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Natural Kids

Natural Kids: September 2008

Monday, September 29, 2008

Mini Monday: BellaWinter!

Happy Monday, Bella!!

radical domestic goddess with a penchant for quality playthings for our littlest creatures...

These things are made for kids to USE. They are designed for kid-life and kid-love. We use primarily recycled/repurposed fabrics and cannot always vouch for fabric content, though we try to only use natural fibers, ie wool, cotton, and bamboo.


Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday Interview with Lalapequenos

Today we get to meet Allessandra, of lalaspequenos , whose shop is full of some of the coolest kids clothes I've ever seen! Her bright colors, beautiful natural fabrics, and fabulous designs are really something to here we go!

Tell us a little bit about yourself and how and when did you get started with arts and crafts?
Growing up in Costa Rica, my grandmother was the center of the universe for me. Of course my parents were part of that too but it was my grandmother’s infamous “teas” that led me down a crafty path. During those teas, which looked more like knitting circles, I learned about life. Discussions about children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, recent marriages, awful divorces, and who made what recipe for whom, carried the afternoons into the evening. So it was that in between talking about Elena’s knee operation and my aunt’s graduation that my six-year-old hands learned to knit. Knitting turned into crocheting, crocheting turned into sewing, appliquéing, stuffing, embroidering, quilting, and all around fooling with fabric. To me, crafting is a necessity and part of my social upbringing. It is part of the day like brushing teeth or combing hair. It is a time to learn about life, and now with my own children, to teach about life.

What is the main thing you make and sell in your store? What else do you make and/or sell?
I make and sell children’s clothing in my store. My two boys (7 and 8) are my main inspiration. It is very easy to tell when something I make is not “cool”. I get the stinko face right away! They remind me to think like kid. “You would not wear that if you were me.”
I also make girls and baby clothing. In which case I pretend I had a little girl and go to town!

Who if anyone has been instrumental in helping you hone your craft?
I have a sewing mentor here in the states and she is so knowledgeable about techniques, fabrics, machines- I am so happy to have found her!

Where do you get your inspiration?
Honestly – everywhere! I live an hour from Washington, DC and have access to wonderful museums, libraries, parks, and here in the woods – Nature! My inspiration can come from a beautiful fabric scrap or looking at designs from the past.

What are your favorite materials?
Currently, I found the most wonderful organic Sherpa fabric and have been having the most fun working with it. But I’ll use anything that will help me achieve the look I’m going for.

What advice would you give other Etsy sellers and those interested in opening up a shop?
Go for it! There is nothing more pleasing than to share your work with the world. Get out there and make connections with other sellers. Etsy is a wonderful venue for new sellers because there is information everywhere! Join a team or even start one. The support you can get is priceless.

What advice would you give to beginners in your main craft?
Make sure that you get the technique down first. It’s like planting a tree. If the roots aren’t properly rooted, it will not grow very well. It will always struggle.

What is your Etsy shop address and name? Where else can we find you? and the name is Lala’s Pequenos.
You can also find me on and the recently opened,
I welcome everyone to visit my shop and say hello!

Thanks for reading !

- Cynthia

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thursday Treasuries

We have a very busy team this week again! Take a look at all these beautiful items from the Natural Kids Team...

Mamaroots beautiful treasury, Naturally Hot, gives us a nice cozy feeling on these cooler Fall days...
TheSingingBird captures Autumn Glowing from Within...

Cornucopia Muffin, is a very sweet treasury from freedomRainbow...

What in the World???... mangopeachwalnut gives us a very fun group to help us ponder this question...
Handcrafted Harvest, is another lovely treasury features fall goodness from some members of the Natural Kids Team and made by lavenderladybug...
"Harvest This!", says mangopeachwalnut, and for a good reason.. they are all so cute!

TheSingingBird, gives us another yummy treasury to savor, Coffee and Chocolate...

FreedomRainbow shares a little team love with It's a Family Affair...
Finally, it's Play Time! Don't you want to play with all of these items chimera is sharing? I do...


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Food For Thought

So did you guess where last week's quote came from ? Of course, it was from a shop I love dearly: the shop profile!

Here is a new riddle for you: What team member felted the delicous food items you see here? Write to me and if you get the correct answer you will be entered in a drawing for one of my Wee Pocketdolls! =)

One comment I received after posting last Wednesday gave me Food For Thought for this week.

Mary Richmond wrote:

"the single biggest thing moms can do to be green is pack green lunches, stop buying individual water bottles and snacks and recycle at home. OK, that's not a single thing but they're all related. i invite you to look at all the wrappers and containers that your family uses and disposes of every someone who works with kids every day I'm appalled at the waste otherwise smart families send to school every day.....use reusable containers for everything, use a Brita filter, use cloth napkins and real utensils (buy at thrift shops or yard sales so you don't lose your good ones but kids are surprisingly good at this....) and make your own snacks....

So I did take a serious look at what and how I pack my kids' lunches. All in all I think I am not doing too badly. We do use a Brita filter and refillable water bottles. We definitely stay away from those frightening "Lunch ables". A cracker, a small container of ketchup, and some cheese wrapped in plastic. Who in the world came up with that idea? Very little food and lots of trash for more money. But oh so convenient...

I make the children sandwiches or quesadillas, with a side of fresh fruit and vegetables. Takes about 15 minutes. You can put them in boring Tupperware containers or you could use one these cool lunch wraps by

Wow, isn't that pretty? What a great idea! I have to get some for the children and husband. Just imagine opening your lunchbox and looking at that instead of some ugly cardboard box...Makes me hungry just to look at that wrapper!

And then of course, there is always the possibility to choose snacks that have a natural wrapper: how about bananas, oranges, and apples?

Have a great week, and enjoy many healthy snacks!


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Monday, September 22, 2008

Mini Monday: Unwaveringfaith

Today's Mini Monday features Unwaveringfaith, an artisan and homeschooling mama from Tennessee.

We are a family of eight. We homeschool our children, with a mixture of Waldorf and Charlotte Mason methods. We just welcomed our sixth baby this February! We live on five acres with a pond and lots of trees in Western Tennessee.

Natures Enchantment is a family endeavor. We consist of myself, my husband and my children. I absolutely LOVE what I do and making things for children is my greatest joy! My husband makes keepsake boxes and other special wooden things for my shop. My oldest son and daughter often make things to sell for the shop. I have two younger daughters who, from time to time, will make a card or special crafty thing to try to sell here (so sweet!)

Thank you so much for supporting our children. It gives them so much joy and a sense of accomplishment when something they make sells.

Know that everything you purchase was made with lots of love and care. We love what we do and put our hearts into everything.

Happy Monday!


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Thursday Treasuries

Lot's of great treasuries to share today! everyone has been very busy, making great new ideas and showing them off...

here's one i missed! you all are too busy for me:)

TheSingingBird made this great treasury For The Tippy Toes In Your House...

mangopeachwalnut shows us how fun it is always chasing rainbows...

and also the beauty of the indigo child...

freedomRainbow shows us how adorable monstrs can be, in i love monsters!..

green and white look so lovely in this beautiful treasury made by oritdotandolls...

Oh, to be a kid again!.. we will all wish that when we see whimsicalmom's fun filled treasury...

Treehugger's Unite! in this terrific treasury from FaerieRebecca...

Buzzhandmade says Good Night, Sleep Tight to all of our little one's...

NaturalStar shares some wonderful Natural Toys...

Fine and Fuzzy Felted Finds abound in this cute treasury from TheSingingBird...

Let's go Into the Mist, once again with freedomRainbow...

Fall, the year's last smile will make everyone smile too, in this sweet treasury from buzzhandmade...

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Simple Steps to Save the Planet

"The other day, as I was browsing a fellow team member's profile, I stumbled upon the following phrase:
"Part of the example we are teaching our children is that we must live in a way that respects and honors all life, especially our home, Mother Earth. We've chosen to drive a hybrid car and have installed solar panels on our roof as a way to begin this. We frequently use recycled materials when packing and shipping items to further support our "green" efforts. We have a long way to go to living more sustainably, but every step each one of us takes is a positive change toward our collective future. Thank you for supporting our efforts with your purchases!"
You all may guess at who wrote it. I loved it, and it has stuck in my head all week.

So I make and promote toys out of natural materials. Toys that won't pollute and if they should ever break will not sit in a landfill for gazillions of years. It is my mission to convince people that "Happy Meal " toys, and plastic toys in general, are bad for our planet.
But what can I do besides that? I often worry about how to lead my life in the way the author above describes. What other steps can I take to help the planet? How do I teach the children the kind of respect described by my friend? Not everybody can afford to purchase a hybrid car or have solar panels installed. But there are so many small things in our every day life, small changes, that we can make to live a greener life style and waste less resources.
One example that comes to mind is plastic grocery bags. I remember reading that the City of San Francisco has actually outlawed them. Unfortunately it is not that way in the small US city where I live. The majority of people waste between 3-10 plastic grocery bags per store visit. Whenever I go grocery shopping, I bring grocery bags with me. I carry them in my car. Wow, they even give you money for each bag you bring! Who would have ever thought that? In Germany YOU PAY the grocery store for every bag YOU WASTE ! Didn't you know that you were out to shop that day?

But there are many other ways to safe resources and energy. One phenomena I find rather intriguing, is the fact that nobody in US appears to dry their clothes other than by using an electric dryer. Or is it just here in Colorado? Please, correct me if I am wrong! But I have never seen an outdoor clothes line in this town, nor anywhere else used in this nation. Wow, it is so simple that it blows my mind! How come people would never think of it, living in a place where the sun shines almost every day?

And there are so many benefits to doing it besides the BIG one of SAVING ENERGY!
1. Your clothes get less wrinkled. Hang them up, right after you washed them, and you will not have to waste your time ironing them , wasting more energy...

2. Your clothes smell so good and fresh, and get bleached naturally - by THE SUN! You’d be amazed how tough a stain it can handle...

3. Plus, as an extra bonus, your clothes will last so much longer because they don’t get ripped to shreds being violently spun around by an electric dryer.

4. Hey, and it's good exercise too. Who needs a trip to the gym when you can carry a couple of loads up from the basement and work those legs and biceps...=) The children enjoy helping with it. My daughter things it is so much fun!

I admit, in Winter time, I find it a bit more challenging. Who likes to wade through 3 feet of snow to hang up clothing. But I have an indoor clothes line for the basement I brought from Germany. Unfortunately it only holds half of a load. I have not been able to find one standard item used in every German household: A giant metal foldout clothes drying rack that can hold an entire load of clothing. Forget those scimpy little ones they sell here. They collapse with one pair of Blue Jeans. Please, if anyone here knows where in US to purchase a decent drying rack I’d be eternally grateful!
My family does drive a hybrid car. We carpool to school all the time. My husband walks to work. I work at home. We recycle glass, paper, cardboard, and plastics. We share a trashcan with the neighbors because we don't have much trash. My son loves to earn money by collecting aluminum cans at parties...We have not been able to afford solar panels for our house...but I hope that the day until we have them is not too far away. I hope that by setting a good example to the children I am making progress and doing my part respecting our planet and saving it for future generations to enjoy!

Have a "green" Day! Remember to take those shopping bags with you.
And please, if you have any other great ideas on how to safe energy let me know! Maybe I can write about it next week!

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

And two I missed

Thanks to Orit for finding two treasuries I missed!

From LittleElfsToyshop, come take a walk in the forest of delight.

From Woolies, have a look at some simple Dollies.

Sorry I missed you, ladies! Until next Tuesday!


Tuesday Treasuries

The NaturalKids treasury makers have been hard at work--and who could blame them with all of these lovelies??

Orit has some lovely selections in Blue and Purple...

Calm and blue seems to be the theme of the day, as UnwaveringFaith offers this Calm and Comforting treasury.

Winsomehollow stays with the blue theme in her Blueberry Rhyme treasury.

TheSingingBird breaks the pattern and shows off some vibrant Red and White, a Heart's Delight!

TheSingingBird would also like to help you get a jump on your holiday shopping by offering a peek at some lovelies to go On or Beneath the Christmas Tree.

WhimsicalMom says Boo to You! in this Halloween themed treasury.

FreedomRainbow offers a bit of magic in this IS magic.

And finally, MangoPeachWalnut offers a bit of rainbow beauty in Wish upon a rainbow...

Until next Tuesday!


Monday, September 15, 2008

Mini Monday: Little Elf's Toyshop

Today's Mini Monday features Little Elf's Toyshop...

My name is Kelley and I make waldorf style dolls and toys and needle felted figurines. I do my best to use natural materials whenever possible, though some of my items do have materials that are synthetic. I love kids and making kids happy and have wanted to be a toy maker ever since I was a little girl. All of my toys are double sewn for best quality and are made with lots of love and care. I want these toys to last a long time so they can be loved for many, many moons.

Until next Monday...


Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday Interview with Mamakopp

Hi all! Here's another interview with a member of the NaturalKids team. Meet Mamakopp whose wonderful shop is full of amazing woodwork toys, fun stamps, and way cool robot arm bands! Come and get to know her...

What is the main thing you make and sell in your store? What else do you make and/or sell?
The main things I sell in my shop are wooden toys. I started wood working long ago. Four years, but got into making things with a scroll saw over two years ago. When I discovered nature tables, I couldn't afford the sweet wooden animals from the German companies so I asked for a scroll saw for my birthday and received it! I have been making the fox, raccoon, skunk and mole with the same template I hand drew then. I make all my own templates. Drawing is something I do in my spare time. I hope to soon to share some of my drawings on Etsy too. I also knit and make stamps. I make books for my kids and sew.

Who if anyone has been instrumental in helping you hone your craft? Where do you get your inspiration?
My children. Often a new design comes from those eager little voices asking for mommy to make this or that. The griffin and phoenix were a request from my son Lucas. My children always get the first of anything I make. Also inspiration comes from the natural world and my innate desire to always create and always challenge myself to take it a step further. It helps to be selling as well :) This always keeps me going, knowing that my work is appreciated and loved. I love being a part of heirloom toy making. I think often about all the neat toys my grandchildren will have that my children played with and loved. Some I made and some they made. I enjoy doing this for other families as well.

What are your favorite materials?
I LOVE to work with wood. My drawing abilities come shining through in a three dimensional work. That's neat. I also like to knit and sew.

What advice would you give other Etsy sellers and those interested in opening up a shop?
Take it slow and enjoy the process. It's a wonderful feeling to find yourself through art, if you are true to the process.

What advice would you give to beginners in your main craft?
Take it slow. Don't let the scroll saw intimidate you. Buy the good stuff.

What is your Etsy shop address and name? Where else can we find you?

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thursday Treasuries

We have some great new treasuries to check out this week, and I'm really excited to show them off!

Natural at it's best, this title from Natural Star says it all...

Let's join Cozy Cottage Creations Up in the Clouds, for this dreamy collection...

Finally, Winsome Hollow shows us how lovely red and blue look together in Two Little Singing Birds...

Can't wait to see what comes up next... good job everyone!