Thursday, January 27, 2011

Cartolina iPhone app - version 1.3

Hey, guess what? The free update is ready for your Cartolina iPhone app. There are 8 new Cartograms which I think you will have fun with. The new designs are based on the layered ephemera look that was so popular with the holiday app. We have changed a few things with the functionality - there are now 4 lines available for your message - and, we have one *brand new feature* that I think you will enjoy - now you can post Cartograms to your Facebook page!! So making Facebook announcements can be really fun - and really pretty! Enjoy . . .

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Help, please :-)

So, as I have mentioned a few times here recently, I am going to open an Etsy shop to sell Cartolina Art Prints. I get so many emails and calls from people interested in buying prints so I think it's a fun idea. The trouble I am having though is trying to figure out which of our images would work best as framed art. I'm hoping you can help me :-)

I have formatted the images that I know are the most popular onto 11 x 17 sheets for printing. I am having them professionally printed at our printers in Vancouver. So they will be a lovely quality with lots of brilliant vintage details. I'd like to start with 12 prints in the shop and then add to the collection over time.

I've prepared 20 and we
need to whittle it down to 12 - that's where you come in . . . . I'd love to know which ones you would consider buying or which ones you think will be the most popular. Some will be great for a kids room, some are more conservative - hopefully there's something for everyone! Please can you take a minute and let me know what you think - even if you just list your top 4 or 5 favourites. Leave your comments and I'll pick a couple of names from the list to win a free print when I get them printed next week! And if you think I've missed any obvious ones just let me know! Thank you so much - what would I do without you :-)

As you can see above, most of the art prints will have a natural vintage edge so that they can be framed with a small white release (which means you don't need to mat them) or you can mat them right over the edge for a clean look.

A place for everything.

I would love to have one of these cupboards - I know exactly where I'd put it too. It would be so fun to curate each drawer with a selection of tiny treasures - I could get all giddy just thinking about it! This one looks vintage but it's new - from Red Rooster Bab.

Love Maude

Oh just look at all these pretty embroidered things from Love Maude. She has such a good eye for colour and scale and each piece is so beautifully made - what a clever gal :-)

Monday, January 24, 2011

I can't remember if I told you all ready but one of the things I have up my sleeve for this year is to reconnect with some of the wonderful people who buy our Cartolina products. Because we are wholesalers we tend not to talk to the end consumer very often and I kind of miss chatting to the people who actually buy our stuff in the stores. So as part of my reconnecting plan we are going to have a super fun market stall in our local market and hopefully travel to some of the other Pacific Northwest markets - to meet some people and have some fun weekend road trips - can't wait!

We are also going to open an Etsy store to sell some exclusive Cartolina products including some limited edition art prints - to frame for your walls. I'm really excited about this! I get asked all the time for frame-able versions of our designs and finally we are going to do it! probably in the next 2 weeks!

I was talking to a friend of mine who is a very successful Etsy seller and she reminded me to use watermarks on our images when we post them in our shop. I know that I should, but I think it's such a shame :-(

Today I just wanted to touch base with you about the problem of 'right click copiers'. I know that lots of you have had to deal with this problem online but, if you haven't, a 'right click copier' is someone who doesn't understand the implications of using copyrighted imagery without permission and randomly swipes other people images online and uses them to create art and crafts that they sell commercially either on Etsy or another e-commerce site. I recently had this happen here at the Cafe when an artist, who I had featured here a couple of times, started swiping images from other posts here and using the imagery in her jewelry - fortunately I noticed and put a stop to it - but I was horrified!

There are lots of legal sources to acquire the rights to use beautiful vintage imagery. Artists and crafts people should familiarize themselves with the process and the copyright laws so that they are confident that the images they are using are legal. It's a shame that a few people have to ruin it for everyone else. Have you had this problem - how did you deal with it?

I'm looking forward to opening our Cartolina Etsy shop but I probably will have to put big watermarks on the sample images - sorry! This week I would love you all to help me pick which designs we will produce as art prints. They will be printed professionally. They'll be 11 x 17 and I think you'll love them! So I'll put the selection together tomorrow or the next day and I hope together we can come up with a great collection!

P.S. A good piece of advice when you are using vintage imagery or anything that's rare, but in the public domain, is to restore the image and make a few obvious changes to the image so you recognize it as your work. That's what we do - do you have any tricks? :-)

Vintage inspired treasures

My friend Eilidh in Scotland has the sweetest shop, Silk Purse, Sow's Ear, where she sells her vintage and handmade jewelry. There are a number of pieces in her shop right now that I have my eye on including these wonderful art deco dogs. Eilidh makes pretty little brooches from original vintage ephemera mounted on wood and also fab rings from her collection of vintage buttons. It's fun for me to check out her pieces because it reminds me of the treasures that you find in the UK at flea markets and antique fairs - quite different than what you find at markets over here. We are very overdue for a trip to Scotland - maybe later this year - and I guarantee you it will include a fair amount of treasure hunting! Thanks Eilidh!

DIY - upcycled book project

Here's my favourite DIY tutorial from the last couple of weeks. A pretty little vintage 'rolodex' from Andrea Rodgers. This is so clever and really so practical - I love it. If you collect paper ephemera what a fun way to display it. Great job Andrea!

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