Kitschdesigns

YART SALE....One Of The Best Things About Summer!

June 10, 2009 09:54 by ehouston

I just put a bunch of my shop items on sale this morning and then I decided I would go ahead and join the Etsy Yart Sale.  It starts today and runs through Sunday, June 14th (my b'day!).  So, come check out my sale items along with all the other great finds out there in the Etsy creative community.

                     

 

Happy Shopping!

Kitsch Krafts


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Craft Fair Hell Has Ended...FINALLY!

November 3, 2008 11:17 by ehouston

A month ago I got this crazy idea I would attend a local craft fair.  Luckily I already had some stock and I figured things would just fall in to place.  Then, I started back to my old thrift store scouring ways and began finding all kinds of bits and bobs to create new items.  That is when everything went haywire, then and when I decided to attend a second craft fair a week before the other.  For you crafty types out there, you know how it is.  You start to get ideas and then you have to get those ideas out of your head and create...whatever it is you are dreaming up.  So, that is how I spent the last month.  I had a good time, but I did end up with a lot more stuff than I ever would have imagined possible in such a short time frame.  In the end, both craft fairs I attended were pretty much a bust.  I made back my booth money, but no real profit.  Most of the other people in the booths around us had the same experience, and some of us could not decide if our stuff was just mismatched to the rest of the attendees or if the economy really just had people so down.  Either way, it was fun to show off what I had created and I did get lots of very sweet compliments.  Although, I wish some cash had traded hands along with the kind words.  ;0)

As promised, I am including photos of my bigger booth set up.  These also include items that will be posted to my Etsy shop over the course of this next week.

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From way back...vintage quilts and tablecloths are the base.

 

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Front right side of booth....keepsake and jewelry boxes.

  

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Front right side continued....with holiday decor....

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Right side, back corner...baby stuff...

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Back table....baby stuff, vintage fabric decor, bookmarks and handbags...

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Front left side back to left corner....vintage fabric pocketed aprons and more handbags.

Here is my mom fixing up her display of handmade ornaments on our kitschy silver tree.  She created the most hysterical things from polymer clay and recycled light bulbs.  Her imagination always amazes me and when all was said and done we did a great trade for Christmas gifts this year.  I know some lucky people that will be getting some pretty cool ornaments for their trees!

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Arranging the ornaments.... and my Holiday Albums underneath.

Some of her creations....

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Pig with Lipstick (she could not resist!)     Smiley Bumblebee                                  

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Sweet snowman with earmuffs            Smiley Reindeer

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Very cool Mermaid                 Funky Dragonfly

I also stumbled upon several other Etsy crafters while I was there.  Kim Smith, owner of White Cottage Design uses quite possibly the coolest color combos evah!  I really wanted to indulge myself and purchase one of her owl shadow boxes, but I never got a chance to go back over to her booth.   She shared her set up with Jodi Reeves of The Creative Jar, also known as "Jodi The Crafty Chick".  She makes really neat paintings and being textile obsessed, I also admired her fused plastic bags with bits of fabric- super hip!  I had a very fun conversation with the owners of Ragan's Fabric and Goodies and Just For Us Girls.  Cheryl and her husband were a hoot and she makes the sweetest clothes from Amy Butler fabrics. 

Check out these shops when you get a chance and help support some really great people/crafters/artists while you are at it!


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News Headline: Possible Death By Craft Fair

October 30, 2008 01:56 by ehouston

At least that is how I am feeling this week.  One down and one to go.  I really do enjoy attending these events, especially when I meet great people and see other cool crafts.  I met several other Etsy sellers at the small church craft fair I attended last Friday and I hope to meet more at the event this Saturday.  These two were a hoot!- Lori Long and Megan Wilkes, owners of Happy Monkey Art.  They create clay sculptures of hysterical little scenes.  You just have to check out their shop to see what I mean.  Megan also paints and has another shop for her art called, Thru Aries Eyes.  Sarah Paddon, a jewelry artist, was there too, showing off really nice pendants necklaces.  Check out her Etsy shop Cottage Island Creations.

I have decided that prepping for a craft fair is a bit like getting ready for your wedding.  My husband and I planned and paid for our entire event, so maybe this is not a shared feeling with those that could afford a coordinator or had a mother that took over.  But, either way, I would guess that no matter how much planning you do it never seems like you have it all finished.  I keep running around and thinking of new things to make and then I have to remind myself that there is no more time.  Or, I realize there is another task I have to complete to ready what is done for the event and again I realize I am out of time.  Just like the night before my wedding, I reminded myself last night that no matter what, every little detail will not be exactly as I planned it.  And, that's all part of the fun, right?  Luckily I thought of that a couple of nights before this event...;0)

Here is my mini-booth set up for the church fair last week.  It was a family festival, so I just concentrated on my baby and kids items and advertised for the other fair I am attending this weekend.  I will have my full booth at the Saturday event with lots of holiday products, and I will add those pictures later. 

 

 
Stroller Blankets in Vintage Fabrics, Tooth Fairy Pillows from a Vintage Quilt, Changing Pads, Play Mats and Baby Quilts in Reproduction Vintage Fabrics, and Onesies, T-Shirt & Bloomer Sets, and Cap and Onesie Sets with Vintage Baby Images.  

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Holiday Kitsch- Coming Soon!

October 21, 2008 05:45 by ehouston

Have you ever made something so cute you can hardly stand it?  Or, something you just like so much you are torn about giving it away or selling it?  Well, my latest projects fall into that category.  I found some vintage holiday fabric cut-outs at a thrift store a while back and although I normally would not have bought something like that, I threw them in the basket anyway.  I am so glad I did because I think what I decided to do with them turned out pretty nice.  I was thinking about all those pictures that my parents took over the years of the Christmas tree decorations and then the tree with all the gifts underneath.  And, of course, the tree, gifts and sleepy kids in PJ's picture we have from every Christmas.  I thought it would be funny to have an album of just those pictures and maybe even a couple of notes about the holiday that year.  It seemed like a cool thing to look back at each holiday to get your nostalgia on.  So, I used the vintage cut-outs and created these albums:

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They have a sweet vintage red polka-dot fabric on the inside and the edges have vintage rik-rak inlaid in the seam.  My favorite part is how someone decorated the trees with sequins and beads.

I have also been working on some boxes that I thrifted a while back.  I finally decided to use some other vintage fabric and embroidered linen scraps to cover them and make keepsake or jewelry boxes to sell.  Here are just a couple:

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I have been working away lately to get ready for a couple of local craft fairs that are coming up in the next two weeks.  No matter what I decide to create I keep feeling like I just won't have enough stuff to fill up a booth.  Then I am afraid I will kill myself only to have a surplus when I don't sell anything.  It's so hard to judge what will happen at a craft fair.  Then the pricing nightmare.  I know what I need to price my items at, but I also know that people are cheap and rarely want to pay for the work involved.  Whatever items are left over will be added to my Etsy shop after November 1st.  Wish me luck!


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Working, working, working away!

August 29, 2008 05:05 by ehouston

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I just wish I could whistle while I work, but unfortunately I have never been able to make much more than a sharp single syllable note (if you can even call it that) come out when I try to whistle.  So, it would be the most monotone song to ever permeate this home, and I think the dog might even have to leave the room.  ;0)  It's okay, though because I have the radio and my imagination to keep me going.  I have been working on more bags lately and have added several to my shop, with more on the way. 

Right now I am working on an embellishing job for several little canvas backpacks that I bought years ago.  I had other plans for them at that time, but they never materialized.  I am glad for that, though, because I think this project is much cooler than I what I had originally set out to create.  I hope other people feel the same way and enjoy them too!  I am having wonderful fun with fusible webbing and vintage fabric scraps.  I wish I had jumped on the fusible webbing bandwagon a long time ago because I think it might be one of the most wonderful inventions of all time.  Unfortunately, I was not a card carrying member until recently because I remember the stuff my mom tried using when I was little and it never seemed to work.  I cannot tell you how many hems she tried to "cheat" on by fixing them with something called "wonder under", I believe, and as soon as you washed the garment the hem would come right back out.  I guess this product has come a long way.  Uh-oh, I am feeling the beginning of an iron-on patch craze around here.  Never mind my bad whistling, if the dog does decide to stick around she might just get a new fusible webbing accessory.  Watch out Rox., the iron is hot!

Have a great holiday weekend everyone!

E


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Ahhhhh, now that's Better!

August 25, 2008 07:46 by ehouston

I did some thrifting on Friday after searching for an item I had decided to pass up the week before. It was a toy and I knew it would not be there a week later, but I just had to go back and look. I have never been so disappointed to lose out on something while thrifting. Well, that's probably an overstatement, but this was a more of a collectable than a toy and I had always wanted it growing up. I found it for a fraction of the original price and passed it up when I heard my husband's voice in my head saying, "you bought what? Really, a toy? Come on, really?". You see, he is just way more practical than me and that is saying a lot. So, I passed it up to regret it forever. Oh well, it was not meant to be.

On my way back out of the store I was trying really hard not to look at ANYTHING. You know how it is, once you start it all goes down hill so quickly. Suddenly you start to see all kinds of things that you think will fill the void of the one that got away and this is when you end up buying a bunch of true junk. Well, I broke my own thrifting rule and I looked. Of course one thing led to another and I ended up with a nice little grouping of stuff. In fact, I found a pretty good wooden cigar box that my husband promptly scooped up to claim as his own. Sorry, Charlie, but that one is mine, all mine!

I did come across a couple of those old plastic Lazy Susan's and decided to grab them just for the heck of it. They were only $1.99 each and it seems you can always find a good spot for them. After scrubbing the vintage gunk off of them I decided the Avocado Green and Harvest Gold needed some sprucing up. So, I used some self-adhesive shelf paper to line the center circles of each. The green one got a shot of gray wood-grain (thank you Martha Stewart for your fabulous KMart selection!) and the gold one is still a work in progress as I add some vintage, atomic starburst paper. The vintage paper is so old the backing was pretty much stuck to the front and is in the process of being glued down the old fashioned way. As soon as it comes together I will find a good spot for it too, and I will share that later. I thought about it for a while and here is what I ended up doing with the little green and wood grain number:

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Below, our messy spice cupboard (we like a lot of spice in our life-hee!)

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Whoola!  I am now Sleeping with the Enemy!

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...everything is lined up, I swear....  All the labels are facing forward, I promise....

Ahhh, organization.  It is rare in my home and I love it while it lasts.

-E


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Textile Obsessive, are you? Yes, you might say that...

August 8, 2008 10:23 by ehouston

I have been collecting fabric for a long time and my obsession peaked several years ago when I completely freaked out about the amount of textile items I owned.  I am sure there are plenty of people out there that are waaayy worse off than me, suffocating under the piles and piles of dusty barkcloth, slipping on the chantilly lace and wishing they had just the right shade of orange to match up with that chevron patterned polyester.  I have been there and I was in heaven, but then suddenly, I had reached a moment of being completely overwhelmed by it all.  My 9 to 5 was not letting up on my free time enough for me to create like I had been accustomed to in the past.  My website was slinking along, barely there, while most requests came by word of mouth, and I just felt my chest tightening at the thought that I may hold on to this stuff forever along with some crazy teenage dream. 

I guess I read to many magazines, blogs and websites about all those talented individuals that some how get "discovered" and suddenly their 9 to 5 becomes their dream job.  Don't get me wrong, I chose my career path and I enjoy what I do.  It's just lacking in the type of creativity that I thrive on.  So, one day after a few deep breathes I began the purge.  I went through every single piece of textile on the racks that lined the walls of my office/craft room, and I bagged it all up.  I told myself that I would only keep the pieces most precious to me.  Those that have the best patterns.  The ones that just make me smile at the thought of cutting them to make something great, or keeping them forever to pull out and enjoy from time to time.  That day I did manage to take four very large garage-style storage racks, packed two rows deep on each shelf and stacked up to the ceiling, down to one extra wide five-shelf unit.  I think I counted 15 large yard-size garbage bags full of fabric and it took me about 4 trips to Goodwill to unload it all.  With each trip I dug deep for the will to keep going in the direction of the thrift drop off, did the deed and then felt weight lift on my way back home. 

At first I was definitely sad, but the opening up of all the floor space felt very freeing and I believed I had made the right decision.  Plus, I knew that some lucky person was about to come upon the fabric stash of a lifetime while just wandering through their favorite thrift store one afternoon.  It was not until recently that I started to really miss some of those fabrics.  The feeling is almost equivalent to that of losing a pet.  I know it seems crazy, but I often find myself thinking, "Oh yeah, I can use that pink floral doubleknit to make a sweet scarf to go with these mittens!", only to remember that the pink doubleknit is now adorning someone else's fabric pile.  I think what has really made all of this hit home is the fact that I am starting to get back out there.  I find I am being drawn back to the thrift stores for inspiration and the occasional good find.  Unfortunately, over the years the thrift stores have decided to use a new pricing scale for anything they think might have vintage value.  So, that bin of vintage fabric scraps that used to be about $5.00 is now $10.00 or $20.00, which might not seem like much, but it can take a tole on a tight crafting budget.  I guess I got lucky in that I was thrifting at a time when it was not as mainstream.  It was a necessity to cloth myself and outfit my first apartment.  I miss those days. 

In the meantime I have decided to start sharing my prizes and have found a lot of other people out there that have the same kind of love for all things vintage, especially textiles.  I will admit that sharing our pictures is fun, but a little hard to stomach when you realize someone else has the most perfect example of 1950's barkcloth you have ever come across.  What I am saying is there is definitely some jealousy involved..;0)  This reminds me of a story the husband of a couple we are friends with told us about how his wife shops.  Actually, they were both talking about how it was like hunting, and fighting could break out at any moment in the mall.  Well, I am not a mall shopper and I have always thought of myself as being much more civilized than that.  But, then I think of those times when I have slipped into a bedroom at an estate sale just in time to see some other lucky thrifter tucking the best fabric find under their arm.  So far I have subdued the eye-gouging and hair-pulling, but there have been times when it was almost too much to take.  I am limiting my entry back into the world of thrifting and fabric collecting, but it's like the draw of "The Dark Side".  It's just so darn strong!

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