Did you hear? The Big Chill is on!

Big Chill Poster by Kris Johnsen and Meagan Anderson

Yep!  It’s happening.  And applications are open through October 31st:  you can click here to go download the application .pdf at the website!

Tell your friends!  🙂

Socks Rock

Cat: Totally not impressed with my ballet moves

Ohmygosh – you know what would be a totally great holiday present for someone, man or female, young or old?  Or even just a great present for yourself?  Hand knit socks!  Socks rock.  Click here for the Etsy listing.

When I started knitting socks this summer (summer knitting needs to be small, otherwise forget it in our humid North East) I was like “Hmm, why would people want ‘expensive’ hand knit socks when you can waltz down to target and pick up something pretty similar for 10 or 12 dollars?”

Well.  Here are some reasons:

Subsistence culture.  It’s the new old thing, learning how to make essentials (gardens, hosiery, cooking, etc.) from scratch.  Even if you’re not great with the four needles in the round yourself, at least having something that was made with them is a start!

Comfort, comfort, comfort.  These socks are so warm and so comfy – knit with peruvian worsted wool the fibers are a continues thread of wool, unspun, so there are not a lot of gaps between stitches making these just about the warmest socks that will still comfortably fit in a pair of sneakers.  Sweaty feet?  No problem.  Lanolin in wool naturally wicks away moisture making your feet comfy AND dry throughout the day.  Personally tested, because (TMI) I have super sweaty feet.

Made in the U.S.A.  Don’t you love that?  Our country doesn’t make a lot of things nowadays, and by buying American made you’re strengthening the economy double fold by transferring money and transferring it domestically.

Customizable.  Don’t see the sock height/size/color you want?  Send me a note and you can pretty much get whatever you want at a reasonable price.  I’m only doing solid color socks at present, but be on the lookout for multicolors soon!

More Colors! Let me know if you want something different - I'll see what I can do!

Super Sunday

Socks for Sale!

Yes!  I finally took the pictures I wanted of my favorite new thing to make:  socks!  The above foot warmers are made with 100% Peruvian wool and are SUPER warm.  Don’t worry about sweaty feet, though, because the wool will wick away moisture while keeping your toes warm.  The ankle-high sock is $29, and the high top sock is $34.  Each pair is made to order, and if you have any special requests I am happy to try and accommodate.  Please specify shoe size (or foot length, from back of heel to tip of big toe) for perfect fit (or, if you’re not sure, ‘small’ ‘medium’ or ‘large’).  These will be going up in my Etsy shop before the weekend is up so come check it out!

Delicious Treats Only Take 30 Minutes

I’m excited, because tonight we’re going to Brian and Tara’s house for a fire.  Because I love fire so much, it doubles the fun of hanging out with friends.  I am going to bring my camera and do weird things with it!  I made the brownies above for the event, and because Brian and Tara are in a band called the Rattlesnakes this concoction is now called ‘Rattlesnacks’ in my mind cookbook.  All you really do is add Reese’s peanut butter chips to brownie mix, but sh, don’t tell.  I did these while I was simultaneously making chicken salad/chicken broth – so with a total of maybe one hour in the kitchen I managed to make lunch, a food staple and dessert in one sitting.  Plus I got to wear one of my vintage aprons so… totally worth it.

Lots of bottle caps

Lots of bottle cap work yesterday, today and tomorrow.  See how each of those has a little jump ring in them?  Well.  Each jump ring must have a hole made for it.  Then the hole needs to be sealed after the ring is put in.  Le sigh…

More Socks on the Way

Started this pair to fill the monotony between bottle cap batches.  A typical day goes like this:  come home from work (7am-4pm), throw stuff on a chair, sit on the couch, turn on the Cosmos, lean over bottle caps, every hour take a stretching, sitting up, dry time break and knit.  Eat dinner at some point, bottle caps, knit, repeat.

If you haven’t seen that applications are open for The Big Chill this December 3rd, then you should click on this to download your application now!

I must be manic today.

Recycling Clothes at Its Finest

Click to View Listing from Hand Me Down Designs, $35

You know that really awesome piece of clothing that you can’t live without but then you start… expanding… then it’s a little too small.  Then it gets a stain.  Now there’s a hole in the zipper.  Oh, darn it – now your favorite skirt is a weird, swiss-cheese sausage casing that you try to wriggle in to once a week with no luck.

I finally parted with my favorite red corduroy skirt, and I’m glad I did.  I donated it to Malaika of Hand Me Down Designs and she made a fantastic Fall bag out of it (see picture above).  The skirt was cut on the bias and I love that that shows in the body of the skirt, with the contrast of having it run vertically up the strap.  Great browns were added – it’s so cool to see my favorite skirt renewed and possibly someone new’s favorite bag!

Great job, Malaika – keep up the good work!

If you’re interested in donating your weird, swiss-cheese sausage casing clothes (or just ones you’re tired of) to Malaika to give them a new life shoot me a note and I will get you her contact information, or you can convo her on Etsy.  Making old in to new is a sense of satisfaction only topped by the fact she gives you a coupon for a $5 credit to her shop when you donate a bag of clothes!

Just Listed

Chicken Barrette, $6 from littleeyedesigns on Etsy

‘Ello!  If you haven’t peeked in to my Etsy shop lately (click there), you’ll be blown away at all the new items.  I’ve been hemming and hawing about new listings and I realized that when you sell tiny, little specialty objects it really is a numbers game:  the more I pack in there, the more chance there will be someone who connects with the artwork featured in the bottle cap!  Many new listings still to come, but I especially like that chicken barrette.

I’m also offering FREE SHIPPING on any order over $10, all you need to do is enter “ISPENT10” (all caps, no spaces) at checkout and the shipping charge will be removed.  That’s neat!

http://littleeyedesigns.etsy.com

FREE SHIPPING from Little Eye on Etsy

Click Here for Shopping with Free Shipping!

Hey duders — guess what!  If you spend $10 or more on any order in my Etsy shop you can get free shipping by entering “ISPENT10” at checkout.  All one word, all caps.

Music to My Ears… and My Hair.

OK, I’m going to try my hand at being a nice lady to my Etsy shop again.  I fell in to a lull this summer when sales were slumping and the beach was getting warmer and warmer.  But now that the Picnic busy-ness is over, I’m on top of my wholesale order (yet again) and the only real ‘extra’ project I have going on is knitting socks it seems like a pretty good time to start taking pictures again.

Non-sequitur:  I am in need of someone with size 7 feet who would like to trade modeling socks for… a pair of hand knit socks.  I’d need your toes for modeling by mid-September and then I’d have a pair of socks (in your choice of color and calf-length!) ready for you by the beginning of October.

Ok, but now to make sense of this post title:  I experimented with making post earrings with bottle caps before Picnic — this is not something I would wear (I like little posts, big hoops, or super dangly ones) but I’ve noticed a lot of people walking around with the chunky, ‘clip-on’ style earrings so thought I’d give it a go.  It did pretty well!  I sold three pairs at Picnic which was half of my experiment stock.  Here are two listings that will be music to your ears (and hair):

A Pirate Looks Under Starboard - Click on the Image to see listing.

Bass Clef Hair Clip - Click on image for listing.

Pickles, Picnic, End of a Season

Good afternoon.  I’ve been curating again!  So much fun to make treasuries when you’ve got the time…  Click on each image to be taken to a selection of 16 items by awesome artists and vintage superstars.

Design Your Own Embroidery Hoop by merriweathercouncil.

Picnic! Treasury featuring items by vendors who will be at this weekend’s Picnic festival.

Chilled Dill Pickles Print by hartart13

pickle people Treasuryfeaturing delicious, pickled perfection.

2 Bicycle Etched Pint Glasses by phoenixfirestudios.

 end of the summer Treasury – featuring all those good, Autumn-y thingies.

Strength in Numbers: A 4th of July Collaboration with Mollie Ann from Rough Magic Creations

Eureka!  This week has the important distinction of being the week I finished a collaboration with another talented crafter, Mollie Ann, of Rough Magic Creations.  It all began when the Etsy Maine Team came up with a 4th of July Team Challenge, to create (by yourself or with a partner) a holiday-themed piece for Independence Day.  Being the enormous fan of red, white and blue that I am (my photo background has been only that, lately!) I was super psyched.

I got in touch with Mollie, knowing that she was way more talented with metal than me.  I’ve been thinking for a long time about branching out of the bottle cap bezel world, and this was a great first opportunity.  Mollie and I put our heads together to make a star-shaped earring and pendant with a circular bezel hammered right in the center.  Here is our initial sketch:

And by 'sketch,' I mean image of a star I copied and drew elements on!

From there, we agreed that sheet aluminum would have the right color we were looking for (Mollie usually uses copper, but the silver color and price point of aluminum worked well with our design) so she ordered it and I waited with much anticipation to receive my new bezels in the mail!

Empty Bezels, Waiting for their stars + stripes

Finally (okay, I say ‘finally’ but it was so fast, like a day later!  I was just like an excited kid on Christmas morning) I received the lovely pieces (pictured above) in the mail, ripe for the epoxy-ing!  After cutting some custom size circles, gluing and mixing epoxy Mollie and I were the proud parents of the pieces you see below:

Stars and Stripes Earrings, $26 on Etsy

Stars and Stripes Pendant (You pick stars or stripes) $24 on Etsy

Stars and Stripes Earrings and Pendant Set, $48 on Etsy

Mollie and I are so pleased at how these turned out!  The photo prototypes are our ‘rough drafts’ so we’ve made some changes, including making the bezels deeper so that the epoxy doesn’t bleed around the edges of the circle … which you can kind of see in the picture but won’t be an issue on any further runs of the sets.  If you’re interested in ordering a pair of earrings, a necklace, or a set of earrings and a necklace please know you can specify what combination of stars and stripes you’d like!  Order from either Mollie or I in our Etsy shops (you can click on the images to link to the listings) and let us know what you’d like!  We can also do the stars with totally different images, not just stars and stripes.  🙂  The stars and stripe sets are made of lightweight charms with a nickel ball chain for the necklaces and sterling silver ear wires for those of us with sensitive ears!

All orders received by June 22nd should be shipped to you in time for the 4th of July.

Little Eye Destash – Audrey Cleans House

Ceramic Owl Beads, Set of 4

Or, “Audrey Cleans Bead Drawer” is more like it.  Probably not enough to make boyfriend completely elated (I would start getting rid of clothes and shoes if all his wildest dreams were to come true), but it’s a start!  Spring cleaning has to begin somewhere.  Throughout this post I’ve peppered images from listings just recently posted on Etsy.  Keep in mind if you want to buy the whole lot of them and call it good I’d be happy to quote a price for you at a pretty substantial discount.  I just want them gone!

Now, to rant…

For the fifth day in a row this week I managed to sleep in.  This time it wasn’t just the 10 or 20 bewildering minutes that I’d been snoozing extra at the beginning of the week,… no.  A good, solid 30 minutes AFTER I was supposed to be at work I heard the boyfriend’s alarm go off (not mine) and jumped out of bed like a bat out of hell running madly around the house collecting articles of clothing and bits of breakfast, hoping that it would come together in a whirlwind as one full outfit and meal.  No dice.  By 9am I was sweating in unseasonal clothes and my tummy was grumbling hardcore.  Good thing boss brought in donut holes.  Yes!!

I’ve been wondering all day after this, the most egregious of sleep-ins, what the hell is causing my new exhaustion.

Gold and Enamel Autumn Leaves, Set of 2

Mononucleosis?  That’d be a trip, considering I’m not a 13 year old girl.  I used to fantasize about kissing the wrong person and getting out of school for a month.  Basically my main objective through middle and high school was to be as manageably and convincingly ‘sick’ for as long as possible.  What can I say?  I’m an independent learner.

Warm weather?  As a clammy, weird, pale Irish girl I’m somewhat prone to the moister months of March and April.  I was born in San Francisco where fog replaces snow in the long ‘winter’ season.  So when it starts to get hot and humid I basically soak in the atmosphere and get all puffy and sweaty.  Attractive?  Yes, obviously.  The only other benefit is that it makes me sleep deeply once I can manage to ignore my weird, pale Irish cheek sticking to the pillow.

Must Be All That Sun

Party Girl?  Granted, our downstairs neighbor had a real rager ’til 2am on Tuesday.  That’s weird!  So maybe it jumpstarted my week in a bad kinda way?  It explains Wednesday, at least.  But the only other ‘partying’ I did was to split a 6-pack with boyfriend last night which should hardly put me so under that I can’t hear the dang alarm in the morning.  Either that, or I’m becoming a lightweight.  Thank goodness!  It’s so much less expensive when you’re drinking out…

Both Ends of the Candle Are Burning:  That’s definitely true.  I hardly have a minute… scratch that, I don’t even want a minute!  So naturally there comes a little exhaustion with that.

I suppose it could be any of these or a combination of them all.  I’m just glad the weekend’s here, the alarm clock’s off, and I can catch up on all those beauty Z’s and internet duties I’ve grown so accustomed to.  Hope you enjoy yours as much as I know I’ll enjoy mine!!

Jointed Fish Pendant from China Trip 1999