Saturday, November 28, 2009

Black Friday to Cyber Monday SALE on Etsy!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends! The Kooky Tea Party Etsy Store is offering 20% off ALL items for the weekend - including Cyber Monday. So far, the sale has been going really well with lots of people taking advantage of the 20% off bargains and the offer of only paying shipping on ONE item - the rest are posted for FREE! It's a great opportunity to stock up for Xmas!

Speaking of Xmas - I still haven't managed to get much Xmas shopping done at all! Fortunately, I now have my Mum & my Mother-In-Law here to go shopping with me. I can't wait! I love shopping at Christmas time. As long as I'm not rushed. I also can't wait to get Ari's photo with Santa this year. Last year she was only 8 weeks old and while it was her first Xmas, I felt she was a little bit young for a photo with Santa. This year I'm definately getting one though - whether she's howling or not! (What a mean mother!)

It's sweltering hot here in Brisbane. HOT HOT HOT. I feel sticky as I'm typing this. Why don't I have air conditioning? We even hopped in the car this afternoon to hunt down Mr. Whippy. We could hear him in the distance, and eventually we found him! We ordered our ice-creams, (I got a choc-dipped soft serve with nuts on top)...and I got Mum a chocolate nut sundae to take home. Well! By the time we got to the car (about 3 metres away) our ice-creams were melting and by the time we got home I had ice-cream down both arms and Mum's sundae was now a milkshake. Disaster!

Hope everyone is having a nice weekend =)


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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Early Starts....

For the fourth morning in a row I am awake before 6am! Thanks to Ariella...I'm not sure what this new routine is about, but my body clock is certainly not used to it. She used to sleep past 8am most mornings...

Anyway, I guess I am grateful because it means I can get an early start on jewellery orders and such. Yesterday I got the chance to list a heap of earrings in the new Kooky Tea Party MadeIt Store. MadeIt is an Australian website that it much like Etsy - all handmade items - and it's fantastic! Some time today I will continue to list more items in there.

My Byron Bay weekend is now off due to Schoolies. I forgot that NSW Schoolies week starts a week later than QLD, and therefore accommodation is very expensive that weekend, and there will be a million 17 year olds running a muck down there! Best not to be a toolie and leave the partying up to them I think. =)

Last night I started reading Pro Hart's biography, written by his son David Hart. It's opened my eyes up to the dedication he had to his art and I've found it to be very inspiring so far. I'll keep you posted...

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

To Do List

We're half way through November already! I feel like the end of this year is just slipping through my fingers. Wait 2009! Wait! There's a few more things I want to get in before this year is through...

1) Get Kooky Tea Party off to a cracking start...

This is already underway with a few website visits and lots of sales already through the Etsy store! I hope to open a Kooky Tea Party eBay Store later on this week...

2) Visit Byron Bay.

This will be happening the weekend after next, when we drive down to meet Nanna Neeny on her way to Bris! I have yet to organise accommodation for it.

3) See "New Moon" - the 2nd installment in the "Twilight" saga.

Yes, I know, it's a bit sad isn't it? I couldn't help but get in on the hype and I've read all 4 books *cringe*. Even if it's not a great movie, I have 2 words that sum up a reason to see it - Robert Pattinson.


4) Organise Christmas Day.
I have yet to figure out what we are doing on Dec 25th and I haven't even started my Christmas shopping yet...


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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Free Postage For Xmas!

Here is a voucher exclusively for anyone who follows my Blog, Twitter or Website. Free postage ANYWHERE in the World until Christmas (25/12/09).



MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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Sunday Arvo Jibber Jabber

It's 12:55pm Sunday and I've had a fabulous weekend so far. Yesterday was L-A-Z-Y! We sat around and watched countless episodes of "Mythbusters" and I slept on and off (thanks to some medication I'm taking at the moment which makes me VERY tired!). Then last night I had dinner at Montezumas with 3 of my bestest friends, followed by dessert at Pancake Manor in the City with Wade, Ari, Craig (a collegue of Wade's) and Lis! I felt like a bad mother with my 1 year old awake at 10pm scoffing ice-cream, maple syrup & strawberries into her mouth and all over herself! But hey - it was a one off and she had slept a lot through the day also...

This afternoon I'm expecting to catch up on some Kooky Tea Party orders.

What have you been up to this weekend?

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P.S. I bought Bon Jovi's new album "The Circle" and I'm really impressed! Loving it.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

KOOKY TEA PARTY!

Well. Things have been super busy lately! Very exciting though....

I've been selling both my art and jewellery online for years under the "Art By Jaz" name. It's worked well that way, because I was mainly selling my artwork and a little bit of jewellery here and there which I also consider as my "art" in a way, so they sold easily in the same shop together side by side.

I have been incredibly fortunate to have so many wonderful customers over the past couple of years, and my jewellery seems to be taking off more than ever, so I feel it's time to create an entirely seperate identity for my jewels!

Hence...Kooky Tea Party!

Oh the names I went through to come up with this! I'll explain the entire process in a later post...

So far I've only opened an Etsy store for Kooky Tea Party. My 'old' Etsy store will continue to sell whatever jewellery is in there until the listings expire, and from there on that store will be dedicated to selling my artwork only. I'm still in the process of creating my market stall too! I'm hoping to get to the markets some time before Xmas! Time is running out! I can't believe we're in November already! eeeek!

Thank you SO much to all of my fantastic customers who have made it possible for me to continue to expand my jewellery empire! Much love to you all,

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Weekend Project: Baroque Style Side Table

This morning Wade, Ari & I got up nice and early and went to the Chandler Markets. We haven't been there for ages, so it was nice to see how many new stall holders and people were there! While we were there we bought: breakfast (coffee & sausage & egg rolls), lady finger bananas, mangoes, and a side table! We managed to bargain the guy down on the side table from $35 to $20! Well it did have some scratches and pre-loved dints in it!

So on the way home we stopped in at Bunnings and picked up a can of high gloss black paint, and when we got home we took to work on the side table. Here's what went down:

1) Here's what we began with:

2) Quickly sanded it down...


3) Here I am very hesitantly spraying the first coat! Haha...can you tell I haven't done this much before? I would be a crap graffiti artist!


4) The first layer - a thin coat...followed by more thin coats...


5) VOILA! New black side table!

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Friday, October 23, 2009

Making Earring Cards

I've started thinking about how I'd like to do up my market stall. The other day I came across these fantastic BIG (15cm x 15cm!) yellow mugs at an op shop for $1 each, and I thought they would fit really well with my theme. I thought I could fill them up with rice and display my rings in them maybe?

I could go out and buy a whole heap of display stands and things, but from looking at other successful market stalls, I've realised there are so many other ways to display your jewellery with items that I've already got at home! For instance, yesterday I came across a box of unused business cards, and I thought instead of throwing them out I could make them into earring cards. Here's what I did:

1) Found some old business cards that I no longer use...

2) Found some scrapbooking paper I had lying around...

3) I traced the size of the card onto the back of the scrapbooking paper (I could fit 4 cards on these particular sheets). Then cut them out.
4) I coated the side of the business card I no longer wanted to be seen with craft glue (PVA).

5) I glued the scrapbooking paper to the front of the business card.

6) Poked a couple of holes through the card (you can use either side now - the design side or the blank white side) and VOILA!

Earring Cards!


I will take these with me to my market stall!

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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Party Fun Today!

Wow. What a day! This morning we had Ari's 1st Birthday party in the park. I would say it was a success! She looked beautiful in her 'Abby Cadabby' costume, and the rotunda was filled with loads of 'Abby Cadabby' themed food & decorations! Thank you so much to everyone who came. It was a very memorable morning. I still want to take some photos over the weekend before I sort them all out. I assure you the minute I'm done I'll post them here on my blog.

I've got some new stud earrings in my online stores this week, and there's a lot more to come over the next couple of weeks...here's a little peek...


My absolute favourites at the moment (if I had to pick only one) would be the Black Octopus Earrings. I just adore them!!

Lately I've had a real urge to set up a market stall. I'm picturing a little stand at the local craft markets, overflowing with art and jewels (mainly jewels at this point). There are lots of beautiful ideas for market stalls on flickr. Just something I'm going to work towards over the next month or so. I think it would be good to get in before Christmas. What are your thoughts?

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Home Sweet Home

It's 5pm, and miraculously, Ari has fallen asleep on my shoulder. So I've popped her down on the couch (amongst all the mess and boxes), while I get 45mins (hopefully!) to myself before picking Wade up from the station. I have to apologise for not being online for a few days. Things have been crazy busy around here with moving and everything. Today I spent most of the day unpacking boxes of miscellaneous rubbish and sorting stuff out. It's really refreshing to have a clean slate to work with when it comes to putting together a home, but it's also tough because I've got boxes and boxes of things that i just HAVE to hold on to, but don't want to display. I'm starting to get very good at working with a small space! I think it's also important not to make it look cluttered. I still want breathing/walking room in the house. Oh, and did I mention I also want it to look FABULOUS?

Tonight Wade will be putting our PC together and setting up our new internet connection. Loads of downloading space and a faster connection speed - wooo hoo! So the rest of the working week will be focussed on filling orders that have come in during the move, and then hopefully setting up a little space where I can paint and create my jewellery. For the moment, it's going to be anywhere I can set up shop (preferrably where little fingers can't reach!) until I get my little studio space put in. There's a laundry type area next to my kitchen, and my plan over the next few months is to rip it out, and put in a workbench along with overhead cupboards to store supplies. It's not exactly ideal to be running my business from such a small space, but it does allow me to be at home with Ari, which is just an absolute blessing in this day and age. A lot of mums are financially forced to head back to a workplace while putting their babies in childcare; and I am so thankful that I have the choice to stay at home. I admire working mums for their ability to have both a job outside of the home, and take care of their household also. I think every woman who has children and manages their life around them in a successful way deserves a medal. It's not easy to balance work, romance, babies & health all at once. I certainly don't achieve that balance every day. I think if you can achieve the balance most of the time you're doing extremely well!

On that note, I better tidy up the mess I've made while unpacking today. I'm not making dinner tonight. Pizzas are $5.50 on Tuesdays, and I just can't justify taking out the saucepans tonight...


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Friday, October 2, 2009

Packing Up & Shipping Out!

Well, this will be my last blog post from my little place on the Sunshine Coast. Tonight the truck is being packed to head down to the big smoke tomorrow morning. It's all very exciting of course, but it's also a little bit sad. This is the place where I spent the majority of my pregnancy and it was where we brought our little girl home to. It will always hold a special place in my heart. But...life goes on...and as one granny flat door closes another nicer door opens. And this time - I own the door! hehe.

I was lucky enough to take some time out from packing on Wedn
esday morning to have a coffee & lunch with Tabi in Maleny. Then a mochacino, sour cherry chocolate ganache cake, 2 turkey, brie, avocado, sour cream & cranberry panini's later...we had a scour through some op shops. One of my favourite ways to spend time! I found this super kitsch deer painting for $2.50 - I personally think it's awesome. I haven't found anyone else who does though (yet!) so make sure you tell me if you like it...then I'll know I'm not completely crazy!

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Settlement Tomorrow!

Gosh it's 11:23pm already! Where did the day go? Oh that's right - I spent 7 hours driving to the Gold Coast & back with my parents (& Ari) to pick up my little sisters new car! Which is really nice btw, but she's only got her automatic licence and yet insisted on buying a manual car, and she now needs to wait until she can drive it! (What's the point!?)...

Anyway, it's all very exciting here. Tomorrow we will be the proud owners of our very own HOUSE! woohoo! We'll be in there painting madly this weekend, but I'm still going to keep all of my online stores open. We won't be actually staying in the house yet, so I'll still have my computer here up and running until next weekend - and well - I'm not sure what's going to happen there. I can't bare the thought of no internet access just yet. Give me a few days to get my head around it! Thanks,

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Ari's 1st B'day Invites...and Smurfette in time for Summer!

I've finished Ari's "Abby Cadabby" 1st Birthday invitations and they're all ready to be posted today! I've never created an invite on Photoshop before, so for a first timer, I actually think I did an ok job.


Sydney is currently covered in the worst dust storm in over 70 years. From the photos I've seen, it's like a blanket of orange! Someone called it "Rangapocolypse"! I hope for all of the asthma sufferers that it calms down soon.

The new channel - 99 - is currently playing retro cartoons. "The Jetsons" is on at the moment. So, in honour of my love for retro cartoons, I've created these Smurfette Earrings. They've already proved to be quite popular! And rightly so...Smurfette is the prettiest smurf of all!


Hope you're all enjoying your week so far!

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

You heard it here first...

Exciting news! Wade & I have bought a house! It will be our first home of our very own. So we are very excited and very busy packing up here on the Sunshine Coast for our big move back to Brisbane in 2 weeks time...

My online stores will still be open right up until we move. The weekend of the 26th-27th Sept my stores will most likely be on holiday mode, but other than that, my art & jewellery will still be available 24/7 to anyone around the globe.

A new line in my stores - RINGS! I've currently got 4 available, but I plan on adding plenty more. I absolutely love the owls! I have made some for myself (of course!) and I wear the cream one especially, all the time!

Last night I also added a couple of new charm bracelets (hand made by me) -

They're listed as "Buy It Now's" so first in best dressed!

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

my weekend so far...

So this weekend Wade's away at Army Training for work (poor Wade getting his butt kicked!)...and Lisa & Jayde came up for an impromptu visit - which is nice of course! Except that my house looks like a bomb has hit it. Speaking of fires...last night there was a MASSIVE fire on the other side of the Sunshine Motorway - a few kms from our house. It was crazy! After the suddeness of the Black Saturday fires in Vic this year I get worried about fire anywhere near my house...I didn't realise it was SO incredibly unpredictable until all of those people were caught up in it without warning.

I thought I'd get a ton of jewellery and painting work done this weekend while Wade was away, but alas, not much at all...I'm hoping to catch up this afternoon. I'll post any updates on Twitter.

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Friday, September 11, 2009

Rant + 1st Birthday Progress...

Honestly - I feel like crap today. I woke up with a scratchy throat and now my eyes feel like they're about to pop out of my head. I'm typing this on an old keyboard because yesterday I managed to spill two (yes - TWO!) cups of tea on the keyboard and destroyed it. But wait, there's more. I've also got this crazy person on eBay sending me mean messages (in CAPITAL LETTERS) saying that they haven't received the item that I sent them. I kindly told them that if they haven't received them by early next week I'll send them another for free (out of the goodness of my heart) and instead of saying thanks, I get another angry email IN CAPITAL LETTERS. What's with people!?

---END OF RANT---

On a much better note. I've made progress on Ari's 1st Birthday celebrations! Still not sure where we're having it, but I've bought a few Abby Cadabby themed items from the States, and the ones that have arrived so far are adorable!



I'm also going to make her a cute little birthday outfit, complete with tutu! I dragged myself (and mum & Ari) down to Spotlight today to buy the materials. I've watched this tutorial to learn how to make it! No sewing! Woo hoo! I'll let you know how I go...

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Monday, September 7, 2009

Buzzing Around...

Today I'm a busy little bee getting orders ready to send. I thought I'd just make a quick blog post while Ari's having a little nap. She's been crawling around the house this morning causing all sorts of chaos (including pulling the entire lot of toilet paper off the roll!)...so it's a relief that she's having a little nap right now.

I've added a couple of new jewellery items to my stores over the weekend...you can click on the photo to go to thier eBay listings. They're also up in my Etsy and MadeIt, and ArtFire stores.


In the lead up to Christmas (yes, that's right - I'm already mentioning that word! crazy isn't it?)...I'll be getting lots of jewellery stock in, including lots of NEW items so keep an eye out! I'll be posting daily updates on Twitter.

It's a busy time at the moment. Trying to get some painting time in, getting new jewels made, lots of orders coming in =), organising all of my online stores, packing and moving house, planning Ari's 1st birthday, and of course, first and foremost looking after my beautiful baby girl. It's a little bit chaotic here, but I'm loving every minute of it!
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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Start to the Weekend.

Ok first of all - we haven't set a wedding date. But today, I tried on a wedding dress for the first time. It was a nice and a little surreal experience. In a way I guess I expected it to be an emotional moment, but then at the time it was...well...it was really just like trying on a REALLY nice dress!
So then I put a veil on, so I might feel a bit more weddingy...and well...i saw a bride in the mirror, and I guess that bride was me! I kind of felt like a kid dressing up. Like I was still just putting a beach towel over my head and pretending it was a veil. I tried on 2 amazingly beautiful dresses...but I don't think either of them are going to be my wedding dress. I'll know my wedding dress when I see it.

I really can't wait to be married. I think the exciting thing is that I'm going to be married to the love of my life. Not the wedding. I feel good about that though - I mean - that's why you get married right? Because you want to marry your life with someone elses. Although the wedding part is pretty exciting... =)

Lisa (my friend) & Jayde (my sister) are up for the weekend so we've been catching up, doing lots of shopping, eating, playing guitar hero (yes - I'm the Summer Drummer!) and we watched 'Bride Wars' tonight, which I actually really enjoyed! We're all feeling weddinged out though now.

I just read Mem Fox's "The Green Sheep" three times to Ari and now she's fast asleep...and I nearly am too.

Goodnight,
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Monday, August 24, 2009

Flavour Series + Print Progress

I've nearly finished my "Vanilla Cherry" painting. (about time!). The reason this one has taken longer than expected is that I keep changing it. Chopping and playing with it until it's just right. I promise I'll post piccies very soon.

I've already got some ideas for the next one in my 'flavour' series too. It's going to be "LIME!". I never used to like Lime flavoured things as a kid (especially lolly snakes and jellybeans - ew. the green ones are always the last ones left), but as an adult I've come to discover the amazing "Lime Spider". Lemonade or Sprite, some Lime milkshake syrup, and a dollop of Vanilla Ice-Cream - Heaven!
Oh! Speaking of soft drink...I found my beloved Vanilla-Coke back on the supermarket shelves! Yaaay!

I've also made some progress on the printing front. Today I worked out how to scan my images in at a higher dpi so that I can create awesome art prints. I can see them coming to fruition in the near future. So keep an eye out.

OK now I'm off to change a pooey nappy, put a very tired baby down for a nap, and then maybe get to finish this painting!

Much Love,
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