WOWZA! It’s been far too long since I’ve given an update, so it’s probably time to explain what I’ve been up to and why it’s been so quiet around here recently.
Let’s start off by going back a few months…
Shortly after my last post leading into the holidays, business in my shop skyrocketed (at least compared to what I’m used to – I am still just a one woman operation after all). Pretty much every morning between Thanksgiving and Christmas was spent filling orders until noon and then spending the rest of the day trying to restock things when I could. Things even picked up to the point where I couldn’t fit orders in my mailbox anymore, and I had to drive them in a large bag to the Post Office every other day.
Going into the holidays I thought I was prepared, and I was to some extent, but not quite as much as I would have liked. Ornaments of every type were big sellers, especially my flying spaghetti monster and dice ornaments. Next year I’ll try to have more ready before the rush starts – I feel like I spent far too much time trying to recreate things as they sold out and it left me feeling pretty stressed. Even through the stress, I was quite happy with how the season turned out. Reviews have been trickling in, and people seem overall pleased with their orders. Thankfully there was only one issue this year with an item getting lost by USPS, but then it was miraculously found unharmed only a week later. Overall, this was another great experience for me to learn and prepare even better for next year. 🙂
Things finally started to slow down a couple of days before Christmas, and I had a wonderful holiday with my entire family together (for the first time in MANY years).
Surprise Basement Renovation Project
With the holidays over and things back to normal, I figured it was time to finally start working on a project I had long planned – renovating my basement and entryway/stairwell leading into it. Every January, since I moved into my house has been ‘pick a room and repaint it’ month. I’ve done every room in my house so far (minus my bedroom), and this year it was finally my basement’s turn. The room was super dark, the paint was chipping and the ceiling and walls were terribly discolored in places. I started the project by targeting a part of wall that looked to be in worse shape than the rest, and boy was I in for a surprise – black mold! That’s right, we found black mold behind the walls, which as I’m sure you’re all aware, is quite the health concern.
From then on out what began as a simple painting project turned into an entire renovation project complete with the ripping out of walls and studs, reinstalling new ones, putting it all back together, and then of course – painting it all! Let’s just say that I’ve more or less been living in my basement for the past two months. (For anyone interested you can see all the progress pictures on twitter, including before and after pics here.) Only now am I finally seeing an end in sight. Everything moldy has been replaced, we (hopefully) took care of the moisture problem, and I’ve completely repainted the entire room, cabinets, stairs, railings, door frames and doors. The final result isn’t perfect, but it looks monumentally better than what we started with. I have a few small finishing touches to take care of, and I’ll finally be free to see daylight again!
I did take a couple of crafting breaks (for the sake of my sanity) while my epic basement project was going on. I’ve always loved Norse Mythology and figured it was time I made some Norse Rune Earrings. (After doing a few searches, I was surprised at just how few were available on etsy.) I made matching necklaces to go along with them, and they are available in both red and black runes.
The weather was beautiful when they were completed; everything was covered in a pretty blanket of white and my American Cranberry bush had berries on it still, so naturally, I had to take all of my pictures outside on said bush. You can see more pictures on one of the earring listings here: Norse Rune Dangle Earrings.
A couple weeks ago I also made a few more COFFEElementals, for those of us who can’t live without coffee and of course like summoning the elements. I tried to make enough this time for everyone who wanted one (as I sold out immediately last time). I sold quite a few when I announced them on twitter and I currently have two left.
I just got back from a nice week long vacation visiting my family out of state, and now feel refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready to pull out my clay again. Within the next couple of weeks I plan on working on a few projects I’ve had brewing in the back of my mind for a while. When I’m done with those, I’ll be opening for commissions (for customizable dice dragons only). Keep an eye on my commission page for announcement – I will also announce when I’m open on twitter.