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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Treasury Saturday

Another week of treasuries gone by. I was able to snag two of them.

playgroundforcorapaige-022709The first I will talk about it called ‘Playground for Cora Paige’. It displays twelve etsians that have special items whose proceeds go 100% toward the Cora Paige Playground fund. To read more about this cause check out the article written in the Storque.

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This is actually the first treasury I put together this week…I called it ‘Serenity’.

And here are a few treasuries I was honored to be featured in this week:

whatcomesaroundgoesaround-earthlycreations-022709

‘What Comes Around Goes Around’ was created by EarthlyCreations and features my Swirling Oranges Wristlet.

quiltsforanytimeanywhereany-quiltlover-022509Quilts For Any Time Anywhere Any was put together by QuiltLover. She chose to feature one of my favorites, “Disappearing Dog Star.”

wouldyyoulookatthese-serenstitches-022509

Serenstitches put together the treasury, “would you look at these’ and featured my ‘Spring Flowers’ quilts.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Meet EllaBellaMay!

My Background:

il_430xN_58148131Technically, I am not a typical artsy person. Currently, I am in clinical research, and previously, I was a chemist. So, making my elephants is a creative escape for me. I started out making quilts when I was 18, and still love creating them, but the elephants that I make now are faster and allow me to have a little fun when I'm not using my left brain! Elephants are one of my favorite animals, so it's especially fun to see the response, and that so many others like elephants, too!

Quilting was my first creative outlet. I had my first baby when I was 24 years old, and I was still in school, so I learned how to make a lot of the things she needed, like quilts, blankets, cloth diapers, and clothes. Since then, I have made quilts for others that may be in a position where they also need things like baby clothes and blankets, and have showed them how to sew, too. But, I haven't really thought of myself as a creative person, or a "right-brained" person because I've always enjoyed the sciences and love my job as a researcher. So, to give my left brain a break and still stay in touch with my creative side, I try to quilt as much as possible, and have started making my little elephants.

Do you dream about making other things?

I really do! I would love to expand my elephant shop to include turtles and giraffes, and maybe a mouse! I really like the "not so typical" animals, like these.il_430xN_48933912

How did you discover etsy?

I found Etsy through my youngest daughter who also seems to be growing up with similar eclectic tastes as mine. She's fantastic in the sciences, but loves to design and sew her own clothes. She found Etsy one day while surfing the web for homemade items, and we were both hooked!

Do you have any advice for others?

My advice? Don't ever close a door on your creative side! I believe everyone has the ability to be creative in some form, and it can be very emotionally rewarding. There are so many creative avenues, there's something for everyone! :)

How will the new CPSIA law affect you and your business?
il_430xN_59029272The new CPSIA law is just about the saddest thing I've ever heard. Talk about stifling creativity! And gift-giving. And charity giving. And the income for so many artists that emotionally and financially need an outlet to display what is important to them. And as buyers, we need a place to discover and learn from other artists' wonderful talents. It's not just that babies won't be able to cuddle with my elephants, it's also that so many artists won't be able to have an outlet to display their skills. And that makes me very sad, indeed.....

To see more of EllaBellaMay’s beautiful elephants make sure to check out her shop on etsy! I bought each of my girls’ one and they just love them!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Winter Dyeing Adventure

087On Monday, February 23rd, Diane and I decided to do some fabric dyeing. I have a custom order for seven different shirts/tanks/rompers for one family and I was going to fill that order. As I was going through our white clothing inventory I discovered that I was ONE large t-shirt short…so, it turned out into a ‘just for fun’ dyeing day.

077 I am trying to increase my fabric stash because I have all the ideas for art quilts in my mind and need to have a wide variety of colors for these projects. Since I own/operate an apple orchard my first art quilt is probably going to be some sort of orchard image which means I need lots of different browns, greens and reds. That was my plan along with a few bins of fun! I have included a picture of one of my fun pins here! Don’t worry I’ll make sure to take a few ‘after’ pictures of the fabric and post them later so you can see what that bin made!

Dyeing in the middle of winter is nowhere near the fun as dyeing in the summer. It’s also a lot more difficult to ‘see’ what you have done. But, 086 it’s still fun and I really enjoy dyeing. My favorite part of it is that I go into it with an extremely laid back attitude. All the bottles of dyes just sit in front of me and I just mix a little of this and a little of that and go for it! I have a fairly decent knowledge of what colors I’m going to achieve by mixing certain things but I never know EXACTLY how it’s going to turn out or the pattern it’s going to make on the fabric.

Diane and I have gotten much more efficient in dyeing as well. We used 070to put each item in its own bucket or bin….we have learned that we can get a fairly decent variety by putting many fabrics in one bin. I think I had six bins that I dyed that day and still a few individual buckets. I was dyeing hats and I was being a bit picky that had a certain ‘look’ about them.

I was almost about to tell you our process of dyeing (what we do first, then next and to finish it up) but I realized that’s why you are going to sign up for our 2009 Summer Dyeing Workshop on June 20th! We will teach you the ‘formula’s’ for dyeing in the morning and then teach you the more creative side of dyeing.

088 One thing I will say is that HEAT is extremely important in our dyeing process…which can be hard to come by in a cold basement in February. 089 My husband has built us special insulated box that hooks up to our outdoor woodstove. Pex tubing coils around on the inside of this box and super hot water flows through it to heat up our fabric. It fits LOTS and LOTS of bins and buckets! It is amazing!

Diane gave me a quick ‘sneak peek’ at our fabrics yesterday and I am so excited to start ironing! (Trust me…that is HUGE for me to say…I HATE to iron, but that’s how you can really see just how amazing your fabrics are). One washout is complete…lots more to go but hopefully I’ll be able to post some end result pictures next week!

STAY TUNED…

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Cora’s Playground: Etsy Benefit Sale

A little girl named Cora, who was just over a week younger than my baby Capri, passed away recently from cancer.  To read more about her story please go to:

http://themcclenahans.blogspot.com

AND


http://corapaige.blogspot.com

Many etsian sellers have decided to sell specific items whose profit will go directly towards a playground in Cora’s name.  I could not hear this story and see pictures of this family and not imagine what I would hope other’s would do if I where in this situation.  I have chosen five adorable onesies to donate their proceeds to this amazing cause.

onesieSnails & Butterflies

 

 

 

il_430xN_47749324Starry Dusk

 

 

 

 

il_430xN_47748095

Cotton Candy

 

 

 

 

il_430xN_47524195

Beautiful Rose

 

 

 

 

il_430xN_46870624

Horizon

 

 

 

 

100% of all proceeds from these listings goes directly to:
CORA  PAIGE PLAYGROUND FUND

To find links to more shops participating in this fundraiser please go to:

http://thesefavoritethings.blogspot.com/2007/01/coras-playground-etsy-benefit-sale.html

Thank you.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

HAPPY FIRST BIRTHDAY CAPRI!

I know! I can’t believe it either! My baby girl is one today! In remembrance of that special day I’m going to take a little look back…

February 24th, 2008

100_1326I woke up that morning extremely uncomfortable because I was ridiculously pregnant and baby girl was hanging out with her feet jammed under my ribs. Also, today was my due date and baby had not dropped…I was NEVER going to have her. Jared knew I was not in a good mood so he said he would watch Cedi while I went and sewed a bit…sewing relaxed me.

My mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and I had decided to make a quilt for Katrina’s wedding (Barb’s daughter). Karma had just gotten me her blocks the day before and I decided I would try to get my portion done since I knew that once baby did decide to come I wouldn’t have much time for sewing. I ended up finishing my part in the quilt that morning.

I think Karma called me around 1:00 to wish me “Happy Due-Date.” I responded with, “Shut Up, this baby is never coming.” Around 2ish I felt something weird…but wasn’t quite sure what it was (I was induced with Cedi and once I started contracting I pretty much had my baby-so I wasn’t really sure what contractions felt like). Cedi was napping so I told Jared that we should do the bills while she was down.

I decided to take a shower. When I got out I realized that my contractions were really close together. I told Jared he should call his parents…we needed to go to the hospital.

I think we arrived at the hospital around 4 or 4:30. Jared said that the roads were the best they had been all winter. (thank goodness!) I felt like I was in Triage forever before they finally got me my own room. All I wanted was an epidural.

My doctor got to the hospital pretty quickly…it was her first anniversary and I tore her away from their dinner (sorry but thanks!). All I wanted was an epidural. My doctor ordered one for me as soon as she got there but she knew my labor would probably be short. They called to say the epidural would be there in fifteen minutes. I made Jared tell me the time so I could try to keep track. Thirty minutes later and 8 cm I had given up all hope. I even looked at my doctor and said, “This is going to be you in three months!” (she was pregnant too…)

But, miracles upon miracles, the anesthesiologist arrived right then. Stuck an insanely large needle in my back while I was having contractions (I had to sit absolutely still, but it really helped me deal with the pain by having something to focus on). It started to work pretty much right away. I had them put the Oscars on. They told me that a lot of women like to wait and rest before they start pushing. I said, “Let’s 100_1328just get her out.” Fifteen minutes later (at 8:16pm), my beautiful baby girl, Capri, joined us. She was 8lbs 1oz and 21-inches of absolute perfection!

Happy Birthday my beautiful and sweet baby girl!

100_1358

Cedi (at 15 mo) meets her baby sis for the first time!100_1343

il_430xN_57863132

Here are a few things she would have loved to get for her birthday!

River by ImogensGarden a perfect baby doll for my baby doll…

il_430xN_58681468

If only Capri had some hair…this would be adorable!

Posh Peacock Wool Felt Hair Clip or Pin Brooch by pammydawn

il_430xN_58663636and of course Capri needs one of these! She does live on an apple orchard!

delicious GREEN APPLE leaf printed onesie by sweet3leafprint

il_430xN_58644306

and for my elephant loving little girl…Eli the Elephant from Zadyball! How fun!

010

And here we both are…exactly ONE year later! Happy Birthday Capri!

Monday, February 23, 2009

etsyBABY Spring Fling Challenge

I received the following email on February 12th and immediately decided I wanted to participate:

Here are the following details to participate in the Spring Fling Challenge:

A. Make an item to be listed in your shop that has a feel of "Spring" to it.

B. All Items should be listed by the 1st of March.

C. Include in the title listing : EtsyBABY Spring Fling Team Challenge.

D. Add the following tag to the listing: "Spring Fling"

E. A poll to vote for your favorite "Spring Fling" item will be available on March 3rd and will end on March 31st.
All Etsybaby members can vote just once.

D. The winner will be announced on April 1st and will be awarded 7 days of ad space on EtsyBABY.

Now, I just had to figure out what I wanted to make. I narrowed it down to either an appliqued onesie or a quilt. I finally decided a quilt would leave me with the most creative freedom.

100I LOVE to make bright baby quilts so I started out with three different pieces of hand-dyed fabric and cut them into squares. Laid them on my design wall, figured out how I wanted them to look and sewed them together. Then I found this adorable black fabric with all these fun colored bugs on it for my border. Once I had the base, I decided to work on the actual design. At first I had this idea of having a drooping flower coming out of leaves with rain drops in one corner and bugs in another…I even had this all cut out and ready to go. Then I decided to change my flower into a larger fabric circle with loops of ribbon as the petals. Once these idea came to me, my entire design changed.

In the end, I created an amazingly fun baby quilt. There are five flowers 094 appliqued on: a spiral, a ribbon loop flower, a thicker spiral, circles, and circles within circles. I layered different green fabrics to create dimension on the stems. I also cut out some of those adorable bugs from the border and appliqued them into the quilt…bringing the border into the main picture. 095To finish the design off I found a couple of cute butterflies and a dragonfly to applique into the upper corner.

Now that my design was complete, it was time to quilt. Since getting my new sewing machine, I have much more confidence in my ability to quilt. I decided that I would do this one myself instead of sending it to my aunt-in-law. I chose 097a bubbly printed blue flannel fabric as the backing. I typically like to use flannel to add an extra level of coziness to the quilt. I sewed all of my flowers and bugs on. Then I quilted the ‘sky’ in a ‘wind’ pattern, the lowest green in a ‘grass’ pattern and the middle in just a random jigsaw-esque pattern.

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To complete this beauty I used some more hand-dyes to bind the outside edge. I’m extremely happy with the end result and I can’t wait to hear what everyone thinks!

And to name it! I’m going to call it ‘Spring Flowers' and it is for sale in my etsy shop!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Treasury Saturday

It was another fun week for treasury making! I challenged myself in a new way. I created my three treasuries this week all from the artists’ that had commented on the previous treasury I had made. Sort of as an incentive for people to comment, but also as a wonderful challenge to try to make a unified treasury with a limited supply of choices. It was fun checking out new artists shops and seeing what else was out there. Of course, my quiltsy team is amazingly supportive in treasuries so I was able to feature quite a few of them throughout the week. I hope you enjoy looking at my 12comments-kims-021509treasuries as much as I enjoyed putting them together!

The first one I created is to the right and I named it ‘12 comments.’ I know, super original!

12commentspart2-kims-021609

This is the second treasury in my series. I creatively named it, “12 comments part 2”.

12commentspart3-kims-021609

And my third, and final (for now) treasury in the comment series is to the right and appropriately named, “12 comments part 3.” This treasury, at one point, made it to the third spot of hotness in Treasury West! I am very proud of that! I will definitely do this series again.

And now are here are some of the wonderful treasuries that I was lucky enough to be featured in this past week!

chachacha-warmnfuzzies-021909

“Cha Cha Cha” was put together by warmnfuzzies and feature’s my Swirling Wheat Wristlet – Take 2…an adorable origami bag perfect for a night out on the town!

etsyBABYinbloom-ImogensGarden-022009

“EtsyBABY in Bloom” features the Daisy Field Pillowcase my mother-in-law, Diane, made. This beautiful treasury that helps remind us that spring WILL be here soon was put together by ImogensGarden.

springishere-quiltingfrenzy-021509

QuiltingFrenzy put together the lovely treasury to left called “Spring is Here.” It features one of my favorite quilts…Springtime Wonder. This quilt is a mixture of MANY different fabrics and is backed with a wonderfully cozy flannel…perfect to wrap up in with a hot cup of tea and a good book!

ILoveColor-originalsbylauren-022009

‘I Love Color’ was put together by OriginalsbyLauren and features the beautiful ‘True Lover’s Knot’ Quilt that my sister-in-law, Karma, made.

everythingscomingupdaisies-quiltingfrenzy-021809

Daisy treasuries seemed to be a popular theme this week! QuiltingFrenzy put together another wonderful treasury called “Everything’s Coming Up Daisies” and also chose to feature Diane’s Daisy Fields Pillowcase.

LoveEtsyBaby-kazzalblue-021609

I almost missed catching that I was featured in this treasury! Kazzalblue put together the fun and brightly colored ‘Love EtsyBABY’ and included my Snails and Butterflies Hand-Dyed Onesie!

quiltstowarmyoursoul-fabricsnquilts-021509

And last, but not least, my first art quilt, Butterfly Garden Art Wall Hanging was featured in fabricsnquilts treasury ‘Quilts to Warm your soul.’

And that wraps up Treasury Saturday for this week! Looks like Treasury West should open again soon…I have a great poster sketch ready to go!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Meet SnooliBaby in my 100th blog post!

*When did you first start creating things?
I first started creating precious baby items after my son was born. I needed to find a way to make a little extra money as a stay at home mom. It started with a craft fair and then I found Etsy! The rest is well...history!

*What were the first things you created? and how did your creativity progress from there?
It all started with these unique three-sided loveys called Snooli Snuggles. I use this incredibly soft minky dot fabric and literally give my lovey three sides instead of the normal back and front. This adds just a little extra for those little fingers to cuddle.

*Is this your only business or do you do other things as well?
This is my only business right now, but I'm thinking about making an Etsy shop that is just for non-baby items...give myself a little grown-up time. I plan to make vintage styled aprons in the latest high quality fabrics from designers like Amy Butler, Michael Miller and Joel Dewberry. I was also thinking of including some silk sashes and belts and maybe a purse or two. We'll see how it goes.

*Do you still dream about making other things? If so, what?
I also dream of making more of my Snooli Friends...I've made a few puppies and now a monkey and some bears. I've also just completed some bunnies just in time for Spring. If only I could find a pattern for a lion or a horse.


*How did you hear about Etsy?
You know, I heard about Esty a long time ago and silly me, just moved on by. Then one day, I heard the name again and remembered it. I came straight back here and opened up my shop! Lucky for me, I've had a few sales. Thanks everyone!

*Any words of advice to others?
It seems like the first sale on Etsy is the toughest! I just wasn't sure how to get my shop noticed. So I started browsing around and checking out other shops...adding items and shops to my favorites. Then I posted a sale on my local craigslist site pointing people to visit my Etsy shop. Finally I got my first sale! And they've just kept on coming. Thank Goodness!

*How will the new law by CPSIA affect you and your shop?
I'm pretty sure that the new law will put my Snoolibaby shop out of business. I've been doing lots of reading and I'm not really sure how I would even go about doing testing on my toys...that are made entirely out of fabric. I don't even use buttons. I think I'm going to have to just keep selling until someone stops me. I have two small children that mean the world to me and I would give them my own toys to play with in a heartbeat! What's a stay-at-home-mom to do?
Thursday, February 19, 2009

Little Girls and Little Dresses


In honor of Capri turning 1 on Tuesday (holy moly!), I'm doing a feature on some adorable little dresses I found on etsy. I recently purchased some patterns to make dresses of my own but I have no idea how long it will take me to get to that part of my list!


From one of my favorite shops on etsy a dress I absolutely adore!

Queen of Hearts by Allthenumbers! Is this not just absolutely adorable! I've been doing my hardest to not buy it but if I make a few more sales...who knows!


This dress would be adorable on either of my girls. I also don't think it will be too much longer until they're in the same size! French Coriander from ZoZoBugBaby:

Way too adorable! from smallbeans!




Cedi would just love this one! She's going through a whale-loving stage! A Pink Whale of a Dress from thetrendytot!


One last beautiful dress from KateEmersonDesigns!




I just love putting my girls in dresses and I am positive they would look adorable in any of these!
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