The newest additions to my shop:

Sunday, September 27, 2009

cheesy moment

I do my best thinking when I'm driving. Today on the way home from work, 'Unwritten' by Natasha Bedingfield came on the radio. It made me realize how important positivity and the braveness to try new things is to being successful in life. I felt very inspired:

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

So what's inspiring you?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Craft race

Once I've set a specific method for making a new item I like to make a big batch all at once. It serves three purposes: 1) it helps boost inventory quickly 2) I need to know how long something takes to make so I can price it 3) racing against the clock is fun.

I'm finally happy with how my recycled christmas card ornaments have been turning out so here is what I did Wednesday:
10:00 - start time!

10:47 - Picked out the cards I would be using from my collection, organized them into piles, and traced the templates onto the card fronts. I decided to make 12 as thats what fit on my table well.
1:12 - Cut out everything and laid out the pieces for gluing
Between 1:12 and 4:30 I took 30 minutes for lunch plus a 15 minute internet break (what can I say I'm not a distance racer)

4:30 - scored all folds, first gluing (attach floss loop and bottom), and second gluing (the cone)
5:30 - All done!
Final score: 405 minutes
Time per ornament: 33.75 minutes

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wow me Wednesdays - pirate edition

In honor of last Saturday being 'international talk like a pirate day' This week's wow me Wednesday is this sweet pirates vs ninjas checkers set by Goosegrease.

Look at those tiny little eye patches!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Craft 365 of the month - August

Craft 365 - day 131
Originally uploaded by candy_calamity

Today I hit day 150 of my craft 365 challenge - each day I photograph one crafty thing that was part of my day and upload it to flickr. On the Candy Calamity blog I'll be sharing my favorite picture from each month. These pink and gray earrings posted on August 24th are my favorites from last month.

You can find them currently in my etsy shop: here

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wow me Wednesdays - paper folding

As a long time origami fan and someone who does a lot of folding for my craft, I try to keep an eye out for new techniques to learn and things to try when it comes to paper folding. This week I found two interesting things.

First is this dramatic folding technique by Paul Haeberli

I haven't figured this one out yet, but I know I'll get it soon.

The second is
I found a great tutorial there for kusudama flowers which I used for my wedding, but I finally had the time to check out the rest of their site. Turns out, every tutorial is a great tutorial, I'll be busy with paper projects for weeks as every post they make is fun and irresistible.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Fall is in the Air

Although we have been blessed with remarkably cool weather here is St. Louis this summer, when I stepped outside today I noticed a change in the air. It was a bit crisper and fresh - I also noticed that the neighborhood seemed to have acquired a full coating of crunchy brown leaves overnight. Yep, fall is here, which means its time to get busy for the fall and winter craft show season.

From the candy calamity blog you will see a new show calendar I added to the sidebar. I'll be keeping that up to date so its a good place to check and see where to find me locally.

I've got seven shows planned this season, which is quite a bit more then I did last year, and I'm pretty excited to get going. Here they are:

Sept 19th: Grovefest
Sept 26th: Green Homes Festival
October 3rd and 24th: Towergrove Farmers Market
November 7th: Eureka High School Craft Show
November 14th and 15th: Edwardsville High School Band Craft Fair (tentative)
December 5th: Artropy by Showme Etsy

and the first show is this up coming Saturday, which means its time to get busy!!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Wow me Wednesdays - woollyfabulous

It seems like everywhere I look I run into another fabulous creation by woollyfabulous. She works mostly by felting recycled wool sweaters. But its her ingenious use of zippers and other embellishments that really wow me and take her pieces to a whole new level. Check it out:

Plus she covers the local trees with doilies - lacy trees are just wild!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wow me Wednesdays - fused plastic

This week for Wow me Wednesday I focused on upcycling plastic bags. Pretty much everyone I know has a big pile of grocery bags either under their sink or in the pantry or garage. It seems like they are everywhere. Even since I made the switch to reusable bags I still end up with bunches of them. I've been experimenting with fusing the plastic and making flowers from them. But here are a few neat-o things that other etsians are doing with their bags:

A knitted plarn Barrett by Stick to your Knittin Kitten

Eco-friendly wedding ware (it looks so delicate!) by VieModerne

These unique wired leaves by Emily Grace and the Yellow Suitcase

And this cutie owl coin purse by So She Sows

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Zen and the Art of Candy Wrapper Folding

I recently quit a job at a telephone research center. I quit because I couldn't make myself go there and make the same phone call asking the same questions over and over again anymore. This came as a surprise to me because boring repetitive tasks are my forte. I love counting things in large numbers, sorting, alphabetizing, and even stuffing envelopes. I think this skill of mine is the biggest key to the success of my business Candy Calamity.

I started making bracelets from folded candy wrappers while I was in college. Years later, when I thought about turning my hobby into a business, I knew that I would never make it unless I could create dozens of bracelets or more. Since deciding to go for it, I have make close to 100 bracelets, many candy wrapper coin purses, and even some purses made from folded potato chip bags. That equals thousands of tiny folded pieces.

So what was so wrong with the call center? My brain was forced to spend tedious hours thinking about things like satisfaction scores, efficiency quotas, and demographics. It was repetition for the brain, not the hands; a far cry from my beloved candy wrapper folding.

When I do my folding, my hands fall into a familiar rhythmic pattern, my body relaxes, and my mind moves beyond the worries of today. After a few minutes I no longer think about what to fix for dinner, what chores need to be done, or other mundane things. Instead I dream of future projects to be, the possibilities of tomorrow, or sometimes simply nothing. The allure of the daily moment of Zen is what draws many crafters back to their craft time and time again, be it knitting, cross stitch, painting, lamp working, or even making jewelry out of candy wrappers.