Custom Orders – #CIJParty 2016

Contributor post by Sheila from BeadyEyedBird

Those of us who do custom orders can appreciate what a special gift a custom order can be — to the buyer or to the person the buyer is giving it to. It’s not just any old thing — something mass-produced that anybody could find or buy. Instead, it’s something that incorporates the unique spirit of the artist, perhaps even something that is designed with a particular person in mind.

We asked our friends at Christmas In July what kind of customized item/s they offer, and their experience has been with designing/producing for particular clients. Here’s what they said.

Alexandra Richards from EyeLoveKnots said:

One of the first orders for my shop was a custom order for some ceramic tile coasters in hot pink with bunnies on it. I did some digging for bunny clip art and found the cutest one! My client loved the idea, and ordered a set, and has since been back to put in several different custom orders.
It is so wonderful being able to work so closely with clients to make their visions come to life, and it’s even more wonderful when you hear from them about how they use their item, how they gifted it or what they like about it.
It takes lots of time and patience to put together custom orders, and sometimes you have to step outside your comfort area and get creative and resourceful, but in the end, I think it’s way worth it. Not only do you produce a new item for your client, but I also feel like the flood gates open up with similar ideas or different ways to approach the idea.
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Hot pink bunny ceramic tile coasters

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Dawn Whitehand from DeeDeeDeesigns said:
 I definitely do custom orders! Making a range of table wares I can custom make sets of plates or cups or bowls, in custom sizes and custom colours.

I can also custom make jewellery. I have had many custom orders for specific ring sizes, which can be tricky given the shrinkage that occurs with clay, however, I have worked out all my shrinkage rates and regularly create successful orders.

I usually make a few rings, and the spares I list in my shop!

My most recent custom order was for a set of earrings. the customer was replacing a set of broken earrings and wanted a set as close as possible to the originals. I think they turned out wonderfully!

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Blue ceramic earrings -custom order

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Dana Hamant from LilybeanzBowtique said:

 A majority of my items are custom items. I originally stocked my shop with ready to ship items. Almost all of the orders I have received since opening in February of 2015 have been custom items. I love when I get a custom request. Some customers have a very specific idea in mind and want me to produce it exactly. I find these to be the most challenging, yet rewarding. I love seeing their vision come to life in my hands. Most of my customers have an idea of what they want and tell me to “have fun with it.”

The cover picture in this listing is my most recent custom order. This was for a local customer. She wanted a fabric wreath in her local school’s colors: Red, White, & Black. I had so much fun going to the craft store and matching up the fabrics to create this piece.

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Made-to-Order Wreath, Holiday Decorations, Country Style Decor, Scrap Fabric Wreath, Rag Wreath for Door, Fabric Wall Wreath, Outdoor Wreath

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Valerie Brown from FirepanJewellery said:

I definitely do custom orders, ranging from enamel earrings (the client wanted each earring to be a different color), one of a kind silver pendants, gemstone jewellery, and of course engagement + wedding rings!

I just recently had the pleasure of making the wedding rings for my friends. I had made her engagement ring four years ago. We collaborated on the initial design which incorporated elements that were meaningful for the both of them. We used diamonds and sapphires from her Grandma’s Art Deco cocktail ring and I carved a lotus into the gold at the bottom of the ring as a very personal reminder of his Buddhist beliefs. When it came time to make their wedding rings, she just wanted a simple, plain band and he got the custom design ring. His wedding ring is a very wide band with a lotus cut out (this is meant to be on the bottom of the ring, to mirror hers). Aside from being able to incorporate very personal elements into their rings, they were able to choose different materials for their rings. Hers is 18K white gold, and his is 18K yellow gold (this was done to suit their skin tones better).

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Custom wedding ring set

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Wendy from wendysuniquecreation said:
I accept custom orders on everything I make except for upcycled glass pieces. Even with some of them I’d accept custom orders since some pieces may be customizable to an extent or if the customer wants a specific theme.

My most memorable custom order started when a Facebook game neighbor posted they had excess game resources I needed. From there we became game partners and then friends. We’d chat daily and one day I noticed her sending me lots of minion characters in Facebook chat. I proceeded to say she must love minions and she responded by saying she’s a minion nut. Well, I mentioned that I have a minion slipper pattern for ladies and when looking for that pattern, I found a minion hat pattern as well for sizes 0 – adult. She ended up buying a minion hat, minion slippers, and minion purse that I enjoyed making for her since I too love minions. My favorite part was where we would joke around and laugh, resulting in me making a blue tongue for both her slippers and hat instead of the usual pink tongue. Since then she has placed 2 more custom orders with me and she loves everything I make her.

I believe a happy customer brings repeat customers and word of mouth is the best free advertising.

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Many thanks to everyone who shared their stories with us!

Until Next Time,

Sheila

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Vintage pickins – #CIJParty 2016

Contributor post by Alicia from AliciasFindings

Vintage sellers have a love of all things old and timeless.

The memories these items invoke are amazing.

Here at Christmas in July we want to know “How do you decide what to pick?” Are there certain items you love, that are more in demand. Why do you pick what you do?

Dawn Whitehand from DeeDeeDeesigns says while I make ceramic tableware and jewellery, I also create upcycled jewellery, which I sometimes combine with original ceramic components.

The materials I choose are wide and varied, but I love vintage buttons, and have been collecting them for many years from many sources. Some I don’t re-purpose into jewellery because I want to keep them!!

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Upcycled Gray and Blue Button Ring

Leila Valois from ValoisFelts said I too love upcycling my vintage finds. I pick things up from charity shops and fairs – buckles are one of my favourite things right now.

I’ve made a few ‘fairy windows’ with them. They have gorgeous colours and designs that inspire what I felt in them. This pearlescent one had a fantasy/scifi feel about it.

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Alien UFO Fantasy Window- Miniature Painting-Needle felted brooch

Jennifer Allison from JenniferAllsion  states I almost always post vintage goodies that I would want to keep for myself (and often do…krikey!). I like to find things that I can re-purpose…give new life to…and could spend hours just browsing antique stores and garage sales for items that remind me of warm memories and simpler times. I recently found a cardboard puzzle from the 1950’s and fell IN DEEP LOVE with the graphics…knew I had to find a way to give it new life.

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Washington state puzzle piece magnet

msmadmax from madmaxshop says fashion constantly refers to the past for inspiration. Especially today when the current forecast can be seen borrowing from a previous successful trend in fashion featured two decades ago, i.e. sequins and sparkle, romantic ruffled blouses, done up denim

Wearable fashion trends for 2016 have been inspired by the trendsetting fashions of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. I like to post vintage items that can easily blend in with current fashion but still evoke a trendy look and feel of yesterday…

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80s Vintage Blouse

Dana Hamant from LilybeanzBowtique said I adore the vintage look. I love to use fabrics and designs that invoke this. Recently a friend requested a planner band to adorn a notebook she had. She wanted something “vintage-looking.” I found these vintage-style wooden buttons and knew they would be perfect. After I had created her one-of-a-kind piece, my creative juices kept flowing.

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Custom Fabric Tutus and headband set

Sue from MissIvyVintage discussed I have always loved vintage linens of all sorts…Embroidered, crocheted, tatted, and prints. I find a great deal of pleasure when I find a linen that at one time brought joy to a child. I find these linens especially charming and when I list, I hope the item will bring joy to another child. I have only this one.

Vintage handmade Childs Santa Claus Pillowcase

Vintage handmade Childs Santa Claus Pillowcase

Shelly from ShellysSelectSalvage states I have loved vintage items since I was a child. Their history calls to me and I think of all the hands it has passed through and how it was cherished before. Now I feel like I save them for others to enjoy.

I like looking for unusual items and miniatures, something that will catch the eye.

I personally collect vintage linens as I love the old smell, softness, and look. I have a huge vintage pillowcase collection and love using them on all my pillows.

I love this little guy – such a funny face.

Cow Bottle Opener and Corkscrew

Cow Bottle Opener and Corkscrew

willowvalleyvintage from WillowValleyVintage says My daughter and I are fans of Marie Kondo, so we are always looking for items that “Spark Joy!”

We love the graphics and idea behind this Balloon Pump.

Gag gift Party Decor Vintage Inflato Balloon Pump

Gag gift Party Decor Vintage Inflato Balloon Pump

Kira from TrellisLaneVintage said my love of vintage is rooted by my mother, many years of looking for and living with antiques. I love the 50’s through 70’s and fill my shop with items that catch my eye. I try to focus on items that are functional and fun!

Vintage chip and dip set,Indiana glass set

Vintage chip and dip set,Indiana glass set

Jackie Irvin from JackJacksWayart discusses that my love for drawing began at a very young age. I have been enjoying creating custom design door decor for a few years now.
I also love working with pastels painting portraits, making jewelry, chalkboards and much more.

Old World Santa Door Art

Old World Santa Door Art

Catherine Caramanica from BlkBttrflyDsgns discussed that It’s in my nature to choose items that are unusual, unique, one-of-a-kind, edgy. I love to bring eclectic offerings to the table. These boots are for a confident woman. A woman who isn’t afraid or apprehensive to wear something that stands out. They’re an outstanding pair of boots.

Tony Lama Cowboy Boots-Ladies 7B

Tony Lama Cowboy Boots-Ladies 7B

Heather from ArabellaBlossoms says buttons are always popular with sewers and crafters. Vintage buttons hold a special attraction with their beauty, originality and craftsmanship from a bygone era.

I have gathered buttons for my stash for as long as I can remember. As children our Sunday afternoons were often spent playing with my mother’s button collection. She stored it in a large tartan painted biscuit tin. My stash is now much larger than that one and it is time for me to share the love-and my buttons!

4 Large Gold Black Tone Metal Shank Vintage Buttons

4 Large Gold Black Tone Metal Shank Vintage Buttons

toysfrom70s from toysfrom70s said my wife and I recently downsized and as the old saying goes you can’t take it with you, we’re selling off our childhood memories. Sharing the love of 1970s toys and collectibles. We didn’t realize how many people also loved some of the items we have sold over the year, the notes they send tell us we’re not alone in cherishing memories and it is rather humbling knowing we’re spreading smiles across the USA with our items.

Just listed maybe it may bring back a smile to you of childhood.

1974 Vintage Growing Up Skipper Doll

1974 Vintage Growing Up Skipper Doll

Alicia Holman from MemaAntiques discussed that we love vintage items. We love the history regarding each item we obtained. This item for instance came from a home in Orangeburg SC. This was a wedding gift given to the family in the 1940’s. The female in the home kept it in her china cabinet and never used it. She wanted it to always be in perfect condition.

Her son told us how she would fuss at the children and the grandchildren if they came near this dish. Reminds me so much of my grand parents and their favorite items.

It is so much fun. All items in our shop has a story behind it or we can tell you were it came from.

Fenton Green Grapes and Leaves Carnival Glass Candy Dish

Fenton Green Grapes and Leaves Carnival Glass Candy Dish

Cher Loose from LooseChipsWoodWork says when an item reflects a memory in my heart I pick it up and cherish it… we have a rule in gift giving and buying… it is if we like it ourselves then someone else will too! (and if they do not, they will return it to us and that is okay too!) example: My husband remembers the Western Electric Company in Reading PA, before it was bought out by AT&T and he even worked there for a few years, actually using a slide rule. So this is why I sell this, in hopes someone else will find someone who likes to collect slide rules or maybe put it in their pocket and show another generation how to use one for fun…. on Christmas Morning in December or in July!

Vintage Collectible Slide Ruler and Instructions

Vintage Collectible Slide Ruler and Instructions