Total Art Soul - for artists

" An artist cannot fail; it is a success to be one "
Charles Horton Cooley

getting your pricing right - asides from the obvious :)

Posted by: gringrimaceandsqueak

Tagged in: Untagged 


We're sure you all know about working out materials costs, sellers fees and hourly rate for making things- but it's also important to be realistic about how much time you'll actually spend doing just that.

We are all creative, imaginative people and as we've discovered, its all very well theorising about spending three days making, a day online, a morning for photos, and a day or so designing. But how often are you really going to make another of the same thing? If like us you continually come up with new ideas, find new materials and new techniques, all that playtime has to be accounted for.

We've only been online one month and already we've had to make a lot of adjustments. Because we have new projects coming out of our ears its turning out that actually the majority of our time is spent on development and to keep our Etsy page moving, we've been using up all our oddments making batches of fascinators. 


 These are comparatively quick, can be sold at a more manageable price and one day a week covers our listings for the rest of the week, leaving us free to work on the other end of the scale. We need to keep in mind our target audience and ensure that what we produce is relevant, in our case costume pieces for the glamorous people and elegant pieces for weddings.

Being organised and keeping an eye on how we are really spending our time means we are charging realistic prices that will cover our costs and enable us to continue. Trying to please by charging less if you're only producing a small amount of stock simply isn't going to work.

On the plus side, it's proved time and again that upping your prices can actually increase sales- how often in the past I've gone 'sod it' and charged what I really want thinking it'll never go only for it to be the first thing out the door because to the customer it has real worth.

So, be brave and be honest :)


Karen and Rich 

The new! illustrated! food for starving artists part 3 :)

Posted by: gringrimaceandsqueak

Tagged in: Untagged 


Instant noodles – because they can be super......really

Ah, instant noodles. The mainstay of many a student and artist, how we love them. It does have to be said however that they can be a little dull. Especially the 15p packets from Tesco, for which I heartily recommend throwing the packet of bland or just plain vile flavouring away . How to make them more interesting? Read on!

Here are two quick, easy and cheap ways that I rather like:

Thinly slice a garlic clove, get a quarter cup of frozen peas or a small can of garden peas, plus any additional herbs or spices that you want that are lurking in the recesses of the cupboards. Take 1 packet of noodles and cook them in the normal way, throwing all of the above ingredients in too. Meanwhile, bash up an egg and fry it in a very small amount of oil, so you get a kind of very small omelette. Remove this from the pan and roll it up like a crepe (careful, it will be hot!) thinly slice this then cut the slices down the middle. When the noodles are done, mix the whole lot together and eat, yum! Or:

Cook the noodles in the normal way, then drain them and let stand for a few minutes while you heat some oil in a deep frying pan, normal pan or wok if at some point you’ve had enough money to buy one! When the oil is hot, take a small handful of noodles and add to the oil. When these are light brown and crispy take them out and drain them while you do the rest. Crispy fried noodles! Fantastic. Eat on their own or as a side with something else.

There are many variations to be tried with noodles, so go for it!

Karen and Rich

Soldering, Grinding, and Buying Gemstones

Posted by: mooaany

Tagged in: gemstones


PendantNow that I have returned from a couple of tech refresher courses, I am happy to say that I still have all ten fingers and can still do my jewelry work, and even type blogs.  Never mind that one finger decided to wander under my torch flame and get a bit scorched.  And never never mind that one of my classmates pushed her chair out just in time for the burnishing brush on the flex shaft to burnish a shiny spot out of another finger.  

 We just get out the alligator tape we should have used first and wrap em up and continue!

The GemShow was packed with discerning buyers with eagle eyes, and also those buyers hoarding all the great big questionably colored strands that laid in wait on all the many tables.  

 The joy of it all but I did find some of the most lovely faceted rectangular pink amethyst that sparkled appropriately, and I am busting to create something new!








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