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Musings, art pieces, compiled mishmash of creative blobs and the daily life of Lyza Roderick – artist, visual merchandiser, + lover of the earth. Owner of Dreamsongs on Etsy Follow my creative + crazy journey discovering the ins + outs of well, everything.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Some Quick Post-Juno Updates

So WOAH that was one hell of a blizzard. (And more is on the way!)  I don't know about you, but I love storms, especially snow storms (plus it doesn't hurt I had two snow days off from work!).
Some lovely and HUGE icicles 

The first snow day was spent snuggled warm in bed with my handsome fella, watching Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, while the storm raged outside. Luckily we didn't lose power. I heard that most people who lost power on Cape wouldn't be getting it back for a few days. That must suck.

The second snow day (aka yesterday) was spent digging out all of our cars, of course! I also am a freak and I love shoveling. Don't ask me why, I just always have. When I lived with my parents, my dad and I would always go out and shovel either way way late at night or early early in the morning. Its so quiet and peaceful out at that time, it's my favorite.
The crazy amount of snow on our deck... about 4ft!
Also did the finishing touches on the latest project I am doing for Tiffany Jazelle! (click here to see the last project) With so much stuff going on, I can't have unfinished projects. It will drive me nuts. A Behind the Scene's post will be coming soon.

Anyway, these past few days I haven't been posting, I've been brainstorming SO many ideas and I have finally decided what I will be filling my Etsy shop with! (It's a MIRACLE!) I will be filling it with more than one thing but they all stem from the main idea, which is: Dreamcatchers. I've been working on them for years now... I made a few a couple years ago with vintage doilies and other found items but I never stuck with it.

But I'm stuck now. Yesterday I officially ordered all of my supplies! They will not be the same ones I had made in the past, they will be better than those. There is not much more info I want to release at the moment but SNEEK PEEKS are a'comin'! Stay Tuned!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Etsy Goals Part 1: The Basics

Usually when I want to do something I just do it without any sort of lengthly preparation but not this. I've learned too much from my Boss Lady, Tammy at Wicked Thrift to just jump into this blind. She has taught me an insane amount about running a business throughout the past 4 years and I'm so glad I've had that wealth of knowledge in my life and continue to have it.

I've been doing A LOT of research on how to have a successful Etsy shop over the past week and I have learned a lot. The most important thing I've learned is goal making and just how impactful it can be.

So what are my goals?

To start with, I gotta conquer the basics...
  1. Figure out exactly what you will be selling in store.
  2. Have a shop name. Yay! That one is done!
  3. Figure out how to get the supplies you will need in a manageable way.
  4. Figure your profit margin and prices for items.
  5. Create a unique step in your process that makes you stand out.
These goals have to be accomplished before I can even move forward in the goal making process. Once these are done I can move on to the customer service and shop preparation goals which include creating a perfect "Shop Bio" and other fun things like that.

I'm not necessarily starting this Etsy shop to quit my day job and open up a studio and survive off that for the rest of my days (well, thats not the goal yet at least). I just want to share my work with people and in this day in age, an Etsy shop is the best way possible. Of course making money is a goal. It's always a goal. But according to the guides I have read, it is always best to start small.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Behind the Scenes: Creating the TJ show sign

Photo by Tiffany Snow - Tiffany Jazelle (Cropped and edited by me)
So if you live on Cape Cod and you don't know Tiffany Jazelle, you will now. Carried in countless stores all over the North East (Sativa, Little Beach Gallery, Marie's Jewelry, and Charming Treasures just to name a few) and a few in the Sunshine State, Tiffany Jazelle is a jewelry line specializing in bracelets made with gorgeous semi precious stones and meaningful charms. Her bracelets are great because you can wear them with anything. You can wear all of them as a cool edgy boho stack or just one or two for a simple and elegant look. They fit any style since she has a wide range of stones and charms to choose from while always being classic and trendy (yes, at the same time!).
Some of my Tiffany Jazelle Bracelets (top to bottom) The U collection, Onyx with Zodiac (discontinued), Autumn Jasper with eye of Horus, Watermelon Tourmaline with Hamsa, and Turritella Agate with Lucky Elephant)
I have been fortunate enough to know Tiffany Snow, the creator, founder, and mastermind behind the Tiffany Jazelle line, for a few years now. She approached me recently asking if I wanted to help her out by creating a sign for her table for trunk shows and the upcoming "Accessories the Show" in Las Vegas. Of course I said yes. Duh.
Her entire line, studio, and even display pieces all match with a specific style vibe and I had to take that vibe and try my hardest to put it into this piece. Its kind of like that beachy, bohemian vibe mixed with subtle undertones of Cape Cod cottages, clean and sophisticated. The first thing I thought of was palette wood. Its weathered and rustic, green, and "all the rage right now" (for a lack of a better phrase... I hate that phrase). Plus, I knew I had some on hand, piled up in my parent's yard somewhere. See, my parent's house is kind of like the creativity warehouse, lots of just random supplies and tools, plus my father who can build pretty much anything.
Off to a good start! Dream Stone dream catcher for the background done in a wood stain pen.
I'm a night owl, I always have been. My boyfriend, Ethan can pass out at 8pm if he really wanted to yet my ass can't fall asleep until at least 11pm. Since he goes to sleep so early (to be fair he wakes up at almost 6am every morning and has to drive off Cape to work every day) I figured that's the perfect time for me to get to work. So fueled by many mugs of Bourbon and chamomile, vanilla, and honey tea, I set up our kitchen into a mini studio and burned the midnight oil for about a week.
The creative juice and more progress! Added the charm images to the bottom with acrylic paint.
A few nights of work and chit chats with Ethan and I's roommate, Jeff, who sat at the table eating his hot cereal at night, and I was done. Jeff ended up being a huge help at one point. I'm horrible with symmetry and the dream catcher is very symmetric so I was having a bit of a stress fest over it. The ring itself was easy, just traced some plates (yes, dinner plates) but the webbing on the inside I knew was gonna make my head explode. In between him complaining to me about how he can never make his hot cereal to his liking, Jeff said the magic word, "Stencil". DUH. Make a stencil and trace it. Duh. So I measured out all the meeting points and traced a stencil over and over again. And finally I was over that hump and on to the next.
Just one more coat of paint for the logo and I'm all done!
So once all the charms were painted I decided to sand them down a bit to give them more of a rustic look since they were really popping off the wood. I have to say, it came out exactly like I wanted it to. The last thing to do was place her logo in the center. To keep the lettering smooth, since painting on weathered wood isn't the easiest, I used an oil based paint pen I picked up at Michaels. It worked perfectly because I was able to write it on rather than paint it with a brush.
And the finished product! So glad she loves it!
Now that I am done with that, I am moving on to another small project for Tiffany so stay tuned for another Behind the Scenes post about that. This one was definitely fun and a good experience to work with some mediums I haven't used before. Every project is a new learning experience and a new opportunity to grow and understand your strengths and weaknesses.

photo by savvy-quotes


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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Twenty Fifteen

My boyfriend told me something the other day and it made me think. Mostly because hearing it from someone who knows me like the back of his own hand made the goal seem so much closer than its ever been. It's nothing that's difficult to accomplish, I'm halfway there already but I just tend to get "bored" of things rather easily (this is my third fourth attempt at a blog) and just move on to something else. Dumb, I know but I'm only human.
Anyway... we were sitting in the living room and he says to me, "You know what I think you should do now that it's winter? You should open an Etsy store." Duh. It's been a goal of mine for awhile now and I think this is finally the time to make it happen. I've been hindering it's process mostly because I don't want it to be a mishmash of a bunch of random stuff that doesn't make any sense. It needs to have a niche, a concrete "collection" of things that all relate to each other one way or another.
So thats why I am sitting here, writing this on my fourth blog now that I just birthed out onto the internet hoping it will help me kickstart this entire movement for myself. A place where I can post news and updates of my process to share with others who are planning on taking on the seemingly easy challenge of opening an Etsy store and to post examples of what may be in store and other side projects of mine.
So here goes nothing.