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Posts Tagged ‘Crafted’

Monkey

This little fellow was a pretty good representation of my mood this morning and I guess the barista is either psychic or I was looking kind of grumpy when I ordered my latte. Love the coffee at the Brasil Kiss coffee truck so much, my fave baristas and the best coffee on wheels. And a little monkey pick me up when I needed one the most.

Tomorrow (Sunday) is our last day at Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles and then we’ll see where we are at. But for the short term, at least, where we will be at is On Vacation, and I am really looking forward to the break!

Much of our inventory is 50% off in store tomorrow only – including Rosie Girl Art cards, bone and horn jewelry by Christopher Miller, and all of our wire wrapped ring stock, to name a bit…

Poppy

The Sketchbook Challenge continues and I continue the May challenge of trying to draw bowl shaped things. I’m sort of stuck on flowers at the moment. This is all going somewhere cool, I am just not quite sure where yet.

Tulip

It’s getting a little easier. Ellipses and guide lines are helpful, as is Google Image.

Going pretty much off Dion DIor's example

And then this is the flower that started it all, pretty much lifted straight off Dion Dior’s tutorial, I’ve done this one about ten times and I’m finally starting to feel happy with it. But I don’t just want to draw THIS flower specifically, so that’s why all the poppies and tulips and other things I’m Googling and then trying to draw.

Tried a lotus. It looked like a cabbage. Or maybe an artichoke. No, I’m not posting it.

This is why practice is good. Less cabbage/artichoke, more floral.

Cabbage later, when they post a vegetable sketching challenge.

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They tell you not to talk about negative or hard things on your blog. When you’re in business, you’re supposed to present this strong, optimistic front all the time. People need to see your highlights reel, they say.

But I don’t know that that is necessarily me, or authentic to me, and really, right now things are not so much a highlights reel as they are “just slogging through a very difficult time.”

One of the things I said when I started this business is that I wanted to support other artists. That I wanted people to see the process, to learn, to take heart, to know that all things are possible. But I think that honestly you can’t show people that unless you show them the darkness, the struggle and the failures. The thing about being who you are and okay with who you are RIGHT NOW is that sometimes, that’s not pretty. Sometimes, it’s ugly and tear streaked and angry. Sometimes it’s just damn hard. Over the last year and change, I feel like I’ve gotten pretty far from that place where I started. I’d really like to get back there, hasta pronto. Refocus my vision. Be real.

What’s real is, we are closing our shop at Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles.

Oof. I’m sitting with this and working it out for myself.

We are closing our shop at Crafted. Our beautiful little curated store and bead shop.

Closing. I just keep having to sit with that one. Really. No more driving to San Pedro in the mornings. No more food truck mysteries. No more dubious PA system, weird bands, or hilarity in the halls. No more dancing with Captain Sexypants in the bead shop. I’ll miss my community, the group of folks there who have been such a part of my life for the last year and change. I’ll miss them all so much. It feels a lot like a crashing, fiery failure. We went in to this with so much optimism and it has been hard and sometimes ugly. There has been drama and there has been struggle and the market is STILL struggling so hard to survive. I want it to survive so much. I believe so much in the project. But Honey&Ollie cannot stay, and survive.

Our last day at Crafted will be May 26th. I’ll be taking an extended hiatus, hanging on to the space (unless someone wants to lease it) and the shop may or may not re-open again in the fall. That part is up in the air. I will be re-evaluating a September re-opening as things move forward. I won’t be going that part alone, because while it is my company, I have a wonderful partner who is a huge part of my business. He is my touchstone and often the voice of reason and hard truths. He’s the person I bounce everything off of. He’s been there since this started and the store is as much his baby as it is mine. So no, it is not a sure thing that we’ll go back, but it is on the table. I have a list of things that, if checked off, will open the door to considering a “yes.” If not, well, at the end of the summer, we’ll gather our fittings and fixtures, and turn off the lights, go home one last time.

I really do not know what direction that’s gonna go in.

I’m really clear about this decision, and yet it’s a little bittersweet. I have poured so much into the last year. So much has gone in to this project. A lot of my life, so much heart, so much work, so much money. Turning around on that and saying, “No this isn’t working for me.” is somewhat devastating. Not even somewhat. It is hugely devastating. I anticipate a few weeks of grieving our breakup. And once that is done, well I will need to regroup. And the truth is, the store as it has been is permanently closed. If we do re-open, it will be in a very different capacity. It will be a very different store.

I have three months to decide if I want to go there, or if I want to go in an entirely different direction.

Three months. It seems like such a long time but three months is really a blink of an eye.

I’m taking the month of June entirely off to regroup. It’s gonna be the break of all breaks. The online shops will be closed for a month – we will be officially on vacation as of May 29th. You’ll want to follow me on Instagram in June (rainhannah) because aside from a few pre-programmed Tweets and FB updates, I’ll be on a social media break and Instagram will be the only exception to that rule.

July 1 through August, the online shops will be open with the inventory on hand, and I will be taking custom orders, just like normal. But otherwise, that’s slated as some serious development time. I will be rethinking a lot of aspects of my business. I’ll be busy developing new product lines, cleaning up old messes, setting up new systems and figuring out what it’s all going to look like going forward. That’s a bit scary, but kind of exciting all at once. I get to scrap it all and then rebuild from the ground up. I’ll be rebuilding that with some other folks on board, because I have learned that I really cannot do this alone. I can’t be a CEO, a designer, the maker, the technician, the bookkeeper, the photographer, the marketing expert, all by myself. I need some help. It’s scary to think of giving up control of every little thing but it’s time.

September is really going to be the rebirth of it all. Honey&Ollie 2.0. Yes, I am still going to be making amazing jewelry. But I’ll be doing a lot more. And I’ll be doing it BETTER. And I won’t be doing it alone.

The really cool thing about a crucible is that there’s rebirth on the other side. It’s just that it’s really hot and uncomfortable while you are in it.

Would you believe I’d planned to write this post as something about art journaling? Yeah. I know. Best laid plans.

Art journaling tomorrow. Raw truth today.

Sometimes it’s like that.

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I might have just opened an art bead shop at Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles.

beads2

And by “might have” I mean, we opened today even though about half our stock is either still being made or in transit. It’s kind of a work in progress…

We’ve got some great bead artists in the shop, including… Heather Powers/Humblebeads, Patricia Healey, Amy Mealey/Xaz Beads, Shirlee Yantz/Enchanted Chic, Elaine Robitaille/Too Aquarius, and Raida Disbrow/Havana Beads to start.

While the emphasis at Six Bad Cats Art Beads & Yarn is totally on the handmade and artisan quality supplies, we are offering a few things on the non-handmade side. We’re working up a fairly wide selection of affordable ceramic beads in every hue from Mykonos (these look GREAT in art jewelry!) and also a bunch of fun Czech glass accent beads for your creations. I’m a big fan of the more earthy hues in those, and that great picasso finish. We eventually also plan to sell waxed Irish linen in every color we can find, hand dyed sari ribbon, and other fun textiles to include in your beaded creations. This list is just going to keep expanding as I get more orders made and talk to more artists.

beads1

Eventually you’ll be able to find some fun and interesting gemstones, plus a nice selection of handmade earwires, headpins, closures and clasps in sterling, copper and bronze by ME. Those will be coming along shortly, not in stock yet.

Oh! Oh and, y’all… I hope you saw the “& Yarn” because… yes we are also going to be selling yarn!! My own handspun, some stuff from other spinners and some hand-dyed luxury yarns from my buddy Reesa at String Theory Fiber Arts. And whimsical yarn bowls in fun colors from a fabu potter. Look for yarn and other yarn related goodies to start popping up towards the end of February. Because I have not forgotten my roots. Oh no. Knitters, you are not forgotten. I have your back. No fear…

This is my studio assistant, ignoring temptation helping me count beads. She was helping, of course, by ignoring temptation.

staygoodbonnie

Because you need good help to run a bead shop these days.

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I’m actually gonna take just one second to acknowledge the passing of an amazing man – Mr. Don Moehnke of Eureka, CA. He was my first music teacher – recorder, flute, voice and music theory – and he was a tremendous and bright light. To the family of Mr. Moehnke, I just want to say that I mourn for your loss, he was special. Thank you for sharing your husband and father with so many little children and young adults, for so many years. He touched so many lives and now he is gone to the place where the music never ends.

*sigh*

Okay. DIY earring tutorials. Right. On it.

Part I – You will remember that we left off with cutting the mesh to size and attaching the mesh.

PART II

Backside:
Place the wire mesh over the back of the frame, leaving yourself about 3/4 – 1″ of space for the hanging rings. Use a staple gun, and attach the mesh securely to the frame like so:

meshplaced

Now, get some D ring hangers. I got them at Aaron Bros. when I got the frames. You can probably also find them at Home Depot. Get two per frame.

hangers

Take a pen, and place the hangers where you want them. Then mark your frames so you know where to drill. Remember, though, mark/measure twice. Cut/drill once.

framesdrillingholes

Captaindrills

I actually drilled most of the holes but for photography purposes and because he is more photogenic than me, Captain Sexypants is today’s drilling demonstrator and model.

Hey, the power drill is the one tool in the shop that I am actually somewhat comfortable using!

framedrilled

You want to drill with a slightly smaller bit than your screws, and not quite as far down as your screws will go.

frameringplaced

Attach your hangers. Careful not to strip the screws.

framesdringstwo

And that’s basically it. Now you can hang these on ribbons and hooks, or screws, whatever you like. I will probably hang two on the wall and put one on an easel.

framependant

I like the idea of using S-hooks for hanging things, but for my little pendants of glass, that doesn’t work so well. So they’re sideways S-hooks that I made out of copper. I’m still figuring out the proper hook to hook ratio but this is the general idea. People can pick out the tile they like and I’ll have an assortment of ribbons, chains and cords for them to pick from.

frameearring

It also works nicely for earrings and necklaces, though I am going to use standard S-hooks for those and the earrings will be on cards.

It’s nice to have these done, though they were the least labor intensive of our efforts. Today we also stained things!

stainedcorbels

Hey baby… nice racks!

Dstaining

We put stain on the shelving brackets and plank shelves today, and they look very nice. It’s Minwax “terracotta” and I think we’re just gonna wax these after we finish staining everything. I’m not much for polyurethane and shiny, and wax is pretty nice looking.

Captain Sexypants is left handed and I am right handed and if we stand side by side the right way when we stain boards, it is a beautiful symphony of coordination. Unlike if we stand on the wrong side, when it is a cacophany of elbows banging.

D&Rshop

We are ridiculous, but that’s okay. You know you still want to come see us when Honey&Ollie opens up at Crafted on June 29th!

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but first… what do I hear? Is it a rotary sander?

sandingbanditodoor

Why yes! Yes I think it IS a rotary sander… which means… it must be… THE SANDING BANDITO!!!

Sandingbandito

Okay, it’s not really a bandit, it’s just the Captain and his rotary sander, sanding All The Things.

corbels

Remember, kids, Captain Sexypants says, “Safety first.”

So… say you want to make some hanging wall displays for your booth and you are on a budget. Say, you are not sure if you want to hang necklaces or earrings, but you want the versatility of being able to choose either. This is a handy little display (nothing original, there’s a million like ’em on Etsy) that gives you a lot of options for showing off your work.

You will need:
Frames of whatever size you want.
Garden mesh (chicken wire, it comes in different sizes/shapes).
Wire snips or some kind of cutting device.
A staple gun.
Staples.
D rings for frames
ribbon or chain for hanging.

First, the frames. Old frames, new frames, whatever. It doesn’t matter. Find something you like that matches your booth aesthetic. In my case, I’m going for “Enchanting antique shop where Fleur Delacour might shop.”

framesstack

Aaron Bros was having a sale, and I had a coupon, so I picked some new frames. I didn’t want to go matchy matchy, my shelving is fairly dark, and I wanted to lighten things up a bit so I went with light, distressed frames with a little bit of metallic sheen here and there.

1. Take off the plywood panel on the back, and then remove the glass. CAREFULLY.

Now, you want to get some garden fencing or chicken wire. I’m not sure what they call it, it’s wire mesh and you get it at Home Depot or any hardware store that carries fencing.

framessnips

2. Cut it. With the snips. I double dog dare you not to swear. Okay actually first you want to figure out how big to make the mesh. I used the frame as a reference, figuring I’d want about 1/2 – 3/4 of an inch of mesh overlaying the hole, on the back of the frame.

framesmesh

No really. NO swearing.

Okay fine, you can swear. I did. Repeatedly. Just persevere and eventually you will get through it. Or, in my case, Captain Sexypants will figure out a faster and more efficient way to do it that doesn’t involve scratches, puncture wounds and naughty words.

3. You want to put the mesh on the back of the frame, lining up the horizontal wire with the line of the frame. You don’t want it crooked. You also want it fairly tight.

4. use your staple gun to attach the mesh securely.

framesdone

it is very simple.

Next post will show you how the back side of the frame looks and how we attached the staples, how to attach the D ring hangers so you can suspend it from a hook or a bar (you might also just want to put it on an easel on a shelf), some cute and decorative S hook options and pendant hangers, plus some ways you might display things on your new frames. Here you go, Part Two.

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In Progress Honey&Ollie sign

Holly at Raven and Rose Arts just shot me over this picture of my shop poster, in progress.

The Honey&Ollie girl! Who is secretly, in my heart, a grown up version of Ozma of Oz. Not to mention, a nod to my amazing Uncle Don, who helped inundate me with fairy tales, elves and magic at an early age and who had a lot to do with my love of Art Nouveau as well.

You will have to come down to Crafted at the Port when we open, and see her!

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Displays in progress

The Infamous Captain Sexypants (who is now “The Infamous Captain Sexypants” instead of just plain “Captain Sexypants” for the purposes of this blog post because at Uptown Village Market people he’d never met before kept coming up to him and going, “Hey you are Captain Sexypants, aren’t you?” and calling out across the crowded fair, “HEY CAPTAIN SEXYPANTS! HEY!” and other such things, and then I had some splainin’ to do) is VERY handy with wood. And, as you can see, he also knows his way around a sander and a table saw.

These were a splintery 10′ 4×4 post, some banister caps and a board, just a few short days ago. Now they are satiny, deluxe, almost-finished jewelry displays of pure AWESOME.

Once they are all glued and screwed together, I’ll be priming, painting and distressing them. An undercoat of brown and an overlay of cream (probably with a crackle finish and some dry brushed gold), then we’ll be adding cup hooks. They’ll primarily be used to display my handspun yarns and handknit caps, but the shorter ones will do nicely to show off my stitch markers and maybe also some earring cards.

There will be a tutorial.

Tomorrow, I will be turning a set of 3 vintage looking frames into earring hangers and a necklace display using florist’s wire, a staple gun, cork and aida cloth.

And hey guess what? Probably there will be a tutorial.

In the very least, there will be pictures.

Thursday, we are going to go to Home Depot for boards and probably we will also stand around hemming and hawing about paint chips and flooring samples and pulling our hair while we look agonized at the million. freaking. choices.

Oh wait, that’s just me.

The Infamous Captain Sexypants will probably just look cool and calm and collected and point out the perfect shade of Martha Stewart fancy texture-able flat latex.

Because he’s good like that.

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