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Saturday, September 24, 2011

October Craft Shows

October is going to be a crazy busy month for me - I have signed up for 3 craft shows in Huntsville and Madison. AWR Designs will be setup at all 3 shows with an entire booth all to myself. I have been working diligently on several new items, specifically ID badge lanyards and flat Herringbone beadwoven bracelets! You will see some Alabama and Auburn-themed lanyards and bracelets, as well as other school colors of local high schools and middle schools. I'm very excited about my new line of jewelry... come see me and check it all out!!

Madison Street Festival, October 1, 2011, 8:30am - 4:00pm
First craft show is the 31st annual Madison Street Festival and I'm really looking forward to this one! It's held in downtown Madison, AL, on Saturday, October 1st, 2011, from 8:30am to 4:00pm... Rain or Shine!! There will be over 250 vendor booths, Entertainment Stages, a Parade, a Car Show, Special Events, Children's Area, and a juried art section know as "Artist Alley". Vendor booths include arts and crafts, food, non-profit organizations, local businesses, and club exhibits. All items sold at the event, with the exception of non-profit promotional items, must be handmade. A parade kicks-off the event each year, with approximately one mile in length, winding through downtown, it is the perfect distance for younger participants to join in too! Free admission to the public.

For more information on this event, check out the following website:
Madison Street Festival


Heritage Festival, October 15, 2011, 10:00am - 4:00pm
Next, we have the Heritage Festival at Burritt on the Mountain in Huntsville, AL, which actually runs from October 13-15, 2011. The Heritage Festival is a fall festival that will represent six continents with vendors representing the different countries, including Native Americans and early settlers. Thursday and Friday (Oct. 13-14) will be focused on sharing presentations to various school groups and Saturday, Oct. 15, will be open to the public, with vendors sharing their heritages through music, dance, food, crafts, and history. The festival will be up on the mountain with a spectacular view of the city of Huntsville, and will be held from 10:00am to 4:00pm. Free admission to the public on Saturday, Oct. 15.

For more information on this event and other events going on at Burritt on the Mountain, check out their website:
http://burrittonthemountain.com/


The Owens Cross Roads Homemakers Homemade Parade, October 29, 2011, 9:00am - 4:00pm
And last, but not least, we have the 1st Annual Homemade Parade, a Holiday Arts and Crafts Fair and Silent Auction, presented by The Owens Cross Roads Homemakers and Owens Cross Roads Elementary School, in Owens Cross Roads, AL. Free admission to the general public.

For more information on this event, check out the Owens Cross Roads Homemakers website blog:
OXR Homemakers Homemade Parade

Hope to see you there!!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

August & September Craft Shows

Ok so I have been asked about upcoming craft shows that I will be participating in and selling my jewelry so I am going to list all shows here. Some of them are not definite as I will have to submit an application. But once I find out that I am for sure going to be participating, I will update this blog post. But go ahead and mark your calendars as I really don't see any issues with getting accepted to them all!! :-)

August 6, 2011, Saturday, 10:00 am - 2:00 pm
2011 ASPCA Challenge Kick-off Party
Decatur Animal Services
300-A Beltline Road (next to Wilson Morgan Park)
POC: Lisa Rodenberry

I have already been accepted to this show so I will definitely be there!!

DAS is one of 50 animal shelters in the country to qualify for this year's challenge to compete for $300,000 in various grants and the only shelter in Alabama and Tennessee! In order to qualify, they will need to adopt or return to owner 300 more dogs and cats than they did last year. They are having a kick-off party to showcase some wonderful animals. Local businesses, vendors, clubs, and organizations will set up information booths around the shelter to draw in people to see the dogs and cats. There will also be live entertainment, activities, concessions, DJ Jammin Jeff, Decatur Police Department K9 Unit, a 40 foot Adventure Course Bounce House, and lots of giveaways!!

For more information, please check out the following link:
http://www.challenge.aspcapro.org/

Or visit Decatur Animal Services on Facebook:
www.Facebook.com/DecaturAnimal


August 13, 2011, Saturday, 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Artisans Cove 2nd Saturdays
BBQ Dinner for the CARE Center and Art Festival
At Artisans Cove in Hampton Cove
220 Old Highway 431 South
Hampton Cove, AL 35763

Sponsored by Art Festivals Reflectives Frame & Art Gallery
For more information, check out...
http://www.artisanscove.com/


August 18, 2011, Thursday, 4:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Sidewalk Arts Stroll
Around the Courthouse Square in Downtown Huntsville

For more information, check out the following link:
http://www.sidewalkartsstroll.com/


September 10, 2011, Saturday, 8 am - 5 pm
Trade Day in Huntsville
Around the Courthouse Square in Downtown Huntsville
Event presented by the Von Braun Lion's Club.

I hope to see you there!!
Angela Robison
AWR Designs
http://www.awrdesigns.etsy.com/
http://www.awrdesigns.blogspot.com/
www.Facebook.com/AWRDesigns
www.Twitter.com/AWRDesigns

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Participation in Upcoming Arts and Crafts Shows

Etsy is a wonderful online source for buying and selling handmade goods, in addition to being a great source for networking with others through teams and forums.  But for some people, especially those just starting out and trying to get their business recognized and known in a massive network of millions of talented artisans, there must be other ways to promote and sell their items.  Luckily, I found a local team of crafters on Etsy, NA Crafters, who live in or near Huntsville, AL.  Through this team, I have learned of several arts and crafts shows that are going on locally in the area.  And, of course, I'm all about taking part in as many shows as I can participate in.

The first one coming up is Sidewalk Arts Stroll, in historic downtown Huntsville.  It's a huge marketplace full of a variety of artists/crafters selling their "stuff"!!  There will also be a variety of musicians performing, including jazz, gospel, and even improv.  In addition to arts and crafts, there will be vendors selling home-baked goods, locally grown produce, antiques, etc... something for everyone!!  Get your family out and come see us... it is sure to be a lot of fun!!  You can read more about this event at the following link...

Sidewalk Arts Stroll

This will be my first craft show I will be participating in, so I am a little nervous, but very excited!  I just hope it doesn't get rained out, as they don't have a rain date scheduled.  I will be sharing a booth with my friend and fellow NA Crafters team member/captain, Jessica Moon.  She also sells jewelry... unique charm bracelets and necklaces and also some really cool sports team jewelry!  Check out her Etsy shop here...

TrevTrevDesigns Etsy Shop


Our team, NA (North Alabama) Crafters, has our own website.  Check it out here...

NA Crafters Website

The next craft show I will be participating in this month is going to be Artisans Cove, in the Hampton Cove area.  It's scheduled for July 30 from 1-5 pm. Several NA Crafters team members will be participating by selling their arts and crafts, including myself!  :-)  When I get more details on this event, I will add them here...

Please come by and see all our handmade treasures!!  I'm sure it will be fun for all, so bring the family!!  :-)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

My Busy Weekend...

Well, I just spent a majority of this weekend working on my jewelry. I'm not complaining, as I enjoyed most of it. I guess I just didn't realize initially how much time would be involved in going from design to actually listing an item on Etsy to sell. I'm still learning and will continue to learn more as I go. I honestly don't know how people with young kids at home and a full time job doing something else can manage an Etsy shop on the side. I don't think I could. Anyway, so I've been working on several pieces of jewelry (10 items total) over the last couple weeks and all I needed to do on most of them was to just add a clasp. So I finally finished them all on Friday night. So then Saturday was spent on photography, taking several pictures of each item, in various locations, settings, angles, etc. It doesn't end there. I then went through every picture cropping, adjusting, zooming, etc. to make them just right. This process actually took up most of my Saturday. I did manage, however, to list one item, this brown peyote stitched/cellini style necklace, around 10 pm last night. Then today, I finished listing all 10 items in my Etsy shop.

The one item (out of these 10) that I am most proud of is this green peyote stitched cellini rope necklace with a green gemstone pendant that I also did a peyote stitch around, creating a beautiful bezel pendant, which was the first time I've ever done that. I do believe it turned out very nice. My husband seems to think so, also. Of course, he knows better than to say otherwise. LOL I also did my first ever peyote stitch toggle clasp using the same seed beads that I used for the rope necklace and on the bezel. Even the bail holding the pendant was done using the same seed beads. This necklace took several hours to complete. I honestly don't know the exact amount of time I spent on it, but I enjoyed every minute of it... there's just something very relaxing about the rhythmic motion involved in peyote stitch, as well as Herringbone and other stitches. It's kinda like a stress release/therapeutic process, I guess you could say. So, anyway, here it is... the completed project...












To see the rest of the items I just finished and listed in my Etsy shop, you will just have to go check them out in my shop...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

NA (North Alabama) Crafters Etsy Team

When I registered on Etsy and started listing my jewelry on Etsy to sell, I had no idea that I would end up connecting with several other crafters locally, who live so close to me.  I started looking around on Etsy to see what all I could take part in, including taking interactive classes online, joining teams, and connecting with other Etsy shop sellers to help each other promote our shops.  I ended up joining several teams, one called NA Crafters, a group of talented crafters from all over North Alabama, including Huntsville, Madison, Cullman, Decatur, Athens, etc.  We are continuously talking online about our crafts, local arts and craft shows, and our most recent event, Craft Party 2011, a worldwide celebration of crafters from all over the world meeting up on June 10 to celebrate arts and crafts.  I have posted some of the pictures from the party here.  See the below link for pictures from our local team meetup, at Lowe Mill studio in Huntsville, AL.  Several NA Crafters team members showed up and we had a blast!!



 
 


 

See below link for the rest of the pictures taken at Etsy Craft Party Meetup at Lowe Mill in Huntsville, AL:

Another fairly new venture for our NA Crafters Etsy team has been our very own website, designed by one of the leaders of the team, Tarra of Little Sunbird Studio.  She not only has multiple artistic/craft talents, but is also a fantastic web designer/graphic designer, and we are blessed to have her on our team!  Also, the captain of our team, Jessica of TrevTrevDesigns, who has an awesome jewelry shop on Etsy, selling very unique charm jewelry and sports team jewelry, has been phenomenal in keeping up with welcoming new members, organizing events, and she actually started the NA Crafters team on Etsy!!  There are so many talented others on our team that I could go on and on about, and I hate to leave anyone out.  So please check out our team website for more info on all of us and for the latest happenings going on in our group.


I was actually honored to participate in a feature blog on our team website. See my interview here...


Monday, June 13, 2011

Unemployed

Well, here we are, both of us - my husband,Darrin, and I, unemployed. Darrin was laid off from his job in February earlier this year and I just got laid off from my job on May 27. It's gonna be challenging, but I think we will be ok. I already have 2 prospects lined up, but unfortunately they are both contingent on a government contract and I just recently discovered that we will not hear about one of them until November!! The other one... any day now. I just hope we can pay all our bills from our unemployment checks. I do have another interview lined up for today. Hopefully this one will go well.

One positive thing I see about this is that I will have more time to spend on my jewelry business. I have accumulated lots of beads and supplies over the past several months. I have just needed more time to be able to design and create more items to sell and list in my Etsy store. I also plan to get caught up on my Facebook page and this blog! I will still spend as much time as I can looking for another engineering job, especially since that's the job that pays the bills, for now!!

Anyway, be on the lookout for several more jewelry items that I will be posting in the coming weeks!!

Thanks for stopping by!! :-)

My First Blog

Ok so I'm just getting started here with this whole blog thing, but I think I'm gonna like it. I want to make this blog primarily focused on my custom jewelry. I work full-time as a systems engineer for a major defense contractor, and I make jewelry on the side. I started taking an interest in jewelry a couple of years ago when I started purchasing this woman's craft club kit-of-the-month. I then discovered another craft kit-of-the-month that was strictly jewelry sets and other kits containing beads. I quickly got hooked!! I have always had an interest in arts and crafts since I was a young child, and I actually remember winning 1st place in an art contest in elementary school. My favorite subject in school was math and though I wanted to become a math teacher, I eventually ended up going unto engineering. While at the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), I took some art classes in college. But once I decided to pursue my engineering degree, there was just not much time for other interests.

So... moving ahead to my current situation. I recently moved from Orlando, FL, back "home" to Huntsville, AL, to get married. My husband and I had dated back when I was living in Huntsville (15 years ago) and we reconnected through Facebook (yes I know, this will have to be another blog alone, as its a great story!!) I was fortunate enough to find an engineering job in Huntsville fairly quickly and moved back home to plan my wedding with my husband and our families, who all happen to live in or near Huntsville. As we were trying to save money in any way we could in planning this wedding, I decided to create the jewelry for my entire wedding party. I loved coming up with the designs and creating the necklaces, bracelets, and earrings for my bridesmaids, flower girls, my mom, his mom, and my guest book attendant, and they all seemed to love it, too!!
I showed some of my jewelry to a friend at work, who was getting married in April 2011) and she ended up asking me to design and create the jewelry for her bridal party.
I have had several friends, family members, and even strangers, who have seen me wearing my jewelry, tell me how wonderful my jewelry is and that I should try selling it. So I did just that. I started researching the web and reading several books on marketing and selling jewelry and on starting a small home-based business, and I finally opened my Etsy store just a few weeks ago. I have 26 items listed right now and will continue adding items. No sales just yet, but I'm hoping that will change soon... :-)

Please check out my etsy store:
http://www.awrdesigns.etsy.com