12.22.2016

11 Best Selling Craft Categories

Trying to figure out what you could sell to make a little extra income? Here are some of the more popular choices.

Remember, though, to be distinct.  Research and design beforehand - stand out from the crowd.

Some of the Best-Selling Craft Categories



Sewing, Looming, Knitting






Potholders
Personalized Towels
Placemats
Curtains
Baby Clothes





Themed Wall hangings
Throws
Quilts
Scrunch Scarves
Wool or Rag Rugs
Saddle Blankets
Tote Bags
Clutches, Totes or Purses
Diapers
Napkins

Home Decor Products always sell well.  

Pottery
Candles
Paintings
Tapestries
Birdhouses
Painted Gourds and Baskets
Bedroom and Bathroom Decor
Window Frames
Ornaments
Sculptures
Wind chimes
Wood Carvings
Stained Glass
Garden Decor

Paper goods

Journals
Greeting Cards
Origami

Lawn/Garden Ornaments

Windchimes
Water Plants
Hand-made Pottery
Fish Pond Décor
Lawn Furniture
Archways & Trellis

Pets

Beds
Pillows
Collars
Toys
Jewelry
Costumes
Carriers
Food and Treats

Jewelry:  popular all year long but especially during the holiday season

Beaded
Sterling Silver
Earrings
Leather
Southwestern  and Western
Belt Buckles
Ankle Jewelry
Wrap Bracelets

Edibles

Pet Treats
Coffees
Herbal Teas
Biscottis
Spices and Seasonings
Cookies
Cupcakes
Pastries
Dried Herbs
Jams and Marmalades

Cater to Kids with things like

Doll Furniture, Houses & Clothes
Wooden Toys
Baby Clothes
Blankets
Stroller Covers
Baby Art
Kids Wall Decor
Baby Jewelry

Leather and Sterling Silver:

Leather:
Belts
 Wrap Bracelets
Lariat Necklaces
 Wallets and Purses
Sterling Silver: Necklaces, Bracelets and Earrings
Buckles
Silver Rings
Purses and Totes

Bath and Beauty:

Bath Salts
Handmade Soaps
Bath Muffies
Natural Perfumes
Skincare
Lip Balms & Glosses
Mineral Makeups
Eye Pillows
Organic Lotions


Woodworking:

Signs
Housewares
           Flower Boxes
Kitchen
Outdoor Furniture
Toys
Woodburned Art and Sculpture
Rocking Horses

12.17.2016


An Excerpt from The Sacrifice of the Sage Hen

by Susie Schade-Brewer
Published by Swimming Kangaroo Books (2009)

PROLOGUE



Deep in the woods, a scream pierced the night, lifting
through the trees toward the sky. It was
shrill and enduring, a scream of pain and agony. Minutes later,
there came another scream and then another. Like echoes in a canyon, they bounced off snow-capped mountains, to finally be
swallowed up by the denseness of the pines.

With each outcry, the timid and frightened deer stopped
their late-afternoon feeding, lifted their heads, and flitted their
eyes in nervous uncertainty. Squirrels halted only long enough
to acknowledge the unfamiliar sound, then re turned to their
raucous harvesting. Overhead, an eagle mocked the sound and
circled cautiously, his eyes fixed on the ground and everything
happening there.

None of these wilderness sojourners had ever heard this
sound before, and chances were good they never would again,
so they regarded the screams with only passing wariness. For
Micah Fremont, though, who rushed on moccasin-ed feet
through the forest, dodging obstacles to maintain steady footing,
the mission was different. Caution be damned—he couldn't get
through fast enough. Darkness would cover him soon.

Inside a cabin built of sturdy cedars and insulated tight
against the mountain's elements, an orange glow from a hearth
cast across the room. Over the dying flames hung an untended
coffeepot. Steam rose from its spout until finally it emptied, and
the smell of burned chicory filled the room.

Synopsis The Sacrifice of the Sage Hen

Book Synopsis:

Have you ever wanted to write your own Great American Novel?  Learn how to get started here.

*******

The Sacrifice of the Sage Hen

A Novel of the American West, 1859 Missouri

The people are restless - the effects of prejudice and hate.  Blood has already been spilled, and now there is talk of war.... a War Between the States!

The Town of Independence Missouri has become a hub of activity as hundreds prepare for their exciting journey to Oregon. This spring's wagon train, piloted by Peter Chastain, plans to pull out as soon as the grass is long enough to keep the stock fed and healthy.  And none too soon for the violence of the border ruffians has come too close for comfort.

Full of spirit and restless rebellion, Charlotte Mary West hates that life is moving on without her, and she is not remiss to let the whole world know she is NOT happy!



She longs to break free of the restraints of her arranged marriage to a man she describes as "adventurous as old hay" and his expectations that she act like a proper lady. Nothing proper about her!

Her passion is for adventure –to return to the much-loved mountains where she grew up - to live and discover the meaning of life for herself.

If that isn't enough to make her unhappy, she learns that her beloved and esteemed father, mountain trekker Fremont West, has hired on to scout for Peter Chastain's wagon train. And her best friend, Matilda and family, have joined that same wagon train!

Everyone is leaving and moving West but her ... they will be living her dream. Unfathomable that of all people, she is the one who will be left behind!


Then tragedy strikes and she is left a young widow with no means of support, and soon to become a mother.



¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨¨¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨¨¨¨°ºҨҨҨº°¨¨

Dirks Braelen is on the run from his life as a hired gun in Texas. He's ready to hang up his holster, stop killing for a living and try to find peace for his tormented soul.

He may be ready to leave his old life behind, but two brothers whose lives he devastated in Texas may not allow that to happen.

Hatred for the man responsible for their parents' death fuels a deep, uncompromising ache for Revenge! That ache takes them 500 miles into Kansas Territory to exact it -- and they will have it, no matter what the cost!


***

Two people who share one commonality -- a search for happiness and the meaning of life -- will they find it in each other?

He wants to escape his past. She's trying to escape the present.

Possibly they will find the answer they seek skillfully woven into a tale told by Charlotte's father. The secret? The sacrifice of the little sage hen.


Written by Susie Schade-Brewer
Released in 2009
Published by Swimming Kangaroo Publishers

Available at Amazon  in Kindle or Paperback.


Click here to read the Prologue of The Sacrifice of the Sage Hen




11.07.2016

The Secrets Of Choosing A Good Business Name

Witty is Good, but Will People Know What You Do?

You finally have decided to take the plunge! You've been contemplating this for a long time, and now the time is perfect to start your own business. You just know the prospects and possibilities are endless.  

But what will you call it?

Choosing an effective name for your business can be as crucial as the service or product you supply. So important in fact that it can either make or break a business, sending you into forever

10.28.2016

7 Unsafe Herbs for Dogs and Cats

Oh my my, how we adore our pets. We hate when they hurt or are miserable from fleas or dry skin or some other pesky problem. And while we may have our favorite herbal remedies to medicate ourselves .. I know I do .. pets may react totally differently to the very same ingredient.

Before treating your pets, a good rule of thumb is to first be wise about what it is that is ailing them.  Incorrectly diagnosing and then treatment can be disastrous for our little guys.  Small animals have a shorter digestive system than we do, so

10.24.2016

Rural Entrepreneurs | Making It In The Wide Open Spaces

As anyone who has done it knows, living in a rural area can be both rewarding and challenging.  Each new day may present new hurdles. Questions.Unexpected hardships. Unfamiliar horizons to explore.

But living in the country can also provide opportunities that some living in more confined areas may not have. 

In fact in recent years, many rural women have taken advantage of their land and circumstances to set-up and run a business of their own.

9.11.2016

Is Etsy a Good E-Commerce Platform?



I’ve been using Etsy as my e-commerce venue now for about 5 years. I set the first shop, Cool Creek Designs, up in 2011, the second, Country Chic Shoppe, came in 2012, and the third KnobSnobbery, in 2014 ... well, it was 2013, but I revamped it completely so it was actually 2014.

sell crafts, start craft business
Can You Turn a Hobby Into An ECommerce Shop?
I have always been a crafter, so doing things with my hands came naturally. But selling them? ... well, that was a whole new can of beans!

I saw a piece on the Today show with a gal who gave advice on selling your own crafts, and the venues you could use to do that. I’d never heard of Etsy before, so was excited to check it out.
 
Well…it has been a slow go.  And in all honesty, I cannot say that it has provided me with a great income.  After 5 years, my first shop has only sold a little under 500 items. Nothing to boast about there.  As the experts on Shark Tank have been known to say, and I had to admit they were right, “This is not a

Ever Wanted to Write Your Own Great American Novel?

It is the great American dream - to write your own novel and see it in print. Better than that, to see it listed on the New York Bestseller List!

It is estimated that one in 1,000 manuscripts written will get published.  And of those, a minuscule number will hit the best seller list.

But that's no reason not to try.  If that story lives within you, as it did within me since I was 7 years old, it absolutely must find its way out of the darkness and into the light.

My best advice - with persistence and hard work, you can beat the odds!

Here's how you do it.  Step One:  Begin.

Yup, simple as that ... make a appointment with yourself, plant yourself down into a chair, and just begin.

That may sound trite, and perhaps a little simplistic, but whoever writes a story without just beginning?

Writers have an innate instinct about the stories that live inside them.  At this point, don't even worry if it would sound good to an editor.  Just get a notepad, or clear your desk before the computer, and BEGIN.

9.10.2016

How to Distress Wood For Shabby Chic Style | DIY Crafting

The process of "shabby'ing" up your favorite piece of wood furniture or decor is not at all difficult, and the end result - that beautiful rustic appearance - is always fabulously delicious.

Distressed Vintage Jewelry Box
Painted with Ivory Chalk Paint
I've been distressing jewelry boxes, jewelry organizers, pictures frames and decor for a while now.  I have learned it's not always easy on the hands, especially fingernails, so I recommend you wear gloves of some sort.

Since most of what I work on is fairly small wooden pieces, I use rubber gloves, and a lot of the time just on my right hand.  A glove just makes life easier and keeps my hands looking "church ready."

Remove Gloss and Shine

The first thing you will have to decide is if the piece you will be working on has been finished with a glossy finish from shellac