First, gather supplies. Flowers, thread, ribbon…

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Then pin the ribbon in loops. As neatly as possible, but they move, and it doesn’t matter that it’s not perfect. They’re a fun thing.

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Next, making sure you knot the thread underneath, make small stitches to secure the loops. Only one or two per loop is needed, as the buttons and beads will be more than enough to secure it later.

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Decide on what will be the centre of your flower and sew it on. If needed add more beads so the centre is fully covered and you can’t see the ends of the loops. It should look something like this.

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Or this…

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When you are adding the centre piece make sure you knot the thread regularly underneath to keep it tight and secure.

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My last flower got the royal treatment as I had run out of ribbon so it as beads all the way. A flower button formed my centre and then I beaded extra petals around it.

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Any help in my decision is welcome, I do have all those other fabric flowers I bought, so plenty of flowers for plenty of ideas.

Keep smiling 🙂
Jennifer

WEBSITE RELAUNCH!!!

Well, after nearly two weeks of work (interrupted of course by other seemingly important this like family and Art Trails) I have finally finished my website.
It has had a total overall: new pages, new products and a new look.
The only thing I haven’t put on it is a shopping cart. I realise that may be shooting myself in the foot, but until I find the funds to get a proper site done up or find a better way to incorporate shipping into it, it will have to wait.
For any sales and enquiries a simple email is all it takes and I can arrange the best price for you (and invoice via PayPal).

Pease wander across and have a look, I’d really appreciate any feedback you can give me (aside from any typos I’m sure I’ve missed) as it can only help in the long run and don’t forget to share with your friends, I post world wide so it doesn’t matter where you are.
(Christmas is coming fast, as usual it seems, so of you want to be super organized, there are lots of presses waiting ..)

Thanks and I hope you like it. 🙂

www.marcatodesigns.com

Jennifer