What’s Coming in 2014

Happy New Year!  After I’ve hung the new calendars, I always spend New Year’s Day taking down the tree and putting away the Christmas ornaments.  Yes, I intentionally leave them up that long.  I mentioned putting them away early this year a few days ago and my husband looked at me like he didn’t know who I was.  I guess that’s a tradition that’s pretty deeply rooted around here.

So, what can you expect here at Crafty Staci in the coming year?  For one, I’ll be continuing my Friday Favorites series, which has featured over 1500 projects already.  The round-ups are becoming popular on Pinterest, with my Gifts for Guys post being my most-repinned item in 2013.  If there’s a topic you’d like to see covered, just let me know!

Friday Favorites

February will mark the fourth (!!!) anniversary of my blog.  I haven’t decided what it will be yet, but as always, there’s going to be a giveaway.  I’m torn between an item handmade by me or supplies so the winner can make something herself.  Any opinions on that one?

Birthday Cake

This is going to be a big year for my family as well.  My son will be graduating from high school in June.  My baby.  Just…stunned.

2013-10-26 Tucker Senior Photos 155

And my daughter will be tying the knot with her fearless firefighter in late July.  The wedding is going to be at our home but even though we’re going to be up to our eyeballs in DIY, you probably won’t see many wedding-related crafts until after July.  I don’t want to give everything away before it happens!

Codi and John Engagment Photo - Heather Fitch Photography

I’ll probably be taking a month or so off from this blog and my shops when we get close to the event.  Don’t worry, I’ll come back after I rest a little.  Then I’ll leave again for a week in September for a family trip to Disneyland.  After that, I’m all yours.

Speaking of my shops, I’ll still be working hard at Etsy and Zibbet this year.  I’m hoping to make a personal appearance or two at crafts shows next fall and winter as a vendor.

Zibbet banner Nov 2013 holiday with jars

I’m looking forward to this year for so many reasons, not the least of which is the time I get to spend here with you.  Thank you for coming on this crazy trip with me!

Last Day of Holiday Sale 2013

I’m wrapping up the final day of my sale in both my Etsy and Zibbet shops today, so if you have gifts left to buy, now’s the time! Black Friday Weekend Sale - CraftyStaci

This has been a big year for customizing, which means the selection of ready-to-ship items is still good.

Lens Cap Holders:

These are still in stock in all three sizes, including some with a small internal pocket to hold an extra memory card.

Lens Cap Holders - CraftyStaci

Memory Card Wallets:

I have these in both sizes, although right now there’s only one for SD cards left, but several for CF cards.

Memory Card Wallets - CraftyStaci

Business Card Holders:

There are a few of these in stock.

Business Card Holders - CraftyStaci

Camera Straps:

I have several straps in the around-the-neck style.

Camera Straps - CraftyStaci

And some for use around your wrist.

DSLR Wrist Straps - CraftyStaci

Coffee Cup Sleeves:

There’s still a great selection of these available, including some of my novelty shaped patterns and camouflage, which includes a donation of the proceeds to Wounded Warrior.

Coffee Cup Sleeves - CraftyStaci

Ninja Monkey Bags:

A few of these are still available too.

Ninja Monkey Bags - CraftyStaci

Jars, Lids, Straws and Coasters:

Everything here is stocked up and ready to ship.

Drinking Jar, Steel Straw and Mason Coaster - CraftyStaci

The sale and coupon code both end at 1 am Pacific time tonight.  Happy shopping!

Black Friday Weekend Sale 2013

Before I get into the sale portion of this, I’d like to wish you all a happy, healthy and safe Thanksgiving.  I hope you’re able to spend some time with loved ones, enjoy some great food and reflect on what you’re thankful for in your life.  One of the things I’m grateful for is the fact that all of you choose to spend some of your time here with me.  Thank you!

Once the dinner has been put away and demoted to leftovers and the annual viewing of whatever movie your family is into is over, some of you are probably going to move to the shopping portion of the weekend.  I’m not going to brave the crowds out in the real world this year, but I do intend to do some browsing online.  If your plan is similar to mine, I have some deals in my own shops to pass along to you.  Be sure to read all the way to the bottom for a special additional discount code, just for my newsletter and blog readers!

Etsy:

CraftyStaci Etsy Shop

CraftyStaci Etsy Shop

All of my ready-to-ship Etsy items will be marked down 15% except the Christmas section, which will be 25% off.

Zibbet:

CraftyStaci Zibbet Shop

CraftyStaci Zibbet Shop

All items in my Zibbet shop will be marked down 15% except my Ninja Monkey Bags, which will be 25% off. 

Now for that additional discount I mentioned…

Black Friday Weekend Sale - CraftyStaci

Black Friday Weekend Sale - CraftyStaci

For your cut and paste ease, that coupon code is HOLIDAYS2013.  This coupon will expire at 1 am Pacific time on Tuesday, December 3, 2013.  This is the only discount available on my custom Etsy items, which will not otherwise be on sale.

I’ll be available all weekend so if you have any questions, feel free to email me at craftystaci (at) gmail (dot) com or through either shop directly.  Happy shopping!

Holiday Delivery ScheduleFor in-stock delivery before Dec. 25: order by Dec. 19, 2013 within the United States and Dec. 1 to international and military addresses.For custom delivery before Dec. 25: order by Dec. 9, 2013 within the United States and Nov. 18 to international and military addresses.

Vanilla Brown Sugar Coffee Syrup

I live about 7 miles from the nearest store.  Not that far, I know, but when I only need one thing it’s impossible to motivate myself to make the half-hour round trip drive.  I’d rather spend that thirty minutes in the kitchen trying to make an acceptable substitute for whatever it was I thought I needed.  This time, it was coffee syrup.

I try to confine myself to two cups of coffee in the morning.  Most days I stick to it, but sometimes I cheat my own system.  Rather than having a third cup of hot coffee, I switch to iced instant espresso.  I know, it’s really no different, but I feel a little less like I’ve fallen off the wagon because it’s in a different cup. 

Last week, on a particularly tiring day, I was headed for that third cup of denial when I realized we were out of both caramel and vanilla coffee syrup.  How does that happen and I don’t notice?  Anyway, I did a quick search for a caramel syrup recipe, but every one I found listed caramel sauce as an ingredient.  Huh?

I decided to aim for a caramel flavor on my own, so I whipped up this syrup.  And I wouldn’t really say it tastes like caramel, but it is oh-so delicious.

To make this, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine the water, brown sugar and salt in a saucepan.

Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently but gently, until the mixture just starts to come to a boil and all of the sugar has dissolved.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.  Cool, then pour into a bottle.  Add a tag or label and this would make a great gift.

Vanilla Brown Sugar Coffee Syrup - Crafty Staci 5
Vanilla Brown Sugar Coffee Syrup - Crafty Staci 5

This would also be tasty with some other spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves.  I think I would try brewing them in the water  (the way the Chai Tea Concentrate is made), then using that water to make the syrup.

In case you’re wondering, the way I make my iced espresso is I fill the 20 ounce glass half full of water, add about 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons powdered espresso, fill to about 3/4 with coconut almond milk, sweeten to taste with the syrup, then finish filling the glass with ice.  Zero drive time.

Vanilla Brown Sugar Coffee Syrup - Crafty Staci 6
Vanilla Brown Sugar Coffee Syrup - Crafty Staci 6

Speaking of my glass, these are in my Zibbet shop now, along with that stainless steel straw, which I completely love and is available straight or with that little bend at the top.  Also, that coaster?  It’s made from leather and a mason jar ring and you’ll find those in my shop as well.  I haven’t listed the wraps yet, but if you’re interested just let me know.  It’s been a busy couple of weeks around here!

New at Zibbet

When Etsy recently announced they were going to start allowing factory made items, I panicked a little right along with most other sellers.  After I calmed down a bit and came back to the Land of the Rational, I realized it was best to give it some time and see what happened.  So I plan to hang in there on Etsy, work hard and hope for the best.  However, in this whole process, I learned about another marketplace and decided I’d try it out too.  It’s called Zibbet, and so far I like what I see.

I started out by moving my Ninja Monkey Bags there.  After that, I added a few coffee cup sleeves.  It’s starting out slow, but I like having somewhere I can branch out from the photography accessories I’ve been making for the last couple of years.

Yesterday, I added something new.  I’ve partnered with my talented husband to make Mason Drinking Jars!  They’re so cute.  If you’re a fan of those little canning jars like I am, add these to your Christmas list.

Crafty Staci Drinking Mason Jar blue pint

They come in blue and clear, pint and 20 ounce and singles or sets. 

Crafty Staci Drinking Mason Jar set of 4 clear pints

Next week we’ll be adding handmade stainless steel straws.  After that, we’re planning mason jar soap dispensers, leather mason jar lid coasters and mason jar cozies.  But right now, this is my very favorite thing to drink from.  There’s nothing like a metal straw to keep your drink cold.

Crafty Staci Drinking Mason Jar 20 oz

These will be included in my sale on Black Friday weekend, so pick out your favorites now and sign up for my newsletter so you won’t miss out on that extra discount code!

Crafty Staci Newsletter

Just in case you haven’t gotten enough of me yet, I’m about to launch a newsletter.  I have a lot to say, and apparently it can’t be contained in a blog, various social media outlets, two shops and the ear of a husband you’re probably feeling a tiny bit sorry for right now. The newsletter will focus on my Etsy and Zibbet shops.  I’ll use it to announce new products, fabrics or variations on existing products.  But the most exciting thing you’ll find in my new newsletter is SALES!  Click the big box below and it will take you right to the sign-up page.

Newsletter sign up

I’ll be publishing via email, fewer than six times per year (probably 3 –4), usually in advance of a sale or holiday.  Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I will be having a Black Friday weekend sale, so my first edition will be out that week.  All of my in-stock products will be on sale, but subscribers of my newsletter and blog readers will receive an extra coupon code, totaling the largest holiday discount I’ve ever offered.  If you’re interested in following what’s happening in my shops (did I mention the SALES?), just sign up and watch your inbox!

New for Fall in my Etsy Shop

Thanks to the miracles of technology, you’re reading this while I’m enjoying a mini-vacation with my sweet husband in sunny Las Vegas.  He’s just finishing up his bachelor’s degree, which calls for a celebration, and today happens to be his birthday.  We’re actually not huge gamblers, but we enjoy the sights, shopping, entertainment and delicious food that the city has to offer.  Okay, and maybe a few minutes at a nickel slot machine.

I’ve been working hard on some new items for my Etsy shop, and when I return the focus will be on getting them listed ahead of the official start of the holiday shopping season.  Ready for a sneak peek?  If there is anything here you’re interested in, just leave me a message here or email me at craftystaci (at) gmail (dot) com with the number of the item and I’ll set up a reserved listing for you when I return on Saturday.

I’ve got a few more camera straps in my workroom to finish, but these four will be up soon.

Camera Straps - Crafty Staci

These wallets hold twelve SD memory cards.

SD Card Wallets - Crafty Staci

These wallets will hold eight of the larger CF cards, or SD cards in their plastic cases.

CF Card Wallets - Crafty Staci

These are the new lens cap holders.  There are two 84mm, four 77mm and two 67 mm size.  Many of these coordinate with the camera straps shown above.

Lens Cap Holders - Crafty Staci

These business card holders slide onto your camera strap.

Business Card Holders - Crafty Staci

And, one of my favorites, lots of new coffee cup sleeves!

Coffee Cup Sleeves - Set A - Crafty Staci

Coffee Cup Sleeves - Set B - Crafty Staci

Coffee Cup Sleeves - Set C - Crafty Staci

I’m also trying out a new crafty sales platform called Zibbet.  Right now, you’ll find my Ninja Monkey Bags and some of my coffee cup sleeves in my shop, with more to come before the holidays. 

If you have any questions, feel free to email me at the address above.  I’ll be checking my mail periodically and I’ll return late on Friday, refreshed and inspired.  And with a slightly lighter wallet.