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Thursday, October 9, 2008

New Biddy Birdies have flown into town!!

New Birdies have flown in!!!
This cutie little birdie LOVES to go on adventures!!
~She like the grocery store.
~She likes the library.
~She likes the mall.
~She likes picnics in the park.
~She LOVES the pool.
~She LOVES the beach.
~She likes to sew.
~She LOVES babies.
~She likes to garden.
~She LOVES the farmer's market.
~She loves to go antiquing.
~She even likes to just go on walks and window shop!
Check out the new Biddy Birdie Totes at My Etsy Store - Simple Sweetcakes!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Zippy Zipper Pouch - NEW DESIGN

I LOVE this new design!! As my husband says - "It's a little edgy." It really is - the shape just adds more dimension to the bag. It's perfect for holding items in your larger bag AND carrying out all by itself as a fabulous clutch! Check them out -!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Oh Holy Moly!!!

Have been gone for a while!!! Summer has been roasting me.......well, I am up and back and posting strong!!! See you all soon :>

Friday, May 9, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Design Options

The Independent Designer of the Week is Designoptions- a jewelery shop on Etsy featuring kiln-fired enamels, "high contrast" pieces.

Here is my favorite item from Designoptions- fleur de lis choker. I love French "things" and I am REALLY into red right now! Thiswould match my new red patent leather pumps perfectly!!

I asked Lynda a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?

I would describe my etsy shop as always ready for summer: fun, exciting and hot!

How did you get started?

I started making jewelry about ten years ago. I took an intro class at my community college and was hooked. After a year there, and many workshops later, I ended up at the maryland institute's art jewelry program in baltimore for four years.

How long have you been crafting?

I have been making and selling things since I was about 6 and I carried a box of stones I had painted door to door to sell to my neighbors. For some reason, they bought them.

What is your inspiration?

My inspiration for working with my hands came from my father who was a professional photographer back in the day, and could also draw and draft. My mom was really into fashion and read vogue and mccall's and loved twiggy so I did too. She made a lot of clothes to help make ends meet. I loved the mother/daughter matching dresses with coordinating coats! My mom's mom sold her incredibly chic knitted dresses and suits to high end department stores on the west coast. She taught me to knit and crochet, while my dad's mom taught me to hand sew and make lace (tatting). I learned how to embroider from my great grandmother who made amazing crazy quilts.

What is your favorite piece in your shop today?

My favorite piece is any one of my "lucky" pendants. They are reversible and fun and perfect for taking away for the weekend.

How do you market/advertise your wares?

The first and most major thing I have done is join Etsy and open my shop. Etsy's design is clean and modern; its super simple to manage and navigate. You can't beat having a convenient shopping cart! I have tried to read all of the marketing advise Etsy has available and implemented some of their suggestions. I load and reload my work several times a day. I try to make a treasury whenever I can stay up that late. I have been fortunate to be featured in treasuries somewhat regularly and that seems to have kept my exposure on the sight up. I have joined several social networking sites such as indiepublic, we love etsy, and facebook to meet and mingle with as many like-minded artist and regular people as possible. I love to shop and do all of my shopping on line, so social shopping sites like stylehive and stylefeeder are perfect for me to bookmark my favorite finds and showcase my own work for no cost. I met the wonderful ladies from recently on stylehive and they will be featuring my fleur de lis pieces in an article on New Orleans. So, its already working!

Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?

Yes - as a general rule in life, do what you believe in, and try to have fun doing it.

Lynda, thanks so much for your thoughtful and open answers and advice! Good luck and I hope you go FAR!!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

I am featured on Handbag Designer 101!!

How exciting it is to be recognized!! I was featured on the Handbag Designer 101!!!! This website is fabulous for not only handbag designers but also handbag enthusiasts - of which I am both!!! It has wonderful references on handbag trends, celebrity handbag sightings, handbag events and highlights of handbag designers!!!

Check out my interview - how proud I am of myself - I am absolutely swelling :> Well, enough gushing!

Have a wonderful evening.......

Monday, April 28, 2008

Independent Designer Friday on Monday!! - Made by Melissa

The Independent Designer of the Week is Made by Melissa- an eclectic shop on Etsy featuring jewelry, crochet work and craft supplies.

Here is my favorite item from Made by Melissa - Live Laugh Love Shop Bottle Cap Magnet. Wht a delightful way to be reminded about the important things in life!

I asked Melissa a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?

My jewelry is simple but I try to make it unique at the same time, mostly traditional, although I do follow some trends. My baby blankets and washcloths are traditional for the most part while still being one of a kind.

How did you get started?

Friends told me I should try to sell my jewelry and my good friend and Etsy seller AliV found Etsy and here I am!

How long have you been crafting?

Forever! Even at 5 years old I was taking apart costume jewelry and restringing the beads every morning to match my outfit. I had the best accessories of all my kindergarten class! My sister and I used to spend our summers crafting. Right after school ended my mother would take us to the craft store and get us whatever supplies we wanted for our summer crafts. I started off making braided friendship bracelets from embroidery floss for everyone I knew (even my dad wound up wearing a few) and somewhere along the line I discovered beads.

What is your inspiration?

I just like to make things that look good - whether they are traditional, trendy, one of a kind or easily replicated. I am inspired by looking at my beads sitting in there storage caddy and picturing them in a necklace, or braclet or earrings.

What is your favorite piece in your shop today?

This bracelet made with purple glass hearts and amethyst crystals is my favorite jewelry piece: And this classic rainbow zigzag blanket is my favorite crocheted piece. I made a blanket in the same pattern for my son and I use it all the time in his car seat. He was fascinated with all the colors on this one.

How do you market/advertise your wares?

I do a lot of little things, I am street teams, I hang out in the Etsy forums, I've been in some buy and replace treasuries, I spam my friends and family and I have a blog that I update as regularly as life allows. (

Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?

Don't give up!! It takes a while to get started and make a name for yourself. Keep listing things and relisting expired items, promote yourself and make things that you like. Don't sell anything that you aren't completely proud of. Its easy to promote things if you truly love them, and if you love them, then there is certainly someone else out there who will love them as much as you do.

Thanks Melissa for your interview! We all wish you continued crafting success :>

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

It's a Convertible Baby!!!!

It's a CONVERTIBLE baby! Change this from a wristlet to a snug shoulder handbag to a pouch to hang on your stroller or beltloop!! I LOVE this style for going out with girlfriends - I LOVE the options I have!!

This perky pouch is made from a black floral fabric accented with a complimentary lime green fabric, orange grosgrain ribbon and detailed stitching. Perfect for holding - lip gloss, make-up, coins, cell phone, moola, ID, credit cards, camera - the ESSENTIALS!
Use this bag to help you zip out the door!
-Features include durable cotton lining and zipper closure with coordinating ribbon zipper pull.
-Wristlet strap with swivel hook - use as a wristlet OR a mini purse!
-Bag lined with interfacing and fleece for structure, softness and durability.
-ALL bag seam points are heavily reinforced for usability, durability and toughness!!
-This bag measures approximately 8" (W) x 4.5" (H).
-You'll find your Zippy Zipper Pouch treated with Scotchguard - so party it up - you're protected!!
Have a GREAT hump day!!!!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

My 2 new loves .....

Obviously, I LOVE handbags. But, my second love is sunglasses. I wear sunglasses everyday of the year - everyday of the YEAR!! I am like the postal workers - rain, snow, sleet, hail - I wear my sunglasses. I basically find 2 pairs that I like and literally drive them into the ground. I mean, if you were a pair of sunglasses atop my nose, you would be SERIOUSLY worked.

So, on to my new loves of 2008! Metallics are SO hot - they're everywhere!! I want to wear this new trend but I am a stay at home mom and wife of a man who is studying day and night for a SERIOUS test in June so.....I rarely dress up how I would like. I do, however, dress up with handbags, scarves and SUNGLASSES!!!!

These are my two little metallic pretties - the top I bought for $5.99 at Charlotte Russe - what a steal!! The bottom I bought the same day for $22.00 at a mall kiosk - so Top Gun :> I love them and I feel good in them - which is well worth every penny spent!!!

Independent Designer Friday - Girl Party Tutus

The Independent Designer of the Week is Girl Party Tutus- an adorable shop on Etsy specializing in beautiful little girl tutus.

Here is my favorite tutu from Girl Party Tutus - Meadow Rose Ribbon Wrapped Tutu. What a delicious and darling pink and green tutu! Oh, if only I could be 3 again - I would DEFINETLY wear this :>

I asked Kim from Girl Party Tutus a few questions about the craft business!

1. How would you describe your crafts/Etsy Shop -

I would describe my crafts and my shop as a celebration and an embracing of the inner little diva in myself, that quality that both my daughters, many little girls in fact happily show the world.

2.How did I get started -

During a play date my oldest daughter and her friend were playing ballerinas, I thought wouldn't they be cute in tutus. I knew I could buy them, but decided to give it a whirl on my own, after many trial and errors I came up with the design that I love and decided okay lets take it to the next step, discovered Etsy and here we are.

3.How long have I been crafting -

I think I really got going when I became a SAHM, I always had a desire, but me in my 20's, ugh don't get me started, I just didn't have the focus, when my priorities changed so did my desire to really find my creative energy.

4.What is my inspiration -

So many things, but mainly nature. Nature really comes up with some pretty creative and amazing color combinations; flowers, birds, the sky at dusk,endless inspiration.

5.What is your favorite piece in your shop today -

My favorite piece today, I think is my Pastel Rainbow Satin Wrapped TuTus, it is just so incredibly girly and adorable!

6.How do I market/advertise - I am just getting started so my focus has been 1st, word of mouth, thankfully I have a large family and group of friends who have done an amazing job helping me spread the word and handing out business cards. 2nd I have joined networking groups like Designing Swanky Moms, IndiePublic, Posh Mamas and the Mom Pack. These amazing moms, designers, crafters, entrepreneurs have been a huge resource and have helped get my name and tutus out there as well as providing a wealth of information and support to help me move my business forward!

7. Any advice for fledgling crafters/entrepreneurs -

Since I still consider myself a fledging, the best thing I can offer is find something you love to make and or sell, believe in yourself, don't be afraid to ask for help and support and seek out any and all resources.

Thanks Kim!! You have adorable tutus! :> The world would be a much prettier place if every little girl could twirl in a Girl Party Tutu!!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

A BEAUTIFUL day with my kids!!

We had an absolutely delicious day today!! It was about 70 degrees and SUN!!! I love the spring :> My kids are having a GREAT time everyday riding around in my son's new motorized car. My daughter at first was afraid and now she just loves to zip around with my son. She asks everyday to "Go for a ride in Brady's car." I can't wait until she can steer herself because I am already eying up the Barbie jeep for her! Our neighbor, who is 4, has that car and my daughter LOVES to just sit in it and get a ride. She is really into pink and girly stuff so the Barbir jeep is completely up her alley!

Now, on this sunny delightful day, while I was somewhere hacking down blades of tall dead grass (the ornamental kind), my son decided to sneak into the house, grab my camera and start snapping!! I like to call this one - Caught red handed!!! :>

This was also his concoction today that he decided to photograph - I like to call it - "My snack and my toys in a bucket of dirty water." I wonder what he calls it!! I wonder if my son has a future in this photography thing :>

Friday, April 11, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Dinner Time Chimes

The Independent Designer of the Week is Dinner Time Chimes - an enchanting shop on Etsy specializing in recycled dinner ware wind chimes to felt flower bookmarks.

Here is my favorite piece from Dinner Time Chimes- Ready for the Beach - Shell Spoon Windchime. I can imagine sitting on my deck enjoying the tranquil sound as I dine al fresco. Ahhhhh.....summer!!!

I asked Erin of Dinner Time Chimes a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?

We like to think that our shop is filled with unique gifts, that just happen to be created from things that other’s no longer have use for.

How did you get started?

The windchimes started out as a way of having something fun to make with my dad when I was in middle school and to also give me something to hunt for at flea markets. Over the years, it's turned into 'what can I make out of these?' thrift hunts for silverplate and anything that I think will work as a bird house. Now that I’m married and have convinced my husband that this is fun, the work continues.

How long have you been crafting?

I’ve been making crafts for as long as I can remember, I must have something to do at all times.

What is your inspiration?

Since almost everything in our shop is created from other’s trash, I guess that I’d have to say that I’m inspired by estate sales and thrift store finds. The reason that I continue to make wind chimes after so many years is that I love the look on people’s faces at shows when they realize that it’s real forks and spoons making that beautiful song they’ve been hearing as they’ve strolled along.

What is your favorite piece in your shop today?

This one goblet windchime ( ) is my current favorite, mainly because I think that the picture turned out great. Getting a perfect shot of the windchime, when the wind’s not blowing and it can be cropped to a square for Etsy and still look impressive has proven to the more difficult that I would’ve thought. My second favorite is the boot birdhouse, mainly because it’s so unique and people browsing the shop can’t help but click to see what it is.

How do you market/advertise your wares?

Since this business is a hobby for us, we rely heavily on word of mouth advertising. The local free online advertising has worked out great, mainly because the items that we create are so unique. The local NCTriangle Etsy Street Team ( ) has really started working together to support each other through Etsy and local shows, and soon we hope to start doing some advertising both locally and nationally to find shoppers. In addition to selling online via Etsy and our own website, we have windchimes in a couple local antiques stores.

Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?

Follow your dreams and do what you enjoy. Crafting and selling what you make should be fun and exciting; otherwise you should ask yourself if it’s worth it. Ask questions if you need help with anything, the crafting community tends to be very giving and friendly.

Thanks Erin!! I admire your effort to find pieces to recycle to make into beautiful music and to make ou planet a little greener in the process!!! CHEERS :>

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Please donate

I watch American Idol. I love to listen and cheer on my favorite contestants. I sit on my couch with my glass of white wine and enjoy the comfort of my home. I was touched by the special show that was aired tonight. I want to give. I want to help. I pledge to donate to help end hunger and death in our country and countries around the world. Won't you help me?

Visit here to find out how you can give back - Idol Gives Back.



Have an idea to help me launch a way to help with a handbag line?? I would LOVE to hear!!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Why buy a custom fabric handbag??

You may be asking yourself this very question. What are the benefits of buying a custom designed purse from Simple Sweetcakes??

Well there are many reasons:

1. You will have a bag that is completely unique to you ~ Unique in size, shape, texture, color, and style.

2. You become the designer. What fabrics do you like together? What ribbon colors would you like to add? What size handle is most comfortable for you?

3. You are OVER the "designer" handbag parties. You are looking to be an original - NOT a follower.

4. Spring and Summer are fantastic times to flaunt color!! You can choose a bright hue to lighten your mood.

5. It's FUN!!!

Interested in seeing more?? Check out our current fabric selections - FABRICS.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Birds before dawn

It is dark. My son looks up the stairs. He turns to me. "I'm not going up there," he says. "It's dark up there!" My 2 year old daughter turns to me and says, "It dark up dare!" and "Ooooohhhhh!" I tell my son that there is nothing going on in the dark that there isn't going on in the light.

Yet, tonight as I sit and watch Pride and Prejudice (I LOVE all period British moive and especially Jane Austin!!!), I have a realization. In the film, Lizzie begins to hear a most beautiful sound. It is the sound of the first bird just before dawn. I begin to imagine my experiences with this sound. This is my connection - In your desperation, it starts as a faint sound in the back of your mind. You lay there in the darkness, still thinking and trying to shake the terror you feel. And then, wait....there it is again. You begin to think that it might be a sweet sound. wait....yes, there it is again and again....and wait. again! The sounds are coming so quickly now. You don't even need to look out the window. You know that daylight is coming. You know that everything is changing now. Changing from the dark of the night. So now it's "better."

I actually connected with my son in that thought, that moment from the film. I once felt how he feels about the dark. I remembered my feelings. I realized that my practical advice of there being no difference of surroundings between day and night means nothing when you are scared. I felt the empathy of the moment. I did not belittle his feelings. I will not. I will try every day to feel them in my heart.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Chic Designs by Hayley

The Independent Designer of the Week is Chic Designs by Hayley - a delicious jewelery shop on Etsy specializing in everything from do-it-yourself tools to beautiful special occason pieces.

Here is my favorite piece from Chic Designs by Hayley - Turquoise and Chrysocolla Necklace. Turquoise is so HOT!!! This would look killer with a bright red top, dark blue jeans and your new peep toe pumps!!!

I asked Chic Designs by Hayley a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?
I would say that my jewelry is sometimes funky, sometimes elegant, and sometimes somewhere in between! I love color and I love things that have some sparkle to them.
How did you get started?
I first started making my own jewelry using inexpensive beads and plated wires. Once I felt like I had mastered the basics, I started diving into buying actual semi-precious gemstones. I learned most of the techniques I know by heading to my local library and checking out jewelry-making books and by buying beading magazines. So pretty much I self taught myself everything I know. People around my small town started asking me about my jewelry and if I was selling it. It wasn't until my jewelry collection got ridiculously large that my husband suggested the possibility of selling my stuff. I also noticed that when I had yard sales and was selling some of my first beginner pieces, people where showing up early and literally ripping jewelry out of each others hands. That was really exciting to see people eager to buy even the basic stuff.
How long have you been crafting?
I've only been making jewelry for about 4 years now, but come from a family of crafty people so its in my blood.What is your inspiration?As I've gained more confidence over the past few years of making jewelry, I've gotten bolder at making more interesting color combinations in my work. I see some of the fabrics that my sister uses in sewing her handbags and I just fall in love with the colors. Mostly though my inspiration just comes from wanting to make something out of the ordinary that you wouldn't find at the local shopping center.
What is your favorite piece in your shop today?
I absolutely love my white topaz and freshwater pearl earrings. I think they are absolutely stunning.
How do you market/advertise your wares?
In addition to selling on etsy, I have my jewelry in a gift shop in a neighboring town. People are able to pick up one of my cards there too which directs them to my etsy shop. Although I would love to be able to list at least one item a day on etsy, sometimes it just doesn't happen (3 kids) although I definitely list at least 3 or 4 pieces a week or even relist an item. I also make sure to wear some of my work wherever I go, even to the grocery store, and keep a full stock of business cards in my purse so that anyone who comments on what I'm wearing can be handed a card. I find that is like being a human billboard. Who cares if you are just heading to the Post Office or the grocery store, throw on a fabulous chunky necklace and matching earrings and turn some heads. I also get on the "We Love Etsy" network usually daily and list photos of my work. I also check out the forums on etsy and convo other etsy crafters.
Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?
Be persistent. You can't list 10 items on etsy, not do anything for a month and expect the sales to come rolling in. Get your name and your craft out there. Do a craft fair or something of that nature. It's a way to get your name out there to a lot of people at one time. Don't be afraid to share what you do with people. For me, the best kick start to my business was getting my items in gift shop.
Thanks Hayley!! You have delicious pieces :> I love your advice about wearing a few fab pieces of jewelery even to the post office! I think that as a mom myself - I need to hear that advice!!!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The NEW Dolce Bag

I am pleased to introduce the latest addition to the Simple Sweetcakes handbag line - the Dolce Handbag. In Italian dolce means sweet. I think that this sums up the bag. I really wanted a sleek and modern looking handbag with also practicality in mind.

We all carry our LIVEs around in our handbags. We need a bag that can stand up to that tall order. So, the Dolce is tall ~12 inches and it's wide ~ 12 inches. It can carry your water bottle, diapers, sippy cups, wallets, pouches, makeup, hat, socks - whatever you want! It super stylish and site extremely comfortably under your arm.

Check out the one above here - Dolce Handbag in Pink and Green Spring Patchwork.

Ciao Dahling!!!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

My new FABRICS have arrived

So I was using the computer as the UPS guy drove up. I will admit that a butterfly of excitement went through my belly. I LOVE receiving my fabrics! It is truly like Christmas morning!!! I have to post some of my faves here. But, you can check out ALL of my fabrics here -

I can't wait to get sewing!!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

What a delicious dress!!

I LOVE this fabric! I want to make a large beach tote with it. This Milly dress is fab!! I love the blue with the white - yum - outlined in black - so chic! It reminds me of a vacation dress to the Bahamas or Aruba OR even an evening out in July eating at an outside street cafe. Oh - I love the spring and summer!
I would make an addition. I would add a wide white belt to cinch of the waist. It makes you look thinner and it really pulls together the look. I love that wide belts are back! I bet you can find some on Etsy and buy handmade. The above belt is from Target.
I have been inspired by this ensemble to make some belted bags. I made a few in the past and LOVED them. I'll whip some of those up this season :>

Monday, March 31, 2008


He he he he!!!! I feel like a little kid leaving the candy shop with my bag full of penny candies (oh how I miss penny candy stores!!) I LOVE this new fabric. I am waiting on pins and needles until it gets here! I can't wait to get it! I LOVE the red and turquoise - so great for spring. Also, how COOL is the orange and yellow pop - so retro! What will I make with this??? I am in the process of addding other new fabrics to my selections - FABRICS - If you have been thinking about designing your own bag - I have some fab fabric coming!!!

My kids had a FAB Birthday Party!!

We had a GREAT time. Look at my 2 little ones snuggled together on the chair! I can't believe that they are 4 and 2!!! YIKES!!! Does time fly.
As the party was winding down, my son REALLY wanted to open his gifts. He was told that he could open them when the other kids went home. So, he walked around and told everyone if they could or could not stay!!! He told my friend, "OK, you are an adult with children so you can go home now." And to others without kids he said, "You can stay 'cause you don't have kids."
Well, I guess it worked for him because all of a sudden my house was clear!! He had motivation. I didn't even find out that this was happening until close to the very end! I hope my friends don't think that I was "kicking them out"!!!! Gotta love the things kids say!!!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Butercups And Buterflies

The Independent Designer of the Week is Buttercups And Butterfiles- a fun and whimsical Etsy shop specializing in everything from stone pendant necklaces to crocheted baby booties.

!Here is my favorite piece from Buttercups And Butterfiles - Blue Couch Tissue Box Cover. What a fun way to liven up any room in your house. This is truly a conversation piece :>
I asked Buttercups And Butterflies a few questions about the craft business!
How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?
I have a little bit of everything, Its simple and the items are so useful and unique. Our crafts are made by my daughter and I and we love working together to make people happy with our products.
How did you get started?
I was told by a friend through myspace about etsy. So I checked it out. I sold items at local fleamarkets and shows. But never thought of the idea of selling online till now. I love it, its great.
How long have you been crafting?
Since I was 8 Years old, I was young when I started. I'm 28 now and still going strong with it all. I dont think I'll ever stop crafting. Its so rewarding.
What is your inspiration?
My mother was the most inspiring person in my life. Now she still is even though she has passed on. Now my daughter gives me all the inspriation I need.
What is your favorite piece in your shop today?
My Favorite piece would be the little blue sofa tissue box cover. Its a bright blue and its so adorable.
How do you market/advertise your wares?
Business cards, word of mouth, friends and family.
Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?
Keep your chin up and stay positive, if a sale doesn't come today it will come the next day. Staying positive about things is what makes great products and if you have great products, you have happy customers. : )
I COMPLETELY agree with your last bit of advice. We all have good days and bad days. As long as we are true to ourselves, love what we do and put our heart in our work - we can make our businesses thrive!
Thanks so much for your advice and keep up with your adorable crafting!!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Planning a Birthday Party - friend and foe

Well, I am almost finished with the party for my kids - it's on Saturday. We're starting the day at a local moonbouce play area and coming back to out house for lunch and cake. My son will be 4 and is obsessed with Thomas the Tank Engine. He has been since he was 16 months old! I am so happy because those stinkers cost a fortune!! Anyway, he is having a Thomas cake (again!!). I decided to get it from Coldstone Creamery this year to get something different.

My daughter - who will be 2 (there birthdays ar 5 days apart :>) decided on a little mermaid cake. She was torn between the Hello Kitty, Princesses and Ariel - she finally made her decisions.

I have been working feverishly on my house in anticipation of this event. I really want to update my entire kitchen but won't do it for a couple of years. So, to keep me happy until I do that - I decided to paint everything that I could in my kitchen - walls, trim, cabinets - even the countertops! Yeah, i might be crazy but if I'm going to change it in a few years anyway, I thought, what the heck!! That's the picture above. Hmmm - you can either love it or hate it!!
So, I am off now to finish putting together my Independent Designer Friday post (and cleaning, laundry, cooking, etc.......)! I will be featuring TONS of lovely ladies and their respective (delicious :>) Etsy shops/websites! These are going to be some fabulous upcoming weeks!!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

NEW Crayon Toddler Bags!!

I just finished a wholesale order for a boutique - Lass & Laddie. These are the La Petite Sweetcake Crayon Bags that were designed. They turned out so ADORABLE!!! I was so psyched to see all of them sitting in a group looking all pretty and springy in their bright colors! I was so proud to ship these little babies off. Each bag measures approx. 6 inches by 7 inches and is 2 1/2 inches deep. Just big enough to carry around some crayons (8 to be exact) in the little pockets, notepads, pencils and stickers. ALL the essentials for every little girl :>

Monday, March 24, 2008

Customize Tote with Nature

Here is one other project from Martha - I will do this as soon as we have leaves!! You use a canvas tote or pillow or curtains (you decide) and choose real leaves to embellish with fabric paint! So artistic, simple and fun :>

Embellish Tote with Nature

Handbag Tutorials!!!

Here are some cool and fun handbag tutorials to get you started on this Monday!!!

Strippy Handbag - cool stripe effect patchwork handbag.

Reversible Handbag Tutorial - nice everyday handbag.

Pleated handheld handbag - cute going out handbag - pretty for spring fabrics!

Reusable Grocery Bag Tote - Easy and made from 2 pillowcases!

Classy Pleated Clutch - cute and classy :>

Kids Beach Towel Tote Bag - a fun project to make for the upcoming summer season!

(Pictured at top from Martha

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Toddler Tips - HOT Easter Crafts!!

LOVE this adorable Easter bucket from . I especially LOVE the chickie template - they are absolutely adorable!! My kids and I made Easter baskets the other day out of old shoe boxes, construction paper, markers and good old foam stickers! I will post their masterpieces tomorrow.

How about this adorable Easter bunny card! I found this at a site called - Crafters Community. I will have to find some time tomorrow to make a few for their grandparents!

The also wanted to mention some of THE BEST chocolate I have ever tasted - Gertrude Hawk Chocolate
I grew up just north of Scranton, PA and was very lucky to be near the home of this delicious chocolate! It really melts in your mouth and put Hershey's to shame :>

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Going Green - Organic Gardening Options

I found a company recently offering a wide range of organic weed and pest control products as well as organic fertilizer. Hey, I LOVE a green lawn come spring just like the next lady but, I am beginning to think that all of the herbicides I use to keep those dandelions away just isn't "dandy" for the environment!

Along comes - Pharmsolutions!!! This company makes natural alternatives to man-made chemicals. Everything from IndoorPharm made from certified organic soap, certified organic almond oil& certified organic soybean oil to keep indoor pests away from plants to GarlicPharm made with pure garlic oil to keep outside pests away.

I am psyched!! I will be able to grow my veggies this year and enjoy my flowers knowing that in protecting them I am NOT hurting my planet!!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Hello all! Happy St. Patrick's Day to you! This is an extra special holiday in my family as my husband and son each share this saint's name as a middle name! WOO HOO! I decided to hunt on Etsy to find some cool shamrocky items!
Here is what I found - An adorable shamrock pillow by Chubby Trubby. What a fun way to sunggle up!
The next is a delicious shamrock bracelet by dckdesigns. This bracelet would be a fab addition to your spring wardrobe! I wish everyone a bit of luck - in life and in style! :>

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Doodle Designs

The Independent Designer of the Week is Doodle Designs - a fantastic Etsy shop specializing in beautiful handpainted signs and home decorations

!Here is my favorite piece from Doodle Designs - DADDY first hero, first love . What an absolutely inspiring Father's Day gift!

I asked Jenny of Doodle Designs a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?

Fun! I love to create fun pieces of art for your special place. Of course with a 3 year old daughter and 5 year old son, it isn't hard to tell where a lot of my influence comes from!

How did you get started?

I have been crafting all of my life. My mom painted wood items and went to craft shows while I was growing up and is still very crafty. I loved to "doodle" and paint, and after years of making things for my family and friends i desided (with a little nudging) to make a business out of it.

How long have you been crafting?

All 31 years (ok, so just after i could actually use crayons!)

What is your inspiration?

Color, my precious kiddos, friends, papers...everything I see really.

What is your favorite piece in your shop today?

I think my favorite piece isn't listed in my shop yet (it is coming soon!0 but as for what is IN my shop today...well, I have too many but I am partial to the "Has anyone seen my tiara?"- my little princess definitely pushed that one along!

How do you market/advertise your wares?

I have my own web boutique as well as my Etsy shop. I have more customized/personalized items in my web store than Etsy. I have a business blog (I am just getting started with that...) and a ton of word of mouth. I am so thankful for other crafty ladies who spotlight artist like me. That is a GREAT advertisement!

Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?

Do what you love and stick with it. The more I try to venture off in different directions the more i am reminded that it is important to stick with what you love. It will work in time and with tweaking. Start slow and build. A tree grows over time from a little seed....not overnight.

Thank you so much for this feature! I am enjoying following your blog!!

Thanks Jenny - for your information and inspiring handpainted messages!!

Toddler / Kid Tips - Keep your house clean!

We ALL need tips on how to keep our house clean and germ free. Here are some tips that I recently read in Better Homes and Gardens.
1. Clean all contact points - counters, faucets, cabinet pulls, refrigerator handles, light switches, and garbage can lids. These all need to be sanitized. Use a good disenfectant. Be sure to read labels to use effectively and always rinse from a surface that may touch food.
Basement -
2. Change your furnace / air conditioner filter - check out Filtrete filters and SafeHome Filters. These companies offer filters that will rid your home of dander, pollen, mold and some dangerous gases as well.
Bathroom -
3. Fans - Showers and baths create a lot of heat and moisture. Be sure to dissapate that moisture so it doesn't have a chance to breed mold by running your fan for 20 minutes after your trip to the tub.
Living Room -
4. MY FAVE TIP!!! Remove Shoes - Create a NO SHOES POLICY throughout your house. It's super easy to do and you will leave all of the outside dangers out of your home - pet droppings, chemicals, viruses. This is an especially important rule for houses with children playing on the ground!
Good Luck and keep cleaning! :>

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

FAB skin care creams - ROC

All right, I am 33 and I will admit that I am searching for the Fountain of Youth - for my skin! I have been using ROC products for over a year now - the Eye cream and the Night Cream. I do love the way the products feel and I do notice that the skin around my eyes is fantastic. I am running low on the night cream so I decided to try somthing new - but stick with ROC. I DON'T have deep wrinkles but I do want to prevent them so, I decieded I am going to give the Retinol Correction Deep Wrinkle Night Cream a try. I also thought that while I add a deep wrinkle night, I should add a deep wrinkle day cream. Let's keep those bad boys AWAY!!!!! You can find these products at I have ordered from there before and received my products the NEXT DAY! The product costs are from $25 - $30 - not bad - I'm satisified!
Then after you have polished your skin - you can rock out your new look complimented with my Eclair Clutch. Check out the one above - GROWL!!! You sexy mamas!!!

Quote of the Week!

"When someone is relating an important event that's happened to them, don't try to top them with a story of their own. Let them have the stage."

~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

This is a TERRIFIC bit of advice. It happens to be one of my New Year's Resolutions - just listen more. Sometimes we let information slip by that could really help us and/or the person talking because we aren't listening. We're just waiting for our turn to speak. I call it "the Stubbed Toe" syndrome. You tell someone that you just stubbed your toe and it stinks! He says, "Yeah, I stubbed MY toe last week and was in the hospital!" Big deal......I want to talk about MY toe! And it goes on and on.....

So, in short - LISTEN!!! Don't talk and enjoy. You might realize that you were missing something! :>

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Going Green - Recycle Cell Phones!

Everyone loves their new gadgets! We have cell phones, ipods, cameras, blackberrys.......they are SO fun when they are shiny and new! You are left with the question - "What do I do with my old cell phone??"
When I am out grocery shopping, I do notice some bins that advertise recycling your cell phone - or maybe that was reading glasses!! Well, here's a bit of advice - check out This company has partnered with many major retailers - Best Buy, Lowe's, Home Depot, Sears, Radio Shack, Circut City and Target - to offer convenient drop off locations for reycling your "old" cell phones and rechargable batteries.
The site offers an area where you can type in your zip to find the closest center. I found 12 located less than 7 miles from my house - very easy way to be green!

Monday, March 10, 2008

My new fabric love - Alexander Henry

Here is my new fabric love - well at least for the week!!! It is an Alexander Henry Japanese inspired "Lady Yang" print. This fabric brings a feel of a more vintage Asian fabric. I love that parts of the gold in the fabric is actually shiny - really retro!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Independent Designer Friday - Beach Haus Designs

The Independent Designer of the Week is Beach Haus Designs - a fantastic Etsy shop specializing in limited edition jewelery that sparkles and shines!

Here is my favorite piece from Beach Haus Designs - The Jenny Necklace - from the website - What a delicious raspberry shade - a very FRESH addition to your spring wardrobe.

I asked June of Beach Haus Designs a few questions about the craft business!

How would you describe your crafts/Etsy shop?
It is an extentison of our website with a few beautiful pieces of jewerly on it. We are looking forward to expanding our collection on Etsy in the near future.

How did you get started?
I was creating jewelry as a hobby & as gifts for friends and family when people started asking to buy my jewelry. My first sale was a sparkly shamrock bracelet!

How long have you been crafting?
Honestly, all my life! My mother was a huge crafter and really made it fun for myself & my sisters. So for me to be creating jewelry is such a natural thing........I have been creating jewelry specifically for about 10 years now.

What is your inspiration?
I am inspired by my two beautiful daughters & supportive husband. I love to travel pretty much everywhere as well as we spend a lot of time at the beach in Florida and in Northern Michigan. The sand, the water & the sunsets are huge sources of inspiration everyday! Being a southern girl I love feminine, girly, fun things and that reflects a lot in what I design.

What is your favorite piece in your shop today?
In the etsy shop- I love the Rosie Posie Bracelet
At our online store- I love the Olive Necklace

How do you market/advertise your wares?
We advertise in some regional magazines as well as we do quite a bit of web marketing, newsletters, postcards as well as we have our web address on everything we send or give out. Really helps to get the store name & website out to customers.

Any advice to fledgling crafters / entrepreneurs?
Don't give up. If you feel this is your calling in life then go for it! Sometimes it is learning a better way of doing things, marketing it differently, trying different shows, etc....I found that once I try something & it doesn't work then we try something else and try not to keep repeating the same mistakes. Also, don't be afraid to ask for help or advice from others that are being successful. Mentors are a great thing!

Thanks June - for your information and a bit of sparkle and bling!!

Toddler Tips - Girl Charlee Clothing

I have been admiring the children's clothing company - Girl Charlee for awhile now. I LOVE retro and vintage and if you do to then you will love this clothing line. Above is a delicious little outfit that is a fave of mine :> I love orange and I LOVE gauchos!! I think they are too cute and refreshing on little ones! I think this outfit will most likely end up in my daughter's closet.

Girl Charlee offers clothing for boys and girls from birth through size 6 along with unique gifts and health and body items. Check them out!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Quote of the Week!

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things."

~ Robert Brault
I add a story from my own week......I was washing the dishes from lunch in the sink a few days ago. My 2 year old daughter comes up to me with her favorite blanket in hand and begins to lay it on the dirty red carpet under the sink.
I begin to think to myself - don't do that it's dirty! But I just watch her work instead. She so meticulously lays the blanket out, carefully considering it's position. She then lays down on the blanket preparing for a rest.
Again, I think to myself - NO don't that's SO dirty! But, I refrain from speaking and continue to watch. As she's laying down, she picks her head up, looks at me, pats the ground next to her and says, "Lay here mommy."
Without even thinking twice about the dirty floor I lay down next to my daughter feeling so priviledged that she invited me! Ah, but the best was yet to come. As we were laying there face to face not more than nose distance apart, she kisses me. Not once, not twice, but all over my face. I was so happy I could have cried. How long will my little sweet want to do this with me? I realize how lucky I am right now.
What a sweet moment I didn't let escape me by worries of the everyday. :>
Live, Laugh and Love!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Going Green - Talking Trash

I often think about and research ways to help the environment. I especially think about reducing my waste. I use cloth diapers, reusable grocery bags, recycle all paper and cardboard and plastic, glass and aluminum.

I found some facts from Better Homes and Gardens that I want to pass to you. I always wondered what became of the items I recycled - here is some cool information.

Recycled Glass becomes food containers, tiles, landscaping pebbles and road surfacing.

Paper becomes newsprint, boxes, insulation, and animal bedding. **One Sunday paper recycled each month saves a tree a year!!!

Aluminum becomes beverage cans, cookware, bike parts, and tennis rackets. Steel becomes new steel and could become auto parts, filing cabinets or appliances.

Plastic turns into alot of things. #1 and #2 plastics become beverage and shampoo bottles, pipes, fleece, fencing, deck planks and gutters.

Want a cool shopping tote - check some out like the one pictured above out at my Etsy store - .

Now you can feel good knowing where your recycled items end up! Good Kharma :>