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Monday, April 28, 2008

A Walk Down the Isle - Interview with Madeline Bea Soap Co.

The following interview with Etsy Wedding Team member, Madeline Bea Soap Co. was originally posted on on Thursday April 10, 2008. Thanks to Moodwax (another Etsy Wedding Team Member) for allowing us to repost her interview.

A Walk Down the Isle - Interview with Madeline Bea Soap Co.

Today I am featuring a creative and talented member of the Etsy Wedding Team. Medeline Bea Soap Co. has created a line of bath and body products that are perfect for any bride to be. Her wedding speacialty is personalized bridal shower and wedding soap favors. She also created a lavish "bea blissful" welcome basket, perfect for bridesmaids, out of town guests, or any bride that would love some extra pampering!

1. Where are you from?
I am from the beautiful mountains of Northeast PA. I live in the same town I grew up in.

2. What special things do you create for weddings?
I make handmade soap favors whose labels and wrappings can be customized and personalized specifically for the bride and groom. I also can put together gift baskets for bridesmaids, out-of-town guests, flower girls, etc.

3. Tell us a little about yourself.
I'm a stay-at-home-mom of two beautiful little girls. I married my high school sweetheart and he's the best husband and dad I could ever imagine. We live a pretty simple life full of laughs, love, and family.

4. What or Who got you started doing what you do?
I started exploring how to make soap out of a desire to make frugal Christmas presents. The craft was way more involved than I thought but the more I learned about it, the more I really wanted to do it! So I bought a couple books and did a ton of online research and taught myself the craft of soapmaking. Once I started, there was so much I wanted to do; new soaps, scrubs, lip balms. It was so addicting. And even now there's way more that I want to do then I have time to do.

5. What is a little known fact, or something unique about your work that is interesting?
Soapmaking is a big chemical reaction. Measurements of oils, water, and lye have to be very precise (to a tenth of an ounce) or the whole batch could flop.

6. If you could pick anyone famous that would purchase your items for their wedding, who would they be?
I would have to say Martha Stewart because you know that everything she would have at her wedding would be the most charming, best things you could have.

7. If you are married, what's one thing you wish you had for your wedding that you didn't?
My soap for favors, of course! Oh yeah, and a sober DJ!

8. What's your favorite wedding song?
I'm going to have to say my own: "All I Need To Know" by Kenny Chesney. It simply says that "In a world where most things come and go, I'll always have you to hold, And that's all I need to know." It most definately captures the essence of marriage. If you're marrying for any other reason then you'll probably be dissapointed.

9. Can you give any advice to all the brides to be getting married this year?
Make the day truly about you and your groom-to-be. So many weddings are carbon copies of each other. I love weddings that are unique and speak volumes about the couple. You and your guests are more likely to enjoy the day when it feels like YOUR wedding and not like the same wedding they went to last month. Oh yeah, and please keep your perspective. It is ONE DAY!!!! It will be over as quickly as yesterday. But your marriage is what all the work is for!

10. Perfect honeymoon spot.
I wouldn't know!

11. If you could choose 1 item from your shop that you wish every bride could have, what would it be?
One of my Body Scrubs. Her skin would be glowing on her special day (just like her smile!)

12. Links where we can find out more about your work.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Etsy Wedding Scrapbook: Amy of BeadsinBloom

Here's a story from Amy of Beads in Bloom, about how her wedding is what got her started in her current art.
"This isn't really mushy, funny, or cute, but my wedding is actually why
I started French Beading in the first place. The "package" we got for
our little beach wedding only came with flowers for my husband and
myself. Nothing for the bridal party. In an attempt to continue the
DIY theme for most of our wedding, a friend of mine suggested beaded
flowers. I had never heard of them, but after a several trials and
completely cursing and putting aside this lovely craft because my first
attempts were atrocious, I 'saw the light', so to speak, and fell in
love with this age-old craft."

Amy and her wedding party, with handmade bouquets

Leigh-Ann Kline featured on Art Addict

I just wanted to extend a congratulations to Etsy Wedding Team Member Leigh-Ann Kline, who I featured on Art Addict. She also recently made a front page appearance on Etsy. She makes gorgeous and elegant handbags and clutches. Of course, Leigh-Ann is no stranger to the press. Her bags have also been featured in publications such as Inside Weddings and Divine Details. If you take a look at her gorgeous creations, you'll understand why. Check out the article on Art Addict here:

Etsy Wedding Scrapbook: Valerie Tyler

Throughout this blog, you will have the opportunity to meet many members of the Etsy Wedding Team who will also share with you some of the photos and details of their own weddings, weddings we have attended, or our" Always a bridesmaid stories" I figured to kick off the series, I'd share with you a few details of my own wedding.

I happen to be a jewelry designer, and a teacher. These two things make me a bit of a micro-manager. So when it came to the details about the role of flowers in my wedding I was really rather anxious.

For starters, I knew I did not want to spend a fortune on floral centerpieces for my tables. I toyed around with the idea of ordering fresh flowers in bulk, but knew there was no way they would ever successfully make it to the tables. The solution came from a lot of brainstorming on my part and the help of my rather artistically created mother. I wanted the centerpieces to be natural, but not particularly fragile or pricey. What we ended up doing was get affordable glass vases. I then used natural bamboo poles, grasses, and money changers (unfortunately I couldn't find enough **real** moneychangers, but they still looked and felt real). We then recycled smaller glass bottles as well and put the bamboo inside the bottles to center them inside the vases and filled the entire vase with glass pebbles to weight it. The bottles were then wrapped inside vellum, and a black ribbon added for flair. I think the total cost per centerpiece came to about less than $10.00 a centerpiece.

Since my wedding, I've noticed different versions of this. I had a friend who took beautiful branches and put them in a vase. She made personalized cards to commemorate occasions and events that she had in common with her wedding guests and typed all the happy memories on artsy cards. She hung the cards from the branches. They were a great way to get to know the other guests, and let each guest know how much the bride and groom cared about their special memories of their times spent with the guests.

I've had also dreamed for ages of doing the old-fashioned toss of the bouquet coming out of church. It had always seemed so elegant and glamorous to me. The whole bouquet toss and accompanying garter dance at the reception just didn't really fit with my personality or my husbands. The solution was that I had a throw away bouquet of simple daisies, tied loose. I walked out, untied the ribbon and tossed the flowers to----the children! It was a delight to watch the flowers scatter through the air and watch the children gleefully catch them all.

Having been married on the Fourth of July weekend however, I think one of my favorite moments was when we all lit sparklers under the tent outside. Cute little tin buckets filled with sand and star cut outs were perfect places to put out the hot sparklers. The grown ups were more hilarious than the children even running around twirling their arms in the air (note: my change of dress for late night dancing too!)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Etsy Wedding Team in the Treasuries again!

Another lovely treasury of items from the Etsy Wedding Team

Treasury Curator: UpFromtheAshes

Etsy Wedding Team member featured on the Indie Wedding Guide

Congratulations to Etsy Wedding Team member Susan, of Middleburg Folk Art Studio who was featured in the Indie Wedding Guide. Her lovely paper mache' cake toppers were recommended by the guide as being "just the right touch" for a garden wedding. I definitely agree. Congratulations Susan!

Love Birds in the Garden, $77.00

If you'd like to see the full article visit:

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Tips from the Team: Getting the Perfect Bridesmaid Gift

From Etsy Wedding Team Member Capitola Girl; here's a tip about picking bridesmaid gifts:

You have your bridesmaids picked, but what about their gift? Shop for items that enhance your theme. For example, if you're planning a beach wedding, think about putting together a bath and body sun care kit loaded with fun, coconut scented products and lotions. Planning the perfect winery wedding? Tuck a pair of hand painted glasses into a romantic wine and cheese basket. Planning a winter event? Try a hand knit scarf or a snowflake necklace. Remember that when looking for bridesmaid gifts, buying something handmade is a way to honor your closest friends with something as unique and special as the gift of their friendship.

Ideas from the Etsy Wedding Team

Pictured above from left to right:
Barefoot Necklace by CapitolaGirl, $46.00
Small bridesmaid bag by lilyelle, $16.00
Whipped Cream Luxurious Pure Alpaca Knit Scarf from TickledPinkKnits, $45.00

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Wedding "To Do" List: Save the Date!

The instant many brides are first engaged their minds are suddenly flooded with all sorts of the ideas and possibilities there are for their wedding. (Some are even dreams from their girlhood!) Then minutes after that may come the moment of panic---where to begin?

We at the Etsy Wedding Team would like to present brides and grooms with an ongoing series known as the "The Wedding To Do List" in which we present all those items on the ever famous brides' check-off lists, as well as a few neat things you may not even have thought of. We'll give you hints to help you plan all the details as well as give you some resources and ideas where to find fabulous items to personalize your wedding.

Of course, the first big step is always setting the big date! Once that is done, the very first thing brides and grooms need to do is send out "save the date" notices to their guests. Here are some lovely ideas from members of the Etsy Wedding Team:

If you're going for a classic and elegant look consider these "Elegant Save the Date Cards" from JustAnotherDay. They're a good value at $65.00 for 50 postcards. Better yet, the colors can be customized to fit your wedding scheme.For those that like a little bling (very tasteful bling!) visit fubabee to view the "Crystal Swirls Save the Date" card. Your wedding date will be printed on gorgeous pearl shimmery card stock with either a blue or textured black backing. Even more delightful, your guests will be charmed to open the cards and discover they are adorned with eight tiny crystals. Lovely!

If you are looking for something more casual and cute check out the "Cute Flowers Save the Date" cards by PolkaDotsandPaisley. These cards are bright and cheerful with lovely colorful flowers and a modern design. You can also order samples to determine your favorite look before committing to an entire run of cards.

The shops have many more styles to choose from. So be sure to visit and browse if you're looking for something other than what is pictured.

Stay tuned for features on additional paper items (invitations and more), accessories, gifts and other wedding items.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Treasury Feature: I Do Handmade (Weddings)

The Etsy Wedding Team was in a treasury today. Much thanks to Capitolagirl for putting together a gorgeous collection of items from Etsy Wedding Team Members. Here's hoping this treasury lands on the front page!

For anyone wishing to find more lovely items from the Etsy Wedding team, simply click the team member links to the left of search for the tag "ewt" on Etsy.

Tips from the Team: How to Register Everywhere you Want!

The Etsy Wedding Team is full of fabulous ideas to help you plan your perfect wedding and we will be providing you with an on-going blog feature called "Tips from the Team". The team itself has a wealth of personal experience in weddings, from planning their own, helping with others, or working in the wedding business. Between all the members, we've amassed a wealth of helpful little tidbits and ideas that we'd like to share with you to make your planning a little easier.

To kick off the tips, I'm going to offer one from myself personally. We all know weddings aren't all about the gifts (but they certainly are a fun part of it!). However, putting together the perfect registry to reflect you and your spouse can sometimes be a time-consuming and difficult process. For those who treasure handmade and unique items, it can be particularly daunting, as few individual stores have registries for one of a kind or handmade items. Fear not though---you can make your registry personal and ask for **exactly** what you'd like.

On MyRegistry.Com you can add items to your registry from any store in the world. That even includes handmade shopping sites such as Etsy (hint!hint!) or charities through charity gift certificates. The possibilities are endless, and the site is perfect for the traditional or completely non-traditional couple. Visit the MyRegistry.Com Tutorial to find out how to add a gift, or browse the site to find out all the other great features such as gift tracking that are available. Best of all you can do it all without ever leaving your home or office. That's one of the best features for busy brides and grooms.