Monday, December 27, 2010

Share the Love - Walk In the Woods, LLC

This weeks Featured Artisan is Walk in the Woods, LLC. Beautiful creations
that bring you "Back to Nature" ! You can find Walk in the Woods at:

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Artfire Collection

I have been included in an Artfire Collection curated by "Gold Bracelets" Click the "View This Collection" button below to see all the beautiful items included in this collection. And don't forget to check out Gold Bracelets site as well. She has beautiful creations!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Share the Love - Cosmic Hippo Designs

This weeks Featured Artisan is Cosmic Hippo Designs. Glenda Ganis is the owner/designer and she has wonderful creations to jazz up your wardrobe! You can find Cosmic Hippo Designs on:

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Share the Love - ArtiZenBeads

Share the Love... Blogger's Unite Featured Artisan
This weeks Featured Artisan is Laura, Owner/designer of Artizen Beads.
Wonderful creations that inspire you! You can find Artizen Beads on:

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Share the Love - Moonsong Ranch

This weeks Featured Artisan is Doug, Owner/designer of Moonsong Ranch. Wonderful creations that inspire you! You can find Moonsong Ranch on:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Share the Love - Sugar Lane Bath Company

This weeks Featured Artisan is Sugar Lane Bath Co. Indulge yourself in these wonderful bath products! You can find Sugar Lane at::

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Share the Love - Little Sista Studio

This weeks Featured Artisan is Little Sistah Studio. Works of art you can share with loved ones, family, friends. You can find Little Sistah Studio at:

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Share the Love - Featured Artisan - Lottie's Trinkets

This weeks Featured Shop is Lottie's Trinkets! Beautiful Handmade creations to Jazz up your wardrobe with.
You can find Lottie's Trinkets at:

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Share the Love - Passion for Beads


This weeks Featured Artisan is Passion for Beads! Sally creates wonderful

treasures for you! You can find Sally - Passion for Beads at






Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Share the Love - Tina's Treasures

This weeks Featured Artisan is Tina's Treasures! Tina has a wide
variety of handmade creations in her shop! Stop by and see them all!
You can find Tina's Treasures on:

Monday, October 4, 2010

Surviving Togethter

Dana, Lisa, Kelly (front) Ruth, Sara, Cathy, Theresa, Karen, Karen, Denise (middle) Nicole, Sue, Donnadee, Lenelle, Amy, Judy and Rene (back)

This past weekend (October 1-3) 18 beautiful women spent a fun filled time of sharing and surviving together (along with several co-survivors).

 The fourth annual Breast Fest took place at the Potawatomi Inn in Pokagon State Park located on beautiful Lake James near Angola, IN.  

 Sue and Nicole always do a wonderful job planning this event and this year was no exception. Theresa received  the crown for traveling the farthest. I arrived late, so I'm not sure where Theresa is from, but I believe it is the Washington DC area since she is doing the Komen 3-Day there next weekend.

Other states represented were Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin and I think Illinois.

There were 3 attendees who have reached the coveted "5 year cancer free" milestone in this journey.
Sue - Judy - Lisa  CONGRATULATIONS!!
 It was a blessing to reunite with those I met 2 years ago when I was there and to meet others who I only knew through Facebook. Sara is one I see frequently on FB and finally got to meet.

Cathy and Sara
 There was the traditional toast to all our "sisters" and a candlelight ceremony for those who couldn't be with us.

The afternoon was spent exchanging gifts (pink elephant style) and just sitting around visting and acting silly.

Ruth - Sue - Kelly
Lenelle - Nicole

That evening a nice buffet dinner was enjoyed by all.

Thanks to the "Alumni" for keeping this event going year after year.

I am already looking forward to next year!


PS - thanks to Nicole and Judy - I stole a couple of your pics :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Share the Love - My Helping Hands


This weeks Featured Shop is My Helping Hands Graphic Design. Custom Avatars, Banners and Ads!

You can find My Helping Hands Graphic Design at:




Artfire Shop







Saturday, September 25, 2010

Let the Show Begin!

The fall craft show season has officially begun! I participated in the Fall Craft Fair at the East Mulberry Street Gift Cottage in Bryan, OH where I live. Actually it was within walking distance of our house.

The craft fair was held in the garden behind this quaint little gift shop. The weather was nearly perfect with 60° temperatures and partly cloudy skies. It was a bit windier than I liked, but at least it didn't rain.
Here I am at my table waiting for customers. There was a good turnout of shoppers and I had good sales for such a small show. There were only five vendors and the gift shop was having open house and there were several other small shows throughout town today.

I had a new earring display that is going to work very well. My mother-in-law gave me an old picture frame that was sitting in the corner of her garage. I took it apart, put screen across the opening and a piece of white poster board on the back. It made a great earring display and looks even better when the earrings are taken off the cards. I have a couple more old frames and am going to make a different display for each price group of earrings that I make.

My mother-in-law was on my right selling crocheted and sewn items. LoveBug Creations was on my left selling cards, gift tags, gift bags and other paper items. Further down the garden was a lady selling Michigan and Ohio State University bird houses made from gourds that were really cute. Furthest back was Fred selling wooden items and bags made from recycled upholstery fabric.

Fun was had by all!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Share the Love - Featured Artisan - KP Designs

This weeks Featured Artisan on Share the Love.. Blogger's Unite is KP Designs! Kathy has wonderful creations. You can find KP Designs at:

HERE for code

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Artfire Promotion

ArtFire has a great new promotion going on right now and if you sell crafts or haver ever thought about selling your crafts, now is the time to check it out. You can even opt-in to this great deal if you already have an Artfire basic or pro account.

Here's the deal....ArtFire is offering a limited number of people the opportunity to lock in a $5.95/month lifetime rate!! But they have to get at least 20,000 members to opt-in or no one will get this exclusive $5.95 rate. Click here to get all the details for this great offer!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Share the Love - Dean Designs

This weeks Featured Artisan is Deans Designs.
Beautiful creations by a very talented artisan! You can find Deans Designs at:

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Fall Fashion Color Trends

It feels like fall in NW Ohio today and I'm loving it! I sat in my studio last night (it's upstairs) with the window open designing school charms for the first fall craft fair.

There was a nice cool breeze coming through the open window, the local HS football game was tuned in on the radio, and I was at peace with the world.

Feeling the early signs of fall reminded me of an article that came through the inbox recently about the 2010 fall fashion color trends. Covering the full color spectrum from warm to soft cool colors, the palette includes bold, dark, bright colors offering a wide range of design possibilities.

An order of turquoise nuggets are on their way that would look nice with chocolate brown Swarovski pearls and silver accents. The creative juices are starting to flow!

The enitre Pantone article can be seen here on their website and a free copy of the Pantone Fall Color Report can be downloaded from there. Go check it out and start designing!!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Shop, Design, Promote - Oh My!!

September has arrived! Let the fall craft shows and fairs begin!! But wait, I'm not ready yet.... Good thing my first show isn't until Saturday, September 25th. Caty Ann's Creations will be participating in the Fall Craft Fair at the East Mulberry Street Gift Cottage, 847 East Mulberry Street, in Bryan, Ohio that day.

But first things first - let's not get the cart before the horse. New fall items need to be added to my inventory and that means SHOPPING. Bless my darling hubby for taking me to the city three times last month to stock up on supplies. We usually shop JoAnn's, Hobby Lobby, and Michael's. Just look what I came home with the last trip.

I brought these home from Hobby Lobby...

School charms for book bags, zipper pulls or key chains are on the agenda to finish before the 25th. These sell for $9.00 each and shipping is free. Already have some finished in scarlet and gray for OSU and purple and gold for the Bryan Bears as well as burgundy and gold for the Edgerton Bulldogs. I can also make these to order. Just leave a comment on this post with the school colors and mascot name. Be sure to leave your email address so I can contact you.

These beads came home with me from JoAnn's...

And this is my Michael's stash...

Beautiful breast cancer awareness purse charms have already been designed with some of those sparkling pink beads. And I've already designed (and sold) a pair of earrings from charms I bought at Michaels!

You can check out all my new items at the following online stores:

Be sure to check back often as I plan to be adding many new items in the coming days and weeks. And remember it's not too soon to start thinking about Christmas!!!

Oh, I almost forgot...Caty Ann's Creations has been on Zibbet for one year now! Do I hear a "Hip-Hip-Hooray"??? To celebrate our first anniversary, everything in the shop is on sale for 10% off - no coupon code required. Hurry on over and look around!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Share the Love - Moonsong Ranch

This weeks Featured Artisan is MoonSong Ranch! Beautiful Creations by a very talented Artisan!
Moonsong Ranch Handmade Alpaca Fashion products include felt nuno scarves, western style hats, purses, cases, knitted scarves and many other unique gift items

You can Find MoonSong Ranch at:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Photography Through an Amateur Lens

If you have an account on Artfire, Ecrater, Etsy, Zibbet or any other website for selling handcrafted products, then you probably already know that the most important part of setting up a shop is good quality photos. There are any number of posts in forums on these websites that stress the importance of good quality photos, some going so far as to recommend having a professional photographer create your product photos. If you depend on your shop as your sole source of income, then this is probably not a bad idea. However, many of us are simply doing this to generate some extra spending money doing something that we enjoy. Fortunately there is a plethora of resources out there to help us amateurs create quality photos – not professional – but at least good quality.

I would like to share with you some of the tips and tricks I’ve learned over the past year setting up Caty Ann’s Creations on Artfire, Zibbet, Ecrater and most recently, Etsy. Actually, in the beginning, I thought I was uploading pretty decent product photos. They weren’t bad, but I think you’ll agree I’ve come a long way! did I get from this....

to this...

Well, it really wasn't all that difficult.

Let's start with the camera. All of my photos are taken with a Nikon, Coolpix L12, 7.1 Mega-Pixel, digital camera. This is a reasonably priced "point and shoot" type camera. Mine was purchased at WalMart about 4 years ago for under $100.00 and takes good pictures.
The more mega-pixels, the better the pictures. Many of the digital cameras on the market today are 12-15 mega-pixels or more. If you are buying a new camera I do recommend you purchase one that has a "Macro" setting for taking "close-up" pictures of your products. I'm not one to read manuals, but it's a good idea to at least flip through your camera manual and get an idea what functions/features are available. Then experiment with the camera settings until you are familiar with your camera's capabilities.

Now let's talk about "props". Props are limitless and everywhere!

  • wine glasses

  • plates

  • cups

  • vases

  • candy dishes

  • cannisters

  • scarves

  • blankets

  • rocks

  • tree stumps

  • fence posts

  • porch railings

  • trees

  • bushes

  • flowers

  • dolls

  • figurines

  • lamp shades

  • musical instruments

  • wire mesh inbox on my desk
You get the general idea. Use your imagination! For example - in the picture of the black and white bracelet above on the red background....what do you suppose was used for the background?? I frequently take at least a couple of shots on either a white or black background. Due to the colors in the bracelet, neither of these colors worked well and I decided red would be perfect. So, with neccessity being the mother of invention, I found a jersey knit dress top that was the perfect shade of red. A large shoe box was placed inside the shirt and the back of the shirt pulled taut across the box for a smooth surface. Worked pretty well, huh??

Location, location, location! My favorite place to do photo shoots is outdoors on a slighty overcast day early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the light is softer and not so harsh. This works well in the warmer months.
When the weather doesn't permit outdoor shoots I will clean off a table, countertop or spot on the floor. Many people use a light box for indoor photography, but I haven't progressed to that level yet - LOL. You can Google "homemade light box" for more infomation on this option. I just turn on several lights placed around the area where I will be taking the pictures and adjust the white balance on my camera. Here are a couple of recent "indoor" shots:

Locations I've used:

  • My Studio

  • Dining Room

  • Kitchen Counter

  • My Office

  • Front Deck

  • Yard

  • Flower Garden
In a future post I'll discuss ways to enhance your photos to bring out color and clarity without spending $$$$ on expensive photo editing software.

This is currently my favorite photo. The violin is a family heirloom that belonged to my husband's grandfather. It seemed the perfect 'prop' for the classic necklace designed with black onyx and fresh water pearls.

What tips and tricks have you learned/used in your photo shoots? I'm always looking for new ideas.

Caty Ann's Creations - Distinctive Jewelry Designs's Fan Box