Etsy Shop: Coming (back) Soon


Ash and Acorn on Etsy will be re-opening this week.  I’ve been finding spare moments here and there–like while waiting for my truck to have the oil changed–to work on my beading, and have dozens more ideas in my head for the future.  My shop will continue to have wedding crowns and candles, but will also have other items for sale which share the “cover everything in beads” theme.

Having the shop open while we prepare to move will be an interesting exercise; all my craft supplies are in boxes, but aside from that, are easily accessible.  Conveniently, as I mentioned, beading is a craft which is easy to transport, like knitting, and is easy to do anywhere you are going to have to sit around a wait a while–if you don’t mind a few curious looks.  And if your auto mechanic doesn’t mind the possibility of a few shiny pink seed beads being left behind in his shop….

A glimpse at some of my projects lately, some for the shop, some personal:


Leaves and Blossoms: New Crowns and Candle Set


First, I’m excited to announce that I’m now selling a few of my crown and candle sets at my church’s bookstore.  This will both benefit the St. George, and, I hope, encourage people to peruse my Etsy shop, Ash & Acorn.  There is a special promotion code on the back of my business cards (available at the bookstore) for use online at Etsy–10% off your purchase, and a portion of the profit will be donated to the church, in addition.  My crafts and the business cards will be available starting this Sunday–just in time for St. George’s festival.

I have also re-done the “Etsy shop” page here on the blog.  It includes an e-mail address to contact me, and a gallery of my crown and candle designs.

New crown design!


This crown set is named “Victoire,” which is French for “victory.”  It is inspired by the laurel-leaf victory crowns of classical Greece and Rome, and by traditional Greek wedding crowns, which are often made of flowers.

Detail of Victoire crowns

Detail of Victoire crowns

I found the leaf lace on Etsy.  It was stunning by itself, but I wanted to give it some extra sparkle and dimension, and added clear glass seed beads on every leaf.  I had a very limited amount of lace, so this is truly a one-of-a-kind crown set.  It took almost 9 hours (if not more; I eventually lost track) to bead and assemble.  View the listing here.

New candle set!


Just in time for autumn, I am introducing a candle set inspired by spring! 🙂  I call this set “Cherry Blossom,” after the pink flowers of the cherry tree.  The candles are 15-inch tapers, wrapped in sheer pink ribbon and white lace.  A pink crochet flower is accented by pink glass seed beads, and pinned to the candle.  It’s a very feminine candle, and would be perfect for a baby girl’s baptism!  The listing is available here.


The exact candles in the photo are only available at St. George’s bookstore, but I have three more styles of crochet flower pairs available from my Etsy shop.  It makes each pair of candles a little bit unique.

It’s good to be crafting again!

Ash & Acorn


My Etsy shop is open for business!  The new name is “Ash & Acorn,” which was entirely Shaun’s idea.  I like it–it references my name (Ashley, which means, “ash lea” or “ash tree meadow”) and the former name of my shop (Squirrel’s Spot–acorns, squirrels. Right?).  There’s not as much new inventory up for sale as I had hoped, but I’ll just do what I can for the time being.  The re-opening may not have been as grand as I wanted, but I like the direction I’m going with my crafting and my shop.

I’ve also re-named this blog “Ash and Acorn” to coordinate with my shop.  Let’s see where this new chapter takes me.

Ash & Acorn on Etsy

Etsy Shop: Opening May 1

I work best against a definite deadline.  Therefore, for better or for worse, I will open my Etsy shop again on Friday, May 1.  Over the next few weeks the name will be changed, and I will be getting new listings ready.  Here’s hoping I make it.

Etsy Shop Update

Things are much the same as they have been with my Etsy shop.  Thanks to a new part-time job (hooray!), and a very stressful and unproductive February (boo!), I will probably have to delay opening my shop until the end of March.

Maybe by then we will be able to see over the snowbanks.

What’s in a name?

I’m thinking of changing my Etsy shop’s name.  I’m fond of “Squirrel’s Spot,” but I named it that almost four years ago, and originally the items in my shop were a little more whimsical.  But now that it’s mostly wedding/baptismal/beaded items, I’m thinking that another name might be more appropriate.

I’m also considering no longer selling Lab Mice greeting cards…either at all, or at least not in my Etsy shop.  They haven’t sold very well.  They also don’t really go with the crowns and fancy candles, but I’m not sure I want to have two different shops.  Lab Mice cards might be best left for my own personal use.

So I have a lot to think about….

Squirrel’s Spot Etsy Shop…(Temporary) Closing

My Etsy shop, Squirrel’s Spot, will be closing temporarily starting January 5, 2015.  I need to take some time to re-organize, re-stock, and take care of some necessarily business-related business.  I’m not yet sure when Squirrel’s Spot on Etsy will re-open, but hopefully it will be sometime in mid- to late-February 2015.  This blog will still be up and running as usual, and I still plan to keep posting Lab Mice comics.

See you on the other side, Etsy!

Special Beading Projects


Beaded piece to go on a candle for our dear friend Maria. Gold seed beads are used to trace outlines on white brocade fabric. An Orthodox cross is created using natural freshwater pearls.

I’ve felt for a long time that I have waaaaay too many crafting interests.  Growing up, my room was basically a storage area for a jumble of craft supplies–some of which related to each other, but many of which did not.  Now, in my own home, my studio is starting to feel the same way.  I’ve been thrashing around the last two years, trying to figure out where I really want to spend my time and money where crafting is concerned, and what I should be focusing on in my Etsy shop.  I think I’ve finally found my direction, and it’s beading.  I love textiles and I love beads, and I think the two can be combined to make some really beautiful crowns, candles, and other projects.  Like most crafts over the years, I’m teaching myself how to do this, relying heavily on a book that I came across one day at the library.  I’m practicing every chance I get, learning as I go, and getting better with every bead I stitch. Below are some examples of that I’ve been working on lately.


Custom Etsy Order: Antique Grace

For this custom Etsy order, I used candles provided by the customer and pinned my 12-inch beaded piece onto the candles.  The candles themselves were beautiful, 18- and 24-inches.  Getting the cloth onto the candles was something of a challenge because of their wide circumference, but I managed it in the end.

Regular 12-inch candle next to the decorated 24- and 18-inch candles.

Regular 12-inch candle next to the decorated 24- and 18-inch candles.

The beaded piece for my 12-inch "Antique Grace" candles.

The lightly beaded piece for my 12-inch “Antique Grace” candles.  The fabric comes from a dress.


Angela’s Candle

This was created by request for Angela, a good friend.  It was my first attempt at serious beading, and I was so pleased with how it came out.  Thankfully, Angela was happy, too. 🙂

Cream brocade fabric with old-gold braid trim, and gold seed beads to create the crosses.

The piece laid flat before pinning it onto the candle.

The piece laid flat before pinning it onto the candle.

On  the candle.

On the candle.


I beaded the cross separately--this was my first attempt, which I ended up not using because the footrest was too high.

I beaded the cross separately–this was my first attempt, which I ended up not using because the footrest was too high.


Wedding Card

When Shaun cleaned out about 50 years of junk from our attic last fall, one of the few treasures he found was a small roll of embossed cream wallpaper.  When we needed a wedding card for a friend, I decided to bead a square of the wallpaper in one of her colors.  It was more difficult than I had anticipated, and I quickly learned that beading on paper (especially something really heavy like wallpaper) is very different and more unforgiving than beading on cloth.  In spite of all that, I am pleased with how it turned out, and I hope our friend is, too.

I lost track of exactly how long it took to bead this, but I think it was around 10 hours.

The finished piece was mounted on a folded piece of cardstock.  It was a snug fit in the envelope!

The finished piece was mounted on a folded piece of cardstock. It was a snug fit in the envelope!



Maria’s Candle

This candle features the piece that I used as the opening photo for this post.  I wanted to do something special for Maria and build on what I had learned from Angela’s candle.  First I stitched the cross into the fabric using natural freshwater pearls, and then traced the outline of one of the brocade leaves and a vine in gold seed beads to frame the cross.

In this project I learned a very important lesson–that what you bead flat does not necessarily look the same when it is wrapped against something round.

I think this took about 6 hours to bead.






Upcoming project:  Beaded Vintage Lace crowns

I don’t have any beaded crowns yet, but I am working on a set!  I found a roll of pretty vintage lace in a thrift store, and am working on beading it.  I hope to make them customizable in color.

Coming soon!  Shown in gold.

Coming soon! Lace embellished with gold seed beads and tiny glass pearls.


Thanks for looking!  Check out my Etsy shop for more examples of my work.

Etsy Shop–Last Chance Sale!

"Ribbon and Lace" candle--on sale for 10% off!

“Ribbon and Lace” candle–on sale for 10% off!

I have reduced the price on FIVE of my candles–from 10-20% off–including my popular “Ribbon and Lace” candle! I am trying to make way for new designs. If you like one of the designs, don’t hesitate–I won’t be making any more of the candles that are included in the sale.

Check it out HERE.