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Saturday, 13 June 2015

Good Grief

I can't believe its been over two years since I last wrote on this blog.

I can't believe its been over two month's since I started this post!

In my last post, way back in March 2013, I made mention of the fact that I was moving.  Lets just cut the crap and just say that it was a bad move, the last two years have been hectic and I am so so happy to at last (AT LAST!) be back here writing on this blog ;)

And I have an important announcement to make - I went ahead and opened up an Etsy Shop!

I have called it the Copper Cat's Garden.


I've been umming and aahing about it for just about forever now.  I've read a lot about the downsides of Etsy, but for an absolute beginner I think it makes sense, and I hope to get enough funds together to start selling locally in my wonderful new home town of Brighton.

Seagulls off the Palace Pier, Brighton
It really is lovely here, cupped by the South Downs against the ever changing sea.  I can't tell you how wonderful it feels to be living near the ocean, and I am surrounded by a sensuously rolling and luscious landscape that is very soothing for the soul.  Needless to say, I spend as much time outside as I possibly can!  I feel very lucky to live in such a wonderful place, and it is filled with wonderful people too.

Brighton seen across the Downs from the Chattri War Memorial
The iconic ruins of the West Pier
Cinnabar Moth on Wolstonbury Hill
Now, I have approached this whole Etsy thing in a rather hap-hazard way.  I was playing around with photographing some of my jewellery last weekend, after noticing that the paving slabs in my garden would make a nice neutral background for 'product photography' while I was reading in the sun.  I just used my phone camera along with a couple of adhoc props from my mantle-piece, and before I knew it I had literally hundreds of photos of variously draped jewellery!

Probably my best photo so far
That evening as I sat sorting through all those photos I was over come with a wave of curiosity.  I had 'opened' an Etsy store I while back and then done nothing with it...  I hadn't even spelt the name right!  But I realised I had enough photos from my afternoons snapping frenzy to populate it with a good handful of listings, so I just went ahead and did it with little further thought.  Seeing my jewellery in an Etsy setting was strangely exhilarating, I got all tingly looking at my new, bodged together home page.

You have to understand I had no idea what I was doing!  I didn't have a clue about good titles or how to effectively use tags.  My descriptions were lazy and often silly and I had absolutely no idea about postage costs at all.  This all resulted in a stack of listings that could never be found and probably wouldn't be very appealing if they were uncovered.  Very silly, seeing as listings get the most 'organic' exposure when they are newly listed.

What can I say - creativity is my strong suite, not sensibility!

I love the luminescent quality of  Czech glass



















I have improved things a little bit since then.  I've tweaked everything to be more searchable and hopefully more enjoyable to browse.  I actually looked at postage prices (far less than expected) and adjusted my pricing along the lines of a sensible (rather than non-existent) model.  It still needs work, a proper banner and policies wouldn't be amiss, but slowly its evolving into a proper storefront that I can hopefully sell through effectively.

I have a lot more pieces of jewellery waiting in the wings to be photographed today and tomorrow; a plethora of necklaces and earrings and couple of bracelets too.  I hope to have some of these new items listed in the shop Sunday afternoon - all properly written out and detailed this time round of course!

In the meantime here is a little preview of one of the necklaces I will have to offer - featuring some pretty dang stunning lampwork beads from Kaz Baildon of Cheeky Cherub Designs which I have been hoarding for years!  I do love a good crescent shaped bit of copper and plenty of Czech flower beads, I'm sure you can already tell - flowers are kind of my thing!

These wonderful lampwork beads positively glow
Thanks for joining me here for this slightly long winded and definitely long overdue blog post!

I hope you will come and visit again soon :)