Sunday, December 28, 2008

Is Anyone Else as Overwhelmed As I Am?

A new year. Fresh starts. New beginnings. I love it. In theory, that is. But evaluating last year, figuring out which direction to go this brain hurts already. I've opened new shops at Artfire and Shop Handmade. I have my stuff at Etsy and my mother-in-law's shop there too. I have a Bonanzle shop also to sell the garage sale type stuff I used to sell at Ebay. I still sell at Ebay sometimes. My husband just opened a shop at Bonanzle to help get rid of construction related items, old hardware, etc... that are too good for the landfill. He doesn't have time for I do that too.
And then Auctiva is opening stores in January. Should I do one of those? If so, which other shop should I give up? Have I given them enough of a chance?
Well, I'm just rambling. I haven't blogged in sooooo long and wasn't sure what to write about. My head is so full. So I need some concrete goals to put down here.
1) Blog more often.
2) Blog more meaningfully.
3)Focus efforts. Work smarter, not harder!
4) Promote.
5) Focus on great customer service! Get repeat customers.
6) Clear out clutter!
7) Go to bed earlier.
Good night!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Half Off OWLS!!

In the spirit of cleaning out some inventory..I'm offering 50% off on all owl items in my etsy shop.
Do you need some owl playing cards? Or a vintage wall plaque? (i have two).
What about a nice Lefton figurine?

Come check it out!! Great prices!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Diversify, Diversify

So I've been spending a few days brainstorming and trying to figure out how to grow my business(es). I've pretty much decided that it is smart not to put all your eggs in one basket as they say. Going back and forth between and is giving me a headache. Feedback on both of these sites is both positive and negative. I guess the same can be said for Etsy. And Ebay for that matter.
So the only way to figure out what to do is to try them out! So today I opened on Artfire.
I only have two items there so far. I intend to add more. I love their one-page listing format. It's great! They are a little buggy...but they're still in Beta so that's to be expected. But everyone raves about the stats. Next to try ShopHandmade and see how that goes! I'll be blogging about it!
ArtFire - Buy Handmade - Sell Handmade

Sunday, November 30, 2008

A new selling option

So I was introduced to today. It seems to be a viable option to Fee-bay or Greed-bay or whatever. I checked it out and it seems like it may be a good thing. It's new but growing quickly.

I haven't added any items to my booth yet. Maybe this week.

It has a good feel to it, and people have actually made sales on it. There are local options with it so it's a nice combination of Ebay and Craigslist.

Check it out if you get a chance!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Like My Treasury?

Like my treasury? It's titled "Reflections". My very first time trying to snag a Treasury, and it worked! I just happened to be on Twitter and someone tweeted that the Treasury was opening soon. I wandered over there just out of curiosity...then decided to try for one. You know, just to see what it looked like. Had my title ready, as was suggested and BAM! got it. I also had my Treasury laid out in Poster that helped too.
Let me know what you all think!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Conquer the Clutter!

A few days back, I started a thread on the Etsy forums asking for organizing tips! I am in sore need of them! I was supposed to be cleaning, weeding, etc...but I was I am now. I got some great suggestions! I thought I would share them with you!

First, JoyfulAbode wrote: "My best tip is get rid of junk before you start. You can't organize clutter; you can only move it around. It's a fact!" That is a true statement. Others on the forum loved that one!

I also heard from CreationsAnew. They wrote: "My best tip!!!! I clean up my office/workspace every day after I'm finished working in it!and...I close my books every month!!!! Great advice for when tax time rolls around!" If only I could be so organized! Something to strive for.

I totally agree with TheCandlesmith who said: "The hardest for me is putting things back where they belong the first time..........." That is why I'm in the mess I'm in! No pun intended.

Oh and here's a good one! lrichmond3 writes: "oh, oh, I have a great one but it doesn't necessarily have anything to do with organizing your work space but I suppose it would work anywhere. Dump the contents of a drawer in a box. For one month, every time you use something from that box, you place it back in the drawer. At the end of the month, whatever you haven't used from the box, goes in the trash. I've done this with kitchen drawers and man, it really works!"

And here's another system that works for jewelsbyfaith. "If were talking house stuff, I like to walk around with a basket, one room at a time and if there is something that's in room, and doesn't belong, it goes in the basket...then I carry the basket around and put everything back. I do this every now and then for each room, and it helps. When it gets REALLY bad, I get out the laundry basket, make the entire household sweep, set it in the middle of the floor and tell everyone they have 10 min.s to put it away..what's left over gets tossed! The kids mover really quickly when I do that! especially if it's nintendo games, etc, the basket!"

And when I'm overwhelmed...I remember what cherrybounces wrote: "Baby steps!"

The ideas I wasn't able to include can be found on this thread. Thanks everyone!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Welcome to Etsy....

Looking for some handspun yarn? Or some unique vintage finds? This new Etsy shop is for you!
Although a member of Etsy since 2006, HappyTrees has just recently had the time to focus on her shop and her blog.
We took a few minutes to ask her some questions.
How long have you been spinning?
I've been spinning for about 4 years...the first two were on a drop spindle and the last two have been on my Kromski Wheel.
Where did you learn?
I taught myself how to spin and watched a few internet tutorials...
What's your favorite item in your shop?
My favorite item in my shop is this: My Blind Melon Handspun...I dyed it with Koolaid and Food Coloring and vinegar.

What's your favorite vintage item in general?
My favorite vintage items are always my fisher price toys...anything from the seventies.
What was your best thrift store find?
My best find was my Fisher Price record player complete with five plastic 'records'!

Anything else you'd like to tell us??
I'm pregnant with my fourth child and not currently working. So I've been spending a lot of time creating new pieces or scouring the thrift stores and attic sales for the perfect pieces. I quit working in Oct., that's when I finally had the time to work on Etsy and my blog, and to try to network a little bit. So I am really just getting started.
Anything else??
My real name is Anastasia, i'm married, 33, 3 kids-2 thru 13 and one on the way! 1 dog(Murray) and 2 cats(one spot and two spot)-Before I quit I was an esthtician for an Aveda salon, my husband is a muscian, and I've always made things...from the begining of my memory, I've sewn glued created something. Be it houses for my gnomes and barbies, or clothing for my little sisters stuffed animals. I love to create...and fiber is my favorite medium.
So everyone, take a minute to check out this great new Etsy seller!! HappyTrees, Welcome to Etsy!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A New Feature

In the next few days, look for my new feature..."Welcome to Etsy". I'll be interviewing/featuring a new artist or shop owner at Etsy. I'm choosing shops that have had less than 5 sales to hopefully give the owners a little more exposure and help spread the word about Etsy!!!
Buy Handmade!!

Keep watching!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

How Did We Survive Childhood?

Little People

Ok, so the toy on the left represents the toys I played with as a kid. The Little People were...little. The toy on the right represents today's Little People. Larger. No, not a statement about childhood obesity, but a safer, choke-free toy.
The other day, I heard my 1 1/2 year old chewing on something. I turned around, and the toy on the left was COMPLETELY inside his mouth. I'm not even sure where I left it, that he could find it. And I'm not even sure what possessed him to want to put it in his mouth.
But it got me thinking about how we survived our own childhoods. There are tons of items that we would look at horror-stricken if they were given to our own children, but we gleefully played with ourselves. Our car seats were not comfortable, no padding, no cushioning. Our paint had lead in it. We rode bikes with the wind blowing through our hair.
And amazingly, most of us survived it.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Kitschy is Kool

Share your comments as to why kitschy is kool...

Kitschy is just unique. It says.."I'm interested in the eclectic, the unusual and I have a sense of humor"
(This recipe box is made by Hallmark. And can be found in my etsy shop. )

Introducing....Grandma's Drawers!!!

My new etsy shop. Featuring jewelry supplies and 80s jewelry. A huge destash of my mother-in-laws crafty collections. (see earlier post). So far I've only listed a few things. Shown here!

Don't you love big eighties earrings???

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Games People Play

I love the fact that people are creating new things out of the old. Call it recycling, repurposing, upcycling or what you will, it's just a darn good idea. There is too much STUFF already in the world. Go to any thrift store and you'll see what i mean. Most of it is junk. But anyone who can repurpose something that others would just throw away is to be commended.

On etsy, I've seen some great ideas and future blogs will feature some of these. I love the fact that old game pieces can be reused. A game missing some pieces would normally be thrown out. But not those Scrabble tile pendant makers! Those Monopoly die-cast pieces jewelry makers!

Ok, now I'm babbling...time to go to bed.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Owls, Owls, Everywhere!

Until I started seriously browsing Etsy, I really hadn't realized how popular owls had become. (again).

What is it about owls? Maybe we're all in the need of some wisdom in these perilous times!
I remember a pair of chalkware ones my mom had forever on her living room shelves. Probably still does.

Here are some of mine that I've collected and can be seen at

Monday, October 27, 2008

Some Favorites!!

Over on the right I've created an etsy mini of some favorites from other etsy sellers, some experienced, some new. Enjoy and give them a click!

The featured stores are:
Bianca Venice Photography
Signs of my Life
The Unlikely Nest
Deer Path Vintage
Creative with Clay
Sara Grein Photography
Times Gone By
Kaw said the Krow
Vital Industries
Urban Heirlooms

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Power of 10!

Ok, so today I tried an experiment. I'm still in the middle, so I'll have to let you know how it goes. I am a big procrastinator!! (see earlier post)

I have some chores to do that I don't like to do...involving putting clothes away, unpacking, etc....

So I have put them off..but then my poor husband, who works hard enough as it is, ends up doing it in the evening and I feel awful!! Guilty.

So in the spirit of making changes...I decided to try a new system. It's called the power of 10. It's along the lines of using a timer.

Last night I sat down and made a list of things to do. I said I would hang up 10 pieces of clothing. I would take pictures of 10 things to sell on etsy. I said I would find 10 things to donate to Goodwill. Then I'd do dishes for 10 minutes and dust for 10 minutes.

So far it's going well. The managable goals thing seems to work. And I worked a lot longer and did more than 10 on some things...once I got the ball rolling.

Still have to clean and finish pictures...but baby's napping and I'm almost done with my 10 minutes of blogging!!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

I'm in a Treasury on Etsy!

This is my first time posting a screen bear with me!
I'll need to work on that!
TheUnlikelyNest (a great store on put me in her treasury.
Check her and us other newbies out!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Holy Supplies Batman!

Well, our trip to Montana is coming to an end. We were visiting my mother in law, a die-hard crafter, collector. I was supposed to set her up with her own Etsy store so she could destash and sell her creations. She's not ready.

So I am coming home on the train with the first lot of destash. Jewelry and leatherwork supplies. Here's a sampling.

She has a basement and several storage containers FULL of supplies and thrift store finds.

She wants to CLEAN OUT. I will be her agent. Look in my etsy store for some new items in the next weeks...and I'll have to set up a new supplies store soon too.

I'll be posting here so keep watching!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Tag, I'm It!

I was tagged recently by aksarbenlove I'm new to the blogging world, so I hope I do this correctly.
Here's how tagging works:
1. Link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blog.
4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

My seven random facts:
  1. I get chills and freak out if I hear or even think about someone rubbing a paper towel on their teeth.
  2. I graduated a year early and had the third highest grade point average.
  3. I love dipping french fries into the ketchup packet.
  4. Peanut butter and pickle sandwiches are the BEST.
  5. My son's middle name, Carter, was my maiden name.
  6. I once won a poetry contest and was published in some silly anthology..."Poetic Voices of America"
  7. My pet peeve is bad spelling in public places.

Tag, You're It!

  1. zebralilly
  2. walker street vintage
  3. must love etsy
  4. fifty acorns
  5. one world organic clothing
  6. Michelle Brunner
  7. earrings, anyone?

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Flowers for my Followers!

Hello Everyone!

Thanks for following my blog! I'll try to keep up with keepin' it interesting!

We're off to Montana by Amtrak in a few hours and here I am procrastinating. Should be packing. Need to re-read my article below!

Here's some thank you flowers!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

To Catch a Thief

"Procrastination is the thief of time."~Edward Young c. 1742

For many of us, procrastination is exactly that. We find ways, excuses and other more important things to do instead of what we SHOULD be doing. For me, I spend a lot of time in forums or playing with photos or browsing ebay instead of listing, listing, listing like I should be doing. Either on ebay or etsy.

So here are some solutions. Writing this was a great reminder for me too!

First, understand why you procrastinate.

  • Is it to create a sense of urgency, thus more motivation?

  • To get that 'rush'...a feeling of excitement?

  • Being overextended?

  • Only do things when you feel like doing them?

  • Lack of self-discipline?

  • Fear of criticism or failure?

  • Overwhelmed?

  • Disorganized?

It's important to always think of the consequences. Pressure, anxiety, quality suffers or the inability to relax during free time. There's that nagging feeling that something isn't done.

But what can we do? How do we catch the thief?

Here are some suggestions from other people and some ideas of my own:

  • Make a list. The night before, write down specific items you want or need to accomplish. You'll feel progress as you check things off. Prioritize the items and even mark what time of day is best to accomplish them.

  • Figure out how to tell time. Be realistic on how long things take. Use a timer...(my favorite suggestion) Anyone can fold clothes for 15 minutes! When the timer goes off, you're done. Or you're on a roll and can keep going.

  • Delegate. If you're truly overextended, try to share the load.

  • Break down large projects into smaller. Instead of saying " I need to list items tomorrow" say.."I need to take pictures of 5 items tomorrow"

  • Reward yourself. Plan on an uninterrupted stretch of productive work. Then when you've accomplished it, reward yourself...take a break, read a book, take a walk..check out the forums!!!

Anyway, just a few ideas that I hope will help! Now finish reading this and get back to work!

why vyeshi?

You may be wondering...why Vyeshi? Well my husband and I have been studying Russian for the past 7 years. When i opened my etsy store...i was looking for a way to express the eclectic-ness of the items in the store as well as be unique.

"Vyeshi" is a loose english transliteration of a russian word that means "things" or "items". It probably should really be spelled..."vyeshchee" since the "sh" sound isn't really accurate for the Russian letter it represents. But I think my spelling is more user friendly.

Here's a picture of some nesting doll or matroyshka magnets I saw for sale in Prague. Incidentally, this image is available on a greeting card in my other store:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Meant to post some pictures on that last one. Here's some I took in Montana awhile back.

Heading to Montana

This Saturday we're taking the train to Montana to visit my husband's family. His mom and stepdad to be exact. We haven't been out there in a year so they're anxious to see our little one. He's about 17 months and has changed quite a bit in a year!!

We'll get to rest a bit while we're there. Lots of shopping and my husband should get to fish. Mom loves thrift stores so we get along great! She's looking into setting up a store on etsy as well and so I'll probably help her with that. She's an amazing artist.

The train will be fun. We go at night so we won't see the scenery but at least we don't waste a day driving. And it's cheaper than gas!!
I'll post any cool finds when I get back!

Monday, October 6, 2008

my first post!

Well, here I am! After planning on doing this for awhile, I've finally set some time aside. There's been a lot of advice from the Etsy forums to get out there and start blogging!

I have had a blog before, but I think I abandoned it after 2 or 3 posts. But I think this could actually be kind of fun now.

I'm now a SAHM (not that that gives me more time to blog...) but I am trying to build a SAHB (stay at home business) selling things on etsy and ebay.

Having had some success on ebay, some months better than others, I decided to carve a niche for myself on etsy. I like their community and I love checking out everyone's artwork. People's talent is amazing.

I have two etsy selling my original photo art greeting cards...and the other selling vintage items and ephemera and assemblage art supplies. and

Anyway, i think I'll end this now and save some other topics for another day!!