Year in Review Friday, January 2, 2015
- Bead Cruise 2014 was my favorite one - ever!
- Embraced teaching more in person and enjoyed creating online classes.
- Sold my beads at the two biggest bead shows in the country - Bead & Button and BeadFest.
- Worked on my second book, finishing up and sending it in very soon! It will be available in early 2016.
- Hosted another fun and successful autumn Bead Retreat. Loved spending time with such an amazing group of women.
- Starting writing a regular color column for Step by Step Wire Magazine.
- Joined the BeadStyle blog team as a monthly contributor.
- Booked several classes and retreat for 2015 and have a few in the works and finalizing details.
- Took two amazing online illustration courses and worked on adding new illustrations to my portfolio.
- My oldest daughter graduated, turned 18 and started taking college courses.
- Moved to a new house in October. Which we love very much but turned my life upside down for a while.
- My Step-Dad beat cancer into remission, my mom became a super hero.
- I learned to set business hours and enjoy time off - it was not easy!!!
Wishing you peace, health and happiness for 2015!
New Year Muffin Tin Jewelry Challenge Tuesday, December 23, 2014
Micheals Beading Challenge with a Twist Blog Hop Reveal Thursday, December 18, 2014
My next design is a bracelet that uses just a few of the beads from the challenge and my "Twist" beads are a lovely set of ceramic beads from White Clover Kiln and a two of my polymer clay beads.
10 Last Minute Jewelry Gifts to Make Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Inspiring Bead Shops: Perfectly Paired Saturday, December 13, 2014
I thought I would try something fun today and feature a few online bead shops that are worth a visit. These are friends of mine, but this is just me saying "oh, look here at what they've got" because these three hardworking beady women sure do inspire me! I've paired up their beads with a few of my Humblebeads Bead Mixes. Enjoy!
Ornamentea + Humblebeads
Ornamentea is a brick and mortar bead shop located in Raleigh, North Carolina run by Cynthia Deis. Ornametea has a super inspiring website with lots of free projects from trendy designers. They offer an eclectic array of mixed media and jewelry making supplies.Cynthia works with several different bead artists to round out her collection, which I love to see!
Humblebeads: Wild Bird Bead Mix
Ornamentea: Chexx Beads, Beveled Bayong Wood Beads, Green Girl Shibuichi Bird, Antique Brass Metal Spacers, Harvest Gold Dupioni Silk
Stinky Dog Beads + Humblebeads
Kitty Bozzini has carved out quite the bead inspiring beauty of a website at Stinky Dog Beads. This is an online only bead shop that offers a beautifully curated collection of beads with photographs that just make you want to shop! Stinky Dog Beads offers lots of unique items that have my nature-lovin' heart going pitter-patter. Must shop the clasps.
Humblebeads: Woodland Bead Mix
Stinky Dog Beads: Central cut Picasso Czech glass beads, Double link chain, antique brass, Mykonos Peace dove, twig connector, Halo Heavens English cut Czech beads
Rebecca Anderson is the curious bead propieter behind The Curious Bead Shop. Rebecca's popular Etsy shop is run from home in Scotland! You may have seen Rebecca's jewelry featured here on my blog, she has a way with Humblebeads. Rebecca's shop offers mainly Czech glass in so many yummy colors and styles but she is also branching out with findings, metal spacers, waxed linen and leather.
Humblebeads: Tribal Pattern Bead Mix
The Curious Bead Shop: Copper faceted cornerless cube, Orange Evening Ember Faceted Rondelles,Royal Blue Faceted Glass Bicones, Violet Opal Petals, Burnished Pink Leaves
Pinning You a Merry Christmas Thursday, December 11, 2014
- Pin holiday images and your jewelry that fit your brand (like my goregous nature-inspiredHumblebeads Christmas board.)
- Pin holiday outfits and your jewelry. You can find outfits on Pinterest or create some on Polyvore. You can name your board Holiday Style or Holiday Outfits.
- Create different types of holiday gift guides and include your jewelry. Like a Stocking Stuffer Gift Guide or a Gift Guide for Nature Lovers or a Gift Guide for Sisters, etc. Include items that compliment your brand that would fit in the gift guide. These are fun to make!
- Create an all handmade gift guide featuring your favorite makers and your jewelry. Or create a holiday gift group gift board with several different types of makers.
- Niche holiday boards - have jewelry that fits a certain niche? Create a board just for it. I did this with my pet holiday ornaments and we created a cute board that mixes the ornaments with adorable holiday pets in the Paw-fect Holiday board (warning: cute overload!).
Increase Your Views:
You can use #hashtags to help increase your chances of being picked up by Pinterest's search. Make sure they are relavenat and only use 2-3 hashtags. If you include the price on your items they will show up in the Pinterest Gift Category.
Best time of day to pin? 9pm -1am. We all must lay in bed and scroll through Pinterest trying to fall asleep. I thought that was just me!
Images that are vertical get repinned more often. As always, make sure your jewelry photos are top-notch and pin-worthy!
So your assignment - create a holiday pin board with your jewelry. Share the link below and I'll pick a random comment to win a $20 gift certificate to my Etsy shop! Go on, promote your work in clever and fun ways - it's good for you.
Creating to Battle Holiday Stress Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Online Classes and Tutorials Sale! Thursday, December 4, 2014
You know what I love the most about this time of year? Making gifts and decorations or elfing as we refer to it around here. We spent Saturday having our annual crafting party with my family. Always so much!
I'm offering a new online tutorial. This Winter Wonderland Felted Ornament class was going to be a webinar but has since become an downloadable PDF filled with lots of step-by-step photos as I walk you through the process of needle felting and some basic bead embroidery techniques to embellish them.
Right now I'm offering a sale on all of my classes. So this was $19.99 and now you can get it on my website for $15!
This class is on sale for the rest of the week for $25. The deal is good until Sunday night, so jump on over and get started today!
Micheals Beading Challenge Blog Hop with a Twist Sunday, November 23, 2014
Are you ready for a big dose of color and bead inspiration? I'm so exited to announce that Lorelei Eurto and I are co-hosting another Michael's Beading Challenge Blog Hop.
Go to your Michael's craft store and buy these beads. This week, for an extra incentive to play along, the Bead Gallery beads are 40% off! There is an extra 25% coupon off even sale items today. Check the coupon page for details.
The bead details:
You must have a blog to participate. It's a blog hop!
Don't have one but want to start one? Lorelei has a nice ecourse on setting up a blogger blog from start to finish. Get it here.
Use the beads shown here, and you can add in up to 2 additional bead types to your design.
If you are able, have your +2 types of beads from a beadmaker, local bead store or indie bead seller online. Your +2 beads can be ones you pick up for the challenge or ones in your stash. Make sure you include a shout out to the small business that you are supporting in your blog post.
Choose any design you like, using any technique - that'll be the fun part of the whole thing- to see what different things you can do with these same beads.
Not to worry! If you find similar beads somewhere like Hobby Lobby, go ahead and use 'em. Seeing what everyone does with similar beads, is half the fun. If you can't find a particular bead strand at Michael's you can substitute a similar one.
Reveal Date: December 18th
If you want to participate - Come to my blog the morning of December 18th (reveal Day) and use the Link Up tool to add your blog links. I find this to be the easiest way to keep track of all the participants. So mark your calendars, buy the beads, create beautiful things, and get your blog posts ready for December 18th for a great hop.
Please feel free to leave comments on this post, or questions too.
Psst...like that color palette above? Check out the new issue of Step by Step Wire to see my contribution to as the new Color Canvas guru!
(In case you are wondering, this isn't a sponsored post by Michael's or Halcraft Beads. Just two creative girls looking for a way to connect with our beady friends and share some inspiration!)
Black Friday Dilemma Thursday, November 20, 2014
Okay, so I have been thinking, pondering, mulling it over and I'm pretty sure I'm 100% anti-Black Friday. And super anti-Black Friday for those poor folks that have to work on Thanksgiving. I mean I like deals and bargains and a good hunt, but at what price is the deal costing other people?
I like to live in a world where stores are closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas. I'm an old-fashioned mid-west girl. I live in a town where the stores downtown close at 7 pm on weeknights and you have to drive to the next town to see a mall.
I want small events in artist's studios and shopping at local artists markets. I want to shop downtown and support all those hard-working mom-and-pop shops that make up the landscape of my beloved home town. I want to shop online with my friends and artists that I have been admiring all year.
But I'm also a business owner and have a family to take care of and know that everyone is getting ready to buy gifts and make gifts and start the whole shopping frenzy. I love that that my business helps those who want to buy handmade and honor small businesses. I love that I have a business that encourages creative folks to make gifts for the holidays. It's all great stuff and I'm a holiday nut and love celebrating the holiday season.
So my dilemma, I've decided to not offer a Black Friday-Cyber Monday sale. I've decided to offer my big holiday special early and have came up with a plan for December that makes me happy and ready to pull out a candy cane and hot cocoa!
Item of the Week:
Starting Monday every week until January, I will send out an Item of the Week email with a special item that will be on sale. There will limited quantities for the item of the week. Email subscribers may find exclusive bonus coupon codes throughout the holidays. Don't miss out!
Subscribe to the Humblebeads email list - the bead emails will include free projects, biz tips and all the good stuff I have always offered.
Subscribe to the Humblebeads Jewelry email list - look for gift guides, gift-wrapping ideas and fun ways to celebrate the season.
Rewards for Repeat Customers
If you are a repeat customer, you'll find little coupon codes to use for December included in your orders.
December 6th - Humblebeads Holiday Trunk Show - This will be a private invitation only event in South Haven. If you live near me, know me and want to attend, send me a quick email for details.
December 10th & 11th - Humblebeads Online Trunk Show - This will be a one-of-a-kind, sample and overstock sale in a private Facebook group. You'll find jewelry, bead grab bags and more during the event. Details will be posted later this weekend.
I am going to pick a random email subscriber from both my bead and jewelry email lists for a $50 holiday shopping spree. You have until Sunday at midnight to subscribe. You may subscribe to both lists to double your chances of winning. Winners may redeem their gift certificates at either my bead or jewelry website.
Okay - candy canes ready - let's enjoy a less crazed, much happier holiday season this year!!!