Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Happy 4th-Take Liberties This Weekend!

      In a good way, of course! 
Start learning that song you've been meaning to work on or take up re-learning that instrument you've been wanting to play but putting off cause "duty is calling". Our ancestors & founding Fathers & Mothers sacrificed an awful lot just so we can sit on our behinds & surf the web & Tweet. Perhaps you've been wanting to start knitting a project or finish sewing that garment you started months ago. Well guess what-it's time to start taking liberties & get to it! 
      I've been expanding the stock at Mandolin Babe's & have added some flatpicking books,basic mando books,and have gotten more children's books in for banjo,mandolin,& fiddle. I still need to make a pattern for a banjo cradle strap (should I make that my liberty this weekend??) and I've made a gig bag pattern for a concert size ukulele. 
     Reading wise I'm into "The Handmade Marketplace: How to sell crafts locally,globally, & Online" by Kari Chapin. One of the best books on the topic I've read so far. She really gets into the details in an easy way that doesn't make you feel weighed down. I got the book as what handcrafted items I sell gets accolades from who ever buys them,but the prob is they sell so slowly. I want to find out what it is that I need to improve on in the promotion dept.! 
     Wanting to wish all my readers a warm,safe,& Happy 4th. Celebrate!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Rose By Any Other Name....

      This rose really surprised me. I picked up 4 bare root roses at my local Big Lots,who had discounted them an additional $ just to move them out. The bag showed a deep red,but this is just absolutely delightful. I've never seen a rose this color,and all for $2 something! 
       I've started up the 6 string Banjo Blog again-tho I have an itching to get a banjolin or a tenor banjo,I keep getting outbid on any that I'm eyeballing,& I'm gettin the clue to stick with what I have. So I've been playing the 6 string and it's great because now I feel like my guitar playing skills aren't going to waste. I should write a book on tips for beginners for it. 
      Summer has finally arrived at the cottage-not too sure I'm happy with the heat aspect of it-I love the flowers blooming,seeing the carpenter bees,honey bees & dragonflies but if we could just turn the temp down 8 degrees or so it'd be perfect! 
      I've been winning more antique musician photos for the store. At wonderful prices. I'm still tweaking the Prostore that I now have. It takes a lot of effort,but it's a gorgeous storefront. 
  Here's my latest "for me" project:a violin case for my fiddle. Needs a lot of work,but what a win at $9.99 + shipping! Found out thru an antique dealer on Twitter, @OldMotherRiley, that it's a good bet it's 19th century. Made in England. Here's a pic of the inside that I need to redo:
  It'll fit my 7/8 very nice & snug when I'm done. Want to put a little compartment for rosin & a cleaning cloth in as well. 

Monday, June 7, 2010

More Tailpieces,Banjitar,and Junkin!

That adorable hand carved moon face is on a 16 1/2" viola tailpiece I have up for bid in the store,in addition to 2 other viola tailpieces I embellished. I have contacted my supplier for more fiddle tailpieces,and I have some beautiful cabachons to add to those. 
    I re-rediscovered my banjitar after joining the banjo players hangout-I've been picking Irish tunes on it at night & just plain enjoying myself! 
    The fiddle is going to be practiced on again now that I'm mostly over making myself sore under my chin while I was working with my new shoulder rest and switching chin rests-trying to adjust & see what was right for me so  was no longer supporting the fiddle with m left hand. Aggravated a gland or something but it's nearly gone now. I've really missed not fiddling! Mandolin needs plunking on & so does my ukulele.
    I'm awaiting my antique fiddle case that I got from a seller who was taken nearly 3 weeks to ship it. I reported him to the site,then he gives me a tracking #. Hoping the case is worth the wait. It'll be a relief to have the fiddle in a case,safe from the cats & dust.
    Went to the semi annual neighborhood yard sale extravaganza last Sat & got 2 small frames-on for a pic of Dad & I,and one for an antique hand tinted pic of a fireman fiddler I have. Other prizes were sewing notions,a bag of buttons,2 Oscar De La Renta scarves,one paisley scarf,a harp CD by Carol Thompson,a fall sign for the kitchen,and 2 pairs of sterling silver earrings-one having quartz crystal points. I made sure whatever  got I would have a use for-I don't want to start cluttering up the house again with items because they were a steal or cute. My unloading of previously gained goods is working-people are bidding on my stuff and helping me clear out more clutter. 
     The store will be having an increase in selection of Mel Bay books once the latest shipment arrives-will see if it comes today *crosses fingers* I ordered banjo,fiddle,mando,and guitar books. Trying to cut the drop shipping way down as I like packing the items myself and givng away a business card magnet. Plus it does help to be able to thumb thru the books if I get asked something.