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December 2014
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February 2015

Pulp Sushi Valentine's Day Gift Guide

Sure flowers and candy are great but that's not the way to my heart.  I wanted to put together some gift ideas that will win me over if I was still single.  This is by no means a hint for my boyfriend, we actually don't exchange presents on Valentine's Day but that's ok, he spoils me all year long. :)  If you are looking for jewelry, hello - check me out! :) 

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1) I still can't say No to a cute pair of big, platform, wedge shoes from Modcloth.  These are special occasion shoes for when you want to feel extra cute.

2) While I have a dress that is already covered in hearts if you don't want to commit to the FULL Heart print ensemble, this Sweet Your Heart Out skirt also from Modcloth would do the trick.

3) I adore this "I Love You" Embroidery Hoop Art from Hudson Valley local Kitsch and Stitch.

4) It is no secret that I love me some handmade soap and I like to keep stock regularly so I never run out. So a nice gift set like this one from Right Soap won't tell me you think I stink but that you think I'm pretty neat. 

5) How adorable are these Pink and Red Heart Paper Straws? I wouldn't use them, I would just put them in a glass Mason jar and keep them out as a display in my kitchen.

6) Not very Valentine-y but you bring me a pink and gold pineapple from Hodi Home Decor and I'm going to be pretty stoked.

*This post contains affilate links.  If you click on a affiliate link and make a purchase, I may get a commission from that purchase.


Blog ♥ : Have You Seen...

It's been a while since I've shared some favorite findings from the web but lately I've been reading some pretty good stuff! 

Rowhouse

Updating your product photos is such a pain and something I've been dragging my feet on.  I'll do a couple here and there but yeah, I can feel Heidi's pain from Rowhouse 14 but her new images are sweet! 

Friends


This really hit home for me because I have a lot of internet friends.  Some of my internet friends go way back to the LiveJournal days of the late 90s and we're still in touch through Facebook.  Funny how that works out. I'm glad Kristen from Milo & Molly feels the same. :)

Too-many-topics

I've worried about this some times.  I think it's one of the reasons why I've scaled back how often I publish a post during the week.  I'm pretty comfortable with three posts a week and like keeping it business/life related and not have too much extra fluff.  I'm over the fluff, how about you?

Last but not least, Etsy Is Thriving Whether You Like It Or Not, at least that's what Julie Ann Art says.  Here is a different spin to all the negative attention Etsy has been getting lately.  Even with all my griping and hearing about it from others, there's still a reason why I keep my shop there and Julie Ann breaks it down perfectly.

 


New In The Shop This Week

New in the Etsy shop this week is a new line of choker necklaces featuring colorful Swarovski beads. There are eight colors to choose from.

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I'm also trying a new chain!  I've never used a Figaro chain before but I always thought the chain was a pretty design.  I wanted to try a different style of necklace with no charms, and hanging closer to the neck.  

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I could have kept going and made them with MORE colors but I think eight is a good place to start for now.   If there is a color you would like to see, let me know!  We can work something out.  :)

Shoot I should try and dig the Pantone color of 2015: Marsala shouldn't I? Why do I think of these things after the fact? This is why I fall behind lol! Have a great weekend! 


Give Pulp Sushi for Valentine's Day

I interrupt your week of blog reading to bring you some gift ideas for Valentine's Day from the shop. There is still some time to get your order in within the United States.  Click on the images to view the Etsy items. It's all about hearts and pink and flowers! 

Don't forget the blog reader discount (just look over at the sidebar). You always get 20% off your purchase with code BLOG20

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Say Hello to ALOHA

A part of being on this fitness kick is I have to be mindful of what I put in my body. I'm not big on energy drinks and most protein stuff scares me. Recently while going through my daily blog reads, there was not one but TWO blogs that mentioned ALOHA chocolates and protein powder.

First off, I like the name, it's not pretentious sounding and "jockish". So I check it out, and I really liked their vibe, it's a gorgeous web site.  They keep their mission and goal simple - help everyone live a happy and healthier life. Ok I tried a sample pack...

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I got four packets of their Premium Protein powder, two chocolate, two vanilla.  The difference between this powder and other protein powders is Aloha is vegan, gluten-free.  There are no dyes, sweeteners, natural and artificial flavors, artificial colors, maltodextrin or fillers of any kind.  Just stripped down natural goodness. 

I first tried Vanilla as a drink.  I just mixed it with ice water & 2% milk.  It was a good excuse to use my adult sippy cup.  I'm no protein powder drink expert but this was pretty good and filling. The next day I tried the Vanilla in my oatmeal, not so good, I better stick to drinking. 

I liked the Chocolate just a little more which is weird because usually Vanilla is my favorite but in this case, I was digging the chocolate.  I am not a Dark Chocolate fan so I was worried this would taste like it but nope. It tasted so natural and not sugary sweet.

Chocolate it is! I placed another order....

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This will tie me over for a bit.  The powder is very fine and all you need is two scoops for a 16 oz drink.  I will have it for either breakfast or lunch and it's enough to tie me over without feeling heavy or sluggish.  Between drinking this and keeping up my exercising, I've been feeling pretty good.  

If you want to check them out, they also have Chocolate Bars, Nutrient Packs, greens for smoothies and more.  Their "Discovery KIt" is a good place to start.  Aloha!! 

This is not a sponsored post, I purchased these items and am not being compensated for this post.  I just wanted to share the love. :)  The links are affilate links so if you decide to check them out, I do get a little credit. 


New In The Shop This Week

Happy Friday! I'm back with more newness added to the Etsy shop this week. You can click on the link to view the Etsy listing.

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Oh my freakin' god this bracelet!!!  This bracelet was made entirely from scratch. The "chain" was put together with jumprings I connected individually and added the beads after I wired each one.  This took way longer than I thought it would but feel so super accomplished with how it came out. 

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"Grumpy Owl" earrings version 2.0 - this time including smokey quartz Swarovski beads. 

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I was at a birthday party this past weekend and I met someone who actually remembered me from the Holiday Craft Fair I did in Beacon last month.  Her mother purchased a bracelet from me.  She mentioned my flower stud earrings and how cute she thought they were.  Then asked if I had hair pins available.  D'oh! I did but they weren't in the shop. I made so many over the holidays and just left them out of the shop in case I sold a bunch at the fairs.  Well I only sold a couple so now they're back in the shop in sets of three. 

Don't forget the blog reader discount (just look over at the sidebar). You always get 20% off your purchase with code BLOG20

Have a great weekend!


Small Business Tip: Sometimes You Have To Say 'No'

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As a small business, it can be hard to turn down a custom order especially if a nice chunk of change can be made.  But just like we shouldn't price our items for less just to make a quick a buck, the same applies to potential custom orders. 

This week I got a convo where someone asked if I can do 20 (that's TWENTY) of a particular necklace in my shop. While I'm good with bulk chains and general jewelry supplies, charms are a different story and the charms I like to use come from a specific shop that presses these here, not "Made In China". Naturally, this costs a little more which also means I can only purchase so many at once. 

I am also not in the position where my items are just flying out of the shop so I constantly need to restock.  So asking for 20 of anything from me is a tall order.   Of course it can be done, but with some time and a deposit.  Overall I was asked for $500 with a $150 deposit.  I don't think this is unreasonable especially if this is to be done in the next couple of weeks.  

Instead I get a response saying that they had "another seller who can guarentee a quick delivery...".  They didn't exactly turn me down, but they didn't say "ok" either.  I had a bad feeling this would turn into a back and forth bullshit so I had to end this quick and tell them that they probably should go with the other person.  

The person wasn't rude or anything but I still got annoyed. If this person just said "Ok, I'll send the deposit right away!" then I wouldn't be writing this post.  I wish I had a nice studio where I was so organized and had nice little compartments and shelving for my supplies and inventory but I don't.  I have a messy corner in my lliving room and it's been this way for years. 

It is just frustrating that we still need to justify wanting to get PAID for our craft. Have you experienced a similar situation where you had to turn an offer down because it just seemed unreasonable? 


Favorite Instagrams To Follow

Favorite InstagramsTo Follow

Out of all the super hot social media platforms, Instagram continues to grow and has beat out Facebook and Twitter in popularity amongst the young folk. I love it! I didn't know what I was doing with it at first but it's now something I look at several times a day.  Today I wanted to show off some of my favorite Instagram accounts, not to say I don't enjoy them all, otherwise I wouldn't follow them.

Before I do that, I wanted to share some thoughts I had while preparing this post.  One of those thoughts was: 

I need to step up my Instagram game!!

Seriously!  It's great to promote your items and share your life but whoa, it can get a little bit crazy. At least it did for me. I got a little bit of everything going on with a link to my Etsy shop and a mention that I  make jewelry in my profile.  Sure, I want to gain more followers on Instagram because you're instantly in everyone's pocket (on their phone) and people check their phones more than their computers. 

One thing that these IG favorties have in common is consistency with their images which may be why I'm so drawn to them.  I can go through my feed and identify who the image is from without looking at the name.   If Instagram is not a good test on branding, I don't know what is!  Let's take a closer look....

Favorite Instagram Picks - Part 1I love Everyday Is A Holiday and their throwback art catering to the sweet tooth when people didn't care about organic, gluten-free bullshit.  Their overall color scheme has always been soft pink and teal or super light blue - all the way down to Jenny's hair! You can see more @jennyeveryday

Favorite Instagram Picks - Part 1I don't follow any big box companies on Instagram except for Lowe's, yeah that's right - a store I hardly ever go in to, not because I have beef with Lowe's, it's just because there's a Home Depot just 5 minutes away. Anyway, I first noticed Lowe's cool promotion on Pinterest and discovered that their Instagram was just as pretty after Victoria from SF Girl By Bay was guest Instagrammer for them not too long ago.  Take a look at their pretties @loweshomeimprovement

Favorite Instagram Picks - Part 1I first met Rebecca Peacock when I was doing the Bazaar-on-Hudson market in Cold Spring.  Her jewelry is so elegant, classy, and "casually luxurious" (her words) and her images reflect that in tone and setting.  You can see more @rebecca_peacock

Favorite Instagram Picks - Part 1One of my favorite shirts to wear is from The Stay Home Club.  Funny enough, I learned about their business through a Instagram giveaway (I didn't win).  Great product and customer appreciation photos, plus regular giveaways.  Follow them @stayhomeclubofficial

Favorite Instagram Picks - Part 1Yay Nguyen! From her needle-felt eyeball ornaments to embroidered animal pendants, this girl's work is flawless.   Her IG is a perfect mix of promotion, behind the scenes and just living life to the fullest.  Follow along @knitknitetsy.

Do you have an Instagram account? Do you use it to promote your business/blog? Or is just for personal amusement? 


New In The Shop This Week

Slowly getting back into the swing of things. It's been extra cold this week and just 9 degrees as I type this.  When it is this cold, it slows me down but I was still able to add a couple of items in the shop through out the week. Click on the items to view the listings on Etsy.

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This necklace may look familiar because I've made a couple of them before and they sell well.  I don't know why it took so long to put another one together.  The Jade Heart beads are just so cool!

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 My chainmaille bracelts did well over the holidays at the craft fairs. It really makes a difference you can see and touch them in person.  I had to get on the ball and make more but these take a while and I'm running low on the jumprings (*eep!*).  

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This necklace was fun to make.  I wanted to just mix it up with a bunch of left over beads and extra pieces of chain (why throw those away??). Yes, I threw a black skull in there too but he's harmless. 

IMG_9889Last is a set of four rose stud earrings for only $20! You can still purchase them individually but I'm starting to bulk them together and sell them as set. 

Don't forget the blog reader discount (just look over at the sidebar). You always get 20% off your purchase with code BLOG20

Have a great weekend!


A New Healthy Chapter

I mentioned earlier in December that I started exercising more. I said I would talk about it more so now is as good of a time as any, right at the beginning of a new year.  

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One of my excuses for not exercising was I had no time.  I woke up too early for work, came home too late and exhausted.  That schedule ended back in March, now most of my mornings were FREE! This past Summer I was at my heaviest *ever* and I just said "Enough is enough!" I started lifting my weights in July, almost every day.  After a couple of weeks I was already feeling a little more confident and dropped a couple of pounds but still had a ways to go. I knew I had to suck it up and add more cardio to my routine.

I used to power walk once in a while, maybe a few times a month but that just wasn't enough.  One Monday morning (November 10, 2014 actually) I woke up and thought "I'm walking today."  During that walk I started to jog a little. I don't jog. I don't run. EVER! What made me do it today?  No clue. I walked, jogged, walked some more and didn't pass out! 

This is NOT me!
Shirt from Activate Apparel (this is me)

I know a few runners.  If you know any runners then you know that they REALLY love running. I never understood it. I thought they were crazy, but they might be on to something.  Maybe jogging those few steps triggered some endorphins in my brain because I went home afterward and downloaded MapMyRun on my phone thinking, "I'm doing this again tomorrow!" and I did. I actually did it every day that week and took Saturday and Sunday off.  

The cold weather didn't stop me which surprised me even more!  I picked the WORST time to get in shape, right before the Holidays in an unseasably cold late Fall but if I'm dressed properly, the cold isn't too bad.  Cold and raining on the other hand? I'm still staying in bed and lift some weights later. I've grown to actually like outdoor winter exercising!  I still suck at jogging but I try to do some of it each day.

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I don't diet, screw that! Diets don't work for me. If there is a food I love, I'm gonna eat it, especially if it involves CAKE.  Depriving myself just doesn't work.  There are certain foods I don't want to eat anymore. My eating habits started to change naturally and I started making better choices.   Although I did recently treat myself after doing 3 miles a day, five days in a row....

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The support and encouragment I've been getting from friends on Facebook & Instagram has been awesome. This is a new chapter in my life that I'd like to share more about here once in a while.

Damn that donut looks good, I really want one right now.

Do you workout regularly? What is your routine? Jogging? Yoga? Gym? How do you stay motivated? Especially in the Winter?