The "Crafty Christmas" handmade gifts sale is running full-blast at Felicitous right now, and it is going great! I spent so much time the last few months crafting like crazy to prepare for it, and things are selling quickly.
Along with the annual favorites (T-shirt Journals and Geeky Earrings), I also made these super simple "Lucky Penny" charm bracelets--I used pennies from 1980-2005 since Felicitous is mainly a college hangout for the University of South Florida.
I was not confident that these would be a hit, but to my surprise they are one of the most popular items from the sale so far.
Making a Lucky Penny Charm Bracelet is super simple, and it makes the perfect Christmas gift or stocking stuffer for almost anyone you know who wears bracelets: give your mom a bracelet with a penny for each of her children's birth years, your lovey a penny from the year you met/wed, or just give anyone a bracelet with the year they were born. The hardest part is sorting through your change jar/couch cushions/car to find the right penny.
Because this is such a simple project, I dressed up the how-to presentation a bit by making a little instructional video. I hope it makes this quick project more fun for you.
November is just around the corner, and I have been madly creating jewelry and thingies and gifts for the 3rd annual handmade sale at Felicitous. A big seller from past years has been my mismatched trinket earrings--I make them from whatever random bits, charms, and dongles I have collected over throughout the year that didn't make it into another project. Pieces from thrifted board games are my favorites, and there are always a handful of Monopoly-piece and Clue-weapon earrings hanging off my laboratory bulletin board ready to be gifted.
Well, apparently everyone in my neighborhood decided Clue is boring, because the thrift store was chock full of the old mystery game. I grabbed a few for $2 each, thinking I would make some earrings out of the weapons like always. When I got home and opened one of the boxes, the game pieces were super detailed characters and the board was in perfect shape. Our Clue game growing up just had colored pawn pieces, and I was totally mesmerized by these miniature people. I couldn't toss them out, so instead I upcycled the game and made coasters out of the game board and wine glass charms from the characters.
This Clue Drink Set for Six makes a fun hostess gift for a murder mystery party, adds flair to board game night, and pairs perfectly with a viewing party for the movie "Clue," which is hilarious. Best of all, it is easy to make yourself and, with some creative adjustments, could be replicated with pretty much any board game.
It has been a suuuuper long month for me. The problem is that I am not very patient. Dave and I are buying a house (hopefully we will be closing on Thursday), and as soon as we decided what house we wanted I was ready to move in--we were already packed up, and what's a girl to do without her art supplies?
Like I said...it's been a long month. All I've done is pack, clean, and dream about the wonderful place our first home will be. I didn't feel like I had anything to blog about, because I didn't feel like I was doing anything interesting.
But alas! Now that I look back on the last month, there are some exciting things that I did (other than fall in love with a cute house)!
Our Savior ONE Graphics
Our Savior is a church with two very individual locations, three different types of worship, and four separate services every weekend. In order to cultivate a sense of unity within this unique congregation, the church joined all four services into one big worship celebration at the Palladium Theater in downtown St. Petersburg. We wanted to create a service-specific branding consistent with the church's existing logo that also signified what this service was all about--joining together as one body, as one church, despite differences in worship styles, age, and traditions.
While the service required an array of printed and digital designs, my favorite is a massive, 6'x9' banner to hang at the theater. It was awesome to see something I had made on my little 13-inch computer screen take up such a grand space at the Palladium.
Return to Instructables
I finally got the chance to post my Recycled T-Shirt Journal DIY on Instructables, and within minutes it was featured. About an hour after that, I got this email:
Which felt like this:
I used to be a fairly active Instructables poster, but after the gift-crafting marathon of Christmas 2011 my creative brain slipped into a paint riot and didn't create many things that merited instructions. I did make a ridiculous number of paintings during that time, which is wonderful, but it did mean my Instrucables account was left neglected. It feels good to be welcomed back with a declaration of popularity.
New Felicitous Mugs and Mailers
The ever-inventive Rani wanted to get some new mugs made up for Felicitous. The shop's logo was too busy for this particular application, so we decided to go with the simplified box-Felicitous we used for the store's t-shirts. After reading over the printing specs, I realized we could print on both sides of the mug! Yay! My initial idea was "BEST. PLACE. EVER.," but this catchphrase was quickly swept aside as being too cocky. Too cocky?! But it's true! I fought and fought, but in the end Rani was right: we didn't want to alienate other local businesses (that we love) with our fervent declaration of self-superiority. We settled on "BEST. MUG. EVER."
Rani also wanted to send out a mailer to people who lived around the shop. She wanted the postcard to be really eye-catching and colorful while showcasing Felicitous's eclectic interior and drool-worthy consumables. Since it's summertime we put the focus on our iced drinks, and I am proud to say that these mailers are consistently bringing new customers to the store.
Lastly (but DEFINITELY not leastly), I went out to Duxbury, MA to see my recent-college-grad lil' bro-bro and for my little sissy's graduation from High School and found two really awesome things:
1. This photo my Alenni-Sister took of Dave and I for her Darkroom Photography class:
2. A treasure bag of kaleidoscopes at a thrift shop.
Nothing like ending a post with a low-res cellphone vid, amirite?
Hopefully I will have lovely pictures of our new home to show you next week. EEEK EXCITEMENT.
The New Felicitous Website is LIVE!
I've been busy putting together a new website for Felicitous Coffee & Tea, and it is up and running!
Felicitous had been using their facebook page as a website for the past six months, so the shop was definitely in need of an online overhaul. It came together pretty quickly--it is so much fun to develop a site for a business with which I am already deeply involved. Rani (owner of Felicitous/awesome human) wanted the new site to be professional, whimsical, organized, and full of personality. It captures the spirit of Felicitous as well as giving a glimpse into the wonderful community that surrounds this little local spot.
I can often be found vicariously scoping out local coffee and tea shops around the country via their websites, and it amazes me when I get a real sense of what it feels like to stand in that coffee shop solely from their online presence. To capture the atmosphere of Felicitous, the zeitgeist displays a smattering of photos taken by customers using instagram. What better way to capture the spirit of the times than through the crowd-sourced lenses of camera phones?
Seeing the shop through the eyes of the customer has been enlightening for Rani and I as well--people seem to love drinks heavily laden with whipped cream, nerdy superhero mugs, and anything served in a mason jar.
New Hostel Life Headphones from OrigAudio
The Hostel Life always has something super exciting going on, and this past week was no exception. The new rolling article feed I helped design went live on the site's homepage, encouraging visitors to be a part of The Hostel Life's community of travel writers.
The creator of the Hostel Life, Mehdy Ghannad, is one of my favorite people to work with. Ideas for new avenues of advertising and partnership spill out of his brain like crazy; because of this, Mehdy always has requests for me that are just downright cool.
The Hostel Life is partnering with OrigAudio to make some super-sweet custom headphones as promotional giveaways, and Mehdy asked me to do the design!
I am going to feel so cool when I whip out this sweet ear candy on an airplane. My ears have suffered greatly since my old noise-canceling headphones broke--I have resorted to blasting my music through iPhone earbuds to cover airplane noise. Maybe, on a magical day in the future, I will be seated next to another lucky receiver of headphones from The Hostel Life and we can bond over our matching love for travel.
Like (seemingly) everyone else in America, I don't really care about Valentine's Day. I do enjoy being super cheesy and celebrating all kinds of loving relationships, so Husband Dave, Sister Alenni, and Me Emily did some new-fashioned love-locking for funsies!
In various parts of the world, couples decorate padlocks with their names and professions of love, lock the padlock on a fence or chain, and toss the key away as a symbol of their everlasting commitment. Because I work at the coolest place ever (Felicitous Coffee & Tea) and because my boss Rani is unbelievably adorable, she created a spot for lovelocks around a beautiful tree in the shop's backyard.
Dave and I are of course madly in love, and my lil' sis Alenni was visiting from Blizzardville, MA when Felicitous unveiled the lovelocks. I painted a lock for me and my sister as well as one for me and Dave.
Sissy is a talented songwriting highschooler, and she can play a ton of instruments. Our lock has music notes and a paintbrush (for me). Dave's soul shines when he is playing bass guitar, so fitting a bass clef and a rocket together was the perfect icon for us! The other loves of our lives are Nemo and StarFox, our faithful cat and dog, so they also make appearances on our lock.
Dave insisted that we put our lock on BEFORE ANYONE ELSE, because hey, if he is going to do anything even remotely romantic he is going to do it all-out. The night that the chains were installed (a few days before Valentine's Day) we ran to the store and snapped our lock on. Alenni attached our symbol of sisterly love shortly after.
Although that would have been enough celebrating for me, Dave surprised me with a little Valentine's gift this morning: and after-dinner mint found in his coat pocket. Awwww...that's love!
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