Monday, July 21, 2014

Painted Fall Sheep




 





It's been a while since I've done any painting.  I'm usually kept so busy making buttons that I have let other creative endeavours fall to the way side.  Recently I've decided to try and get back to some of my other creative loves.  I'm going to incorporate some painting into my buttons I think.  This is the first thing I've painted in a while.  I'm a little rusty but I think it will all come back eventually.

I'm going to paint some primitive style items and then transfer that image to my buttons and perhaps a few pins or brooches.  This is a design by Betty Bowers but I plan to start designing my own items.  I think this prim sheep turned out pretty well.  I still have to put the final sealer coat on this and then I'll probably list it in my other shop. 

Fall is the perfect time to start decorating.  I know, as I write this, it is still July but those of us that create know we need to start way ahead of the seasons.  I've been listing Halloween and fall buttons lately and will soon start on Christmas items.    Actually just this past weekend I sold a few Christmas buttons so I know those of you out there are also starting on the season early :)

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Bright Red Fused Glass Bird Sewing Buttons

 

Handmade Fused Glass Bird Sewing Buttons

It's a new month and a new beginning.  I'm excited for June to begin and for summer to "hopefully" get going in full swing.  It's a bright sunny day today so I'm very optimistic.  I'm up right now and trying to get some work done on my buttons before my son (adult son) gets up.  I'm hoping to spend the day doing some fun things with him.  It doesn't matter how old your children get it's always a good thing when you can spend some quality time with them.

I don't mention it often but I have another buttons site www.buttonsbyrobin2.com where I have my artisan buttons.  On this site I have fused glass buttons (like the bird sewing buttons shown above), ceramic, hand painted wooden buttons and more.  These buttons are much more labour intensive and a labour of love.  They don't get as much attention as my resin buttons at www.buttonsbyrobin.com but to be fair I really don't spend as much time on them as the resin buttons.  I simply love these bright red fused glass buttons though.  They look much better in person but I hope you can see their potential in the above picture.  These are made with a base layer of black glass and then the red pieces are individually cut out and they're fused together in the kiln.  Once the glass has been fully fused together I drill holes in them with a diamond (yes real diamond) coated drill bit.  It's a labour intensive and expensive process.  Given the hardness of the fused glass the drill bit will only drill about 10 buttons before it has to be replaced.  A set of 5 drill bits is about $50 US so as you can see even drilling the holes costs a fair bit.  I truly love these buttons though and so will continue to make them and other designs in glass.  They are truly beautiful and I know those of you who appreciate artisan buttons know how much love and art goes into making them

If you have any questions or have any suggested designs you'd like to see in glass please feel free to leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Fire Truck Sewing Buttons

                                           Fire Truck or Fireman Sewing Buttons

I have a son of my own and remember how difficult it was to get cute clothes for him when he was a baby.  He's a grown man now but I always try and think of little boys when I make my buttons.  I want to be sure that the Moms and Dads out there are able to find cute clothes for their little boys.  I hope in some way that my fireman buttons (and my other boy themed buttons) add a special touch to their outfits.  Of course I realize that it's just not little boys that like fire trucks.  I know little girls may as well and I try not to be too stereotypical in how I list my buttons.  I do have a section for boy buttons in my shop www.buttonsbyrobin.com but I know a lot of these would be perfectly adorable for little girls.

These particular buttons have been pretty popular in my shop so I'm happy to keep them in stock.  If you have other ideas for buttons you'd like to see drop me a line and I'll see what I can do.  I'm always looking for new ideas and inspiration.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Green Dandelion Sewing Buttons


Green Dandelion Sewing Buttons

Okay I'll admit it.  I'm a bit cranky today.  As a matter of fact I'm slightly more cranky than I was just a moment ago.  I was writing this post and hit something and deleted everything.  The funny thing was I was writing about how listing these buttons in my shop and writing a bit in my blog was starting to turn the day around and then - boom - deleted my blog post.  Oh well....I guess you just have to laugh.  There are certainly much worse things in the world. 

I must admit I really do like these dandelion buttons.  I haven't had them in my shop www.buttonsbyrobin.com in quite some time.  I think they were last listed in 2012.  It's funny how all of a sudden I'll see some buttons I've made in the past and want to remake them.  The one thing about having a website and making all my own product is that usually there are very small numbers of buttons made.  I get bored easily so want to move on to another designs.  I guess that's why I have close to 500 designs in my shop currently.  It's probably not the best business model because I'm constantly having different designs (which is good) but that means when something sells I no longer have it available.  I've started to make a few sets at a time most of the time.  This way when something sells I have another to put in it's place.  Again, if a design is a flop :( I have a number of sets that sit there.  I'm constantly rethinking how to get the best use out of my time when making the buttons.  Particularly since it's just me making the buttons - no manufacturer - no production line.  What is your best trick for making handmade items in a productive manner?


Monday, May 26, 2014

Turquoise Blue Whale Sewing Buttons

Turquoise Blue Whale Sewing buttonsI love these whale buttons.  The blue is so bright and pretty.  Images are from Digi Web Studio and when I saw the collection of sea creatures I just couldn't resist them.  There are a number of other adorable sea creatures that I'm sure will be making their way to my shop shortly.  I've already started on a blue and yellow fish. 

Looking at these sea themed buttons really makes me want to go on vacation again.  I particularly love going to Mexico and the Caribbean.  I remember being in Mexico (Puerto Vallarta) a couple of years ago and being out on the ocean watching the whales.  Now they weren't this cute blue but they were beautiful and majestic as they jumped and frolicked around us.  We were in a ship that was respectful of the distance.  There were other smaller ships that went far too close.  It's dangerous but also disturbs these wonderful creatures.  I can't wait to go on my next vacation.  We've booked a trip for next February to Antigua but lately I've been wanting to go back to Mexico.  We've been there about five times I think but it almost seems like going home.  Maybe I'll go look a www.itravel2000.com and see what trips are available.  A great deal of the fun is the search for the perfect place and the anticipation of the wonderful times to come.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Butterfly Sewing Buttons





Bright Butterfly Sewing Buttons

I just love these bright butterfly sewing buttons.  These have been sold out on my site www.buttonsbyrobin.com for a bit and I just got around to putting them back up today.  These are really perfect for summer as they're so bright and cheerful.  I love these pink/purple colours with a touch of green and bright yellow.  These have been pretty popular in my shop.  Today is a day for butterflies I think.  I'm trying to think positive thoughts and these certainly do help with that.  These are the type of designs that are sure to brighten someone's day. 

Custom Request Rodeo Buttons

Sometimes I'm asked to do custom requests.  Well actually often I'm asked to do custom requests.  This time it was for some rodeo buttons.  My customer sent me the pictures and I made some sample buttons for her.  These are ready to have the holes added if the images are approved.  Custom requests sometimes give me really great ideas about what people are looking for.  I haven't been able to find cowboy images that I've been really pleased with for my shop.  I've made a few sets of cowboy buttons over time but I'm still on the hunt for something that really fits the bill.  I hope my customer is happy with these buttons.  She only needs 6 so hopefully will be able to find 6 that are suitable.  It's really challenging sometimes because everyone has different taste and likes different styles so it's hard to know what idea someone is thinking of.  Having done these I think I'm inspired to go on the hunt for some more cowboy themed images and see if I can come up with something within the next few weeks.