Thursday, November 20, 2008

Ella-Bear Bowtique is Moving!

The Marine Corps has handed down orders to my husband for a new duty station. We are excited as a family to have the opportunity to move to new and different places to experience what different parts of this great country has to offer.

I will be taking some time off from my Etsy shop and my Hyena Cart shop on America’s Handmade Homefront to prepare for our move.
That means I’ll be closing up shop briefly. Or in my case, packing up shop briefly. Both my shops on Etsy and America’s Handmade Homefront will close up on November 21st 2008.
This is no way means that I am not coming back! I just need some time to pack up our household, drive it to our new duty station and unpack it all and start to settle in to our new surroundings. We should be unpacked and settled by December 10th, just in time for America’s Handmade Homefront’s December 15th stocking. In the mean time you can check out my blog at
Ella-Bear Bowtique on Blogger for updates on our move and sneak peaks at upcoming products.

Be sure to catch America’s Handmade Homefront’s December 15th stocking for great new items and fantastic re-opening discounts from Ella-Bear Bowtique.

Thank you to all my wonderful customers for your kind words and support with my move. I’ll be very happy to be settled and to get back to work creating more fun and beautiful items for you in December!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Birthday Celebration Sale!

Today is my husband's birthday! Happy birthday honey!!!

In celebration of his brithday I am offering FREE shipping on any order of hair accessories in my Etsy shop and in my Hyena Cart shop. Just wait for a revised invoice before making payment.

Even Marines like to feel like a princess ;)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Jewelry by Jems By J and Company

The Etsy JET team was having a really fun scavenger hunt recently that I choose to partake in. It was a lot of fun and all the shops were so beautiful to look through. The JET team has enormous talent!

I was lucky enough to win one of their scavenger hunts and was contacted by Jems By J and Company who allowed me to pick any item for $20 or less in their store. How generous!

It proved hard to choose any one item. Jems By J and Company is truly talented. In the end I choose a sea glass necklace. The photo didn't do this necklace justice. It's absolutely gorgeous.

Another necklace that I thought was absolutely stunning by Jems By J and Company was this "Watching Over the Bird's Nest" necklace.

Jems By J and Company has a shop full of amazing items to choose from. The prices are fantastic, the shipping time was fast, my item was packaged immaculately and the seller was a delight.

Stop by their shop and check out all their lovely pieces. You are sure to find a favorite.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Let's Pretend!

Now that my daughter is 3 years old she is VERY into playing dress up and pretend. I found a great shop here on Etsy that has all the essentials for the girly girl that likes to play pretend.

Chic Baby Rose has a large variety of beautiful items perfect for your little princess.

This adorable pettiskirt is my favorite! It is done so gorgeously and would make any little girl feel extra special.

What little girl doesn't love to throw tea parties? The perfect toy for playing in her kitchen or throwing her friends a tea party fit for a princess are these adorable wooden cupcakes.

Lastly, what princess is completely without her crown? This will top off any pretend outfit she decides to wear.

I absolutely LOVE this shop and can't wait to snag some items for my daughter for the holidays.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Meet Flirt Buttons

I was lucky enough to be Flirt Button's 200th heart and was so generously given a free gift!

She sent me one of her delightful pocket mirrors, a fun bottle opener and cute hair pins.

The items came so quickly and were beautifully packaged. It was like Christmas morning in my mail box. It was such a lovely thing to receive in the mail and I absolutely love my items!

Here are some other great items from Flirt Buttons.

Magnet Set


Pocket Mirror

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Etsy Homefront Trunk show and FREE Give Aways!

Etsy Homefront is having a gift giving guide trunk show with 11 free giveaways during the show.

I'm giving away my "All Wrapped Up" christmas clippie.
Other prizes include a memory board, a crochet winter hat, a brooch, magnets and more!

The trunk show starts at 7pm EST in the Etsy Labs in the Tree House.
Make sure you swing in to try and nab some free stuff!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Portraits with HRphotography

Yesterday I had the privilege of meeting Haylssa of HRPhotography. I approached her a little while ago about the possibility of her doing my children's portraits. I've always admired Halyssa's photography and was so pleased that she was willing to take on my request.

I was so pleased with the entire session. Halyssa paid every attention to detail when it came to setting up beautiful backdrops for my children's autumn and holiday portraits. We were even lucky enough to change settings for my children's birthday portraits down by a lake in her area. She did wonderfully at getting beautiful shots of my children both posed and candid. I am so happy with the outcome. The photos are so beautiful and captured my children's true expressions which can sometimes be so difficult to capture on film.

Here is a photo my sister-in-law took yesterday while at the photo shoot in between locations. I've edited it but you can see what gorgeous locations we had to use courtesy of Halyssa.

I'll upload the photos from Haylssa as soon as they are ready. In the mean time I highly recommend stopping by her Etsy shop and checking our some of her fine art photography and gifts. She does amazing work, is a lovely person and is very professional. We are so pleased to have had the chance to work with her and I know you will too!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Knit and Crochet Lovelies

Some of you may or may not be aware of the fact that I can knit and crochet. I've actually been doing those two crafts longer than making hair bows. My talent in the area isn't even close to impressive but it does what I need it to do for me. Give me relaxation and something to do with my hands while watching Brothers and Sisters every Sunday night.

Here are some the knitters and crochet folks that I am impressed with and some of their fabulous creations.

This first seller I have purchased my daughter's hat from and even a few hats for my best friend's new baby but I have yet to purchase a hat for myself. It's on my Christmas list I sent my mom so hopefully she listens. TwoSeasideBabes work is flawlessly beautiful. What exactly from her shop is on my wish list. The ever popular buckle beanie she has. It's a definate favorite of mine.

The next yarn lovelie I'm going to display is another absolute favorite of mine. The knitted rug. Let me tell you, these things are not easy to find in the handmade community. The talent and time that goes into these pieces is amazing and Fafnir's rendition surely doesn't disappoint. Their entire shop is chaulk full of beautiful fiber art pieces.

Lastly I want to feature a seller that is not only on Etsy but also on Hyena Cart as a vendor on America's Handmade Homefront, HomemadeZen. I asolutely love her stuffed lovies. My favorite is this cloud brooch she has both in her Etsy shop and at America's Handmade Homefront. It is just too cute for words and would make an awsome gift for that quirky and fun person on your list this year.

I of course have LOTS of other crochet and knit items that I fancy. Other shops include Bethjt, MooseThreads, Buddlebub Creations on Inspired and CraftyAnna.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Christmas Wish List

What's on my Christmas wish list this year? A whole bunch of beautiful items from Etsy.

For my walls I would love one of these beautiful family plaques from ASimpleImpression.

And also one of these awsome magnet boards from Polarity.

For my kitchen a much needed butter keeper from JimandGina. It's semi embarassing to admit that my own butter currently resides on a plate with a bowl sitting over it.

For my bedroom I'd love this cool duvet set from NightByrd

And for my bod, this beautiful shirt from Heirloom08

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Vote for me!

The Etsy Homefront Team is having their winter challenge and I've entered a snowman themed hair bow.

Last challenge my poor headband didn't get ANY votes! I would love to get at least one on this one. So please click on over to and vote for me by leaving a comment with my shop name Ella-Bear Bowtique and my winter themed bow as your choice. You'll make my day!

And be sure to check back and see which one of the fabulous items entered wins our challenge because they'll be the first seller with their products on display for the Homefront Team exclusive gift buying guide trunk show! You won't want to miss it!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Making your handmade soap last longer.

I've recently jumped on the handmade soap band wagon and am thoroughly enjoying it. There is so much variety to choose from between Etsy and Hyena Cart. My two favorite soap makers right now are Mommy's Little Helper and Smokey Mountain Scents. I currently have pumpkin spice soap and kaldis dance coffee kitchen soap beside my kitchen sink. Kaldi's dance coffee soap gets all those nasty smells out of my skin from cooking like garlic and onion. The pumpkin spice gives my hands a wonderful scent that I associate with the current season. So it's a very nice balance.

But I noticed that they were leaving soap marks on my kitchen sink and I was frustrated with having to wipe it day after day. My solution to the problem came while I was browsing on Hyena Cart one day. I found these deluxe wood soap decks from Faith Acre Farmgoods.

Not only are they attractive and a fantastic price at only $4 with free shipping but they extend the life of your handmade soap by whisking water away from your soap so you don't get that filmy residue. I bought several and are now using them throughout my house to hold my Smokey Mountain Scents and Mommy's Little Helper's soaps and absolutely love them!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Nature Hikes

With the weather cooling down my family and I have gotten ourselves out of the house and into nature more frequently.
The Virginia summers are hot and humid. Being from Michigan, hot and humid don't sit well with us. We thrive in the cooler weather like we're having now and are taking full advantage of it by going on nature hikes as a family.

My children absolutely love the outdoors and all the dirt, bugs and animals it has to offer. My husband and I enjoy this time out not only as great time spent with our family but also to use it as an educational time to teach our kids about the various plants and creatures we encounter.

It is fun watching their excitement as they discover different flowers, trees, insects and animals. On this particular trip my children had their first encounter with small snakes. There was a small creek with a lovely bridge that crossed it and the creek was so full of life. The snakes were swimming away looking for a place to hide, frogs were hopping and turtles were sitting on logs.

Not only have our nature hikes been a great venue for our children to learn about the outdoors and be active but it has been very beneficial with wearing them out so that they sleep in for us in the morning. I've never been personally against killing two birds with one stone, that's for sure. ;)

This time of year nature hikes are also a great opportunity to explore the changing seasons. To take in all the beautiful colors and wonderful outdoor smells that autumn has to offer. Certainly an opportunity not to be passed up.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Grand Opening of America's Handmade Homefront!

Today is the grand opening of a new selling endeavor for myself and some of the other gals from the Etsy Homefront Team.
We have started a congo on Hyena Cart that consists of 10 shops entirely made up of military spouses.

We're called America's Handmade Homefront and we're offering a nice variety of different items from a variety of wonderful shops.

At America's Handmade Homefront on Hyena Cart you'll find children's clothing, accessories and toys, tastey treats, quilts, home decor, soaps, candles, scrubs, jewelry, crochet items and more!

Our items go live, or become available, today at 3 pm EST. If you check out our blog 3 hours prior to going live, at 12 noon EST today you'll find a list of shops participating in special discounts on Hyena Cart and how to find them.

You'll find a lot of your favorite Etsy Homefront Team sellers at America's Handmade Homefront. Some even have items exclusive to Hyena Cart that you will not find in their Etsy shops!

On our congo you'll find these great shops:

An Army Wife Trends
Ella-Bear Bowtique
Homemade Zen
Love Abounds
Maddie & Me
MayRae Crochet N Knit
Mommy's Little Helper
Smokey Mountain Scents
Teri's Treasure
Tuliptree Baby

So be sure to check out our new congo, America's Handmade Homefront, and help support handmade and military spouses!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Novelty Clippies

I know you've seen them around on Etsy. The various ribbon scultures/novelty clips. They're cute, unique and look difficult to make. All is true except the latter.
These clips are not difficult to make if you take time to imagine how to make the piece work so that it remains sturdy and functional for actual use in a toddler or young girls hair.

There are a lot of tutorials for sale on Etsy and other ribbon sites that charge you to learn how to make their pieces. I have never purchased any of this tutorials and I have not fashioned my clips after their designs. All of my ribbon sculpture and novelty clips were created through trial and error until I got the exact look I wanted while managing to keep the quality and sturdiness of the clip intact.

I added my first ribbon sculpture piece this past June. This was my first attempt at ribbon sculpture and it took quite a few times to get this piece right. I am more than satisfied with the product and those that have purchased it are as well.

Since this cherry piece I have added a few other to my arsenal. A pumpkin, a present and even a little tree.

I have made other items like a cat, a lolli pop and a bird but their functionality is still be tested and redone to make sure it is the highest quality to remain in tact in your daughter's hair.
I have had customers send me convos asking about the durability of my ribbon sculptures because they have purchased from other Etsy shops where the clips fell apart after the first use.
With Ella-Bear Bowtique ribbon sculptures and novelty clips you are getting a high quality product that will be able to sustain regular wear in your daughter's hair.
I do not put our ribbon sculpture that will fall apart after a few uses. My clips are built to last. If they don't pass the test then they are not put into my shop until the proper changes are made to ensure that they do.

My advice when purchasing ribbon sculpture is to contact the shop owner and ask what they do to ensure the durability of their clips. If they don't do anything or are not willing to answer because they don't want to give their secrets away I would move on to the next shop. Otherwise you just may be wasting your money on a product that won't last.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Meet CreationsAnew!

CreationsAnew helped contribute to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc. by buying some beautiful bows from Ella-Bear Bowtique! Thank you for your contribution.

CreationAnew Photography & Design takes photography to a new level. Offering not only the beautiful photographs themselves but different products featuring the photography. With everything from mouse pads, to calendars and paper weights, CreationsAnew is your one-stop shop for home decor and gifts!

All photography is available in different sizes. You can get a 4 x 6, a 5 x 7 an
8 x 10 or even a mouse pad!
My all time favorite photo from CreationsAnew is the "Old Virginian Shed". There is no doubt that this photo would look beautiful on any one's wall!

Every year I make a new years resolution to keep better organized with my time and activities and I never follow through. I know many of us with Etsy shops need help better planning our daily activities to ensure enough time for work and play. With CreationsAnew's beautiful 2009 desk calendars people like me can finally follow through on their resolution!

Need some inspiration at the office? CreationsAnew's memo pads and paperweights are exactly what you need. You won't mind the daily grind in your cubical if you have these cute notepads to keep notes on.

I personally bought the above notepads and couldn't be happier with the product. I'm giving them as a gift this Christmas and I know my recipient will be more than pleased!

If you're looking for beauty and functionality CreationsAnew Photography & Design is the way to go. With gorgeous photos of flowers, landscapes and more you'll find it's hard to choose just one. And with as many options as she offers for her photography like calendars, paperweights, note pads, postcards and more, you won't have to!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Meet CutesieClips!

CutesieClips helped contribute to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc. by purchasing some beautiful bows from Ella-Bear Bowtique. Thank you for your contribution!

CutesieClip's goal is to make the world cute one clip at a time. She is well on her way! She specializes in the most adorable felt hair clips you'll find on Etsy hands down. If you can dream it, she can create it. With everything from cute flower clips to the truly unique like this rice bowl with chopsticks clip.

My personal favorites from her shop are her current seasonal items. This scarecrow is perfect for your little one's school Halloween party or that special trip to the pumpkin patch.

Her clips are not only for the young but also the young at heart. With versatile snap clips with non slip material they will work not only in your daughter's barely there hair but also for the mom who has fine or thin hair as well.
CutesieClips designs have endless possibilities. You can go for the ultra cute item for that special little girl in your life or for a design that can transcend age barriers like this cool football clip. Which is perfect for the die hard college football fan, like myself. Go Blue! ;)

At CutesieClips you are sure to find exactly what you're looking for. Something both unique and of extreme quality. CutesieClips creations are definitely a must have on every little girls wish list. And with great prices and fantastic customer service she'll be on every mom's wish list too!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Meet SmokeyMountainScents!

SmokeyMountainScents helped contribute to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc. by donating directly. Thank you for your contribution!

SmokeyMountainScents is more than just your average soap shop. With a huge selection of soaps, candles, scrubs, tarts and bath bombs in your choice of 89 different scents SmokeyMountainScents is definitely a cut above the rest.

My personal favorites are the current seasonal items she has to offer for Autumn. I recently purchased the Pumpkin Spice Soap and am anxiously awaiting it's arrival.

SmokeyMountainScent's coolest seasonal item has got to be the Candy Corn Soap. It looks and sounds good enough to eat!

She also has Cracklin Wood Wick Candles which seem so warm and inviting. They would, no doubt, make the perfect house warming gift.
Like this cranberry cracklin wood wick scented candle.

Above all, SmokeyMountainScents is the perfect place to buy bath and body items to treat yourself. The sugar and salt scrubs are certainly not to be passed up.
This orchid foaming scrub, with a blend of Jasmine, Muget, Violet, and Lemon, is just what this tired mama needs to treat herself at the end of a hard day at home with the kiddos.

SmokeyMountainScents is more than just a soap shop. It's the ultimate spa experience. The place you'll find all the items you need to relax and treat yourself to a luxurious spa get-away from the comfort of your own bathroom.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Meet TuliptreeBaby!

TuliptreeBaby helped contribute to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc. by buying a beautiful clippie set from Ella-Bear Bowtique! Thank you for your contribution!

TuliptreeBaby is a horticulturist taking time off to raise her two toddler girls. When she isn't busy chasing children around she's hard at work on her adorable baby shop TuliptreeBaby!

Her shop is full of beautiful and functional baby items like this wet bag. Perfect for cloth diaper mama's on the go or those wet bathing suits after a long day at the beach. A definite must have for any mother with small children.

She even has fantastic Eco-friendly items in her shop like these reusable baby wipes which can also be used as cute and fun wash cloths not only for your little one but also for yourself! They're made of soft minky materials which feels so nice against yours and your babies skin.

Tuliptreebaby is also the woman behind TuliptreePapers. A one-stop-shop for all your paper needs. Her inventory includes mini cards which are perfect for those thank you cards to send out to your Etsy customers. Gift tags for all your gift giving needs. And my personal favorite this cute card set which is absolutely perfect for sending well wishes this upcoming holiday season.

I have personally purchased from TuliptreeBaby, not once but several times and have been more than completely satisfied with her amazing, quality products and fantastic customer service. You will not be disappointed to receive a TuliptreeBaby or TuliptreePapers product. They will have you coming back for more time after time again. Both of her shops are sure to become some of your new favorites.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Meet SewSuzy!

SewSuzy helped contribute to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc by buying her daughter to be some beautiful bows from Ella-Bear Bowtique!

SewSuzy is a stay at home mother who's shop specializes in monogrammed and personalized items for the whole family! She has everything from seasonal clothing, baby shower gifts and even beautiful monogrammed pillow cases perfect for a wedding present. All of her items are very reasonably priced and very beautifully done.

My favorites are this children's apron which you can make your child feel super special by adding their name or initials.

And this super cute bib and burp cloth set. It makes a perfect baby shower gift and is so elegantly done.

She even has great seasonal items for Halloween. I just love this little pumpkin shirt!

SewSuzy is truly a one-stop-gift-shop with high quality hand made items that will suit anyone in your family. With great prices and excellent customer service this is on shop you truly cannot pass up!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I have made 4 sales so far that 100% of the profits will be donated to The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc in rememberance of September 11th 2001!

That is $21 so far in donations to be made!

I really want to get to $50 before Saturday. So please swing by my shop and purchase those cute little bows you've had your eye on for that special little girl in your life.

Purchases can be made all day today and tomorrow. I'll be adding some new bows later today so be sure to check those out as well.

Thank you for your help is making this possible!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Rembering September 11th.

Seven years have passed since that fateful day when our country was attacked. But the memory, for me, is as vivid as the day it happened.

I was in my first period match class in my junior year of high school. My economics teacher ran in, out of breath, and hollar at my math teacher to "turn on the T.V.! A plane just hit the world trade center!."

My teacher fumbled with the remote to turn the television on to CNN. The room fell completely silent as we all watched the smoke rising from the tower. Then suddenly a second plane hit. Some of my classmates, myself included, were in tears. I think we all knew, without saying what this meant. That our country was under attack.

As I left my 1st hour, I rushed to my next class so that I could continue watching the coverage. As I raced through the halls you could see the looks of concern on everyone faces. I attended a school with over 2,400 students and I have never heard the hall way be so quiet before.

It was a moment that none of us will ever forget.

Unfortunately, with day to day life, we've all pushed it to the back of our minds unless it is brought up. Myself included. A lot of 9/11 charities have had their donations plummit as the years go on.

So in rememberance of that fateful day and to all there were lost I am donating 100% of all my profits from today, September 10th through Friday September 12th to The World Trade Center Family Group Inc.
Please stop by my shop and take a moment to buy a beautiful bow for that special little girl in your life. Not only will you be recieving a quality made Ella-Bear Bowtique creations but you will be helping 9/11 families in the process.

You can read more about The World Trade Center United Family Group Inc. or make a direct donation to them here:

And tomorrow please take a moment out of your day to bow your head in prayer and remember those that we lost, those that lost loved ones and those that have and are currently fighting in Afghanistan to bring the terrorists responsible to justice.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Where have I been!?!?

Our weekend trip to visit friends in Ohio turned into a long vacation to Michigan to visit friends and family.
It was over due and, I would like to think, well deserved.

So, as I'm sure you noticed, my blog and my shop got put on hold while we tried to enjoy ourselves and take a break from the grind stone.
But I am back up and running and have a lot of new and exciting things coming out soon for fall. New products will be up throughout August with great back to school specials each Monday. So be sure to check it out for great deals.

Our vacation was absolutely lovely. We come from a fairly small town in Michigan called Traverse City. Every year Traverse City has it's famed Cherry Festival. I grew up going every year and was so pleased to be able to take my children to the festival for the 2nd year in a row.

For us the festival means parades, the Blue Angels, carnival rides and Gibby's fries.
But to many others there are even more events to take part in. Fashion shows, concerts, open air movies, car shows, world famous fudge, ice cream socials, pie eating contests, pet shows, food and whine tasting, you name it the Cherry Festival has it. Which is why it is such a huge draw to the area. This year alone there were an estimated 500,000 people occupying my home town.
Not only do they come for the schedule of events but also for the natural beauty that is Northern Michigan and Traverse City. From the land mark sand dunes, beaches and lakes to the historic light houses and charming down town shops. Traverse City is truly a not to be over looked northern gem.

Monday, June 2, 2008

June Give Away

My birthday is June 12th and my 5th wedding anniversary is June 13th so to celebrate
I'm having a fantastic give away from June 1st through the 30th. With every purchase you make you will be entered into win a $10 gift certificate to Ella-Bear Bowtique.

The winner will be selected at random, drawing from a hat, and will be notified through Etsy convo. Winner is responsible for shipping costs, the gift certificate can be used toward shipping.
Gift certificate will not be mailed. It will be a code given to the winner with an expiration date of September 1st 2008.

Each bow you buy gets you another entry in for the gift certificate. The more you buy the better your chances of winning!

Also today only, Monday June 2nd, I am having another BOGO. Buy any one item and get the 2nd half off. 2nd item must be of equal or lesser value of full priced item.

Happy shopping!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Never Forget

To me, Memorial Day is not only a day that I honor those that gave their life to serve this great country but also a day to honor my husband.

My husband is an active duty Marine. He joined in 2002 but had wanted to be a Marine since he was 10 years old. He joined into the DEP program when he was 17 and graduated high school early to leave for boot camp. He and I married 6 days after his boot camp graduation while he was on his 10 day leave before heading to his MOS school where he would become a part of the Marine Corps Field Artillary or an 0811. His job is a combat MOS which involves shooting howitzers. Generally when field artillary are deployed to combat situations they are deployed as grunts also known as infantry or as we in the marine corps lovingly call them, the human shield.
Luckily, when my husband was deployed to Iraq in 2004 he went as field artillary and not as a grunt which is very uncommon.
My husband recieved a purple heart in Iraq when his convoy was hit by a road side bomb. Luckily no one was killed but my husband took shrapnel to his face and by the grace of God only had to have a few stitches. Never in any other time of my life have I been so scared for my husband and I thank God every day for bringing him home safely.
Thankfully my husband's entire battery returned all in one piece save for my husband's injury.
They were VERY lucky. We as the wives, mother's, father's and children of that battery were very lucky. Not everyone is so fortunate.
Which is why I am thankful for Memorial day. It's a time to reflect on the losses we have sustained as a country from each and every war. A time to reflect on those that gave up their lives to ensure our freedom. A time to thank those brave veterans who have been injured and disabled while protecting this great country. And a time to thank those that continue to put their lives on the line for us on a daily basis.

So while you enjoy your long weekend full of BBQ's, family trips and outtings please take a moment and remember what this holiday is really about.
The selfless act of those who have given up their lives so that we can live in peace and enjoy those BBQ's that we will all be attending.

Please take a moment and view this video that my husband created showing what his job is to be an 0811, field artillary crewman.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

How to Advertise on Craigs List

I advertise on my local craigs list and on occassion craigs list in other areas of the US. It has brought sales into my store and locally offline. There has been some interest within the Homefront group that I tell them how I post without being flagged.

Here is a link to my current craigs list ad.

Craigs list has bots just like etsy that catch certain words that shouldn't be posted and in result they will remove your listing.
One sure fire way to get flagged and removed is by completely directing someone to your Etsy store without offering the option for local pick up or to work through your email address.
Of course you will want to direct them to your Etsy store but the best way to word it is by saying check out my site for more photos and details of the work I am able to do. Most people get the idea when they see it and will either purchase from your site or email you directly and place a custom order.
When posting a link for your etsy store I find that posting my mini, which will not show up as a mini, works best. Copy and paste the flash version of your mini and it will shop up as links saying buy hand made buy etsy and then your store name.

Avoid saying things like "I have sales every monday!" or check out my free shipping etc. Mentioning shipping in your ad again will get you flagged and removed because craigs list sees those posts as scams. Again, if they need the item shipped to them they will figure it out through your Etsy store or by emailing you.

The best thing to do is just give a rundown of your product and your price ranges. People on craigs list are generally looking for deals. There are people willing to pay more for handmade, custom and unique pieces as well so stating your range of prices up front helps a lot.

Of course there are always those craigs list snobs, especially in the babies and kids section, that will flag anyone trying to offer a service without thinking twice. In this case craigs list doesn't generally second guess and removes your posting. Your best bet is to email craigs list at the email they provide and ask them why you were flagged. As long as you are offering a tangible item that your target market can pick up within distance of their relative location then there is no reason for them to remove you and they will allow you to keep posting.
And when I say relative distance, that generally means within your states and the surrounding states.

Try to avoid posting to a craigs list half across the country because people will find you annoying and your shop a waste of their time because you are not even close to their region.
I know this from experience as I have had customers from Craigs List in my area that said they had thought about purchasing from another person who posts bows on my local Craigs List until they saw that she was located in California. In result they flagged her post simply because they were irritated that it wouldn't be available for pick up and purchased from me instead. :)

Other tips for craigs list posting is that most purchases are made toward the end of the week and over the weekend as that's when people have money to burn and time to surf the net. Or if you are in a military town posting on or after pay day is a good time for posting as well.

Craigs List buyers can sometimes, not generalizing, be a bit different. Some things to be aware of is that if you conduct a sale for a custom item they are picking up make sure you have a set price that you make sure they acknowledge to you either over the phone or through email. Make sure they acknowledge that you are asking cash only and that they bring EXACT change. I have had people show up with less than the total amount hoping I would sell for less. To help avoid this I state up front this is the cost, payment is upon pick up in cash only with exact change. If you do not bring cash and exact change I cannot sell you the item and you are welcome to go and pick up cash and exact change otherwise there will not be a transaction. Also, NEVER make an item to be shipped that you are expecting payment after completion. There is a lot of impulse buying on CL because people are fearful that if they don't purchase it first someone else might snag it up. Sometimes people don't think through their purchase and then change their minds leaving you with a finished custom project with nothing to show for it. I usually ask half the price in cash or through paypal up front. I do not start working on it until I recieve half of the amount and it has cleared.
Also there are scammers on CL that will email you wanting you to ship to another country etc. I generally avoid these transactions all together. Of course we can and are willing to ship to other countries but generally the people wanting shipment to another country from purchasing in a craigs list in Washington DC are looking to scam you.

So happy posting, I hope some of you are able to post to CL without being flagged and removed after reading this post and that it brings you many new sales. :)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Slack posting, new items and Monday madness

It certainly has been a while. What have I been up to? Let's see. Spending time with the kiddos, relaxing and working my little, I mean big, tushy off. ;)

I have listed a lot of new bows with some of the new ribbon I have bought and have incorporated some new designs so be sure to check my etsy shop to view them.

I have also been working on some new bibs and haven't decided whether or not I will add them to my shop. For the time being I am just making a ton of bibs for my children, my nephew and my friend's kiddos and that is rewarding in itself for the time being.

Monday madness sale is today! I'm having a BOGO. Buy any one item get the 2nd one half off. 2nd item must be of equal or lesser value than the full priced item.
Be sure to look for Homefront in the chat rooms tonight starting at 6pm EST for other fantastic sales from Homefront shops!

I promise that I'll have a better update soon. For now it's back to work!

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Being from one place and living in another you sometimes see things that you never knew existed or were possible. Generally you end up mentioning it, in a very astounded manner, to someone who thinks you're completely dense because they've known it all along since they have either grown up in the area or an area where it's common place.
This seems to happen to me a lot considering we are military and are originally from Northern Michigan. Something that shocks the heck out of me might have been something you grew up with somewhere else in the world.

When we lived in North Carolina it was the kamikazee beatles. I am still unaware of their actual name. We call them kamikazee beatles because they literally fly directly into your house, car, yourself etc. And not lightly either. These are HUGE bugs and when they would thud against the house in the summer time you could definately hear it. Also the Banana Spiders there were out of control. When I found one on my air conditioner I about had a heart attack until I found out it was completely harmless. It certainly didn't look like it was when I considered it's size and flashy colors. Generally those two things together in my mind scream blood sucking killer. :)

Now that I'm in Virginia it's the catapillers. Of course I grew up knowing what catapillers were and seeing them, even playing with them when I was a child.
Although I only ever saw a few catapillers all year and never in the same spot.
Here, apparently, it's commonplace for hundreds of catapillers to be on the same tree. And not a large tree either, a baby tree! Here are the photos from ONE tree across the street from my house. Mind you we have about 20 trees on our street and they all look the same way. Covered in tons of catapillers. I guess it's one huge catapiller family reuinion. I think my neighbors thought I was nuts when they saw me photographing them. :)