Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Special Orders are Okay, Sometimes

Pacific driftwood with copper and red cedar wind chime, beach stone clapper.

There is much wood on our local beaches. But to find the 'perfect' piece, especially for a special order, is not an easy task. Seeing the wood packed beach, you think it should take only a minute, but instead it can take hours.

Sometimes people are hesitant to ask about having me make small changes to a completed work, or about special orders. It never hurts to ask. That's why I put information about special orders on my website.

I've done many special order projects. I recall very well the first one, which was a long time ago. It won't be forgotten by me, because it was complex and difficult. The customer mailed a large tube with drawings of what he envisioned, and I did my best to follow his blueprints. It was a challenge!

Since then, there have been many special requests. The vast majority are simply small changes to an existing work, and I complete them without any additional charge. Some I can tell from the start are going to be a ton of work, and I need to charge accordingly.

Other special orders appear at first glance to be simple, but turn out to be a great deal of work. For example, one recent one was a nicely open ended request: a nice driftwood wind chime. There is an enormous amount of wood on the beaches here, especially at this time of year. So you would think finding a suitable piece would be easy. It's not. I wanted to find the perfect piece. You can never find the perfect piece~ especially if you are looking for it!

After four trips to different beaches and many long walks, I found a piece that I quite liked. Now, after drying it by the fire, and doing the work to turn it into a wind chime, I like it even more. It wasn't the 'perfect' piece when I found it, but now it is. I hope she likes it as much as I do.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

More Wind Chimes

Wow! Another whole page of amazing wind chimes just added to my website!

How do I find the time to not just make these, but take pictures and add them to my site? Well it's not a hobby, or a little craft I do on the side. It's my job. Sometimes, when I put in twelve or fourteen hour days, it seems like my life! Not a bad life, though. Most of it is a lot of fun, and it's rewarding to make things that make people happy. You can learn more about my art and my life (and even see a picture of me working!) by clicking here.

Wish I had more time to write, but... gotta go work!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Wind Chimes Going, Going, Gone

Too late~ Gone! This is the third large wind chime to fly away this month. And I don't have many left. Just one, I think. Well, not to despair. I hope to get out and make some more soon. In the meantime, there are sure lots of other super nice designs and styles still available at my website. And one really nice freestanding large double wind chime.

Here on the West Coast, Spring is in the air. Little flowers are coming up. The days are longer. And I'm loving it! I do most of my work outside. So just imagine how nice it is to have warmer weather. And dryer. Even better, the late afternoon light is improving for taking pictures of completed projects. Those short, dark winter days are awful for taking pictures. So warmer, dryer, and better light-- I'm happy.

It's clear that others have their thoughts turning towards Spring too, as I see an increase in the sale of wind chimes and garden art. One more reason for me to enjoy this change of season.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Wind Chimes for the Eye as well as the Ear

The main wind chime page from my new website. Three out of nine already sold. Not too shabby, considering the site is not really indexed by Google yet. Nice to know people appreciate my work.

Messing around with keywords, linking, and .htaccess for changed URL's, and making more of a mess than a fix. Oh well, live and learn. Or~ learn from you mistakes blah, blah. Gosh, I must be learning a lot!

Still, I'm very happy. There have been some sales, and that helps to make it seem all worth it. There were many rainy days where it was nice to have an excuse to stay inside, too! Now the sun is out, so heading outside to make more neat things. Much nicer doing that when it is not cold and raining!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Stoned Out

From the Sunshine Coast, B.C. ~ Pacific Ocean Beach Stones
Stones, stones everywhere~ but where is the right one?

Funny thing happened the other day. A customer bought two of the same beach stone wind chimes, and when it was explained to her that only one was available, that each work is unique, she asked if I could possibly make a second as similar to the first as possible. Always looking for an excuse go beach, I said sure.

Well, the beach is full of stones. But very few are suitable for my wind chimes. And even fewer look even close to the ones in the the wind chime this customer wanted me to match.

So anyone seeing me down there picking up stones, rejecting them, comparing them, would have thought I was a real nut case. In the end, I found the beach stones I needed. She will have her two matching wind chimes. You can see more wind chimes like this at my website.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Wind Chime, or Sun Catcher ~ Get $15 from PayPal

Beach glass inspired cobalt blue wind chime with copper

Sorry. You missed another one. Shipped out this morning.

But there is good news! First, there are more wonderful wind chimes, sun catchers, and art for you to discover at my new website. Some even on sale! Even better. PayPal has a promotion where you get $15 cash back on any purchase $30 or over. Now that's a deal!

So why not check out the items I have already marked down by 40%, and then get cash back from PayPal?

Oh, the PayPal cashback promotion is good at any site that uses PayPal, even eBay. You can find out how it works here.

I don't know how long this is going to be available. You can sign up, and then you have plenty of time to use it (or not use it, as the case may be).

So that's the 'push, push, push' for today. But hey~ maybe you can forgive a little pushing, if it puts $15 in your pocket.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

'Push, Push, Push'

You're too late! You missed the boat! This one sold yesterday. But don't despair. There are more beautiful works at my website.

A reviewer of my blog just wrote they liked the ‘push, push, push to try to get people to buy.’ That got me thinking (oh, oh).

It’s tough making a living selling art or crafts. You can make all the amazing things you want, but if you can’t sell, the dog’s not going to eat.

As the reviewer noted with approval, I am upfront, and don’t sneak up on people. I believe in my work. It’s a big part of my life. it’s what I do. Along with pushing.

I thank the reviewer for not being annoyed and for an honest, thoughtful assesment of my blog and my new web site (the appearance of which has now been vastly improved from when he or she saw it— I hope).

Now if I could only think of more ways to push...

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Second Major Revision Done

After many (many!) hours, I finally finished the second major revision of my new web site. From starting off just one month ago knowing zero about how to do any of this, I'm now feeling pretty good. But a ton of work! I need to wait for the googlebots and other bots to come by and, with luck, do a better job of indexing. It would be nice if people could find me!

Sitting at the computer is not something I am used to, at least not for longer than maybe an hour at a time. To spend so much time in front of this thing has made my head feel like a big ball of cotton fluff. Even though it is raining, and ugly, I am going to take my pup out right now for a real long hike. Some fresh wet air~ I believe that will do the trick.

If you do take a quick spin over to see the new site, be sure not to miss the 'On Sale' page. Some really good deals!