Monday, November 28, 2011

Broke Out My SEXY Slippers

It's getting pretty chilly here today.  (Northerners, don't groan at me)  We started off near 80 and at 2:46pm we've dropped down to 64.  The temps are supposed to get colder yet.  It's dark and gray out there and it's raining too.

I'm actually thrilled about the whole thing.  It's been in the 80s for weeks and humid.  Anyway, I broke out the sweatshirt and my SEXY boot slippers that I bought at Ikea this weekend.

They are down filled and very comfortable and warm.  Not very sexy though.... lol

Since it's so gloomy around here today I figured I might as well get started on some new items for the Blu Mudd line today.  I've already sketched out my ideas and have a pretty good idea what designs I want to do.

Now I have to make a slump mold, which is where this little bowl is going to come in handy...

I also have a stamp or two that I want to carve.  We've gotten a lot of requests for sea turtles lately so....

sea turtles it is!

In the meantime, I put 4 custom pieces in the test kiln to fire.  They should be ready to ship out tomorrow, provided all goes well with this glaze firing.  You just never know what's going to happen in there.

As far as the show we did this weekend, it was a colossal waste of our time.  We did manage to make our entry fee back and a little profit too but no where near enough to make it worth it.  A friend of mine suggested more than once that I do a Buckler's Show so I told my husband and he was on the phone trying to get a spot at the show they were hosting this weekend.  We got in but man do we wish we hadn't of.  It was a really small show and we had to drive 40 minutes to get there each day so the cost for the gas in my van was a little high.  Once you took out expenses and such, I could have made more money sitting at home listing junk on eBay.  It was disappointing and we will not be doing any of the Buckler shows in the future.  Live and learn.  It's all part of the learning curve, I'm afraid.  Hopefully the show in New Port Richey will be a better experience.

Okay, so I'm off of this computer and heading on over to my work table.  Don't forget, everything in my Blu Mudd Etsy Shop is 20% off today for Cyber Monday.  Just enter CYBER20 at checkout to receive your discount.  Have a great week everyone!


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Discount?? Did someone say Discount??


It's time for Blu Mudd's Cyber Monday Sale.  Purchase any items in our Blu Mudd Etsy Store on Monday, November 28th and receive 20% off!  Just enter the coupon code CYBER20 when checking out.

I hope everyone had a great holiday (US peeps) and that you didn't stuff yourselves too much on turkey and all of the fixings.


Saturday, November 26, 2011

Front Page! Yeah baby!

We had a very long day at the craft show today but man was I happy to get home and see that I had several Etsy sales and that one of my pendants had made the front page of Etsy today!!  Woot woot!  Pardon me while I dance around and act a fool.  :)  That was awesome.  I only wish I had been here to see it myself.  Here's the treasury:

I'll talk about the show more tomorrow or Monday as it's a two day show and not over yet.  :)  Stay tuned!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

WOYWW #129

Hello!  I signed up to participate each week in WOYWW.  Every Wednesday I'll give you a little peek into my studio to see what's going on around here.  If you'd like to participate too you can click on the badge over there on the right side bar to find out all about it.

So, what's on my worktable this Wednesday?  Stamp carving mess, that's what!  I have been commissioned to create 2 custom pendants for a lady in Ohio.  She's giving them as gifts for Christmas.  I drew out the design (mirrored image) on a cheapo pink eraser and then carved it using a stamp carving tool and some wood carving tools.

It came out right on the first try.  I love it when that happens!

Now I'm off to clean up some bone dry pendants waiting for me in the food dehydrator.  For those who celebrate, have a HAPPY TURKEY DAY!

I thought I'd share pics of the rest of my studio real quick before I run...


Ceramic Bracelets Are Sturdier Than You'd Think

I have been wanting to make a ceramic bracelet for myself for a few months now but never got around to it..... until the other day that is.

I made about 12 or so of them as a test run, remember this photo?

When they were dry I cleaned up the edges and went about glazing and firing them.  When I took them out of the kiln I was pretty pleased with how they turned out and quickly started putting the one I made for myself together to wear.

My husband came into the studio and sat down for a chat.  I showed him the bracelets and he said, "Won't they break easy?  Like if you hit them on a desk or table or something?"  I didn't have an answer and then panicked thinking Oh My Gosh, what if they break??

So, I decided I'd be the guinea pig and test mine out before making the others available for sale.  After 3 days of wearing it at all times (except in the shower), I am happy to report that not only has it not broken but it hasn't even chipped.  No scratch, no crack, no nothing.  Whoo hoo!

For the trial I did everything I would normally do.  I cleaned the house, I cooked.  I worked in the studio.  Etc, etc.  So, I'm really confident that they'll hold up really well and will be releasing them to my Etsy store next week.  I'm not saying they won't break, say if you drop it on a tile or concrete floor or if you do a face plant and use your arm to save your face or something.  BUT, normal day-to-day activities shouldn't break it. I have banged it a few times on my desk and it's still in one piece.  Anyway, I'm thrilled to have my new bracelet and am working on my link making skills before I release finished ones.  It's almost there.... just have to tighten up these wraps.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Colors Make Me Happy

Here is a sampling of some of the newer pendants that I didn't get to share before the show.  I'm really liking how all of these turned out.  The hearts really make me happy.  By the way, the hearts are Blu Mudd Exclusives!  That's right!  Designed by little ol' me.  :)

Okay, so here goes the pendant parade....

I absolutely love these hearts!!!!

This one is a Blu Mudd Exclusive too!  I love, love, love it!

I love how the turquoise peeks through the blue on this one.  Gorgeous!

I just love the colors of all of these pendants.  Funny how something so little can make you so happy!  All of these pendants will be added to the Blu Mudd Etsy Shop later tonight.

I have taken a bit of a break from making pendants but I started a little somethin' somethin' new last night.  I wanted to make a bracelet for myself and decided to make a few different ones so I could add them to the shop too.  See the high tech equipment involved????

I have more to share but I'm going to close this post here since it's so picture heavy already.  More later!


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Our First Art and Craft Show

Hellllllllllo everyone!

I am extremely sleep deprived and exhausted but I'm going to attempt to create a logical post in spite of it.  :)

We attended our very first art and craft show today.  I was so wired yesterday trying to get a million last minute things done and trying to make sure that I didn't forget anything that I didn't get to bed until 12:30pm and couldn't fall asleep until sometime around 3am. I hate that.  Then I was back up again just 2 hours later to shower and hit the road for our 6am set up time.  0_0.

We got there and set up.  We fumbled with the tent for a few minutes but then remembered how it went up.  The set up was pretty painless and took us about 2 hours because we had to add eye hooks to the top of the displays and make last minute adjustments.

The show started at 9am and within 15 minutes of the show open, we had our first sale... WHOO HOO!!

We got a lot of awesome feedback about the pendants, some even going on and on about them which just made my heart sing!  All of our customers were awesome & I enjoyed talking to everyone too.

There was a DJ right behind us playing Christmas music that we would chat a bit with here and there.  He and his wife were really cool people and they must have felt the same about us because he frequently went over the speakers telling everyone to visit our tent and his wife also purchased a pendant from us.  As a thank you for all of the free publicity he gave us, we gave him a free pendant with an upgraded suede necklace.  It was the least we could do for such an awesome guy.  :)

How I managed to look alive today I'll never know.  Right now it's very hard to focus and my body is begging me to go to sleep.  I'm trying to push through until at least 9pm before going to sleep though so I'm not up again at 3 am.  I saw this picture that my husband took of me and my youngest daughter and I said, "WHOA!  That doesn't even look like me!"  I can really see how haggard I really was/am.  I wonder if our customers thought I was a zombie... lol

We did pretty well today and I'm now over the nervousness about doing shows.  I also made note of things I want to do differently next time (like get more than 2 hours of sleep).  Now that this show is over and I have enough pendants to keep on stock, I can focus a bit on creating some gifts for Christmas for family members that I have floating around in my head and I want to make a lot more sculpted pendants too.  BUT FIRST, I'm taking a day or so off and doing nothing but kicking my feet up and taking a breather.  I think I've earned it after making and packaging 1300 pendants!  :)

Okay, I'm getting delirious, better get off of here and slip into something more comfortable (sweats and a t-shirt - sexy huh?).

Goodnight peeps!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Feeling the Pressure

My studio looks like a bomb went off in here.

We're 6 days away from the show and I still have a lot going on to get ready still.  I'm getting really nervous about the whole thing but I'm not going to beat myself up about anything too much.

I'm still glazing pendants...

I'm still trying to fill all of the displays...

There are glazes and underglazes EVERYWHERE!

Pendants still waiting to be bisque fired...

There are earring sets waiting for packaging, Suede necklaces waiting to be packaged, unread mail, books and misc stuff all over my computer desk...

It's a bit of controlled chaos, really.

I do have faith that I will have enough product for the show and that everything will run smoothly.  I just keep plugging away at it, every day and when Sunday gets here, whatever I have done will be enough.

That doesn't mean that I'm not feeling pressured or that I'm not nervous, because I certainly am.  But, just like with everything else in my life, I just believe it will all be okay.  :)

I did take some time to go to the book store with my teenage son the other day.  He was so sweet.  He said, "Mom, when we're done we're getting some Starbucks, my treat."  Love that kid!  So I ordered a Pumpkin Spice Latte and enjoyed every single sip of it.  Yummmm!  While he was buying the book he needed for his Language Arts class, I was looking through jewelry books.  I wanted to find a book that would teach me how to do all of the closures and links because I have a ton of wire and want to play with making bracelets and such with ceramic beads and charms that I make myself.  I was just about to give up when I came across this book, " Easy & Elegant Beaded Copper Jewelry; How to create beautiful fashion accessories from a few basic steps" by Lora S. Irish.  It's packed with tons of different closures and links and how to make them.  SOLD!  I brought it home and have been flipping through it here and there when I take a break from show preparation.  I can't wait to play around with some designs but that will have to wait until after the show.

Then, as if I don't have enough on my plate already, my son brings home a kitten today!  We already have four cats and DO NOT want/need another one.  He said it came running up to him at the neighborhood park when he was walking home from school today.  I explained that there was no way we were keeping it and I took the kitten and my son and drove back over by the park.  I sent Jesse door to door to see if we could find the owner.  No one claimed the kitten.  :(  So, I have put a found ad on Craig's List and will be keeping my eye open for lost signs to go up.  I really hope we find his owner but I'm only going to give it a week.  Come next Monday, if no owner has been found, I will put him up for adoption.  He's so cute and so friendly that I'm sure he'll get snatched up quick.  Poor little guy.  In the meantime, he'll be calling our lanai home.  We're keeping him separated from our cats in case he's sick or has fleas and also so he doesn't mate with our only intact female.  0_0.

He is cute though, huh?

Anyway, that's the madness going on around here at the moment.  The next time I post will be after the show this weekend.  I'll be sure to take pics and tell you all about it.

Have a great week everyone!