Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Lula Pillowcase - Confronting Tacky in Crochet

I finally finished my EtsyFAST May challenge - flowers - and posted it today, the Lula Pillowcase. Since I already make several items that qualify as flowers (see my crochet pins, Pink Icing Flower pins, Grayscale flowers pins, etc.), I wanted to make something really special. My grandmother loved pink roses and bright colors. Her house was full of bright pinks and greens and she liked to wear bold floral patterns. She was a very talented home sewer and very creative. 

Crochet always has the potential of being tacky; not slightly tacky or kinda tacky, but really kitschy tacky awful wonderful. Rather than skirt around the issue with this project, I wanted to really go for it and make it as full and loud and textured as possible. I guess I still have some natural restraint. There are no tassels or fringe! It was an exhausting exercise and took over a month to complete, but the finished product makes me smile and reminds me of the feeling of being at my grandma's.

Here's the pillowcase in progress. Arranging them was fun; sewing them on was a total pain. Below you can see the pillowcase peaking out from my booth-in-a-bag, see my post on Beer-B-Q Success! for more images of the pillow in action (on a table).

Monday, May 19, 2008

Beer-B-Q Success!

The Etsydallas Beer-B-Q was yesterday. It was a blast! Over twenty Etsydallasites gathered for a homemade trunk show complete with free food, music, raffles, and goody bags. We were stationed from the front yard to dining room to the garage. Here you can see Jen, of HipHazel, and I sitting in our booth space. Jen and I are both sporting my crocheted button pins and I'm finishing up a shawl/wrap/capelet that promptly was tagged and put on the rack with the others.

Here's Jen with Hazel, the original Hip Hazel, and below another image of our booth. We thought the wall color was great with our color schemes.

Regina of LittleCookie was our dining room neighbor. Her Kanzashi flowers are amazing. She hand dyes silk and folds them into traditional hair ornaments originally meant for geisha. Her work is exquisite and beautifully presented. 

We thought we were lucky to be inside, though I hear it wasn't too bad in the shade with a breeze. It was great how many friends stopped by and hung out, eating free food, listening to the band, or just chatting. Customer traffic was good and sales exceeded my very low expectations! So, it was all good and very fun and I was exhausted at the end of another very full day.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Treasuries Explained

I've been lucky enough in my short time at Etsy to have been featured in several Treasuries. Etsy Treasuries are made by fans and supporters of Etsy as a way to create a favorites page that is published and available for everyone to browse. It's a great way to visually take in a sampling of what Etsy has to offer. Treasuries can be grouped by themes, colors, interests, materials, almost anything! Some are quite artfully done and reflect a real curatorial bent. Quite often Etsy team members will build Treasuries to showcase their team. I've been in several Treasuries just because of my team memberships in EtsyFAST, EtsyDallas, and Etsy Texas Crafters. 
There is also a secondary treasury called Treasury West. It is labeled the experimental treasury and can disappear at any time. Treasuries are competitive and very much like a game. The more clicks you get on a Treasury the higher that list goes on the master list.If popular enough, it might even be selected as the front page of Etsy. Understandably, Treasuries are sought after and the space is limited. Even if you want to make one, there might not be room! So, there is much excitement if one is able to "score" a Treasury and then there is a frenzy to get the word out so you get lots of unique clicks and your list will be bumped up. 
Each Treasury has an expiration date. Some would-be Treasury creators will troll the list looking for almost expired lists so they can time their attempt. The title of the list itself is also important and tends to be clever and not always descriptive. The point is to make you look, even if what you find surprises you. On the whole, I find Treasuries a pleasant diversion and fun way to browse. I'm always thrilled when I find myself in one; there is a small yellow star next to the name of the list when one of your own items is included, if you're logged in.

My items in the Treasuries featured include from top to bottom: light green shawl, crocheted pins, light green shawl cropped off and pink flower pins, and pink and grey ruffled scarf.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Freebies for all - or at least some

I received my sample packet from Etsy Texas Crafters today! Very exciting. I submitted my crocheted pins, as seen in an earlier post of mine from March 16. Here's what the packs looked like (you can see my pins on the left). I've just sent off my samples for the EtsyDallas Beer-B-Q and I tried to make something smaller and new. I settled on bobby pins and hairbands with little crocheted circles and buttons. I think they are pretty cute.

I've been away from Etsy because of my trip to Chicago for the art fair, but I have plenty of projects underway. I have a fantastic project half done for the EtsyFAST monthly challenge for May - flowers. I'm making a ridiculously flowery pillow. No, I mean really FLOWERY!! It's funny and tacky and, well, you'll see. I hope to finish it soon. Maybe I'll post it next week if I make good progress. It's so much work and will cost so much, I'm sure to never sell it. Coming soon...