Monday, March 10, 2008

Etsy Colors: Chartreuse

I got an assignment in my 6th grade English class to write a poem about colors. No, I did not write about red and blue and purple and orange. I rambled on and on about the joys of periwinkle and avacado and eggplant.

This theme has continued into today. I love colors with random names, and chartreuse seemed like a pretty random color to me. Yet however random the color, it's one I have come to know and love.

Here are some of my Etsy chartreuse picks:

If you're going to be accused of being a freak, you may as well do it in style, right? Stoopidgerl has a whole series of resin necklaces that are fun and freaky (in a good way). Perfect for the little rebel in all of us.

Forest Motif Giclee Print

I love this one- it's perfect for almost any room. Except a teenage boy's. But that's them and not this print. Beesknees has lots of other beautiful prints, many with the same minimist, nature theme that I really like.

Chartreuse Wowza Hand Painted Yarn

This one basically speaks for itself. And my cat heartily approves of yarn in any form. She loves the variety at SeeJayneKnitYarns and knows she wants to buy some for me for my birthday coming up. I just need to teach her how to use the internet...

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Saturday Night Special- March 8

For this Saturday night only (until I wake up tomorrow morning at 9am EDT), I'll be offering flat rate shipping to anywhere in the US. No matter how many things you buy, it's only $2. After you check out on Etsy, don't pay by PayPal, and I will resend the invoice to you. Your order will only ship after I get my PayPal payment.

Happy shopping!

Frenchroast's Fave Five

Here are my five favorite things:

1. Favorite web sites (besides Etsy!):

2. Favorite band

3. Favorite place I've visited

New Zealand!

4. Favorite book

You want me to pick just one?

5. Favorite cat

Aria- my little love.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Frenchroast Finds: Good Coffee

I didn't name my shop Frenchroast for no reason. I love coffee. I have loved it for years. When I was 5 and Dannon yogurt first became affordable, I would nick my mom's coffee yogurt and eat it myself! I was drinking coffee (very weak, with LOTS of milk and sugar) regularly by 14. And it only got worse in college.

Though I am no-longer mind numbingly addicted to coffee- that stopped in grad school after I drank 60 oz of coffee one morning and wound up in the ER with a rapid pulse and dehydration- I still love to drink it. One cup first thing in the morning, and the next cup sipped slowly throughout the day.

I don't like to spend money, nor do I have much to spend, but I do indulge in really good coffee. My favorite comes from Montana Coffee Traders. I learned about them from my mom's friend who lives in Kalispell, MT, near Glacier National Park. When Connie found out about my love of coffee, she sent me a care package with four (!) 12 oz packs of coffee- creme brulee, huckleberry, cherry, and cinnamon bun.

They have special "project coffees" which benefit charities in coffee-growing areas, and they also have a large selection of fair trade coffees. The selection of flavored varities is astounding and I love it.

I need some more coffee now...

Monday, March 3, 2008

Etsy Sellers: littlepurls

This is the first of what is going to be a series of regular features on Etsy sellers- who they are, how they work, any selling hints, and just a kind of "getting to know you" event. It beats speed dating, trust me. :)

My very first featured seller is littlepurls (aka Tally). I met her in the Etsy forums when she posted this item that I have since fallen in love with: the Cabled Neck Cuff in Orange with Vintage Buttons. All of her items are charming, simple, and creative. I interviewed Tally, and she had this to say about her work on Etsy.

How long have you been knitting?

I've been knitting now for 3 years. My wonderful sister (Holly) taught me a few Christmases ago. The first thing I knit was a hat, and it was horrible. Didn't fit, bad colors, I don't think I even have it anymore. But I knew when I was done that I was hooked.

Knitting is addictive for me. The act of designing and creating something is like a drug. It's also like being caught in an avalanche, because while your designing and making, new ideas occur to you, improvements on the last one and its endless, new ideas spiraling on forever. That's what I love about craft, the limitless possibilities.

When did you start selling on Etsy?

I found out about Etsy through a friend who spins and dyes her own yarn and sells in there. She knew I was designing and thought it would be a good venue for my work. I officially starting selling on Jan. 25, 2008. The first few things I posted were pretty boring (most of them are still for sale so you can see for yourself!). I was trying to find a niche for myself. I tried knit baby onesies, but they were to time consuming to make and there was no way to make it cost effective. About a month ago, on a trip to Portland, OR, (where it was terribly cold) I came up with the the scarflette cuff. My Mom and I were going to a concert and I wanted something around my neck to help me keep warm, but I also wanted something that was part of my outfit. And being newly single, I wanted something that would make me stand out from the crowd.

Do you have any advice for Etsy sellers?

Essentially, the goal was to make something unique, something that hadn't been done before and I think it's possible that I did. I guess, like everything, it's a work in progress. If I had to give some advice to new Etsy sellers, I guess I would tell them to stay persistent, and don't be afraid to try something new! Etsy can be a great sounding board for new ideas! If it sells, make another one. If it sells twice, you've got something, make ten more!

Pictures are also important. I take all my pictures myself, of myself. The best thing to do is to take your items outside. The best time of day to do this is either in the morning or in the evening, as bright midday sun often bleaches out your photos and your items. I really like contrast in my photos, mostly with colors, but also with textures and light. It's really important to have a background that sets off your item. Its also nice to convey the 3-dimensionality of your product by having low angle light that highlights shapes and contours. And, just like everything else, don't be afraid to try something new! The more unique your photo is the more views you're gonna get. And the more views you get, the more sales you get. If you have a crazy idea that you think might be too weird for Etsy, just remind yourself: nothings too weird for Etsy!

And littlepurls now has a blog! Visit it here.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Etsy Beavers

My current reading for my environmental history class is a chapter called "Beaver" in the book The Ecological Indian. And because I'm not looking forward to all 50 pages of it, I thought I would make an Etsy Beaver-themed post.

B is for Beaver Print by matthewporterart

Beaver Power Undies from prettygreeneye

Silver Beaver Pendant by zippandesigns

Ah, the dam beavers beckon.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Etsy Colors: Fire Engine Red

This is going to be one of the regular features of this blog: looking at the different colors of Etsy. Less a feature of a specific artist or particular type of item (art prints, necklaces, lip balms), these are just items that fit a particular color scheme.

Sometimes, I will try and create a treasury out of these items. Other times, it will be a just for fun kind of thing.

This is a just for fun kind of thing. :)

To start, I found an ACEO of an original acrylic painting and collage from Etsy seller heavensearth. I love the modern/primitive painting combo, and the colors are just lovely.

Next is a pair of Red Polka Dot earrings from Christiane, a seller very new to Etsy. Not only are these earrings cute and charming, they're also very reasonably priced at $5. In fact, all of her jewelry is very affordable. Give her shop a visit. I especially like the Meadows bracelet.

My last pick is from another new Etsy seller, WhatsEatingYin. Yin makes delightful greeting cards, including this Fairy Whispers Card. I like the Happy Easter Basket of Joy card set. All of her cards are made on eco-friendly card stock, and she also sells gift tags, etc. Her theme is "Eco-friendly art from the heart."

To pick out your own color-themed Etsy items, play around with the Etsy :: Colors tool.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

First Post

I started selling on Etsy about 9 months ago (April 2007), and have found myself part of a wonderful community. I never imagined I would be able to do what I love (create) and actually make some money at it.

Etsy isn't my full-time job; I'm finishing my master's degree in science writing, and I also do freelance work on the side. I've been blogging regularly for almost a year and a half, and I love it. My other blog is ED Bites.

This blog is meant to be a little insight into how I make my jewelry, hints and help, and updates and specials in my shop. Keep an eye open- I intend to have regular specials for my blog readers!