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Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving To All

With this being a short week and everything going on at the studio, we just want to post a quick Thanksgiving wish to all of you. We hope everyone will enjoy the holiday and eat lots of turkey.

Lately, we feel that Thanksgiving might be a holiday that is overlooked – sandwiched between Halloween & Christmas. In our eyes it's a holiday full of rich Autumn colors, wonderful traditions and a time to reflect on what we are grateful for.

We are looking into doing something interesting next year to celebrate our friend the turkey. Above is our version of Thanksgiving the Swirly Turkey that did very well this season. That tells us people love to celebrate this holiday just as much as we do.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Going, Going....GONE!

The holiday season for us is in full swing. As a matter of fact we are preparing tonight for a one-day craft show tomorrow. But with all the hussle and bussle of that, we are sad to say that our Christmas online collection has quickly sold out (for now anyways). Even with the economy down, people still had the holiday spirit! We thank all of you for all your support this season.

We are both working around the clock working hard to fulfill orders. We are creating more pieces, packaging and shipping them out, to make sure you all get them in time for your Christmas tree decorating traditions.

So once all the orders have been shipped we
will evaluate what we have left and if we have enough to relaunch the site again before Christmas or call it a year. Either way, join our mailing list if you want to stay informed or just keep checking back. Thanks again for all your amazing support with us over the years.
Lianne & Paul

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Our Christmas Collection has arrived!

Today is the day! Our collections for Christmas and Baby have finally arrived. A lot of you have been asking when we would have them available. We've been working extra hard here at the studio to get them ready...so please check them out!

Here is our Christmas Cardinal Birdhouse ornament after we painted it but before we add the varnish and glitter.

We go through many paint brushes because we can only use the finest tips for all the fine details.

The final designs after we added glitter and ribbon and bells etc.
Happy Holiday!

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Christmas Festival, Boston weekend

This past weekend (Nov 7-9th) was the start of our craft show season (check earlier posts for the rest of the dates). These shows—especially the three days ones—are very grueling for us. Between setting up and standing on your feet for 10 hours a day for three days straight is not exactly our idea of fun. But really the reward for doing these shows is getting to meet all the admirers and fans of our designs. We love hearing the stories about how we have become a part of their holiday traditions. It does make it all worth it. We thought we would give you a little glimpse into what goes into one of these shows. We have been doing this show for the past five years and we find it very successful for us.

The event is held right in the heart of the Boston waterfront. Very easy to get to and plenty of parking lots.

We had a Thursday night check in time. It was cold and rainy. But the good thing with large shows is that you are able to drive your car into the building and unload. Here Paul is trying to set up our tent in our 10x10 space.

The manufacture of this tent says it's a one man set up. We still can't figure out how that could be.

We use the white tarps from the tent for the walls because you never know who or what is next to you at these shows. With our items on the smaller side you don't want them to get lost.

Past years we had a 8 x 10 rug, but rolling up a rug after 3 days of traffic was not good.
So we found these Flor tiles. They are 19 x 19 squares and work awesome! They are easy to transport and store, plus you can get them is all sorts of cool colors.

We have many trees to showcase our many collections of ornaments.

We offer many more designs at these shows than we can offer on the website. We have some for every season. We have a Halloween tree, a Valentine display, and some new and very limited holiday designs. We sometimes use the shows as a test market for new designs to see what sells and what doesn't. It's fun seeing the reaction of customers that have strictly bought online and visit us at a show for the first time. They are shocked about how many more designs there are.

The structure on the left (that looks like at three layer cake) was custom made for us.
The tiers rotate and it's able to hold lots of ornaments. We found an end table that we painted white and decoupaged on the top and front of the legs with blue and green tissue paper.

We love it and it also comes apart, which is always good to consider when doing these shows.

This show always draws a crowd. In the past up to 20 thousand people have come through the doors over the three days. It's great exposure for us, even though we question a lot of the other so called handmade crafts that are there.

When the 3 days are done we are burnt. Our feet are sore, and we are tired. It usually takes us a day to fully recover. We'll go back to the studio, regroup and see what ornaments were popular and which ones we need to create more of. We also receive a lot of interesting ornament requests, we take notes and will work on these for next season.

So that is a snippet of what goes into a show. Do you go to a crafts shows? If so why? Which ones do you attend and what do you like and don't like about going.

Come visit us at a show, we love to meet our customers. See this earlier post to mark your calendar on where we'll be in the next few weeks.

Until next time!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

New Swirly Craft shows added

Here is the an updated Craft show schedule. If you live in or near the Boston area stop by and say hello and support your local crafters.

This is a brand new show to Boston happening every Sunday through Dec 21st, 12pm-6pm Prudential Artisan Market. We are only taking part in a one day show. Swirly Designs will be there on Sunday, November 23rd

And the last show of the season for us will be the SOWA Holiday Market
Saturday, December 13th and Sunday, December 14th. This show is always great. It's full of really talented artisans. Check out the websites for hours and directions.

We just finished up the 22nd Annual Boston Christmas Festival this weekend
(Nov 7-9th). We will post some photo later this week after we recover.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Bye for now... Mary Engelbriet's Home Companion Magazine

We got a call a few weeks ago from another magazine telling us she saw our ad in the Mary Engelbriet's Home Companion (MEHC) magazine and was wondering what we were going to do since MEHC magazine is ending there publication after 12 years with the Dec 08/Jan09 issue. (Shocker!!) They wanted us to advertise with them now. Well I was to a little confused since I hadn't heard anything and we just placed an ad in the Dec/Jan issue and was about to place one for the Valentine issue. We even just renewed our home subscription for two years! I thought this was a really tacky way to get someone to advertise in there magazine. So I informed them I would think about it and would let them know. After emailing our MEHC ad rep –who has yet to reply to our emails–and a made a comment on their website, we came across this media release.

It looks like MEHC ended there publication agreement and will be seeking a new publisher.

So, for now no more MEHC after this latest issue. We really enjoyed advertising in as well as a being a faithful reader for 12 years. Here at the studio, we keep all her issues to be inspired by and for wonderful ideas.

Above is the cover of the Premier issue of MEHC from 1996. Every issue featured one of Mary's fun and whimsical illustrations until....

Mar/Feb of 2002 when some would argue they jumped the shark when they switched to an all photographic cover.

Well lets hope we haven't seen the last of MEHC magazine.
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