Tag Archives: oh you crafty huh

Watercolor Flowers

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Watercolor Flowers

Hello! My mom, sister, and I learned the joys of watercolor painting after taking a class together last July. It was so much fun and it inspired my mom and I to take it up as a hobby. I even treated all of us to an at home class last month as an early birthday gift for my mom! During our at home class, our wonderful teacher conducted a painting session on roses and I am so proud of my mom for her dedication to practicing watercolor in her downtime. This past week, I was finally able to paint with her during a visit and decided to see what I could remember of painting roses. I also tried my hand at pansies! Check it out:

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I like to fancy myself as a creative person in terms of writing, fashion, and figure skating. However, I have never considered myself an artistic person until trying watercolor painting; I can barely draw a stick figure! Quitting my day job for a career in painting is not in my future, but I feel proud of myself whenever I paint anything and it doesn’t turn out awful. At the end of the day, I am trying something new and enjoying myself and that’s the most important thing.

A month had gone by since learning how to paint roses and while I definitely need a refresher, I felt pretty good about the two I made on the first page. The red one is my favorite! In fact, I was having so much fun painting with my mom that I wanted to try something completely new: Pansies. Pansies are one of my favorite flowers and they always remind me of my grandma, who would tend to beautiful window boxes filled with them. The variety of colors and delicate petals speak to me and I know that spring has officially sprung when I start to see them at stores!

To start, I tried to paint a pansy from memory and that didn’t go too hot. A reference picture was a must and I found some great drawings of pansies that were most helpful for my next attempts. Although none of the paintings I tried on the second page look perfectly pansy, I could kind of see it. I also felt like I got a decent grasp on what must be done to improve for next time and that’s good enough for me! I am especially pleased with the one in the top right as well as the flower directly below it. While I love taking watercolor classes, it was an extra feather in my cap to try something brand new all by myself!

I can’t wait to paint again with my mom and am looking forward to giving pansies another go. Practice makes perfect, amiright?!

What is your favorite medium of art to work with? In what ways are you creative or artistic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

 

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New Guitar Shelf

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New Guitar Shelf

Hello!! Johnny’s dad is an incredibly handy guy and has the gift of being able to fix and make seemingly anything. I love hearing Johnny’s memories of building Lego and pinewood derby cars with his dad when he was little and I love hearing his dad’s wisecracks about it even more!! For our housewarming/birthaversary party last year, we knew that we were going to receive a hand crafted gift from Johnny’s dad, but we didn’t know what. Until now!! Check it out:

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For our gift, my father-in-law made us a shelf using one of Johnny’s numerous beat up guitars that are still tucked away at his parents. I couldn’t believe my eyes when Johnny brought it in the other day and, at first, I thought he treated himself to a new guitar! It is, hands down, one of the coolest and most thoughtful gifts that we have ever received and I can’t wait until Johnny hangs it up in his man cave/music room. The good lord knows that we have plenty of knick knacks to fill it up with!

Johnny and I are so lucky because we both truly couldn’t ask for better parents and in-laws. We try to visit both sets as often as we can because we enjoy spending time with them so much. Ever since Johnny and I started dating, it was really special that we both essentially stepped into each other’s families without missing a beat. The guitar shelf that Johnny’s dad made is going to be perfect for housing trinkets from family vacations as well as hand me down decor from our fams. I can’t think of anything more appropriate to place in it and we will forever treasure this amazing gift. ❤

Huge shout out to both mine and Johnny’s parents for being awesome! Another shout out is also in order for my friend, Simon, for answering my Social Media Call To Action. Thank you so much and everyone please check out his page, Simon’s Space!

What is the best gift you have ever received? Do you play any instruments? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

At Home Watercolor Painting Class

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At Home Watercolor Painting Class

Hey!! Way back in July of last year, I took a watercolor painting class with my mom and sister and it was so much fun. It was a blast to spend time together learning something new and we had a great teacher – the amazing Ana of Falcon Grove Studio. After a long and highly stressful handful of months, I decided that we could all use a treat. So, I had Ana come to the family home to teach a watercolor masterclass to my mom, Kristen, Val Gal, and me. We passed a wonderful afternoon getting back in touch with our creative sides as Ana guided us through some Valentine’s Day projects. Take a look at mine:

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For our class, we worked on painting roses which used a lot of techniques that were new to us. It has been a long while since I painted watercolor because the shit had hit the fan and I was definitely rusty, as you can see. BUT it was still really fun and it was cool to have the class from the kitchen table! Ana is such a knowledgeable, patient, and kind teacher and it was special to have her do a class just for us. Our roses might not have turned out the best, but everything was coming up roses all afternoon as we painted.

After finally painting watercolor again, my mom and I remembered why we enjoyed it so much in the first place. We are both looking forward to retrying our hand at the roses this week when I bring my supplies over during an afternoon off. I think it’s safe to say that we have a lot of room for improvement and it’s nice to feel motivated to give watercolor another go now that things have settled down a bit. Ana gave us the know how for watercolor roses and my goal is to make a painting of a bouquet after more practice. 😀

I am so happy that all of my best girls were able to participate in the watercolor class and it was the perfect Galentine’s Day/prebirthday celebration for my mom get together. Hopefully I will have a lot more watercolor paintings to share with all of you soon!

Have you ever taken an art class before? What makes a good teacher? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

How To Encourage Your Child’s Creative Side

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How To Encourage Your Child’s Creative Side

Children’s overall development depends on fostering creativity because it allows them to think critically, express themselves, and learn problem-solving techniques. A child’s imagination can be given a fun and interesting outlet through creativity, which enables them to enjoyably explore new ideas and concepts. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of the ways you can encourage your child’s creative side:

Provide Art Supplies:

Giving kids access to a variety of art supplies is among the simplest ways to encourage their creativity. Items like paints, markers, crayons, paper, and clay can be categorized under this. Children can explore their creativity and think outside of the box by being encouraged to experiment with various materials and methods.

Imaginative Play:

Being able to create their own characters, worlds, and stories allows children to engage in imaginative play, which is a crucial aspect of childhood. You can provide props like dress-up clothes, toy animals, and a designated play area in your home to encourage this kind of play.

Read Books and Tell Stories:

Children’s imaginations can be greatly sparked by reading books and sharing stories with them. While storytelling enables children to develop their own interpretations of the stories they hear, books can introduce them to new concepts and worlds. Books are a great way to stimulate imagination and grow vocabulary. As an added bonus, you can organize crafts and activities based around your child’s favorite book.

Create a Craft Corner:

Give your kids a dedicated area for creative endeavors by designating a space in your home for craft activities. An inviting craft space that kids will enjoy using can be easily made with the help of a small table and chairs and supply storage.

Encourage Exploration and Experimentation:

In order to foster creativity, it’s crucial to let kids experiment and explore with a variety of tools and methods. This can entail experimenting with new art materials, trying out various techniques, or discovering fresh approaches to creating.

Attend Art Classes or Workshops:

Children can benefit from structured opportunities to explore their creativity in a safe environment through art classes or workshops. Their confidence can be boosted and their artistic abilities can be encouraged by working with other kids and learning from qualified teachers. These kinds of activities might take place at daycares near you too.

Take Nature Walks:

Children who spend time in nature can be more creative because they can experience the sights, sounds, and textures of the natural world. Go on a nature walk or scavenger hunt together and encourage them to observe their surroundings, which can help them come up with new ideas and engage their imagination.

Foster creativity in your children with the tips above and watch their imagination soar to new heights!

Featured Image By: PXHere

So Much Fun At So So Artsy

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So Much Fun At So So Artsy

Hello! In December, I went to a paint class at the Solon Community Center with my brother that was hosted by the delightful Melinda, owner of So So Artsy Paint & Sip Studio. We had an absolute blast painting snowpeople and after learning that Melinda’s studio is very close to where I work in Twinsburg, I just had to interview her! This past week, I was able to spend a morning getting to know Melinda and her business better and I am so excited to share her amazing work with all of you. Let’s get to it:

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So So Artsy Paint & Sip Studio has been in business for close to six years and is currently in its second location in Northfield. Through Melinda’s dedication, So So Artsy has become the place to be for birthdays, bachelorette parties, graduations, and corporate events. Melinda also enjoys her time utilizing her background as a social worker and counselor when she brings her art to schools and hosts classes for people with special needs. Born and raised in Northfield, Melinda’s effervescent personality and skill is now a staple in her hometown.

Business has never been better at So So Artsy and, shockingly, Melinda credits the success to the COVID-19 pandemic. For three years, the studio was struggling to profit and Melinda began to enhance her marketing strategies. Then, the world shut down and she kicked it into high gear! Through offering virtual classes as well as her ingenious art kits, So So Artsy became fully booked within thirty days. The art kits, which include paintbrushes, paints, a disposable apron, canvas, glass, and more were also a huge driving force and were shipped in the thousands.

Melinda strives to turn every class at So So Artsy into a special event where peoples’ creativity can flourish. It is a highly interactive experience and guests are encouraged to share their ideas of what they would like to paint beforehand. The painters also have full control of the music system so they can create an atmosphere tailored to them. Although Melinda draws inspiration from the beautiful Metro Parks nearby, she loves hearing the public’s ideas for canvas art and will then paint something to be replicated.

At six years old, Melinda was introduced to art through her best friend’s mom. Every weekend, they would all get together to work on crafts and it is a memory that is looked back on fondly. In fact, one of Melinda’s favorite paintings was made when she was in twelfth grade after painting ceramic statues during her art weekends. She tried to replicate the statue on the canvas and it was then that she realized her own talent.

Instead of acquiring an art degree, Melinda became a social worker and counselor and spent twenty years working for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. As you can imagine, such a long time in a stressful field burnt her out and Melinda knew that she needed a change. To boost her spirits, her friends invited her out to a paint and sip night and she went, albeit begrudgingly. That evening, something clicked and the realization dawned that she could do something like that too.

After her paint night revelation, Melinda began working diligently for two years to formulate a business plan for her studio. So So Artsy’s doors did not open until she was satisfied with her plans of A through Z and says that this is essential to creating a successful business. Melinda’s focus on her business plan was longevity because she knew that the money and popularity would come after being established. This plan has served her well and she is currently looking for a bigger space for her studio in the Northfield area.

If you are looking for a fun and unique outing with your friends or family, look no further than So So Artsy Paint & Sip Studio. Even if you are “eh – so so artsy”, Melinda’s welcoming spirit and expert guidance will have you feeling “so so artsy” before your class is over!

After spending time with Melinda, all I want to do is paint! You can visit So So Artsy’s website and from there, you will be able to book your party or purchase an art kit in the shop. Do be sure to follow So So Artsy Paint & Sip Studio on Instagram @sosoartsypaints or on Facebook at So So Artsy Paint Studios Northfield Ohio. Thanks again, Melinda!

Have you ever been to a paint and sip event before? What was your experience like? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

How To Integrate Art & Culture Into Your Life

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How To Integrate Art & Culture Into Your Life

It’s no secret that art and culture can have a profound impact on our lives. But what does it mean to integrate art and culture into your life? And why is it important? In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of art and culture in our lives and offer some practical tips on how to integrate them into your everyday life. So whether you’re a die-hard museum-goer or just looking to add a little more creativity to your life, then let’s get to it:

The Importance of Art and Culture:

Art and culture play an important role in our lives – they can enrich our experience of the world, help us to understand other cultures, and give us a sense of identity and belonging. There are many ways in which we can integrate art and culture into our lives. Some of the benefits of doing so include:

  1. Enhancing our creativity and imagination.
  2. Broadening our perspective and understanding of different cultures.
  3. Nurturing our emotional well-being.
  4. Connecting us with our community.

Making Time for Art and Culture:

In our fast-paced, ever-connected world, it can be difficult to find time to slow down and appreciate the arts. But making time for art and culture is important not only for our own enjoyment but also for the health of our communities. Set aside a little time each week specifically for enjoying art and culture. Whether it’s an hour at the museum or thirty minutes of listening to local bands, pencil it into your calendar.

If you have trouble making time for art and culture on a regular basis, try turning it into a habit. Pick one day each week or month to visit a gallery or attend a performance. After a while, it will become second nature. Check out the Frederica Wald blog to find new ideas and info on exhibits.

Finding Art and Culture in Everyday Life:

You don’t have to go out of your way to enjoy art and culture – sometimes, it can be found right in your everyday life. Here are a few examples:

  • Take a different route: When you’re running errands or heading to work, take a different route than usual and see what new sights you can find. You may stumble upon a hidden mural or an interesting storefront that you never would have noticed before.
  • Talk to your neighbors: Get to know the people who live near you and ask about their favorite places to see art or experience culture in your city or town.
  • Check out local events: Most cities and towns have regular events that showcase local artists and performers. Keep an eye out for flyers or check online calendars to see what’s happening near you.

Art and culture are important aspects of our lives that can have a positive impact on our well-being. By making the most of the tips above, you can enrich your life and experience the world in new and meaningful ways!

Featured Image By: Pxhere

Where To Look For Artistic Inspiration

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Where To Look For Artistic Inspiration

If you’re feeling blocked creatively, it can be helpful to seek out inspiration from other artists. But where do you find it? And once you’ve found it, how do you use it to create your own art? Let’s explore some of the best places to look for artistic inspiration and offer some tips on how to make the most of it:

Art Galleries:

Art galleries are a great place to start your search for artistic inspiration. There are usually several different artists featured in each gallery, giving you a wide range of styles and mediums to choose from. You can also ask the gallery attendant about the artist’s process and what inspired them to create their work. Check out the best exhibits from women chosen by Frederica Wald.

Museums:

Museums are another excellent source of inspiration, especially if you’re interested in historical art or want to learn more about a specific artist or movement. Many museums offer tours led by knowledgeable staff who can provide insights into the artwork on display.

Photography:

Photography can be a great way to get inspired, especially if you’re looking for ideas for a new project or want to explore a different style of art. There are many different types of photography, from landscape and portraiture to still life and abstract, so you’re sure to find something that catches your eye.

Film:

Film is another medium that can be very inspiring, particularly if you’re interested in storytelling or visual effects. Watching films from different genres and eras can give you a new perspective on your own work, and you may even find yourself borrowing some of the techniques used by your favorite directors.

Nature:

Nature is one of the most popular sources of inspiration for artists, as it provides an endless array of colors, textures, and forms to explore. Whether you’re taking a walk in the park or exploring a new city, keep your eyes open for interesting patterns and shapes that could be incorporated into your work.

How to Use Inspiration:

Experimentation:

When you find something that inspires you, it’s important to experiment with it and see what you can create. Don’t be afraid to try new things or to fail. The more you experiment, the more likely you are to find something that works for you.

Be Open-Minded:

It’s also important to be open-minded when looking for inspiration. You never know where you’ll find it, so it’s important to keep an open mind. Who knows? Maybe your next great idea will come from something completely unexpected.

Take Your Time:

Finally, don’t rush the process. Inspiration can strike at any time, but it’s often not something that can be forced. If you’re feeling stuck, take a break and come back later with fresh eyes. Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of time and patience.

For an artist, there can be inspiration everywhere you look. However, sometimes people can get stuck. Take the time to explore art hubs in your area and you might have an aha moment for your next great work!

Featured Image By: Pxhere

Planning The Ultimate Girls Night In

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Planning The Ultimate Girls Night In

Hello! It has been snowing in Ohio for the past couple of days so, as far as I am concerned, winter is officially here. While it is always fun to have a night out, the cold weather makes me want to stay in until spring! Those winter nights gives the perfect opportunity to host the ultimate girls night in because why leave the comfort of your own home if you don’t have to?! Call up your besties and find your comfiest pajamas because it’s time to plan a GNI so good that it will make you scoff at a night on the town:

So Many Activities:

While nothing pleases me more than a good old fashioned girl talk, a night in begs for some fun activities to do together. This could be anything from pulling up a YouTube tutorial and having a wine and paint night to baking and decorating holiday cookies. How about making your own pizzas together instead of ordering delivery? Or putting together an ice cream sundae bar? Hey, a girl has gotta eat!

Spa Treatments:

A girls night in staple is, of course, getting to pamper yourselves. We’re talking face masks, painting nails, and aromatherapy – the works! Have your best girls bring their favorite products and turn it into a swap so that all of you can try something new. You could even create your own face masks and hair treatments with ingredients in your kitchen. Who knows, your girls night might turn into your first small business meeting with your skin care creations!

Snuggle Up:

What is a good girls night in without some chick flicks? Pop all of the popcorn and pop the champagne! Movie time means snuggling up, getting cozy, and unwinding so lots of soft blankets and fuzzy socks are a must. You could even order matching PJs if you want to be super extra! On the subject of blankets, fleece throws are super easy to make and can be added to your growing list of activities.

Cocktail Creations:

If you plan on indulging in the drink, how about creating a girls night signature cocktail (Or mocktail!)? Wine or champagne is always a good choice but it will be a blast to shake things up literally and metaphorically. Get inspiration for cocktails on Pinterest and put your own twist on it. You or your friends might just find your new calling as the best bartender ever. 😀

Playlist, Please:

Having awesome music on as you craft, eat, and talk the night away is so essential. Even more important is your selection, which means no mopey ballads! Girls night in means girl power anthems, one hit wonders, and beats that get you in the spirit for an impromptu dance party. And, what is a girls night in without Queen Bs, Britney Spears AND Beyonce? The answer is: NOTHING!!

If the winter weather has driven you to hibernation mode, you might as well have some fun. Your girls night in will be a GREAT SUCCESS and you could turn it into a tradition with a different host every month. Now, where’s my invite?!

What are some girls night in essentials? What is your favorite night in snack or drink? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Subscription Boxes: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

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Subscription Boxes: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Hello!! I take my holiday shopping very seriously because I love being able to spoil my family and friends. We have been discussing lots of holiday gift options here on lifewithlilred and today we are going to continue on by chatting about the gift that keeps on giving – subscription boxes. Subscription gifts are awesome because it’s not just a present for Christmas but every month! This is a gift that will always go over well so let’s talk about some popular choices to treat your giftee to this holiday season:

Entertainment:

One of the most obvious subscription gifts has to be streaming services and there are plenty to choose from. Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime are all excellent for your standard viewing options and cover every genre imaginable. However, there are specialty streaming services like CrunchyRoll for anime fans or Shudder for horror buffs so bear this in mind if your giftee has one specific genre that they love. Remember, you don’t have to gift an entire year’s worth of a streaming service, either. Most of these services offer a three month, six month, or full year package.

Food, Glorious Food:

Is your giftee handy in the kitchen? If so, a meal kit subscription like Blue Apron or Hello Fresh could be a great choice. These kits offer meals for all kinds of different diets and are mindful to any allergies or restrictions. Not only will it be fun for your giftee to whip up something brand new but it is also a huge time savor too. A meal kit means that no grocery shopping is required – score! 😀

If your giftee isn’t too keen to cook, you can also do a subscription for DashPass to eliminate delivery fees on DoorDash. This is something that my Johnny would love because his favorite Sunday activity is DoorDashing Popeye’s or Steak N’ Shake lol.

Beauty:

It’s always nice to try out new makeup, bath and body care, and skin care and subscriptions to Ipsy, Sephora Play, or BirchBox allow you to do just that every month. This is a subscription that will be sure to please the beauty guru in your life and it gives them the opportunity to try products out without committing to a full price and full size item. As someone who deeply enjoys testing out new products, I would be thrilled to receive a beauty box subscription!

Ride Sharing:

Although ride sharing programs like Uber and Lyft don’t have a subscription, per se, they do offer gift cards. If your giftee lives for a night on the town, this could be a wonderful way to go. It’s always a blast to have a night out at a restaurant, bar, or theater but it’s never as good when you have to worry about transportation. A ride sharing gift card will fully eliminate this issue and can allow your giftee to let loose safely.

Oh You Crafty, Huh?

If you have some kiddos on your shopping list, fear not – there are lots of cool subscriptions for them too! Options like Little Passports and Cratejoy can provide your littles with a fun and educational craft every month. You can sweeten the pot of this gift by offering babysitting services to their parents so that they can have a night out and you and your lil giftee can complete the craft together. This is a total two for one gift deal and one that parents and children will both love!

Pet Parents:

Is your giftee the parent to a spoiled rotten pet? If so, you can’t go wrong with BarkBox! Pet subscription boxes will send you toys, treats, and chews for the beloved pet and will help deepen the bond with their owner. This is a really good option for pet parents because they are going to be receiving things that they would more than likely end up buying anyways. The money that they save can go to even more pet products! 😀

There is, truly, a subscription for every hobby and interest and it is a gift that everyone on your list will enjoy. The best part? No gift wrapping required!

Do you use any monthly subscription boxes? What is a subscription that you would like to receive? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Homemade Gifts For Everyone On Your Shopping List

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Homemade Gifts For Everyone On Your Shopping List

Hello!! While store bought presents are always nice, I think we can all agree that there’s something about a homemade gift that just hits different. Homemade gifts are special because someone took the time to craft, cook, or create something just for you. It’s a one of a kind gift that can’t be replicated on any website and that means a lot. Today, we’re going to discuss some homemade gift options as the countdown to the holiday season draws closer so you can wow everyone on your shopping list:

Sweet Treats:

The holiday season is the perfect time to indulge in your sweet tooth before New Year’s resolutions for a healthier lifestyle begins. Chocolate, caramel, or candy apples, trays of cookies, cakes, or homemade chocolate truffles are all an easy and delicious way to go. This will also help your giftee with their holiday feast because dessert will already be taken care of!

Scrapbooks/Photo Albums:

Does your giftee have a million vacation or family photos on their phone that never got printed? Then, a scrapbook or photo album will be a much appreciated gift! Let your crafty side take over with fun backgrounds, cute stickers, and your own happy memories of your giftee to share. Your present will make a lovely addition to any shelf or coffee table and will be able to be enjoyed whenever your giftee feels like taking a stroll down memory lane.

Tech Savvy:

Are you fairly tech savvy and have a business owner as a giftee? How about using your skills to create a social media page or business website for them? Your handiwork will assist in helping their business grow throughout the new year. If your giftee already has a site or social media page, you could offer to manage or update it to keep things fresh and relevant.

Pet Parents:

Do you have some pet parents to shop for? You are in luck because there are so many great homemade options to create. Customized pet bowls, snuffle mats, and homemade treats are all excellent places to start. Or, perhaps your giftee owns a small animal who needs fresh veggies in their diet? You could make a small indoor garden with pots containing herbs and leafy greens. Your favorite Lil Red rabbit owner would definitely love something like that!

Game/Movie Night Bundle:

Does your giftee enjoy hosting movie or game nights? If so, a bundle to assist in their next event could be very easily arranged. In a small gift basket, you could provide all of the fixings for a fun night in. A DVD or board game, snacks, or a homemade throw blanket to snuggle up in will further enhance the festivities. You also just might secure an invite to their next get together. Score! PS: This option can also be modified for a date night if you are shopping for a couple.

No matter what you choose to create for a homemade gift, you are already winning the holidays. I just know that your giftee will appreciate your thoughtfulness and generosity!

What is the best homemade gift that you have received? What kind of gifts have you made before? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah