February Design Challenge Winner!

Posted Friday, February 28, 2014

February's Design Challenge had the theme "Come fly with me!".
We had lots of lovely entries from our team member but the winning entry with the most votes was..

A beautifully designed and handmade Cape Cod themed mobile creating a serene scene for any nursery! This mobile consists of a 3 soaring seagulls made from a mixture of 100% wool felt and merino wool blend felt, 6 white fluffy rain clouds. The wings of the seagulls can be personally molded and formed into the shape you want them to fly at. Watch them move to just the slightest air movement and capture your imagination and delight of your child.

Here are some more lovely items from LullabyMobiles

Elephant baby mobile - crib mobile - You pick your colours -yellow, gray, white, polkadots - nursery mobile - unisex mobile - custom made - LullabyMobiles Rainbow felt hearts banner/ garland/ bunting - nursery decor - birthday decor - made to order - LullabyMobiles Airplane mobile - baby mobile - nursery decor - You pick your colors - crimson, navy, gray felt airplanes, white clouds - LullabyMobiles Rain cloud mobile - Crystal sun catcher - crystal blue rain drops - Sparkling prism tear drops - LullabyMobiles
SALE - READY NOW - Woodland mobile - Forest mobile - baby crib mobile - deer - fox - owl - squirrel - acorns - nursery decor - LullabyMobiles Personalized felt name banner - name garland - You pick your colours - ombre blue - custom made wall art - Nursery decor - LullabyMobiles Personalized felt name banner - custom made wall art nursery decor - made to match bedroom colors - nursery decor - ombré - LullabyMobiles Owl mobile - woodland - baby mobile - You can pick your own colors - cyan, white and green - nursery decor - LullabyMobiles

Meet Etsy Seller Papoose Clothing

Posted Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Today we would like to introduce you to
Etsy shop Papoose Clothing

Papoose Clothing has been selling on Etsy since November 2010, she sell handmade beauitful outfits for children, from vintage inspired to creative modern pieces. Today she is sharing a little about her shop and selling handmade items.

Short Sleeve Peplum Dress with Ruffle Bib Autumn Winter 2013 by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing Customizable Tiered Pom Pom Dress by PapooseClothing - papooseclothing Long Sleeve Peplum Blouse with Peter Pan Collar Autumn Winter 2013 by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing White and Cream Reversible A-line Top with Front Bow Detail by PapooseClothing - papooseclothing

What motivated you to start your shop?
Three years ago I received the news that my sister was pregnant with her first child, and I wanted to make a few keepsake dresses for my new niece. I delighted in making such miniaturized items and all the dramatic bows and frills that come with designing little girls' clothing that I decided to take the plunge and open a shop on Etsy. It all sounds so much simpler than it really was and still is, but that's the short version!

What is the story behind your shop name?
I loved watching the movie Gidget as a child, and there is one particular scene where some girls insult Gidget by calling her a "papoose." I had never heard of the word before, so strange child that I was, immediately looked it up in the dictionary to figure out what it meant. The word has always stuck with me so when I was thinking of possible store names, it naturally came to mind because it was a favored childhood memory and an appropriate name.

What surprised you most about having your own craft / online shop?
I knew absolutely nothing about running a business when I opened a shop on Etsy, so everything surprised me. I didn't even have business cards; I basically had a shop name and a few sad items for sale. It is such a huge learning experience, and I am still growing and discovering new and better ways at being a small business owner. It takes constant work and determination to grow and get out of the "it's just a hobby, but here's my stuff" phase into a legitimate business you want people to take seriously.

What is your favourite creations from your shop?
I love the Double Ruffle Bloomer Bubble Shorts because they are so darling and sassy. The design is simple but it really packs a punch, and the shorts can easily take your little papoose through all the seasons with the right pair of tights for colder months or wear them alone during hot summer days.

What do you find most challenging about being an Etsy seller?
I continue to struggle with the photography aspect because pictures are the only source for potential buyers to make a decision based on looks. The description helps, but pictures can and should relay fabric details, color, fit, feelings and mood, everything. Great photography can really help a store stand out from the crowd, and separating yourself from everyone else and creating your own distinct brand is one of the biggest hurdles when selling on a site that grows daily!

What's your personal philosophy behind your shop / products?
I firmly believe in fostering a child's imagination, and clothing was one of the first areas of my life I vividly remember expressing myself through. I know how it feels to wear the perfect little dress when playing make believe and "putting on a show!" I once gathered "costumes" so I could look just like Laurey scene-for-scene in Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! while watching the movie by myself. I want to give your little papoose that same elated feeling and freedom of personal expression through handmade style.

What do you do when you aren't working?
I love to read books and watch old movies, but when I'm with my husband, we compromise and pick a series to watch on Netflix. We've been through several shows and are currently finishing up The X-Files. The show frightened me so badly when I was younger, but now I'm fascinated by all the theories and beliefs they write about.

Anything else you'd like to tell us or share?
I have recently released the Spring Summer 2014 collection, Bayou Bebe. It is inspired by the romance of Cajun Country in south Louisiana with all the mystery and charm of the bayous. This collection has been a love story for me because I grew up in Louisiana so I feel a deeper connection to this line than past inspirations. I hope this relationship is evident in the clothing and speaks to people on a meaningful level, not just superficially. Although I hope people like the clothes for their own design merit, I hope people can understand the thoughts behind it and that I did my part in relaying a story.

SALE Ruffle Neck Tunic Dress with Sash Spring Summer 2013 Collection by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing Moroccan Blues Sleeveless Peplum Dress Autumn Winter 2013 by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing Starry Night Long Sleeve Navy Tunic Blouse Autumn Winter 2013 by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing Brown Vine High Low Ruffle Skirt with Matching Suspenders by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing

Easy and Fun Recipe: Homemade Cottage Cheese

Posted Monday, February 24, 2014

My daughter recently watched a television program about making cottage cheese and she became very interested in wanting to make her own. A few minutes on the internet and we found dozens of recipes and how- to's.  The recipe we followed was from Val Harrison at Allotment.org.uk. I was curious and hesitant to try the cottage cheese but I must say it tasted good!

Here's what you need:                                            
2 pints of skimmed or semi-skimmed milk.               
2 tablespoons of lemon or white vinegar. (we used lemon)
Pinch of salt
wooden spoon
sift or sieve

Here's what you need to do: 
  • Pour the milk into the sauce pan and heat until hot but not boiling.
  • Stir occasionally and cool down for a few minutes
  • Add 2 tablespoons of lemon or white vinegar
  • Stir and watch the milk separate into curds and whey
  • After cooling put the mixture into your sifter to catch the curds
  • Discard the whey
  • Transfer the curds into a small bowl and add a pinch of salt

Dorinda's shop, Raising Green Kids, offers eco-friendly products for your family. Follow her on Facebook and twitter and at her blog.

February Design Challenge. It's time to Vote!

Posted Friday, February 21, 2014

For February our Design Challenge theme was "Come Fly With Me"
We have lots of lovely entries from our team members, browse down and vote for your favourite item!
Voting is open until 27th January.

Meet Etsy Seller Little Luckies 2

Posted Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Today we would like to introduce you to
Etsy shop Little Luckies 2

Little Luckies 2 sell handmade cloth / rag dolls & stuffed animals! Today she is sharing a little about her shop and selling handmade items.

Plush Lion - LittleLuckies2 Plush Elf 'Misfit' Cloth Doll - Arthur - LittleLuckies2 Plush Puppy  - Penny - LittleLuckies2 Cloth, Rag, Fabric Doll - Flora - LittleLuckies2

What motivated you to start your shop?
I opened this little shop because I have the need to create, to keep my hands moving and to fuel my passion for smiles. My kids beds were overrun with toys I had made and, I was making toys for my nieces, nephews, and friends.  Still it wasn't enough to keep me busy!

I was trying to think ahead, the kids will be in school full time soon and, I really don't want to go back to the corporate life, it isn't  for me.  I want  to be able to do something that I love.  If I can bring in enough income to help our family, while doing something I love, it's a win win!  So, in 2013 I made a New Years resolution to open up shop and, was determined to keep it.  It wasn't hard with the constant encouragement from friends and family. So, in June I opened up my shop "little Luckies" and sold my first Etsy product in September.

What is the story behind your shop name?
little Luckies is all about they kids and our family. It means so much all at once!  That I'm lucky to have my little ones, that they are lucky to have both my husband and me. It's also a play on words with our family name :)

What surprised you most about having your own craft / online shop?
When I opened I started to feel a sense of self...  Mums you know that 'self' that kind of gets lost when you have kids :). I started to feel that I was worth more than being just a mum.  Don't get me wrong I love being a full time mum but, I was starting to feel lost in it.  For the past 6 years I've been totally focused on the kids and, the family unit. I wasn't doing anything that felt fulfuilling to myself as Susan- if that makes any sense.  It's been so nice to finally have something to call my own.  It takes so much effort to simultaneously run a family and have a small business on the side.  I'm proud of everything that I accomplish with little Luckies.

What is your favourite creations from your shop?
Honestly, my favourite is the Rhino because I think it's a brilliant pattern!  Created by another etsy seller Pauline of Funky Friends Factory.  Most of what I make come from patterns she has created.

What do you find most challenging about being an Etsy seller?
Getting noticed and sales!! Etsy is so huge its very hard to get people to find you. I know I have a good product that is handcrafted with great care and love, but as much as I network and,  do what other successful Etsy sellers suggest I still have only had 17 sales, most of which were generated through  Facebook.

What do you do when you aren't working?
Running a family, doing laundry (OMG the laundry!), driving everywhere and catching a few zzzzz's.

Anything else you'd like to tell us or share?
I will sew practically anything and I love a challenge.
I also, have a Facebook page where I like to post pics daily of the items I'm working on.  I like to keep my buyers informed and, share with them the process from, acutally sewing plush to, what that is cooking on my stove :).  It's kind of like a mini blog.

Plush Snowman - Flurry - LittleLuckies2 Elephant Plushie- Eldrige - LittleLuckies2 Spring Time Turtle Plush - Sandy - LittleLuckies2 Plush Elf Cloth Doll - Tinsel - LittleLuckies2

Easy-To-Make Wild Bird Feeder

Posted Saturday, February 15, 2014

Kids love to learn about nature and a fun way to encourage them to help care for wild birds is to make a simple bird feeder. Bird watching and feeding is a great way to teach your little ones about the many varieties of birds and their habits. Watching the birds bring their friends to this fresh tasty treat is a reward for the kids, as well as, the birds.

Explain to your child that supplementing the food supply of our feathery friends is very important, especially during harsh winter conditions, to help guarantee their survival. Also, please remember that once birds start coming to your home to eat, they get used to the food being there so it’s important to keep feeding them throughout the winter months.

An easy-to-make pinecone feeder is a simple project that even young children can help create. All you need is a pine cone, string, and the food items you will use.

STEP 1: Assemble your materials.

STEP 2: Tie a string around the wider, stem end of the pinecone. Be sure the string is tied tightly so it doesn't fall when the birds arrive.

STEP 3: Mix ½ cup vegetable shortening with ½ cup oatmeal or corn meal in a mixing bowl until well blended. This amount should cover one large pinecone or two or three smaller ones.

STEP 4: Thoroughly spread the mixture over the pinecone with a child friendly knife/spreader or use the back side of a spoon. This is rather messy, so have paper towels handy for hand clean-up.

STEP 5: Pour the birdseed into a pie tin, paper plate or cookie sheet. Roll the pinecone in the birdseed until well covered.

STEP 6: Suspend the feeder from a tree branch where it can be easily seen from a window. Last, but not least, all you need to do is watch for your feathered friends to come and enjoy the meal you lovingly prepared for them!

Thanks to Nancy Keesling of TutuCuteandMoore for sharing this fun project with us.  You can find Nancy on Etsy, where she sells unique handmade clothing and and gifts.  You can also follow Nancy on facebook.

Meet Etsy Seller Jenny Dale Designs

Posted Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Today we would like to introduce you to
Etsy shop Jenny Dale Designs

Jenny Dale Designs has been selling on Etsy since February 2013 (happy 1 year anniversary!), she sell nursery art & decor for Children, including wonderful illustrations and poetry. Today she is sharing a little about her shop and selling handmade items.

Sock Monkey Art, Nursery Art, Nursery Decor-   Sock monkey and rocking horse: Art print - JennyDaleDesigns Robot's Red Ballon- painting with quote or personalized message: hand signed art print - JennyDaleDesigns Super Hero Cat and Mouse Burglar: hand signed art print - JennyDaleDesigns Canvas art, blue bird, whimsical nursery print-8x10 limited edition canvas print ready to hang - JennyDaleDesigns

What motivated you to start your shop?
I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and I have been creating art for as long as I can remember.  However, it wasn’t until the birth of my son that I began to focus my attention of creating art for children’s rooms and nurseries.  Having taught kindergarten for 8 years, I have a profound respect for children and I believe they are capable, creative citizens.  They deserve to be surrounded by beautiful, thought-provoking works of art.  All of my paintings and illustrations are made with thoughtfulness, love and care. I also write poetry to accompany each one of my prints, giving children and parents a chance to engage in the artwork on another level.  I have been a fan of Etsy for years, and opening my own Etsy shop seemed like a perfect fit for my artwork.

What is the story behind your shop name?
I choose the name Jenny Dale Designs because I wanted a name that was reminiscent of my childhood yet unique to me as an artist.  My middle name is Dale and when I was a child my dad called me “Jenny Dale”.  Although I lost my dad to cancer 9 years ago, each time I hear my business name spoken aloud it is as though my dad is with me - watching over me…smiling…proud.

What is your favourite creations from your shop?
I have so much fun creating each one of my illustrations that it is hard to pick only a few!  I have a lot of fun creating characters out of birds and owls…and cats!  I have a lot of fun with my cats!

What do you find most challenging about being an Etsy seller?
When I first opened my Etsy shop, I thought I’d immediately be overwhelmed with sales orders coming in!  Whenever I sell my work at craft shows and festivals I am always incredibly busy, but I soon discovered that selling online is a different ballpark.  There isn’t quite the same sense of urgency, so people tend to take more time to make a decision.  I also find that my listings are sometimes buried in a sea of other items that pop-up in a search.  I’m learning to focus more energy into promoting on-line sales and spreading the word about my shop through social media and advertising.

What's your personal philosophy behind your shop / products?
As I mentioned earlier, I believe children deserve to be surrounded by beautiful, thought provoking works of art.  Each one of my paintings tells a story through colour, characters and the poetry I write to accompany it.  I also think art should be accessible to everybody.  Rather than offer my paintings through traditional galleries, I choose to sell my prints online and at craft shows and festivals.  People who might not otherwise engage in my art, are able to do so because it is in a relaxed, familiar setting.  As a parent, I know we can’t all spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on art for our homes.  I strive to make my artwork affordable knowing that tastes change and kids eventually grow up!

What do you do when you aren't working?
Most of my time is spent with my wonderful son, James and my loving husband, Mark.  Our days are full of laughter and exploration.  Living near the mountains means I am never far from a trip to the Rockies to hike, snowboard, or just take in the scenery and check out the local galleries.

Roaring 20's Vintage style Duckling-Betty The Flapper Duck hand signed art print - JennyDaleDesigns Fox and Sailboat Nursery Art: Art print with Poetry - JennyDaleDesigns Panda and Sailboat, Panda Nursery Art: Art print with Poetry - JennyDaleDesigns Cute Pig Art, Nursery art, Art for Girls: Little girl pig playing dress-up (hand signed art print) - JennyDaleDesigns

Treasury Challenge #28 - Little Cupids

Posted Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The theme for the EtsyKids Team treasury challenge #28 was "Little Cupids" in prepartion for Valentines day later this week.
Our team members created lots of beautiful treasuries featuring some amazing items, but the winner with 218 views is...
Valentine Tutu Dress by Atutudes - atutudes
Valentine Tutu Dress by...
Pink LOVE Birds Magnet - Valentines Day Magnet - Rustic Heart Shaped Refrigerator Magnet - Shabby Chic Decor - WalterSilva
Pink LOVE Birds Magnet ...
Kids Valentines Day White T shirt with chevron Print Pocket, Valentines Gift Idea for Boys or Girls, Customized Love Note Tee Size 2,4, & 6 - fernandfawn
Kids Valentines Day Whi...
Valentines Pillowcase Dress Sizes 12m-8 - littlepetuniadesigns
Valentines Pillowcase D...
QUEEN OF HEARTS Valentines Baby Dots One-Piece or T-shirt - thenook
Sweetheart Shirt - Voile Girls Top - Valentine Toddler Blouse - Red and White - Valentine's Day - sneakypea
Sweetheart Shirt - Voil...
Fun N Funky Valentine Skirt - ChewChewsCloset
Fun N Funky Valentine S...
Heart Shaped Blanket Mat- Newborn Baby Photo Prop- Unisex Boy or Girl Photo Prop- Heart Rug - TheWhimsicalStudio
Heart Shaped Blanket Ma...
Pinboard floral fabric patchwork.  Round fabric covered cork pinboard with button pins - HandmadeCuddlesShop
Pinboard floral fabric ...
Valentines Day Pillowcase Dress DARLING DAMASK Red White baby toddler girl - lilsweetieboutique
Valentines Day Pillowca...
Owl Valentine Boy Girl Friend Class Card Pack - Classroom Stationery Set - weandthebean
Owl Valentine Boy Girl ...
Valentine's Day sparkly sequin knit hat with heart - knitwhitscouture
Valentine's Day spa...
Elastic Hair Tie Storage-Valentines Day Gift-FOE Elastic Hair Ties-Hairties-Girls Hair Ties-Ponytail Holders-Yoga Hair Ties-Jelly Mason Jar - PolkaDotPineappleB
Elastic Hair Tie Storag...
Provence Lavender filled hanging pillow - decoration - LaPetiteMaisonBlanc
Provence Lavender fille...
White Waterfall Dress with Pink Hearts by Papoose Clothing - papooseclothing
White Waterfall Dress w...
Thank you HarmonyGirlsClothing for creating such a lovely treasury!

HarmonyGirlsClothing makes beautiful dresses and outfits for little girls. We love adorable party frock that is available in her shop. Visit her shop to see more of her wonderful creations.

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