Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Featured Seller

Todays featured seller is Etsy, Coriandr and Folksy seller Tina from Mollimoo

What is your name/business name?
I'm Tina Peacock & my business name is Mollimoo

What is your craft?
I knit & I make hand sewn fabric buttons from modern & vintage fabrics. I also make brooches & other bits 'n' bobs.

How long have you been crafting for?
I was taught to knit by my mum when I was 8 years old. I have only really had the crafting 'bug' for a year though I've always been quite creative.

What is your most favourite thing about your craft?
Ooh, everything! Sourcing new fabric for my buttons, thrifting for vintage fabrics & collecting lots of vintage buttons. Knitting because it is sooo relaxing.

And the least favourite?
When I spend too much time on the computer in the crafting forums instead of getting on with making more designs! It's addictive & great fun but very distracting!

Where do you sell your work?
I sell my work in my shops on Etsy, Folksy & Coriandr. I hope to attend a monthly Art Boot Sale at a local gallery as well.

Anything else you'd like to tell us?
I love my little blog so do feel free to join me for a nice cup of tea & slice of cake....

Thanks so much for answering my questions and I hope you'll all check out Tina's shops.

Monday, 28 September 2009


So I've just spent the most amazing long weekend in Rome with my gorgeous hubbie Andy. My parents in law kept the rather tearful kids, who simply can't understand why we wanted to get away without them. Thankfully they did of course survive and Jamie said to me this morning that he now feels such a baby for crying!

Anyway I don't really know where to start in describing the vibrant, bustling, ancient, roasting hot, stylish city that is Rome. Firstly I was amazed that it was about 30 degrees every day - coming from Northern Ireland where the temperature rarely gets above 21 degrees, even at the height of summer this explains why the centurians got away with wearing very little!

Of course we all know that Rome is as famous for it's ancient ruins as it is for the Vatican, so we decided thats what we must see.

After an open topped bus tour on Thursday to give us an idea of the city we wandered amongst the Piazzas and fountains along cobbled streets and negotiating the traffic. Make no mistake, driving in Rome is seriously the worst I have ever seen! Drivers reversing down one way streets at speed, the hundreds of Vespa scooters that shoot through pedrestrian crossings when you're half way across. After a couple of days there though I got much more confident at striding across and hoping they stopped!

We did a guided tour of the Vatican with Marcello, an Italian American and it was worth every penny.

The day we went round the Colosseum and the ancient ruins of the Palatine it was free entry as it was European Culture Day. I think both of us were gob smacked at the sheer size of the Colusseum and the temples and arches. It took a while to get my head around the fact we were wandering around remains of buildings that date from the 4th century BC. Can't see much of Northern Ireland 2000 still standing in 2500 years!

I've got to say I knew that it would be expensive with the pound so poor against the Euro but I was still a bit shocked the an iced tea and a latte cost 16 euro at the foot of the spanish steps. That's basically £16 or $25!! Anyway we had some brilliant meals and spent quite a bit of time drinking coffee, Pinot Grigio and eating ice cream while watching the world go by.

So if you fancy a few days in glorious sunshine among 21st century style combined with ancient history, definitely save up your pennies and enjoy all the delights that Rome has to offer.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Rome here I come!

I have been dragging out my 40th birthday celebrations for as long as possible and now for the piece de resistance - 5 days in Rome with Andy!!

We head off later today so I won't be blogging till next week, when I hope to have lots of lovely pics to share.

The forecast is bright sunshine and 28 degrees until Sunday so I have packed the factor 30 and a sunhat. Fingers crossed the met office hasn't got it wrong!

Monday, 21 September 2009

Mondays Featured Seller

Todays featured seller is Etsy and Folksy seller Christine from DarkFairyTreasures

What is your name/business name?
Dark Fairy Treasures

What is your craft?
I make unique one of a kind pices of jewellery, and bespoke wedding stationary.

How long have you been crafting for?
I have been crafting since I was a child, and have a great interest in ancient textiles, jewellery, and all papercrafts.

What is your most favourite thing about your craft?
Since I became disabled in 2003, crafting has become a lifeline for me. I craft to exercise my hands and my mind.

And the least favourite?
My least favorite thing about crafting, is that my treacherous hands don't always work.

Where do you sell your work?
Folksy,Etsy and by word of mouth.

Anything else you'd like to tell us?
My blog address is

Thanks so much for answering my questions and I hope you'll all check out Christines shops.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Friday Roundup

This week has been pretty busy with my 3 Front Pages, so to be honest I've not made much new stuff, I've been working on replacing items that have sold.

I did make this Lavender Floral Bracelet. Well, I made two as the first sold within a couple of hours of me listing it!

I've also working on a custom order of matching Ivory Bubbles Bracelet and Earrings. It's been a bit frustrating waiting for supplies I've ordered on the internet though - some companies are great and ship immediately, some I've had real problems with this week, with the wrong order being sent through twice!

I also made this Cerulean Memory Wire Bracelet which is a little wider than my usual, so is perfect for those with a slightly bigger wrist.

And finally, I'm having a 10% off sale throughout my shop this weekend - I'll refund through Paypal after purchase.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Front Page!

Well they say things come in 3's and that's been true for me and Etsys Front Page this week! In addition to the FP on Saturday I've been featured twice more!

The first one was on Monday in this stunning blue treasury by lazygiraffe -

and the other was on Tuesday morning in this lovely hot pink treasury by BeadsbySam

Thanks to both of you for including my bracelets in your treasuries!

Etsy Showcases!

I've always been a bit unsure about buying a slot on one of the showcases on Etsy, as I've not read particularly good things about them in the forums.

However I eventually decided to bite the bullet last Friday on the Fall Wedding Showcase and thought I'd share my experience. Coincidentally that was the night I was on the FP as well - typical!- so it's hard to tell which results have come from which!

The item I featured in the showcase, the
Fizzy Bubbles Bracelet is one of my best sellers as a bridal piece.

It didn't sell on Friday.

However I did get 4 enquiries about custom orders for bridesmaid accessories. 2 of these have become definite orders for multiple items, which is fantastic!

So would I pay the $15 again for a showcase?

Well, I wouldn't say definitely yes, but I may be tempted to do a wedding one again, as I do think it brought extra exposure to my shop. It's not something I would rush into though, as I think $15 is pretty steep for one days advertising.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Mondays Featured Seller

Todays featured seller is Folksy seller Chloe from Hatastic

What is your name/business name?

What is your craft?
I design and make fascinators, headdresses, and other such hair accessories.

How long have you been crafting for?
I have always made things, but Hatastic! was officially born in March 2009

What is your most favourite thing about your craft?
I LOVE being able to put things together from whatever I can find at home or in secondhand shops! Currently I am making a bespoke piece for a client which includes a pheasant feather. I didn't have any fabric that was quite the right colour to go with the feather, and used an old makeup bag which was totally unusable and had aged naturally, so the gorgeous patent pewter colour of the bag was cut up! Looks fab!

And the least favourite?

Where do you sell your work?
Folksy and a bit on Etsy, but I am lucky to have a few stockists too.
Eco Emporia
Rococo Ethical Boutique
The Oriental Magpie
Shop Curious
Mary Portas Living and Giving Shop

I am also featured in
Not Just a Label
Cosa Verde

Anything else you'd like to tell us?
I am also a blogger for Eclipse Magazine on hat fashion. Check out the current competition where you can win the exclusive Eclipse Fascinator! Ends on 14th September so enter now!

Thanks so much for answering my questions and I hope you'll all enter the competition as it ends today!

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Front Page!

I woke yesterday morning to find out that I made it to the Front Page on Etsy overnight thanks to PaisleyChainsaws treasury.

I got a total of 30 new shop hearts, 1500+ new item views and a total of 81 new item hearts! No sales though but it's amazing what half an hour on the FP does!

Friday, 11 September 2009

Friday Roundup

I've had another good week on Etsy which was rounded off yesterday by my treasury making the front page!

This was a last minute poster sketch that I did using the search term UK, so I'm really pleased it made it to the FP! On a side note, is anyone else getting fed up with the huge volume of admin curated front page? It seems 9 times out of 10 when I log on that it's an admin FP, which I always think is a bit of a shame when there are so many gorgeous treasuries.

Anyway, I'd delighted that I've reached 250 sales on Etsy this week. My goal this year had been to reach 200 sales by the end of September, so I'm chuffed I've surpassed it.

I've got to say that I'm loving the rearrange your shop feature. I've spent far too much time playing about with it and it is a bit irritating to have to keep rearranging when I renew or list something new, but with practice I'm getting better.

On the crafting front I've made another pearl bracelet. This one is Metallic Blue

I've also been working on some new memory wire bracelets. This one I've called Irish Sea as the colours remind of the stormy seas around the North Coast.

I'm working on another custom order as well, so I'll let you see it once I've completed it

Wednesday, 9 September 2009


I've been asked a few times about how I take my pics and I've decided to do a short tutorial today.

Can I stress immediately I am no photographer, I've just improved my pics over the past year and a half or so of selling online.

There's no doubt the best way to get customers into your shop is to draw them in by great photos. When I'm looking to make treasuries or just browsing with a view to buy, my eye immediately runs past many lovely items just because the pic is poor.

When I started selling online I had absolutely no idea about taking photos of jewellery. This is one of the first pieces I sold on Etsy.

Really pretty dreadful because the shadow is so harsh. I remember getting so frustrated waiting for sunshine to make it as bright as possible. A friendly Etsian sent me a convo telling me to improve my pics or I'd have trouble selling online. She suggested using something like Photoshop. I'd never heard of it, but it really was a god-send. It took a bit of practice before I stopped dazzling everyone with the over bright pics! Unbelievably this bracelet sold to someone who has become a great repeat buyer!

Gradually I got much better and am pretty proud of this pic of one of my first memory wire bracelets I sold last July.

So now I use Picassa which is free to download. I take all my pics outside, in the shade on a pure white background using the macro setting. Ours is a pretty basic camera (don't ask me the make!) Once they are loaded onto the computer, I just edit them with Picassa. This allows me to whiten the background and just as important, crop them.

The white background works best with dark colours like this blue bracelet -

but not so well with paler beads like in this lemon bracelet -

I still stuggle to find an alternative background when the white doesn't work and usually pick a grey/black one, which I'm not too keen on.

Hope this has been helpful and as I say, I'm certainly no expert!

Tuesday, 8 September 2009


I got some really lovely presents for my birthday at the weekend, but I was especially touched by the scrap book my Mum and sister Louise put together of my 40 years.

I have kept photo albums through out the years but they are the type that have sticky pages and scrawled notes on them. I had a real laugh recently looking through my angst-ridden ones from my teenage years complete with torn up photos and letters from boys who had dumped me!!

This one is just stunning and I wanted to share a few of the pages, though the pics aren't great.

This one is from my earliest childhood, complete with birth card and baby photos.

This page is one I'm most proud of. The 'N Ireland' and the Red Hand of Ulster are from when I represented Northern Ireland in a National Cross Country race. Also on this page is a couple of less than flattering newspaper photos documenting my race wins.

On this page there are pics of me and my hubbie Andy, from our earliest days to more recent ones. The one on the bottom left is taken from our first year formal at Uni when I was 19 and Andy 18. I even have a stunning curly perm!

And finally, one of my friends. My best friend Jane, my hen weekend and the Scottish gang.

I just wanted to say, Mum and Lou, I really appreciate the time, effort and energy you have both spent on making this for me.


I don't normally show off my work on my blog until a Friday but I'm very excited by my latest bracelet! I realised that a few months ago I made a bracelet with czech flowers that has a huge number of views on my flickr account and in fact sold before I even got it listed in my shop.

So I've decided to do a few more similar to it - don't know why it's taken me so long to think of it! So here is the latest I made yesterday -

and a bit like the last one, it's sold even before it made the shop!

I've planning on different a few more in different colours, so I'd love some feedback.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Mondays Featured Seller

Todays featured seller is elgeecanknit from Folksy

What is your name/business name?
Business Name: Elgee,Fink & Ash - thats me, my hubby and my son

What is your craft?
Knitting, sewing, patchworking, sculpting (from recycled materials), making from recyled materials, cross-stitch, tapestry

How long have you been crafting for?
As long as I can remember my mum taught me to knit and the rest is self taught. My gran gave me a sewing machine years ago and I have never looked backed since. I have really taken it seriously since I was about 22.

What is your favourite thing about your craft?
My fav thing just now is knitting I love the fact that you can create anything its amazing the end result. Also I love patchworking old bits of material (cant throw anything out)

And your least fav?
Finishing a job off.

Where do you sell your work?
In our Local Museum (where I work) and on Folksy, craft fairs and parties at my house.

Thank you for answering my questions and I hope you'll all check out her shop.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

40 today!

So today I turn 40. I'm relieved in a way it is finally here as I've been hearing about it for so long from friends and family. It doesn't bother me at all as it's not as if I'm friends with a bunch of 18 year olds now is it? All my friends have either already turned 40 or will be soon. I think I may stutter slightly though the first time I have to tick the box that reads 40-49 rather than 30-39!

So what have I achieved in these 40 years?

Well I am a daughter, sister, wife and mother. I am a physiotherapist, I've lived in Northern Ireland, England and Scotland. I've visited Jamaicia, Budapest, Spain, France, Italy, Belgium and Lanzarote. I've made great friends. I've started my own business. I've been married to Andy for 15 years and we've been together for nearly 21 years. I have 2 brilliant children that I love to distraction.

Not bad for an old doll :D

To celebrate my 40th birthday, I'm offering a massive 40% off in my shop today. Just put '40% discount' in the note to seller and I will refund via Paypal.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

August Roundup

I decided today to do an August round up instead of a weekly round up.

Thanks to the Weekend Deals article it has been my best month by far on Etsy. I've had 44 sales and have found it's remarkably easy to get used to being busy!

I've decided to concentrate on more autumnal items and have been working on more memory wire bracelets again.

This Golden Brown Bracelet is made from a mix of golden brown, gold and ivory roughened glass pearls with gold bugle and seed beads.

This Blue and Grey Memory Wire bracelet is made from blue and grey roughened glass pearls with silvery grey bugle and seed beads.

And 2 of my favourite colours together, this Duck Egg Blue and Ivory Bubbles bracelet is not classically autumnal, but I just love them together!

Just to say, watch this space on Sunday as I am celebrating my birthday and will have a special deal going on in my shop!

Treasure Trails

Last week I met up with my old friends Gillian and Allan and their 2 youngest children Holly and Conor to do a Treasure Trail

Now I'd never heard of these, but there are over 320 trails throughout the UK.

So what are they?

Well here's the blurb - The Trails are a fun, healthy, and educational way to get you out and about exploring. Some Trails require you to solve a murder mystery whilst others require you to find the location of hidden treasure, or crack the code to save the world!

Basically you download the trail from the website and then follow the trail while solving the crime. We did our murder mystery around one of the most picturesque villages in Northern Ireland, Hillsborough. The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland lives in Hillsborough Castle and the village is full of interesting facts and quaint pubs and shops.

Hillsborough Castle

We followed the clues around the village trying to find our murderer and weapon used. The kids loved the old courthouse, within the Tourist Information and had a ball running around the Fort.

I was amazed the trail kept the kids attention throughout and with the promise of a Curly Wurly for the winners, all 4 kids tried their best to solve the crime.

Definitely worth the £5 it cost to download the trail and a great way to explore somewhere I thought I knew quite well, but didn't really!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

It's a Writing thing

I've been tagged by Anne from The Pineapple Tart Anne is a publisted author and I'm not so sure some of this may applies to me.

What word do you use too much in your writing?
My main writing is either descriptions of my bracelets so 'chic' is a bit overused, or emails to friends so 'me' is a bit too popular as well

Which words do you consider overused in stuff you read?
'mavarick', 'enigmatic' and 'compelling'. I usually can't stand characters that are described like that as it usually means they are prats

What's your favourite piece of writing (written by you)?
I wrote a short story for a competition in a magazine once which of course didn't win. But I still think it's a great story.

Regrets, do you have a few? Is there anything you wish you hadn't written?
My biggest regret is the essay I wrote for my A level English exam. It was called 'Was Gatsby Great?' Just before the A levels my teacher Mrs Donnelly had given us a sample essay of that very title and I never, ever read it. The essay I wrote on the day was total rubbish and earned me a D. My biggest regret without doubt.

How has your writing made a difference?
No unfortunately

Favourite words
"You have to leave feedback for 20 items" (In my dreams!)

Least favourite words
No feedback needed

Do you have a writing mentor, role model or inspiration?
My sister Anne. She got her first book published in her early 20's and keeps coming up with new ideas.

Writing Ambition?
I'd love to get a short story published

I'm going to tag 3 people -