Saturday, September 27, 2008

crochet with plarn

This week, I took a little break from making sock monkeys. I've been feeling rubbish - in more ways than one! I have been crocheting with plarn (plastic carrier bags turned into yarn). If you'd like to know how to make plarn, have a look at this super easy YouTube video. It's easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy!

I thought it would be funky to make a plastic shopping bag out of recycled plastic shopping bags. However, I now realise that it would have been much quicker if only I had known how to crochet granny squares. Ah well, maybe next time. I'll let you know when I've finished making this bag. I bought lots of socks ready to be made into monkeys, so I'll show you those too. I'll report after the weekend. Cheerio for now.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

bon voyage!

Cheerio little fella. In the morning, he flies off on his travels to America - what a long journey! He's really looking forward to meeting his new friend, the incredibly talented watercolour artist, Kimberly Shaw (you may remember she sent me a stunning card a wee while ago). My first international sale!

I was so excited a week ago - starting up my shop, my first international shop, some lovely comments on my blog... it was all going wonderfully. I had loads of crafty things on the go and millions of sock creatures in the making. Okay so not millions, but a few! And then everything went downhill. Two reasons: doctors and estate agents. I'm not sure who are worse sometimes. As anyone with ME will know, finding a nice, helpful doctor who actually knows what they're talking about is like finding a cure for cancer in McDonalds. My whole week was taken up with listening to the advice of the "specialist" (who cunningly disguises the fact that she's not a doctor by calling herself a "specialist") tell me to ditch the routine which has meant that I've been able to do more and create more than I've been able to do in over two years, in favour of "re-training your body". I'm following her advice because she is the specialist. So far, I feel terrible: more pain than usual, more exhausted than usual and generally more 'hung-over' than usual. I'm looking forward to when she realises that it was a stupid idea of hers and then I can go back to my nice lovely routine again. I do have things that I want to do! And as for the estate agent, well we all know that getting a bond back from an estate agent is like getting blood from a stone. We'll just squeeze harder.

Sorry for the lull. Just you wait, I'm going to have some very cool things to show you. Watch this space...

+Edited. I followed the advice of the specialist to the letter. She realised that it was stupid and I was able to go back to my old routine. Hooray! Oh how I wish they would just listen in the first place!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

shop is now open

That's right folks! My shop is now open. I haven't finished listing everything, so it's a little bare at the moment [insert a joke about a 'little bear' here] but it is slowly taking shape. Here's what it looks like at the moment:

I have another sock monkey to show you, but I've run out of embroidery silk so he's blind at the moment and very very shy. So I'll photograph him once he's got some eyes. I'll give you a sneak peak for now [runs off, takes a photograph and then uploads it]. Here he is:

I have quite a few monkey friends in production a the moment, I just need to get my act into gear. I did quite a bit of reading yesterday so today I'm not much good: stumbling about with my sunglasses on indoors to protect my achey eyes from the harsh sunlight, which just makes them worse. I'm surprised my eyes haven't turned white with lack of sunlight!

Cheerio for now.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I love your blog

What an award to get! Thank you, Sian for awarding it to me with such lovely words. Thank you.

The rules for those receiving an award are:

1. The winner can put the logo on their blog
2. Link the person you received the award from
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs
4. Put links of those blogs on yours
5. Leave a message on the blogs nominated.

(I know that most of the people I've nominated don't really do 'tagging' and the like, so don't feel obliged to pass it on.)

My nominations are, in alphabetical order:

  • biscuit monster - cool things, funky textile talent and quirkiness which always makes me smile (the banner alone does that)

  • wagonised - she, like Andrea, takes my breath away with her drawings

I'm also discovering new blogs, so look out for added links down the side. 

The unpacking is going well and I'm hoping  to show you pictures of our living room/studio very soon. However, I've been slower than usual because I'm still recovering from the move and catching up on boring house-moving things (like chasing up the thieving estate agent for our deposit). Boring, but tiring. I'll be back to my creative self soon.

Friday, September 5, 2008

my first sale!

I've had my first sale! Hurrah!

I wasn't sure what to do about packaging - it's not something I've ever done before; it's not like I could look at other people's Etsy packaging for ideas (it wasn't until after I posted this that I found the 'Etsy Packaging' group on Flickr!). I was satisfied with what I did. That was until today when I got a call from my first customer saying just how much they absolutely LOVED the packaging! Now I am very pleased indeed. Don't you just love feedback like that?!

I gave the monkey a tag with care instructions on it and, of course, my shop name :o)

... and tucked him into his tissue-paper bed.

I wrapped the box and lid in Chinese newspaper, which I think looks very cool.

Tied it up with string...

...and added a thank you tag (which was made from an old London tube ticket) with some stickers to jazz it up a bit.

What do you think? I'm trying to recycle more, which is why I used newspaper and a tube ticket. 

There's something very exciting about wrapping something you've made; something that someone has bought. I think I'll enjoy having a shop :o)

I am still working on setting up my Etsy shop (technical problems), but if you'd like to buy anything I've shown on my blog, just get in touch and maybe we can arrange something. Cheerio for now friends!

+edited: for Sian, here's the link to the Etsy Packaging group on Flickr and also the Nice Package group and the Crafty Packages group. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

icy spine

I am back online! I'm still catching up with bits and bobs, so for now I will show you a picture of a bit of ice. It fell from the freezer while it was defrosting and we thought it looked like a spine, so Mr Pippa took a photo of it.

Could this be the strangest blog post I've ever posted? Possibly.