Monday, 26 April 2010

A Productive Day

Today has been very productive. I have put four new listings in my Etsy shop, of things that I have made:

Green and Orange Flowers and Bunting set.

Paper Flowers in green, white and blue
A6 Butterfly Notebook / Journal with Japanese Stab Binding

I feel really pleased with myself today - it was great to list four items all at once - I haven't done that for ages! 

Tomorrow I will be going Paper Shopping, to find the perfect paper for a commission book. A lady has asked me to make a Wedding Guest Book for her son's wedding. I'd normally use a good quality medium/heavy weight paper; however she has said that she'd maybe like to stick tags in it, written on by the guests, so I think the pages really need to be stiffer - perhaps a good, smoothish cardstock instead.  I am off to see what I can find (wish me luck)!  

The butterfly book above was a bit of a "practice piece" actually, as the customer has asked for her book to be bound in a Japanese style too. I need to get some things straight in my mind, regarding measurements, methods, stitching patterns - oh, lots of stuff... so I'm making books.  However, I did buy some lovely papers while I was away in Cheltenham. This butterfly paper was one of those, but there are some more too...

It makes me happy to be creating again. I seem to have had a creative lull over the last few months - perhaps because of the crazy building project last spring and summer... then all that decorating, organising, furniture building, tidying, organising (again), decorating (again), laying floors, shelf fitting, furniture building (again), shelf fitting (again)... you get the idea!
Also, it wasn't a great winter for my mum and her health, so I was very busy with her... I do hope she will have a few months of good health - she could do with a nice, warm summer (but not too warm!) and some stress-free, healthy days, to set her up for next winter! (and so could I !!).

I want to get on with making lots of stuff now - books, more books, scrap layouts, scrap supplies and embellishments, soft toys... On Sunday our Scrapbook Club is meeting for our monthly Crop, so I should get a whole day's scrapping! I am looking forward to it.

"Watch this space", as they say!  


  1. Wow, you have been busy. I really like the flowers, they are so pretty.

  2. Looking forward to seeing all your new creations and LOs.

  3. Some lovely things....particularly like the bunting.

  4. what a nice feeling to add 4 things to the shop - you must feel very satisfied. They are beautiful - I love your colour choices

  5. Lizzie these are all fabulous and I'm sure they will be snapped up in no time!
    It feels good to be back in a creative zone - I'm waxing and waning a bit at the moment, hopefully I'll be back in the groove soon.
    Just as the weather is warming up for you, this last weekend has been a big change for us ... all of a sudden it is cold, the heater is on and long everything is being dragged out of the cupboard.

  6. Love the blue, green and pink flowers with buttons.

  7. Beautiful things! It feels so good when you are on a creative high! I feel in a little bit of a slump at the minute; but I guess it goes in cycles! Best of luck with your sales.

  8. Hi Lizzie, love all your creations, especially the book. I took a year of handmade book classes at BPS and one of them was Japanese stab binding; I loved it! Glad to see you are getting back into your groove too! Will send you over some of our sunshine if you like (but you won't want the HORRID humidity when that kicks in!). Tara for now

  9. Your work is so lovely, Lizzie! I finally had a chance to do a little bunting on a birthday card this week and it was lots of fun. :o)

  10. Sounds great, Lizzie :-) I'm glad you're feeling creative again! I go through a lull now and then, and it's always good to be back into it. And by the look of your new listings, you're definitely getting back into it! xx

  11. Hi Kirsty,

    Thanks for dropping by my blog and reading the post about Etsy - also for your comment.

    In answer to your question, no, I don't really know a lot about Misi. I have visited there, but didn't open an account. I did find that it was difficult to locate the handmade books for sale, because there was no specific category for them - they are listed as "Gifts", which isn't very helpful and when I did look, I found mostly bookmarks and craft supplies, listed as "Books". This did put me off as I was afraid I might put in a lot of work to set up a shop, offer items for sale, but get no attention at all, as no-one would find my books.

    Apart from that, I don't know anything about Misi, I'm afraid. It may well be a great place (and I could be missing an opportunity). I don't know anyone with a Misi shop, so can't really advise you, other than to hang around there, look at their forums and the items for sale (and those sold, if you think you want to be a seller there). Try to gauge whether the sort of stuff you want to buy/sell is there, in what volumes and how well it sells, for what sort of prices (do they suit you) etc.

    There are a number of online Marketplace sites now - Misi is one, Artfire is another, Folksy is also UK-based, 1000Markets is a US only one... there are more, but I can't remember them! I did come across another European one, based in Holland (I think), but can't remember its name.

    As far as Etsy is concerned, I was a little unsure about it being US-based, but went ahead anyway. If you want to be a seller, it's good to have a Paypal account and to set it up to accept sales as well as to buy things. It's a good plan to look at postage rates for the kind of stuff you would be selling, check about customs if you can etc. However, I haven't had any problems so far. As I mostly sell books, I can often send them as "Printed Paper", which is less expensive and my packages tend to be small. I'd say that at least half my sales so far, have been to people in USA or Canada, with a couple to other countries abroad.

    There is a huge US and Canada presence on the site and they seem to be happy to buy from UK, which I think is definitely an advantage. Etsy is the biggest site of its kind just now too, which can be good, although you need to research prices properly and read the advice in the Etsy Forum and Blog (Storque) carefully, to get the most out of your opportunity. When there are so many sellers, you have to make sure you get your stuff seen!

    So far, I'm pretty happy with Etsy. They have a great team of tecchies, working hard behind the scenes, to keep the site running smoothly. They come up with some great ideas to improve it and keep members informed of what's going on. You can subscribe to newsletters etc, follow the news items on the blog and look in the forums, to keep up with what's happening. Occasionally there are changes which the community are not sure about, but there's a good communication link between "them" and "us" - the Etsy admin people do seem to really care about the community and regard themselves as a part of it. They do pay attention to comments, requests etc and "people power" does work.

    On the whole, I'd recommend Etsy, if you want an online shop. However, as I said in my blog, you have to put in the work, to get the results - but this applies to any online shop, on any online marketplace site, as well as to a "real" bricks-and-mortar shop or market stall!

    Good luck!


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