International Friendship Day: August 5th, 2018

Contributor post by Mairi from mairidesign

International Friendship Day is on 5th August. What a wonderful way to celebrate the good times you’ve shared with your friends and to show them how much you appreciate them. Spend time with those who make you laugh and support you when you’re feeling low, or maybe it’s a time to re-connect with long lost friends from school. However you celebrate, wouldn’t it be nice to get some special gifts for those you appreciate?

The CIJ team have selected some gifts that they know your friends would love.

Przemila K from CanisArtStudio says

The best friend is someone really important. This person deserves a large and valuable gift. But if you want to make a small surprise, I suggest a small oil painting. Perhaps your best friend is an animal lover or dreams about a pet or maybe not. But always a dog is a perfect symbol of friendship. A miniature oil painting will be perfect for this occasion. If you need another pet portrait, please visit my shop. You can also order a portrait from your own photos.

Gordon Setter Dog Portait

zizzybob fromzizzybob  says

What better way to say Merry Christmas than a very unique, quilted fabric postcard for your Best Friend Forever.


BFF Quilted Fabric Postcard

Margie Sarrao fromFunNFiber says

At <$15.00, any BFF can remember that you love her “to the moon and back” every time she dons this sparkling crystal heart necklace! It is adjustable from 17.5″ to 20″ long, making it versatile as well.


I Love You to the Moon and Back Necklace

Cristal Hughes fromDesignsbyCristal says

Greatest Of All Time – G.O.A.T

The g.o.a.t of all times. Do you have a shero who you’d love to give a lanyard or key chain to? Well, this simple yet meaningful Greatest Of All Time accessory is just waiting to uplift her.


G.O.A.T – Greatest Of All Time

Judy Merashoff fromJAMsCraftCloset says

This framed positive saying/affirmation wall art is the perfect gift for your BFF. Friends are Flowers in the Garden of Life says it all!


Upcycled Cottage Chic Picture Frame

Colorful Creations

Contributor post by Alicia from AliciasFindings

Spring is in full swing, which means summer is on its way! No one is in a hurry to skip past the beautiful spring pastels, but neither will anyone complain when it is time to break out the bright summer color scheme either! Colorful creations are appropriate any time of the year, but especially so as we are breaking out the popsicles for kids and the fireworks for 4th of July. Summer is all about colors!

With that in mind, I asked our Christmas in July team for the most colorful creations in their shops. So here are some of the best of the best in terms of colorful Etsy items!

Karen from TimeTalentJewels shared this absolutely stunning crochet wire necklace, fraught with summer colors! I just love the shapes and sizes of these beads, as well. Don’t they remind you of summer fruits or flourishing gardens? PLUS this listing includes both the necklace and an earrings set! Karen says: “What got me started on this particular Wire Crochet Necklace was a very small bead by the name of “”Dyed Jade”. The colors were just beautiful within that tiny bead and what colors popped out were Corals, Yellows, Aqua, and Chartreuse. I had a lot of fun trying to get the exact colors for this necklace and it finally all came together. There are even little yellow butterflies in the necklace which gives me hope that summer is approaching with the warmer weather that I absolutely love.”

(Pro tip: check out the rest of Karen’s shop! It is filled with equally beautiful and colorful pieces of jewelry!)


Now here is a piece that everyone who wears sunglasses needs – and who doesn’t wear sunglasses in the sunny summer months?! I just love the bright colors and designs on the fabric, and I envision these being a perfect gift this summer season! Here is what Diana, owner of JolieFemme, says:

“My shop is always filled with colorful items. I love color and fun prints! I chose this fabric because the flowers are so bright against the white background and it has little skulls too. This item is easy to find in your bag and keeps your glasses safe and scratchfree. #colorfulisfun Bright color is great to bring a smile and good for any time of the year! #happycolor”.


And now, an item that is rather unique for what you might expect on Etsy – but we love unique here! CorkyCrafts offers an array of seeds for flowers so that your garden can flourish this summer. The owner says:

“What is summer without sunflowers? A garden should make you smile, plus it is a great teaching tool with children too. In Texas sunflowers are king during the hot Texas summer months. We enjoy sharing our TX size flowers with our clients. My shop is filled with cork crafts and when I’m saving up corks for projects during the spring and summer we also offer our flower seeds to help spread a wide array of color in flowers to our customers to enjoy gardening to


Cindy Humphrey from Cynhumphrey says:

At the time I created this, we were living in our first house we purchased. My husband loves to spend time outdoors in the summer so we built a huge deck on the back of the house and put in a koi pond right on the side of the deck. I love to take objects and turn them into something entirely different so when I came across these designer koi shoes I just had to make a ring or earring stud organizer out of them. They are also perfect for craft show displays!


Any new moms out there? We’ve got you covered with this uber-cute diaper clutch! No longer does changing diapers have to be a dreaded task, because this colorful creation from artsyEVE is there to brighten up the task. Here is what the owners, Evelyn and Lucy, have to say:

“This little diaper clutch is the perfect little bag for taking a diaper, a small wipe and perhaps a pacifier with you–when you don’t want to carry a large diaper bag! Colorful and fun!”


Georgie from littlecrowdesign says:

When Pantone announced the 2017 colour of the year was ‘Greenery’ it was no surprise to me! Green has always been my favourite colour – it can be bright and cheerful, or serene and calming. This original print features another favourite of mine – succulents! The combination of colour and design makes this pillow cover a special one.


Izabela Gveroska from Gavriila says:

Love this necklace,it is so colorful,I enjoyed making it, I started to make it as a bib necklace,but I ended up as a crochet pendant. It is unique,only one piece, it was so complicated during the process of knitting, so it is impossible to repeat it once again.


Sherri from ButterflyFeetDigital says:

This is a confetti clip art oval frame set. Photography transparent overlay or solid white background are both included in this set. I used my favorite colors to make the confetti sprinkles – starting with purple! Then on to pink. Couldn’t leave out blue. Blue and orange is a favorite combination. I really love pink and green. So many reasons to love this colorful clipart!


Dawn Whitehand from DeeDeeDeesigns says:

This charm bracelet is part of the ‘stripe delight’ range created specifically for the vibrant colours of Spring! The range also has earrings and a necklace available in my shop!

The beads are individually handmade made from colourful paper joined together by hand formed findings.


Victoria Evrard from StarryNightTrees says:

I love mixing lots of different colors together. This is my Celebration tree and I use every bead color I have access to. This is my favorite tree and I have mine out all year and use it as a night light.


Nancy Duncan from EponasCrystals says:

Multi colored beads and gorgeous carved rainbow fluorite pendant depicting the goddess Kwan Yin. The necklace is beaded with turquoise beads, rainbow fluorite beads, purple river stone, turquoise quartz, orange bone beads, pink, blue and turquoise seed beads, and silver plated pewter spacer beads.


And last but not least…another stunning necklace! I hesitated to include two pieces of jewelry in the same post, but let’s be honest, we can never have too many necklaces – especially when they are as bright, colorful, and unique as this beauty from Bungalow42. Connie Lee, owner of this shop, shared the backstory behind this piece:

“There is a folk art vibe to these hand painted fish. Their history is a bit of a mystery. The original statement necklace was a vintage piece that belonged to a family member but no one seems to know its origins. Happy to report that all of the fish are in good vintage condition. It is obvious that they were handmade and hand painted with love. This was the first time that I got to deconstruct a vintage piece for new designs. It was big fun. #happycolor #fishjewelry”.


If these colors didn’t remind you that life should be filled with color and joy, I don’t know what else could! Be sure to share your brightest pieces in the comments below. Let’s spread some color love throughout this Etsy community!


Contributor Post by Sheila and Shannon of BeadyEyedBird 

What’s your neon ‘bag’? Whether you sell (or love) neon art, supplies, signs or nail polish, we want to celebrate it! We asked our teamies to share items from their shops that are (or remind them of) neon; check them out below. We hope all you out there in WordPress-Land will respond to tell us about your own fond memories of your first or most memorable sighting/use of NEON!

pam colangelo from PearlsVintagebyPam said:

This phone was a gift to my Son in the 90’s when he was a teen. He used it and we painted his walls black. When he left for college then moved permanently to Virginia we put the phone in storage. I unpacked it when I was searching for his baby items when he and his wife were expecting their first child. I am using the phone until it sells!!


Coke Phone Coca Cola Disc Telephone Red Coke Sign Phone Rings Lights Flash & Coke Song Plays 1996 Retro Coke Phone Collectible Coke Gift

Nancy Duncan from EponasCrystals said:

This is a brown sorrel genuine horse hair tassel necklace with neon pink Swarovski pearls and silver beads.

I love neon signs. When I went to Las Vegas I was in heaven! It just makes me feel happy with the bright colors and otherworldly glow.


Horse Hair Tassel Necklace, Layering Necklace, Pearl Necklace, Bohemian Jewelry,Boho Jewelry

Dawn Whitehand from DeeDeeSupplies said:

I think my first memory of neon is watching a movie as a child – but I don’t remember the name of the film!!

Neon signs never seem to go out of fashion, I guess because they are so bright and outstanding.

Bright colours are also great for jewellery design and costumes, bunting, scrapbooking – anything actually. And these bugle beads are ideal for any of these projects, plus more.


Bugle Beads Loose – Tube – Barrel – Assorted Colours – 30mm – Jewellery and Craft Supplies – 25 pcs – DeeDeeSupplies

Many thanks to those who participated!

Until next time,



You can be crafty, too!

Contributor post by Amy of BeadsAndThreadsbyAmy

Around the holidays, I love giving and receiving crafted goods.  It means so much to me that my loved ones think enough of me to pour their heart and souls into creating a gift for me.  My mother used to crochet blankets and doilies, my aunt used to quilt picture albums and create Cabbage Patch doll clothes, and my grandmother used to can foods for holiday gifts.  I loved every gift and still treasure them today.

Our Christmas in July team has some wonderful kits, supplies, and patterns to offer you for your holiday crafting.  Whether a beginner or expert, you are sure to find all of your supplies for crafting the perfect, heartwarming gift.

1) Sue and Misty from shabbyshopgirls says

 This is the time to start making or thinking about giving a gift of crafting supplies! We have many different kits available in our shop – our favorite being this beautiful Nativity Scene Tree Skirt Kit by Bucilla. Whether you like to craft yourself, or know others who would love to make this tree skirt, it would be a beautiful gift or made up, a gorgeous heirloom to pass down generation to generation!
tree skirt kit

Beautiful Christmas Tree Skirt Kit. Click the pic to view the listing.

2) Barbara from AuntBsAttic says

 My youngest fell in love with outer space when he was 4 years old. His Favorite Uncle lives out in the country – free of street light interference – and most nights are spent on the back porch looking through several telescopes. When I saw this fabric, I was flooded with wonderful star gazing memories – of visits to my brother’s house, and the happy squeals of a child discovering his first hidden treasures in the night sky (and he now owns his own telescopes and is an avid star gazer!)
Out of this world fabric.  Just click the pic to be taken to the listing on Etsy!

Out of this world fabric. Just click the pic to be taken to the listing on Etsy!

3) Sheila and Shannon from BeadyEyedBird says

 This little item has been used by my happy customers to make a simple and quick (and adorable) necklace — for themselves or for gifts for others. Just add a simple ball chain and you’re there! When I lived in Santa Fe, we often saw the most gorgeous blue birds — bluejays & bluebirds, primarily! And I LOVED them. So of course I was delighted to find this pendant and offer it to others. Another reason I love these is because I used to get goose eggs and spray paint them gold for Easter, and tell my daughter these were very special eggs laid by the Easter bunny, just for her. Ah, I loved those days! (And she did too…) So the gold egg in this wonderful art pendant reminds me of that too.
Make a quick necklace for that special person with this charming pendant.  Just click the pic to view the Etsy listing!

Make a quick necklace for that special person with this charming pendant. Just click the pic to view the Etsy listing!

4) Jennifer Loftfield from CaffeinatedPapercuts says

 I love scrap booking (it’s an easy offshoot) but I always feel like I’m “behind” in keeping up with the piles of photos laying around. To catch up, I’ve started dong some traditional scrap booking and some pocket scrap booking. That said, I can never leave anything just a flat, boring piece of paper so I decked out some journaling / pocket cards for my pages and decided to offer them in my shop as well! They’d be just as perfect to use on a card, tag…anything you can think of.
Lovely Holiday Scrap Book Tags to add to your holiday memories.  Simply click the pic to see the Etsy listing.

Lovely Holiday Scrap Book Tags to add to your holiday memories. Simply click the pic to see the Etsy listing.

5) Amy Spock from BeadsandThreadsbyAmy says

I love to sew, and have way too many patterns! I actually ended up with a duplicate of this one. If you like decorating your home for the holidays, these patterns will sure let you do that. They’d also make great gifts!
Home decor, easy sew patterns would make great holiday gifts!  Click the pic to view the listing!

Home decor, easy sew patterns would make great holiday gifts! Click the pic to view the listing!

6) Carolyn Eady from SproutsPressDesigns says

 I’m not sure if this counts as a supply, since it’s also a kit. But here goes anyways.

This is a bookbinding kit I put together as a result of requests for workshops outside of my city. While I love to teach in person, it’s just not always possible, so I created a simple, step by step kit for eager bookbinder enthusiasts. This kit is a beginners kit, easy peasy, low stress and simple. It comes with all the tools and materials needed, so it makes a great gift or the perfect thing to bring on a cottage vacation!

Stunning book binding kit would make a lovely, personalized gift for any one in your family.  Click the pic to see more details!

Stunning book binding kit would make a lovely, personalized gift for any one in your family. Click the pic to see more details!

7) Rachel Palmer from 910woolgathering says

 Along with my hand made knit and crochet items I carry supplies as well, from my own hand spun yarn to excess factory yarns I no longer need. This particular hand spun is made from a natural colored sheeps wool and is three ply. I spun this at a re enactment event, and this item is great for recreating items for other re-enactors or any other typical use for yarn.
Stunning yarn for crochet or knitting a heartfelt gift!  Click the pic for more information about this lovely yarn.

Stunning yarn for crochet or knitting a heartfelt gift! Click the pic for more information about this lovely yarn.

8) Sherri from ButterflyFeetDigital says

 My shop is mainly all about digital craft supplies – DIY printable papers for scrap booking, card making, decoupage, any craft project needing background papers. This Christmas themed paper pack is one of my favorites. It is useful for making Christmas cards and tags and scrap booking and more.
Scrapbooking, anyone?  Downloadable paper is a perfect way to display those family pictures!  Just click on the pic to view the Etsy listing!

Scrapbooking, anyone? Downloadable paper is a perfect way to display those family pictures! Just click on the pic to view the Etsy listing!

9) msmadmax from madmaxshop says

 All the supplies in my shop have been found in an old sewing basket…they are at least 60-70 years old. If you are looking for that special vintage item… want to enhance your restoration project…accent an accessory…create earrings or give a vintage sweater an authentic look…check out the supplies section in my shop.
These vintage buttons could be used for so many things-jewelry, embellishment, or clothing.  Click the pic to see these 60 year old beauties!

These vintage buttons could be used for so many things-jewelry, embellishment, or clothing. Click the pic to see these 60 year old beauties!

With Christmas and the Holiday Season just 4 months away, visit any of these shops to help you find the perfect supply to make the perfect gift.  Handmade says “I Love You”.

#CIJRoadTrip – Croatia: Varaždin

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Let’s travel to Croatia – Varaždin with Zlatka from Laurelisjewelry

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

I live in Varaždin, Croatia. There is a lot special stuff about this little town, these are just a few of them:

Varaždin is a small historical town which first written reference was on 20 August 1181, when King Béla III mentioned it in a legal document.

It was declared a free royal borough in 1209 by the Hungarian King Andrew II. The town became the economic and military centre of northern Croatia. Due to Turkish raids, the town was structured defensively around the old fortress, and acquired the shape of a typical medieval Wasserburg. In 1756, the Ban Francis Nadásdy chose Varaždin as his official residence, and Varaždin became the capital of all of Croatia. It hosted the Croatian Sabor and the Royal Croatian Council founded by Empress Maria Theresa.The fire of 1776 destroyed most of the town, resulting in the administrative institutions moving back to Zagreb.

By the 19th century Varaždin had been completely rebuilt and expanded, with flourishing crafts and trade, and later the manufacture of silk and bricks. The theatre, music school, and fire department were founded.

In the 20th century Varaždin developed into the industrial centre of Northwestern Croatia
Varaždin represents the best preserved and richest urban complex in continental Croatia.

The Old Town (fortress) is an example of medieval defensive buildings. Construction began in the 14th century, and in the following century the rounded towers, typical of Gothic architecture in Croatia, were added. Today it houses the Town Museum.

The Old and Contemporary Masters Gallery is located in the Sermage Palace, built in the rococo style in 1750.

In 1523, Margrave Georg of Brandenburg built the town hall in late baroque style, with the Varaždin coat of arms at the foot of the tower, and it has continued in its function until the present day. There is a guard-changing ceremony every Saturday.

There are many baroque and rococo palaces and houses in the town. Worth particular mention is Varaždin’s Croatian National Theatre, built in 1873
A baroque music festival has been held annually in Varaždin since 1971, and attracts some of the finest musicians and their fans from Croatia and the world. Recommended to visitors is also the historical street festival Špancir fest every September.

The city features its old city guard, named Purgari, in various city ceremonies as well as the weekly ceremony of the ‘change of the guards’ in front of the city hall. Additionally, Varaždin police officers patrol on bicycles in the warmer months.

Varaždin’s cemetery date back to 1773 and it was long time an ordinary place until 1905, when Herman Haller had an idea to make it more beautiful and park-like with large trees and alleys for citizens to stroll through. The reconstruction of the cemetery was done between 1905 and 1947 when it got the form for which it later became one of the most beautiful cemeteries in Europe. It is an outstanding example of landscape architecture and protected cultural and natural park.

Today Varaždin is a popular destination for the summer holidays. The city has numerous areas of interests ranging from cultural areas (reflected by many museums, galleries and theaters in the area), shopping centers in the downtown core, various sports and recreation facilities, also a rich history in cuisine. The close of the tourist season is marked by two annual festivals. he annual ŠpancirFest begins at the end of August and ends in September (lasts for 10 days). At this time. the city welcomes artists, street performers, musicians and vendors for what is called “the street walking festival”.

The city also hosts the Varaždin Baroque Evenings festival, first held in 1971. The festival honours baroque music and culture, both of which hold a special place in Varaždin’s identity.

Varaždin is also the host of the Radar Festival, which hosts concerts at the end of summer. It has already hosted various popular artists as Bob Dylan, Carlos Santana, The Animals, Manic Street Preachers, Solomon Burke and many others

Herzer Palace - Varaždin - Croatia

Herzer Palace – Varaždin – Croatia

Varaždin Civil Guard - Croatia

Varaždin Civil Guard – Croatia

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

Plitvica Lakes

Varaždin Main Square With City Hall - Croatia

Varaždin Main Square With City Hall – Croatia

Varaždin Old Castle - Croatia

Varaždin Old Castle – Croatia

Varaždin Streets - Croatia

Varaždin Streets – Croatia

Varaždin Špancirfest - Festival In Late August - Croatia

Varaždin Špancirfest – Festival In Late August – Croatia

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

Not very much. I am mainly inspired by fantasy and Gothic, but sometimes I find inspiration in medieval history of my town.

Varaždin Cemetary - Croatia

Varaždin Cemetary – Croatia

Varaždin Cemetary - Croatia

Varaždin Cemetary – Croatia

Croatian National Theatre In Varaždin - Croatia

Croatian National Theatre In Varaždin – Croatia

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?

Not this fall! I usually had a place in Spancirfest, but now, with a little baby and job, I just don’t have time.

Gothic Victorian Earrings From LAURELISjewelery

Gothic Victorian Earrings From LAURELISjewelery

Victorian Gothic pendant From LAURELISjewelery

Victorian Gothic pendant From LAURELISjewelery

Black Punk Rock Faux Leather BraceleFrom LAURELISjewelery

Black Punk Rock Faux Leather BraceleFrom LAURELISjewelery

5. What are your social media sites?