Monday, September 1, 2014

How to Sell and Make Money With Your Crafts

You Can Make Money With Crafts


I often hear friends complain about making beautiful crafts, but not being able to sell their crafts. I tell them all the time, they have to sell themselves, and their crafts, to the world. They can not just set up a little table at a craft shop and expect people to find them. They need to step out of the box and find the customers! With that being said, let us look at the many ways you can make money from doing crafts.

Teach Classes


This is one of the best ways to get yourself out in the public's eye. Give classes on how to do your crafts and make money. Traditionally, classes are given in person. You can teach your craft from your home. You can also contact your local library and find out if they have a community room that can be rented and you can teach there. Some craft stores also allow you to teach crafts at their stores. You benefit by charging for the instructions and the craft store benefits from the purchase of supplies needed for your crafts.

Make Instructional Videos


Similar to teaching classes, you can also make instructional videos on making your crafts. You can sell and market these videos on your own, from a website, or you can post them to various video websites online and earn money from views and advertising.

Write How To Articles


I make a lot of crafts, from sewing and knitting to paper mache and wood carving. However, I make these items for my family and friends. To earn money off my crafts, I write how to articles for each project. I have found this to be an excellent way to make money off of crafting for many reasons. The main reason is that I don't have to settle down with one particular craft item to make and sell. I can jump around, working on a wood carving one week and the next week sew a Halloween costume. I like being able to try out different craft ideas and sharing the ideas with other people. Another reason why I choose to make my craft money by writing is because I have been able to build up a good amount of residual income that I can count on getting each month. I don't have to rely on holiday gift buying for the bulk of my income.

There are many websites that pay for craft articles. You will want to find a website that allows you to post more than one picture per article and that has a step by step layout you can use.

You may also want to consider a blog. With a blog, you can write about your craft, post pictures and videos, sell your crafts, and sell items from Amazon.com.

Sell Craft Kits


I have a friend that switched from selling her crafts to selling craft kits so that other people can make her crafts. This is a fun way to get more people interested in your craft. There are also many people who want to make their own items to gift and the craft kits allow them to do this.

Sell Crafts Online and Offline


Sometimes the craft market seems overwhelmed with same craft items. For example, a few years ago, everyone seemed to be selling skinny scarves. If you are going to sell your crafts online or in person, make sure your items are original in some fashion. Use special yarn, have a color theme to your items, sell your crafts and your creativity to the public.

If you are fortunate to practice a unique craft, such as carving hiking sticks or caning, you will be met with a more interested audience. Take advantage of this curiosity and make money by testing out all the ideas above, from selling kits to instructional videos. You may be well on your way to quitting your day job if you angle your craftiness in the right way.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Rye Crackers with Caraway Seeds

Rye Crackers with Caraway Seeds 


  • 2 cups whole wheat flour 
  • 2 cups rye flour
  • 1 tbsp caraway seeds 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda 
  • 1 cup water from 
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil 


In a large bowl, mix ingredients in the order given. Lightly flour a dry, flat surface and roll out cracker dough until thin. Cut into desired shapes. Heat oven to 275 degrees F. Bake crackers on baking sheets for about 30 minutes. Remove from sheets and let cool completely.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Reusing Old Jeans for Hotpads

During my lean years, those years when my two oldest were little, over a decade ago, I made a lot of things I needed out of things I did not need. One of those things were old or outgrown jeans. In fact, I remember putting a call out to the family requesting any unwanted jeans and I got bags full.

While I used the jeans first for larger projects, such as a braided rug and a jean quilt, the left over pieces were just right for hotpads.

My first step was to cut a square from paper to use as my pattern. I then would cut out as many squares as I could from the leftover pieces. The second step was two layer the jean squares. Depending on the thickness of the jean material, I would use 3 to 5 layers of jean material. I would then pin the layers together. Using a heavy needle and cotton embroidery thread, I would first hand sew a design in the middle of the squares. I kept it simple, such as a heart or flower outline. It was just something that held the layers together. For finishing off, I would whipstitch all around the edges.

I have used these hotpads for over a decade. I won't share a photo of them because they are on longer nice looking, but they do work better than any cheap hotpad bought in the supermarket.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Stop Buying Herbal Supplements and Make Your Own Cheaply

You can make your own herbal supplements cheaply and safely at home. You don't need expensive equipment and you can be certain of the quality of the herbs you grow.

Make Your Own Herb Supplements


Buying herbal supplements is expensive. Besides price, there is also the question of the quality of the herbs, the age of the herbs (how long have they been sitting around, losing their potency), and where the herbs were grown and in what kind of soil.

As an herb lover, I have always been suspicious of any health product sold in stores. It is in my nature to question everything and, while I am sure that there are many quality herb supplement companies, I don't have the time and resources to be 100 percent certain of the condition of the herbal supplements available. The only way I can be certain of the quality of my herbal supplements is by growing my own.

Growing Your Own Herbs


Growing herbs is a fun and healthy activity. Many herbs can be grown in pots on a sunny windowsill or on a sunny patio. If you have a small patch of earth to garden, you can grow many more herbs. If none of this is available to you, consider renting a community garden plot or asking a friend or relative for a small patch of herb to garden.

Easy Herbs to Grow


Caraway Seeds (Carum carvi)

Catnip (Nepeta)

Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile)

Coriander (Coriandrum sativum)

Dandelion Root (Taraxacum officinale)

Elecampane Root (Inula)

Fennel Seed (Foeniculum vulgare)

Hops (Humulus lupulus)

Horsetail (Equisetum arvense)

Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis)

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza glabra)

Marshmallow (Athaea officials)

Nettle (Urtica)

Parsley (Petroselinum)

Rosemary (Rosmarinus)

Sage (Salvia)

St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

Valerian Root (Valeriana officinalis)

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

How to Grind the Herbs


After you have grown, picked, and dried your herbs, you will need to grind them into powder form.

Mortar and pestle. This is the old fashion way to grind herbs. It does not take electricity for you to grind your herbs this way, but it can be a time consuming process.

Magic Bullet. Many people have been successfully using the Magic Bullet to grind their herbs into powder form.

Food processor. A simple food processor will grind your herbs.

Coffee grinder. Another popular item that people are using to grind their herbs into powder form.

Capsules


The capsules you need to make your own herbal supplements can be bought online. The capsules are inexpensive and can be bought in bulk from places, such as Amazon.com.

Capsule Filler Machine


Filling capsules by hand is tedious work. Capsule filler machines are inexpensive and speeds up the process of making herb supplements.

Storing Your Supplements


After you have made your supplements, you will need to store them properly. Store made capsules in a dry containers, just as a glass jar. Keep the supplements out of the sunlight to prevent deterioration of the vitamins and minerals in the herbs. The supplements should also be stored in a cool area of the home. Cool, dark, and dry are the three necessities for keeping your herbal supplements safe.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

How I Use Coconut Oil for Better Health

From the first day I started using coconut oil I saw the benefits. From better skin and hair to feeling healthy, I am now convinced coconut oil is the reason for my well being.

Reasons for Choosing Coconut Oil


It was a rash decision. I told my teenage daughter to grab her shoes and meet me in the car. We drove off to the health food store. We walked in and straight ahead I saw what I was looking for: extra virgin coconut oil.

For the past few months I have been researching for different ways to improve my overall health. The only catch is that I am generally lazy when it comes to setting up any sort of regime. I needed something I could quickly use and see almost immediate benefits. Coconut oil made sense to me because I could use it in cooking and baking - something I do every day - and I love the flavor of coconuts. Keeping it on the kitchen counter, I could also easily eat a spoonful of it for each meal I prepared: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In sight, easy use, and tastes good. These were the perfect qualities of a regime I could actually follow.

Soft Lips and Healthy Skin


One of the first things I did when I opened up the tub of coconut oil was put some on my lips. From that moment on, I haven't used anything else to soften my lips. I no longer have chapped lips and the skin on my lips is soft, smooth, and perfect for those rare occasions I put on a bit of color.

Coconut oil also softens the skin. I began using it on my face the first night by testing out just a tiny amount of coconut oil on my cheeks. I did not break out and the oil was quickly absorbed into my skin. After the initial test, each night I would put a light layer on my entire face and neck, including the skin under my eyes. I could not be more pleased. My skin began to soften within the first week and there have been no acne outbreaks from using the coconut oil. (Other people have experienced pimples when using coconut oil on their face. What you experience my very well different from my own experience.)

Rough patches of skin have also been softened by regular use of coconut oil. At night, I will sometimes rub some coconut oil onto my feet and put on a pair of clean socks. My feet have softened up and my heels are no longer cracked from dryness. My elbows have also softened and no longer pain me from dry skin.

There are many other skin uses you can try out. Extra virgin coconut oil is said to help fade age spots. Use it as often as necessary to keep your hands moisturized. As I've done with my feet, I have also used coconut oil on my hands and then placed a pair of clean cotton gloves overtop to hold in the moisture. This helped with my dry hands and cuticles. You can also use the oil as a makeup remover. The side benefit of this is that the oil seems to help with growing healthier eyelashes.

Soft Hair


If you have dry or curly hair, coconut oil is a blessing. Before going to bed, simply place a small amount of oil in your hands and, using your body heat, soften and melt the oil. Massage it into your hair. Comb through and bun or braid your hair back for the night. The next day, wash out the oil. Your hair will feel softer and healthier.

To get rid of static hair on cold winter days, put the tiniest amount of coconut oil on your hands and melt it between them. Lightly run your hands through your hair, focusing mostly on the ends.

Eating Coconut Oil for Better Health


Eating coconut oil has been an easy habit to get myself into. I believe this is mainly because I enjoy the flavor of coconuts. I take roughly 3 teaspoons of coconut oil a day, approximately 1 teaspoon before each meal. From my personal experience, this has helped my curb my snacking habits and it has given me small energy boosts with no crashing experience afterwards, as with coffee.

There are studies that show that the lauric acid in coconut oil can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol. It is also said to improve thyroid health.

Amazingly, coconut oil also increases the body's absorption of vitamin D and calcium. As a woman in my 40s, calcium intake has been a major concern of mine. I have switched to drinking raw milk for the health benefits and taking natural calcium supplements. I now have the coconut oil working to my benefit, as well.

Fight Off the Flu


Coconut oil is antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antiviral. Many people believe that ingesting coconut oil on a daily basis has helped them avoid or overcome the flu more easily than if they were not ingesting the oil. I haven't been taking coconut oil long enough to know whether or not it will help out this flu season, but I am anxious to find out if my new health ritual proves beneficial against the flu.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Easy Poppy Seed Bread

Easy Poppy Seed Bread


  • 1 package yellow cake mix 
  • 1 package coconut cream instant pudding 
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten 
  • 1 cup warm water 
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil 
  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds


Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Scrape batter into two, greased bread loaf pans. Bake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees F until  bread is firm.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

12 Herbs You Can Grow Indoors

There are plenty of herbs that you can grow indoors or move from your garden and bring indoors when the weather starts to get cold.

1. Basil - Basil can be grown indoors and sprigs can be cut, chopped, and added to spaghetti sauce. Eating a leaf of basil will also tame bad breath.

2. Chives - Chives grow really well when potted and brought indoors. Use fresh, chopped chives in scrambled eggs are as a garnish for deviled eggs.

3. Dill - Grow inside and add fresh dill to breads and soups.

4. Fennel - Fennel is commonly used to cure an upset stomach. Grow indoors in a well-drained pot.

5. Hyssop - Grow hyssop in a sunny window and use it to make a healthy tea.

6. Lavender - Lavender growing in a sunny window can make a whole room smell beautiful.

7. Parsley - Parsley is a popular garnish and freshly chopped parsley is a much needed addition to homemade chicken noodle soup.

8. Peppermint - Peppermint grown in a sunny window can be used to make tea that will soothe an upset stomach.

9. Rosemary - Potted rosemary plants are a common Christmas gift and can be grown indoors.

10. Sage - Sage is a great addition to breads, bread stuffing, and soups. Use freshly grown sage for baking, cooking, and in teas.

11. Savory - Savory can be added to meat dishes and it is used in making broths.

12. Thyme - Thyme can be added to a number of meat dishes, soups, and broths.