Saturday, November 30, 2013

Shop open for an extra week.

Thankfully I have had freelance design work this week so can now keep my etsy shop open for definite until December the 8th. I may be able to stay open until Christmas just have to find out the rules from the Jobcentre, as I had to claim Benefits for about 6 weeks there. That imposes restrictions on what you can earn and having something sell from my online shop would have caused even more reams of paperwork and a corresponding drop in the benefits, so it was just simpler to keep the shop closed until design work came in. All very confusing and frustrating in the lead up to Christmas.

I have been filling a batch of hat commissions in the evenings also and now they are finished will be working on new stock for the shop and my own dolls too. I hope to have some bags and brooches (for big dollies like you and me) ready by the end of next week too, so look out for those! :o)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Shop opening for Christmas!

Yay, I have opened my etsy shop again this evening and will be adding more stock over the next few days as I finish and photograph new items :o)

Sadly, due to my ongoing financial woes, I am just signing off benefits for a few days to do some freelance design work unless things really pick up and I can go back to regular self-employment. I am keeping the shop open until December the 1st and do not know if I will be able to open again before Christmas as everything is so up in the air right now. So should you stop by my little shop and see something you like, please don't delay to avoid disappointment.

I will also be listing some Gift Vouchers! Buy the BJD lover in your life a Gift Voucher and I will make them up a Top Hat, they can choose from a selection of fabrics and trims and so the hat will be unique to them :o)

Tomorrow I will show you a range of Custom Hats that I am finishing this evening, ready to send to their new homes!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Let it SNOW!!!!

Gggrrrr, why can't I get any of the snow effect gifs to work on my blog? I changed the background to pale blue but still couldn't see any flakes... Last night it began to snow here but soon changed to rain so I went from elation to "Doh" just the same as I have with this gif business :o(

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Pooh Cornered!

I just did something really stupid. It is very sunny today and while my back was bad I didn't do that much house work, so my little cat Georgie has set about "carpeting" all my lovely wooden flooring with his fur... not to mention most of the kitchen surfaces too. He isn't allowed on them of course, it's just that he is a nervous sort and jumps at the slightest thing, this causes him to emit fluff in fright (and sometimes the odd fishy parp!) and later it settles on anything in it's downward trajectory, including me...

ANYWAY, this morning I decided to get dusting and cleaning and disinfecting, etc... you know the drill. So lastly I get out the old Mop & Bucket. I started mopping at the front door and worked backwards, right up to the kitchen sink at the back of the house, and that is where I realised I had done a Winnie The Pooh and painted myself into a corner... doh! I couldn't even reach the kettle. I stayed there for about 5 mins (funny how slowly a watched floor dries) until a puzzled Georgie walked in with muddy paws and set about sniffing and love-facing every corner of his newly clean home... he'd just got it how he likes it and I'd ruined things. Decided to admit defeat and followed him round erasing paw marks then made that cup of tea. You've got to know when you are beat ;o)

Friday, November 8, 2013

New Hats available in the shop

The new batch of hats are available in the shop now. All are completely handmade with traditional hat making techniques and materials despite their tiny size. They are mainly hand stitched too, i have the blood loss and sore fingers to prove it!

Due to my current circumstances I am only opening the shop this weekend, so if you see something you like, you have today, Saturday and Sunday to purchase. Thanks for looking :o)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

New hats available on Friday

I will be reopening my etsy shop on Friday for the weekend and there will be a stock of new BJD hats for sale. There will be more preview photos of the hats here and on Flickr tomorrow and Friday. The shop will only open for the 3 days so if you see anything you like, get in quick ;o)

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Catch 22...

I'm stuck in a bit of a catch 22 situation at the moment. During the year I have been working long hours trying to get a big (for me anyway) stash of hats and bags, dolls and whatnots ready for the Christmas season so that I could make some impact by doing a mass listing on etsy and hopefully actually make some decent sales before the end of the year.

But crafting is always a precarious way to make money and have I always earned my rent and paid my bills by doing freelance design work. This year has been HARD... design work has gradually become scarcer as this recession drags on and on, but my bills have kept getting bigger and bigger. The cost of living in the UK has skyrocketed! Utility bills seem to have doubled and the astronomical rise in my weekly food bill has become a little hard to believe, am I eating for 5 suddenly of does everything cost so much more? Of course, I live out in the country, and the nearest places to shop are the big supermarkets (you know the ones that conveniently promise to match each others inflated prices?) and the cost of petrol eats up any savings I could make travelling to cheaper stores.

I saw on Autumn Watch last night (lured by the promise of seeing something cute live in the studio - Nick Baker!) that this year we have a bumper harvest of berries, nuts, mushrooms and so on, to keep our fluffy/feathered friends in good eating for the coming Winter. Well, much as I love wildlife, b*gger the Badgers, they will need to fight me off as I forage for windfalls in the hedgerows of Caerwys, I am swapping my Nigella cookbook for a Ray Mear's guide to how not to poison yourself while making Muffins from moss and Lichen Lollipops - a girl's gotta eat!

Now I have run out of work and savings at the same time so have had to sign on for benefits, and had to close my etsy shop because I can't make sales AND claim benefits at the same time. I feel I am not far away from becoming a character in an Erskin Caldwell novel (but with higher standards of hygiene and morals of course!). I also had lined up some craft fairs for the Christmas period and now don't know if I will be able to do them. So pretty much everything is on hold until I have found a part time job which brings in enough to cover the rent each month or my investigation of Working Tax Credits proves a bit more fruitful. I think the best approach is to keep my fingers crossed and post preview pics of the items I HOPE I will be able to put up for sale shortly. I will keep you posted.

So, that's cooking Nigella style - OUT, Ray Mears style forraging - IN.... and some Nick Baker for Eye Candy (he's the one on the left by the way)...