Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Organized Chaos - My Workspace!

I have sumbitted this post to my Etsy blog group - however, I would like to share it with my visitors as well :0)

I like to call my workspace "Organized Chaos" - however, I know exactly where everything is. It becomes a bit disorganised because my workspace is separate from my storage - and on two different levels. I store in my computer room and then work at the end of the dinning room table. The family doesn't like it much because a project could take weeks and the table is consumed with my stuff.

I create sea glass and sea pottery shard jewelry, art and home decor. The first picture is that of some insulator cover I believe. It looks black... but when you hold it up to the light it is a deep and vibrant purple! I scour the beaches all year to collect and have bins full of my bounty. I separate the glass by color and place them in their own bins. Generally common colors like emerald green, white and dark brown are tossed in together. I have all my display items for shows in another bin - mail and marketing items in yet another bin... and lastly, my sterling components are in separate containers from other beads. Everything has a place... even though it may not look pretty at times. I work on a board my husband covered for me with this foam material. This board is really simple, yet is extremely useful... and yes, handmade! I have a dremel and diamond drill bits I use when drilling my glass and pottery - always keeping my surface wet... and wearing a mask and protective goggles.

It took me along time to perfect my methods when starting out. I didn't know how to drill through glass or what to use. There weren't a lot of people doing what I was doing then. However, through trial, error and a lot of research - I have found my grove and what works best for me!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sea Glass Tank Tops Are Here!

I have just completed my first and original sea glass tank top now available for sale on Etsy! There are more in production in different colors, sizes, styles and various shades of glass. These are a perfect addition to any wardrobe - dress it up or down, wear it alone or under a jacket or linen shirt - you will be sure to impress!


Product care instructions: Hand wash, lay flat to dry and warm iron if needed.
I recently had someone reivew my blog and comment that they couldn't understand why am I promoting a tank top and what relevance does it have to sea glass.
Let me clarify - these are the first ever sea glass tank tops - meaning they are adorned with sea glass (the tank top themselves... on the strap or where ever else I dream up) I have collected - they are like jewelry, wearable art.

"Summer In Sepia" Etsy Treasury In the Buried Treasury Blog


Check out my "Summer in Sepia" treasury in Timothy Adam Designs new blog Buried Treasury and feel free to drop comments!

I love the warm vintage feel of these items.... I am so glad summer is around the corner!

Check out his blog and the stores featured or click the links below!

http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=9025812
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=9419052
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=11306245
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=7268108
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=11168130
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=9107175
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=8385623
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=11190136

Sunday, April 27, 2008

How To Make Your Blog Header Background Transparent

When I did my blog redesign and imported a new template, I wanted to give it my own personal touch. I loved my new template design but loathed the big yellow header box. I knew there was a way to maniuplate the HTML in order to make the background transparent to show the image I had added to my blog body background. Thanks to Vin of Beta Blogger for Dummies and the Blogger support group I was able to find the direction I needed. By no means am I advanced at HTML - so here it is in layman's terms!

**It is alway best to dowload a copy of your full template to your computer before making changes to the HTML**

Also, you can select "Preview" to view edits as you make them before "Saving".

Navigate to the following area when editing your blog --> Layout Tab ---> Edit HTML Sub Tab

How to add a new image to your blog body background:
1. Decide on an image you would like to use
2. Add the following code before your: body {
** For what ever reason I am unaware - I had to import this code as an image for you to see as it was not showing up when I typed it in here...


3. Add the following code or change the code to your selected image here: (You will be changing the whole url string in background: to source your own image you are going to use.)

body {
background:#fff url("http://1.bp.blogspot.com/YOUR IMAGE GOES IN THIS SECTION.jpg") no-repeat $endSide bottom;
background-attachment:fixed;
margin:0;
padding:0;
color:$textcolor;
font:x-small Georgia Serif;
font-size/* */:/**/small; font-size: /**/small;
text-align: center;
}

Now that you have done that it is time to make the back ground header transparent so that you can see your blog body image through it.

4. Find the /* Header section in the HTML of your blog

5. Find the header-wrapper section and add the following code for "Opacity". The opacity, filter and -moz-opacity lines must match. So, if you change the opacity to .950 - then you have to change the filter to opacity=95 and the -moz-opacity to .950. I found that .850 gives the blog a great transparency without loosing the ability to read the text.

#header-wrapper {
background-color: #FFFFFF;
opacity:.850;
filter: alpha(opacity=85);
-moz-opacity: 0.850;
width:925px;
margin:15auto 10px;
}

6. Now you need to add the opacity to your outer-wrapper as well. Let's find the section under the outer-wrapper called main-wrapper and make the following additions to the code.

#main-wrapper {
background-color: #FFFFFF;
opacity:.850;
filter: alpha(opacity=85);
-moz-opacity: 0.850;
width: 450px;
float: left;
padding: 0;
margin-right: 10px;
word-wrap: break-word; /* fix for long text breaking sidebar float in IE */
overflow: hidden; /* fix for long non-text content breaking IE sidebar float */
}

7. You must also change your side bar wrappers adding the opacity code as follows. Find the section sidebar-wrapper and add the code.

#sidebar-wrapper {
opacity:.850;
filter: alpha(opacity=85);
-moz-opacity: 0.850;
width: 220px;
float: right;
background: $sidebar2bgcolor;
word-wrap: break-word; /* fix for long text breaking sidebar float in IE */
overflow: hidden; /* fix for long non-text content breaking IE sidebar float */
}

8. Depending on your blog layout - you may have multiple sidebars - in that case you need to edit each one and add the opacity code as follows in this example:

#right-sidebar-wrapper {
background-color: #FFFFFF;
opacity:.850;
filter: alpha(opacity=85);
-moz-opacity: 0.850;
width: 220px;
float: right;
padding: 0px;
background: $sidebar1bgcolor;
margin-right: 15px;
word-wrap: break-word; /* fix for long text breaking sidebar float in IE */
overflow: hidden; /* fix for long non-text content breaking IE sidebar float */
}

Hopefully this has helped anyone that was getting a bit stuck on how to make these changes. Feel free to email me with any questions or if you need additional help - I will help if I can! I will be adding more tips in the future, so keep checking back!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Etsy Product Review #1 - Logo Design by Curious Ink

I have decided to do product reviews of items and/or services I have purchased on Etsy. I find it helpful for customers to know quality and the total ins and outs of customer service when purchasing an item and/or service.

The first product review will be Curious Ink. I put in an Alchemy request on March 14 , 2008 for a professional logo design. I had decided to change my branding image and get everything professionally done to have a more unified and streamlined look to my shop and blog. So first things first - I wanted a logo - one that represented me and what I do. I also needed a logo for advertising purposes and to be of high quality and resolution to be reproduced into print work as well. I received 16 bids on my Alchemy request. I carefully went through each bid - inspected the work of each bidder and made my choice - Curious Ink. That same day, Amy (from Curious Ink) accepted my request and contacted me. We were off! I had originally but my bid at $15 - basically just ball parking. Her bid came in at $30 - however, you totally get what you pay for. I was impressed with her work from the start - her attention to detail was astounding - she has insane talent! She was on the ball and I was a part of every step in the process. I felt like I was the decision maker in how my business "image" was going to be developed.



In my Alchemy request I stated: "I need a logo designed for my shop that I can use for advertising purposes.. print and Internet. Must match the mood of my store - be timeless and fresh." and with Amy that is exactly what I got.

From initial acceptance of the Alchemy bid, to delivery of images the process took 13 days... every bit worth the wait. I didn't have a time stamp on when I needed this done - so I am sure if time were an issue she would make every effort to meet specific deadlines. Check out the process via the pics. I highly recommend Curious Ink for all your graphic needs!

Check out her work at two different sites below and click here to email Amy regarding custom graphic needs for your business or self:
http://www.ifreelance.com/pro/35489
http://www.jonahstudios.com

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Sad Farwell To American Idol Carly Smithson - WHAT! Can America Not Hear?


Again - I get sucked into watching this mindless show - only to be let down. I mean Carly Smithson - she - is the best female signer of this season! I seriously can't believe Jason Castro is still squeaking by... mainly because of all the young girls voting for him - ack... Brooke - very nice and classy girl - but sorry folks - no where NEAR the talent of Carly - and so sick and tired of Syesha's ego... I seriously don't think the stage is big enough for it... again good singer but sorry not NEAR the talent of Carly... I will also address that it's not the first time Brooke and David Archuleta messed up (or forgot) their lyrics! OK - enough of this random rant - I really am just sick of these "talent shows" not being about the "talent" - but about how popular the person has become to the viewers.


It should have been Carly and David Cook in the end... Well - at least when the ones that ARE the "stars" are let go early - they are the ones that make it big... unlike... Ruben... Taylor Hicks... who? who? Not that they don't have talent - but let's see - last time I checked it was Chris Daughtry that has sold millions of albums.... I have said enough...
I will be tuned in next week only to reel in disappointment again.
I would love people to share their opinions - however, in sharing let's keep it kind and clean for everyone!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Critiques and Reviews Has "Critiqued and Reviewed" Sea Glass Things

I was lucky enough for Tim, from Timothy Adam Designs and owner of the blog Critiques and Reviews, to be picked for the April 22nd Etsy shop/blog review.

Tim also used me as his first video review - which was very exciting to see. I thought the video brought so much more to the table as you see and hear him as he navigates my Etsy store and this blog.

Tim has dedicated this particular blog of his to helping his fellow Estians promote, polish and drive traffic to their Etsy stores and blogs.

He was so quick to get my sites reviewed and he sent me a convo with all the information as well as a link to where I can view the review. Come check it out here to leave comments.

You are bound to find a lot of useful information and may be able to extrapolate pieces fitting to your needs.... after all... there is ALWAYS room for improvement!

Please leave comments here as well - ideas, opinions... all I welcome!

If you haven't done so already - contact Tim to get on his blog roll, sign up for his newsletter and start to particapte in the FREE information sharing that is taking place on his blog - Critiques and Reviews.
I also want to thank Cassandra of Cassandra Russell
Design for posting
something about the critique on her blog and making a new avatar for me - I am trying it out now!
Check out her blog!
So tell me... am I "click" worthy???




Monday, April 21, 2008

Incorporate Sea Glass into Your Wedding: Funky Gifts and More!

It's wedding season - so why not give a gift that is beautiful AND different - sea glass house wares! I have more coming soon to my Etsy store - but here is what is listed so far. As always - custom orders are welcome.







What about gifts for the bridal party....






How about something for the bride to wear as she goes down the isle....

Or... something to write the "Thank You" notes with....
Whatever you are looking for that is sea glass inspired you will be sure to find it at Sea Glass Things... and if by chance not - we do custom orders. Happy planning!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Sea Glass Things Feature Sponsor on Tha Hotness

Check out my sponsor feature today on
Tha Hotness and look for my ad on Tha Hotness blog!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Mother's Day is Approaching - Check Out My Sea Glass ID/MOM Bracelet Now For Sale!

I had sold out of these this past Christmas - so I decided to make another for this Mother's Day that is just around the corner... what a perfect gift!


The sea glass used ranges from colors of greens, seafoam, aqua and white - beautiful frosty pieces. The sterling beads, sterling stardust beads and alphabet beads with the sea glass have been strung on 49 strand wire. It comes with an adjustable link that can fit wrist sizes from 7 inches to 9 inches and ends are finished as well. There is a white swavorski drop that finishes the sterling chain end with a heavy duty oval lobster clasp on the other end! The bracelet is adjustable to fit wrists 7-9 inches.

Friday, April 11, 2008

April 11th Contest Give Away: A Pair of Caramel Sea Glass Hoops!

WE HAVE A WINNER!!! Kind Clay aka Jenny won the sea glass earring giveaway!! Every player was assigned a number and using a random number generator she was picked - CONGRATS!! Stay tuned for more contests in the upcoming months.


Since it is my birthday tomorrow - I have decided to do a contest! This April 11th Give Away is for a pair of caramel sea glass hoop earrings that measure 3/4 of an inch in diameter (RV $20) and will be a perfect addition to any wardrobe!

Contest Rules:

1.) Add a comment to this post
2.) Sign up for my newsletter (that will be starting in near future) in the left column

A name will be selected at random next Friday - April 18th. You will be contacted via the email you used when signing up for the newsletter - the earrings will be shipped first class mail. Gook luck to everyone and thanks for playing :)













Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Beachcombing Bliss - The Shore is Reborn With Every Change of Season

Ahhhhh.... a cold and seemingly endless winter has come to an end. Spring has sprung - you can smell life in the air. People start to move, colors and sounds change... the days become longer - there is a rebirth. Summer is around the bend and even the waves on the shore change to bring forth the turning of seasons.

I haven't stepped on the beach to collect all winter. My hibernation got the best of me. I have recently returned to the peace the ocean brings - it is my therapy... my connection... and in doing so have cultivated a plentiful bounty... coveted... admired... and the first of many.


*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

These pictures are the first bounty of the season. We went out for the first time last Sunday - which is rare for me seeing as I cultivate all year - however, couldn't muster up the gusto this winter.


New Collection Listed on Etsy: "The Shores of Essex" Collection

I have just added a piece of my newest collection "The Shores of Essex" Collection to my Etsy store. This is a beautiful necklace with brown/bronze freshwater pearls, chocolate and aqua sea glass, bronze swavorski crystals, sterling findings, bali spacers and sterling silver .999 Karen Hill Tribe starfish that I purchased directly from the Hill Tribe in Thailand. I always try to cut out the "middle man" when purchasing my Hill Tribe - so 100% of the profit is returned to the community. I most likely will be making a bracelet and earrings to match as well.













Check out the collection at http://seaglassthings.etsy.com

Monday, April 07, 2008

Etsy Featured Artist - Week of April 7th: Snitter Dog

Oh boy... looks like I will be posting featured artists randomly now - seems like I just can't make it to the computer to post as much as I would like. Last week was crazy busy so I didn't get anyone posted. So - here it is April... and the April 7 - April 11 featured Etsy artist is Kerry from Snitter Dog. Read her story, check out her store and leave comments!

Snitter Dog by Kerry: http://snitterdog.etsy.com/

If you are looking for some fun and funky artwork to spruce up your bare walls... look no further! Kerry, of Snitter Dog, may have just what you need... color, passion, talent... and artwork that tells a story. Whether you are in the mood for cute, mod, or something slightly bizarre... she has it. Kerry's bold colors, and attention to detail sets her apart - and she has something for everyone. Since being on Etsy only five months - she has already built a client base and continues to thrive. Oh - and if she wasn't talented enough already - she also creates jewelry and paper goods that she sells in her two OTHER Etsy stores: http://thegreenefairy.etsy.com/
and http://pookietown.etsy.com/ - Check out her amazing talent in her store and find out more about her below!















Question & Answer with Snitter Dog!

Q: Tell me a little about yourself… your background and how long you have been involved in your art/craft/hobby…
A: I am originally from southern WI, and have been doing art since I was a very small child...When I was a kid I was always doing something creative-- drawing, painting, making friendship bracelets...I wound up at UW Madison at age 18, where I studied fine art. I received my bachelor's degree in 2001....It was here in college where I started using watercolor a lot-- It's the medium I use most frequently now.

Q: Where do you get your inspiration?
A: I get my inspiration from a variety of sources...While in college, I was very interested in dream imagery and personal symbolism...I use this occasionally still--if something is on my mind, I will try to create a piece of art based on what I am feeling...Also, I often just see something in the world-- and it inspires me-- like certain color schemes, textures, and it makes me want to create!


Q: What mediums are involved in your work?
A: I currently use a lot of mediums-- I have trouble sticking to just one!...I probably use watercolor and gouache most often...I also am very fond of a fine point bic pen, colored pencils, and embroidery thread....


Q: What would set you apart from your competition?
A: I think what sets me apart from the competition, is that I am reluctant to throw just anything out there...I spend A LOT of time on most pieces....I like to make sure that if I am trying to sell it, that it is worth the price I put on it...often more....


Q: What piece are you most proud of?

A: I am probably most proud of my painting, The Conception of Dorothy Gale-- it is a watercolor/mixed media piece...I worked on it on and off for a couple of years, and it's fairy large scale in comparison to the sizes I usually work in...I think it turned out pretty well :)

Q: How do you market your products in and out of Etsy?
A: I try to market my products in a variety of ways-- I am a member of Indie Public, Flickr, Marmalade Pink, I blog, and I also participate on the Etsy Forums....there's probably more ways I market...these are the first ones that pop into my head! :)

Q: If I were to ask you – “Where do you see yourself in five years.” – What would you say?
A: In five years, I will probably still be a poor artist!...Although I hope I won't be :)

Q: Lastly, tell me something I should know about you – funny, quirky, profound etc. anything you would share with the Etsy community?
A: ...something to know about me-- my Dad was my high school principal :)...It was actually not that bad-- if I ever forgot my lunch money, I just had to go and hunt him down...and I got to alter my class schedule to get my favorite teachers :)

Thank you to Kerry for taking the time to answer the questions and much continued success in the future!

Stayed tuned for more great artists to be featured in the up coming weeks!!

Feel free to drop me a line of someone you would like to see featured as well - just email me!

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