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Interview with Little Lily

This week we take a close up look at Little Lilly with our talk with owner and artist Jade. 

Tell us a bit about you.
My name is Jade and I live in Northern BC, Canada. I’m 27 years old and have been married to Daniel for 7.5 years. On January 15th of this year, I gave birth to our fourth beautiful daughter, Danica. Our other three are Addison (5.5), Tegan (4), and Myka (18months). I can honestly say that being a mom is my favorite thing in the whole world. Every day I am in awe that God has blessed me with such an amazing family! I recently had a friend joke that when she reads my Facebook status’, she pictures me in a bonnet and apron. I assume it’s because they are all about baking, sewing, gardening, and collecting eggs from my chickens. Unfortunately, I don’t own a bonnet; although I did just buy a really cool apron from etsy! That’s another thing I enjoy…shopping on etsy. There’s so many amazing products out there from really talented people!

Tell us about Little Lily.
I started Little Lily in May of 2009. A friend told me one day how hard it was for her to find good quality baby washcloths. I was planning on making some cloth wipes to use on the baby I was expecting at the time anyway, so when she said that, it was like a light bulb went off in my head! I knew I wanted, soft, good quality, thick wipes, and knew from research that bamboo fabric had these qualities. I ordered a yard and went to work. When I sent her some, she tried them and said, “you should start an etsy business with these!”

Our second daughter’s name is Tegan Lily, and I have called her Little Lily since the day she was born. So when it came time to name the business, it was a no-brainer 🙂

A few weeks into selling the wipes, people were asking if I made other things. I experimented with a few products, but found that I didn’t have time to make tons of different products, so I have kept my favorite three as regular items; bamboo baby wipes, hooded bamboo baby (and toddler) towels, and swaddling blankets! I also make bamboo baby wraps as special orders.

What do you make and how long have you been creating?
I make organic bamboo baby wipes, hooded towels and swaddling blankets. Occasionally I add a new product as a feature, but for my regular stock, I like to keep it simple 🙂 I started sewing them a year and a half ago, when I was pregnant with our third daughter.

Where do you find inspiration?
My girls 🙂 And I look at fabric online more than is probably a “healthy amount” 🙂

What got you started in your craft?
I was talking to a friend one day and she mentioned how she was frustrated with her baby washcloths because they wore out so quickly, and were flimsy and rough. I had heard about how soft bamboo was, so I did some research, ordered a yard of it, and the rest is history!

What’s your favorite thing you have ever made?
The hooded towels. I actually made a hooded towel “poncho” once, and I use it all the time for my toddler when we go swimming. I’ve thought about adding them to my regular line…maybe soon!

How long have you been on Etsy and how has it been for you so far?
I’ve been on etsy for almost a year and a half…about a month after I started making the products! I LOVE etsy and can’t say enough good things about it. I enjoy pretty much everything about etsy and having my own business!

What advice do you have for other Etsy artisans?
Think about products and businesses you love; think about their appearance, products, customer service, etc. Now implement your favorite qualities into your business. Treat each customer like royalty, and set up your shop to look professional as if it was a million dollar a year, professional company. On that note, branding should be a huge priority. I bought my panda avatar from for $20, and it is the best investment I’ve made into my business. It’s on my sew on labels, business cards, and pretty much everything I do on the internet! I’m even going to get a vinyl window decal made for my van using my panda!

What do you hope to gain or contribute to the Natural Kids group?
I love building new relationships, especially with people who share the same interests as me. I am hoping to gain ideas to improve my shop/business, and to encourage others to do the same 🙂

What thoughts do you have for parents on the importance of natural toys for creative play?
I believe that things such as electronic toys, TVs, and video games are completely changing the way kids develop, and not necessarily in a good way. I think it’s very very important for kids to play with simple toys, made of safe, natural materials to develop their creativity. I don’t think it’s healthy for kids to learn to rely on being stimulated by outside sources all the time. Learning to “center” themselves and be able to come up with their own ideas, etc is crucial.

Find Little Lily and Jade at:

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by Jen of SewnNatural

What are the sources of our inspiration? Where do we, as artists, mothers, fathers, teachers, chefs and community members, find fuel to light the sparks of creativity within us?

image above via Flickr

For one NaturalKids member, Farida (you can visit her magical shop, Alkelda, here) stories and storytelling are closely woven into her artistry, and her life. “I create figures for people to use in nature table displays and in storytelling for folk tales, fairy tales, saints’ legends, therapy… wherever the imagination leads.”

We are thrilled to announce that starting very soon, Farida (of Alkelda) will be regularly posting interesting and delightful book suggestions on this blog. Our new blog bookshelf will be a fresh new feature for our minds, hearts, and imaginations.

image via Flickr

This week, Farida curated an Etsy Treasury based on the inspiration she found in a wonderful story called Sand Flat Shadows – you can read it here. Here is the collection of handmade pieces she put together, a collection you can also see here for the next few days:

Here is one of the lovely dolls in Alkelda’s shop, the Blue Blossom princess, ready for gentle play on your nature table or woven into your stories!

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Stoking the Creative Fires

Wanted to share a little bit on how I keep making stuff fun!
I happened upon a radio program the other day the other day where a Native Canadian was speaking about what winter means to her and her people. The snow blankets the land to put it into a deep sleep to help it rejuvenate for the next year. Her people spend long days in close quarters with one another, telling stories, preparing food, cleaning, and resting. Sounds like a plan.
I plan on using a typically slow time and cold weather to it’s full advantage. This past winter season was the first for me to participate in craft shows and having no idea what to expect I pushed my little production line (me) on full tilt. I didn’t have any time to explore other ideas that would pop up while I was busy sewing 20 little hats, 40 legs, 34 totes… I have always been a painter and since babies, painting has not come easy for me but thankfully, I have always been in the practice of keeping up a sketch book to make sure I jot or draw these ideas to pull from when the timing is right. (So many people tell me they can’t draw so they don’t keep a sketch book but remember, your sketch book is for you, as long as you can tell what it is, great 🙂
Tidy up
Before I can get down to starting new projects I always need to totally pull apart and organize my work space. Depending on how much space you have, this can take awhile but oh how satisfying to see all that fabric neatly folded up and organized into wonderful colourful piles. It’s also nice to know where that vintage polka dot yellow ribbon has been hiding out. My brain appreciates a clean slate and work surface so I can take stock on what I may need for the next project.
Do you have something on your mind that you’ve been dying to work on? Do you keep a sketch book or journal with different ideas? Not to stress if you don’t, there are so many places to look for inspiration. (I’d also highly recommend getting that sketch book/journal if you don’t have one already 🙂

Surf the web with no agenda, follow those links from your favorite blog, get lost on flickr… I usually like to give myself a time limet as it can be overwhelming sometimes. Keeping track and bookmarking my web inspiration is also made easy with There are also lots of leads to follow there as well.
Get out and go shopping but leave the money and any expectations of buying anything at home. Do bring a camera to capture anything that may inspire. It’s fun to see what is out there and I can find inspiration in a variety of stores from ceramic tile shops to high end furniture boutiques.
Maybe your over thinking it, you could try renting a movie from your childhood that holds special meaning. My brothers, sisiters and I watched “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” when we were kids close to a million times and every once in awhile I love to watch it and lose myself in the costumes, the songs, that crazy log dance! There are so many small details in movies or books or poetry that could start an avalanche of ideas.
Hit the library. We have a fantastic resource library in Toronto and I love flipping thru microfilms of old magazines. Not to mention all those art books with the wonderful full colour pictures. (renaissance lives!)
Get to it
Once your revved and ready to go, most importantly, don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Just because you spent 4 hours on making a sleeve for an outfit and it looks awful is not a cause to be hard on yourself. Everything is a learning process and that’s what makes it so fun. (it’s fun remember!)
Come spring I know I’ll be needing to devote more time to my business. I feel it’s important to remember to fill your creative cup and not forget about tending to it. I make sure to clear a special time every week for a few hours devoted to just that. Let my busy fingers do as they may. Learn to crochet? Potato printing some dish towels? Sure, why not. Usually I have 3 little helpers creating along with me and its challenging to adapt whatever project I’m working on for the munchkins but well worth it when I see there little faces concentrating on towering cotton balls.
Where do you seek inspiration?
How do you keep creating fun and fresh?

May the creative muses always continue to inspire!