April 14, 2014

Pre-School Easter Basket Fillers

I love to share how I'm filling our Easter baskets. This year, there aren't quite so many handmade items, but I'm sticking with the simple + thoughtful and also used lot's of great free printables.


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(+) a fun new bathing suit
(+) Happy Hoppy Easter card - printable from Classic Play
(+) a donation of "baby chicks" to a family in need through Plan Canada. Comes with a beautiful card to share and explain to young children
(+) bunny ears cookie cutter
(+) printable Easter stickers from And We Play
(+) printable Easter stickers from mermag

(+) not pictured: printable colouring sheets from fifth & and hazel

If you missed my Easter basket fillers from previous years, you can check out the 2013 Easter basket fillers and the 2012 Easter basket fillers.

I'm also sharing lot's of great Easter and Spring inspiration on my hop! hop! hop! Pinterest board.

Happy Spring!

Alison

April 01, 2014

Filling Your Birthday Countdown: DIY Birthday Badges

Sometimes I love to just sit down and create something without much of a plan beforehand.

I knew I wanted to make a birthday badge for NJ's birthday countdown, after several attempts of trail and error, I came up with this, a combination of wool felt, buttons, stitching and a variety of ribbons and lace.

Who knows, maybe the next person who orders from the Petit Cadeau shop will get one of this as an extra little surprise.

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March 24, 2014

Introducing Petit Mail



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What can I say?  I'm really excited to announce the launch of Petit Mail. Subscriptions are already selling, grab yours right here.


I created Petit Mail because I'm so passionate about the joy of snail mail for children + I hope you are too. My daughter NJ (age 3) and I always make a habit of going on an adventure to check the mailbox.  She loves to see what has arrived and when we get home, she helps open the envelopes & packages and examines everything inside.  She loves to play with the empty envelopes. Her grandfather (Poppy) build her a small wooden mailbox that we use to "play mail" & hours of fun. 



Amid rising postal costs around the world, people are sending less and less snail mail.  I want her to know the simple joys of receiving a letter, addressed just to her.  I want her to know about stamps, and how to write an address on the outside of an envelope.  Mostly I want to have something fun in the mail each month for her to open, a special surprise just for her!



YOU named the characters - join Olivia and Oliver on monthly adventures by snail mail.  Each month, your child will receive a fun letter via snail mail.  We alternate between stories from Oliver or Olivia each month.

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Letters are:
(+) full-colour, double sided 5x7 inch cards
(+) printed on thick 100 lb cardstock
(+) packaged in fun, bright envelopes featuring stamps, embossing & tape
(+) some months include little extras, like stickers & other goodies

Ideal ages: 3-6


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The first edition of Petit Mail will be sent out to subscribers on April 15th, 2014.  So head on over to the shop and grab your Canada, USA or International subscription before then.  Makes a perfect Spring gift or Easter Basket alternative. 

Purchasing Petit Mail as a gift?
Subscribers have the option to download a printable gift card (included in your purchase confirmation e-mail)


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March 13, 2014

Handmade Marathon: Joyful Roots


Editor's Note: I have been working with the lovely Kim at Joyful Roots on several projects over the past year and recently purchased one of her gorgeous art pieces. I felt it was certainly time for The Petit Cadeau readers to meet Kim and discover her original art, fabric and other creations. 



(+) Tell us about your business
Joyful Roots was born from my desire to create uplifting and positive art and design to bring into the world. From miniature paintings, to pillows, to original fabric, my creations are meant to inspire and bring joy into peoples lives and homes. I sell my creations in my Etsy shop online.

(+) How did you get started?

I always knew that I wanted to own my own business, but it took me quite some time to figure out exactly what shape it would take. I have degrees in civil engineering and landscape architecture, so at first I started dabbling in residential landscape design. That morphed into a graphic design and website design business. However, in time I began to realize that my true passion has always been hands-on art creation. I’ve been crafting and creating ever since I was very small, so it was a natural move and one that was close to my heart.

(+) The gal/guy behind the business - Tell us about yourself, how do you spend your Saturday mornings, a little glimpse into your life, your family etc.

I’m a new mom to a little boy, who was born mid-October and I also have a step-daughter half the week who is 8 years old. My little guy occupies most of my time right now and we’ll spend much of the day giggling, playing “king of the mountain, taking walks and singing songs.

On a typical Saturday, I would wake up and my darling husband would probably make a fantastic breakfast accompanied by his home-roasted coffee (so delicious). We live five miles from Mexico in Southern Arizona on four acres and are surrounded by ranchland. We are currently in the process of building a chicken coop so that we can get some chickens and we dabble in growing veggies too. If we aren’t found creating, or exploring the nearby artsy town of Bisbee, we are probably out rock-climbing or hiking.


(+) What inspires you? Where does your creativity come from?

One of my biggest inspirations is nature. It’s always been something I’ve drawn energy and inspiration from. On the flip side, I’m inspired by rundown barrios, old towns, the brightly colored Mexican art and architecture, bold patterns, and inspirational words.


(+) What's one thing you would like to improve about your business?

I would like to create more of a cohesiveness and focus in my shop. I have a hard time sticking to one thing because I am constantly getting inspired by something and wanting to explore new mediums. For instance, my husband just bought me a screen-printing kit for Christmas so you can expect to see some screen-printing in my shop soon. I am starting to streamline a bit and also honing in on my personal style. This year I plan to focus much more on pattern and surface design.

I also need to get better at being more outgoing because I want to market my creations to stockists and product manufacturers. One of my big long-term goals is to get some of my designs licensed for fabrics or products. I need to be bold and step out of my comfort zone to contact these companies about licensing. It’s going to happen this year!


(+) What is the best gift you have ever given or received?

The best gifts I have received were all either hand-made or something I could use to create something hand made. I have to say that the screen-printing kit my husband gave me is up toward the top of the list. Some other gifts have been hand-created goodies for my baby. For instance, Alison and some of the other Oh My! Handmade girls all send my babe an amazing box of handmade gifts including one of Alison’s Celebration Bags, a hand-knitted sweater, handmade soaps and some cute cards! Everything in that gift box will be a keepsake and treasure.

(+) How do you celebrate special occasions?

I tend to celebrate things fairly quietly. If I’m celebrating with other people, I like it to be with a small group of close friends or family. I’ve never been the huge party, big blow-out type of gal. However, I do love to make memories, whether it’s through a new experience, a new place, or just by having some good laughs with people I love. Some of my fondest celebrations have been walking the shoreline of Lake Michigan with my love after getting engaged, my bridal shower with my closest ladies in Chicago, my 10th birthday in Cancun Mexico, and a Tucson Potluck Thanksgiving with college friends under a homemade canopy in unexpected rain.



(+) What do you do when you make time for yourself (you and only you)

When I have time to myself it will almost always involved creating. I love getting out my paints and creating something new on canvas or sewing a useful project like the baby carrier I am currently making. Oh, and I suppose once in a while it might include a bubble bath by candlelight. ;)


You can find more Joyful Roots here:

Website (+) Shop (+) Twitter (+) Facebook (+) Instagram (+) Pinterest 





March 06, 2014

How to Fill A Birthday Countdown Calendar: DIY cake toppers


This year for my daughter's 3rd birthday, I've decided to focus on simple gifting + the celebration. Placing more importance on honoring the day, than material gifts. 

This means little surprises leading up to her birthday in a handmade birthday countdown calendar, and a special homemade cake.

Her birthday countdown calendar is a beautiful sunshine yellow and has five days of surprises, each of which I will share with you here on the blog, starting with fun cake toppers. 








I like to make new cake toppers each year.  They are simple to make and you can design your own, or use some of the beautiful free printable designs that are available.


This year, I've decided to use a "cute as a button" theme, and I made custom toppers in 3 easy steps:

(+) purchased wooden buttons from a craft supply store
(+) hand painted some, and left some plain
(+) hot glued the buttons to thin wooden dowels

That's it, seriously.
Use your imagination for your own cake toppers.  Cut simple shapes from pretty paper (hearts, stars,


More Cake Topper Inspiration

(+) Balloon Cupcake Toppers by Studio DIY

(+) DIY cake toppers using scrap paper and ribbon from She Paperie

(+) I used these gorgeous printable "you are my sunshine" dessert toppers from kiki creates for NJ's 2nd birthday

February 26, 2014

Things Worth Celebrating: A Community Blog Tour



This post is part of the Things Worth Celebrating Community blog tour. A collection of posts by bloggers focusing on everyday moments that deserve to be celebrated.

When I first starting thinking about hosting this blog tour, I knew that I wanted my post to be filled with photos. So, onward, shall we, to my things worth celebrating....








(+) sweet treats.  I could eat one of these flourless chocolate brownies every day (+) use little luxuries every day. locally made body scrub for my dry Winter hands. smells amazing (+) making a giant mess in my creative space and enjoying the process  (+) moving. centring. getting back to my yoga practice after being ill for weeks (+) sleeping in (a rare treat). tea or coffee in bed.

Many amazing bloggers are participating in this Community Blog Tour. Be sure to visit and read all of the other posts to get ideas + inspiration for your own things worth celebrating!


Not a blogger but want to play along?  Tag your photos with #thingsworthcelebrating on Twitter and Instagram. 






February 20, 2014

Slow Gifting: Turning Ideas Into Reality

This week, I'm honoured to be guest posting for Andrea and Danielle on the Crafting Connections blog about how I'm turning my slow gifting ideas into reality.

Here's a sneak peak at the photos, head on over to Crafting Connections to read the full post.


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