For the love of mom

There's so much to love about the special women in your life--the moms, grandmas, aunties, and other ladies who give you so much love and encouragement all year long. 

And though there's absolutely no way one gift can really express just how grateful you are, I know a few ladies in my life who wouldn't turn a gift down! 

So in the spirit and loving and giving, we've curated just a few things in the treasury below from our artists and members--simple, thoughtful gifts that will let someone know in a small way just how much you really care. 

Click through, and you'll find gifts for the traveler, the gardener, the fashionista, the minimalist...

Holiday Crafts: Around the House Edition

Jenni from Jenni20 Designs gets crafty on the cheap. Here's how inspiration struck her and how you can create your own holiday glitter tinsel wreath with things you already have at home.

You know I've never met a piece of glitter I didn't like. In fact, my favorite colors (aside from the perennial favorites, pink and green) are glitter, plaid, and stripes.

I pulled out a vintage-style swing coat the other day in preparation for a holiday get-together. (Of course, that's before I realized it was going to be 80+ degrees the first weekend of December.) It is a shimmery, creamy, gold and silvery confection and the second I saw it hanging on the back of my bedroom door*, I had this glitter tinsel craft in mind.

Actually, this is a two-for-one tutorial because you can make either of these glittery holiday decorations using the techniques and materials: 1) the giant Christmas ornament 2) the sparkly holiday wreath.

If you're like me, you have a few wire hangers in the back of your closet (I know, cue Mommie Dearest) and an attic and/or garage full of random festive stuff. Add in some scissors and, if you're really industrious, some fancy jewelry making wire shaper thingamajigs, you're all set!

I'm not an actual Mommie Dearest, but I imagine this would be a fun craft to do with kiddos once you've done the prep work and are ready to wrap.

(You can also use variety-store garland. Certain "dollar" establishments around town sell 9ft. of glitter garland for $1. Grab two or three to make the ornament. If you really want to be fancy, a certain Bullseye store sells really plush glitter garland for $6. One package of that will make a really lush wreath.)

Wire hanger (remove the spongy stuff), plier doo-dads, tinsel garland of choice, and a pair of scissors.

There's really no official way to do this. You just bend and wrap. (Cue Elle Woods.)

For the ornament, I suggest bending your hanger into a mostly-round shape (the tinsel covers a multitude of geometrical sins!). For your wreath, you can play around with diamond or square shapes, but I found the traditional round wreath was the look for my door.

Bend the hanger until mostly circular; you can do this with your hands if you don't have fancy pliers. Leave the curved part--this will become your ornament's hanger.

 (My mom said it would be cute to wrap that part in a silver pipe cleaner--I didn't have any on hand.)
I promise it won't look like an acorn when you're finished.

Starting at the top of the circle, tie a loose knot (gently) of garland/tinsel around the wire, and start wrapping. You'll get into a rhythm pretty quickly and find what works best for you. I found that wrapping the tinsel around each edge of the circle before stringing it to the other side kept my tinsel where I wanted it.

You'll have to fuss a bit with it, but it takes almost no time at all to wrap. When you get to the end of your strand of garland, just tie the next strand to the first and keep wrapping. I used 3 packages of bargain-store tinsel, about 27ft. (!) for this little guy. But that was $3, so I thought that a pretty good deal.

To make the wreath, start the same way: tie your tinsel (gently--you don't want to break it) into a knot around the top of the hanger. I left mine on so I could hang it on my wreath hanger, but you can always bend yours down if you want to hang your wreath with a bow.

And then you start wrapping. Instead of going around both sides of the form, you'll just wrap, and wrap, and wrap all the way around. I counted this as a good arm workout.

If you have delicate hands, you might want to consider wearing gloves because
the tinsel can get pretty itchy after a while.

Don't worry about spacing it evenly around the circular form; you can always manipulate the tinsel once it's all wrapped and tied off to get the desired effect or cut off a few feet if you think you've got too much.

But my desired effect was a gloriously bushy, rich, and full wreath that is full of sparkle and pizazz, so I didn't cut one inch off.

I used the entire package of ridiculously full garland ($6 at the Bullseye store) and I love love how it turned out. I'd love to see how yours turns out!

Use skinny garland for a modern, streamlined look. Hang two or three together for even more flash. I'd also love to see one done up in green with a cute ornament hanging down in the middle of the wreath.

People, you have some wire hangers to repurpose!

Please tweet pictures to our Etsy Dallas Twitter account or post to our Team Facebook Page.


*Yes, the hanger was part of the inspiration!

Golden Summer

Oh Texas summer, your breath beats upon the backs of our necks like a bull chasing a rodeo clown, we run for our lives in concentric circles with no escape in sight. But wait, what's this? A shining beacon of hope…bright, golden, and handmade, here to save us from the most certain of deaths… with style, and grace. Thank the good artists of Etsy Dallas, our heroes!

Enjoy the cool breeze of your lovely central air and listen to some favorite tunes while you lounge on this silkscreened pillow by Butter Design Lab.

While you're there taking a break with Butter, you might as well do a little light summer reading, which can only be accompanied by Haute Hardware's librarian chic eyeglasses necklace.

Now that you've had a nice relaxing afternoon indoors and safe from the oppressive Texas sun, its time to pack your bags and take a summer holiday (in style, of course) Jenni20's nautical striped passport cover is most definitely the coolest way to travel. 

Don't leave your friends behind on your style adventures! Send your bestest a little shiny package of magical thinking from Paper Beats Rock.

Posted by Christina of Paperfingers.

Blog Crawl 2012

Blog Crawl: Week One
Welcome to the first installment of the Etsy Dallas Blog Crawl! Like any good pub crawl, our Blog Crawl will entertain you and introduce you to a different side of our fearless participants. Frothy beverage encouraged but not required. 

Many of our members author a blog, and these sites are as diverse and rad as the artists themselves. Make sure you add these to your daily readers; we love groupies!

This week, we feature two Etsy Dallas Members:

Meredith of Etsy Shop SheepishKnitCrochet
Meredith’s blog, One Sheepish Girl, began back in August of 2010.  It’s been amazing to watch this blog grow over the years.  She has a great eye for color and composition, and, let’s face it, she’s just the cutest thing ever! 
Three things you’ll love about OSG: tutorials that are coherent and totally do-able; photographs that showcase Meredith’s quirky cool style; and her curatorial feature: The Blush List. 
Ok, maybe four things you’ll love—she is a prolific blogger.  Updates all the time!  More eye candy all the time!!!!

Alicia of Etsy Shop LaAlicia

Alicia’s blog, creative adventures, began in January of 2008.  Throughout this blog, you’ll note Alicia’s commitment to making our world a better place.  Her particular brand of craftivism is evident not only in her works but also in her EcoMonday posts which feature products that are all at once functional, fabulous, and eco-conscious. 
Three things you’ll love about creative adventures: Alicia is a funny lady (her new Word for Wednesday posts never fail to make me giggle); her Meet the Artists posts feature cool folk that you’ll want to know more about; and you know when you read this blog that Alicia is a real, cool person. 

Blog Crawl authored by Jenni of Jenni20 Designs. 

V-day #craftchallenge winner

Yesterday, Jenni of Jenni20 Designs challenged her fellow Etsy Dallas members and Etsy Dallas lovers to a craft challenge: create an artistic interpretation of e.e. cummings "i carry your heart with me" by the end of Valentine's evening.  

A handful of intrepid crafters were up to the flash craft challenge and tweeted pictures of their entries. 

As they were all pretty darn awesome, Jenni was unable to pick a favorite, so she had to resort to the random number generator. 

And the winner of a $15 gift card of her choice is..... @CocoandCocoa


The runners up, in no particular order:




Etsy Dallas Member @ferrochie

Check out the poem if you haven't and follow Etsy Dallas on Twitter to keep up with our daily shenanigans and our special events! 


A Valentine's Day Contest and Giveaway

Whether you have a sweetie or not, let's celebrate l-o-v-e today with a classic poem and a fun giveaway!

Jenni, our sometimes blogger and Etsy Dallas Tweetheart, is an admitted word nerd and today she issues the following craft challenge to all crafters, lovers, and lovers of craft out there: 

By 6pm 8pm CST tonight, February 14th, create an artistic interpretation of e.e. cummings "i carry your heart with me" (click on the link to find the full text of this poem). 

Tweet a photo of your doodle, illustration, creative photo, yarn art, pasta necklace, or any other original craft project; make sure you at reply @etsydallas so we see it.

The winner will be selected by an algorithm that takes into consideration such things as: use of poem, interpretation of the poem, random phases of the moon, how much do you make Jenni and her friends smile when viewing the picture, and possibly a random number generator.   (If you don't tweet, email jenni20designs at att dot net with your submission.)

The prize will be your choice of $15 gift card to retailer of your choice: Starbucks, Barnes and Noble, or Target--three mass-market establishments that Jenni loves and frequents, and, since she is donating the prize, these are the choices she names for you. 

Show us the love, people!

Jenni and all the Etsy Dallas crew

(Almost) Instant Gift-Wrap

(Almost) Instant Gift-Wrap: a festive tutorial brought to you by Jenni of Jenni20 Designs

Poms are everywhere right now--and with good reason.  They're awesome!  This tutorial will teach you how to make awesome mini poms to adorn an array of holiday awesomeness, from trimming the tree, to wrapping gifts, to frosting yourself.

about 3 or 4 yards of yarn
a pair of scissors
a business card
manual dexterity
about 45 seconds to make the pompom
a gift to wrap
and someone to give it to. 

There are quite a few methods of pompom making, but the business-card pompom is my favorite because I love the size of pom you get—and everyone has a business card hanging around. 

Here’s how to make magic happen:

1.      Cut about 6” of yarn off your skein and set aside. 

2.      If you’d like to use some yarn to wrap your gift, measure out an arm’s length or so to set aside. 

3.      Wrap and wrap and wrap and wrap the long piece of yarn around the height of the business card (this will give you a cute mini size pom—about an inch when all is said and done.)  The more you wrap, the fuller your finished pompom will be. 

4.      Once you’ve wrapped all the yarn around the card, gingerly slide the loops off the business card. (I typically let the 6" piece keep it all together so it doesn't unravel when I'm sliding it off, but this is optional.)

5.      Take the 6” piece of yarn and tie it in the middle of the loop bundle.  I suggest tying multiple knots just to make sure everything stays in place.  A word of warning, don’t pull too hard or you run the risk of snapping the delicate yarn fibers.  Mom’s square knot (left over right, right over left) is a good one here. 

6.      Once your loop bundle is secure, take your scissors and snip the loops. 

7.      Give your pom a little shake; shape it if you want, maybe give it another little hair cut and voila!

8.      Use the 6” tie to attach your pompom to the gift wrap and give your charming package with pride.    

What else can you do with your pompom? (And, let’s be clear, there are those among us who insist it is spelled pompon.) 

Attach a safety pin to the back and wear it as a festive brooch (bonus points if you take a cheesy mirror picture after a long day at work and a hard workout).

Bobby pin it to your head and wear it as a charming hair ornament—on the side a la Frida or as a sassy ponytail pretty. 

Want more craft ideas?
Click on this tutorial like and make an array of poms and adorn a wreath, make a festive garland, festoon your roller skates.
Or how about this fun floral project?
a vase of pom flowers via
 Let's not forget the sassy scarf of poms:

This tutorial originally published at All Things Fabulous.

Twitter Throwdown: A Crafty Challenge

In case you missed it, we had quite an exciting crafty challenge on twitter the other day. It all began like this:
@DowdyStudio accepted that challenge, improvised on supplies, and came up with this twitterific beauty:
Next, @Ferrochie threw his, no, wallet into the ring. It has a place for everything
and is oh, so eco-chic!

And then, I had to get into the action with a comical party bunting:
As always, you can count on Etsy Dallas to keep crafting fun! Be sure to follow @EtsyDallas so you won't miss one minute of all our crafty happenings. I, personally, can't wait to see what Jenni, our Chief Twitter Officer comes up with next. We would love to have you join us in our next Crafty Challenge!

More Treats to Beat the Heat

1. It's a Hoot Apron by miamaria
2. English Garden Pearl Necklace by Tefi
3. Mini Bowls by Karmacrochet
4. Sweetest Matryoshka Dolls by RegalCottage
5. Mini Donut Ornament or Keychain by Midnightsnack
6. Organic Baby Onesie by thepapernestco
7. Peaceful 8x10 Print by themiscellany
8. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You Cards by ohlouisedesigns
9. Green Glasses Passport Cover by Jenni20

It seems the heat is here to stay for awhile, so Anna from For the Love of Joy found us some more cool picks to help us beat the heat. Enjoy!