Imagination Emporium
April 4, 2012

I am very excited to announce that my aunt Lisa has opened up her own retail store in Grafton, North Dakota called Imagination Emporium. The store will feature all sorts of beautiful home decor, decorating, and apparel items, some purchased and some handmade. Not only does my aunt have great taste, but she’s also got a really keen eye for displays and merchandising, and I have no doubt her store will do very well. My mom and I were invited to contribute to the stash inside, and we had a great time sewing and crafting together in preparation.  We were able to get three boxes mailed out by the end of last week! It felt GREAT, especially as I was able to send off some creations that have been sitting around my apartment for a while.  While it would be nice to have a few extra dollars coming in each month, I ultimately just want to show my support by helping the fill her shelves. Any earnings are just a great bonus! Also, now I can add to my creative resume that I have several wares for sale in an actual shop!

The first two photos here are ones I received via text showing the excitement of setting up the store.

And now, a photo dump of all the handicrafts I am sending:

adult sized slippers

This is a slipper pattern my grandma taught me, and it was the first project I learned after learning the basic stitches of knitting. She used to make these slippers for her own children, and then all the grand-children… I’d guess she’s made at least 20 pair just for our family. She can’t really knit anymore because it’s too hard on her hands – and these are knit in double strand, on size 8 needles, it’s tough on my own hands! In fact, I’d like to take this opportunity to brag that I actually have developed a knitting callous on my left pinky. Now that is what I called hardcore knitting!

baby slippers

I’s hard to see the proportions here, but these booties are only about 4″ long, while the adult slippers are about 10″. I adapted this pattern from the adult sized slippers. These are an excellent way to use up yarn that is leftover from other projects.

crochet flower headbands

The pattern for these flowers and leaves comes from this book, “100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet.” I believe I have posted about it before. This is an excellent book for creating realistic and detailed flowers for all types of embellishing on projects. The patterns range from beginner to advanced, and the instructions are detailed, including symbolic diagrams. The author, Lesley Stanfield, has created a similar book called “75 Birds, Butterflies, & Little Beasts to Knit and Crochet” that is equally cute and fun.

The flowers on these headbands are made from nice wool yarns that I bought at a garage sale this past summer. The seller had them in medium sized bundles for 25 cents each. I think she was a weaver, but she had no use for them anymore. The colors are just amazing together!

crochet flower pins

This is the same knitted flower pattern as above, but made with a thinner yarn (actually, the yarn I got from Goodwill in this post!) I made leaves for these too, and glued them onto hair clips. My mom was thinking that these flower headbands would be a hit for girls for Easter.

I cut little felt discs to glue on the back, to hide the hot glue and the clip.

Everything looks more legit when you put it in a plastic bag with a price tag on it!

covered button bobby pins

These next barrettes you may recognize from a holiday bazaar I did about a year and a half ago. I was really excited to be able to send these, because since the bazaar they have essentially been in storage. I thought about listing them at my Etsy store, but since there is such a large amount it would be very time consuming to take pictures of them all, and potentially expensive in listing fees, especially if they didn’t sell. I also think they really are best presented in person, and it’s more fun for a potential customer to look through them all together and choose their favorites. I’m very excited to see how these do in the store.

I tried to use all different, fun fabrics, and all sizes of buttons, so there’s bound to be a pattern and style to interest everyone!

bow bobbies

these are just some fun little bow pins I made from glittery ribbon I got at JoAnns.

I will update this blog with updates about the store’s success, so stay tuned! in the meantime, Click here to ‘like’ Imagination Emporium on facebook and show your support!

Holiday Bazaar Tabling
November 27, 2010

The bazaar went so well! I met a lot of great people, including one lady who recognized me from my work whom I’ve helped before, ha! She also had a table. There was a real diverse selection of products for sale, from cookware, scarves, jewelry, and Christmas items.  While the tabling deposit was a little steep (for me at least, I mean I’m definitely still a “small time” tabler) I still made out pretty good in sales after recovering that deposit. While of course, first and foremost, for me it’s all about the crafts and the process of making them and keeping busy, it’s always nice to come home with a small wad of cash to spend on more supplies, and new endeavors!

I slaved for weeks preparing for this bazaar. I got the idea for my biggest project about a month ago, when we had a great sale with a ton of coupons at work. I loaded up on covered buttons and eighths of fabric, and set to work making these barrette sets. They were my biggest hit by far at the bazaar. It was interesting because most of the shoppers were older ladies, and a lot of them kept saying “oh, these would be so cute for my daughter/granddaughter/friends 9 year old” etc. All the fabrics I chose were fun, bright, and defined prints, and I guess some would consider them more juvenile. But I would wear any of them! It’s just interesting to see what kind of audience you think you are preparing for, and who actually ends up favoring your style. I would like to do at least one more bazaar before Christmas, and I’ve discovered I need to try and target an audience with younger teen girls and women with daughters.

I developed a pretty good system for the barrettes – I’d cut all my circles out, then line them up to make the buttons, then line them up to attach the pins… I love setting up assembly lines!

I’m completely proud to say that I made the design for this packaging in Microsoft paint.  While I’ve had a few changes to work with Photoshop and InDesign at school when I was working on the literary magazine, but at home I have little to no budget in terms of technology so I’m always trying to find ways to make due  with what I got. Someday when I’m sure I’m a successful artist and business woman with my own studio and one of these keeping me warm at night, I’ll let myself splurge on a great camera and software to make everything look professional. But for now, Tim Gunn would be proud, I’m “makin’ it work!”

A secondary project for this bazaar I dreamed up are these knitted and crocheted flower headbands. I absolutely love this book and used it in several ideas for designs. I then added some beads to give the pieces a little more texture, and glued them onto headbands using felt circles.

These were absolutely a last minute idea, created the night before the bazaar. I got glittery holiday picks in the floral section of a craft store, cut off the stems, and sprayed them with a coating to keep the glitter in place.

And now, the table! I divided my table in half, with hair things on one side and a sampling of everything else I have made on the other.  As an afterthought I think next time I will devote most of my table to hair things, as they seemed to be the big sellers, and I think my table was so full of stuff that it was a little overwhelming.

To create these headband holders, I covered oatmeal canisters with purple velvet, and pinned them so they look a little drape-y. You can see on the left I also included some feather pad headbands I have made as well.

I dotted the table with a few crocheted friends to keep it approachable, ha.

I look forward to setting up for more bazaars, I’ll post more updates when you can expect to see me out and about!

WL Holiday Bazaar
November 12, 2010

…I have been slaving away the last few weeks in preparation for this saturday’s Holiday Bazaar in West Linn.

If by chance you are in the neighborhood, you should stop by! I am debuting my two newest endeavors:
bobby pins made out of covered buttons, and headbands with crocheted and beaded flowers on them!
I’ll also have most of my old favorites, like lucky feather beaded pendants, some resin pendants, my beat writers nb series, blank journals, gemstone rings, and some feather headbands as well. A little of everything!

I’ll post pics of my table setup and new products sometime this weekend. Please stop by and say hi if you get a chance! Even my grandma will be there.