Ah, the combination of hi-tech and handmade. It makes me happy. Our family just welcomed another member of the i-family to our home and our brand shiny new iPad mini needs a case, so I went Etsy browsing!
One-of-a-Kind sleeve style case, made from a piece of an oil painting that has been sealed to be weather resistant. Upcycled buckle and leather trim as well. Created by Bonspiel Creation from Victoria, BC.
Charcoal and lime green iPad mini case from Princess Tree Accessories, based out of Toronto. (on sale for $30.14 CAD with a free iPhone 4/4S case, too!)
Handknit Sock Monkey iPad Mini sleeve by downgirl, from Guelph, ON. ($29.11 CAD)
Padded iPad Mini sleeve in grey chevron with velcro closure by VintageFabricFinds from Annapolis Royal, NS. ($22.00 CAD)
Felt Fox sleeve, with small front pocket and included D rings to turn it into a small messenger back from Boutique Id in Montreal, QC. ($64.46 CAD)
Padded cotton sleeve with velcro closure from Molipop in Quesnel, BC. ($28.07 CAD)
Hand stitched leather sleeve with snap, and option for monogram. By Zenok Leather in Vancouver, BC. ($88.37 CAD)
Cotton sleeve with screen-printed branches and a bright cobalt blue flower appliqued on the front. Shibang Designs from Montreal, QC. ($46.78 CAD)
All of these makers and designers have lots more product available in their shops! Colours and sizes to fit lots of different devices. Enjoy :)
I get a little thrill when I discover someone who’s doing something different – and I had that feeling when I saw the work of Heidi Denessen in her HD Art & Apparel shop.
First up, I saw the Big Thaw Tunic dress… and then discovered that it is her own artwork, printed on eco-friendly fabric, that adorns the back scoop of this reversible piece. Love it!
And this – the reversible Deep Lake Tunic dress:
I really do love the idea of “wearable art”, and I like how Heidi has incorporated it in a more subtle way – a splash of colour at the neckline, or a peek along the hem.To see where the fabric inspiration comes from, I checked out some of her original artwork pieces and these are a couple of my favourites:
(image source: HeiditheArtist.ca)
(image source: HeiditheArtist.ca)
Heidi was born and raised in BC, and now makes her home in North Vancouver with her fellow artist husband and their little boys. Her artwork is focused on mixed media work, with bold colours and detailed collages incorporating paper and other materials. You can visit her website to see some examples of her work – it’s obvious that she is inspired by the gorgeous landscapes around her Vancouver home!
June is just around the corner, and that means that beach and pool season is nearly here! There are endless ways to bring some handmade creations along on your summer adventures. For those who are feeling brave, you can even find beautiful hand dyed bikinis like these ones from Daub + Design! Just slather on the sunscreen first… please!
Now maybe you aren’t feeling particularly bikini-ready, but you still like the look of the fabrics… Daub + Design has some beautiful lightweight scarves or tights that would be a great accent to any outfit.
When the sun starts shining and the mercury starts to rise, I know that many of us feel like our wardrobe needs a little freshening up… so why do we end up wearing the same bathing suit year after year? (or maybe that’s just me). Why not make your beach attire as unique and personal as you are, and take a little handmade goodness to the beach this year? Check out the Daub + Design Cargoh Store to see what is available!
~dreaming of warm sand between my toes, and a cold drink with an umbrella in it…
If it ever stops raining here in Ontario, I am confident that warm and sunny weather will finally make an appearance. And with those longer, summery days come all kinds of wonderful outdoor activities for the whole family. More road trips, more all-day bbq’s, more days at the beach, more long and lazy afternoons at the park… *ahhh… bliss…*
But wait! we interrupt this daydream to bring you: Reality! Little persons like my own toddler sized munchkin still need to have a nap or two, often right when you want to be somewhere else. One possible solution? Napping on the go! A little bit of comfort and routine can go a long way, and these great nap mats from SewnNatural can give a little one their own familiar spot to rest, no matter where the summer breeze takes you.
All SewnNatural products are eco-friendly and organic, which is a great way to remind kids about protecting our earth! The underside is made of durable denim, and the inside can be any of the beautiful and soft cotton prints.
SewnNatural is an Ottawa based mother-daughter team who pair a love for sustainable and ethical products with a flair for fabrics that is not to be missed! Beyond the sweet and useful nap mats, there are toys, mobiles, bedding, bibs, and even these fantastic car seat organizers:
Oh, and last but definitely not least… they also have super-cute dresses like this one:
Now, if we could just get some sunshine around here…
Everyone has different aspects of their personality, even if they don’t often get to see the light of day. Right now I am usually wearing my “busy working mother” hat, with the occasional “goofy friend” or “cheesy romantic wife” thrown in for good measure. But lately I am missing a few other sides of myself. I am currently working on re-introducing myself to the “adventuring traveler”, and maybe someday I’ll have the time to get reacquainted with the “wistful daydreamer” who used to hang out for hours in the branches of a favorite tree.
It is she, the wistful daydreamer who would feel perfectly carefree and at ease in the beautiful bohemian inspired clothing from the Barefoot Modiste.
Milli is a self-taught seamstress who calls Edmonton home. She started sewing at the tender age of eight, and hasn’t looked back since. You can sometimes see the influence of her African roots in her work, and there is a freewheeling gypsy vibe that brings to mind music, laughter, and stories around a campfire.
Milli has a mild obsession with fabrics, and is always on the lookout for fabulous finds that make their way into her pieces. Many of the materials she uses are reclaimed from thrift store or garage sale finds, so you can be sure that anything she makes is truly one of a kind.
~Here’s to embracing all the different sides of our many-faceted selves!
As the parent of a toddler, it sometimes feels like I am living in the eye of a hurricane. My girl is one pudgy-cheeked ball of motion, noise, and sometimes utter chaos. So when bedtime arrives and she is feeling snuggly and quiet, my husband and I really soak up those moments! Of course when a kiddo feels like cuddling there is nothing better than a special squishy friend, and these adorable buddies from Stephanimals are so cool that every kid is bound to love them.
Each one is handcrafted to be “Unique Like Nature”, and they even come with a soft story book that helps kids learn about the animal and their habitat! The quiet moments are a great opportunity to talk with kids about things that are important to your family, and Stephanimals share stories of conservation and knowledge about the world’s critters.
But wait! It gets even better! Stephanimals donates $2 from every single sale to charity, (in 2011 all funds raised will go to Nature Canada) Awesome, right? They don’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk… and you can too!
There are lots of different fabric choices for each animal, make sure you visit the Stephanimals site to see them all. There’s also links to lots of eco-friendly groups and products, a fun page full of activity ideas, and an animal info section where curious minds can go to learn and explore!
~Remembering my special childhood bedtime buddy. Her name was Ellie… she was an elephant. Yes I know, the creative juices run deep in me, can’t you tell?
Monday was a big day for some very dear friends of mine. They welcomed a beautiful baby girl into their lives, and she has since stolen everyone’s hearts! (Funny how babies can do that so fast… You just can’t fight those eyes, and the adorable little fingers and toes). So I have had “baby girl brain” all week, and thus have stumbled upon Little Jumping Beans. They have the sweetest little shoes, bibs, and crib sheets, all in fabulous fabrics that any fashionable new parent will love.
Jaimie is a mom of two who has a soft spot for pretty fabric and hollywood gossip. She sews all of her creations in her Calgary home.
As an extra bonus, 10% of sales are donated to a different charity every month! I love it when you can shop and do good things for the world at the same time. Visit the Little Jumping Beans Etsy shop for more great stuff, or drop by Facebook and say Hi!
Celebrating the sweetness of new life,
It’s the quintessential fathers’ day gift, and a Christmas time staple. The tie. Almost every man has a selection to choose from, but lets be honest, most of the time they are just like every other tie out there. Bo-ring. So why not shake it up a little and get your husband, father, son, or even your boss, wrapped up in some handmade style. Nadine De Lange is an Ottawa artist who creates these fabulous marble effect hand painted silk ties.
Have an upcoming wedding that needs a splash of unique style? Nadine can hook the entire bridal party up with some one of a kind dapper duds. Take these cumberbund and bowtie combos, for example:
Nadine’s work is done in batches, with a very cool “floating paint” technique that gives her pieces great dimension. You can see the whole process, step by step, right here on her website.
Custom work is available, and Nadine prides herself on 100% customer satisfaction. Visit her website to see the whole range of colours and styles, from demure to dramatic!
Have a great day everyone,
I will admit that I was a bit of a bookish child growing up. Don’t get me wrong, I certainly climbed my share of trees and rode my bike for days on end, but I have always found a good book to be something totally magical. It’s not at all surprising then, that for a good chunk of my life I entertained dreams of being a writer. I outlined plots, sketched characters for my great Canadian novel, and lurked around corners to hone my skills as an investigative reporter. Now I’m all grown up, and even though I may not be a Canadian Lois Lane, a really nice notebook can still make me swoon!
Why would you settle for a plain old boring notebook, when you can have something as fresh and pretty as these?
New Leaf Handmade Goods is the partnership between sisters Maria and Cecilia. Based out of Swift Current Saskatchewan, they have blended their love of paper and fabric with artistic talent and thrift-store sleuthing to create these beautiful books. The paper inside is all reclaimed, recycled or repurposed, so they are lovely to look at and easy on planet earth!
Mixed in among the blank pages in each notebook, you can find reclaimed treasures like sheet music, tracing paper, and map pages that give each book some serious personality. Maria and Cecilia even include a few notes about the origins of “your” paper, so you can truly get a feel for where the pages came from. Then it’s up to you to fill each page with whatever your heart desires.
There are even some childhood favorites that will bring back happy memories. I just read this one to my little girl a few days ago!
Want to see what else the sisters have to offer? Head on over to the Etsy shop where you will find plenty more notebooks to choose from, as well as a whole bunch of great pillow covers like this:
Then, when you are done browsing, stop by their Facebook page or Twitter stream and say Hello, or visit the blog for musings, DIY and even a newsletter. Also, make sure you wish the girls a Happy Birthday because New Leaf turns one year old in just a couple of weeks! Congratulations Ladies, and keep up the great work!
As many of you know, I have recently returned to my “outside-the-home” job after maternity leave with my little munchkin. This also means, among other things, a return to planning and packing lunches. So far I have managed to get something together every day and avoid starvation (or a desperate McDonalds’ run). However, usually my lunch has ended up thrown into a big ugly shopping bag. So what’s the big deal with that? Nothing really, but picture this: Me, attempting to look “professional” and “put together” (ha!), carrying my purse, baby’s daycare bag, and a grocery bag lunch, while balancing the baby on my hip and fishing my keys out of a pocket. Yeah, that’s what I thought.
So, while it might not be a huge deal to have a stylish and pretty bag to carry my lunch, I think it will make a difference in how I feel about myself each day as I dash off to work. Enter: Urban Harmonie Designs. I think these eco-friendly, reusable, and super-chic lunch and snack bags are fantastic!
These bags are made with laminated cotton, and are free of all the nasty stuff that normally accompany most plastic items. Even better: you can just wipe them clean with warm soapy water! Vicki (aka Urban Harmonie) has a love for all things vintage, so her fabric choices often have a retro feel. Her bags are all handmade in her Vancouver studio.
Now if only I could be as inspired about what to put *in* the lunch bag!