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It’s How To Monday, so in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, or beauty in general, why not make your own flower arrangements instead of buying them for usually double the price from large retail flower shops. If you live in the Los Angeles area (although I’m sure your city or town has something similar) there’s a flower mart in Downtown Los Angeles open to the public where you can get a wide variety of flowers at wholesale prices so you can even afford to make a large vase!

This would be a great addition to your home, and also makes a great gift. Here’s a video I found on Video Jug on how to make a simple, but elegant floral arrangement.

 http://www.videojug.com/film/how-to-arrange-flowers-for-a-small-vase

Just as I was beginning to loose hope of ever selling an item, I got an email yesterday from another etsy member saying that she ordered a Scrap Journal from the store and just wanted to make sure that I send it to the right address.

I blinked several times, rubbed my eyes, and then starred blankly at the computer screen. Could this be true? Now the order only totaled $3.25 but I don’t think it was the fact that I was going to be $3.25 richer, it was the fact that someone had noticed and felt confident enough in my work to spend their $3.25 at my store. What a day!

I then rushed out to the post office that just opened near the house, the one right across the street from the classy strip club and was greeted by the nicest post office worker I’ve ever encountered. She even offered me pen when I was on the other side of the office filling out the mailer. How attentive.

Yesterday might have been ripped out of the pages of the twilight zone but, I sure enjoyed it. Even if it wasn’t real. (Yes, I had many, many dreams about having already sold an item, I know. It’s sad.) So I can now include myself in the masses that have already sold an item on etsy. yay!

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So long scrap journal! We’ll miss you, but we’d much rather have you with a new owner. =]

I’ve been trying to think of new ways that we can all learn together, push our creativity a little further, and share our projects.  So Sergio and I came up with the “Bringing Domestic Back Challenge.”

It will be a weekly challenge for everyone to try and incorporate a more handmade and personal aspect into your lives.  We will all be challenged to use a different ingredient, try a new craft project, meet new people, etc.  Also, everyone will be invited to host a different week so they can create their own challenge for everyone. 

Participants will not be expected to join the challenge every week (I know everyone is very busy), but those who participate frequently will be rewarded with a small prize.  (For the first person to participate in 3 challenges in a row will recieve a MyWoodenRobot gift package)

Let me know if you’d like to join.  Our first challenge will begin Friday, February 1.  Hope to see you there!

 Just one catch:  Participants need to join Apt 310G if they’re hoping to win prizes (it just takes 1 minute to sign up (it’s 100% FREE too!) and if you’re already going to do the challenges, then a prize for doing it won’t hurt will it?).

I always wanted to be more active in the crafting community or at least an admirer.  So it dawned on me that the next step I needed to take was to attend craft fairs, maybe get to know the vendors, the attendees, or coordinators.  And aside from getting to know the crafters better, I’ll also be more involved in the SoCal community. 

So I found this great site that shows all the craft fairs, shows, and festivals, coming up in the next year.  Unfortunately, craftmasternews.com it’s only for the west half of the country but smartfrogs.com will give you a list of fairs for the east half.

I feel so left out of the loop.  Just in January alone, there was a list of over 20 shows that I missed out on but I won’t let that happen anymore!  I’m so excited to attend the Chinese New Year festivals in Los Angeles in just a little over a week.  I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures!

Just as I was about to get off the computer, I of course just had to find something else to do on the interweb.  I now know how Meredith can call herself an internet addict.

So of course, I landed on etsy and I came across RunnerBean’s shop and I’m so glad I did.  Though small (compared to other users that have what seems like infinite products) with only 18 items listed, it was a very fulfilling browse.  You see there, I came upon these wonderful statue type items that runnerbean calls paper gurumi which she explains came out of an appreciation for the growing craft of amigurumi (crocheted toys done in a continuous stitch made in a round) but didn’t they was gifted with the dull ook.  So, they ventured into the paper version of amigurumi and came up with these:

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Sol  $35

 

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Lark  $30

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Bookworks by Sue Doggett $18.45 from Amazon

I just recieved this book in the mail yesterday and I love it!  Normally, I’d only expect to get about 1 maybe 2 crafts that I love in a book and for about $15 (if I do the craft more than once) I’m happy.  But I can definitely see myself doing many if not all projects from this book.

Up until now, I’ve been doing book binding from what I figured out myself and what I saw in a few instructional videos here and there.  After reading a through half of the book last night, I’m now almost confident in my bookbinding knowledge since I now understand a lot of the terms and lingo.

And probably the best part (if we’re excluding the information you’ll learn) is that the projects don’t look tacky or dated.  The designs are classic or modern and if you don’t like the way one book looks, you don’t feel like you’re limited to making it look exactly the same way they did it.  Lots of options here.

I definitely recommend this book if you’re even just the least bit interested in bookbinding. 

Paper Cuts Studio has been such a big inspiration for me.  And after that wonderful interview with the lovely Feliza-Rose from Paper Cuts Studio, I decided to take my designs, book binding, and well everything to the next level.  A few of her journals feature linocut prints (like Robot Love) and after she explained how approachable this craft was, I decided to give it a try myself.

So without further adu, here are my first linocuts.  After I did the first one (the mushroom design at the bottom) I couldn’t stop!  But it was getting late and I needed to go home (I did the work at Sergio’s house a.k.a. the Wooden Robot creative headquarters). 

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Clock wise from top left:  Cartoon Broccoli, cupcake, ice cream, birdie, Phat Monkey, mushrooms, lanterns.
I think this may be a new addition to my top 5 hobbies (don’t ask me what the other 4 are, there’s like a 20 way tie).  It’s fun, easy, fast (depending on your design) and best of all:  cheap!  I got a sheet of linoleum for about $6 and these cuts only took half of that sheet.

So once in a while, I decide to keep my promises, especially since it’s for the good of My Wooden Robot.  =]  So today, I got off my lazy butt and took some pictures of my new card designs.  We uploaded 5 today but I have a lot more coming that we’ll be posting everyday (at least one new card a day).  I’m so excited because I actually built the macro photo studio (thanks Paper Cuts Studio!) and my pictures came out so much better.  Now I can spend my time making more designs than struggling with my poor lighting situations or weather that’s not cooperating.

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So check out my etsy store to see the new designs (as well as the ones that have been up).

I’m in desperate need of a new wallet (not that I have money now, but it doesn’t hurt to find a cute home for it ahead of time!).  So I decided to do a little bit of searching before I make the purchase.  Any favorites?

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The Bifold Snap Wallet ($26) from Blissful is perfect for the cutesy middle school girl in me. 

 

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But I do have to admit that this Leather Owl Wristlet ($45) from bonspielcreation is hypnotizing…

 

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And this Forest Flap Wallet ($35) by pego is a style I’m more likely to lean toward.  It’s simple, and has lots of functional pockets and flaps to keep my all important Borders or CVS cards in.  =]

The day will be over in 8 minutes and I didn’t make my 2nd sock monkey.  Can you blame me?  I’m afraid it won’t come out as cute as my first!  Plus, it’s not like I didn’t design like 20 cards today with Sergio…