Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Something Wonderful

Wooly Knits N' Bits has created some gorgeous baby items. You have to go and peek at her cute little knitted baby hats and booties. As a soon to be Grandma she is excitedly knitting, waiting for baby!

Wooly Knits N' Bits

There is something wonderful about moving stitches back and forth on two needles. It helps me clear my mind after a stressful day. I choose my yarn for their colour and for their feel. I do not knit in acrylics, they just do not have that softness that I am looking for. I am especially fond of hand dyed yarns. I am a soon to be grandmother and I have been knitting baby items with great excitement.I knit in the car, in front of the tv, and with my cup of tea at night. I will not have more than two projects on the go at once. My etsy shop features knitted items but also wonderful yarns for you to knit with.

Check out my etsy shop at

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Tomcat's Creations

Tom makes amazing handcrafted pens! He describes the process of making his one of a kind pens as involving a fair amount of time, specialized equipment and numerous steps. They include selecting the hardware kit and the "blank", cutting the blank to spec, drilling and gluing the blank, and endmilling. This is all before even getting to the lathe. Once on the lathe the shaping is done followed by finishing. The acrylics go through a 12 stage sanding process and 2 stages of polishing while the woods get 4 stages of sanding, 6-8 coats of finish and followed by 2 stages of polishing. They are then inspected under bright lights for defects, then assembled. All are refillable with replacements available from any office supply store.

Be sure to visit to see his amazing unique hand crafted pens.

By Tomcat's Creations

My name it Tom and I'm a pen addict! It all began a few years ago when my granfather presented me with a lathe for Christmas after hearing about my idea for a chess set. I only had to buy my own chisels to get started. Shortly after getting things set up to "play" a lot of things happened. I became very busy with work (no time to play), welcomed our third child into the world (really no time to play), moved (toys in storage) and my father passed away... In the weeks following the latest I spent a fair amount of alone time in my shop thinking and sorting through things. I rediscovered my lathe and some pen kits that I had bought to try a few months previous. (My father had collected corporate pens and I thought they would make great gifts!!) The first couple turned out good, the next pair were better and became wedding presents, and the next few went under the Christmas tree for friends and family. After getting numerous positive comments I decided to make my hobby a business. Later that summer I landed a large corporate order. I now have my work in use throughout Canada and the US and even a couple in Taipai and Australia. I also donate items to local childrens charities for their silent auctions. Many thanks are given to my family for supporting my frequent absences to the shop and constant thoughts as to what material I will use in my next pen.

I also dedicate this craft in memory to my father who taught me to use my hands.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Keeping Organized on a Tight Budget


Here are some great tips for managing a wonderful space on a tight budget. Sheena suggests ways to put together some price conscious solutions . She offers fabulous tips on how to keep organized and to de-clutter to "keep the mess in check, and increase project management all round!! ". Great ideas Sheena! Thanks for sharing.

"My name is Sheena, and I’m a full-time & freelance graphic designer from Vancouver, British Columbia, who also makes jewelry as a hobby.I create out of my very small apartment, which I share with my boyfriend and two cats. Our living room is set up as a dining area, 2 separate offices and for entertaining, so it is VERY important that we keep ourselves organized! Because my boyfriend was in school last year, we’re running off a very tight budget and have put together some price conscious solutions.The best thing I ever did for my workspace was to invest in/find some cheap, but effective storage units. Vintage travel containers from a yard sale, milk cartons transformed into a portable and lightweight filing cabinets, and two sets of drawers (at less than $30 each at your local Swiss furniture store!).
It’s not the most aesthetic office, but it functions very well for me! Compact and lightweight drawer units can keep my smaller, delicate items well organized and accessible. My less fragile, messier and larger items (receipts, documents, sketchbooks, envelopes), easily tucked away so they don’t overwhelm my desk! I also have invested in quite a few accordion folders, which helps me keep my monthly expenses/bills/invoices and such, in check!! Zip Lock bags have a thousand uses, so I keep them on hand at all times!
Finally, I make it a habit to do a weekly heavy-duty tidy of my desk space, and throw anything I might be hording for some reason. (I’m extremely bad for keeping post-its, doodles, and mail scraps because I think I’ll need them later.) De-cluttering regularly keeps my little work space as organized as it can be, and all my projects safe from accidental harm (by me or by cats). And, at the end of every project, I clear my desk of whatever I was working on, so that when I come back, I don’t have to organize before I can start working. Haha, I know that sounds a bit obsessive-compulsive, but I run a business from my desk, lots of hobbies and just recently an Etsy shop, so keeping my mess in check, increases all my project management all round!! :)"

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Good For You

Check out Shelly's delectable soaps...almost yummy enough to eat and good for you too!

by Body Deli by Shelly

My name is Shelly I love to make soaps, body creams, and mineral makeup with healthy ingredients. I stay at home and LOVE what I do! My products are made from scratch with my wonderful recipes and most of the novelties soaps are made from silicone molds I made from real food. Create body products and makeup is my passion!

I just created my blog, also have website, twitter and flickr accounts.
Have a peek!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Thank you for all of your wonderful messages and words of encouragement!

You are going to go bananas for davenevanxaviour's absolutely adorable amigurumi !
Enjoy having a look through her shop and
her blog at

I used to work for Ty Inc., the Beanie Baby company. It was my first job after I had graduated from The Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. After drawing and animating on a computer all day I wanted to just relax on the couch and make something. I had discovered amigurumi (a Japanese word meaning crocheted or knitted stuffed dolls) while browsing the internet, and I thought it would be cool if I could do that. So I asked my mom to teach me how to crochet. She knows how to do everything that involves crafts. She taught me the basics, but now I make up my own patterns and am getting more advanced as I try new things.Crocheted toys make up the majority of my shop, but I like to try new materials and mediums. I find old crafting supplies around the house, and make cute and geeky things. This is a hobby for me, so I make everything while I'm on the couch relaxing and watching tv.My words of wisdom:I believe that you should create art that you like and can be proud of instead of trying to make things that appeal to certain tastes, ages, or trends. If you believe in your work and are confident in what you are making people will like it. Listen to the positive and negative comments, but don't take them personally. Everyone has different tastes, and for every person who doesn't like your art there is someone who does. That is life, that is art.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Any Place Is A Great Place To Create!

Creating is creating no matter where you are!
Do you like to create indoors or outside? Do you prefer to create early in the morning after waking up feeling renewed and refreshed or in the evening when the kids are in bed? Maybe you are a night hawk and like to create in the middle of the night (I love the feeling of finishing my paintings ~sometimes in the wee hours of the night!) I have even found ways to bring some of my art tools with me when I go away on vacation (you never know when inspiration will hit!).
I agree with New Creationz that any where you can find a spot is a great place to create! Check out her fabulous creations

When I take a look at the photos posted here, one word immediately springs to mind ‘HELP!’I am one of those people that dream of having their own studio, I wish for a space that I can call my own. That I don’t have to share with anyone else. That has all my equipment orderly arranged along spacious shelves and tucked away in neat little boxes. But, alas my life is not like that and though I peel through decor mags searching for the answer to my clutter problems, I have not let it hinder the flow of my creative juices.Sharing a small house with a family of five (including two teenagers!) has to have a few compromises. But my family is very accommodating. Most times, I am busy on more than one project so end up being rather spread out around the house. They put up with not eating at the dining table for days, due to it being covered in paints, canvases and with whatever project I am involved in at the time. It’s only once in a while that they tend to murmur when I am so engrossed in my art that I forget all about fixing dinner! I also work five days a week at my children’s school so am not normally able to sit down and complete a piece in one sitting.

For that reason I have adapted the way I work, to grabbing a moment here and there, so as to ensure that I progress with paintings or other projects. So I would like to encourage those that are not naturally “tidies“ or that don’t have a special studio to work in, or not much time to spare, to not be discouraged or feel they cannot produce anything worthwhile!I have learned to make the most of what I have got. Though my space and time is very limited, I am compelled to use the talents I have and won’t let my circumstances stop me. Having said all of that, I am still allowed to dream.....

(I am originally from South Africa and now live in New Zealand with my husband and three children. We love the life we have here and I am continually inspired to paint and photograph the beautiful green fields, blue sea and white beaches we are surrounded with.)

Friday, July 3, 2009


I just returned from beautiful Las Vegas. Wow wow,wow! I was so inspired by the amazing lights and colours. Everything is so super grand and alive in Vegas! It is extremely energizing to be a part of the Las Vegas life. I can't wait to create something. I think that my next piece will definitely reflect the glamour and the glitz of Vegas!

These gorgeous pieces by MaruMaru would look lovely worn in Vegas or anywhere!
Check out MaruMaru's beautifully glamorous pieces at

Hi! My name is Michelle and I graduated last year with a B.A. in Communications and a minor in Japanese. I opened up my shop 2 years ago on Etsy which was when I began making jewelry. Now that I have finished school, I have too much time on my hands! I started liking jewelry when I began working in the jewelry department at a well-known retail store. At first, I didn't see what the big hype was over jewelry until I would stand for hours at a time and become anxious to try a few things on. When I wasn't helping customers, I was trying on jewelry whenever I could and soon enough I put everything I liked on hold so nobody could buy them! I'm really picky about jewelry, so whenever I'd buy a necklace, I'd use my pliers to take off or add parts to it to make it just right. I'm inspired by fantasies from when I was a child. I wanted everything to be in pink and blue like cotton candy, ride on a unicorn and eat ice cream all day long. My grandmother owns a very large land in Japan and made it into beautiful garden that is now a popular tourist attraction. I would spend my childhood in her garden looking at blue Hydrangeas wishing I could take it all back home with me.
In my shop, you will see lots of flowers from rose cameos to Czech flower is an online boutique that features retro and vintage style jewelry from flower cabochons and 70s kitsch to cute owl charms. I love vintage-inspired and retro charms, and absolutely cannot live without color. I wanted my shop to reflect this, so I started using origami papers I had lying around to use as backgrounds. When I'm not playing around in my jewelry supply box, I'm at the movies or drinking champagne!
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