YAY Instagram….

Boo for forgetting to actually have the earrings that we posted on IG available on Etsy! Well, they are now! ūüôā

At the end of the year, (and show season) not only are we¬†pretty much sold out of everything, but we¬†find that we’ve¬†gotten a little¬†forgetful. All that being said, this is probably one of our¬†favorite times of year. Not because it’s Christmas or the holidays or anything of that.¬†It’s because it’s the only time of year that I can take a whole day to develop a new design or piece and not feel rushed.

I say all of this like I don’t have ANY deadlines coming up. I actually do.

We have quite a few upcoming events:

On beer and bottle caps

I’m just now getting my head together.

Having just completed Tucson Comic Con, (which was tons of fun), getting over a spectacular case of Con crud, swearing off FB since November 8th, (I could no longer stomach the train wreck), and watching the unthinkable happen during an election I thought would be uplifting to a lot of people, I have finally gotten it together enough to write something.

I realized over the past week, after going though several boxes of Kleenex, that after I made my voice heard, via voting, there is nothing I can do about the outcome, except but on my Big Girl Panties and get on with life. For me that means doing R&D for new pieces, getting our business running more or less efficiently, ¬†booking more and different shows, and making our art available to more people. That means media. Which is hard for someone who is as big of a camera-phobe as I am. I don’t even like having my hands in photographs.

This coming year we are going to try some new things here at WGB. We are going to try doing short videos, of us making what we make. We’ll see how that works out. In the mean time, we will of course be posting photos of all the cool stuff we make including photos-as-we-go.

We had an interesting interaction at the last Con we did. An attendee¬†was convinced that we didn’t make our own stuff. One of the things he was stuck on was the amount of bottle cap jewelry we have. He thought we bought finished pieces from China and resold it as our work. We had to explain that between our friends and ourselves, we tend to drink quite a lot of beer. Which means we have access to potentially hundreds of usable bottle caps per month.¬†The next question from him was “Well, why are the black, pink, and blue?” Well, we paint them first. He couldn’t wrap his head around that. I still have some unpainted bottle cap pins from the first round I made. After I made those, I realized that I liked the look of them better if they were painted first. So, that’s what we do now.

We’re always trying new things and improving on old techniques once we find a better way. Now, that’s not to say that when I finally make my Fallout Armored Bottle Cap Jacket, that the caps will be painted, (they won’t be). That is something that I’d like the logos to show….for authenticity. I mean, after the apocalypse, there probably won’t be much time to paint your caps before you turn them into armor, now will there?

All of that aside, the last part of 2016 and the first several months of 2017 are shaping up to be AWESOME! We are busy getting our feet wet participating in shows that aren’t Comic Cons.

First up, we will be in Hello Handmade Market in Phoenix, December 3rd & 4th, at the Phoenix Convention Center, South Building.

Then it’s off to Yuma, AZ for the Two Rivers Renaissance Faire and Pirate and Faerie Festival, February 3rd, 4th, and 5th, ¬†because, you know, everything is better with PIRATES! I’m dragging my alter ego out for this one: a retired Tiefling pirate turned merchant by the name of Azreal Thunderfoot. Known throughout the realms for her hasty temper but big heart.

For March we have Wild Wild West Con! March 3rd-5th, 2017. The largest Steampunk Convention in the Southwest!

In April we’ll be at the Pima County Fair, the 20th-30th! This will be our first long run show. Can’t wait!

During May we’ll be participating in the Phoenix Comicon! May 25th-28th. It’s during Memorial Day Weekend this year! It’s going to be a BLAST!

We’ve got lots of other irons in the fire too! Looking at WesterCon 70, the Tucson Spring Street Fair, and street festivals in SoCal! We’re so excited and we’ll keep you posted!

We also are shining up our website! Going to have lots of cool new stuff to show and tell you about!

Rocks and rolling ankles

I have been out of commission for the last week.  I threw my back out when I rolled my ankle on a rock during my morning walk. I am not the most graceful at the best of times, and I probably should just wear a helmet all the time.

That postponed a lot of plans I had. I was kind of angry about it until it dawned on me that I wasn’t panicking. I have a list of what I have to get accomplished for the opening of my gallery (that is happening on Monday, 7/18!), along with having everything made (kind of behind on that what with the whole being flat on my back thing), inventoried, packed, and ready to go for our next convention, SuperToyCon. That’s the first weekend in August.

The first few days, I couldn’t hardly move. And let me just say that I’m cranky when I am prevented from doing what I want to do. So what did I do while listening to Dune play in the background? I started to set up my store on my website.

I really haven’t been happy with Etsy for a while. I feel I don’t have much control over what I can do with my shop. I like to be able to tweak things. The fact that I can’t seem to link to my blog annoys the hell out of me.¬†That coupled with the fact that unless you pay them or watch your shop like a hawk, your creations get lost in the “stuff and shosh”*.

Jonathan helped me start a shop on my blog a long time ago, then we tried Etsy. Well, we’re revisiting hosting our own store on our own website. He gave me advice and pointed me in the right direction and I stared teaching myself how to use the WooCommerce software.

Much swearing, tears, running of cats, and a few “Eureka!” moments later, I found my groove and proceeded to totally rock the building of my happy shop.

I (and my shop) will be happier when I have more products listed. I think I’ve done well so far. My goal is to upload at least one item per day. That involves taking photos, quick editing said photos, writing a bit of code, writing (at least somewhat) interesting product descriptions, and using one of the least intuitive pieces of software that I’ve come across in a long time. Having said that, once you figure it out, you think: “Of course you do it like that! It makes sense now!” You find your groove and move on.

 

*Thanks Cathy for the turn of phrase! :^*