Happy Christmas In July 2015 To All, And To All a Good Night!

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight, Happy Christmas In July 2015 to all and to all a good night.

Thank you to all the Etsy shop owners who participated this year.

The Christmas In July team leaders spent the past year working hard behind the scenes for the Christmas In July 2015 event!

I would like to take a moment to thank the CIJ leaders! Please take a moment to check out their shops!

Alicia from AliciasFindings

Amy from BeadsandThreadsbyAmy

Angie from CraftyMom75

Ashley from FrenchSoulKnittery

Barbara from MermaidsHatbox

Betty from LadySnooks

Candy from TrueEarthDesigns

Dawn from DeeDeeDeesigns

Elizabeth from CottageCraftsOnline

Jennifer from CaffeinatedPapercuts

Kristy Jo from KrystalKlarityBeads

Lia from Ghirlandiamo

Lin from rhodyart

Megha from byTheArtBug

Nancy from EponasCrystals

Patricia and Rebecca from northandsouthshabby

Sandra from Ankletknits

Tracy from LittleShopOfColor

The blog contributors wrote great blog articles during CIJ!

We had many fun opportunities for you to be involved!

Thank you for joining us on Friday July 10th for the #CIJParty!

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Please continue to use the hashtag #EtsyCIJ on social media!

We are ready with social media for a fantastic holiday 2015 season!

Facebook
www.facebook.com/EtsyChristmasInJuly

Twitter
twitter.com/EtsyCIJ 

Pinterest
pinterest.com/etsycij/

Happy Christmas In July to all, and to all a good night!

Google + Tips, Tricks, Business Uses And More

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Google + is fast becoming one of the most widely used social medias out there. That is most likely the case, because of how many ways one can use it. It is great for connecting, networking, publishing ideas to name a few. We at Christmas in July wanted to know how our members used Google +.

Google +

Google +

AliciasFindings says:

I use Google + to promote my Etsy teams. I find it to be a great way to get the word out about sales, coupon codes, etc. I love the Google calendar! It is great for not only adding Google events, but for your own life events! What else do you use it for? Promoting? Networking? Personal? Work wise?

Candy Frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns states:

I use Google + mostly a place  to showcase my jewelry. I do use communities to post to. But, it is a back burner behind Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

We also looked into other sites and found some more ideas for you: Google Analytic for Business helps you determine who your audience is. It measures data and lets you know the end result.

Why Google Analytics

Google + DO’s for business –

  • Take Advantage of SEO (search engine optimization) Value
  • Use visuals when possible
  • Strategically share content
  • Make your posts stand out
  • Grow and target your audience

Google +: Do’s And Don’ts For Small Businesses

Create Events (for business or friends):

  • Navigate to Events from Home menu
  • Click “Create Event” in upper right corner
  • Fill out info and invite guests
  • Click Invite and you started an Event!

15+ Google + Tricks You Might Not Know About

  • See who has shared your posts
  • Format your posts
  • Create polls
  • Share your circles with others
  • Create photo slide shows

Google + For Etsy Sellers From Google

How to set up a G+ page:

  • Hover your cursor over “Home” and select “pages” from the drop screen
  • Click “create a page” button in upper right corner
  • Pick the type of page category you wish to select
  • Click finish and you are set to add info to your page

There are Communities you can join on a whole host of topics. You can also join events being held by friends on G+ or near you locally. You can use Hangouts, which is like a chat/skype kind of device.

How to start a Hangout:

  • Click Hangouts from the Home menu
  • Click “Start a Video Hangout”
  • Invite guests and start sharing and chatting

How to start a Hangout on Air (speak to those internationally):

  • Follow same as above except click on “Start a Hangout on Air”
  • Give your Hangout a Name, start date, invite guests and click “Share” to begin

You can also post anything you wish to (within G+ guidelines). Businesses can also make pages and also have their regular G+.

If you haven’t already I would check out Google + and see what it’s all about!

Spring Flowers

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Today is the first day of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere! Enjoy the beauty of spring flowers from members of the EtsyChristmasInJuly Team!

Patricia from TheOldBarnDoor says:

Ah, spring flowers – just the mere mention of spring flowers and my heart starts to race (I’m Canadian and our winters can be long). I have lily of the valley planted everywhere here on the farm and the ones by the doors and windows welcome visitors with their heady fragrance and graceful demeanor. Besides, they remind me that a fairy just might be lurking near by.

Metallic Print Pure White Lily Of The Valley Macro Photograph From TheOldBarnDoor

Metallic Print Pure White Lily Of The Valley Macro Photograph From TheOldBarnDoor

Nautico Creations from NauticoCreations says:

I have more Spring flowers in my shop than anything else. Spring is my favorite time of year after surviving long Minnesota winters. I spend time in the Spring assembling flower arrangements indoors while waiting for the temperature to warm up outside.

The yellow flowers in this arrangement are just so nice and sunny and are my partner’s favorite color. The lacy metal flower pot is my mom’s favorite. Ranunculus is my favorite flower so I’ve included one of those to dance with the tulips and daisies. And the butterfly, well, what could symbolize renewal of the seasons more than that?

Yellow Tulips And Daisies - Silk Flower Arrangement NauticoCreations

Yellow Tulips And Daisies – Silk Flower Arrangement NauticoCreations

Lia Russo from Ghirlandiamo says:

In my shop I’ve many items made by spring flowers!

I adore them: so many kinds and colors, from the delicate peach blossom to the strong colors of tulips, buttercups, irises and others.

Here in South Italy, although never too cold in winter, it’s really soon warm in spring. And when you look around, everywhere you can see flowered trees and smell pleasant scents!

The most exciting smell for me is that coming from orange blossoms and effectively in my shop I also have some wreaths with those flowers.

I generally prefer strong colors but, at the same time, I love those timid flowers, not easy to see: delicate pansies and tremulous lilies of the valley.

In this my last wreath I put them together, creating a pleasant color contrast between white and many shades of lilac.

Pansies And Lilies Of The Valley Wreath From Ghirlandiamo

Pansies And Lilies Of The Valley Wreath From Ghirlandiamo

Becky from BirdsOnATwig says:

Nice cheerful sunflower, and vintage no less! I purchased this many moons ago at a wonderful handmade craft fair show… all of it’s “cousins” have found homes, this is the last of the bunch!

Wooden Sunflower Sign From BirdsOnATwig

Wooden Sunflower Sign From BirdsOnATwig

Walter Silva from WalterSilva says:

Funny you ask, I have been decoupaging with a lot of floral patterns in anticipating Spring!

More to come!

Floral Patterned Cross stitch Desk Organizer From WalterSilva

Floral Patterned Cross stitch Desk Organizer From WalterSilva

Sue and Misty from shabbyshopgirls says:

Big, bright, beautiful daisies! Spring & Summer is just around the corner and daisies are the perfect flower to lighten and brighten your home decor! Daisies are so friendly aren’t they?!

Vintage Daisy Tablecloth   From shabbyshopgirls

Vintage Daisy Tablecloth From shabbyshopgirls

Angie Fitzpatrick from CraftyMom75 says:

I was so ready for spring craft shows and ready to make some different aprons for craft shows that are reflective of vendor’s attitude at Spring craft shows-ready to be back out, ready to start a new year and meet new people. Then, right in front of me in February appeared this fabulous floral print!

Spring Floral Pastel Apron From CraftyMom75

Spring Floral Pastel Apron From CraftyMom75

Kristen Sargent from KestrelCollection says:

I seem to work with flowers no matter the season.

My first listing of March is this triple strand bracelet using glass beads in shades of white with off white roses. I like how it’s crisp but not too formal. That’s sort of how I feel the season of Spring to be. Crisp and new, but too young and carefree to be too serious. This coloring of this bracelet plays as a neutral so you can wear it with just about everything.

Shades of White- Rose Multi Strand Bracelet From KestrelCollection

Shades of White- Rose Multi Strand Bracelet From KestrelCollection

Betty Travell from LadySnooks says:

Can’t wait to see some real spring flowers. But, I made this bracelet to fill the void until we get some real ones. I’ve used the Czech Glass Flowers in blue and added some bright green beads and garden charms.

Spring Blue Garden Charm And Bead Bracelet From LadySnooks

Spring Blue Garden Charm And Bead Bracelet From LadySnooks

Emma-Louise from LSBJewellery says:

I love to watch spring unfold as the leaves and flowers unfurl I know that winter is finally over and warmth will soon follow, I created this particular watch from a selection of glass flowers and leaves it reminds me of my garden as the new season starts.

Springtime Statement Bracelet Watch From LSBJewellery

Springtime Statement Bracelet Watch From LSBJewellery

Valerie Brown from FirepanJewellery says:

I love roses, and mine generally arrive in mid-spring. This year, however, we’ve had a long hard winter so I thought a little hand lift was in order (to encourage good green and pink thoughts!).

Spring Rose Necklace From FirepanJewellery

Spring Rose Necklace From FirepanJewellery

candy frizzell from TrueEarthDesigns says:

Having found this carved gemstone, I began to think how to make it into a pendant necklace. With the lovely color, I found these beautiful pastel gemstone beads, together I knew they would make for a great jewelry piece.

Spring Blue Agate Necklace And Earring Set TrueEarthDesigns

Spring Blue Agate Necklace And Earring Set TrueEarthDesigns

Becky from LollysCubbyHole says:

I have spring flowers… some are found in the boutonnieres below. I also have vintage hankies with blossoms, buds and vines that make me just want to sing of spring!

Men's Burlap Boutonniere From LollysCubbyHole

Men’s Burlap Boutonniere From LollysCubbyHole

Corkycrafts from Corkycrafts says:

I love to garden and my friends always ask for seeds when spring arrives of the many wildflowers that pop up here in Texas. After requests and requests I started selling them in my shop too. I love to share TX color with my friends who have moved away from Texas and also with people who love to garden. Once I started listing many more people were asking for other seeds so I branched into the seed listings during the spring and summer months so I can save up corks for my projects. Check out my shop of the variety of seeds I have available.

Texas Wildflower Seeds From Corkycrafts

Texas Wildflower Seeds From Corkycrafts

Aquamarine – Pantone Fashion Color For Spring 2015

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Color trends are a wonderful way to celebrate the seasons!

According to Pantone one of the top colors for Spring 2015 is Aquamarine.

Pantone Spring 2015

Pantone Spring 2015

Aquamarine is cool, calming and ethereal. Aquamarine is a shade with a wet and watery feel. Open and expansive, this restful blue also acts as a stress reliever.

Members of the EtsyChristmasinJuly Team have many Aquamarine items in their shops! Here are a few!

Carolyn from SproutsPressDesigns presents her screen printed pouch, with images depicting thistles; a plant commonly found here in Ontario. Carolyn sketched the thistles outdoors, on a glorious summer day. She hand printed the fabric with aquamarine ink as she felt it best captured that perfect summer day: blue skies with the odd fluffy white cloud.

Crisp White Linen Pouch Screenprinted With Thistles In Aquamarine From SproutsPressDesigns

Crisp White Linen Pouch Screenprinted With Thistles In Aquamarine From SproutsPressDesigns

Merri from from ShoreItUp is inspired by the ocean and this aquamarine clutch is one of the first clutches she made. It embodies the cool calm waters of a far away tropical paradise. Aquamarine is truly one of her favorite colors.

Aquamarine Beach Clutch From ShoreItUp

Aquamarine Beach Clutch From ShoreItUp

Utary from Oyeta says that when she sees or hears the color aquamarine, it always reminds her of the white sandy beach and the color of the ocean sparkling as the suns shine on it. The serene sound of the waves and the warm breeze of the wind. She found this beautiful linen fabric in aqua and make this clutch with starfish brooch to remind you of the beautiful beaches and ocean and the beautiful memories left.

Aquamarine Starfish Clutch From Oyeta

Aquamarine Starfish Clutch From Oyeta

Barbara from MermaidsHatbox shares that when she colored the silk in this color, she wanted to sew something for herself from this. Then the silk get lost in her fabric stash. As she was digging it out again, the idea came spontaneously to create a summer hat / beach hat from this, which reflects the colors of the sea. As a contrast, she chose white denim. To represent the sparkle of the sea she embroidered the silk with beads and sparkling paillettes.

Aquamarine Sun Hat From MermaidsHatbox

Aquamarine Sun Hat From MermaidsHatbox

Patricia and Rebecca from northandsouthshabby crafted these bowl filler ornaments, looking to capture the hues of the Caribbean Sea. They think the shade is a perfect color to compliment any coastal cottage or shabby beach decor. The attached fishing net adds an authentic nautical feel. Their customers agree, as these ornaments remain one of the most popular items in our shop!

Beach Ornament From northandsouthshabby

Beach Ornament From northandsouthshabby

Susan from SSFDesigns shares that this corset and boy short was inspired by its color. Shes loved how the satin fabric shimmered and changed colors like the sea. She thought it would make a cute and sexy corset with a French vintage look!

Aquamarine Corset And Boy Shorts - Plus Size From SSFDesigns

Aquamarine Corset And Boy Shorts – Plus Size From SSFDesigns

Kristy Jo from KrystalKlarityBeads loves the natural look of beads with the natural inclusions that you expect. Kristy Jo is more about nature than she is about bling. And more about passion than she is about things being really expensive and making her money. Kristy Jo just love rocks! She loves this simple, uncomplicated design because the pieces have some brown inclusions and imperfections – and that is life, and nature! This piece feels calming to her when she is looking at it or holding it while thinking of a spring or summer sky – that is why she made it and kept it simple.

Aquamarine Bracelet From KrystalKlarityBeads

Aquamarine Bracelet From KrystalKlarityBeads

candy frizzell from TrueEarthDesigns mentioned that she wanted to use two contrasting blues, but still complementary in color. She chose Amazonite and Aquamarine and loves the heart shaped gemstones.

Amazonite Necklace And Heart Shaped Aquamarine Gemstone Sterling Silver and Earring Set From TrueEarthDesigns

Amazonite Necklace And Heart Shaped Aquamarine Gemstone Sterling Silver and Earring Set From TrueEarthDesigns

Natalya from GlassNatalyaDarlin loves the cool color of aquamarine. This set was created in very hot days. Really there was a wish for cool! And it such turned out. She added to aquamarine pink and purple color, the necklace reminds her of “Polar lights”.

Aquamarine Necklace And Bracelet Set From GlassNatalyaDarlin

Aquamarine Necklace And Bracelet Set From GlassNatalyaDarlin

Aquamarine Bracelet From GlassNatalyaDarlin

Aquamarine Bracelet From GlassNatalyaDarlin

Arek from ARPELC creates jewelry from the heart. He loves the combination of rose gold and beauty of the blue aquamarine stone. He treasures simplicity in design. Arek thinks this ring combines all these features.

Aquamarine Ring From ARPELC

Aquamarine Ring From ARPELC

Valentine’s Day “Sweet” Treats

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Valentine’s Day is almost upon us and what does one think of but sweet decadent treats. Chocolate, flowers, romance, hearts and dinner for two!

I asked CIJ team members to show me their treats!

Elizabeth Welburn of ElizabethLovesGlass told me:

I think paper ephemera would be considered a true “vintage collectible”.
These cards are from the 1960’s and have Hallmark Canada markings on the back.
I found them in my grandmother’s belongings – she actually had a lot of unused cards and I guess she picked them up “just in case.”
The cards are fairly heavy paper. In my mind, the strangest one is a Valentine’s ‘wallet’. It’s intended to hold cash. I would not think to give money on Valentine’s day, but hey, you could put a handmade gift certificate in this wallet if you wanted. And the design is very pretty and retro.

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Myrna Neal of ShopOfCraftsByMyrna says:

I love hearts. That is and has always been an expression of love. I make hearts and send them anywhere from anyone with a message that they want to send…..or….I send the heart to the person and they give or send the heart themselves. Love is in the air!

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Marjorie Scenna of mscenna states:

I love vintage and holiday inspired vintage items are wonderful and make great gifts for any occasion! These Valentine inspired earrings were created from a mix of vintage beads that I received from a friend. The glass roses reminded me of Valentine’s Day and then when I discovered the silver hearts, I thought they made a perfect pairing! Vintage Valentine’s Day with a new touch!

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Kristen Sargent of KestrelCollection explains:

I wanted to provide an affordable but totally awesome gift ready to give so I created the Valentine Everlasting Rose Earrings. I will ship each order with chocolate, a card and gift wrap it all so Valentines’ Day can be special and not stressful.

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Ifigeneia tsiltikli of fifirixtra told me:

This is a costume vintage item that i specially made for my Aikido teacher!
He has a lovely family with 2 girls very elegant! I wanted to make something for him that he could put it at his home and i got it! i think the lace with the tulle made it really vintage and the off white felt colored it with cocoa to give a more vintage result!

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Adonis Lewis of jewelrybyadonis let me know:

My inspirations are these sweet soft pastel hearts. They’re so quietly stated with beauty. I wanted to do something special with them and show them off. So I created this wire wrapped bracelet in pink and gold. They are perfect for a Valentine sweetheart.

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Noel of MinkCouture said:

I love participating in A Month of Letters-every day in February, write a letter and mail one and get some mail back in return. This pin was inspired by that and the notion of love letters. Made from an old sweater, some vintage die cuts and images from a vintage postcard, this sweet little pin reminds us all that we wish out letters had wings to get to our loved ones faster!

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Lia Russo of Ghirlandiamo states:

For me Valentine’s Day = heart, so when I saw that heart shape basis, I immediately imagined to put on it some other little ones, of different natural materials (wicker, bark, wood, cotton).

A so romantic and sweet item!

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Valerie Brown of FirepanJewellery says:

I love red, and I love Valentine’s day! When I saw the gorgeous reds that you can have in enamel, I knew I had to make hearts! I wanted a different take on the traditional heart, though, so I designed a heart that is a little off center and funky. The heart pendants are sweet because they are one of a kind, so you are giving a very individual gift to your sweetheart.

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Wendy WN of WoodNotions tells me:

I dressed up my little heart ornaments with rose pink ribbon to say “I give my heart to you!”
The lacy heart was inspired by a stained glass design. Combining the two classic designs, somehow created a fresh and cheerful look.

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Arlene of ThisandThatCrafter explains:

Here is a supply I sell… My inspiration is the challenge any ribbon has in getting a creative picture of that ribbon. Any ribbon is a challenge to get a creative picture of so I decided to take the ribbon and write a word. Since this is pink ribbon and Valentines is just around the corner I decided on the word Love. Love is a sweet word for the Valentine Holiday Season….

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Utary of Oyeta stated:

I love roses and red roses always reminds me of valentine days. Lately I’ve been so in love with vampire love story and this red roses in black clutch I create represent the darkness, the forbidden love, the broken heart and all that sad times when we love someone. No matter how dark it is, the red roses will remind you that love is still exist, to give you strength, power and hope

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Catherine Clifford of DesignsByCnC says:

I have always enjoyed both giving Valentine cards, as well as receiving them. When I was a young child I liked to make frilly and colorful Valentine cards for my family and friends.

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Jo Ann’s Angels of JoAnnsAngels states:

Red customarily symbolizes red and Valentines Day. I love that these angels are fitting for country/rustic tastes to more contemporary. Angels are so special and fitting for every occasion. It’s a great feeling to know angels are watching over those that we love.

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Sue and Misty of shabbyshopgirls explained:

We love vintage hankies, so every year my mom, sister and I exchange a vintage Valentine hankie with each other! It’s made for a wonderful tradition to show how much we appreciate each other and family!

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Sherri of ButterflyFeetDigital said:

I made this card for my husband a few years ago and then put the printable up for sale in my shop. It’s sweet, but not cute as in for kids, so it’s a perfect grown up valentine.

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Patricia and Rebecca of northandsouthshabby tells me:

The heart shaped bowls of these spoons, called to us at an estate sale. Once home and polished were discovered they were actually straw spoons! We think they would be perfect for the romantic at heart who love to set a pretty Valentine’s Day Table!

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Amy Spock of BeadsandThreadsbyAmy says:

We created these as a fundraiser for our local animal shelter, where we have adopted a wonderful cat and dog over the last year. They turned out so well, that we decided to list them in our Etsy shop, too!

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Kelly of ColourscapeStudios explained:

I created this print as a simple yet heartfelt way to describe the love people have for one another. My inspiration as always is my family, love lives here in our home and I want to share that warmth with everyone else!

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Nancy Duncan of EponasCrystals said:

Wild Heart Earrings are hand stamped brass and reversible! You can turn the hooks around and get two completely different looks.Sweet! Perfect for Valentine’s Day for your sweetest!

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Sarah Johnson of BellaBoutique23 told me:

One of my favorite gifts from my husband for Valentine’s Day was a coupon book, it is such a fun, romantic gift so I made this Valentine Scrapbook Mini Album that has love coupons that can inspire some romantic gestures.
Besides the photo spots there are places to journal, to write poetry or love notes in this album and a secret note can slip into the front of the album. I really enjoy sweet love notes and that was another inspiration in this album.

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candy frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns states:

My inspiration for this piece was the color for Valentines Day. I also love the way the coral was cut into petals. Bamboo Coral is an organic gemstone with small lines and grooves.

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Desert Dabbler of DesertDabbler tells me:

I love red dresses, Swarovski crystals, and going out with my special Valentine, my husband of many years. This was the inspiration for me to make this red and crystal bracelet.

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This Valentine’s Day why don’t you celebrate your love to your special someone(or your mother, brother, etc.) by giving them one of these special “Sweets”

Top Ten Tips: How to say I Love You

Contributor post by Amy of BeadsAndThreadsbyAmy

Valentine’s Day is the perfect way to share your “I Love You’s” with all of those you truly care about.  Our Christmas in July Team on Etsy share some ways to extend that I Love You into the rest of the year.

10) My daughter loves the jewelry I make. A jewelry gift is always a way to show someone they are special. Place it in a beautiful box with a handmade card or note. We always think of red, but it can be a color she loves. My daughter loves purple. –candy frizzell from TrueEarthDesigns

9) My husband and I have been together for over 30 years, and my top tip would be don’t forget “special occasions” like Valentine’s day. It actually becomes more important, as the years together grow longer, to show you’ve made an effort to pick out a gift just for your sweetheart!  – Valerie Brown from FirepanJewellery

8) I believe we should show others we care for them EVERYDAY!! I love putting together gift baskets for my loved ones. The items don’t have to be expensive, just thoughtful. For example, manicure supplies, DVDs with popcorn and candle or a nice book, assorted teas and a nice sturdy mug. Thoughtful always trumps expensive. –Jo Ann’s Angels from JoAnnsAngels
7) For me loving someone is all about surprise. Making life fun by making gifts all the more because there is no official occasion. –oppning from oppning
6) I believe in telling those that you love that “you love them”. I have always lived what I believe but I do understand that many have a hard time doing just that. I have created a send a heart in a cascade of fabrics that can be sent for any occasion. It can be scented and mailed to the person you want to send a message to. –Myrna Neal from ShopOfCraftsByMyrna
5) I want to give EVERYONE handmade gifts, but realistically, that doesn’t always happen. For teachers, sisters, mom, I like making zipper pouches. They’re useful and can’t have enough of them. I also give animal pillows to adults as well as kids. They’re kind of a nice travel size and still fit in my useful/handmade category. Happy Valentine’s Day! –Lucy from MyFunnyBuddy
4)  I am a giver so I think the best way is to tell someone you love him with words, hugs and kisses, my husband and my daughter at least they appreciate it. For all the other parts of my life, a handmade gift is my way to saw them that I love them, a piece of me!  Happy Valentines day to everyone!! –Ifigeneia tsiltikli from fifirixtra
3) The sweetest thing I’ve heard at a craft show was about these mini book necklaces. A man bought one and was going to write something on each page that he loved about his wife. He planned on giving it to her as a special token, filled with his words of love! Aw!!! So sweet! –Carolyn Eady from SproutsPressDesigns
2) I love to give gifts to the one’s I love to show them I care. A gift doesn’t have to cost a lot either. One year my husband gave me coupons to redeem and it is such a fun, romantic, and inexpensive gift you can give. I chose to create a card for Valentine’s Day that includes coupons to give to a special someone. –Sarah Johnson from BellaBoutique23
1) I’m married for many years and in this kind of relations often wife and husband take everything for granted.

I think it would be very nice to me to be invited by my husband go visiting one of the beautiful Italian towns: Naples, Venice, Rome, just like tourists!  Will it occur?  Perhaps if I show him my last Valentine’s Day decor, he will understand! –Lia Russo from Ghirlandiamo

Alas, our Ten Tips is at an end.  How better to say “I Love You” than a poem…

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

….and a few gifts from our Top Ten Contributors and other members of our CIJ Family.

To shop for any of these stunning, thoughtful gifts, just click on the collection!  Happy Valentine's Day from the Christmas in July Team!

To shop for any of these stunning, thoughtful gifts, just click on the collection! Happy Valentine’s Day from the Christmas in July Team!

Small Business Holidays – Black Friday, Cyber Monday And More

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Every year small shop owners look forward to the sale days around Thanksgiving.

This year Black Friday is on November 28th, Small Business Saturday is November 29th and Cyber Monday is December 1st.

I asked Christmas in July members “How do these sale dates benefit your shop?”

This is what they told me….

Patricia and Rebecca of northandsouthshabby told me:

Our shop will be offering a 10% discount on all items purchased from November 28 through December 7.

This year we will be increasing our advertising about our sale on social media venues. We will be doing this before and during the sale. With all the changes on Etsy, promoting on sources other than Etsy is becoming more important.

We hope to incorporate more visuals in those ads, perhaps creating staged vignettes with our items. Right now though, that’s only an idea, and time is flying! LOL!

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candy frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns said:

I think having sales on these dates gives you a chance to change your shop around and renew older pieces. It is 4 days of posting new pieces, using social media sites to bring people to your shop and sales allow you to restock (look for new gemstones). I am using Etsy on Sale for discounting my items, but also you can use a discount code for an extra discount, a push for that maybe sale, for those 4 special days.

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Alicia Bell of AliciasFindings states:

Having sales on these dates helps you to find new buyers. By networking and having a sale,it gives you the ability to widen your reach to a new bunch of buyers (target market). I am using a coupon code from now thru December 1st.

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So while you are enjoying the Holidays with family and friends, remember to shop Small!

 

 

Aurora Red – Pantone Fashion Color For Fall 2014

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Color trends are a wonderful way to celebrate the seasons! According to Pantone one of the top colors for Fall 2014 is Aurora Red.

Aurora Red is a more sophisticated shade that adds verve and spark.FCR_FALL2014_Home_Banner_Img

Members of the EtsyChristmasinJuly Team have many Aurora Red items in their shops! Here are a few!

Patricia and Rebecca from northandsouthshabby found this cheery Santa at an estate sale. It is a beautiful example of hand carved folk art from the New England region. They love how each whittled cut is angled in the piece -it lends to the rustic charm! Beautifully carved, and gorgeously painted, featuring an earthy shade of red -or as Pantone calls it – aurora red! A wonderful shade that will not overpower your holiday decor!

Vintage New England Hand Carved  Santa From northandsouthshabby

Vintage New England Hand Carved Santa From northandsouthshabby

Lia from Ghirlandiamo says that creating this wreath, she liked using not the classic Christmas red but a bit different one. Lia wanted to create a particular contrast between the base color and the white snow flakes. What do you think about it?

Aurora Red Italian Christmas Wreath From Ghirlandiamo

Aurora Red Italian Christmas Wreath From Ghirlandiamo

Amy from BeadsandThreadsbyAmy loves deep red for the holidays. When she found these hand cut lead crystal beads at a bead store on their travels to Southern Colorado, she knew they were screaming “ornament”. Here is the result of that lovely trip!

Lead Crystal Hand Beaded Victorian Christmas Holiday Ornament Cover From BeadsandThreadsbyAmy

Lead Crystal Hand Beaded Victorian Christmas Holiday Ornament Cover From BeadsandThreadsbyAmy

Christine from cwagenblass9 says this is an interesting shade of red – great for Christmas items.

Aurora Red Homemade Christmas quilt Star Tags From cwagenblass9

Aurora Red Homemade Christmas quilt Star Tags From cwagenblass9

G from PaperDraper shares This seems apt as she has what could be an aurora red in the sky! Her images for this collage were taken from a 1940’s newspaper and the lines behind signify a bomb blast with boy scouts cycling for their lives.

Aurora Red Original Collage From PaperDraper

Aurora Red Original Collage From PaperDraper

Majorie from mscenna came upon these vintage chunky pearl beads and couldn’t quite decide what to make but had a necklace in mind. When Majorie found the blue vintage beads and all she could think of was “something borrowed and something blue”.  She put them together in hopes of finding a bride who wanted a vintage inspired necklace!

Aurora Red Button Pin From mscenna

Aurora Red Button Pin From mscenna

Susan from SSFDesigns made this Aurora Red sequin evening dress for a custom order. She thought that the hardest part to making it would be getting the perfect fit and the boning detail , but it turns out that trying to get the picture taken with all the sequins was the hard part. Ordered as a custom order in her shop.

Aurora Red Evening Dress From SSFDesigns

Aurora Red Evening Dress From SSFDesigns

msmadmax from madmaxshop says that Julie Barne’s (Peggy Lipton) probably wore a bodysuit similar to this one being one of the hippest and first young undercover female detectives. Soft and stretchy and easy to wear. Dig it!!!

Aurora Red And Black Stripe Bodysuit From madmaxshop

Aurora Red And Black Stripe Bodysuit From madmaxshop

Rachel Palmer from 910woolgathering says the yarn she used in the scarf was the inspiration. The separate colors all lend themselves to go together, that it is always fun to try new pairings that she never would have tried. The shine and the drape are also added bonuses.

Aurora Red Unisex Cowl Wrap From 910woolgathering

Aurora Red Unisex Cowl Wrap From 910woolgathering

Kristy Jo from KrystalKlarityBeads shares that she made this because it has such depth and a more natural feel than many other stones. She kept thinking of fall colors and the depth that nature shows in, say – a red Maple tree. She had a necklace of this already and the stones are smooth and comfortable so she wanted a bracelet as well. Kristy Jo likes to look at bracelets (when we wear them they are more visible to us ourselves) and she tends to look from the color of what she is wearing to the colors in nature when she is outside.

Aurora Red Gemstone Bracelet From KrystalKlarityBeads

Aurora Red Gemstone Bracelet From KrystalKlarityBeads

Nancy Duncan from EponasCrystals says that while red is not one of her favorite colors, carnelian is one of my favorite stones. It can be orange to red in color, and these beads were in that red zone. Red brings a warm energy and is a nice color for fall and winter.

Aurora Red Stretch Bracelet From EponasCrystals

Aurora Red Stretch Bracelet From EponasCrystals

Noel from MinkCouture lets us know this chunky bangle bracelet is made with beads wrapped and knotted with a vintage men’s tie. The tie is cream, mauve and aurora red. A funky accessory that can compliment any outfit.

Aurora Red And Cream Vintage Mens Tie Bangle BraceletFrom MinkCouture

Aurora Red And Cream Vintage Mens Tie Bangle BraceletFrom MinkCouture

Isabel from CozyDetailz says that a Christmas inspiration to make this bracelet, using several and different red tones and calling it an Aurora Red friendship bracelet for all her friends in the world.

Aurora Red Cuff Bracelet From CozyDetailz

Aurora Red Cuff Bracelet From CozyDetailz

candy frizzell from TrueEarthDesigns says we usually think of the orange and yellows of fall, but look at a autumn tree and you see a deep brick red as well. This is her favorite time of year.

Aurora Red Faceted Agate Necklace And Earring Set From TrueEarthDesigns

Aurora Red Faceted Agate Necklace And Earring Set From TrueEarthDesigns

Elizabeth Berry from feesfusions says she made this pendant with a technique called a pot melt. Several colors of glass are melted together in the kiln and the end result is always a surprise as you really never know what the end result will be. Elizabeth really likes the reds in this pendant with a touch of white and black.

Aurora Red Fused Glass Pendant  From feesfusions

Aurora Red Fused Glass Pendant From feesfusions

collectique from Collectique says nice Norwegian tole in these two hand painted Aurora Red wall hangings. Gives a bright enhancement to any room, but she pictures them hanging in the kitchen since one is a cutting board and the other is a wall pocket or a knife holder. Matching floral designs and the green swirling leaves really deepen the lovely red background color.

Aurora Red Kitchen Home Decor From Collectique

Aurora Red Kitchen Home Decor From Collectique

 

Self Improvement Month – September

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

September is a month with lots of changes, new beginnings and hopefully a great start to a new you!

There are many ways we can self improve whether it be physical, emotional or mentally.

Here at Team Christmas in July we wish to know how your craft has improved you and show a picture of one of your items that improved your skills.

Candy Frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns told me:

How my craft has improved is sourcing and the choosing of higher grade gemstones and working with different types of bails to make the Y necklace styles. My design style is mostly in the classic gallery with a mixture of tribal.

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Valentina Caceres of JuguetesEloisa explained:

Every time I make one of my toys I think my craft improves. Also, learning of new tool to use has improve it a lot!. If I have to choose one item that has improved my craft it will possible be this one. This castle set has help me going on a next level of toys, allowing to experiment in size, colors, different shapes and adding something else, in this case the drawbridge. It was a real challenge, both doing the castle and the dragons!

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Kristy Jo of KrystalKlarityBeads stated:

I came into this with no real experience so I know I have learned and improved. I have made changes in grade of materials, quality of our supplies that we use and the ones we sell. I think I have made the most improvement on expressing myself in classic, almost minimalist pieces like this. I also have improved on allowing myself to make what I feel and not always think it has to be like everyone elses’ to sell.

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Arlene of ThisandThatCrafter said:

Getting more into my upcycling… Trying to recreate instead of throw away…

Here are some of my up-cycled tags and ribbons….

I am going to start cutting strips of plain sheets and stamping them for the holidays… Will post some once I get them done.

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Walter Silva of WalterSilva mentioned:

Lately, I have been drawing a lot on deconstructed cardboard boxes with Sharpies.
I just draw and have fun… Now I am developing these doodles to the next level with Caran d’ache crayons and importing them into Photoshop and voila, very cool doodles on new items. Learning that a simple fun drawing can be developed with other materials is so rewarding. You can follow these steps on my instagram, where I post them.

Follow me on Instagram
instagram.com/waltersilva

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There is so much you can improve on both big and small…so start a Self Improvement Revolution!

Women And Jewelry Go Hand In Hand

Contributor post by Alicia of AliciasFindings

Jewelry and Women are just two of many categories you can search on Etsy to find that perfect item you cannot live without! Christmas in July team has outdone themselves with these spectacular and shiny finds! Whether your taste is vintage,boho,avant garde or classic…take a trip with me.

I am sure most of us have that one item that just makes our jaws drop to the floor in awe and wonder. It must be mine!

Rachel Palmer of 910woolgathering says:

This one of a kind shawl was made from hand dyed wool. I dyed it using natural golden rod flowers for the yellow. I then hand spun it into yarn and wove it on a triangle loom.

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Shannon of SimplyTwitterpated let me know:

I make ecofriendly jewelry from fallen trees or recycled lumber. A fallen cedar branch in my yard got a new life when I created these wood slice stud earrings. They include the live edge, giving them a very natural look!

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Patti of CrochetGiftsnThings said:

This is the reason I opened a shop on Etsy in the 1st place. I was low on money one Christmas so I made a pair for everyone in my family and they were a big hit. They are my best seller!!

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msmadmax of madmaxshop explained:

Throughout the decades, New York City has been a melting pot of exceptional style and unique outfits. As a result, it has become one of the ultimate resources for the finest in vintage fashion and accessories. This enchanting button front lace teddy by FORMFIT was an original 5th Avenue showroom sample.

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Nancy of jaysboutiquecrochet told me:

Basically half of my shop is targeted towards women (and the other half towards babies, so check out my “Women’s Slippers” section to see them all. Also, some gift sets for new moms that includes Mother/Daughter crochet slippers. Wonderful stocking stuffers or gifts for any time of the year!

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Nicki of OodlesofBling says:

My shop is dedicated to women… probably 98% of my listings are for women.  In the Victorian era, women made jewelry for themselves from shells and paper. There are some very intricate designs still around today.

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Amanda Sagarin of eclecticnesting stated:

It’s very hard to sell handmade jewelry here on Etsy because of all the wonderful selections folks have to choose from. I have a passion for making handmade earrings (I have many pairs I’ve made for myself and it brightens my day to wear them!) and would be so grateful and thrilled if a pair spoke to someone as a treat for themselves or a present….

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Kelly of ColourscapeStudios shows me:

What women are made of!

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Laura of PLANETDIGS2 shows me:

My fav boho, hippie vibe bracelet brings back memories of always being a gypsy for Halloween! I’ve don’e other similar bracelets. There must be many ‘gypsy at heart’ people like me.

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Veddma of veddma tells me:

My love and I traveled across Ireland for our honeymoon. Embedded in a castle wall, at the Bunratty Castle, we discovered a black figure of a woman, opening herself up to the universe. We have learned that this figure is a Celtic fertility symbol, Sheela-na-gig, and her images are often found in the castles all over Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and England.

Just over a year later, I got pregnant with my first baby. I looked for images of Sheela-na-gig to make myself an amulet. She was the representation of female power, openness, fertility, freedom, and bounty of the universe to me. I drew her and made collages for my birth, and then I have found a lovely pewter charm design. This is how my Sheela-na-gig necklaces were born. Her image filled me with strength and helped me focus to bring my baby into being.

The necklace below is bright green, inspired by the green fields of Ireland that brought this wonderful symbol into my life.

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Amy Spock of BeadsandThreadsbyAmy says:

As a plus size woman, I know how difficult it is for us to find larger bracelets that are fashionable and timeless. So, I set about creating this cuff. It fits a larger wrist beautifully, and looks great with blue jeans or evening gowns!

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Betty Travell of Lady Snooks explains:

An Ammonite is a creature that lived in the seas between 240 – 65 million years ago and are now extinct. Fossils have always fascinated me, but this one was unusual. I had never seen an ammonite where the bottom portion is a deep red like this. The rest of the fossil is the usual shades of brown and rust.
I wanted to make it special, so I added some very small tourmaline beads along the one edge. I feel this makes it stand out.

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Candy frizzell of TrueEarthDesigns states:

I love working with gemstones. I started around 8 years ago making jewelry. I now search for unique, patterns, character stones for my pieces. Like today, I received my order of gemstones and started putting colors and designs together. Beautiful Tigers Eye has so much movement (chatoyancy). All I can say is fun. Here are some of my newest design sets.

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I hope you enjoyed this stroll and found something you must have,whether it be for you or someone else!