Thursday, 19 May 2011

Vintage love: St Michael bedding

I recently bought this fabulous set of vintage bedlinen from ebay. It was a complete steal and in pristine condition because it is still in its packaging! Plus, they also still have their price tags intact - 85p for bedlinen - those were the days.

I also love the fact it says 'Made in Britain' on the packaging, always a sure sign that something is vintage as we hardly manufacture anything in this country anymore. St Michael, or Marks & Spencers used to pride themselves on only selling items made in Britain, but even they have succumbed to market can read more about the history of St Michaels here

I also want to tell you about two new items in my Etsy store, a sleepy owl and lavender rabbit in two new colourways. First up is my new Lavender rabbit in cornflower blue. It is handmade using vintage fabric in shades of cornflower blue, royal blue, pale yellow and pure white.

Second up is my Sleepy owl in sky blue and bottle green. This owl decoration is handmade using vintage fabric in shades of bottle green, navy blue and pale pink. It is filled with chemical-free, French Lavender and non-allergenic stuffing.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Four years of selling on Etsy

May 14th (this Saturday!) marks the 4 year anniversary of my very first sale on Etsy

So to celebrate I am offering free shipping on all orders for 48 hours over my anniversary weekend. All you have to do is enter the discount code 4YEARS at checkout. This offer will run from 8am (GMT) Saturday 14th May to 8am (GMT) on Monday 16th May.

I honestly can’t believe I have been selling on Etsy for 4 years, the time has just flown by. I also can’t believe that when I stumbled across Etsy in 2007 whilst reading Susie Bubble’s blog Stylebubble that it would become such a big part of my life

Pre-etsy I had been trying to sell my handmade bags at craft fairs, I had found it a disheartening experience as I was often faced with people who weren’t my target market tutting at my prices and making me feel about two inches tall. When I found etsy, it helped me to realise that you don’t have to undervalue your work and that there are people out there who will pair a fair price for unique, handmade goods.

Since opening my Etsy store in 2007 I have sold vintage fabric bags, homewares and accessories to 100s of people around the globe. I have received lots of positive feedback and my confidence in my products has grown. Over the past four years I have expanded the Pouch range to include not only bags, but belts, clothespin bags, vintage trims, lavender filled hearts, owls and rabbits. The latter have turned out to be one of my best selling products and I am constantly on the look out for bright and bold vintage fabric to craft even more owls and rabbits!

The biggest plus-point about Etsy is that it is not just a selling venue, it is a community. Through Etsy I have met many designers and crafters from around the world and in the UK. Most importantly, I have formed friendships with a small circle of like-minded crafters who offer me support and advice about selling, designing and also the occasional life-related dilemma. I have even met a number of my fellow crafters in ‘real life’. Most recently Lisa from seaurchin and Laura from Lupin Handmade visited my home city of Bristol and we enjoyed a cup of tea and a chat.

In my life, alot has happened in the past four years, I have got married and most importantly I have become a mum for the first time in 2009. To say my daughter has changed my life would be something of an understatement. My priorities have changed and I no longer want to work in my old job – I want to be able to make an income through crafting. It offers me flexibility as a Mum to a young toddler and job satisfaction because I am doing something creative, which motivates me more than any other job I’ve had.

I think my Etsy store has changed dramatically since I first opened in 2007. I have learnt loads and have worked hard developing my products and honing my photography skills. I am proud of the way my online store looks today, although there’s still lots to learn. There are so many talented designers on Etsy, that you have to continually raise your game to try and keep up!

So, here’s to the next four years!

Don’t forget, free shipping on all orders over my anniversary weekend, just use the code 4YEARS to claim your discount. Please visit my store here

If you are new to etsy, or are unsure how to use discount codes, please see this helpful etsy guide

NavyBlueNotes kindly gave me permission to use her birthday card image at the top of this blog post. 4th birthday card by NavyBlueNotes

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Vintage love: Teabreak biscuit tin

I love vintage tins, but unfortunately I don't own many of them. I'm usually caught up in tracking down vintage fabric and tend to ignore things like tins. I do however own a few that have been passed onto me by my Grandmother. She has had them in her cupboards for so long, they have become vintage and collectable by accident...she just wants to get rid of them and I'm more than happy to give them a new home!

This particular tin dates from the 1950s, so it's pretty old. I like it because it says 'Teabreak' on it and quite frankly, tea breaks are my favourite part of the day.

It's actually pretty big as far as vintage tins go, it measures over 20cms tall. I really love it because it's so sturdy and chunky and can hold a myriad of crafty bits and bobs. Because it's been stored away for so long, it's actually in very good condition. A quick Google search tells me these tins are brass lined - which goes to show how well made it is - I doubt if they put brass in many biscuit tins these days!

In other news - the winner of April's giveaway...
Many thanks to everyone who took part in my blog giveaway last month. With all the excitement of Easter and the Royal Wedding, I haven't had a chance to announce the winner.

Comment number 52 was picked out by the random number generator - so congratulations to Amber L who writes the appetizerforacraftymind blog. A selection of vintage trims will be winging their way to you shortly...


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