Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I spend a good deal of my day in the Etsy forums. I admit that it is generally when I should be focusing on my day-job, but it is a nice way to break up the monotony of the entry-level work that I have to do because we're so short staffed.

Etsy announced yesterday that the current CEO is leaving and a previous one is coming back to the position. In all honesty, it doesn't mean much to me, insofar as I've had an account for about two years and have been selling for even less time than that. I know that any change this company makes will affect me, as I am a customer, maybe even saying a client is more accurate, of said company. But I didn't think too much about it since it was announced. I've only known Etsy under one CEO, and I didn't even know who that was until the announcement that she was leaving (this should say something, actually).

Maybe in a bit of coincidence, the day-job also recently announced a change in CEO. This affects me greatly, as this man is also the company founder, my father has worked for him since I was twelve years old, and I know for a fact that his "retirement" was not a choice move. What this means is that, when he bounces back, and he will, I will be there to support him. My loyalty is not blindly with the company, it is with the former CEO, because I know that he cares about his people and I know that the interim CEO cares about money.

The financial recession hit this company hard. Federal interest rates have a direct relation to our bottom line. We laid off people. When that wasn't enough, all remaining employees took a percentage pay cut. We know that it was either that, or more lay-offs, and the CEO told us directly that he was not willing to do that. I know that he cares about his people.

What does this have to do with Etsy changes?

Well, the new CEO, Rob, announced that he wanted to bring Etsy out of the retail focus and back towards the people. It makes sense: sellers on Etsy are not one big retail corporation; we are all individual, independent artists, designers, crafters, and people with an eye for quality in things that have passed their initial popularity. Etsy should be about people. It is a wonder that it can be anything but.

Today, Rob posted a thread for all the Etsy Admins to come in and say a few words. The forums exploded, but not like they did when Etsy forced the orange gift guide button upon us, but with calm smiles and heartfelt joy. Here, here, and here, and there may be more I missed. Everyone is happy, giddy, smiling. There was a connection to people in the forums today, beyond what happens in the day-to-day.

Even though I don't have memories of a younger Etsy to go on, there was something different about today. I love seeing Admin in the forums, even when they just come in to close a thread. It's like seeing my boss do actual work instead of just dictating. But today, they descended on the forums, gave us quotes to think about, made jokes, and responded to the threads we started talking about their presence.

Today was a good day to be in the forums. If this is the new direction that Etsy is going in, I'm happy to be along for this ride.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Magical World

I couldn't resist making another treasury! I filled this one with elvin and fairy-type things for a touch of magic. Enjoy!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Gnome Sighting!

I don't search for these things nearly frequently enough. (I suppose part of my brain assumes a blogger or shop keeper will tell me when they mention something of mine.) In any event, this fabulous blog by merigreenleaf mentioned my Red and Green Jingle Gnome a few weeks ago. Yonder:

My Gnomes are well traveled!

I'm in a Treasury

Check out these awesome trees!

What a lovely thing to wake up to!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sylphs Have Landed

Sylphs, airy cousins to the earthy Garden Gnomes, are here! There are two in the shop right now, and I have a few more to put up.

Sylphs are air elementals. The breeze that rustles your hair is a Sylph who wants to play! They love hide and seek and they have the very special task of carrying raindrops to thirsty plants everywhere!

These lovely little sprites could also be called fairies or angels, if you like. Have a look!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Writer's Block

Some of you may be able to relate to this. I am a writer. It is a hobby, but still true. My preferred genre is fantasy, though I go into sci-fi on occasion (I've currently got a steampunk-ish story growing too). I am always coming up with new ideas, new places and creatures and tales jump into my head all the time. I think I have three stories that I'm mainly working on right now. I am always writing something. And, if I'm not writing, the stories - what has gone on before and what will happen in the parts I haven't reached yet - are constantly playing in my head. Each tale has gobs and gobs of support info: details that make the world of the story what it is, but may never actually come out in the story itself.

If you're like me at all, you probably need something to write all those notes on. I tend to type the narrative, but I take notes on everything. It sounds like I need a good story journal, doesn't it? The only problem that I have with nice journals is that I somehow have it in my head that they need to be filled with something special, that my random notes and story thoughts aren't good enough. I'm working to get this mindset out of my head, because a beautiful blank journal is a sad thing, just like a doll who spends her life in a box and is never played with (and I should know about that, being a doll collector).

It was a post on the Etsy forums that led me to the wonderful work of Awaken Journaling. She was talking about clever item descriptions, and mentioned something that she used in one of her lines of journals. I had to check it out, and both of the items she had in this line were awesome.

I am talking about the Apocalypse Journals. These wonderful books of possibilities featured stained pages and rugged leather covers, meant to look like they've been through the Zombie Apocalypse. The part that the forum post was referring to is worth quoting, "They're also an essential in a post-apocalyptic world! Use it to draw maps of safe routes, keep track of food rations, or just to relax and doodle after a long day of zombie fighting." Don't you think you need one?

She had two books of this style posted and I wanted them both! I didn't have the funds for both, though, and I debated with myself over which one I liked more. When funds to buy one became available and I still couldn't decide, I sent probably the oddest question that anyone has ever asked a crafter: "I love them both, but I can only get one, which do you think I should get?" Indeed, if someone posed such a question to me about my Gnomes, I'd have a hard time answering! To make it worse, she compounded my dilemma by listing two more!

In the end, I went with my first choice, the Apocalypse II. Simply put, the cover of this journal is the most awesome piece of beat-up leather I have ever seen. The pages were stained with tea to look old and worn. I've stained pages with coffee before, I think tea works much better! Even with my new journal in hand, I still couldn't write just anything in it.

A couple weeks later, she posted another Apocalypse Journal, held a Black Friday sale, and I got paid. Before I really knew it, Apocalypse I and V were on their way to me. These two looked even more rugged, each with a piece of black on the brown that creates a kind of pocket.

Now, the issue here is that I claim a journal, and a good friend of mine is going to get one for Yule, and the third is unclaimed (so, technically mine) but I don't know which I want to keep the most and which I think my friend would like the most.

At the heart of this decision are the totally awesome journals at Awaken Journaling. If her journals were not so awesome, I would not have this problem! If you are in need of a fine place to write your thoughts, stories, notes, or tally your total number of zombies slain to compare with your buds, you will not be disappointed by checking her out! She has a new line of Pamphlet Journals, and I know I need an assortment of those!