Saturday, 18 June 2011

Sometimes you're lucky

Like I mentioned in the giveaway post earlier, I feel like I've won several giveaways and prize draws lately. It's always been my intention to do something to show off on the blog and thereby also send a little thank you to the generous people that've given these beads and components to me. But seeing how I've not blogged much lately, I haven't really gotten around to do that. Sure, I've mentioned a couple of the things on my other blog, but today I thought I'd at least show you some of the things I've got and who I got them from.

This first pendant -- without the bail I've added just to test an idea of mine -- is from Clay Designs by glee. I won it in a Beads of Clay open studio event. If you, like me, love ceramic beads, be sure to check out the Beads of Clay website and blog.

Recently -- ok, probably some months ago, but it feels recent -- I also got some lovely patinated bronze clay components and a polymer clay heart by Staci Louise Originals from her Artisan Accents jewellery components line (in a giveaway at Lorelei Eurto's blog). One of the bronze pieces are missing from the photo.

What more have I got? Yes, I won a monthly prize draw as a Rings & Things blog partner. (That was probably a few months back by now -- time flies!) This included sparkly Chines rondelles and a small swarm of butterflies.

I love the butterflies, but one thing I really liked was the colour in these little rondelles. It's called 2-tone green and it's a sort of light sage green finish on crystal, which glitters with hints of mauve and also a slight blue tint. And, boy, does these rondelles sparkle despite their small size (3 mm)!

Then, this week I got this loot by Beads Direct. Not a giveaway, but a prize I won in their "bloggers and writers competition". I was one of three winners with my blog post "Grey looks best with colour!". In line with the colour I chose, I got this handpicked mix of monochrome beads. I especially like the lentils. I'd probably never buy them myself as I don't use chunky lentils that often and would've focused on other beads, but having them here in my hand I just love them.

(Click on each pic to enlarge it: they don't look as dark then.)


There you have it, just some bragging. Sometimes it really pays off to enter giveaways and competitions, even when it feels like you never win. Because one day you will. I'm not luckier than anyone else and see what I got! It's just a matter of not giving up just because of the odds and of finding the opportunities.

One good way of finding these opportunities is of cause to follow blogs (as well as following people on Twitter and FB) and sign up for newsletters. In the newsletters, shops and magazines will announce upcoming and current contests they arrange. As for blogs, follow blogs where you know giveaways are common, but it also pays to follow other blogs as bloggers often gets extra chances to win if the blog, tweet or write something on Facebook about the giveaway they want to enter. Some bloggers -- like me, over at Manekis Pärlblogg, or Michelle Mach -- will also blog about contests, calls for submissions etc that we hear about.

If you're active on a forum, there might be a section where members can post tips about contests etc. If not, you might want to start one. You can also start a section or thread with giveaway tips. Help each other to find all the fun contests and giveaways/blog candy online.

Most of all, if you find a giveaway or competition, don't pass up just because you keep telling yourself you never win. Who knows, this time it might be your name they draw or your creation the judges will choose. Maybe you win, maybe you don't. You won't win most of the time, that's just the way it is, but hang in there and you will win one day. The only way you're definitely not going to win is if you pass up when the opportunity arises. And it's always the things we don't do, not the things we do, that we regret later. So take the chance whenever you can. Find the opportunities. Just do it!

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