Taking Stock 05

This week has been a looooong week! It's the last full work week of the year. There are so many things I need to get and get done before Christmas! I'm so thankful we're not having Christmas at our house--man, I don't want the stress of trying to clean my house on top of everything else!

Taking Stock- weathered flowers

Making: plans for my shop for 2016
Cooking: chicken and dumpling soup.
Drinking: Panera coffee. Not my favorite, but it gets the job done.
Reading: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. So many people were loving this book, so I got it, but I'm not really a fan...
Wanting: to learn how to paint with watercolors
Looking: forward to the weekend.
Playing: Dj Spooky
Deciding: what cookies to make for our Christmas cookie exchange (important decisions over here)
Wishing: I was on vacation.
Enjoying: napping on the couch when I get home from work.
Waiting: for the last of my Christmas gifts to arrive.
Liking: having an unseasonably mild December!
Wondering:  how to create a clone of my self and have it sit at work.
Loving: the handmade soaps I bought from Pigeon River Soaps.
Considering: buying this class.
Buying: nothing that isn't grocery related. I need to go on a spending freeze until January!
Watching: Leftovers. It's been two seasons and I'm still not sure if I like this show...
Hoping: to sleep in tomorrow
Needing: a haircut.
Smelling: coffee
Wearing: the usual work attire: sweater, jeans, scarf, mittens.
Following: seanwes. Really really helpful/inspirational podcasts about entreprenuership.
Noticing: that i clench my teeth when I drive to work.
Knowing: not enough.
Thinking: about plans/projects for 2016.
Admiring: friends who decide they have had enough and leave their soul sucking jobs.
Sorting: though scraps of paper with my notes.
Getting: a little excited to see the star wars movie this weekend.
Bookmarking: 7 nifty online tools that will change the way you blog
Coveting: free time.
Disliking: my hour (and sometimes longer) commute to and from work.
Opening: Christmas card in the mail! Yay!
Feeling: a little envious of (and really happy for!) friends who decide they have had enough and leave their soul sucking jobs!
Snacking: too much!
Helping: my mom with her etsy shop. I'm re-editing her product titles and tags.
Hearing: a lot of chatter in the office.



I hope you had a good week. Do you do a "taking stock" sort of post too? I'd love if you posted a link in the comments section below!


Related posts:

Top 10 posts of the year. So far.

Pincushion kit

pincushion kit, via Fix Design

Since I didn't have a chance to put together any blog posts this week due to my slight automobile mishap, and I wanted to leave you something fun, so I collected my most popular posts in the past 4.5 months.

Please check out the valuable resources in my Crafty Connections posts-- I think you'll find a ton of valuable resources to help with marketing your handmade art and craft products. If you happen to read anything that is particularly helpful, drop me a line and let me know!!! Also, if you're looking for help in particular topics, let me know and I'll do my best to find helpful resources for you. If you have a question or need help in a certain area, know that there are others that have the very same questions so please ask!!

Also included in this list is a fabulous round of of Granny Square tutorials and carefully curated collections of wonderful etsy items I found while doing (ahem!) research. Don't miss these! There are A LOT of great handmade products to check out (Easter and Mother's Day are just around the corner...)


Did you happen to enjoy any of these posts? Please be sure to share them on Twitter or Facebook!! Share the love!!!

Have a wonderful day!



Featured Handmade Artist- OhMafelt

Hello! Hello!!! Are you ready for some cuteness? Great! I can't wait to introduce you to Sorcha, from OhMaFelt. Sorcha makes the cutest stuffed creations with custom dyed wool felt, and lots of love and imagination.

Featured Handmade Artist- OhMaFeltno rain, no rainbows by OhMa Felt

Featured Handmade Artist-OhMaFeltSee! I told you they were super cute!!! I'm totally loving the little party deer...

Hi Sorcha! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Hello! OhMa Felt is a small family run business operated from our home on the Central Coast of California. We purchase wool felt from a mill on the Eastern Coast, it comes to us an off white color and thin like most store bought felts. We cut it, dye it, re-felt it, and press it. Each sheet is handled about 12 different times till completely processed. The result is a studier fabric in a custom color palette which is designed to fit our products. I am a potter by trade, but found it difficult getting into the studio when my daughter was very young. Sewing and making dolls has been something that I have done all of my life, and became more of a focus during those early years of her childhood.

What is the first craft project you remember making?

I could not begin to recall the first craft project because making things has always been part of my life.

Where does your inspiration come from?

Everything, my child, my Grandmother. The interest in living a creative, art filled life.

Can you please describe some of your creative process?

I love routine so the normal route is to wake up early, make tea, check the computer, print orders and answer correspondence. Feed all the animals, and get the child off to school, a long walk with the dog, putz in the garden, then into the sewing room or the pottery shed. I like to work till school is over. The rest of the day is spent on family and household. I must always have something in my hands to work on, and have been know to bring sewing to parties.

What is your most prized handmade possession?

Just one?! A handmade Valentine from my husband given to me on our first Valentines Day, 27 years ago. My daughter's drawings, I know, but they are really quite superb. A quilt from my Grandmother.

If you could give one piece of advice to a new etsy seller, what would it be?

Read all of the How To information, that is an incredible resource. Take great photos.

What are some of the ways you promote your work?

We do a few shows a year, and will add more this year. I like to have fabulous postcards and stickers available, and hand out tons. Stores and publications have found us on Etsy. Word of mouth has worked wonderfully, that includes all of the fantastic treasuries on Etsy, thanks to all the curators!

What are three websites you couldn’t live without.

Etsy, Pandora, OhMa Felt(a shameless promotion, I know, but its my job!)

Where do you see yourself in ten years?

Well, at 57 I would like to be surrounded by good books, good friends and family, and an amazing garden. Like now. And orders for plushies, because I do not plan to retire, ever.

If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?

The power to disperse balance, calmness and tolerance. Liberally.

Thank you so much Sorcha!!! It was a pleasure interviewing you and getting to check out your wonderful whimsical creations!!! http://www.etsy.com/shop/OhMafelt

If you would like to be featured on my blog in a Featured Artist series, or you would like to recommend an artist to me, please leave a comment or send me an email at aprilbern at gmail dot com. A few lovely folks contacted me last week and I'm in the process of scheduling them in! (so contact me! it makes my job a little easier ;) )

Thanks so much!!!

Featured Handmade Artist- SweetStitchShop

Hello! I'm super excited to introduce you to Sue from SweetStitchShop! Sue is relatively new to etsy, having only started her shop in January of this year, but you'd never know it by looking at her shop!

Featured Handmade Artist- SweetStitchShop
I LOVE this little fabric bucket! (I'm imagining having several of them on my shelved storing all my little sewing and scrapbook bits...)

Featured Handmade Artist- SweetStitchShop

Hi Sue! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is Sue Redekop and I live in the capital of Canada- Ottawa, Ontario. I sew and design items for children and the home. I love creating items that are cute to look at but functional at the same time.

What is the first craft project you remember making?

My first craft project takes me back to grade school days where I made a jewelery box out of popsicle sticks and glue. It was "fancied" up a bit with gold spray paint (what can I say - it was the 70's!) I think my mother still has it to this day.

Where does your inspiration come from?

I am inspired by sweet, whimsical fabrics and modern design. I love to stay on top of worldwide design trends and colors by reading blogs and magazines.

Can you please describe some of your creative process?

My creative process usually begins by sourcing fabrics and thinking "that would make such a cute peasant top...fabric bin...etc." or saying to myself " I MUST use this fabric in some project...it's too sweet to pass up!" Fabric is definitely my starting point.

What is your most prized handmade possession?

My most prized handmade possessions are stuffed Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls made by my aunt who is a wonderfulseamstress and a little stitched sampler my mother made for my son.

If you could give one piece of advice to a new etsy seller, what would it be?

Being new to Etsy myself my best advice would be to believe in yourself everyday and just keep doing what you love despite slow or hard times.

What are some of the ways you promote yourself and shop?

I try to promote my work through my blog, twitter, flickr, word of mouth, local craft fairs, and local boutiques.
Shop: www.etsy.com/shop/sweetstitchshop

Blog: www.finehandstudio.blogspot.com/

Twitter: twitter.com/shopsweetstitch

Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/35966835@N02/

Local Shops: Flock Boutique - www.flockboutique.ca/

Workshop Boutique - www.workshopboutique.ca/

Boutique Le Local - www.boutiquelelocal.com/

What are three website that you cannot live without?

The three websites I couldn't live without are:



New York Times online...(I am a newspaper junkie!)

Where do you see yourself in ten years?

In ten years I see myself in a smaller house with a dedicated sewing/music studio space and hopefully growing my brand.

If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?

I would love to have some type of magical superpower that would clean my house, do the dishes and all the mundane things that take time away from the creative process!

Thanks so much Sue! I really enjoyed this interview!!!

Please be sure to stop by Sue's shop and check out all the wonderful homewares and gifts!

If you would like to be featured on my blog in a Featured Artist series, or you would like to recommend an artist to me, please leave a comment or send me an email at aprilbern at gmail dot com.

Thanks so much!!!



Crafty Connections- February 1, 2011

Hello! Welcome to this weeks Crafty Connections! Each and every week I scour the interwebs and gather the best tutorials, tips, and informative links to help with your handmade craft business. In addition, I’ll post links to cool crafty DIY projects, and blogs I think are worth following. I hope you enjoy this weeks links!

If you know of any good handmade craft marketing resources I should include in the next Crafty Connections post please don’t hesitate to email me, or leave the link(s) in the comments section! I would love to be able to share these great resources with everyone! Also, if these links helpful to you please let me know! I appreciate the feedback!!!! Thanks!

Wednesday Inspiration- Blush

Wednesday Inspiration- Squirrels!

Last Day of my Birthday BOGO Sale!!!

Hi! Don't forget that today is the last day of my Birthday BOGO sale!!!

Buy one print (any size!) and get one FREE!!!

creativeapples birthday bogo sale

To order:

Simply pick your print and in the “Message to Seller” let me know what other print you would like for FREE! (same size or smaller)

Looking for more photos to choose from?

Check out my flickr–all photos from my flickr account can be made into prints too!


If you don’t see the size you want, please convo or email (aprilbern@gmail.com) me and I’ll list a size just for you.

Hurry! Sale ends Sunday, September 26, 2010.