Tag Archives: craft

Sweet Gherkins! I am a Ninja of my Craft!

20 Aug

This has to be one of the coolest features- not just because it is about my art, but because well, as some of you may be aware of, I was a bit of an alternative sort of Ninja back in a different life time.  But more on that another time….I’m in a bit of a rush as the witching hour is upon us and nobody has had a complete meltdown just yet but I think I must go spread some merriment and delegate.

Check it out!  Fantastic blog!

the :ninja blogs!: Series – Ninjas of their Crafts.

xo

Bek

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Two Tip Tuesday!

3 Feb

There’s no wrong way

Originally uploaded by CleverIndie

I’m going to start collecting tips and sharing them…Two on Tuesday, ok? Cool. Make sure you get the two tips next Tuesday by subscribing via email!

Clickity click here!

I love reusing spools from my chain purchases to hold small things… They are usually wide enough that they are more tip resistant than other containers, which is an important feature for me, what with being less than grace personified and all…

I do quite a bit of work either on a high countertop/bartop where I can stand or sit (mostly stand), or sitting on a softer surface with plenty of back support… Things tend to get flung and knocked over (again, another reason why I hesitate to work with glass and gemstones and if I do I always double the recipe) in either location, this contraption prevents that a bit…

Basically, I packing tape one hole, with a little bit of paper so it’s non stick on the inside of the well… I have, in the past, used double stick tape to tape this to my tray table/lap desk/workbench, but in each location I wound up getting too cocky, started talking with my hands (I’m a passionate hand talker…), and kablammmm! small bits (headpins, ear wires, you name it) everywhere….

And, when working from one of my satellite locations, I like to wind my tape measure around the outer portion… So it’s handy…

Another tip? When Target has silicone baking mats in the dollar section near the entrance I grab a few- they are easily cleaned during messy kid crafts (yet they give kids a colorful background and contrast- very helpful for some kiddos) and they are great when working with things that tend to roll away, a little non-slip grip and cushioning…

OK, that’s all I’ve got for now…

Hugs all around,
xo
bek

School Glue is Too Fast For Us….

4 Jun

OK. So eventually you have to let little kids use elmer’s (or other brand) white glue in the squeezy bottle, right?   Child cannot glue with gluesticks alone…

BUT the problem with anything that isn’t a complete solid and it’s interaction with younger kids, is that the combination of boundless enthusiasm combined with the sheer joy of “more” usually leads to a puddle of glue that frequently drowns whatever they were trying to glue and if on paper, can form a soggy, rippy, drippy mess…

For kids who will only sit and glue for a little while I have a suggestion… I tried this on a whim yesterday and so far so good…

Try putting your squeezy bottle of white school glue in the fridge- even 30 minutes works… I may start storing one in there to see how it “keeps” over time…

The cold thickens the consistency of the glue just enough that, when squeezed, it comes out slowly…

This effect seems to wear off (keep in mind we live in Florida and it is hot hot hot here) after a short while (I stopped trying it after 20 minutes because not only do I have a 4 year old, I have the attention span of one…) but lasts long enough that junior can glue a little bit without needing triple tarp protection and the vigilant hovering of the mama….

There is still time to buy handmade for the holidays!

16 Dec

One of the many joys of buying handmade and direct from the person who makes and ships your goodies, is that you usually have a wider window for shopping when there are deadlines involved….

I’m finding that many domestic US sellers on Etsy.com are shipping orders placed by 12/17 in time for the holidays…  I am one of them and you can find me here: CleverGirl.Etsy.com

My top tips for buying handmade with the shipping windows closing:

COMMUNICATE.  Check communication the seller may have left for you- check shop announcements and always check their profile on Etsy.com – lots of shop policy info and sometimes some fun info about the artist can be found in the individual’s profile….

If you don’t see the info you need- click contact and send them a message and be sure to include: the item(s) you are interested in, when you need it to arrive, and where you need it to go (city,state, zip are helpful!)…
I have added a priority shipping upgrade to my shop but it must be purchased as an “item” as Etsy doesn’t allow for us to have multiple shipping speed options and prices within a listing and I’m busy packing up orders to head out tomorrow and I just don’t have the time to go in and edit 100+ listings…

Of course, my dear blog readers, if you buy before noon tomorrow (12/17/2007) and put “beclever” or “blog” or something that lets me know you read this in the “notes to seller” area when checking out of Etsy, I’ll upgrade you at no charge (so don’t add that Priority shipping upgrade listing to your cart!)  to USPS Priority…

Also, as someone who has worked retail and done lots of shipping over the years, please keep in mind that once a package has left a seller’s hands and is in the hands of the US Postal Service there is nothing they can do to change or speed up the delivery of your package- so if you want it faster let us know- I can do 3, 2, or overnight via FedEx (make sure you allow for 24 hours in addition to the delivery/shipping times as I do need to pack up your goodies) at an additional charge- many folks can and are happy to help with such details…

Also, at the risk of sounding a bit cranky (from when I worked in shipping for a major US toy store way in the past…I still have flashbacks :-) please do not lambaste the person you purchased an item from (or leave them negative feedback)  if there is foul weather, and if the post office takes longer than their “suggested” time on first class mail and priority mail this time of year- they do not guarantee delivery dates on those types of packages.  Once a package is out of our hands, and it has been labeled and shipped properly, it really is in the hands of our friendly postal workers!

*hugs*

Let’s all do our part (read the instructions, ask questions, and not expect anyone to be a mind-reader… I think that goes for everyone this year- buyers, sellers, husbands, wives, parents, kids, etc….)   to keep all of our increased stress levels to a minimum and let’s all work together all year to make the holidays more enjoyable and less stressful!

Woohoo!

Group hug.

Peace out.

Always be clever. 

xo

B

Buy handmade.

8 Nov

Did you take the pledge? Here’s the link: Buyhandmade.org
I Took The Handmade Pledge! BuyHandmade.org

Sign it. Live it.

and BUY IT on Etsy!

Ok. Now on to my birthday news… It was a tough one this year, lots of mixed feelings and mounting health problems….Blah blah blah..

I did wake up this morning to a little birthday treasure hunt that hubby invited boy to join in (which makes it even more fun)….

Turns out that the baldguy signed up for his very own etsy account and raided my favorites. Yup. My birthday was handmade this year and it all came from my Etsy favorites list!

Links to the treasures coming tomorrow, after some sleep which will renew my ability to put some pictures on here, hopefully…

The best gift, by far, was that the baldguy took the time to figure out the whole Etsy thing and he listened… And I’m thrilled to report that all of the sellers were hugely helpful in answering his questions, getting the packages out, and providing excellent customer service to someone new to the whole Etsy thing. Big round of applause for the artists of Etsy- for not only making awesome things but also balancing good business practices on top of it! Yay!*hugs*

Off to bed to burn off the last hour of this day as I have to catch up on work tomorrow.

Oh and I usually name my present, if we have the funds, and buy it myself around my birthday. That being said, every year since we have been married we have mourned the loss of a major appliance (or a technically minor one that we “need”) or welcomed a new major medical device(insulin pump, muscle stimulator, TENS unit…another insulin pump…) into our lives -always between October 31 and November 7th…. This year, it is our garbage disposal (garberator, or in this case the in-sink (garb)erator :-) BUT, it is covered, thankfully. And I squirreled some money away…Woohoo. SO I did splurge and I have a fabulous custom bag coming from MoxieAndOliver

(ok and a little coordinating case for business cards and my id n’ stuff)

I will, of course, share photos when it arrives! Caitlin is a sweetheart and so talented! She is the very same genius who made my cane straps for me- her work is beautiful and unique- I saw the cane strap and knew I needed a bag to match it! It feels so good to put a bit of my hard earned money into another artists work…To get a little snapshot of their creative spirit to treasure…. Sure I could have bought a bag at one of our local mass merchandise chains but these days I am enjoying buying handmade, direct from the maker – better products, unique products, better quality, and tons more fun.

Oh and I am having a little free shipping thing until midnight… I was hoping to get to my blog a bit sooner but Lexo the Great read me “The B Book” (because my name starts with B) and one of my most favorite kids books “My many colored days” by Dr. Seuss (link is to the hardcover version…we are still reading our gnawed board book version and loving it!) SO for my friendly blog readers, free shipping until midnight 11/8 (up to $5, free shipping will be given via a shipping refund from paypal…if you are paying with propay I will send you an invoice reflecting the discount, just put “beclever” in the notes to seller area)….

What are you still doing here! Shop! Shop! Shop!

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