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The Many Sides of Vivienne Strauss

I seriously don’t know how I missed this, and I feel bad because if I had known I would have shared much sooner about the great wife of artist Matte Stephens — her name is Vivienne Strauss. I mean I knew of her, but I had no clue that she is also an artist who has not 1 but 3 Etsy shops! Yes three! Oh the many sides of Vivienne Strauss…

The first etsy shop is called The Other Side of Vivienne where her paintings are sold, then there’s a shop called The Double Sided Vivienne with original collages, and finally the third featuring vintage patterns called Modern Design 901.

I stumbled upon her paintings when I was looking at Matte’s fun owl head costume and noticed a comment there from his wife, and I followed the comment straight to her Flickr photostream where I discovered this whole WORLD of lively art by Viv herself. Then I located her shops and can clearly see her eye is for retro quirky characters that range from Josephine Baker to ladies with poodles and oh-so-posh lifestyles.

I’m quite pleased to have found Vivienne and to know that Matte and Viv are a couple of really cool who do what they love, are in love, and making people happy with their art. But you know what they say… behind every good man is a GREAT woman so I should have known than Vivienne must be some kind of wonderful because look at the mega-successful Matte. Three cheers for artistic couples!

(images from vivienne strauss)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, etsy on November 03, 2008

Hello Handmade {New!}

Just in! The talented Betsy Dunlap and Shanna Murray have teamed up to open Hello Handmade, a shop that just opened this morning. Combining the artful calligraphy of Betsy with the beautiful illustration of Shanna, you will find a special ’09 calendar, seasonal print, and some vintage hangers to purchase for display use – all ready for you in their new shop this morning. Congrats, ladies!



In the weeks and months to come, you can expect cards, gift tags, and more! Not only are collaborations huge right now, but have you noticed hangers becoming increasingly popular to display prints, photography, and calendars vs. traditional frames? Fun!

Thank you Betsy and Shanna for letting us know about your new shop, best wishes for a successful business!

Psst: Have you seen “The Jill”, Betsy’s custom calligraphy style? It would be perfect for a wedding or on place cards for a fancy dinner, don’t you think?

(images from hello handmade paperie)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on November 03, 2008

Folksy – NEW!

I have a question for everyone and I’d love your input but first I have to tell you about Folksy before I ask… I haven’t seen this site blogged about yet but I think that Etsy and DaWanda have a new kid on the block to play nice with called Folksy!

Currently in beta, Folksy is a brand new online marketplace for independent arts and crafts based in the UK. Like Etsy and DaWanda, you can set up a shop on Folksy and sell your wares… If you are not based in the UK you cannot sell right now, but they will soon roll out international sales in February 2009 which will include eighteen of the major world currencies currently supported by Paypal. If you haven’t heard of Folksy, I invite you to go check it out and see what you think.

About Folksy, “Folksy champions cool crafts and design talent. We marry up designers and crafters with buyers who want individual, quality stuff that’s made with love. Plus, we run design competitions and other fun stuff.”

About Etsy, “Your place to buy and sell all things handmade.”

About DaWanda, “Dawanda – Products With Love” and, “DaWanda is the place for unique and individual products and people. Buy handmade and hard to find goods, share your discoveries with your friends and create your own collections.”

Now for the question… What do you think of all of these similar online marketplaces? I’d love to hear your opinion so please… fire away! Do you think it can be compared to blogging — the more the merrier, or is it different? Do you think that having an Etsy, a DaWanda, now a Folksy… that it’s just too much? Do you think it benefits the sellers on these sites? If you sell on such sites, why do you choose to sell on them and not just one?

I personally wish someone would start a site like this in Japan but with an English version as well! Wouldn’t that be the BEST. THING. EVER?

(images from folksy)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, real talk, shopping on October 30, 2008

Helena Carrington

Helena Carrington is a textile designer and illustrator based in Norwich, England. Inspired by travel and culture, especially Italian; the architecture, streets, colors, and textures, she designs illustrative and photographic digitally printed interior textiles, accessories (such as pillows), photography and art/illustration pieces.

Helena uses both digital and screen printing to produce unique designs with a sense of place, whether it’s through illustrative buildings or an Italian car on a pillow for example. I just love her aesthetic, it’s quirky and fun, bright, unique. I can get a feeling for her personality through her work and I think she would be a really fun travel companion!

You can find Helena’s work online at the new Folksy or in her Etsy shop. I really like her inspiration – her trips to Paris, Italy… How nice!

(images from helena carrington)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, textiles on October 30, 2008

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