I did a lot of shopping the last few days. I mentioned my shopping trip to Amsterdam yesterday, but I also went shopping in Utrecht the day before! I didn't actually plan on going shopping that day, I only went to Utrecht to get a haircut. I was in there by 10.30 am though, and my hair dresser couldn't help me until 3.00 PM, so what's a girl supposed to do?
Both days were very succesful, I bought a bunch of fantastic new clothes! I didn't take pictures of anything I didn't wear yet, so here's what I did wear, today:
I am so in love with my new red boots! I'm all for red shoes. The skinny jeans are fantastic too, because they are fake. What? Yes, fake. They are actually leggings, made of super stretchy jeans fabric to make them look like jeans. They can have that nice super tight look, without making it impossible to move or breathe. The waistband is actually elastic! Ha, what an invention! I couldn't resist and bought a dark blue, light blue, jeans black and black black pair. I was tempted to get a grey pair too, but I decided against it. They had white too, but they made my legs look like sausages :( I bought mine at Pieces, but they are available at Vero Moda and Only as well. The boots are from Divino.
Other things I bought included: A gingham dress (I know! Another one!), some more boots (I am horrible!), some basic shirts and a very nice face mask from Lush. I got a free soap with that, and it's making my whole room smell delicious!
My hair cut is less succesful than the shopping trips. It's much shorter than what I like, and looks like a wig! Baaaaaaaaaaaaad. Luckily my hair grows fast, so hopefully it will look better soon.
My update today is a little later in the day (make that night here in Europe) than usual, but I have a good excuse: I was shopping in Amsterdam with my sister all day! I had to visit my neurologist (more about that later), and of course we grabbed the having to be in Amsterdam thing as an excuse to go on a crazy shopping spree!
One of the shops we visited was Open Shop Amsterdam, where they have a selection of Tizzalicious Goodies! It was the first time I got to see my items in a store (I have delivered them on several occasions, but never went back after that), and it was very strange! Nice though! It was also nice to see that there was a lot less than what they ordered from me, which means it has been selling quite well! Yay for that!
Like I mentioned, I also visited my neurologist today, about the migraines. I have been seeing him every 3 months for the past god knows how long (ever since I was 7!). We have decided that I will start the dreaded Topamax medicines before. They worked well in the past, but the side effects were nasty. I hope they won't be too bad this time. Plus I will get some other stuff to help me build down the meds I take when I do have a migraine. They cause headaches when you take them too often, which I have been doing the past month because it was migraine day every day. So hopefully that will help a bit too.
Another something I'm gonna have to do is stop drinking soy milk. Soy containes female hormones, which might be screwing my hormone balance, causing the headaches to get worse. Farewell morning hot chocolate, I will miss thee :( I guess it will be worth it if it helps though.
I don't have pictures of any of the nice things I bought yet, but hopefully I will be able to show those sometime soon. I bought some fantastic new things!
Faux food is always good! That's definitely one of my motto's. I love how Die Krämerin takes is further than the usual cupcakes and donuts. You can even buy a whole grocery bag full of faux food in her shop!
I haven't shared a treasury here forever! I make them often though, especially for the Crafting in Color Team. This one is for the team too, I made it this morning when Etsy came back online after their maintenance.
I had a bit of a strange morning this morning. I usually start the day with an apple & hot chocolate while checking my convo's & e-mails, and after that I start packaging the packages I need to mail that day. However, this morning Etsy was down, which meant I couldn't do my Etsy packages. I figured I'd just check my bank account, to see if any DaWanda payments came in, so I could at least start with those...but my banks website was down too!
It gave me some time to remake a few items that sold out though, so at least I made myself useful. Plus I could tell I wasn't the only one who didn't know what to do, all my Twitter buddies were talking about Etsy being down too. I think we need a life!
I can't beliiiiieve I never featured She.LikesCute as Cute Craftster of the Week! Or maybe I did and I just can't find it anymore? In any case, you can never have enough cuteness, so if I did feature her before, I will just do it again!
After all the Valentines finds earlier this month, it's time for a normal Stationery Saturday again. I found the perfect shop for you: Maria Lunate sells the cutest printables. As I am in the possession of a laser printer these days, I am certain I will buy some cuteness there some time.
I kept myself busy this morning, and stocked the shop with new products! Necklaces, bobby pins and earrings to be exact. As usual, you can find them on Tizzalicious.com, Etsy & DaWanda.
My February newsletter also finally went out! It had been forever since I last sent out a newsletter, I have been so swamped with everything that I just didn't think about it. You can view the new newsletter online here. You might want to do that, because it uncludes a free shipping coupon!
If you'd like to join the newsletter (which contains discount coupons more often of course!), you can use the form right here in the righthand sidebar of the blog, or you can use this form on Tizzalicious.com.
I'm glad everyone thought my information about Disqus yesterday was useful! It seems to work very well too! I will post a follow up post about it once I've been using it a little longer. My main concern was that it might put fellow Blogspot members off commenting, because it's so easy to comment when you're already logged in. But it seems like most of you fellow Blogspot ladies (and men?) thought it was brilliant, so I guess I don't have to worry about that!
One of the things that bothered me about using Blogspot as a host for my blog was the fact that I couldn't reply to comments by e-mail. I often get questions in my comments, and I never knew where to answer them. Do I leave a reply myself, and hope they will read it? Do I reply on their blog? What if they don't have one? Do I edit the entry and reply there?
I never knew, so a lot of questions went unanswered, and a lot of answers went unseen.
I found the solution now though! I just installed Disqus. It replaces the usual Blogspot comment form by one of theirs. Other Disqus members can post a comment using their profile, and non-members can leave a comment like on most non-Blogspot blogs, by entering their name and e-mail.
Another nice thing about Disqus is that it can make threaded replies, like LiveJournal does. You can reply to another comment that way too! It will make commenting a lot more interactive.
It's VERY easy to install. All you need to do is download your template in your blogger layout settings, upload that template to their server, and paste the code they generate for you back in the Edit HTML field here on blogger. Easy as pie!
It all sounds perfect to me, and I am excited about it! This is my first post using it, so you will notice that the comment for looks different. Go ahead and click the "Leave A Comment" link to check it out :)
P.S. This has got to be the most boring looking blogpost I ever made. It looks depressing! Sorry about that!
This isn't so much a tutorial as a few useful tips on how to improve the pictures of jewelry, accessories, and anything else that needs you to get close!
I am not a professional photographer, and my pictures aren't perfect, but these things helped me out a lot, so they should work for you too:
Make good use of the macro setting!
♥ Always use the macro setting on your camera. Usually the icon for the macro setting is a little tulip flower.
♥ When taking a picture, press the button only halfway down at first, this will make your camera focus. Once it focuses, click through.
♥ Select the right white balance for the light you are using. Not every camera has the same settings, but most cameras these days have at least the following options: Sunny, Cloudy & Artificial Light. If you choose the right white balance, you should be able to get true colors with any kind of light.
♥ If your camera has an option for "vivid colors", use it! This will make all colors so much brighter!
♥ Ditch the white background! Even when using the correct white balance, it's hard to get white to look white. So why bother? Just because a lot of shops use white backgrounds, doesn't mean you have to too! Besides, who needs white backgrounds with teams like The Crafting in Color Team around?
Just have a look at these 2 pictures:
The first image was taken on a white background. I spent a lot time editing it, and the background still looks greyish. The second picture hardly needed any editing at all, and in my opinion, looks a lot better!
♥ If there isn't enough light, pictures often turn out blurry. To fix this, you can either set the "ISO" higher, or use a Tripod. Setting the ISO higher can work out great, but it also increases "noise" in your pictures, so don't set it too high! A tripod is always great. I have a gorillapod myself, it can bend in all kinds of shapes, which makes it easier to take pictures from different angles.
♥ Talking about taking pictures from different angles: Do this! A picture that shows only part of the item, or from a strange angle, usually makes the picture a lot more interesting, and thus clickworthy. Most selling sites give you space for more than one picture, so you have plenty of space to show the item in full or in the other spots.
♥ After you finished taking your pictures, edit them in a program like Photoshop or Gimp. Gimp is free, and has some great tools that will really help your pictures look better. My Gimp is in Dutch, so I won't be able to post screenshots that would be useful, but I can tell you the tools I use a lot:
- The "automatic white balance" setting (Under "Colors"). - The "fade white balance" if it was a little too much. - The "Unsharp Mask" to sharpen the picture. I usually set this to 1.1 - The "Curves" tool (under "Colors"), to make images lighter. - The "Hue Saturation Tool" (under "Colors").
That last tool can do a lot! It can saturate colors (which makes them stand out more), change a color tone a little (like when pink looks a bit too salmon, you can change it with this tool), make colors lighter or darker, etc.
The one rule to stick to when post editing your pictures is: Don't overdo it. If you lighten a picture too much, the colors will get bland, if you sharpen it too much, it will look fake, and if you saturate it too much it will get blotchy. Also keep in mind that not all monitors look the same. What looks great on your screen might be eye hurtingly bright on another.
♥ Invest in a nice camera. I liked my old camera, it took nice, sharp and bright pictures, but once I got my new camera I noticed how much better this one is at taking macro shots. It creates a sense of dept, which makes pictures so much more interesting to look at.
A good camera does not have to be expensive. I have a Canon Powershot A720 IS, which is available for around $200.
♥ Get to know your camera. That new camera I am so happy with now, caused a lot of angry moments when I just bought it! Take the time to get to know your camera. Something that really helped my photography skills in general was doing "project 365", I took a picture every day, for a whole year. Something like that really helps you to get to know your camera, you can't wait for a sunny day to take the picture, you will have to make do with what the day offers you, so you figure something out.
I hope these tips were useful! Taking good pictures is tricky, but I hope these tips will at least make it a little easier for you!
Oh how I love finding random cuteness is dollarstore type stores! I went downtown today to get a few things, and I spotted these super cute bags:
Aren't they cuuuuute? I had to get them of course, even though they are quite small, and thus probably useless.
The first one is by the Korean brand Artbox, I always love their stuff. I wish it was a bit easier to find though, If anyone knows where to get it online, please let me know! The only site I could find was this one, and I'm desperate for more!
I have a new favorite Etsian: Skunkboy Creatures! The creations in this shop are so cute, that I had a hard time picking which ones to show you. I managed to make a selection though, so let's have a look!
As you might have noticed, my blog was loading extremely slow for a few weeks! I thought it was just me, but I was told other people had the same problem, so I played around with my gadgets a bit, and it's fixed now!
So those of you who were avoiding my blog and only reading the feeds...feel free to stop by again, the slowness is gone! It turns out it was the indiego ads that were slowing it down. Strange, because I had them forever, and they never caused any problems before!
I added these earrings to the shop yesterday! They have got to be one of my favourites. I love how geeky they are! Always, you can find them on Tizzalicious.com, Etsy & DaWanda.
Thanks for the sweet comments on my last entry everyone! ♥ It really meant a lot to me. My dad is doing a lot better. He will be able to come home from the hospital in a few days.
I can't ignore Valentines day of course! Happy Valentines Day to you all! Do you have any romantic plans? Or are you anti-Valentines day? The boyfriend and I had plans to go shopping together, and maybe see a movie & go out for dinner, but I'm not feeling too fantastic (crazy migraine month doesn't seem to be over yet), so we will just stay in, order food (because we are lazy and I'm addicted to Falafel sandwiches), and watch some movies.
My dad had a heart attack this morning. He is fine now, but it still scared me a lot. I guess at some point in your life you start getting worried about your parents getting ill and dying, but I wasn't at that point yet, and it never occured to me that something like that could happen. I am quite shaken up about it.
As you can probably imagine, I'm not quite in the mood to blog at the moment, so I will leave at at this for today. I will be back tomorrow with some nice Etsy & DaWanda finds, and a shop update.
I told myself not to make anything new until I was completely caught up with adding things to Tizzalicious.com. I failed miserably though! My plan for today was to glue a whole bunch of things that are close to being out of stock, and then do groceries. I couldn't resist the temptation of using all my pretty new beads & charms that were still sitting on the kitchen table though, so I grabbed my pliers, and before I knew it, I had ended up with this:
So much for glueing and doing groceries!
I am so pleased with how everything turned out though. So many pretty colors! Now I just need to photograph it all, and add them, and the things I didn't get around to adding before, to the shop. Oh well, at least I won't be bored!
Now it's time for the glueing though, I'm afraid. Boo :(
I am still not doing well migrainewise. I seem to be having a very bad couple of weeks, so I'm trying to take things easy a bit. I worked more than I should have today though, so as soon as I finished packing the packages I have to mail today, I'll cuddle up on the couch with my 2nd Twilight book, which finally came in the mail yesterday! I was smart enough to order book 2, 3 and 4 at the same time, so I won't have to wait for the next one when I finish this one (which, knowing me, is probably sometime tomorrow ;)).
Talking about reading, does anyone have any good book recommendations? I always run out of books to read, and I think it's really hard to just go to the bookstore and pick a good book!