Monday, December 28, 2009

How to have an Old Fashioned yet Green Wedding

Here's my newest writing:

How to have an Old Fashioned yet Green Wedding
http://www.squidoo.com/Old-Fashioned-and-Green-Wedding

Show your own style and be environmentally friendly at the same time !

Friday, December 25, 2009

How are YOU trying to be Green ?

Trying to be Green can be so tough
Just finding the materials to make my items - that are both organic AND as local as possible to avoid using so much transportation and fossil fuels... is impossible for some things.

I use my own homegrown (in my organic gardens) herbs and flowers and buy organic fabrics whenever possible for my items.
Finding local organic fabric is tough, so I use quite a bit of vintage fabrics to make my hand-sewn items - at least it is keeping it out of a landfill and I am not buying any new non-organic fabrics.
I also use vintage buttons, trims, lace...

To me, using vintage fabrics and notions is not only being Green, but it also gives handmade items an extra special something too.

Handmade AND Vintage = Beautiful, Useful, and Green too !

Organically Yours,
Diana

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My little reporter

My 11 year old has an interview at The Winner a big store in a neighboring town that sells designer women's clothes at a discount.
She is doing a backyard history project for the Quest program at her school on the store as it has been around for quite a few years.
I hate going into town on busy days, but she has to get her school work done.

I helped her a little to refine her introduction and the questions that she will be asking in the interview.
She did a great job and didn't need very much refining at all.

She called on Tuesday to introduce herself and set up this appointment.
She did great on the phone introduction and explanation of the assignment.

That's my girl :)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

More local success for Hubbard Ohio business

Diana's Hand-Sewn and All Natural Products are getting even more popular !

Diana's Hand-Sewn and All Natural Products are getting more local recognition.
Another local Hubbard, Ohio store has asked me to bring in a display of my All Natural handmade products and some of my hand sewn items to sell them in her downtown store right in the center of town.

This lady has a store in town with furniture and other things - she also does interior design...
She found my website and emailed me last week about putting some of my things in her store !
I emailed her back and will go to meet with her next week or so to talk about it.
I hope she knows that it is JUST me and not a whole crew that makes my things and that my hand-sewn items take time and are one-of-a-kind.

I am putting together a nice display of a little bit of everything so she can see them up close and then we will talk percentages and we will go from there.

This is so exciting !

The only problem is that I have been so busy helping my Mom and oldest daughter & helping a friend get her business going that I am way behind in my own work.

I have several folks waiting for my soap to be ready and others are waiting for the herbs for my newest body balm "Baby My Skin" to finish infusing so I can get a batch done.

My perfumes are mostly sold out too and they also take many months to make.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Are you marketing locally too ?

My local marketing efforts are starting to pay off...

There is a lady who has a store in town with furniture and other things - she also does interior design...
She found my website and emailed me to put some of my things in her store !
I emailed her back and will go to meet with her next week or so to talk about it.
I hope she knows that it is JUST me and not a whole crew that makes my things and that my hand-sewn items take time and are one-of-a-kind.
We'll see what happens.

Friday, December 4, 2009

How to start your OWN online store

Get your OWN online store !

Have you thought about starting your own online business ?

If so, what's stopping you from going for it ?

Maybe I can help you to make up your mind and get over your fears.

Here are a few tips and some good sources to help you build your business, keep improving it, and even gain more followers as well as loyal customers too =
http://www.squidoo.com/start-an-online-store

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Stevenson's Inn and Restaurant in Masury Ohio

A new local favorite !
We stopped at http://StevensonRestaurant.com in Masury, Ohio on Friday for lunch and it was SO GOOD !

We had the fried fish sandwich and the grilled chicken sandwich.
The family loved them both and the price was right too.

I had a nice sized bowl of their slightly spicy homemade clam chowder - a little unusual, but so rich and so tasty !

I highly recommend Stevenson Restaurant in Masury Ohio and I am quite sure that we will be going back - often :)

Northeast-Ohio's newest gem !
~Stevenson's Inn and Restaurant~ in Masury Ohio
* a local place - good food, good prices and good service too

The perfect combination ;)

Organically Yours,
Diana

Friday, November 27, 2009

We still miss you David - after 14 years

Yesterday, it was 14 years that my brother, my only sibling, died.
He was 30 and supposedly perfectly healthy.

I miss you :(

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thank you from Jack's family

Thank you to all of you who took the time to go over and write a little note on Jack's page http://www.squidoo.com/a-puppy-tale so that my daughter could see it :)

She really appreciates knowing that there are so many kind folks out there who thought Jack was special !

Monday, November 23, 2009

A sad ending to Jack's story...

To all of Jack's friends and supporters,

Our sweet Jack died in his bed on November 21st.
His Momma (My oldest daughter) found him when she went in to feed him.

He did not come running so she went to see what he was doing and she saw him 'sleeping' in his bed.
We love you and will miss you Jack - Your Momma and the rest of us are broken-hearted.

Please send your condolences here http://www.squidoo.com/a-puppy-tale

Monday, November 16, 2009

The best place to buy Books and Videos

Gypsy Queen Media has both an online store and a Backroom Bookroom in Hubbard, Ohio.
If you're local, send her an email for directions to the Hubbard, Ohio store and Gift Shop.

For most folks though, here's her online store:
http://gypsyqueenmedia.ecrater.com/

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Have your gift wishes come true for any event

Have you filled out your WishList ?

Want items from my store http://organicgiftsbydiana.mybisi.com/ and your friends and family have been asking "What would you like ?"

Then, go to my store and click on the WishList link - fill out a Gift Registry (Wish List) for yourself - and send them to my store so they will know what you want ?

Make sure to fill out all of the boxes as fully as possible to avoid any mistakes.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

How to get your OWN online store

I just finished this page where I show you how to get an on-line store and where to look for help in building your business.

http://www.squidoo.com/start-an-online-store

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Learn how to Squidoo

Want to Squidoo, but don't know how ?

Part 2 of my workshop on Monday at 11:30 am EST

Sign-up here http://sellinglounge.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=2395

Don't worry if you missed my first workshop because my step-by-step lesson for Part 1 is still there so you can catch up with the group in only 15 minutes.
Here it is (with the comments and questions from the group that you can ignore) - so just follow my step-by-step posts (OrganicGiftsByDiana) and you will have your own Squidoo lens in no time at all !
http://sellinglounge.com/viewtopic.php?f=103&t=2507

Organically Yours,
Diana

Sunday, October 25, 2009

500 videos

Gypsy Queen Media just got in over 500 more videos !

She is looking them over to make sure the correct video in is each box and to ensure that none seem to be damaged.

Then,

She will be listing many of them in her online store: http://GypsyQueenMedia.ecrater.com/

Some of them will be taken to the new local Hubbard Ohio store called Petzie's at 6177 Youngstown-Hubbard Road to be sold in her Backroom Bookroom along with her other books and videos.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

New and Old Books and Videos at Gypsy Queen Media

I've been helping my daughter by scanning the old books and videos she is listing at http://GypsyQueenMedia.ecrater.com/

Wow, she has some really old books !
She also has some new books and videos, some scary videos that some folks will be looking for this time of year, some cookbooks, and lots of family videos and kids books too...

Monday, September 14, 2009

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

hand-sewn designer one-of-a-kind Apron - coming together

Here is more of my first hand-sewn designer one-of-a-kind Apron - Spring Flowers in peacock blue Apron - showing both sides.

It is being assembled little by little as it takes a while to sew the parts together by hand.
I now have the main body done which is reversible.
I also have the ties sewn and am now starting to attach the waist band.

I will also add more decorative embroidery stitching I think.
Perhaps more along the ties and maybe the waist band.
I have embroidered by hand the ends of the ties with French knots using 3 colors of thread at once to get a variegated color effect.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Soon, these parts will become a whole...

As some of you already know, my newest projects are Aprons.
These will be designed and entirely sewn by hand by me using mainly vintage fabrics.

The first one = Spring Flowers in peacock blue Apron, has all of the parts cut out, ironed and some of them have been sewn.

I will finish sewing the parts and then I will put them all together.

Here are some of the parts:

Here you can see some of the main body of the apron which is already done, the waist band is sewn on 3 sides and now needs to be turned right side out and then pressed and hemmed and attached to the body of the apron - you can also see the ties which are pressed, but still need to be sewn and attached to the waistband.
The waistband and ties were made from a vintage white cotton fabric.
I may embellish the ties with some of the floral fabric - we'll see.

This apron (as likely most will be) is reversible with coordinating vintage fabrics.
On this apron, I used a vintage cotton fabric with spring floral print on a peacock blue background for one side and a Swiss dot vintage fabric in peacock blue for the other side.


Here is an assortment of pockets that I am making to go on either this apron or another one that I will make with the last bit of the same 2 peacock blue vintage fabrics.
These two aprons might have the same fabrics(because they go so well together), but they will be 2 different aprons.

All of my hand sewn items will be one-of-a-kind items.
I may use some of the same fabrics because I do not believe in waste and will use every scrap in some way, but each finished item will be a unique designer item suitable for a wedding gift or for any other occasion for which ONLY a one-of-a-kind gift will do.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Satin-crushed velvet Neck or Travel Pillow



Cream colored Satin (double thickness) and crushed velvet (in a chocolate brown color) Travel Pillow.
There is also a matching eye mask.
These are great for travel or just to relax at home.
Both have real lavender buds inside for a soothing scent.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Vintage Pillowcases embroidered and crocheted by hand

I have several different Beautiful Vintage pillowcases with hand embroidered flowers, ribbons, birds, butterflies... and hand crocheted trim on the edges.

Most are unused, but have had the starch go yellow over time.
It should come out with a good soaking in my Grandmother's favorite - Biz.
But, even if it doesn't come out, the designs and the hand crocheted trims are well worth the price and can be used as part of a quilt, to add to a new set of pillowcases, or framed as art...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Beautiful scarf in 3 colors - huge at 36" square

I have listed on ebay 3 different scarves.

A red one with golden and yellow flowers:
Scarves are worn in many ways.
Besides the typical fashion, they can be worn as a halter top, a turban, a shawl, as a wrap around your waist to dress up a pair of pants or a skirt...

I have 3-6 of each type of scarf, so if you want more than one, let me know so I can combine the shipping to save you some money.

I also have other silky scarves.

A Navy Blue one with the same floral design as the chocolate brown scarf below.

A deep brown one with the same floral design as the navy blue scarf above:

Friday, August 7, 2009

Secrets of Great Chefs

I have a brand new website called Secrets of Great Chefs.

It features cookware, and small appliances... that are new - vintage and handmade kitchen items, cookbooks and decor - vintage and handmade aprons and kitchen linens...

I also give some of my favorite recipes too.

I still have much more to list, but you can still stop by for a visit:
http://secretsofgreatchefs.com/

Friday, July 31, 2009

My new mini website

I made a mini website to complement my other websites.
Natural Gifts By Diana

What do you think ?

Organically Yours,
Diana

Monday, July 20, 2009

Need readers for your blog ?

Well, one new customer found me through this Really Smart Deals - What about you ?

Are you looking for extra exposure for your blog... ?
It is fun seeing what others have done with their blogs and I have even joined some that I would not have seen otherwise.

You can have 10 links, 5 text ads, and 5 banner ads and all you have to do is surf at least 10 sites a week !

+ She is always giving us chances to win extra hits.

hand-sewn liners for my eye masks

I am making washable liners for my eye masks.
I happened to think of it the other day when someone asked how they should wash the eye mask.
Well, they are not washable, but can be spot treated.

So, I am now sewing by hand some liners out of white cotton vintage fabric so folks can keep their eye masks it new condition in case they want to wear them while they have eye makeup on or they are sweating from a fever...

These things are almost as much work as my eye masks are - LOL

I think I will offer them separately to keep the cost of the eye masks down AND then they can buy extras of the liners too if they want them.
They will be around $7 or $8 - should be more, but I'm trying to keep prices down wherever I can.

I also think that if someone buys a set or spends over say $60 or $65 with an eye mask included in that purchase, I'll throw in a liner for their free bonus instead of something else.

What do you think ?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

6 little zucchini

Hubby brought in 6 little zucchini from our organic garden.
They will be so yummy grilled outside.

I will sprinkle a little black pepper and olive oil on them and then grill them over medium-high heat until they're nicely browned and softened on both sides.
Yummy !

Friday, July 17, 2009

Tomatoes and peppers and pumpkins - oh my !

My organic gardens are growing like crazy !
That's what feeding your soil every Fall/Winter by covering the sleeping garden with a blanket of leaves and grass will do.

My happy soil thanks me the following Spring and Summer by welcoming the organic seedlings that we grew ourselves.
Then, I give my plants a good bit of compost when they are first planted and while they grow.

Right now my tomatoes are starting to get fruits, my pepper plants are getting big and we have a pumpkin that is the size of a bowling ball already.

I can taste the yummy food we will have soon from our own organic garden ;)

Organically Yours,
Diana

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

another of my hand sewn eye masks



Here's another of my handsewn creations.

This was designed, cut, sewn, stuffed and finished by me.

One side is a vintage cotton fabric with cherries and the other side is a vintage faux fur fabric.

Lavender buds are inside for a lovely scent too.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Monday, July 6, 2009

Peacock blue and floral Hand-Sewn Luxury Relaxation Gifts

This is another of my hand-cut and hand-sewn eye masks and neck pillow - travel pillow.
These are made from vintage fabrics and have real lavender buds inside for a soothing scent.
I list most of my hand-sewn items separately as they are different sizes - so you can mix and match items for a perfect fit.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Lavender and Roses and Mints, Oh my !

My daughters have been helping me to gather some of the herbs and flowers that I use for my all natural products.

I use the lavender and roses in my body balms and I make a perfume with each one too.
I have used some dried roses in some of my hand-sewn eye masks, sachets and neck pillows, but the most requested scent in these is my lavender.

I use the mints in herbal teas for us to drink - Yummy !
I also use them in some of my all natural products too - like my peppermint in the shoe sachets that I make.
I use some of my peppermint and some of my spearmint in a lovely bath salt tea.

I have lots more harvesting and drying to do.

See you in the Organic Garden !

Friday, June 26, 2009

Looking for Natural Gifts ?

http://organicgiftsbydiana.mybisi.com/
Here are a few examples of what you can find there:
Diana's hand sewn neck pillow from vintage cotton fabric



The first photo is of a Neck pillow that was hand-cut and hand-sewn from a vintage cotton fabric.

The second photo is of a matching eye mask/eye pillow that was also hand cut and hand sewn by me.

Both are stuffed with real lavender buds (dried lavender flowers) and some fiberfill for a soft and gently scented unique handmade gift.

All of my neck pillows and eye masks are handmade by me and although there may be a few that were made using the same fabric, each one is purposefully unique and designed to be a one-of-a-kind gift.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What do you think - would you rather have a set put together for you or do you want to mix and match your own ?

I sell on BiSi and eCRATER as well as at my shop (by appointment only) and I have a little display set up at the flea market in my Mom and daughter's booth.
So, I am keeping everything that is listed in boxes that are marked with what and where they are listed so when something sells - it is easy to get the orders together and keep my inventory straight.

I added a bunch of products to my eCRATER store too.
Many of the products like my handmade perfumes, body balms and lip balms... will be the same as listed in my BiSi store.

However, My hand-sewn items are all one-of-a-kind.
I do make similar pieces (sometimes of various sizes) so my customers can mix and match to make a set if they like.
I will put a few of my one-of-a-kind hand-sewn items in my eCRATER store.
Right now, I have a "Froggie loves you !" eye mask and neck pillow set in my eCRATER store.

It is the first time I have listed something like this as a set.
I like listing these separately so folks can make their own sets, but I thought I'd try listing one as a set to see how it goes.

What do you think about listing as sets or mix-and-match ???

Here's my BiSi store where you can find the eye masks and neck pillows separately so you can choose your own colors and sizes... :
http://OrganicGiftsByDiana.mybisi.com/

Here is my eCRATER store with a set already together and listed at a small discount :
http://OrganicGiftsByDiana.ecrater.com/

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Diana's newest writings

Here are my three newest Squidoo lenses (writings/pages)

Please stop by and let me know what you think.


http://www.squidoo.com/Being-Natural


http://www.squidoo.com/Sensitive-skin

http://www.squidoo.com/natural-product-showcase

I'm still here...

I'm sure you all think I must have left the country or something, but I'm still here - LOL

I am still working on cleaning and organizing my whole shop area and my oldest daughter is helping me to rearrange my product sections to serve as a walk-in shop when someone makes an appointment and as a storage area for my 2 online store listings.

It is taking some doing, but we are making progress.

Are there EVER enough shelves ???

Sunday, May 31, 2009

show was good...

The show was nice !
Made a few decent sized sales, had fun and made several good contacts too.

Folks loved my all natural body balms, lip balms, bath salt teas and soaps... and they really couldn't believe that I sewed all of the eye masks and neck pillows by hand and that they had real lavender or other herbs inside them.
They were pleasantly surprised.

We had a nice time, but are Sooooooooooooooooooooooooo tired - I do not look forward to having to put everything away and restocking my online store.
Why couldn't everything have sold so I wouldn't have to put it away - LOL

Monday, May 25, 2009

Getting ready for the show...

My oldest daughter is coming over for a little while today to help me start packing things up for the show.
She is the one who will be helping me that day too.
I made inventory sheets listing everything that I will be taking because I want to make sure it is all organized so I don't forget anything.

I also have a list of other items to take like my business cards, signs, displays...

I finally finished up the chocolate nut fudge lip balms and the honey lip balms.
I got the Pina Colada lip balms poured, but still need to label and wrap them.

I wont have very many soaps ready to take.
All of this damp weather wouldn't allow them to dry properly so I can't wrap them yet.

I sure wish I had another month, I'd have everything ready for sure ;)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Girl's Night Out at Fellow's Riverside Gardens - fundraiser for the Youngstown Ohio botanical garden in Mill Creek Park

4th Annual Girls Night Out At The Gardens, hosted by the Friends of Fellows Riverside Gardens on May 28, 2009.

This is an exclusive shopping event limited to 425 women in the Youngstown area.

It is an evening where women sip cocktails and dine on specially prepared hors d’oeurves, as they shop trunk shows.

This year we are opening up our trunk show to exclusive vendors that will intrigue these women with the new, up and coming trends.

These women will shop from 5:30-9 pm that evening, with a guest lecture by Dr. Shayesteh on Health and Nutrition beginning in the auditorium at 7:30 pm. Those not wanting to attend may continue to shop.

The Girls Night out at the Gardens evening will have a fashion show and demonstrations, lasting no more that 45 minutes. Concluding the demonstration, there will be a grand raffle, which will benefit the Gardens.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fellows_Riverside_Gardens

I think the tickets are $20.00 if you know anyone who wants to go.

Organically Yours,
Diana

http://organicgiftsbydiana.mybisi.com/

http://www.squidoo.com/AllNaturalPerfume

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I'm been busy...

I made more of my Red Roses exfoliating all natural lip balm yesterday - over 200 of them.
Today, I made the labels for them and will get as many put on Wednesday as I can.
The labeling and shrink-wrapping take longer that the making of them - LOL

I also made the signs to use on my display table at the show at the end of the month.

I have so much more to do, but that's all for today as I can't see straight anymore.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Refills for some products now available

I have been working on adding refills to my product line and finally have a few ready.
So, save your containers from your first purchase (or use one that you have that will fit) and buy the refills from now on.

This is so important to me because I cannot stand waste and I am very much into being "Green" and practicing the 3 R's of Reduce/Reuse/Recycle whenever possible.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Love Perfume, but not the chemicals ? - Find All Natural Perfumes at Diana's

Try one of my Handmade All Natural perfumes featuring the flowers and herbs from my own organic gardens.

All Natural Perfumes by Diana

Here is just some of what you will find :


image of Diana's All Natural Jasmine and Myrrh Luxury Perfume



image of Diana's All Natural Lavender Perfume



image of Diana's All Natural Perfume - Especially for Mom - blossoms and fruit



image of Diana's Frankincense and Pink Roses All Natural Perfume



image of Diana's All Natural Sandalwood & Vanilla Luxury Perfume



As soon as my lilacs are harvested and dried, I will be working on an All Natural Lilac Perfume as well.

I'm not sure if I will make it a straight Lilac perfume or if I will mix another of my wonderful flowers in with it.

So far, I think I want it to be just Lilac, but we'll see.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Love my products, but can't buy everything you want ?

I now have a Wish List - Gift Registry on my store website.

Now, you can have your friends and family get you exactly what you want for your bridal shower, baby shower, wedding, anniversary, or any other special day/holiday.

I do suggest that you make a first and second choice for my one-of-a-kind items in case someone else gets to it before your friends and family do.

Also, make sure that you fill out all of the boxes as completely as you can to minimize any mistakes.

Fresh new look for my store !

My online store has a whole new look.

I am working very hard this Spring to get all of my ducks in a row and allow my business to take off the way it clearly wants to do.

I am getting more and more people from all over who appreciate my handmade and All natural products and the tips that I give them about Organic and Natural Living.

It was about time that my store looked as good as people thought it was.

Stop in to see for yourself.

http://OrganicGiftsByDiana.mybisi.com/

I will showcase my All Natural products at our local Botanical garden afterall

I will be doing the show at Fellow's Riverside Gardens in Mill Creek park this May.
It is too big of an opportunity to miss.

My daughter will share the booth with me and we are splitting the cost.

I have been busy making up extra products to make sure I have enough for the show.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Diana's was invited to set up at our Botanical Gardens

I was given such a wonderful honor the other day.
Our local Botanical Gardens - Fellow's Riverside Gardens at Mill Creek Park - is holding a fundraising event in May and asked me to set up a booth because they want to especially focus on Health and Wellness this year.
My shop would be a perfect addition as I am an organic gardener and use my own herbs and flowers... to make my All Natural products.
I also help others to learn about organic gardening and natural living too which was a big plus.

However, with hubby just losing his job, there is no way I can afford to pay the entry fee.

What a bummer !
I am finally getting local recognition and I cannot take advantage of it.

I asked her to keep me informed just in case something should come up and I can get the entry fee.
There is always next year I suppose.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

I guess my "hobby" days are over

Hubby's last day of work was January 31, 2009.
He is laidoff for good.

So, I need to really get my business into full gear.
If you know anyone who appreciates the Organic way of life and the All Natural products that I make, please send them my way.

I have been working on a new balm for very dry skin. It will be in the testing phase soon.

I am also mulling around an idea for a Tribute Perfume for my Grandparents.

Diana's Zazzle store - My designs OR yours