1. market203 Etsy Shop : Now Open!

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    Start you own online business comes with A LOT of trial and error. What works, what doesn’t, what’s most convenient, what’s the most fun, what’s the least stressful, etc…

    I’ve been doing a lot of personal shop evaluation and I’m finding my self saying “they told me so” over and over in my head. They told me to start small. They told me to start with Etsy because it has an online community that helps small businesses get started. They told me it was worth it.

    Ok Ok. You guys were right. I started with an online shop run by Big Cartel and love the ability to present a fully branded shop. I thought I’d be able to spend the time driving awareness to my new digital space and money to spend on advertising. I was somewhat wrong. I work full time at an advertising agency, and I’ve found that promoting a new shop is another full time job.

    So I’ve decided to migrate most of my inventory over to Etsy and build a community in that space for the time being. I love browsing Etsy, creating treasuries, and bookmarking favorites, so I’m sure a lot of other people do the same thing. Let’s see how it goes. I’m willing to try several approaches until I find something that works.

    Another little announcement is that I’m expanding the category of items in my shop. I started with items that fit into the “container” category and now I’ll slowly be adding more industrial vintage pieces to the shop. I’m exciting about being able to shop for more things I love. Yippee!

    Oh, what do you think of the new logo? 

  2. Big Daddy’s Antiques

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    With warehouses in both Los Angeles and San Francisco, Big Daddy’s Antiques has a massive amount of floor space to fill with one of a kind antiques. I’ve never been to California, but if I ever had the chance to stop by Big Daddy’s I’m sure I could waste several hours perusing all the goodies. If you are like me and live across the US, the Big Daddy Antiques website has a ton of images to flip through that will give you a good idea of what’s currently in stock and what’s currently sold.

    I love randomly searching the internet for antique finds and stumbling upon a treasure like this. There is so much stuff out there just waiting to be found!

  3. Altitude Summit: another great year ahead

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    *original image from here

    Last year was the first year the Altitude Design Summit won me over. I remember being at my day job and streaming the entire event on my second computer monitor. I also remember stalking the twitter feed taking down notes that would help out a new blogger like myself. Maybe it was because I was new to the game, but the Altitude Summit was filled with valuable information that helped me jump right into “blog land” with confidence and excitement.

    This year, come January I’ll be blogging officially for 1 year. This time around I am much more familiar with the event’s speakers and excited to see what they’ll bring to the table. I envy those who are able to make the trip to Salt Lake City Utah and hope they tweet their little hearts out, so I can gain an insider’s snapshot from my home laptop. If you’ve been considering taking the leap and attending this year, DO IT! (and then tell me all about it)

    If you’re obsessed with lifestyle, food and fashion blogs, fantastic images, smart ideas and great design inside and outside — all wrapped up with a social media bow — Altitude Design Summit is the place to be. Because we feed those obsessions. 

    Who’s all going?

  4. my midwestern batootie is out of shape!

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    While in Portland the boy and I took a day to do some touristy things, like visit the Multhnomah Falls and hike to the highest point. Seems like a good idea when the starting signs said it was only 1 mile to the top. LIARS!!! We got about half way up the constant incline climb to find a sign that said, “You are half way there. You have traveled 1 mile”. Let’s just say that was mildly discouraging to put it lightly, especially when the both of us are extremely out of shape and the boy was toughing it out mid flu/food poisoning. Oh yeah. That happened. We about died and that’s being generous with word choice. We felt like we were suffocating and our shins and batootie muscles were about to snap in half. Slightly dramatic, but not really. It was pretty, but OMG was it painful.

    *note to self…1 mile by foot feels NOTHING like 1 mile by car.

  5. friday finds & favorites // 30

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    This week was a perfect summer week. The weather wasn’t deadly hot, their was a slight breeze, and the sun was always shinning. The weather man is making this gal happy!


    For all the typography nerds out there. Love you guys.


    Yes!!!!

    1. Do you like the idea of drawing on the walls? This notebook is perfect for you!

    2. This young man tries to get a job at Google by putting together his own video promotional campaign. Genius!

    3. Nest Online Magazine has launched its fall issue and there are lots of great things in there.

    4. Julian’s Flickr stream is beyond refreshing to look at. Beautiful imagery paired with perfect little reminders.

    5. Elsie does it again with this song lyric art wall DIY project.

    6. Found this Etsy shop for my dad. He’s been into making found objects into lighting fixtures and pendants. Great inspiration!

    7. Turn a digital video into a flip book.(Oh, martha!)

    8. Stamp carving tutorialfor all of you who want to print your own patterns with linoleum.

    9. Austin Gros’ home tour via Pennyweight Online is just stunning. His home is warm, inviting, and put together with attention to detail.

    10. Last weekend the boy and I went to see Crazy Stupid Love. Let me just say one word about it….Yumm-o

    11. Emmadime’s Look for the fall is out and WOW is it purdy. So many knitted beauties!

  6. Oleg Dou Funeral Portrait

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    I know this is a little odd of a post coming from me, but I just had to share. I stumbled upon this set of “funeral” portraits by Oleg Dou.  Amazing compilation of work!

    Oleg Dou confides that he was inspired at first by a curious tradition practiced in XIX century : child funeral portrait. The shooting required a long and fine preparation. The costume in particular was very sophisticated and each detail was fancy, from the position of the hands to the slightest lock. The little fragile body, lifeless, prepared for the hereafter, was immortalized in a still life photograph.
     - lalettredelaphotographie.com

    One of the most fascinating aspects of this photographers work is that Oleg didn’t even buy his first professional camera until 2005! I also have a great appreciate for the strange and slightly off kilter kind of things.

    Check out the more recent work from Oleg Dou (Tears)

  7. Walkin’ around town

    16 Comments






    I wanted to thank everyone for participating in the little discussion in yesterday’s posting. I’ve gathered lots of helpful insights and I think I’ve decided to give Etsy a try. I think the combination of the two should help me refine my strategy over time.

    The photos above are captured from the streets of Portland Oregon. There are the last of the massive batch I brought home, which is a bit sad. In my opinion, one of the best ways to take in a new city is to walk around town and snaps some shots along the way. Add a hot chocolate or chai in hand and we’re talking perfection.

  8. Let’s talk Etsy vs. Big Cartel!

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    *click image to visit my treasury for my office makeover!


    I couldn’t resist. I’m going to have to make one of these!

    I’ve been doing a lot of Etsy shop hopping, hoping to find items that I’d want to include in my home office makeover. Because I’m a treasure hunter myself, I have a hard time settling for what’s on Etsy with the thought that I can find the stuff myself with just a little bit of hunting. I’m finding that if I go out searching for a specific item in mind, I don’t find it. I’ve discovered the art of thrifting, hunting, pickin’ is that you never know what you’ll find, so throw all expectations out the door.

    Let’s talk Etsy for a moment shall we. I’d like to start a discussion in the comments section of this post today and I’m going to try and actively participate. So here’s the thing. I really enjoy the community that comes along with Etsy. The search tools are very easy to navigate and it seems that if you are searching for anything hand made or vintage, Etsy is the first place to check. My pet peeve with Etsy is there are a lot of shops that just exist because they can. They lack a direction, lack branding, and lack any kind of professionalism. I really appreciate the Etsy sellers out there who know that building a cohesive brand through product selection and branding is extremely important.

    I currently use Big Cartel to sell my vintage goods because I’m passionate about having a shop that is branded and over time can stand as it’s own identity. I am noticing that even though I’ve made efforts to advertise my new shop to bring awareness, the lack of online community means that I am constantly working REALLY hard to get people to stop by. I’m reassessing my strategy at the moment and thinking about having both and Etsy and a Big Cartel shop (different items in each with a few overlap). This sounds like it might be more work than it’s work, but I’d love to hear your thoughts.

    I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts about Etsy vs Big Cartel and if you have any advice for driving traffic to online shops.

    Like anything else, I understand that a shops success just takes time and patience. As long as I am doing everything I can to get to my end goal, I’m a happy camper.

    Thoughts?

  9. Oh, Hello Friend + FOUND Vintage

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    Don’t forget to scroll down to the bottom for the Q&A with Danni of Oh, Hello Friend.





    When I first saw the pictures from your recent craft show that featured FOUND antiques I remember shouting “That’s exactly what I’m talking about!” I’m curious how you chose to use FOUND and why you thought it was important?
    I actually used FOUND to decorate my entire wedding, so that’s how I discovered them. I still remember stumbling upon the Wedding Chicks blog, and they had just featured FOUND, which also happened to be found’s first feature on a wedding blog I think. I remember thinking “renting vintage furniture?! that is brilliant!” and looking up where FOUND was. I figured out of all 50 states, it was a long shot they’d be in California but not only were they located in California, they were located 10 minutes from my house and wedding venue! It was meant to be. So that’s how I discovered FOUND and I think it’s a pretty neat story ;) Jeni & Allison at FOUND are simply amazing to work with, they are the sweetest people around.  Anyway, I think set up and how you present your display / company is one of the most important elements! If you were to just throw all your products out on a table, I don’t think it can be as successful as thoughtfully displaying them.

    Because FOUND is a vintage rental company, how does the whole process work? How do you go about renting from FOUND?
    Renting from FOUND is really simple. They have a HUGE warehouse (it’s literally vintage heaven!) full of everything.. You walk through and note which pieces you like. Allison then sends you a super organized follow up document with all the pictures along with pricing per piece. They’ve got it all set up. So because I had to take into account the price I paid to sell at the show, I also had to budget out what I could afford to rent. But it worked out really well, I can honestly say I’ve never been more proud of my booth than when I used items from FOUND.

    What do you feel are the most important aspects of a booth’s design? Are there certain things to keep in mind while designing the space?
    I think just keeping it true to who you are, what your brand is is most important. I wouldn’t use items to display that don’t fit with my brand. Another equally important aspect is to just make a good and decent display! It’s important, and I’d encourage everyone to put thought into it. At various shows / farmers markets, some people just lay all their product out on a table. Which works for them and the product may still sell, but their product could be so much better and maybe sell so much more if they just had a nicer display. I think it’s all about perception, if your display looks cheap, it makes your product look cheap. If you have a nice display, it’ll make your product look like a million bucks ;) You can try to utilize your space, try layering.. I use lots of vintage crates and boxes to layer and hold product.

    Does the look & feel of your booth change from one craft show to the next? I imagine it takes a lot of work to put a show together.
    I’ve been selling at shows for a couple years now so at this point, I sort of just set up as I go.. It’s not exactly the same every time, because I sometimes have different products. The first show I ever did, I remember doing a mock set up in my living room — setting up all the display and product as if it were at the show. I definitely don’t do that anymore, it’s way too time consuming! I’ve done it recently but only because I had 2 shows booked on the same weekend and I had to make sure I had enough display pieces and product for both shows. That was intense! ;)

    Do you have any tips or tricks you’d like to share with my readers who are looking into designing a booth for a craft show?
    Organize, organize, organize! :) It took me a couple years to get organized, I used to bring multiple bins and boxes because I just wasn’t organized. It would take me 2+ hours just to tear down, because I had some boxes in one bin and some others in another, it was just scattered. Now I can clean up my booth in about 45 minutes or less, which is still pretty good because I have lots of little pieces and items. Tips: bring LOTS of business cards. I know that sounds like a no-brainer. But even if you think you have enough, bring more. I thought I had enough for a show I did last weekend, and I STILL ran out! Every time someone asked for a card, it was such a bummer – I felt like I was missing out on sending my name out there each time! So bring plenty of cards.  Sign up and apply for a square credit card reader, if you have a smart phone that is compatible. Accepting credit cards just makes for a better show.  It’s free and easy! (squareup.com) I don’t have too many designing tips – just go with what you like and what you think reflects your brand and style.

    Did I miss anything extremely important?? Anything you feel like you need to add?
    I think you covered everything! Thanks for allowing me to share!

    * the first two photos are of Danni’s wedding and the rest of from her craft show. All photos are taken from Oh, Hello Friend and the property of Danni. 
  10. I’m pretty sure nature was against us…

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    I’m pretty sure nature was against us while visiting the Pacific Northwest. We arrived smack dab in the middle of the coldest week of summer, the stereotypical rain showers rolled through, the sun hide behind miles of clouds, and I’m pretty positive all the forests were conspiring against us as we attempted to brave the new terrain. It could be that I was Miss Grumpy Pants the entire trip, but that’s besides the point. (I’m a sunny and 100 degrees kind of gal)

    We attempted hiking three times during our trip and each time I swear the mile markets lied to us. They were either lying, or we are horrible judgements of distance by foot. Thank goodness for gorgeous scenery! The ‘new to us’ views made up for everything else. Plus, who wouldn’t want to live in this little house in the woods?