Sunday, February 28, 2016

Custom Order Update and New Inventory!

So as you can see, while I have been sick in bed with endometriosis for 7 days, literally, I have been quite busy.  I have 5 new double sakuras made, 2 of which obviously not pictured.  On the bottom is the lovely custom order i am still working on.  They are now measued in equal lengths (not an easy task I assure you.), and have been taped with floral tape and are ready for thread wrapping.

Except for one problem.  I hurt my wrist trying to open a stupid jar of olives.

So tonight I am hoping to accomplish that big photo shoot and get all the new inventory listed for bookmarks, the 5 double sakuras, 2 kikus and anything else I have made lately.

But with my wrist out of action, its going to mean no kumihimo, no kanzashi, and a brace for the next week.  FUN. not.

Good thing I can still type in a brace.

So look for more store updates and such over the next few weeks.  Hopefully I can still thread wrap with the brace on, I need to get this custom order out the door.  But definitely more computer udates soon.

We are also still tossing around ideas as to what to do now that the kickstarter has failed.  Looks like we might be opening a store on the TZARTISAN website, for donations and to help those who donated to the kickstarter and did not receive their rewards.  We are still going to publish this book people! Kickstarter or not!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

TZARTISAN Still Going, Store Updates, Personal Stuff

Bookmarks are finished!
I have about 50 or so that have tassels and another 30 or so without. Some were just too big to leave space for a tassel.  Next up is photos and listings, which will take some time. I plan on breaking them down by tassel color and the variant patterns therein. Each bookmark has a different pattern, even the ones cut from the same paper set. It's going to mean a lot of photos, and a lot of photoshop. 

I also finished the small side piece that's part of my big custom order.  It came out awesome! And i have learned to balance the weight with these things petty well. It's the same color scheme as the two bouquet pieces, but for some reason the colors come across much more vividly than in previous attempts at photography. 
Custom Hair Clip

I still have a few pieces to put finishing touches on, like that pink and white kiku and a more casual round petal kiku in two shades of denim blue. That one is getting a clip.I need to do more clips.

And with the sale of two hair stick flowers, it's more inventory that needs replacing.  But exposure is way up, and my Etsy site is racking up the hits. So i am not complaining about replacing inventory,  lol.  And I have a ton of fabric in stock to work with. Good times!

It looks like big blue beauty is going to be sold off for funding the tutorial book project. I'll give details on that when I have them. That's all part of the TZARTISAN team development and ideas being passed around.  I would love to see her go to a good home. I was going to keep her, but she's more of a cosplay piece.  I don't generally wear stuff with a bira bira. If I had to pick one to keep, I'd remake my wisteria piece. Without a doubt. If I ever find the time.... not that THAT is a bad thing. It's been a good kind of busy on this end. 

Especially in personal areas.  I've had a lot of struggles with my insurance, but several of my doctors are going out of their way to help me.  It has been a challenge, but I am getting the services I need.  And with those doctors, we have made several breakthroughs that will get me back on track to better health.  
Ok fine.  I'll just tell you.  I'm a Type 1 diabetic, with endometriosis, and bipolar disorder. I have a slight PTSD because of my 5 year old hyperactive autistic son I have to watch constantly.  My husband and daughter are both severely ADHD.  My life revolves around medical stuff. 
So why do kanzashi?
It's my passion, it gives me something to look forward to every day.  Custom orders keep me going in life.  I don't care about the money, I never really did.  It's nice, but I always spend it on more supplies, more books, more projects.  Or sometimes I help out a friend.  Or I fund a tutorial book, lol.  But kanzashi to me, is something not medical.  It is a beautiful creation of meticulous love.  It isn't counting carbohydrates, or taking injections, or having 10 different alarms on your phone for keeping track of blood glucose testing, pill reminders, injection reminders, it goes on and on.  
Kanzashi is my escape.  Making people happy, seeing praise for my work, it's all I need to let the rest slip away into the background. 

Don;t forget the Kickstarter!!!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Kickstarter Fail? And Store Notes

Well, it's been a little over a week now and the kickstarter has pretty much failed.  Unless we can make 1,000 a day until the campaign is over, there is no way the numbers work out.  So unless I can get an internet miracle, I don't think it's going to happen. 

Glad I haven;t gotten to all those rewards yet.

The team is discussing what to do next, to get the book out there and published.  There has been a lot of valid debate.  There has been some drama.  I don't know what the future holds, but I feel I gained a lot of experience out of this venture, not to mention the contacts of several of the women that make kanzashi around the world.  I have already won.  I don't care if the book gets published.  It would be great if it did, but I never expected the kickstarter to take off and actually make 20k. 

too many bookmarks
So I am back to focusing on work and custom orders.  The pink double bouquet has had a small piece added to the set, a hair clip with 2 blossoms, a leaf, and small shidare.  So I have been working on that.  AND the bookmarks are finally going to make an appearance.  I ended up giving away ALL the ones I made at Christmas.  And they were all well received.  I have some legitimate bookmark tassels for accent, and just finished backing and trimming more than 40 bookmarks. Not a small task, as you can see by the photo.

******* Mini Tutorial on Bookmarks!*********

To make the bookmarks, I take a 6inch, 15cm square chiyrogami paper, and cut it into three.  Then I layer them on top of each other to make a sheet 6 inches wide and about 8.5 inches tall.  Then I cut THAT into another 3 pieces, 2 inches wide each.  Then I back them with a strip of colored cardstock and trim the edges with a knife.  Next up I will take a gold gel pen and mark the back corner of each with the store initials.  Then each gets laminated in a 5mm thick lamination pocket.  Make sure to leave a small space at the top so that you can punch a hole for your tassel or decoration.  Satin cording doesn't stay on very well, but ribbon or tassels work great.


I still have kumihimo waiting in the wings when this project is finished and photographed.  But I have been collecting washi paper for a while now, and I needed to clear out my storage.  Plus i think they might do well in the store.  if not, well, they were cheap to make, though time consuming. 
I still have more to go through as well.  But the colors aren't nearly as nice as these are. 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Kickstarter and Custom Orders!

Custom Order

Click the link for direct access to our campaign! We have all sorts of rewards including hair accessories (of course), craft kits, and major pieces up for grabs!!!!!

The picture on the right is my latest custom order, the design I drew up previously.  It's coming along rather nicely, and the colors blend really well.  There are thread wrapped gold accents on the leaves you can;t see. 

I have also been stocking up on my washi paper and will be getting back to those bookmarks fairly soon, hopefully as soon as the custom order is over and I have more of these kickstarter rewards out of the way.  I miss paper.  But it will mean I have to suck it up and get some bookmark tassels. It's not a huge amount of money, I just want to wait adn make sure nothing ELSE comes up between this project and the next. 

I am getting tired again.  Medical insurance has not been kind to our family this year, and we are having to pay a lot more for my diabetes supplies and insulins. But such is life, or suck is life, however you want to look at it. 

Another note of great news! We have offically shut down donations for the Elizabeth Comer Medical fund! We raised $850 for her medical costs! THANK YOU to all who donated, purchased from my shop, or purchased from Elizabeth's shop.