Wednesday, 26 January 2011

The Bristol Creative Massive

Time to get the ball rolling, methinks.... so many of us all creating such gorgeous stuff - and all of us different yet complementary, exciting, diverse and utterly original! And of course, all of us Bristolians! Yet, so many of us struggling just to get seen or heard. So, now is the time my friends, when we shall all work together and promote one another. There will be quite a lot of online work initially, but it will pay off in more exposure. We (As in Innerspiral) have just been promoted to etsybloggers which means our site will soon be potentially seen by over 350 people a month... and we shall link our site in to your others....

Here is my plan:
1 - I shall begin a new blog called The Bristol Creative Massive, and message privately those involved the login details.
2 - on that blog, we shall begin by posting as many of our own links each as we have
3 - we shall then, all of us, click on each others links and make ourselves useful, ie follow a blog, leave a comment, favourite a website, tweet and facebook links... any action you can think of, is good
4 - anyone who has a business website or blog should link into the new one for The Bristol Creative Massive (hereafter the BCM ! ) and add as many of the partakers as 'friends' as possible - links, connections, networks!!
5 - If you're not already on twitter or flickr and you fancy joining to big it up to a wider audience, or any other social networking site, then go for it! Then post on the blog to let us all know.

This is just for getting going people! We can do anything if we work together. Power in numbers - the hardest part is just getting started...once the ball is rolling it will pick up speed....Any one with any ideas, post them on here too. I don't want to be a leader, I'm just a firestarter, this belongs to all of us xx

ooooh, ooh, we need a logo, who's good at that?x

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Handspun Fun: It Does Exist

Handspun Fun: It Does Exist

check it out we've been featured on Traceyknits blog - oooh so exciting and the yarn does so love the attention... hope it doesn't get a big head!x

Friday, 14 January 2011

on the road again...

Yes it's me and pig in the fattie van :) driving home from Brighton where we went to take Dave and Gemma's stuff back to them... now it's us driving to Bristol to go and move all our stuff - out of the mould and into the fresh, free air of Linden Lawns! Hoo-bloody-ra! 

Been listing on Etsy like freaks the last week or so. There's so much that it is neccessay to do if you want an online business which works. So far have figured out
1 - you must be ACTIVE, i.e. get on the Etsy forums, have a blog (check!), list every day..., twitter, facebook, blah blah and it must all link up. Hoping to get Flickr sorted out soon
2 - you must have photo's that look like they just came out of a magazine, even if that magazine is called 'Hippy Today'... otherwise people just don't see them. They can't - too much conditioning in this slick slick shiny world. So we got a mannequin (cats do NOT like posing for photo's) and we're going to get a jewellery hand next too for bracelet displaying. It's all got to look right. Luckily at Lawns there are, well, lawns... and a pond and trees aplenty for us to have a beautiful pixie setting for our lush pixie products to get a stylish photo shoot...
3 - everything has to link up - you must have a brand that works for you. So we are the Innerspiral brand. We think our image works well for us - it's simple, recognisable, monochrome and stark, effective. It does sum up who we are, which is why we chose it and the name - simply put, we're trying to evolve ourselves and our life paths up the spiral, be who we choose and not conform - work in spirals, not straight lines! Plus, spirals is what we do - hula hoops, spinning wheels, record decks, felt making - spin spin sugar!
4 you gotta have products that are innovative, different, beautiful, are complementary to each other, work together, provide a choice for a customer, don't overlap the competition too much... find your niche and work it baby
5 Promote yourself but don't spam... be brave and a bit more pushy than you would normally feel comfortable doing, perhaps.... after all, its faceless, the internet. So we have a signature on our email linking to our Etsy shop, and we are looking for sites to link into for more promotion opportunities... this is something we're still strugling with, to be honest!!
6 Don't stop doing markets! Don't do too many either-they can be a massive waste of time and creative energy. Find the ones that work for you - for us, it's specified craft markets - and stick at them, build a reputation, get your faces and product known - and relentlessly promote your online activities...!

That's about as far as we've got. We're not expecting miracles - after all, it is January! We're just trying to get all polished up, spick and span for when shopping levels do start to resume their normal pace.

I made a treasury on Ety which was so much fun, it's called Pixie Wonderland! But of course! Check it out here if you like...

Think will make another one soon, maybe make one on the Bristol Creative Massive I think.... after all, this city is humming with creative explosion, it needs to be seen by the world! It aint just Banksy who's a good artist from these here parts we'll have you know!

Treasuries are good cos although you don't put your ow stuff in them, it gives you a way to communicate with fellow sellers, the ones whose stuff you really like, you get to big them up and then tell them you've done it... then hope they return the favour if they like your stuff!! 

Approaching Bristol at Fattie speed... so over and out for this cat and pig until next time

oink squeak miaow!!

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Artisans in the Hills: Find original and imaginative ceramics, fine art, ...

Artisans in the Hills: Find original and imaginative ceramics, fine art, ...: "02 December an on-line arts and crafts gallery has been launched showcasing imaginative and original artwork, and crafted work. Based South ..."

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Cat pig action in hippy camp....... day 2

Well well here we are still in nailsea as we still no van parts to mend our fattie van. So we are doing some late night craft out session.

predraft fiber before spinning yarn

 I (pig brains) have been making a head band with the yarn i made yesterday and spun some new yarn, carnival yarn.

todays yarn 'carnival yarn'

And Za Cat has been making a piece of prefelt and making more felt bangles and generally internet wizzing it right up.

computer daze

sari silk before felting

Cat oclock has been playing with the predraft techniques whilst layering up fibers for her felt.

This is the head warmer i made using beetlejuice yarn


there has been a cat caught on camera tonight check out the evidence.....

felt felt felt

More felt action

Rollin it right out

And here it is

TA DA a felt bangle

All right thats enough breeeeze from me now! hope you enjoyed the pics and the update

peace & love

Pig & Cat

raaa it's a tiger

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

hippy camp decamped

So, today has been a busy old day. Stranded in the backwaters of nailsea, waiting for Fattie to undergo reconstructive brake surgery (hyper-important) we have been trying to get back on it. More easily said than done! No sunshine – barely any daylight at all today, so pretty much almost impossible to get photographing done. Got enough though to list some stuff and now there are 23 items for sale in our etsy shop! And quite a lot of etsy renovation took place too. Learning, learning….

Still trying to be healthy and stuff but why is so hard? Keep getting so hungry!

Pig made 3 and a half bobbins of yarn today. Go pig! Finished the pixie yarn, created new Beetlejuice yarn, and new ice cream single, as yet un-named but with photo’s as you can see! Also got new i-pod (Christmas present) working with block rocker…also in pics. Its for Wanda the hoop cart. We robbed all the parents music so been creating to live pink floyd, led zep and eric clapton.Wicked! All the cats dreams came true when we were listening to the live version of dark side of the moon.... epic

Lots of plans for cowls and hats and more felt and felted jewllery and who knows what else... just waiting for our new mannequin to turn up (hopefully tomorrow) she looks like she'll be pretty good. Who knows, maybe tomoro we'll have some luck and we will have a double whammy of sunshine and mannequin and we can have a photographic ball! Then the listing will really begin!!

Will have to give mannequin a name. Getting her a wig so can photograph hair clips and fascinators better. Linda? Maggie? Cassie? Something like that, everything gets names round these here parts! We got fattie the van, herbert the heater, wanda the hoop cart and a whole load of hoops with names (such as Emily and Eric )

Yes we know we're weird.... we relish it! We revel in it! You like it :)

Working on the premise that clearing out and getting rid of all your old stuff releases your energies, frees you up and makes you lighter so first things to go were all the things for the mini we don't even have any more, next the fish tanks... then all the clothes, books, cd's, dvd's, random assorted stuff and general hippy tatt is all on its way out, whatever we can sell we will to raise funds for making fattie so fat, everything else will go in a historically massive swap/giveaway that we are going to organise soon! Can't wait! We've gotta lighten the load if we want to be massve hippy van dwellers living on our wits and our crafts and our hoops at festivals.

 Is it too boring to call new yarn forest? Think it sounds good. It will look lush as a cowl we reckon! Mioaw.

Here's the spinning wheel of joy, Frankly surprised that it has lasted this long without turning psychedelic mad colours and patterns... well, it won't take long!!

Sunday, 2 January 2011

its a whole new world...

Or its trying to be, in any case. This is our first blog (well our second actually, this is the sister blog to Pixiehoopsound, also begun today - if you're interested)

So today, post Solstice, post Christmas, post New Year - oh the holidays we so longed for are finally over! Thanks be! It was fun, but we've had enough. My body is punishing me right now for having been so indulgent, I got mild flu with an annoying little cough and a definite bulge in my belly. No more meat, sugar, booze for this cat til Jan is well over and that is that! Especially after reading all this mad info I found today on enzymes and raw food, man, we been organicatarians for a long time now but this stuff just blew my tiny little mind...

So there is a new grand plan! We passed our first module with what we feel was quite high success, so now we must move onto making it work in real time - crafting is for life not just for christmas! We learnt so much from doing the Christmas markets and met some really brilliant characters, amazing people, and got connected but we found in the reality of it all that generic town centre markets run by the council just aint for us! Yeah, its really busy - with people going to work, going for coffee, going for lunch, going home... not with people who are really trying to seek out one of a kind, quality handmade goods that revive traditional crafts with a modern day twist... nope, generic tatt wins the day so.... thats why you do specialised craft markets, stoopid! Lesson Learnt. Ding!

Lots of factors in the master plan for world domination as Jenny put it ;) GOT to get our photo's looking good on Etsy, number one on the list. Oh and actually listing all our lovely things helps too. Blimey and gosh but listing does take time... its so worth it though! Being part of the international craft community, quite frankly, gives me thrills :)

So its the last day of the holidays today and everyone's back at work tomoro - luckily for us, we work for ourselves. Uh, unluckily this sometimes means working 4 times harder for 4 times less money, but I'd still rather do it than be in an office being bored and annoyed and frustrated... being poor is fun! No really, it actually is, to a certain extent, you get extremely inventive and very grateful for little things ;) but we've got to get financially viable this year.... we're getting married in 8 months! HURRAY!

Pig is spinning a rather tasty bit of yarn, single ply on the special technique in naturally coloured fleece, as I chatter away to myself on this blog. I haven't quite the energy for felting tonight unfortuantely, still ill, and ever so confused (why do I keep forgetting things? Darn mind fog!) Trying to get to get grips with all this screen stuff, blogs, twitter, facebook, email, ebay... its a whole new virtual world out there.