Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Time flies...

I can't believe it's been over two months since my last update! I'm really sorry about that. I've no idea where the time goes these days!

I hit a bit of a low period with my jewellery around mid July as I wasn't doing too well with the online selling and I was attending craft fairs that had very few people coming through the doors so it hit me hard and I started losing my drive to create.

Thankfully, my motivation has returned, along with another craft fair and i've been creating like crazy!!

I've been trying out some new ideas and just having fun with it again. I think I forget that it's supposed to be enjoyable sometimes. I'll hopefully be listing items a lot more regularly on Etsy than I have been previously and ill hopefully be providing a slightly more varied range of jewellery.

My latest creation is the first bracelet I've designed using several different types of beads. I had so much fun making it and I can't wait to see who buys it. Most of the beads are handmade by myself using clay but there are also plastic and wooden beads added in to give the bracelet some really interesting textures.

I've also been experimenting with my product photos. Nothing beats daylight for great images, but I like to try other things to see what effects I can get. I enlisted the help of GerryQuiff Photography for a jewellery shoot last month. I had some lovely models who volunteered to help out and I got some pretty awesome pictures that I'm using for advertising. You can see some of them on my Etsy shop.

This coming weekend (Sept 3rd and 4th) I'll be attending the Merchant Square Craft Fair. I've been to this one before but this weekend is a bit different as they're raising money for the STV Appeal. I think STV will also be carrying out some interviews and such with traders ,so fingers crossed I get a chance to show off my jewellery or talk a little about it. If you're in the area it'd be great if you could come along as you'd have the chance to help out a great cause, as well as getting a look at a lot of different traders as there's bound to be many in attendance.

That's all for this update but i'll try to update again soon. (I think I'll need to set a reminder for myself so I don't forget! hehe) Thanks for reading :)

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Sunday, 26 June 2011

Keeping spirits up...

Hello everyone,

I attended my second craft fair yesterday, trading as DysfunctionDesigns. It was at Finlaystone Country Estate and it was a little disappointing to say the least. The location is beautiful and the stables and courtyards were a lovely place to have a stall but sadly it was not a success. I think I'd mainly blame the weather as it was fairly miserable all day. I'm not sure how much advertising had gone into it, but alas, we live and learn.

In the spirit of getting back on the horse, I have managed to secure a place(due to a cancelation) at the Ayrshire Arts & Crafts Fair in Troon Concert Hall next Saturday(2nd July!)
It is fully booked so hopefully that gives some indication of how good it is. It is also indoors, so fingers crossed that it goes well. I'm not sure what kind of crowd this fair will attract but i'm staying positive for now. It's only my 3rd craft fair afterall!!

The weekend after i'll be at the Merchant City Market(busy bee, I know!! :D ) I'll be trading on both Sat 9th and Sun 10th of July so pop in to that if you're in the glasgow area. It's also indoors and theres a fab selection of restaraunts and bars in the square as well so hopefully it'll be a success.

As i'm attending these craft fairs i've been working away on a lot of new pieces! I've added a couple of items already today and will continue to add new stuff pretty frequently throughout July (unless it all sells at the craft fairs of course, hehe). If all goes well then I may have to spend a lot more time crafting and I might not be able to update as often as i'd like. I'll try to pop on every so often to let you all know what's going on.

Please spread the word about DysfunctionDesigns, I would appreciate it very much. Share my Facebook fan page with your friends and family or mention my Etsy Shop to your work collegues. Either way, I'm trying to get the word out to as many people as possible,in as many locations as possible so please tell people about my items if you like them!
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Monday, 20 June 2011

Busy Busy Busy!

Hey folks,

Sorry for the lack of updates this month, I've been pretty busy. I was trading at my first craft fair ever on the first Sat in June! It ended up being fairly quiet due to the location (Stereo, in Glasgow) but it was good nonetheless. I made a few sales, learned a few things and picked up a few tips from other sellers so all was not lost!
After that I went to Download Festival in Donnington, had a great time but was happy to be back home with running water!! hehe.

The real world is trying to drag me back so i'm currently back to the job hunting as i'm only working part-time at the moment and sadly I just can't afford to keep doing that. If (when) I get a full time job you may see a slight lull in updates and new products but i'll do my best to keep on top of things as my wee business means a lot to me and I really want to see it take off.

On a brighter note, I'll be trading at the Finlaystone Annual Summer Craft Fair at Finlaystone Country Estate in Langbank this Saturday (25th June!). It's in a great location and there will be a wide selection of sellers there offering their wares. Hopefully the weather will be good so come along if you're free!! I'll be selling lots of new items.
All the details can be found here:

I'm also trading at the Merchant City Market on both Sat 9th AND Sun 10th of July! so pop along if you can. I'll be bringing along loads of new items that won't be available online until after the fair! It's situated in the Merchant Square so there's a fab selection of restaurants if you fancy popping in for lunch or dinner.
More info here:

I've been working away making a lot of new beads and pendants so i'll be uploading lots of new items after the craft fair this sat so keep your eyes peeled! I'm going to be adding some clay rings to my shop as well as new clay bracelets and necklaces. Don't forget I also sell tribal jewellery for men!

Anyways, just wanted to give everyone a quick update on what's happening with DysfunctionDesigns... I'll try not to leave it so long before my next update :p

Ta ta x
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Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Cupcakes, Biscuits & Chocolate..Oh My!

Biscuit Village Jurassic Dino Tin

The net is a great place to discover new things. Due to my massively sweet tooth I've recently discovered many online sellers who specialise in cakes and biscuits! (yum yum). The biggest drawback about finding a tonne of fabulous and delicious treats on the net is that most of them aren't in your area. Massive bummer eh?
After drooling over countless cup cakes & biscuits from US sellers I decided to go on a hunt to find some awesome treats a little closer to home.
I'm based just outside Glasgow so I zoned in on British sellers. All these shops provide quick delivery within the UK.

The first awesome shop I'll be talking about is Biscuit Village...(http://www.biscuitvillage.co.uk)
I stumbled upon this fabulous shop via the awesome Dino biscuits (shown to the left). Biscuit village use fresh and organic ingredients to create fun and funky edibles. They have a fabulous range and even do personalised biscuits and custom orders.

I discovered these fabulous chocolate bunnies by Choklet via WowThankYou (http://www.wowthankyou.co.uk/choklet/). Choklet is a small business based in Nottinghamshire who create fabulously fun chocolate shapes decorated with bright and fun designs. Their milk chocolate designs come in a range of great shapes including flowers,cars and numbers and they also offer personalised messages. Choklet provide unique and affordable edible treats for all occasions.

Lastly i'd like to mention Lush Buns! (http://www.lushbuns.co.uk). I have them added on my facebook page and i'm constantly seeing updates of yummy looking cupcakes and cake pops! Their cupcakes are both simple and elegant allowing them to provide their customers with high quality and affordable handmade products. They also do a fabulous "big one". A giant cupcake that serves 12-16 people!
Not only do Lush Buns make fabulous cakes but they also supply them in a range of quantities to suit you and they have a very reasonable minimum order.(I'm sure you'd have no problem reaching it!) The shipping charges are also very reasonable.
This is just a taster (ha ha!) of the range of cakes and biscuits available online within the UK. It's now easier than ever to get hand made quality(and even personalised) products delivered straight to your door!
If you have tried any of these products please feel free to comment below, or even if you just enjoyed reading about them. If you have any other suggestions for UK based cake sellers I'd be more than happy to discover them :)
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Sunday, 15 May 2011

To stick or not to stick...

When I first started my jewellery business I was creating all kinds of jewellery from gold bracelets with pearls to tribal bracelets with skulls, following every idea that came into my head. I didn't really have any kind of direction in mind, I simply new I wanted to create jewellery.
After a while, having read numerous blog posts and seller interviews, I managed to focus my jewellery making into a more concentrated area. I decided that my creations would fall around the categories of Gothic, Tribal and Antique. I chose these as they were the ones that I enjoyed working with most. I felt that my passion for creating items that fell into these categories would show in the quality of my work and I believe it has done. Having this focus has allowed me to be more creative. I am constantly looking for new ideas and sources of inspiration and sometimes this leads me off the path slightly. I have started to create my own fimo beads which I use in necklaces and bracelets. These generally don't fall into any of the previously mentioned categories but I feel such a great sense of achievement when I finish a piece that is truly hand made. Creating jewellery is a great experience, but creating my own beads as well is something else. I'd say my business is still fairly new and I have learned that I shouldn't be afraid of trying new things or trying to keep all my jewellery in the one category. The only way we can learn and grow is to try new things, make mistakes, and see what works.

I will always try to envisage my target market and create items geared towards them but there is no rule that says your target market cannot change. I would rather enjoy the creative process and come up with jewellery that I have put my heart and soul into than make the same kind of jewellery over and over again just so my shop can constantly stay within the same genre. I do not want to sell half-hearted creations. I do not want to follow trends and simply provide products that are already saturated in the jewellery market. I want to create. To provide new and exciting pieces that my customers can be happy to wear. If I do not enjoy creating an item then I am wary about selling it as I know that it may not be up to the standard of my other work. It's not a total loss when this happens though as it allows me to discover what I am passionate about creating and what I'm not. It lets me focus more on the things I love and hopefully allows me to create a higher standard of jewellery.
I do love making jewellery and if I ever manage to make my business successful enough so that it becomes my career then I feel I would be truly blessed and extremely lucky. I can imagine nothing better than doing something for a living that is this enjoyable, as well as the feeling that I get from providing products to my customers that they can love and enjoy too. I'd like to sign off with the following quote...

If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants. - Isaac Newton
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Monday, 2 May 2011

Sunglasses at the ready!

Hey everyone,

I have just created a treasury collection on Etsy so thought i'd share it on here and give a little insight to why I picked some of the items. For those who don't know, a treasury on Etsy is a collection of items chosen by a user to fit in with a specific topic or theme that has been chosen by that user. It should not feature any items made by the user and it gives sellers a chance to get their items seen by a bigger , or at least a different audience.

I love all 16 of the items I featured in the collection, but my favourite has to be the Peace and Music Camper van print! I have a secret love for all things hippy-ish and for me it really sums up the summer vibe. It's not just the van itself that makes this picture, it's the whole setting...especially with the sun just breaking through the trees. Its a very cheery picture and makes me think of far off adventures and having a great sense of freedom. Looking at it fills me with a warm contentedness. This print can be found here - Peace and music campervan

The item that started off my treasury was this adorable toddler blanket. As soon as I saw it I fell in
love with it! The colours and the print are just stunning and I think this would be a perfect present for any little nephews(or niece!) or cousins. It also looks extremely comfy and well made and comes in a very generous size. You can find this item here -Dino Toddler Blanket

I think it must be all this good weather we're having which is making me appreciate brighter colours and it's having an effect on my shop too! Before now I had mostly been focusing on creating Gothic, antique and tribal themed items but since starting to make my own fimo beads I have been experimenting more with  brighter colours such as oranges and yellows.

The last item I want to talk about is this wonderful little upcycled crochet bowl. The colours are fabulous and it is a little in keeping with the hippy theme as it is
very eco friendly as well as being very pretty and practical. I am a very big fan of crochet and I enjoy seeing new and varied creations that are possible using this craft. I have dabbled in this craft myself, but so far have stuck mostly to scarves and blankets. This lovely little item can be found here - Upcycled Tie Dyed Bowl.

I really enjoyed making this treasury and hope you enjoy looking at it.
You can find the full treasury here - Sunglasses at the ready!
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Friday, 29 April 2011

Sharing the love...

Through uploading and researching my own products, I frequently come across amazing artists and sellers on Etsy and all over the internet. I thought I would showcase a few items that I've stumbled upon over the last week or so.

Firstly, I'd like to draw everyones attention to the wonderful work over at Shelly Belle. She creates fantastic name and wedding plaques. I came across the site on facebook and was instantly drawn to the commissioned plaques photo album where there are some great pics of a very wide variety of designs, including, safari, Peppa pig and rock chick. These plaques are ideal for children's bedroom doors. She has an amazing talent and a list of sterling reviews! I shall definitely be placing a custom order in the future!

A shop that I know many people are sick to death of 
me shouting about is NeverDieArt
I love her art work! I recently ordered another 2 prints from her amazing collection. The only reason I found her shop was through random browsing on Etsy and I am very thankful that I did as her prints look amazing framed and on my wall! Anyone who likes alternative art should definitely check her out and even if you don't ...just go have a look anyways :p 

It's hard to keep this post brief as there really are LOTS of sellers and shops I could mention. I'll probably start doing blogs similar to this one on a regular basis. I had thought about doing blog interviews..but this way, I can choose who and what I write about and I'll always be blogging about items and art that I love!! What could be better than that?

Lastly, I bought another print from a shop on Etsy called Spiral Moon. They have such a beautiful range of art work and decorative boxes. Their shop says that they will be uploading new products soon so I will definitely be keeping an eye out for those!
Anyways, that's all I have to say for now so check out these awesome sellers (and maybe pop over to DysfunctionDesigns as well if you fancy) and I'll do another update with more awesome products soon.

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Monday, 25 April 2011

The birth of the fimo-bug...

Handmade fimo bracelet
I'd entertained the notion of working with fimo for a while and had already created a couple of necklaces using it. However, it was only yesterday that I really started to look into it in more depth. I created a selection of patterned beads which I ended up being quite proud of. I created a bracelet soon after and listed in on Etsy. Less than an hour later and it had sold! I couldn't believe how quickly it went. Needless to say I feel extremely proud and happy with myself.

I spent more time last night and today creating more fimo beads. I don't want handmade beads to take over my business but I do think they definitely have a place in my shop. Creating any of my items gives me a great sense of pride but when I make my own beads as well I get something extra in knowing that I had a hand in creating all the elements.

Recently, I have been working with a lot of Antique style pieces and they are quite delicate and feminine. This inspired me to create a number of chunky tribal bracelets with big skull beads. I adore stuff like that as it's so bold and great for everyday wear. Most tribal jewellery is also unisex so it generally doesn't look too girly.

Over the last month i'd had to limit the time spent making jewellery as i've been working and studying a lot. I missed it so much though and it's nice to have a bit more time for it. After a few weeks I should have even more time and I cannot wait! Here's to finding your passion! I've had a few fleeting ventures in the past and none lasted as I either got bored or they just didn't work out. I've been making jewellery for a while now and I'm still as passionate about it, if not even more so! I fully intend to be doing this for the rest of my life.
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Thursday, 21 April 2011

Here comes the sun!

Judging by the weather over the last week or so it's looking like summer is getting into full swing. Even here in Scotland!
I do love the nice weather but ideally i'd liked to have had my exams out the way before the really good weather kicks in, but never mind. I won't complain :p

Over the next 2/3 weeks i'll be spending a lot of time studying for my last 2 exams so things may be quiet on the DysfunctionDesigns front. After the 9th May though...I should be able to focus a lot more of my time to my wee business as well as blogging more often! (You're all cheering arent you!)

I've got some products loaded onto WowThankYou so that should be an exciting avenue when it launches in the next week or so. I'm also thinking of branching into over avenues..I have my jewellery and supplies shops..but I may try to take on another. Need to get some ideas flowing I think.

But yes..for now i'll leave you as even though the sun is still shining I really do need to do some studying!

Ta ta x
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Wednesday, 13 April 2011

My item was featured in a front page treasury!

What it says above basically! :p
One of my bracelets was selected for a treasury which is currently sitting on the FRONT page of the treasury listings on Etsy! I'm quite proud.
Whether it gets me sales or not..I don't really mind as it's just a nice feeling knowing that people like your work! :D

You can check it out here > Surf's Up! Treasury
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Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Louise Knits: Made in Britain!

My Etsy shop has just been featured on this blog :Louise Knits: Made in Britain!

Check it out! :D
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Friday, 1 April 2011

What day is it!!

It's been hectic at this end lately. Sadly i've got so much going on with uni, work and the rest of it that I've not been able to spend as much time on my jewellery as i'd have liked to. Hopefully that will all change very soon though!
I got my shipment of bronze and gunmetal beads and findings in this week and i've already started creating new pieces so they should be up this weekend!
I've just added a bracelet and a necklace to my Etsy shop :

you can find them here
I'm currently in the middle of setting up my new shop on WowThankYou so that should be open at the end of April when the new site launches :) Looking forward to that!
I'll try to update more frequently, but for now, ta ta x
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Sunday, 20 March 2011

Sunday Catch Up!

Well, I made it to the bead fair last Sunday and it was fantastic! Very busy though so I didn't get to spend as much time taking a leisurely look around as I'd have wanted to but I did pick up some great supplies.
Have created a couple of new items since and they're up on my Etsy shop now! I'm also working on a few other pieces but I'm (im)patiently waiting for a delivery of some amazing antique gold and bronze beads and findings to finish them off. I should be creating a good few new vintage pieces over the next few weeks, can't wait!!

Just a quick update today. I got a new tripod so i'm going to retake some photos and I'm also taking advantage of Ebays free listing weekend!

Just before I go, here's a pic of my latest bracelet:
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Saturday, 12 March 2011

Snow in March!

I've been watching the weather and traffic reports all day, checking out how bad they are as I'm planning to head to the Scottish Bead Fair tomorrow. I'm hoping the rain will wash all the snow away tonight and it'll be fine by the time I have to leave...well,here's hoping.

I've recently made a shop on WowThankYou. It's being refurbished at the moment but I'll update when it's open. Looking into other options as well,so will probably look into them more after May when I'll (hopefully) have more free time.
I'n the mean time I've added a few new items to my Etsy shop...

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Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Bracelet Give-away!

Would you like the chance to win one of my one of a kind hand made bracelets??
Just head over to the Handmade Success Blog (link below) for details of how to win a bracelet, absolutely free!!

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Monday, 7 March 2011

New Range

I have added a new range of bracelets and necklace to my Etsy shop! They feature stunning eye beads in a variety of colours.
Here are some samples:

You can check them out at DysfunctionDesigns on Etsy!
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Monday, 28 February 2011

The latest addition to DysfunctionDesigns! :) Very proud of this piece.

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Sunday, 27 February 2011

New Etsy sister shop

Just a quick post to let everyone know that i've started another Etsy shop. It's for beads and jewellery supplies that I won't be using.
Some great items that deserve to go to someone who can use them instead of just sitting gathering dust! :D

Dixie De-Stash
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Friday, 25 February 2011

Sneak peek!

Here's a look at a couple of the items I'll be putting up on Etsy tomorrow..

Fell in love with everything I ordered from The Bead Shop Scotland! :)

I have been wondering about other on-line places to sell my jewellery. I have some items on Folksy but that's it apart from Etsy. Looking about for new ideas. Obviously, keeping costs low would be good..but I guess as they say, you need to spend money to make money....
I should get a good few more items up this weekend as I'll be staying in :D Jewellery making is therapeutic(well, sometimes :p) so I'm sure it'll do me the world of good!

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Monday, 21 February 2011

Bead Fair

Less than 3 weeks to go until the Scottish Bead Fair!! I'm very excited about it.Will hopefully be able to buy several new types of beads and other materials, which means..YES..new items!! woo!

Saying that, I've just uploaded 3 new pieces over the weekend so make sure you check those out too!! :D

Pink Skeleton Portrait Necklace
Two Trees Tribal Bracelet
Theres No Place Like Bracelet
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Thursday, 17 February 2011

Got some new supplies in today!!Shall be putting up new items over the next few days!!!
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Saturday, 12 February 2011

It's all going on!

Thought i'd show off my newest addition to DysfunctionDesigns..

Remember! you can find this and other items here : Etsy!

I'm in the middle of researching a new Goth themed range of necklaces!! I'm so excited by it. Hopefully the range will be announced in March(if not before) and products should be available from March!!!
Keep your eyes peeled.
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Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Blog Interviews

I would be happy to do a blog interview relating to my handmade & alternative jewellery business if anyone is interested??
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Tuesday, 8 February 2011

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Have been watching the Etsy Symposium today and it's really inspired me. It's also really given me a good feeling about some of the choices i've already made regarding my jewellery :)

I am now specialising in the following themes.. Gothic,Geek,Tribal and Antique. Since I started creating jewellery, I found myself regularly making jewellery that fell into these 4 themes. They also reflect my own interests and I think this is very important when making hand made items.

I have a lot more focus now. Long may it continue :D
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Monday, 7 February 2011

Lots of new items just added to Etsy!!!

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Friday, 28 January 2011

New Blog!

Keep up to date with my newest creations on here or on the DysfunctionDesigns facebook!!
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