Wednesday, December 31, 2008

What's That Sound?

Can you hear it? You have to be really still . . . yeah, that's it. The sound you hear is me sleeping. OK, I'm not really blogging in my sleep. But I am sleeping better for sure. And it's all because of a new service I purchased. When I first developed my crocheted bracelet website I knew it was really important to backup your files. When I initially tried to do this, I loaded it on a dvd. Apparently, no information quite made it to the dvd but I didn't even know this until 6 months later or so. I then became afraid to backup for fear I would mess up some important files or worse yet, lose them. Doesn't sound too smart, right? Fortunately, I found Carbonite. This is an online service where they do the backup for you. I initially signed up for the free trial period (15 days) but then purchased when I realized what a great service this is. Everything in your document files (pictures, documents, favorites, etc.) gets backed up constantly. OK, you say, your website (public_html) is not in your documents. This is where FTP comes into play. FTP being an acronym for File Transfer Protocol. The purpose of this software is to transfer files between your computer (the client) and any FTP server. I have basically used this software to publish files to a website. But now, I uploaded my website files into My Documents. So any time My Documents are being backed up, I'm guaranteed my website is too! I'm sure you can find some free FTP software on the internet as well. Also, you can actually just use your FTP for backup as well. But then you have to remember to do it. With Carbonite it literally works while you sleep! It's completely automatic and you never have to think about it again. What's really cool is, when I've loaded a picture and I see a thumbnail of that shot in my picture file, on the bottom left hand corner I will see either a yellow dot or a green dot. The green dot means it's already backed up. The yellow dot means it hasn't been backed up yet. For the most part, it's almost instantaneous! I love to see green! And, your files are even encrypted twice for security before they are even backed up!

I highly recommend this service to anyone who doesn't want to think about backing up ever again. Oh, and if for some reason your files get lost, read
here how easy it is to restore files! I am not affiliated in any way with this company, just a very happy client. It's given me total peace of mind. And that little monkey that was on my back . . . he's now out of my life!

And here's to everyone's security. May you all have a very happy, healthy, safe and secure new year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

BAO Item of the Week

This week we have eleven specials offered by members of the Bead Art Original team. For details, click on the photo.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Marvelous Monday

Floating, fluid, and space are some words that come to mind when I see these computer generated graphics. These are just a few of Cinda LeBus's many pictures on her flickr. You'll find tons of color inspiration there. I just might be reporting back as I hear the polymer calling . . . have a marvelous Monday!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Studio Bits and Pieces

I managed to squeeze a little studio time yesterday and thought I would post a recent pendant. It's going to my niece Jaime for her birthday. Christmas day is my daughter Lily's birthday. Yikes - another teenager in the house.

And then I revisted Yin and Yang . .

Hope everyone has a very happy, healthy and safe holiday! Only good things in the new year!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Kids Lids - Then and Now

Back when my kids were young, my sister-in-law, who lives in NYC, always managed to find the coolest clothing for them. Particularly nice were the hats. They had these really fungraphics of animals handpainted on - cats, tigers, pigs, etc. My oldest daughter used to love wearing them. Those days are long gone, but it's no wonder I had a soft spot for the following hats when I found them on Etsy.

The first time I found these hats I had to put one in an Etsy treasury. Oh, if only my girls were little again. No - actually, I take that back (real fast)! But how cute are these? They're by Katie Segel and a trip to her shop will bring a smile to your face for sure!

But wait - there's more. I also found artist who makes hats. She goes by mymarketstall (whose name came from being a vendor at the local farmers markets in Grand Rapids, Michigan). Her inspiration came from the natural beauty of fruits and vegetables that were available at the market. To date, she's designed 27 different fruit or vegetable hats. I'm only showing a few here, but the choices available in her shop almost make it too hard to choose. You'll see what I mean when you visit her shop.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Better Late than Never

Yup. Sometimes you can't always fit everything into 24 hours so . . . better late than never! I hope this post makes it worth your while.

You may or may not have seen some of this work, but it's always amazing to see what Jeffrey Dever's been up to. I still have to laugh that I shared a table with him at Synergy! (I think I was last seen crawling under the table!) Today, I came across a link to some pieces I hadn't seen so I thought I'd share. He has some nice detail pictures as well.

And here is another page where you can view more work. It's so strong yet so graceful. Don't you just want to go inside his head for just a moment? Here's one of my favorites. Enjoy and have a fabulous Tuesday!

Monday, December 22, 2008

BAO Item of the Week - 12/22 - 12/28

Another Monday, and another great offering by some members of the BAO team. Click on the image to see what the specials are!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Great Etsy Shop

A couple days ago I made this treasury. In doing it, I came across yet another shop whose work I loved! The name of her shop is SincearJewelry.

She has a great sense of color and a unique style. It was really really hard to only pick three
pairs of earrings! But here are only a few of my favorites. Visit her shop and to see all her colors. And they come in different sizes!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's All in the Packaging

Yesterday, I went shopping for the holidays with my husband. One of the items on our gift list was a gift certificate to Victoria's Secret. As soon as I saw the cashier "wrap" the certificate I made her stop. I was so excited to see what she was doing. In the past, I blogged about packaging here. Along with that post, there are several links to packaging sites. I knew as soon as I saw it, I had to blog about it. It's so beautiful and so creative, I couldn't wait to come home and take a picture.
Can you see that round piece of wrapped fabric at the top? That's the last thing they insert and it actually holds the whole cupcake together. How smart is that? They call it their cupcake wrap. Here's what the inside looks like along with the gift certificate. Above the gift certificate is the to and from information. Below it is the amount of the certificate.

And to give you a closer shot of this origami cupcake, you can see the folds. When it's completed unfolded and laying flat, it's a circle. So, am I the only person who gets excited about these things? You should have seen the look of "here we go again" from my husband as I was ooohing and aahing over something so silly. Oh, and with the holidays coming up, anyone thinking of putting a gift of a piece of your jewelry or other small object in something like this? So, I guess I'll have to take a closer look to figure out how they do this! Judy Dunn?

BAO - Item of the Week

This week from 12/15 - 12/21 the BAO team has again put up a great selection of specials. To see the details of these specials, click here.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Marvelous Monday

Seems like a reasonable transition from last week's birds to this week's feathers. (I feel a sneeze coming on!) From land to sea and even from the sewing machine. Here's a few colorful pictures to start your week off. Have a marvelous Monday!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Out of the Studio - Design Tweeking

Whenever I make a new design, I test it by wearing it. Especially earrings. I made a couple polymer clay earrings a little while back. I loved the design, but I didn't feel they functioned quite right. I felt they needed tweeking but wasn't exactly sure what to do.

Meet Madeleine (on left) and Tuxedo Sam (on right). (I think I realized Madeleine should have been named Marlo after Marlo Thomas with the hair flip thing going on!) Oh . . . am I dating myself? Through the riveted tube in the middle comes a wire that is balled up at both ends. It gets pushed up right at the middle point so the length of the wire is equal on both sides. On one side, I formed a loop that goes to the right and on the other side, the loop goes to the left.

The problem was, what happened at the right. I couldn't get the loops to stay together where they met. I knew the problem had to be resolved before they were sold. When someone ordered a few of them, I had to address the problem. But this time when I looked at them, I realized they just really need to be joined at that point. Duh! I took some sterling wire and wrapped it at the top. Here's another pair of the earrings with the change and a close-up of the join. Sometimes, all you need is a little tweeking. How about you? Have you tweeked today?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Handmade Holiday Gift Guide Etsy

Last year I did a bunch of blog posts on Etsy shops that I thought were great places to visit for handmade, unusual gifts. So . . . with the holidays soon approaching, I thought I would revisit this. Today, I happened to find a shop called bsartstudio. Their tag line is "No BS, Just Awesome Affordable Abstract Art. I love art for the walls with options. They make art panels that measure 5" x 7" for walls. You can buy one, or you can purchase a set.
And if you like your panels that you buy from them . . . just wait. In their Bio it says"*** Afraid of Commitment? Check out our Art Exchange Program in the Policies Secion! ***. So I did. Here's what I found: Get 50% OFF your next painting from BS Art Studio when you change your mind!So you're afraid of commitment. Well have no fear! We understand that people's tastes (and decorating) change over time. Ours do too. That's why we have the wonderful Art Exchange Program. Here's how it works:Say in one, three, five years (or however long into the future), you decide you want a new painting, and you just don't have that extra space for the painting you originally bought. No worries. Before you purchase the new painting, simply convo us and let us know you would like to exchange paintings. We will re-list the new painting that you want as a private listing. Then, send the first painting back to us. Once we have received the first painting and determined that it is in perfect condition to re-sell, we will give you 50% off the new painting. How great is that?
What a great marketing idea! So . . . got you thinking? Have fun shopping!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Marvelous Monday

Our fine feathered friends are the subject of today's colorful blog. Have a marvelous Monday!