Thursday, October 30, 2008

Us Trendy

I was contacted by Jordan who asked me to be part of the Us Trendy fashion designers, models and artists community. The site is like a virtual runaway and fashion people search for new talents there.
Come and look around :)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Some photos

I have no new knitting to show, so here are some photos of our weekend. We had a storm- after year 2005 when water was more than 2.5 meters above average and houses near the beach were flooded, people call every wind that blows a bit stronger, a storm.
Now the weather is almost fine. Still raining outside, but not so badly.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Real treasures

Etsy has a wonderful feature- treasury. I made one too, dedicated to my European Street Team friends!

First line: fleurfatale, JKphotography, enchantedpond.
Second line: krize, nanouke, AtelierSusan.
Third line: staroftheeast, TheHouseOfMouse, byMarianneS.
Fourth line: Silvia66, P8Accessories, Kreativlink.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

A cup of tea?

Friday evening we went to café for a cup of tea.

I: “We would take 2 cups of Gurman’s “Seven samurai's” tea.”
Bartender: “Would you be so nice and tell me how to make it?”
I: “Well, let’s see. The tea jar is on your left shelf and I see a teapot next to it. Just take the tea, put into the teapot and add hot water.”
Bartender did what I suggested. 3 minutes later she’s giving me the teapot. “Would you like to have anything else?”
I: “Yes, cups for drinking would be perfect!”
Bartender: “Is one enough?”
I: “As you see, we’re together and I asked for 2 cups earlier, so I really appreciate if I can have 2 cups.”

Later she apologized and said it’s her first time to serve clients and she’s not even working there. Weird things happen…

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Lazy shopper tips

I'm not one of the girls who likes to go shopping once in a week and spend their free time in shops. I hate it.

If I need new clothes, I will go and buy a lot, so I don't have to do it any more in next few months. I even don't like supermarkets, food hunting makes me tired and angry.
Having a personal shopper would be great solution. Someone, who takes your list and enjoys running for one place to another ans searching for red ankle boots or new carpet.

Thank god someone invented Internet!
Online shopping is totally different thing. I buy unique things on Etsy and often shop on Ebay too. And Ebay is something I wanted to talk about.
Most times I always get what I want, but I've still learned some very important things:

* If you're not sure about something, always ASK. Take time for details.
I bought boots 2 weeks ago, there was only one photo about them. Size was right, so I bought them. But turned out they didn't have a zip on the side and boots are too tight for wearing.
* Buy from someone who has return and refund policy.
She was ready to refund the cost of boots, but not the shipping cost. But shipping cost was 2 times higher than the boots.
* Always check feedback!
If someone has a lot of feedback, but in last month more than 15 negatives (true, and more than 100 positives), then it makes me careful.
* Check the shipping costs
Sometimes it can be unreasonable. Again about my boots- she took £5 more for shipping than it actually cost. Not very good customer service, I can see the price on the package.

Please, feel free to ad your own tips. It can help someone :)

Happy weekend!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

How all the magic happens

It wasn't very long time ago when I accidentally discovered blog community called SITS. Officially "The Secret Is In The Sauce".
Maybe a week ago or so and I didn't pay too much attention to it- first it seemed like every other community where you can leave your blog link and hope others to find you.

Gosh, I was wrong! I spent hours browsing other's blogs and I was totally speechless. I still don't understand how so many people can handle everything- raise kids, be a fantastic husband, manage the household and blog so sincerely that it's impossible not to read.

I admit- I don't read much blogs, I'm more the photo-watching girl. Now I've found some truly amazing writers and I appreciate how they let strangers to their life. I don't know none of them personally, but I feel like we've been friends for years.

There's time difference between Estonia and US (most SITStas seem to be from US)- when I go to sleep, they have afternoon. When I wake up, they already sleep.

After my first evening, when I read the blogs and left comments, I was surprised next morning finding same amount of comments from my own blog. Even more.
I thought "well, ok, they are just polite. there is no chance they come back again if I won't leave another comment"

I know, I know- I was AGAIN wrong. For example, Tressa from American in Norway commented my blog days later, because I forgot to put my blog links to my Blogger profile. And then she came one day, said something like "Oh, didn't see your blog link before, nice to meet you" and I thought "wow, you did all this for me???"

I felt like a horrible person. If I don't find the link immediately, I usually won't search for it later. Tressa, I admire you!

... and to make long thing short- I'm addicted to SITS. I like every user and I'm happy for Heather and Tiffany who founded such a great place.

I need to share some fantastic blogs I found thanks to SITS. Stop by, comment and say hello, maybe you will find a new friend :)

American in Norway
FL Home Blog
Pennies In My Pocket
Heather's blog, of course!

Monday, October 13, 2008

New earrings

When Anna made those earrings some time ago for European Street Team challenge, I knew immideately I need a pair like this!
But unfortunately someone bought them before I had a chance to do it. I was even more happy when I found another pair on her Etsy shop.
I bought them about 2 weeks ago (or maybe less) and the package arrived last week. Today is first time I'm wearing the earrings at work and I already got some compliments.
I love them! They're even more beautiful than on the photo.
I didn't wear earrings for years but start doing it again some months ago. Now I'm addicted- I have around 20 pairs of earrings and I buy new every time I see something fabulous.
Please, check out her shop.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Another puff sleeve cardigan

We had to go to sailing today, but the weather is awful here- windy, dark and rainy. No fun to be outside, especially on the sea...

I used the time- surprise surprise- for knitting. I've finished another puff sleeve cardigan, in gray and green shades.
I've never been a big fan of effect yarns, so I like this one a bit more than the first. Mix of wool and silk is so soft on the skin.

I remember my childhood, mother always knitted us woolly sweaters for winter, but none of us did like them, because wool was itchy. Modern wool is not itchy at all and I've started to wear things made from it again.

About the project now:
Yarn used: Novita Luxus Wind, 80% wool, 20% silk
Color: Green, gray
How much: about 200 grams
Size made: XS

First I didn't like the mix of gray and green, but more I look it, more I like. Not bad at all.
Oval buttons are more suitable too, they don't stand out as much as roundish.
Pattern with cables...? Well, it's fine. Wanted to make it low-key.

I probably knit one for myself too. And Cammie, who's idea this cardigan was, wants it also.

Friday, October 10, 2008

My mailinglist

You're welcome to join my mailing list. Don't worry, I send my newsletter only if I have something important, interesting or fabulous to say :) About once or twice a month.

You will get information about new trends, sales and giveways on my blog.

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Thursday, October 9, 2008

I've been tagged: 7 facts about me

Glasfaden tagged me and I need to post 7 facts about myself now. Isn't as easy as it looks, but I'll do my best.

7 facts:

* I don't like to wear socks (more into high heel shoes these days), but if I have to, my socks are always white.
* If I can skip cooking, I always do that. I prefer buying a wine while someone else is preparing the dinner.
* I love swimming, I go to swimming pool usually 5-6 times a week.
* I don't like sweets much, but I can eat Tiramisu all day long.
* I'm engaged to my camera. I go nowhere without my Canon.
* I always drink 3 cups of coffee in the morning.
* I love animals, as long they're not mine.

The rules are:
1. Link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving theirnames as well as links to their blog.
4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving acomment on their blog.

Here are the ones I’m tagging:
The Ordinary Housewife
Heather Knitz

Etsy artists: Most adorable baby photos

Look at those photos- don't they melt your heart and make you buy? I wish I had a baby...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Purple for fall

I admit: I'm shopping addict.

Or actually I don’t like to visit shops much, but when I do it, I buy more things I should. Happens usually once in every 2-3 months, because I like to renew my clothing before every new season. Sometimes it works, sometimes not, depends how much I can spend.

However, in last few weeks I’ve been shopping much. All shops are filled with purple items, so I think it should be some kind of fashion color this fall.
I haven’t been a big fan of purple, but more I see it, more I like.

New York’s fashion designers emphasize purple in the top five tones used in their collections. Purple has become staple, but also blue, chocolate brown and steel grey.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Etsy artists: Buttons

It's 6.30 here and I'm drinking coffee. I usually wake up at 8, but today I need to go to see my doctor then.
My son is still sleeping, so I show you some cool buttons and products with buttons I found from Etsy.

First: calloohcallay Second: heatherknitz

First: creativepapertrail Second: miaetgigi

First: Kraplap Second: PattycakesPlunder

First: AmandaSainsbury Second: TheHouseOfMouse

How to make seasonal business year around?

If I knew that, I would be millionaire :)

There are different branches of industries that are seasonal.
Knitting, for example. Everyone likes to wear warm scarves in autumn and winter, wrap themselves to beautiful knitted capelet or put on woolly mittens while it’s freezing outside.

However, summer is not that cheerful, especially if it’s not only your hobby, but business also. Yep, it’s possible to make cotton tops or hats or whatever else, but it has always been, it is and it will be that knitting is more popular during cold seasons.

So what can you- as a business owner or artist- do for making it easier to survive during the low season?

Think about:

1) Marketing
* Do you know who and where are your clients, how to reach them?
* It can be a low season, but dollar spent to marketing is never expense, it’s investment. Sometimes it can be more useful to increase the expenses to marketing while things are not going so well, because it helps you to reach your goals in the future.
* New selling channels and strategies- what are doing now and how you can change things better?
* Do you have enough knowledge for selling your items?

2) Quality and product development
* Do you know your client’s expectations?
* Do you offer what you have promised?
* What kind of product you make? Is it copy-paste from someone else or original idea? Original sells usually better.

Spend the low season for preparing to busier times. Make new designs, think about your market and strategies, how to give a bit more than people expect from you.
Be brave and make decisions. Bad decision is better than no decision.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Autumn and colors

Autumn is my favorite season because of colors and weather.
We just had a long walk on the beach- sun is shining, it's not very cold and trees are in yellow and orange outfit.

Estonians are lucky, because we really have 4 different seasons: spring with blooming flowers, summer with sun and warmth, autumn with colorful leafs and winter with a lot of snow. Some of my friends from Brazil, Portugal and Spain have asked how our cold (+10C and below that is cold for them, not for us) autumn looks like.
It's hard to put it into words, so just see the photos I made today.

I've been living near the water most of my life and can't imagine having a home somewhere else. We often find ourselves wrapped up to a blanket, sitting on the beach cafe, drinking tea on the terrace and enjoying the silence and sunset.
When I need to think about something or if I want to be alone, I go and sit on the beach, th best therapy ever!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Something cute

I have to thank Cammie for the blouse I just finished.
Cammie is amazing woman from US, who has given me so many new ideas lately. I've knitted 4 different items to her and found a lot of inspiration on her thoughts...

So Cammie wanted a shrug with princess puff sleeves. I haven't done anything like this before, but it sounded like a great challenge. At the same time, ArtMind won the last week's EST challenge and picked "cute" for new topic.

I decided to mix those 2 things- cute and puff sleeves- together and here is the result.

I'm not sure how I should call this knit? Blouse, cardigan, shrug? Any ideas?

Friday, October 3, 2008

Check this out!

Access Fashion is a great blog about knitting, needlework and things handmade.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Lesson learned

If there is no such thing as a fine weather outside, the only possible way for taking photos is building a home studio. Something I was experimenting this morning, please let me know what do you think!

Thank you notes

Using a thank you notes is a bit unfamiliar habit to Estonians. I know it's popular in US and a lot of other countries, but people here usually don't send than you cards.

So when I started on Etsy, I had to learn that sending a card is a good customer service. People expect it and are happy about it.
It took some time, but now I've found a conception to my note and I'm satisfied with it. The paper is fixed with crocheted flower, people can use it as a brooch later. I've got some good feedback about it.