Monday, April 30, 2012

New Stores!

In a previous post I spoke about successes. Well I believe in order to be truly successful in this industry of toy manufacturing here in Montreal, I have to get my product in as many stores as possible!

I've recently brought some new products to the new store Mixx Authentik. Nearby there's Perfide. They carry my little furry guys. Both are in Montreal on Notre Dame street, in the St-Henri neighborhood.

In a few weeks there will be a boutique/art gallery in Saint-Faustin-Lac-Carré, QC called Maison des Arts et de la Culture Saint-Faustin. It's near Mont Tremblant in the northern part of Québec called Les Laurentides.  I've never been there, and I'll get to see it in May. It should be nice.

Just yesterday I started up a new web shop with Down That Little Lane company in Australia. It's another opportunity to sell. Hopefully it'll be a good one. ;)

I don't know how this will turn out, but when I did a search for plush toys, there was only 1 page, so it's good there's very little competition.

My next task is to get more physical stores here in town. That's the most imperative thing. I missed March, when stores were stocking up after Christmas, and now I'm stuck in a month where everyone is full. What is a girl to do?? The government program I'm in has me on a 3 month 'probation' of sorts. I have to prove my business is viable!! Talk about stress. I'm not a fan of working for people. I have the sort of personality that works best alone. To be honest, I've been working for myself for 16 months, and I quite enjoy it. It'd be really hard to have to go back to that full time. Honestly, I may have to (even if I do get triple the amount of stores to take on my products). The fact is, stores don't always sell regularly, and they certainly don't pay regularly either. To support myself, I have to make at least a minimum of $1800. Since stores usually take 50% commission, that means I have to sell twice as much as I would if I were selling them direct in a fair.  Lots of stress.

Well that's it for today! I have lots of tagging to do for the Salon de Verdun coming up this weekend. If you're in Montreal, stop by! The event is here:

Happy Monday!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Little Dragon Sketch

As you all have noticed, my blogging has become more sporadic. I've sort of run out of stuff to talk about! Haha  I really need to sit down and set up a blogging schedule. I'll have more business stuff to talk about once I get into more depth of my sales courses.

For now, let's look at a cute drawing I did on my iPad last night!

This cute dragon was drawn completely on my iPad, all with the tip of my index finger. I think I erased and re-drew his left eye 5 times! I couldn't see what I was doing! I did order some styluses, and I can't wait to start using them! I have a few other sketching apps that would be more fun with a stylus.

Have a great week!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Featured Store: Mixx Authentik

Today I'm going to be doing a little feature blog post on a brand new store in Montreal, in the St-Henri neighborhood that's carrying my monsters! Yay! :-D

The owner, and friend, of Mixx Authentik is Valérie Lalonde, and she is a brand new entrepreneur. 

Valérie posing with the Encyclopedia of the Canadian Woman (in French).
She attended SAJE (not with me, but in a different course time), learning about being a new entrepreneur, whilst writing her business plan.

She just opened shop on April 20th, and in one week has already seen some really great sales! Her store is mostly vintage furniture, dishes, and some clothing, and she's giving a lot of artists opportunities to sell their products in her store. 

Another new entrepreneur, and friend of mine, Barbara Coulombel has some of her beautiful hand painted glasses, plates, and butter dishes. Here's a great shot of her nice display: 

Rocky B Creations

You can visit Barbara on Facebook, Twitter, or Etsy. She also loves to do custom work, and ships internationally.

So today on April 27th, I stopped by to drop off some really funky, kitschy pillows with babies printed on them wearing union jack diapers. I'm pretty sure this fabric was vintage when I got it in trade, and realized it'd make some really cool pillows.

This couch is absolutely lovely, and comes with a matching chair!! She's also carrying my kitsch baby pillows!
These baby photos really seem to fit well with this couch! I love it! I also brought in my only remaining monster pillow, Snowy. He's got his spot in the window display on a really cool, vintage aqua & white poof. While I was talking to Valérie, someone came in asking about that pillow! How awesome is that!?

Snowy, a Curious Little Bird monster, gets a view of the world on this funky poof.
Let's take a tour of the rest of the store, shall we??

Great cubed shelf holding a bunch of vintage hats
In the back there's some really great mosaic art. Even that wooden box under the no parking sign is cool.

Here you've got your bar needs, a typwriter, olympic seats, suitcases, and magazines.

A very cool toaster oven, dinner table and chairs, display chest. That poster on the wall rocks!

Old timey food cupboard, and an even older (and working!!) fridge!

These screens (there are 2 in the store) are very cool. This is a better shot of the couch and matching chair. Don't you just love those crazy lamps!?

That chest in the bottom right is very large!

There's the 2nd screen, and more furniture.

A very old Parker Brothers game of 'Bargain Car User', Playboys from the 1970's. Don't you just love the cover with the pinup illustration and butterfly wings!? I do!!

Vintage makeup table, some handmade bags, and clothing (either handmade, or vintage - Not sure). There's also jewelry, but it's all handmade by local artisans in Montreal.

Front window display: Left side

Front window display: Right side
Well there you have it! I hope you can take time to go and visit Valérie's store.  Soon I'll be bringing in more monster pillows, so you can be a fan of my Facebook page to stay apprised of any new developments.

Here is the store info for Mixx Authentik:

4005 Notre-Dame Ouest, St-henri, Montréal, Québec, Montreal, QC

Tue - Wed:11:00 am-4:00 pm
Thu - Fri:11:00 am-7:00 pm
Sat:11:00 am-4:00 pm
Sun:11:00 am-2:00 pm

Phone:1 438.380.8620

If you're going by metro, it's across the street from Place St-Henri metro, or 8 minutes walk from Lionel-Groulx metro. Parking is available on the street (or possibly by the metro, but it could be paid parking).

Have fun, and happy shopping!!

P.S.: If you happen to buy a handmade item, please post a photo on that person's Facebook page! We love to see happy customers!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

My Life As A Plush Toy Designer

I am, as you all know, a new plush maker in this world. I started making monsters about a year ago. I started making monsters originally for a mail out project to get a job as a graphic designer back in 2008, and in January 2009 I put that project aside. I picked it up again in 2011, and developed my style even further.

One year later, here I am! I've got an established line of furry monsters that tickle your fancy, and appeal to all ages. I knew going into this new business that it'd be hard. I was unemployed and on employment insurance when I started making monsters. I had lost my job in January 2011, and couldn't find work as a graphic designer. I had started selling my monsters on Etsy in May on a suggestion by my cousin, Adrinna.

My first craft sale was at Old Skool Fairs in 2011.

I've come such a long way from June 2011 when this photo was taken! I've seen a lot of successes happen to me since then. I've been featured on many blogs:

The Steady Hand:

Nobody Puts Sarah In The Corner:

I love the Yeti:

I only like monsters:

Monster Create and Make

Monsters International: (these guys did an art gallery of monsters on paper, and I showcased my monsters
for a week).

The House of Hearts:

Ooh So Cute:

I've also been featured in a magazine!

Go Green Kids & Parents My feature is on page 35!

But what I want is more success! <laughing>

I mean I want to show up on a news spot, like Belua Designs

She made it on the news in November of 2011, and then when it was over, she couldn't keep her store stocked!! Oh how I wish that was me!! To be fair, she's been making her sock monsters for 4 years before she made it on TV. I know it'll happen to me. My monsters are awesomely cute, and will for sure make it somewhere high profile sooner or later. :)

Another artist that I aspire to be as famous as is Amanda Louise Spayd. Her stuff is amazing!

The resin faces are amazing! I've always (and still want to know how she does her eyes). I won't talk about that, cause I could ramble on forever!

I know Amanda's work is more 'art doll' quality. She usually does one at a time, and will rarely do batches of 20-50 dolls to sell. I would love to have her acclaim in the doll industry, but my monsters aren't artsy. I could easily start making artsy dolls, but that would require 1 to 2 days for sketching and designing of a model, and then a few more days to actually construct it. But that sort of art is not a huge money maker. Maybe in the long run, like 5 years later? Perhaps I will construct some artsy dolls once in a while. I aspire to be invited to showcase my dolls in art galleries like Amanda. I follow her on Facebook, and she's recently had a show in Japan. Can that be me? Do you see my monsters being so popular that a curator will want to showcase my stuff?? I hope so!!

I know it's wrong to be jealous, but it's like fuel to a fire for me! It aspires me to work harder, be better, find more ways to be seen out there. I know a curator here in Montreal, and perhaps I can contact her and bring up the idea of doing a plush show in an art gallery. All the local artists can attend, and get some badly needed recognition!

I know the future is bright for me. With all the work and effort I've been putting into this business, only good can come out of it.

Here's where I am now at craft fair events:

Yes Art Expo - Old Montreal - December 2011
 If only I could have a wall like this for every event, I could always have amazing displays.

I'll keep you all updated of my future successes! Have a great Sunday!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Random Tidbit: Veggies

Happy Friday everyone!

So this week's random tidbit is about vegetable safety. You're thinking, what? Vegetable safety? Am I kidding?? Yes! Hahaha

Actually, today I'm going to talk about how to keep some of your veggies fresh in the fridge. I know a lot of people say it's best to keep them outside of the fridge, but if you're like me and you buy 2 weeks worth of veggies in one shot, then you need to know how to keep those crisp until the last little bit is eaten.

Broccoli: I remove the elastics, and take those empty yogurt containers (the big ones) and stuff as many broccoli as I can fit. Then I fill it up with water until the stalks are well covered. I would check the water level every 3 days or so. If the water looks mucky, replace it with fresh water. With this method, I've kept broccoli crisp for weeks. Another thing... Those stalks that you might be tempted to throw out... DON'T!!! Trim all the hard stuff on the outside of the stalk with a potato peeler, and then slice the stalk all the way up. It's so good and full of water! Almost like celery or raw asparagus. Yum!

Asparagus: Take your bunch(es) of asparagus and remove the elastic. Then put them all in another big yogurt container, and fill it up with water. Keep an eye on the water level, and replace the water in the tub every few days as it will get mucky fast. Your asparagus will stay crispy for 1-2 weeks.

Potatoes & Apples: This edible geography link -->  talks about putting apples on top of potatoes to keep the potatoes fresher longer, and you can do that in the cupboard. I used apples that were sort of wrinkly a bit. The apples have been in the cupboard (all wrinkly) for over 2 months now and haven't really rotted, and the potatoes seem to be staying crisper longer.

Note: Don't ever put your green onions standing up in water. It just makes the stalks go all limp and gross about 1 hour after you do it. If you want to keep them fresh, put them in some sand, standing up.

Well that's it for this week's random tidbit on veggies. I hope you'll be able to enjoy your veggies! :)

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

New Baby In The Family

My brand new, 1 month old Singer machine break down on me last night after I was sewing up something a little thicker than usual (bad me). I took it into the shop, and on a suggestion of a Facebook fan, I decided to stop by the local thrift store to check out this sewing machine she had mentioned this morning.  Upon getting to the store, I didn't see it right away, but when I was walking up the ramp to the back I spotted it! From my standing point, it was that ugly military green, and I *knew* it was going to be a gem!

I popped off the hard case top, and I squealed (internally) with joy!! It was a vintage Kenmore sewing machine! I have no clue how old it is, I'm guessing it was made in the 70's or 80's. Ok, update! I just downloaded this sewing machine ID PDF file, and after locating the serial number, this machine was made in 1972-73.

I am now overjoyed! This beast is 40 years old! Woooo!! I threaded it and it works so well! It took me a few minutes to figure it out. Haha I even had to resort to a few YouTube videos (just in case).

So let's check out some great photos!

Check it out! You can even see the motor and the gear thingy that will power the arm! So cool!

This machine was so heavy! Even though I didn't live very far, I took the metro home. One whole stop. LOL  Even the 4 block walk back home was enough to have me sweating with exertion! I've been home for 40 minutes now, and my arms still hurt!

Moral of the story? Keep these! They're old, but they will never break so easily.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

1 Year Blog Anniversary

I'm a little late in celebrating this, but it's been 1 year since I started this blog, and that I wanted to start my own business! But today's post is all about my blog.

My blog birthday is February 11, 2011. So I'm a few months behind, but that's okay!

I have learned a lot in the past year blogging. My most important lesson to date is that you can't just blog haphazardly! I was doing that for a whole year, and during the past 4 months nothing new was being created, and I didn't have anything to talk about. I've learned that it's important (for those who blog for their business anyway) to have a schedule and know what you're going to blog about in advance (usually a month in advance).

The other lesson I've learned is that in order to get followers, one most visit and comment on other people's blogs. I tend to live in a world that's all about me, and I have to constantly remind myself to go out and read and comment on other blogs. If only I could get the blog follower numbers as high as my Facebook and Twitter followers. If I did that, I'd be such a happy camper!

I love to learn, and I know that this next year will yield a lot of new lessons.


Sunshine and Blogger Appreciation Awards!

Thanks to Jayme of RAWR Creatures I was nominated for both the Sunshine Award and the Blogger Appreciation award. I'm so touched and happy to be nominated by such a lovely lady, and a fellow Canadian like myself!
The rules of accepting the awards is that I have to answer some questions.


Here are my answers to the Sunshine Award questions:

FAVOURITE COLOUR – Purple! I absolutely LOVE this colour. I make so many of my monsters in this colour, it's hard for me to remember that not everyone is a fan of purple.
ANIMAL – Kitties! OMG how I love kitties.
NON-ALCOHOLIC DRINK – Second Cup's Chai Latte. Like a liquid cookie in a cup. Mmmmmm
FACEBOOK or TWITTER – I like Facebook. Twitter is fun, cause of the 140 character challenge. Some days I think about posting in the format of a haiku.
GETTING or GIVING PRESENTS – I love to receive, but giving one of my handmade creations to someone and watching them unwrap it is the best.
FLOWER – Gerberas.
PATTERN – Rainbow stripes. I'm super addicted to this pattern right now. I love colourful fabrics!
PASSION – Um, I love nature. :)
NUMBER – 4. I'm a little OCD. Every time I kiss my kitties, it's always 4 kisses. Weird, I know! :)

The rules of the Blogger Appreciation Award:
1. Thank the person who gave you the award with their blog link on your post.
2. Answer the following 4 questions.
3. Award the Blogger Appreciation Award to as many readers/commentators/supporters/followers as you’d like.
4. Let the blogger know you've just awarded them (by leaving a comment, a tweet, an email, etc.)

The questions:
1. How long have you been blogging?
2. What are 1-2 reasons why you started blogging.
3. What types of blogs do you like to follow/read?
4. What is 1 thing you would like to improve on as a blogger/on your blog?

Here are my answers to the Blogger Appreciation questions:

1. How long have you been blogging?
I started blogging in 2011 when I decided to start my own monster making business. So about a year now.

2. What are 1-2 reasons why you started blogging.
I wanted to be able to share my creations with people, give them a chance to connect with me in other ways. I also find blogging a good way to expand my circle, and get more traffic to my online store (which is currently the hardest thing right now). As an entrepreneur, blogging is an essential part of my business.

3. What types of blogs do you like to follow/read?
I like to read fun blogs with lots of pretty pictures! Hahaha No, seriously I like blogs of lovely crafty ladies who do really cool stuff, and sometimes I'll come across a DIY blog.

4. What is 1 thing you would like to improve on as a blogger/on your blog?
Right now the biggest thing I'm working on is a blog schedule. I know that having a pre-planned schedule is important as a business person. It gives the readers something to look forward to (if there's a specific topic covered every week). Plus, I'll be able to blog more regularly that I have been currently. 


I'd like to elect these lovely ladies for both awards!!! 

Ginger Mandy 

Pouring My Hart Out

Rengawk's Ramblings

Congratulations!!! :D

Sunday, April 15, 2012

April Giveaway

That's right folks, it's my April Giveaway. This time I'm doing something slightly different, and hosting the giveaway on Facebook.

To participate, follow this link CLICK ME TO ENTER GIVEAWAY and you can enter in your comment in the comment box. Please make sure to read all the rules. :)

A lucky winner will be drawn (on Facebook) on April 30th at 12 am EST.

Good luck!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

26 Random Facts About Me

Julie from Gleeful Things started this "25 Random Facts About Me" on her blog, and I thought it'd be a great way for all my fans and followers to learn more about the woman behind the monsters! I'll be telling you about things I like, or dislike, my quirks, or general information you don't get from bloggers.

Let's begin!

1.  I totally believe in ghosts. When I lived in Edmonton a ghost would move things directly in front of my face in broad daylight. Nothing scary. Now living in Montreal, I'm still living with ghosts. Whether it's the same one, or a new one, I'm not sure.

2. I have 5 tattoos. The Buddha you see on my arm, a fairy on my back, a butterfly with stuff on my lower back (or as some like to call it, my tramp stamp), a butterfly on my abdomen (free birthday tattoo from my tattoo artist), and another fairy wearing a loin cloth on my right ankle. I wanted a 6th tattoo on my left arm on my wrist of some Thai happiness prayer and a lotus flower, but the only person I'd want tattooing that lives in Edmonton. Plus, they're really expensive now, and I just don't have that kind of money.

3. I love to stop and talk to animals when I see them walking down the street. I don't tend to say hi to the person walking them either. Hahaha

4. My 2 cats are the loves of my life. They're both 13 years old, and I fear the day when they die. I will be all alone, and very, very sad, and will need some emotional support to get through the rough times. Just thinking about it makes me all choked up. Moving on.

5. If I can't find a really good book, I'll reread a novel I previously read that I loved. Books I've reread: Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series. I've read this series 4 times, and it never gets boring. Harry Potter and this one novel I recommend to all is Phantom by Susan Kay.

6. I only drink coffee between 8 am and 12 pm, and I can only handle 2 cups during that time. If I drink more I get a little crazed with all the caffeine. Coffee in the afternoon gives me a headache.

7. My favorite colour is purple. I just love it.

I'm playing an odd square game in Tokyo, and losing at it!

8. I went to university right out of high school, and studied Biochemistry. It wasn't what I wanted to study, and after 2 years I got kicked out because my GPA dropped to 1.25. That translates to a Grade of D, and that's no good. The dean wrote in my letter that I need to learn responsibility and work for a few years. This is why I'm a firm believer that going to college/uni right after high school is a bad idea. Not only am I $25,000 in debt because of all my schooling, but I wasted 2 years doing something I didn't even want to learn. I originally wanted to do microbiology and work in a level 5 lab studying the ebola virus! That's a result of many years of reading Michael Crichton novels. :D

9. I lived with my dad and brother on military bases until I was 16 years old. We traveled to a new base every 2 years, and I never kept the friends I made when I left for a new home. I think all that moving around has made my life a little weird.

10. I traveled across Canada 5 times to move. Edmonton, AB to Mont-Apica, QC  then  Mont-Apica, QC to Penhold, AB then Edmonton, AB to Toronto, ON then Brampton, ON to Edmonton, AB and finally Edmonton, AB to Montreal, QC.  Those are not all the cities I've lived in, but the cities I moved to and from going across the country.

11. There are things about my personality that I dislike and wish I could change by just snapping my fingers. Unfortunately, I have to settle by making painstakingly slow changes over time. I have to be careful how I act around people. I wish I could be 100% myself, but I can't. This aspect of me is the hardest part of being me.

12. I love to laugh so hard that nothing comes out. Those are silent laughs, and they're the best!

13. I just waxed my upper lip because the hairs were getting dark enough to look like a tiny mustache. HAHA Now the skin on my upper lip feels weird!

14. I will always prefer a real book over an e-reader. I like how books feel, the paper, the written word, the pictures on the covers. E-readers can be good, but for me a physical book will always be my book of choice. I hope bookstores stick around forever, or else I'll become a book collector.

15. I'm a FRIENDS addict. I love that show! I've seen the entire series about 8 times through, and I never tire of it. My least favorite episodes are the ones when Ross gets jealous of Mark, and him and Rachel 'take a break', and my favorite character is Phoebe because she's so out there.

16. I get nervous before every event/craft fair. Even though I'm a people person, it's always a little nerve-wracking.

17.  I never celebrate Halloween, and I've never had an Easter dinner with my immediate family. Since my parents divorce when I was 7, I've never lived in the same city let alone same province as my mom, dad and brother. Being alone has always been part of my life. I do try to spend Christmas with someone.

18. I prefer to write notes on my hand than on a piece of paper. I have a tendency of losing paper, but I'll never lose my hand. :)

Me and the owner of a cute Japanese ryokan in Kyoto. My room was ¥20,000 which is about $200 for 1 night.

19. I hate the colour orange. I once painted a fish on canvas. The main colours were green and orange. Once it was finished I couldn't look at it because of the orange.

20. I love to play in the park for kids. I used to love the swings, but now they make me nauseous.  If there are no children I'll play. I especially like those little cups you sit in and they turn at an odd angle. They look harmless, but they can go really fast!

21. I have 3 x 60 liter buckets of shoes, and I only wear 2% of those shoes the rest of the time. I should really just get rid of them, but I never know when I'll need a pair of boots or high heels for a dressy event.

22. I went to Japan for a 2 week traveling vacation, and I did it all by myself. While I was madly saving every dollar I didn't spend on food or bills, I was teaching myself to read and speak Japanese. I soon gave up on the reading, and focused mostly on the speaking. I visited 6 different cities, and met tons of locals and travelers. I highly recommend Japan as it's safe, everyone is so polite, and it's just so different. The only I could do without was all the rice. Rice for every meal! Ugh.

23. I want to travel to Thailand, and Europe! The only thing holding me back is my lack of funds. I've lived alone now for 15 years, and I have to say it's super hard to save money for trips when you're the only one to pay all the bills. Yes, it would be easier to live with roommates, but....

24. I dislike living with roommates! LOL I prefer to live alone. Working hard to save money for a trip means I will cherish that trip 10 times more.

26. I think about 'the end of the world' and everything I'm doing. Sometimes I think about how we're destroying our planet with cars, oil, garbage, overpopulation. People don't recycle (like my neighbor - and that really bothers me), or the random person who takes the trash from their car and leaves it on the street. I hate that Montreal has so little garbage cans, and there is so much trash everywhere. I watch people constantly putting their garbage on the ground, not caring about it. I wish people would care more about their world. I also think about how everyone seems hell bent on having babies. Personally I don't want children, and I honestly wouldn't want to bring a child into a world right now. At this very moment I have a hard time paying for everything all by myself. I can't imagine having a kid and being in even more debt. Let alone that that kid's going to grow up in a world full of garbage, and most likely will end up in WW3. It's bleak, I know. 

26. I like to stop, close my eyes, and enjoy the fact that I'm healthy, alive, have an apt, clothes, and food. There are so many people out there who are so materialistic, who must have the latest car, or iPhone, or television. They are greedy, think only of themselves, or of the status that item will give them. They are not grateful for what they have, only thinking about what they don't have. I have never had a lot in my life, and I'm always grateful for the little (or big) things I do get. I know it's to have stuff, but I think about all the people who are too poor even to afford a decent meal, or able to go to the movies. Those living on the streets because they lost everything. Got fired, lost their wife, and got depressed. I don't know what brings people to the streets, but I can tell you that they never look happy.

I hope you enjoyed learning about me! Why not play this game and you write about 25 Random Facts about yourself! :D

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Button Brigade

I have a very small, but very awesome collection of buttons. Not the kind of buttons you put on a shirt, but that you wear like a brooch.

I have 3 that I want to share with you today.

This is my "What .... was I talking about?" button. I can't remember where I bought this, but when I saw it I knew I had to have it. This is exactly how it goes with me! I sometimes will start with an ending in mind, and then I'll start going off in different tangents and eventually lose my train of thought. It happened to me a week ago, and I still don't remember what I meant to be talking about.

 This button was given to me probably about 12 years ago by my brother. If you're not into sci-fi, it's the communicator button from Star Trek. I never wear this, but I've kept it all this time. I'm sure eventually it might be worth something. Who knows.

This is my favorite button. It's really, really old. It was made when the comic strip "Grimmy" was being published in the newspaper.  Perhaps it still is! I think this is a funny button. Sure, it's raining in the illustration on the button, but my mind goes in the gutter when I read this! hahaha  Now that I think about it, I think I've had this button for a good 15 years now. This is a collectible!

Well I hope you enjoyed my button collection :)


Saturday, April 07, 2012

Store Revamped

Well, after deciding not to switch to the Sidecar theme on Big Cartel, I spent 8 hours last night making changes to my store to pretty it up. I wanted to add my own text for my horizontal navigation bar, but it wasn't as easy as choosing a font. Nope. I had to create each individual word in Photoshop, making sure that each image was the same height, and then with some HTML code plop it in. But not only that, I wanted it to be a link AND have a rollover effect (change colour when you put your mouse over it). Thankfully I succeeded in finding some code online, and it was so easy!

I've removed the header and replaced it with something cleaner, and removed the background images. I thought it'd be nice if perhaps my store was slightly different looking than my blog, that way there's no confusion. There were also these ugly colour bars that hovered over the main pages, as well as 'highlighting' each category (on the right sidebar), so I removed those as well.

Last but not least, Big Cartel finally got pagination working on the home page, and now I can show 20 items at a time, but the option to go to the next page (right below the images). Big Cartel had 2 options before this was implemented. The 'home' page would just show featured items, and then to see everything you had to click "All" on the right hand side, but not anymore!

Here are some screen shots of the changes:

On every page I even added custom font images. Now it's all matchy matchy, and pretty!

I hope you'll stop by my store and take a look, and bookmark it for later on when you would like to buy a monster. Please remember this store, because my Etsy shop will always only have the same 11 monsters, and they'll always only be made-to-order. My store will always be full, and will be the only place I will add new items. :)


Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Strawberry Nails!

Today is my first day that I've done some funky nails, and today's nails are strawberry nails. This is a photo of my right hand. My left hand isn't nice enough to photograph (odd, since I'm right handed). :)

I bought this lime green polish just today, but it went on messy because of the thickness of the paint, as well as the really wide brush. Next time I'm going to use one of my paint brushes. The white dots are made with a manicure white pen. ;) You can buy the specific nail pen for details ($7.49 on sale), they come in colours such as white, black, light pink, hot pink, blue, purple, and silver. But when I wanted white they were out. I saw the french manicure pen for $3 less, and figured as long as I don't push too hard, I can do dots!

To replicate this effect you need:

• French Manicure White Tip Pen (I used Sally Hansen's. It was $4.99)
• Pro Nail Lacquer in raspberry
• Lime green nail polish (brand is up to you).

I'm really picky about how things look, but as this is my first time, I'm not worrying too much about the look. As long as I don't stare at it, it looks cute. :)

Happy nail painting!


Tuesday, April 03, 2012

New Domain name

Ok everyone, I didn't give anyone much time to change their links to my blog, but I did send everyone a personalized email with the new URL.

However, there is a problem. I have noticed the "Google Friend Connect" has been discontinued as of March 1st, and I cannot add it to my blog. So, in order to be a faithful follower as usual, you'll have to subscribe to RSS, which I believe will show my blog posts in a Google reader.

I've even tried to re-add the "Followers" gadget on my blog, but for some reason I'm getting this message:
"We're sorry... This gadget is configured incorrectly. Webmaster hint: Please ensure that "Friend Connect Settings - Home URL" matches the URL of this site."
I've spent almost 2 hours trying to figure this out. Because they've discontinued the Friend Connect, no matter how many times I try to connect to that website, it won't let me. It redirects me to Google Blogger help. Grrrr. It's so frustrating.

If anyone is technological savvy and can help me find another way to show my followers, I'd love to hear from you!

Blog URL is Changing Today, April 3rd

Ok valued Curious Little Bird blog readers, it's time! I know I said I'd be switching over the URL of my blog in May, but I want to promote my new store on Big Cartel now. So starting today, Tuesday, April 3rd, my blog will be Please make sure you change your Google Readers to that, and I would really love it if you could all continue to follow me with the new URL.

As of today (Tuesday), will go directly to Big Cartel. If perhaps you don't change your link on time, it's highly possible that either you'll get a "this page does not exist" message, or you will be redirected to my shop. But don't worry, because there's a link in my store to my blog.

I honestly don't know what will happen, as I've never had to change a blog because someone moved.

To recap:

New blog URL: 

Store URL:

If you have any questions, please post them! But the new URL should be in effect tomorrow which is Wednesday, April 4rd, 2012. (new information from the CIRA saying that the URL takes 24 hours to take effect on the web).

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Introducing My New April Sponsors

Happy April everyone! I'd like to introduce to you my new sponsors! Thanks so much for your support! I hope everyone will take time to get to know them, and check out their links.

Magical Daydream

Hi! I am Mariëlle, I live in the Netherlands and I love to make things, to challenge myself to be more creative, and to turn ordinary every day things into a magical world of wonder. I blog about my creative pursuits, from painting t-shirts at night to making rainbow cake, sketching, making a kite, sewing a dress, traveling, bike make-overs and many more things.

Visit her:  Blog 

Nobody Puts Sarah In The Corner!

My name is Sarah & I run the little ole' blog NobodyputsSarahintheCorner! I'm an exec assistant by day and a crafty cat lady by night; just a simple nerdy blogger in the midwest! Stop on by for my fun Outfit Posts, Kitty Corner, Awkward & Awesome Thursdays, DIY Fridays, and Things I'm loving blog posts!

Visit her:  Blog  Facebook  Twitter 

RAWR Creatures

Hi! My name is Jayme and I’m the owner of RAWR Creatures. 
By day I’m a graphic designer at an advertising agency, and in my spare time I create and hand sew as many sock Creatures as I possibly can. I live in Nova Scotia, Canada, with my little kitty Boo, and I am known to have ‘maybe’ more than a couple of collections ;) I love finding odds and ends, bits and baubles and little treasures to use in my Creature making – this helps to make each RAWR Creature unique and special.

I love getting to know other crafty types and artists from around the world, so if you stop by, please leave me a message so I can say hi back :)

Visit her:  Blog  Facebook  Shop  Twitter 

Gleeful Things

Hey there! I'm Julie & I run a blog and business called Gleeful Things. I’m 29 going on 21 or so and live near Los Angeles, CA in an area known as the South Bay, just a few minutes from the beach! I spend a lot of my free time hula hooping, going for bikes rides, and of course crocheting. My blog is proof of my obsession with crafting as I often post tutorials & crafty inspiration. I love all things handmade and have been publishing my own crochet patterns since 2006.

Visit her:  Ravelry  Hat Shop  Facebook  Twitter

Foxy Whiskers

My name is Lou and I'm from Western Australia. Cupcakes, Tea-parties, DIY's and everyday silliness is what you will find over at my little blog, Foxy Whiskers. I blog about anything and everything that pops into my head! Come over and say Hi! I love making new friends!

Visit her:  Blog  Twitter  BlogLovin' 