Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Featured Seller

As a break from my usual Wednesday Giveaways, I'm going to feature another great Folksy seller - MoreCakeDesigns.

1.What is your name/business name?
My name is Hannah Roberts and my label is More Cake... designs.

2.How long have you been crafting for?
I've been crafting since I was very young probably about 8 years old when I did a 'Thumper (from Bambi) Embroidery'! my mum still has it and it's actually quite good. lol! My mum sews and my grandma used to knit like a demon.

3.What do you enjoy most about your craft?
The best thing about crafting is the satisfaction of making something yourself from idea to finished item, I find the whole process incredibly cathartic. It's even better when someone else loves your work and is willing to pay for it. Seeing work bloom from a pile of fabric and trimmings is just magical.

4.What is your least favourite thing?
My least favourite thing about crafting (which I have only recently discovered online) is the business side, once you start selling and trying to make money from your craft you quickly realise that the making is probably only 20% and the rest is promoting, listing and generally getting your work seen and out there. For someone who isn't good at promoting themselves it can be a steep learning curve.

5.Where do you sell your work?
I sell my work on Folksy and Misi. I also sell in a fabulous interiors shop in York called Blossom & Walker and I also have items in Beningborough Hall's Farm shop near York.

6. Where do you get your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from all sorts of places, sometimes its a customer request, often it comes from a piece of vintage fabric and recently for my 'pocket full of wishes' it came from seeing a basic pack of origami star paper in Hawkins Bazaar and thought they were such a lovely idea I took the idea a little further. Websites and the internet are great too but often I look at other work and think 'that's so fabulous, my stuff isn't half as good as this' so it can be counter productive.

7. Anything else you'd like to tell us?
I've recently started a sewing club at my son's school (Cottons Club) and wish I'd done it sooner. The response has been overwhelming and I have had to rope a friend in to help and stagger classes to fit everyone in, I'm really excited about this. If all goes well I should be able to make a living out of my work, teaching and selling just like a 'real job'!

Thanks to Hannah for answering my questions and I hope you will check out her fabulous shop.

Just to say, I am off to Barcelona tomorrow for a long weekend so I won't be back until next Monday! Hopefully I'll remember to bring my camera and will have some pics to show off next week.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Memory Wire Bracelets

I decided that for today's post I would do a short tutorial on my favorite type of bracelet - memory wire bracelets.

Memory wire is a very strong, very hard wire which always returns to its original circular shape when pulled out of shape or stretched repeatedly. It comes in a variety of sizes - from ring sized to choker sized - and in a variety of finishes.

The bracelets diameters range from 4.5cm (1.75") which would fit a childs wrist, through 5cm (2"), 5.5cm (2.2") to 7cm (2.75). I initially used 5cm diameter but found them too snug a fit even on my tiny wrists. Now I use 5.5cm memory wire. The beauty of memory wire is that there is no clasp and the bracelets will expand to fit most sizes of wrists whilst staying in a circular shape.

One important thing to invest in before working with memory wire is memory wire cutters, like the ones pictured below. These are cutters designed for memory wire and I found to my cost that if you use ordinary wire cutters, they will get damaged.

To make the bracelet -
1. Decide on how many coils your bracelet will consist of and cut the wire using your memory wire cutters.
2.Turn a loop at one end of the wire with round nose pliers - bring the loop right over to ensure as close a fit to the rest of the wire as possible. After I have made the loop, I squeeze it with flat nose pliers to ensure the loop is tightly closed. This avoids beads moving about on the bracelet.
3. Thread your chosen beads onto the wire.
4. Finish by making a loop with your round nose pliers and squeezing it tightly shut with your flat nose pliers.
It is possible to use endcaps to finish off the loops but I have read these are prone to falling off, so admit I have not used them.

With these bracelets I like to use seed and bugle beads -

silver plated spacer tubes -

or to use the spacer tubes with a focal pattern at the front of the bracelet -

I'm always working with memory wire and would love some suggestions for new colours to work with!

Monday, 25 May 2009

Mondays Featured Seller

Today I am featuring Marie from WEE Clothing on Folksy.

What is your name/business name?
My name is Marie and my business name is WEE which is the name my niece aged 3 used as she couldn't pronounce. Friends picked up on it and have called it me ever since. I wanted my business name to be personal to me.

What is your craft?
I hand-finish ladies and children's t-shirts using fun felt motifs designed for those who want to break free of what the high street dictates is this seaons 'must have'.

I have played around with clothes and anything else I could I could get my crafty hands on all of my life. I began making my ladies t-shirts in 2007. The children's t-shirts came later in 2008.

What is your favourite thing about your craft?
My favourite thing about making t-shirts is coming up with new designs. I worry that I'm not going to be able to come up with new ideas but once I kick my brain into gear, the ideas pour out. Ladies designs are always the hardest to think up. The children's are easy as I'm a big child at heart.

And your least favourite?
My least favourite thing is working around the clock to get orders finished.

Where do you sell your work?
My t-shirts are available to buy online at WEE Clothing. I sell my ladies and children's t-shirts one Sunday a month at Duck Pond Market, Ruislip. The children's are also stocked at Emporium Tea Rooms in London and Karine's Kids at Camden Lock Market, London.

Where do you get your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from many places. I have a love for nature which is why so many of my t-shirts feature animals or plants. For my ladies designs I like to create opular traditional designs that are immediately recognisable such as Ace of Diamonds and Cherries.

So I hope you will check out Marie's great website and Folksy shop!

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Slieve Binion

Yesterday I did something I've not done before - climbed Slieve Binion in the Mourne Mountains. Normally my Saturdays are spent pottering around and having a latte in M&S, but yesterday I was asked by my friend Gillian if I was up for doing the charity walk organised by her sister Jen and friend Andrea. Jen and Andrea are adventurers and have started a blog about their expolits Dynamic Duo which will have pics from yesterday put up on it. 12 of us were game enough to do it to raise money for a local maternity unit.

The Mournes for those of you who don't know are found in County Down and in the words of the song 'sweep down to the sea'.

It being Northen Ireland and May it was of course a dreadful day -foggy, windy and wet. Actually I'm really very glad it was foggy because if I'd seen where we were going on the way up, I may not have made it! We had occassional glimps of the view as the fog lifted and had a very blustery and quite eerie lunch at the summit in fog which reduced visability to 15 feet. The descent was almost harder as it was slippy and the rain was like needles. However, the fog had completely lifted by the time we reached the 3 mile track which would led us back to the car park, so we were able to see where we had been walking.

At the end my legs were tired, my feet were sore but I was so chuffed I'd done it and when Jen and Andrea asked who was game for the next one, I didn't immediately think 'No way'.

Maybe once my feet have recovered I'll think about it :)

Friday, 22 May 2009

Friday Roundup

It's Friday so time for me to show off some of the things I've been working on all week. I got a request from a neighbour to make up an Ivory Bubbles Bracelet and matching necklace, so that keep me busy for a couple of days.

I also managed to get some new bracelets listed on Etsy, although the camera is still tempermental and I'm putting off buying a new one until after my trip to Barcelona next week.

I made this Blue, Green and Silver Bubbles Bracelet with some of the new glass pearls I got last week. I decided to do this one on beading wire with a clasp, instead of elastic like the Irish Sky one last week.

I finally made another wraparound bracelet, this one is called Spring Green Memory Wire Bracelet Green seems to be one of the on trend colours at the minute and I'v had these green bugle beads for a while, so it was nice to use them.

Any feedback would be great!

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Honest Scrap Award!

I have been awarded the Honest Scrap Award by Jacqui at Cards Especially For You - thanks Jacqui!

There are a few requirements and they are as follows:
- I must thank the person who gave me the award and list their blog and link it
- I must list 10 honest things about myself
- I must put a copy of The Honest Scrap Logo on my blog.
- I must select at least 7 other worthy bloggers & list their links
- I must notify the bloggers of the award and hopefully they will follow the above three requirements also.

Here's my 10 honest things:
1.I am a natural red head
2.I hate having fair skin
3.I spend far too long on the internet every day
4.I am the most untidy person I know
5.I miss Scotland dreadfully
6.I have a huge pile of paper work waiting for me to deal with
7.I have a terrible temper
8.I don't enjoy confrontation
9. I'm a useless cook
10 I love gardening

My award goes to the following lovely bloggers

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Wednesdays Giveaways and Discounts

It's Wednesday so that means a round up of blog giveaways and discounts!

First up this week is the chance to win a $25 gift certificate to spend on Reparapy merchandise. Check out the Reparapy blog for your chance to win!They are giving away one certificate a day for 2 weeks, so it's a great chance to win.

The next giveaway can be found on the Pocket Full of Pink blog. You could win 8 of these cute mushroom tags and the closing date is Tuesday May 26th.

And the final giveaway this week is to be found on SassyGlassDesigns blog. You could win these gorgeous earrings

Good luck!

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Panda Notecard Giveaway

I've been lucky enough to be the recipient of a blog giveaway! Patricia Snow was giving away some of these cute Panda notecards and I was one of the lucky winnners.

Check out Patricia's shop on etsy to find more of her great work.

Monday, 18 May 2009

Seafoam UK!

Unfortunately todays featured seller has poorly people to care for, so her interview will come another week. I decided instead to feature some of the gorgeous work on Etsy that can be found (using the unoriginal phrase borrowed from Etsy admin) using the search terms Seafoam.

First up are these stunning Seafoam Earrings by RachelLucie. She has used a combination of silver freshwater coin pearls and a trio of translucent seafoam amazonite briolettes individually wire-wrapped together to create these earrings.

Next is this gorgeous necklace by stripeymonkey. The necklace is a great mix of sterling silver and leather with vintage crystals, handmade glass and chalcedony drops.

And finally, who could resist this Seafoam and Roses Bracelet
by RubyWren. The Carved-Rose Amazonite bead sits in the middle of beautiful large blue beads and silver spacers in this bracelet.

So I hope you'll check out these lovely Seafoam pieces and all the UK sellers shops I've featured.

Saturday, 16 May 2009


Mel P from Kookie Designs has tagged me, so here goes!

8 things I am looking forward to...
1. I am looking forward to Jamies birthday party being over tomorrow! I get really anxious when I'm in charge of other peoples children, so as much as I know Jamie and Alex will love snowtubing, I will be looking forward to my large glass of white to relax tomorrow night
2. Barcelona in 2 weeks with 2 of my best friends from Scotland
3. Getting a new job (fingers crossed)
4. My sister Anne and her 4 chidren coming home from Bahrain for 3 weeks in the summer
5. Our family holiday to Cornwall in July
6. Turning 40 in September and getting it out of the way
7. 4 childfree nights in Rome in September to celebrate my birthday
8. Making some new designs with all those beads sitting around waiting for me

8 things I did yesterday
1. Walked the dog in the rain
2. Went shoe shopping and came home with 2 blouses
3. Have a latte in M&S
4. Made a couple of bracelets and swore at the camera
5. Answered my work emails and pretended I was working
6. Took Alex to get a fringe cut so she could look like Miley Cyrus
7. Had coffee at my friend Gillians
8. Painted my toenails

8 things I wish I could do
1. Live in a country where summer meant sunshine
2. Spend time with my granny who died when I was a child
3. See my friends in Scotland more
4. Get a physio job (see above)
5. Always keep my kids safe
6. Be a bit more motivated to keep the house tidy
7. Relax and enjoy life a bit more
8. Have more time just Andy and me

8 shows I watch .....
1. ER
2. Cold Case
3. The Apprentice
4. Greys Anatomy
5. Britains Got Talent
6. Ashes to Ashes
7. The Wire
8. Brothers and Sisters

So my 8's are done! The rules for those I tag are

1. Mention the name of the person who tagged you
2. Do your lists of 8
3. Tag 8 bloggers
4. Tell them that they have been tagged

My 8 are -
1. Ali at alibalijewellery
2. Amy at arehandmadejewellery
3. Boo at boojewels
4. Valerie at cabinandcub
5. MissMaisy at missmaisyschatter
6. Cherylline at iliaiye
7. Sarah at landcuckoo
8. Jen at 10oneworld

Friday, 15 May 2009

Fridays Weekly Round up

As it is Friday it's time to get a round up of what I've been working on all week. Unfortunately I've been having real problems with my camera and think I'm going to have to invest in a new one. As well as the one I normally use, we have a wee pocket sized one that we got to fit in my handbag a couple of years ago. However, even though it has a macro setting, it just isn't very good. As any one trying to sell their work online knows, photos are the one thing that draws in prospective buyers and if the photos aren't up to scratch, the buyers won't come.

Anyway, I have been crafting away as usual and got some new beads to make a few more of the Bubbles Bracelets. This one I called Irish Sky simply because it exactly matched the sky here this morning before it started pouring down.

I've got to admit I've been getting a bit disillusioned with Folksy over the past few weeks. The people I've met in the forums are brilliant but there is a general air of discontent that it is hard not to be affected by. I listed this Gold and Bronze Memory Wire Bracelet exclusively on there.

Over the weekend I'll think I'll be off camera shopping and if it ever stops raining, hopefully I'll get some of my other new creations listed next week

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Happy Birthday Jamie!

Today my son Jamie turns 8. I find it hard to believe that it is 8 years since Andy, Alex (then 2) and I sat in the sunshine on Troon beach waiting for me to go into hospital to be induced. Jamie was the most placid baby, the worst toddler and now is the most loving, generous and funny boy.

He is full of mischief and his favourite hobby is irritating his sister but tells me a dozen times a day that he loves me and comes into bed every morning for his 'morning snuggle'. Thankfully as he can now read the time this is happens at half 7 rather than the half 5 it was for many years! His favourite food is cold custard, he wears his socks in bed, his hands are always warm and he has already reached his 8th khu in karate. And I love him to bits.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Wednesdays Giveaways and Discounts

Every Wednesday I'm blogging about blog giveaways and discounts to here's todays.

First up is the ETTEAM giveaway that I found on NiftyKnits blog
MidnightCoiler is giving away some of her beautiful hand made charms (24 total - valued at over $30.00) in the ETTEAM first big blog giveaway. The charms are a stoneware/pottery that are crafted and fired, each a unique individual work of art.

The next giveaway is to be found on AudreysCountryCrafts Giveaway blog Audrey has featured Lilyja Jewelery on her blog and this amazing necklace is to be won

And finally the last blog giveaway is on Pretty Paris' blog She is giving away these gorgeous earrings and matching hairpin!

So quick, get entering as these giveaways all end soon! and good luck :)

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

PIF Giveaway

Last month I was one of the lucky recipients of Southern Girl Florals Pay It Forward blog giveaways. I received my stunning hair accessory yesterday. It makes me think of summer holidays and lazy days in the sun. In fact, I've had to hide it from Alex my 10 year old as I know for a fact that she would love to get her hands on it!

As well as hair accessories Lindsay makes wreaths and floral arrangements and I hope you'll check out her amazing shop on Etsy

Monday, 11 May 2009

Mondays Featured Seller

Today I'm featuring one the regulars on the UK chat thread in Etsy Clare Bears

What is your name/business name?

Where do you live?

What do you make?
My signature line is my jointed teddy but I make all kinds of soft toys. I also do cross-stich, knit and crochet. I'm also always looking for a new thing to make. It's a sickness :)

How long have you been crafting for?
Forever. I was always drawing and colouring in when I was younger. My Mam taught me to knit when I was in the Brownies and during school I tried allsorts of crafts. At home, the scissors and cellotape could always be found in my room! i first made a toy at the age of 8 was a Winnie the Pooh kit which I tried to submit for my Brownie craft badge but Brown Owl said he was too good and my Mam must of made him (she didn't, she ownly sewed the round bottom in as it was difficult!) so I wasn't allowed to enter him. I still have him now! I was taught to make toys properly when I was about 12. My step-grandma made bears too and she taught me how to make them. I've made them ever since and have mostly made them as gifts but once or twice have sold them. I'd never really taken the whol thing seriously until I found Etsy and I kind of found somewhere I enjoyed being. Now, I spend every spare minute making something. Unless i'm travelling with my day job and then it's hard to take airline-friendly scissors and needles!

Where do you get your inspiration?
My first inspiration is Bonzo (see my blog for more details). He is as old as me and has needed so many repairs. He's the item I would rescue from a fire if it was all I could take and he has been everywhere with me. For as long as i can remember, I have had a love of soft toys and always see them as a personality (Bonzo is a bit of a grumpy old cynic). I guess I want other people to feel the same way about the toys I make. I look at fabric, whether it's fur or not, and see it as a bear or other toy.

What do you enjoy most about your craft?
Seeing the bears face for the first time. When i finish making the bear's head and turn it inside out, I see their face and I know if their a boy or a girl and what they're like. It's probably some kind of over-active imagination but it's a kind of ritual now.

What do you enjoy least?
Stopping half way through making one to go to bed!! I have a day job so I still have to have a decent night's sleep so I hate stopping in the middle of a bear. I hate it most if I have to leave it for a few nights. It drives me mad!

Where do you sell your work?
Just on Etsy at the moment but I plan to add it to Coriandr at some point. I have to travel with my day job so the grand expansion plans are a bit on hold at the moment. It'll be a while before i take over the world :)

Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself or your work?
I love doing it and I want everyone to enjoy my work as much as I enjoy doing it. I have also found such kind and supportive people through Etsy who have kept me going longer than I might have done on my own. I thank them all for that.

America sounds brilliant! how long are you going for?
About a month. This is all for my day job though but I can't wait to have a rummage in some craft shops while i'm there!

Clares shop is temporarily shut while she works/suns herself in USA but check out her pics on flickr

Friday, 8 May 2009

New listings

I've decided that on a Friday I'm going to show off what I'm working on or what I've listed this week.

I've been quite busy with my Etsy shop this week. Since Saturday I've sold 6 items, which is really pretty good since I only had 7 sales there for the whole of the month of April! Yesterday I listed a necklace and bracelet which are a bit of a change from my usual.

Chunky Boho Bracelet and matching

Chunky Boho Necklace. I'm offering 15% discount if both items are bought together.

In my Folksy shop I have just listed a Salmon Pink Bubbles Bracelet

This is a variation in the glass pearls bracelets that I sell a lot of and I thought with wedding season just around the corner that I would add some more colours. I've had to take the photos on a black background as I'm finding that using a white background then photoshopping it, is draining the paler beads of colour and not really showing the correct shade.

I'd really appreciate some feedback on the backgrounds and if the black works well -thanks!

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Book Club

Tomorrow night is the first night of the Book Club I have set up. I was in a book club when we lived in Scotland and since we moved 2 years ago I have been thinking of starting one. One thing I learned was there are 2 essentials for a successful book club - plenty of wine and plenty of food. I suppose I should say 3 essentials and add a good book!

My dilemma is which book to pick as the inaugural book the club shall read?

My favourite book of all time is Ken Folletts The Pillars of the Earth but at 1076 pages it may be unfair to ask the working mums that are coming along to read it within the 4 weeks until the next Book Club meeting.

My next favourite book is Stephen Kings The Stand but again at 1000+ pages it may not be the best choice.

I'm currently reading Philippa Gregorys The Other Queen about Mary Queen of Scots. Although I really enjoying it I'm not sure if historical novels are everyones cup of tea.

So I think I've narrowed it down to 2 of my favourite reads of the past year. The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton

and The Island by Victoria Hislop.

Both are compelling stories, not over long and hard to put down. So I'd like some input from anyone who has read either or both of these books, to help me decide! Leave your comments and I'll get back to you about what I chose and how the night went.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Blog Giveaways and Discounts

I've decided that I'd like to have a bit of structure to my blog so on a Monday I plan to feature another crafter and on a Wednesday I will promote some of the Giveaways and Discounts to be found on the blogs I follow. Who knows what I'll be writing about on the other days yet!

The first blog discount is to be found on handcrafted-ginas blog. Gina is offering a discount code for purchases on her site and also any personalised cards you may wish to order.

The next blog giveaway is to found on 10oneworlds blog. Jen is hosting a giveaway from YouniquelyChic and you could win these gorgeous earrings.

And finally you could win a t shirt on the suaviloquy blog. All you have to do is leave a comment on the blog for a chance to win one of these t shirts -

If you are having a blog giveaway or discount, leave a comment with your link!

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Treasury Making

I've just nabbed myself another treasury on Etsy and thought I would do a condensed version about what they are, how to get one etc.

What are treasuries?
Treasuries are an opportunity to show off other peoples work. They are really not intended for self promotion and some people frown upon those who chose to put one of their own items in their treasuries. However, Etsy admin have said that we can put one of our own items in our treasuries, but it will be swapped to an alternate if the treasury makes the Front Page.

What is the difference in the main treasury and Treasury West?
The link to the main treasury can be found on the home page, whereas treasury west can only be found through the direct link -

Treasury west is a test and may be removed at any time.

How do you know when treasuries are about to come up?
The main treasury will become available only when the total number of treasuries drops below 333. Treasury west becomes available when the total number drops below 222. You can work out approximately when they are going to become available by working out what times are left on remaining treasuries. However, it is possible to delete treasuries, so it's easy to get caught out! Remember that once the main treasury has reached 333 and treasury west 222, it is not possible to delete a treasury, so you can work it out accurately then.

What happens when they become available?
At the bottom of the page a box will appear and you type in the title of your treasury - this can't be changed later so make your spelling is accurate!There is a maximum of 33 characters, so make it short. Click on 'create' and hopefully it will take you to your treasury. I say hopefully, because strange things have been known to happen at this point!

Can I have a treasury ready in advance?
Yes with poster sketch You can click on and make up a treasury to keep until the next one is available. This allows you to move items around, change them about and generally have a play with your treasury. Remember that although you will put 16 items in your treasury, only the 12 in the first 3 columns are visable to anyone else. The last 4 are the alternates and are only visable to you. The only way to transfer your poster sketch to your treasury is to put the item numbers in one by one, there is no way to put your whole poster sketch in your treasury quickly.
One thing worth remembering about poster sketch is, if you have made it quite a bit before you get a treasury, some of the items may have sold or expired, so you need to check them every so often and certainly after making the treasury.

Can I let people know they are in my treasury?
Etsy admin changed the rules for this a few months ago and now we are allowed to convo people to let them know we have used one of their items for our treasuries. I think though that the spambot filter may still play up if you convo too many people at once with the same message, so either pause between your convo's or change the wording slighty.

How do I know if I am in a treasury?
You can either take a look at the treasury lists - a gold star means one of your items is featured, a silver star means that one of your items is an alternate - or you can use craftopolis where you just put in your shop name and it will tell you how many treasuries you are in or are alternates in. This brilliant site also allows you to find out if you are in any gift guides.

How will I know if I have made it to the Front Page?
Apart from the fact your shop and items hearts/views will no doubt have jumped significantly, you can take a look at craft cult where the new Vault feature shows all the front pages.

Well I hope this has covered the nuts and bolts of treasury making! The one thing I know that's been left out is getting a screen shot of your treasury but I've got to admit that's one thing I can't yet do, so if anyone can help out, I really appreciate it!

Monday, 4 May 2009


I've discovered the fantastic work of Sue Harris from BlueBoxStudio on Folksy and she has agreed to an interview about her work.

What is your name/business name? Sue Harris - Blue Box Studio

Where do you live? - in the Victorian sea side resort of Clevedon, North Somerset. We have a pier built from spare parts from one of Brunel's projects and the oldest purpose built continually operating cinema in the world.

What type of crafting do you do? I make sea glass & sterling silver jewellery from sea glass I find around Britain's beaches and silk & velvet scarves using traditional and contemporary Shibori, batik, devoré, hand and screen printing techniques.

How long have you been crafting for? Since I was 5! I was given a toy sewing machine at the age of 5. I out grew that within weeks and was then given an old Singer sewing machine. My Dad disconnected the handle and reconnected the treadle for me and off I went. I've sewn ever since. I started knitting at the same age, spinning wool was a discovery in the 80s, closely followed by a variety of knitting machines. I started making bead and silver jewellery in 1995 and started selling at fairs and through galleries from then on. My love of textiles was always at the back of my mind and I discovered Shibori, a more decorative and complex form of tie dye whilst reading books at a book stall in a very quiet craft fair. I mainly make scarves but from time to time the range widens. Collaboration with another artist in the 1990s let to me working with velvets as well and, once that ended, I continued to explore the ways I could colour and texture fabrics.

What is your favourite thing about your craft? You can't beat walking along a quiet beach looking for sea glass ... real 'me' time. I love that I am lucky enough to be able to do my craft as a part time business. Circumstances have been different in the past when this was taken away from me and the depression I felt from being 'robbed' of this was devastating. I treasure my luck in being able to work for myself again and must give credit here for the patience and support from my husband who, if he wanted to be purely material about my business, would tell me to go back and work full time in what my mother would have called 'a real job'!

What is your least favourite thing about your craft? The fact that I can only do this part time. As a struggling artist (aren't we all?) I also work part time in an office which I don't particularly enjoy. Sometimes I also have days when things just won't go right, usually drills breaking one after another when drilling sea glass. I learned to stop what I am doing and do something different on those days!

Where do you get your inspiration from? I love texture and colour. I am inspired by the beautiful beaches I get my sea glass from, the colours in nature lead me to explore pattern and colours in my work. Often seeing vintage textiles in exhibitions I get ideas of how I could incorporate something similar in my own work. I often work listening to the radio and depending on what is on I often find, certainly with the colours I use or the patterns I create, that my mind reacts to what is on. A good play could have me making intricate designs, bold classical music can lead to big bold designs on velvet, something light and uplifting may mean I work with brighter colours. The shapes in nature, such as the twisting tendrils on a climbing plant may lead me to twist silver as a mount for my sea glass pendants. Sometimes the glass is so beautiful in itself that it just needs a simple mount. Less interesting colours such as white may benefit from pretty beads or pearls. Often a piece is designed around some lamp work glass beads that I couldn't resist.

Where do you sell your work? I sell on Etsy, Folksy, through fairs, open studio events and galleries in the UK. If any gallery owner would like to stock my work I'd love to hear from them.

Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself or your work? I'm taking part in North Somerset Arts Week from Friday 1 May to Sunday 10 May. If anyone is in the area, come and see us. I am being joined by a local potter and we are raising funds for Holly Hedge animal sanctuary, where I went to be adopted by my 2 merry moggies. As far as I know we are the only venue to be doing teas, coffees and home made cakes - I even did training to get a food hygiene certificate and registered with the council, how's that for dedication! [It's a legal requirement that most people ignore thinking it doesn't apply to them, it does. But then not everyone has insurance for their work or premises. I think 25 years as a civil servant made me into a rule-freak!].

Thanks to Sue for answering all my questions! Don't forget to check out her shops

Friday, 1 May 2009

More Earrings!

AS I said in one of my earliest blog posts, I love earrings and this week treated myself to a pair made by MomentsbyMartha on Etsy. I love green and have had my eye on these for a while.

I don't make alot of earrings to sell online but found some findings this week and using some lovely green glitter beads I got at the bead fair a couple of weeks ago, I made these Spring Chandelier Earrings

I'm inspired to make a few more earrings, so watch this space!