New Year Craft Supplies Sales

We interupt your regularly scheduled reading for an important SALE announcement!

Here are a few sales you may want to visit:

  • 25% off your total order through January 2nd at jcaroline creative! Read full details inside her crafty business blog.
  • 20% off all ribbons (5 yard increments), 10% off all full spools (50-100 yards each) and 10% off all hardware and notions at the Ribbon Spool.
  • 10% off everything inside Bella Joys Ribbon.

Have you heard about a great crafting sale that I've missed? Post a comment with a link to the sale so we can all stock up on our craft supplies (fabric, ribbon, hardware, paper) for the new year.

Happy crafting in 2008! I can't wait to see all of your new polka dot products and projects!

Upcoming Crafty Mom Features

Happy day-after-Christmas! Are you headed out to the sales to buy next year's decorations, gift wrap, ribbons and fabric? Me too!

We have received many requests for features for our 2008 calendar. Here are a few of the amazingly talented crafty moms in business you will get to meet very soon:

As the founder of Polka Dot Mom, I feel so privileged to get to meet you, work with you and promote your businesses every day. There are so many fun and friendly moms out there making GREAT handmade gifts. There is no need to buy from anyone or anywhere else!

My favorite place to shop for handmade gifts right now is Etsy. Have you visited this amazing site? You can find almost anything you need. It is another great way to support crafty moms in business.

I am sewing a few orders today for early January birthdays and hoping to sneak out of the house for a well-deserved shopping trip too.

If you know a mom who designs and makes her own polka-dot-inspired products, please send her a link to Polka Dot Mom. She can request to be featured by writing me too at sally@polka-dot-market.com.

Happy December 26th, Moms!

Sally

Make Polka Dot Ornaments



You can make this!

This is a super last-minute gift you can make for party hostesses, teachers, classroom friends, neighbors and more!

Supplies:
  • White, frosted or mirror ball ornaments (colored balls work great too!)
  • Good quality paint pens
  • Any ribbon for a cute bow (we chose 7/8" polka dot grosgrain ribbon)
  • Ric-rac or more thin ribbon for hanging (optional)

Steps:
  1. I like to wipe my ornaments with Windex and a paper towel before I begin. Let dry.
  2. Practice the name with your paint pen on the back of an old magazine.
  3. Write the name on your ornament - write entire name, don't worry about perfection, this is your first coat.
  4. Go back over your name after the first coat has dried for a clean finish and a professional paint job!
  5. Cut your ribbon to about 22" long for a big bow.
  6. Pull through the wire loop of your ornament ball and tie a bow.
  7. Trim ribbon ends and heat seal with a lighter or use Fray-Check to seal ends.

Voila! Let your personalized hand-painted ornament dry completely. Tie on a coordinating handmade gift tag, then wrap loosely in lots of tissue paper.

Everyone will be so impressed!

Tip! Make it a family craft - My daughter loves to help me with my work. She has watched me paint so many ornaments this season and has been dying to help. She has her own ornaments and we are painting gifts for her grandma, grandpa, auntie and uncle. I will post photos of her work for you.

What are your favorite last-minute gifts to make for Christmas?

We Made It!



We made it through our Christmas orders! Everything is packed up and on its way. What a great feeling! I hope my customers are as thrilled when they open their boxes of Christmas gifts this week from Polka Dot Market.

I cannot tell you how excited I am to play with my little girls, wash the dishes, vacuum the house, put away the laundry, play with my girls some more, cook my husband a hot meal or two, and go to sleep before 2:00 a.m. Laundry? Cleaning? Why would I want to do those things?! Well, I love my family and I can't wait to take care of them like they have been taking care of me these past two months. What a great feeling it will be to have a clean house with dinner in the crockpot (maybe) and extra time to tickle my girls or play tea party too!

I am thankful for this season, our family, our church, our neighbors and our friends across the country. This is a first Christmas without my favorite Aunt Ann who passed away September 14th. I cry every time I think of her, but I know she would only want us to celebrate the season in joy, laughter, gratitude and surrounded by family. She is missed!

Wishing you a few days off to spend with your family too...make the most of it and give lots of hugs and tell everyone you love them. Take lots of pictures too!

Now on to sewing gifts for my family and friends...the fun never ends around here!

Merry Christmas (in one week)!
Sally

P.S. - I forgot to tell you that the photo is from my customer, Julie. You can see more of her work at Lot 116 Photography. Isn't her daughter PJ adorable?!

Christmas Sale at jcaroline creative!


You must see this sale going on now through December 19th at jcaroline creative! (a favorite craft resource).
Here is the link to this amazing sale: 12 Days of Christmas Sale

The owner, Caroline, wrote on her blog:
"Through December 19, I'm going to put random things on sale for a day or two. Things will come and go as I feel like it. Some things will be great deals, some will be okay deals, but I assure you it will always be interesting. Check back daily to see what's new. I will be adding other virtues that you can purchase throughout the sale."
So, get shopping and act fast!

Words of Wisdom

I am not wise, but three words from a piece of art inside Rhon's Country Crafts really made me think. Since we are all up to our eyeballs in Christmas orders (lacking sleep and patience), there is a chance that we are not feeling the Christmas spirit quite yet. Let's take a deep breath and...

Be Silly, Be Happy, Be Kind.

Isn't this great advice for busy working moms? Be silly, be happy and be kind. Doesn't sound too hard, right? With this busy Christmas season right on top of us, I need to remind myself of these three things once or twice every hour! Here's how I see it:

Be Silly - This is for our kids. Take the time to roll around on the floor, tickle their bellies and hug the heck out of 'em. Bring out the messy finger paints, roll out the play dough and let them take extra-long bubble baths (with lots of bubbles). Try some new Christmas traditions...make a memory with your kids like baking cookies for Santa (slice, decorate, bake!) or trimming your tree with play dough candy canes and yarn. Let's get silly, moms!

Be Happy - This is for ourselves. Our happiness affects the whole family...and our business! If happiness is a mug of hot chocolate and reruns of the Martha Stewart show on the Fine Living channel late at night, then do that! If happiness is browsing the aisles of your favorite craft store 'til closing time because your husband is putting the kids to bed, then do that! I like to play favorite CDs during the dinner "rush hour" around the kitchen. That keeps me focused and not so crabby when the kids are running through the kitchen or pulling out all my pots and pans. What are your favorite things to do that refresh you and keep you sane?

Be Kind - This is for our husbands. Don't they deserve it? My husband always says, "Well, if you would just ask nicely!" Ooops. Sometimes I snap and expect him to read my mind. Okay, a lot. The best advice I've heard is to treat my husband better than I treat my friends. Makes sense! I really need to focus on this one. Here's to kindness and smiles and kisses and more happiness at home (he's worth it).

Thanks to Rhon's Country Crafts for this sign and reminding me what is truly important. We love our crafts, we love our business and we love our customers. When we are busy, let's all remember to "Be Silly, Be Happy and Be Kind" for our kids, husbands and ourselves too.

Here's to You!

Sally

P.S. - You can purchase this inspirational message sign inside Rhon's Country Crafts for your home office too.

A Handmade Polka Dot Christmas


We love the selection of handmade Christmas gifts (featuring polka dots, of course!) made by crafty moms on Etsy this year:
  • Polka Dot Santa Hat Gift Tags (above) by JaneSays - Need handmade gift tags to make your Christmas gifts look really great this year? This is your shop! She has a great selection of polka dot gift tags...and more! Guess what? Tags are 10% off this week!

  • Polka Dot Buttons Christmas Stocking SOLD! by ChamberryCherry - Bright colors, bright buttons and tons of polka dots in this festive design! My daughter would be so excited to see this stocking stuffed with goodies outside her bedroom door on Christmas morning. Perfect for college students, first apartments and kid's rooms too.


  • Polka Dot Picture Frames by NikkisNacs - This is one of our favorite products on Etsy right now. We love red polka dots with lime green ribbons for any of our Christmas decorations. This custom frame would love great in my kitchen with its bright green walls...will it be mine?


  • Polka Dot Baby Booties by EricaLynDesigns - How cute would these booties look on your baby this Christmas morning? For opening presents and crawling around the mounds of wrapping paper and ribbons piling up on the floor...these booties are perfect! They will look great in Christmas photos or even paired with their special outfit for Christmas Eve.



  • Polka Dot Ribbon Initial Tile Necklace by VMDesigns - A gift for the "tween" on your list (though I would wear it too). This Etsy shop is filled to the brim with adorable polka dot gifts...these hand-painted intial tile necklaces are one of her newest and most popular designs. Each necklace comes with three ribbons to tie a beautiful bow in the back and is available in oodles of colors for that special girl on your list.

There are a lot of crafty moms out there! We picked only a few to share here today (or they wrote us a note to visit their shop and boy, are we glad they did). Leave us a comment if you have a boutique filled with handmade polka dot gifts for Christmas. We love to shop!


Here's another neat way to show you love handmade gifts: Have you visited the site to pledge to "Buy Handmade"?


Many of these mom-owned boutiques have Christmas deadlines coming up very soon, so place your order this week for on-time delivery since everything is handmade.


Click to see every single handmade polka dot Christmas gift available on Etsy today. We love them all!


Merry Christmas, Moms!

Winter Blues Ribbon Bows


We don't have the winter blues...we just love these blue and chocolate polka dot ribbon hair bows for little girls inside Angie's shop, Cute and Sweet.

Angie is a busy mom with two little girls, ages 4 and 1, running around the house while she tries to clip a new hair bow design in their hair!

You can read more on Angie's Cute and Sweet blog too. Mention her blog when you place your order and receive 10% off.

Her collection of "Winter Wonderland" hair bows are a steal - three polka dot ribbon clippies for $4.25. I'm sure they won't last long...but Angie can make more. Not to worry!

Stay warm, crafty moms!

Baby Door Signs by Sheppard Girls

We were so happy when Lisa Sheppard, owner of Sheppard Girls, wrote us about becoming a Polka Dot Mom. She has a great line of polka dot products that I know all of you will LOVE! (And her daughter's name is Sally like me...she must be a cool mom, right?!)
Lisa is a city girl living in the suburbs with her husband and two little girls who are 8 and 4. She writes, "We have really great neighbors, but we live in utterly charmless 1980s house so I pretend is the cozy cottage of my dreams. I spend most of my time gardening, doing art projects and eating. My favorite things are magazines, craft blogs, flea markets, glitter, coffee and fabric."
Sheppard Girls makes products for babies, girls, and sometimes their moms. Her business name comes from her childhood: "When my sister and I used to walk to the bus stop, one of the neighbor girls used to sing 'here come the Sheppard girls, here come the Sheppard girls'. I used to stamp "sheppard girls" on the back of each door sign letter by letter, until it finally occurred to me that I could order a custom stamp!"
Lisa started out making hand-painted baby door signs as gifts for her friends when they started having babies. Her baby bibs are based on the pattern her grandma used to make bibs for Lisa and her sister. She makes everything from her studio, which is an ever-expanding corder of her family room with a sewing machine that sits on their coffee table. Lisa is a stay at home mom with lots of energy and fun ideas, looking for an excuse to buy all the amazing fabric available right now (we can relate!).
We picked Lisa's door signs for her feature and were pleased as punch to learn that they were her very first product line and this is the first time they have been featured! They are her best seller at local shops and shows. Lisa says, "I love the door signs because making them is a fun break from all the machine sewing I do, and some of them like "It's naptime buckaroo" crack me up!" Each sign measures 3.25" x 9.5" and is hand-painted, decorated with fabric and trimmed with sweet polka dot ribbon and seam binding. Custom designs and personalization are available too.
You can read more on Lisa's sheppard girls blog too!

Polka Dot Magnets



Welcome Victoria, a crafty mom in business from Knoxville, Tennessee where she lives with her husband and daughter. She began designing and painting her creations almost five years ago for her daughter who wanted something cute, but not too frilly and flowery. Today through her shop, Victoria P. Zurcher Designs, she spends her time drawing adorable characters, painting original works and printing hip paper stationery. We agree that she has succeeded in creating a cool collection of "girl" stuff without the "girly" part. You will be hooked on her attention to detail and love for bold colors and clean designs.

I must admit, it was not easy deciding which of Victoria's polka dot products to share with you. There are so many! We do love her square polka dot magnets by Victoria over at Victoria P Zurcher Designs. My refridgerator needs a "magnet makeover" and her fresh polka dot designs will do just the trick! This is an inexpensive gift that any mom will love. She will think of you every time she opens the fridge (and for me, that's a lot).

Your set will include four magnets that each measure 2" x 2" square and are protected with a scratch-resistant cover.

Don't forget to decorate your fridge for Christmas too! Check out these holiday polka dot magnets inside her Etsy shop too!

12 Days of Christmas at Lilybella

One of our early Polka Dot Moms is back with a great Christmas sale for our readers. Allison has created a huge 12 Days of Christmas sale inside her boutique, Lilybella.



Through December 2nd, she will have a brand new sale every day. You can drop by Lilybella and see the daily sale posted on her home page. Click on the category "Sale of the Day" in her catalog to purchase the daily special. You can shop one day or all 12 days.



Some of our favorites at Lilybella include her polka dot personalized coffee mugs (today's sale item!) and her new polka dot oil cloth tote bags.



The coolest part about this sale is you can shop every day and take advantage of these great prices, then Allison will combine your shipping into one payment and ship everything to you at the end of the sale.



Click to visit Allison at Lilybella Boutique. Once you see her products, you'll know why she's a Polka Dot Mom too!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here are a few of our favorite Thanksgiving-themed handmade gifts by moms on Etsy:

Little birdie and polka dot "feathers" button ponytail holders by Kid Charming.

Happy Turkey Day cards by Made with Care - the polka dot border is sewn to the card. How unique!


A fall-inspired orange polka dot pumpkin pin cushion by Veronica Claire. That reminds me...I can't wait to eat my slice of pumpkin pie today!

Happy Thanksgiving, Moms!

Enjoy your dinner...and let someone else do the dishes.

Green Grocery Market Bags

Our newest and "green-est" Polka Dot Mom is Rebecca, owner of BananaSaurus Rex on Etsy. She's out to save the planet and reduce our use of plastic bags with her line of vintage-fabric MamaGoToMarket cloth grocery bags.

Rebecca is a semi-retired graphic designer who loves to sew. She lives in Northern California with her husband and two boys, ages 4 and 2. She says she feels so lucky to stay home with them full-time.

Rebecca works in her dining room creating new things out of "old junk" like vintage tablecloths with a stain, hankies with a small hole or shirts with a frayed collar. She loves to wash and cut these vintage fabrics up to give them new life as her grocery Market bags and more.

She is happiest when she finds vintage polka dot fabrics peeking out from a pile of garage-sale linens. She writes, "Polka dots are so versatile. They can be modern or old-fashioned, whimsical or sophisticated and they seem to go with everything!"

Everything inside Bananasaurus Rex is handmade and one-of-a-kind. Her MamaGoToMarket bags are truly a great find. Each bag has a totally genius accordion-fold base that allows it to sit flat for loading and unloading. They measure 14" tall and 15" wide and an amazing 9" deep and hold a little less than paper, way more than plastic. Rebecca's grocery bags are built for endurance, but they are so cute they won’t embarrass you at the library, the beach or the gym.

Rebecca says, "Like Mama herself, our MamaGoToMarket Bags are strong and flexible and look great even when carrying a heavy load." (Moms, you'll be admired by all of your friends for being so GREEN and earth-friendly too!)

Bulk discounts available too...buy a few for your neighbors too. For Christmas, you can pack an easy meal or some pantry staples in this pretty and useful bag and give to your elderly friends.

Mention "Polka Dot Mom" at check-out and receive an automatic refund on your shipping charges once payment is complete. And she'll even send you one of her popular Lavendar Sachets (a $6.50 value for our readers only). Love that!

We have no idea where her company name came from or what it means, but we love her designs and her commitment to helping moms look great at the grocery store while saving the planet!

Thanks, Rebecca! Stop by her shop and buy your Earth-friendly fabric grocery bags today.

New Look for Polka Dot Mom

What do you think of our new Polka Dot Mom logo?

As you know, Polka Dot Mom loves to feature crafty moms in business. We will continue to do this and more! As we were writing your articles each week, we found ourselves writing about your life, your kids, your experiences AND your boutique business. We also found that our Polka Dot Moms have become our friends along the way.

So our new tagline is, "Crafts. Kids. Business. Friends."

Crafts - Being a Polka Dot Mom is all about being crafty and creating unique, handmade products using polka dot fabrics, ribbons and designs. We'll share about the latest polka dot tools for our crafts and even where to find the best deals for our inventory.

Kids - We all have 'em. Some days they are the sweetest little angels, make us laugh and even help us get work done. Some days they don't take naps or have runny noses, tummy aches or mommy-aches. We love them, they need us and we need them. Here we will share the joys of being a mom...and the challenges!

Business - Whether brand new or seasoned, we are moms who own small boutique businesses. We'll talk about marketing, advertising, start-ups and making your sales grow.

Friends - Every mom we've worked with is a fun and friendly woman first and foremost. We keep our focus on the positive, higher things that will improve the lives of our kids, husbands, families and our businesses. Of course, we'll laugh along the way about our mistakes, successes and the crazy things that life always brings.


You can now subscribe to Polka Dot Mom on our new FeedBurner RSS feed to find out when there is something new here on our blog.

Our logo is by Amy of PattyCake Designs - another mompreneur!

Thanks for making Polka Dot Mom a great place for moms to hang out, promote each other and help fellow moms take the leap into starting their own crafty business!

Christmas Ribbon Notepads



This adorable personalized Christmas Ribbon Note Pad is handmade by sisters-in-law Tori and Courtney Tait of Good Thoughts Paper Co. of California.
Tori is a crafty mom with two little girls, Taylor and London, and Courtney has one daughter, Kelsey. Their families spend a lot of time together on housboat trips and camping adventures. Their girls love being around each other too.
As a little girl, Tori always had to have ribbon in her hair and her own girls are the same way. What is cuter than a little girl's pony tail tied up with a big polka dot ribbon?
Tori and Courtney say, "Now that we are all grown up and can't really pull off the pony tail and ribbon look, we can have our cute bows tied on a personalized notepad sitting on our desks!"
"Our business began after one of our girls received a similar item as a gift. We fell in love with the idea and thought "we could do this better!" We immediately began making our Ribbon Bow Pads and giving them as gifts. They were a hit! Everyone who saw them wanted us to make one for them.....so really that is how our company began. We started selling a craft fairs and word of mouth.
The sisters now have a web site running to reach even more guests and tell them about their top-selling Ribbon Bow Pad. Every note pad is a combination of fun paper and trendy ribbons (every single sheet is personalized). The pads are perforated so that the bow never moves and are then glue bound for extra strength. All of their products make really unique gifts for all ages.
Courtney and Tori believe that people really enjoy receiving a handwritten letter or card. There just isn't too much of that personal touch anymore. What a better way to drop someone a note than on a fun piece of paper or in an adorable note card? We really feel more "Good Thoughts" should be spread around. We encourage everyone to write it down and send it out; in a sense to pass along your Good Thoughts!
For Polka Dot Mom readers only: Enter coupon code "POLKADOT" at checkout through November 30th to receive 10% off your first online order. Thanks to the Tait sisters for that one!
Sending "Good Thoughts" to all of you hard-working crafty moms out there,
Sally
P.S - Now go order your Christmas polka dot ribbon note pad! Perfect shopping list or to make your refriderator look really cute (magnet Bow Pads now available online).

Polka Dot Christmas Gift Cards


Want to make Christmas gift-wrapping really EASY this year? Kori from Sunny Day Tags has the solution: Polka Dot Christmas Gift Enclosure Cards (now on sale)!

Kori is a stay at home mom to 2 beautiful little girls in Indiana. She loves to make things. Her grandmother is a tole painter and seamstress and can make just about anything, even at age 85. Kori would spend weeks in the summer with her grandmother sewing, painting, and making boxes and beads.



Kori's 3.5" x 2" gift enclosure cards can say whatever you want! You can choose up to four lines of text and the design possibilities are endless. Custom orders are welcome at Sunny Day Tags and include a free e-mail proof. Each set includes twenty-five cards printed on 110-lb. cardstock hand-cut by Kori (no perforated edges).

Your polka dot Christmas Gift Tags will arrive wrapped in a clear plastic bag tied with ribbon.

Visit Kori's shop today to see her current sales and specials too!

Unique Creations by Ta Da Designs

Shhh...Beth is painting!

Our Polka Dot Mom this week is Beth , owner of Ta Da! Designs and mother of two from Louisiana.

She writes, "My husband, Jason, is a pretty neat guy. He's a Wildlife Biologist who's passionate about the endangered Black Bear of Louisiana. He's a GREAT cook and does most of the cooking. He's currently teaching me about the wide world of Nascar. I have two kiddos. Zeb is four and is passionate about dinosaurs. He's very spirited and has lots of interesting things to say. Evie is 8 months old and is trying to walk and is getting into everything as I speak! She is a very mild mannered baby and always has a smile for you."


Beth is from one of those crafty and creative families. Her mother is a quilter and an excellent seamstress. Her grandmother does a lot of cross-stitching and recently retired from craft shows. Her grandfather is an artist, as well her late uncles. Her cousin, Ashlee, makes the cutest bows, jewelry, & candles.

She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Interior Design from Oklahoma State University and then worked in residential and commercial design. She even trained with Martin Alan Hirsch in specialty faux finishes in Kentucky. When Beth began staying home for her kids, she freelanced as a design consultant and always painted on the side. When she started doing more painting than consulting, her business was born! The name "Ta Da! Designs" evolved because every time she finished a painting project, she would run to her husband and say, "Ta-da! What do you think?"


Beth has a unique line of painted items in her Etsy shop and website. We love her new line of Christmas gifts with painted letters on glass like "Beleive", "Joy" and "Family".

To our readers, she writes, "I am always dreaming and creating decorative products for the home and can't seem to stop. Painting is my passion and I will paint on anything and everything. In fact, I'm often heard saying, "Don't be scared, it's just paint!"
Visit Beth today inside Ta Da! Designs and order something special for your home for the holidays. And I say, "Don't be scared, it's beautifully handmade!"

Polka Dot Beach Paintings

Introducing Krystyna Haskell of Krysha's Creations. She's a talented mom of two girls, a painter and business owner, and our newest Polka Dot Mom!

Krystyna was born in San Diego and lives in Florida. She began painting children's art to personalize my daughters' bedroom walls. Her family and friends enjoyed them so much that they gave her the idea of starting her own business. She loves to paint and specializes in beach- and island-inspired art of fish, mermaids, pirates, crabs, turtles, surfers, and more! Krysha's Creations are meant for rooms as unique as your child.

Krystyna writes,
"Have you ever wanted to make your child's room unique with one of a kind, hand-painted artwork? Unlike most of the art at stores out there, each of these are hand painted, personalized, and made to order just for you. No two are alike! I can personalize colors or take suggestions for orders and have them done in less than a week. Each are created with high quality acrylic paint and sprayed with a protective coating to ensure a long life. The edges of the canvas are painted so that it requires no framing and comes ready to hang with large saw tooth hanger on back. These make great one of a kind gifts for any occasion."


Krystyna paints polka dots on many of her island-inspired paintings from tropical castles to hula girls to surf boards. Her pieces are affordable for everyday working moms like us. Want to create a beach theme in your child's room? As a San Diego girl living in Florida...Krystyna knows water, beaches and islands and her beautifully unique paintings show her expertise! We love the bright colors and the feeling of pure "happiness" in every painting.


Take a peak inside Krystyna's website portfolio of paintings categorized by themes like "Curious Critters", "Island Living", "Allstar" and "Princess". We know you will find something you LOVE!

Guess what? Receive FREE SHIPPING every day at Krysha's Creations too.

Leave the painting to Krystyna...and have a great week, Moms!

Sally

Hand-Painted Kid's Furniture


Welcome Gabrielle, our Polka Dot Mom of the week and owner of Tickled Pink Designs!

Gabi has a degree in interior design from Syracuse University and apprenticed with a decorative painter on Nantucket Island. She loves painting and creating exciting, child-friendly environments. Gabrielle lives and works in the picturesque sailing community of Marblehead, Massachussetts with her husband, John, and two active sons, Jackson, 6 ½ and Chase, 5.



Tickled Pink Designs officially opened in October of 2005, although Gabi has been painting furniture since college. She loves to help clients design a special painted piece or table and chairs set to complete a room. Find accessories like hand-painted foot stools, wooden wastebaskets and step-stools. Most of her designs feature a hint of polka dots on the arm of a chair or the leg of a table...we love that! Gabi's designs can be found in local retail stores and through her website at Tickled Pink Designs.



Her popular Christmas item is the "Milk & Cookies for Santa" hand-painted wooden tray. Gabi writes, "I came up with this design so my boys could carry the tray themselves and we wouldn’t have to worry about spilled milk!"

Be sure to browse Gabi's portfolio of hand-painted children's furniture, accessories and custom murals when you visit her shop.
During the month of November, shop Tickled Pink Designs take 10% off any order when you mention "Polka Dot Mom" (please place Christmas orders by November 15th).

What a special gift any of Gabi's hand-painted items would make for Christmas. We love the beautifully monogrammed children's wooden tables - how unique!

Have a super week, Moms!
Sally

Just Sayin' "Happy Halloween!"

I want this! Okay, just had to share this adorable polka dot fabric "pumpkin" pillowcase dress by Lillifee Boutique on Etsy. What a creative idea and what a wonderful way for me to tell you, "Happy Halloween, Moms!"

No tricks. Just treats. Here's to a fun-filled week of crafting costumes for everyone in the family. For me, it's hoping I have clean tights, undershirts and leggings for the girls to wear under their costumes. I always forget the tights!

Have a great week, Moms!
(This week's feature mom coming up shortly - you'll love her!)
Sally

Breastfeeding Gift Basket for New Moms


Welcome our newest Polka Dot Mom: Julene of Present By Design is our crafty entrepreneur-mom this week! Her website is filled with gifts and gift baskets for new moms and babies.

Julene lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband and 2 1/2 year old son. Her business, Present By Design, has been open for two years and she has many popular products. Her Fortune Tootsies baby socks will be featured in the holiday catalog for Femail Creations. Julene is an experienced graphic designer who loves to be creative, travel and connect with other moms in business too.

We love her Simplymilk™ gift basket filled with everything a new breastfeeding mom needs (and an adorable handmade polka dot chenille burp cloths too). Take a peek inside her Simplymilk™ gift baskets:


Julene's Simplymilk™ Breastfeeding Care Kit was created to help make breastfeeding simple and enjoyable. “When I started breastfeeding, I felt I was fumbling along. With some research I found the basics tools that helped me succeed. I hope these same items included in Simplymilk™ will guide you through this special time with your baby.”
This special gift for new breastfeeding moms contains one luxurious polka dot chenille burp cloth, an earth-friendly cool/warm pack in matching sleeve, four pre-washed natural hemp-jersey breast pads, a starter tube of ultra pure Lansinoh® Lanolin cream, a Milk Bands™ nursing bracelet, a box of Traditional Medicinals® Organic Mother’s Milk® tea, the La Leche League breastfeeding guide and a keepsake willow basket. Wow!

Her vision for Present by Design is to create and offer gifts that will touch your soul and make you smile. More importantly, Julene wants to help moms be moms.
Thanks for being a super Polka Dot Mom, Julene! Visit her shop at http://www.presentbydesign.com/ today to see her full collection of gifts and gift baskets. She has a great e-mail newsletter too (be sure to order early for Christmas).
Have a great week, Moms!
Sally

Baby Cha-Cha Polka Dot Picture Frames


Janie of Baby Cha-Cha is our Polka Dot Mom this week. (I love to say, "Baby Cha-Cha!")

Baby Cha-Cha is a unique online boutique specializing in everything SASSY for your little girl. She stocks adorable Spanish onesies, camouflage onesies with sayings like "Lil' Cadet" and "New Recruit", flower headbands, baby beanie hats, western hats, fabulous tutus, wall art and more!

Janie writes, "I am a work-at-home mom of two feisty “cha-cha” little girls. Victoria is 5 and Vivian just turned 1. My very supportive husband and I live in Houston, Texas. In addition to creating new products for Baby Cha-Cha, I also enjoy photography. I take all the photos for the website and for other families and friends too. I am also training to run the Houston Marathon in January! I am “Running for a Reason". We have a foundation in memory of our beautiful baby who we lost two years ago from a heart defect. Vanessa’s Big Heart Foundation is our site and you can read about it at http://www.bigheartfoundation.org/."



Janie says that being a work-at-home mom of two beautiful girls has not only brought out her crafty side, but has enabled her to enjoy life through her daughters' eyes. Janie began her Baby Cha-Cha journey five years ago when she only wanted the best, trendiest and cutest things for her. She started making hair bows, cute dresses, fancy onesies and crafting all the "bells and whistles" that come with being the talk of the town. Janie and her girls received so many compliments from moms (and strangers!) every time they went out. She decided to take action and open her own online boutique: Baby Cha-Cha.


Janie's collection of fun & funky hand-painted personalized wall plaques and picture frames are sure to add "Cha-Cha" to any little girl or little boy's room. With so many colors and styles to choose from, you're sure to find something terrific to match your child's decore, whether hung on a bedroom or bathroom wall or door. These originally designed plaques by Jessica Roberts are made from premium white pine and painted with non-toxic acrylic paints, then sealed with glossy clear coat for a long lasting protection and easy cleaning. Each plaque can be left as is or personalized with any name up to 14 letters. The back of each plaque is finished with fabric and coordinating 7/8" grosgrain ribbon for hanging or can be requested with hanging hardware instead. Please allow 2-4 weeks for delivery, as each work of art is custom made just for you.
Just for Polka Dot Mom readers, enter coupon code “Open” and receive 10% off your order now at Baby Cha-Cha!
Add some cha-cha spice to your child's room or wardrobe today - you'll love everything inside this sassy boutique.
Have a great week, Moms!
Sally

Silver Mother's Bracelets

We welcome Koryn, owner of Mother's Precious Gems, this week as our newest Polka Dot Mom! Koryn makes gorgeous custom bracelets for moms and little girls. We like to think of each little circle bead as its own little "polka dot".

She began her crafty business, Mother's Precious Gems, in 1991 when she was at home with three boys under the age of three, and was pregnant with a fourth child, her daughter (great time to start a business). Whew! To top it all off, she is the devoted wife of a military officer and her family has moved around the globe. Her jewelry business has traveled and grown with each new assignment. Today, Koryn's four children are teenagers and she lives in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area where her husband remains on active duty at The Pentagon. Koryn even teaches preschool part-time during the school year too!


As a busy mom, wife and crafty lady, she enjoys that her beading can be done in increments between driving to and from soccer, or making dinner. Koryn's kids have even gotten in on the act making gifts for their friends or designing their own jewelry. Koryn is thankful to be at home and available to her family, while still growing her mother's bracelet business empire and gaining knowledge of her craft.

In the beginning, her designs were crafted using white letter beads and semi-precious stones, hence the name "precious". Once Swarovski crystal became popular, Koryn began using it alongside mostly sterling silver since sterling has become the jewelry of choice. She still makes custom pieces in gold fill upon request.

Mother's Precious Gems specializes in sterling silver custom name bracelets and heirloom jewelry featuring Swarovski crystals representing the birth-month birthstone colors for each child. More kids on the way? Koryn will happily add additional strands at any time for only the cost of materials and shipping as her congratulations to you!
As a special discount to her friends at Polka Dot Mom, any order that mentions this article will receive FREE SHIPPING. Click to design your custom silver mother's bracelet today.

Ladies, treat yourself to that mother's bracelet you've been wanting for so long! Koryn makes beautiful jewelry that you will cherish for years and years to come. Each piece is handmade by Koryn with great care and if she misses a bead, her military husband calls from the Pentagon and says, "Drop and give me twenty!" Just kidding....

Have a great week, Moms!
Sally

Polka Dot Minky Baby Blankets


We have found a beautiful little Etsy shop with the most luxurious minky baby blankets for boys and girls. You better hurry...I am buying this chocolate and aqua polka dot minky baby blanket today for a friend's new little baby boy! (Don't worry, Liz of Sugarplum Creations says she can make more.)

Introducing our crafty Polka Dot Mom of the week, Liz of Sugarplum Creations! Liz is a work-at-home mommy from Oregon with two precious little princesses, ages 5 and 2 1/2. Sugarplum Creations was started about a year and a half ago when she began sewing again for her own little ones. As all of her friends were having babies, she loved the idea of creating that special gift uniquely for them. She was then urged to start selling my creations, and stumbled upon Etsy in February. Liz says she could not be happier with her number one, most important job of raising her children.

Liz writes, "I've always loved to create. My mom, bless her heart, is not crafty at all, but I have several aunts who used to craft with me when I was young. We would make christmas ornaments and sew together. Those are some of my happiest childhood memories. I lost touch with my "crafty side" as I got older, and it was definitely put on hold when I got married and started a family. When I started creating again, for my girls, I realized how much I had missed it. As a mom, it can be easy to lose yourself as you are completely wrapped up in doing for everyone else. It is so empowering, for me, to know that I can be a mom and a wife, while still having something just for me. Since starting Sugarplum Creations, I feel like I am productive in other ways too, I know I'm a better person for it. And I love that I am teaching my girls that they can do whatever they set out to do."

We love Liz - she is one of those great, funny moms who you e-mail back and forth with and laugh out loud as you share the "joys" of motherhood. We both seem to be always working late at night and sewing while everyone else sleeps. Is this true of every crafty mom? YES!



Liz's minky blankets come in so many beautiful fabric patterns and colors. Our favorite, her polka dot minky baby blanket, can be custom made in pink or aqua dots. Her blankets feature super-soft patterned minky fabrics back with luxurious swirl minky in so many color options. Each measures approximately 29" x 34" and are perfect for the stroller, car seat, nap time, snuggle time, tummy time...you name it!

Shop at Sugarplum Creations before October 31st and receive 15% off your order when you mention "Polka Dot Mom" at check-out (Liz will send you a revised invoice). Now is a great time to stock up on baby gifts and Christmas gifts. Everyone loves a SOFT baby blanket and ever new mom wants to wrap her baby in luxury (especially if it soothes and relaxes them).

Thank you, Liz, for making beautiful baby blankets to help us spoil our little angels!

Have fun crafting, moms!
Sally

Moms Need Business Cards Too

Have you started a new job recently as a MOM?

You know that being a mom is a full-time, serious, real-life job. You have tiny clients watching your every move and hanging on your every word...you have appointments and schedules and activities and group meetings and even issues best handled by the human resources department (YOU).

Cathy from Ittibitti Cards for Moms writes, "When you start a new job, one of the first things you do is order business cards. They're an essential tool for networking with others. You meet a new client, you hand them a card.You meet a person at lunch, you hand them a card. So why don't moms have them? We are a major networking community. Mom's groups, preschools, "big-kid" schools, games, dance and music classes, and on and on. Why not have an easy way of remembering and contacting each other?"

Reward yourself with your own customized mommy business cards from Cathy at Ittibitti, our Polka Dot Mom this week!

Cathy lives in Indiana with her husband and three kids. She owns Ittibitti as well as her own graphic design business. When you see her designs, you will be impressed with her creativity, unique style and amazing attention to detail.

Cathy writes, "ittibitti® is actually the second business I’ve started out of my home. I have been a successful, self-employed graphic designer for about seven years and I absolutely LOVE what I do and will continue to create and design corporate projects through my graphic design business, Cathy Swick Design (CSD). But, one day, as I dropped my oldest son off at a friend’s house to play, I mentioned to his mother that I was going to run some errands while my son was there and I’d leave her my cell phone number. Standing outside her house while scrounging around in my purse for something to write on, I said out of near desperation, “I just need a business card for my family! This would be so much easier!” And, whalaa! ittibitti® was born—customized and colorful, family calling cards for moms on the go!"

Created with over-the-top color and whimsical, original illustrations, Cathy's card designs are flooded edge-to-edge with bright color and are professionally offset printed on a heavy, satin coated card stock in full color and come in sets of 100 for $49.50 (larger quantities are available, too).

Even better, moms can type in the coupon code "POLKADOT" during check-out to save 15% through November 30, 2007.

We hope every Polka Dot Mom will purchase her own Ittibitti polka dot business cards - because being a mom is serious business that deserves really cute office supplies.

Have a great week everyone!
Sally @ Polka Dot Mom

Grand Re-opening at Lemons and Lollis


We want to give a shout to Corina of Lemons and Lollis and proud crafty mom to one little girl to say "Congratulations!" on the grand re-opening of her website. She has created an amazing fall collection of children's clothing and handmade baby gifts. You'll love her fabrics and beautiful designs. Read more about Corina and her shop on her Lemons and Lollis blog too!
A full feature about Corina coming soon!