Friday, February 26, 2010

My First Cardigan

First of All:
Thank you everyone for following my blog. I am so close to having 100 followers which was my goal when I first started! My shop is taking off, and I owe it all to you guys!

I am starting my first Crocheted Cardigan and I am super stoked! Its my first garment EVER! I was so scared to start it and made sure to pick something that I would love and that wasn't too complicated for my first one.
I was thinking of making a child or baby sweater (thought it may be easier). I decided against it mainly because I would not be able to tell if it fit right. I don't have any babies in direct contact with me. Lots around.. but most are a day's drive and finding time to go visit would be a big problem.

I looked an looked and finally fell upon a sweater called Aruna. It is a Berroco Free Pattern... I didn't even know Berroco patterns existed!

It is beautiful and my style! I already started and it is coming along pretty well. I had to adjust the pattern a bit (I was losing stitches somehow in the pattern so my garment was shrinking).

Feel free to start this one up with me and we can compare results!

Here is my progress so far. I have been doing about 5 or so rows each day so I don't get bored with it.
Has anyone made a garment before? I would love to hear some tips... especially about piecing it together.. I am dreading that part.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Lunch Box Project Giveaway

I have been working with a Wonderful artist and etsy seller to bring another giveaway to my followers!

Lisa Orgler is a wonderful artist who has started The Lunch Box Project.
"The Lunch Box Project began on January 1, 2009 as a resolution to paint an image of food daily. I achieved my goal of 365 delectable illustrations and am now carrying on that tradition in new ways." says Lisa Orgler

Her Illustrations are delectable all right! Just take a look at these Tomato Cards! They come with envelopes and little stickers perfect for stationary lovers or a great home warming gift.

She makes more than just cards though. Take a look at these great recipe cards! The great news is they can be yours!

You could win a set of recipe cards from Lisa Orgler's Shop!
Best of all you get to choose which ones!

When Lisa first approached me and I took a look at her shop her recipe cards stood out to me the most. Mainly because when I got married my Aunt gave me personalized recipe cards (vintage of course). I absolutely fell in love with the idea of beautiful recipe cards that you can hold on to and pass down generation after generation!

Alright now down to business!
This Giveaway starts February 18, 2010 and ends February 25, 2010. I will announce a winner with in 1 week of the end date. I will contact the winner and send them over to Lisa to get the details squared away!

To Enter:
All methods give you 1 entry
  1. Visit her shop and chose your favorite item. Comment to this post telling me what item you like. (only do this once)
  2. Sign up for her newsletter! You can find out how on her blog: (only do this once)
  3. Start following her Facebook Fan Page. (only do this once)
  4. Tweet this:
@craftytortoise join the giveaway and win illustrated recipe cards! #contest #giveaway #blog #free

You can Tweet as many times as you want as long as it is the above phrase.

Good Luck Everyone!

More than one comment on any one post will not count towards multiple entries, but is welcomed. (only 1 entry per blog post)
I am not responsible for unrecorded entries due to computer or internet problems.
More entries does not guarantee you will win, it only ups your chances. Winner/Winners will be chosen at random.
Prize will be mailed to the Postal Address received after contacting the winner/winners. I am not responsible for prizes not received due to postal problems.
If you wish you can add your email address in your comment to make it easier for me to contact you in the chance you win.
Following the Blog is also advised. This will keep you in the loop and show you my latest posts.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

41 Listings and Counting

Being an up and coming shop on etsy I have been working very very hard on my shop. Improving it, updating it, researching it and more.

I created a new banner! You can visit my etsy shop to see it.

I have been reading and visiting the forums and have gotten a lot of advice. Once piece of advice I really took to heart was having as many Listings in your shop as possible. Most of the top sellers have at least 100 listings in their shops. So 100 different items to buy. I was very impressed and figured if I was impressed that other people were impressed as well.

So as part of my shop improvements I am striving to have 100 different listings up in my shop! So far I have 41, but earlier this week I only had 35. So six new listings is good... not great.

I will get there... it just may take me a while.

Friday, February 12, 2010

More Blogger Love

I received an email from a fellow blogger earlier this week. (by the way I LOVE hearing from fellow bloggers or followers) She didn't know how she got to my blog but was happy she did. She asked for some advice and for some help getting people to read her blog.

I remember when that was me, (heck that still is me) but I gave the advice I could and she ended up talking about my shop in her blog.

Don't you know I love when people talk about my craft! So go over and visit her blog. She has some great ideas!


Thursday, February 11, 2010

In Use

Every once in a while if someone tells me they are having a baby, or just had a baby I give a hat away. I don't expect anything in return.

Well the other day my husband came home and said that someone in his office was excited because he had just had a baby boy! I of course immediately went to my inventory and grabbed a blue hat to give to him. Well, I didn't think anything of it, but the recipient did. He just sent me these pictures!

I love seeing my items in use! Just makes me so happy to know that they are being used and loved!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Prices Prices Prices

I have been hanging out in the etsy forums lately (I got 2 sales from people in them too!) and I have noticed a lot of people talking about how pricing too low or too high can make a huge difference whether your shop is taken seriously or not.
So I thought I would take a little time to price my items and figure out a price guide.
I took into account things like:
Attachments (ears, flowers)
Design (if I create my own)
and Size

After calculating my prices now and breaking them down I realized that I was SEVERELY underpricing.
So I made up a chart and attached a price to everything and all of a sudden things looked better.

I am really excited about it my new pricing. It give my shop the availability to have discounts and will bring me a much better profit for my time. I also tried to keep my prices fair so that I won't lose any potential buyers.

I don't know if any of you sell your own crafted items, but if you do:
Anyone having trouble figuring out how much to price their items?


I was featured in another treasury today and just wanted to share.

Check it out HERE!

My New Crocheted Garland was chosen and I absolutely love the treasury anyway!
I loved this creation when I made it and I do have the pattern/tutorial on sale as well!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Monday Flickr Inspiration

I have been throwing around what day I was going to make flickr day. I knew I wanted to start sharing more flickr mosaics and I still do! I have decided after much thought to make Monday Flickr Inspiration day.

Mondays are Mondays and I know I have a whole lot of trouble getting up and moving let alone being creative. Sometimes we need a little push in the right direction. Here is where Flickr Mondays will really help out.

I started this one simply. I gathered a few pics of crocheted and other handmade garlands that are just beautiful. Leaving me to go... I wanna make a garland. (the whole purpose of mosaic monday inspiration) I am inspired! I hope you all will be too.
1. christmas garland, 2. new year garland, 3. scalloped fabric garland, 4. spring buds garland

Please let me know if this inspires you! Also if you create a garland don't forget to share it with me! Email me your projects and I will share them or just add me as a flickr contact and I will make your items into a mosaic!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Feel the warmth!

I am getting cabin fever! I can tell. I keep wanting to crochet warm things. I just finished 2 baby hats for spring. I am so ready for March!

Here are my new hats for newborn baby boys and girls!

They fit Newborn-3 months and I think they are absolutely adorable! I cannot wait to give one away to some of the prego women I know!
The girls hat has a flower attached with an alligator clip so it can be removed.

I love giving things like this at those baby showers where the mom chooses not to know the sex of the baby before hand. Its great because I bring the hat with the flower attached and when they find out they can have a boy or a girl hat! (and it is much more fun than just a plain green or yellow hat)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Hand Warmer Pattern FREE

I know its been a while since I posted a free pattern. Mostly because I am working really hard on my shop now a days. So to make it up to you I am offering you my Hand Warmer Pattern for free.

You remember this one. I posted when I made it and said it was coming for you for free... well here it is. It is in PDF format but the link is HERE!

This pattern is more on the intermediate level for one reason. You need to know how to do Around the Post stitches. If you have no clue what I am talking about skip rows 5-8 and just sc around instead.

As with all my free patterns it is not perfect. If you have major problems please contact me and if I can I will try to help you as much as I can!

Good Luck and Enjoy!

Don't forget to send me pics of your creations using my patterns! I would love to post them and share your creativity as well!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Love is all you need

February is here and man did it get her fast. I feel like Christmas was just last week.

I love that February is all about love (pardon my nerdyness)! Valentines day is just around the corner and if you are like me you just cannot wait to wear pink and smooch with your hubby.

But if you are like my sister you see the dark and scary part of Valentines day and cannot wait for it to be over (the curse of being single).
Either way I hope this mosaic makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

1. Love Cats Crochet Rug, 2. Love Letters Crochet Pattern..., 3. way back into love, 4. Crochet Rose, 5. Love - Snails, 6. love birds, 7. I love green fingerless gloves, 8. Love Chan in a Box of Love, 9. Fortune Cookie with I Love You Message, 10. Amigurumi Panda Love Love, 11. Love Letter Coin Purse - Front, 12. love tokens for sweet nothings, 13. ♥♥, 14. jojo and joseph 2, 15. Miniture Love, 16. First Crocheted Chocolates

Also don't forget to add me as a friend on flickr and start posting your photos of your great creations (they don't have to be crocheted). I really want to feature some of my fans!