Wednesday, September 29, 2010

{ new feature and a giveaway!!! }

I'm so excited to share that I'm the featured etsy designer this week on the Sprinkles blog by Cupcake Mag. This has been in the works for a few months, and Casi has been great to work with. Please go check out her awesome blog to learn a little more about me and how my little business got it's start. Plus, I'm giving away a $50 gift certificate to Olive and Ollie on etsy for one lucky reader, so jump on over and enter to win. The giveaway runs through October 6th. Good luck!

Thank you again, Casi and your team! You all are the best!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

{ the creative connection event -- part 2 -- the handmade market }

The next part of our adventure at The Creative Connection Event that I want to share with you was my booth in the HandMade Market. I don't usually do craft shows, and in fact, this was only the second one that I've ever done. I worked all summer building inventory, which was a challenge with the volume of sales in my etsy shop, but I wanted to have a strong presence there. I actually brought my sewing machine to Minneapolis because I needed it for one of my classes, but I was glad to have it because I ended up doing some last minute work in my mobile Olive and Ollie studio. Or, in other words, my hotel room.

My sister Kate and I did a lot of prep work in our hotel room, tagging the clothes, and ironing things that needed it, so when we went down to the exhibit hall, all we really needed to do was set up. She was such a great help, and even ran to the Target up the street on a last minute trip to buy a second clothing rack. Here's what the booth looked like on Wednesday evening, for the preview.

In addition to my standard designs, I made some modern patchwork scarves and hung them from a vintage quilt rack. I loved the pop of color that they provided on the white table top. This project is really simple and quick and I'm thinking of making a tutorial for them later this fall.

I thought my booth looked ok, but I really felt that it was lacking something. So, I decided to pull the curtains back on the side. Since I was on a corner, there wasn't another booth directly to my right, so I opened up the curtain on that side, which helped a bit.

Then, like I often do, I had an idea pop into my head about 6 am the following morning, to run a clothes line on the two open sides of the booth, and hang some garments from it with clothes pins. Great idea, right? Of course, I didn't have any of those supplies with me, but thank goodness for the Target up the road. After the meet and greet coffee in the morning, I ran up the street and luckily found just what I was looking for. I really think that simple change added so much to my booth.

All in all, I had a great experience at the HandMade Market. I met some amazing people there, including so many talented artisans and designers. But the highlight of the event was when Nancy Soriano, one of the creators of The Creative Connection, and a personal hero of mine, interviewed me for F&W Media's new website, which is scheduled to go live next month. Can you believe it? I couldn't, and in fact I'm still kind of pinching myself. Nancy was so gracious and kind, and had even chosen some of my designs to be featured on her appearance on the local Minneapolis NBC affiliate. You can see the video here by clicking on the icon to the right in the link.

Honestly, as I said before, I'm still pinching myself about everything that happened last week. And I'm so honored to have had such an amazing experience at The Creative Connection Event.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

{ the creative connection event--part 1--the road trip }

I just returned from the most amazing experience ever,The Creative Connection Event. Oh my, I don't even know where to begin, so I think I'll start with the road trip. I was an attendee of the event, as well as a vendor in the HandMade Market, so the best thing for me to do was drive from Cincinnati to Minneapolis. Yes, drive. For those who know me, I'm not too fond of driving, and I've never driven that far. I had originally planned on traveling with a couple of people to break up the driving, but I ended up only going with my sister, who is 18 years old, and therefor too young to drive the rented van.

All I can say is thank goodness for satellite radio.

Because we had to drive about 720 miles. One way. But, we saw some fun things along the way on our crazy road trip.

In Indiana, we saw a wind farm.

And a huge commercial { i.e. tourist} farm.

In Illinois we stopped at an Oasis in Chicago-land. How brilliant: gas, food, and restrooms all together, built right over the interstate.

In Wisconsin, we saw tons of places for cheese, and so we decided to stop at a wacky place on the side of the road. Everyone knows that Wisconsin is known for cheese, so we stopped at a place called Humbird Cheese, who claimed to have over 100 varieties. Plus they had a swiss cheese sign and clock, so we just couldn't resist.

We also saw some really cool rock formations, near the Wisconsin Dells.

We stopped to stretch our legs at a rest area near the Black Valley River. The sky was so beautiful on that day.

I had an amazing, amazing experience at the Creative Connection Event, and I'll share more in my next few posts!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

{ crunch time }

It's crunch time for me { big time crunch time} . I'm gearing up for The Creative Connection Event, which is literally just a couple of short weeks away, and I'm trying to get everything ready for my booth at the HandMade Market. I've been working really hard all summer, but have really kicked it into overdrive the past couple of weeks. I actually need to have the majority of everything finished a week from today, because that's when Jeff leaves for a trip to New York City with his students. So, the pressure is on.

But, under pressure comes great things, right? That's what I keep telling myself anyway. Here are some of the goodies I'll be taking with me to Minneapolis. If you're going to be in the area September 15th-18th, please stop by and see me! I'm really excited and I know that this will be a great event.

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