Black Friday Coupon Code!

By Friday, November 28, 2014 1 No tags Permalink 0

Now that we’re all lounging around in our food comas (we had turkey AND duck yesterday), it’s a good time to get some online shopping done! Wheeeee! Here’s what I’m offering in my little corner o’ the Internet:

Black Friday Coupon Code

And that code will work on EVERYTHING in the shop. Need a throw pillow? I got you. Looking for more cloth napkins to wipe up those turkey leftovers? No problem. Have stockings that won’t stuff themselves? I have things for that. The code will even work on the custom mood boards, which are normally $150 but are (temporarily!) $112.50 with the coupon code. Bargains abound!

A lot of other handmade businesses are offering crazy deals today, too, so be sure you peek at your Twitter and Instagram feeds so you don’t miss anything. We totally appreciate those of you who shop with us and share the small business love. The mall is going to be a madhouse today, anyway; just kick it with us on Etsy and save yourself the hassle. The code will work through Monday, December 3rd.

Happy shopping!

Holiday Host + Hostess Gifts

By Wednesday, November 26, 2014 6 No tags Permalink 0

Can you believe that tomorrow is Thanksgiving? I CANNOT. The holiday sneak happens to me every year and now I’m all discombobulated. Doesn’t it feel like Halloween was last weekend? Where is my time turner when I need it?

Despite my (and your? maybe?) frazzled unpreparedness, the holiday party season is upon us, anyway. My default host/hostess gift is a bottle of wine with a cute bow on it, but I think it’s good to branch out sometimes. There’s nothing WRONG with giving wine, obviously, because wine is delicious, but since a big holiday party can be a lot of work, I think it’s totally appropriate to gift something a little more special. Here are some not-wine ideas to get the wheels turning. (Most of these are from Etsy, by the way. Handmade for the win.)

Holiday Hostess Gifts

ornaments  //  candle  //  potpourri  //  fudge  //  planter

Can I get a what-what for those ornaments?  I know that stones in general are trendy right now–agates, druzy, geodes, etc.–but I haven’t seen many in ornament form so these feel really interesting. Also fun in a non-traditional way is the gold planter. The wee cactus doesn’t come with it, sadly, but you could always pop one in there for the ultimate low-maintenance (read: impossible to kill) gift. If you want to DIY something, the potpourri-in-a-jar is festive and cute. It’s the kind you can simmer on the stove to make your whole house smell like the North Pole. Potpourri is a pretty safe choice, but if the thought of deviating form your normal boozy gift freaks you out, food and candles are universally loved. If you’re torn between the two, I’d go with food. Everybody will want to be your friend with that fancy peppermint bark fudge.

What do you normally give to a party host? Do you try to branch out or do you stick to the same ol’ thing all the time like me? What’s your favorite idea here? And while we’re on the topic of gatherings, have a great Thanksgiving if you’re celebrating tomorrow! I’m taking the day off, but I’ll be back with a Black Friday/Small Business Saturday post on Friday so you can get yo’ shop on. Happy Thanksgiving!

DIY Gemstone Earrings

By Monday, November 24, 2014 17 No tags Permalink 0

DIY Gemstone Earrings

Welcome to the first installment of Handmade Holidays 2014! If you’ve been a reader for a while, the series is going to be a little different this year. Instead of trying to jam 900 holiday things into December and feeling like I’m CONSTANTLY forgetting something, I’m going to be sharing one gift/project/decor/tasty food idea every Monday between now and Christmas. Easy! Let’s jump right in with some DIY bling-bling.

Small tangent: This might seem like kind of weird thing for me to share because I used to do this for a living and surely there are Trade Secrets. I don’t feel like I’m revealing anything scandalous because, one, there are already a lot of basic jewelry-making tutorials out there for people to look at, and two, just because I show you guys how to make something doesn’t mean that everyone will want to do so. (I can look at paper-related DIYs until the world ends but I still prefer to buy cards.) That being said, this project IS literally one of the easiest things you could ever make and I hope you’ll give it a shot, even if you’ve never made jewelry before.

Here’s what you need:

— Aleene’s jewelry glue (Dazzle Tac is another good brand)
— glass faux gemstones from this Etsy shop
— earring posts and backs (mine are from JoAnn)

DIY Gemstone Earrings

In the spirit of making this tutorial easy, I picked stones that come in settings. If you want to branch out, you can find a ton of loose stones and empty settings at places like Fire Mountain Gems or Art Beads, but it CAN be kind of finicky to get them placed correctly. My goal is to keep people from wanting to poke their own eyeballs out with jewelry pliers, so I just went with these.

The main step for this project is to put a squeeze of jewelry glue onto the earring post…

DIY Gemstone Earrings

…and press it gently onto the back of the setting. The tube says the glue “bonds instantly” but that’s only half true. It will stick your fingers together right away (which I’ve done, just go wash your hands) but for metal-on-metal you actually have a grace period of several minutes to scoot things around if they’re not in the right spot.

gemstone backs

Once the posts are on there, let the glue dry for at least 24 hours and you’re done! One-step jewelry for the win!

DIY Gemstone Earrings

I whipped up some of these for a friend and they’d be a great gift idea for just about anyone with pierced ears. Actually, the backs of the settings are big enough that you could attach them to clips! The stones pack a lot of punch but are still pretty lightweight, so you wouldn’t have to worry about them slipping off OR doing the dreaded earlobe pinch.

Have you ever made any jewelry? How’s your gift buying/making so far? Who else ends up wanting things for themselves after they make them as presents? (Oh, sparkles. I can’t resist you.) How many gifts do you want to DIY this year?

handmade holidays 2014

P.S. There’s still time to enter the handmade giveaway! One lucky person will win a prize pack of handmade goodies worth over $60!

Pinterest Picks

By Friday, November 21, 2014 8 No tags Permalink 0

Happy Friday! This was my first normal week since I got accepted to those holiday craft shows (I don’t have another one until December 6th), so as much as I’ve been enjoying the sewing marathons, it was nice to get other stuff done. We picked up goodies for the office project, did some cleaning, and had our act together enough to cook real food at home everyday. Oh! And laundry! I feel so accomplished. Let’s celebrate with a virtual high-five in the form of Pinterest Picks.

Seeing this DIY for Christmas village stamps reminded me that I’m going to have to bust out my holiday decorations soon and I’ve given it zero thought. And we never did buy another Christmas tree after we gave the old one to my sister. Whoops! I’ll figure it out.

Christmas Village Stamp

source

Three words that I never thought to combine before, but are obviously a magical pairing: cheesesteak stuffed mushrooms.

stuffed mushrooms

source

Fancy animals, all dressed up for the holidays! I like the monocle on Mr. Owl.

animal mugs

source

It’s been a while since I showed you a white kitchen and I’d hate for you to think I don’t like them anymore. Actually, my favorite parts of this room are the big ol’ island and three-legged stools, neither of which are white, anyway. Go figure.

Rustic Kitchen

source

The Nordstrom website calls this color “Dark Garnet Suede” but I’m going to say it’s Oxblood because that sounds more dramatic, like something from Downton Abbey. Mary would be like, “Carson, none of the maids can find my OXBLOOD shoes!” And Carson would be all, “Lady Edith wore them in the mud and then threw them into the fire!” (I can literally see both of those things happening.) But for real, picture these with dark skinny jeans and a white blouse. I think I’ll add them to my list of things to buy when the spending freeze ends.

Oxblood Flatssource

So what are you up to this weekend? My mom and sister are coming to town for our annual Christmas shopping expedition, in which we try to get as many gifts figured out as possible in one day. I’m buying a handful of things on Etsy, as usual, but it’s hard to get EVERYTHING online, you know? I’d like to make some stuff, too, so I actually need to sit down and do it because, suddenly, Thanksgiving is next week. Gaaaaah! The holiday sneak begins! I’ll catch you back here on Monday with a DIY project that would make a great gift, so hopefully we can all get one thing crossed off our lists.

P.S. Don’t forget to enter our awesome handmade giveaway! One lucky person will win a prize pack worth over $60. Boom!

Handmade Gift Guide + A Giveaway!

By Wednesday, November 19, 2014 19 No tags Permalink 0

You know what tends to get overlooked in gift guides this time of year? The little items. Cute, fun things that are great for people who only require a small gift anyway–like neighbors or a teacher–or things that make good stocking stuffers. I’ve done it, and for that I apologize to my tiny friends. I didn’t mean to leave you out. To make up for it, today I have a group of killer Etsy items that are all $15 or less. (And a chance to win them all, woooo!)

From my shop there are the paint-dipped wooden spoons. I’m partial to the gold because SPARKLES, but they’re available in a handful of other colors, too. I also wanted to toss out the idea of using the glitter clothespins as place card holders, either for Thanksgiving or Christmas/Hanukkah dinner. I hadn’t thought about doing that until a smart customer pointed it out as she was buying them at the show last weekend. Total genius move. I love my shoppers.

 Handmade Giveawaysource

This little zip pouch would be so handy for holding loose change, kleenex, gum… Basically, if you know someone who carries a purse or a backpack, this would be a totally practical choice. That’s such a pretty shade of green, too.

Handmade Giveaway

source

Have you heard that, allegedly, this winter is supposed to be all polar vortex-y again? That’s the word on the street (and by “street” I mean “the Farmer’s Almanac”) and I’m a bit concerned. I love the idea of giving bright, happy scarves to friends as a way to get them through what’s coming. I own several from this shop and they’re so soft.

Handmade Giveaway

source

How unusual, I found more GOLD! We’re not great at remembering to send out annual Christmas cards, but I do keep them around for packaging gift certificates. (If you’re more on the ball with your mail-sending, then obviously you could also use these for that.) I love the modern ornament silhouettes.

Handmade Giveaway

source

Finally, it’s hard to go wrong with festive jewelry. These are the perfect size for a stocking stuffer, or as a little something for a babysitter or co-worker. Since they come in a bunch of other colors, too, you can get several pairs for an earring extravaganza.

Handmade Giveaway

source

Now that your gift-giving wheels are spinning, let me tell you what ELSE is going on with these items:

 

Handmade Giveaway

One lucky person will win allllllll of the great stuff I just told you about–a prize worth over $60! Woot! This giveaway is open to worldwide residents and you can enter using the Rafflecopter below. The winner will be chosen and announced next Wednesday, November 26th. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway