Monday, June 28, 2010

Sarah's Spotlight - BeachyRustica

Who isn't ready for summer? And what's better than a trip to the beach on a warm summer day? I know I would have certainly preferred that to work today! Sometimes though you just can't get to the ocean. We all know how that goes. Luckily for us, BeachyRustica offers the next best thing - bring a bit of the beach to you! I happened to be browsing through different sections of Craft Is Art tonight for my spotlight. The beautiful colors found in this store drew me right in! I happen to love sea glass as well and am really intrigued by how this shop owner turns it into cabinet knobs.

The largest variety of items in this shop are the cabinet knobs, but the owner also offers drawer pulls, wall hooks, magnets, and tiles. In addition to sea glass, the owner offers fused glass knobs which are also quite unique. There is such a large variety of colors to choose from! I look at one cabinet knob listing and keep checking out the others to see different color combinations! You can visit the owner's personal website at to view different colors.

As mentioned before, BeachyRustica also offers ceramic tiles. These tiles knobs, hooks, and magnets are created from tiles handmade by Emily Ulm. While this shop mostly features beach-themed tiles (starfish, mermaid, and seahorse among others), the personal website shows a larger selection including an acorn, tree, and rabbit. Since I already raved about this shop's wonderful color selection, it should also be noted that these hooks are also available in several different glazes to match your personal taste.

I have to admit that I don't necessarily give much thought to cabinet knobs, drawer pulls, and wall hooks. Maybe I've lived in too many apartments, where I don't have much say in these things! But I love how light and summery the cabinets are in BeachyRustica's pictures! It does inspire me to redecorate, although I'm not sure my landlord would approve!

BeachyRustica also has a shop on Etsy.

You can friend BeachyRustica on Facebook.

Friday, June 25, 2010

It's play time for the cats!

Introducing my Catnip Mat! Here are photos of my newest item! 
I love the way it turned out! I admit it was a pain working through all the cabling, but I think this will hold up well to Max and Izzy's claws - at least I'm hoping! If I had all wool yarn in my stash, I would felt one, but I think I'm out right now. That might be a future project.

These catnip mats are made at the time of purchase to keep the catnip super fresh!
Pheoda was happily sleeping until I took out the catnip for this mat. The poor thing drugged herself up, so she wasn't really in the mood for a photo shoot later!
She leaned right over the sniff the mat, but she wasn't quite in the mood to play. I think she got mad at me poking her with the mat to get a good picture! She eventually ran away. I found her later on the ironing board, and she was very close to playing then. She still looks a little dazed in those pictures. Poor girl. I think she might have recovered by now.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sarah's Spotlight - Purple Sparkle Crafts

Finally! A new spotlight! This one better be good to make up for such a long break... I browsed through many stores the last few days looking for the right one to spotlight. Then, I came across Purple Sparkle Crafts and knew I was back in business! The shop owner, Becky, joined the Etsy community way back in 2007, when Etsy was still fairly young and unknown.

What I find impressive is that Becky says she started making candles, wax melts, and bath and body products only in 2006. She comes from a completely different background having worked in the world of Insurance. After being laid off from her place of employment, Becky spent several months looking for new work before deciding to open her shop. At one time, she also had a "real" store in Bath, United Kingdom, but now she sells exclusively on Etsy.

What really drew me to Purple Sparkle Crafts are Becky's beautiful cupcake candles! I'm sure I've mentioned before that I have a bit of a sweet tooth. I grew up in a household where ice cream was a nightly dessert, and Lucky Charms and Frosted Flakes were not uncommon for breakfast. Ask any of my coworkers - they will tell you that I seek out sweets at work. Becky's candles look yummy enough to eat! She says that she was drawn to bakery fragrances when she started making her candles. Shaping them to look like cupcakes is her way of standing out in a crowd!

In addition to her candles, Becky also offers wax melts, jarred candles, soaps, and even one quite impressive teacup candle. I really don't think you can go wrong with any of items. With scents like birthday cake, cinnamon bun, pink sugar, rocky road, and sweet summer pie, I know I'm ready for dessert. There are a few non-sugary scents such as freesia and rose for those who don't want cavities!

Becky also has a second Etsy shop, Amy May, where she sells handmade accessories, craft supplies, and vintage items. This shop is currently in vacation mode, but be sure to check back!

You can also find Becky at:


Sunday, June 20, 2010

Poor Neglected Blog

I realize that I had no spotlight this week after giving 6/14 as a return date from vacation. Sigh... I was so excited to upload, organize, and label my pictures from vacation, that I couldn't seem to get back into this whole blogging thing. But then my sister told me today that I had not posted anything to my blog in quite some time, so my neglect has not gone unnoticed. It's now midnight, my fiance might still be out fishing if he's not on his way back home, I overspent at the outlets today, and I should be in bed. But, here I am!

What's new with Yard By Yard Knits? I posted my Topaz Dog Sweater and Orange and Yellow Baby Hat to my store this past week. I did struggle with the price for my dog sweater. I have the same sweater listed in a smaller size for $25. This sweater is a large, and I can also make it in extra-large. I had already decided to charge a little extra for it, but I wasn't sure how much. I debated between $28 and $30, but decided to go with the more even $30. Is $5 too much of a price increase for the extra time and yarn that the bigger sweater uses? I'm still deciding...

My current knitting project is a small catnip mat. I am making a rectangle to fill with fluff and catnip for my kitty friends. My sister emailed me and said here's a great idea for your shop. I've made some cat toys in the past but nothing for the shop yet. It's on my endless to do list. So I have dropped all other knitting to make sweet Izzy a catnip mat! This one will be long enough for her to hold in her front paws and kick with her back feet, allowing for maximum play and fun! One problem with knit cat toys is that their claws sometimes get stuck in the yarn while playing. I decided to go with a multiple cable pattern to keep the stitches a little tighter with the hopes that claws won't get stuck as easily. It looks great, but working 5 cables every 4th row certainly does slow down my progress! What could be an afternoon project will likely take me a couple days. Oh well, it will look beautiful when it's done!

I'm also looking forward to being featured in an upcoming blog by Audrey's Country Crafts. Her Etsy shop is currently closed while she is working on some home renovations. But she features other Etsy shops on her blog. I will also be participating in my first giveaway through her blog! Yea! I'm pretty excited about this. I've been wanting to do one without being able to organize it in my head. If someone else can do it for me, I won't complain!

It really is time for bed now. I will return with a spotlight this week!