Gifting has always been one of the biggest joys of my life. I truly love everything about it, I love showing someone I care, that I’ve thought of them, that I listen, that I “get them.” I love the element of surprise and the anticipation of the unveiling of the gift. Above all else I love coming up with a completely unique and personal handmade gift specifically for that person.
To me a handmade gift is unmatched by any store bought item, ever. I can recall nearly all of the gifts I’ve made over the years starting with my kindergarten macaroni Christmas ornaments, to a poem surrounded by delicate colored pencil shavings (it was the epitome of art to me as an 8-year-old) to a series of knitted scarves I made post-college. Recently what I’ve found is that the inspiration, thought and effort put behind a personal handmade gift usually generates an amazing item, often I’m told I should make more. When looking over my Etsy shop I realize that every one of my items came from a spontaneous gift idea for someone I care for.
I think it goes to show there is Power in Gifting, the combination of love, excitement and the goal of an exceptionally perfect gift brings something really magical and wonderful to the crafting table.
When starting off this blog I told myself that I wanted to share what it is like to start a new shop online. Well, I realize to do that I need to be completely honest with myself and with you … Continue reading
Recently I was asked by an Etsy buyer if I worked on commission. One of my dream goals for my shop is to make any plush or felt a dream come true for my customers. At this moment time makes that difficult but I couldn’t resist this first custom sale and the challenge of this job.
I was contacted by a random Etsy seller to to make a Porsche 917 in Gulf Livery (insert photo) . (This is a two-pronged YAY 1. for being a complete stranger 2. because he searched for plush cars, go M.Y.!) When I first saw a picture of this car I panicked, I didn’t know how I would go about recreating something as ambitious as this race car but at the same time I was so thrilled by the prospect of making my first custom order I knew I just had to do it.
After a good half hour of being excited and freaked out I calmed down enough to really look at the pictures and realized this was something I could actually make! So I got to work. It took some time to create the correct pattern, embroider the numbers and Gulf signs and assemble the final pieces. In the end I had accomplished my goal of making a well built AND well replicated car. Not only did this plush challenge me as a textile artist it also pushed my work to a new level and gave me some much needed confidence. I’m left feeling really excited for new projects and while I might not be able to do custom work as often as I like I am so grateful for this first project and all it has done for me.
Have a look at the actual car and the plush car! Please note these pictures did not work out as well as I would like but I’m working on it. You can view all of the plush photos on my Flickr account!
- Porsche 917 Gulf Livery
This past week I launched the merrily yours Etsy shop. For me this was a big deal, huge really. While it may not seem like much the event of going live as a handmade artist means a heck of a lot to me. It’s not just about selling crafts, it’s declaring that I am an artist and I believe I have something valuable to share. It also meant everything from my image, logo and blog had to be up to snuff. I didn’t want to launch a so-so brand or shop, I wanted to hit the web with a great online presence and of course this took a lot of time and energy. Along the way I’ve learned that everything can’t be perfect but it can be really good, the key is to be good enough to move forward. So while everything wasn’t as perfect as I would have envisioned for launch day I decided to bite the bullet and let my handmade dream fly on it’s own. It was so awarding and inspiring to hear all of the positive feedback and support from family and friends. I was so excited when on the first day of launching the shop I had a complete stranger favorite the Turntable Felt Picture, to me that was huge, someone outside of my circle saw my work and liked it! I even did a happy dance. In the first week I sold that very same piece to a friend who told me he and his wife “fell in love” with it. Suddenly I had demand for an item, my own creation! It felt incredible and is exactly the motivation I need to continue growing.
I’m looking forward to this week with an open heart and mind, excited to bring more fresh items to the online handmade marketplace. I’m hopeful for more positive feedback and hope you stay tuned!