Friday, May 6, 2011

I'M BACK

Hello faithful friends.

Yes, I know from the blog aspect, I have been MIA for a while, but hey life gets in the way sometimes.  I was really feeling the pressure and there are somethings that I am not going to neglect - my family, my faith or my clients. So, now that I have found a stable stepping stone for now it is time to jump back into things.

Before I get started (which will actually be next post) I wanted to touch on a subject that is close to my heart and chaps my backside and it is kind of a two for one deal.  Have you ever looked at a website of hand made goodies and noticed that there isn't any consistency between the items or a few different watermarks, none of which belong to the boutique named in the website?

THAT IS BECAUSE THE PHOTOGRAPHS HAVE BEEN STOLEN FROM ANOTHER ARTISAN!

Not every Tammy, Dina or Heather can pick up some ribbon and turn it into the gorgeous creations that these women are able to obtain.  Not every boutique website, facebook, etsy, or ebay is producing handmade, couture goods that would qualify them as such.  Because people are jaded, confused or delusional they slap up a page throw some ribbon together and call it quality handmade goods or they don't even put that much effort into it and buy them from China and label them the same.  These types of items aren't going to create the same "ah-factor" that the awesome creations will so instead of taking the time, putting in the money and sweat equity to perfect a very difficult craft, many people just right click and viola they have the same level of products as the best in the business. Um -NO!

Just some food for thought, if your favorite boutique is going to rip off the intellectual property of another artisan, then what is to stop them from ripping you off.  (ANSWER:  There isn't).

The reason I am speaking (writing) out is because it is like a plague these days.  Daily there are half-hearted pages going up with less than quality products or those using others work to display items that I can almost guarantee aren't going to arrive even resembling the pictures used.  It is scary buying online, especially from a vendor that you have never used before.  You have to do your research, heck, even ask for references.  If something looks fishy it probably is.  There are some things that you should remember and look for.


  • Remember quality isn't cheap so if you see a "gorgeous" bow that most sell for $15.00 priced at $5.00 or a tutu for $10.00 there is probably something wrong with it. 
  • All ribbon, tulle, fabric and bows are NOT created equal.  Shoddy raw materials create shoddy finished products.
  • Quality, hand made bows are heat sealed and stiffened for durability. 
  • Bows are like a finger print.  We can all fold and sew a bow the exact same way and it will not look the same.   
This industry is super saturated, but there is a great deal of it that is less than quality and highly unethical.  If you want to get your money's worth and put quality products on your royal little one, do your research. Okay, vent over :)  


Join us next time for more fabulous creations from honest, talented artisans that any little angel would be lucky to be dressed in.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Love Bug Baby Boutique

I know, I know.  I had fallen off of the blogging bandwagon for a little too long this time.  I got really inundated with making, remaking, starching, reshaping, shooting, re-starching and re-shooting bows! To those of you who see something and say, "Oh, I can make that" crafting and making hair accessories is not for the faint of heart and weak in spirit!  There is some really steep competition out there if you intend on making this a business and even if you aren't, it still takes a great amount of time, patience and practice.


I am happy to start back up with one of my most favorite craft ladies in the whole entire world.  Krista, the owner of Love Bug Baby Boutique, is the salt of the Earth and probably the kindest person you will ever have the pleasure of coming across!   She is the type of person you want to do business with.  I have actually purchased from her myself and her customer service is top notch!  You can view her items on her Facebook Page, her Etsy Shop or her Zibbet and it is gorgeous!  Any little girl would be lucky to have any one of Krista's handmade goods. 


Easter PEEPS Twisted Boutique Pigtail BowsMocha Kisses Valentine Pigtail Korker SetFeather Fancy Headband With Rhinestone Jewel

 Love Bug Baby Boutique has a great variety of accessories for you little princess, from bows to headbands to hats, each hand crafted item is obviously done with a ton of love!


Here is what this amazing soon to be mother of 2 had so say about her business: 


1. Why did you start crafting/making bows?
My mom began doing foster care about 4 years ago and I needed a cheap but cute and fun idea for gifts, mainly for Christmas, but for birthdays and other holidays as well. Since I am a student and did not have a job at the time, my funds were limited  Little did I know at the time, I would be sinking what little I did have into a business that seemed to take forever before I started seeing a profit!

2. What is your favorite thing to make?
I love making twisted bows, korkers, and stacked bows. But lately I have been really into all different kinds of headbands. 

3. What inspires you?
I have 2 little sisters my mom adopted through the foster system and a niece who have no problem putting in orders, letting me know what they want, what they like, and even what their friends would like! I also have a baby girl due in May and I have started really getting into infant headbands and bows that she could wear  
Other than that, I love to shop for ribbons and other supplies so when I see something new or something I like, I love to play with it until I create something pretty that I am proud of 


It is easy to see the pride that Krista has in producing beautiful accessories.  Go check her out and tell her that I sent you! 







www.etsy.com/shops/lovebugbabyboutique
http://www.facebook.com/thelovebugbabyboutique

Monday, March 14, 2011

Awww .... It's a Luvy Bug

Happy Monday!  

I must say, that I am slowly, but surely picking up steam.  Between yesterday and today I made around 75 bows and lined about 250 clippies.  I have found the love for my ribbon again. It is funny how, when we encounter a rough patch, we neglect the things we love and love to do.  It is late, so I will dive right in.
I found it fitting that today's boutique is Luvy Bug Designs owned by Jessica Johnson.  On her site the first things you encounter are super bright colors, you can't help but smile!  I was intrigued to see there that, in a previous life, she was a paralegal and then decided to be a "domestic engineer" ... I prefer goddess ;)  All joking, Jessica is another prime example of all of the incredible moms that run a successful business while staying home with their children.  

Luvy Bug Designs is more than just an accessories shop!  They have the coolest wall appliqu├ęs!  I love these things!  I had two in my last home and will certainly be turning to Jessica and Luvy Bug for some in the near future.  Jessica stocks other unique items such as magnetic book marks and first aid kits that are too cute along with her hair accessories line of headbands, bows and clippies.


Here is what Jessica had to say about Luvy Bug Designs.


Why did you start crafting?  
I started crafting because we rent our home but I still wanted something fun for my daughter's room, that wasn't super girly but wasn't little boy, either. Since I couldn't paint I started making wall decor, hers are cute little bugs and frogs. From there I expanded into simple bow holders, one of my vinyl designs with a yard of ribbon, then iron on appliques and then fabric flowers/puffs on headbands and then the craziness and fun that is LuvyBug Designs.


What is your favorite thing to make? 
My favorite thing is still the vinyl wall decals, especially custom orders since it allows me to move beyond my usual. I did a fun peace sign order, in different colors and sizes for a tween girl's bedroom and a Mickey Mouse for a toddler boy room.


What inspires you?
I'm inspired by my daughter. It sounds silly, but she and I do a lot of looking online together and, I'm a little ashamed to admit it, but my two year old has picked out many of the designs for my spring hair line. Her choices seem to sell better than mine. Who knew that the feathers would be a flop, but the skulls would fly out the door? I mean, who, other than my two year old? I often do things I like and hope others will like as well.


One thing that I did not expect to gain on this journey was a collection of women who are knowledgeable, supportive, talented and inspiring.  Jessica is all of these and so much more.  During her interview for this cameo, she gave me the most eloquently versed thank you for my husbands service that I have ever received and those words will always ring special.  If you are looking for someone who has excellent principles and quality craft-wo-manship  (ha .. you like that?) then Jessica is the lady for you.


Jessica, thank you for letting me share your shop and your story.  It was truly my honor!


GO, NOW and check her out online at:
www.luvybugdesigs.com
www.facebook.com/luvybugdesigns


And please, tell her I sent you.


Goodnight everybody! 

Friday, March 11, 2011

Bloomin' Brilliant!

Tonight is going to be straight to the point.  I would like to introduce you to Alana Temple the talented owner of:


Bloomin' Bloomers

From the moment I came across her creations I was in love!  I have the incredible opportunity to view some of the most gorgeous bows you will ever feast your eyes on daily, but it is nice to shop around for other handmade creations from time to time.  Bloomin' Bloomers has a huge selection of stunning, ruffly (the name says it all) - Bloomers.  When I stumble on adorable items like these it makes me wish I would have come across them years ago when my princess could still wear them (not to mention it quadruples my baby fever)!  I couldn't wait to see what brought about this path for Alana. 

THE INTERVIEW:

Why did you start crafting?
I started sewing to help me relax after work and to keep myself busy while my husband was studying (taking college classes). My kids are teenagers and grown-up and did not need/want me around so I had nothing to do but watch tv :(   (Don't worry Alana ... we want and need you!)

What is your favorite thing to make?
My favorite thing to make is Ruffled Bloomers but the Chiffon Bloomers are becoming my next favorite.

What inspires your creations?
I get inspiration whenever I go to the fabric shop to see what new fabrics they have received. When I see one that catches my eye, I get excited and can't wait to find the coordinating fabrics. Before I know it, I have another outfit to make!

She has hair accessories to!! SO - go check her out and tell her that I sent you!

http://www.bloomingbloomers.net
http://www.bloominbloomers.blogpot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/bloominbloomers

Thursday, March 10, 2011

One Bad Diva and One Dainty Diva

Well, I was a bad girl yesterday!  After an awesomely crazy day yesterday, I worked myself into oblivion tracking packages, calling suppliers, emailing clients, doing some graphic design.  I finally laid down at about one and passed smooth out.  When I awoke this morning the first thing that pops into my head ....

#%$!  I DIDN'T DO EITHER ONE OF THE BLOGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Really, there is no excuse.  I really must go back to my endless sticky notes (physical and digital) and tons of lists!  I must say, it was an exceptionally inspiring day!  I had really been lacking total motivation to do anything except for digital design.  Looking for a specific type of craft supplier, I stumbled upon a craft mall that wants my stuff in it!!  HOLY COW!!  It really was the kick in the pants I needed.  With the supplier set backs and a few other time mismanagement issues I was running way behind in pretty much every aspect of life professional and personal and I am proud to announce that I am totally, 100% caught up (please, hold your applause), because that only applies to business matters.  Hopefully this weekend, I will tackle all of those nasty chores I have become so fabulous at putting off!!


DAINTY DIVA BOWS


Speaking of inspiring, tonight, I want to introduce you to the spectacular Marla, owner of Dainty Diva Bows!  She has many venues for you to shop her stunning creations: a full service web site, an Etsy store and even a Facebook Fan Page!  Talk about selection!  This lady literally has everything from bottle caps to bows and hats to headbands.  Incredibly enough it doesn't stop there!  You will find huge variety within every category sure to be the perfect addition to any outfit you can imagine.  Her tag line says it all, "Everything a Diva needs to accessorize her world!"




Here is what Marla had to say about her creations and their origin:

1. Why did you start crafting/making bows?

I started crafting when my daughter was four. It was a difficult time in my life personally as I was going through a divorce and I wanted to find something to fill my time in the evenings after she had gone to bed and then while she was away on weekends. Additionally, financially things became tight, so I realized now that she had hair, I couldn't afford to buy all the cutesy stuff I had wanted to. So, I decided to take advantage of the challenges presented to me and teach myself how to make hair accessories myself. It grew from there as other mom friends found out I was making her bows and soon, they started putting in requests and orders. At that point, Dainty Diva Bows was born :-)

2. What is your favorite thing to make?
Right now, my favorite thing to make are stacked boutique hair bows. It was my goal for 2011 to learn how to make this style of hair bow and I love seeing all the pieces come together!

3. What inspires you?
My inspiration is my daughter Emmy and her friends. I get so excited when I see them all wearing my creations and it inspires me to keep going and create more. I love when her friends are over and they want to "shop" in my studio and help me create. They get tickled pink when they get a bag of ribbon and supplies and they can create on their own along side me.



Eventually, Marla hopes be able to make this "hobby" a full time enterprise and maybe even open a brick and mortar store front.  She really loves what she does she says.  In my opinion, that is evident in her gorgeous creations.  





All of the of the pictures are hyper linked back to her site!  CLICK on them and tell her I sent you.  PS - she is having a SALE!! 



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

She's Fiery, Fiesty and Short

A lot of the women that I have the pleasure of being inspired by and conversing with make boutique hair accessories and clothing. Mandie or  Spitfireshortie has a style and design all of her own.  She is self professed to be highly opinionated and a little ball of fire!  Her outspoken and feisty ways are highly evident in her extremely unique, handmade resin jewelry.  Her items include sparkle filled pendants, earrings, bracelets sure to express what is on your mind.  My favorite piece in her collection is her spoon pendants.  They are dainty, girlie and absolutely adorable!!  I love the niche that Mandie has created for herself.  You have to go check her out!




It was really intriguing to me how she got started making jewelry, see for yourself:

#1: I started making jewelry because I have a severe nickel allergy and it was hard to find "inexpensive" jewelry that I liked , so I just started making my own. The beading moved on to resin that I would make my own one of a kind pendants from for use in my jewelry...now I can't stop! LOL.

#2: My favorite thing to make is definately my resin pendants...its such a wide variety of things that you can do to it and with it...I love making something I know I can never make EXACTLY the same the second, third time.

#3: My inspiration is my family. The funny things that come out of my kid's mouths, my family member's styles and my incredible love of anything sparkly. =o)


Be sure to check out her shop at www.etsy.com/shop/spitfireshortie or follow her blog and tell her that I sent you!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Monday, Monday ... So good to me!

The past few weeks have been trying at best, but for some strange reason I woke up with a sense of motivation and urgency this morning!  I am by far not complaining.  I have actually used it to my advantage and hope with all that I am that it continues.  I spent the morning separating this blog from the other one.  There is so much going on and so much to do and say that it felt cluttered.  So here it is. :)

I am going to start highlighting specific shops along with my random treasuries.  There is a wonderful group of gals that we will call HGs (can't give away all of the secrets, now can we?)!  They are everything awesome about hair accessories and crafts in general!  I will ask them all a static set of 3 questions and display their answers, to give you some incite into the mind of a crafter, along with some information about the things that they create.


The first lady that I would like to highlight is Melissa the owner of Sew Proverbs 31.




It is refreshing in this day and age to see someone who displays strong personal and business ethics and convictions.  Sew Proverbs 31 has a wide display of beautiful fashion accessories for your little one, girl or boy, such as her baby leggings and the little man neckties.  The site is easy to navigate and beautifully designed!   This is one shop that you want to keep your eye one for new creations for your little angel.

And now for the interview portion of our adventure. Here are the questions I presented to Melissa and her responses:

1. Why did you start crafting/making bows? 


I've been crafting since childhood with my mother (sewing, cross-stitching, hand crafts) and it evolved as I matured into methods and processes I was more interested in such as sewing clothing, hair accessories, the digital world of computer web design.


2. What is your favorite thing to make? 


I love to make rolled rose headbands and to sew various projects such as childrens clothing. My newest 'obsession' is web design and have been focusing a bit more on that lately. Basically I have a condition that causes me to want to try any and all craft projects...I see them as a challenge I want to try to overcome and then I get bored and move on *laughs*


3. What inspires you? 


I gather inspiration from everywhere. I often see something and love it but want to change an aspect of it to meet my personal taste/preferences. My children are also my muses. They provide me with an endless source of ideas of new things to create. Although I have been known to find a random colored trim or fabric and then get obsessed with figuring out the perfect way to use it...


You can also check her out on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sewproverbs31.  Please go check her out and tell her that Maredith sent you !!

Thank you, Melissa, for allowing me to look over your creations.  It was truly a joy!


Here are some other amazing creations from the very talented HGs.



1. Crochet Cotton Beanie Hat  by Lorraine Clair
2. Giant Elegant Flower Peony by Glitz N Gigglez
3. Gorgeous Blue Chiffon Singed Flower Clip by Karen Act
4. Oh So Sherbert Felt Flower Headband by Hugabug Designs
5. St. Patty's Kanzashi Bloom Hair Clip by Ari Blooms
6. Boutique Baby Pink Rose Hair Clip by Bibbidi Bobbidi
7. Vintage Inspired Flowers by Sparkle Bowtique
8. Trendy Fabric Flower in Gray by My Little Nuggets
9. Extra Large Peony Flower Clip by Jewelias Closet
10. Flower Bows and Hair Flower Clippie Instructions by Tiaras N Bows
11. Michael Miller Laughing Leaf Yellow Fabric by Blinky
12. Black and White Striped Ribbon Rose Hair Clip by Funky Kinda Girl
13. Double Layer Crochet Flower Hair Clippie by Tutti Cuti Bows
14. Premium Double Daphne Headband by The Dilly Daisy 
15. Turquoise Fabric Rose Trio by Love Mom Boutique
16. Kansashi Barrette by Misty Meadow W