Happy Lunar New Year!

(photo of decorations for sale during my trip to Singapore in 2006)

Most of us celebrate the new year on January 1st, counting down until midnight, singing auld lang syne, and making resolutions to lose weight, particularly all the pounds gained from all the holiday feasts with family and friends.

Well just around the corner is the Lunar New Year, which as you can guess, is based off of the lunar calander; therefore the date changes year to year, but this year, it will be on January 26, 2009.   In Mandarin Chinese,  you will often hear people greeting each other with “Xin Nian Kuai Le, Gong Xi Fa Cai!” which translate to “happy new year” and “wishes that you be prosperous”!  

Its a time to wish each other a happy new year that will be filled with good fortune and blessings! Wikipedia lists out many of the exciting traditions in details, but one of my favorite traditions of the holiday is when elders give the younger children lucky red envelopes “hong bao” with money inside! I find it a great concept, to wish that prosperity would come to your loved ones, and literally to give them some money to kick start the year!   In addition to the envelopes, you are sure to see everything decorated with red and gold, including lanterns, auspicious sayings postings on doorways, etc. because Chinese view red as symbolic of good luck and ward off evil, and gold of course to symbolize fortune.

Another thing you might see during this holiday is the Chinese character 福 (“fu”) meaning  “good fortune”, sometimes you might even see it upside down!  The reason for it being upside down, is Chinese love play on words! The Chinese word “dao” (3rd tone) for “upside down” (倒) sounds similar to the word for “arrived” (also “dao” but 4th tone: 到). Therefore, the word upside down is also symbolic to mean “fortuen has arrived”!

This a great holiday that brings generations of families together and eat traditional foods that are also symbolic of good fortune for the new year, like fish, oranges, noodles, sweet sticky cakes, and much more! 

cow1Also, it being the new year, brings on a change in the zodiac as well! This year will be the Year of the Ox/Cow!  The ox is symbolic of being hardworking, patient, with a logical mind.  I am trying to put out new pendants in my Etsy shop that you can purchase to give to all your friends who’s Zodiac symbol is the cow! (i.e., anyone who will be turning 12, 24, 36, etc. multiples of 12. )

 

~Best wishes to all of you in the new year, and that despite the state of our economy, I hope you all will be blessed with good fortunes to come!~

 (Glass magnets with 4 Chinese blessings of long life, health, good fortune, and peace)
 

 

Gift Certificates for Sale!

Do you love our products at Majenta Designs, but there are too many choices and not sure what your loved one would like most? Then this gift certificate is the perfect gift to let them browse at their leisure and choose the items that suit their fancy! Almost all the items in my shop are $15 or less, so this gift certificate is the perfect amount for them to pick out something special!

WHAT you’ll receive: a digital gift certicate will be sent to your email address, in which you can print out and give to your loved one.

WHERE to redeem: gift certificate can only be redeemed for items listed at www.majentadesigns.etsy.com.

HOW to redeem: after your recipient has “added to cart” all their selections, they simply write their code # in the “message to seller” during checkout.

TERMS & CONDITIONS: certificate can only be redeemed at my Etsy shop. It can not be applied towards shipping/handling charges. It is not redeemable for cash. Certificate expires after 1 year from purchase.

Want a DIFFERENT AMOUNT?: Just convo me and I can make a reserved custom listing just for you.

BLOG A DAY GIVEAWAY!

Click Here

Koi Pendant - $15

Koi Pendant - $15

Win a chance to get your very own adorably cute and fun Japanese Koi fish Pendant Necklace from Majenta Designs or 30 other amazing handcrafted items from other talented artists! See below for pictures of the items for GIVEAWAY as well as the DETAILS on how to play!

 

 

blogadaygiveaway_preview

The Blog A Day Giveaway!

We’re hosting a giveaway this month and is a massive one! We’ve got 30 amazing prizes to giveaway. So let’s get started shall we?

TO ENTER:
This is a little different than our usual giveaways but I thought it would be fun since most of us will be shopping for holiday gifts anyways. I love to blog and if you do too this giveaway is perfect for you! Browse through our wonderful list of giveaway contributors and find shops or items on the list that you like and write about them on YOUR blog, Myspace, Ning site or any other type of post that you can link to. Then, come back and leave us a comment with your contact info (email address) and a link to the blog post and tell us who you blogged about. I will post up reminders daily so you don’t forget! BUT, if you are busy or you miss a day or two you can blog about up to 2 shops per day.

GENERAL GUIDELINES:
♥ If you blog about more than 1 shop per day you will have to post up seperate comments for each individual shop you blogged about for it to count. For example if you posted about 2 shops the first comment would say “I blogged about shop1 – http://shop1.etsy.com/” and the second comment would say I blogged about shop2 – http://shop2.etsy.com/
♥ Enter once for each shop! That’s up to 30 times! 30 chances to win!
♥ Interenational residents can enter too!
♥ Contest starts Oct 31st and ends December 4th at 11:59pm (EST)
♥ Winners will be drawn using a random number generator and a winners list will be posted on Dec 8th. Be sure to check back to claim your prize.

BLOGGING IDEAS:
Here are some fun topics and ideas for you to blog about!

♥ Blog about your favorite item from a shop along with a photo and link to the shop
♥ Pick something that reminds you of a story from your life and tell us about it
♥ Post about who you would buy a gift for from a shop
♥ Pretend to be a critic and review a shop
♥ Create a questionaire for a shop owner to fill out
♥ Choose 4 items from the shop that you think work together as a group (by colour, pattern etc.) ♥ Post about your wishlist from one of the shop
♥ Tell us why you like the shop
♥ Pick an item from X shop as great gift idea for “Dad” or “Grandma” or one of those hard-to-buy-for-people
♥ get a shop owner to fill out a meme
♥ If you are a past customer of one of these shops tell us about your experience shopping with them

GIVEAWAY CONTRIBUTORS:

♥ Fruit Variety Candle Gift Set from Moodwax, $26
♥ 15 oz. palm/beeswax blend pillar scented in our Cinnamon Spice essential oil blend from BeSem Natural Scents, $20
♥ Ice Crystal Resin Necklace from PennyDogAccessories, $24
♥ Xmas Dancer Gift Set from kittyhawke, $95
♥ Snow Bunny washi covered notebook and a Japanese fabric badge set from Asking For Trouble, $21
♥ Fabric Shopping Bag and Earrings from avocadocreations, $28
♥ Desert Dreams Hairsticks from stringmealong, $15
♥ Rose Quartz and Leather Earrings from HeartofaCowgirl, $16.95
♥ Handbound Leather Journal (7×4, 300 pgs) from myhandboundbooks, $30
♥ STUD from museacdonline, $18.50
♥ Silver plated Marsa Ring ,Two Beaded beads and Polymer Clay Flower Pillow Bead from dicopebisuteria, $24
♥ Island Vibe burp cloth from SnugBugClothing, $22
♥ Red Hum Love – Original Scratchboard from TidbitsandBits, $25
♥ Pink and Green box from gmistudio, $15
♥ Limited Edition Cloud Print Wristlet from TheTinyFig, $28
♥ Evergreen Earrings from GenuineArticle, $35
♥ Your choice of any pewter pendant from 2monkees, $15
♥ For the Birds – Felted Birdhouse Ornament in Pinks & Browns from thatissocute, $15
♥ Black and White Floral Bangle from tooaquarius, $25
♥ Orbitals 3-strand Wire Crochet Bracelet ‘mod dots’ in purple from pomomamadesign, $25
♥ Marbled Earth Earrings from chendric, $18
♥ Sweet Tooth Gift Set from threeofwands, $26.75
♥ Loves Me, Loves Me Knot from xiztance, $40
Lucky Fishpond Necklace from majentadesigns, $15
♥ Hazy Raindrop Earrings from zahour, $35
♥ Shark Attack Dog Leash from Organidog, $15
♥ Sterling Silver Drip Necklace from BeadsInTheBelfry, $25
♥ A Little Black Box from littleblackboxes, $23
♥ Falling Leaves – Hand Spun Merino Wool from jilldrapermakesstuff, $20
♥ Custom Gift Set (Scrub, Butter, and Perfume) in White Gift Box with Ribbon from thegardenbath, $25

For an extra chance to win post an entry on your blog and invite your friends to join in on the blogging, then come back and post a link to the entry in the comments section.

Good luck to all and Happy Blogging!

Krazy for Koi Fishies!

Magnets Set - $16.50

Magnets Set - $16.50


Petite Pendant - $10

Petite Pendant - $10

Wow, for some reason, my koi items have been flying off the shelves in just the last 2 days!  I have no idea what has triggered all these sales, but its been great!   These koi’s are so adorable, they bring a smile to anybody who sees them!  I sell pendants, cufflinks, earrings, magnets, rings, hairpins, and more! Check out the photos below of some of them, as well as feel free to peruse and shop from my eboutique at www.majentadesigns.etsy.com for other paper designs and Asian-inspired items!

Square Pendant - $15

Square Pendant - $15

Ring - $5

Ring – $5
cufflinks - $15

cufflinks - $15

hairpins - $6

hairpins - $6

Boston Handmade at SOWA Market THIS SUNDAY!

SOWA Outdoor Market (10/12/08)

SOWA Outdoor Market (10/12/08)

Come find the Asian-inspired jewelry, housewares, and gifts of MaJenta Designs (everything under $15-17!) at the South End (SOWA) Outdoor Market amongst other wonderfully talented Boston Handmade artists and crafters THIS Sunday (10/12/08)!  Its a holiday on Monday, so enjoy your long weekend by soaking up crisp autumn air and enjoy a day of shopping and supporting the local arts!

My Etsy Anniversary SALE!

Its been exactly one year since I opened up my shop, MaJenta Designs!  I want to celebrate by offering FREE WORLDWIDE SHIPPING on all purchases today!  Just make sure you leave a “message to seller” at check out saying “Anniversary sale!” and I will send you a NEW payment invoice with the shipping charges removed.  If you have any questions, dont hesitate to contact me! 🙂

Interview with Boston Handmade

I was interviewed by the Boston Handmade team, a juried team of local artists and crafters in the Greater Boston area. Here is the link. And the article is below:

INTERVIEW WITH JENNIFER TANG OF MAJENTA DESIGNS:

Boston Handmade: Tell us a little bit about yourself
MaJenta Designs: My name is Jennifer, and I was born and raised in Western Mass but since graduating undergrad I have been living in the Boston area. I am currently a graduate student at Northeastern University studying Counseling Psychology with a focus on helping underserved populations and emphasis on multicultural prospective. However, I always had a passion for arts & crafts too, and so I recently started up my jewelry business to fulfill that other passion as well as any profits helps towards paying off a lifetime of loans! 😉

Boston Handmade: What first made you want to become an artist?
MaJenta Designs: I have always loved arts & crafts ever since I was little and probably making Christmas ornaments in elementary school or some time as early as that. However, I never thought about getting into the business as I never thought I’d be able to figure out all the details of what it takes to sell things at the professional level. I’d have to give props to Etsy for that, I have learned so much valuable information about how to run a business from Etsy, and I think that being a part of a group like Boston Handmade and having a support network to turn to for advice and help is definitely invaluable as well.

Boston Handmade: What are your favorite materials?
MaJenta Designs: I love working with chiyogami, which is traditional handmade Japanese paper (literally meaning thousand generation paper), because the patterns are so intricate and gorgeous, and I love making jewelry and housewares with it encased in glass as the glass really helps to illuminate the paper designs and give it an added depth.

Boston Handmade: What inspires you?
MaJenta Designs
: I love making pieces that have a symbolic meaning to it, as I think it makes the piece more significant, especially if someone buys it to give as a gift, it adds a special message behind the piece. For example, plum blossoms are symbolic in Asian cultures for perseverance and new beginnings as they are usually the first signs of spring that burst forth after the bitterness of winter.

Boston Handmade: What do you love most about what you make?
MaJenta Designs: I love that the chiyogami paper is so versatile so I can make so many different creations with them. I know my Etsy shop is dominated by my pendant necklaces and magnets, but these papers have been great at making decorative nightlights, photo albums and journals, and I actually just bought a button/badge maker, so it’ll soon be great to make these into collectible pins and cute pocket mirrors too!

Boston Handmade: Any tips on selling handmade stuff?
MaJenta Designs:
you have to be persistent, I’ve seen many great artists quit after a few weeks, but success doesn’t come just by opening a shop. You have to keep promoting yourself, keep your items fresh, have great and friendly customer service, and keep creating new items all the time. I also found that it really helps if you develop your own niche and your have a theme throughout your shop, as your store seems more uniform and professional if you have a consistent theme.

Boston Handmade: What advice would you give to artists who are new to Etsy?
MaJenta Designs: This advice overlaps a bit with my previous response with being persistent and not giving up, as there are literally hundreds of thousands of sellers on Etsy so you need to make yourself stand out. I also think you need to have a thorough shop policies section and some interesting info about yourself in your bio. I also think it’s a great idea to start off as a buyer, as not only does that help build your feedback but also can be good karma hopefully too. With detailed info about yourself and your policies in your shop and some positive feedback about you already in place, it helps customers see you as a professional business, and can feel more comfortable when buying from you.

Boston Handmade: What else do you like to do when you’re not studying or crafting?
MaJenta Designs: I love to travel and explore new countries and learn about new cultures. So far I’ve been to about 20 countries across Asia, Europe, Australia, and North America, but my goal is to hit up every continent in my lifetime! I love doing outdoors activities and having unique experiences there, such as scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef, riding in elephant in Thailand, or biking around Dingle in Ireland.


Boston Handmade: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
MaJenta Designs: I’ll hopefully be done with all my schooling by then! Ideally I’d love to have a job as a part-time professor teaching psychology, have a small private practice of my own, and hopefully own a house where I can have my own crafting studio! One of my goals for my business is for it to grow, I want to be able to do more craft shows as well as have my items carried in a few boutiques, that would be ideal!