Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fall Metamorphosis---Owls Style!

It's Challenge time again! The theme of this challenge was centered around the changing nature of fall, and the only real rule of it was that the entered items either transitioned into seperate items, or had a secret component, or something along those lines. Our Owls took that idea and ran with it, and created some very awesome pieces! The slideshow below shows 2 photos for each entry.

Follow the links below to see each entry's Etsy listing for item descriptions and more photos, and vote for your favorite in the poll on the left!!!

Beornica's convertible stocking cap
CorkysCookies' 2 in 1 wall decor/clothespin bag
InkyPaws' Autumn/Winter Kitty
Knitandpearl's Starlight Metamorphosis Necklace/Brooch
Lalala08's Offbeat Corsage Bracelet
RemixStudio'sLove Clamshell Box
StripeyMonkey's I've Got A Secret Necklace
Zemphira's Owl Tree Topper & Puppet

Friday, October 24, 2008

Owl Spotlight, Remixstudio

Notes From Design Camp

By day, I work as a graphic designer at a small studio. A few weekends ago, I had the opportunity to go to Design Camp. Yep, it is pretty much as nerdy as it sounds. In actuality, it’s just like a lot of professional development conferences, with just a far cooler name. Design Camp is put on yearly by the Minnesota chapter of AIGA (http://www.aiga.org/) (American Institute of Graphic Artists, the professional organization for design.)

What did I learn at design camp? (I better have learned something, work paid for this trip!) Lots of things, like, designers are kleptomaniacs, and border-line alcoholics. (See below photo for what the combination results in.)

Actually, I did learn lots of stuff, and did some networking too. Besides brushing up on design related stuff, a lot of stuff relates well with my Etsy life too, such as:


Everything, and anything can be self-promotion. What, you say you don’t promote? You give talks and workshop? I repeat, everything is self-promotion, even if it isn’t the typical, “Hey, here is my card.” As a business owner, everything you do, you pretty much do as a representative of your work.

Why should you self promote, (other than the obvious of getting business?)

// build new relationships

// maintain current relationships

// updates on the business

// landing custom jobs, consignment jobs, etc

Things to consider when self promoting?

// What is my brand? Does my brand have a tight, cohesive focus? Is it recognizable and memorable?

// What do I want to say about myself?


Somewhere between the 60’s and now we’ve lost our imagination. Now, I can only assume the speaker was correct, or at least more knowledgeable in this than I am, I’m only twenty-four, all I know of my youth is large bangs, and stirrup pants. And I certainly know that wasn’t the peak of creativity.

Anyway, Brian Collins’ (http://www.collins1.com/) point was, language influences everything we do—using words like “kill, debrief, engage, etc” set this mindset that doesn’t influence the imagination. We can only solve problems that are presented to us. In the 60’s, the age of space, we were inspired to dream of things that had never been seen, or even fully understood. Language like “hope, inspire, problem-finder,” we can find the “problems” and use our imaginations to inspire and change things.

Now what that is, is up to you, and me, and everyone in between. One great question was asked after the discussion, essentially was “Well, going out and doing these really great impactiful projects is great, but what about the rest of us who are just stuck making crappy websites for regional siding companies.”* (This question maybe very paraphrased and/or interjected with my personal questions.)

I don’t remember exactly remember what he said (sorry, I’m a bad note taker!) But I think it’s important to realize, that if you have a job that doesn’t seem to be having the reach, or impact you want, you really do have opportunities everyday. Unless you really do work entirely by yourself, you interact with people everyday. There, on a smaller scale are ways to make an impact. Put a bit of yourself, and your views into everything you do, and everyone you interact with, from the smallest, most insignificant job, to the largest.

*Brian Collins worked on re-imagining this gas station in LA:

RemixStudio , also known as Liz, makes awesome bags from t-shirts in addition to some graphic design. Check out her Etsy shop and get to know her a bit better by reading her blog.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Owl Spotlight, WeiOpenSecret

If you’re like me, who enjoy crafting and using as many as non-toxic and eco-friendly supplies as possible, I’ve found some great resources to share. Enjoy and dig in – you can be green, too!

Twisted Limb Paperworks specializes in handmade, 100% recycled paper products, including recycled wedding invitations, business/corporate holiday cards, birth announcements, shower invitations, thank-you notes, programs, guest books, place cards, menus and favors. You can read about their Green Ideas, purchase their handmade paper by the sheet to create your own works.

Of course, Etsy is also a great place to find eco-friendly materials.

If you are looking for unique, modern, eco-friendly fabrics, Daisy Janie offers gorgeous prints and color combinations on linen/cotton blend fabric.

See Jane Work brings in Cocoina's Almond Scented Paste.

Used in schools in Italy since the 1930s, the $8 imported paste comes in a vintage-style silver tin and includes a stiff bristle. You can also get it in the form of a $3 glue stick for handy toting about.

Coccoina Almond Scented Paste is non-toxic, non-solvent, and acid free. Best of all it has the sweet smell and delicate flavor of marzipan, an almond-based confection popular in Italy for making sweets.

This glue is the ideal adhesive for scrap booking,

mounting photos and other crafts.

Or try
Stick with your Beliefs.

Creativity is good for body, mind, and soul. Looking for more selections of environmentally friendly products? Check out

Wei runs Wei's Open Secret -- a fun mix of different jewelry styles and gorgeous items like the sweet Choo Choo tags! Other than her Etsy shop, you can also find her at her blog

Breast Cancer Awareness with the Etsy Owls

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we decided to create some items and sell them in our team shop to benefit breast cancer research. 100% of the proceeds from these items will go straight to charity. This is a cause that means a lot to us, and we hope we have done it justice with these items.

Click on the blog post title or the link to our shop above to see these pink items, learn more about the individual sellers, and to get in on our cause by buying your favorite pink item!


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