Where Does It Come From? Where Does It Go?

I haven’t posted any jewelry-related news in quite a while. There hasn’t been any jewelry-related news to post, it seems, in a very long time.

Early last fall I had production surge that grew out of an idea for a new collection of jewelry (mostly necklaces) and a sense of urgency about the impending holiday shopping season. During the first week of November I designed and produced more pieces of jewelry than I had made all year. Two weeks before Thanksgiving I should have been giving the new pieces to My Sweetheart for pictures that I could post in my Etsy shop, but I let one unexpected conversation sink the entire mission instead.

The conversation started with “oh, honey! You made all of this? This is really good! This should be in stores, honey!” which led to a light bulb moment of “my dear friend has a very successful (whateverkinda) business and she’s just expanded that to include a fabulous boutique, but she doesn’t have anything like this… She needs some of this, honey.” Without much contribution from my side, the matter of a consignment deal seemed to be all but settled in the final comments “when I talk to her tonight, honey, I will tell her that she needs to do this. It will be good for both of you. Don’t worry, she’ll listen to me. You’ll be in the store by Monday. Consider it done.”

Of course I didn’t consider it done… But I did consider it a possibility and I expected to meet this “dear friend” within a day or two to explore compatibility between her boutique and my jewelry. In the meantime, I realized that my jewelry was not “consignment-ready” and needed quite a bit of work to make it so. To that end, I halted production of new pieces and turned my attention to expanding my consignment agreement knowledge base, pricing my pieces for consignment and creating informative and branded packaging with detailed descriptions for each piece. I was so busy for the first few days that I was grateful that the shop owner hadn’t been able to schedule a meeting. Once I got a handle on situation, though, with real production momentum diverted, the pressure from the countdown to Black Friday threatened to squash me as I waited each day for the introduction.

I realized on Monday, two days before Thanksgiving (My Sweetheart and I celebrate the holiday on Wednesday, in honor of our Diggity Dog) that the introduction wasn’t coming. I realized on Tuesday that I couldn’t make up for the days lost and have my Etsy shop ready for the two most important days in the retail industry. I felt completely defeated by my own foolishness and I crowned that defeat by forfeiting the entire holiday season. Inspiration to make new pieces packed up and vacated, taking the motivation to post the pieces already made in tow. Even interest in traffic through my Etsy shop had absconded.

That’s where jewelry-related news slumped, fell and died. I haven’t had an inkling of inspiration toward making jewelry since November. I have tried to force the creative urge, but the only results produced by that force, so far, have manifested as doodles, drawings and sketches… (Zentangle, anyone?) None of them have had any relation to jewelry. So that’s been a bummer.

And then…

Today…

This happened, out of nowhere.



{Sidenote: I know, I know… The photos aren’t great, but one of my major downfalls is the idea that I have lodged in my head that tells me I can only post photos if they look (mostly) professional. Perfection is far too elusive for my spur-of-the-moment skillset, which means most of what I make never gets published. That mindset sucks and I am actively trying to defeat it.}

I don’t have any idea from where the inspiration for either of these bracelets (or the drive to build them) came to me, but it came on like gangbusters and I made them both in a single sitting this morning. I have a feeling that I will even manage to post them to Etsy soon.

Does your creativity go through dry spells? What does it take to quench your creative thirst and inspire you to continue (or resume) creating? I hope you will share in the comments.

This One I’ll Keep

I’ve been busy lately. I’ve made over 2 dozen new pieces of jewelry for my etsy shop and I have listed over half of it already with the rest to be added shortly.

I always have to keep in mind when I am designing a piece of jewelry to sell that the item will belong to someone else and not let myself become attached to the item. Although, everything I make is made to my personal taste, I have been able to stay emotionally unattached to my creations. Well, I have been able to compartmentalize how I feel about what I make with every piece I’ve made…  Until now.

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Getting It Done Because I Said I Would

Christine over at 100things100days is one of the most interesting and thought-provoking writers I’ve read. She’s got a great post that I swear she might have climbed into my head and taken notes for. Go check it out and come on back (after you read my comment on her post).

Go ahead… I’ll wait… (I’ve got a couple things to do while you’re over there, anyway.)

A big part of the reason I started the repurposedKate blog was to create accountability by sharing my mental list of to-dos with whomever cares to take a look at my fine mess and declaring my ambition to tidy it up with an invitation to come back later and view the results. This IS NOT the anxiety-free technique, not even a little bit.

But… When a girlfriend stopped by for a short visit about a week ago and asked what I’ve been up to, for the first time I can remember in years–nay! for the first time in maybe a decade or more–my answer was not a variation or derivative of “not too much” accompanied with a shoulder shrug and a change of subject. Instead, I rambled on and on about starting a blog and about blog buddies. I told her about the first project in my weekly clutter-busting series here that shows my mess on Wednesday and the same space un-cluttered or repurposed on Monday. I was showing her my most recently made bracelet design and going on about the then-up-coming launch of my Etsy storefront when she apologized for not having time to stay longer to hear more about all that I’ve “been up to” and started toward the door. Her visit was over and I was still talking about all that I am doing or have been getting done.

I was dragging my feet getting to the “open shop” stage of my Etsy set up… Until I hinted at it two or three times. I can hardly believe that I am actually doing something I have dreamed of doing for years, but had cheated myself out of the thrill of doing it by keeping it to myself. I procrastinated getting to the work of organizing the warehouse until I started the weekly challenge. My Sweetheart had to help me finish, but I had the Etsy launch and another couple of projects underway at the time. By the time the Weekly project was ready to photograph for the Monday reveal all of the other projects (except the launch) were complete!

Now, I try to focus on what I am getting done more than on what I need to do. Right now I feel like I may be on the verge of a stroke due to the anxiety of thinking of all of this stuff all at once (and while trying to hurry up and got off the computer and out the door for an important early morning puppy delivery). But I know that it’s going to pass and I’m not going to have a stroke and by the time the sun sets again I’ll have transformed a couple more to-dos into to-dones.

Hopefully I’ll get that new necklace design finished by then, too. (See how I just did that accountability thing again? I just have to sneak up on myself with it!)

🙂