Sunday, December 6, 2009

Holiday Traditions

Everyone says the Christmas season is getting longer and longer, with some stores putting out decorations right after Halloween. So how come I feel like it’s getting shorter and shorter? I feel good that I have most of my gifts purchased and my outside lights up, but I haven’t done Christmas cards or put much at all up inside the house. As usual I feel the rush of time as the clock counts down.

As a child Christmas seemed like a slow progression family traditions. First, the catalogs from JCPenney and Sears would come. We’d pour over the Toy sections for hours before circling our final “wish list” choices. Next we’d go get the tree. Often we’d cut our own and that was a grand adventure in finding the perfect tree. Not that the perfect tree had to be “perfect.” I remember trees with big holes that were perfect for handmade preschool ornaments. One year we had a hole so big my dad drilled a hole in the trunk and stuck an extra branch in to fill a gap. We didn’t care, as long as we got to drown it with tinsel at the end! Then there would be a day dedicated to homemade Christmas cookies. Frosting those cookies was half art and half competition. And finally, after gift buying, cookie eating, wrapping, the hanging of stockings with care, and Midnight Mass, finally it would be Christmas morning! Now that part seemed to go quickly, but what a joy!

Does anybody still make time to bake cookies from scratch or go cut down a real tree? Are your stockings homemade or store-bought? What Christmas traditions have you held on to that allow you to slow down and enjoy the season? My time comes at night when the tree is the only light in the room. Maybe “Silent Night” is playing or maybe it’s just plain silent. I can do without the cards and the cookies as long as I have that moment.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Guns and Dolls

I’ve been travelling quite a bit in the plains states of the Midwest lately and I’ve noticed something. Go into any Interstate gas station/restaurant/store combo and there are dolls. There are fancy dolls under glass in frilly frocks and fancy bonnets. There are whole shops within a shop devoted to dolls. And then I found these:


Yes, darling, you can have your very own cloth “mini-me.” She’s already been stuffed and hung from the ceiling with care. She’s just waiting for you! Would you like “Suicide Sally” or maybe “Noosy Nellie?” Why are you crying, dear?

Seriously, this has to be the creepiest way to display a doll I’ve ever seen. I’m not sure I understand the underground doll culture that seems to exist here. But I do remember, having grown up in Wisconsin, that “Gun and Doll” shows were quite popular. I don’t really get the connection, but I suppose if the hubby likes guns, the missus must like dolls, right? Uh, maybe. Maybe the doll culture is just as strong as the gun culture and you have to be a member to understand it. In fact, maybe the NRA shot these poor rag dolls before they were stuffed and strung up for public viewing. Maybe.

Monday, November 9, 2009

One of my favorite things

jasper earrings

Pillows of Kambaba Jasper hang from hammered silver hoops in these elegant earrings. The swirling greens of these stones would compliment any Christmas outfit as the silver catches the light. Check out these earrings and the matching bracelet in my Etsy store!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


I have to admit I’ve been fairly uninspired lately. It’s partly because I’ve been traveling up to two weeks a month for work. Weekends are about relaxing and laundry and catching up on household chores. On one of my trips I bought a green ceramic pendant and brought it home. Every so often I’d pick it up and try to picture it in a finished piece. Nothing. Nothing good, anyway. (I wish I had a photo to insert here, but I’m writing this on the road!).


Finally, inspiration came in the form of a 40th birthday party invitation. This friend had purchased several pieces from me in the past so I knew her taste and wanted to create a necklace just for her. This woman has a natural style so I used a dark brown suede cord as stringing material. I accented the pendant with antiqued silver beads, dark brown glass beads, and some knots to hold it in place. I have to say I liked the result! I left the length unfinished so she could choose how long she wanted it. The reward? She absolutely loves it! And she doesn’t want me to finish the length – she likes being able to knot it at any length she wants.

Inspiration followed by the instant gratification of seeing the piece in the hands of a happy friend if hard to beat! It makes me wonder if I should only do custom pieces from now on. I like the creative challenge of matching the piece with the person, and I certainly like delivering it directly into the hands of a grateful recipient.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Black and White Badlands

B&W Badlands

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Christmas Earrings are back!

The Christmas earrings are back in my Etsy store! I’ve listed them at super-low prices because hey, they’re just for fun after all!

Sleigh bells ring, are you listening… ?

bulb earrings ce13


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I’ve Been Jinxed

I’m starting to think I’ve been jinxed on this business trip. Either that or this particular hotel has a jinx. Upon check-in, the staff couldn’t find my reservation, even after I provided my printed confirmation.  They gave me a room as a walk in, but also made me stand therehotel for 20 minutes while they called the reservation website’s customer service. The next day, my keycard wouldn’t work. Add on one more trip down three floors to the front desk to have it re-coded. Next I tried to use their nicely equipped business center only to find the printer wouldn’t work. It kept saying “No Paper” even though the tray was full. Add one more trip to the front desk. After a highly delicate procedure involving slamming the tray in as hard as possible numerous times, the printer still did not work. So much for being productive.

It’s too bad I’m having all these little problems because this is actually a great hotel. I not only have conditioner and hand lotion (which not all hotels provide anymore), but there is mouthwash, a shower cap and two kinds of tea. The free breakfast even includes scrambled eggs and bacon, which is great for people like me who don’t want the huge sugar waffle. I hope that nothing else goes wrong to detract from my stay, but to be safe, I think I’ll stay away from the fitness center and the pool!

Friday, October 16, 2009

No Reruns

So I had this brilliant and inspired thought for a blog post, but in the back of my mind was this nagging idea that I had written about this subject before. I looked back in my archives and yes, I had written about in in July! So I am back at square one with no brilliant idea.

I admit I haven’t written many thoughtful blog posts lately. I’ve been travelling for a week at a time for work and, well, you know how it goes. I still love all my blog followers and those that I follow! I just wish I had more time to interact with everyone. Perhaps tomorrow will bring some (truly) new inspiration!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Moab Day 1 008

Monday, October 5, 2009

Early Bird Free Shipping for Christmas!

Gray Pearls

The chill in the night air tells me that the weeks are flying by, and soon it will be time to think of snow and colored lights and presents under the tree. I’ve started choosing gifts for those special people in my life, and maybe you have, too.

For all my blog readers, I’d like to offer FREE SHIPPING on any order in my shop from now until December 31, 2009 (U.S only). Just type “freeblogship” in the “Note to Seller” and I’ll refund your shipping fees through PayPal! If that’s too hard to remember, don’t worry. Just write me a note that you saw the Free Shipping offer on my blog! There’s no item limit on this offer, so enjoy shopping! Visit my store at http://www.boutiquebybonnie.etsy.com


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday - Poudre River Fall

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wednesday Pet Peeves

I'm just wondering, why do so many public bathrooms have the tissue dispenser placed in the absolute worst possible place? Do the (male) contractors laugh out loud when installing it, thinking of us poor ladies being forced to sit sideways or trying to bend our wrist in a way that nature never intended? I mean, come on people. You don't need a degree in ergonomics to get it right, just a little common sense.

And one more pet peeve... To all you fast food drive-through employees out there, what part of "That's all" don't you understand? I don't want the dollar biscuit or the upgraded drink or even the chocolate sundae (and no, I don't want to try the new combo meal today). I'm a big girl and I've been choosing my own meals for a long time now, thank you.

That's all.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I've been wondering what to blog about, because it's been an emotional week for me. Emotional enough for me to think, "middle age is when you start going to more funerals than weddings." Pretty dark, eh? Of course that's not true. We all suffer the loss of loved ones. Some go too soon, others live to a grand old age. I am lucky this week. My uncle, who is in the hospital with a breathing tube down his throat, is expected to recover. Two days ago doctors told his family to say "good-bye." Two days ago I was ready to challenge anyone who believed in the power of prayer. But today I am only thankful. He's not out of the woods by any stretch, but he's improving and that is wonderful news.

So yes, I debated about such a personal post, and in the end I have left out some details. But life hangs on a thread and we all need to reach out and show our love while we have a chance. You never know when your time, or someone else's, will be over.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

New Pieces!

It’s been weeks since I made any new pieces, so today I took advantage of the dreary weather and took some time to create. I managed to create or finish off eight new pieces! The shorter days mean I need to think about boosting the inventory in my Etsy store for Christmas. Let’s hope it’s a good season for handmade this year.


These wire earrings took me a long time because I’m not great at wire work! They’re a variation on a design I saw in a jewelry makers magazine.


Sticking with the copper theme, these are the first ear wires that I’ve made by hand. The stones are a green jade.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Red Accent

Today I’m highlighting this red coral necklace, hoping to sell it before the listing expires on the 16th! Red coral is set off by puffed silver filigree beads in this 17" long necklace. It’s finished with a self-closing lobster claw clasp. The cheerful red is great all year round but especially for the upcoming holidays of Thanksgiving and Christmas. And best of all, it’s under $20!

Coral necklace

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Fall Cometh


Have a long, peaceful Labor Day weekend!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Scary Creatures

I’m tired of finding scary bugs in scary places. Last time I changed my sheets I uncovered a black spider just sitting there under my fitted sheet, right where I always sleep. It must have been divine providence that I chose to change the sheets at just the right time to discover and kill him. Creepy. And then there’s the shower incident. I’m standing there, face full of soap, I pull my washcloth toward me under the spray, and an Earwig falls out of it (without contacts I have to assume it was an Earwig). I can tell you I dropped that washcloth like a hot potato and couldn’t WAIT to get out of that shower.

I’ve learned to check the shower for bugs before getting in, but I never thought to check my washcloth. I know these small creatures can’t hurt me, but they sure scare the bee-geesis out of me! I don’t like them and I don’t want them in my house. But, since I refuse to move to a concrete jungle, I have to accept sharing space with the intruders. Some of them are so creepy that I physically cannot kill them without letting out a series of embarrassing girl shrieks and hopping around like a mad woman. Just approaching for the kill raises my anxiety to dangerous levels. What if it moves? Oh, I don’t want to see it move! Can it jump at me? Oh, I hate this. Why do I have to do this myself?

But I am a strong, independent grown-up woman, so I do the thing that frightens me. I’d love to say I am stronger for it, but next time I’m faced with a big ugly spider don’t be surprised if you hear me whimpering like a school girl!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

My Casting Call

I was going to do a “Wordless Wednesday” today but I realized it’s been a while since I’ve written a true blog entry. So if it’s alright, I’m just going to ramble for a while. In shop news, I had a nice surprise this week when someone ordered five items. That hasn’t happened since the pre-Christmas days! A thing like that can certainly brighten your day. :)

Last week I was completely stressed out at my day job, but then I decided to let go of the worry and things got much better. It’s hard to keep those outside forces and pressures from getting into your bloodstream. Once inside they’re like a poison until you let go.

I’ve been watching that new reality series on Discovery Channel – The Colony (read about 'The Colony' here). Ten volunteers try to survive for ten weeks following a (simulated) global catastrophe. the-colony-group250 I’m amazed at what they’ve managed to build from what was lying around the warehouse. In my opinion the “cross section” of society they’ve chosen is heavily skewed toward engineers and scientists. I think a more realistic scenario would look something like this:

Meg – a 30-year-old 3rd grade teacher

Benjamin – an 11-year-old boy that Meg has taken under her wing

Henry – a bank president who doesn’t even do his own yardwork

Paul – a retired machinist. He can build stuff but has arthritis.

Susan – a SAHM mom who lost her kids in the catasrophe

Danielle – a 22 year-old cocktail waitress and art student

Robert – a computer programmer and a deacon at his church

Javier – an 42-year-old insurance sales rep

Jennifer – Javier’s wife. Sells real estate and has a quick temper.

David – a 24-year-old physical therapist

I have to wonder if this group would be able to build a wood gasifier to run a handmade generator that runs a daisy-chained bank of batteries that goes to a converter that outputs A/C power. Or would they just build a campfire, make their own oil lamps, defend themselves with clubs, and trade the power tools for food??

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Chrysocolla Earrings

I just listed these double Chrysocolla earrings. This is such a gorgeous stone with it’s shades of blue and green all swirled together. I was lucky to find a strand of it in a small mom-and-pop shop last year and fell in love with it.

E030aI sold a pair of these a few months ago that only had one bead each. These match a necklace and bracelet I already have for sale in my etsy store.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Four days in Kansas

Plane ticket: $340

Hotel room: $80

Six pack of beer from my hometown: $8

Wireless Internet in the middle of Kansas: Priceless

Traveling for business is not glamorous, at least not in my profession. But it does offer a chance to see parts of the country I would never visit otherwise. It's a chance to break away from my regular routine and the chair I sit in 8 hours a day. It's a chance to meet new people in new places and prove I can navigate in a strange environment (both literally and figuratively). But in a few days I'll be more than ready for that trip home again!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Say Yes?

I’ve been sitting here watching episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress.” If you haven’t seen it, the show is set in a high-end bridal salon and features stories of brides shopping for wedding dresses.  It got me thinking about my own wedding dress. I found it at a bridal fair. While looking through a catalog at a booth I turned the page, slammed my finger down, and said “that’s the dress.” It was the first dress I tried on and the one I ended up buying. And the kicker? It cost less than $400. I think it’s because it didn’t have a train (trane?).

Looking back, it could have been fit better to my body, but on the day I felt special and beautiful. It’s hard to believe women spend $5,000+ on a dress when that’s not what I remember about my wedding day. I remember the way my husband’s tux felt under my hands, I remember I was so nervous before walking down the aisle I didn’t know what side I was supposed to be on. I remember the happiness on my husband’s face during the ceremony and the fun we had during the reception.

Sure, I would have loved a $7,000 dress, but that’s not what the day was about. The day was about a big party to start our lives together – a party we were paying for ourselves. Part of me wishes I had spent more and pulled out more stops, but in the end it’s just one day.  And all the beading and lace in the world won’t buy you a happy marriage.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

New Listings for Sunday!


N088b B040a N087a

Sunday, July 19, 2009

New Listings!

I’m slowly getting around to adding new items to my etsy store. People get bored with seeing the same items being renewed so adding fresh pieces is essential.

Picture Jasper Necklace

This Picture Jasper necklace has a Southwest look and features nine rectangular “shards” as the centerpiece. I love the natural variations in this stone.

I also added this precious bracelet of pale pink glass beads. At 5.75 inches, it’s perfect for any girl who loves pink. A heart clasp finishes off this darling piece.

Girls Bracelet

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Rustic Woven Metal Fish Necklace

I just listed this necklace in my Etsy store, and something about it is very appealing to me. I love the antiqued metal and the way it’s woven to create the fish pendant. It gives the whole piece a rustic handmade look that I think appeals to both women and men.


The simple black cord doesn’t distract from the focal pendant, which is accented by blue glass beads. This is the first of several pieces I finally got photographed to list!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Front Stoop – The Old Farmhouse

Front Stoop

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Home Again

I’ve returned home from my road trip with a few mosquito bites, a bit of a tan and a lot of memories. I even made a sale in my etsy store while I was gone. chunky green braceletA bracelet very similar to the one in this photo sold. That always seems to happen when I’m away for a few days! It must be the watched pot phenomenom.

Tomorrow I go back to my day job, but I think the break has done me good. In fact, I vote that we all get five weeks of vacation a year instead of two!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Travel Notes

Vacations are to remind you who you are outside of work. Who the REAL you is, They can take you away and immerse you in a brand new view of the world. I’m two days into my vacation and have already had plenty of memorable moments. I’ve sat on a rock facing the Cathedral Spires at sunset. I’ve driven through the Black Hills national forest in morning light. I’ve gazed across fields of yellow flowers as far as the eyes can see. And I’ve seen a double rainbow end to end after a short Summer squall. And all that was just part of getting to the family reunion.

IMG_0266 I believe we all need to get out into nature to replenish ourselves. My favorite view is any one that just makes me say, “thank you.”  Thank you for putting me here in this spot at this time and creating something so beautiful.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Sweet Summertime

OK, maybe not so sweet when it’s too hot to do anything outside – and we haven’t even hit the 90’s yet. Thankfully I got some help putting in my window air conditioner today which provides much needed relief! We didn’t have air conditioning in the home I grew up in and I remember retreating to the lowest level of our split level home seeking the cooler air. I’m thankful that Colorado is dry and humidity is rarely a problem. Still, I think I may move downstairs to the guest room during the hot spells that I know are coming (I say that every year, but this year by George I may just get smart and do it).

Summer vacations are in full swing and I have a houseful of company this week. We’ve been busy playing tourist and running all over the Front Range. Next week I’ll be the one travelling to a family reunion on my mom’s side of my family. I won’t be back until July, which is just around the corner already. It will be a road trip that will take me through the Black Hills of South Dakota and I’m planning to make some photography stops. If I have a chance I’ll post a photo or two next week, otherwise you may not see an update for a week or so. Enjoy the rest of June!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Green Goddess Necklace

This is a necklace I’ve had listed for a while that’s pretty gorgeous. I love Peace Jade with it’s mixture of white and green. I paired it with diamond shaped green Serpentine and teardrops of Green Aventurine. A few antiqued pewter spacers and a heart toggle clasp finish the look. Green is my favorite color so of course I find this necklace especially attractive!

peacejade Click on the picture to see more photos of this necklace!

Monday, June 15, 2009

And the Robin says ”cheep”

Ok, someone asked for more bird photos, and they seemed to be popular, so here’s one more.  Just your every day backyard Robin, captured in mid “cheep.”  I took this photo this evening shortly after another severe storm passed through. We’ve had nine days in a row with severe afternoon weather!  This bird also wasn’t a bit afraid of my cats on the deck. Maybe they aren’t the fearsome hunters I imagine they are.


Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Shout Out to the United Kingdom

It took me a long time to add international shipping to my store. I guess I was afraid of underestimating shipping costs and the imagined hazards and pitfalls of mailing overseas. If you remember, I officially started offering international shipping about a month ago. I tried to get the word out, but saw no results. Now, suddenly, my last two sales have been to the U.K.! I'm always happy to make a sale and it's gratifying to know my overseas buyers are out there and have found me. So I just wanted to give a 'shout out' to my international friends and say, don't be shy! I'm open for business!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bird photos with new lens

My new toys arrived today! As soon as I got home from work I opened up the boxes containing my new 70-200mm lens and the 1.4x extender and slapped them on my camera. Well, first I attached the UV filter to protect my nice new lens. I attached the lens hood, took a quick peek at the owners manual to see which Image Stabilization setting to use, and headed out onto the deck. My yard is home to a lot of birds and this young fellow came right out to see why my cats seemed to think the deck belonged to them (I think maybe he’s not too smart yet)!

bird1 A bit farther away, the rest of his family gathered to call out warnings and insults to me and the cats. I don’t even know what kind of birds these are. I much prefer my house finches and mourning doves. Anyway, they provided a nice little test handholding my new lens to see how the IS works.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Girl’s Pink Necklace on Sale!

I’d rather sell it than renew it, so I’ve marked down this pink donut necklace to just $8 until the June 15th renewal date! It’s made of rose quartz chip beads and the swirled donut is acrylic. The pink and white color scheme of this piece makes it the perfect girl’s gift. This Rose Quartz necklace is 16.5" long with a 2" drop for the pendant. Click the photo for more info!

rose quartz necklace

Monday, June 8, 2009

Spring Hail

We’ve been having wonderful Spring weather in Colorado, and by that I mean it’s anything goes! Just about every afternoon you can count on some rain clouds building up over the mountains until they can’t hold any more and it pours for all of about 10 minutes or so! Sunday the weather was wildly unsettled with tornados on the plains and hail at my home in the foothills. Hail is pretty common here due to the elevation. I treasure these Spring rain storms because I know that soon it will turn hot and dry. But for now, everything is green and the sky is a wonder to watch.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

New Camera Lens Coming!

Yay, I just gave in and ordered myself the camera lens I've been wanting for six months! I also ordered a new tripod head, a good UV filter for my new lens and a 1.4x extender. That's a small piece you put between your camera body and lens to extend the range of the lens. It's a less expensive and less bulky way to get some extra telephoto.

I'm excited to get these new pieces and give them some serious use at my upcoming family reunion. I visualize some great portrait and candid shots along with landscapes in and around the old family ranch. Every time I get a new lens it becomes my "favorite" and I expect nothing less this time. But, like children, each lens is unique and they're ALL my favorite!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Gone Fishing

I’m finally over being sick for five days. Here’s to better health!

I did go out on Saturday and visit a bead shop I’ve never been to. They had some interesting, affordable items, including this fish pendant that I snagged for 75% off.  I strung it on this simple knotted cord and it’s all finished except for the clasp. Fish

I also picked up this piece of Blue Coral (which looks black actually). I like the shape but I’m not sure about the accent beads. The cord is round rubber, but it seems a bit Coralflimsy for the piece. What do you think? 

Sales have been slow in my etsy store lately, but I like to keep adding new items. Got to keep it fresh! Of course these items aren’t listed yet since they’re not finished.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Long Weekend, Short Trip

Sorry for the long absence, but I took advantage of the long weekend to make a short trip to see a dear friend in California. The best part is I missed all the rain here and enjoyed perfect sunny skies! While in California I got my toes painted, drank some Sangria, and laughed myself silly - well worth the trip! Now I need a week (or four) to recover! Do you think they'd miss me at work? Thankfully this is a short week. The trick is to take the laughter and the love from this last weekend and stretch it out. Every time I look at my "fancy feet" I'll remember my visit and feel good inside. I'll be reminded to nurture the parts of myself that are uniquely me; the quirky parts, the talented parts and even the flawed parts. Because it's the flawed parts that make room for another person to come in and make you better than you are on your own.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wordless Wednesday – Crazy Horse Stone


Saturday, May 16, 2009

Really off-topic music post

This morning I dusted off the boxed set of Baroque music CD’s that my musical sister gave me many years ago. I needed to be refreshed – to get out of the repeating soundtrack of my life. Actually, last night I was thinking about making a list of my favorite songs of all time, and the earliest ones that came to mind were from the 1980’s. Then I thought, why not go earlier? Surely some songs from the 60’s deserve to make the list! But then I thought, why not go even earlier? What about Classical music? And so here I am, reconnecting with Classical music.

I’ve always loved the layering of melody and tempo in Baroque music especially. Who doesn’t know the Pachelbel Canon or Handel’s Water Music or Vivaldi’s Four Seasons? The Pachelbel Canon carries the listener along like a leaf in a mountain stream that trips and plays along, until it finally reaches a pristine mountain lake. If Pachelbel is water, then Vivaldi is air – just as playful, but soaring through the treetops instead of dancing on the water. Handel, I think, is more like a row of large trees – impressive but orderly and purposeful. Sadly, my favorite Baroque piece is not included these CDs – Bach’s Sleepers Awake. It’s a simple “song” that I fell in love with when we sang the choral version in high school.

Isn’t that great? I actually do feel smarter, more peaceful and even more motivated when I listen to Classical music. The pieces are complex and beautiful and written with passion and genius. Not to mention the talent it takes to perform them. If these notes can enter my brain and leave behind just a bit of that, then I’m the better for it.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Girl’s Are Pretty in Pink



Last weekend I made this cute little bracelet designed for a girl’s small wrist. The pale pink glass beads and heart-shaped toggle clasp make it a sweet accessory. I like that the pink is delicate and not overpowering. It’s not listed in my Etsy store yet, but hopefully I’ll get it uploaded soon.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Office

Have you ever had a day that left you feeling like a failure at your job? Today was not so great. I made a mistake. Actually, I made the mistake last year but I just caught it yesterday. I compounded that mistake by not fessing up to my boss right away (Note to self: Bring potentially bad situations to your boss’s attention before he gets a call from the client).

My reward was a visit to the principal, er, I mean the boss’s office to explain what happened. For the rest of the afternoon I felt like a big fat failure whose lousy at her job.  I’m sure I can shake it off by tomorrow. And I did learn some important lessons. Now I have to step it up and bring my “A” game. Man, I hate phrases like that!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Wordless Wednesday


Sunday, May 3, 2009

Now Shipping Internationally!

flags Finally, I’ve added true international shipping to my Etsy store! I’ve been intimidated by international shipping (beyond Canada) for too long, so I’ve finally taken the plunge. Why put up road blocks to increased sales? Jewelry is light and easy to ship at reasonable prices. And now that I’ve done a couple, the customs forms aren’t so scary.  I do hope the international buyers will find me. Etsy doesn’t make it easy to highlight the fact that you offer International shipping. I want to welcome all my readers from overseas and thank you for sticking with me!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Landscape Stone Pendant


Here’s a pendant I made last weekend. This gorgeous oval Landscape Stone pendant is wrapped in copper wire and hung on a rust colored suede cord. Landscape stone displays natural earth-tone patterns reminiscent of a painted desert landscape. I really love the natural pattern and colors!

This necklace is 25 inches long and finished with a toggle clasp. The pendant measures 1.75 inches long by 1.15 inches wide (41mm x 30mm). I hope you like it!


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Wordless Wednesday - Aspen

Monday, April 27, 2009

More shop tinkering

Tonight I’m taking a tip from Timothy Adams and adjusting some of the prices in my Etsy store. I raised the prices on several items and lowered the price on a couple others. Timothy points out that people will gravitate to a medium priced item in most buying situations. How do you raise your median price? By significantly raising the price of a few items to create a new “ceiling.”  I probably fall in to the trap of pricing my items low, thinking no one will buy them otherwise. So many of us undervalue our work. I still think my prices are low, but I have a greater range now.

As a reverse experiment, I took a group of nearly identical items, my men’s chokers, and reduced the price on one of them by $1. By making one item look like an accidental value, it should be more attractive. I’ve tried so hard to keep prices consistent in my store that perhaps there hasn’t been any incentive to buy one piece over another. I’ll be interested to see if I notice any changes in sales from this.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A new look for an old listing – Spring cleaning for your store.

I’ve slowly started taking new photos for old listings that need an update. This Sodalite braceletSodalite Bracelet is one of the first items I listed in my Etsy store.  The listing only had two product photos and I wasn’t 100% happy with how the photos looked.  I think the pink just didn’t reflect my own taste, to be honest. 

I’ve kept the pink photo in the line-up, but my new main photograph is clear and simple. The background does not Sodalite Braceletdistract from the colors of the stones or try to convey a specific mood. The bracelet gets to be the star. In addition, it’s more in line with the other photos in my store. I will admit, my store doesn’t have a fully consistent look, but I’m trying to steer toward that goal. I have two more of these Sodalite pieces to update, and then the pink will be gone!

Another key to updating a listing is to tweak the Title, body text and tags. I actually found an error in the body of this listing that had been there for a year! And then I saw that I was only using eight tags!  It’s so important to use all 14 tags if possible so that you show up in Searches.

Now I feel like this is a new listing instead of an old one. It’s modern and updated and I feel proud to call it my own. How’s your store looking? Is it time to do some Spring cleaning?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Vote for my photo!

I entered this photo in Timothy Adam's product photo contest on his Handmadeology blog. I'd sure appreciate your vote, so here is the link! http://timothyadam.cheddrmedia.com/iframe/310-Etsy-Worthy-Photo-Contest/entries/1635-Chunky-Green-Bracelet.html

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Cow in downtown Anchorage.
Copyright Bonnie Stotz 2005

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Moss Agate and Cross Earrings

I just wanted to share my newest creation. I didn't realize until I finished them that the diagonal wire wrap on the agates match the binding on the cross charms. Sometimes design decisions come from subtle clues!


These have just been listed in my Etsy store.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Rainy Day Deer

Our Spring storm has so far dumped more rain and slush than snow, but that will likely change overnight! I caught these deer in my backyard around 6 p.m. enjoying a soggy evening romp. Usually I only have six deer, but this time I counted eight!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

And the winner is…

I’m happy to announce that Judy Richards Shubert is the winner of my Tax Relief Earring Giveaway! Judy

You can find Judy online everywhere, but be sure to visit her blog, Food Gratitude, and her Etsy store, Edna Alice Designs. Judy also has a real interest in genealogy and cemeteries. Judy has won her choice of the earrings in my giveaway.

A big Thank You to everyone who entered my Giveaway and stopped by my blog in the last few weeks! According to comments, the favorite item in my Etsy store seems to be these Moss Green moss green earringsEarrings. That’s interesting since I gave away a pair just like this in my last Giveaway! I love them too, and these earthy flower beads are some of my favorites. But I also love hearing which of my “lesser known” pieces get noticed by certain readers. It’s nice to see that every piece has it’s fans!

Well, I hope Tax Day was kind to everyone this year. The good news is, we don’t have to do it again for another year!