Say Hello to My Creative Friends & Treat Yourself to Handmade Loveliness

pencil case

I love having creative people in my life. They remind me that creating is good for the soul, that the art of making is a life-giving endeavor.

As I wrote this post I had to fight the urge to raid my craft closet and string together some chunky wooden necklaces and write five different blog posts and work on outfits for the next sale and learn how to sew.

Creativity begets creativity, doesn’t it?

Several clever and artistic gals in my life have Etsy shops. And because I love them and love their wares, I want to introduce them to you.

Etsy is sea of treasure. And that’s part of the dilemma — it’s a sea. Which means it’s challenging to get your stuff noticed. And that’s where this post comes in.

These creatives are real-life friends with real stuff they lovingly created with their real hands.

In a world of mass-produced everything that feels rather soul-less, I find handmade to be a breath of fresh air, don’t you?

First up: Rachel and her new shop, CottonandCursive.


Here’s a little bit about Rachel’s creative inspiration and her delightful bags.

As a little girl, I developed a love for writing and drawing that has stayed true for all of my years. I carried way too many pens and pencils with me wherever I went, and I still do – you never know what color you might need! The very first pen bag my mama made for me keeps me company while I stitch and inspires me to create new things just like she did (and does) for me!

I piece and quilt each case by machine in a herringbone pattern using high quality machine thread and a trusted YKK #4.5 zipper with extra-long pull (little longer than 1″). The lining fabric is quilted to the outer fabric so that the lining cannot loosen or pucker, allowing free motion of the zipper at all times. The zipper is finished on each end with pull tabs for easy opening and closing.

Y’all, I never knew pencil bags could be such a work of art. They’re also perfect for make-up, jewelry, essential oils, and whatever little odds and ends a gal may need to carry in her purse.

Rachel can do custom orders too. Check our her beautifully crafted bags at her CottonandCursive Etsy shop.

For readers, Rachel is offering FREE shipping through the end of March with the code: RealFreeShipping.


Next up: Sara and her shops {BeingSaraDixon} that can be found on Etsy and at society6.


Sara makes pretty things with acrylics, digital art, and woodblock printing! Yes, blocks that she cuts out of actual wood. I would surely cut off my fingers if I attempted such brave art.

I’m in love with her woodblock animal prints, perfect for a nursery or kids’ room. I feel just like Lucy Pevensie when I look at the “not so cowardly lion” woodblock print because he’s totally Aslan, right?

not so cowardly lion

Here are a few words that describe Sara and the fun she has creating beautiful things:

Create. Be Kind. Hallelujah.

Words and pretty things. Those are things I love. So I create and try to share words that mean something. I genuinely hope that the things in this shop are good for you, because making them was good for my soul.

My personal fave is her “not so forgetful elephant” that can be printed onto a tee if you visit her Society6 shop here.  {Yes please.}

elephant tee

society6 is super cool because you can treat yourself to everything from a throw pillow or a canvas print to a t-shirt, all made from Sara’s original designs.

You can visit Sara’s website to find links to all the things she creates, lovely blog posts included.

For readers, Sara is offering 20% off everything in her Etsy shop with the code: THEREALGAL20. The society6 shop is offering 20% off throw pillows, tote bags, phone cases, shower curtains + duvets through this weekend. 


The third creative I’d like you to meet is: Anna at StichesbyAnnaSteely.

Anna is just 13 years old and she’s been crafting away to stock her Etsy shop with colorful and cozy scarves, baskets, ear warmers, and other goodies.

stitches by anna steely

I got the sweetest e-mail from Anna several weeks ago and she asked if I might consider a bloggy shout-out to get her shop on the map, so to speak. I love that sort of zeal and creativity in a young gal! {Anna is the daughter of one of my college friends that I haven’t actually seen since college. We’ve become reacquainted through the blog and I just love that.}

I’m especially fond of Anna’s hand-knit infinity scarves and her crocheted baskets, perfect for organizing office supplies and prettying up one’s desk.

Anna offers free shipping on all purchases.


And just a reminder of The Real Gals’ Styling Services, my newest creative endeavor to offer up hope and possibility for your wardrobe. In case you missed it this week, you can read all about it here.

RGSS logo

And I’m almost done curating my outfits for the next SALE. Think spring. Also? I’ve got dresses. {throws confetti}

So — when will y’all be ready shop?


Enjoy your weekend, friends, and have fun visiting these shops and taking advantage of the discounts especially for you!

Have any favorite Etsy shops you’d like to share? We’d love to see. Let us know in the comments!


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