Monday, December 16, 2013

Custom Pet Portraits

I've had so much fun these last few days working on some custom dog hoops! Thanks to Vanessa and Jessica for giving me the chance to work with some extremely cute pups...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Magnet Give-Away Winner!

BIG thanks to everyone who participated in my first-ever giveaway and congrats to Jeff S. who will be taking home two lovely sets of magnets!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Snowflake Magnet Give-Away

Living ten years in Florida has really thinned out my blood. I traveled to my hometown of Philly over the Thanksgiving break to be with family and got a chance to remember what it's like to be cold. Really really cold. My 4 year old nephew has a man crush for the Imagination Movers so we all went to see them at Sesame Place. We were sitting in an outdoor pavilion, and with the wind chill, it was around 16 degrees. Pretty cold for a Floridian. Heck, we bring out the scarves when it's 72! Alas, a good time was had by all. My before and after pic...

So for right now, here's the only snow that I can really handle - Wilo Tree Press Snowflake Magnets. And in the holiday spirit I want to share them with you!

I'll be giving away two box sets of 4 magnets. One for you and one for you to give as a gift to your favorite snow buddy! Just drop a comment down below and let me know your favorite thing to hang up around the holidays. The winner will be chosen randomly and announced on Thursday so you have until Wednesday at midnight to drop a line. And please one comment per person. Can't wait to hear from you blog buddy!

Monday, November 18, 2013

A New Look for the Shop

Part One: The Battle for White Balance

So what was supposed to be a few days of tweaking my shop somehow turned into two weeks!  It all started with a conversation I had in the Etsy Forum. I was feeling a bit blue because of slow sales and no views, so I thought I'd drop in on a thread. Ya know, the one where you "say what's wrong with the shop above you."  And the comment I received was very nice but ended with a suggestion to "try to make all of the whites in your photos match."  And henceforth, the battle of white balance began! Oh brother has it been an uphill climb. After many hours of thumbing the exposure button up and down and bumping my head against a wall, I think I've finally figured out my system. Here's how I achieved a more balanced look to the photos in my shop...

This is my little corner of the bedroom where I usually 
set up to take pictures.

I would rest my pieces against the ledge to get the brightest spot. 

But I've always enjoyed looking at pictures on Etsy that have different backgrounds and foregrounds. I especially like photos that have aged pieces of wood. But where to find an old piece of wood? I stopped at Goodwill, peeked in a few antique shops and eyed some yard sales but no luck. One day I had the brilliant idea to head to Home Depot. I nearly cried with joy when I saw the entire aisle that showcased all kinds of wood tile flooring. Little did I know that you can't really buy one single, square foot of floor tiling. Thanks to the lady at the Home Depot who had to literally stifle a laugh in my face when I asked. Made me feel as if I had asked if there was a basement in the Alamo! But the joke was on her because I found just what I needed in the aisle over. So I grabbed a piece of plywood for the backdrop and headed back home with head held high. And this time I also decided to set up shop on the porch.

But I couldn't quite get enough detail. Totally frustrated, I tried to resist doing a Karate Kid type chopping block action on my plywood, took a deep breath and decided to go back to my original spot. This time I used my new set up. And the pictures turned out pretty good!

I'm happy to say that I can now take photos with ease. All you need is a bright day, two planks of wood and a teetering, unbalanced stack of books. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Walk with the Dog: A Study in Crazy Florida Trees

The weather has been so cool and lovely these past few mornings. Winds and I have been enjoying some nice long walks in the parks by our house.  And this time I took the camera along! Check out some of the crazy trees we spotted...

 I love the circles the mower left behind around the base of this tree.

 Fuzzy-fuzz trees.

 Upside-down trees.

I call these brownie trees because they remind me of the crackle on top of Brownies once they bake. Mmmmmm...brownies.

My shadow is a giant!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Monday, October 28, 2013

It never gets old...

This weekend the hubs and I got away for a one day trip to Disney. We're only about 70 minutes away, so oftentimes we make a quick jaunt over to the parks. These trips are always a nice little break from the day-to-day grind. It's a chance for us to detach ourselves from our computers, get away from work and connect with each other again. It's like recharging our batteries or, as we like to say, regaining all of our Zelda hearts. Needless to say, I'm super refreshed and inspired to get back into the studio/dining room and create!

Oh castle (le sigh).

This kid is awesome.

Me and the Hubs

Loved the way the sunlight was streaming in from the lobby window where we had lunch.