Monday, September 18, 2017

Apple Season is Here

by Cindy Lindgren

Before pumpkin-flavored everything invaded the marketplace, apples were the gateway to Fall. For me, September is for visiting apple orchards, baking apple pies or just setting a bowl of them on the kitchen table for snacking. Here's a few items from our HandmadeMN members to get you in the mood for apples.

For starters, I love these plaid totes for carrying your apples home from the orchard or farmer's market. The smaller bins filled with apples keep the apples in sight for healthy snacking.

Fabric Storage Bins by Shaggy Baggy
When you start baking your apples into tasty pies, you might need a new apron for inspiration.
Floral ruffled apron by Bethie Ann Designs
These apple quilted hot pads are perfect for handling hot apple pies!
Available by My Bit of Wonder
Even if you don't have time to bake, you can fill your home with the aroma of crisp green apples.
Handmade Candle by Auntie B's Wax
Not all apples are edible.These charming apple earrings would make a great Fall gift.
Apple Earrings by Dragonfly Adornments
Last of all, I found this wonderfully creative, layered paper art by Crafterall,
Matryoshka "Apple" Nesting doll art by Crafterall.
Celebrate apples by visiting a Minnesota Apple orchard near you! Check out this Minnesota Grown website for a list to check out.



Monday, August 28, 2017

Little Luxuries for $8 or Less


By JeffAmbroz


Handmade can be a bargain!

Let’s face it:  Handcrafted goods often cost more than mass-market items made in factories.  And that’s how it should be.  Prices of handmade products reflect the skills and artisanship of their makers.

However, you may be surprised that many HandmadeMN members offer items at a wide range of price points, many at $8 or less.  When you factor in their unique qualities and special craftsmanship, each of these items is truly an affordable little luxury.

Reading is a simple pleasure, made even more enjoyable by a beautiful, beaded dragonfly bookmark by DragonflyAdornments.  It’s made with cotton cord, glass beads and a pewter charm:  gorgeous materials for an item that sells for $8.

Nature-inspired beauty abounds in this handcrafted bookmark by DragonflyAdornments.

HandmadeMN makers are getting creative in offering value priced items, using technology to bring you artful items for your home.  After you purchase it, this arrow print from DreamhouseCreative arrives to your email inbox as a digital download.  Simply print it on your own paper, and you’ll have an 8” x 10” artist-drawn print ready for framing, for the very low price of $5.

Print at home for just $5:  Affordable art from local designer DreamhouseCreative.
 
UffdaUffdaUffda’s eye pillow will bring you calm and relaxation, for only $8.  It’s created with cotton, batik-style fabric, and filled with flax seeds and organic lavender flowers.  You’ll love using this item on the plane, after a workout, or just to unwind after a long day at work.

Rest your eyes with flax seeds and organic lavender flowers.
For just $6, you can have a whimsical, handcrafted present for yourself or someone special.  This tea-inspired mini zine looks like a tea bag. The maker, SharonsCompendium, tells us, “This little book relates the story of a Buddhist master in China, whose advice to students who wanted to discuss the mysteries of enlightenment was ‘go have some tea.’”  For just $1.50 more, you can add a wonderful gift set option.

For the tea lover:  a little book of whimsy and inspiration.
 
Keep in mind that bargain priced items can still be sturdy and highly functional.  This Scandinavian flowers keychain by relaine is made with three layers of interfacing, ensuring it will keep its shape for years. Nickel hardware and a split ring for your keys make it a pretty and practical bargain at only $8.

Designer style at a practical price:  a sturdy keychain by Relaine.
  
As these items demonstrate, for $8 or less, you can add handcrafted beauty, function and inspiration to your day-to-day life.  Take some time today to explore the many shops of the HandmadeMN Etsy team, and challenge yourself to select an item that will delight you or someone you love for $8 or less. 


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Eclipsed

by Cindy Lindgren

Did you see it? Or not see it? I'm talking about the Total Eclipse that happened on Monday. Here in the Twin Cities, we battled clouds but did manage to catch a glimpse of our 85% eclipse between thinning clouds around 1:00pm.

Susie from Metaling Susie went to the Rose Garden near Lake Harriet, Minneapolis with her daughters. They caught glimpses of the eclipse between clouds and remarked how exciting it was to see the progress of the moon.

Here is a pair of copper crater moon earrings from her Etsy shop in celebration of the eclipse.You can find them in her shop here.



 Shelly and her family went to Lincoln, Nebraska to view the eclipse. She said it was a great view even through partly cloudy skies. The can of Sunkist makes a fun pun for the occasion.

Shelly is sharing a HIP Mini Travel purse from her Etsy shop, Bound to be Creative shop. You can purchase it here.



Below are a few more sun and moon themed items from our HandmadeMN members:
Sun Moon and Stars Charm Necklace by Gemstone Talisman
Women's Sun shirt with UV protection SPF 50 by Margaret Mousley

Sun-dried Cotton Soap by BathNBeads
Palette Passion hand painted a silk Sunflower scarf.
Moon Jewelry by Dragonfly Adornments