Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Somewhat Sidetracked, but still Crafting

Yesterday was sort of an "off" day for me.  I just didn't feel up to doing much.  I slept horribly the night before and was awaked a couple times during the night by horrible nightmares.  So yesterday morning I put on a movie and got out some yarn to start braiding. 

For ages now I've wanted to play around with making an Arabian native style costume for my Arabian mare, Leah.  If not a full costume, than at least some pretty accents like a halter and breastcollar with tassels and beads and so on.  So yesterday, on my slump day, I watched 3 movies and braided a 33 foot long rope out of purple yarn. 

I've been making yarn rope since I was a kid, many of my early dog leashes were in fact made from yarn I had braided. 

The rope I finished yesterday is a basic triple braid, made from 9 strands of yarn and is just shy of 3/8" wide.  I plan to either continue braiding it to triple the width, or to layer it on another material and sew two or three widths of it alongside each other. 

So I suppose I was sidetracked yesterday, having not completed any tasks for the Studio.  But it felt good to make some progress on a project that I've had in the back of my mind for almost 10 years now!

Monday, March 12, 2012

New Old Project Unearthed

During my all day cleaning and organizing marathon a couple of days ago, I unearthed a new, old project.

Years ago I had bought a bunch of materials to craft stall signs for my horses.  Each would start off with a basic wooden plaque and I'd add a wooden horse cut out (painted to match the horse), along with painted wooden letters spelling out the horse's name, and finally some sort of extra embellishment such as horseshoes, or stars, etc.

Well, all of the wood projects have been packed away and pretty much buried for a while.  I was pretty excited when I opened the tote and began pulling everything out. 

I've now gotten back to work on the project and since I have two horses now, instead of seven, I foresee that they might actually be completed!  (haha)

Here is a quick picture taken this morning of the, in progress, sign for Bo:

I decided to try a bit of dry brushing with some metallic copper acrylic paint to see how that looked. I'm not 100% sold on the look, but I do like it.   It turned out to have a bit of a textured look. I think I'm going to try using a sponge to do the background on another plaque, then compare to see which I like best. 

The little horse I had painted for Bo was in rough shape, so I did some sanding and I'll repaint it, complete with his white markings. 

I still need to paint the edges, attach the horse, name, and decide on some extras..  then go out and hang it on his stall!  I have a plaque for Leah, my other horse, too, but hers hadn't been started at all.  I think I'll go with a copper background on both of them, for continuity.  Leah is a grey horse, pretty much white now, so I'm thinking the black and white should look good on copper. 


In other news, I've been on fire so far today doing some research about various marketing techniques - such as copy writing, SEO, photography, social networking, and so on.  There is so much to learn and it seems things change faster than I can keep up with them.  Though I do find it fun to read about these things and then play around with implementing some of what I've learned.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Cleaning Day

Today is an absolutely gorgeous day.  In fact, I'd say the weather is perfect.  The sun is shining, it's nice and warm, 70 degrees - not too hot, not too cold.  Mercifully there is no wind.  So, what am I up to?  Getting started on cleaning up the Studio room.  It may seem an odd choice of activity on such a beautiful day, but I'm encouraged and excited to get it done.  The beautiful day and sunshine has me charged up and wanting to get stuff organized! 

I've also just now changed the theme on here to a nice green, spring inspired background.  As much as I have been wishing for snow all winter, I may have to accept the possibility that winter is now over...  We still have time to get in a big winter storm, but it feels very spring-like today.  Tomorrow we'll change the clocks forward, giving another hour of daylight and that makes me happy.  Though it's never been diagnosed, I suspect that I have some of the seasonal, or light affected depression.  I have noticed that on gloomy, overcast days, it's all I can do to get motivated and do anything.  However, on a day like today, full of brilliant sunshine, I am usually feeling go, go, go! 

Well, enough rambling, it's time to get back to cleaning!  :D

Friday, March 9, 2012

Just Can't Take it Anymore!

For each of the last two days I've been frustrated by not being able to find something I need supply-wise.  I've had an overwhelming urge to start working on some new items, but I have been thwarted by not being able to find a critical needed element.  First it was my black card stock (still MIA at this writing) and yesterday it was a tool called a carbide scraper (also still missing).  I know both of those things are here, in fact I know I've come across them recently, but alas - now I can't find them.

I was on a roll with organization in my Studio room quite a while ago.  Everything had its place and I was actually working at my desk down there.  Now that room is a mess, the desk is covered with stuff, and I've taken to working on my projects either here at my computer desk, or in the living room.  Hence there now being THREE places in the house where I have supplies and projects stashed.

I finally announced to my husband last night that I need to gather up EVERYTHING and return it to the Studio room and re-organize it all so I can find things when the urge to create grabs hold of me.

Now all I have to do is do it...




Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Website - Getting Serious

Ok, so I've had my website up and running for...  a couple of years now...  with not much on it.  Well, over the last few days I've been chipping away at finally populating the Gallery pages I'd set up with pictures!

Here's what's up so far!:

I'm pretty happy with the progress so far.  I have to add several more dreamcatcher pictures and then get started on the greeting cards and bookmarks.  The biggest project today was the 4 hours or so spent on the cross gallery.  I think it was time well spent.  Now I FINALLY have a place where people can go to see every color I've made.  I have a few newer colors that I haven't photographed yet, but this was a huge step! 

Friday, March 2, 2012

New Books, Inspiration, WhooHoo!!

Yesterday my wonderful husband and I were in town to run some errands, namely for me to go to the dentist and get a couple of fillings.  (ouch)  Afterwards we ran some errands, including stopping by our local bookstore.  We browsed books for a little while and I found a book on wild horses that I liked, then a book on card making and scrapbooking.  Well, he bought both of them for me!  What a guy! 

-- Wild Horses of the World is chock full of beautiful photos of many types of wild horse and pony, including several that I, with a lifetime horse obsession, hadn't heard of.  The wheels have already been spinning with inspiration of custom horses I could create using this book as a starting point.

-- The Complete Practical Book of Making Gift Cards and Scrapbooking is a small, thick (512 pages!) reference for paper crafts.  Each section in it is lead by several tutorials, showing many different types of techniques.  The tutorials are followed by many, many projects with material lists and step by step instructions.  The book is LOADED with high quality color pictures, which is awesome for me, since I am a visual learner.  I'm already overloaded with ideas after just flipping through the book a few times and stopping on random pages. 

As an added bonus, I discovered a statement in the very back that says the publishing company plants and manages forests that contain 3.5 times the amount of trees used in printing their books.  That is very cool. 

I haven't had much luck yet in selling paper crafts, but to be fair I haven't given them a fair shake in my advertising either.  I've so far only really listed a few paper items for sale.  I need to put the hammer down in getting all of them photographed and listed for sale.  That, in combination with the rush of new pieces that I'm sure this book will spawn, should see me getting some of my paper goods out in the world I'm hoping!

Time to get to work!!