Birthday Balloons

My new collection in Move the Needke is all about birthday balloons. I was inspired by an image I saw of watercolor like balloons and decided to make my own pattern of balloons in various color.

This birthday card is perfect to wish someone a happy birthday.

You can also get custom invitations on this pattern.

How do you celebrate your birthday?

New Prints and Wall Art

Want a free printable quote? Just scroll to the bottom of this blog post!

I am now offering prints and wall art in my shop, Anna Leehey. The photos are mostly originally art, but I am also offering quote prints and cards.

I also relaunched my printables shop, Printables and Things, which will be selling digital printable PDF versions of the physical prints.

I like these printable quotes because you can print them out from home and use them in your binder, on your desk or even frame it as wall art. The possibilities are endless. If you want to see a blog post with ideas on how to use these quote prints, just let me know.

You can download a free printable quote here.

This quote says, “she created a life she knew she loved.” I love this quote because it shows how you can create any life you want. I have this quote on my Erin Condren and thought it was a good quote to giveaway for free.

Leave me a comment and let me know how you use prints.

Create Your Own Customized Products

If you love creating and customizing your own products, check out my new website for Move the Needle. 

  1. Find a decorative pattern you like.
  2. Choose an item to customize the pattern on.
  3. Select any other details or variations and checkout.

I am selling everything from notebooks to laptop cases. My Etsy shop is also restocked with a bunch of new items that I am hoping it will increase my sales.

Let me know your favorite pattern in the comments.

How to Write an About Page for Your Etsy

Have you written an about page on your Etsy shop? An about page is important because it lets your viewer get a more in depth look at your shop. To edit your about page, go to Your Shop > Shop Settings > About Your Shop on the Etsy website.

Members

Your shop viewers will like to see who is behind the shop. The members section allows you to include a short bio of yourself. You can add info about yourself, what your other job is, your hobbies or where you live. You can also add a photo. Add a headshot or a photo of you working in your studio. You can also add other members or people who work on your shop.

About Page

What’s Your Story? 

Every shop has a unique story behind it. Your about page lets you share this story to your viewers. Start with a story headline that describes what your shop is all about.

The story section allows you to elaborate further on your shop. You can write about how you came up with the idea of your shop and how it get started. Maybe you have an interesting story or reason behind why you started your shop. Maybe you wanted to raise money to donate to a charity so you decided to open a shop selling a specific item to start earning money. Maybe you lost your job and thought opening an Etsy would be a unique way to earn money. Let your viewer know what your shop is all about. You can also include info on how your shop has grown throughout the years or places you have been featured on. Maybe you were featured in a magazine. This is a good place to write about it.

The story page also allows you to add five photos. Use high quality photos that are displayed 760 x 428 pixels. Since you already include photos of your items on your shop page, include other photos here. Studio photos work well such as photos of you working in the studio or in the process of making your craft. You can also add photos from craft shows, places you’ve been featured on, displays or your items or group photo shots of items.

Links

Finally, there is a section for shop links where you can include links to your shop blog and social media sites. This will help viewers find you on other websites.

Etsy might allow you to work with an outside manufacturer. If you do work with a manufacturer to create items for your shop, you can apply to work with a manufacturer in this section. Etsy will review your application.

Grab my free printable for creating an about page here!

Be sure to share it on social media.

What tips do you have for creating an about page for your Etsy?

Etsy Shop Anniversary

Today is my anniversary on Etsy! I have been open since 2008 so it has been a while. Since it is halfway through the year, I thought I would do a half year review of my Etsy shop, Move the Needle.

My altered moleskines have been popular in my shop. I added some choices for decorative paper to alter them and black and white seems to be really popular.

I had a half off sale for all my other items, but that didn’t seem to pick up sales. I am thinking of rephotographing some items and adding some new cards I made.

Do you use Moleskine journals? If you have an Etsy shop, how are your sales sofar this year?

How to Sell Vegan Products

How to Make.Vegan Products

Want to make handmade products to sell that are also vegan to sell on Etsy or other paces? I always try to make sure my products are vegan and cruelty free o my Etsy shop. A vegans defined as someone who avoids all animal products including leather, fur, beeswax and other animal byproducts.These are some tips I use when making vegan products.

Source your materials.
When finding materials, check to make sure they are vegan. Do they use leather? Do they use beeswax or animal products? When bookbinding. I make sure not to use beeswax in my products. Beeswax is often used  on I Thread in bookbinding when using the Coptic story method to sew the pages together. You can find a vegan beeswax alternative, but usually I just do without it.

Check if an item is tested on animals.
Another thing to check whe sourcing materials is if a product is tested on animals. This is especially important for beauty products. You can also check for other details such as if the product is organic.

Ask if something is vegan.
If you are not sure if a product is vegan, ask the shop owner or email the company. It doesn’t hurt to ask or double check.

Can you sell food?
If you want to make vegan food products to sell, make sure it is okay in your state to sell food products and check for all the rules and regulations. It is generally okay to sell food on Etsy if you follow government regulations. Check this article on Etsy for more information on food products.

Consider packaging. 
Your packaging should also be vegan or eco friendly if possible. Will you use leftover materials to make your products more eco friendly? Is there a certain style you want for your packaging? Consider all these elements when designing your products.

Make a note that your products are vegan.
In your policies or about page, mention your products are vegan and don’t use animal products. Some customers may like to know details on a product and if it is a vegan.
Do you sell vegan products? Let me know your best tips in the comments.

How to Make Your Own Body Scrub

I got sent a few beauty recipes to try out. This tutorial will show you how to create your own body scrub with just a few simple ingredients.

Body Scrub

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sea salt
  • 1/2 cup Epsom salt
  • 1/4 cup finely ground cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Essential oils: Use 3 drops peppermint oil with 5 drops lavender oil for a “for her” salt scrub. Use 10-12 drops of sandalwood or Thieves essential oil for a “for him” salt scrub.
  • Optional ingredients: Use 2 ground bay leaves for a “for him” salt scrub. You can also add a couple drops coconut oil or vitamin E oil.

Instructions:

1. Mix all ingredients well.

2. Store in reusable glass jar with a tight fitting lid.

To use: Apply salt scrub to a clean body. Relax for 10-15 minutes with the salt scrub on. Rinse off and pat dry.

This scrub has many benefits. The sea salt will open the pores and Epsom salt will pull toxins and restore magnesium. The essential oils and herbs give benefits to the skin.

I really liked this salt scruv. I used it on my body when I took a bath after dry brushing to help release toxins. I also use it on my hands. I love the scent and way it makes me feel.

Let me know if you try this out. Have you ever tried making your own homemade beauty products?

Work Vibes

In the photo class I am taking, today’s challenge was all about capturing your everyday work life. I think studio and office shots are great.

I am applying for freelance jobs right now and these are some ways I stay organized with my resume and other files. Though it is a simple item, I love how it was captured in this photo.

These are a couple new shots of my paper craft products I am working on for my Etsy. I love the contrast of colors in these two photos.

How do you capture your work environment through photos?

Blank Paper Planner Stickers

Blank Paper Creations sent me some planner stickers to review. I want to get in to planning more so I was excited to check out this shop.

The stickers came in this cute package. I love the hand lettering used for my name on the package.

Blank Paper Planner Stickers

Blank Paper Planner Stickers

I got two kits including the Fall Friends and Blushing Beauty kit. I love the colors and characters on these kits.

This is one of the spreads I created with the Fall Friends planner stickers. I thought the stickers were well made and I love the designs on these stickers.

Have you ever used planner stickers?

How to Make a Vinyl Record Bowl for Record Store Day

Happy Record Store Day! Why not make a record bowl toncelebrate?

Supplies:

  • Vinyl: Choose a record you don’t want to listen to anymore and make sure it is not worth something (in case you want to sell it).
  • Oven: The heat from the oven will help soften the record so you can mold its shape.
  • Cookie Sheet: This is for setting your bowl and record on.
  • Bowl: Make sure it is oven safe. This should be the size and shape you want the record.

Instructions:

1. Put the bowl face down on top of the cookie sheet. Place the vinyl record on top of the bowl.

Record Bowl

2. Bake in the oven for about 8-10 minutes or until the record is soft enough to mold.

Record Bowl

3. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven, using your oven mitts. Place the record inside the bowl so it forms funky shape. You will want to do this quickly so the record doesn’t harden.

4. If the record isn’t the shape you want, you can out it back in the oven to soften a little and try to mold it more. I ended up making two records to try out different shapes.

Have you ever made a record bowl? Let me know in the comments how yours turned out.