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1  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Question Re: Recycling Cashmere on: October 03, 2010 06:23:32 AM
I'm getting ready to cut into a thrifted cashmere sweater to make it into something else, and I have a few questions (I've never used a cashmere sweater before to make things). 

First, are the raw edges going to fray or run?  I recently used a couple of cotton/rayon/nylon blends and they didn't fray or run at all, but I have no idea about cashmere.  Will I have to serge or hem the edges to avoid problems? 

Secondly, should I give it a special treatment?  I have felted 100% wool sweaters before, but I have no idea if there's anything special I should do with cashmere before cutting it up. 

Thanks for any and all help!  It's a beautiful sweater; I'd like to avoid any problems that will render it unusable! 
2  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Autumn Blossom Pin on: August 19, 2010 08:23:17 PM
I made this pin entirely out of re-purposed materials--a polyester scarf and a felted wool sweater.  I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.  It's a tad more hippy-chic than I usually go for, but I think the uniqueness of it is good.  I'm hoping it'll work in it's favor, anyway Grin

Thanks for looking!
3  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Satin & Peacock Feather Cuff on: August 15, 2010 07:11:33 PM
My parents have peacocks and my mom gives me their feathers.  I have had a hard time using them because I usually think they're kind of tacky, but I love how this turned out!  Just thought I'd share.  More pics and info on my blog at http://aquietlittlelife.blogspot.com/2010/08/etsy-shop-update-satin-rosette-peacock.html

Thanks for looking!
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Beaded Satin Cuff on: August 06, 2010 12:13:49 PM
I'm not terribly "trendy", but I am terribly pregnant and I have a trendy shirt that flatters my figure that I like to wear.  However, the planet that is my belly was really too much of a focal point (it's a black shirt, no print, nothing to draw the eye except for my globe) so I needed something with some flair to wear with it.  I like cuffs, but haven't found any that go with the rest of my clothing, but I knew exactly what kind of accessory I wanted to wear with this particular shirt.  And it looks great with it!!  I can't believe it turned out exactly how I wanted it to!  It took a long time to make--like, 8 hrs, as I did the entire thing by hand--but it was worth it.  I love it!  To make it a little bit funky, I used some weird things for the middle part, along with beads and buttons and snaps and pieces off of broken jewelry.  There's actually a tiny nut there somewhere.   Grin 

Whaddya think?  I don't bead anything else, but I have been asked to make more of these, so any feedback to make them better is great! 
5  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / I Am Without (Crafting) Focus... on: May 24, 2010 03:47:44 PM
For a long time I've known that I need to have more focus in my crafting (and fashion) style, and especially with my Etsy shop. Does anyone else have this problem??: I like to do all sorts of different things, so I resist the idea of settling into one kind of project (ex: reusable snack bags, purses, children's clothing, ladies tops/dresses) or one type of style (ex: bohemian, prep, punk, etc--but I'm pretty sure now that bohemian is me). But then, I'm all over the place! And in regards to my Etsy shop, I don't want to "limit" myself by narrowing down the type of projects that I do, and as a result I have done nothing in months because I have too many ideas, each "better" than the other, and no "most important" thing that I need to work on first. So, I get NOWHERE!

So, really, I need help. I need input. I need opinions on which kind of things I should do primarily (for my Etsy shop). It doesn't help a ton to look at my sales and see where the best seller is, because I haven't done a lot of sales and they're also all over the place (because my product line is!). I just don't know... Should I focus on children's clothing and accessories? Pillowcase dresses and matching purses are awesome, easy, and adorable. But ladies tops, with ruffles and flowers, are really huge right now and they're fun, too. (I don't think purses/bags are my thing, because they require too much time and special materials that aren't readily available to me at a reasonable price.) I've been doing flowers a lot lately, but I think that market is totally saturated and I don't really enjoy that anyway, not like I enjoy real sewing.

Anyway, I'm certainly not expecting anybody to take lots of time to analyze my blog, but I really have to get my focus figured out, or I might as well stop renewing my Etsy listings and just clean my house! 

Thanks SO MUCH for any input! I really value your help.


BTW, if you do feel like helping this misdirected girl out, "sewing" under LABELS on the right is a good one to click on to get a feel for the things I create. TIA!
6  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Best Place for Russian Tulle? on: May 09, 2010 04:52:54 PM
I'm making a wedding veil for a friend, and she'd like it made of Russian Tulle.  Where is the best place to buy it?  If I have to drive to buy it, I'll be driving at least an hour so I thought I might just order some online.  Can anybody help me here?
7  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / HELP PLEASE! Something's Not Doing its Job. on: September 01, 2009 09:07:17 PM
I have a 1950s Montgomery Ward sewing maching, not sure of the model bc I've misplaced the book again.  It's got 6 or 8 different types of stitches--straight, stretch, zigzag, feather, and a few finishing stitches--and a 3-step button holer.  Every problem I've had with it so far has been resolved with a good cleaning, but not this time. 

It would seem that either the feed dogs are not coming up far enough out of the metal plate, or the bar with the needle and foot isn't going down far enough when I put the foot down.  Whatever is going wrong, there's not enough pressure on the fabric to pull it thru like it should.  It pulls if I press it down onto the feed dogs, so I know that it's not that they aren't moving.  There's just too much space between the foot and the dogs. 

Adjusting the tension, adjusting the pressure, cleaning it, changing the needle, and making sure that everything is square in the bobbin area has not helped.  I haven't checked my book for troubleshooting on this yet because I can't find it.  In the event that I can never find it, or that it will take me until Christmas to find it, I would REALLY REALLY REALLY appreciate some help!  Thanks in advance! 
8  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Using Already-Made Clothing in Handmade Wares? on: November 25, 2008 12:23:52 PM
I have recently done some business with a shop owner who is interested in purchasing more (and more specific) handmade goods from me.  She's asked about baby leg warmers, and I got to looking around on etsy to figure out how people who sell them make them. 

It seems that -- unless they're all manufacturing their very own socks to begin with--they're using store-bought socks that they alter into leg/arm warmers.  My question is:  is it legal for me to go to WalMart or Target or wherever, buy a pair of knee socks, turn them into leg warmers using my own skills and sewing machine, and sell them as "mine"?  It would seem that this is what people like me are doing, but I don't know enough about it to feel totally comfortable doing that, without some input from some who might know. 

It doesn't seem like the same thing as using bought fabric to make a bag; that fabric is just fabric, not already in a bag shape, you know?  Can anybody help me sort thru this?  Please?
9  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Will You Do Black Friday Sales? on: November 24, 2008 02:38:11 PM
I just recently got a website up with some handmade wares (baby stuff, purses, totes, etc) and I have advertised in just a couple of places.  I have talked with a few people about have a sale to bring some attention to my stuff, and I was thinking specifically about doing a Black Friday deal.  So far my method of ordering hasn't evolved past my customers sending me an email.  I was thinking something like, all the orders I recieve dated on Black Friday get 20% off (before shipping), or something like that. 

Does anybody do promotion sales, and if so, what's a percentage/offer that gets good attention without breaking your bank?

10  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Tips for Participating in Craft Fairs / What is your definition of a Successful show?? on: November 03, 2008 06:42:57 AM
I'm trying to enter the craft circuit (I'm in the Ia/Mo/Il area) and I'm wondering what people consider a successful show?  I'm trying to get a good idea of how many sales/how much $$ cleared is needed to be a "good day".  I'm selling baked goods, but I'm also taking along a table full of my handmade crafts, like purses, totes, wallets, etc.

Would you mind sharing...

*What do you sell?

*How much inventory (in $$ or quantity) do you take?  How much do you have to sell to consider it a good day, or a successful show?

*What kind of business do you USUALLY do?  Are most of you doing it for fun, b/c it's your passion, or do you really make decent money at it?

I'm a stay-at-home mom, and this is HOPEFULLY going to supplement our income a little.  I love to sew, so I'm giving selling a try, but any advice for a beginner would be much appreciated!  I just don't know what to expect as far as sales...

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