Saturday, January 31, 2009

Shopping List Saturday

The ay bee cees
The ay bee cees

Double Booked

Today I am not just "shopping" for my list. I am in search of a weekly planner for my son. He has become very connected to having a written calender for the week, we have been recording lots of things. Who puts him to bed at night, me or dad to where we might go that day. So I thought it would be nice to give him something handmade that he could keep all of his plans neatly written for reference. I had a hard time finding a daily planner on etsy, if anyone knows of a seller please make a comment. These are some of my favorites. You can find the list of other bloggers who make Saturday lists in the right sidebar of Charlotte's blog. Cheers......

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Wizard of Oz Discovery Tote

This is a tote I made for my daughters 4th birthday. She loves the movies Wizard of Oz so we had a Oz party for her. I ordered the fabric from an online fabric store and stitched the rest. I really had too many ideas for this tote but in the end wanted it to be simple and playable. I included Munchkin land where Dorothy's house landed on the witch, her feet sticking out from underneath of the "house". From there you walk down the yellow brick road to find the grumpy old apples trees where Dorothy and the Scarecrow find the Tin Man. The off to the poppy fields where they fall asleep before getting to Oz.

I searched hi and lo for the McDonald's Happy Meal Wizard of Oz Dolls, which are Madame Alexander. We had a few but I wanted to include the whole set, 12 all together. Finally, found them through from an independent seller, YAY!!! I had found other sets on eBay but, they wanted 100 bucks for the set of twelve Happy Meal toys! The seller I bought them from had the set listed for 34.00, I thought that was great. We got all the toys without having to eat the terrible food! So, of course she loved it and I think it is pretty special too.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


As parents and concerned citizens I’m sure most of us at one time or another have been confronted with the question of lead poisoning. But have you asked yourself what your government is doing to protect your children from lead contained in toys? The answer? They're banning toys, taking books from schools and libraries, hurting low income families, killing entrepreneurial spirit and risking putting the economy in an even greater depression than we've seen in decades. I'd like to introduce you to their solution: the CPSIA.Do you know about the CPSIA? No? Then I ask you to take a few minutes to find out about it.The CPSIA stands for Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, a new set of laws that will come into effect on 10 February, 2009 and will impact many, many people in a negative way. Make no mistake, this is very real. View it for yourself. If Forbes, the American Library Association and numerous other media are paying attention, perhaps you should too. How will these new laws affect you? Well, here are a few examples: To the Parents of Young Students:Due to the new law, expect to see the cost of school supplies sky rocket. While those paper clips weren't originally intended for your student to use, they will need to be tested now that your 11-year-old needs them for his school project. This law applies to any and all school supplies (textbooks, pencils, crayons, paper, etc.) being used by children under 12.To the Avid Reader:Due to the new law, all children's books will be pulled from library and school shelves, as there is no exemption for them. That’s okay though, there's always television. Our children don’t need to learn the love of reading after all.Article from the American Library Association the Lover of All Things Handmade:Due to the new law, you will now be given a cotton ball and an instruction manual so you can make it yourself since that blanket you originally had your eye on for $50 will now cost you around $1,000 after it's passed testing. It won't even be the one-of-a-kind blanket you were hoping for. Items are destroyed in the testing process making one-of-a-kind items virtually impossible. So that gorgeous hand-knit hat you bought your child this past winter won’t be available next winter.To the Environmentalist:Due to the new law, all items in non-compliance will now be dumped into our already overflowing landfills. Imagine not just products from the small business owners, but the Big Box Stores as well. You can't sell it so you must toss it. Or be potentially sued for selling it. You can't even give them away. If you are caught, it is still a violation.To the Second-Hand Shopper:Due to the new law, you will now need to spend $20 for that brand new pair of jeans for your 2-year old, rather than shop at the Goodwill for second hand. Many resale shops are eliminating children's items all together to avoid future lawsuits.To the Entrepreneur:Due to this new law, you will be forced to adhere to strict testing of your unique products or discontinue to make and/or sell them. Small businesses will be likely to be unable to afford the cost of testing and be forced to close up shop. Due to the current economic state, you'll have to hope for the best when it comes to finding a new job in Corporate America. To the Antique Toy Collector:Due to the new law, you'd better start buying now because it's all going to private collection and will no longer be available to purchase. “Because the new rules apply retroactively, toys and clothes already on the shelf will have to be thrown out if they aren't certified as safe.” the American Economy:Already struggling under an economy that hasn’t been this weak in decades, the American economy will be hit harder with the inevitable loss of jobs and revenues from suppliers, small businesses and consumers. The required testing is far too costly and restrictive for small businesses or individuals to undertake. To the Worldwide Economy:Due to this new law, many foreign manufacturers have already pulled out of the US market. You can imagine the impact of this on their businesses. If you think this is exaggerating, here is a recent article from Forbes for those of you prepared to be stupefied and boggled, The New Law you know? If this upsets or alarms you, please react.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Beach and Island Discovery Tote

This is a new tote I posted in my store yesterday, it is a special order for a customer that now owns three of my Discovery Totes. That alone is exciting for me! I re-listed it just so other people could check it out. I think it turned out adorable! She wanted a beach scene with an island and a bridge. The bridge and house are movable on the play surface. She also, requested the sea shells that are felt and stitched to the beach area. This little beach is just waiting for some little inhabitants! The great thing about Discovery Totes is the fabulous clean-up ability, moms love that!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Shopping List Saturday....Sunday Style

Virginia Rose Kane

Road Side

Paper Cut and Die

This week I have been really amazed by some of the paper cut artists on etsy. The first image is not an etsy artist but had to include her work for the sheer beauty. Her name is Lisa Jones, she attended Sydney College of Fine Arts and is an accomplished artist, showing her works internationally. Although, she utilizes a laser cutter to do her cutting the thought process is the same as if she were cutting paper. Virginia Rose Kane is an artist that was a former botany student, her works are all hand cut. What I find interesting about her work is the way she layers the paper to create another story within her paper cutting. I have included works by Paper Cut and Die, who is from Toronto, and cuts her work using x-Acto blades and scissors. Then, there is Road Side.....all I can say is "Amazing"! Her work is quirky, beautiful and smart. She has a great blog that you should check out too! Then last but not least, there is Elsa Mora who has an etsy store but sadly it is empty right now....I can wait, it will be worth it! Her work is nothing short of "magical". I linked to her blog that has become one of my favorite reads. She actually has two blogs, one for paper cutting and a main blog. She is so talented, showing her work in galleries internationally too. Her paper cutting blog is incredibly informative, linking the reader to other paper cutting artists, tutorials that include videos, books, and supply sources.Plus more images of her work that will blow you away!

All worth checking out! You can find the list of other bloggers who make Saturday lists in the right sidebar of Charlotte's blog. Cheers......

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Wow.........Etsy Front Page

Wow, (I said it again) I can't believe how insightful I was today! I walked my son to school and on the walk home I was saying to myself that I need to check on my other etsy shop. I have two stores, Helicopter Studios where I sell children's items and Heilo Studios where I sell metalwork. I use the word sell but I haven't sold anything. So, when I arrived on I was checking out the front page as I always do and voila! There at the bottom was a piece from my Heilo Studios store. I have not looked at this shop in months, I have had some success with my children's toys but no luck with my metalwork. One of the reasons I started making my Discovery Totes was that I needed a break from metalworking and with all my research noticed that etsy is filled with jewelry shops. Although, I have been working at my jewelers bench making all my Christmas presents I have not worked on anything to sell. I am feeling the urge to work with metal again and this front page spot may have just propelled me!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Shopping List Saturday

Retro Wale

I can't believe this week has gone by and I have not posted anything since last Saturday! I guess that happens to the best of us. I really have been focused on some home projects this week, I have not worked in my studios much either. This week has been a week of moving around art, and purging "stuff" out of my house. It feels great to clean out and organize, something I needed to do for a while and have finally put it first on my priority list.
This weeks shopping list is a small group of amazing items. I really try hard to find stuff that I have not seen before. I could see these together in a corner of my home, they compliment each other beautifully! Enjoy!
You can find the list of other bloggers who make Saturday lists in the right sidebar of Charlotte's blog. Cheers..

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Shopping List Saturday


Well, here it is another shopping list Saturday. I have been feeling a bit worried about future of my etsy store with the law that may come into effect on Feb. 10. It will be absolutely ridiculous if it passes, but in the meantime, myself and thousands of other etsy sellers are squirming while we wait for our fate. I have a gut feeling that it is so silly to require every maker to send their product out for third party testing that it just will never happen. Believe me, I am all for testing for lead paint in toys and want my children to have safe toys. But, that is one of the reasons I began making my work, so my children would have toys that are handmade with love and that are way above any standards a manufacturer in China would ever require. So, with that being said..... my etsy choices for my list this week are ones that gave me a feeling of separation and solitude in this new year. All of these paintings made me feel alone but "happy" at the same time. This work makes me want to wander away to a quiet place to sit and think. Enjoy!
You can find the list of other bloggers who make Saturday lists in the right sidebar of Charlotte's blog. Cheers......


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