Give Aways

Friday, August 17, 2012

SHOP FEATURE - august 17th, 2012 - cJoyOriginals

we are tickled pink to feature the lovely Carol from cJoyOriginals today!  pull up a chair, check out her beautiful designs and then shop with her exclusive DDH coupon code!

What made you decide to start your shop?
I have been creating jewelry since I was in college.  I started out making jewelry for myself, and as gifts for family and friends.  Then, I started selling some of my jewelry to friends and co-workers.  People loved my jewelry and told me I should find an outlet to sell my jewelry to others.  Then a couple years ago, a friend told me about Etsy.  After checking it out, I got very excited about the possibility of selling my jewelry online.  I spent some time checking out what Etsy was all about, and then decided to go for it!  My shop has been open for just over a year now, and it has been such an exciting adventure!

What kind of products do you sell?
I make one-of-a-kind handmade jewelry - necklaces, bracelets and earrings.  I like to make jewelry that is stylish and fashionable, but affordable.  I enjoy doing custom jewelry, too.  I have had a number of customers request special pieces, and I have enjoyed customizing jewelry or making special items for people.  I am thinking of designing some other things in the future, such as keychains, scissors fobs, and maybe eyeglass chains.

What is your favorite shop accomplishment so far?
One of the most exciting moments for me was having my first repeat customer.  A woman bought a necklace from me, and about two weeks later, there was another order from her.....she bought another necklace!  That was a wonderful feeling!  But honestly, no matter how many sales I have, every time I sell a piece of jewelry, my heart jumps and I get so excited!  I love that my jewelry is being worn by people all over the United States.  And I am just starting to ship internationally.....I recently sent my first orders to Canada.

What is your biggest challenge as an online/etsy seller?
I am just starting to learn about the social using that helps people to find my shop and how I can use it to help me to market and sell my jewelry.  It can be a bit daunting sometimes to someone who is a bit "old-fashioned" and not as familiar with all the wonders of modern technology, but I am learning.....and it is an exctiing part of the process!

What is the top selling item in your shop?
I pride myself on making one-of-a-kind jewelry, so no piece will ever be identical to another (.....unless that would be a special request from someone directly).  But, I do have some styles of jewelry that I design that have been very popular.  Some of the favorites of my buyers are my multi-chain necklaces:, my lobster clasp charm necklaces:,  and my front toggle charm necklaces:

Do you have a tip for others selling in the online community?
I have learned how important it is to have good photography of your items in your shop.  The way I photograph my jewelry has changed and evolved so much over the year that my shop has been open, and I have had to be willing to let go of my original ideas, keep an open mind, and do what works.  It has been quite a learning experience, but making the changes has made my photography so much better!  My basic photography tips are: 1) keep it simple and focus on your items, without too much extra clutter;  2) lighter backgrounds tend to work best, in most cases;  3) try to use all five of the photos you have available to give different views of your items; and 4) use photos that are in focus so that people can see the beauty of your items.  I believe that good photography is a crucial part of success!

Do you have a crafting resource/handmade blog/shop that you go to?  If so, what is it?
There is a great online vendor,, where I get a lot of my beads and supplies.  They have great tutorials and design ideas, along with resources like color guides, too.  They also have some kind of sale or special going at any given time......LOVE good sales!  PLUS, they offer Free Shipping on any order over $10 (in the U.S., and they have great international shipping rates, too).  That is a great bonus!  Also, I am continually impressed by the wonderful creativity of my fellow Etsy artists, and I am always getting inspiration from what I see in other shops.  Etsy has a great community of artists that are willing to share their ideas and knowledge with others.  If you ask someone on Etsy how they do something or where they got something, I have found that they are always willing and excited to share what they know with others.  That is so wonderful and appreciated!  And my most favorite resources are the MANY, MANY wonderful shops that sell jewelry supplies on Etsy......although they are very dangerous for this admitted bead, chain and charm freak!!

What are you currently working on?
 I just started designing some bib necklaces, and I am enjoying experimenting with those new designs.  Then, of course, I'm thinking ahead and just starting to create some new jewelry for Christmas and the holidays.  That will be coming up fast!

Carol - we are so excited to see what else you come up with!  and now, DDH enthusiasts, you can use the exclusive code DAILYDOSE20 for a whopping 20% off!  the code is valid until 9/15/12.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Memories of Summertime - Crafting Challenge Entries!

we are so thrilled to present the entries for this month's design challenge - Memories of Summertime!  please feel free to vote for your favorite on the sidebar - and get as many people as you can to vote as well!  tweet, blog, pin... spread the word on our talented artists!

Carol's entry - "When I saw these wonderful bright colored buttons earlier this summer, I knew I had to make a fun bracelet with them.  The bright neon colors and the wonderful flower shapes just made me smile!  I created this playful and fun bracelet recently and was so happy with how it turned out.  I think it just screams "SUMMER FUN"!

Colleen's entry - "I love the shore!  I could almost smell the ocean while I painted this blue heron.  This is acrylic on a 5" x 5" archival canvas."

Julie's entry (  - "Inspired by weekends at the beach, this Beaded Leather Wrap Bracelet is made with 4mm gold glass beads carefully wrapped on 1.0 mm dark brown leather cording with beautiful flower button closure.  Totally great for your inner beach goddess!"

Karen's entry - "For the challenge, I did a series of 3 paintings on driftwood slices to capture memories of summers at the beach. The driftwood slices are about 6" long and 3" wide and I painted two of them with oil paints.  One is "The Sighting," of a whale seen off the beach and the other is "Catching Waves," or body-surfing at Santa Cruz, which my brothers and I did every summer.  The third slice had such a beautiful flow to the wood I didn't want to paint it.  But it had a natural hole, so I glued a watercolor on the back so you see it through the hole--like a secret cove in the distance.  I added a layer of crystal glaze over the watercolor to give it a liquid look, and added the tiny brass sea stars."

Lisa's entry - "This is a garden ball I made that made me think of summer.  All of the shells (except those tiny white ones) were collected by me on my family vacation on Long Beach Island, NJ this past June.  It was a labor of love, for sure :)"

Mary's entry ( - "This adorable little hedgehog is one of my new 'Dreaming Trees' creations!
The dreaming trees theme centers around a cute little Fiscars tree punch! Each design starts with a foundational drawing with detailed features and a colored body background. I then create prints of the design, cut them out, decoupage it onto wood or recycled cardboard base and then cover specific areas in trees to simulate spines, feathers, manes, bushy tails etc... Trees are punched from scrapbook papers and recycled magazines."

Rebecca's entry - "Memories of the clear sea. This necklace is named for Salacia.  In Roman mythology, Salacia was the salt water sea goddess and wife of Neptune. The stunning 8mm turquoise, clear and black Preciosa Czech beads are befitting a goddess. Not to be outshone are 6mm black Swarovski Pearls and 4mm black and clear Swarovski Crystals.  The glass pendant on this spectacular necklace is a vibrant turquoise, black and copper focal sure to grab attention."

Reshma's entry - "The Aquamarine Blue Bracelet - Summer is the time when you head to the beach. This is a bracelet that I made in shades of blue, aquamarine, sky blue and deep cobalt blue with hints of gold. A bracelet that can be worn with other bangles/bracelets as part of a stacked bracelet -  to the beach or summer soirees! Beads used are czech rondelles and czech matte finish beads. Bracelet ends in a pewter togglle and clasp for ease of wear."

Friday, August 10, 2012

SHOP FEATURE - august 10th, 2012 - HappyWalrus

we can think of nothing better than a big ol' floppy sunhat in the dog days of summer... and no one makes 'em better than Emma over at HappyWalrus!  enjoy the Q & A with Emma and then head on over to her shop to take advantage of her exclusive DDH discount code! 

What made you decide to start your shop?
I started Happy Walrus as a way to sell the excess of hats I started making and as a response to all the people who kept asking me where I got my girls’ hats from. My hope is to not only give myself a new creative outlet, but also to help other parents enable and encourage their kids to show off their individuality. Society often puts pressure on us to fit a standard mold and go with the flow, but it is important for us to identify who we are as individuals - what drives us, what excites us, what are we passionate about. Wearing a hat with a pattern that we can look at and smile about is such a small, simple way to bring joy and a sense of individuality to the life of a child. That is why I love doing custom orders. When parents tell me what their children love and ask for a hat matching their son’s or daughter’s interest, I feel honored to get to make that hat for them.

What kind of products do you sell?
I sell children's hats in three styles - beret, sashed bucket hat, and appliqued bucket hat - plus a few purses to coordinate with the hats. I like to keep it simple and experiment within those styles to show how similar things can really be different and individual. I'll use the same pattern 20 times and get 20 totally different hats.

What is your favorite shop accomplishment so far?
My favorite shop accomplishments are the positive feedbacks I have gotten. I don't just crank out hats and then forget about them. I make them imagining them being worn and loved. It is really rewarding to hear back from customers telling me their children love the hats and are really using them. That is the best part of selling on Etsy, I think.

What is your biggest challenge as an online/etsy seller?
The biggest challenge is getting my stuff out there. I am constantly tweaking things from how I photograph to how I tag my items to try to get more views. People can't fall in love with my hats if they never see them. Over the last year I have been able to increase my views and sales, but it has been very gradual. A smaller challenge is just finding time to really build this business as much as I would like. My machine isn't really portable, so I have to be in my sewing room to work. That doesn't go over so well in the summer when my daughters want me to be taking them to the park.

What is the top selling item in your shop?
Custom order bucket hats are definitely one of the top selling items with medium (20ʺ) bucket hats a close second.

Do you have a tip for others selling in the online community?
Find something you enjoy making and stick with it. It takes time to build a name, but if you are consistent and people know what you sell, down the road they will come back to you for that product. I am a repeat shopper for Etsy shops that specialize in one or two things because I know, ʺI need more soap...soapilyeverafter sells that,ʺ or ʺYasya needs more snack bags....littlebughouse sells that.ʺ

Do you have a crafting resource/handmade blog/shop that you go to?  If so, what is it?
I spend way too much time browsing pinterest for ideas. I love looking at what colors and patterns people are repinning. I get inspired to then go to the fabric shop and try to match it.

What are you currently working on?
I am wrapping up a couple more bucket hats, and then I will start working on some new berets for the fall - corduroy lined with satin, flannel lined with fleece, and faux fur gallore!

thank you so much, emma! and now for the discount - use the code DDH15 at the HappyWalrus and save 15% storewide! (expires Sept 10th, 2012)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

win it wednesday - Sybillinart!

this week's 'win it wednesday' is in partnership with the lovely Sybillinart!  we are so happy to help her cross-promote her PROMO GAME giveaway here on the Daily Dose!  the easy to enter details are as follows:

you MUST be a subscriber to the Daily Dose of Handmade
you MUST be a follower on Twitter!  (@DDofHandmade)

Click HERE to go straight to Sybillinart's fabulous BLOG and post that you did these things - and check out her promo game activities!  easy peasy, right?  her contest closes August 31st and has TWO surprise prizes!  so go now!

we are also sending out huge congrats to the winner of last week's giveaway, hosted by the terrific DelicateByNature...


karen - email us at so we can chat about getting you your awesome soap!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Win it Wednesday - 1 August featuring Delicate by Nature

********************** THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED *******************

Ok bath and beauty fanatics! We have an amazing giveaway for you this week!!!!  Etsy's DelicatebyNature is giving away three full bars of handmade soap!
The three scents featured are: green clover and aloe, oatmeal milk and honey, and the new Soapoo shampoo bar (Lemon, black pepper and sandalwood).  Total value of $23.75!!!

It is time to enter this fabulous giveaway!  I can say first hand that I LOVE soaps by DelicatebyNature!

To Enter (Open World Wide). Be sure to enter a separate comment for each entry that you complete (1-7):
1. Sign up for the Daily Dose of Handmade Newsletter.
2. Follow Daily Dose of Handmade on Twitter.
3. Heart DelicatebyNature on Etsy.
4. Like on  DelicatebyNature Facebook.
5. Follow  DelicatebyNature  on Twitter.
6. Follow DelicatebyNature  Pinterest.
7. Tweet this giveaway (be sure to add @ddofhandmade). Daily entry.

Good luck! One lucky winner will be announced next Tuesday!