March 31, 2009

April is Autism Awareness month - are you aware?

Can you believe we are in April already? that seemed to just sneak up on me!


Did you know April in the national Autism Awareness month? - now you do. As regular readers will know my 8 year old daughter, Felicity, has a sever form of Autism and keeps us on our toes - you can read more about her HERE.
So for the month of April I plan to make Autism Awareness my focus on this blog. The Weekly Featured Artists, treasuries, etsy finds, information, images and even my blog background etc etc will always come back to Autism.
Please feel free to ask any questions, make comments, add suggestions and share your stories too!

Don't forget I have Autism Awareness fabric bunting sets listed in my shop HERE, HERE and HERE that the full amount of the sales will go to The Autism Treatment Center of America™, home of The Son-Rise Program®



Giggle

CUTE Purple People Eater!!

What am I talking about? How can a Purple people eater be CUTE?
Just click HERE to take a look at all these really fun and adorable finds and you'll see what I mean - and don't forget to leave a comment about which one is your fav!!




Giggle

March 30, 2009

Weekly Featured Artist - Michelle of michvanetta


For this weeks Featured Artist it was almost too hard to choose the photos to use to go with the interview as all of Michelle's pieces are stunning!! You really should take a look through her shop 'michvanetta' to see her earrings, necklaces, brooches, bracelets, hairpins, bangles and more!!! Oh and you can stay up to date with Michelle over at her blog too.

Tell us all about yourself and your craft?
My name is Michelle Vivado and I’m the sole creator behind michvanetta.
Mich is an abbreviation of Michelle and Vanetta is my middle name, the combination of the two is definitely unique.
I’m a thirty something mother of two gorgeous little girls aged 6 and 2, and amongst all that I do for them and my husband I need a little “me time” for creating and meeting other creative, like minded people.
I live in Eltham, a leafy suburb of Melbourne, it’s a lovely community, an artistic community and a wonderful place to raise children.
I come from a very creative family, my mother knits beautifully and most of the women in my extended family create in one or many forms.
I create jewellery and more and working from my little work bench is very satisfying. It's always overflowing with wonderful and unique beads, that I really find hard parting with.

How long have you been creating your craft?
I’ve been creating jewellery and more for around 6 years now.


What is one of the biggest lesson you have learnt about your craft & selling it?
One of the biggest lessons I have learned is to not be so shy about speaking about what I do if asked and hand out business cards to those that do ask. It has many benefits and often results in lovely comments (which is always nice) sales and/or custom orders.

Which of your items did you have the most fun creating & why?
At present I’m really having a lot of fun creating my magnet sets, I have so many wonderful buttons in my huge stash and I love playing with them and seeing what different colours and different shapes will work with one another.


Is there a basic ‘household’ item you use when creating that seems to work just as good if not better than the actual ‘tool’?
I can’t say I do use any household items whilst creating, as I only create with my jewellery tools.
When starting out, I didn’t own a jewellers cutting tool so I went to my husbands tool box and used his pliers…I wouldn’t dream of using them now.

What is your favourite candy bar & why?
I haven’t eaten a candy bar for nearly 4 months, not because I’m a freak, but due to being on a cleansing diet under the care of my Naturopath. In saying that I do get tempted all the time and you’ll often find me drooling over a Mars Bar ad.


If money, responsibilities, and time were no issues where in the great wide world would you go & why?
There are so many places in the world I’d love to visit and re-visit. If I have to choose just one it would be to go back and visit La Paz in Bolivia, South America. My husband is Bolivian and we would love to take our girls there and show them around. Show them where daddy grew up and to have them meet his extended family. It’s a beautiful country, vast like Australia and the sights, smells and hospitality are truly mesmerizing.

March 29, 2009

Twilight Tide Pettiskirt GIVEAWAY!!!!

Oh how I'd LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to win this for my little girl - Oh so very funky and cute!!!!!!


Twilight Tide Pettiskirt GIVEAWAY!!!!

March 27, 2009

Just Listed


Thanks to Carley of Vanilla Pixie I had the heads up to list Giggleberry Creations at the FREE online Australian business directory - Hot Frog.
In just 6 easy steps I was added to the directory and ready to be found by a shopper.....

Any of you fabulous Aussie businesses out there who haven't yet discovered Hot Frog click HERE to head there and fill in your details - it can't hurt right???
Oh and thanks Carley!

March 25, 2009

Autism Awareness banners

Some readers of this blog may know that one of my three busy bee kids is Felicity. Felicity - or Fliss as we say is our ball of energy 8 year old who has sever Autism. We have been working with Fliss in her Son-Rise Program® run by The Autism Treatment Center of America™ for the past 2 years now. We have seen and continue to see Fliss advance in ways we never thought of and were told by 'professionals' wouldn't be possible!!!
From seemingly living in her own little world, blocked off to any of us, Felicity has come out of her shell and now greets us with her beaming smile and a bear hug that could bring down a grown man! She is also slowly but surely adding words to her language and loves to show off her new found voice at any chance she gets.


With March coming to an end I was reminded that April is the national month of Autism Awareness so i thought I'd do my little bit. Just today I have listed in my shop HERE three sets of Giggleberry banners made from the fun, vibrant and colorful Autism awareness puzzle print fabric. These sets would be great for any room or area that is in need of a 'pick me up' and the best part ALL the sale price of these flag sets will go to The Autism Treatment Center of America™ to further help the many families who are also running The Son-Rise Program® like Felicity's in their own homes.


The Autism Treatment Center of America™, home of The Son-Rise Program®, has helped more than 22,000 families discover an extraordinary unity and caring in a situation that so often leads to division and stress. Children treated in The Son-Rise Program® have gone on to reintegrate into school, live full lives, and leave Autism behind. We offer hope, direction, support and confidence where others offer a bleak future.


March 23, 2009

Weekly Featured Artist - Ben & Dani of finchbird and Mangofrog



For this weeks Featured Artist we have a husband and wife team - Ben and Dani from finchbird and Mangofrog. When I was floating through the finchbird shop I feel in love with so many of their gorgeous pieces - so unique and when I clicked on the finchbird 'profile' page and read the quote Ben and Dani have there I knew these guys are on to a good thing - "Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful" William Morris!! Visit Ben and Dani today at www.finchbird.etsy.com or www.Mangofrog.etsy.com, I bet you'll find something you believe is beautiful - I know I have!!!
Oh and mangofrog currently has an awesome sale going... you just have to check it out!

Tell us all about yourself and your craft?
Ben and Dani Finch are the husband and wife team behind finchbird. Ben holds an honours degree in Jewellery and Object Design from Sydney University and currently teaches Design and Visual Art. Dani (that's me) is the chatty one ... I do all the promotion and administration, I run the Etsy shop and the Blog and design and make the finchbird packaging. I also make the mangofrog range of jewellery incorporating Czech Glass and Sterling Silver.
Ben's designs are modern, organic and minimal. He loves clean lines and pure forms - I'm the lucky one who gets to try out all the new pieces!

How long have you been creating your craft?
Ben has created jewellery since the mid 1990s and has worked mainly on commissioned pieces since then. He has only recently started selling a production range to the world!


What is one of the biggest lessons you have learnt about your craft & selling it?
We are learning all the time! One of Ben's steepest learning curves has been that of believing in himself and his work. Putting a piece of yourself 'out there' for others to see and critique is a giant step!
I am learning lots about the world of online selling ... photography, promotion, pricing agaaah!!! My greatest discovery so far has been the incredibly supportive DUST team on Etsy ... those girls rock!

Which of your items did you have the most fun creating & why?
The moebius bangle was originally created for travelling exhibition that went around Australia. We put a copy of the original bangle up on Etsy and almost immediately received a convo from Lisa in the US asking if we could custom make a cuff for her in a similar style. Lisa was fabulous to work with and we all had a lot of fun communicating and designing for someone thousands of kilometres away .... and she was thrilled with the result!


Is there a basic ‘household’ item you use when creating that seems to work just as good if not better than the actual ‘tool’?
I LOVE this question..... Ben is a traditionalist and uses beautiful tools in the proper way!... I'm a big fan of improvising though and when I make the mangofrog 'hoop' earrings, I wrap the wire around the kid's Panadol bottle!!

What is your favourite candy bar & why?
Give us a block of Belgian Mint Chocolate any day... pure indulgence!


If money, responsibilities, and time were no issues where in the great wide world would you go & why?
I think we would travel back to Japan. We traveled there in the mid '90's and were so inspired by the Japanese aesthetic and the idea of wabi sabi - the beauty of imperfect, impermanent simplicity.

Thanks to both Ben and Dani for sharing with us!!
To stay up to date with all things finchbird be sure to drop by the finchbird blog.

March 21, 2009

A Giggleberry Giveaway!!!


These giveaways are just too much fun so I decided to do another...... Over at An Exploration of Creativity blog I have been the lucky first to be part of their 'Get to know and give away' section! There is a short 'interview' with me then the GIVEAWAY....you can enter to win a 10 flag set Jolly Jungle fabric banner.


This fun, bright and unisex banner would look great in a bedroom, cubby house or playroom or maybe it can be the inspiration for a jungle themed birthday party????
It will have your little one entertained for ages finding all the colorful jungle animals.
Be sure to check out the three ways you can be in the running to win HERE and goodluck!!

March 19, 2009

Crafty Corner - How to make a nursing cover

In the final days of waiting for my now two week old bub to arrive I was in a sewing frenzy just trying to keep myself busy and figured I should make things I would be able to use after Harrison arrived that would make life as a mum a bit easier.
Which is when I had my light bulb moment!!
When I had my daughter I breast fed her for 10 months and every time I fed her while we were out and about I would struggle with a baby blanket or wrap tucked into my bra strap to try and keep a bit of modesty - sometimes failing miserably when Milla would wriggle or squirm. So this time around I have found the perfect thing - a nursing cover!! And one so easy that if you can sew a straight line then you can make it your self!

All you need is:
*1 yard fabric of your choice - I couldn't go past Michael Millers Lolli Dot fabric!!
*1" D rings
*12" boning
*Scissors
*Pins
*Wooden dowel (I used the faithful chopstick)
*8"x8" piece of soft fabric like flannel (optional)

Thanks to the great tutorial Little Birdie Secrets: how to make a nursing cover I found on one of my new favorite blogs Little Birdie Secrets I had this cover made in only about 30 minutes!!


I just love the idea of adding the boning to the top of the cover so you (and only you) can see what your little bambino is up to!


I can see these nursing covers being made in all kinds of gorgeous fabric for family and friends who are expecting new arrivals!!

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For HEAPS of other great ideas for things to make be sure to check out Little Birdie Secrets just by clicking the button above!!

March 18, 2009

Crafty Corner - How to make mess with paint and your child - LOL

So the rule is: if you do it for one child then you do it for all children...... including painting their hands and feet for prints to include in their baby books.
Tonight was Harrison's turn...


Doing his foot prints was easy enough


but trying to get him to spread his hand out for a print after it was painted was impossible


oh and keeping his painted hand away from his face was tricky too....



It was straight to bath time after this with dad while I cleaned up green paint that managed to end up everywhere!!

March 17, 2009

Wonderful Treasury West

Thanks to Art Nomadix who included me in her fun, bright and Aussie treasury west titled Down Under Delights!!


Come check it out HERE and be sure to click on all the gorgeous items and if you have a moment leave a comment - Thanks!

March 16, 2009

Weekly Featured Artist - Cath of Chunky Chooky


This weeks Featured Artist is fellow Aussie and mum Cath. Cath is the driving force behind the fun and funky Etsy shop Chunky Chooky and with a tag line like 'Funky threads and cool things for small people' how can you help but take a look at her creations???

Tell us all about yourself and your craft?
Hello, my name is Cath, I live on 9 acres just on the edge of a a little town called Bellingen on the mid north coast of NSW, it's a beautiful town in a valley surrounded by hills and trees and waterholes with a river running though the middle of it. We did the tree change from Sydney about 9 years ago and we are very happy about the move. I live with my partner and 2 year old daughter and our big black dog Zac. My daughter is my inspiration and I started sewing again after she was born and a friend gave me some fisherman pants from a recent trip to Thailand. So I made my daughter another pair of fisherman pants then lots of people wanted them... then I started making monsters and toys.
I pretty much taught myself how to sew after learning the basics years ago but as soon as I started again I knew I would love it. In the early days there was a lot of unpicking and frustration and trial and error but I kept moving forward and had lots of encouragement from friends. I love felt, denim and bright colours and I love vintage fabrics too although when I buy them I find it so hard to cut into the fabric...like I am destroying something really old...so I end up hardly using it just collecting it...

How long have you been creating your craft?
I have been creating Chunky Chooky lovelies for about a year.


What is one of the biggest lesson you have learnt about your craft & selling it?
The biggest lesson I have learnt is patience! Especially with Etsy - its so huge - and my shop is like a speck in the ocean. I am confident my product is good I just have to get it out there a bit more!

Which of your items did you have the most fun creating & why?
I love creating the softies and the little stories that go with them. I think part of buying handmade is to have something as unique as possible, so sometimes the designs are a little similar - although I never use a pattern I just free hand draw onto the fabric- but the stories are all very different - and they write themselves- I just look at the finished softie and the story just pours out of my fingertips...


Is there a basic ‘household’ item you use when creating that seems to work just as good if not better than the actual ‘tool’?
I am also a big fan of the chopstick as a stuffing poker.

What is your favourite candy bar & why?
I really am a bit of a chocolate snob. I think if I am going to eat it I want the good stuff- Lindt chocolate from Belgium.


If money, responsibilities, and time were no issues where in the great wide world would you go & why?
I have travelled a lot but it was about 10 years ago so I would return to some places and go to some new places. I would do a round the world trip -it would take a year -I think my ultimate place would be Morocco- to the Grand Bizarre- to me heaven on earth- all those lovely shiny things and all that silver and all those carpets... then we would pop over to Turkey for similar reasons. Then we would spend a few months travelling and eating around Italy my the cobblestone streets, admiring the gargoyles.... A month back in India as well- including a camel safari- plus Africa- again on safari but staying in one of those really expensive places where giraffes come up to the window and you can feed them-my daughter would love it ( and so would I)... then on the way home some deserted beach in Thailand or Vietnam to relax after our long journey...then home to the farm, I would miss my dog.


Thanks to Cath for sharing with us - you can follow what the Chunky Chooky is up to at Cath's blog HERE and if you head over soon Cath is hosting a great giveaway for one her Tweeters HERE.

March 14, 2009

You'll 'bookmark' these for sure!!

When I log into my beloved Mac my personalized iGoogle page pops up to greet me. In the top left hand corner of the page are all my 'bookmarked' websites that I visit frequently like my etsy shop, Goggle Analytics, Sydney Morning Herald, my daily blog reads and many more.


This week I added two new website finds to this list and to any etsy shop owners out there once I share with you what they are I bet you'll want to do the same.


The first is www.craftopolis.com. This website has 'treasury hunt' and 'gift guide search' where you can type in your etsy user name and click submit and you will be automatically told if you are currently featured in one of them - no more searching though over 20 pages of treasuries to see if one of those little gold stars pop up! EASY!


The second website I have bookmarked is CraftCult's Heart-o-matic. It's not just about shop hearts, item hearts, single item hearts, and item views. They just added a new tab called Featured, which it would let you find out if you have been featured on the Front Page today and if any of your items are currently in a Gift Guide!!

Have fun with these sites - I know I am!!!

March 12, 2009

Cheeky Milla Monkey!

This little home movie I just had to share.
When I was at the final weeks of pregnancy with my daughter, Milla, I packed my hospital bag and threw in a dummy in case I needed it for our new arrival but the minute she arrived into the world she put her thumb in her mouth and sucked away, soothing herself easily so the dummies were never needed and she has made it to 15 months of age without ever using one.
So when it came time to pack the hospital bag a few weeks ago for Harrison's arrival I again popped a dummy into the bag - just in case. Lucky I did because our little man is not a thumb sucker and seems to like the dummy after a feed just to settle himself to sleep.
Since bringing Harrison home Milla has had moments of wanting to know everything that he is doing to moments of not caring but she has not let the fact that he has this funny looking blue 'thing' to suck on go past her. We have told her it is for Harrison to have when he wants to fall asleep and she seemed happy with that explanation but while I was putting clothes away in the bedrooms the other day I could hear little giggles coming from our lounge room so grabbed the camera and the following clip is what I found - Enjoy!
video