Archive | October, 2009

a reminder:

24 Oct


I love living in LA, and this is just part of the reason why. Is it defacing public property? Perhaps. But then again, all you need is love.

P.S. We are working on some new stuff for the store! Be sure to check back soon…



16 Oct
sooo many accounts now

We have sooo many accounts now

We have a lovely new flickr account for your enjoyment. Or for our enjoyment.


in my old age, i fear that i’m becoming quite maudlin

16 Oct

And also rather fond of plushy representations of physical things.

There, there, little felty tree. You can come over any time.

we make things.

16 Oct

If Orderly Civilians is to me a beloved child, then architecture (my day job), in many ways, would be my husband.

I had this conversation last night about salaries and how much more I would be able to make if I had chosen to be something more along the lines of a sales manager or even an F1 help-text writer. Ridiculously boring jobs, but ones that pay far more for less effort than my current job. That is not to say that sales and help-text writing are not demanding jobs–some of the most admirable and convincing people I know of are the sales reps who troop into our office and bring us delicious lunches (Bottega Louie!) and miraculously always know what to say and exactly how to say it.

Specify my product!
Specify my product
Now I’m sure that these guys get a special thrill for every dollar of product that winds up in a $$$$$$$$$$ construction project, but there is just something completely indescribable about making things that would be lost forever if I had chosen a different career.
A month or so back, I made a detour to LA Mission College  up in Sylmar on my way back to Clovis, where one of the first buildings that I have ever worked on in a design capacity is being built. It’s a community college building and as a direct result of conservative board members, is not all that adventurous design-wise. But it’s a sturdy sort of building, functional and straightforward, and it was so amazing to see the building parts that I had worked on in 2D drawings becoming physical reality. Silly things, like exit stairs that I had worked out, or the loading dock that I had chosen colors for.
Rebar that will eventually become stairs

Rebar that will eventually become stairs

Almost Ando-esque

Almost Ando-esque

There is just something gorgeous about being able to point to something and say “I conceived of this.”

– ChairmanMHow

for now, happy.

14 Oct

It’s one of those rare occasions in an Angeleno year where you can fall asleep to the sound of falling rain.

Well, perhaps it’s more like the sound of tires on wet asphalt, but it’s still something, I suppose.

Things have been a bit gloomy around here as of late, amongst all the good that has happened. Within four hours of listing, our cherry ring was featured on a Treasury list, and within a day, we had our first sale to a stranger (no longer, hopefully) all the way over in Iowa. This was followed up two days later with yet another sale to a fellow crafter in North Carolina. Then we headed over to Los Feliz and left one of our mythic apple rings for designer Carol Young to take a look at (she wasn’t in at the time).We received our seller’s permit, and our Fictitious Business Name statement had been approved and was on its way to the printing press.

So there was all this excitement and buzz and general optimism about Orderly Civilians and the possibilities that seemed bounded only by the limits of our creativity. And it was so great.

But since then, things have slowed down. There hasn’t been much activity on the sales front, we had a hiccup with PayPal, and a friend’s negativity started to get the better of us. What if no one likes our products? What if our listings are buried under a mountain of other apple rings? What if no one even wants an apple ring? What if we make two sales for the entire fiscal year and have to pay a mountain of business taxes out of pocket?

Insecurity is a hard thing to get over, and it’s harder than you’d think to give up on caring about what those closest to you think. I’ve always been one to jump headfirst in to things and get really excited about a new opportunity or venture, and I still think that it’s a good thing and a good trait to have. Otherwise, I’d never start anything and end up doing nothing at all but play Cooking Mama and Final Fantasy all day long. Of course, this means that the downside is that once started, it’s hard for me to find the energy to keep going once the initial honeymoonish phase is over. I tend to take things to heart and feel everything, both the good and the bad. Highs are ridiculously giddy and euphoric, and the lows are exactly the opposite.

So it’s been in this mindframe that I’ve been wandering around in recently, lost. We’ve not gotten much done in terms of creating much backstock or generating prototypes and ideas for new products. Our Moo business cards came in and they look spectacular (although we forgot to include our e-mail for inquiries–it’s, by the by) and our Seller’s Permit start-up package came. Today, we received more ring blanks/shanks and our new stock of wooden apples came in. But other than that, it’s been pretty hard to drum up the energy to work on much of anything.

Moo business cards <3

Moo business cards ❤

Today, however, I checked our Etsy listings, which I pretty much haven’t done since receiving the first two orders, and was just completely floored. Although we’ve made only a handful of sales, the number of views and hearts (each heart represents an Etsy user that has bookmarked an item as a favorite) that our humble rings have received is overwhelming. Our Mythic Apple ring has been the most popular by far and has received 703 views and 57 hearts, the Red Delicious Apple ring has received 222 views and 22 hearts, the Granny Smith Apple ring has received 159 views and 12 hearts, while our Bing Cherry ring has received 115 views and 1 heart.

Really, I almost fell off my chair. It was so nice and wonderful to see these figures, and so validating as well. Almost a reassurance of divine proportions that I’ve not gone totally off in terms of taste and judgement. Sure, sales are more sluggish than we had hoped, but really, how many times have I hearted something on Etsy and not purchased? It’s enough that there are people who LIKE them, and perhaps even WANT them. And one day, when disposable incomes are easier to come by, maybe, just maybe, they’ll remember that really awesome apple ring that they saw once upon a time.

Daniela and her apples

Daniela and her apples

It is more than enough.

So now it’s time for listening to the gutters drip and dream of all sorts of impossible. But tomorrow is another day, and tomorrow we’ll all march forward with faith in ourselves and our visions.

P.S. :

How cute is this?

– ChairmanMHow


5 Oct

Mere hours after our store went live, we received word that our cherry ring had been picked by fellow Etsyian Photogenic Gallery to be featured on their Treasury List!

Honored beyond measure

Honored beyond measure

Working on getting our collection into physical stores such as Carol Young’s gorgeously curated store in Los Feliz…so far the feedback has been pretty positive, so wish us luck with crossed fingers and toes!

Open for business

4 Oct

These few days have been ridiculously busy, but now for some good news! Our store is finally open and taking orders!

Orderly Civilians' store

We’re currently selling four fruity types of rings for $9-$12 including our flagship products:

Granny Smith varietal

Granny Smith varietal

Red Delicious Varietal

Mythic Varietal

Mythic Varietal

We’ll be adding more items to the store from time to time, so head on over to check it out and remember to check back often!

Phew. More images of the process to come, but for now, it’s time to bask in the glory of a job well done.

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