Tried & True  DIY With Kids: Minecraft Birthday Party

Another year, and my boys are still in love with Minecraft!  As much as I struggle with the screen time, it has been incredible to see how they love to play, plot and plan their Minecraft adventures together like the best of friends.

 

This year we are gathering ideas for my son’s Minecraft birthday party, with a special focus on not buying a lot of commercial junk (if that is possible!).  So, as usual I look to Etsy for great ideas and inspiration!  We need decorations, party favors, a cake and activities…

minecraft-party-favors

(more…)  


Friend Feature  Stairwell Before & After with Julia Rothman Wallpaper

Hello Friends! I am so excited to show off my new stairwell!  I found this wallpaper by artist Julia Rothman about two years ago, and after collecting rolls of it for birthdays and Christmas, it is finally finished!

Julia-Rothman-Wallpaper-Hall-2

In our old house, the hallways and stairwells flow together, so I decided to keep the wallpaper just in the stairwell “chute” since it is hard to find an ending place.  It really feels like you are ascending into the sky as you go up the stairs, and you catch just a glimpse of it from below that piques your curiosity.   (more…)  


CMH Studio  Sweetest Valentine’s Gifts from Cheeky Monkey Home

Valentines-Headbands-Pillow-Hearts-Gifts

This Valentine’s Day Cheeky Monkey has a pile-up of great gifts for you and your sweeties. Our flying heart headbands are irresistible all year long, and they come in lots of colors on our Etsy site. (more…)  


CMH Studio  Meet Me Behind the Scenes at Cheeky Monkey Home Studio

I get asked a lot, “Who makes your pillows?” and “Do you have a shop..?”, and I thought it would be fun to invite you into the Cheeky Monkey Home studio, to show you where I cut, stitch and sew all of my products.  Come on up to my third floor home studio…..it is tiny, but we can all fit! come-upstairs

This is where I design, cut and sew most everything that I make at Cheeky Monkey Home. The wool felt I use is made in Germany, and it comes in several thicknesses and endless colors.  I keep many bolts of felt and supplies in my studio, and I have a small storage space nearby for my product inventory.  Otherwise, I try to get my supplies locally, and I have some amazing suppliers right here in Massachusetts!

cutting-felt-in-the-studio

cutting-felt (more…)  


CMH Studio  Customize Your Pillows at Cheeky Monkey Home

Hello, and Happy New Year!  This year I really got to know my customers, and I learned that I need to let people know that—YES!— we do custom pillows and personalization (a lot!!).  While there are many colors and designs on our Etsy Site, we also love to do custom orders.  A custom pillow (with a personalized message on the back) makes an amazing and memorable gift. I want to share some of my favorite custom designs in 2014, just to get your creative juices flowing….who knows, you may have a custom vision in mind too!

 

The most common request I get is for a new color combination or a different size of something I already offer.  Below are custom versions of the bunnies, painter’s palette and world map pillows we sell in our shop.  As much as I like the originals, the new combinations are pretty special too! 

navy-and-grey-bunny-otomi-pillow painter-palette-pillow-grey-blue

world-map-pillow

(more…)  


Friend Feature  The Happiest Gift of Jewelry from Happy Art Studio

I was honored to be a guest artist at the Happy Art Open Studio last weekend for a holiday sale.  I met Tami Rodrig, the artist of Happy Art Studio, on the craft fair circuit this year, and was immediately impressed.  But, as it turned out, I have been a long-time admirer of her work ever since my husband gave me a lovely set of Happy Art earrings and necklace several years ago. Tami is a mixed media artist who began making jewelry when she moved here from Israel years ago—but her jewelry is just one of the many successful branches of her creative business!

Happy-Art-Studio-necklace-and-earrings

(more…)  


CMH Studio  Keepsake Christmas Stockings from Cheeky Monkey

I have a very special felt Christmas stocking that was made for me by a close family friend when I was a baby. In my view, it was always bigger and more beautifully embellished than anyone else’s, and it made me feel like the most important girl on Santa’s list!  This year I started to make felt Christmas stockings for Cheeky Monkey.  My love for Scandinavian imagery inspired these fun Dala Horse Christmas stockings in classic Scandi colors!

 

Dala-Horse-Christmas-Stocking

 

I am also experimenting with using beads to personalize the stockings with a name….which I love!  We have a large collection of straw Yule Goat ornaments, thanks to my mother-in-law, and they are the inspiration for my newest Yule Goat stockings in two colors.  (more…)  


Friend Feature  Holiday Gift Guide: Best in Show from New England

With the holidays at our doorstep, I am bringing you some of my favorite makers from a year of craft fairs around New England.  It takes some serious scrappiness and downright determination to be a maker and to do the craft fair circuit, and these are some of the best!  This is just the beginning, so hoping you will stay tuned for more of the Best in Show!

Gift-Guide-1-5

(more…)  


Friend Feature  Etsy Love: Matryoshka Dolls

What is it about Matryoshka, or Russian stacking dolls, that we all love SO much? I just had a few orders for my Matryoshka pillow, and once again, I find myself just staring at them and feeling all warm and fuzzy!  I think part of it is the colors–I absolutely love red and pink and orange together.  HOT colors that both clash and sizzle, make me happy.  I also love their personalities and special outfits, that change as you uncap them and discover who is inside.

matryoshka-pillows-by-cheeky-monkey-home

 

But it is not just me—people I meet just cannot get enough of Matryoshka dolls, and I find it totally fascinating!  I realized that while I make lots of Matryoshka pillows, iPad and computer cases,  I did not know the story behind these specially carved and painted dolls, and it is time to find out!  

(more…)