Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My Survey Results

CRYH101 Heart Pendant Lt Siam 2I need to Thank-You for the great suggestions that I have received through my survey. I am already planning to put several of the suggestions into place.


If you haven't completed the survey please visit my blog and click on the link at the top of the right sidebar or you can go to the survey here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FY5QYX3. I would love to get as many responses as possible. The survey is completely anonymous so please be honest.
Chalcedony Pendant Necklace Black 4
The survey was created using Survey Monkey. I found that it was real easy to set up the survey and I have received several good responses.

One of the responses was a suggestion to feature stories by artisans who support specific causes and the story or reason behind their support. The stories would be similar to "The Story Behind Cheryls Purple Cow"

Debbie Teal 2If you create Awareness pieces or if you know of someone who does, and you want to share that story with my readers, please contact me. I would love to feature you. I think I will use the Feature Title "Crafters with a Cause".

Click here to read more!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Penguin Caturday

This one is all about the penguins!

Photos courtesy of I Can Has Cheezburger?

Click here to read more!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Survey: Please Read

It is time for me to examine my blog, my Facebook and my shops. I need some input from my fans and followers to help me make some decisions about what to keep, what to get rid of and what to change.

I have created a survey through Survey Monkey and I would love to get as many responses as possible. The survey is completely anonymous so please be honest.

You can visit my blog and click on the link at the top of the right sidebar or you can go to the survey here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FY5QYX3

You don't need to be a fan or a follower to complete the survey. Please share the link with as many people as you can.

Thank-You Click here to read more!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Facebook Store Front

I found a new application that allows you to have a store front on your Facebook page. I have already installed the application on my Fan page.

Setting the application up on my page was a bit confusing. I am in the process of writing a tutorial that covers the steps needed to open your store. This store front does not have the functionality of Etsy. But there are a few advantages to this new application.

If you want to see what my store front looks like on my Fan Page the tab is called "Shop Now" .  The application is called "payvment Ecommerce Storefront". 

I like the fact that I can add pictures and whatever text that I want to my Welcome page.  I can also list almost anything in this shop, as long as the item is within Facebook guidelines.  

I have set-up a discussion on my Fan Page for any comments or opinions here: http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?uid=84445958484&topic=15923

If you have already set yours up, you can leave a link to it by commenting on this post.  That way anyone who reads this post can view more than one shop. Click here to read more!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

PBS Special “Through A Dog’s Eye’s”

PBS is airing a special Wednesday night at 8:00 pm based on the book Through a Dog’s Eyes by Jennifer Arnold. 

“Through a Dog’s Eyes” will show glimpses into the lives of a few people and their service dogs. You can view the trailer here: http://www.pbs.org/dogs-eyes/film#

Jennifer Arnold, the founder of Canine Assistants, will explain what is involved in the puppy-rearing and training of the Canine Companions.  You will even get an idea of how the process of matching people and their dogs.

Ádám Miklósi, Ph.D. is one of the world’s foremost experts in dog cognition.  He will explain some of the science behind Jennifer’s training philosophy.

This special will introduce you to the families and the Canine Companions they are paired with.  The stories they share will inspire you and provide insight into ways that our four -legged friends assist us in our daily lives.

I believe this is a must see for everyone.

Click here to read more!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Caturday Again

I guess I am running a little late today.   Looks like the LOLCats all have their "Cattitude" on.

Photos courtesy of I Can Has Cheezburger? Click here to read more!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Treasury East Epilepsy Awareness Treasury

Treasury East on Etsy is now open. I have already created my first treasury there. Epilepsy Awareness is the Name of My Game

Epilepsy Awareness is the Name of My Game

Click here to read more!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tutorial: Change Your Blog Background

Gemme Chandelier Earrings by Kibble2008
Is it time to redecorate your blog? Do you want to change the colors and maybe even the template?

There are some basic changes you can make real easily. The easiest change to make is simply changing the colors of your current template.

From your blogger dashboard, click on "layout".

That takes you to the page elements tab. Click on the tab to the right of the page elements tab called "fonts and colors".

You will see this screen.

Bergamot Cluster Earrings by Kibble2008
First scroll down the menu on the left outlined in green until you see the name of the part of your blog that you want in a different color. The first part listed is the Blog Background Color. Click on it to choose it. Choose the new color from the colors to the right. I drew a blue box around the colors you can use. If you don't like the color you have chosen, just click on another color.

You can go down the list and change as many of the colors as you want. Be sure and save when you have the colors you want. If you have really messed up the colors, Don't Save, click "Clear Edits" and start over. You can change most of the colors on your blog on this screen

If you don't see the color that you want you can enter the hexadecimal code for the right color in the box that I outlined in red. Just type the six digit number (including letters a through f) in the box and hit enter if you have the correct color be sure and save. There are many gadgets and sites that help you find the hexadecimal code for the color you want.

You can also change your blog appearance using the new template designer in blogger in draft. I will have a tutorial on the template designer in soon.

I want to thank Rowena from Cherrypik Jewel's for suggesting this topic.  Please click on the pictures to be taken to the item listing on Etsy.  You can use the links below to find her pages:

Cherrypik Jewel's on Etsy
Cherrypik Jewel's on Facebook
Cherrypik Jewel's Blog

If you suggest a tutorial topic and I write a tutorial based on your suggestion I will feature your items in the tutorial post. Click here to read more!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Professional Tips: Your Sites and Links

Trendy Purple Bracelet by WanderlustBling
The way your website, shop, Fan Page or any page that you personalize looks and performs is a direct reflection on your business. In a Treasury Tutorial: How to Prepare Your Item For Treasuries part 3 I suggested that you view your shop as a potential customer. You need to do this for every page or site that you personalize.

Visit all your pages, websites, shops, etc and pretend you are a potential customer. Click on all the links, pictures, anything you can click on, if it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work for your customer.

Hearts and Flowers Earrings by Zur Designs

Brick and Mortar shop owners do this all the time. When setting up a display, they will step back and try to see what it looks like to a potential customer.

If they post a sign indicating what direction to go for a certain product, the owner makes sure the arrow points the right way. Your link is a sign that directs a potential customer to where the item, information, etc is supposed to be. All it takes is a moment for you to click on the link to make sure that it works properly.

I would like some input from my readers.  How would you answer these questions:

Question:  What action do you take when you are in an Etsy shop or on a blog and you notice something like a link that does not work properly? 

My Answer: I notify the shop or blog owner.  If I see the problem with the link I provide that information also. In my opinion, this is just professional courtesy.

Question: If I notice something in YOUR shop or blog like a link that doesn't work properly, do you want to know? 

My Answer: I sincerely hope that you will. 

I am preparing my next tutorial on how to change the background of your blog to a picture.  I should post it within the next day or two.

I am always looking for topics for my Tutorial and Tips series.  If you have any suggestions, please comment.  I will feature your items in the tutorial if I use your topic. 

I used pictures of items from the following Etsy shops in this post:

Zur Designs

Please click on the pictures of the items to be taken to  the listing page.
Click on the shop name to be taken to the shop. Click here to read more!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

OMG! It's Caturday!

I found a really informative blog post for those who enjoy Caturdays.  the blog is james S Huggins Refrigerator Door and this post "Guidelines for Cats" is a must read.

Photos courtesy of I Can Has Cheezburger?

 F3CGR2HB2H24 Click here to read more!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Story Behind Cheryls Purple Cow

This post was originally published on June 6, 2009.  I had occasion to refer to it a few days ago and I wanted to share it again for my new followers.  I did make a few changes to make it easier to read. 

Handmade Wire Wrapped RING
Purple Mother of Pearl
by gabeadz
I have been crafting and making jewelry for about 5 years. Before that I seemed to gravitate to highly stressful clerical type jobs. I worked in banking and also in motor vehicle registration and titling. How did I get from there to beading and crafting? If you will listen I will tell you.


Do you remember the kid in art class that just could not make anything? That was me. Most people get A's and B's in art class. I failed art class. I found the whole process of creating something bothersome. I just could not, would not do it.

That was my fast-paced stressful life and I loved it. My life started changing in 2004.  I remember having "episodes" of sudden inappropriate emotion or rage most of my life.  But they lasted a few minutes and happened every few years.  The stress became too much around the summer of 2004 and the "episodes" became more frequent and lasted longer.  It was during this time that I started having a compulsion to create things.  I received many incorrect diagnoses during that time but finally in November 2005 I received the correct diagnosis, Right Temporal Lobe Epilepsy.

Grande Vanilla Latte Shawl
by CordovaStudios
I lost my job as I tried to get my epilepsy under control. As I started to control my epilepsy and my seizures decreased, the need to create grew.  And the more things I created the better I got and the better I got the stronger the need to create became. That is why I attribute my newfound "gift" of creativity to my epilepsy. 

I started playing with different crafts and techniques to see what my potential was. I went through most of the crafts available and then I started beading and making jewelry. And that is what gives me the most pleasure.

I have been making jewelry since early 2007. I really like making the Awareness Ribbon jewelry. I think it is important to raise awareness regarding medical conditions like Epilepsy and Cancer. At first I was giving most of my pieces to my family and friends. Everyone urged me to try to sell my creations. It took a while for me to get used to the idea that I could make something worth selling, but I came around.

Stained Glass Candle Holder
by African Sand Stained Glass

I found the motivation to open my own store, but the store needed a name. I wanted the name to be something that I could connect to. March 26 is "Purple Day" and wearing purple on that day shows that you support Epilepsy Awareness. 

Purple has always been my favorite color so I decided that the name of my shop would include "purple". I was getting there. I had one word, but I still couldn't figure out the name. Then one day out of the blue, I remembered a gift I received in Junior High from my best friend Dee Dee. She gave me a purple cow with a poem attached:

"I never saw a purple cow;
and I never hope to see one.
But I can tell you anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one."

I had completely forgotten about that purple cow. I surfed the web looking for a purple cow. I was surprised to find that a book was written based upon this popular poem. The book helps you to succeed in business by being the purple cow among all the regular cows. The purple cow represents something extraordinary, different. It is something unusual that we all would like to have or even see just once.

Purple and Pink Dragonfly Necklace
by Simply Raevyn
My best friend Dee Dee was never ordinary and neither was I. We are both still purple cows. I never realized how wonderful it was to be different. I even located her through the Internet and found out that she has Lupus. The Awareness Ribbon for both Epilepsy and Lupus is purple. Strange coincidence?

Now you know a little bit more about me and how Cheryls Purple Cow was born.

I used pictures from the following Etsy shops in this post:
African Sand Stained Glass
Simply Raevyn

Please click on the pictures of the items to be taken to the listing page.
Click on the shop name to be taken to the shop.
Click here to read more!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Interview with Artisan Original

Cobalt and Copper Necklace and Earrings Set by Artisan Originals
I have met many wonderful people on the internet since I opened my Etsy shop.  One person that stands out is Valerie from Artisan Original on Etsy.  I met Valerie on Twitter late one evening, I was bored and joined in a conversation with her and a few of her friends.  We have been friends ever since.

I love to see the jewelry that she makes.  The Cobalt and Copper Necklace Set is one of my favorites.  Cobalt is such a beautiful color and the way she combined it with the copper is outstanding.

In addition to making beautiful jewelry Valerie is also a great photographer.  The Blush Rose 5 x 7 Print shown below is in her shop.

 And now for the interview:

Blush Rose 5x7 Print by Artisan Originals
1.  I noticed that your username on Etsy is Elderarc.  Is there a special meaning or story behind the name ElderArc?

ElderArc is an online persona I created before I started making jewelry.  It is my username on Deviantart.com.  I play an online MMORPG game called Final Fantasy XI and my character's name is Arctic.  My linkshell (or guild or group) on that game was called Elders of Fenrir.  Nearly everyone I know online calls me 'Arc' and to commemorate my linkshell group and because I'm older than most gamers, I took the persona of ElderArc.  I made my Etsy shop to tie to my Deviantart persona before I decided upon a business name.  My family thought ElderArc as a business name sounded 'stupid'.

2.  What prompted you to open up your first shop?

Some of my Deviantart friends had Etsy shops and it seemed like a neat thing to do.  I didn't start out seriously thinking of running a business.  It just sort of evolved that way.

3.  If you had the resources and time what would you like to learn to make?

If I had the money and time I'd love to learn metalsmithing or glassmaking.  I'd love to have a kiln and the whole workshop setup with torches and hammers and big old anvils and racks of glass and precious metals to work with!

Blush Floral Earrings by Artisan Originals
4.  Why do you create?

I create because if I didn't I would probably explode! I've always had a drive to make things. I've crafted from childhood.  I constantly have new ideas that I have to get out.  I write ideas down in a little notebook and make them when I have time.  Even watching a movie I look at the things people are wearing and wonder if I can make them.  It's just a drive that I have..the need to create.

5.  Share a funny or interesting experience that will give us an insight into you.

The only funny thing I can think of at the moment is my adventure at the flea market this weekend.  I wrote a blog post about it, Adventures in No Man's Land.

6.  If you could talk to anyone, past or present, who would you talk to and what would you say?

I would want to meet one of my favorite authors, Robert Jordan.  He died last year and his series of books, the Wheel of Time, was unfinished.  He chose an author to finish his books because he knew he was dying but his planned offshoots of his series based on supporting characters never came to fruition and never will.  I'd love to comb his mind.  He must have been so interesting to know!  What a creative spirit!  I mourn the loss of those offshoot books because I would have read them!
Purple Crystal Sphere Necklace - Diadem by Artisan Originals

7.  Is there anything you can add?

Well, based upon my previous answer you can probably guess that I'm an obsessive reader.  I adore books and tend to buy by author.  If I like a book, I buy up everything by that author... I don't read skinny books.  I love epic stories that take up volumes and volumes!  Some of Jordan's books top 1000 pages and his series is (currently) 13+ books long.  I have a home library and if I lived in a perfect world, I would create and read every single day.

Artisan Originals on Etsy
Aritsan Originals: ElderArc Ventures into Beadland Blog
Valerie Clifton's Artisan Originals on Facebook
Artisan Originals on Twitter Click here to read more!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


Chili Reflections Version 1
I tried several crafts before I started making jewelry.  One of the creations that I enjoy making almost as much as jewelry is something I call "Reflections" 

I call them "Reflections" for a couple of reasons.  First is the fact that I start with a good sized mirror.  Second is the fact that the irror is decorated to "reflect" the taste and personality of the new owner. 

The Chili Reflections were made for my Mother-in Law.  Her house was decorated in chili peppers.  Version 1 was the first Reflections that I completed.  I don't remember why I decided to change it before I gave it to her but Version 2 is the official version.

Chili Reflections Version 2

Blue Reflections

I made the Blue Reflections for myself.  The flowers that I used are some of the flowers from our table at our wedding reception.  Both my husband and I love blue.

Blue Reflections

Texas Rose

The Texas Rose is just a little something I threw together to use the ceramic roses.  The flowers were originally red but I have always loved yellow roses.

Seascape Reflections Version 1

The Seascape Reflections Version 1 is my pride and joy.  When this one was completed i came to the realization that my life had changed in many ways.  This was the first time that I created something that I felt I could be proud of.

Before we moved to Las Vegas from Lubbock, my son, Ken's girlfriend (now his wife) fell in love with this.  Needless to say she received it as a going away gift from me.

Seascape Reflections Version 1

Incomplete Seascape

 A few days ago I got bit by the bug again.  I started a new Seascape Reflections.  This is a picture of it about half-way through.

The picture below is still not quite done.  i am still playing with the shells and i am trying to find the perfect candle holder. 

Seascape Reflections Version 2?

I would like to have a "Reflections" listed in my store but that is difficult because each one is made specifically for someone.  "Reflections" are by their nature different for everyone. 

If you would like me to work on a "Reflection" for you please contact me.

Click here to read more!