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1  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Selling Crafts on Etsy.com / Re: Opening an etsy shop - do I need a business license? on: June 19, 2006 06:24:09 PM
You don't need a business license to open up your Etsy shop, but it's good business practice. Licensing your business encourages, maybe even forces you to take your shop and your business seriously, IMHO, and legally/technically, it's required for tax purposes.

The "hoops" you have to jump through aren't particularly arduous, especially for sole proprietorships. I'm in Arizona, and I registered my business name with my state and county. Next, I registered for my TPT (Transaction Privilege Tax aka sales tax) license, again for my state, county, and city. I fill out a simple monthly tax form, regardless of my sales, and that's that.

Registering for a business license, aside from giving you more legitimacy, also allows you to purchase your supplies at wholesale prices, which may become an issue if your business explodes -- and I hope it does!

Blue skies,
2  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / Re: polymer clay!--what's your fav? on: June 09, 2006 09:33:03 PM
I'm a Kato grrl all the way. I always clay with wide open windows and a fan running, so the odor has never bothered me. I love this product for caning, and find that both the working and finished texture is perfect for me. And man...it's smooooth! When I wear latex gloves while working, especially for rolling beads, I find that I barely have to sand them.

In fact, one of the main reasons I sand is to actually give a bit of tooth to the surface for finishing with Future or Varathane. It can actually be too smooth to hold a sealent. Learned that through trial and error, just like most everything else in my creative pursuits!  Wink
3  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Baby Book -- with an edge on: February 05, 2006 07:11:55 AM

Hey craftsters...I'm in the need for some creative mojo.

My brother and sister-in-law are having their first baby towards the beginning of April. We know that they'll be having a girl, and the her name will be Savannah Alexandra. I've been asked to make a "baby book" to present to them at her baby shower the first weekend in March. I live out of state, so have to have it mailed by the last week in February.

Now, Rachelle (my S-I-L) is a "hip mamma" type. She has a witty, if dry sense of humor, and while she loves being at home and in charge of the domestic sphere, her style has a delicious tongue in cheek "edge" to it -- like Mrs. Cleaver meets Melissa Etheridge! Wink Anyway, I think her baby book should be the same, and I'm looking for some inspiration.

I've started trolling for fun quotes and page headings, but haven't come up with a suitable format. I thought about altering a baby's board book, but am not sure that's the look I want either. I usually make my own journals, know about all the acid-free rules, and know that I want to include stamp carvings and faux postage. Other than that, I don't have a clue. What would you do to create a baby book that will turn heads?

Thanks for your help!

Blue skies,

4  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Re: Rubber Stamp and Watercolor on: February 04, 2006 10:56:28 PM
I think this might be a good way to go, but I've never done it before.  I don't have a heat gun or anything, but I have this crafty book that says I can do it with an iron or a hot plate, which I'm not sure about.  What about toaster oven?  Does it need to be concentrated heat, or just heat? (The book doesn't give much guidance.)  Maybe I'll just get myself a gun....

My first attempt at pre-heat gun embossing involved the burner on my stove. I turned it on medium and gingerly held my embossed image over the heat, making sure to keep everything moving and far enough away from the flame that nothing burned or discolored. It goes quickly, so watch it at all times. I've heard of toasters, and even naked light bulbs working, but a heat gun is definitely easier, and more controlled. Good luck! Cheesy


5  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Re: Business Cards on: February 03, 2006 11:40:14 PM

Hi! Congrats on your move and gettings set up with new business cards.

After printing cards on my home computer, and wasting a bunch of ink on blank cards that feel thinner than most traditional business cards (and have those tacky perforated edges, micro or not) I became sold on Vista Print. I use them for all of my business correspondence from business cards and stationary to sales sheets and brochures for a coordinated look.

I've had both the matte and glossy cards, and definitely prefer the glossy because the colors just pop out at you. They have a good varitey of premade designs, but I uploaded my own photo for my cards, and that worked exceptionally well. All I had to do was make sure that my design fit within the guidelines of their template, and they took care of the rest.

I know that they can be expensive at first glance, but they're always offering specials, especially once you're an established customer. Their products look and feel professional, and that really makes for a strong first "image" impression.

Good luck in your search for the perfect business cards! Take your time, and you'll find something that suits you. Smiley

Blue skies,

6  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Re: card making questions..help please! on: February 03, 2006 11:31:36 PM

I think there are as many glues, pastes, and tapes as there are crafters! It can be mind boggling when you start to explore them all.

My favorite glues/pastes for mounting papers and/or photos: YES! paste, Nori rice starch paste, or home made methyl cellulose paste...all are acid free, and don't dry so fast that you can't reposition something you're not happy with. I apply them with a paste brush or flexible palette knife, and then lightly brayer my mounted image (covered with a scrap piece of paper if necessary for protection) on the substrate to remove any wrinkles or air bubbles.

My favorite double-stick tapes: 3M XL tape runner, and the Tombow tape runner.

One other thing that might work. If you have (or have access to) a Xyron machine, you can turn your whole photo into a "sticker" with an even coat of adhesive on it from edge to edge. Peel off the backing, and stick it down. It's permanent though, so I'd recommend marking the corners on your cardstock so that you know where you want to place the picture.


Blue skies,
- K

7  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Re: How do you make your own stationary? please help on: February 03, 2006 11:20:12 PM

I'd have to agree, both the "Sock it to me" stationary and the recipe card seem to be drawings scanned into the computer, placed appropriately, and printed, or graphics created in Illustrator or another drawing program,
touched up in Photoshop and placed/printed as well.

I'd use a lightweight, smooth surfaced cardstock. You might only be able to print a few at a time before reloading your paper tray, but the results would be worth it based on the sample links you shared. What kind of computer system, if any, do you run? If you don't want to do the digital work yourself, you might be able to take a completed layout to a copy shop and have them photo or color copy it on the stock of your choice. Most places will cut it for you too, so that you don't have to spend precious time making friends with a paper cutter when all you really want to do is write!  Wink

Blue skies,

8  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Re: Rubber Stamp and Watercolor on: February 03, 2006 11:09:17 PM

I too love combining watercolor with stamped images. You can create everything from delicate washes to colors so vibrant that it looks like you've used gouache. Though I still like my tubes of paint, I really like the on the fly painting I can do with all of the watercolor crayons out there.

I've honestly never sealed my watercolors when I've worked on stationary. I too use the "emboss and paint" method, both because the image lines don't run, and the raised surface creates "holding cells" for the colors when you don't want them to run wildly, especially when working wet in wet.

As for premade stationary, Strathmore makes cards that can stand up to light washes. The packs come with around 25 cards/envelopes, I think, and a variety of colored deckled edges. I prefer making my own cards, so I haven't used them in a long time, but they did work well for me.

If you're intent on sealing your work, I'd suggest Krylon's Clear spray sealer, or perhaps their UV Protectant. Just use outdoors or in a well ventilated space, and you should be OK health wise. If you're at all concerned though, check with your doc!


Blue skies,

9  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Re: Add some excitement to your mailbox! on: January 21, 2006 09:36:36 AM

Now this is a really cool idea! I'm bookmarking the site and will register shortly. Oh man...this could get dangerous -- but oh so fun. Thanks for the link!


10  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Completed Projects / Re: Purple Butterfly Necklace on: January 20, 2006 10:09:09 PM

The way the necklace flows down in a lariat style works beautifully with the stillness of the butterfly. It reminds me of  butterfly that freezes on a flower during "mid-sip" when a bumbling human like myself comes to close. The contrast of flow and stillness really balances the piece. Goregous!

Blue skies,

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