Sunday, September 17, 2017

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree!

Thy leaves are so unchanging

We're now two months away from the first of two craft fairs that I'm working this year. Both of them are bookending the Thanksgiving holiday, and obviously, the minds of consumers will have already moved well past turkey comas and football to tinsel and snowmen.

As such, I've decided to introduce a Christmas line in this year, the main feature being, well, Christmas trees.







 That's the bottom half of it, anyway.

I modified it a bit to make it one piece and in the round. 'Cause I STINK at seaming. I go out of my way to avoid seaming when I can. And I think the pattern calls for beads and other decorations to be added after the fact, and I'm adding them as I go, using some beads I found in the back of my closet when I recently cleaned it out.




 I have enough of these beads to make two trees, and I have quite a bit of silver and gold colored beads. (Seriously people, every time I see those beads, or even think the words "silver and gold," I think of Yukon Cornelius from Rudolf.)


 I've also made a bunch of snowmen. They're cute (and snowmen is generally a good seller at craft fairs, from what I can tell), but these ones came out almost baby-fied.



 See? Cute, but baby-fied.

 Is baby-fied a word? I think there's another word out there, but I'm not entirely sure what it is, so I'll make a new one.

Baby-fied.

Yup. It works.

Friday, August 18, 2017

No Spend Month

Happy Friday!

I've recently decided (recently meaning within the last couple hours) to do a "No Spend Month" Challenge for the month of September.

Am I crazy for doing this? I kinda feel a bit crazy.

I went onto Pinterest, searching for hints and tips and whatnot, and quickly fell down the rabbit hole. (To be honest though, "Went to Pinterest" and "fell down the rabbit hole" are a bit synonymous.)

I suppose the decision to do this started brewing a couple months ago- I created an account with YNAB (You Need A Budget.) They're not paying me to say this, but I seriously love it. It's $50 a year, but I've already saved over that each month. What's cool about it is it is extremely similar to the envelope system, and I can pretty much SEE every dollar I have- which is something a notepad and a pencil can't do all that easily.

But it's hard to say exactly HOW MUCH I'm saving- because while the regular, known, expenses are a month ahead (July's income pays August's bills, etc), what's left over is being spent as soon as I get it and I have nothing extra.

Which is no good. Because I know I should have extra, and while I'm glad that I haven't spent MORE than I brought in (which I usually do), I have savings and other debt goals that I want to get under control.

As far as rules go, I'm keeping it kind of chill. Obviously my monthly scheduled bills are going to be paid (I don't think my electric company would be okay with me saying I wasn't paying them because I'm doing a No Spend Challenge.)  Some people refuse to buy food, preferring to shop from their pantry instead. I'm not going to do that though- storage space in my kitchen is rather limited, and so I don't always have all that much more than a week's worth of food anyway. I won't be buying extra through- just what I NEED for meals (and a reminder to myself, wine is not a NEED.)

Yeah. No wine is a rule, as is no dining out. No candy bars (That one will be tough- tougher than the no wine). No buying things for the crafting business, which probably won't be as much of a problem problem as my lack of impulse control says it will be.

Speaking which, there's a promotion going on in my etsy shop- 10% off any order of at least $10 (and since most of my items are at least that...



It's working in either one of two ways. Some of you are going to be lucky enough to have it come off at the checkout, no questions asked, no need to put in a coupon code. It's a new thing Etsy is running with- although I believe that it's only open for a limited number of shoppers for now.

If that's you, great! No need to do anything. If not, or if you're shopping as a guest, use coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL2017 for the same 10% off any order of at least $10. This is going on until Labor Day here in the US (September 4th).



Back to the original topic. No spend month. I'll write a weekly check in, one to keep myself honest, and secondly to provide you with amusement for all my whining.

Happy weekend everyone! (Me? I'll probably spend part to most of it at the car dealership getting an oil change and watching them freak out at the open recall on my car. That and cleaning.)

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Where Does The Time Go?

I remember growing up, certainly in my elementary and middle school years, where summer vacation was like a long, lazy pause in time. Not so much by the time I got to high school, when I had band practice and band camp and a part time job cashiering at a local supermarket, but when I was young, the summer days dragged forever, never ending until Labor Day came and suddenly Mom was waking me up at way-too-early-o'clock to catch the bus and another school year was beginning.

I miss those days.

Now it seems like as soon as summer gets here, we're preparing for it's end. The days go faster and faster until suddenly another whole year's gone by and we're back to where we began.

I haven't written in awhile, mostly because I didn't know what to say. More accurately, I felt like I didn't have anything to say. I knew what I was feeling but I didn't know how to express it. Earlier today, I decided to just take out the metaphorical blank piece of paper and just see what words came out.

Honestly, I was a bit surprised to see that my last blog post was in April of 2016. How has it been over a year without anything to say?

That's not to say I have been idle. I've been thinking. I've been thinking a lot of thoughts, and now they're in some form of a cohesive format. (Thanks to Jen, who seemed to know exactly what questions to ask to bring me to the words I needed.)

I've decided that for one thing, I'm going to stop doing the craft fairs. The two I've signed up for, I'm still going to do. I still have a bit of inventory, and yarn, and I've made the commitment. But after that? I'm done.

I'm going to put my main focus into my etsy shop- EvidentlyMotley. Over the past year and a half, I've reduced my handknitted and sewn items to almost zilch (I've still got the line of pin cushion thread catchers in there- price reduced for quick sale) and I've expanded my line of stitch markers.



To help get my long term goals going (and to tie into my ramblings at the beginning of this post), I'm offering a coupon- from now until September 4th, 10% off every order of at least $10. Coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL2017


Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Photobomb

I've talked before about my kitty, Molly. She's a very sweet tuxedo that usually looks like she's pleading.

Or, due to the white patch on her upper lip, sneering. Usually pleading.

Normally, she doesn't care all that much about yarn, or fabric.

That being said...

Today, I was updating photos for two of my etsy listings- a dropstitch scarf and a half circular shawl and then she decides to care.


Although, not that she'll show her face. In the year and a half that I've had her in my life, she's very rarely allowed her face to be photographed.

Ever.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Orange and Blue (revealed)

I recently got the quilt back from the quilters! Wednesday afternoon, I got the call that it was ready and I went and picked it up. And it was GORGEOUS.


So today, under the watchful supervision of Molly (above), I attached the binding. 



Even though handsewing, in my opinion, looks better, it comes out all sucky when I try. So machine sewing it is. 



(Doesn't that quilting look fabulous? I'm really happy with it.)




Saturday, February 6, 2016

Sneak Peak (also known as, Orange and Blue)

Orange and blue are not colors I would have instinctively put together. In fact, the (perceived) contrast) was why I bought the fabric- I planned on doing a specific quilt, and I thought the contrast would have looked REALLY good. (and, let's admit it, different than my usual color schemes.) But when I went to print and start the planned quilt, the pattern had disappeared.

DRAT!

I had to come up with something else to do with all this fabric. Which didn't work with ANYTHING else in my fabric stash (except, of course, the black and gray I bought for the original quilt.) But I had decided I didn't like the gray with the orange and blue.

But then I saw this other quilt.

To be honest, I'd seen pictures floating around Pinterest before. It was interesting, using half square triangles (which was a new concept/technique for me), and maybe a Someday quilt, but I was seeing it in a different light.

I was seeing it in Orange and blue.











Keep tuned for the reveal, folks. Planned for this coming Wednesday, February 10th.







Friday, January 22, 2016

SSSSTTREEEEETCCHHHHH


My kitty, Molly. Who is an absolute sweetheart.

Don't you want to just rub that belly?