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Thank you to everyone who sent entries for the name contest via comments & emails.  I really appreciate it.  It was JUST what I needed to get the ball rolling with this project.  I didn’t realize until after I started this name contest, that it was actually 2 separate contests.  One for the items on Etsy, and one for the upcoming venture that I am getting ready to leap off into.  🙂 

Here is the master list of names for scarves and bags:

  • Love Runneth Over
  • Sweet Winter
  • Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • Fairy Wings
  • Candy Girl
  • Bubble Bath Bliss
  • Orange you Glad You Bought Me
  • Morning Sensation
  • North by Northwest
  • Northern Lights
  • Alaskan Summer
  • Alaskan Winter
  • Las Delicias
  • When I’m not here I’m cooking
  • What’s for dinner?
  • The Sweetest Thing
  • Dew You Miss Me
  • No Ordinary Garden
  • Fall Fling
  • Plum Passion
  • Savory Seaweed
  • Sweet Valentine
  • Sun Kissed
  • Alaska Bound
  • Sweet Home Alaska
  • Carte Blanche
  • Sweet Romance
  • Delightful Dahlia

Now all of the bag/scarf names can and will be used.  So that is great!  The harder part was narrowing the business name down to something more fitting…  I coerced my friend Laura (whom I am hoping to not-so secretly partner with in this business) to help out!

Drum Roll please…                                                                

Here is the master list of names for our new business adventure:

  • Synergy
  • Hearth
  • Synergy Hearth
  • Simply Handmade 
  • The Stash
  • The Cache
  • The Handmade Stash
  • MagArt
  • The Sewing Shack
  • The Sewing Shoppe
  • Simply Handcrafted
  • Fabrics ‘n Fairbanks
  • Needle in a Haystack
  • Patterns and Patches
  • Caribou Crafts
  • Boats and Totes
  • The Knitting Room
  • The Knit Stitch
  • The Sewing Machine
  • Sewing Destiny
  • Penguin Threads
  • Moose & Yarn
  • Heavenly Hemmed
  • Stitches and Stashes
  • Blissful Stitches
  • Mag Totes

What a list!  🙂  When Laura and I started looking at the lists, some names were very obvious contenders and others were definitely not.  Nothing too cutesy, something that suggests the content, nothing with our names, but something all artists can relate to. 

The final name:

The Stash: A place for learning and creating all things handmade.

Ta Da!  We like the fact that all artists, regardless of their medium of choice have a stash of sorts.  Whether it is pencils, fabric, glass, wood, paint, paper, etc.

What do you think?  I am anxious to hear from you!               

Who would have thought that blogging would be so, so, so….  competitive!  🙂 

I am smiling as I say this.  Since I started blogging, there seems to be an edge of competitiveness in the house.  Whose blog is getting more hits, why, etc? 

Yesterday, Thane had his all-time best day (thanks to me) in visitors to his blog.  You see I happened to be reading another blog & left a comment with his blog link.  🙂 

So, now we have to decide who REALLY gets the points for those blog statistics?  I am guessing it would be me, his loving & dear wife! 

I have been cruising along with Etsy today.  Got photos of all my bags done & loaded! 

Check it out if you can. 

Don’t forget that we are having a Name Contest too!  🙂  What is in it for you????  Maybe a new tote bag if you win. 

Thank you all for the emails & comments about Etsy, my blog & my ‘hopeful’ venture into my own business.  You are all dear to my heart!   

As I lay awake from 2-6 a.m. last night all I could think about were names! 

Nice huh? 

I came to the conclusion that my brain is not very ‘snappy’ in the cool name department.  So I am BEGGING for you help.  🙂  PLEASE!!!  Save me from my nights of sleeplessness…

So here goes!  I need some really cool-catchy names for my items that I have listed on Etsy.  I noticed that lots of the other sellers are very whimsical in theirs.  Here are the items listed and my dreary names… 

Now if you are not familiar with my bags, their shape stays relatively the same, their fabrics and accessories change.  If you needed to know that?  🙂 

I have also been toying with the name for the shop, if and when it comes to be.   Mostly because it is too cumbersome for me to refer to it as the ’boutique/lounge/classroom thing’.  I would like something descriptive about its nature.  Some of the ideas that I keep coming back to are:

  • Simply handmade
  • (Something) handmade
  • All handmade

I guess you can get the picture that my brain is NOT good with names.  🙂  So I am begging all of you, my dear cyber-friends, to help me come up with a name.  What is in it for you, you ask????  How about a brand new tote bag?  Made by little old me?  You can even pick your colors – OR – it can be a surprise to you!  Your choice…  So let the games begin, I guess I am actually starting a CONTEST

So let’s give it a deadline of Saturday, January 19th. 

Cheers!  🙂   

After much ado today, I FINALLY got my etsy shop up and running. 🙂 Yeah!

It is a super-cool way to buy/sell all things handmade. On Etsy, pronounced like Betsy without the B, you can search for local things to buy or national or international, but the basic premise is that they are handmade. Nifty huh?

Today was the day for me to take photos of some of my things (Yes, even at -20 degrees I went outside for the photos) and to figure out how posting them works. So I am anxious for you all to check it out and give me some feedback. Good/Bad/Indifferent. I will be posting more items in the store as the week runs on too. This week is so busy and it hasn’t even started yet.

The sewing jobs are rolling in thank goodness, so maybe there is potential to change things again and work from home AGAIN! Maybe if I was recieving health benefits at my ‘real’ job that would make a difference. You think? Nope, me either… 🙂

For the past 8 years I have stayed home with my girls, while my husband has been the breadwinner so to speak. Various things came my way during those years:
• MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) Support Group
• Started a home sewing business (Sun Berry Designs)
• ABC Preschool (Parent Co-Operative)
• Became an Educational Consultant (Usborne Books)
• Joined PTA (Parent Teacher Association)
• Facilitated a discussion group for Parents (Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Fairbanks or UUFF)
• Became a Community Resource Coordinator for my daughters Elementary School
My motto has been try anything that comes my way, give it a year commitment and then re-evaluate.

With all the changes that have occurred around here in the last 6 months, I have done more reflection than usual. Maybe that is because my current job (first one out of the house in a long time) is not quite what I anticipated. 

Ultimately the last 5 months, of working for someone else, I have seen that I am supposed to create my own destiny.

My husband is an architect, and very interested in sustainability. So we often have discussions about the environment, building designs/materials, etc. Lately I have been noticing the same concerns throughout other industries as well. One in particular area is in crafts & gifts. I am in love with the website What an ingenious idea! I am in the process of setting up my online store there. I will add links as I get that figured out!

Another thing of interest is the Handmade Pledge movement that is going on. These are all things that I have practiced (time allowing) so making it a campaign is amazing… The premise is that we are actually ‘helping’ the environment by buying local items and/or making your own gifts.

So what would it take to set up a ‘new’ business in my life? I think I would do quite a bit, to know I could, surround myself with handmade goodness all day AND create loving things for others too. My first blush as a dream would be to run a sewing lounge with a boutique on the front with local-handmade consignment items. Is it a financially feasible idea though? That is where I keep catching my mind wondering… I need to do more exploring on this I think, so plans are: Keep my home sewing business afloat, deal with my current job situation, do Farmers Market again this summer and keep networking with like minded folks, start taking some business classes and actually WRITE a business plan. Yikes…

I am hoping that my friend Laura would like to jump into this venture with me too. Can’t think of a better way to spend my days!

Wish me luck!

I Took The Handmade Pledge!