Thursday, October 28, 2010

New Home

Our blog had a brand new home!!!! :D Please hop over to: and don't forget to follow us there!!! :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival: Halloween Things

This week our blog carnival from EtsyBloggers is hosted by Mystic Wynd. She wants to know the following:

1. Halloween is just around the corner. What is the best Halloween costume you've ever worn or designed for someone else to wear? What made it so special?
2. Tell us about your top 3 favorite horror movies. What is it about them that scares you?


Costume wise I think the best costume I’ve ever worn would probably be the year I was a witch when I worked for Convergys in Texas. I had on a black dress, black nylons, black heels, painted my face green, and had the witch hat on. I also had a stuffed black cat that I carried along with a broom. We had a “Witch Alley” that year and all of us that dressed up as witches sat there. It was pretty cool, especially when the boss shot us weird looks every time he walked by! :D

My top 3 favorite horror movies in no particular order would be: SAW series, Halloween (Rob Zombie versions), and Friday the 13th series (originals). To be perfectly honest, none of them actually scare me. I rarely even jump when watching a horror movie, which drives most people I watch them with up the wall! SAW is kind of gross though, so sometimes I’ll look away because I’m squeamish, not because I’m scared.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

What’s With All The Purple?

Recently I had an e-mail in which the sender asked me why I have so much purple. My site at is based around a light shade of purple. This blog has a dark shade of purple as it’s “far back” background. I have used purple rimmed graphics both here and at my Etsy shop, and my Artfire shop (which I need to set my color scheme again now that I am a Pro member again) is done in purples.
The answer is simply that purple is my favorite color. However, that is not to say that I see too many purple beads that I am particularly fond of. I tend more towards turquoise, amethyst (yes, I know, that IS purple LOL), carnelian (gorgeous for autumn items), and the seemingly un-ending rainbow of colors that Crystallized Swarovski Elements beads are available in.
But I do use a lot of purple in my crochet items. Right now I’m doing the Bernat Mystery Crochet-Along and using a dark purple instead of the lavender. I’m making another afghan that I’m doing in purples, blues, and greens, and let me tell you, it’s shaping up to be a gorgeous blanket. I can’t wait for it to be finished! But that one isn’t for sale – that one is mine! :D
I do want to show you my latest bracelet though – it’s perfect for autumn!
Please excuse the obvious mess around it – this isn’t intended to be a “sales” photo for Etsy – I just wanted to be able to show the bracelet off! :D
And with that, I am off to settle down for bed – 7:30 comes quickly and I have church in the morning! :)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

BlogCarnival – Fall Activities

This go-around, our blog carnival by the Etsy Bloggers Team is brought to us by SpottedCowSoaps who asked us the following questions:

1. What are some fun activities you like to do in the fall. (travel, apple picking, etc)
2. Show us some awesome photos of autumn in and around where you live.

1) In the fall I like to just walk around and view the leaves. I love the colors the leaves turn, and recently was inspired to do some jewelry and afghans that remind me of the colors of fall. :) Of course, there is Halloween that I adore as well, and I love to decorate the house for Halloween and let my black kitty sit in the window. :D

2) I’m not a very good photographer and frankly don’t have any pictures of fall here. I wish I did – ask me again during winter and you might get a few pictures from last year’s blizzard! LOL

EtsyBloggers’ October Featured Blogger

I know I haven’t done well at keeping up on this blog, but to be honest, I haven’t really been creating much of anything lately. I hope to change that, but enough about me and my blog. :) Today I’m here to talk about Margaret of SpledidLittleStars!

Margaret has TWO Etsy shops – the first one, Splendid Little Stars is where she sells hand-dyed clothing and accessories. I have to say I LOVE LOVE LOVE the scrunchies! If my hair were long again, I’d snap them up in a heartbeat!


After that she also has the Sparkly Park store, which is where she features her gorgeous earrings – I so want those little angel earrings!



Plus, if you visit her blog you’ll find all sorts of things like photography, jewelry, and other arts and crafts. It’s a great blog to check out! Congrats Margaret!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Taking the Etsy Holiday Boot Camp Pledge!!!!

I, Eternal Stardust Designs, pledge to participate in the Etsy Success Holiday Boot Camp to the best of my abilities. I vow to check in every week, do my homework and support my fellow Holiday Boot Campers. I will read the weekly newsletters and blog posts, check in on the weekly forum thread, read the weekly blog post, check off the checklists and salute the mascot. I promise to share what I've learned with those who need it, support my fellow Etsy indiepreneurs and, most of all, have a positive and persistent attitude. I understand that together we can spread the word about our handmade and vintage goods, making this holiday season a more unique and meaningful one to gift givers and give-ees everywhere!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Blog Carnival: Weddings

Our Etsy Bloggers blog carnival host this time, Patch, has asked us a couple of questions about weddings:

1) Show us your wedding photo!! or anything from your wedding day.. or
2) Any items in your shop that you think they can be on somebody's wedding day..

Well..... I can't show anyone my wedding photo or anything from my wedding day because I'm not married and never have been. *sigh* However....

I do have items in my shop that I think would be perfect for a wedding day - and if my shop wasn't on vacation until September 19th or 20th, I'd give a link. But for now, I'll just post a photo of the items in question. :)

Cream & Brown Floating Bead Necklace

And let's not forget the matching earrings:

Cream & Brown Earrings (to match the floating bead necklace)

I think those would be perfect for a bride and could be done in other colors if the bride wanted - or could be made to match the bridesmaids' outfits instead. :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

I Learned A Lot and Sold Nothing

I learned a lot at the Art in the Park festival, but I didn’t sell a single thing. From what we’ve been told, I am the only vendor who did not sell anything at all. It pretty much stinks that I didn’t sell anything but I did learn some very important things.

A bit of background: It rained. Most of the day. We ended up leaving early because I was soaked and freezing. Now on to what I learned. LOL

  • Get a tent. I don’t care if you think you won’t need it, get one. You’ll need it eventually.
  • Bring an umbrella. When you’re transporting things from car to booth, you’ll need something to keep from getting soaked.
  • Don’t forget the chairs! My feet, knees, and back were screaming at me by the time I got home, and I was only there 3 of the 6 hours of the festival.
  • Don’t think you can get by with just a card table.

The person I shared the space with and I barely got anyone to even look at our items. We decided it was due to us not having a tent or having a professional looking setup. Everyone else there had tents, racks, tables, etc, and we had just card tables with nothing else to use for display purposes.

We will be attempting Art in the Park again next year, but next year, we’ll be better prepared!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fall In The Air

Fall is a time of year that I actually like really well. It's cooler but not too cold. The kids are back in school, meaning that the neighborhood is a touch quieter during the day. The crisp fall air makes me want two things - Halloween and to start crocheting the big blankets and afghans that will keep myself and others warm this winter.

Fall is also the season that finds Sioux City's Latham Park holding it's annual Art in the Park festival - which the last piece that needed to fall into place for me to be able to be an artist vending my items there has fallen into place as of today, so I will definitely be there - this year on September 18th.

Latham Park is a gorgeous, privately-owned park that is a favorite spot for weddings here in Sioux City. It has a fountain, roses, and it is just a really beautiful spot. Art in the Park is one of the things that they do throughout the year and it brings to light the park and local artists! I am proud to say that Eternal Stardust Designs will be a part of the festival this year and I hope I'll be there next year as well!

Are there any local art festivals or craft fairs that are held annually at a specific time??? If so, do you attend as a patron or as a vendor??

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Blog Carnival: Quarters

Our Etsy Bloggers Blog Carnival host this time, Judy has given us a couple of very interesting questions:

1. Are you in the first quarter of your life (up to age 25), second quarter of your life (up to age 50), or 3rd quarter (beyond age 50)? Describe your goals and dreams for your current "quarter." How have they changed over time?
2. Describe someone who influenced the person you are today, or who motivated you to do something. Explain how this is so. Is this a positive or negative?

1 - I'm in the second quarter of my life. Wow that sounds so weird to think that I am in the second quarter. :/ My goals and dreams for this quarter is to get this business of mine off the ground! :) I love my crafts and would love nothing better than to be able to just do them and not have to worry too much about anything else - but I also have a goal of getting a decent full time job so that I can have my bills paid so I can just worry about doing my crafts. :)

2 - My mom motivated me a lot - she always encouraged my creativity and I think she would have been proud that I finally took steps to try and make a go of selling my craft work! :) This would definitely be a positive thing! :)

So what you do you make of our two questions this week?? :)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Is It September All Ready??

Wow - time sure flies. It seems like only yesterday it was January 1, 2010 and now here it is the 7th of September! I can't imagine where the time has gone - especially since I really haven't been all that busy! :)

I've been a bit busy the last week or so - I've made a few hats - yes, I'm going to post pictures below:

Floppy Brimmed Hat w/ Pink Flower (Custom Order)

Mesh Cap (Custom Order)

Crocheted Hat (Custom Order)

Earth & Sky Stocking Cap

Mesh Cap in Bright Yellow

Mesh Cap in Watercolor

Turquoise & Lime Stocking Cap

There's what I've been working on. A friend of mine had suggested I do so because the weather is starting to get cool and people would be looking to get new hats and scarves. :) It made sense so I made some hats.

I'm getting ready for a festival called Art in the Park that's done here in Sioux City's Latham Park. Latham Park is a private park and this is one of the events that they hold each year. This year I'm going to have my first year as a vendor. I'll try to take some pictures to post here on the blog. :)

Ok, as it's 4:43 AM and I should be asleep, I'm going to go for now! :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Taking the Plunge Into Etsy Showcase

Being that my current sources of income are the non-existent sales from my Etsy, Artfire, and US Trendy shops, and some freelance writing work that I do, I have been a bit lax on advertising my shop and my items. This is mostly because all of the really good ways to advertise are, well, costly.

That being said, last night I decided to go ahead and click the "Promote" link next to one of the baby blankets I posted a week ago or so. What I ended up with is an Etsy showcase on 8/25 in the crochet category. The Etsy showcase is not as expensive as some methods of advertising - it's $7 per day that you choose to participate and they just add it to your Etsy bill as opposed to charging a credit or debit card for it immediately.

Yet in the past it was the fee that stopped me. Like I said - my current sources of income are not exactly bringing in the money like crazy and extra fees just seemed like a bad idea. But I decided to take the plunge and see what happens. Wish me luck!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

10% of all Sales Donated to K-LOVE

As a born again Christian and follower of Christ, I have been led by my Lord to donated 10% of each sale to K-LOVE, a wonderful Christian radio station ministry. K-LOVE is one of my favorite radio stations to listen to - between the uplifting music and the heartwarming stories of people who have turned to Christ, it makes any day brighter.

K-LOVE is completely listener supported, which means that if they don't get enough support, they could have to go off the air. So many people have come to our Lord Jesus Christ through this wonderful ministry that I have been called to help make sure that they stay on the air.

If you would like to help support this wonderful radio station, simply make a purchase from any of my stores, Etsy, Artfire, or US Trendy. 10% will be saved back from the sale and when K-LOVE makes their next pledge drive, a one time donation will be made with the money that has been saved specifically for K-LOVE. Join me in helping this radio station stay on the air! Thank you!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Team Treasuries for 8/13/10

At the EtsyBloggers team we always have at least one weekly treasury - but this week we have 5 of them! :) This is mostly due to the 3rd anniversary sale that is going on right now - we have over 50 Etsy vendors participating - for my part I'm giving everyone 10% off everything in the shop. Pay as normal with PayPal and I'll refund the difference back to you. :)

Our normal weekly treasury is being curated by MysticWynd blog here and can be found at:

Next up we have a treasury that is being curated by Memories for Life Scrapbooks blog here and can be found at:

Our third treasury is curated by PatchSupplyShop blog here and can be found at:

This next treasury I am honored to have been included in and is curated by PatchSupplyShop blog here as well, and can be found at:

Last but certainly not least is our 5th treasury for this weekend, curated by PatchSupplyShop blog here yet again, and can be found at:

Happy browsing everyone and don't forget to check out for a full list of the shops participating in the 3rd anniversary sale!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

EtsyBloggers Anniversary Sale Event

And now a word from the awesome EtsyBloggers Team about their 3rd Anniversary Sale Event (of which Eternal Stardust Designs is taking part).

Have you heard?? Approximately 50 Etsy shops are participating in this wonderful event...we're all celebrating the 3rd Anniversary of the rockin' EtsyBloggers team...and we're all having a SALE!!! Look at all the beautiful items just waiting for you to take a closer look:

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Blog Carnival: Back to School

This blog carnival is being brought to you by the EtsyBloggers Team blog. They've given us 2 questions relating to back to school time:
1) It's back to school time...How are you preparing to get the kids or yourself back to school?
2) What was your favorite BOOK, MOVIE, or GETAWAY SPOT over the summer?

Well, in answer to question #1, since I don't have kids and I'm not going back to school (I would love to but can't afford to even with financial aid) so I'm really not preparing for back to school. :)

Question #2 is a bit more difficult to answer. We didn't go anywhere for vacation or anything this year (my roomies and I that is) so I don't have a getaway spot. Most of the movies I watched this summer were from RedBox so they weren't really summer movies. But I did read a few books this summer - my favorite so far would probably have to be "Lucan" by Susan Kearney. Granted that book came out last fall, but the book was really, really good and it was the first of a trilogy. So that would have to be my favorite book of the summer!! :)

EtsyBloggers Featured Blogger for August - Patch!

This month on the EtsyBloggers team our featured blogger is Patch. Patch runs 3 shops - Patch First Shop, Patch Vintage Clothing Shop, and Patch Supply Shop.

Patch's "First Shop" is her Beaded Swarovski & Bridal Custom jewelry shop and features gorgeous items like the one below (my favorite):

Cute Berry Lantern Earrings - Pink and Green

Patch's "Vintage Clothing Shop" has beautiful vintage clothing that anyone would love to have. My favorite is shown below:

Vintage Red Leopard Blouse

Finally, Patch's "Supply Shop" contains many different types of supplies from packaging supplies to crafting supplies. Being a beader, I loved the gemstone set below from this shop:

Gemstone Bead Mix - Set 4

Patch is one amazing lady - running 3 shops and 2 blogs! You can check out both of her blogs: Patch First Shop Blog & her Wedding Guide Blog. Be sure to stop and take a look at both of her blogs and all three of her wonderful shops! :)

Monday, July 19, 2010

More New Items I've Made

I'm still working on all the items for the Farmers Market, as well as listing items on Etsy and Artfire in the meantime. :) Here are a few more of the items that I'll be taking to the Farmers Market:

Bright Squares Baby Blanket - Made using Hobby Lobby's "I Love This Yarn" in Hot Rose, Turquoise, and Amethyst. It's soft and cuddly!

Pink Gingham Baby Blanket - Made using Bernat Baby Coordinates in Pink, Baby Pink, and White. It's gorgeous, but the darker pink has been discontinued so this one is unique (at least for me lol).

Cross Bib - Made using Bernat Baby Coordinates in Lemon Custard and Sky. Sky is no longer available, and the design for the cross is my own.

Heart Bib - Made using Bernat Baby Coordinates in Sky and Iced Mint. Again, Sky is no longer available, the design for the heart is my own.

Star Bib - Made using Bernat Baby Coordinates in Iced Mint and Sky. This pattern was on the back of the Bernat yarn label. :) I can't claim the pattern as my own. Sorry.

And now for a little something that I'm currently working on. It isn't finished, but it *is* a scarf. And it is *not* crocheted. It's *knitted*. :D

Zebra Scarf (Take 1) - Made using Red Heart Super Saver Multi in Zebra. I love the way this is striping. I've had several comments from people who've seen me knitting it and who've seen the picture I took of the WIP - and they all say it's really cool. :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Getting Ready For the Market

Even though I am not scheduled to be at the Farmers Market until October, I am still busy getting ready for the market. I have to make several more scarves, I have more baby blankets to make, I have more jewelry and bookmarks to make. But I wanted to share with you some of the scarves that I've made.

These are the unedited pictures - so they probably don't look as good as they could. :)

Pink & Raspberry Scarf

Turquoise & Raspberry Scarf

At the market I'll also be selling some of the scarves and hooded scarves my best friend's mom made. I sell them in my Etsy shop right now. They are wider than my scarves but I believe that the regular scarves she makes are a bit shorter than mine are. I also plan to add shawls to the line up in the shop, as well as to my lineup for the Market next year (if I do the market next year).

Right now it's a matter of pulling together the $90 required for the 3 days I'm scheduled to be at the market, getting the table purchased, and getting all the merchandise ready. Normally I do a lot of production work on Sunday but this Sunday we've got a lot going on at church and so I probably won't get to work on my stuff then. But I hope to have at least 2 more scarves made by the end of the weekend, as well as a couple of baby bibs (which I still need to take pictures of the ones I've already got made).

Speaking of baby items, I've got pictures for you of the baby blanket I've already finished. :) This is done in soft turquoise, soft blue, and soft mauve. It's really nice and would go great for either a boy or a girl!

Turquoise, Purple, and Blue Twinkle Star Baby Blanket

The pattern I got from the back of a yarn label. I think it's absolutely adorable and I've designed a couple of variations on the theme of the blanket that should be in production in the next couple of weeks. I'm not putting the blankets in the Etsy shop I've created for them just yet - they haven't yet been labeled properly according to CPSIA & FTC standards. As soon as they are, they'll be available in my shop as well.

If you like what you see, but not the colors, don't be afraid to convo me on Etsy or contact me via Artfire, Facebook, or Twitter - Most items can easily be made in a variety of colors to suit your needs.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Featured Etsy Shop via Pounce: Creative Habitat

Well, I'm back for this week's Featured Etsy Ship via Pounce. I found an adorable shop that's been open since November of 2009 but hasn't yet had any sales. Creative Habitat is a shop that features holiday themed table runners and wall hangings!

This shop currently features a Santa table runner, a snowman table runner, an Americana Flag wall hanging, and more! There aren't many listings in this shop as of yet but I can't believe that someone who loves to decorate at the holidays won't soon snap some of these items!! :)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Custom Orders

I was perusing the Etsy forums tonight and came upon a post that for any artisan who does custom work would be heartbreaking. The seller was talking about having started a custom order only to find that the person went ahead and had someone else on Etsy make the items they wanted.

This seller was talking about making sure to get the money for the order up front. Other people piped in that they use a 50% non-refundable deposit for custom orders. Of course, they also mentioned that the deposit should be listed in your shop policies and that when they pay you, if they do so by PayPal, then it needs to be listed as a service, because PayPal does not allow refunds for services.

So now I find myself wanting to go through and look at my custom order policy and see if I need to make changes to them. Fun fun. :)

I don't know how other artisans feel about it, but to be honest, I find it extremely disrespectful to contact an artisan about a custom order, find out that yes, it is possible for what you want to be done, and then find someone else to do the job for you. While it is nice to see that someone respects your professional opinion on something, it isn't so nice when that person that respects your professional opinion so much decides to have someone else make the item for you. But that might just be me. :)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Featured Etsy Shop via Pounce: Meaningful Gifts and Accessories

I'm staring a new feature here at Eternal Stardust Designs' blog. I'm going to be highlighting a shop here on Etsy, that I find through the "Pounce" feature that I find to have interesting items. These shops will be shops that are still waiting for that coveted first Etsy Sale. :)

Our inaugural edition kicks off with a shop I found called Meaningful Gifts and Accessories. This shop is amazing! I'm sorry I can't figure out how to show you the items - but I don't want to steal their photos! :)

The owner, jimmekat, is a crocheter who makes jewelry out of her crochet! I too am a crocheter, but I haven't quite gotten the hang of making crocheted jewelry! :D She has several adorable pairs of unique earrings that are made from crochet. You simply must check this shop out! :)

She's just opened her shop on June 2, but I can forsee her items being a big hit. She's already started out with the great summery colors!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Eternal Stardust Designs Has Made It's First Etsy Sale!!!

As the title says, I have made my first Etsy sale. A friend of mine saw and wanted to purchase the Annie bracelet from this post (the bracelet was actually named after her) and she wanted to purchase one of my best friend's key chains. She didn't want to have to purchase from two different places (my best friend's key chain was on eBay) so I helped my best friend end her auction and then posted 2 custom listings - one for the key chain and one for the bracelet!

Now please do not think that you cannot get this beautiful bracelet! If you are interested in the bracelet, just let me know! I can definitely make another one for you - or I can make another one like it but using slightly different beads. Just let me know if you are interested - you can convo me on Etsy!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Looking For New Venues

I am constantly looking for new venues in which to sell Eternal Stardust Designs jewelry. To that end, I have yet to find an offline venue in which to sell my jewelry. Until tonight that is.

Our local farmers market, which I had always thought was exclusively for edible products, actually does allow arts and crafts to be sold there. There is a website for the farmers market and I found the application plus the fees for selling there. There were a few things that weren't clear, so I went ahead and I emailed them for a bit of clarification on those things. I am thinking of perhaps a day or two in July, a day or two in August, a day or two in September, and a day or two in October, but I am not positive.

I'm not sure because I don't want to choose 8 days and find out I have to shell out $240 all at once to do it. I might just find out from them if I can apply for a date in July, see how things go and then apply for more dates if I decide it is worth it.

Or I might just start saving up now to actually go ahead and rent a space for the whole season. It's $350 for a 10-foot space, not that I need that much but that's the smallest space you can get, at least for 2010, and if I start saving now, just a bit of money each time I get paid for blogging or get a sale, I should have enough by next March to be able to go ahead and buy a space for next year.

If you sell offline, what venues have worked for you? Farmers markets? Street fairs? County fairs? Museums? Gift shops?

Monday, May 31, 2010

More New Designs

Well, I posted 2 new designs although one ended up being switched to a custom listing for a friend as she wanted it. LOL I can make more of the bracelet though as soon as I get more of the heart beads for it, so no worries there if you like it and want it.

This is the bracelet I am going to be calling "Annie":

The above bracelet is the one that my friend wanted to buy, so it's now in a custom listing. I can make more later if someone else wants one. :)

This is the bracelet I am calling "Royalty in Purple":

This one is a double-row flat spiral weave - and off-loom woven bracelet. It's absolutely gorgeous and I wish there was a way to capture the sparkle and shine of this bracelet in a photo.

More new designs are coming, just as soon as I get the materials I am looking for.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Giveaway: Hand Made Loop Earrings Winner!!!!

Well, the giveaway contest is over! There were only 2 entries, but even so, I went to and used the True Random number generator to generate our winner!

And the Winner is......

LASHAWN!!!! :) Congratualations!! Please contact me @ so I can get your shipping info!! :D

Stay tuned, I'll have more giveaways in the future! :D

Thursday, May 27, 2010

In Business....

Sometimes I have to pinch myself to believe that I actually am legally a business now. My city doesn't require me to have a business license, the county said that although I could spend $10-$12 each month to "register my business name" it didn't really matter because it didn't give me exclusive rights to the name, and the state gave me my sales tax ID without a bit of problem!

But I am a business now, and I keep having to remember that I need to keep track of what I do with my business. For example - keeping receipts for beads, keeping receipts for eBay fees, Etsy fees, etc. It can be really challenging. Obviously I am keeping these receipts for tax purposes, and to be honest, I may actually have to go to a tax preparation service at least this first year to be certain I am doing my taxes correctly. :D But I digress. LOL Remembering to keep my receipts is sometimes a big challenge because my first instinct is to simply shove the receipt in my purse and move along.

This is especially true when I am at the post office, Walmart (where I buy my shipping materials), Hobby Lobby, & Michaels. Yes, I do buy beads from Hobby Lobby & Michaels. LOL Those receipts get stuffed into my purse and often forgotten about. If I don't think about it, I'll toss them in the trash and never think about it. :/

When I order things online it is easier to keep track and since I always use my PayPal account to pay for those things, it makes it very easy to keep track because PayPal keeps track of it.

I do have a couple of tips for keeping track of business related purchases. If you have a PayPal account, use it to pay for supplies, eBay/Etsy fees, etc wherever possible. The records kept by PayPal can help you to remember where and when you spent money on your business!

Another thing, and this may sound funny, but get a PayPal debit card! If you have brick and mortar stores you purchase supplies from, postage to purchase from the post office, etc, PayPal also tracks purchases made with the debit card! So you have a record of it still! Obviously you still have to keep the receipt to use for tax purposes, but it can help if you happen to need to enter an amount in your preferred bookkeeping method and don't have the receipt right there with you at the moment.

Keep a box of some sort to toss your receipts in! I use a box that my Bible came in, a friend of mine uses a shoe box, and I have yet another friend who uses one of those little coupon file books to store hers in. Whatever you use, make sure you have one and try to remember to put your receipts in it!

Another thing you can do to help you get your stuff together for tax season is to use a service like lets you keep your books - track expenses and income. They also partner with which allows you to keep your receipts online. Both are great tools to use - I haven't started using yet, but I do plan on doing so soon! offers a free account where you "do it yourself" as far as scanning and storing your receipts there, as well as paid plans that allow you to send them your business cards and/or receipts and have them scan them for you. There are different levels and all accounts start with a 30-day free trial of the paid version of the service.

Being in business can be a headache, but it is something that I definitely like. I'll post more posts giving my little tips and tricks for what works for me when I find things that work well for me. :)

I ♥ Etsy

One of the biggest things I have noticed lately is that there are a lot of people on the forums at Etsy who are complaining about things. They complain they are not being found in the search engines (mostly Google), they complain they are not being featured on the front page. They complain that they don't get any answers why they aren't doing well.

A lot of sellers on the forums seem to want Etsy to promote their shops for them. To me this is being lazy. I mean, yes, it's nice to be featured on the front page of Etsy. I am not going to say it isn't. But I have noticed more than once that, well, people on the forums tend to want Etsy to do everything for them.

Etsy was created to make it easy for people to start their own business selling the items they make in their studios, kitchens, living rooms, etc. They were not created to promote those shops for their shop owners. If I am going to run a business, I need to be not only making the products that I am selling, but I also need to be marketing and promoting my products and my shop.

I have several ways of doing so. I use Facebook & Twitter. I use MySpace. I talk about my products, my inspirations, etc. I host giveaways on my blog and I post links about that on my social networks. I use deviantArt to show of photos of my work. I use what tools I have available to me to promote my shop.

When I send out a package, I enclose a few of my business cards. I use return address labels with my business name on them. Each item that is sent has a business card inside the packaging for the item. That is how I promote my jewelry. I make sure that the buyer knows where it came from, and I give them an opportunity to also tell others about it.

I love Etsy. I have no plans to leave Etsy. Sure I get frustrated, but then I realize that it is my own lack of promotion that is keeping me from reaching my full potential, not something that is wrong with Etsy. More sellers should take a step back, take a deep breath, and see the same thing.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

My Newest Creation & Renewed Faith

Well, I finally got off my buns and started making some new creations. :) The first creation I have (well, only creation I have since I ended up needing to order more beads for the other one) is the "Dreaming of Vegas" bracelet. I was going to name it "Poker Face" but then my friend bought a couple of items from me on eBay and her username there inspired me to name the bracelet something else. The funny thing is that another friend of mine said she thought this bracelet would sell really well in Vegas! :)

Dreaming of Vegas Bracelet

My friend bought the following two bracelets from me on eBay. These are my first jewelry sales via eBay and so I was thrilled to realize they'd been purchased. :) I should have known who it was who bought them. She'd told me she wanted one of them already. :D

Red, White, & Black Flat Spiral Weave Bracelet

Green & Blue Flat Spiral Weave Bracelet

Don't you love the packaging?? I use colored card stock type paper that I get in packs of 50 and my best friend ever so sweetly cuts it to the size needed to put it in the self sealing bags. She cuts it for me because I can't cut it right to save my hide. :D It's a good thing we live in the same house, huh?? LOL

So there you have it. My newest creation and a bit of renewed faith as I've sold a couple of pieces. Now to sell some other pieces! :)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Giveaway: Hand Made Loop Earrings

I've decided to hold a giveaway for a pair of my hand made loop earrings. This gorgeous pair of earrings features a large loop that was hand formed from 24 gauge jewelry wire, an 8mm purple & turquoise glass confetti bead, 4mm CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements in Jet, and 8mm pink/purple/turquoise glass rounds. They are on rhodium plated base metal fish hook ear wires.

To enter just do the following:

Go to Eternal Stardust Designs, pick your favorite item, then come back and leave a comment letting me know which item is your favorite.

Extra Entries:

1 Entry Each:
Become a fan of Eternal Stardust Designs on Facebook

Friend Eternal Stardust Designs on MySpace

Follow Eternal Stardust Designs on Twitter

Follow this blog by clicking the "Follow" button on the right sidebar.

2 Entries:

Tweet the following out to your followers:

Win a pair of hand made loop earrings from Eternal Stardust Designs! - #esd #giveaway

This giveaway will run from today through Saturday May 29, 2010, and the winner will be announced on Sunday May 30, 2010, prize to be shipped on June 1, 2010!

Good luck!!! :)

***NOTE*** This contest is open only to people living in the United States. Sorry!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Where I Find Inspiration

People are innately curious. They wonder about everything. They wonder about life, God/Goddess, faith, how things work, and where inspiration comes from. When it comes to artwork or crafts, they definitely wonder where inspiration comes from.

My inspiration is everywhere. I can look at beads and say "oh, that would be so cool as a (insert piece of jewelry here)." I can look at trees or flowers and say "oh, if I could find beads that color, or find beads shaped like those leaves or flowers, I could make an adorable (insert piece of jewelry here."

I have been inspired by paint schemes on NASCAR race cars - I've done items based on Tony Stewart's cars, Kyle Busch's cars, and Jeff Gordon's cars. I am continually inspired by their paint schemes, I just don't have the beads or money to get the beads to make more of the NASCAR inspired items.

I have been inspired by things that I know my favorite celebrities like. Several of my favorites are poker players - so you can imagine the thrill I got when I found beads that were made to look like the Jack - Ace of Hearts. I even have a title for the bracelet I'm going to make for them already - a favorite tune by Lady Gaga - "Poker Face."

So inspiration comes from many places, and has many faces. I've even been inspired by seeing items others have made - they inspire me to learn a technique I don't already know and to create my own designs based on those techniques. Inspiration comes to you in many ways - you just have to play around until you find yours.

Hard At Work

I have been hard at work lately creating new items, listing new items in the Etsy shop, and even posting items on eBay to see if that is a feasible solution for selling/marketing Eternal Stardust Designs.

Right now I have 4 items up for auction - three of them are not in the Etsy shop, so you would only be able to purchase them via eBay right now. If you're interested in seeing what we have to offer on eBay, you can click here to view my eBay page.

There are currently 45 items for sale in the Etsy shop - Eternal Stardust Designs on Etsy so you can definitely check that out as well if you are of a mind to. :)

I also have some blog posts for this blog planned, including giving some insight into my inspirations for making my jewelry.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

We Have New Things Coming...

There are quite a few new things coming up - the first being 2 new bracelets & 1 new pair of earrings. The earrings I am really excited about because they're a bit of a difference from the normal earrings I make. :)

Also I am working on getting the official website up and running - it will soon house this blog, links to the MySpace, Twitter, & Facebook pages, and will also have a shopping cart where you can purchase items as well. The Etsy shop will still be up and running, but you will be able to purchase items from either place.

New items will be split between the offical site shopping area and Etsy. All custom orders however, I would ask that they be done via Etsy through the conversation system. This way I can keep track of them better. :)

I should be rolling out the website soon - just have a few more kinks to work out and then I'll be ready to open the website up!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Four New Items In the Shop

Here are the listings for our four newest designs/items. The Pink Firestorm bracelet is one-of-a-kind due to some of the beads used in the bracelet no longer being available for me to purchase. The Autumn Fire earrings are also one-of-a-kind as I can no longer purchase the amber glass leaves used to make them, so these items are definitely unique looks!

Pink Firestorm Bracelet

Autumn Fire Earrings

Thank You For The Cross Earrings

Rosalie Earrings

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Coming Soon To The Shop

These are just "rudimentary" photos of some items I'll be listing once "proper" photos have been taken. :)

Rosalie Earrings

Autumn Fire Earrings

Thank You For The Cross Earrings

Pink Firestorm Bracelet

2 New Earrings In The Shop

Well, we have 2 new pairs of earrings for you to view in our shop - Carnelian & Glass Leaf earrings, which can be viewed HERE and Blue Aventurine earrings, which can be viewed HERE.

I've had both pairs of earrings for a while now, but for some reason never took pictures of them or listed them in the shop until now. Truth be told, the Carnelian & Glass Leaf earrings are my favorite of the two pairs. I just love the way they look together. The sad thing is that the glass leaves are extremely fragile and unfortunately, they were a clearance item when I purchased them, so I cannot get any more of them. Once the earrings are gone, they're gone.

I have a few more of the leaves and plan to make a couple more pairs of those earrings as well as possibly making a necklace out of them, but we'll see what happens with that. :)

Monday, March 15, 2010

Big Things Coming

Well, I finally got the information I needed and I filled out the necessary forms in order to receive my Iowa State Sales tax permit. Now when I sell items whether it be through Etsy or if I sell at a craft show/fair, I will need to collect Iowa State Sales Tax.

Iowa is a flat-rate state, so I set up my PayPal account to automatically charge the sales tax on the items if the package is being shipped to Iowa. Fun times. :D Plus I upgraded my PayPal to a business account so as to make sure that credit card statements show some form of Eternal Stardust Designs on them when they're viewed after making a purchase.

And finally, I ordered my business cards. Although Etsy has a partnership with MOO, I used VistaPrint to order my cards instead - 250 FREE business cards (shipping & handling was the only cost) - plus I can get a few other items for nothing but shipping if I want to. I'm not sure where I'm going to hand out my business cards other than putting them in the packages when I send out orders, but we'll see. I do know I'm going to make sure to carry some with me all the time!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

New Earrings in the Shop

There is a new set of earrings in the Eternal Stardust shop - Pink and Purple spiral rope earrings. :)

I picked up a bag of "amethyst mix" seed beads the other day - they just screamed at me to spiral rope weave them into something. So the first something they've been woven into is a pair of earrings. :)

You can view the listing HERE. :)

Oh My

I have gone over a month without posting to this blog and I sincerely apologize for that. Allow me a moment to explain.

I do not have a full time job. I do some blogging that allows me to get paid for writing articles and I write, freelance, for a website that allows me to more or less be a ghost writer for other blogs. The work is easy, although the pay isn't the greatest. So I have been trying to find a full time job to allow me to pay the bills - and then continue to filter my freelance writing money into Eternal Stardust.

Over the next few months, there will be some changes. Eternal Stardust will have 2 new partner shops - ESD Baby (Eternal Stardust Baby) & ESD Home (Eternal Stardust Home). ESD Baby will feature crocheted and knitted baby blankets, layette sets, etc. ESD Home will feature things such as crocheted towel toppers, crocheted and knitted dish cloths, placemats, coasters, and pot holders.

Also coming soon to Eternal Stardust Jewelry will be a line of jewelry that is inspired by NASCAR. What I would like to do is make it so that you can convo me on Etsy, tell me your favorite driver and what your favorite paint scheme for their car is, and I will weave a bracelet in peyote stitch for you. This could also be done with football, baseball, and basketball teams - anything that would have team colors could have this done.

I am working on getting the main website up and running so that I can have a place that will show off all three of the shops.

Please, don't forget to add us on Facebook and MySpace. We're also on Twitter.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Another New Item Listed

This item is actually new. I finished one of the 4 scarves I was crocheting and posted it on Etsy tonight. I did miss the February 3rd Etsy listing, so I didn't manage my goal of one per day for February, but at least I remembered tonight's and have 3 new items in my shop. :)

This item is a pink & dusty rose scarf. Right now I have only one in stock, and since the dusty rose I used is no longer available, any subsequent pink & dusty rose scarves will have a slightly different dusty rose used on them.

This scarf does not have fringe on it, and can be made in any colors you want, so feel free to Convo me on Etsy or email me at for custom color information.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

New Item Listed

Another new, but not new, item has been listed over at Eternal Stardust Jewelry & Accesories. :) This time it is the Golden Sun & New Moon with Tiger Eye necklace. This gorgeous necklace features glass pearls in Gold & Black with square Tiger Eye beads. The Tiger Eye beads can easily be changed for other stones, although they may not be square, and if preferred, the Tiger Eye beads can be exchanged for round ones instead. Take a look!

Monday, February 1, 2010

A Couple of Challenges

This month of February I have challenged myself to do 2 things that will help me promote Eternal Stardust Jewelry & Accessories. The first one is to try and list at least one new item each day during the month of February. I started off today by listing a pair of earrings. I have a couple of other pairs of earrings to list, as well as two scarves that I am in the process of making to list, so I have at very least, through Friday covered. While I am not sure exactly what I will list after Friday, I can say that I will find something to list.

That being said, my 2nd challenge is to find a way to work with what I have right now to make my photographs of the jewelry and scarves better. For the scarves I was thinking of possibly photographing them around someone's neck - to show how they look actually being worn - although with the hooded scarf that would not be such a good idea and I've heard that people do not want to see earrings being modeled by a person at all. I've placed a poll in the sidebar regarding how to display earrings for pictures - please vote for your preferred display.

If you have any other feedback or options for display of bracelets, necklaces, scarves, earrings, etc, please feel free to leave me comments. Thank you!

New Item Listed

I've listed a new pair of earrings. Actually they are not new, they are a re-listing of some earrings that I had previously posted but had then given away in a contest. :) I have the materials to make another pair, and so I put them back up for sale in the shop. You can view the listing for the Red & Black Dot Earrings by clicking the link.

Our shop's public profile has also been updated to reflect the fact that there are, in fact, two of us who are selling items in the shop. It is a possibility in the future that we may separate the shops, but for the time being, the shop will be a collective shop.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Two New Items Listed!!

We are proud to announce that our Etsy shop now has 2 new items listed for your viewing/purchasing pleasure!

Up first is this beautiful hooded scarf. The hooded scarf is crocheted by one of my business partners and is able to be customized to the colors you want. The one in the photo was a gift to someone, but the scarf only takes a day or two to complete, so you won't have to wait long for a scarf to make its way to you!

The second item is this adorable scarf. This scarf is also crocheted by one of my business partners and is also available in custom colors. Just simply convo us to let us know what colors to make your scarf in!

We will have more earrings, bracelets, and necklaces in soon, as well as some other crocheted accessory items as well! Check back often, you never know what you will find!