Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pumpkin Pye Boutique Hit 1000 Sales on Etsy! Hooray!

I'm pretty excited to say that my shop hit 1000 sales on Nov. 17th! It might seem like "no big deal" for some people, however for me, it's pretty huge! Ill reminisce back to June 2008, so you all have an idea as to how Pumpkin Pye Boutique came about and some of the hardships I went through. A bit of a personal story, but here it goes.

June 11, 2008... I was scheduled to have my csection for the birth of my daughter, Ava Sky, on June 12th at 7am. I was a nervous ninny that night before especially and decided to distract myself from the scary thoughts of a surgery and dabbled onto etsy. "What's etsy?" I thought. I searched and searched for such cool things! Everything from photography to paintings, to felted items and polymer clay. I stopped at the polymer clay and thought, "oh, I have polymer clay!" I created a login id right away. After the etsy id was created at a record speed, I popped my laptop down and waddled toward the kitchen cabinets (where i store my art supplies) and dug my freezer bag sized bag out of old polymer clay that I've stored (or hoarded) away for oh about 16 years. It was still usable. HOLY MOLY! I used to make charms with my best friend (and neighbor) when I was about 9 or 10 years old. Immediately this bag brought back so many memories of my clay days with Teresa! I started sculpting away at 10pm at night in my rocking chair. I made some silly little things and that was that. Next morning came rather quickly. After only about 4-5 hours of sleep, Ava Sky was born at 8:20am on June 12, 2008.

Flash forward- August 2008. Time has passed and Ava was now a few months old. I was preparing to go back to my job the following week and was all nervous to go back after my maternity leave. I wanted to go back, after all, I figured it would make me feel whole again and not just a mother. The people I worked with were awesome and I truly loved my job. Well, that Friday, I called up my job and found out that they could no longer have me work for them due to the economy being so rough- especially taking a toll on the art/music industry of sales. I was very upset, but I understood that maybe this would be best for Ava and I.

PANIC MODE- Yep, panic mode set in just a few hours later after that phone call. Questions popped up in my head.. "how am I going to afford everything?".. "my baby is colic and needs expensive formula.. and how am I supposed to pay for this?" "What am I going to do?" "Where can I work now?" and so on. I never thought that my answer would have been "my etsy shop". Sure, at first, I got the unemployment benefits. Knowing that this would eventually run out, I needed to work fast. I had to put everything into my polymer clay and get inventory built up to open up shop.

October 2008- I started Pumpkin Pye Boutique out with $20 bucks. Yep, just $20. I didn't have much to spend. I bought new clay at michael's arts and crafts at 50% off and bought some silver necklace chains. I started to construct little peanut butter and jelly friendship necklaces. This was an easy one, since I craved pbj during my pregnancy which was still very familiar. I took pictures of my completed charms and posted them onto etsy and I opened up 2 shops at once. I was desperate and in panic mode. I waited for my first sale. I posted on forums and promoted on myspace. A few weeks into this.. I got my FIRST SALE! Oh my goodness! I was SO happy! I thought, wow, someone likes my stuff! I didn't really think my charms would sell. I knew they were cute, but did anyone else think they were cute too?? Apparently so! I got maybe one sale every other week. All in between, I started listing more items. I discovered etsy chat as well and chatted it up and played those silly 5 min featured seller games just to get noticed. Bonanzle started doing pretty good! I was up to 6 sales for the month! My money went straight to supplies of course. So now my crafty habit paid for itself! Perfect!

Flash Forward October 2009- October 2009, I was having quite a bit of sales come through. I would say it snuck up on me and I wasn't ready for it. At this time I had 4 shops open! Etsy, Bonanzle, Artfire and Ecrater. What a "go-getter"! Etsy was ranking the best in sales by far. I had about 45-60 sales for October. Not bad at all!

November 2009- Unemployment ran out by then after all of those extensions I got too. I would say that the sales I got on etsy totally smacked me upside the head. My emails are forwarded to my phone and all day long, "ding ding"... "Etsy Transaction"... 3 hours later.. "ding ding" Etsy Transaction".. 10 minutes later, "ding ding" .. "Etsy Transaction". I was super stoked but didn't realize how hard this would be when you get 10 sales each day! This was CRAZY! Sticky notes were everywhere, my organization sucked for someone who is SO organized and OCD. Custom order requests too were flying in.

December 2009. - Sales doubled November sales with a total of 75 orders. Still working hard as ever, I felt so successful. I built this from the ground up. Bruno, my husband, was shocked. I bought everyone Christmas presents this year! It felt good. Real good.

Flash Forward for the last time- November 2010.
My etsy shop now at this point has been up and running for just over 2 years... and 1008 sales. All I can think about this is how lucky I am. Maybe it's not luck, who knows. I just know that I busted my ass building this up to what it is today so I can be at home and raise my daughter and not have to leave the house to work. I know other moms do this, but this just wasn't me. I loved my job I had before etsy, but I'm glad it happened this way. I always knew that when one door closed another door opened and it did just that. Currently at 80+ sales on November 18th, and the month is not yet over. Seems like it's going to double November 2009 sales. I'm pretty excited and am very thankful for my friends and fans who have helped me build up my shop to what it is today. I hope that I will be doing this for as long as I can. When I was little, people used to ask me, "what do you want to be when you grow up?" and I always replied, "an artist." As I got older and was asked this same question in high school, I replied, "I professional colorer." haha! So, I guess this is really what I became.. a mother and a polymer clay artist. To wrap this up, you really can do anything if you put your mind to it, just don't let anything stop you. As Woody in Toy Story says, "Reach for the stars!"

Monday, November 8, 2010

What goes into "handmade" crafts?

Have you ever found yourself wandering around on etsy searching just about anything and everything? Maybe a cute cuff, coffee cozy,handpainted necklace, clay earrings, or a piece of wheel thrown pottery? You might even glance at the price of the item and think, "that's a bit expensive for a coffee cozy". But, is it really? I for one, like to bargain shop. I live on a budget like most people, but you can't really look at a handmade item at being too costly when you are comparing it to Target/Walmart prices.

As an artist of handmade polymer clay jewelry, I want to explain what actually goes into "handmade". It's alot of love, patience and time. Time for me, is really of the essence when my two year old is at my feet. Here are the steps that I go through to create my best selling peanut butter and jelly friendship necklaces. I mold out the inside of each bread... roll out a thin brown log, flatten it, smooth it and place it around each bread. Then, I cut the end with a clay tool, smooth it out and make sure the end is smoothed out and mended so you can not see where the end has been cut. And yes, there is an easier way of doing this. If i made a cane, which would be like a loaf of bread, and then slice each slice, could possibly cut my time down significantly and also it would change the appearance tremendously. However, I do not cut corners like this and I hope that shows. Each hook is carefully placed in and then a tiny piece of clay is placed in that loop and smoothed over with a very tiny tool. Again, everything is smoothed out so no blemishes appear around the edging. Do I have to do it this way? No, but I choose to for durability. Each topping of choice is sculpted out and pressed onto the clay and centered. Now, for the face, it is not painted on. Each pupil is rolled out with just the right amount of clay and very carefully placed on, making sure the eyes are placed apart with a right distance and that each shape is as round as it can be. Then, the cute little smiley is rolled out in my hand and placed on with a needle, or sometimes my fingers. Once the construction is complete, it doesn't stop there. They are baked for 15 minutes at 275 degrees, pulled out to cool and then each little imperfection on the toast are scratched out and sanded out with a needle and a special tool that i scrape into the clay. Sometimes little dark pieces of clay get into the lighter clay and need to be removed. This too is time consuming and may cause blindness!! After each little imperfection is taken out and removed from the clay, it is then glazed by painting on a layer of glaze for each side, one side at a time. This too takes about 20 minutes including drying time in between glazing each side. While waiting for the final coat to dry, i begin cutting and measuring each necklace chain for each charm made. After it is dry, the charm is attached by a jump ring onto a silver chain. Now, imagine doing this on a daily basis, and having lots and lots of orders and only yourself to create them! It's alot of love into these!

This is just an example of my handmade creations. There's lots of other crafts that also take alot of time that are tedious and have high attention to detail. I hope after reading this, some of you might realize how time consuming and how much love really goes into each and every piece that I ship out. If I'm not happy with the piece, it doesn't get shipped- it's that simple. So, next time you think about purchasing an item at walmart that appears to be handmade for $5 you might just want to head out onto etsy an support a real handmade artist that works hard and shows pride in their artwork. Support handmade artists :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

On a personal note..

This is just something that I thought is necessary to share in support of my cousin and his wife who really need some help.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

July's Winner is...



You Won the Cherry Snow Cone Necklace!

Thank you all for participating and sharing your summer memories :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

An Interview with Allison Kapner

Today's Feature is a wonderful woman named Allison Kapner and boy, she is SO creative and even eco-friendly! She hand sews wonderful items and comes up with some new and hip ideas using recycled/upcycled fabrics! Take a look at her interview!

1. What is the name of your business?
Allison Kapner Originals

2. What has been your inspiration behind your business and/or products?
Seeing potential in items that other people have found no longer useful.

3. How long have you been doing your art/craft? I have sewing and quilting for 10 years, but the past 3 years I have spent focusing on creating my items for others.

4. What is your most favorite piece of art/craft that you constructed?

A suede purse that I made from a suede skirt that I had that I haven't fit in since high school.

5. What is something that keeps you going forward with your art/crafts?
The ability to come up with new ideas, or work with new materials seems endless. The ideas seem to always be out there, it just might take me awhile to turn the idea into a project.

6. What are your hopes and dreams for your business in 2010?
That I'll get more collaborative projects with customers, and that I'll have more ideas to share with people through my blog - The Sewing Lawyer:

7. If you can learn another craft, what craft would you like to learn?

I would love to learn how to create my own fabric designs.

8. What would you like to tell other artists/crafters who are just starting out their business?

Make what you love, not what you think others might like. Have a passion for what you do, and make sure it is enjoyable (even though it might be a lot of work).

Check out Allison Kapner's Facebook page below!!/pages/Lake-Worth-FL/Allison-Kapner-Originals/348972263960?ref=ts&__a=8&ajaxpipe=1

Allison Kapner's etsy shop:

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Interview with Veezie of "The Dirty Peaches Clothing Co."

This person I chose to interview is Veezie of the "Dirty Peaches Clothing Co." I met Veezie at a craft fair and she is a great inspiration to keep on recycling and sewing! Read more up on Veezie and what she does!

Interview Questions

1. What is the name of your business?
the dirty peaches clothing, co.

2. What has been your inspiration behind your business and/or products?
at first it was just to sew, deconstruct, sew. but now its to (a) make really beautiful clothing from 100% recycled material (b) help mamas stay at home with their children and (c) save the world and make everyone in it pretty. :)

3. How long have you been doing your art/craft?
i graduated fashion school in 2002. i officially started dirty peaches in 2004 (as pretty in punk, and changed the name later), and only really started the ball rolling when my partners, heather & may joined up with me this year. BUT i've been making my own clothing and jewelry from "garbage" since forever. i was a poor kid.
4. What is your most favorite piece of art/craft that you constructed?
my fav thing is always the last thing.

5. What is something that keeps you going forward with your art/crafts?
money. lmao. no, jk. i like the idea that if i can make fashion this way, then other people can do this, and maybe, just maybe, one cute dress at a time, we can somehow change the way we make fashion.

6. What are your hopes and dreams for your business in 2010?
to just keep truckin' through. we are just barely making it and i hope that with all the hard work we've been putting in it'll pay off soon.

7. If you can learn another craft, what craft would you like to learn?
metal working. welding... but christian says that you can never have a ct scan once you're a welder because of the metal bits in your eyeballs.... so we'll see how that goes........

8. What would you like to tell other artists/crafters who are just starting out their business?
no matter what happens, keep truckin' and keep having fun with what you do. it will show. and that will be the winning ticket. the pieces we make that are just... made, don't sell. but the stuff we make that we are just in love with making every step of the way are always the first to go. its cheesy, but there's something to be said about making your items with love. its what kept crafting alive for the last billion years (or however long its been. lol).

Be sure to check out The Dirty Peaches Clothing Co. HERE! and catch up on their latest fairs and items!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Another Giveaway! Come and enter!!

Enter in this giveaway! I have constructed something totally different! A cute little piece from my childhood summer memories- A SNOW CONE!
All you have to do is comment below and tell me one of your favorite childhood summer memories! Simple!

THE WINNER WILL BE REVEALED ON AUG 1st!!!!! (I will use a virtual hat to draw a name out of!)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

An Interview with The Hemp Butterfly

After doing some craft fairs and meeting other amazing crafters/artists, I had a few questions for each of them. Below are some questions for Jennifer Robison of "The Hemp Butterfly".

1. What is the name of your business?
The Hemp Butterfly

2. What has been your inspiration behind your business and/or products?

I grew up in the very beautiful island of Puerto Rico. I try to bring the colors of the rain forest, beaches and the skies of my childhood to life.

3. How long have you been doing your art/craft?

I have been knotting away since 1993. A very good friend gifted me a necklace and I was in love.
4. What is your most favorite piece of art/craft that you constructed?

I love my Vee Cuffs. They are full of intense color which is so me.

5. What is something that keeps you going forward with your art/crafts?

I do this for my children. I do this so I can show them that if you have a dream you aim for it and work very hard to get it. You never give up. If you don't know how to do something you look it up and you try and try until you succeed. I'm not in it for the money to me the greatest satisfaction is to see someones face light up when they find that perfect piece.

6. What are your hopes and dreams for your business in 2010?

2010 has been a great year so far. I plan to be involved in some local fashion magazine fashion spreads, I also have a few very exciting events I am taking part in as well. I have some charity events coming up as well that I am a part of. You must give back to the community that has supported you for so long you know.
7. If you can learn another craft, what craft would you like to learn?

I would love to learn how to paint.
8. What would you like to tell other artists/crafters who are just starting out their business?
Don't be afraid to follow your dream. Work very hard at your craft and just don't give up. There are many groups and collectives out there that are willing to help out struggling artists like ourselves. Don't be afraid to reach out to them.

You can find her work on Etsy -

Monday, July 19, 2010

Get your Stache on!!

Do you ever feel like being someone else on a day other than Halloween? Perhaps even for a moment? I have found the greatest incognito solution- a "Finga Stache"!!! Created by Venessa Santiago-Mejia of Busy Vee Creative Pursuits. Stick your finga through the elastic band and place your finger right up under your nose and you have become someone else! Choose from different colors and patterns! Check out the fan photos below wearing their finga stache!

And you can even eat a chocolate peanut butter sandwich WITH a finga stache!!!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Ahoy Mateys!

Ahoy Mateys! Summer is approaching and boats are sailing! I just adore anything with boats, anchors, fish, water etc.. so I wanted to show a bunch of great finds with these theme! Here they are! Check them out!

SilverBeyondOrdinary on Etsy has this really awesome bracelet..

TheCozyNest- Anchor's Away Pillow will really add a cute accent to your boating decor!

ButterCookies has these adorable nautical shoes..handpainted! CUTE!

KarenMiller has beautiful pictures all made from wood. This particular piece is called, "Crossing Paths" and it is made from an old door panel and chair rungs. Very cool!

Ponderandstitch has beautiful handmade bracelet cuffs! This particular one is a pretty charcoal greyish/blue color that would be so cute with a little nautical outfit!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Toasty Adventure Photo Series!

I'd like to rewind to about 2005. It was this time where I really fell in love with photography. My boyfriend got me the best birthday gift of all- a digital camera! It was a point and shoot, but at the time, it was a great point and shoot! Great mega pixels, great memory capacity and a creative eye behind the lens if I might say... lol. I started shooting the usual things like trees, flowers, the ocean etc. I shot lots of neat things which can be seen on my flickr. Fast forward now to April 2010. It's been a few years and after having two sony digital point and shoots, my hubby (which was my bf who bought me my first digital back in 2005) surprised me with a Nikon D5000 slr! HOLY MOLY! I am a lucky girl! I took a different twist now with my photos and decided to shoot pictures of my hand sewn toasts! You are probably thinking, "huh"? I have 3 so far in my series and will have more to come in the future so have a look and share your thoughts! I'd love to hear them!! These 3 prints are framed and up for purchase in my etsy shop at just $5 each. :)

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Win Jacques the French Baguette Charm!!

Who doesn't love something for FREE? Yep, FREE! You can win a FREE charm from Pumpkin Pye Boutique! All you have to do, is follow this blog and answer these 2 simple questions:

* What is your favorite item at Pumpkin Pye Boutique?

* What would you like to see more of?

AND... your name will be entered and drawn at random! (Please be sure to leave a contact e-mail address) The name will be drawn on April 1st and this is not an April Fool's Joke! :D


Saturday, March 20, 2010

A New Look!

After doing a few craft fairs, I had come to a realization that my craft fair table just wasn't up to par. So, after discussing this with a good crafting friend of mine, Venessa (of Busy Vee's Creative Pursuits) we decided, it's time to shop thrifty! And that is just what we did! Here is the outcome of our great (and cheap!) finds from our lovely day of thrifting!

The Yellow Ornate Frame has been painted with clearance paint ($1 from Lowes). Picture Frame itself- $1 at Faith Farm :). Train Case -$5 ; Yellow Rimmed Plate- Goodwill - 50 cents! (i bought 4!) Ring Display Box- $2.. made with a thick car washing sponge which I had cut slots into and then covered with left over fabric.

These are just some ideas! :) Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A New Look...

Pumpkin Pye Boutique is going for a new look! Being that my last craft fair table was a disaster in my opinion.. I went to Joanns with a new frame of mind. After posting a thread on etsy forums, I have received great feedback and useful suggestions. Take a look at my newest project.

Operation Table Cloth!

Keep in mind.. I am truly just a beginner and have been teaching myself to sew on my new singer simple sewing machine. (Just 100 bucks at Walmart! What a deal!)

So what do you think of the polka dotted table cloth?!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Pictures from The Indie Craft Bazaar!

I've decided to post some pictures from the Indie Craft Bazaar from 2/13/2010 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida which I was a vendor at. My table needs improvement and I will be working on this for the upcoming craft events!

Me and my daughter, Ava Sky... my inspiration and the love of my life :)

Pumpkin Pye Boutique's Line Up!

Pumpkin Pye Boutique is out and about and crafting all around!
Come check out the products at these local South Florida events
if you are in the area!

Come join us on March 14th from 12pm-6pm at
Old School Square
Cultural Art Center Amphitheater
51 N. Swinton Ave.
Delray Beach, FL. 33444

March 27, 2010
@ Old Davie School Museum
6650 Griffin Rd. Davie, FL 33314

12:00 pm - Open Doors for Odd Duck Patrons. First 100 guests get a handmade gift bag full of goodies from our vendors!

Throughout the Day....

  • Raffles
  • Silent Auctions
  • Crafting Table
  • Tasty Treats
  • Live DJ
6:00 pm - Odd Duck shuts it's doors.

Earth Day Festival

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Featuring performances by
Randy Kaplan
NPR named “Loquat Rooftop” one of
the Top 10 Children’s CDs of 2008

Sawgrass Sanctuary - 237 North New River Circle, Sunrise, FL 33326

Celebrate green living at Sunrise’s second-annual Earth Day Festival.

This all-ages day of outdoor fun will feature:
  • Free admission
  • Live music, including performances by Randy Kaplan, PALO!,
    Ruffhouse and Mike Dunn & the Kings of New England
  • Children’s rides and activities
  • A farmers’ market
  • Festival foods and ethnic specialties
  • Unique, handcrafted goods
  • An eco-chic fashion show
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Giveaways

The first 500 people through the gates will receive a BPA-free water bottle that
can be refilled throughout the day at the Festival’s complimentary Water Station


Click HERE for a 10% off Coupon at Pumpkin Pye Boutique specifically for these events!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Welcome to the Crochet Loft!

I just LOVE crocheted things! I tried to teach it to myself with youtube videos and books and failed miserably. I wish I knew how to do this stuff! The Crochet Loft does a wonderful job at it and has been doing this since she was 8 years old! (WOW!!!) Take a look at her beautiful designs and if you have any questions, contact TheCrochetLoft!

For your Ipod Nano! A case!!!

Check out Beadle-E-Dee!

Mhaynes2009 is a kindergarten teacher who likes to flex her creative muscles during the summer. In her shop you will find scrapbooks, jewelry, home decor and craft supples. She enjoys trying all different types of crafts. Please feel free to contact Mhaynes2009 if you have any questions. Enjoy looking around her shop! Please check back frequently to see what she has added. Thanks!

Fabulous beads that need YOU to string them! Dazzle them up with adorable charms too!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Welcome to MegansMenagerie's Etsy Shop!

I was sitting on etsy chat (when I should REALLY be sewing..but whatever!) and I decided to offer some fabulous artists a feature on my lonely blog. Megan is a 26 year old mother, wife and full time nursing student- WOAH! How do you do it? She explains, "After a full day of seeing the husband off to work, chasing around my 5 year old, and having my head between medical books, I sit down and unwind by creating anything I can with my hands. I started making jewelry a few years ago for myself and my family. I always wished there was a way to share my jewelry and other handmade items with people outside of friends and family. Not long ago I was introduced to Etsy and am so happy that there is a site like this that exists and that I can be part of it! I am amazed by all the talent on this site and excited to be able to bring you all the creative things I have made."

Take a look at Megan's beautiful work!
Follow her on Facebook:
Follow her on Twitter:

Warm and Cozy Cowl in Seafoam

Warm and Cozy Cowl in Tangerine Mist

Warm and Cozy Cowl in Painted Desert

Pumpkin Pye Boutique Puts a New Spin on Things!

Pumpkin Pye Boutique has ventured on out of the box, yet again! Steering away from polymer clay and into some metal, pearls and other great finding, Pumpkin Pye Boutique strikes again with some great pieces of jewelry! (Not to pat myself on the back by any means, but working outside of polymer clay has been very challenging!) Come see these fabulous pieces I am talking about!