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Archive for January, 2010

Valentine’s Day is just two short weeks away!  What a perfect time to spread some love to the ones you cherish!  If you’re looking for a lovely gift for one of the special ladies in your life . . . sisters, mothers, dear friends . . . take a peek in my Etsy shop!

“The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and to let it come in.”
~Morrie Schwartz

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Today I Will .........

Well, we are 28 days into this new year – can you believe it?  With the new year, I have taken some time to reflect on my vision and direction for KaraAnnisJewelry.  Early this month, I set set some goals down on paper, but I thought I would take the chance to share them with you here as well.

I am very excited about 2010 and what it has in store for Kara Annis Jewelry!

Here’s a peak at what is ahead for this year:
The Website – Hopefully you have visited the KaraAnnisJewelry website! This website has been up and running for just over a year now.  I think it’s time for a little freshening up, so over the next month or so, I plan to do just that.  In addition, I will continue to add new events and items to the website throughout the year!

Jewelry Shows – One of my favorite ways to share my jewelry designs is through home shows!  I love the warm atmosphere that hosts’ homes offer, I love the fellowship and interaction that home shows provide, and I love giving you the opportunity to see my designs up close, to try them on!  This year, increasing the number of KaraAnnisJewelry home shows will be a big focus! In addition to home shows, I am considering venturing into the craft show arena.  I have have started to do my homework, gathering ideas for displays and searching for the perfect show to start with.

Learning New Skills and Techniques –One of my biggest accomplishments in 2009 was setting up my metalsmithing studio. This year, I would like to develop my metalsmithing skills further.  I plan to experiment with new techniques and designs in my studio, and to create a new line of products using these skills.  I would also like to find a mentor or take classes to expand my abilities!

Marketing – This year, I would like to spread the word about KaraAnnisJewelry.  I will put a little more focus on my Etsy Shop, which is an international marketplace.  I also have some exciting events, promotions, and giveaways in store – one of which will begin in just a few days (stay tuned for details!!).

Jewelry for a Cause – I don’t want my passion for creating and selling jewelry to be a selfish endeavor – I’d like to use this gift to help others.  This month, I have decided to donate $5 for each item purchased to World Vision’s Haiti Releif fund.  I am also in the process of developing a partnership with a local non-profit organization.  I am quite excited about this opportunity to help individuals in my local community.  Look for more information about this partnership around Valentines Day!

Wishing you a blessed 2010!

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Hi there.  By now I am sure you are all aware of the devastating events happening in Haiti.  Many in the Handmade community are getting involved in the Haiti Relief efforts.  You can get involved too, simply by shopping from these artists!

I will donate $5 for each item purchased from my shop now through February 6 to World Vision’s Haiti Earthquake Relief fund. Visit www.WorldVision.org for more information on their efforts to help in this crisis.

Here are some other artists who are donating a portion of their sales:

Jen at Indie Fixx is currently running a Haiti Relief Fundraising Auction. Various Etsy sellers have donated awesome goods which are being auctioned off with 100% of the proceeds donated to the Red Cross International Response Fund. Click here for details and to start bidding!

Etsy shop ThirtySixTen will donate $20 for each Single Violet Sterling Silver Ring she sells.  Money will be donated to Haiti Releif through Compassion International.




HappyLake Art,  featuring clay and sculpture, will donate 20% of Sales until 2011.





Etsy artist The Painted Brush will donate 100% of sales to Red Cross International Response Fund for the Haitian Relief Effort.





Tina Crespo Photography is donating 50% of every print purchased to the Red Cross for the cause in Haiti.





Many, many more shops are currently donating a portion of their sales to Haiti relief efforts through their shops. You can view a list of handmade artists who are participating here.

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I am quite excited to introduce you to this week’s spotlight artist, the friendly and talented Elizabeth of Prince Design UK!  Elizabeth makes the most amazing poppy bowls and lacy birdies, and I’m in love with her heart-shaped ornaments!  Elizabeth was lovely enough to give us a little glimpse into her ceramicist’s world:

How did you get started in your craft?
I studied fine art and specialised in sculpture for my degree, and then worked as an interior designer in domestic interiors for seven years. During this time, I found ceramics as a hobby, and quickly became obsessed.

Where do you find your inspiration?
This is tricky for me to answer really. There are many many things that inspire me. Everything around you can inspire you, and not just the good stuff! Sometimes I will see something I dislike and think about how I could use an element of the concept behind it and create something that is better. Other times I am inspired by natural forms, objects that I find, patterns, textures, interiors, art, design, contemporary culture and visual codes. I guess the real answer is everywhere and anywhere!

Share with us a little about your creative process.
I draw occasionally and jot down notes of ideas to persue, but only as a starting point. Most development is done in clay these days. I will make a prototype, and sometimes I will then discard the idea. Other times I will make more and more and refine the form until I am happy with it. Often I will change the surface, or experiment with many variations until I am happy with it. Other times, I will make the same object in a range of versions.

How do you promote your shop/work?
Etsy has been a great showcase for my work. Having work on there has enabled me to reach a much larger audience than I could have ten years ago. From there and other online marketplaces, I have had wholesale enquiries, and some of these have lead to great press opportunities. I have been really lucky in that I have had great support from bloggers too.
As I sell online, I promote my work online too.
I have a page on facebook – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Prince-Design-UK/139789272731?ref=ts
and also a blog –  http://gonepotty.blogspot.com/
I also show work in commercial galleries.

What does 2010 hold in store for you?
2009 was a great year for my business, and I hope to keep steadily growing throughout the next year too. I love doing what I do, and feel extremely privileged to be able to make a living this way. The run up to Christmas was so hectic with fulfilling orders that there was barely any time for making and I have really missed it. As a result, there are quite a few new ideas spinning around my mind that I cannot wait to get started on!

If you had a day free of any obligation, how would you spend it?
Doing what I do now, or on a beach somewhere hot with cold beer and good friends.

What is the most valuable thing you have learned within the past year?
You get out of life what you put in. I have seen people who have done wrong get back exactly the same, and I have seen positive people get positive results. Be positive and be kind, even when the going gets tough.

How would you like to be remembered by future generations?
I’m not sure that I really want to be remembered at all! One of the most wonderful things that has happened over the last year has been that people have commissioned me to make bowls to hold their wedding rings on their wedding days. It has been great to make objects that will serve as visual prompts for other people to remember special moments in their own lives.

Thank you Elizabeth for sharing a little more about yourself and your work!   Stop by and check out Elizabeth’s shop and her blog!

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Last week, I got in a shipment of some spectacular freshwater pearls!  I’m quite thrilled with their quality and color – teal, chocolate brown, white, stormy blue, cranberry, rusty pink, purple…  I made these darling little earrings with some of my new pearls.  Here I’ve used cranberry coin pearls and chocolate keshi pearls to create the Valentine’s Day themed “Chocolate Covered Cherry” Earring.

Be sure to check my Etsy Shop frequently – I’ll be adding new items on a regular basis for the next several weeks!

Enjoy!

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I love the detail and texture of these darling wreaths made by whtieserenade.  Each wreath is made with vintage sheet music or paper from antique books – what a beautiful way to upcycle!

Enjoy!

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