#CIJRoadTrip – India: Banswara

Contributor post by Megha of byTheArtBug

Let’s travel to this tiny town in India with Me (Megha – byTheArtBug) and Natasha from byTheCrochetBug. Natasha is my younger Sister and so Banswara is the place where we grew up!

1. What city do you live in? What makes it special?

I live in Banswara a beautiful small town in Rajasthan, India. Banswara is also known as “Land of 100 Islands” because there is a large man made reservoir (Mahi Dam) which has more than 100 islands.
It is also rich in natural beauty, wildlife and is a quiet place away from the hustle bustle of a busy City.
The town itself has more than 200 lakes both natural and manmade.


Sunset at a nearby Stream

2. What are several places everyone visiting your country should see?

India is a huge county. There are several natural and historical places to see. Although it is really hard to select few, a few must see places would be visiting the Taj Mehal, National parks (like Gir, Ranthambore, Kanha national park, Corbet national park), there are some really beautiful hill stations like Shimla, Kullu Manali, Mount Abu. There are several beach destination in the south of India, Goa is one of the most visited beach destinations in India, plus there are a lot of beautiful churches to see.
Rajasthan, the state where we live is very colorful and rich in culture and history.

Here are some local Pictures…


500 Year Old Temple


Mahi Dam


Jua Falls


Tiger – Ranthambore National Park


Dancing Peacock at a nearby forest area

3. How have the customs, traditions, geography, nature etc. inspired the items you create?

The colorful culture has inspired the following item of my shop:

Back to school strawberry snap clip fruit jewelry hair accessory 2 pairs red pink blue mint purple yellow

The handicrafts made from hemp twine are also very popular this inspired me to make several doilies, coasters and organizers from 100% natural hemp twine.

Handmade crochet rustic triangle coaster set of 4 or 6 natural hemp eco-friendly earth friendly

The following piece is inspired by the bead work popular here:

Handmade tatted earrings red with clear seed beads and clear glass crystal beads

4. What are you doing this fall to drive your business in your community? Are you doing a festival or show? How do you reach out to your community?

Craft fairs like USA are not yet popular in my town.
However the seasonal festival fairs are quite popular in which local handicrafts can be seen.
Me and some of my friends who also love to crochet try to meet up once in every few months to have a small crocheting get together.

5. What are your social media sites?

I am not so active on social media sites but I love Pinterest.
Etsy shop

Christmas in July – Craft Supplies

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Christmas in July is an Etsy community event that is a blast to participate in! The official dates this year are July 10th – July 20th.

The Christmas In July team has so many shops that sell a myriad of items, including craft supplies.

I wanted to find out more about these shops and why they sell what they do.

NatashaJ of byTheCrochetBug let me know:

I made these motifs inspired by Irish crochet which is a very old and somewhat lost art. My love for gardening led to to make these delicate floral motifs. These motifs can be used to decorate cushions, dresses, hats, headbands etc. or would make cute brooch or hair clips.

One need not know crochet to use these motifs they can simply be sewn on or glued.


Amy Spock of BeadsandThreadsbyAmy says:

I finally broke down and purchased a lovely sewing room from a dear lady who, unfortunately, can no longer sew. Since I am a quilter and not really a seamstress, I am hoping that these patterns go to a home with someone who can masterfully create lovely family heirlooms for their children, grand children, and even to sell on Etsy. I thought this Vintage (1986) Simplicity bear pattern was adorable and timeless.


Megha Silvano of byTheArtBug states:

I have this card making kit in my shop. Remember the old times when handmade cards were not so rare! A handmade card always has a special personal touch and sentiment. And yes I am one of those people who still give handmade cards and loves to collect them.

With this easy and quick kit you can make three different cards with more then 30 different pre-cut ready to stick pieces to choose from, just let your imagination run wild.


Gloria of LittleFlowerbyGloria discusses:

I think that other jewelry makers can use them to make bracelets, necklaces. I like the idea to share my crochet love with others who cannot crochet. I have to keep my hands always busy so I hope that they can work also for other crafters.


allisoneastmanbeads of allisoneastmanbeads says:

I actually make all of my findings that are available in my shop.


Sue and Misty of shabbyshopgirls lets me know:

We bought these kits for those who LOVE to craft. Some of the most beautiful Christmas items we’ve seen, whether it be at craft shows, antique malls or at someone’s house, have been made from these kits where there are all sorts of parts and pieces, sequins, felt, etc. and embellished with personal touches! Absolutely beautiful works of art all in themselves!!


Kristen Sargent of KestrelCollection says:

This may sound silly but I love folding paper. There is something soothing in making the edges crisp and the points line up. The magic of taking a flat 2 dimensional object and releasing the animal it has inside.

This Japanese Origami Paper Kit is a great way to get started. Instructions are included for making each of the 20 things pictured. The writing on the package is also a very nice real world example for practice reading if you’re studying the language.


These CIJ shops have shown us some wonderful craft supplies. Check out their shops for their sales!