Live Creatively.

Tag: Handmade

World on a String – Make Terrarium Necklaces

How to Make Terrarium Necklace Tutorials The Beading Gem's Journal How to Make Terrarium Necklace Tutorials Informative and Inspirational Jewelry blog for jewelry making.

Very Last Last Minute Father’s Day Ideas

Very Last Last Minute Father’s Day Ideas

It’s OK. Not everyone is a “planner” by nature.

Thankfully, Dad knows you well enough to know your lack of organization around getting something in time for Father’s Day does not reflect how much you love him. (Oh, FYI – Father’s Day is this Sunday if you aren’t quite that far yet!)

There is still time to do something really cool for Dad this weekend. Here are some ideas you can do in no time at all.

Throw him a little party

Turn Dad’s favorite meal into something more festive by using a few decorations. Printable party hats, awesome food labels, and so much more can be found on Etsy. It could be just family, but it will feel his special day.

Get or print him a card

I am crazy about this instantly printable set of Free Father’s Day designs by The Album Cafe that I came across on Living Locurto. How cute! (Here is the link to download it — open’s up a .zip file)

Free Father's Day Craft Ideas

Online gift certificates

Many stores offer gift certificates that can be printed online or even emailed to Dad. Look where Dad shops…and if you aren’t sure, try a gift card from a big marketplace.You can decorate a cool box to put it in!

Get him what he’s been dreaming of

You know what a lot of Dads really want? Sometimes they just want to be able to find matching socks. Especially when a house is full of happy, crazy kids, Dad’s basics like socks and t-shirts tend to disappear under a pile of unfolded laundry. On my Dad’s 45th birthday, I remember my Mom giving my Dad 45 pairs of brand new socks in a laundry hamper that was just his. lol – In a family of four daughters, you can imagine he probably felt like he had nothing to himself ever and could NEVER find his stuff – He was thrilled! Even a new set of his favorite toiletries would show Dad you love and appreciate him…you don’t have to get fancy!


**image credit: The Album Cafe, I Heart Faces (see on Facebook:




Make A Layered Paper Ring

How to Make a Layered Paper Map Ring The Beading Gem's Journal How to Make a Layered Paper Map Ring Informative and Inspirational Jewelry blog for jewelry making.

Make a Morse Code Necklace

Make a Morse Code Name or Word Necklace! The Beading Gem's Journal Make a Morse Code Name or Word Necklace! Informative and Inspirational Jewelry blog for jewelry making.

Featured Crafter: Nikki, In Stitches

Featured Crafter: Nikki, In Stitches

Nikki In Stitches - Kits and Handmade Tutorials
Go, Nikki! She

Crafter: Nikki McGonigal

Company Name: Nikki, In Stitches


Meet Nikki: She is awesome!

Nikki, a one time teacher and now professional Mom to two kids and crafter has been able to turn her talent for DIY-ing just about anything into a thriving business. For years she would encourage friends to get crafty, saying “You could SO make that” when they would see trendy items in stores or catalogs. Today Nikki spends time teaching people how to make things with her fantastic tutorials and simple craft kits.  We talked with Nikki recently to find out about her life, her crafty loves, and what keeps her going when the going gets tough.

Hi Nikki, So what is Nikki, in Stitches all about?

Nikki, In Stitches helps people join the handmade movement by providing tutorials and patterns for projects from all craft mediums, as well as kits to go along with those tools.  With these items together, I really do believe that everyone can make my projects, and everyone can be a successful crafter!

Nikki’s web video segment for Oprah’s OWN network “You Can SO Make That!”

What inspired you to get started?
It’s funny how what starts out as one thing leads to something totally different!
I have always strived to make as much as I can by hand, whether it be gifts, home decor pieces for my house, my clothing and accessories, etc.  I believe making something with my own hands gives it much more meaning.  When I first started Nikki, In Stitches I had just had my first baby and was at a point in my life where it seemed everyone around me was also having babies.  It made sense for me to focus my business there, so I started making handmade baby apparel and accessories.  It was a success.  I had my pieces in a few boutiques and orders were coming in for custom items, but the teacher in me (I was a high school math teacher before becoming a full time mom) was feeling a little left out.  I kept coming back to how I felt when I made a project by hand, and how I really wanted to help other people feel that same pride in their work.  So I changed gears some, focused more on my blog, which provides projects and tutorials in various craft mediums, and decided that inspiring and helping others to join the handmade movement was where I wanted to go.  Now, not only can you find tutorials and projects from Nikki, In Stitches, but you can also purchase kits to go along with those tools, so there is no excuse why you can’t make my projects yourself!
What is the best thing about running your business?
I love the idea that people are sitting down with my kits, watching my videos or reading my tutorials, and literally making my projects along with me.  I love helping them make something themselves, and hearing back from them afterward.  Oftentimes I get an email or a comment on my blog, thanking me for my help and showing a picture of a finished project.  I love that I’ve helped someone make something that they didn’t have the skills to make before.
Did you run into any stumbling blocks along the way?
Of course I’m faced with all of the traditional obstacles…little to no budget, finding creative and low-cost ways to get my name out there, etc. but as a stay-at-home mom of two little ones, starting a business is difficult!  Balancing my time with them, my time devoted to growing my business, filling orders, etc, and then throwing my husband into the mix is very hard, but so fulfilling.  I guess you could say mutli-tasking is my best skill!!
What motivates you when things get tough?
When things get tough, I take a step back and remind myself how lucky I am.  I get to stay at home with my two beautiful babies and play with crafts all day.  I really can’t complain!
Where do you get most of your sales/leads/orders?
At first, word of mouth was my really my only source of income.  I am so thankful for the friends and family I have, and how supportive they have all been.  At this point, my internet sales have grown and become an increasingly larger part of my business.  Also, with the holidays coming up, people are starting to look to make gifts for their family members and friends, and I’ve started teaching classes based around my projects.

To get in touch with Nikki or to place an order for her kits, email Nikki at

See a couple of Nikki’s favorite project tutorials here:
Cork wreath:

Button Necklace:

Tips, Ideas, and Inspiration For Your Handmade Wedding

Tips, Ideas, and Inspiration For Your Handmade Wedding

In preparation for my own “handmade” wedding next year, I have been doing  tons of research to find inspiration. Many couples have beautiful, simple, meaningful weddings that accomplish all of the “should do’s” on my personal list and include thoughtful elements created by the bride, […]

Say I Do…To A Happy Handmade Wedding

Say I Do…To A Happy Handmade Wedding

If your were about to set sail on a long voyage, would you make enemies with the crew and kick a hole in the ship before you go? As a soon-to-be bride myself, I have a few opinions about what a wedding should and shouldn’t […]