It’s Blogtober!

The first day of October, and the first day of Blogtoberfest 2014!

So what is Blogtoberfest I hear you ask, well there is a link opposite that will take you to the host blog, Shells in the bush. Basically we are a group of bloggers who will try to blog daily for the whole of October, Blogtoberfest is a blog hop. I did manage it last year and found it a little challenging, but rewarding too.

I have also decided to challenge myself this month by learning to crochet the proper way, I’ll keep you posted on my progress, and how many granny squares I have made by the end of the month. I’m left handed and basically crochet like knitting, but I want to learn to hold the yarn the properly. I’ve always been interested in textiles, I grew up surrounded by sewing, knitting, and crochet and I used to work in textiles, but doing crochet the proper way has always eluded me, and I don’t like to let something get the better of me so  I’m determined to crack it this time.

P1160973 My yarn has just arrived, and I’ve found a pattern online, (more later) but now my biggest challenge is, should I  work left handed or right handed, I am left handed, but ambidextrous as most left handers are, you learn to adapt in a right handed world.

More later, I’m heading off to the studio now. If you are a fellow ‘Blogtoberfester’, leave me a comment and a link to your blog and I’ll head over and say hi!I’m looking forward to reading lots of blogs with my coffee each day.

Why not have a blog hop around the other Blogtoberfest participants

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Enjoy your day.

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52 inspirational photos – week 40

Design Seeds inspiration

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When serendipity strikes

One of the many good things about moving into the new studio is that I had to have a sort out,  I found a lot of unfinished pieces lying around , including some glass that I’d painted for wall art pieces for an exhibition, but they weren’t used.

I also found some slumping moulds that I’d not used in a while, and voilà, some new pieces were made and here they are. I think the are rather gorgeous if I do say so myself.

glass hankechief drape vase
Handkerchief drape vase or tea light holder.

candle bridge
Candle bridge.

glass dish

small glass dish
Ornamental dishes or candle holders.

ring dish, tealight holder
Ring dish or tealight holder

It’s really difficult to photograph iridescent glass, you can’t capture the play of light on these pieces in a photo. I have more pieces in different colours in the kiln now, I will show you them later.

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What the stats tell me

Do you take the time to view your blog or website statistics? It’s quite amazing what you can learn from them, for example I know someone who is currently ‘Down Under’ is avidly reading my blog.

Looking at blog stats and the countries I’ve reached has become a bit of a fixation, most of my readers are in the USA, but I’ve had views from 138 countries, that really thrills me to bits. Some of these countries I have hardly heard of, or know anything about, Vanuatu, Myanmar, where are they? Then there are exotic dream holiday destinations, St Lucia and the Cayman Islands, places I can only dream of, but someone there knows about my little blog. My blog has travelled further than I’m ever likely to, I love the fact my ‘passions’ have reached out to such a wide, and hopefully interested audience.

I can also see which posts and pages get the most views, its my overglaze painting pages, maybe I should start charging. Also “a few drawings under the bed” seems to strike a chord with readers, so many people coming to my blog are searching the web for “onion drawings“, who would have thought it. The most used search term is “fused glass tutorials“, which brings me on to my Youtube stats. My little video on how to make a recycled glass dish has had over 50, 000 views, I find that hard to get my head around.

black and white doodle mug

zentangle mug

Etsy stats are very helpful in seeing how sales are going, what search terms potential customers are using, my black and white zentangle mug has had the most page views.

But the hare tea plate has had the most likes. Of course this doesn’t necessarily mean these are the best sellers, these are repeat items and therefore more likely to have had more views than one off pieces. Looking at the graphs for revenue and sales I can see at a glance that things are much the same as last year.

 

handpainted plate

hare tea plate

Of course I have all my websites set up with Google Analytics, I haven’t looked at those stats for a while but they are very informative too, and a great tool for monitoring how sites are doing on the web. I am no expert at reading the statistics, ( I know a man that is, my DH, I just need to get him interested) but I do find it all very intriguing, and if you haven’t looked at your stats in a while go and check them out, there may be a few surprises in store.

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52 inspirational photos – week 39

“Fine sky, well done!”
sunset

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5 simple pleasures

Today’s 5 simple pleasures:
cattle

  • Coffee, toast and marmalade.
  • Walking through crisp Autumn leaves.
  • Being watched by inquisitive cattle.
  • Hot soak in the bath, watching the clouds drifting by.
  • 5 minutes quiet time to clear my mind.

 

 

 

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So is this an Indian summer?

Indian summerWe are having a wonderful warm spell just now, which is unusual for this part of the world. I’ve been calling it an Indian Summer, but what is an Indian summer? I  pondered the thought over my breakfast, and does the term Indian denote American or Asian Indians?
Indian summerThe past few mornings have been rather nippy, and misty but the sun soon burnt it off and it got out. It was so warm today I have been grinding glass in the garden all day. According to The Old Farmers Almanac the criteria for an Indian Summer are as follows:

  • An Indian summer  day is warm and hazy, there is no wind, the barometer is high, and the nights are clear and chilly.
  • A moving, cool, shallow polar air mass is converting into a deep, warm, stagnant anticyclone (high pressure) system, which has the effect of causing the haze and large swing in temperature between day and night.
  • Warm days must follow a spell of cold weather or a good hard frost.
  • These conditions must occur between St. Martin’s Day (November 11th) and November 20th.

So it’s not really an Indian Summer , but where does the saying come from?

OFA says the Algonquian Native Americans believed that an Indian Summer was caused by a warm wind sent from the court of their south western god, Cautantowwit. Or the very early settlers in New England would welcome the arrival of cold wintry weather in late October when they could leave their stockades unarmed. But then it would suddenly turn warm again, and the Native Americans would decide to have one more attack  so the settlers called it “Indian summer.”

 

 

 

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