Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year

* one pocket top * clay bird ornaments *
*steampunk hair clip * quilted tote bag *

2011 was full of new sewing & crafting experiences.
Thank you for following along on my adventure and supporting my small etsy business!
~ Have a wonderful New Year everyone, happy 2012 ~

Monday, December 19, 2011

Everybody join in for a sew-along skirt!

Noodlehead is having a fun 'Linky Party' which I entered at. But to have some sewing fun together, visit this link first (here)! It starts at Day 1 sewing and {see her sidebar to right} has 5 days total of how to sew the skirt pattern she picked.
image from Simplicity
The skirt in question is - Simplicity pattern 2226, the above in the image. Looks like it would fit just about any shape you are! Hem line is nice and can easily be lengthend or shortened as desired. Boy do I miss skirts and dresses about now in this chilly winter weather. I think I might pick that pattern up next time I go out. Something in spring colors would be nice, I'm feeling like something in a peachy-rose shade. Hmmm, decisions decisions...

Friday, December 2, 2011

35% Off Sale & Gifting

It's the holiday rush, people will knock out teeth for some deal at a big name store (after waiting for hours in line in the cold)! But honestly, who wants to deal with that? Not me and likely not many of you out there.
So the alternative, you ask? Shop online, shop local and make handmade gifts! I have a 35% Off SALE going on right now to help you in buying affordable handmade gifts this season. So please stop by my CraftinessbyB shop to find something for that special someone this season.
Now if you feel the urge to make handmade I have a list for you! Daunting you say, I thought so too. But just 2 weeks ago I decided to make a few things for gifts this year.

Handmade gift idea #1: soaps
Gift wrapped homemade soaps

Soaps can be a fun & easy gift to make for others. I went to Michaels craft store and found a soap base (they have olive oil, shea and others). They come in a big block, just pick some coloring and scents *sold right next to them* and go home to your kitchen! I added dry tea leaves, flowers and even oatmeal to some. I melted the soap in the microwave in a microwave safe container, then poured it into molds. Here is a great DIY on soap making by Bridal Buds.

Handmade gift idea #2: lip balm and lotion

Lip balms with shimmer

Lotions, lip balms and soap ~ oh my!

I started small, I bought a sample size balm base plus balm tubes on Etsy by CandleLynnSupplies. Her base is just right, natural ingredients and easily melts. Now I got it in my head I wanted more so back to Michaels store I went and found a 'spa' kit with lip balm and lotion supplies. Let me say this: the kit was fun, it had supplies to make all this (includes scent, colors, labels, containers) but their lip balm base was a pain! If you want to play with just making lip balms I highly suggest going to Lynn for good supplies.

Handmade gift idea #3: handmade by you!

Yep, good ole fashioned handmade gifts. They can be just about anything you enjoy making and giving. And for those with kids you just know people adore the kiddie gifts. Their hand prints, their paper ornaments, photos, artwork. To help you get those crafty juices flowing here is a great list of 101 Handmade Gifts from Everything Etsy. Cute ideas such as this one, or this one, oh and this one!
I hope I have given you some great ideas this year and you can now be on your holiday gifting way!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A thankful holiday

To one and all, may you have a holiday full of thanks and warm eats. Don't forget the conversations, hugs and laughter too!
After the holiday craze of this week I will hopefully post a tutorial about gift wrapping! I'm not shopping this season {if I can help it}, no long hours in line and headaches from traffic. I'm making homemade gifts to give from my kitchen.
my gift wrapping & new logo!

I have made soap so far and plan to also make some easy lip balm too. Above is my easy gift wrap with very few supplies. You will need: parchment paper, decoravtive (think scrapbooking) paper, ribbon, thread, gift tag and tape. The tag you see was a free print-from-home one found at Creature Comforts site. There are so many whimsical and cute lables to pick from!
And that is a small version of my new logo for 2012. I designed it myself except for the flowers in the full version. But until then you just have to live with my current design found in my Etsy shop. Which - by the way - is having a 30% off SALE on select goods!

Monday, November 7, 2011

New state, new to-do's

Hello everyone, sorry I have been absent for a while. You see, a funny thing happened {and here is the tale}. A month ago, out of the blue, my hubby got a call for a job interview. It was for a well known food brand in Kentucky, they found his info online and wanted him in ASAP. Well we knew this could be a great oppertunity, so he accepted the interview and out he went to KY. He goes, has interview, comes home and... we wait. We nearly gave up thinking they had no interest in him. But lo and behold ~ they called him back and made a job offer! So in about 6 weeks time we gave notice, arranged for the move, had stuff packed and hauled and traveled through 3 states to reach Kentucky!

As you can see I had a pocket sized traveling buddy for the trip. When we would stop for a break {since we did travel with furry pets} I'd take a picture of the area with pocket Buddha here. We went through mountains, had frosty mornings and a little bit of flurries. But it's sunny autumn weathere here in Kentucky for the most part.
So now I have to unpack my craft supplies and shop goods. I plan to re-open my Etsy shop soon enough with a continued holiday sale. Select items will be on sale starting at 30% off and probably going up from there. So this year I hope you buy or make handmade gifts to give! It's all the more special and personal to give a unique gift to someone you care about.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Bee, resident seamstress

I am pretty sure in the past 2 months I have had some seamstress work to do every week. This isn't a bad thing, I'm not complaining. But ever get so caught up in some work you have no time for your projects? Well that's what happened to me. I do comissioned seamstress work for a local karate dojo in our town. It's a wonderful places, family owned and run, students from ages 3 and up. I always feel welcome their and truly enjoy the sewing I do for them (which ranges from sewing on patches to hemming pants).
So I finally got around to my own projects recently ~ hooray! I finished one that had been begging to be completed and worn. It is an apron from a fabric dish towel *a new one* and scrap fabric. The apron (below) I plan to share in a how-to-make tutorial soon.

Now the other project I finally got to was a top from a new pattern book. I am gaga for this book I found on ~ it has stolen my little sewing heart! I can admit it, sometimes I stink at making clothes from traditional patterns. The lovely book is (find it here) called "One-piece wearables" 25 chic garments & accessories. It is single-pattern pieces, comes with the full size cut out patterns. It is very easy to follow even for a novice at sewing clothes. Many of the patterns only require 2 yards or less of fabric and often has you hem or use bias tape on raw edges. I may have been learning to sew from a young age but clothes always were the most dificult to sew. At least with these patterns I can easily adjust them to fit my size, like add length or tuck in at the bust some. Below is my first top from the book, pattern "one pocket top" which I think I finished in about 3 days and took my time with.
With the nice autumn weather moving in I forsee much blogging and sewing in the near future. I hope people stop by my Etsy shop as I continue the sale and try to get some orders by the holiday rush!

Friday, September 23, 2011

SALE now 20% off ~ thank you friends!

Happy Autumn Equinox! And to celebrate the change in seasons my shop sale includes more goods and deeper discount. Items on sale now are: Clay Beads, Paper Goods and Used Books. Just enter 'MAPLE' at checkout and recieve 20% off those select items!

And here is a very small sneak peek at my coming shop banner. I do plan to switch my shop name but my name of 'CraftinessbyB' will still remain my sort of username. If anyone has an Etsy shop you probably know what I am talking about, how you can't change that name but can change the shop name.

*ha!* I'm not revealing very much am I? Well I want to surprise everyone with what I am personally designing (that ole GD degree at work!). And I don't want to give it all away just yet. This is a time to celebrate the shop I created back in 2008 and give a great going-away party!

And while I'm writing today, some "thank you for being my friend" to amazing crafting buddies I have made online. To Kat over at Zakka Inspired who really does continue to inspire and expand my crafting vision. To Melissa over at MamaLunas whom I know from childhood and have a new bond together over crafting. And to Mai at mairuru who makes amazing goods sewn by hand and always gets back to me if I write here (even if it's months later!). You ladies certainly open my eyes to new crafts, projects and ideas. And its wonderful to have made friends with people who live in places I may never travel to. Happy crafting!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Upcoming storewide SALE

Ever look at your crafty items and think "Wow, my collection is... unorganized"? Well I have and I want to make some much needed changes by the years end. I love what I do, I love to sew, I love to hear back from customers about one of my goods they purchased. But I really should focus more on picking just a few types of things to consistantly sell.
And deciding what to make isn't the only change - shop name. Yep, I feel it's time to pick a new Etsy shop name.

So to get ready for a revamped shop for 2012 I'm starting a sale on Sept. 12th! Yep, storewide and it will get bigger as the year counts down. I will start with a few select goods and eventually markdown my entire stock. I do love to sew but will focus on a few plushies I love in various colors and sizes. I also have a fantastic new book with birdie plushies, I could really have fun with them (and make them seasonal).
And to revisit something I'd been experimenting with...

You just know I couldn't stop and put it aside! I had to make my own style of bralette & tap pants. This is one set I have made and am very pleased with how it looks. And now that I figured out how to do this, I'd like to make some sets for my Etsy shop in 2012. I use upcycled materials such as long slips or long camisoles. I transform them from something bland to something romantic, flirty and wearable on a daily basis. Why was I so bent on learning to make these? Because I think women today often don't feel attractive or apprechiate the curves they have. I hate to see how much ladies spend on top name brand intimates {and I have been one of them!} that aren't even made in the USA. So I'd like to think the reason those brands are so pricey is because you are paying for the name. It wasn't likely made with care, in a warm inviting place, where a seamstress pondered how it should hug a womens shape just so. I want to get back to basics and make things people will truly use and enjoy.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Summer crafting, easy style

It's summertime and it's very hot & humid in N.C. So what is a girl to do? Spend all day in a rather hot crafting room - ummm, no. Instead I have been doing several crafty things by freehand often on the comfort of the sofa (with ceiling fan above).
To start I've been on a sort of jewelry binge, bent on making my own stuff. I do have pierced ears but I've been wearing ear cuffs for most of the summer now. I purchased one on Etsy in rose gold and decided "I could make something similar!" and boy did I ever! Singles and pairs, I've been making shapes and designs from things I've seen or simply tried my hand at.

Silvertone loop ear cuff

My handmade ear cuffs: loopy heart, simple double cuff, goldtone long twist and silvertone long twist

That is one of a pair in silvertone (pic with me in it), I much prefer goldtone myself but either works. It's very easy to play and design your own with limited supplies. All I use to make my own is: small jewelry pliers, 24 gause beading wire (any shade you love), a pen and time to play. The pen I often use to shape the curve of the ear cuff then I adjust it as needed with pliers. And you should have time set aside to play with this, I spent time just figuring out designs or how to shape the wire. The 24 gauge wire is not very stiff but will keep it's shape nicely.

I also have been sewing small things by hand with freehand drawn patterns. If you are anything like myself you have loads of random sized scrap fabric. I love to make small charms to put on things (purses, zipper pulls). And after making a bunny plush for a niece due in October *congrats to my brother & his girlfriend!* I decided to make a smaller one for a charm. Ok, so I also made a heart one too!

Bunny for my soon-to-arrive niece

Fabric charms of bunny & xo heart

Not just fabric charms and ear cuffs I've made but also anklets. Ribbon, leather, beads - anything goes for a fun anklet. I purchased simple metal jewelry clasps and links (see below pic) to put these on/off with ease. 

Ribbon anklet in green with blue glass bead & navy leather anklet with waves bead

I hope everyone has been enjoying their summers! And a big "Hello!" to Kat over at Zakka Inspired blog :D

Friday, March 18, 2011

Felt foodies, what inspired me

"Where do you come up with such things?" I often get asked and usually by family members *laugh* Well my newest adventure is felt magnet & charms inspired by real food. It all started last year after our big vacation trip {cue flashback music... }

Last year we had a big vacation, at least for us. We had planned it for over a year and saved up to go on a big adventure. We would travel 6 hours by plane from NC to CA. And the big trip you ask? To visit San Francisco! We planned it during the Sakura Festival in Japan town plus to explore just a fraction of the surround areas. We stayed near the Pier and everyday must have walked miles and miles. We used public transportation like cable cars, trolleys and buses. Visited the likes of China town, Japan town, Alcatraz Island and so much more.

During this big trip we had a chance to try new foods, which is still new for me. I'm a picky eater, I have picky taste buds, I eat only what I like. I try new food if I want to but I won't if I'm pressured {I don't know what it is... embarrassment if I don't like it?}. We had good eats in China town and took a tour of the area. We tried wanton and I can say this: they were ok but I didn't like the BBQ pork flavor... I need something more mild. While in China town we had  chance to see where they make fortune cookies! It was a small alley with a very small shop. They had doors and windows open, it smelled delicious.

Another place with tasty new foods for us: Japan town! We didn't even explore all these 'towns' had to offer because they were quite large. My noodle bowl bead is modeled after a wonderful dish I had there called 'kitsune' noodle bowl. We also tried mochi for the first time which I have to say goes best with tea. We paid a visit to the Japanese Tea Garden while there which was magically to me. I've never seen anyplace like it before, I would visit every weekend if I lived near it! Here is just a glimpse of what the garden had to offer for visitors. It's also where I tried dorayaki for the first time with Jasmine tea.

Ah yes, someday we shall travel again to San Francisco. There was so much to explore and see and do. And new things always inspire me craft-wise!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The big 4000 fans fanpage on Facebook!

It's big, it's huge, it's the largest thing I have ever seen! My friend Melissa tipped me off to this huge collection of sponsors on one little fanpge on Facebook. They are called 'Bless Others With Cards' and are trying to reach 4000 fans. They hope to have enough fans to do a huge giveaway with products from sponsors. I decided to become a sponsor by donating my lime green Kiko plushie from my craftiness by Bethanee line of handmade goods. Here is the cutie, I tried to show it has a fluffy rabbit tail and is fairly big and huggable.

* to enter the grand giveaway start at Bless Others With Cards photo albums, go to 'step 1' then my item is in album 2 here

With this amazing challenge going on I was able to gain over 190 fans within 4 days! I started with just friends and 7 fans on my page, now I have so many I will do a giveaway also. {here is my fanpage on Facebook} I want to give people a chance to see what I make and a giveaway is a blast anyways. But no myster grab bag from me, I will be sharing pictures of exactly what is up for grabs. I'm going to have 2 goodies set up for grabs which include: a felt made item like charm or coin purse, some hand stamped stickers, handmade bookmark from recycled goods, origami spring color ornament and a special discount to use in my Etsy shop. So I hope more people stop by and explore my line of handmade goods and join my fanpage. More details on the giveaway coming soon!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A crafty life

It's been wet, rainy, windy, humid and alternates between cold & hot. So what is a girl to do in this crazy winter(?) weather ~ craft of course! I've been working on a dress from my 'Japanese winter one day sewing' pattern book. It's actually meant to be a jumper sort of top, but I added length and it will fall to about my knees. It has two tiers to it, a yolk and no sleeves. I made my own bias tape for it to use at the neck and arm holes, I must say I like making that stuff.

So beyond sewing I'm getting ready to list new items on my Etsy shop. I made some cards for Valentine's Day that are already up, you can see them here. I have some cute felt food magnets and charms inspired by Asia to list soon. When I'm in the mood (and usually with hot tea) I enjoy mochi, dorayaki and various other yummies. So I figured why not make cute food inspired felt crafts?

** the Japanese pattern book was purchased from Pomdaour24 ~ find her shop here

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

from B blog to sewingBee

Well it's a new year and fresh starts abound! So I decided it was time for a new blog, new location, new title. My previous blog is on my page, and you can still view the past posts here {just pop on over to the B blog tab}. 

After a year of reading blogs, reviewing how they are composed and falling in love with a few ~ it was time to start anew. I hope to share with you about my line of handmade crafts I make, craftiness by Bethanee {also goes by craftiness by B}. To share about my collection of pattern books that is steadily growing. And of course whatever crafty thing that tickles my fancy.