Sunday, August 7, 2011

Weeeee're Off To See The Emmy's...

Weeeee're Off To See The Emmy's...

Happy Summer! I want to say first that I am probably the worst blogger ever! I haven't blogged since May, even though I had every intention to! There are just too many things to do! But even though I haven't blogged, I have been taking pictures of all of my Emmy prepping to share.

The entry I wrote in May showed a sample of what I was going to do for the Emmy's. After that I began ordering all the supplies I needed, including packaging, labels, new business cards etc. The first thing I started with were my notecards. I chose six of my favorite designs and began printing them at home on my Epson printer. I did bunches each day and it took about a week or so. Then came production day! I am sooooo lucky! My mother and my mother-in-law came over and helped me fold, sort, collate, stuff and label about 120 packages! (I made a few extra.) They were both incredible... With their help it only took a couple of hours. It would have taken four times that without them!

After the notecards were finished I started making my glass pendants for the necklaces. That would be the most time consuming for me. They take longer than you would think, because I am totally anal about them being perfect. I started by glueing the glass pieces onto my printed artwork. I have to use just the right amount of glazing glue and watch for unwanted bubbles. Too much will make for a lot of extra clean up around the edges and too little will not spread to edges enough and won't have good adhering to the glass. I hold the pieces down until they start to dry to the paper and then I weigh them down with books to finish drying. My coffee table books never had so much use.

Ready to trim
Once they were dry, I carefully cut each one out with an knife. I went through a ton of knife blades and bottle of Advil for the pain in my hands! During the next stage I feel like a dental hygienist. I scrape the glue off the sides like scraping plaque off teeth. I know it's a weird analogy, but it's what I think of when I do them! After that I trim down the edges until they are clean. Then I sand down the rough paper edges with my very fancy, expensive sanding tool, an emory board. 

Ready to scrape and clean edges

The scraps are cool...
When I am satisfied with the pendants, I tea stain the backs of each one with a photo marker, stamp them with a swirl (swirls are my most favorite shape), and sign them. The next step is glazing the backs. A couple of coats give it a nice shine and finally I can attach the silver bails that hold the ribbon necklaces. I absolutely love these silver bails I found on ETSY that are in the shape of a sun.

Tea stained, signed & stamped

Glazed and drying

Attaching bails
Once everything is completely dry I start choosing colored ribbons that go with each one and begin stringing the pendants onto them. Then they are boxed in clear front kraft jewelry boxes that I have labeled on the back. The clear fronts allow them to be seen in the organza bags I am using for the Emmy's.

Then it was time to put everything together and use my new business cards, bio sheets and tags. I did a little each day while I was watching TV. When it was finally done, I packed them into two boxes and I was off to the UPS store to ship them out!

And last but not least... I put together my display print with my favorite design "Be Yourself". I thought for a long time about how to display this print. I went through stages of brainstorming that included making the frame a piece of art itself, with wire and beads or maybe painted and decoupaged. But in the end, everything seemed to take a way from the artwork itself. I just couldn't find a frame I liked enough. And then, I happened upon this simple frame that was the perfect size and complimented the colors beautifully, and that was it! I replaced the glass with non-glare plexiglass and it was done. Much easier and nicer than I was trying to do before!

The whole thing is now traveling on its way cross country to The Artisan Group! It's very exciting. And, I also just found out that The Artisan Group received an email from a nationally-syndicated TV entertainment news show inquiring about the fabulous products our group will be gifting to the celebrities next month at The Primetime Emmys... which of course will include my notecards and jewelry! Yippee! 

The Artisan Group has been getting nice press and it's really wonderful being a part of them. I have decided to participate in the Oscars and Golden Globe Awards in the business card category. That means that my business cards will be in The Artisan Group's swag bags for those award shows. For the Emmy's I did the whole shebang... a display item, press bags and swag bag gifts. 

Now I have to focus on making more jewelry to sell, since most everything I have made this summer has been for the Emmy's. I am also planning on finally getting my online store up and running. I have to finish some more jewelry and take photos of every piece. That's going to be a huge undertaking! And of course, I have to clean my studio from the summer chaos!

Two last bits of exciting news I would like to share. First, the local online newspaper, the "Livingston Patch" will be doing a feature on me this month. I just sent them my updated bio and I am meeting with the reporter next week! And second, I had a meeting with a manufacturer two weeks ago about licensing out my artwork on different home products. I am very, very excited about that. I'll have more to tell when I know more! For now... enjoy summer!!!