23 May 2008

Ayana Features: Trista Bell

Today's next Ayana Feature is all about One of a Kind with Trista Bell. In this shop you will find jewelry, blankets, photography and supplies. If you are looking for handmade items that are sweet and simple to bold and beautiful with a little bit of whimsical, then this is the shop for you! So for today's Flower Power Friday I am featuring Stephanie with Trista Bell!

1) Tell me a little bit about yourself and your shop.
Where do I start, I've been doing crafts in one form or another since school. I've always done sewing, floral arrangements, writing (which I could put you to sleep in seconds)LOL ,painting, and in the last few years I happened onto jewelry making and have been hooked ever since. I try to use gemstones, pearls, and swarovski crystals in my pieces. My pieces are more on the sweet and simple side. I love to try new techniques, but if its not perfect it will not be seen, I'm my worst critique. Every once in awhile I'll through in a BOLD piece.

2) How did you decide on your shop name?
When I found out about Etsy and decided I wanted to start selling, my biggest problem was coming up with a name. There were so many Stephanie's (Its a great name!) LOL, and I wanted something that would stand out. So, I decided on TristaBell, my oldest nieces name is Trista and the youngest niece is Isabelle. Just combined the two:)

3) What inspires you?
For me I think it a color or a shape that gets me inspired about a new project.

4) What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
For me thats a hard one. I love all my pieces, but I guess my most favorite is the "Sea of pearls". I put my heart into every piece, so there all kinda in the favorite column.

5) What advise do you have for other Etsy sellers?
Promote,promote,promote! Get your name out there and I think the biggest is be patient. It gets frustrating at times, but when you make that special piece and the right person comes along, its all worth it:)

Here’s a fun question:
6) If you could be any super hero (or villain), who would you be and why?
Oh, boy!! I don't know the answer to this,LOL:) I want to say the Bionic Woman, but I don't think she was a super hero, not sure. If I was Bionic woman, I can run around at lighting speed and get my jewelry, sewing, and house work done in the fraction of time. Plus, I would have super human strength to pick anything up:) BUT,I do have to say I think everybody has alittle bit of villian in them.

Shop for your uniquely designed and crafted jewelry and other goodies at www.TristaBell.etsy.com

Ayana Features: Audzipan Design

Today's first Ayana Features is all about Awesomeness with Audzipan Design. In this shop you will find awesome glass, wood and bottle cap magents, decoupage boxes, banners, custom graphics and more. So for today's Flower Power Friday I am featuring Audrey with Audzipan Design!

1) Tell me a little bit about yourself and your shop.
My name is Audrey Mann, and I am a fun-loving, newlywed twenty-something with a love for design and a newly discovered freedom for design. I recently graduated from Utah State University with a bachelor's degree in Interior and Business Design, and my shop reflects a lot of my personal taste and style. However, my biggest sellers are custom graphics for other Etsyians!

2) How did you decide on your shop name?
I decided on my shop name based on a nickname given to me by a college roomie. We were huge fans of homestarrunner.com, and one of the girl characters is named "Marzipan." My roommate modified it to fit my name, and it stuck like glue. Marzipan + Audrey = Audzipan!

3) What inspires you?
I am inspired by birds, trees, nature, and most of all life in general. My husband is one of my biggest supporters, and he often brainstorms with me on new designs, ideas, and business plans.

4) What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
My favorite item in my shop is usually my newest, because I am always so excited to create something new. At the moment, it is my Wooden Fridge Magnets with Awesome Animals. I just finished the design and assembly, so I am still basking in the rays of new creation.

5) What advise do you have for other Etsy sellers?
My advice to other Etsy sellers- Don't take yourself or your art too seriously! Art should be freedom, not a headache.

Here’s a fun question:
6) If you could be any super hero (or villain), who would you be and why?
If I could be any superhero, I would be Supermom. We don't have any kids yet, but I would like to continue creating and listing on Etsy while raising a family. It seems like I will need to be Supermom to do that!

Shop for your handmade magnets, decoupage goodies, custom banners and more at http://www.audzipan.etsy.com/

Promoting Others

I usually only feature one artist on Friday who makes some items with a floral theme, but since this is my blog, I'm going to do something a little bit different. Throughout today I'm also going to feature various artists just because I can. Today is all about promoting someone else. So stay tuned . . .

Starting my crochet adventure

My birthday was last Friday and since my husband "planned" a spontaneous day for me, I didn't do everything I planned on doing, which is fine by me. All I have to say is The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian is a great movie . . . The Cheesecake Factory has awesome cheesecake . . . outside malls are not as bad as I expected . . . it's always hard to decide which book to get from the bookstore. As you can see I was quite busy. So now that I am a little bit older and a little bit wiser, I am going to challenge myself to learn a new craft . . . crocheting. I'm a little apprehensive about trying a new craft. I tried to learn how to crochet years ago, but soon got bored with it and I let it go. Like I said earlier, I am a little bit wiser and I figure that if I can teach myself how to make beaded flowers, I can learn how to crochet. So stay tuned . . .

"I can accept failure. Everyone fails at something.
But I can't accept not trying."
- Michael Jordan

21 May 2008

EFC for the Month of June

I have been a busy bee this week, which is why I haven't had much time to blog. Yesterday was the last day to submit entry proposals for the Etsy for Charity June theme and charity to donate to. The voting will starts today and members will vote for their favorite. It took longer than I thought to come up with a theme for June since I wanted it to focus on Father's Day, but I eventually decided on "To Dad With Love". Since there were no other entries, my theme won by default.

What's next?
EFC members are going to vote on the charity to donate to for June. The other entries are Central Asia Institute (www.ikat.org), Holy Angles (www.holyanglesinc.org), and the Vestibular Disorders Association (www.vestibular.org). I proposed the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), which sponsor programs and raise awareness of the challenges facing the world's children. They are currently working with the Government of China to rush tents, medicine, clean water and other supplies to help children who were affected by the earthquake on May 12.

The following links are press releases on what they are doing:



And then . . . .
EFC members and non-members can make a handcrafted goody related to the winning theme. These items will then be donated to the Etsy for Charity Shop, in which all proceeds will be donated to the charity of the month.

We'll see what happens . . .

16 May 2008

Ayana Features: Jennifer Squires Productions

This week's Ayana Feature proves that a picture is worth a thousand words with Jennifer Squires Productions. In this shop you will find stunning and fresh photographs of flowers, food, landscapes and more. What I love about this shop is that Jennifer can even make onions look amazing. So for today's Flower Power Friday I am featuring Jennifer with Jennifer Squires Productions!

1) Tell me a little bit about yourself and your shop.
I have been photographing professionally since 1996, but I’ve been taking pictures my whole life. I opened my Etsy shop in February 2008 - it’s been great for me, I work from home but the Etsy community never lets me feel as though I’m by myself.My work covers a broad range of categories, from shopping carts to gerbera daisies, but I always find that I focus on the details of life.

2) How did you decide on your shop name?
I use my name for my shop name, so I guess it comes from good ole Mom and Dad.

3) What inspires you?
I am constantly inspired by the world around me and I use photography to search for simplicity and meaning in the beauty of the everyday.

4) What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
Currently my favourite photograph is February Blues 3, one of the most gorgeous places I've ever been. It's where I became engaged to the love of my life.

5) What advise do you have for other Etsy sellers?
Spend at least as much time advertising off Etsy as you do on Etsy and don’t compare yourself to other stores, you have no idea how they’re marketing elsewhere.

Here's a fun question:
6) If you could be any super hero (or villain), who would you be and why?
Hmmm... What a great question! I think I'd have to be one of Charlie's Angels (uh-oh, did I just show my age?), because they are girls that kick butt and have some cool gadgets to help them along the way. And they know how to have a good time!

Shop for contemporary photographs at http://www.jennifersquires.etsy.com/ or http://www.jennifersquires.ca/

13 May 2008

15 Facts About Me

1) I look like this . . .

2) I was born in Spokane, Washington and raised in Hampton, VA.

3) I have never been outside of the United States.

4) I love cornbread stuffing.

5) At one time in my life I wanted to be a pediatrician.

6) I had an internship as a probation officer for adults and loved it.

7) I can not stand it when people bite their nails/cuticles.

8) I watch anime . . . in Japanese . . . with English subtitles (My husband and I are addicted to Naruto and Bleach).

9) I used to watch Passions until they moved to Direct TV...sigh

10) I want to throw down in the kitchen like my mom someday.

11) I have a gap between my two front teeth and love when I meet other people who have one also.

12) My maiden name is Awkward . . . no this is not a joke . . . yes that is what it says on my birth certificate

13) When I was born I weighed less than 3 pounds.

14) I have natural hair and have been thinking about getting locs for a long time.

15) I was on the flag line in high school.

11 May 2008

Sushi for you

I normally feature other artists on Fridays, but this just looked too good to wait. At first glance this looks like real sushi, almost good enough to eat. It's made of wool. Can you believe that? It was made by Wool By Willow. I first tried sushi when I was a freshman in college. My roommate convinced me to try something different. I even tried the wasabi, but my roommate did not warn me about it. For those of you who are going to try wasabi for the first time . . . a little dab will you do. I had to learn my lesson the hard way.

The results are in . . .

I've been running a poll on my blog to let you decide which beaded flower I should make next. Well . . . the results are in and we have a tie between a water lily and pansy. What does that mean? I'll be making both of them. That was fun so I will definitely have another poll soon so stay tuned. Thanks everyone for participating.

10 May 2008

Sweetheart Crystal Rose

Shhhh . . . Don't tell anyone. I'm working on sweetheart roses with Swarovski Crystals in the center. Stay tuned . . .

All about orchids

I've been commissioned to make wedding flowers with orchids and calla lilies. All of the women will have orchids and the men will have calla lilies. The bride of course will have both. So far I have been working on the orchids. The bride wants white orchids with silver and black sprinkled centers. The bridesmaids also have white orchids, but the centers will be black with silver sprinkles.

Bride's Orchids

Bridesmaids' Orchids

09 May 2008

Ayana Features: Nora Dora

This week's Ayana Feature is all about crocheted memories (for me at least) with Nora Dora. In this shop you will find crocheted doll clothing and the cutest doll hats. This shop reminds me of my mother because she loves to crochet and used to cochet dresses for my barbie doll. So for today's Flower Power Friday I am featuring Noreen with Nora Dora!

1) Tell me a little bit about yourself and your shop.
I have crocheted all my life but during my office working years had put it off. Not too long ago my granddaughter was visiting with me and she brought one of her dolls and was play-making clothes out of cloth, just tying them on the doll. I was inspired to pick up my "hook" and make her some doll clothes. That small event has started a while new passion for me. It's endless the ideas and creative venues available, and I have made clothes for a multitude of dolls and trolls and lately have been obsessed with the beautifully unique Blythe doll. I am proud to say I am in my second childhood!

2) How did you decide on your shop name?
Back in the day when I was working in the legal field, several of us had last names that ended in "een" (Noreen being my real name). My nickname became ‘noradora' and it stuck with me and seemed like a perfect fit for my shop name.

3) What inspires you?
I don't use a pattern for any of my creations. I just pick up my hook and start crocheting, never knowing exactly what I am going to make. One of my sisters, who is an artist, sometimes sends me a list of Titles and color combo's with "why don't you make???"....that is one of the things that comes to mind that inspires my creativity. I do find encouragement to be inspiring.

4) What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
The favorite item in my shop would have to be what I call my "Fly Me To The Moon" Blythe Outfit.....I call it my ‘signature outfit' as the color combo (blues and greens) was my first Blythe outfit and it sold within 24 hours of listing. I was hooked! She's my avatar and brings me smiles!

5) What advice do you have for other Etsy sellers?
I think promoting in the forums, hearting other shops, making treasuries, joining a street team and most of all good pictures are all pluses to help you get out there for people to find you. I also think commenting on blogs when you stop to visit brings people around to see you too.

Here's a fun question:
6) If you could be any super hero (or villain), who would you be and why?
Not sure if Samantha from Bewitched is a super hero....but I would love to have the power to just twitch my nose ....dishes done, house cleaned, weeds pulled out of garden. Wouldn't that be fun then I could just crochet more lovely creations!

Shop for your doll's crocheted attire at noradora.etsy.com

05 May 2008

May Giveaway Winner

Congratulations to TJMETZ, who is the winner of the May gift card giveaway. The next drawing will be held on June 1.

04 May 2008

Mom Would Love This Challenge

All EFC and non-EFC members are welcome to take part in our EFC Monthly Challenge! The theme for EFC May Challenge is "Mom Would Love This"! Submit your entries to EtsyForCharity now! Please take note that all submitted entries need to be donated to EFC Shop where the sale proceeds will be donated to EFC Charity of the Month.

Submission deadline : 10 May 2008

The poll for voting the winning entry will be from May 11 - 17, 2008.

The winner of the EFC May Challenge will win the following prize kindly sponsored by the EFC members:

1) $10 Shopping Spree (Free Shipping) by UniqueGrabs
2) $15 Gift Certificate by ClaireAndJanae
3) A Pair of Earrings - Blossoming Beauty by ErinToKuuke
4) A Felted Pin - BlueBird by ValeriesGallery

If you are interested in contributing a prize to EFC May Challenge, please convo UniqueGrabs and provide him your prize details.

Register at EFC Site to be an EFC member.

View our members' crafts at EFC Gallery !

Come on and join in the fun and help out the community with your crafts!

03 May 2008

Featured Sweetheart Roses

My sweetheart rose was featured in the Etsy Treasury West by Sunshine of Sunshine and Laughter. Thank you so much for adding my rose.

Beaded Talking Tulips

Here are some talking tulips that I have been working on. They are made with transparent yellow and green beads. I used brown beads for the stamen. I have admired these beauties on a larger scale at the General Assembly in Richmond, VA along with pansies, dogwood and other floral delights.

Tulips represent lasting love and happy years. They measure approximately 10-11" in length and the bloom is about 1 3/4" across.

Close Up

Front View

Back View

Top View

02 May 2008

Ayana Features: Doll Closet

For this week's Ayana Feature, I'm presenting Doll Closet. In this shop you will find quality handmade doll clothing. This shop reminds me of my mother-in-law because she has a collection of procelain dolls. Since Mother's Day is coming up, I will feature shops that remind me of my mother and all mothers. So for today's Flower Power Friday I am featuring Christine with Doll Closet!

1) Tell me a little bit about yourself and your shop.
I have been into sewing for as long as I can remember. I started sewing doll clothes as Christmas and birthday gifts for my little sisters and soon their dolls had WAY too many clothes. Then came the idea of selling them. Actually I can’t take credit for that, my friend Ashley (http://ashesplace.etsy.com - who is also the one who told me about Etsy) got me into selling them at farmers markets and I took off.

I enjoy many other crafts also, such as knitting, quilting, cross stitching and the like. Another hobby I am really getting into is photography. I plan on setting up a second shop to sell prints soon.

2) How did you decide on your shop name?
Doll Closet. I wish I could take credit for it, but actually my mom came up with it. I really like it, I guess because it just makes sense.

3) What inspires you?
Shopping for fabric! I love it! Until I check out of course, LOL. There’s so many cute fabrics out there, it’s really inspiring thinking of all the things I can do with them.

4) What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
I’m not sure I have a favorite. I tend to like the old-fashioned dresses better personally, but right now I really like this one. The hat was a pain to make but it turned out really cute, don’t you think? =)

5) What advise do you have for other Etsy sellers?
Keep at it! Be patient. If people like your stuff, it will sell. You just have to give it time.

Here’s a fun question:
6) If you could be any super hero (or villain), who would you be and why?
Spiderman. He’s cool.

Shop for custom handmade doll clothing at http://dollcloset.etsy.com/

01 May 2008


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