You Can’t Win Them All

Well, this Saturday was yet another craft fair. These things are starting to feel fairly routine at this point… thank God! However this fair was unlike any other that I have been a part of thus far because this fair only had (drumroll, please) about 10 attendees the entire time! Yes, literally hours passed by between visitors. It. Was. Dreadful.

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I was very, very grateful that I was, at least, sharing a booth with Kate of Small and Great Crochet or else I would have gone completely mad. At the end of the day, when I was beginning to feel like crap, Kate said: at least we got to hang out. And she was right! We ended up having over eight hours to get to know each other better and come up with a few fabulous crafty ideas. One of which I am literally bursting at the seams to share, but I must keep it under-wraps for the time being. Just know that it is going to be awesome!

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Ultimately the fair was a bust, but I think that each fair (no matter how terrible or successful) is a learning experience. And apparently there was a lot of learning to do this past Saturday. The top two lessons would be this: 1.) Marketing is absolutely key; if you’re not willing to market a fair properly, then there is no reason to even have a fair, and 2.) You get what you pay for, if the booth fee is low there is most definitely a reason why. Oh well, no use crying over spilled milk!

 

 

Christmas in July

Hello and happy Wednesday! Today marks three more days until my last craft fair of the summer… I think. I love doing fairs but while they can be exciting, they are also exhausting!

I am, however, looking forward to this particular fair for a few reasons: 

  1. It’s going to be a small fair,
  2.  I’m sharing a booth with my crafty pal, Kate of Small and Great Crochet (!!!),
  3. This fair’s theme is Christmas (and I had a lot of Christmas items left from last year!)
  4. I get to have conversations with other individuals who support the handmade movement!

This fair is being hosted by the Granite Hills High School Choir from 8AM to 3PM at 1719 E. Madison Ave in El Cajon, CA. You’ll see our little blue 10×10 pop-up in the parking lot. And (if you can keep a secret), we’ll be the ones with a Christmas tree in our booth! Sshhhh! We thought that we were so clever with that idea. Little crafty geniuses.

Click here to check out the event’s Facebook page and to see which other vendors will be there along side us: https://www.facebook.com/events/167172560128811/.

And you can read what Kate’s saying about Christmas in July here: http://www.smallandgreat.com/events. You can also shop Small and Great here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/smallandgreat

If you’re a local San Diegan, then I hope to see you there!

Round 2: Two Shabby Sisters Craft Sale!

It would appear that I am a glutton for pain. Yes, I am doing yet another craft fair this weekend… in just 4 days!

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Remember the lovely girls from Two Shabby Sisters? If you don’t, then do yourself a favor and click here: https://leftylex.com/2013/06/20/sdicm-vendor-two-shabby-sisters/. Well, they have decided to unload of a few more of their leftover SDICM lovelies by having a fair of their own and asked if I would like to join them. Of course! Needless to say, I am going to be stitching my little heart out for the next 3 days so that I am well stocked for the TSSCS. Wish me luck!

And what providence, I haven’t unloaded my car yet!

If your’re in the SoCal area, please stop on by. More details can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/TwoShabbySisters?fref=ts

And here’s my tiny ad here: http://sandiego.craigslist.org/nsd/eve/3896049403.html be sure to pass this along. Cheers!

SDICM Final Push!

With the San Diego Indie Craft Market just 2 short days away, the final push has come upon us! And while I feel surprisingly calm (this time around), I have read several nervous FB posts, Tweets, and Insta-posts from my fellow vendors. I cannot figure out (for the life of me) why some of these extremely talented ladies have butterflies! The crafts(wo)manship of this fair is going to be phenomenal! Several vendors and I have agreed that we need to have our own vendor swap after the customers leave… I have already eyed about 10 lovelies that I would kill for!

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L to R: Stitched. desk, Two Shabby Sisters armoire, Two Shabby Sisters wooden signs

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L to R: Jill’s Eclectic Designs, Vaux Swift Jewelry, Small and Great Crochet

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Top to Bottom: JustPeachyKeen, Lovenote Crafts

Are you dying of cuteness yet? I am! Giddy anticipation is now greatly increasing in my belly. I am so excited to see all of these pretties in person!  I hope you all enjoy your evening, it looks like I still have my work cut out for me. Happy Friday!

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SDICM Vendor: Two Shabby Sisters

I’m going to be completely honest and tell you that I have a major design crush on today’s SDICM vendor. I guarantee that you will become admirers too, just take a look at their lovelies! We’re dealing with a dynamic duo today, Two Shabby Sisters!

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Please tell us who you are and what you do? We are Jennifer Ciani and Morgan Olinger, best friends (more like ‘sisters’), military wives and stay-at-home mommies, who share the same passion for giving new life to old vintage furniture finds and creating unique shabby chic home decor.

What types of lovelies do you make? A little bit of everything! We started our company out refinishing and repuropsing vintage furniture and giving it new life but have now expanded to offer a variety of products, from hand painted custom signs to hand sewn burp cloths, diaper cakes, lampshades, message/ memo boards, picture frames… You name it, we probably make it! Not only do they “make” it, they make it extremely well, I want to live in a world of their creations!

Since you are so diverse do you still have a single favorite material? We solely use chalk paint on all of our hand painted products and furniture pieces. We love choosing materials that are natural and eco-friendly.

So what and/or who is the inspiration behind your creativity? Jennifer: My inspiration first and foremost comes from my great-grandfather, who from as far back as I can remember pushed me to follow my creativity. As a young man, he landed a job as a window display artist for Sears department store, along with hand painting signs for their store displays. He had to leave his career to serve in WWII, but eventually returned to the job that he loved. He instilled in me that nothing can come between you and the passion that you have to create. He pushed me to share my talent with the ‘world’. My second inspiration is my grandmother, who is now 84 and still full of life and creativity! She noticed my creativity from a young age and encouraged me to create. She took me to countless craft and street fairs as a little girl. It was my dream to one day be one of those “crafty ladies” with my own booth! And lastly, the biggest inspiration in my life is my Mother. She not only was my biggest cheerleader, she taught me everything that I know. She kept a spotless ‘model home’ worthy house, she could sew just about anything and juggled raising two children while running a business from home. She did it all. Unfortunately, I lost my mother to lung cancer in late 2011 while I was pregnant with my Daughter. It is because of her guidance, encouragement and example that I have followed my dreams!

Morgan: My inspiration comes my grandfather and grandmother. As a child, I grew up watching my grandmother sew and create crafts for her church craft fairs. My mother is another huge inspiration to me, watching her re-create old “junk” into one of a kind treasures thanks to all of my dad’s FREE ally scores! As he says, “The only trash there is, is something that the earth can absorb. Everything else can be recycled into something new.” Creativity runs in my blood!

It’s obvious that both of these ladies were born into families that fostered and championed their creativity. And even as an outsider, I’m confident that their families must be so proud of their talents and willingness to put that creativity to use!

Back to the topic at hand. Would you like to share your five favorite products with us?

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And finally, where can the good people find you on social media, Etsy, and other sites? 
Etsy: Etsy.com/shop/TwoShabbySistersShop (coming soon!)
Facebook: Facebook.com/TwoShabbySisters
Instagram: @TwoShabbySisters

Needless to say, I’m a giant fan of Two Shabby Sisters and hope that you now are too. Make sure to stop by the San Diego Indie Craft Market on 6/23 and say hello to Jennifer and Morgan! Click here for info: https://www.facebook.com/events/366212010146804/?fref=ts. If you follow them on Instagram you’ll get a sneak peak of the goodies that will be accompanying them to the SDICM!

(And just because I seriously cannot help myself, here are two more adorable Two Shabby Sisters creations!)

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SDICM Vendor: Lefty Lex Creations

Yup, I am now going to highlight myself! Those of you who are regulars to the blog already know about me, but those of you who are are new-comers around here are not yet so familiar. So allow me to introduce myself.20130618-063352.jpg

Who I am and why I do! I’m Alexcis and I’m the owner of Lefty Lex Creations. I became interested in handmade items about five years ago and began putting my 8th grade Home Ec sewing skills to use making baby quilts for friends. I loved the creative process and being able to give something that I had personally made, not store-bought, but had to put that creativity on hold for a few years while I completed grad school. Once graduation was over my poor brain was dying for a creative release and I became consumed with sewing, knitting, and (most recently and fervently) hand embroidery! Since then I have not been seen without some form of craft in my hand. I stitch whenever and wherever I possibly can; I’m obsessed!

What lovelies do I make? While I do occasionally sew and knit still, embroidery is my primary art form and embroidered hoop art is what I enjoy creating the most. Embroidered hoop art is an embroidered design, on a piece of fabric, that is affixed to a wooden embroidery hoop. Was that technical enough for you? Hoop art is basically decor; it can be wall decor or it can be placed in a plate holder to fancy up a shelf, desk, table, etc. I also like using the teeny tiny 3″ hoops as added flair when gift-wrapping presents!

Favorite tools of the trade? This is the thing that I love most about embroidery… the materials are so basic! My favorite embroidery supplies are small wooden hoops (never mind that plastic nonsense!), DMC embroidery floss, and quality solid, colored fabric. I have been drawn to muslin and lace lately but I typically love all the bright colors found in Robert Kauffman’s Quilter’s Tweed line. Love them!

What inspires me to create? Creating is first and foremost, an artistic release for me. There is nothing like picking up a needle and floss after being glued to a computer screen for 8 hours in the office! But my primary reason for selling my creations is to raise funds for my adoption! My husband and I are in the embarking upon an international adoption and it is going to cost around $32,000 to bring our little one home from China. So, I suppose, my true inspiration is create is parenthood; we are very anxious to become parents!

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1.) Talking heads: I adore these colorful silhouettes and have probably made many more than I will ever need (or sell)! I love their simplicity yet their boldness. 2.) Art Deco Randomness: I love the colors and whimsy of this piece. I just let the needle move where it wanted to and this was the final product! 3.) Bride & Groom hoops: I made my first set of these hoops for my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding but have sold quite a few pairs since then. They are fun little props to use at a bridal shower or on the big day itself. 4.) Happy Thoughts in Ombre: I used fly stitches and monochromatic color palettes to create lovely ombre effects in every color of the rainbow. If you’re looking for a certain color, it’ll be with me at the fair! 5.) Embroidered Lace Necklaces: I inherited yardage of vintage lace with stains throughout so the only logical solution was to cut it up into pieces and use them as necklaces! The designs are very simple but make a big impact.

And that’s me in a nutshell, folks! Feel free to follow me on social media at:

Blog: https://leftylex.com/
Vine: Lefty Lex
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LeftyLexCreations
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LeftyLexTweets
Instagram: @leftylex

You can also find my products on Etsy by clicking here:http://www.etsy.com/shop/LeftyLexCreations! And don’t forget to visit me this weekend at the San Diego Indie Craft Market. Just 5 short days! For more info click here: https://www.facebook.com/events/366212010146804/?fref=ts. I look forward to seeing you around!

SDICM Vendor: Lottie Hop

Happy Friday ,all! Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to another San Diego Indie Craft Market vendor who also happens to be the head of the San Diego Etsy Society, Brenna Hopkins! She is truly a gem! so! without further wait I give you our interview!

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Please tell us a little about yourself! Hello, I’m Brenna Hopkins of Lottie Hop! I have always been an artist. When I was 5 I was drawing comics, when I was 11 I started making jewelry and sewing, and at 27 I taught myself to crochet. I love all types of crafting. I used to work in the food industry in a patisserie, but I am now a stay at home mom to my beautiful two year old daughter Charlotte.

You definitely have many talents! What types of pretties do you sell in your shop? I make what ever strikes me as fun and interesting to make. Right now I make jewelry and accessories using my extensive collection of antique and vintage buttons and sewing notions. I also make jewelry using vintage toys, prizes and charms, which is how I got my start in jewelry making when I was a kid. We didn’t have a lot of beads and jewelry making stuff, so I had to improvise with what I had laying around. I like to be resourceful with my crafting, it’s a habit that never went away. I also crochet toys using left over yarns from projects people never finished, or if they bought too much yarn, I grab it and make something of my own. I also make hats and head bands, and sometimes I take commissions for toys if someone has something specific in mind that inspires me.

What are your favorite items to create with? Antique and vintage buttons, especially very old mother of pearl buttons, black glass and jet buttons from the Victorian era, shoe buttons and mid century colorful plastics. I love crazy colored yarns from the 70’s. And I really like working with wire.

What types of items inspire most to create? At the moment I’ve been inspired by a book I bought that has all of Harper’s Bazaar’s clothing and jewelry adverts from the Victorian era in it. It’s really lovely. I am also inspired by music. My whole line of antique button jewelry I recently made was inspired by the album Ceremonials by Florence and the Machine.

And which of your five favorite creations have you decided to share with us? Gimball the baby octopus. My blue and green mis-matched button hair pins, the buttons don’t go together at all, but I love them. My grilled cheese earrings, they’re a new creation and they’re my favorite thing I’ve made so far right now. My grey mammoth earrings, they’re just fun. And lastly the pig with the top hat I made on commission for my friend Amy.

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And where can the good people connect with you online?
Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/LottieHop
Blog: http://www.lottiehop.com/l/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LottieHop

Please visit the San Diego Indie Craft Market on June 23rd to meet Brenna in person! More SDICM details can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/SDIndieCraftMarket?fref=ts. I promise that you will not be disappointed! Now rush through the remainder of your Friday and enjoy the weekend!

SDICM Vendor: LoveNote Crafts

Today I am privileged to introduce you to a fabulous San Diego Indie Craft Market Vendor whom I love to Insta-stalk… Lovenotes Crafts!

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Please introduce yourself to the good people! Hi, I’m Emily! I have a fun little shop called LoveNote Crafts where I sell my handmade hair accessories and paper whims. By day, I’m a counselor and by night I’m a crafter. So when I’m not in the office, spending time with friends, or taking care of my family of 4, you’ll find me squeezing in stitching, cutting, crocheting, and blogging in every nook and cranny of time I can find!

So what exactly are your favorite LoveNote Crafts to make? And what materials do you most enjoy working with? Hair clips, sweater clips, and fabric tape ‘n tags. I love working with wool felt—it’s so soft to the touch and easy to work with. Pretty floral cotton fabrics, whether they are vintage sheets or new on the bolt, really make my heart flutter. Roses represent hope and love to me so you’ll find plenty of them incorporated in to my items.

What inspires you to create your lovelies? After a long and productive day in the office, time spent hanging out with friends, or simply enjoying being at home with my family inspires me to sit down, relax, and create. The quiet of the late (oftentimes very late) evening and early morning is when I feel most creative. It’s a reward to myself, i.e., “good job today counselor- wife-mom-sister-daughter-friend!”. To me, these life roles are gifts so being able to sit down after a busy day and craft a bit is another blessing to be very thankful for.

Would you like to share your five favorite creations with us? 

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1.) Photo Garland Kit—great for displaying photos or notes (cute and functional too!) 2.) Cotton Hair Bows—perfect for the girly girls in all of us. 3.) Wool Felt Blooms—lovely in fun colors all year round. 4.) Sweater Clips/Collar Guards—so “Mad Men” and very feminine. 5.) Cotton Fabric Tape—cute way to dress up gifts or use while scrapping (this is where I get my floral fabric fix!) I cannot wait to see these fabric tapes in person, they look absolutely divine!!!

Lastly, Emily, where can the good people shop your products and keep up with you online? Please stop on by! It would be awesome to “see” you =)

Etsy: lovenotecrafts.etsy.com
Blog: lovenotecrafts.blogspot.com
Instagram: @lovenotecrafts

And, of course, don’t forget to visit Emily at the San Diego Indie Craft Market on June 23rd! Click here for details: https://www.facebook.com/SDIndieCraftMarket?fref=ts. She’d love to see you there… and so would I!

SDICM Vendor: Jill’s Eclectic Designs

Good people, you are in for a superb treat today as we meet yet another fabulous San Diego Indie Craft Market vendor! I am pleased to introduce you to Jill’s Eclectic Designs.

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Please tell us who you are and what you do! Hi there! My name is Jill, of Jill’s Eclectic Designs, and I am a mixed-media artist, a mother of a beautiful boy and a wife to an amazing Husband who is my biggest fan and supporter. I incorporate my uncommon view on the world in my art and I am passionate about creating pieces that are timeless and inspire others.

What would you consider your creative specialities? Jewelry, accessories and décor from “junk” and forgotten jewels that would otherwise end up in a landfill; a little *Sparkle* and a little *Rust*.

What are your favorite materials to work with? I love anything that is vintage and old and has a story behind it. Whether it’s an antique silver spoon, a broken vintage necklace to take apart and give new life to, a tattered belt that no longer functions for it’s intended purpose, a lonely chandelier crystal, or an old key that has long lost the lock it once belonged to-the more rust and patina the better!

What inspires you to create your lovely treasures? The old pieces I find are what actually inspire me the most. I love rummaging through thrift stores, flea markets, and estate/yard sales hunting for the pieces that speak to me and spark my creativity.

Would you like to share a few of your favorite lovelies with us? I have so many favorites it’s hard to choose! I love the bracelet made with my late Grandmother’s sewing tape and the bracelet made from my late Grandfather’s belt-they are very sentimental to me! I also adore the hand-forged “He Restores My Soul” heart necklace-that was created during a difficult time in my life and it’s a constant reminder to have faith no matter what life hands you. Amen! 

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Are you in love with Jill’s work yet? I know that I am! I cannot wait to mosey on over to her booth at the San Diego Indie Craft Market and see what all of this goodness looks like in person! I’m sure she’d love to see you there too, so mark your calendars for June 23rd… less than two weeks! More info here: https://www.facebook.com/SDIndieCraftMarket?fref=ts.

If you’re not in the SoCal area, then be sure to shop Jill’s Eclectic Designs at: www.etsy.com/JillsEclecticDesigns. And follow Jill on Facebook  (www.facebook.com/Jills.Eclectic.Designs) and Instagram (@JillsEclecticDesigns) to keep up with her latest ongoings. Show this supremely talented lady some love!