Handmade in New Mexico- A Gift Guide


Last weekend I heard of two large Holiday Markets in New Mexico (I’m sure there were more), one in Albuquerque and one in Santa Fe. I went to the one in Albuquerque and I was struck how may talented creatives we have here. It prompted me to start a gift guide of the ones I have been admiring through Instagram for some time now. Take a look and consider buying from these makers for your Christmas shopping.

  1. Cynthia Jones Jewelry: I got to meet Cynthia Jones in person last weekend, and she is so easy to talk to, which I find helpful when shopping for Jewelry. I have been wanting to buy a small but beautiful necklace for everyday. And she had just the thing. Her stacking rings are next on my list to buy.
  2. Quail Studio: Designer Emily Howe makes beautiful wool felt objects for the home. I would love one of her baskets to catch all my nicknacks.
  3. Modern Folkware:Studio potter Jennie Johnsrud makes these beautiful housewares. These are the kind of dishes you will keep forever.

    4. Barro by Lucrecia: I have seen her pottery in person in various places and they look as good as on the pictures. If you don’t like the modern look above you might appreciate her fun whimsical style.


    Do you have any favorite makers in New Mexico? Happy Christmas shopping. Buy less but better.


Handmade in New Mexico- A Gift Guide

Sharpie Art

My 12 year old is pretty artsy and always trying new projects. Recently she started doing sharpie art and I love what she comes up with. Have you heard of it?

She usually comes up with a design of her own or she finds a picture online.

20140320-083745.jpg20140320-193900.jpg20140320-193915.jpg20140320-193946.jpg20140320-194001.jpgAll you really need is a set of sharpie markers, pencil, and a sketch book.

Here is another one she did.


You can do sharpie art on pants, shoes, bags…the possibilities are endless.

Have a great day,


Art by Esther Burton


Sharpie Art

Make This: Christmas Banner

christmas banner

I made this banner originally for a Christmas card photo shoot. But it makes a nice decoration piece for your home, too. It is really easy to make, the only thing that took a little time was hand stitching the triangles to the cord. Had I glued them it would have been much faster and I could have done it in one afternoon. I am not much of a seamstress and not a super crafty person. So if I can make this, so can you. IMG_8457 IMG_8458 IMG_8460 IMG_8464 IMG_8467

Here is what I used: a roll of Jute twine (got it real cheap at Hobby Lobby). A yard of muslin for the letters and a fat quarter of red material to separate the words. I cut the triangles free hand, but Hobby Lobby sells packets of them if you need a template.


I bought a red fabric marker and wrote the letters on the triangles. Make sure you have an old magazine under your muslin when you write on it with the marker. The marker will bleed through the material and stain whatever is under it.


I used the blanket stitch to sew the triangles onto the twine. I thought it would look classy. But gluing them with fabric glue would have been faster and easier. IMG_8169 IMG_8172Here is what I would do differently next time. I would not leave any spaces between the letters. The banner is quite long and this would shorten it considerably.

Materials needed:

Jute twine

1 yard of muslin

1 fat quarter of red material

1 fabric marker

red thread or fabric glue

fabric scissors


rotary cutter

cutting mat

If you just buy the essentials I would estimate this project to cost less than $15.

Happy crafting,



Make This: Christmas Banner

Thanksgiving Crafts

I did this post last year and since it fits so well I wanted to repost it today.

Did you wake up this morning and realize that it is getting really close to Thanksgiving?? Are you ready?

If you are teaching this week you might be focusing on our nation’s beginning. Here are some craft ideas I found via the Martha Stewart website for your visual learners.

Here are the links to the tutorials: The corn dolls. The hat and bonnet. The table ship.

Happy crafting!


Thanksgiving Crafts

Making Coasters

Here is a fun activity for a rainy day, or for us New Mexicans, a hot summer day.

My kids love making these bead designs.

We bought the tub with about 6,000 beads and several shades at Target or Walmart for under $10.


The funnest part is making the designs. I recommend it for ages 4 and up.

IMG_6088 IMG_6093 IMG_6100


Once the designs are finished you iron them. It’s best to have a sheet of parchment paper between the iron and the shape. Once the shape is fused together you take the bottom off and let it cool.


If you have missed a spot you can iron the beads again.IMG_6106 IMG_6110

And voila, there are your coasters.

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This can be done in as little as one hour, but it can also take longer if you like. You don’t have to iron the shapes. You can just do the shapes to make fun designs and then put them back for another time. It is a great way to keep little hands busy and encourage play with geometric designs.

Pretty easy, and not messy, except for when the tub of beads gets spilled. 🙂

Have a crafty day,



Making Coasters

Celebrating 100 Days of School


how is your schooling going? Are you close to the 100 day mark? Do you have a big party to celebrate? When my oldest went to private school, the 100th day of school was a big deal. I’m sad to tell you, when I school the kids I get so busy that organizing a party seems like way too much work. So when my friend Mimi invited me over to celebrate I was thrilled.

Here are some ideas my friend came up with to get you started on your party.

  • Count 100 pennnies
  • Make little round cakes, shape them into the number 100 and then decorate with 100 m&m’s
  • Make a paper crown and add 100 stickers
  • Take 100 steps on your balancing beam (if you happen to have one in your house)
  • Swing a hula 100 times
  • Jump 100 times on the trampoline

It was a fun party and a fun way to break from the school routine.


Celebrating 100 Days of School

A Handmade Christmas

Hi there,

Are you busy shopping? Or are you scrambling to find the right gift for your mom, friend, sister, daughter? I have two talented friends who might be able to help you out.

My friend Ginny makes beautiful bead work. I get to watch her sometimes. She works meticulously and puts a lot of thought and effort into her pieces. She grew up in Kenya so a lot of her work is influenced by African art.



The earrings cost $25, the bracelet $90, and the bangles $45. You can buy them here.


Next I like to introduce you to my friend Chrissy. She is from Germany. I have been admiring her stained glass jewelry for some time now. The butterfly is my favorite.

I haven’t decided which one is cuter, the hat or her daughter?

You can buy her goods here. The butterfly necklace costs $80, the octopus hat $50, the felt advent calendar $55, and the bird pendant $35.

They have a lot more in their shops. Be sure to check them out.



A Handmade Christmas

German School Supplies


it is almost August and school is on my mind big time. Everywhere you shop you are bombarded with school supplies. Personally I am going to wait until the day when you can buy tax free, but during my recent visit to Germany they had school supplies available at a deep discount. So I went to town and bought some items I can’t get here. Take a look:

German kids keep all their writing utensils neatly organized in these. Everything has its place: the ruler, the markers, pencil sharpener, etc. You can buy markers individually as you run out of them.

Kids write their schedule on the white paper.

After second grade children write with these ink pens exclusively. Getting used to these takes some practice but is sure makes your handwriting look better.

The water colors from Pelikan are my favorite. The colors are so vibrant and they come with a white paste that lets you mix your own colors in the white spaces on top. Of course you can replace single colors. 🙂 And you wonder why Germans are so exact and organized….

How about you, are you exited about the new school year or is it coming way too fast? When do you do all your supply shopping?


German School Supplies