buttons

Natural Crafts

November, 2009

Festival time is around once again, and with it comes all the excitement and wonder of browsing the shops, playing games, and finally getting that turkey leg. I can’t help you with getting the turkey, but I can help you save money by offering advice to get those old-fashioned goodies cheap- or even help you on how to make them yourself.

The first piece of advice is to shop wholesale, or find deals on sites like ebay.com or etsy.com. Ebay has pretty much anything you could ever need, and if you see something, you have the option to haggle or bid as low as you think the product is worth. On sites like etsy, you can find supplies to make your own products, such as hand-mulled soap, homemade candles, hair accessories, jewelry, or whatever else you would want to make. And like ebay, you have the option to haggle or buy wholesale through certain shops.

Second, sniff out and pounce on sales- this can be garage sales, thrift stores, or even throw-aways that aren’t wanted. You can find things to build up on, like an awesome shirt that you can use to rip up or add to. By building your supplies or, say, a custom outfit for faire, you are saving money in the long run. Also, by building from the bottom up, you have all the options of customization without paying for something you don’t need- you can simply find someone who can customize it for less if you can’t do it yourself.

Last but not least, do NOT discard any remnants of old materials or scraps, such as melted candle wax, old buttons, ragged shirts, floral bits, etc. Put them aside- there might be a day and time for those remains. You can use the castaways to make something quick and easy that might alter the way something looks or feels. Also, you can use them to barter or trade with people- either for a cash return or for a service or product that they might offer. Remember, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”

By doing just these little steps, you save time, money, and effort. In the long run, you might be able to go get that turkey leg- or even two- and not have to worry about spending the money in shops when you can make things yourself, or find them cheaper.

I save money as often as I can, and find new recipes or skills to dabble with. One powder that I make on hot days at faire is great on skin and helps with the heat. I do not remember how I heard about it, or when- but I call it “Faire Days Heat Helper:”

Faire Days Heat Helper

Mix together equal parts of ground cinnamon, powdered         cardamon, and cornstarch. Rub onto skin and leave on as a perfumed powder.

Also, I have an enormous stash of buttons and other oddities. I make quick and easy buttons that go great with dancer outfits or tribal getups. Collect a few buttons- about 7 per ear ring. You also need wire, hemp cord, fishing line- or another type of thread or cord- and ear ring posts.  Depending on the desired look,some jewelry links might prove to be useful. Attach the cord to the ear ring posts, and then attach the buttons to the cord or wire (wire works best) through the button holes. Loop the wire around, which secures these to the cord. Add more buttons to make any desired effect you might want to try. At the end, add a knot or two and then trim the excess. Photos follow, in order, illustrating good materials to work with, and the steps in order to create these ear rings:

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Stay tuned next time to read about how to make your own hair wreath or crown and bath soak that will make you look- and feel- like a million bucks, as well as give a lesson on chakra importance and how it applies to making you look and feel beautiful.