Monday, November 24, 2008

So my main place of sale is Etsy, but I also had stuff up for sale on a new site called It's a pretty neat site where you can have your portfolio, network, and sell your items. Sign up is free. I even made 2 sales there recently. And then I found out why Etsy rocks so much. I love Artistful for it's networking, but for selling jewelry? Not so much. They take 20 percent of your sale AND from shipping because you have to include shipping in the cost of anything you sell there. And then, once you make a sale, the buy pays Artistful and Artistful holds the money for 2 weeks or until the customer receives their items, whichever comes first. Honestly, it's such a hassle. There's really no reason for it. Etsy doesn't do it that way and they're free. Artistful claims they take that much because they offer a free service. Clearly none of them belong to Etsy.

Therefore, after the two sales I made at Artistful, I moved everything I was selling into my portfolio (i.e. not for sale). But just 5 minutes ago, I was commissioned to make another pair of earrings just like the ones I had already sold on there. Go me! The funny thing is that the second I finished making the first pair (see left), I put them in the pile of "to sell if I can" because I didn't like the way they looked. Not one bit. Now here I am, about to make another pair! I guess we are our own worst critics.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

30 minute earrings, part deux

Although I may not know if it actually took me 30 minutes to make these earrings, I am pleased to say that someone found them pretty enough to buy! So now I'm making more of them. I have four more in the making: two silver, one copper, and one brass. I'll also be making one white, silver and crystal pair that I may or may not sell. It depends on how much I love them. Then again, I can always make more if I sell them, right?

I think I will be submitting the instructions for this type of earring to the book contest and perhaps to the Baltimore by Hand blog. We'll see. :-)

Oh, and just in case you're wondering, these earrings go for $30 to $40, depending on the materials used.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Featured Etsymom: Kirsten Skiles

I was going through the members of the Etsy team I just joined (Etsymom) and didn't get very far before I fell in love with one of them. So I've paused in my browsing to bring you Kirsten from Knitsteel. Being an aspiring metalsmith myself, my mouth dropped open at the pure gorgeousness of her work. I have no chasing or repousse tools in my shop, but someday I hope to remedy that. In the meantime, here's an interview with Kirsten.

Who are you?
I’m an Artist specializing in Custom Bronze and Ironwork. I make nature themed jewelry, home décor, artwork and sculpture.

What is your Etsy Shop Name/link?

What tag categories do you specialize in?
Art, Jewelry, Handmade Supplies, and Housewares (home décor)

Do you create for children or adults, women or men?
I create for adult men and women, but my work often appeals to teens and young adults.

What do you like about Etsy?
The opportunity to list whatever I want, when I want. I can list something whether I’ve got 1 or 10 available, whether it’s $10 or $100. It’s also wonderful to be selling directly to the customer and to develop personal relationships with buyers and other Etsy members.

What do you like about creating?
I get to use the talents God has given me and to work toward the visions that fill my mind. It’s also very rewarding when someone writes and lets me know how my work has enriched their life.

What do you love about your business?
1.Making money with my talent.
2. Getting to meet and work with all sorts of highly skilled and creative people.

What is your favorite product right now?
It’s hard to pick just one. I always love the single leaf wallpieces.

What makes you unique at Etsy?
I’m a highly skilled and experienced metalsmith. I work on large scale commissions outside of Etsy. I exhibit work in art shows. I specialize in the techniques of Chasing & Repoussé and teach workshops regularly. I make and sell my own chasing tools.

What makes you unique as a woman?
I’m a blacksmith.

What do you love about kids?
My kids have been the greatest joy and the greatest responsibility of my life. They’ve helped to focus all of my energy, in my art and in every day life. They teach me new things all the time.

What are some other sites to find out more about you and what you love to create?
My blog is probably the most informative
For more information on blacksmithing, start with . Then visit their affiliates page to find a group near you. In Minnesota start with . In Wisconsin go to

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