Sunday, 15 May 2011

At the Seashore (Handmade Buttons)

These buttons remind me that it's time to start thinking about summer It's a rainy Sunday afternoon as I write this but looking at these bright seashore themed handmade buttons it sure makes me dream of hot summer days at the beach (and it really makes me remember my vacations in hot tropical locations!).

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Thursday, 5 May 2011

Goldilocks and Three Bears Handmade Buttons

I was very excited to finally come across these images of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I've been wanting to make these buttons for a while but wasn't able to find the images I wanted. I know I could actually draw them myself but I haven't quite mastered the art of graphic design. I'm slowly learning and did manage to make an image I'm going to be making into buttons later today but the unveiling of that will have to wait. For now I've used these images (with permission of the artists Glazed Mud). I am very thankful that she has allowed me to use these adorable images and I hope you like them as well.

Well I'm also nearing the end of my week off from my day job and as I mentioned I know I'd never be able to make enough product to be able to support myself financially so I'm very thankful to have a pretty good day job to support me. For now I'll have to concentrate on the buttons as a very nice side supporting business. I do have dreams of owning property in Costa Rica (after our last trip there in February 2011) so perhaps I'll make some goals of expanding the business with this dream in mind. Who knows one can dream and it's a great incentive to get those buttons going.

I'm also having lots of fun this week watching some videos from and am learning lots about different ceramic techniques.

For the next little bit I have to get some more resin buttons made and then I'm hoping to play with ceramics this afternoon. I am bound and determined to make these ceramic buttons a hit. It's been an uphill battle so far and I haven't quite found my niche but I need to make them unique and different from all the other wonderful handmade ceramic buttons out there. I'll keep experimenting and plodding and along and we'll see how it goes. I also want to expand a bit into ceramic beads and use some of the wonderful techniques I've learned over the last few weeks. And let's not forget my love of fused glass! So many ideas and so little time or so it seems.

Have a wonderful Thursday everyone!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Ceramic Bee Buttons - Handmade Buttons in Etsy Treasury

My ceramic bee buttons are included in the great Etsy treasury to PaperPicker for including these buttons in this treasury!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Butterfly Buttons - Handmade Buttons

I love love love these bright and colourful/colorful handmade buttons with the butterfly images I think they would look wonderful on a simple white or black button up sweater but I'm sure that you can think of many more interesting ways to use them. I think these are so beautiful that they would take a simple garment and elevate it to something extra ordinary.

I'm also on day three of my vacation from my day job. I've quickly come to the realization that I could never make enough buttons (quantity-wise) to be able to quit my day job so for now it has to remain a nice supplement that I have to fit in. I am going to give it some more thought though as I do think there has to be a way to increase production or make supplementary products that will compliment the buttons. I am a bit distracted today though because I have found some adorable images of children's story books and I can't wait to get making some buttons out of them so my practical approach has gone by the wayside by now and as soon as I finish this post I'm going to get started on some of these adorable buttons. I've been looking for these types of images for quite some time and now have finally found them and can't wait to get started. I'm sure I'll be posting pictures of these in the upcoming days.

Well enjoy your Tuesday everyone. It's a rainy day here and the perfect day to be inside making buttons!

Monday, 2 May 2011

Girly Skull Handmade Buttons and Day 2 Experiment

Here is the handmade button of the day These are bright pink girly skulls. These aren't my usual style but I think they have a girly punk appeal. I listed these yesterday and also have them in a bright yellow and a pretty bright blue.

Yesterday was Sunday and was a typical day in my home studio. I made and listed lots of buttons. I mentioned in my post yesterday that I was going to treat this week as if it were my real day job. So far today it seems I'm off to a slower start than I anticipated. I did manage to get a kiln full of buttons fired and I'm waiting for them to cool. I have been able to peek into the kiln and I think they turned out really well. I am finding that ceramic buttons are pretty time consuming and really don't seem to give me the quantity I need to list new buttons all the time. I really love them but I think they're beyond the budget of most craft sewers so sales are not as high as they are with my resin buttons which are much more affordable for people. Also with the resin buttons I can make them quite a bit faster.

Anyway so far today I've fired a kiln with the third firing so that when these ceramic buttons cool they should be ready for listing. Fingers crossed they turned out. Ceramics are so unpredictable and each step takes so much time. I had some buttons yesterday but they aren't quite what I wanted as an end result so I have to decide if I want to try and change them in some way. I'm not sure yet what I plan to do.

I seem to be getting distracted with household chores and interruptions from my husband who works a split shift so was home for a couple of hours earlier this morning. I have to learn not to be so easily distracted.

The plans for the rest of the afternoon include finishing listing the resin buttons I took pictures of yesterday and take pictures of the newest batch of resin buttons that are ready to go today. Then I have new buttons to make and get ready for tomorrow. It seems a never ending cycle - make, take pics, list and repeat. I also want to fit in some more ceramics. Since I am teaching myself ceramic button making not all my experiments are successes but I do learn something each and every time.

Oh and I must say I had four packages to mail off this morning and I know one purchase was as a result of my facebook page since I was contacted through my facebook fan page. So off to list some new buttons and tweet them to see if I can get some views and hopefully attract more people to my shop.

Happy Monday everyone. I hope you have a successful and productive day!

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Handmade Button and Vacation Plans

I am quite excited because I have the week off from my day job. Usually when I'm on vacation I go away but this time I'm home by myself since my husband doesn't have as many vacation days as I do. This means I have the week to stay home and work on my buttons. I know that a lot of people dream of quitting their day jobs and doing their art as their job. For this week I want to explore that a bit. I'm going to pretend that this is my day job and approach is not as a vacation but as a real job. I know right now that I'd never be able to make enough buttons to replace the income from my day job even if I made buttons 8 hours a day every day. They're just too labour/labor intensive to actually be able to make them in quantity by myself. Never-the-less I'm going to explore my options and use this as a mini experiment to see what I can do. It also happens that today is the first of the month so it's a good day for some new beginning and exploration. So far today I've fired a load of ceramic buttons in the kiln and am experimenting with some glazing and handmade decals combined in a technique which I thought I had discovered. It turns out that this isn't a new technique but something that has been explored by others. It's funny how I really hadn't seen this combination of techniques before and yet it's not new. I guess there really isn't anything new under the sun. Anyway I'm going to explore this technique, make it my own and see how far I can push it. I've also made some more resin buttons which are drying. They should be ready tomorrow. I've also listed a few resin buttons that I made yesterday (I took the pictures this morning and am in the process of listing them.) So for my first "pretend" day of the new job I've done a lot of work. So far no sales for today but Sunday (and weekends in general) tend to be quiet so I'm optimistic that the week will be successful. I'm going to continue to list the rather large pile of buttons I have ready to go and will then decide what I plan to do tomorrow. I do know I have some ceramic buttons ready to go in the third firing of this really labour/labor intensive creations. The problem with the ceramic buttons is that they take a lot of time so are quite a bit more expensive than my resin buttons. They should appeal to a different type of buyer though so I know it will take some time to get them going. I have so many ideas I just hope the week doesn't fly by too soon. I'll try to keep this blog updated throughout the week to let you all know how it is going. Here's to all of us dreamers who want to make a living with our art!