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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Branching Out

My favorite custom request this year...for so many reasons.

We're coming to the close of another year, and I wanted to once again thank my wonderful customers for their continued business. I also want to thank my family and friends for the love and support as we navigated the twists and turns that came with Jonathan's recovery from the accident. We are hopefully celebrating his last surgery which took place on the 23rd. It truly is a year I gladly leave behind, but not without the hard lessons learned. I can find appreciation for the growth this year. 

I think most of us will relate with one another when I say "Hasta la vista!" to 2016, though. 

So much has changed since the days of my small office/craft room.

Many changes are coming to Inspirations by Faith and Novel Adornment as we also begin our new journey as a family in 2017. This year, I finally took the plunge and will be incorporating and expanding- laying the groundwork for a much larger scale production than I ever thought possible over these past years. It was about time I realized it was time to fish or cut bait, as my business has all but taken over the basement and some portions of the main floor of our home. Looking for a home with a dedicated large studio and office space has been a bit surreal.

And I started an Instagram account...finally. 
(My account is not terribly interesting or appealing quite yet, but I have to start somewhere and work my way into it.) 

I also had the wonderful pleasure of meeting fellow sellers on Etsy and the absolutely delightful Vanessa Bertozzi from Etsy corporate (Brooklyn, NY) as we discussed Etsy benefits and challenges for the coming new year. Vanessa's insight was invaluable, and I genuinely wish many others had the same opportunity. I have always loved Etsy, but have been met with concerns over the past couple years about where I fit in the Etsy community as the business expands. After the discussions we had in that get together, I know I still have a place there to call home. I plan on doing a lot more blogging on some of the new venues and features we will be utilizing. 

One very happy moment that came along is reconnecting with a colleague and fellow artist from my designer/teacher days. That has been a great joy to me this year. I hope to soon be able to share more about our collaboration this January.

So cheers to the coming year, and to all the big changes it will bring!


Saturday, December 24, 2016

Re-think Pressed Pennies

Okay, so if you have kidlets, you probably have a bunch of these little flattened pennies from travel, amusement parks, and field trips.  They are inexpensive, and even us stodgy adults love to watch the process of a penny being smashed and pressed into a pretty little souvenir. But then you get them home...well, then what?

Over the years I have looked at the stashes of these shiny little mementos, and wondered what the heck I was going to do with them.  Put them in a jar? Nope. Then the jar became the change dumping ground, and they became mixed together.  After that, they end up all over the house in various areas. My favorite irritation was finding them clunking away in the washing machine.

Many of you know that we usually take an annual road trip around the US.  We started collecting ornaments for each special location.  A few years back, I decided to use our smaller artificial tree (purchased for displaying my ornaments at local shows- remember when I did those???) to also display all of our travel ornaments and special handmade or colorful keepsake ornaments that don't match the silver, cream, and white decor of our living room tree. We set it up in the sunroom and surround it with all our fun Christmas creations.

That's when I had a flicker of inspiration....

So I shouted to the kids to find all the pressed pennies they could from our trips. I grabbed my thin hemp twine, and my crop-a-dile, and voila!

Just one more crop-a-dile miracle ;)

Merry Christmas!