Last Minute Christmas Ideas!

Happy Holidays & Last Minute Christmas Ideas!

Wow, it is December 13, 2017!  Are you ready for the Holidays?  Have you bought all your Christmas presents!  Are you a person who waits until the last minute to buy your gifts?

I have only purchased 1 present!  Oh, I have waited until the last minute and I am pretty sure I  am not alone!  Have you been too busy to go shopping or you do not like crowds?

I used to buy Christmas throughout the year but I have fallen off the wagon for sure. The 1 gift  I have I bought during the Summer months. Nothing else…

Have I waited too long to order online?  No!  Plus, I do like to support my handmade Makers on Etsy.  You can find things that are ready to ship items. Also, many Handmade sellers on Etsy that I have not showcased here on the Blog do have completed items that they can gift wrap for you and you can add expedited shipping as an upgrade.  It is getting close as United States Postal Service is BUSY.  If you take that into consideration for gift giving then, go for it.  Buy something for your loved ones that are made with lots of love and handcrafted! I cannot tell you enough that it is good to support a local seller within the USA, or if you are in Europe to support your sellers there!

See my shop at Nike E. Bottalico on Etsy

I have 3 Etsy Sellers this week who are all members of  ArtisanIndie which is a wonderful Business Coaching Community “…where handmade, local business is celebrated and nurtured.” Do click on the link and see what it is all about. The owner of the Company is Sarah Sewell and her Experts who are a dream to learn from!

I queried the sellers if they were last minute shoppers themselves and if they have any ready to ship items in their Etsy shops for all those last minute shoppers.  Now, they do have ready to ship gifts, (YAY!) but get on it as time is ticking and the United States Postal Service is super-duper Busy!  So if you click on a link, like it buy it right away,  and hopefully, the post-person can get it to you on time. Some of you may know the old Postal slogan, “through rain, sleet, and snow, etc, etc…” (I forgot I had to look up their Motto): “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” While the Postal Service has no official motto, the popular belief that it does is a tribute to America’s postal workers.” That is their Motto, however, there is so much more mail nowadays with online shopping than when this motto came into play.

Sheila Ryan at Babymoon

My first Ety Seller for this week is Sheila Ryan of Babymoon.  I have blogged about Sheila before (sometime last year).  I am constantly amazed by her spirit and energy as she is a business owner, a wife and has 9 children!  I cannot imagine how much she has on her plate and I love her creative soul!  I have seen an evolution in her creativity!  It is really cool to watch. I would love to get to know Sheila better and she only lives a few hours away from me… maybe someday we can have a coffee together!

Sheila is like many of us who are creatives and she does not have her own Christmas list bought and completed!  However, Sheila does have some last minute gift ideas for you to check out and purchase!  I have listed two here for those of you who have waited (like me!).

Sheila named her shop Babymoon since she sees a new addition as “…a babymoon [which] is that sweet time when a mother and family welcome the newest little…” baby into their home. “It is a time of gentleness, reflection, love, and peace…” Sheila sees a Babymoon “…as the qualities, she strives to incorporate in all of her products.” The time a mom has with her “…newborn is so very precious and short, but so incredibly powerful in the life and growth of the new mother.” Sheila believes that by supporting “…new moms is one of her dear passions in real life, and she has made bonds and has dear friends because of her former work with the la leche league and that will last forever.”

Babymoon
      Love Key Fob – Gifts for Her: Click Here
   Pen Planner Holder – Babymoon: Click here

Sheila makes any number of accessories from monogrammed luggage tags, pen/pencil holders, Halloween/dress-up masks, fingerless gloves, fun planner items, travel cases, personalized Christmas ornaments, and allergy tags.  Most if not all of Sheila’s items can be personalized!  She is an amazing small business owner and she adds new collections of her work frequently.  Listed above are a couple of ready to ship items!  Now onto my next Etsy Seller!

Meg McGhee at SirWinslowsZoo

Another shop is SirWinslowsZoo, owner, is Meg McGhee.   I asked her if she has anything that is ready to ship and she does!  Again, my caveat is to order now, and order fast! Don’t wait until the last second when you have to depend on the USPS (United States Postal Service).

Meg has really precious items. She makes stuffed animals, pillows, fish, sharks, and Gnomes (a few other items too)!  Her items are adorable, whimsical and unique.  I smile looking at her items as they make me happy to see them!


Click pictures to go directly to the Shark in Meg’s Shop

Click pictures to go to site

These shark cases, as well as the Gnome pillows, just make me smile as Meg’s products are magical to me and oh so, sweet!  Who would not want a shark to keep up with your pencils, your sunglasses or any small item you need for the day! I find them to be great fun and may have to get my own!

Meg named her shop after a fictional character named Sir Winslow Smith who was a professor of zoology at Oxford University. He traveled around studying Tigers, plants and other things of interest. Sir Winslow has been a part of Meg’s life for a long time! Be sure to read her about page as her story and the way she has developed her products for you, is awe-inspiring!

You can also see Meg’s website at SirWinslowZoo and see more of her products and her own blog.  She has amazing products that you and your child will love!  Meg is also a member of ArtisanIndie’s Community.

Jacqueline McLaughlin of BlueLotusDesignsShop

Ever since I joined Flourish @ArtisanIndie I have been able to get to know Jacqueline McLaughlin of BlueLotusDesignsShop She is delightful and a person I wish I lived closer as she is funny. I could see us being friends (more than online).  

She is very active in Artisan Indie and I have learned a lot from her questions of the group.  I also love her products!  She makes very creative items that her customers love!  She also has a shop that offers a number of items for your perusing and shopping.  You will love her offerings.

Jacqueline McLaughlin shop BlueLotusDesignsShop offers mobiles with lights (ingenious!) and had jewelry, crystals, crystal necklaces, and earrings.  She also offers Crystal crowns that are so boho chic — meaning a cross between Bohemian and hippie influences!  I personally adore her product and have purchased some stones from her to add to my own supplies. Jacqueline also makes Crowns, Jewelry and many other items. Do check out her items!

Jacqueline McLaughlin’s Click pictures to go shopping

Gorgeous Earrings from Jacqueline’s shop Click the picture.

The three women in this blog are all successful members of “Flourish” which is now becoming ArtisanIndie.  The people who have all used the training to better their businesses from Sarah Sewells Community are successful in many ways!  I am a member too, I learn more and more each day.  I love to give Sarah a shout-out as the community is great and will assist anyone with their small business to grow.

 

As with each blog, I thank you for reading, clicking like, commenting and sharing for all the beautiful handmade sellers!  I so appreciate you coming! I want to remind you that I am an affiliate blogger for Etsy.com and I receive a very small fee if an item sells from clicks on my blog. It is not why I support handmade sellers, I am one myself. I support them as I believe it is good to purchase from small businesses and to purchase handmade items made with loving hands.

~nike

Oh P.S. — For those new to WordPress, this is how you comment, (1)first — Click the blog title first, and it will open the blog so you will see the heart at the top. (2)If you will click the Turquoise heart it will give the blog a heart, you are also able to comment by clicking on the purple page symbol, hearting at the turquoise heart symbol and (3) at the bottom of the page, you can “star” the blog!  (4) Add a comment!

Thanks for letting me know who has visited and read the blog… stats are one thing but knowing who visited is “Ace” for me!

 

 

Holiday Ideas – You will not regret reading this!

I asked a couple of people who are artists “what they are doing to get ready for Christmas” and of course, they are in the throes of creating for the Holidays, with Volunteerism, getting ready for Cooking and having family time!  Ah, the balance of being an artist and coming up for air to breathe and spend time with family and friends!

These artists will warm your heart. You can find some excellent and festive gifts for your loved ones or just for yourself! Look at their shops and join their Facebook Business pages for offers right on Facebook!

I ask you, what are you doing to get ready for the Holiday Season? There are so many different holidays during November through January. It is not just about Christmas, I am focusing on Christmas, but I am very cognizant that there are many different Holidays during this time of year.  I celebrate with you, whatever you celebrate, and am so happy you are here visiting my blog! Leave a like, a heart or a comment, thanks!

To lead I am going to start with a favorite artist friend of mine MJ –Mary Jane Chadbourne!  I actually swoon over her work!  I am in love with her art and her processes!  This is one of Mary Jane’s larger pieces:

This season Mary Jane (who goes by MJ) has made a number of Santa’s Elves that she has been selling and I believe she has sold-out all of the Elves at this time. I loved her Elves and was not quick enough to purchase one of them!

Santa’s Elves 2017

Currently, MJ is working on some vintage style pieces and I cannot wait to see them! I will be in line this time to get one of her pieces of art!

MJ has been shown at the “Wonderland Gallery” in Las Vegas, Nevada. She is an acclaimed artist, as she has been shown in many other galleries in Las Vegas and Utah! She has also been featured in the book: The Art of Crayon: Draw, Color, Resist, Sculpt, Carve! which you can find on Amazon.

MJ is one busy person.  MJ  has been in numerous magazines including Stampington, Cloth, Paper Scissors and more.  She experiences that push-pull of being an artist while doing other things like teaching classes in the Artful Gathering each year for the past few years.  I adore her style and her art. She is a very precious person to get to know via the internet. I would love to know her in person too! She is graceful and really kind to share her talent as she does. 

MJ is an instructor at the Artful Gathering, and at this time of year, she is also working on a class (her class along with all the other makers are extremely hush-hush until they are revealed!). MJ has a wonderful studio at the back of her property where the magic happens! I have taken one of MJ’s classes and they are so good! MJ  stated, that she has taught five classes on Artful Gathering which have all had great success and next to creating art, teaching is the love of her life!   You really should look into a class by her as you will learn so much about creating!  You can also purchase a DVD if you cannot take the class in “real time” and with the DVD you can take the class at a later date!  Like I said, I took a class but I also purchased a DVD to go back to over and over for a refresher as the class was so full of ideas and techniques.

Please visit MJ’s Website to see the full array of her work, as it is outstanding! She is a wonderful mixed media artist who is able to work in many mediums very successfully!  I once saw in a magazine or a book that MJ Chadbourne made a very large mixed media piece that she donated to charity. MJ  and her husband (who is also very talented, he is a woodworker) work together making items for charitable purposes to give back. 

MJ and her husband have donated art projects for various fundraisers around the Las Vegas valley. One of the charities they have donated to is to ALS to help families and persons experiencing ALS.  The Chadbourne’s both always believe in giving back!

Click this link to see the beautiful art of MJ and everyone wants to to be visually delighted see magical art during the Holidays: desertdreamstudios.weebly.com

One of Mary Jane’s Shrines

See MJ’s Etsy Shop for wonderful gift ideas!

Next, is Sherry Westfall Matthews of Dalaimomma on Etsy is a fantastic and celebrated artist in her own right and I am so enamored with her work. She is another artist I admire tremendously.  I would love to grow into the kind of artist that Sherry is.  In Sherry’s bio, it states that “Sherry Westfall Matthews is a self-taught Southern artist who lives and creates in Alabama with the support of her two kids, three dogs, and a cat.”  Sherry believes wholeheartedly that creating art keeps people young at heart by through looking for the magic of inspiration in the world and “…continuing to grow by experimenting with new art techniques and products.”

Sherry’s work on Etsy

Sherry fully supports and is an ambassador for Retro Cafe Art (which I support and buy lots of items from too). Sherry is a long-time loyal Retro Cafe Art Gallery customer (she says that’s where the Art Supply Fairy lives and the art Fairy is Kristin Hubick!). You will find that Sherry will use items from Retro Cafe Art to assist in her creative processes. She also creates her own art by sculpting items, using found items and I think she can make things just from the air if she wanted!

Sherry is also an ambassador for RELICS & ARTIFACTS®. If you read Sandra Everstson’s Blog and shout out to Sherry:  Sandra Evertson states that she is overjoyed to introduce you to the RELICS & ARTIFACTS® Brand Ambassadors. This is our hand-picked team of designers created to spread the beauty and potential of the RELICS & ARTIFACTS® line of craft products: Sherry Westfall Matthews believes imagination is much like a muscle…the more you create, the stronger your inspiration becomes!” Also, Sherry being self-taught leads her to want to share her trial and error wins (and losses).   

Sherry’s work has been featured in numerous publications including Somerset Studio, Holidays & Celebrations, Somerset Gallery, Art Doll Quarterly, and Jewelry Affaire.  You can also follow Sherry on Instagram   (@sherrymatthewsart) or find her on Facebook at Sherry Matthews Art/ Dalaimomma.  You can find Sherry on WordPress also. I will get the link and post it!

Right now Sherry and her daughter are working with Toys for Tots for the holiday season. They have a small group of volunteers (approximately 15) who are doing everything in their power to help 1800 children this year! Wow, that is a lot of kids in need. This small group of volunteers take the applications, help raise funds for the toys and fill the bags of toys. It is a completely hands and hearts for this organization. The team for Toys for Tots has a big giveaway next weekend so they are insanely busy. Sherry is looking forward to getting back to her art, however, the time spent giving and helping area children who have less is very rewarding. Sherry and her daughter have been volunteering for 3 years and it has become a tradition for her family to give back to her community. I admire what Sherry is doing while she is teaching & modeling for her daughter the same values.

I worked in the Social Work field for 22 years and worked with people and children who were at Risk of harm or who had experienced harm. I did a lot of Brown Santa’s, Toys for Tots, filling sacks and taking gifts to Foster children and giving back at Christmas time. It is a need and a lot of artists who are drawn to create but also drawn to give back in their own ways to their communities. Many artists donate their art to raise money for charities. 

 

Well, as you can tell, I am a raving fan of both of the ladies I have featured today!  I adore their art and the processes they go through to get the final product~

Last but not least, is my weekly shout out and gratitude for Artisan Indie and Sarah Sewell’s Community of Artisans. I am a raving fan of hers also!  She has helped me understand the business side of my art. She is helping many artists understand how to have a business by doing what you love.  Sarah is a “Postive Thinker,” and believes in advocating for the small individual businesses. Sarah started her business to help others! She has had other very successful businesses and she chose to open a business that is fruitful but also gives back.  She has wonderful goals to support Artisans, and believes in people! I mention her in all my blogs out of gratitude for what she has given to me as far as training, learning, friendship, and a wonderful community of people that I belong to!  Check out Artisan Indie! On the link to Artisan Indie,  right on the front page she offers a Boot Camp for new Etsy Sellers! Right there for free! Do join us in this community, as you will not regret it!  One day she will have her own sellers site for Artisans.

Well, we are the end of this week’s blog, I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed writing it for you! I will be back next Wednesday featuring more handmade sellers and artisans in their own right.  I will try to feature “Content-based business owners” who are Experts in their fields such as SEO, Finding your Target Customer, Writing Exciting Copy and on and one. The Content-based Experts are a part of Artisan Indie. I will try to add one Expert each week along with the artisans I showcase each if they aren’t too, too, busy!  If not I will be featuring them in the coming new year (2018)!

Please share the blog on your own social media as these Artisans are worthy of being seen for their gifts! Remember,  I am an affiliate Blogger for Etsy.com and the links I provide if you purchase, I receive a small fee, but that is not why I showcase any of the sellers I showcase, I do it as I believe in them and their art!

Love & Light to you, and thank you for reading!

xoxo

nike

Oh P.S. — For those new to WordPress, this is how you comment, first — Click the blog title first, and it will open the blog so you will see the heart at the top. If you will click the Turquoise heart it will give the blog a heart, you are also able to comment by clicking on the purple page symbol, hearting at the turquoise heart symbol and at the bottom of the page, you can “star” the blog!  Thanks for letting me know who has visited and read the blog… stats are one thing but knowing who visited is “Ace” for me!