Indie Business Online Workshop

Leigh-Ann Keffer of Freckled Nest and Jill Munro of Lune Vintage are slated to teach an Indie Business online workshop beginning on September 3. These successful business owners have been involved in both the online and local small business market for a combined total of 16 years. The course will consist of 25 sessions related to Starting, Surviving and Succeeding in a Small Creative Business for both local and online companies. There will also be lots of great giveaways throughout the course that will enhance your business. Complete details can be found on Freckled Nest.

Workshop includes:
1) 25 Topics to Develop your Small Business from Start to Success
2) 1 on 1 Brainstorming Chat with Each Student
3) Live Online Interview/Q&A with Leigh-Ann and Jill
4) Pre-Recorded Videos Augmenting some Session Topics
5) Ongoing Q&A thru out the Workshop
6) Business Building Giveaways

Pomegranate Inc.

Pomegranate Inc. features a wide variety of bright cheerful items ranging from table covers to photo frames. If you're looking for unique gift items for your Mom, sister or best friend, there's no shortage of choices. The dragonfly divide box is a stylish way to store jewelry & other nick-nacks. Margarita lovers will drink up the embroidered tea towels, cocktail napkins & hostess apron. There's also a nice selection of tote bags, such as the Sea Life Island tote. And we've all got lots of notes to jot down, so why not jot them down in a swanky leather notebook?

*GIVEAWAY - Closed: One lucky person will win a set of embroidered napkins & a palm beach tote of their choice. To enter, simply visit Pomegranate Inc. and leave a comment on this post noting your favorite item(s). Giveaway ends at Midnight EST, Thursday, September 3.

Key(s) to Happiness

She's SO Creative Contest

She's SO Creative is a funky greeting card company that was established by San Francisco-based designer Stephanie Orma. Her whimsical designs stretch the literal to hilarious limits. This month, She's SO Creative is holding their first ever contest.

The mission: Come up with the inside greeting for the clever new card, The Origin of Turkey Bacon (pictured), and be named the Winning Witty Wordsmith.

Winner: One talented entrant will win instant fame (sans fortune) with the larger-than-fine-print credit line imprinted on the backs of all the cards. With the cheeky paper products being sold in hundreds of boutiques nationwide, you'll become an instant household name (or at the very least, friends & family may stop calling you "hey you"). In addition to a dozen complimentary copies of the cards, the winner will also receive a dozen She's SO Creative clever cards of their choosing. And, of course, you will be blogged, Twittered, and FaceBooked by the fine folks at She's SO Creative.

1. Don't make it cheesy.
2. The inside greeting must contain a purpose (i.e. hello, thanks, happy birthday, miss you, love, happy v-day, etc.) combined with a cheeky, fun, irreverent and/or playful message.

Deadline: October 1 - Winning entry will be announced the week of October 5th.

Enter: Email your witty words to hello[at]shesocreative[dot]com.


Shixie creates the most unique & adorable earrings using recycled vintage elements. The mini dress earrings are available in a variety of colors and prints. Plaid is said to be one of the hot trends this fall & there's a great plaid pair in yellow, red & green. The colorful floral prints are also a favorite of mine. Shixie also creates tin earrings in the shapes of little chairs. And, if the earrings aren't your speed, check out the recycled tin dress ornaments.

Snuggle Luv

I recently found the cutest baby leg warmers ever! Snuggle Luv has a wonderful selection of funky accessories for kiddos. Snuggle Legs are perfect for protecting your sweet baby’s crawling knees. Moms, think diaper changing and potty training without the fuss of pulling pants on and off. And, they work great on both the arms and legs. The best part, besides the Buy Two, Get One Free offer, is they come in designs that are appropriate for boys and girls of all ages. I especially love the Falling Star print. Want to keep your kid's head warm, as well? That's what Snuggle Lids are for! The collection includes floral Baby Bud Hats, crocheted hats, and Snuggle Bands. Check out all the fashionable designs Snuggle Luv has to offer you & your young 'uns!

Ikvotha Mashiach

Ikvotha Mashiach showcases the work of Rhode Island-based designer & seamstress Gabrielle. Working with a combination of vintage and new fabrics & materials, Gabrielle strives to make the world a more beautiful & unique place. As small girls, many daydreamed of being a princess at a tea party. Why do those dreams have to die as we grow older? With the TeaCup Pink Princess Corset dress we can continue the dream! If pink foofoo isn't your style, perhaps the minimalist London Sky Silk Grecian Style Skirt is. The Dollhouse Blue Satin Dress is a sophisticated design that will take your career to the next level. And, if you're looking for a really unique bargain, don't miss the Pretty Pieces Summer Skirt that is priced at just $10! Receive 10% off any item with coupon code yapa1.


Decade, an independently and woman-owned boutique in Denver, Colorado, has been open for over 11 years. The shop has been voted "Best Paris-Flea-Market-Style Store" and "Best Store Anywhere on Broadway" in Denver's Westword newspaper, as well as the Rocky Mountain News' "Top Gift Shop." The store recently launched a website allowing those of us who can't stop by in person the chance to browse their eclectic mix of merchandise, including over 50 gift sets featuring Decade's well-known items for just about everyone, as well as your pet. Each purchase is personalized with Decade's signature wrapping in a kraft box with chartreuse tissue paper and ribbon ensuring that each recipient's package is presented nicely. The gift sets for New Parents include a unique selection of items, with the Daddy Needs a Drink set being especially humorous. There's great gift sets for the Home, lovers of wine, and Masters of the Grill to name a few. Also, the eco gift sets are delivered in recycled boxes fittingly.

Weekend Events

WHAT: Trunk Show at Parts & Labour
WHEN: Thursday, August 27, 6-9pm
WHERE: 1117 South Congress, Austin, TX
ETC: Featuring the work of Anne Marie Beard of *annemarie* & Leslie Bonnell of Glitzkrieg. Free swag, demos, prize drawings, complimentary cocktails & much more!

WHAT: Harrilu Trunk Show
WHEN: Friday, August 28 through Sunday, August 30
WHERE: Exhale Spa, 5300 E. Mockingbird Lane, Dallas, TX

WHAT: Bucktown Arts Fest
WHEN: August 29th and 30th, 11am - 7pm
WHERE: Senior Citizens' Memorial Park, 2300 N. Oakley Ave. & 2300 W. Lyndale St., Chicago, IL

WHAT: Craftaholics
WHEN: Saturday, August 29, 12-5pm
WHERE: The Old Queen’s Head, 44 Essex Road, Islington N1 8LN

WHAT: Dustbowl Arts Market
WHEN: Saturday, August 29; Arts Market 10am-6pm, Live Music 2-10pm
WHERE: Campus Corner on Buchanan St., Norman, OK

WHAT: Portobello August Craft Fair
WHEN: Saturday, August 29, 10am-4pm
WHERE: Portobello Town Hall, Edinburgh, Scotland

Charmed Memory

Josie Burke of Charmed Memory was born and raised in New Zealand. While spending the bulk of her childhood with her grandparents, she quickly developed a fascination with anything and everything from their era. Josie says her childhood memories & experiences carry over into her interesting jewelry designs. The Mad Tea Party bracelet is a fun collection of Alice in Wonderland inspired charms & images. I really like the Marie Antoninette's Most Regal Trinkets charm necklace featuring vintage brass charms. If you're looking for pieces that are eye-catching & unique, you don't want to miss the layered necklaces. Also available is a nice collection of charm necklaces made using various images. The Pretty in Pink collage charm pendant is my favorite!

GIVEAWAY: Enter to win any pair of earrings from Charmed Memory. Simply visit the Charmed Memory shop & leave a comment on this post noting your favorite design. Giveaway ends at Midnight EST, Friday, August 28.

Grandparent's Day

September 13 is National Grandparents Day, a special day to recognize those we love so much!

1. Grandparents will love receiving custom notecards from PrintArtKids featuring your kiddos' artwork. Receive one free sheet of 30 matching return address labels with every notecard order (same artwork on notecards & labels). If purchasing multiple label sheets (minimum 3 sheets), receive one additional sheet free. In honor of Grandparent’s Day, use promo code "funkygranny" to redeem either offer.

2. Keep your crafty Granny's coffee warm with a recycled Coffee Cuff created by Claudia Owen of Claudia's Burning Ink.

3. If your grandparents enjoy a nice glass of wine, treat them to their favorite bottle delivered in a decorative Sassy Koozie!

4. We all love our grandparents because they spoiled us rotten as kids. Give the special grandparents in your life an adorable hand-painted canvas from Cupcakes and Sunshine.

Azami Bags & Accessories

Azami Bags & Accessories features purses, bags, clutches and other accessories created by Argentina-based art student Mariel. Her original and trendy designs are practical and well-constructed. I love the pleated handbags, such as Isadora. The corduroy Paloma messenger bag and grey Luna bag are the perfect accessories for fall. Mariel also creates eye-catching pencil cases and pouches that will come in quite handy. Check out the Azami Bags blog for updates & additional information. Also, receive a 10% discount (excluding shipping) when you mention Funky Finds in the notes to seller section at checkout.

The Little Prints

At first glance, Jody McDowell's shop, The Little Prints, is full of happy colors & beautiful textures. When looking at each item individually, you will see that Jody has given an exciting new life to reused materials. The Megaroids are unique decorative pieces that began as Polaroid photos that have been enlarged and mounted on wooden blocks. I especially like the accessories like the cheerful green & yellow lace headband that's decorated with vintage plastic flower beads and a button. Using an old necktie, Jody also created a cute gray flower headband. There's several adorable wrist cuffs and brooches to choose from, as well.

Handmade Vases

By definition a vase is an open container, often used to hold cut flowers.

1. Ceramic vase made using recycled paper from ads and magazines by Yaslani Etc.

2. A wood building block vase covered with images from a vintage book. Inserted in the top is a vintage glass test tube. By Lavender Gooms.

3. Blue Teardrop Hanging Vase made from recycled glass decorated with aluminum wire so that it can be hung. By Nicholas and Felice.

4. Red wall vase retro organizer made from a piece of old ladder wood. Glass mason jar is attached & utilized as vase. By Old New Again.

Caroline Creates

Caroline Creates is a wonderful source for unique stationery and invitations. Caroline Hull has many great designs available that can be used for a variety of occasions. The bird and tree invitation is perfect for a wedding, shower, or any other celebration. If you're looking for something a bit bolder, there's the flourish save the date and Damask invitation. Perhaps my favorite design is the fun popcorn invitation suitable for children's parties or even an Oscar celebration. Also available are beautiful personalized notecards and stylish letterhead.

The Shops @ Funky Finds

If you don't already know, The Shops @ Funky Finds is our online marketplace. Our goal with this site is to provide artisans with an easy-to-use and affordable venue in which to sell their items. Ultimately, we want artists and designers to spend less time behind the computer and more time doing what they love.

We recently lowered our prices and have introduced a referral program, as well as an advance payment system. Users that pay for three months in advance will receive one month free. Purchase nine months in advance and receive three free months! That means you can sell for one year for as low as $17.91. Talk about a deal! Our Shops blog provides readers with detailed FAQs, a tour for prospective sellers, and more.

Of course, buyers will love The Shops @ Funky Finds because they will find lots of great handmade goods ranging from accessories to wedding goods.

Weekend Events

WHAT: Style Stay-Cation Trunk Show
WHEN: Friday, August 21, 5-9pm and Saturday, August 22, 3-7pm
WHERE: Move Studio, 17062 Preston Rd., Ste. 108, Dallas, TX
ETC: Free Admission. Local designers will be showcasing handmade apparel, accessories, children's items & jewelry. There will also be a chair massage therapist & make up & hair consultants to help rejuvenate and revive your look with great tips & advice.

WHAT: BUST London Summer Craftacular
WHEN: Saturday, August 22, 12-8pm
WHERE: York Hall, Bethnal Green, London
ETC: Goodie bags for the first 100 attendees, raffle and more! Admission is £2.

WHAT: San Francisco Zine Fest
WHEN: Saturday, August 22nd and Sunday, August 23rd - 11am - 6pm
WHERE: SF County Fair Building, 9th Ave. at Lincoln Way, San Francisco, CA
ETC: FREE annual two-day conference for independent and underground publishing. While the focus is on zines, all walks of DIY life are represented.

Super Sneaky Collaboration Project

I have had the pleasure of working with three extremely talented artists & designers that reside in Texas - Dylan Dowdy of Dowdy Studio, Pamela Jackson of Pamela Michelle, and Cheyne Little of Cut Out & Collect. The trio will soon be traveling to Norman, Oklahoma, to participate in the Dustbowl Arts Market taking place Saturday, August 29. There they will be debuting their Super Sneaky Collaboration Project. Sounds intriguing, doesn't it!? They will be displaying their new collaborative goods, including a handbag, a pillow and some mini pouches and wallets. The items will feature Dowdy Studio's superb artwork & screen printing, as well as Pamela Michelle's beautiful hand-carved wooden buttons. And of course, the pieces are all pulled together by Cheyne's top-of-the-line seamstress skills. I believe many independent artisans could take a cue from Dylan, Pam, and Cheyne and benefit from collaborations such as theirs. I am excited to see what the future holds for this Super Sneaky Trio! If you're lucky enough to be in the area, be sure to attend the Dustbowl Arts Market & see these fantastic goods in person.

Milkweed and Honey

Milkweed and Honey features the work of a talented husband and wife team, Sara and Tom Toohey. Their shop is stocked with unique accessories, such as recycled bottlecap cuff links. I also like the vintage hand-painted ceramic pendants adorned with kitsch animals & flowers. And the Falling Leaves Necklace, comprised of delicate, shiny leaves, is gorgeous. If you're looking for accessories that are bit bolder, they have that, too. The brightly-colored wooden leaf earrings and Tin Flower earrings fit the bill.

*GIVEAWAY: Enter to win a pair of lightweight, sterling silver Dragonfly earrings. Simply visit Milkweed and Honey & leave a comment on this post noting your favorite design. Giveaway ends at Midnight EST, Saturday, August 22.

Burnout Tees

You may have noticed the trend of "burnout" tees lately, but what exactly does that mean? Alternative Apparel describes their Burnout Collection as tees that have a sheer, weathered look that results in a retro finish with a soft vintage hand. Once the cotton has been burned out of a tee, those areas are sheer & look great layered over a contrasting tee or tank top. Megan Mucci of Harrilu offers a Delicate Flight burnout poof sleeve tee (pictured) that looks great layered over another tee. Another Funky Finds favorite, Squid Ink Kollective, offers a fun Whale-respected Man tee. 1AEON has a nice selection of burnout tees, including the scissors crew neck tee. I also dig the Daydream design printed on a mushroom color t-shirt. And Crimson Clover is a great shop that has fun Rock Rebel burnout tees available. Don't miss the coordinating double-sided Wild at Heart pendant.

Friedasophie Jewelry Design

Friedasophie Jewelry Design is a great source for beautiful, hand-crafted 14k gold gemstone jewelry. All of these designs, such as the gold Cherry Blossom necklace, are hip & stylish. I love the Sun Star earrings featuring lemon yellow chalcedony gemstones. My favorite thing about this shop is that the designs are stunning, yet affordable. The gold chandelier earrings look like a million bucks, but have a small price tag. The Mystic flower earrings are in the same category of affordable, yet gorgeous! And Funky Finds readers will receive a 10% discount when you mention Funky Finds at time of checkout.

JiJi's Creative Designs

JiJi's Creative Designs features beautiful fabric handbags & accessories created by Jenny ("JiJi") Kim. Her current line includes a range of styles, including the lightweight & roomy everyday tote. This is a great bag to use for work & is a nice alternative to leather bags typically seen in the office. The Carry-it-all Carryall Tote Bag can be used as a diaper bag, beach bag or travel bag. I always like small bags that are easy to carry around & the mini purse is a great option. Currently select handmade handbags are now on sale from 15%-50% off. The Secret Garden mini purse is a great choice that will transition nicely into fall. JiJi's also offers stylish iPod armbands perfect for runners or those that go to the gym.

Making Stuff

The twenty-first century has seen an explosion in all kinds of crafting and Black Dog Publishing's eclectic craft books pay testament to a trend that is only getting bigger. Whether you are a seasoned crafter looking for new ideas or a novice who still doesn’t know how to cast on, Making Stuff: An Alternative Craft Book is for you. Utilizing both traditional craft materials and thrifty finds, Making Stuff gathers together over 50 projects from established members of the craft scene that will undoubtedly inspire you to get your craft on. Their latest title, Making Stuff for Kids, brings children back into the craft equation, featuring a collection of useful, funky, exciting ideas for things to make for kids and with kids. Featuring new ideas and well-loved favorites from puppets to potato printing, this book has something for everyone – a shot of pure unadulterated fun for all!

Black Dog Publishing is generously offering both of these popular craft titles at a 50% discount. Simply send an email titled "Funky Finds Offer" noting the title(s) you wish to purchase, along with your delivery address, to Offer valid through August 31, 2009.

Cardboard Safari

On July 20, we celebrated the anniversary of Apollo 11's moon landing. To continue the celebration, Cardboard Safari has created an Astro Rocket that can easily be yours. Each Astro Rocket is laser-cut for precision fit and easily assembles using slot construction. They look great in earth brown or lunar white and can be decorated with paint, glitter, markers or other craft materials. The rocket can be displayed on your table top, wall or suspended. All rockets are packaged flat and include detailed instructions. Also, they are made from recycled cardboard, a non-toxic, environmentally friendly product. Don't miss all the other cool cardboard designs this company has to offer.

Jessica Rust Designs

I've written about Jessica Rust Designs before & the talented designer recently announced that her company has gone viral. You can now easily invite the charm and classic nature of Jessica Rust's custom-made designs into your home each day with a number of social media outlets that reward you with sneak peeks and members-only perks. Eager to earn a discount on Jessica's personalized dinnerware? Become a fan of her Facebook page and you will receive exclusive deals. Intrigued to learn how Jessica goes from a playful idea to a work of art that you can actually eat on? Jessica fires up her kiln and camera, uploading videos and posts that give you the inside scoop into production. You can also follow Jessica on Twitter to keep tabs on the designer's musings for the day. If you still haven't had your fill, head over to Jessica's blog to read about her daily designing trials and tribulations, as well as the inspirations and loves of her life that help her create her wonderfully original pieces.

Weekend Events

WHAT: Chicago Craft Social
WHEN: Friday, August 14, 7-10pm
WHERE: Evanston Vineyard Church, 2495 Howard St., Evanston, IL
ETC: Cost is $5 and remember, this event is now open to men, as well as women.

WHAT: Buffalo Indie Market
WHEN: Saturday, August 15 & Sunday, August 16; 12-5pm
WHERE: Erie Canal Harbor At Canal Side
ETC: Free Admission. Live Music.

WHAT: The Stitches & Craft Show
WHEN: August 19 through August 23
WHERE: Sydney, Australia; RoseHill Racecourse
ETC: Admission is $10 - children under 10 are FREE!

Vinca USA

Vinca USA features a variety of unique accessories by Austin-based designer Amanda Dimova. We were among the first to see her exciting new designs at The Pin Show in Dallas. The Vinca website is stocked with gorgeous accessories for your ears, feet and more. Amanda designs unmatched shoes, such as the Butterfly pair, that are made by Texas-based Bear Feet Shoe Company. I especially love the silver, pink and black Panther Toes design. Vinca also offers many lovely necklaces, including the Butterfly Pair and Goldfish. These pieces will surely set you apart from the crowd.

*GIVEAWAY - Closed: Enter to win a beautiful Lock & Key Necklace from Vinca USA. Simply visit Vinca's website & leave a comment on this post noting your favorite design. Giveaway ends at Midnight EST, Sunday, August 16.

Designer Call - We Make Stuff...

The We Make,music, & fashion event is set to take place on September 19th in Austin, Texas. The event, held at The Scoot Inn, will include a fashion show featuring six of Austin's best designers and boutiques, with music by Household Names & Lost Werks. The event coordinators are also looking for another band to add to the lineup, so spread the word. There will also be a juried skateboard painting contest and handmade vendors. Applications are currently on the We Make Stuff... website. If you have a question about a certain aspect of the event, you may send an email to Make sure to label your subject clearly. This is a juried show and upon acceptance specific event details will be emailed out to the participants. Acceptance notification and details will be send out via email on August 18th. A wait list will be maintained in addition to those accepted, but it will be capped off at ten. All applications are due by August 14th. Payment must be submitted with application to be accepted. Booth fees are located on the application.

Deathly Cute

Brandy and Michelle are the creative duo behind Deathly Cute, a shop featuring unique quilts, accessories and more. We had the pleasure of working with Deathly Cute when they participated in the Funky Finds Spring Fling held in April. I love the logo earrings that are available with various hair colors, including green and orange. Also available are earrings with their logo printed on guitar picks. The hot pink is super funky! Little girls will look absolutely adorable sporting one of the multi-colored Skullerific bows. Of course, after chasing said little girl around all day you deserve some pampering. That's where the Achy Pack head soother and bath milk come in.

A Place To Bark

I've written about A Place to Bark, an animal rescue, many times and this time is no less important. Take one minute to vote for A Place to Bark so they may win $10,000 from The Christie Cookie Company. This generous business is giving away a total of $25,000 to 12 charities! Here's the information you will need to enter:

Charity Name: A Place to Bark
Charity City: Portland
Charity State: TN
Charity Contact Name: Bernie Berlin
Your Name & Your Email

Tripper Dungan

It is apparent when looking at artist Tripper Dungan's work that he has been inspired by cartoons. After attending school in Las Vegas, he moved up to Oregon & began performing shadow puppet shows at lounges, house parties, fairs, and piano schools around town. In 2002, he relocated to Portland and built shows with Junk Town, a loose art collective dedicated to making art out of discarded materials. Tripper now paints 3-D pictures and creates electronic music for his cartoons and shadow puppets. If you are in the Portland area, be sure to stop by Moxie this month to see Tripper's work on display. The opening is tonight, August 7th, from 5-8pm.

The Philadelphia Designer's Market Recap

On July 18, Joe and I attended our first designer showcase in Philadelphia. The Philadelphia Designer's Market featured the work of about twenty designers. Here's a recap of some of the artisans that really stood out in my mind.

Eclectically Chic features custom designed handbags and accessories by Emily Lazo. She uses faux leathers and fabrics to create beautiful bags, such as the large Merlot and Tie 'Em Up bags.

We purchased an adorable, and affordable, dog bed from Collars and More by Molly. The "more" part includes stylish leashes & key chains.

Kayla Jane is a busy designer creating baby goods, as well as jewelry, garters, and more.

Typhaney Shanker of Typhaney B. Jewelry hand-crafts gorgeous accessories that shoppers were clamoring for! Typhaney has also been nominated for myfoxphilly's Hot List.

I loved all the eye-catching earring designs by Krista Peel. We thought some of them looked like yummy chunks of candy!

April Torres of Isabella Grace Originals designs Earth-friendly jewelry and accessories using mainly recycled materials to bring original works of art to the fashion world. I love the bright sunburst necklace.

Dennis Buchanan is a charismatic designer of high-end luxury business neck wear (ie: ties). I loved that his ties come in coordinating boxes that look very chic.

I have followed the work of Michelle Harvey and Michabella Creations for a while & it was so nice to meet her & her business partner, Cindy Grill, in person. The duo donates a portion of their profits to the American Cancer Society, Children's Miracle Network, and the PA Breast Cancer Coalition.

And don't miss the beautiful designs by Layla Niebrugge of Laylabelle. Her sterling silver silhouettes are gorgeous.

Handmade Nation

Saturday Joe and I attended a screening of Handmade Nation at the Philadelphia Convention Center. The documentary, created by Faythe Levine, delves into what motivates crafters (or makers) to create and sell their wares. We met Faythe at Stitch Austin in 2007 when she was beginning her journey around the country and it was exciting to see how it all came together in the end. The comment within the documentary that resonated the most with me was, "If you don't like the culture you are living in, you have to create your own." Many of the makers interviewed commented on the DIY movement as one that is fed up with mass-produced goods and poorly made items from third world countries. I think that is something most crafters can associate with, as well as the desire to create upcycled, eco-friendly items. So many makers pride themselves on using recycled materials, as well as soy-based inks and other Earth-friendly supplies. And, as buyers, many of us tend to look for that when deciding on a purchase. I believe that the basis for the DIY movement in this day & age is the desire to express one's self creatively & to create unique, one-of-a-kind items that aren't mass-produced and allows you to be your true self instead of a cookie cutter image. Handmade Nation showed many of the interviewees working in the home studios and offices. It was especially interesting to hear how these crafters aren't just doing their own crafting, but also their own marketing, shipping, and bookkeeping. In truth, their entire business from top to bottom is DIY! When it all boils down to it, the best part of the documentary was seeing so many like-minded people doing what they love for all the right reasons. Check out the Handmade Nation blog for a schedule of screenings around the world.

Handmade Nation Products:

- Handmade Nation: The Rise of DIY, Art, Craft, and Design (Paperback) by Faythe Levine

- Handmade Nation Embroidery Patterns by Sublime Stitching

Vintage Blue

Vintage Blue is a vintage-inspired line of sportswear for women. This unique company holds the exclusive license to the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Remember the movie "A League of Their Own"? I loved it! Vintage Blue produces chemical-free garments & uses eco-friendly print materials. The Doris tee is the canvas for the Catch A Foul, Get A Kiss graphic inspired by “A League of Their Own.” I love the tee declaring There's No Crying in Baseball, as well as the Suzy tee depicting one of the earlier titles of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League. Check out Vintage Blue's blog for lots of great vintage photographs & stories.

Karate Kat Graphics

Karate Kat Graphics began in summer '06 with Mary Grover's kids selling homemade cards & giving half the proceeds to kids' charities. Their Zazzle shop features their artwork on hundreds of playful, yet polished, products. There's plenty of fun items perfect for birthdays, including customizable stickers and invitations. One of my favorites are the stamps featuring Mary's 12 year old's lovely Made With Love drawing. This year, Karate Kat Graphics is donating half their profits to Save the Children, an organization dedicated to creating lasting change in the lives of children in need in the United States and around the world.

GIVEAWAY: Enter to win a sheet of 20 Love postage stamps - winner's choice! Simply leave a comment on this post noting your favorite Love design to be entered. Giveaway ends at Midnight EST, Monday, August 10.

Birthday Wishes

In honor of my 31st birthday today I give you some birthday-inspired finds!

1. 1969 Original Vintage Zodiac Poster perfect for any Leo!

2. Birthdays are for celebrating, so why not display that flair with a collaged birthday block from Pocket Full of Prettys?

3. The hoop earrings from April Bella featuring August's birthstone, the peridot, are beautiful.

4. Isotope's Leo Constellation Star Astronomy Graphic printed on an eggplant colored tee is lovely.

5. Any strong Leo is sure to love The Lion necklace from Brooklyn-based Contrary.

6. Sweet Pickle Designs offers a vibrant birthday pendant banner that will be a great addition to any festive party.

7. As I've mentioned many times in the past, I LOVE MONKEYS! You can imagine my excitement when finding Spirit Mama's sock monkey cake toppers - perfect for any age in my opinion.

8. What August birthday gal wouldn't love to receive a lovely sparkling Peridot Silver Ring created by Arctic Jewelry?

9. I would love to see lots of colorful Party Poms at my birthday soiree, thank you!

10. And I would certainly enjoy sporting a unique Steampunk ring embellished with a Peridot Green Swarovski Crystal by edmdesigns.

Weekend Events

WHAT: First Friday featuring dozens of Philadelphia's Old City galleries and shops
WHEN: Friday, August 7, 5-9pm
WHERE: See map for various participating locations
ETC: No admission fee. Hours may vary during the summer.

WHAT: First Friday Artist debut on back wall at Memphis Taproom
WHEN: Friday, August 7 - continuing through month of August
WHERE: 2331 E. Cumberland St., Philadelphia
ETC: Featuring artist Matthew Leake's illustrations

WHAT: Charity happy hour benefiting the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation
WHEN: Friday, August 7, 6-11pm
WHERE: LOFT 610 - 5760 State Hwy 121, Ste. 175, Plano, Texas
ETC: Couture Events and Loft 610 have partnered to host this charity happy hour. Loft 610 will be graciously donating 20% of the total bill for the night to Susan G. Komen. Please mention to your waiter that you are with Couture Events.

WHEN: Friday, August 7, 7pm-12am
WHERE: Sons of Hermann Hall, 3414 Elm St., Dallas, TX
ETC: Charitable event featuring the work of over 20 local artists that have turned coffee tins into functional lanterns. Proceeds will be used to fund the operating costs associated with Art Conspiracy’s large scale December fundraiser benefiting Resolana, an organization that provides rehabilitative arts programming for women in the Dallas County Jail and Dawson State Jail in Dallas.

WHAT: Satellite Second Saturdays Craft Fair
WHEN: Saturday, August 8, 11am-5pm
WHERE: The Firehouse at 50th & Baltimore Ave., West Philadelphia
ETC: Features the work of more than 20 local artisans. Brought to you by VIX Emporium and Satellite Cafe.

WHAT: Hip Happening
WHEN: Saturday, August 8, 11am-6pm
WHERE: Sellwood Masonic Lodge, 7126 SE Milwaukie Avenue, Portland, OR
ETC: The event will be held in conjunction with the Sellwood-Westmoreland Business Alliance’s Passport event.

WHAT: The {NewNew} Heads to Boston's SOWA Open Market
WHEN: Sunday, August 9, 10am-4pm
WHERE: 540 Harrison Ave., Boston, MA
ETC: Free admission and parking

Indiepublic's 2nd Anniversary

Indiepublic is an independent art and design community that I am a member of & is free to join. Once you join the site, you get your own page which can be used to interact with Indiepublic's 14,000+ members, promote your businesses, and your art. To celebrate the community's 2nd Anniversary, the group is holding daily raffles that will begin Saturday, August 1. The exact number of raffles depends on how many gift items are donated to the event.

When you purchase a raffle ticket, you are automatically entered into each raffle held throughout the month. Winners will be chosen by a random number generator. Tickets can be purchased via PayPal using the links below:

Purchase 1 ticket for $1

Purchase 10 tickets for $8.50 (save 15%)

Purchase 25 tickets for $20.00 (save 20%)

Purchase 50 tickets for $37.50 (save 25%)

Purchase 100 tickets for $65.00 (save 35%)

Each day new and different items will be raffled off! A list of ticket numbers with the first name and city of the ticket holder will be posted prior to randomly drawing a number using a random number generator. You can purchase tickets right up until the final day of the month but the sooner you purchase your tickets, the sooner you can start having a chance to win!