Wednesday, November 30, 2011

All Fleeced Out!

All Fleeced Out! Is a shop run by a sweet Mama who has been a customer on etsy for years and when Virgina decided to start her own buissness, she felt etsy would be a great place to start. Her shop is focused on making fleece items. She customizes her items by adding embroidery and apliques. She also makes coordinating shirts and onsies to match her fleece longies and soakers.
Virgina loves working with fleece because it is such a versital material. As she says, "it can be used to make soakers and longies...shoes, sweatshirts and even hats". In her shop you can find fleece longies, shorties and soakers. She can customize your item with a matching shirt or fleece hoodie. She is even working on some new ideas for the future to include fleece wetbags.
This mama uses her daughter for her insperation. Running her shop allows her to stay at home, she also uses her daughter to test out all of her products before selling them, so feel confident knowing her products have been tested on a fluffy bum! New to fleece? Here are some words of wisdom from Virgina " Fleece isn't totally waterproof and can sometimes have compression leaks, but if the diaper underneath it is nice and absorbent, then fleece makes the perfect diaper cover! I've used it successfully at nap time and even at night. It is very breathable, and believe it or not, it even functions well in the summertime! Pul would make my daughter sweaty in the summer, but using a thin fleece soaker or shorties kept her cool"
Why shop at All Fleeced Out!? Virgina has excellent customer service and is a great mama to work with. She is dedicated to the customer and will work with you until you are completely happy. She can digitize her own embroidery and add personal apliques for a truley one of a kind, personalized product. She takes her time with each individual to ensure that you will be pleased with your purchase. She makes each custom creation with love and pours herself into her work.
Currently you can find Virgina's work on etsy, through facebook and online forums such as diaperswappers. Can't you just picture your little one in a matching set of longies and a hoodie.....how cute would it be to have them All Fleeced Out!
Fleece Raglan Hoodie Sizes 9 and 10/12
Fleece Soaker Diaper Cover and Embroidered T-shirt Set
Newborn Fleece Longies - Breastfeeding Advocacy

Monday, November 28, 2011

Meet the Team--Emilie from GotEmCovered

After reading what Emilie has to say about her shop and cloth diapering visit her Etsy shop to see her quality hand-crocheted wool diaper covers.

Where did you get the name for your shop?

I mostly make and sell cloth diaper covers and based on the idea that whatever your need, whether it is diaper covers, feminine cloth, or any other handmade items that I have it covered.

Is it big business or a hobby?

My craft started as a hobby to make one of a kind, custom fit diaper covers and items for my children and family, I found myself enjoying it so much that I wanted to continue crafting and sharing with others. Although it is a source of income, it is still a hobby for me. I put the same care and attention to every piece in my store as I would a gift for a family member.

Why do you like selling on Etsy?

I enjoy selling on Etsy because it is a community of craftspeople creating and sharing handcrafted goods.

How long have you been sewing and crocheting?

I learned the basics of both sewing and crocheting at an early age from my grandmother. But it was not until I later had my first son (5 years ago) that I really started doing both on a regular basis. Since then I have honed my skills and learned many new techniques. I really enjoy creating new sewing and crochet patterns to meet the needs of my family and clients.

What is your favorite thing to make at the moment?

I have currently learned a new technique to add designs onto my wool covers and I am really enjoying creating different themes and trying new ideas.

What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about self/personal expression. I feel that everyone should feel the freedom of self through art, craft, music, personal belief or appearance. I believe everyone has a creative outlet and should feel open to the ability to share it with others

What is your favorite thing in your shop at the moment?

My favorite items in my shop currently is the one size wool snapping tester covers. They are made with the tunisian/afghan crochet stitch which mimics the look of a knit item, but has the density of a crochet item. this stitch has sometimes been referred to as 'bullet-proof" when it comes to wool diaper covers. I originally learned this technique specifically as a solution for my own sons night-time diapering. Since then I have been working and testing numerous designs to make a great fitting covers for a wide range of babies and toddlers. The current design is the result of years of work. It is a 2 part system that allows the rise to be adjusted, snaps along the waist for adjustment, and a contoured backside and thigh for a better fit. I still have these at a reduced price and offer a refund incentive for feedback given in the form an online survey. Although this design has proven to have a great fit and performance, I still appreciate more feedback to ensure that it is the best for my clients. I know that wool covers are an investment and I wanted to find way to make sure that it would be usable for the long term and for every unique child.

Who is your inspiration?

My grandmother is my inspiration. I remember as a child I was sure that she could make that my heart desired or fix anything that may have broken. She was a loving, caring, and generous woman to anyone she met.

Why is cloth diapering important to you?

Cloth diapering is important to me because of so many reasons, but name just a few: it is healthy and comfortable for your baby (any woman who uses disposable feminine pads may be able understand the discomfort a disposable could potentially bring), it is good for the environment, and it is good for the budget - I could not imagine having to pay the large and ongoing expense of disposable diapers especially in the tough time many are facing . I have learned inexpensive ways of cloth diapering and even took the flats hand washing challenge to support the idea of inexpensive cloth diapering. I am more than happy to help anyone get started or just answer questions in a pressure free, non judgemental environment. please feel free to contact me!

Etsy Shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/GotEmCovered?ref=pr_shop_more

Facebook/web Address: www.facebook.com/GotEmCovered

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Flour Tortillas

If you have read my other posts than you know that I am all about food that is healthy for you and for the environment.  Having read the list if ingredients on the flour tortillas that I was buying, I decided it was time for a change.  The list was long and hard to pronounce (a sign that the majority of the ingredients are over processed).  Flour tortillas should be made of flour and not much else but the more I researched the more disappointed I got.  My local grocery store didn't sell any that weren't full of scary ingredients.  So, I added on more thing to my "make at home" list (which is quite long and includes, among others, sandwich bread, jam / jelly, and laundry detergent).  The tortillas were quick and easy, give them a try!
Written by Kailyn Shippee, owner and crafter of Spotty Dog Crochet

Ingredients
  • 2 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour (or not whole-wheat but you know its better for you)
  • 1/2 cup oil (I use olive)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup warm water 
    1. In the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer set with a dough hook, pour in the flour, oil and salt. Beat with the paddle until crumbly, about 3 to 5 minutes. Scrape the sides as needed. If your hand-held mixer comes with dough hooks those can be used as well.
    2. With the mixer running, gradually add the warm water and continue mixing until the dough is smooth, about 3 minutes.
    3. Take out the dough and divide it into 12 equal sized pieces. I do this by rolling out a log shape that is about 8 – 10 inches long. Then I cut it in the middle. Then I cut each of those pieces in the middle and so on until you have 12 pieces.
    4. Roll each piece into a ball and flatten it out on a baking tray or board. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for at least 15 minutes or up to one hour.
    5. Heat a cast iron skillet, griddle or 12-inch skillet over med-high heat. The pan should be fairly hot before you begin cooking the tortillas.
    6. On a lightly floured board or countertop, roll each ball into a 8 to 10 inch circle. Be careful not to use more than a teaspoon or two of flour when rolling out each ball of dough because too much excess flour will burn in the pan.
    7. Grease the pan with a touch of oil and then carefully transfer each tortilla, one at a time, to the pan and cook until puffy and slightly brown, about 30 to 45 seconds per side. Set aside on a plate to cool slightly. Eat within an hour, refrigerate or freeze.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Cloth Diapering with Special Needs or Circumstances

Sometimes even though we wish for pefect health in our children, we get dealt another hand. Sometimes our perfectly healthy children hit road blocks and have special circumstances. Whatever the reason, these are potential road blocks and detours on our cloth diapering journeys. But those circumstances don't mean we can't use cloth!

It wasn't until I was pregnant with my second son that I even entertained the thought of using cloth diapers. And it wasn't for any other reason than trying to save money on the cost of diapers. The thought of having two babies in diapers made my single income budget shudder in fear and despair. In retrospect, I'm so thankful for instinct leading me to cloth. You see, my Kili has some special circumstances that pose a diapering challenge. We have no technically named diagnosis, but we know that my almost 3 year old son has the large intestine the size of a grown man. He has no sensations of needing to eliminate, and there is no end in sight. He also has to be on large doses of laxatives to make sure he doesn't develope another blockage. It makes for a lot of poopy diapers, like 12 a day! That's a lot of waste when you're using disposables!! And it makes for a lot of dunking and swishing (don't worry, a diaper sprayer is on my Christmas wish list!) And he'll more than likely continue using diapers for the next 3-5 years.

Kilian isn't the only child with long term diapering needs. There are so many different challenges facing so many children and many of them will be in diapers for the entirety of their lives. Isn't it wonderful that we have an amazingly talented plethora of WAHM's that can design and create diapers for all ages and stages and needs?! And that as a WAHM we can help some of these children who already face challenges have healthier tushes while helping the environment and their parents already strapped pocket books at the same time?

I'll be forthright. When we first learned of Kilians challenges earlier this year, I balked at the thought of using cloth. I hated the thought of that many diaper changes (when in reality it is now less than it was then, 24 poopy diapers a day!), doing that much diaper laundry, essentially being changed to, well, changing diapers. But it's my reality. I have to change that many diapers a day (when you factor in how many his baby brother uses as well). And I have to change them regardless of them being cloth or disposables. But the converting incident was around my tenth diaper of the day (disposable) and finding my poor boy broken out in horrible blisters. In an hour, his skin deteriorated horribly because disposables just can't hold poop explosions like cloth can. And though we're in a better spot financially now than we were 3 years ago when I first decided to use cloth, throwing that much money away just pains me.

I can't speak for all the moms of special needs children. I don't know their stories and I would hate to tell it wrong. I'm just speaking from my heart on our situation and saying that cloth is possible even if you have a 3 year old poop monster, or a 5 year old bedwetter. Now we just need to find more WAHMS to fill the diapering needs of the special needs children.

Do you make big kid diapers, briefs for the older special needs person? There is a great need in the WAHM market for patterns and products geared towards our kids who face challenges. Do you know of another WAHM that does? Leave a comment, leave a link, and maybe some other mothers will be able to find what they need! Thanks  ~ Dustie from Dustie Bottoms

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

PettiBearKIDS scrumptious AIO fitted diapers

Viki Tiamat is the owner and designer of PettiBearKIDS on Etsy.  She is a very busy mom, as she also has two other Etsy shops; PettiBear, a shop for womens' fashions and accessories all designed by Viki, and TiamatDesign her original Etsy store specializing in graphic art prints, as well as branding, banners, and other graphic design needs. It is obvious by looking at her shops that sewing and designing are her passion.  I spent some time talking with her about her fitted AIO cloth diapers.  

Although her very first diapers were based on a free pattern she found online, her creative ability and sense of style soon tweaked the pattern to better fit her daughter.  Something I admire about them is that they are made with high quality all organic fabrics inside and out.  She uses hemp fleece for the inside layer, and bamboo velour for the outside super soft layer, as she believes these are the best fabrics for her daughters skin, and your babies as well!!  She says, "I owe a HUGE thanks to the free web patterns that got me started".  
She also told me,"I first started to make diapers with the birth of my second baby daughter ,Sheluv. She is fully diapered with mommy's organic diapers and I LOVE it!"  It was when her second daughter was born that Viki decided to open her third Etsy shop just for kids.  I am impressed with the high quality and reasonable prices of her all organic diapers.  

The opening in the front of theses diapers allows you to use the diaper both as a pocket diaper or an AI2 diaper style, by snapping in the insert on top of the lining. They have a Wrap & Snap option for petite babies, ADJUSTABLE button rubber back and a specially designed internal pocket flap to prevent the soaker from slipping out through the opening, and includes one 4 layer hemp fleece inner soaker .


I asked Viki her thought on being and Etsy seller in another country..."I think is the same like having an Etsy shop in the US but with shipping time difference! The only difficulty selling from abroad is that people not always aware of the fact that they buying from Israel and wondering why it takes so long for their item to arrive :) 
Time zones are a bit confusing as well,but with time I learn to understand that if one really like one of your items,he wouldn't mind waiting for a couple of hours till I reply to their questions..At the beginning I was obsessing about answering right away and lost many sleep hours trying to be in the American time zone while in Israel :D But now I know better-I sleep well and answer first thing in the morning!"  

Thanks so much for checking out her cute kids Etsy shop...PettibearKIDS.  No giveaway this week, but please go to the promotions and giveaway page and check out all the sales and promotions for  Black Friday ~ Cyber Monday and  and Small Business Saturday Sales!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Meet the Team--Meet Johanne from Mamajodiapersandpads


Today we hear what Johanne shares about cloth diapering and her experience as a cloth diapering and work-at-home-mom. Her Etsy shop, Mamajodiapersandpads, is filled with all kinds of great products made from North American milled fabrics including: pocket diapers, fitteds, inserts, wipes, menstrual pads, and nursing pads. Don't forget to check out her shop after reading this!

Where did you get the name for your shop?
I came up with my name because close friends and family have always called me Jo (JoJo en francais). I wanted something that represented me and my momminess!


Is it big business or a hobby?
Although I am on mat leave currently, and will be returning to work full time (sniff sniff) I would say it is a business. I dont want to give it up when I go back. But I am so passionate about it, and enjoy it so much, it feels like more of a hobby to me.

Why do you like selling on Etsy?
The MaMas. I have "met" the most wonderful group of ladies here, like nowhere else. I feel very blessed to work for them.

How long have you been sewing?
I have always been crafty and making things, but I have been sewing dipes for two years now.

What is your favorite thing to make at the moment?
I love making everything that is my shop so that is a hard hard question. Although my dipes take a long time to make, I get great satisfaction in making each and every one. I always wonder what little bum will be in there. Lately, I am also really loving making breast pads for Mamas- because they deserve some goodies too!

What are you passionate about?
Cloth diapering and North American milled fabrics and products (buying local).

What is your favorite thing in your shop at the moment?
My new Jean diaper. I love it love it love it- is is sooo cool. Also my flames diaper, which for some reason, nobody buys???



Who is your inspiration?
My children. They were both cloth diapered and being frustrated with what was on the market , I developed my own. And my Dad. He was forced out of business due to manufacturing of fabrics in China and as you will see in my profile, that is the foundation of my business.

Why is cloth diapering important to you?
For the planet- absolutely. We are a very green family and wish more people were. And for baby's health: In 1955, 100% of American babies wore COTTON DIAPERS, 0% wore DISPOSABLES, and 7.1% experienced DIAPER RASH. In 1991, 10% of American babies wore COTTON DIAPERS, 90% wore DISPOSABLES, and 78% experienced DIAPER RASH.
SOURCES:
JOURNAL OF PEDIATRICS 1959, Vol 54 pp. 793-800 “Relationship of Peri-Anal Dermititis to Fecel pH” by Drs. Tamio, Steiner, Benjamin
CLINICAL PEDRIATRICS May 1991, Vol 30 Department of Internal Medicine & Pedriatrics, Loyola University Medical Ctr. “Newborn Chemical Exposure from over-the-counter Skin-Care Products” by Drs. Cetta, Lambert, & Ross

What factors are the most important to you when choosing a cloth diaper?
For me it is about choosing the very very best fabrics out there for baby and- ALL made in North America. Even my thread is made here. The only thing in my diaper that is not manufactured here are the snaps (the best are from overseas unfortunately) and my elastics- but I may have found a North American elastic that will work for us.

What is the kind of diaper you like the best at home?
My own MaMaJo one size PUL diaper. But now that I am potty training Rafi, I like to take two pair of absorbent underwear, one bigger, one smaller, put them one inside the other, and he can wear those around the house. They are super comfy and semi absorbent. I am working hard to try to make a lightweight absorbent and soft trainer-no success yet;.
On the go? For travel? - any good cloth diaper will do!
For budget? For budget, many people like flats or prefolds- they were not my first choice by any means but still a good option.

Do you have a favorite CD shop on Etsy?
Someday Sara - for her gorgeous wool longies. Both my children (and husband ) are allergic to wool so we had to forego my favourite combo of bamboo fitted dipes and wool longies- sniff sniff.

What is your favorite or least favorite cloth diapering memory?
Oh my Gosh. The first time I used an eco soap, I did not realise how harsh they are and used a regular amount on Maiya's diapers. When I took her diaper off, it was like a severe sunburn all over. I was just mortified. My favourite: making my very first cloth diaper for Rafi - I still have it and will always keep it. It is pretty lopsided- but gorgeous because it sent me on this wonderful wonderful journey of being a WAHM on etsy.

Etsy Shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/MamaJodiapersandpads?ref=seller_info

Sunday, November 20, 2011

It''s NUTZ not to use Soap Nuts

SOAP NUTS
Soap Nuts are made from the shells of a special tree grown in Nepal.
 They have been used for hundreds of years in India as a natural cleaning option, and can easily be added to your washing machine in a bio-degradable cloth bag.
 The shells themselves are removed from the fruit and left out to dry in the sun;
 They're naturally rich in saponins- nature's pure cleaning solution.
 When the shells are in contact with water, they release a unique soapy substance.
 Soap Nuts are free of synthetic chemicals, fragrances, toxins, and most of all, the fillers that are used in commercial detergent today. They're just as powerful as standard detergent.


 So I was wondering for a while now about these soap nuts I was reading about and I decided to try them out
Lots has been written about the soap nuts on the web...I tried using them and here is my own impression of  the Soap Nuts -
PRO
First of all they are Organic Laundry Detergent!!!
I can make this statement since I know the soap nuts grow on trees...So it's a good thing no chemicals are involved in your washing process especially when we talk about cleaning our precious's cloth diapers!

 These are REALLY easy to use! Just place 4  Soap Nuts broken in half in the small muslin bag (usually attached to the package when bought in stores), tie it closed, and throw it into the drum of your washing machine along with your articles of clothing that need washing.

Soap Nuts release the soap better in hot water, but you can still use cooler water if you need to run a cold wash-you might just need to use a few more nuts for a deep clean.
 While you won't see big bubbles of suds in the washer, the cleaning solution is pure and will remove all grime and dirt from your laundry in a natural way.

You can reuse this batch for 4 or 5 loads of laundry. The soap nuts will be mushy and grey when they need to be composted for your garden. (another advantage !)

You can also make a Soap Nut Liquid (which I prefer using ) by simply boiling approximately 12-15 whole Soap Nuts with 3 cups of water for 30 minutes. When it is boiled down, you will have about 2c. of liquid left. Add extra water, if needed, to keep it at that amount. When cooled, remove the soap nuts, and pour it into an airtight plastic or glass jar. It is better to make the liquid in smaller batches as it can spoil.
I add 5 drops of aromatherapy extract to the Soap Nut liquid for extra good smell-try adding eucalyptus  or pine and it will make your laundry small like forest (use ONLY natural extracts!!!! )
 Use 3Tbsp (45mL) of soap nuts liquid detergent per large load of laundry.

They are REALLY economic as you may understand from the 4 shells per load...which may be reused about 5 times!!!

The Soap Nuts liquid had easily remove new stains but couldn't handle with the stubborn old ones  (but I won't hold that against them as my old regular well packed with chemicals detergent couldn't handle the stains either )
So don't expect from it to remove the yellow stains (you know about what stains I'm talking about :D) from the cloth diapers,I let the SUN do that job.
But they handle very well with the usual "natural" body smells,so your laundry will  smell clean and be fresh after the wash especially if extracts ^^ were added.

Some say the Soap Nuts are good for your washing machine as well,as saponin is an acid substance  which will help your washing machine work better-I think that's a good news :)

AGAINST
The Soap Nuts have that brown pigment which with time may leave an impression on your clothes (mainly whites) so just use vinegar or baking soda for now and then with your whites

NO "good" smell of freshly made laundry like we use to  with the regular detergents will appear while using  Soap Nuts ...That is if you won't follow my advice and add the extracts (if added you can erase this from the against list )

SO I guess that's it with the "against"  list  :D
That being said my conclusions are that Soap Nuts are GREAT!!!
Not only are you getting a clean laundry ,you also helping to save the environment  and save money, too

As I said, It's NUTZ not to use Soap Nuts!!!


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Adorable Pockets from Scotia Farm Girl


Congratulations to Rebecca #20 who won the pocket diaper from ScotiaFarmGirl!

I would like you to take a look at these amazingly beautiful Oodie Bum pocket diapers from Scotia Farm Girl. One lucky person is going to win one of these as Lindsay has agreed to a give away this week.

 One Size Pocket with Organic Fleece Insert

When I asked Lindsay about her design this is what she told me, “I created them when my daughter was about ten months old . I found the commercially available one sizes were too bulky and the rise was not high enough for our very long daughter. I thought I could create a diaper I would like more, and for less. So I designed Oodie Bums One Size pockets. My diapers are individually hand made from start to finish by me. No two are ever exactly alike as I pick the fabrics and snaps individually for each diaper I create. They are also nice and long for those long rise kids and very trim fitting. Aside from my tab fabrics (printed fabrics) all of my fabrics are milled here in Canada. I like to source as much product locally as I can.”
Dark Blue Oodie Bum Pocket with Zoo Print
I thought Oodie Bums was an interesting name for her diaper products. She told me her family story of when she and her brother were kids he used to say “oodie bum bum” all the time, and it stuck as a family saying (we all have them, don’t we!). When she was thinking of a name for her diapers, her mom suggested Oodie Bums and it just fit.
Snap and Fabric Detail
Lindsay's pretty fabric selections and precise attention to detail make these diapers a great choice for your stash. Please check out her shop ScotiaFarmGirl on Etsy. Lindsay is located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, hence her shop name. She has customers from all over; Canada, the United States and even Europe.

If you would like to enter to win one of these great pocket diapers, follow the entry directions below.


2 Required entries:
-Follow this blog, etsyclothdiapers.blogspot.com, via Google friend connect. If you are already a follower, just leave a comment saying you already follow. Otherwise, leave a comment saying you are a new follower.
-Visit ScotiaFarmGirl come back here and leave a comment about your favorite item.
Additional optional entries (leave a separate comment for EACH of the following that apply)(be sure that you are signed in or leave a way to contact you in each comment): 
- Like ScotiaFarmGirl on Facebook

- Like the Etsy Cloth Diaper team on Facebook
- Follow the Etsy Cloth Diaper team on Twitter
- Tweet about the giveaway (limit one per day) - be sure to use @etsyclothdiaper in your tweet
-Post about the giveaway on your own blog.

Giveaway closes at 11:59pm EST on November 23rd.

Winner will be announced on this blog on Thursday Nov. 24th.
A random blog comment number will be selected using random.org. You MUST comment on this blog post to be entered, and have contact info in your profile. Each entry entry must be its own comment. If you combine entries into one comment, it will only count as one entry. Winning entries will be validated, and you MUST do the required entry to have any additional entries be valid. Thank you for entering!

Natural Stain Removing and some extra tips ...

I'm not an expert in stain removing ,but I know some great and proven tips to remove a couple of the most nastiest stains kids are leaving on their clothes that I thought to share with you :)

  • First one is PEN INK-
Did you know that you can remove fresh ink stain if you soak it in MILK!
 I guess milk's enzymes can brake ink's molecules and remove them from cloth

  •  Another great tip that always helps me is a tip for BLOOD stains
While fresh,the best way to treat a bloody stain is with SPIT-the blood almost immediately vanishes
  • LEMON juice helps remove yellow stains and serves as natural bleach 
when we where kids and didn't have the cash to go to a hair saloon,my friend used to use lemon juice to give her hair some nice sun burned blond shades :D
Hey,nothing wrong in some old good memories and that's a tip too,right :)  

And here is a widely  used trick in our home for OIL stains -did you know that common BABY POWDER  deals fantastically with any GREASY stain! Well it does-spread it on the stain,let it sit for a while and Vu a La -no oily stain there

I sure I know more trick,but they just not coming to my head right now...But since I have a little baby with her nose all plugged (hate this time of the year with all the viruses going around) I thought to share another tip with all the mamas out there-
If you are breast feeding, you already have a natural, perfect and quick cure  for little  plugged nose in you-BREAST MILK.
Use it just like you would use any nasal drops and drip it in-you'll see a relief pretty quickly  (it works every time with my precious )
P.S same ^^ trick will work for grown ups too,but a better liquid to use for adult's sinusitis is the use of
BABY PEE.
Yes,it may sound repellent ,but trust me it helps like a charm (talking from my own experience here). Baby pee is working very well with ear ache  too

I think at that note I'll wish you all a Good Health,Shinny Hair and spotless Holiday Season

Monday, November 14, 2011

Meet the Team-- Meet Michelle from Cutesy Tushies



Michelle's Etsy shop includes pocket diapers, ruffled diapers, embroidered diapers, AI2s, diaper covers, fleece covers, diaper combo sets and babylegs, all beautifully sewn in irresistibly cute fabrics! Read what Michelle has to say about her shop and cloth diapering, and then check out her nearly 100 items for sale on Etsy! Christmas is just around the corner. One of the best ways to convert someone to cloth diapers is to give them something so adorable they can't help but use it!

Where did you get the name for your shop?
I got the name of my shop from my oldest son who at the time was 4. I started making diapers for his sister who was due in a few months, and he always said that they were "cutesy" After I had her out of the blue when I put one on her, he said she has a little "cutesy tushie" and the name was perfect:)

Is it big business or a hobby?
I would say both! I love what I do, but I also have my own website and also opened on Etsy when I first opened my website.

Why do you like selling on Etsy?
I love selling on Etsy because you meet others who normally wouldn't come to your website. Also the networking with other businesses as well!:)

How long have you been sewing?
I have been sewing for almost 19 years since my mom taught me when I was 11. I also crochet and have done that for almost 20 years. I also help my mom with her shop her on Etsy as well.

What is your favorite thing to make at the moment?
My favorite thing to make at the moment is my Ruffle Tushies!:) I love to find new ribbon to add to them and the are a change of pace from the prints:)

What is your favorite thing in your shop at the moment?
The favorite thing in my shop right now is my Pretty Owl Pockets Diapers. Why? I love this print!!!


Who/What is your inspiration?
My kids are my inspiration and always will be. I seen how we struggled with our oldest and rashes. Anyone who asks about cloth diapering I am more than willing to explain and help, so that they and their little ones don't have diaper rash issues like we did.

Why is cloth diapering important to you?
First and foremost, baby being comfortable! They can not be comfortable in disposables, that cause rashes and issues with their bottoms all the time. Then I would say the cost and of course environmental issues that disposables cause with how many are sitting in the landfills.

What factors are the most important to you when choosing a cloth diaper?
The most important factors are fit, it must be a good fit, does the diaper function correctly, such as does it leak, and then of course cuteness:)

Do you have a favorite cloth diapering shop on Etsy? Mine! lol I love Holden's Landing:)

What is your favorite cloth diapering memory?
My favorite cloth diapering memory, being able to tell people about them. I get asked all the time when out and about if my kids are cloth diapered, can tell by their fluffy tushies. I had one person tell me that it was not something they could do and by the time we got done talking, when she had her baby, I had converted her to cloth:)

Facebook page is www.facebook.com/CutesyTushiesandMore
Etsy page-http://www.etsy.com/shop/CutesyTushies
Website- www.cutesytushies.com

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Kid-Friendly Jambalaya

I love Jambalaya but my children were never fond of it until I found this recipe. It's not an authentic Jambalaya, but has some of the same flavors without the heat.

For 7 child-sized (1 1/4 cup) servings you'll need:
1lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 stalk celery
2-3 green onions
A pinch of minced dried onion
1 medium bell pepper, chopped
7 oz canned tomatoes
1 cup dry brown rice
1 cup water
1 cube chicken bouillon
1 bay leaf
Cooking spray

Directions:
1. Cook rice according to directions. While the rice is cooking, cut chicken into 1/2-1" chunks.
2. Spray a medium size pan with cooking spray. Brown chicken over medium heat and remove from pan.
3. Add celery, green onion, and pepper to pan. Sauté over medium heat until softened. Add tomatoes and cook 5-6 minutes more.
4. Return chicken to the pan, add water, bouillon, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil.
5. Cover, reduce heat, and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes. If it seems too thick add a little water, if it seems too juicy let it simmer longer.
6. Stir in cooked rice and add a little salt and black pepper to taste.

I hope your family enjoys this Jambalaya as much as mine does!

FALL



Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wool Covers from Baby Snickerdoodles



Heather from Baby Snickerdoodles makes wonderful wool diaper covers.  Learn more about them in this interview by Denise from Naps and Scraps...


Did you design this pattern for your wool covers yourself?
For longies, and this Skirtie, yes I did...but that is somewhat of a trick question :) I don't actually have a pattern I go to for them, just measurements I keep documented from my own experience with children/sizes. This leaves creative flexibility to be able to do different styles depending on the customers needs, and also broadens the possibilities for each upcycled sweater I use. For my wool soakers though, I love to use the "Katrina's pattern" most of the time.



What is unique about your product?
I know there are fantastic wool-cover makers out there, but I love that with Etsy, we can offer different options, ESPECIALLY when it comes to one-of-a-kind items! I really like being able to offer my longies in a "pants" style, so that they can be worn for warmth and cuteness, as well as functioning as a diaper cover...creating something useful for daily life, and making it affordable for families.


How did you get started making wool diaper covers?
My Boys were super-soakers, and were constantly waking up drenched, even with their pocket diapers STUFFED! I was about to throw the towel in on cloth diapering, when I found an online forum where other mamas explained their solutions to a super soaker...WOOL! :) 



I knew how to sew, so I bought a wool sweater at our local goodwill, and made all of my 3 boys longies out of it (it was and XXL, tee hee!). I was blown away at how well it worked! Dry bedding, even when their diapers were still drenched..the wool was an answer to my prayers! I shared my experience with family, friends, and online groups, and started getting many requests for orders. The rest is history!






What made you decide to sell on Etsy?
I had heard about Etsy from a friend, and got on to buy supplies for making gifts for my family for Christmas. When I started venturing out into WAHMhood, my customer base got too big to keep track of things via e-mail, I decided it was time to launch my own shop, and Etsy was the perfect fit!



I hope you enjoy checking out Baby Snickerdoodles yourself and looking at all her cute soakers and longies as well as the other fun stuff that Heather sews!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Meet Boulevard Designs!

Today we meet Sarah from Boulevard Designs. Her shop contains a wonderful mix of creatively dyed diapering and other products, unique cloth diaper & clothing sets, repurposed wool and t-shirt diapers and covers, fleece covers, and fabulous baby and adult accessories. Read what Sarah has to say about her experience with cloth diapers and selling on Etsy, and then check out her shop for something great!





Where did you get the name for your shop?
I live on a Boulevard, and I thought Boulevard Designs just had a nice ring to it.

Is it big business or a hobby? Boulevard Designs is more of a hobby, but it's a branch of my main business, Wallypop, which provides a substantial portion of our household income.

Why do you like selling on Etsy? It is a way to reach additional customers, and to make/sell items that don't easily fit into my main store. Etsy shoppers by and large seem to be pretty fun and easygoing, as well. Additionally, I like to shop on Etsy, and I love being part of the Etsy community.

How long have you been sewing? I have been sewing literally since I was tall enough to reach the pedal from the chair, and I was helping my mom sew long before that. I started knitting in high school (um, gosh, nearly 20 years ago). I've learned soap making, screenprinting, and tie dye as an adult.
What is your favorite thing to make at the moment? What are you passionate about? At the moment, I'm loving making the baby shoes. They're so cute and tiny and ridiculously unnecessary. I'm not sure what exactly you're looking for with the passionate about question, but I am passionate about helping families who are cloth diapering or babywearing, or who are considering cloth diapering or babywearing.

One of Sarah's gorgeous designs!


What is your favorite thing in your shop at the moment?
www.etsy.com/listing/80679816/elvis-print-reclaimed-fabric-soft-baby The Elvis baby shoes. I mean, really. Elvis Baby Shoes. I keep considering taking this pair down to putting them in the dresser for the baby we're expecting in december.

Who/What is your inspiration? I am in business solely to enable me to stay home with my kids and still eat. My main business, Wallypop, is named after a nickname we gave my oldest when he was a baby.

Why is cloth diapering important to you? It's part of my counter-culture agenda, lol. While I'm only kidding there, I really hate that there's such an anti-child bias in our society, and part of that bias is the (mistaken) belief that kids are just so expensive. Kids CAN BE expensive, but mainly they are expensive because our society pushes so many products that just aren't needed, such as disposable diapers. So many mamas want to stay home with their babies after they're born, but don't feel they can afford to do so - cloth diapers are a big part of helping those moms be able to afford to do what their hearts are telling them. They can also take some of the financial stress off of working parents. Not to mention all the other benefits of cloth diapers, such as fewer chemicals in our babies' environments, fewer instances of diaper rash, fewer blowouts, and adorable softness.

What factors are the most important to you when choosing a cloth diaper? I look for diapers that are made in the USA, preferably by a person and not a machine. I prefer sized diapers over one-size diapers. I look for quality fabrics and materials, a diaper construction that makes sense, and a business/seller that seems to know what they're talking about and what they're doing.

What is the kind of diaper you like the best at home? On the go? For travel? For budget? Fitteds with wool covers. In all scenarios, lol. Prefolds and wool covers are my second favorite. I've never really understood the idea of using any particular type of diaper specifically for travel, unless the travel will involve hand washing, in which case I'd recommend flats. (And, yes, we had to hand wash on a trip with DH's family once.)

What is your favorite or least favorite cloth diapering memory? LOL, the same memory is both my favorite and least favorite. When I was pregnant with my oldest (8 years ago, long before modern cloth diapering was anywhere near as acceptable as it is now), the subject of diapers came up at my baby shower, which was held by one sister in law and attended by, among others, my other sister in law and my mother in law. One of the other attendees mentioned that she thought it was interesting that we were planning to use cloth diapers. One of my sisters in law remarked, very loudly, "oh, yeah, well, we'll see how long THAT lasts!" It's fairly typical of the attitude I get from all of my in-laws about many of our parenting choices, but is still one of my favorite memories because, gosh, it's 8 years later and I'm still using cloth diapers AND have built up a very successful, international business around modern cloth diapers.

Blvd Designs Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Boulevard-Designs/12637776170
Wallypop Facebook: www.facebook.com/wallypopIA
Web: www.wallypop.net

Sunday, November 6, 2011

10 Steps to self-sufficiency

The term self-sufficiency is usually applied to varieties of sustainable living in which nothing is consumed outside of what is produced by the self-sufficient individuals.  Without going all "creepy hermit in the woods" on you, becoming more self-sufficient is a great way to be environmentally friendly as well as provide a healthy lifestyle for your family.  Below are 10 easy steps to becoming more self-sufficient (without earning you "hermit" status).
1.  Start a garden
Gardening can be a very easy way to become more self-sufficient.  You can start out small with potted herbs on a window sill or tomatoes in a larger container on the back step.  Any bit of food that you can grow for yourself means that it is one less item that you are depending on big commericial farms for.  Not to mention the fact that you’ll know exactly what you put on your plants and on your table.

2.  Buy used

Yes you are still buying but this way you are buying items that would otherwise end up sitting in a landfill.  You are reducing your impact on the environment and reducing your dependence on new products and those pesky chain stores that sell them.  Buying used is also going to allow you to save money. 

3.  Get out of debt
Owing someone (the credit card companies) something is never fun.  It ties you to that company and makes it difficult to really be on your own.  Try to get out of debt and stay out of debt, saving up for bigger purchases and re-evaluating what you really need.

4.  Learn to sew / knit / crochet
Go ahead and cross this one off your list! Seriously though being able to make and or repair your own clothes is super handy.  You won't have to pay someone to do it for you and you can even use it to earn money (like we do at Etsy)

5.  Line dry your clothes
One less appliance running means a lower electric bill and that is always a good thing.  Also, line drying your clothes gives them that warm, sunshiney smell that doesn't hold a candle to dryer sheets (at least in my opinion)

6.  Explore alternative energy 
Currently, my husband and I are heating our home with a wood stove.  While i love the sound of a wood fire crackling I loved it even more when I heard how much our friends were paying for heating oil.  Its great to know that as long as we are responsibly harvesting our fire wood, we will always have a warm house.  

7.  Learn to "put up" fruits and vegetables
Learning to can, dehydrate or freeze fruits and vegetables while they are in season is fun and inexpensive.  When you are preserving your own foods, you know what you are putting in it (and what you are leaving out) which is a great way to keep your family full of healthy meals. 

8.  Ride a bike
Bikes are people powered and cars are not.  Biking is a great form of exercise and lets you cut down on the amount of gas you are using / having to pay for.  

9.  Use public transportation
If biking isn't for you (or even if it is) use public transportation when you can.  If we are all going to the same place, why do we all have to drive ourselves?

10.  Keep learning
There are sooo many ways that you can reduce your impact on the environment and take care of your family.  There are a ton of great blogs and books out there and remember every little step helps!

~Written by Kailyn Shippee, owner and crafter of Spotty Dog Crochet
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...