Handmade Goodness

So, I told you guys I took a partial Handmade Pledge the other day. Well, I wanted to share with you a few of the handmade goodies that I have gotten for the girlies in my family before they're all wrapped up.

First and foremost, I cannot say enough great stuff about GiftsDefine on Etsy. OMG! Irma was super sweet over several email conversations and so accommodating too! I had specific needs that she was able to meet and deliver within days. From the moment I opened her meticulously wrapped box, beauty just spilled out! Everything has gorgeous ribbons and sweet hang tags and little extra surprises here & there...

I ordered these adorable fairy angels for Sophie, Sydney and my niece, Asja. The angels come in your choice of hair color and dress/wing colors. Just look how awesome! And each came with a personalized dangle.... the girls are gonna freak out! I just know it. hee hee. I already know what I'm gonna do: when they leave the milk & cookies for Santa, these little angels will appear in its place the morning after.... kinda like a "Thank You Gift" from Santa himself. Ooooh... I can't wait! :)

Then, for my little Sydney, I ordered this super cute pink suitcase full of zoo critters. Again, the suitcase came all decked out with ribbons, hangtags and a personalized charm...

Inside, the most adorable stuffies I have ever seen. She even got a little "adoption card" with them. :)

Check out the detail on these wool stuffies:

I think the giraffe is my favorite, but I really do love them all. AHHHH! I want some for ME! LOL!

Then for the "big girls," Sophie and her cousin, Asja, I ordered something completely different and a lot more "grown up," LOL! I followed a link from Lisa's blog to this site. You upload a high-resolution photo of your child and they make a totally personalized book for them. The book is hardcover and high quality. I just had to get them. It just looked like the kind of thing Sophie & Asja would totally dig. This particular book I chose is a "fairy" theme and the story is advanced enough that they should be able to enjoy it for a few years... at least well into their teens.

When the books arrived, they far exceeded my expectations. The image quality and printing was excellent... definitely an A+. I give them a B+ on the Photoshop work -- but you gotta understand that I am a Photoshop maniac. I was actually Adobe-certified at one point (back in 1996, I think) and went to a ton of training to be able to teach, so I will most likely be a lot tougher of a judge than the average person. I know the girls will LOVE them and that's all that matters. And at the risk of sounding snooty, I expected it to look at lot worse, LOL!, so I was pleasantly surprised. :)

The story is really cute, and their names appear all throughout it, so it will be a very special book for them. I highly recommend it! PLUS, their website is extremely user-friendly. Photos are easy to upload and they take you step-by-step through the ordering process, which only takes a few minutes. Visit the FlattenMe website to check these books out. They also have other themes... even for boys and for infant/toddlers. :)

OK... I wanted to end this posting by saying that I will be taking a much-needed 2-week break from designing, sewing, ebay and maybe even blogging. I might pop in here a couple of times if I start feeling withdrawal pains but I can't promise anything. I have family coming to stay with me starting tomorrow, Friday the 21st and ending on Sunday, January 6th. Not all of them all at once (thank goodness! LOL!) but nevertheless, every day starting tomorrow until 1/6 will have me playing the hostess with the mostest, so wish me luck!

Also, don't forget to leave a comment on my last post regarding my Boutique Cafe interview. I will be drawing the winner of the custom appliqued tee on January 1st! Good luck, all! And HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!!!
So... you wanna hear my voice?

Or perhaps just snicker at my goofy accent? (I swear, just when I think I have successfully gotten rid of it, I hear myself on a recording and go... DOH!) Then, head on over to Boutique Café and check out today's podcast.

I had the absolute honor of being DAY #8 of Boutique Café's "The 12 Days of Christmas." The beautiful, lovely and talented Daria interviewed me for this show and despite my utter embarrassment for the way I sound (and the many times I said "ya know," UGH!) I would love to share this joyous moment with you. :)

Just click on this banner to go to the site and then click on the "Listen to the Show" link below the article:

My interview will be the fourth and last one on this show, so you will hear 3 other talented ladies (and WAHMs) talk about their successful home-based businesses before you get to mine.

But that's not all... if you leave a comment on Boutique Cafe's post about this show you will be entered to win a myriad of awesome prizes including a totally customizable girls appliqued tee made by yours truly. And since I am feeling generous during this season of giving, leave a comment here under this post to be entered to win the same prize!!! So, sometime in January I will be making 2 totally customizable appliqued tees for 2 lucky winners... so go ahead leave a comment here and there and double your chances of winning!

Thanks for checking it out!!!
Animal Parade

I just listed my last set for 2007! WHOA! This one is ready-made and ready-to-ship in size 3T/4T. I will ship for FREE with a BIN and have it to you with plenty of time for the Holidays! I even offer some minor alterations if you need to make the length slightly shorter in order to fit your child better! :)

Please check it out:

Click HERE to see this auction.

And please don't forget to check out my Valentines 4-piece set
that will be custom-made for sweeties size 12M to 5T. This one ends in 4 days:

Click HERE to visit my auction.

And last, but not least, if you are looking for some last minute
handmade gifts for the lovely ladies in your family, please hop on over to MARIELIZ Creations' auctions. She's got some new great designs for the Holidays and has relisted a few old favorites. She is offering FREE shipping with BIN also. :)

Click HERE to visit her purse auctions.

Thanks for looking!
It's beginning to look at lot like Christmas...

Are you singing along yet? I've had that tune in my head for the past 4 or 5 days so I figured the rest of you could stand to be annoyed with me. LOL!

This past Friday we had the first real snowfall of the season. Up until now, we had just had a few flurries here & there, but nothing to write home about (or in my case, blog about) ;) But, on Friday a soft blanket of snow, about 3 or 4 inches deep, covered the ground and by mid-afternoon, when I picked Sophie up from school, there was enough moisture in it to stick together and give way to the the perfect snowball fight. The girls and I had a blast...

But as the weekend progressed, that soft blanket of snow turned into a hard frozen mess on the ground and the trees were covered with a layer of ice about an inch thick. We had an ice storm on Saturday night, which made it virtually impossible to do anything fun outside, but it did yield some pretty amazing pictures...

So, needless to say, we hung out inside all day Sunday, which was perfectly OK by us since the Christmas spirit has permeated our house too. Our tree is up and I find myself staring at it, just lost in thought all the time... I just love seeing the glow of the lights as they reflect off the walls, the ceiling, the furniture... ahhhh... so pretty. I just can't wait to see all the wrapped presents gathered around it... one of my favorite childhood memories that I still enjoy profusely as an adult.

Our otherwise modern and uncluttered hearth has received a sudden transformation as more and more Christmas decorations keep landing on top of it. Just as I thought I was finished with it, the girls would find yet another item that they thought needed to be properly displayed or keep the others company. "How 'bout we put this pretty snowglobe on there..." OK, OK. "Oh, and what about my Christmas Barbie... she can keep my picture company." Alright.

So now it looks like this...

Cuteness abounds...

Oh, and in case anyone was wondering, yes, I DID take the handmade pledge, so I will go ahead and proudly display my badge:

I Took The Handmade Pledge! BuyHandmade.org

It'll be a "partial pledge" as there are some members of my extended family that have some pretty specific things on their wish lists that definitely cannot fall into this category, but I think, as it looks now it'll be about a 60/40 split which is not bad compared to how it used to be. But I am just so excited about making a few things and seeing some other handmade beauties up-close.

I am making a couple of things myself but I will also be spending an ungodly amount of my Paypal $$$ on Etsy. I'll be buying those things that I cannot make myself, like jewelry. Some of my current favorite jewelry gals are Ash, Erin and Ann. And how 'bout those cute little handmade felt creatures that I keep seeing everywhere? Anyone else just as in love with those are I am??? Well, I just did spend a small fortune at this etsy store. OMG! I just love Irma's work and she was so sweet to deal with... highly recommended. I can't wait to see my girls and niece's faces as they open their presents! Weeee!

UGH... which reminds me, I'd better go get the rest of my orders in before it's too late.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, everyone! :)
Be Mine

I had the absolute pleasure this past couple of weeks of getting to know -- and work with -- the lovely Alla, from My_Little_CityGirl. I have been a fan of her knitted items for who knows how long and I was just ecstatic when we decided to do this "sweet collaboration".

Alla was wonderful to work with and when her sweater arrived in the mail, I was just blown away. The workmanship is unsurpassed, the materials are gorgeous and the colors are so bright and cheery. Sydney fell in love with it as soon as she laid eyes on it too.

So, without much further ado, I present to you... BE MINE, a sweet collaboration.

Once I saw Alla's sweater I knew I had to make something equally as impressive and I hope I accomplished the task at hand. ;) I created a 4-piece set that will be custom-made for sweeties size 12M to 5T.

Click HERE to visit my auction.

My favorite picture of Alla's sweater (Sydney was warm and cozy in the frozen tundra that we call our backyard):

Click HERE to visit Alla's auction.

Oh, and Martha, from sugar.snaps, created a couple of M2M beaded hair clips that are just so adorable. We own a bunch of Martha's snaps and my girls love them ... I even wear them on occasion! ;)

You can find these gorgeous snaps HERE and HERE.

Search "Valentine BE MINE" this week to check out all of our matching pieces.

Thanks so much, Alla and Martha, for collaborating with me. This has been a blast!!! :)
Girl Power!

What do you get when you mix half-a-dozen 6-year-olds (and a 3-year-old who thinks she's 6) together with a birthday celebration? Pink, pink and more pink! Sophie celebrated her 6th birthday in style this weekend with a "Princess" themed party at The Gingerbread House.

The girls danced ...

They curtsied...

They learned what it means to "be a princess" (as if they needed further instruction)

They colored, decorated jeweled boxes and had a fantastically girlie time!
(oh, and in case you are wondering, Sophie opted for comfort that day, LOL! She was a "casual princess" and wore this sweet little 2-piece Ariel ensemble courtesy of her grandma. :) Hey, it's still "pink" and "princessy," right?)

Happy Birthday, Sophie!!!
Twirls For Girls
This is neat... and such a great cause. Please click on the ad to get the scoop.

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