Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Pride and Prejudice

I know that I am behind the times and quite a few of you when it comes to this piece of literary masterpiece.  Now, that being said, I have watched the movie with Kiera Knightley twice in the last week.  I have not read the book, which I fully intend on doing somewhere in between all of the designing and shipping and billing and whatnot a family life entails.

However, here is what I have taken away from this:

A woman, a sister, a daughter, a lady whom loves her family fiercely and as such is quite ahead of her time in how she protects them.  Speaking out against not only the upper crust of society's women folk who decide that she and/or family are to be put in their place about who or whom they are to marry.  Especially when Mr. Darcy falls in love with Elizabeth.  However, this love affair is complicated by the fact that Ms. Elizabeth finds Mr. Darcy repugnant because she thinks that just because he is wealthy, he has disdain for her and her family.  This is not true, he actually loves her.  There is intelligent back and forth, while he works through his inability to speak straightforth to Ms. Elizabeth and she learns to see him for who he is and not how much he has.  Finally, they both get over their own pregjudicial designs but alas, it is not that easy.  His aunt pays Ms. Elizabeth a visit in the middle of the night demanding that Ms. Elizabeth promise to never to accept a proposal of marriage from Mr. Darcy as he has been bethrothen to his cousin since birth.  Now, in the course of this intrusive and unexpected conversation, which by our standards today was rather civilized, Ms. Elizabeth appears to have keep her tongue, while being berated and insulted by the aunt.

However, once the aunt demands she promise to never accept a proposal of marriage from Mr. Darcy, even though she does not think it will ever happen, Ms. Elizabeth refuses.  The reason?  Because the aunt came into their house insulting Ms. Elizabeth and her entire family.  That was and never will be acceptable to Ms. Elizabeth. 

Now, we as parents do this for our children, and spouses do this for each other.  Eventually, children do that same for parents.  But, do you ever wonder what the world would be like if we did this for the rest of the community, the state, the country, the world?

Can you imagine if, instead of trying to destroy each other, we did everything we can to help each other?  Instead of trying to "win" more than you, I cooperated with you and we both reaped the rewards?

Think on that for awhile, watch Pride and Prejudice and look at yourself to see what prejudices you have that may be keeping you from loving someone for who they really are, or being friends with someone because they may be above or below your "station", or hating someone simply because of the color of their skin, the pronunciation of their name or the country they were born in, and decide are you willing to make a change and swallow your "pride?"

It all starts with me, and I heard the word "GO!"  Are you going to catch up?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

New creations

I have reached a point where I am trying to understand why as artists we have days, weeks and even months that we create, create and create like mad.  Then all of the sudden, BAM, we hit that wall.  And nothing.  We will sit and stare at our tools, our materials, our usual inspiration with nothing coming to mind. 

I am a great analyzer, so I am not one to sit back and just let things flow.  My creations are the only things that I allow to just flow.  But, when that flow just stops, that is when I start analyzing.  Why did we start having these flows of creative juices, why us?  And just as quickly as they start, why do they periodically stop and start?  Why are some people very creative and some people extremely mathimatically inclined, but put a handful of beads, some wire and string in front of them and all they can do is try to figure out quantum theory equations?

These are the questions that I will never have answers to, the questions that science has been trying answer for ages, questions that, frankly only the Heavens hold the keys to.  These are the questions that I will ponder ever time I pick up a piece of wire and try as I might, I cannot make a beautiful piece of jewelry appear like it normally does.

This week has been one of those frustrating weeks.  I have slowed way down on the creative process.  So, I have concentrated on the backside of building my jewelry business, marketing, photography, etc.  One day, hopefully soon, the creative muse will come back.  When she does, I will hold her hand and walk with her in the garden of creativity breathing in the air of beauty as long as she will stay with me. 

Until then, I continue to anaylze, market and look at those whose creative muse is still walking with them, such as these artists.  Enjoy them.


These are just a few of my favorite artists whom the muse strikes.  I hope that you find them as intringing as I do.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

A New Etsy Treasury!

I am excited because I finally got my first chance to make an Etsy Treasury.  For any of you that have done research, you know that a Treasury if one of the best ways to make yourself and your shop known on Etsy.  Needless to say, I am very, very excited.

I sat like a tigeress awaiting my chance to pounce. 347, 346, 342, 336, 335, 334, ugh this is killing me, 333, one more, 332!  Yes, I finally have a chance!  Heart pounding, palms sweating, you would think I was waiting for the lottery to show the final number to my winning ticket, for Heaven's sake.

I clicked the left mouse button, and I could see my finger in slow moootttiiiooonnn, press the mouse button, and the button depress and I watched as the screen went blank, then the little egg timer come up and spin in a circle. OH NO, it isn't going to work!  So close but no cigar. ~~Sigh~~

But wait, it is bringing up a page I have never seen before, I got in, I got in!  I am doing a happy dance in the living room chair.  I can't believe it, I got in.  Okay, now where is the Treasury I saved the other day?  I wanted to be prepared, you know.  Oh boy, it is lost in computer lala land.  UGH, again.

Oh well, that isn't going to stop me.  I took my time and found every single item I had placed into the saved, but lost, file.  Once I am completely satisfied with the Treasury, I check it over a second, third and ,for good measure, a fourth time.  I finally click the post button and sit back with a very audibly loud ~~Sigh~~

Check it out  http://www.etsy.com/treasury_list.php?room_id=123828

Let me know what you think and remember to use the Treasury to promote your business by curating your own collection of  your favorite sellers or items.

Happy Easter or Passover also!

Monday, March 29, 2010


I have been spending a good portion of the last week trying to get my SEO in line so that everyone can find me when they search on Google.  Now that is no easy task, as any small business owner on the internet will tell you because, we cannot afford to hire another company to do this for us like the "big boys" can.  However, this is essential to growing our companies, our brands and our sales.  Without proper tagging, keywords and descriptions written for the search engines to find us, we are literally dead in the water.

To that end, I have been researching and researching and researching from one corner of the internet to the other, all over Etsy and everything in between for information on how to make my business more "searchable".  Just when I think I have it right, I find out that I am completely wrong!  But, I keep doing because it is so vital.  So, I keep working at.  It is never something that is done, it is a job that will always need tweaking.

That then turns into customer service and relationships.  I liken it back to when the dimestores started and they had to make sure that every customer they served, waited on, and kept a tab open for, was satisfied, even treated like a family member.  This was how they built their businesses.  In our generation, we have less and less contact with our customers, which is truly a shame in a lot of cases, but setting that aside, we have to find the customers and they have to find us.  SEO is what makes that happen.  Once SEO makes that happen, then it is up to us as business owners to become those old fashioned dimestore proprietors. 

I want you to find me in Google, Yahoo and Bing.  Once you find me there, I want my customers to find me hospitable.  Don't you?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Amazing metal artist

I have been doing a lot of research this past week on how to improve the traffic to my Etsy shop.  In doing so, I have been to blogsite after blogsite.  I somehow stumbled upon the following blog and I have to tell you, this man is amazing. The best thing about it, he lives within an hour and a half from me!  What luck!


Timothy Adam has written several posts for fellow Etsians on how to boost traffic to their Etsy stores and tweak the titles and tags in order to increase views and ranking in Google searches.  This is something he does not have to do, but does.  That says a lot about a person, especially about an artist, because it is hard enough to have a unique talent such as his, but then to put it out there for possible copying, well, that is selfless in my book.

I highly recommend that anyone out there looking to increase their Etsy traffic take a look at his site and give these tips a try.  I also seriously recommend that you check out TimothyAdamDesigns, because he has an asethetic that is comparable to none.

Monday, March 22, 2010


It has been an interesting week or so.  I decided to take a huge leap of faith.  I went to get a haircut (that was NOT the leap of faith in case you were wondering) and afterwards, the stylist pointed out that maybe I could put my jewelry in their salon.  I had already noticed that they had a really nice jewelry display in the salon.  However, knowing that this was a pretty high-end salon, for which I usually save up my money and only get my hair cut about 4 times a year, I did not think that they would even consider my jewelry something worth putting in their salon.

Needless to say, I was very excited to hear that my stylist and several other employees loved my work.  The leap of faith comes in because they told me to talk to the store manager about setting up a time to showcase my work and possibly set up a wholesale arrangement. 

Those of us that sell our wares on the internet, such as Etsy and Artfire, or even an independent website, know that we don't make most of our money from those sites.  We do make our living from craft shows, art fairs, judged shows and home shows.  An opportunity to do wholesale does not just fall into your lap like this, especially when you are just starting out.  Who am I to walk away?

I have spent the majority of this weekend trying to decide on what to make so that the right price point is available for me to present to them, the right items are available that are quick to make, but show my style and yet are those items that say "I have to have this NOW!" to the customers.  My jewelry will be sitting beside pieces that are commercially made and I want them to stand out and customers to be proud to have any item that is not only uniquely theirs but is also...knotted and twisted.

This is me stepping out of my comfort zone, meeting people and taking a huge leap of faith that I CAN DO THIS.  If I can, so can you, in anything Life throws at you.  Grab it by the horns, the collar, the shirt tail or the panhandle and let's go!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Okay, so this is the first time I have decided to write openly and honestly (alright, maybe not so honestly, I don't want everyone in the blogosphere to think I am totally incompetent!) about my jewelry making and design work.

I have been dabbling in the bead and string craft for hobby for many years.  Now, mind you, I never thought that in any sense or stretch of the imagination that I would ever start designing my own jewelry line, or that I would start selling said jewelry.

However, here I am.  I started putting together designs of beads and the like, then I started messing around with wire work. 

At this point I started taking myself a little more seriously.  I started researching wire working and wrapping. I became ravenous, buying and reading every wire working magazine my budget would and still will allow for. 

At the same time, my mother and I decided to start this little business venture to open a small online jewelry outlet where she could make a few things and then sell them.  Well, here we are 6 months later, 4 selling outlets later and she is making rings, necklaces, earrings and pendants.  I am making traditional rings, necklaces, pendant, earrings, bracelets and wire worked, wire wrapped and starting to get into wiresmithing.  Wiresmithing is a mix of wire working and metalsmithing, if you want to learn more you can visit here http://www.macjewels.com/.

So, this is an open invitation to those of you brave enough to laugh with me, cry with me and even enjoy the fruits of my labors.

This is going to be knotted and twisted!