Thursday, July 31, 2008

The witch has been picked!

I was so delighted to hear that my very own witch shirt has been picked as a favorite on another blog. Even more special - I've reached my target audience - a 2 year old little girl. To read more about this you can click here!

Buy Something New Today - Polka Dots!

In honor of my new blog design I have searched up and down on Etsy to find my most favorite things with polka dots! Let's go!


I can honestly say that I don't think I have ever seen a more adorable bib than this one from Bean Pickle Sprout. I love the color combination and the little bird is just the cutest. The modern and neutral colors would also make it a perfect pick for a little boy or girl.

Next I chose this brightly colored, ultra hip diaper bag/tote bag from Pink Lemonade Bags. The colors are fantastic and I love the crisp bow. There are pockets on the light pink interior which makes it easy to find what you are looking for.

And lastly we have this lovely travel sized blankie from Dolci Baci Boutique. One of my favorite color combinations is pink and green - and this gorgeous blankie uses both so well. I just wish it came in a larger size!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I decided to try and expand my tutu shirt collection in Alayna's Closet. They are the first thing that I did and the whole reason I started selling on Etsy. So last night I took the witch shirt I already made and added the ribbon and tulle - making one very cute tutu shirt.

Here is Alayna giving her best wicked witch look.
This cute tutu shirt is now available in my shop. Did you know??? Any of my girls applique tees can be turned into a playful and cute tutu shirt? You can even pick the ribbon and tulle color. Your little girl can build the shirt of her dreams!

Notice anything...

My blog has been transformed once again! Michele from Elite Boutique Designs has so graciously helped me in my quest of a 3 column blog. For the next couple of days things may be rearranged in an effort to get everything to fit in my skinny sidebars. But I hope that it will all become more reader friendly. So stay tuned!

Monday, July 28, 2008

New shoes...

Now is the time I start buying Fall clothes for Alayna. You see warmer colors and sweaters and pants start to crop up in the store displays. And that of course means buying new shoes. Alayna has already outgrown her first couple of pairs of sandals that I bought in the Spring. It always makes me sad knowing I have to buy her new ones. Not because I have to spend money on getting some more - but because it means she is growing up.

One of the brands that I love for her are Converse. They are supportive, stylish, and have a flexible sole. I love that they are fairly inexpensive at $20 for the traditional colors. She is wearing these chocolate brown ones today. I usually buy them from Piperlime. They have free shipping both ways which is very convenient. And they always have loads of styles in stock.

With her brown Converse she is wearing one of the new shirts from my shop, Alayna's Closet. There are 3 of them which I call the Pretty Paisley Flower Collection. You can check them out by clicking on the link above.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

On a Scale of 1 to 10... Movies

I thought it would be fun to talk more about things I like and let you know how I rank them. My husband and I always use the "1 to 10 scale" to indicate how much we like things. I thought I could use that for movies, restaurants, books, etc.

Today I am ranking the classic movie Eddie and the Cruisers. I honestly can't say when it was that I first saw this movie but I know that I was young. Since that time I have watched it dozens of times on my own dvd and whenever I catch it on tv. It was released in 1983 and there was one sequel to it which I haven't seen. I also own the cd which I have had for years and years.

I really like the movie and would wholeheartedly recommend it. I would give it a solid 8.5

The soundtrack cd I love! And I would give that a 10.

If you have the opportunity to rent it through Net Flix or elsewhere - do it! You will certainly enjoy it!

If you have already seen this movie - what do you give it?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Saturday Giveaway - Mixology Makeup!

Congratulations to Hil'lesha!

She is the winner of the fabulous clutch from this past weeks drawing. Thanks again to Heather from Brezomayo for participating. You can still check out her shop - her Etsy mini is located on the right sidebar!

Now - up for grabs this week is a 3 piece makeup kit from

Mixology Pure Mineral Makeup.

Rae has chosen a very exciting and fresh eye shadow color called Crush. It is a light shimmery purple, flirty and fresh! It comes in a 10 gram jar with sifter. (3 grams nt. wt.)

Also included is a coordinating plum colored liner. It is a deep colored purple liner that works well for everyone and really makes your eyes pop! It comes in a 5 gram jar with sifter. (1 gram nt. wt.)

And Rae is also being so kind and giving away one of her Vegan Synthetic wet/dry mineral brushes. This Flawless Focus brush is non shedding and super soft!

How can all of this be yours you ask?

* Click HERE to visit Rae's shop, then return to this post to let us know your favorite item.

* Make sure you leave your email address so that I may contact you if you are the winner.

* Only one entry per person

The fine print... This giveaway will be held from Saturday, July 26th - Friday, August 1st. The drawing will close at 10pm EST. The winner will be randomly picked and announced in next Saturday's Giveaway thread. This drawing is open to anyone, Rae is willing to ship worldwide.

Good Luck!

And please check out the rest of my blog - there is much to see!

Time's running out!

Tonight at 10pm EST the drawing for a beautiful hand embroidered clutch from Etsy shop Brezomayo will end.

Have you entered??


I will also be leaving the poll up for another week. Vote for what you want to see next in - Around the House!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A bright spot...

On an otherwise dreary day - weatherwise and everything else - the FedEx man drops off a box for me. And inside was all the beautiful colors of my new packaging! Yay!

I will still package everything in the clear cello sleeves but will tie them off with the colors for boy or girl, cocoa/azalea/lime for a girl and cocoa/turquoise/tangerine for a boy. I am loving that chocolate brown though!

And in other business news - I finished the matching trick or treat tote bag for my little witch. And it is available personalized too! She is now ready for purchase through my Etsy shop - Alayna's Closet. What do you think? I will have more styles coming so keep your eyes peeled!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Buy something new today - Hats!

If you have seen Alayna during one of the past two cold weather seasons you would know that her mom is a sucker for hats. She has had dozens of them! But one of my favorites is one that I bought before she was born in a little boutique shop in Peterborough. She wore it only once, during her 1 month old photo shoot. I have that hat and outfit saved so that one day I can do something special with it.

Throughout my travels on Etsy I have seen some hats that are just as adorable and I wanted to share them with you. Maybe you know a special little someone who would like a warm head and look cute too.


First, from a very successful Etsy seller is this adorable army green flower beanie hat with visor. If you check out Portland Beanie Company's shop you will find hats to fit everyone from infant to adult - all handmade and all beautiful!

Next, for the little monkey in your life, is this too cute crocheted brown hat with pink trim and monkey ears built in. But if your little monkey is a boy - don't fret - Cite' Fuzz has it available with blue trim as well.

And if all this cuteness was too much to handle, I have one more picked out for you!

From the Etsy shop Beanie Designs - is the most gorgeous brown and pink bear hat. Bear not your style? Then check this shop out and you will also find a cute kitty hat.

Hmm... which hat to get Alayna? Of course - all 3!

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's coming...

That wonderful time of year called Autumn. I even love the word - Autumn. It is my favorite time of year - the time when my baby girl's birthday comes around, the hot, humid weather turns crisp, decorating outside with pumpkins, mums, and scarecrows, local fairs, hot apple cider, hayrides. Love it all!

In autumn when the trees are brown
The little leaves come tumbling down
They do not make the slightest sound
But lie so quietly on the ground
Until the wind comes puffing by
And blows them off towards the sky.
(author unknown)

And I finally succumbed and made my first "holiday" themed shirt. I woke up this morning thinking about a witch. Nobody in particular, just a green little Halloween witch. : ) Here is how she turned out.

I will soon be adding to my Halloween family. I would like to do a Frankenstein, ghost, mummy, pumpkin, and maybe a dracula if he's not too scary. And I have lots of tote bags in stock that I will make to match and they will be perfect for trick or treating!

Make sure you keep checking Alayna's Closet for the newest additions!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Try something new today - Stromboli

Call me naive. But up until 3 months ago I had never heard of a Stromboli let alone tried one. We used to live in NJ and our wonderful friends who still live there came up to the country for a visit. This recipe I am about to share with you is one of the best things I have had in my life! The stromboli that was made was actually ham/mozzarella/chedder and the other half was Italian sausage with mushrooms and mozarella.

1 package refrigerated pizza dough
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 pound thinly sliced deli ham
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
Marinara sauce
black pepper

On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a rectangle. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over dough to within 1/2 in. of edges. Top with a single layer of ham. Roll up tightly from a short side; pinch seam to seal. Place seam side down on an ungreased baking sheet. Along the top make slices in dough on the diagonal. Brush top of loaf with butter; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and black pepper. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Cut with a serrated knife. Serve with your favorite marinara for dipping.

Now isn't that the most delicious looking thing ever?! And Alex isn't too shabby himself. ; )
Did I forget to tell you that Alex made this for us? My husband isn't the most skilled in the kitchen - but you gotta love a man who cooks! Thanks Alex! Please come back soon! : )

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Saturday Giveaway - Brezomayo

ABarrett is the lucky winner of the yummy chocolate bath and body set from Sweet Body!

Thank you so much Amber for offering up such a delectable gift! Make sure you check out her shop - you can find her Esty mini on my right sidebar along with previous giveaway participants.

** Heather from Brezomayo is being so generous in offering Alayna's Closet blog readers FREE SHIPPING! When placing your order type in the code - alaynascloset - in the notes to seller. Take advantage of this offer as it expires on July 31, 2008! **

This week we have a truly one of a kind handmade clutch from Heather. In her Etsy shop, Brezomayo - you can see many more pieces from this talented designer.

The clutch being offered is the perfect size to keep make-up, personal items, or anything else you don't want to have to dig at the bottom of your purse or travel bag for!

A little more info about this gorgeous clutch from Heather!

It is sewn from 100% linen & is embellished with linen & cotton patchwork stripes. It is fully lined with off white quilted cotton & it has a linen loop closure which attaches to a button. I know you will love the sweet zigzag stitching details, and the free-hand embroidery design! It measures 6.5" x 9".

* Click HERE to visit Heather's shop, then return to this post to let us know your favorite item.

* Make sure you leave your email address so that I may contact you if you are the winner.

* Only one entry per person

The fine print... This giveaway will be held from Saturday, July 19th - Friday, July 25th. The drawing will close at 10pm EST. The winner will be randomly picked and announced in next Saturday's Giveaway thread. This drawing is open to anyone, Heather is willing to ship worldwide.

Good Luck!

And please check out the rest of my blog - there is much to see!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Around the house... Living Room

Thank you so much everyone for voting in my poll! The winning choice this week is my living room. Like many rooms of the house it too is only partially completed. I was very gung ho into the project in my 9th month of pregnancy with Alayna. I guess you could say I was nesting. I did it all in about 2 days time when my husband was away on a trip. The parts that aren't done, even after 2 years, is the trim around the opening into the sunporch and the painting of the wainscotting on the lower half of the wall.

Wow! Ha ha - I found this photo taken of me and my handy work shortly after I finished my living room. Don't laugh! I was nearly 40 weeks here. : P

I loved my sofa - which I had for a couple of years before Alayna came along. Needless to say - it isn't exactly creamy white anymore. It might be time for a new one soon. I don't know that I will be going to Ethan Allen again though. The curtains are different also - I have double width ones that are fuller and span across the bay window. They are still chocolate brown. And yes I still have the pack and play in my living room. We still change diapers there. Although looking at it here makes me realize I should retire the thing. Hmmm. Anyone need a pack n play?

This fireplace juts out into the living room which is otherwise shaped like an alley, long and narrow. Anyone have any ideas for my tired looking display on the mantle? I am sick of looking at those square wreaths but I can't bring myself to throw them out.

And then we have my little bookshelves that are no more. Like most men my husband wanted a LARGE tv. I didn't want that big contraption hanging on the wall above the fireplace so the next logical place was on the built in console. Paul and my dad ripped out the shelves to make room for the big black box. I was promised some more shelves around it. I am still waiting...

So that is where we spend a majority of time as a family. Thanks for joining me! Make sure you vote in the new poll and let me know what you want to see next in - Around the house!

We have a winner!

Congratulations Elizabeth!
You won a free pair of extra cute hair clips from Apple Blossom Bows!
Check back often for your next opportunity to win!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Just wondering...

Does anyone listen to the songs in my Playlist? I added a couple more that I love and I was just thinking to myself - is anyone listening?
If you are - tell me your favorite out of my favorites!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I am so sorry to have kept you all in suspense for so long! My "real" life got in the way for a bit.

Jennifer of Apple Blossom Bows and I have a treat for you! On my blog for the next couple of weeks I will be holding mini giveaways of a matching set of hair bows for your little girly girls! These drawings will only be open for 24 hours at a time and will vary on the day held. Our first set to giveaway will be tomorrow, July 16th. Between the hours of 12 am to midnight you may comment on this thread. Simply go to Jennifer's shop, browse around through her many accessories, then come back here and tell us which is your favorite item! Easy, right?! We have 9 sets of bows to giveaway so that means 9 lucky winners! The first winner will get their pick of colors and so on and so forth... All of the bows available are pictured below.

Here are the details of the bows themselves.

* Made of 3/8" grosgrain ribbon

* Approximately 1.75" wide

* Attached to partially-lined single-prong alligator clip

* Ribbon ends are heat sealed to prevent fraying

Alayna has several pairs and we love them. They are definitely quality crafted with love. And they are cute too!

Remember! This giveaway is open for 1 day only, July 17th. Check back often to see when the other drawings will be held.

I've got a surprise!!!

Check back later this evening for all the juicy details!

Buy something new today...

As I have been browsing through Etsy the last several days I have noticed many shops gearing up for the holidays already. I haven't even thought much about next week yet - but this will hopefully trigger some of that holiday spirit!

Christmas In July!

One of the things I look forward to is picking out my family Christmas card for that year. I saw these really beautiful handmade cards by Sydnei of Simply Sentimental. I love the design and the colors are just gorgeous. I would buy these for sure.

Another thing I look forward to is the tradition of the birdhouse I receive from my husband. I love, love this one and I don't think it would make it outdoors - too exquisite for any birdies to live in. As a matter of fact - I would have no problem receiving any of these lovelies from Bird House Accents.

Now for something I can trim my tree with. Actually my mom would LOVE these, amethyst is her birthstone. These come from a new shop on Etsy called RattiesBeads and they also come in various gemstone colors. Very pretty and sparkly! They would look luxurious tied on a package too!

I hope that this post gets you in the mood to start storing gifts in any nook and cranny you can find. I will be launching my holiday line of shirts and tote bags next week. ---- just kidding.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

mmm... Beer

Beer bread that is.

Some time ago I was dragged to one of my sister's co-workers house who was hosting a Tastefully Simple party. Alayna had just learned to walk and I was busy chasing her while she was running after her cousin, Eden. So I didn't get to sit down and sample all of the little treats they were passing around. My sister and I threw together an order of things we thought sounded good.

A couple of weeks later and our package arrives. Can I tell you that my husband and I LOVE that beer bread! We have gone through several boxes of it and I actually need to find someone to buy some more. I only have one left in our pantry after tonights loaf.

So I just wanted to pass along this tidbit of information. If you haven't tried it and you get invited to a show - buy it. It is fast, easy, and a delicious addition to any meal. I think I will go have some now.

P.S. Tonight is the last day for Free Shipping in Alayna's Closet!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Promos, goodies, packaging, etc...

Before I became a seller on Etsy and I would make purchases - I would notice the differences in how some packages arrived. I am a visual, tactile person and appreciated the effort that was put into the care and presentation of their goods. When you open something that is wrapped nicely, whether it was tissue paper tied with ribbon, or tucked into an organza pouch - it was like opening a gift. So I kept in mind all of those things that made an impact on me.

When it is time to order more packaging supplies I will be going with a little bit different color scheme. But for now, I package all of my shirts in clear cello bags and then tie a raffia bow on them. In the padded envelope I also include a couple of different goodies. I just started doing these markers but I love the simple (and inexpensive!) effect they have.

And in today's mail I just received these fantastic clothes pins from a seller on Etsy. They turned out so good and I can't wait to start sending them out. But first I want to add a magnet to the back of each one so they can be used and seen on the refrigerator.
Some may wonder what is the purpose of all of these promos. I know some fellow Etsians give out pin back buttons or bookmarks. But I wanted something more useful.
So far I have recieved great feedback from my customers about my packaging and the little extras they get.

Do you know a Guitar Hero?

Well if he is less than a year old I have got the cutest outfit for you!

Click Here to read more about it.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

New item added...

I have completed my first infant boys outfit! I am so excited! I love everything about my new line that I will be doing and this set exemplifies a modern posh tot! Click HERE to read more about it.

As you may have noticed there are dots everywhere! I am changing up my graphics and ads. I want it to encompass both boys and girls and the new colors really do that. The new look is more clean, stylish, and has a more boutique feel to it.

Can you believe I did it all myself?! But it is not done yet. My wonderful friend Anita is a savvy graphic designer and she is going to jazz it up a little bit. So be on the lookout. Please check out her shop on Etsy - she does fantastic work! It is called iGraphicus. *new banner has been added! 7/14 *

How about this...

I am due to go to the grocery store. We don't have a great selection of food in the house but I keep putting off making the trip. Therefore - I am not able to post our regularly scheduled programming of "Try something new today". I will resume next week.

So I thought I would do something extra special to make up for it. How about this...

Any orders placed through Alaynas Closet for the next 3 days will receive Free Shipping! If you order 1 shirt, it ships free. If you order 1 shirt and a matching tote bag, it ships free. If you order 3 shirts and 3 matching tote bags, it still ships free. : ) So commence ordering!

* Free shipping offer good on orders placed 7/13 - 7/15. To indicate that you heard about this offer on my blog and receive free shipping, you must enter the following code in the notes to seller - A C 1 B R. *

Friday, July 11, 2008

Saturday Giveaway - Sweet Body

Lorissha is the lucky winner of one of my personalized applique shirts and a matching headband from Goldilocks Boutique. I would like to thank Lisa for participating with me! Do your little girl a favor and check out her shop!

Today starts a fantastic giveaway that I know you will all love! Amber of Sweet Body is offering up something that most women love and can't get enough of - chocolate! But ladies - you can have all of this chocolate you want and not worry about a thing!

One lucky winner will receive an assortment of chocolate scented bath and beauty goodies. Included in this giveaway is 1 tube of Sweet Lips Creamy Chocolate Lip Balm, 1 jar of Chocolate Marshmallow Body Scrub, and 1 delicious bar of Chocolate Soap.

Submitting your entry for this giveaway is as easy as chocolate pie!

* Click HERE to visit Amber's shop, then return to this post to let us know your favorite item.

* Make sure you leave your email address so that I may contact you if you are the winner.

* Only one entry per person

The fine print... This giveaway will be held from Saturday, July 12th - Friday, July18th. The drawing will close at 10pm EST. The winner will be randomly picked and announced in next Saturday's Giveaway thread. This drawing is open to anyone, Amber is willing to ship worldwide.

Good Luck!

And please check out the rest of my blog - there is much to see!

Around the house...

The poll is over and it is a tie! You wanted to see Alayna's room and the attic. I will break the tie and pick Alayna's room since it is much less messy! :P

We finished my daughter's room about 3 months before she was born. I love decorating and couldn't wait to get going on it. Even though we weren't 100% sure she was going to be a girl, I fell in love with this pink and green wallpaper and had to have it. Lucky for her (and my husband who put up the wallpaper) Alayna came out a baby girl.

I have pulled different characters out of the wallpaper to emphasize. At first I bought every bunny thing I saw. But about 5 months ago I found the Penelope bedding from Pottery Barn and had to have that. So now everything is about the birdies. In a closet I have the coordinating pieces for when we turn her crib into a toddler bed.

I also love the furniture we picked out for her room. I really didn't want something that looked like baby furniture. In a local furniture store we found this set from Broyhill called Attic Heirlooms. I love the heavy distressting on everything and the fact it can really grow with her and last a long time. When we move her into a regular sized bed I would love to get a painted canopy bed like this. But if I had higher ceilings (darn old house) and a bigger room for her, you can bet I would be buying this!

The one thing I just can't settle on is the wall behind her crib. We painted it a solid shade of pink. I didn't want wallpaper there as I thought it would close in the room too much. I just can't seem to find the perfect artwork that I want or anything else that would go. Always something to keep an eye out for I guess. A couple of weeks ago we were in Pottery Barn Kids spending a gift card we had and Alayna saw these birds hanging around the canopy bed I like. She loves them - she lies in bed looking up smiling and talking to them.

And of course I need to show you the inside of Alayna's Closet! It is quite small but it holds everything for now.

Thank you for taking a tour of Alayna's room! It is my most favorite room in the house. : ) What will we see next week? Vote in the poll and we'll find out!

* Also - my current giveaway for one of my personalized applique tees is ending tonight at 10pm EST. Make sure you leave a comment for your chance to win! *