summersgate: (eggshells)
I really like how the mini bag turned out that I made to carry the little book I want to keep track of my food in. It only took a couple hours to make it (book and bag) last night. I think this little bag would make a neat gift. If I find a friend admiring it I will make them one too. It is a good size for a cell phone or wallet. I'm not going on a diet - can't stand doing things like that - but I figure it wouldn't hurt to be more aware of what I am eating. It might change what I am eating if I am taking note of it.

This is a bag that was constructed in a similar way, but larger, that I made a couple weeks ago. I ended up not liking it with the thin strap that I put on it. I originally made the bag to carry when hiking in the summer when I wouldn't need to take along extra clothing but after I put in a bottle of water it was too heavy and the strap dug my shoulder too much. Chloe loved the bag when she saw it and I gave it to her. It would be fine with lightweight things in it.

Dave and I went early this morning and picked up our taxes from our tax lady. We owe about $700. I actually made money again last year with my business. Though I doubt this year I will be making a profit. Since I quit offering the made-to-size rings and bracelets I am not getting near as much business as before. I still wouldn't go back to making to-size things. I like making what I want, when I want and making things for fun and to my own liking - even if they don't sell right away.
summersgate: (eggshells)
"Seeing with the Heart #10" pendant - sterling, enamel on fine silver and nu-gold brass. Listing HERE

This pendant is very similar to the one I wear all the time:
Now that I see them side by side I see how different they are.

Something I have decided to change on etsy is I'm not going to automatically offer a rubber cord with every pendant anymore - some people don't use them anyway. I'm going to start listing the pendants without cords. Plus the cords don't last very long before they start to harden and shorten if you wear them everyday. They aren't a very long lasting kind of thing - that's always been a disappointment to me. If someone wants one or a sterling chain then they can add it to the order.
summersgate: (eggshells)
Last night's dream - we decided I would open up a little shop to sell things in an old trailer that sat far back in the backyard of the house next door. In reality there was a trailer there once. I got the trailer back in the days after my divorce from Pat - so I could have a space of my own while I lived with my parents. In the dream I was wondering how customers were going to get back to the "store". There is no driveway or road going back there. Dave said that in the winter he would plow it for me. I was not looking forward to spending all my days sitting in a trailer waiting for customers - customers that I doubted would ever come.

All I can think is the dream is about the fact that I am telling myself I need to get to work. I need to list more on etsy, I need to make more new jewelry, I need to finish up that mosaic and get paid. But I don't want to spend time in the house, in my room, waiting for sales, in the basement. I want to be outside or reading, in my tent or with friends and grandkids, taking photos and writing about them. It's about laziness on my part and doubt that I will even sell things. Since I quit the made-to-order jewelry (sized rings and bracelets) my sales have gone way down. If I want them to go up again I will need to sit in my room (the trailer in the dream) again fulfilling orders. Blaa.

Why do it? For the love of art. For the love of doing and making. For the love of creation. For the love of expression. Just doing it for the love of money or doing business isn't the answer for me. I seem to be in a dry spell though.
summersgate: (eggshells)
from The Alchemical Tarot

I am the one who...
...has decided it's time to make money. The figure in the card doesn't look very happy about it though. He looks a little suspicious and down trodden. My first thought at seeing those finished coins on the wall is the phrase to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. I need to look for my riches elsewhere (not in money) - let others value money - I will value love, happiness, leisure, time for kindness, creativity, expression. I go back and forth with how I see my business. I know I need to do something as a job to make money. I am drawn to my work space. I love being here in my room and feel very satisfied when I am busy. I am grateful that people want the things I make - that means I can make more of them. But I don't want to spend all my time on this either. I like to think of myself as being in semi-retirement. As always I am seeking balance in my life, because as a compulsive person it is so easy to get out of balance. It's interesting that the word business is very much like busyness. I do like to keep busy - it makes me feel good. But then it can take over and that is all I do in the day. I "do" instead of "be". I don't give myself time to do the things I say I want to do for myself like paint or draw and just express myself. As a self employed person I am the one who figures how much I will work and when I will quit each day but sometimes I am not a very smart or kind taskmaster.

~ Just a note - I'm not doing these tarot cards as a real tarot reading - I'm doing them as writing prompts to see what the images on the cards call up in my mind. It's more like I am doing a dream interpretation with them. I have put away all the guide books that came with the card decks.


Nov. 7th, 2014 09:38 am
summersgate: (eggshells)
out my front window just now (too bad there is no horse in view - would have been better with a horse)

It's snowing today - our first snow of the season. Though I don't think it will stick at all. Very "sleety".

I just don't like the fact that many times things that I ship overseas get lost. They go to customs and disappear. I have no control over it - unless I want to charge a huge amount for shipping with insurance added on and I don't want to do that. So I have decided that I'm going to give up my overseas sales. And while I was undoing those options in my etsy shop I decided I would switch to priority mail shipping within the USA instead of first class like I used to do - faster and insurance is included. But now I have to go through 150 listings and change a phrase that used to be in each one about my shipping plans. Blaa - very time consuming. Taking a little break from that at the moment. Thank goodness for music in the background to pass the time.


Jul. 17th, 2014 11:17 pm
summersgate: (eggshells)
The newest bracelet (with a turquoise stone set in the disc) on top of a pile of some of the others I have made so far Listing HERE

Had breakfast with [personal profile] kyana this morning and then we walked/rolled on the Sandy Creek Trail to the tunnel and back. Another really nice cool but sunny day! Came home and had an order for a ring set and a bracelet to make - which I finished this afternoon. This is how I wish things would always go. Orders coming in every day or so. I really do want to make a living with this jewelry. Dave is at retirement age and I will be next year but we can't really retire yet cause our social security won't be enough at all. I worry about it. I shouldn't though. Worrying doesn't help at all. But putting one foot in front of the other does help.

needle snow

Feb. 5th, 2014 02:54 pm
summersgate: (big girl camera daily)
the snow looks like little needles today

and a snow blanket building up on the spruce needles

Enameling today. And dealing with communications. Since I have decided to hide within the internet to do business I have to deal with a lot of written communications. Sometimes I'm not sure that is better than face to face communications. I guess there are always problems in communications, in everything, everywhere, at every level. I almost wish I had a little physical shop where people actually came in and I could talk to them, understand their communication style, then I could better understand what they really want and need. Though I did get a message today from a guy congratulating me on understanding what he wanted and sending him a good sketch of what I could do. But to that one person there are 2 other people out there that I am not on the same page with. Plodding along...

PS - I just now got the repaired 18 to 200 mm camera lens back - all fixed up good as new it appears.
summersgate: (eggshells)
Well, I took Calico-Pye's advice and got myself a Facebook page for my business - wasn't sure how to do that before but figured it out this afternoon. Here is a LINK. Feel free to pass that around if you like. I have always felt funny posting news of listings on my facebook - blowing my own horn on my personal page. So at least now I will know that people actually will want news of stuff if they sign up to see this page.

And here is my daily listing:
"Heaven's Gift 2" - sterling, faux-bone, amethyst, red sizzler cz Listing HERE
summersgate: (eggshells)
"Spring Thaw" necklace - sterling, merlinite (dendritic opal), moonstone, cz; black onyx and hematite. Listing HERE

Just checked the time and it took 2 hours to list this. No wonder I am resistant to doing this part of the business. It means taking the time to take photos, process them, save them, write copy for the listing and then check it for errors over and over, tweaking it. But there isn't an easier way (for me). I really don't want to go to craft shows with the jewelry or go around to galleries and gift shops and do all that social hassle so there you are - I need to ACCEPT it and just DO IT - etsy is my venue. I'm thinking maybe I could speed things up if one day a week I did the photography for 6 of them at one time and wrote all the copy that day too and then it might be easy in the next week to just plug the photos and words into the listings. Maybe I could get the job down to something I could do in (less than?) a half an hour each day, the rest of the days that week. Maybe I will try that out. Efficiency!
summersgate: (Default)

Hmmmm.... What did I do today? Seems like one of those days where I didn't get anything done. Oh, I did do some sorting of books in the basement. Found old letters from 1973 from a girl who was my best friend, but since then we have fallen away from each other. Still friendly when we see each other on the street but we both know that we won't be following up with a real visit. Reading it made me consider giving her a call, but I didn't - better to just leave it alone I guess. The other letter was from another very good friend, Jimmy Z. We went to high school together, my best male friend. The letter was from just before he left to go out west. He was sick of PA and Polk Center where we both worked. He lived in CO for maybe a couple years, found a woman he was to marry but suddenly died - of a sinus infection of all things. Died so young, only about 25. Also found a letter from a hypnotherapist that I had seen once to help me with depression. He took notes of our session and what I had said - reading it brought all that back.This process of going through old things - so many memories reawakened. But it's good to see how far I've come. I have made progress in life and the issues that used to bother me. They aren't gone, maybe they will never be gone but they are better.

At 1 pm I had a lunch date with my friend David Z, (who ironically is the brother of my friend Jimmy Z that I just wrote about). Ate at the Chinese Buffet and then went to get some more plastic bins for storing stuff in the basement. Went to his house and I helped him freeze a wart on his dog, Halley Mae's forehead. Never did that before but it seems a good way to get rid of a wart - instead of messing with Compound W.

Back home and Dave and I took all the furniture out of mom's old room (the room Chloe has been using) - now Jules can paint it freshly to be Sebby and Rossy's future room. I got an etsy order for a ring set. Back in the first of May I took everything off etsy that needed made to order (all the rings) cause I didn't want to have that worrying me while I was trying to get the studio moved but about 2 days ago I put the rings back up for sale again. It's good that business has picked up - I'm ready to go back to work.

Came over to my studio and fiddled around a little, worked in the basement a tiny bit more too and then took a big nap. Got up and have been puttering at the workbench till now. So I guess I did do something today. It's funny that a day can go by and seem empty till you think about it.

count down

Apr. 21st, 2013 12:32 am
summersgate: (eggshells)
Time is running out in this house. We are going on a little vacation next weekend to Charleston for Dave's niece's wedding and when we get home from that it will be moving time. I will be putting my etsy shop in vacation mode for the trip and then leaving it that way till the move is over. I am hoping I will have my studio set back up and be able to go back to work again in a month. There are a few things I need to get done before everything gets turned upside down for the duration - 2 ring commissions and stone that needs polished and some other one of a kind things that are already started. I should put the shop in vacation mode right now so I don't get any more orders I suppose.

9 days left in this room - so much stuff to deal with! (see milo in lower right corner?)

I have pretty much decided I want a loft bed with a desk underneath it like this one for my new studio. I want to put my computer and business books etc under there and reserve my window table space for painting, art and jewelry work. I already spend too much time on the computer and maybe by putting it in a hole I will not want to spend so much time there - get in and out quick. I have procrastinated doing ANYthing for the move so far - leaving it ALL to do when we get back. But I am doing inner work - thinking - planning - imagining. And I'm not beating myself up about the fact I haven't done any prep work yet. That is a plus. I figure, when it's time, it will be time and it's not time yet. My slogan is "Easy Does It". Truly I think I am finally getting to the point that I am getting excited about the idea of dealing with this stuff and going to a new place where things will be more organized.

fresh look

Mar. 20th, 2013 04:01 pm
summersgate: (eggshells)
a polymer clay picture bead bracelet like this one all packed up and ready to go

All set now with my new packaging. I got these little black organza bags and a square of anti-tarnish material to put in each bag with the jewelry. Plus I am adding a second clear plastic bag to hold a polishing pad (with a slip of paper with my info on it so that if they want to find me later they can) that I have always included - but before the jewelry went in the plastic bag with the polishing pad - now they are separate. I also needed new mailing boxes and this time I got ones wrapped in brown paper instead of the more generic white boxes I used to use. I hope it will be as much fun for the customer to open as it has been for me to package it.

my qr code

Jan. 5th, 2013 08:24 pm
summersgate: (eggshells)

Huh! I never knew for sure what these were before and now I have one! Cool - takes you to my WTS website. Now what to do with it? Put it on my business card?
summersgate: (Default)
Winged Hope's Seed" - sterling, scrimshawed "faux bone" (plastic), Montana agate Listing HERE

This was a pendant I made quite a few years ago - for some reason it just never found a home, though it is one of my favorites.

The gallery shop lady emailed back and said that they have run out of funds for their holiday purchases. Is that just a nice way of saying she thinks my things are too expensive? I don't think they are. I might be trying to read things into it that may not be there. Anyway - I'm going to see it as something good - I can get more for them if I market them myself and get the retail difference instead of selling them to her at wholesale.

I kept myself busy today working on the new pendant - taking photos as I went along. I'll post all the photos later in my blog with a story about fabrication but here is one photo I liked:
hand tools

I could keep working and on other days I might have, but today I think I am going to pretend I have a 9 to 5 job and it's over now - time to do nothing for the rest of the day. Eat dinner, watch TV.
summersgate: (Default)
I didn't do any new etsyizing the last 2 days (so you have been spared my promotion of new items) but I did work on my business both those days freshening up the listings and changing my shipping prices. I took new photos of many things and cleaned up the words. I also took photos of 10 things that I thought the galley gift shop in Indiana might like. I felt uncomfortable with consignment but told the manager that I would be willing to do wholesale instead and she agreed. Now we will see how many of those things she wants to purchase. And I have a new commission for a pendant with an angel face. The customer has requested that I take photos of it's progress - would like to show her friends how it is made - so that is the next thing up on my to-do list. It will be fun to chronicle it's progress and maybe I will for once be inspired to put something on my official wood thrush studio blog.

life is intricate and complicated - some parts are growing while other parts are dying...
summersgate: (i am in here)
I am being called upon to be normal - something I am not that good at. If I was called upon to be strange, quiet, weepy, withdrawn, moody, melancholy, a second-guesser and defeated I could handle that quite well.

I had a conversation with our friend Jim at his art show tonight and the words "identity" came up. Maybe that is the problem - my identity as a caregiver who really didn't have to earn a living is gone now and I need to get with my new "identity" as a self representing artist. The funny thing is that really it IS going well - sales really have picked up since I have been working harder - it does look like it's going to be successful as a business. Sometimes though I think I fear success as much as I fear failure. Anyway... I have been in one of my moods and I'm sure it will pass - and probably pass sooner since I have written about it.

Some photos I took tonight with the new Sony TX9:

candle on a painted table top

dancer on a wall

Nancy at Jim's show

The Byson Band at the Bossa Nova

I really love the size of the camera - it's going to be a keeper. Though the focusing mechanism will take some getting used to. You are supposed to use the touch screen to choose where you want the focus. I am more used to pushing the shutter button half way down to get the focus spot and then recomposing the picture after that.

Yesterday I finished 2 pendants. One really neat commission I made for [profile] kick_galvanic - it illustrates the story of Persephone:
Life Regeneration Marriage - sterling, brass hands, ceramic face, copper pomegranate, Orissa garnet and black onyx

And I finished this pendant too:
Regeneration From Within - sterling, pyrite cabochon, brass sun, pressed glass snake and black onyx drop at the bottom Listing HERE


Nov. 4th, 2012 02:04 pm
summersgate: (Default)
Woke up still thinking about the sun as a subject for jewelry and this piece seemed to be where it was taking me today:

"Our Sun - One Star Among Many" - brass, sterling and white cz star - *edited* sold already - to Nancy's mom!

I did my listing so now it's free time for the rest of the day. I only have one rule in my new life (working my new "job") - I have to make a listing a day. I don't HAVE to work at my workbench each day but I figure I probably will anyway (cause I like to) so I don't need a rule to tell myself to. I wish the weather was better - so, so very tired of this dark, cloudy, cold weather. Anyway... I'm going to drive Johnny back to college in a while and take him shopping on the way. He wants some work-out clothes as a birthday present.
summersgate: (Default)
"Firmament Obscura" pendant - sterling, enamel on fine silver, ceramic face, black onyx and white CZ Check it out HERE

My goal - list something everyday on etsy. Yeah, I know, I have had this goal before and it fell away but now it is important that I really do it - our income depends on it. Since I don't have the job of taking care of mom anymore this is my new job and I really need to be serious about it. So get used to seeing me promoting my listings every day! Hope you don't mind...

road sun

Aug. 9th, 2012 04:42 pm
summersgate: (Default)
sun in the trees near falling run trail

The kids and I went back to Boat Launch #3 this morning to check on Gertrude. She is still there and seems fine. Though she is alone - we didn't see any other geese there. Some fishermen said they saw her flying earlier - when they first arrived she ran and flew towards them. She followed us a little way but wasn't that interested in us and turned back to eat something she found in the grass. I will keep checking on her.

I finally got the business and tax bookwork done that was hanging over my head. So now I feel free to do jewelry work again. I have an order for a stack ring set and am making a new dragonfly - this one with a face. I also finished preparing (with collage and painted pages) a new goatshed journal to write in - I've been productive. Yay!
summersgate: (OPADI)

one photo a day inside - mom's chair

This is the second day in a row that I have had a "pajama day" - a day where I don't get dressed or go outside. I don't know what's going on but I am so tired that I just sleep every chance I get all day. As soon as I get mom back to bed for her naps, I'm in bed too. Mom has a cold, Roswell too (staying home from school with me today). Blaa...

I did get my sales tax work done last night - yay! And I will probably get my income tax stuff tallied today too. That's my focus for now and that's enough.


summersgate: (Default)

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