Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I haven't been designing much jewelry lately. I just barely managed to keep up with my gift orders for Christmas, and now I'm in the middle of re-doing my office.

It used to have a relatively nice, textured, neutral wallpaper. As much as I hate wallpaper, I have to admit it wasn't the worst. But there were some fairly sizable holes that I could only cover up by strategically hanging things, which was great until the rat cage got too close to the wall one day and the little buggers chewed up the wallpaper. (Yes, I do have pet rats. And I love them.)

So I've decided to use my break to overhaul the entire space, starting with wallpaper removal. I started Sunday night, continued through most of yesterday afternoon and evening, and am finally almost done. My hands are killing me, but I have a little break, since I'm right in the middle of a 1-5 shift at the library. I need to finish removing wallpaper tonight, then run out to pick up paint. At the moment I'm learning toward Valspar's "Lip Balm."
Not sure if I'll stick with that once I see everything, but I know I want something warm and neutral, and that seems to fit the bill. I'm hoping to get everything painted tomorrow before I have to come in for my 5-9 shift at the library. It's then or never, since I'll be out of town for New Years Eve and in NYC all day on Saturday.
Also on my list of things to do before I return to my day job on Jan. 4: pick up a cork board to hang up behind my desk, get rid of all the stuff in my closet that I probably don't need or want, find a home elsewhere for non-jewelry related things, and find a phone with a built-in answering machine that I can hook up to our land line, which is about to become my business line. I don't want to use my cell phone for that purpose, and we don't have a phone hooked up to that line at the moment, because it exists exclusively for the purpose of providing us with internet access.
Hopefully by next week everything will be in order and I'll be able to get back to designing jewelry and get some more stuff posted on Etsy. :-)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Turning a Profit & Finding My Niche

Wow... so unless things go horribly wrong during the next 10 days, it looks like at the end of the year Mischievous Kitty Jewelry will officially turn a profit, after less than 2 1/2 months in business!

I'm not really sure how much sales I'll be making in January/February of 2010... I want to focus on photographing more pieces, fixing up my official website a bit, refining my bookkeeping methods, etc.

I'm also planning on funding my first Kiva loan in January. My plan is to fund a new loan once each quarter, and when each loan is repaid I will reinvest the money in a new business. It's really exciting to think that I can use my business to help other people improve their lives, and it gives me a little extra motivation to succeed.

In other news, I also think I have found my niche: custom orders. I'm selling a decent amount of pre-made pieces, but I've gotten at least half of my business from special requests. A lot of times people will see a piece I've already made, but want me to make it in a different color or different length, or some other modification. I love how happy people are when they see a unique piece they requested become a reality. It gives me that same warm, fuzzy feeling I get when I help a library patron track down a book they never thought they'd find.

That's all for now. Hopefully 2010 will be just as exciting and successful as 2009!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

First Etsy Sale!


I made my first sale on Etsy last week!

Still waiting to hear feedback, but I am hoping the buyer likes it. It was this fun little necklace with red, pink and black beads and a little charm with a picture of a bird on it.

My second craft show is this Saturday at Warren Tech, and custom orders just keep rolling in.
Right now keeping up with custom orders is taking up most of my time, but I should hit a bit of a lull after the New Year, so I'm hoping to use that time to work on building up a bit more of a web presence: Work on finishing my website, as well as getting more pieces listed on Etsy and budget permitting, do some advertising online. Perhaps I'll even get ambitious and try sending out press kits with sample pieces to a couple of magazines and see what happens! Of course... I need to put together something resembling a press kit before I can even CONSIDER doing that. ;-)

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