Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone! Here's my freshly carved wide set eye smile pumpkin for you to enjoy:

Now off to work on my costume...if it turns out I'll hopefully post pics later...we'll see...

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Find: Memento Mori Cuff

With halloween peaking around the corner, this week's pick celebrates death with a wonderful brass skull gently reminding you to keep it real. This great find is thanks to jane e roberti's awesome etsy shop and my addiction to etsy's gift guide selections.

I really like the juxtaposition of materials and simplicity of the bracelet, allowing this cuff to be much more than a seasonal item. Plus skulls are, like, really cool.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Letters from Lindsay

One of my favourite past times from the last few years has been to indulge in the ever exciting world of penpalery. Letters are a great way to keep in touch with friends, stretch out my card creating and writing skills, support canada post, and receive wonderful non bill/spam related snail mail! I'm always up for adding to my pen pal list whenever someone moves away, even though we all know that isn't always too successful (oh, you know who you are epic fail penpals!).

So letter writing isn't for everyone - but it most certainly is for my most reliable pen pal lindsay! And the best part about lindsay mail is that it often involves wonderfully hand crafted cards that I promptly show off to whoever is close to me at the time of arrival! Well, today was one of those lovely lindsay mail days, and instead of bragging of the awesome cards to limited few, I'll show them off all her creations she's given me over the last few months! Neato!

I love the colours, textures, and witty banter she always seems to include in her fabulous post and she's recently taken her card making to the next level and opened up her own etsy shop called "the spotted sheep"! Here are a few of my favs she's put up for sale:

Keep it up linds! Oh and keep listing more cards - makes it much easier for me to be your number one (hopefully non- creepy) stalker...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Road Trip: Salmon Arm

This past weekend I did a spur of the moment road trip with some friends of mine to the wonders of Salmon Arm. Not only did we get the most hilarious facial reactions to our small town travel destination, but we got to experience everything Sundays have to offer in such a great place! Here are a few photographed highlights:

Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to snap a picture of the plethora of drivers sitting in running parked cars, the "make you laugh until you cry" awesome cards from the lake effect, or the shopping extravaganza of health food store deals, but take my word - it was fantastic! Next time you have the chance, I highly recommend the drive there. Don't mock us jocelyn - it really was that fun.

More robot love

Thanks to some helpful scheming from jacqui, I've sculpted up an adorable new love robot item for my etsy shop! She's single-handedly convinced me to attempt cell phone charms and the result is pretty darned cute. Take a look:

Now everytime you use your cell phone you can think of me! Lucky you.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Hooray for Africa!

Not too long ago, why just yesterday in fact, I spilled the juicy details of site visit bingo and pined about my lack of territory conquest in Africa. Well pining no more. Thanks to one wonderful random in Stellenbosch, I've had visitors from every continent! (Um..well, the highly populated non-frozen ones google analytics tracks at least...). Hooray!

As you can tell, I'm pretty darned excited! Oh, and a little surprised on how fast that was. Now to try to get that ultimate site visit bingo blackout...but chances are that will take substantially longer...I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Site visit bingo!

As previously discussed, I have been spending quite the amount of time racking up the chart and graph data goodness google analytics has so kindly bestowed on me. Well, for the last few days I've been paying particular interest to that map that tells you where your site visitors are from. I mean how cool is it that you can actually see what areas of the world have checked out my geekery on etsy? and in such a nicely colour coded manner! Oh my!

So it's got me thinking - wouldn't it be fun to see how long it takes to get visitors from every country? Maybe I could start with every continent before I go for the full-out site visit bingo blackout, but still, a girl can dream. In the meantime, check out my sweet progress from the last ten days:

Progress as of October 13th:

Progress as of October 23rd:

I feel like my geography 390 prof (Tom Waldichuck) who excitedly ran back and forth to the slide projector to point out minor differences between pictures. Woo! In all honestly, I am most stoked that I finally got a visit from Russia. Sure tiny European countries are great and all, but Russia great? That's hard to compete with. I've contemplated developing some actual tactics to provoke visits for the ultimate site visit bingo blackout, but that feels dishonest. I think this needs to be a more natural process. Unless of course any of you have friends in Africa dying for a new site to check's ok...I won't say anything.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Find: DNA base pair friendship necklaces

This week's pick is none other than molecularmuse's wonderful base pair friendship necklaces! Allowing you to show off how awesome you pair with someone using a selection of purine and pyrimidine pendants.

Because nothing says friendship better than nucleotide hydrogen bonding. Seriously.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Oak-y Dokey

In attempt to cross more items off my perpetual to-do list, last night I decided to whip up my first art card for ulixis' "art cards, editions & originals" (ACEO) exchange challenge! (which you may recall from my original post). I am sort of getting ahead of myself for once, since the cards aren't due until november 6th, but hey, there's nothing wrong with being overly organized. Behold:

I figure it goes with the autumn theme quite well and includes the two elements I was aiming for 1) texture (inspired by lindsay's collage art genius) and 2) cuteness (in the form of wide set eye smile acorns) ! Hurray! I also figured I could post this in hopes to wrangle in a few more participants in on the super fun challenge! Deadline is october 23rd so sign up already and get crafting.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Unadorned wrist? No problem!

For the last few months I've been trying to brainstorm a neat way to showcase my darling pinback buttons and at long last the crafting process is complete! Success! I've created a series of charming wristlet clutch bags adorn with my adorably geeky button sets.

I had to change my design plan a bit once I discovered how impossible it is to find quality linen in kamloops, but am quite pleased with the finished product. I'm particularly fond with how the colour combinations worked out. Best of all I've got a new product to test out on my etsy site and I get the joy of crossing this little gem off my to-do list. Sweet deal. Now if only I could get a few more projects completed...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Thumbs up yeti

My adventures with pinback buttons continues with a new wintry addition! I figured since I've been rambling on about etsy selling and ramping up for xmas, I should listen to my own advice and create a seasonal themed set of buttons to sell in my shop! (bonus - october's challenge theme for the mad scientists of etsy club is a seasonal too!) So behold! A sneak peek at the cutest snowy mythical creatures around; thumbs up yeti and his dear forest friends jackelope and pinecone!

So cute! I'm really pleased with how they turned out. This set really needed to be circular for full effect, hence the odd pictures this time. Oh, and let's pretend that fuzzy border thing is just for frosty winter effect and not because I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to photoshop...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Find: Indie Rock Colouring Book

I've been contemplating adding a weekly "kate's addicted to the internet" find section to my blog where I share whatever I've been drooling over amidst my hours of internet fun. Here's my first find of the series. Tell me what you think...

Quite possibly the coolest colouring book ever - plus you're supporting the yellow bird project. Indie tunes, colouring, and charity. Triple win.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cute science formula

Random science object (in this case bacteriophage) + wide-set eye smile = adorable.

Why yes. It is that easy. I've divulged the secret, use it wisely.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

More adventures in internet addiction

Lately I've been spending a lot of time searching through etsy's storque how-to's with the dual purpose of 1) the eternal strive to perfect my etsy shop and 2) gaining useful knowledge to share with my dear friend lindsay who is about to dive into the ambitious world of etsy selling! There are some pretty sweet helpful tidbits of awesomeness in there, hence their creation I'm sure.

Amidst all the wonderful online reading I discovered my most sleep depriving addiction yet - google analytics. Who knew google had such an amazing program that tracks site usage! I set it up for my etsy site and blog and have been consecutively staying up until midnight each night just so I can see how popular my sites were that day (right down to what pages were browsed, where the traffic came from, how long they spent there, and where in the world they came from). So cool! Best of all, all the lovely data goodness is displayed in pretty clickable charts and graphs! Seriously, the data is gorgeous, free, and completely insightful. Sweet deal. Here's a nice sample of the map overview of visitors from the last few days on my etsy site. I know, I'm drooling.

Although this discovery seems like a blessing, I'm starting to think it's going to drive me to insanity. Not only has it cut back on my precious (and integral to the health of my poor compromised immune system) sleep time, but now that I can actually see what is and isn't popular on my sites and have to confront the fact that a few things aren't actually popular. Sure I still love each and every part of what I create, but is a mother's love really enough? Isn't the whole perk of online selling how much easier it is to deal with online rejection verses actual rejection? *sigh* Deep breath. Now, only 23 more hours until I can see how popular this posting is...

Monday, October 12, 2009


Thinking about being productive is just as good as actually being productive right? Hope so...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Happy Anniversary Etsy shop!

Today marks the one year anniversary of my etsy shop and my shift towards crafting things for an actual reason! I fondly remember back when I started and would get super stoked about every sale and run to the post office as soon as I found out in sheer excitement...wait...I still do that. Hopefully my first year and 111 etsy sales has provided me with deep insight for the years to come.

My big etsy life lessons so far:
  • You can never be too prepared for the xmas rush
  • Stop making annoyingly time consuming items and then low-balling them
  • It's all about appearance - branding and photographs are as important as ever
  • Don't agree to making anything unless you actually want to make it. No one wants crafting to be "work"
  • Wide set eyes with a tiny smile make anything ridiculously adorable...seriously

All the features

Another early morning and another early morning email informing me one of my products was featured on someone's site! This time the credit goes to those sweet craft lovers at Craft Candy, proving yet again how cool Sheffield is (I mean the Full Monty and a neat craft site?)

Indulge a little and check it out when you've got some time to spare...or even if you don't really have time to spare... that seems to be what I did...

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Buttons for sale!

I've somehow managed to postpone my natural procrastination ways for long enough to expand my etsy geekery sales into *gasp* the real world. Starting today, my lovingly crafted pinback buttons are available for purchase at the art we are artisan market! Hooray! I'll update with pics of my makeshift display mobile next time I'm in the vicinity with my camera - but if the anticipation is killing you I totally recommend stopping by and taking a peek. Might as well have a cup of tea while you're at it...

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A spout of productivity...

Have you ever noticed how when your days off roll around instead of getting actual tasks completed, the day just magically zips by and its back to work like always? Well the productivity gnomes were with me today, and despite my terrible state of health from yet another drug trial, I actually dented my to do list. Seriously.

So how did this all go down you ask? Fantastically! All because of the wonders of a little retail therapy (and ample list making - but that's a well described given). Nothing motivates more than a trip to the store for organizational totes! Plus I got to pick up some other necessities (bonus) which, by happenstance, made me look like the most stereotypically loser single woman in the checkout (yeah - totes, file folders, toothpaste, fine-tip sharpies, and cat treats - I rule). So day attacking tools in hand, I rushed home to spend my afternoon puttering away on my well crafted list.

Tasks completed include:
  • Finish and sort laundry
  • Unpack from Victoria (I know - that was like 2 weeks ago...)
  • Sort mountains of recycling
  • Organize etsy craft disaster zone
  • Sort penpalery/organize card making supplies
  • Clean! like...everything
  • Make mobile for button store display
  • Sketch in my year-long-sister-challenge journal
  • Update blog (which apparently I did times 3)
  • Socialize (times 3 again - go me!)
I've accepted that I'm one of those people who notices they have a million things to do and instead of just doing them procrastinates by cleaning/organizing everything. Well, apparently today it worked. Let's hope tomorrow is as successful...

It's fun to participate!

Amidst my routine "I'm addicted to the internet" searches, I came across a super fun sounding "art cards, editions & originals" (ACEO) exchange challenge courtesy of amanda at ulixis! The gist of this challenge is to create an autumn themed art card (2.5" x 3") that you'll eventually send to a random participant and in return you get someone else's art!

Since I'm all about the random mail and any chance to experiment with small scale art/craft projects I joined up and am so stoked about the exchange that I'm posting this in attempt to stir interest in some of my not-so-closet crafty friends (who I all hope are reading my blog religiously - you know who you are). Everyone's welcome and you don't need an etsy site or anything so challenge yourself and sign up! You all know that getting non-bill/spam related mail is pure awesome and hey, it could be fun.

Robots need love too

This morning I got a pleasant emailing reminding me just how awesome robots are with a feature in an etsy treasury! And since clearly everyone needs to be further convinced of etsy's ultimate coolness, I encourage taking a peak! (Make haste though, it will only be around until the 8th).

In other news it appears that I've been listening to Dan Mangan's "robots" for the last three maybe check that out while you're at it. Consider it extra credit.

Update - I'm silly. Here is a picture of the treasury for your non-expiring viewing pleasure:

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Button update

My woodland and mustached kitten buttons are finally complete!

I think one of my least favourite etsy tasks is trying to take semi decent pictures of shiny things. I am far from mastering low budget pinback button photography as of yet, but maybe one day when I have some extra time on my hands I can redo them. Super reflective item pictures are extra difficult to take, especially when demon cat decides to help....

Thanks stinkums. I hope you enjoyed tormenting me.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Goodbye September...

I can't believe it's October already. Time to get ready for falling leaves, crisp evenings, and halloween! And, lest we forget, a new October soundtrack. This month's selection is pretty indie/folk/pop heavy, the majority of which was inspired from rifflandia. Plus it's all about the three minute tracks (ok, not really), but I did like Mother Mother's speal on truncated versions of songs being awesome. Way to keep it concise.