Who is the NewNew?

Our group tag line says "hand crafted in the NY Metro area." And if you've ever been to a team meeting, you know there are quite a few of us. But really...who are we? Who makes up the NewNew? 

I decided to find out with a little help from Survey Monkey & their free 10 question survey. So, let me introduce you to the NewNew...survey-style

We are overwhelmingly female. Not that we don't have some boys join in our fun. We do! But, for the first time in the NY Metro area, they are in the minority.

We are mostly a group of 30-somethings. We do have representatives in the 20 somethings category & several people in each category above 30-somethings so the age range is really long in this group. Isn't that cool? I feel like I am honing a craft now that I could potentially keep up. Or change! Hand crafting is ageless!

We seem to be a highly educated group. Most of the group who responded have a 4 year undergraduate degree with a large percentage with graduate degrees. Look at us - all little smarty pants :)

So who are we so far? So far the NewNew is a 30-something female with at least a college degree...and she isn't married. The largest number of answers on our survey in the marriage category were for those who had never been married, but it was almost a 50-50 split with those who are married. So, not the strongest question to determine who we are, I suppose.

We also don't have a lot of kids. Actually more than 80% don't have any at all. Perhaps this is a good time to mention that we have close to 200 members & only about 30% of them answered the survey. This is not a scientific analysis, but I would go out on a limb to say that we have plenty of members with kids & that perhaps that's why the response rate was a little low. It's cool, ladies! Next time...

Our most popular borough to live in? Brooklyn. Followed closely by Manhattan. The only borough not represented in our group appears to be the Bronx. Go figure...

And now for the nitty gritty...what do we make?? The answer: Jewelery. Lots of it. Here's my very first pie chart since high school, showing the break down. The list of categories in the key on the right are the categories you will find NewNew shops in & comes from the list on the Etsy homepage, fyi.

After jewelry, the majority of our makers are in the Paper Goods & Art category, though we are represented in almost every category. We are a pretty diverse set of crafters. Also interesting to note is that a lot of our members do more than one thing. One jeweler in our group also makes cake toppers. One photographer also silkscreens.

Almost done! I also thought it was interesting to know whether or not our 30-something Brooklynite without kids who has a killer jewelry line sells anywhere other than Etsy. And the overhwhelming answer is YES!

Where does this lovely lady like to sell? All over! Seriously almost each respondent had a different market that they look forward to. Of course, you can almost ALWAYS find representatives of the NewNew at the Brooklyn Flea. If you had a visit to Governor's Island this summer, we had a nifty pop-up store there. Also check out Better than Jam NYC in Bushwick & Black Bear Vintage in Windsor Terrace (Hello! Both Brooklyn!). To really find us, try our events page, right here on the blog. See the tab at the top? Local NYC Events? There you go...

I hope you'll come out & see us at one of the events! Look for a 30-something woman, who looks like she lives in Brooklyn, is probably wearing her very own killer jewelry without a stroller in sight...Very generally speaking anyway...

Artist Spotlight: Laura Carollo of Gracenotes Papers

Laura Carollo is in the business of making the act of saying "thank you" extra special with her beautiful line of notecards and other papergoods thoughtfully named Gracenotes Papers. Find out a little more about Laura and her line as {NewNew} blogger Alicia from Lingua Nigra shines the spotlight on her and Gracenotes Papers.
Check out Laura's Etsy profile
1. Alicia: What brought you to New York and keeps you here?
Laura: Design and art brought me to New York and it’s been keeping me here ever since. After graduating college in Washington, D.C. with a degree in Graphic Design, New York was calling! I knew it was the only place to go because of overwhelming number of creative people, museums, design agencies, and artists. Creative energy is all around in this city—I can’t get enough of it!
Bee Mine Valentine
2. Alicia: What started your love of type and paper?
Laura: From a young age, I loved to color and draw--to create crafts or dream up cards or projects. But once I realized all the different papers available and the beautiful things I could do with them, I was hooked! I really honed that passion in a college typography class that was exciting and so motivating (to a type nerd like me). The professor’s love for typography was easily transferred and I became slightly obsessed with letterforms and the beautiful shapes they create.
Set of 8 Polka Dot Note Cards
3. Alicia: Do you see yourself doing anything other than paper goods? Would you ever branch out?
Laura: I’ve been taking small steps to expand my offerings. I just started working on a line of cut paper wall art.  I’ve occasionally done non-paper projects when they’ve presented themselves. But mostly, my passion is in paper and until I feel I’ve exhausted this area, and Gracenotes Papers is a well-known brand I’ll continue working to perfect it.
Say thank you with style
4. Alicia: What is the nicest thing a customer has said or done to you?
Laura: My customers are wonderful! They always take the time to thank me or to express how much they enjoyed working together, it’s hard to choose just one comment. I think one of the kindest acts is their repeat business and referrals. I feel great when I see the email or convo from a familiar name and know that they enjoyed their last order enough to return or send a friend to my shop, and I'm always excited they have another happy event to celebrate!
Express your gratitude with elegance
5. Alicia: Can you give any advice to beginning paper people?
Laura: My best advice is perfect your own style. Make it shine through your work and everything you do, and people will be attracted to that. There are a lot of people working in this medium, but it will be your style and personality that helps you build your client base and really succeed. It's not easy, but doing what you love everyday is incredibly rewarding!
Say I love you over and over again
Alicia: Thank you so much Laura for sharing your lovely work and wisdom with us!


Holiday Gift Guide from the {NewNew}

Nothing says happyholidays-happybirthday-happyhanukkah-merrychristmas-happynewyear-iloveyou like a good, old fashioned piece of paper. Somehow, now matter how hard you try, the absurd graphics of e-cards, the strange language of texting, or an update on Facebook doesn't cut it when you're trying to make an impression. This year at the Holiday Handmade Cavalcade at OpenHOUSE Gallery in Nolita, New York, over forty designers will be selling perfect gifts for every occasion. In particular, the artisans doing their work on paper are exceptional. Be sure to come on by on Sunday, December 5th to see these beautiful paper products for yourself!

More fantastic products will be available at the Holiday Handmade Cavalcade, so keep checking back between now and December 5th for more product and artisan features!


New Ways with Magazines

I've always tried to be a little earth friendly. I love recycled crafts because they are so much fun, and can be a real to challenge yourself, you know? So, here's a couple of fun things you can do with magazines. Personally, I love to use fashion mags best, but you can pick whatever you wish.

One popular idea on Etsy, is re-purposed envelopes. These are easy-peasy to make.

1. You don't need a template, just save the envelopes from the greeting cards people give you. Be sure to open it nicely so nothing rips.

2. Take the envelope apart, so that all the parts are laid out flat. This will be your template.

3. Whip out those old magazines, and trace the outline of the envelope on them. Cut it out, then fold and glue at the sides.

That is all there is to it! Easy, right? Simple! Using this method, you can make envelopes of any shape you want, too! That's the fun of it. You can get pages that have similar themes, like cakes, fashion clippings, things like that, and sell them together. Or get old bridal magazines, and sell the re purposed envelopes in sets.

Another cool idea is to use the images and words in magazines for collage work. My husband does that a lot. That's so much fun because every page can be used for something!

You can also make paper beads with recycled magazines.

There are two ways you can go about this: you can do the decoupage version, which is quick and easy, or you can get your heat gun, embossing ink, and ultra thick embossing powder and do it that way. Personally, I prefer the latter, but being a full time stay at home mom, I don't have the time. So I do it with Decoupage and Diamond Effects.

First thing you'll want to do is get yourself a good paper cutter. You'll also need Diamond Effects and a Decoupage medium.

1. You're going to cut your paper into 1/2" wide strips. Or however wide you want. Just remember that the width of the paper, will be the length of the bead you make. Got it? Good. So, cut up that paper! Each strip makes one bead, so cut away my friend!

2. You're going to use just a tap of glue (I prefer a glue stick, for less mess), and glue the end of the strip, then wrap it loosely around. When you get to within 1/4 to 1/2 inch of the tip, add a dab of a glue. You are going to be sitting there until this dries well enough to let go of, which is why I love my glue stick.

3. You can use wire to string the beads, then go over them with Mod Podge (decoupage medium), and Diamond Effects. But you can use anything! Depending on how tightly you wrap your beads, you can even use skewers, or something. But a nice sturdy wire works. I like to fashion a makeshift clothing line out of the wire to let the beads dry.

Voila! You have a paper bead. You can make pretty earrings, and all kinds of fun jewelry with it.
You can even paint them, or add glitter to it if you want.

Want more ideas?

Another cool thing you can do is make an end table out of magazines! Or, you can make gift bows out of them! What a cool idea! Don't feel like doing anything with them? You can always donate them to a local library, or nursing home or hospital.

Just use your imagination, and have fun!

The Craftaholic
Sweet Buddha Designs

The {NewNew} Handmade Valentines

Want to give something meaningful this Valentine's Day?

Etsy is partnering with City Meals on Wheels to deliver hot meals to 18,000 elderly in our area and on top of that - they want to brighten their day with YOUR handmade Valentine's cards. For details on how youc an particpate - visit The Storque for instuctions. Too late to make and send you Valentine? You can always donate directly to here!

Thanks so much to Groundsel, Jack Blue Hand Bags, Jantar, Waisze, MSwedowsky and Kokalaki Jewelry for making and donating these fantastically unique cards to the elderly in our area.