Game Changers

It’s been a busy month (as, errr…is reflected in my blogging activity – sorry guys!) and March has flown by!  However, I’m so very excited to show (and tell) you about some of the reasons for my absence. With all the supplies I’ve acquired (thank you rare and amazing NY closet space) I really decided to go full throttle with Fritz & Fräulein, my vintage redesign biz.

Part 1: I joined The Etsy New York Street Team (no, not a gang of knitting needle wielding ninjas roaming Williamsburg keeping the hipster population in check – well, not yet at least). ; )  The team is an amazingly talented group of handmade Etsy artists from the New York area that meet online and off to share information on everything from markets to sell at to tax tips and supplier recommendations (yes, for my never ending “trim sourcing” quests for the perfect zipper, chain, buckle, leather, whathaveyou) or just attending handmade events like the upcoming Etsy Symposium and an Etsy-focused taping of The Martha Stewart Show.  We also host our own team blog (which I’m a writer for – yay!), Twitter, Facebook and are launching a Pinterest shortly (and you knowww I’ll be a part of that) ; ) to share anything and everything related to the handmade movement and growing a small business. In the short time I’ve been a member, it’s blown me away with how active and helpful this community is that I’m so very proud to be a part of.

Part 2: This leads me to…the fact that I’ve been desperately needing to acquire an industrial sewing machine to replace my sad little home sewer that just isn’t up to snuff to efficiently sew my Garrison Clutches (and soon-to-be released upcycled iPad/laptop sleeve line). I spoke to Parsons, FIT and my old fashion department at Syracuse for advice and then scoured craigslist, the fashion district and spoke to more fast-talking dealers (sewing machine dealers people, sewing machines) than I care to remember. Just when I was totally over the whole search and about to pull the trigger on a used Juki from the least shady dealer I could find, Etsy New York came through. =) Fellow team member, Rosi, from Rosi Rouge, was moving her studio and needed to sell a vintage industrial Singer 95-10 for a steal. I did my research and learned it was one of the original Singers, Made in America on August 5th, 1920 in Elizabeth, NJ (yes, the “need to know” researcher in me actually called Singer with the serial number), is highly regarded in the industry as one of the best machines ever made and still used by designers today, particularly preferred for it’s “elegant stitch.”  Needless to say, if it ran good, it was recommended that I snatch it up.  After testing it out and being in utter amazement of its gorgeous work and whisper quiet whir, I did. =) Aaand here it is…

I have yet to name her/him but suggestions are welcome.  Maybe this will be the Fritz to my Fräulein (at least for now). =)

Favorite DIYs of Pinterest – March 2012 Edition

As you’ve probably already read, I’m kind of a fan of Pinterest.  Being that DIY is such a hot category (and I’m a DIY pinning addict) I’m going to do a quick roundup of my favorites (that I will do – when i get a moment to breathe – i swear). 😉  I should mention that I like to tweak DIYs to give them my own personal style, so I’ve shared the links to the original DIY and included some of my notes / tips below each photo.  If you’ve done any of these or have any favorite projects, please share and comment with any tips, links or pics. In the meantime, Happy Friday and I hope this inspires you to get your hands creating this weekend.

-Stacy

Studded collar via Atlantic-Pacific (project inspired via Cheetah is the New Black). You can pick up these pyramid studs online at Studs & Spikes or at M&J Trimming here in New York (not available via their online site).  Just make sure you dab a bit of Fray Check around the edges of each hole to prevent the fabric unraveling/studs falling out.

Okay, this isn’t really a DIY but I’m digging around to try and find some ombre how-to instructions for at least a few of these (stay tuned). For now, I will say the petals on the cake are pretty self-explanatory (+ pretty beautious, right?) and can probably be picked up at your local silk florist, Michaels or Hobby Lobby. *Thanks to Decor8 for posting.

For those of us that haven’t fully purged our closet of that favorite too short sweater <<slowly raises hand>>, this DIY is for you.  *Disclaimer: I may try this out first on a Goodwill find before taking my scissors to that pink cashmere. I know, I’m a being a baby.

Puff paint? Spray paint? Redesigning? Amazingness. Who needs Jonathan Adler now? Thank you PS – I Made This.

Even though I don’t decorate in this style, I absolutely loooove this DIY. The instructions can be found here. Make sure to scroll down and read all the add’l tips as it seems this DIY has been a little tricky for some. *I’d like to modernize this somehow…maybe spray paint the doilies with metallic paint to make them look like metal embroidery? Add some small chandelier crystals dangling randomly throughout the interior? Do a cluster of sizes but in the spirit of the bubble lamp? Hmmmmmm…thoughts???

While we all would like to afford beautiful, handcrafted furniture, the reality is IKEA will often have to do for now.  Fortunately, there’s IKEA hacks, such as this that make designing your own unique piece of furniture inexpensive and easy.

I think this is SO simple and gorgeous. You can find the tutorial here. I envision this in pairs on the double doors of a library, an English classroom, but I also can totally see this on my front door, adding a little something to our dreary hallway.  But I’d probably dust the pages in gold powder (shocking). 😉

Pintervention

“Hi, my name is Stacy and it’s been 2 hours since my last pin.”

If you’re reading this blog, there’s a good chance you’re familiar with Pinterest.  If not, well let’s just say it’s crack for creatives. Creative gals more specifically. Okay, maybe just women of the world period (not to be sexist but I have yet to see a guy with an active pin board).  Anyway, being the visual, social media savvy, creative chick that I am, it’s the epitome of awesome.  Think the best of internet images (+ each links to the original website for further instructions/details/to purchase/whathaveyou) all living on one streaming page of goodness. From fashion to food, DIY to home design, recipes to fitness tips.  Just pick your poison, pop it in the search bar and wah-lah: a seemingly endless scroll of relevant images to add to your own virtual “pin boards” (they give you some standard boards to start with but you can edit their titles/delete/add as you so choose).  Here’s an example of how I’ve organized mine:

I joined last year, shortly after its launch but it’s really blown up over the past few months.  People seriously have planned interiors of entire homes on this thing.  Pinning serious or not-so-serious quotes has proven popular.  My cousin posts a photo on her Facebook almost every day of “another meal courtesy of Pinterest.”  Others use it to pin their products to increase exposure and sales, which is what I’ve done with some of my handmade Etsy items, linking back to my shop. ; ) Certain things, such as this bedazzled mixer, which I pinned via Iron Cupcake Milwaukee, has received INSANE amounts of traffic: 1400+ repins in 2 hours!  Yes indeed, women (who apparently love sparkles) currently DOMINATE this site.

Your Pinterest can also link to your Facebook if you so desire (although posting pins on your Facebook feed is, quite honestly, about as annoying as Spotify listening posts).  The better part of this is that you can be followed by your Facebook friends that have joined Pinterest and vice versa to see what each person is pinning.  Essentially, you can “like” their pins (i still don’t quite get the point of that) or “repin” to one of your own boards (which is my typical choice if i do indeed like the image).

The icing on the cake (and where the real addictive element lies for me) is the “Pin It” button, which you can add to your browser.  So say you’re on your favorite fashion blog and are obsessed with the dress in a post, just click your “Pin It” button, select the image on the page you want to pin and what board you want to add it to. Easy peasy and much better than dragging and dropping into a “favorites” folder on your desktop (like I used to do).

So that’s the rundown! At the moment, it’s still invitation only, but if you’d like an invite, just include your email in the comments section or drop a quick email to fritzandfraulein@gmail.com and I’ll shoot one over to you.  If you already have an account, feel free to follow me.  I’ll have an active account at least until A&E shows up at my door.