Thursday, April 22, 2010

Boneyard Art Festival

Last Saturday, I had the honor of being one of the artists asked to display work in the lobby of the Main Street Plaza building in downtown Urbana, IL.  This is also where the Shared Space Coop is located; a budding new gallery that I have items located at.

As with any new show, I had no clue what to expect, but was very pleased with my location and the turnout.  I decided to try a slightly different layout from the one I did at the I Do Bridal Expo, mainly because I didn’t have the space or time to do a full booth set-up.  I like how cohesive it looked with my branding, but I still have some tweaks I would like to make for next time.  But it was not bad for a 2nd set up…and went MUCH faster than the first!
This was also my first experience with accepting credit cards at a live event.  I have to tell you, I am glad I had a set up that allowed me to see immediately if a card was accepted, as I had several students present me with cards that were declined.  My only complaint with the credit card system is that it was a little slow as I had to type in all of the info….and I am not a speed typist by any means.  For any future events I will be sure to get one of the card swipers that hooks up to the computer. 

I had the pleasure to meet a talented  photographer, Hector Mandel, who was set up just next to me.  You can see him on the left of the photo below…probably mid text to his wife, a lamp work bead and wire wrap  jewelry artist,  who was at another show.  Hector takes a variety of local landscape images, shot of everyday items in an unusual perspective,  and specializes in amazing images taken while skydiving!  He also has some brilliant shot of his wife making lamp work beads and you would swear you were looking at planets, nebulas, or even  jellyfish! 
All in all, I had a great day and if asked back I will probably go.  Hector told me about another event that is one that I will have to look into doing next year:  The Mom’s Day Craft Fair at the Illini Union.  It is fun to get out of the house and on the road.  I always meet interesting people and enjoy talking to shoppers about my work!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Shared Space: An Artist Coop

Today is the official GRAND OPENING for Shared Space: An Artist Coop.  It is conveniently located in Downtown Urbana, Illinois
in the Main Street Plaza building nestled amongst a variety of wonderful eateries and eclectic shops.  Parking is never an issue with the options of metered street parking out front or the parking garage located on the East corner of the block!

You ask why I am so excited about the opening of this gallery….well It is because it now offers me a new location to sell my product.  And more excitingly…they are soon to expand and will have space to host classes!  I have a list of classes I want to teach, just my rural location is not conducive to hosting classes.

I stopped by the gallery yesterday (with my 2 little side kicks) and brought a variety of items to set up as a way to test the waters.  I was impressed with how well stocked it was and how organized the staff were.  You could hardly tell that they were  in the fray of getting ready for the big launch.  Fortunately for me, my kids were moderately well behaved so I could get my business done….oh the joys of running a artistic business and juggling little kids!  I was also impressed with the random foot traffic that they were getting.  I hope that was an indicator of how visited the shop will be!
If you are an artist looking for a spot to call home, contact Shared Space by clicking this link to the contact page.  Membership info will be on the website soon.  You can also follow the Shared Space: An Artist Coop on Facebook.  Also stop by on April 17 for the Boneyard Art Festival an meet me as well as several of the other artists!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Bridal Expo

Recently I took a chance and did a Bridal Expo.  I thought it would be fun to try to tap into that market a bit more since I will be launching a Bridal based category on my website.

My spot was pretty prime, it was right at the entrance, but dark as can be.  Thank goodness I had some additional lights with me.  I wanted to set my booth up like a girly dressing room and have it be inviting but still inline with my branding and colors. 

I think for a first booth, it came out pretty nice, but there are things I will change for the next time I do a show, as this was a very time intensive setup.  I LOVE how my sign looked.    

Here are a few photos:

The booth looking inbooth-1

The Back Wall


Left Side


Right Side


As for the show itself, I was a little disappointed.  I live near The University of Illinois, a major university for those of you who are unfamiliar with it,  and unfortunately this event was the first weekend of their spring break.  So the attendance was VERY poor. 

The other problem was that the event was from 12 – 4pm and from 2pm until 4pm there was a bridal fashion show.  So during the show, everyone was gone from the expo floor and watching the catwalk.  We vendors could hear the crickets.  

Some vendors bailed early as a result but those of us who stayed were bombarded with visitors leaving the fashion show that ended at eh same time the event was due to end.  I stayed with no issue, but the fact that it was close to 5 when people left and we were supposed to be cleared of the expo floor by 5pm.  So once again I was cursing my time intensive set up. 

I now have a mess of stuff to go thru and jewelry to untangle.  But I did have a lot of positive feedback and a few orders.  Will I do it again?  Probably not.  Was it fun?  Sure. 

I met a really great couple who do amazing photography and and they made the time pass better.   So I will give them a little plug here…They are not limited to just Bridal photography, they also do babies, family, seniors, you name it.  They have a great style, it is vintage meets modern classic.  I LOVE it.

K. Design Photography

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Search Term Tuesday….the Return!

Okay….it has been awhile.  I won’t waste your time with excuses, life happens, we get sidetracked, and then we get back on track again.  So here I am.

When I sat down today to look at my Google analytics for my shop, I was sooo amazed at all of the wonderfully odd search terms that were used to get people to my site.  I had a hard time limiting it to 3….but here you go:

These search terms were selected because they brought 10 or more viewers to my site.  All photos are of products I found to illustrate what I normally would think of when I hear the search term.  If you click  on the

1.  Leather Bound Book

This was a fun term to see.  I have been experimenting with textures and have some new ones that I will be launching that look like leather, sharkskin, and snakeskin.  For the fall I have some plans to incorporate real leather and suede into a few pieces as well.


2.  Etsy Lingerie

I love the thought of my  jewelry being associated with lingerie.  Jewelry like lingerie is something that is so personal and intimate and worn close to the skin.  It is nice to see the association.  I have some plans for lingerie inspired jewelry, but that will not be available until next year I fear. 


3.  Subway sign wall art

WOW…how odd is that term for what I make….but it sure would be really cool to have a line of necklaces inspired by signs….hmmmmm.  Gears are turning for new items now.  In the comments section leave suggestions for signs you would like to see as jewelry.  If I choose one of yours for production, you will receive the first one as a gift!