Friday, 30 July 2010

Giant Knitting

My fab friend Emily got me a fantastic wedding present in May: A super huge pair of wooden knitting needles from Rachel John at a craft festival earlier in the year. I just saw them and knew I had to have a pair!

But they're not as HUGE as these ones! They wouldn't fit in my living room!

Rachel's needles are great, but you can find giant needles on Etsy too - SnokistFarmGirl does very pretty ones for $12 a pair plus shipping. I'm making a cool chunky knit throw using about 8 different strands of machine yarn on a cone - gives an amazing multi tone effect as you can see:

I just need to find time to finish it now!! I've knitted it in stocking/stockinette stitch with a garter stitch border to make sure it does not curl up when laid flat. It's actually really light weight - and the looser weave means it has a really floaty lace like quality to it - a great light weight throw or blanket. I think it might "grow" with time, so I've made it the width of a double bed but half the length - intention was to put it across the foot of the spare bed, but it might end up somewhere else!

There has been some fantastic chunky knits in the shops for their Autumn collections, and to celebrate my love of all things knitted I've created a chunky knit treasury on etsy. Some gorgeous pieces to covert or gain inspiration from.

Can't wait to knit some more super cool items with my chunky needles!! This has to be a project I find time to make at some point:

Reminds me of a giant sea anemone - so soft and squishy...


Wednesday, 28 July 2010

We have a weee-ner!

A great giveaway again - thank you all you fantastic people who entered!

Using a random number generator I drew the winner at 8pm tonight, and the winner was....

Creations by Juliann!

Congratulations! A ladybug knitted tea cosy will be winging it's way to you soon. As for everyone else - a 10% off code will be circulated to everyone who entered, so you too can get a cool tea cosy, or a funky hat, or marvelous mittens... (you get the idea...)
I'm in good spirits tonight as my wedding album was just delivered by my photographer - pictures will follow shortly! I'm one very excited girl...


Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Celebrate - It's giveaway time in July!

Greetings lovely people!

I've got some really good reasons to celebrate this week:

1. I reached a fantastic milestone of over 100 blog followers in my first month of blogging
2. I got a promotion at work (!)
3. I've had some really good trips out with good friends recently and had a great time with them
4. Only 1 month to go until my 1 week holiday in Norfolk - staying with the inlaws...but it's as close to a holiday as I'm going to get this summer!

SO - to celebrate! I listened to all the comments from my lovely blog followers, and I've decided to give away:

Ladybird / Ladybug Tea cosy / cozy! - RRP $16

This has been a really popular item in store and will be knitted to fit a standard sized pot. SO - you are probably wondering how you go about winning such a fantastic item...?

Well - this is what you need to do - It's not complicated - no research needed, no guessing games – it’s easy peasy!

You get 1 automatic entry into the competition if you:

a. Leave me a comment under this blog entry saying what your favourite item in my Etsy shop is
b. You get another entry if you have left a comment and follow my blog.
c. You get another entry for following me on Facebook
d. You will get another entry if you follow me on Twitter
e. Lastly if you tweet, post to your facebook fan page or post on your own blog a link back to this blog competition you get another entry.

So maximum of 5 chances to win…how cool is that!?

Please leave 1 comment for each entry you are submitting, and make sure when you leave your comment on this blog post that you say where I can contact you (email address, Etsy username, twitter handle, facebook fan page etc)

The winner will be announced on Wednesday 28th July at 8pm BST!

Good Luck!

Monday, 19 July 2010

Christmas In July Sale - This week!

Today I've launched my Christmas in July SALE!!!

It's all very exciting - it's 158 days until Christmas! This summer sale in my Etsy shop is promoting some fantastic items in store, including these stunning new mittens I've just knitted:

Cream knitted Mittens - $12
Aren't they fab?! And for $12 a pair these are a real bargain this week! Also on offer are my famous kitty cat hat and glovettes set for just $16 - so cute and can be knitted from kids to adults sizes:

Kitty Cat Hat and Glovette Set - $16

So check out this summer sales spectacular, and get ready for another SUPER COOL BLOG GIVEAWAY later this week!

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Blog Feature - GooseEatFox

This is my second in a series of features of different crafty sellers from around the world - this week I'm featuring the wonderful GooseEatFox!

Q: How did you start out on Etsy?

I first heard of Etsy when I was in college, and I was always envious of people who had a shop! But the time was never right until after I graduated, when I finally had some free time... so I decided to take the plunge. It's been great -- it's opened up a whole other world for me. The artist/crafter community is a neat culture, and I'm really enjoying it. My mission here is clothing rehabilitation, creating re-constructed clothing and accessories.

Q: What inspires you as an artist?

Nothing inspires me more as an artist than a long trip to the thrift store. It's just so full of *potential*... it literally makes me giddy. I love to pick up something and say to myself, "What can this *become*?" Being able to remake something, to give it a new purpose, a new direction, is really cool for me. It's poetry.

Q: What are you working on at the moment?

Right now, I'm working mostly on marketing and taking better photos. I feel like I've got a pretty good handle on the actual creation process; my products are good. Presenting them in a way that does them justice, and getting them "out there" is a bit more of a challenge for me. But I'm working on it, new skills take time.

Q: What do you do when you aren't working on your Etsy store?

Outside of Etsy, I'm an organic farmer in the Rio Grande Valley in New Mexico. It's been my dream for years to be a farmer, and I'm having a blast!


GooseEatFox is taking part in the Etsy-wide Christmas in July Sale from 11-31st July - and is offering FREE WORLDWIDE SHIPPING on all items in store!

Thanks a lot to BackwoodSophisticate for being my 100th blog follower! Looking to launch my next blog giveaway NEXT WEEK in celebration - more details to follow...

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

The Joys of Internationalism!

I'm a great lover of treasures around the world - Though I've not travelled much in my years so far, my sister Jooles has spent the last year or so travelling around the world, including South America, India and South East Asia.

I've been spellbound looking at all the cool things she has got to see on this mammoth Odyssey. (If not a bit jealous at times having to see pics of her on the beach in Rio whilst I'm experiencing snow and ice in a wet and windy Wales...) She is currently in Vietnam - here is a snapshot of her travels!

Etsy have just launched a new International Forum to their site - I'm a big fan of this; it is really about time I say. Etsy is an international phenomenon for everyone who loves craft to get together and share experiences and sales tips... but it is very Americanised... I'm hoping this is Etsy opening it's eyes to the wider world at large!

To celebrate the opening of this forum, and to show the best of International crafting I've pulled together an International Treasury - Around the World in 20 Listings!

(Notice I managed to find a Welsh themed item to sneak in too!)

I'm a member of the Etsy UK sellers team as well as the Etsy Cymru Team (our Welsh team), and I've enjoyed networking with the members, getting advice on Tax returns, what items are popular with UK sellers, how I can get involved with local craft fairs and trade shows and just meeting people in the same country to chat about crafting - my husband doesn't understand when I enthuse about new yarns or cool new needle types.... in fact he gets a bit fed up with the whole "knitting all hours of the day and night" thing at the best of times, so it's really nice to find people around the world who like what I like - and don't glaze over when I mention Intarsia or Fairisle...

So thank you Etsy for waking up to internationalism, and lets hope it leads to making this big old world of ours a little bit smaller....

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Featured Seller: Dadswoodentoys

This is the first in a series of features of sellers that I will be featuring in my blog from all kinds of crafts and all kinds of stores - not just Etsy! This week I'm featuring Dadswoodentoys

Q: How did you get started making toys?

I am married with 4 wonderful kids
On them I am not taking bids

I have 7 yr old, 2 yr old and 4 yr old twins
each of them special no one of them wins

I want the best for them all
and that's how I started rolling this ball

The toys every where made noise and light
but I think the kids not the toys should be bright

So my wife and I were searching to find

toys that were natural and good for their mind

I decided I'd just make some instead
Now you see where all of that led...

Q: Why types of natural materials are used in your craft and why is that so important?

I know natural things are generally good

that is why everything I make is wood

It's natural and nontoxic you see
the way I think more things should be

No chemicals paints or dyes
just wood without any disguise

I also enjoy the comforting fact

that my toys left anywhere long enough stacked

will eventually return into the ground
leaving nothing unhealthy that could be found

many new toys are destined to fill

a garbage dump somewhere disguised as a hill

even when thousands of years have past

those broken toys will continue to last

Q: What is it that you want to accomplish with your store?

The goals for this store are many yet one

ultimately I want kids to have fun

but also I want to be kind to the trees

not filling up landfills way up past our knees

Of course I hope to earn some money

a store that didn't
now that would be funny

But profits are not my only concern
for happy bright kids I also yearn

Q: What are you working on at the moment ?

My newest endeavors tend to be requests
I like trying new things at a person's request

Are you looking for an animal that is not here
I love a challenge I'll not hide in fear

give me a challenge to brighten my day

"No" is the
absolute worst I could say

But I promise to consider each request very well any doubts in my talent I hope to dispel

commission a masterpiece made at your wish
maybe a face, or a dog or a fish

y best work has been with one piece of wood
so what do you think would make wood look good?

Q: What you like to do outside of Etsy?

Outside of etsy I work most the day

but when I get home I like to play

with my kids, they consume my life

I am also in love with my beautiful wife

camping and hiking are a few of the things

that I consider increase the joy that life brings

Written by Dadswoodentoys:

Special Dadswoodentoys Blog Feature Offer!
As a special offer to my lovely blog readers, Dadswoodentoys has offered to give an EXTRA SUPRISE animal to all customers who mentions my blog when ordering!

Do you want a blog feature too?
Interested in being featured in my blog? Leave a comment on my blog with a way of contacting you, a link to your website or store and tell me why you want a blog feature!

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Another Birthday, another milestone...

"Why is a birthday cake the only food you can blow on and spit on and everybody rushes to get a piece?"

I am writing this in anticipation of my 25th birthday on the 8th July. It's a cause for reflection, contemplation... and celebration!

It's been a truly rubbish year, same as the truly rubbish year the year before if honest... but I'm optimistic things will pick up soon. Highlights so far in 2010 include getting married (my first birthday as Mrs Harding!) and spending more time with good friends.

To celebrate, I've created a birthday themed treasury!

What have I got planned for this special day you ask...? A 2 hour strategy themed staff meeting in the morning at work, spending the whole day in the office ploughing through admin duties, then home to my lovely husband at some point in the evening to find out what he has been plotting over the last week or so - I can't get into the spare room - he has been locked in there doing "secret stuff", so I am curious to find out what he has been up to!

I may even take the night off from knitting.... might....

*** Had a fantastic night - went out for a meal with the hubby, bought me a new tea pot, posh tea and retro records and a record player - fab! ***

Saturday, 3 July 2010

...We have a Winner!

I've been so happy with the amazing response this giveaway has had - I was a bit worried that it might flop... but it's been very exciting!

And at 3pm here in the UK (BST) I went to a random number generator and picked the winner - and that winner was...


Well done to you - the berry themed slouch hat will be winging it's way to you soon!

To say thank you to all that have entered, I'm offering all entrants 20% off their next purchase in store until 31st July 2010. Redemption codes will be winging their way to all of you that entered very soon!

The next giveaway will be happening later in the month - hoping to make this a regular event so make sure you are following me to enter!

What should I giveaway next....?

Take a look in store and leave your suggestions as a comment on this post - the shop listing with the most votes will be my next giveaway!