Graphic Design

Open for Business

Before I dive into this blog entry, I wanted to say sorry for spamming all of my readers who get emails anytime I post something — I’m sure you truly enjoyed reading the one and only word in the post: “Shop.” Riveting, huh? You’d think after four years of using WordPress I’d know how to publish a page versus a post. In reality, it’s amazing it’s taken me this long to spam you! Anyway, my bad. It’s not my goal to send you random emails.

Maybe “Shop” was a great teaser for this post, since my exciting news is that my Etsy shop is open for business! Woohoo!!!

A-Smith-of-All-Trades_Etsy-Shop

Right now, I’ve got my nursery prints for sale, along with my popular Do What You Love print (I’ve already sold my first one of these — ahhhhhhh!). I’ll be adding the Adventures of Remmy the Dog prints up there shortly. And, of course, if you’ve seen a design on my blog over the years that you want to see in my shop, comment or send me an email!

A huge thank you to my sister Allie (a fabulously talented artist in Chicago), my friend Beth (who blogs about her fitness journey on BoltingButterfly.com) and blogger Charlotte (over at Monno Design) who all gave me great advice and feedback when it came to the right way to open up shop. They really gave me the push I needed. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while now, and I finally made it happen!

OK, end of my Etsy store plug. I promise I won’t flood my blog with shameless self promotion, but I’m super excited to share this news 🙂


Do any of my readers have shops of their own? If you do, comment and share your shop link and what you sell! I’d love to see the fabulous things you all are doing.!! I love perusing Etsy and looking at all of the amazing things people have to offer. There are some insanely creative and talented people out there.

Happy Tuesday!

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Graphic Design

To fill my shop, or not to fill my shop

I’ve had an Etsy shop (spoiler alert, it’s empty) for a while now that has changed as my interests have morphed. When I was in college, I was into making jewelry, so I started an online store to sell my jewelry and take custom orders (it wasn’t through Etsy, but the site no longer exists anyway). Now that I have a house and am far more interested in home improvement projects and other sorts of crafts, I rarely make jewelry. So when my jewelry listing expired, I didn’t renew them.

Nowadays, my interests fall under design: interior design/decorating and graphic design. It’s actually a little surprising to me that I was ever super into making jewelry since I wear almost none myself… but I digress. I do a good deal of graphic design at work and just got a drawing tablet from my hubby for Christmas that I’m pretty excited to learn how to use. So now I am toying the idea of filling my Etsy shop with some of the prints I’ve designed. I even went so far as to create a bunch of prints last year that I planned on listing. BUT, I’m super indecisive — or am I? … I can’t decide — and I can’t decide if it would be better to sell my prints as a PDF that a buyer could download and print on their own, or have them printed out and mail them to customers.

That’s my dilemma. There are pros and cons to each, but I welcome any thoughts! Do you own a shop where you sell prints? Do you sell them electronically or physical copies? If you are interested in buying a print (not necessarily from me — from anyone!), would you prefer they mail you one and you pay more, or to get the file and print it yourself?

OK, enough of me thinking out loud/in writing. Here’s are a few of the prints I created last year. I think they’d be adorable in a nursery. I can customize the background colors and swap out the animal name with a baby’s name.

The fox is my favorite.

Fox_asmithofalltrades

Bear_asmithofalltrades

Trex_asmithofalltrades

I really love this little whale, too!

Whale_asmithofalltrades

I’m excited to start using my drawing tablet to create even more fun prints. I hear it takes a long time to get used to it, but I’m up for the challenge.

 

Uncategorized

Birthday Jeopardy (and the best gift ever)

I love birthdays. I can thank my mother for that. She always made our birthdays wonderful. They are one day a year you get to feel special, or make someone you love feel special. Yesterday was Brian’s birthday, so I came up with a fun way to give him the gifts I’d gotten him.

BIRTHDAY JEOPARDY!

Birthday Jeopardy

I made a full Jeopardy board (Brian loves that show & trivia games) and came up with 31 questions to go with it! I  did one round, plus final jeopardy. Each category had a gift associated with it. My favorite category was: Tina, you “fat” lard. All of the answers had the word “fat” in them. And yes, the next category was Come get some dinner.

Here’s an example:

Tina, you “fat” lard

Watching, thinking of, hearing about or listening to Game of Thrones makes Jess this 8-letter word for tired.

What is ‘fat’igued?

Ding ding ding! For that question, B got the newest Game of Thrones book.

The best category and corresponding gift was in final Jeopardy.

Golden Retrievers

Jess’ three golden retrievers were all named after movie characters. Name the three films.

What are The Land Before Time, Indiana Jones and Ratatouille. 

Buzzzz. B got this wrong (he didn’t know my first dog Sarah was named after Sarah the Triceratops in the Land Before Time. Rookie…. Also, Remmy isn’t really named after the rat in Ratatouille. But it worked so well for the clue!).

Since it was his birthday, he still got his gift.

Birthday Portrait

A custom portrait of Remmy!

So this is basically the best, most amazing, adorable gift ever. As a blogger a super small small smallllll business owner (really, I can’t even claim that.. but whatevs), I always love to share other fantastic small businesses. I bought this print from Kathryn Selbert Illustrations, who has a shop on Etsy. I sent her three pictures of our pup with a few details, and she made this graphic drawing, basically combining all three into one adorable cartoonified Rem. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE. I ordered this for B on Nov. 4, originally planning to give this to him for Christmas. But she sent me the file on Sunday (you can opt to print your own or she’ll send you a print) and I had it printed just in time for his birthday! Talk about amazing timing.

Here are the photos I sent her:

PupPortraitPic1 PupPortraitPic2 PupPortraitPic3

Here’s the illustration she made:

JessicaS_lowres_web_1

Is she talented or what?!? I love that she pulled in Rem’s bandana (which I think has since been destroyed) and that his big ol’ tongue is hanging out. I also love that it looks like a watercolor painting.

Let’s be honest, this was a gift for me just as much as it was a gift for Brian. We both love it. It’s definitely one of my favorite gifts I’ve ever given.

Kathryn has all sorts of other adorable illustrations available in her shop, so you should definitely check them out. She does two-week turnarounds, so there’s still plenty of time left to order your pet portraits before the holidays!

OK, I’m done raving now. Happy day-after-your-birthday to my main squeeze. Glad you liked your birthday game & gifts.

If you want to check out Brian’s other fun birthday “game,” check out my post on his beer scavenger hunt!