Custom Order From a Photo

Wow, I really haven’t written in quite some time. I have discovered Instagram and have to admit that I will do a quick photo post these days as opposed to a more lengthy blog post. I enjoy writing though so I am making a mental note to try to find the time to write more in the future.

The reason I am writing today though is because this custom order I had the honour of working on last week needed more words. I have a customer who has ordered a number of things from my Etsy shop, both straight from my shop and custom, too.  I have to say it feels pretty darn good when someone likes your work so much they keep buying more.

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This custom order was extra special though because my customer’s parents lost their dog and he was interested in having me do one of my silhouette’s to give to them as a gift in memory of their furry loved one. Of course, I am a huge animal lover and also still remember when I lost my beloved dog like it was yesterday. After having so many orders from this person I feel like I know him that much better and I wanted to make this one extra special. Ordinarily, I just find silhouettes of a dog breed and paint from that but in this case I thought I would give painting from a photo a shot. I am really happy with how it turned out and hope his parents love it. I also hope Biscuit is happily carrying mail and newspapers at the Rainbow Bridge with my dog, Stella.

This is the photo of Biscuit that I worked from to make the painted sign.

Wedding Guest Book Tree

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I have been waiting so patiently to post this one! I was asked to do this wedding guest book tree as a custom order back in March. I was given a picture of a tree that was used to have wedding guests sign the leaves then the idea is to frame the paper and you have a piece of art and also a fabulous souvenir of your wedding. This lady wanted one on wood! How great of an idea is that? So, we discussed colours, font etc. and because the couple already have a child she asked me to add an extra bird in (awww!) Then I went to work and I LOVE how it turned out. Of course, because it was a surprise for the bride and groom and their wedding wasn’t until the beginning of May I promised I wouldn’t post it before the wedding. I certainly don’t want to spoil any surprises!! I hope they love it, too.

A Sign For a Beach House

This next sign was ordered by a lady who lives not too far from me in East Beach. She just moved in a month ago and has been dreaming of a sign (reminiscent of cottages that have been named) for the outdoor of her new home. Her last name is Pearson so she thought it would be cute to have a pier and a sun. I think it turned out great!

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A cute sign for the outside of a beach cottage!

My First Craft Market

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My display at the craft market. I was given the table and table cloth to work with.

 

Well, today I attended my first craft market as a vendor. I learned a few things along the way. Previously I wrote about how as a newby I missed a lot of the deadlines to apply to be a vendor at Christmas markets (If you missed that post you can read it here). Then, I applied to a couple but didn’t get in. And eventually I decided to do a market at an elementary school. The table fee was low so I figured I didn’t have a lot to lose and, if anything, it would be good to get some experience with being a vendor at a market.

I think I did pretty well in terms of getting a market checklist together and making sure I had everything I needed. Hubby woke up early with me and drove me and all the stuff (a lot of stuff!) to the school. Hubby only had to go home to get two things I forgot (luckily it wasn’t a far drive). Even so those two things I could have lived without if I had to. (Hubby also surprised me with a handmade rustic business card holder this morning. You can see it on the far right corner of the table. It’s gorgeous. Isn’t he great?)

I also think I did fairly well in terms of setup. It is difficult to set up a bunch of signs on a flat table so I brought a couple of props along, basically things I had on hand, to raise some up off the table to make them easier to look at. Linda from Cottage Living (the shop where I have some signs displayed …if you missed that post you can read it here) kindly lent me a tree from the display in her shop so I could display my ornaments (how awesome is that?!). I may need to rethink a few things for next time but overall I think it turned out okay.

So, we managed to get up early, get there and set up just in time for go time. And then …nothing happened. There were no people (except for the other vendors). Now I will say that this market was run by the PAC (parent advisory committee) of an elementary school and as I found out it was their very first year. However, I was a bit concerned when I noticed earlier in the week that the event wasn’t advertised in the craft market section of the local paper. I know I had seen other school craft fairs in there.

Also, when my son came with his girlfriend he commented that there were no signs on the street leading up to the school. From the outside you would never know there was a craft fair going on in the gym. I think that the main people who came were friends and family of the vendors. I didn’t expect a huge, huge turnout like some of the bigger craft markets get but I guess I at least expected the parents of the students to attend.

On the upside I had lots of time to visit for the friends and family who did come to see me. (Thank you so much for coming to those who did!) I also enjoyed talking to a couple of the other vendors. I got some experience in and won’t be so overwhelmed preparing for the next market. And, at the very end a lady came to ask me about a custom order and took my card. If that order follows through then it may just make the day a win. I think the biggest thing I learned is to ask what the marketing plan is before committing to my next market. That, as I found out, makes a huge difference!

On the downside I am a bit disappointed after putting in so much work to prepare for this market. And, I have lots of stock! Anybody want to buy some Christmas ornaments?

 

A Custom Order for a Dear Friend

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A custom order for a dear friend. I love the message, too!

I had a dear, old friend get in touch and ask me to do a custom order for her. In addition to getting to connect (we don’t live close to each other anymore) I also got to make something for her, too. Yay! I really love how after sanding the wood grain showing through makes each piece unique.

This was also the first thing I photographed in the new house. I am thinking I should start to get my husband to take the photos for me since he did such a great job with the ones of my knit/crocheted items. I also think my other photos I have done to date are just meh. Maybe they should be redone, too? Anyone have any thoughts or opinions?

Busy days

We have been busy, busy, busy. We are moving at the end of the month which is BUSY all in itself. It was also the girly’s birthday this week. She turned 4 and we took her on a super adventure. It was great fun! Four is such a great age (although I have been saying this about each age she has been, ha ha).

Last week I was working on a big custom order but I haven’t had time to write about it yet due to the busy-ness. The order was for two pieces …one was 25″ by 25″ and the second one was for 22″ by 28″. These are the biggest signs I have done to date.

First, after having the hubby cut the wood to the right size, I glued the wood together. I also put cross posts on the back and hubby stapled them in with his (super scary …have I told you about my fear of power tools?) staple gun.

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The boards glued together are finally dry and ready to paint.

 

Then I painted them with CeCe Caldwell’s Dover White to give it a white wash effect. I love it for the background to my rustic signs.

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CeCe Caldwell’s Dover White paint drying on the signs.

Then it’s time to paint the words on. Here is the first sign finished before I hand sand it for the warm, well-loved rustic finish.

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The words are painted. Time to let them dry before sanding.

Both signs are done! They took way longer than I originally estimated. Estimating is hard to do the first time round. (In this case, I hadn’t yet done a sign this big and with this many words). That is all part of the learning curve in doing business though.

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And, the lady who ordered them loved them so much she sent me pictures of them in her home (and she nicely agreed to let me use them in this post)! She is the first person to do that for me and I absolutely loved seeing them. It kinda made my day. It really makes me love what I do when I can make someone so happy with what I have made custom for them!

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Oh, and I almost forgot. Fall is nearly here which means I have broken out the hook and yarn and have been crocheting up some cowls. Look for those coming soon …as soon as I can rope hubby into taking some pictures for me. (I think it looks better if cowls are displayed being worn by somebody).