Julie Green, from UpUpCreative, gave me the low down on the crafty scene in Rochester, New York. Julie is a talented graphic designer whose work is bright & bold. She’s also the brains behind the Each Penny Pretty design blog. Check her out on Twitter!
Jennifer Joy Creative: All my creations are inspired by nature and my little family. I love to work with natural fibers such as hemp, linen and cotton for my clothing and wool, alpaca, bamboo, tencel, and various others for my yarn.
Are you ready for a fiesta? I know I am! Cinco de Mayo (if your Spanish is rusty, that means the Fifth of May) is a Mexican holiday commemorating the Mexican army’s defeat of the French forces at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. So, now that you know what you’re celebrating, let’s get to the handmade stuff!
What is Cinco de Mayo without some good Mexican food? Kitchen Stories has an easy solution for you! Not only will their Mexican Spice mix make your enchiladas, tacos, and fajitas easier, but the cute graphic tin will look great in your kitchen!
Now your food is looking good, so it’s time to make sure you look good too! I love this Fiesta Brooch from Frank Creations. What a colorful way to show your Cinco de Mayo spirit!
From a Mexican feast to Mexican elements for your home, this cool handmade mosaic shrine by Blue Terracotta was inspired by funerary temples in Mexico. It would look exceptionally beautiful in an entry way or living room.
Another way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo is by supporting Mexican artists. I found two wonderful illustrators whose fabulous work will help to make any room feel more cheery. First up is Geninne’s Art Store. This wonderful print of a puppy has a cool collage feel.
Next is Rosie Music whose shop is filled with fanciful watercolor illustrations. This example of her work, from her umbrellas series, is just the right thing for that empty bit of wall that you have.
Another piece that was inspired by Mexico is this amazing photograph from Jen Murray Photography. The vibrant colors could liven up even the darkest space.
Last but not least is my favorite item of this week’s batch, an eco-friendly Frida Kahlo softie created by Sew Sew Suck Ur Toe. What a fabulous way to bring Frida Kahlo, and the spirit of Cinco de Mayo, into your home!
I hope that you all have a fabulous Cinco de Mayo fiesta! Join me next week when we send some not so subtle hints to spouses and kids everywhere as we spotlight some of the best handmade Mother’s Day gifts!
One of the reasons I love to be a vendor at art and craft festivals, is the opportunity to meet the other vendors. People like me, people who like to make stuff. It’s even better when I somehow end up being at the same shows with the same people over and over again…it’s almost like having co-workers!
One such co-worker for me is Mu To-Sanguan, who has been my neighbor at at least four craft shows this year. She makes adorable clothes for kids and babies, featuring simple designs in bright colors, with a ton of personality.
Mu was inspired to start making things for kids while she was babysitting for friends one day. She took a look at the kids’ blanket, and thought: I could make something cuter than that.
Even though she studied applied physics and electrical engineering in college, she already knew that working in a corporate office was not for her. The opportunities for creative expression were few and far between. She was already a self-taught sewer, and so started experimenting with making cute little things for kids, and eventually Lil’ Fishy was born, in late 2003.
Mu likes to make things for kids, because she feels totally free to experiment with mixing colors and patterns. She has found that parents tend to be more adventurous with what they buy for their children, than what they pick for themselves. One of her most popular designs is the reversible jumper, which is a fun way to combine two or more fabrics into one, colorful garment.
Mu designs every item herself, and is inspired by the process of sourcing for fabric, when a certain color or group of colors will catch her eye. She’s also inspired by her Asian heritage, and is often drawn to motifs and images that suggest her background.
Everything at Lil’ Fishy is made by hand, including the silk screened images on the t-shirts and onesies, by Mu herself and her small group of helpers. The Lil’ Fishy collection is currently focused on clothes for kids and babies, but a few things for women have recently snuck into the line. Mu hopes to add a few items for men, as well as some pretty things for the home, in the new year.