Wednesday, October 31, 2012

NEPA Arts & Crafts: November 2012


Happy Halloween, arts-and-craftsters! Looking for something to do when the costume parties are no more and your holiday candy high is crashing? Fear not, for November is upon us and we have plenty of events for crafty creatives seeking local handmade artisans. Reap the benefits of visiting a few craft fairs and holiday bazaars this harvest season here in Northeastern Pennsylvania!

11/03 - AHEA Harvest Craft Show @ Abington Heights HS, Clarks Summit
11/03 - Craft & Gift Fair @ The Oblates of St. Joseph, Pittston
11/03 - Holiday Craft & Vendor Fair @ Carbondale Area ES, Carbondale
11/03 - Holiday Craft Show @ Line Mountain HS, Herndon
11/03 - Holiday Show @ Quality Inn & Suites Conference Center, Wilkes-Barre
11/03 - 11/04 Christmas Open House @ Komishock's Gift Shop, Milnesville
11/04 - Arts at Hayfield Homespun Holidays @ Penn State WB, Lehman
11/04 - Gift & Craft Fair @ Hughestown Hose Co., Hughestown
11/04 - Vendor Sale @ Anthracite VFW Post 283, Kingston 
11/10 - Craft Fair @ Damascus Township Bldg., Damascus
11/10 - Craft Show @ Masthope Community Lodge, Lackawaxen
11/10 - Holiday Bazaar @ St. Mark's United Church of Christ, Cressona
11/10 - Holiday Craft Fair on the Hill @ West Side CTC, Kingston
11/10 - 11/11 Galleria @ Xavier Center at Scranton Prep, Scranton
11/10 - Shop 'Til You Drop Vendor Craft Show @ American Legion, Milford
11/10 - 11/12 Spirit Mind & Body Expo @ Comfort Inn, West Hazleton
11/11 - Holiday Shopping Event @ West End Fire Hall, Brodheadsville
11/11 - Holiday Shopping Extravaganza@ Mount Carmel Area HS, Mount Carmel
11/11 - Vendor & Craft Sale @ Blue Mountain HS, Schulkill Haven
11/13 - Holiday Bazaar @ United Presbyterian Church, Pottsville
11/16 - Girls' Night In @ Hilton, Scranton
11/16 - 11/17 Fine Arts Festival @ Triton Banquet Hall, Tunkhannock
11/17 - Craft Fair @ Isaac Tripp ES, Scranton 
11/17 - Craft Show @ Priestley Elementary, Northumberland
11/17 - Fall Craft Show @ Hazleton Health & Wellness Center, Hazleton
11/17 - Fall Craft Show @ Lake Lehman HS, Lehman
11/17 - 11/18 Artisan's Marketplace @ Waverly Community House, Waverly 
11/17 - 11/18 Buckhorn Band Craft Fair @ Wallenpaupack HS, Hawley
11/17 - 11/18 Holiday Boutique @ St. Patrick's Church, White Haven
11/17 - 11/18 Holiday Craft & Gift Fair @ St. Maria Goretti Banquet Hall, Laflin
11/24 - Craft Show & Chinese Auction @ North End Fire Co., Pine Grove
11/24 - Holiday Craft Fair @ Valley YHEC, Rome
11/24 - Holiday Craft Show @ Our Lady Queen of Peace, Gilbert
11/24 - 11/25 Holiday Arts Festival @ Skytop Lodge, Skytop
11/24 - 11/25 Holiday Craft Bazaar @ Fernwood Resort,  East Stroudsburg
11/24 - 11/25 Red Cross Craft Show @ Kingston Armory, Kingston
11/25 - Arts & Crafts Fair @ Western Pocono Community Library, Brodheadsville
11/30 - 12/02 Old Time Christmas @ Downtown Jim Thorpe

On-going events: 
Saturdays - Moose Exchange Community Market @ 203 W Main St., Bloomsburg
1st Friday every month - First Friday Scranton @ various venues, Scranton



Thanks for reading! If you know of a crafty event here in NEPA that I've missed or are looking for more information on a particular event, feel free to send me an email at shubette.etsy[at]gmail[dot]com! Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Inspired #2: Last-Minute Halloween Decor

Halloween is almost upon us! If you haven't decorated for trick-or-treaters just yet, don't panic! I've got you covered with 5 quick & easy projects that'll have your house haunted in a hurry.

The crazy cat lady in me wants to decorate with this pretty kitty light-up garland all year round! This quick project by Rubyellen of My Cakies is super cute and so easy! Click through to see how to make both black cats and spooky specters!

If you haven't much time to decorate pumpkins and could do without the mess, here's an interesting take on an old Halloween tradition: use washers, bolts, chains, and hardware you might have around the house to make them hardcore! Alexa Westerfield shows you how on I Love To Create!

Turn boring, beige, and burlap into a frightening and fanciful table runner with Priscilla, the Thrifty Crafty Girl! Learn how to stencil, stamp, and finish with a frightening frill!

These spiderwebs by Jean of The Artful Parent have been cut from coffee filters! This is such a great and inexpensive idea, and it doesn't even require a trip to the craft store! I'm surprised I hadn't thought of cutting out spiderwebs like this, as I've made hundreds of snowflakes this way as a child.

Kathleen of Grosgrain Fabulous shows how a little glow-in-the-dark Mod Podge can turn your mirror into a spooky surprise! Imagine seeing this smiling skull from the corner of your eye in a dark room!

 I hope this list has helped you in your last-minute Halloween preparations. Here's hoping you have a happy All Hallow's Eve!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Fall Fashion Sets

I can tell already that I'm really going to miss Autumn once it's over. I love it when the leaves turn bright hues of orange and yellow, but now many of them are dark, burnt shades of burgundy and brown. As the vibrant colors fade out and fall, I'm dreaming of ways to make the inspiration of these palettes last forever. Here I've compiled several of my fall-inspired fashion sets on Polyvore! Enjoy!

Autumn Hues


Patterns for Fall

Gingham? Check.


Patterns You'll Fall For


Thanks for reading! You can follow all of my sets at!

Friday, October 26, 2012

My First Custom Card Order

I was recently asked to create a custom anniversary card for my new friend Kate's first wedding anniversary. Since the card was for her husband, I strived to make it romantic, yet masculine, and to draw inspiration from some invitations and stationery from their wedding. Here's what I came up with:

The text on the front of this card was pulled straight from Kate's Save-the-Dates! I'm especially happy with how the ampersand turned out! I used just a little bit of gold thread to give it some definition.

Initially, I had planned on stamping on the words on the ribbons, but the ink just didn't want to show up on my gold cardstock. I'm always a bit nervous when it comes to using handwriting on a project, but I think I really nailed it this time.

The lacy border with the heart design has actually been cut from one of the invitations! I then used a similarly textured paper on the inside of the card, repeating the border detail as well.

Since this was an anniversary card, I thought the message on the inside should be something personal and meaningful, so I left it blank to allow her to write her own. I tried stamping the "Happy Anniversary" message, but was disappointed again by my inability to stamp neatly. I covered it with ribbons of the same gold cardstock that I used on the front of the card. The envelope you see here is one of the envelopes used to send out invitations, so I made sure the card matched it in color and size. Then there was this project:

When I first talked to Kate, she described to me an item that she discovered on Pinterest. She said she found the item for sale for $45, but the link I found, luckily, was this tutorial on Smashed Peas and Carrots. It pretty much laid out the entire project for me, but I saved some money by using a heart-shaped stencil rather than die-cutting them. The words in the majority of the hearts are the lyrics to the couples' wedding song, while the two red hearts spell out "One down..." and "Forever to go." The other two hearts show the states in which they met and were married, with little red stars over the specific cities.

As I was finishing up, Brad suggested that I add a little more depth by gluing patterned paper around the frame! If you look closely, you can see that the pattern on this paper mimics that on the front of the card, but it's burgundy instead of golden brown! As for the hearts, I don't think I'll ever be happy with how uneven the lyrics are, but all that mattered is that my client said it was perfect!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Business & Blog Goals

When I first started blogging, I was scared. Not only was I afraid that I wasn't going to "succeed" at it, but I was scared of sharing that side of me with the people that I actually know. I even felt a little ashamed when I would tell people about my hopes and dreams. I felt weird when I talked about my Etsy shop and my web design projects, that people would doubt my ability due to my complete lack of formal education in relevant fields. I was afraid to talk about the goals I've set for myself because I didn't want to hear anyone tell me that I'd never make it happen. The problem here is not specific people bringing me down, but the fact that I had become so obsessed with how others were going to judge me that I didn't try to break out and do something for myself. Today I'm going in with complete disregard and sharing what I want to do, because everyone should take the time to dream big. Many of these goals are very long-term, but it'd be nice to knock a few off in the next year or so, and I intend to do just that.

Business Goals: 

When I refer to my business, I'm generally talking about the small shop that I have online that currently carries no products and makes no income. The truth of the matter is that a blog can be a business all on its own. With this in mind, here are some of the goals I'm setting for my business, blog included.

Finish my blog design
As of yet I'm not 100% happy with the visual aesthetic of my blog. I've a few budding ideas on how to tweak it here and there, but it's not quite where I want it just yet. I'm also a stubborn DIYer and refuse to have anyone else design it for me. I will be happy only when I've successfully done this myself.

Buy a vintage van or trailer & mobilize
This is kind of a big deal for me. Instead of running a traditional brick-and-mortar shop, the original idea I had for my business was to take it on the road with me. I'd love to just get out and go whenever I want, and sustain myself with income from the items I've made by hand. For this to work, I not only need to find a pretty caravan to take myself away in, but I need to set up my headquarters online so that my customers have a consistent means of keeping in touch with me. Getting my driver's license would certainly help, too.

Reach 100 followers
That's right - I'm a newbie. While I wrote a blog for Shubette Handmade before this one and recently switched blogging platforms, I hadn't dabbled in sponsorships and advertising before. I think it's going to be much easier to find my target audience now, and this goal seems very doable in the near future.

Have a project featured on Craftzine
Or do they call it Makezine now? Regardless, I have a lot of ideas. Some of these are really crafty and original projects(or so I'd like to believe), and it'd be pretty darn awesome to have a how-to featured on one of the biggest crafty zines on the 'net.

Become a featured blogger on Modcloth
Yes, at this time I have no fashion related posts. This is something I've been meaning to fix. First I'll need to get some supplies for self-portraiture(camera remote & tripod), and then I'll need to work on my style posts! This is going to take a lot of work, but it would be such an honor to be recognized by a brand this huge. Maybe someday when my shop gets rolling I'll add "Sell my handmade accessories on Modcloth" to my goal list, but for now I'll just worry about selling any of my handmade goods.


Design 10 unique items
I'm starting small for this one. One of the biggest issues I have with selling my items is that most of the things I create are custom orders. This means I'm usually carrying no stock whatsoever, and I need to fix that if I ever plan on making a living. 


So these are my hopes and dreams right now. I could have gone on forever with numerical goals, such as "List 100 items in my shop" or "Get my sponsor button on 20 different blogs", but I realize that if I start out small, these accomplishments will accumulate before I know it. All I have to do is really try to earn a living. Do you have any blog or business goals that you're trying to achieve within the next year or so?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

My New Navigation Menu!

Hey there! I spent all of yesterday working on my awesome new navigation menu and I wanted to show it off! While I didn't expect it to be an easy task, I knew that I'd be able to figure it out with a basic knowledge of web design and a lot of Googling.

While I'm not 100% satisfied with the look of it, I'm glad that I got this far and now have a template to work with when I decide to make it prettier! I'm also now full of new ideas regarding the look and feel of my blog, as to me it feels like there's still something missing.

Maybe when I get more familiar with projects like this I'll try to write up a tutorial that's a bit easier for beginners to understand. While I was certainly capable of finding all the necessary information, I found it a little difficult as this was my first experience with slicing images in Photoshop. Ideally I'd like to write a tutorial that includes not only the directions for uploading the necessary images and adding them, but also the basics of slicing an image, putting it back together using HTML, and defining which pieces should be clickable links, among other things.

So what do you think of my new navigational menu? Would you like to see how I did it?

Monday, October 15, 2012

Inspired #1: Craft Room Organization

This week has been a total mess! I've been trying desperately to get organized, set up my new studio, and get back into my creative groove. Last week I was awfully sick, and I just couldn't bring myself to do all the planning and organizing and such that goes into blogging. I attempted to fill in this week-long gap by importing my posts from my previous blog, only to be really upset when my images were bigger than my new layout and my previously-unorganized post tagging system carried over. I've decided to just delete all of my old posts and not worry about it, to just move forward. Instead I've written this brand new post with my creative craft-room revamp in mind!

Without further ado, I'd like to introduce my very first Inspired post. With this feature I'd like to take some time to appreciate some really creative and inspiring tutorials, projects, and products to really get those creative juices flowing! Keep in mind that each image belongs to the owner of the respective page that it's linked to. Click the image to view its tutorial!

The first thing that comes to mind in an organized DIY space is having a place to keep all of your tools, especially the ones used most frequently. You can find a full how-to on setting up your own storage pegboard on the Martha Stewart website, as well as a handy dandy video.

What do you get when you cross a beautiful hand-painted mural with a really useful shelving unit? An awesome sewing storage project that you can make yourself! The best part is that it folds up into a framed painting when it's not in use. Visit the bubblewrappd blog for the full tutorial, as well as information on buying one, if you're not feeling crafty enough to tackle this on your own.

What's a great sewing & studio room if you've got nowhere to sit? I'm especially inspired by this desk chair reupholstery project over at Practically Functional. The best part is that this is almost the exact same chair that I have sitting in my bedroom! I will most certainly be referencing this page for that chair project as well as for a similar one I've got coming up.

If none of the previous tutorials got your goat, then I strongly suggest checking out this Curbly roundup of 12 great craft room organization ideas! There you'll find links to all kinds of supply storage techniques including closet organization, making use of upcycled materials, and some truly crafty ideas in general.

Maybe you've got all of your supplies organized, but are looking for ways to better collect and document your creative thoughts. This is where Wendy of The Shabby Nest comes in with a big, bad blog notebook. In this post she covers every little page and pocket you might need in your own blogging binder, as well as links to a few great printable organizational freebies.

So thanks for reading my first ever Inspired post. It's been really fun digging up these projects and I really can't wait to get back on track in making my own little studio room!

Psst! Speaking of great DIYs, I've been working on a super-secret home decor project that I can't wait to share! Check back this week!

Friday, October 5, 2012

This Week on Instagram

This week was a pretty great one. On Sunday, Brad and I went to the flea market, where we found a sander for less than $10 and a scratching post for Lefty for $2! I was very tempted to buy a pretty red vintage bicycle that I found for $25(Around here this would cost between $50 - $ 75). It was in great condition - a little rusty, but not irreparable - but the brakes didn't seem to work, and I know practically nothing about fixing bike brakes, so we passed on it. About 10 minutes later I saw a man walking away with it, and I was happy that he found such a great deal. Until we were just about ready to pack up and go home, that is, and I spotted on a table a shiny new set of bicycle brakes. I could not believe it.

Aside from this trip, I really haven't been out of the house much this week.Yesterday I really wished that I had that bicycle to take myself out while Brad was at work with the car. Instead I went for a short walk along one of the many trails on the property, and most of these pictures are the result of that.

If you've enjoyed my photos, feel free to follow me @ShubetteHandmade on Instagram! Thanks for reading and have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Happy Birthday to a Special Lady

If it wasn't for my grandma, I wouldn't be where I am now. Not only did she teach me to cross stitch, but every time I went to visit my grandparents she always had something fun and new for me to make. She showed me how fun crafting and creating is, she has this uncanny ability to send me clothes & craft supplies that I actually love, and she's always up for craft shows and thrifting!

I never realized how much we really do have in common and all the fun things that we could do together if we didn't live so far apart. Thanks, Gramma, for everything you taught me and everything you've done for me. I love you and I hope your birthday is the happiest!

Monday, October 1, 2012

NEPA Arts & Crafts - October 2012

Here's my guide to a happy October for Northeastern Pennsylvanians and those whom may be traveling through! In this feature I compile all the artsy, crafty events that I can dig up that are right here in NEPA! Read on for the full list!