Thursday, September 9, 2010

Big News!!!! (Banana Papers preview)

Warning: Long post ahead!

After years of hesitation and lots of self-doubt, I've finally received enough encouragement to convince myself to make the leap and start selling my craft projects! I'm in the process of opening up a store on Etsy called Banana Papers. I will also be at my church's craft market in November. Getting the Etsy shop running is a little overwhelming at this point bc I don't get much time on the computer during the day and what little time I do get, it's taking me forever to learn how it all works. I'm not too knowledgeable on the computer! The craft market at church will be much easier (I think) bc I can just sit and visit with friends who stop by. No headaches trying to figure out shipping costs, etc.

Curious why I chose the name Banana Papers? First of all, I wanted something unique. This past winter, Lolabee and I were driving down the road and the subject of cookies came up. I had mentioned vanilla wafers. She said, "Banana Papers?!?" I laughed and said, "No, vvvvanilla wwwafers." That time she heard me correctly. For some reason, it just always stuck in my head. My shop will have no rhyme or reason to it, so that made it easy to need a name that wasn't too particular. It'll be colorful. No matchy-matchy things. And, because I always want to be fair with my kids, I guess you could say Cal plays a little part in the name too -- simply bc he loves to eat bananas. :)

I love crafting but always feel bad spending money to buy supplies to make one or two things, then having so much left over. Plus, after I make one thing, I always think how it'd be cuter if I'd done this or that instead. By making extras of these things and selling them, it helps me to maybe make a little bit financially as well as it gives me the excuse to create things. And, a portion of all of my sales will go to local mission work so that others may hopefully benefit from it as well.

So, that's that!

Below is my Etsy shop's store banner. After I made it, I started thinking it's kinda Napolean Dynamite-ish/MTV's Teen Mom. LOL I would have made it a little more elaborate, but I just couldn't figure out photo resizing and such, so we'll just go with graphics.

I just made the onesie above for my mom. It's too small for her, though. Hahaha (Just messing with you, Mom!) She needed a baby gift for a shower this weekend and it was for a baby girl. She's commissioned me to make baby gifts before but they were for baby boys. I've been dying to try rainbows for a while so this gave me an excuse. The cloud wraps around to the back of the onesie. I wanted the edges to be a little rough and the stitching to be a little imperfect -- kinda like a kid's drawing.

I started making these banners bc it gave me an excuse to use lots of fabric from my stash. I love fabric and have collected yardage and pieces over the years. Lately I've been buying vintage-inspired designs. The first banner I ever made was for Bee's bedroom. (Not shown) It was easy enough that I wanted to make more, but didn't really have a place for them.

I love to cook. These recipe boxes are inspired by one I saw last year somewhere online. The recipe card dividers are made from old album jackets. I've scalloped the edges to some. Each box has a variety of colored dividers. There's everything from country to gospel to symphonies to classical to rock. Some of the covers made me and KJ literally laugh out loud. Bad hair, bad name it. We'd just crack up. I did make a point to carefully cut each card so that there's nothing offensive showing. Not that I was buying raunchy records, but some of them had a little bit more risque, hippy-type of stuff that I didn't necessarily feel was appropriate. I actually really like how these turned out. They were definitely the most fun to make. The inside bottom of each box is lined with funky paper. The boxes are distressed to look like a recipe box great-grandma would have had on her counter. Each one will come with 8 dividers.

I like the dividers plain, but feel the need for each to be labeled according to food type, just like typical recipe dividers. However, each card was cut to show off certain aspects of the album jacket, so I hate covering it up. I am playing around with the idea of offering these style of labels. What do you think? They're just the right size, but look a little kooky. (No, they're not supposed to look like the people are talking....)

Lastly (for now) is a wreath. There will be lots more available in different colors and fabrics, but all will feature the same basic details. There's fabric and felt flowers with felt leaves, yarn, pearly beads, and lots of burlap; vintage-inspired fabric and doily are wrapped opposite of the yarn. It's meant to be hung where the flowers are sitting at about 5:00 to 8:00. The wreath is sitting a little crooked in this pic. I can't decide if I should come up with a ribbon/scraps/rikrak or something for them to hang from or leave them alone. Thoughts? My mom is quite dumbfounded by this wreath. I thought it turned out pretty cute but when I showed her, her first question was, "Is it done? That's all you're doing to it? Okay, yeah, it's...cute(?)." LOL I'm hoping others will like it a little better :)

(Mom, I know you're reading this and making excuses for your reaction. It's okay. You don't have to "get" all of my wacky ideas. Hugs!)

So, there you have it. A sneak peek! More to come, just haven't had a chance to tackle it yet. I know there are several of you who read this blog but don't comment. I'm serious when I say I want your input on this stuff! Email/text me if you don't want to comment online. I've never showed my stuff to anyone and I'd love to get some feedback. Plus, I need thoughts on the recipe card labels. I'm stressing about that!


bopha said...

How exciting for you and us! Ashley and I were just talking about how "crafty" you were. I love the wreath and I might need a banner for Harper's room. Looking forward to the opening of Banana Papers.

Tina said...

Okay, I do like the wreath. Are you sure this is the one you showed me? I think it needs something to hang by but what do I know I come to you for creative things, love all of your work it just grows on me. I love the onesies the best(if it matters)

Jamie said...

Thanks, Bopha!

Yes, Mom, it's the exact same wreath...!!!

AshleyAnn said...

I love it all! Just love it...I'm going to email you now...