Archive for Resources

Emancipation on the Eve of a New Year

January 1st is the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the decree signed by President Lincoln that freed those slaves living in states not under Union control. Though it did not abolish slavery (the Thirteenth Amendment, passed in January of 1865, did this), it was significant in that it paved the way for African Americans to be enlisted into the federal army. It also turned the dialogue from the war being one to “save the Union” to one being fought against slavery.

To commemorate the 150th year of this document, the National Archives will display the original document through January 1 in the East Rotunda Gallery where the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights are displayed.

Years ago, I stood at the door of no return at Goree Island in Senegal, West Africa – a door undoubtedly that my ancestors crossed to come to these Americas. DoorofNoReturnGoreeIs
As I stood at the threshold of that door of my own free will, I wondered what those who have stood here against their will would have been thinking, the fear of the unknown, of the horrors that lie ahead.

The Emancipation Proclamation was not perfect document, but I will be at the National Archives to commemorate its 150th year as well as its place among the other imperfect yet significant documents that have formed this nation.

[flagallery gid=4 name=”Emancipation Proclamation”].

For additional information on events being held to celebrate the 150th anniversary at the National Archives, click here. For additional information on the Emancipation Proclamation, follow this link.

Here’s to freedom, justice and a very HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Resources for Turning Handcrafts into Profit

So you have this talent creating handcrafts. People are telling you how fab you are and orders start coming in. Do you look the proverbial gift horse in the mouth and just give your talent away, keep it under wraps and bring it out on special occasions, or do you thank your lucky stars that you have a gift that has lucrative possibilities?

If you’re like me, you opt for the latter. But how do you turn a gift or hobby into a business? Here are a number of resources that have proved helpful in my endeavor to create a profitable handmade business.


In How to Sell Your Crafts Online: A Step-by-Step Guide to Successful Sales on Etsy and Beyond by Derrick Sutton, you’ll learn everything from how to design a fab Etsy banner, how to take eye-catching photos to how to effectively use social media to promote your Etsy shop.

How To Sell Crafts Online

How to Make Money Using Etsy, written by Handmadeology’s Timothy Adam, provides essential information on how to establish an Etsy site, how to optimize product visibility and increase sales, how to effectively blog to promote your Etsy site, and much more.

How to Make Money Using Etsy

In Handmade for Profit by Barbara Brabee, you’ll find step-by-step guidelines on every aspect of establishing and running a handmade business. Topics include developing a product line, pricing, how to sell at a variety of venues, and marketing methods.

Handmade For Profit

Jewelry Making for Fun and Profit by Lynda S. Musant and Maria Given Nerius provides home business basics, jewelry-making how-to’s, as well as how to profit from your jewelry-making talent.

Jewelry Making for Fun and Profit

With these reference materials in your arsenal, you’ll be well on your way to turning your passion into a profitable venture.

Please comment and add your go-to references and resources here.

Three Must Reads For Artists and Creatives

This is a blog entry I wrote for the Etsy Artists of Color blog
Saturday, July 30, 2011

I’m constantly in search of new methods and techniques to improve my art. One of my favorite past times is browsing publications at bookstores. I find it to be a release Read more

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