It's MONDAY! Which means its time for our brand new Monday Giveaway. Each and Every Monday Stop by to enter to win something fabulous from members of The {NewNew} York Etsy team. This Monday we are proudly giving away a gadget cozy from bshorr.

This little gadget cozy was made to fit a 30gb ipod or a 8703e blackberry but can also fit similarly shaped devices. it's approximately 7" tall (flat) by 3.5" wide - the top 2 inches are cinched a bit to ensure your gadget won't slip out! there's also a loop so it can comfortably be worn around your wrist. This particular cozy is a wool/acrylic blend in a multi-colored blue.

Bshorr loves to knit & crochet and is always in the middle of crafting something. She finds inspiration every time she steps out onto the new york city streets! She spend her days working for a tv show and her nights making things for her shop. All of her wearables are made with high quality yarn that will feel good on you!

How to Enter:

1. To enter to win, tell the world why you want this gadget cozy.
Post about your love of this product and your love of Bshorr on Myspace, Facebook, livejournal, wordpress, blogger, or your own personal blog or website.

2. Post a LINK back to your personal post right here in the comments section.

3. Entries can be submitted through 10pm Saturday, November 8, 2008.

4. Winners will be selected randomly and will be announced the following Monday with the New contest item.

5. To see the full legal contest rules click here.

Last weeks winner:

The winner of last weeks earrings from Salt and Paper goes to mollyshoelace.

Congrats to the winner and I hope you all enter this week!
Can't wait to see your posts! And stay tuned for next week's giveaway.

~jen pepper

Gift Ideas for the Urban Runner

Today there are about 39,000 runners who will be participating today in the NYC Marathon, one of the world's largest marathons. There's nothing quite like running through the streets of this wonderful city. You experience the vibrancy of each neighborhood, the local flavors, the sights and sounds.

For those looking for some great gift ideas, here are a few charming city-centric gifts that would be perfect for the urban runner:

Want more ideas? Just click on the categories under Our Shops On or download our catalog (right column). You'll find lots of hand crafted goodness for all your running champs!

Creativity on Parade in NYC at a Halloween Tradition

Creativity on Parade in NYC at a Halloween Tradition
By Lorina/

I LOVE the Village NYC Halloween Parade! I'm not talking all the usual suspects, like Batman, and other caped no! I'm talking about all the really clever, and creative costumes that you just cannot pay for, because, well, they just don't sell them!!!

This year was particularly interesting, in it's 35th year, not just because the very comfortable weather wooed more than it's fair share of revelers, but also because
it's an election year, and that means really funny political statements come out for a walk up 6th Ave. This being NYC and very democratic, anyone dressed as a republican candidate would have a twist. Take this one: Bush in a toilet "necklace".

There was also a reminder to vote, as in this "virtual voting booth" costume.

Several also dressed as Sarah Palin, yelling "Don't vote for me!"

Then there were the recycled variety. These always get my attention. Everything from Ketchup packets to Metrocards, no refuse to be....refused!

Hope to see you next year at the Village Halloween Parade!

October Team Wrap up

October was a very busy one for The {NewNew}!
We set
up a web presence to better organize who we are and our events. Look for this to be fuller developed over the next month - integrating our upcoming events and driving to traffic to our Handmade Cavalcade. Our Team Catalog was printed and shipped [Yippee!!!] and some of us met in person to give it some hand made finishing touches as we stuffed envelopes and shipped it out.

Our monthly theme was Indie fashion with a splash of Halloween How-To at the end from Luckx4, KarensMonsters and KimmChi. Other posts included product purple features from ThirdFloor, jewelry trends from CajaJewelry, beauty rituals from NordeaSoaperie, and mensweare features from Ikyoto. And how-tos from cakehouse, MShoelace, and BlueStitchBooks.

Our Monday contests continued with earrings given away by SaltAndPaper, soap given away by DirtyLovesClean, a necklace given away by PulpSushi, and a monster given away by KarensMonsters.

Crafting for Charity:
The team was finally able to put our craftiness to good use this month while volunteering to make Sock Monkeys with FreshArtNYC and Etsy Labs. It took about five hours of dedicated crafting to produce one little monkey - with each monkey going to FreshArt to be sold to fund their special needs arts programs throughout NYC. If you are interested, every other Monday they host sock monkey making in SOHO and they also accept donations of gently used art supplies - check out their website for more info -

Live and in Person:
We rocked the Antic with several members pairing up and lining Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. PHOTOS

And we continue our rotation at the Brooklyn Flea - with some group participation at the Brooklyn Indie Market in the coming month.

October 8, 2008: Our Monday Giveaway is picked up by Craft Gossip

November we go full steam ahead!

On Nov 13 we explore a new sales medium - Virtual Trunk show! Login To Etsy at 7pm EST for deep discounts and chats with participating artists in the Virtual Labs NewNew Trunk Show Room.

On Nov 16 we partner with the local emerging designer market - Brooklyn Indie Market - to have a NewNew day at this Carrol Gardens staple.

More info in the coming weeks, but be sure to mark your calendars!


Black Widow Bling**

I like Halloween, but I've never been an over-the-top Halloween person. I prefer my costumes subtle and chic. In one short crafty afternoon, you too can sport this slightly creepy, but oh-so-cute sparkly spider & web for Halloween this year!

You will need:
• Spider pattern (download here!)
• Scraps of black fabric (the spider is small, so I say the sparklier the better)
• Big scraps of netting or lace
• 2 beads or sequins (Or embroidery thread if you are feeling ambitious!)
• flat-head bobby pin
• small amount of cotton/stuffing
• needle & thread
• hot glue gun (or other strong craft glue).

Cut out two spider bodies from your black fabric. Pin the spider bodies with right sides together. Stitch the two bodies together, leaving an opening about an inch long.
Turn the Spider body right side out and stuff.

Slip stitch the opening closed.

The spider legs are formed by folding a black pipe cleaner. Bend one pipe cleaner approximately 5/8” from one end and fold it back on itself. Twist this double-length slightly together.
Bend the pipe cleaner again at the base of the first leg and approximately 1 “ from the base. Twist this double length again. Repeat for the remaining two legs, but make these slightly longer.
You should have 3 or 4 inch inches of pipe cleaner left once you have folded 4 legs. Fold and gently twist this extra back around the base of the legs. This will help to stabilize the legs. You will also use this pipe cleaner “platform” to sew the legs to the body. Now shape the legs into a gentle curve.

Repeat this process with a second pipe cleaner to make a second set of 4 legs.

Stitch the two leg sets to the back/belly of the spider, just behind the head.

Cut two circles of netting or lace. One should be about 6" in diameter and the other should be 8"-10". Sew a smallish (1"-2") circle of loose running stitches in the center of each.
Draw the running stitches together to gather the circles into a ruffle. (I did each circle separately when I made my spider. If I were to make this again then I would sew/gather them simultaneously...a little less work!)

Flip the spider over and sew the gathered circles to his belly, over the legs. Sew several tight stitches to secure your thread, but don't cut it just yet.

Center the bobby pin over the gathers/spider belly and tack it down with a few stitches. This is just to hold it temporarily so that you can keep your fingers clear when you are gluing. I put the open end of the bobby pin towards the back of the spider because I wanted it to look like he was crawling down toward my face. Reverse this if you want him crawling up into your hair.
Sew small beads to the spider's face for eyes. You could also use sequins here—or go nuts and embroider a cool face!

Secure the bobby pin to the spider and her web with glue.

Happy Haunting!

**The geek in me feels the need to point out that she's not really a black widow unless you embroider that tell-tale fiddle shape on her back.

Coaster How-To

Halloween Coasters from the {NewNew} York Street Team

Basic Supplies:
-Sheets of felt
(mainly black + a contrasting color)
-Scissors or craft/exacto knife
-Embroidery floss in a bright color + needle

I like my craft projects quick and scalable! This Halloween themed coaster project is something you can keep very simple with the shapes provided and be done with some basic coasters within an hour, or you can really make them more durable by adding cork backs or even leather if you've got it, embellishing them with some embroidery via machine or hand, or even size them up to make placemats - it’s up to you!

The first thing I did was call out to members of The {NewNew} York Street Team to supply me with some scary silhouettes to work with. 6 Artists answered my call, supplying silhouetted artwork for a pumpkin (from CollectiveElements), ghost (from MayLuk), bat (from ME/KimmChi), bunny (yes, i said bunny) and skull (from Luckx4), and witch (by AlleneLaSpina).

All of this artwork, sized for coasters, can be downloaded HERE.

Choose the designs you want, or even make a set of all of one design.

Step 1:
Choose and print the designs you want. Use these as templates to cut the felt out. The size of the design files should be suitable for basic coasters if printed at 100%; for glasses with extra large bases you might want to scale these up a bit.

Step 2:
After you print out the templates, cut them out and pin them on to the color of felt you would like for your coasters. (I chose black for starters, but will cut them further and back them with a bright contrasting color in step 4).

Step 3:
After you have your desired number of designs cut out, use your exacto knife or scissors to add in details and design to the simple silhouette - making sure your accents are large enough to show through the cuts.

Step 4:
Use the templates you cut out in Step 2 to cut out more felt using nice bright colors which will be eye catching in contrast to the spooky black silhouettes. Pin these to the black silhouettes of the same design.
Step 5:
Using either hand embroidery or a machine, you can sew along the edges of the coasters in a nice bright contrasting thread - attaching the bottom layer as you go. For a great video tutorial on how to do the blanket stitch (the one around the bunny and witch CLICK HERE). You may have to press the whole thing with a hot iron when your done. And then you’ll have some spooky coasters to rest your spooky beverages on.

If you want to make these coasters more durable, you can use these templates and a craft knife to cut the silhouettes from a roll of thin cork or even scrap leather. Back them up to the felt parts and use a good glue- gorilla glue or E600, press them together and let them sit overnight under a pile of heavy books. When they are dry, trim up any excess.

Thanks to CollectiveElements, MayLuk, KimmChi, Luckx4, and AlleneLaSpina for submitting designs!

And thanks to those that came out to the Etsy Labs for the craft night I hosted with this project on October 20 - that's you RedBridge and ThePeachTree - THANKS!

Download this whole tutorial in PDF format


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How To Make Wings for your Halloween Costume

You can use these to make wings of all different shapes, sizes to suit your needs. I’m purposely making strangely small oddly shaped monster wings.

What you’ll need:
Wire hangers
Panty hose (any color)
Decorations: Fur, feathers, sequins, whatever you have
Felt, fur, or other thick fabric
Sewing machine (optional)

Start with your two wire hangers. Shape them into a wing each. If you want bigger wings, try shaping your own from larger pieces of wire. If you’re using hangers, straighten the hook on each and wind them together.

Take a pair of panty hose, the color may determine what kind of wings these are, I’m using black. Don’t be shy to paint or dye the panty hose to get the desired effect.

Cut off the legs and stretch a leg over each wing. Pull the opening towards the center where the wings will connect together (at the hook part of the hanger).

Measure two strips of elastic of the same length around your arms and to the middle of your chest, comfortable, but with some tension.

Take two pieces of felt or fur (I’m using 4” x 4”) and glue or sew the two pieces together with the pantyhose, ends of the elastic loops and hook part of the hanger tucked inside. If you’re using a sewing machine like me, don’t try to sew over the wire hangers. Make sure that you sew over the pantyhose and elastic though, so they stay firmly in. Even if you’re gluing the two pieces, I recommend putting a few stitches in over the elastic bands the pantyhose, even by hand, for added security.

Now time to decorate! Glue, sew, paint your wings to your heart’s desire!

Try your new wings with a fairy dress, or a white gown and halo, or with butterfly antennae. If you’re like me, maybe you have some other purpose for wings. I can’t wait to finish my monster costume to try on with my new wings.

Karen's Monsters

What are YOU doing for Halloween?

Oh so much to do in the city for Halloween! Here are some ideas if you are trying to scramble to get a Halloween costume together and hit the town.

Tonight at Etsy labs - is an Open craft night - the perfect opportunity to drop by and put the final seems on your costume. They will also have pumpkincarving tools on hand for those of you who happen to pick up an orangy goard on your way over - 325 Gold Street, Brooklyn (4-8pm)

On THURSDAY - October 30 - Threadbanger is hosting a Halloween Costume Bash at The Mercury Lounge at 8pm - complete with Janome giveway, organic treats and DIY giveaways. You can RSVP by emailing to get on the guest list by tomorrow!

If you can't make it to that and still want to strut your stuff you can go to the annual Halloween Parade on FRIDAY October 31 - down Sixth Avenue - starting at 7pm.

The Park Slope Halloween Parade is from 6.30 to 8 down 7th Avenue.

If parades are not your thing - you can train it up to St. John the Divine on 112 street for their Halloween Extravaganza which will include projection of the Phantom of the Opera with organ accompaniment with a procession of ghouls afterward which includes the spooky puppets of Ralph Lee - shows at 7 and 10 - tickets are $15.

Know of any other Halloween parades going on in your local neighborhoods?

[NewNew Halloween themed merch here]


Monday Giveaway - Cutest Earrings ever!

It's MONDAY! Which means its time for our brand new Monday Giveaway. Each and Every Monday Stop by to enter to win something fabulous from members of The {NewNew} York Etsy team. This Monday we are proudly giving away a pair of Mosaic Dot Earings, from our very own Salt and Paper.

These earrings are part of her new dot mosaic collection. Little circles in tan and cream gather round a bright fuschia center tile on a base of coffee brown. They are made of expertly cured and finished polymer clay which makes them lightweight and easy to wear. simple and really stunning! Lovingly sanded and polished to a satiny, weathered finish with chunky beveled edges. hanging from hand-formed brass earwires.These are real mosaics! the tiles are individually cut and cured, assembled into a design, grouted, sanded and polished.

The disks measure approx 5/8" in diameter (1.5cm) and 1/8" thick (.3cm) and earrings measure approx 1 1/8" (3cm) from top of earwire to bottom of disk.

Natalie Wedeking is the Brooklyn-based designer/craftsperson behind Salt & Paper. She is inspired by mostly non-jewelry things: good package design, poster art, old marimekko patterns, William Morris wallpapers, scandinavian folk art, prefab housing, old book covers, vintage signage - pretty much anything made before 1975. In real life she is a graphic/package designer and the things she loves in graphic design - flat color, patterning, unusual color combinations - show up in her jewelry work. Natalie particularly likes to work in polymer clay, which gives her an opportunity to make completely unique jewelry elements from scratch. The medium lends itself to abstract florals and flat, graphic patterns like woodgrain. She layers it almost like paint, often very precisely and geometrically, but in flattening and finishing a piece, the nature of the clay takes over and the end results are unpredictable and very interesting.

How to Enter:

1. To enter to win, tell the world why you want these lovely earrings.
Post about your love of this product and your love of Salt and Paper on Myspace, Facebook, livejournal, wordpress, blogger, or your own personal blog or website.

2. Post a LINK back to your personal post right here in the comments section.

3. Entries can be submitted through 10pm Saturday, November 1, 2008.

4. Winners will be selected randomly and will be announced the following Monday with the New contest item.

5. To see the full legal contest rules click here.

Last weeks winner:

The winner of last weeks monster from Karen's Monsters goes to turtle.

Congrats to the winner and I hope you all enter this week!
Can't wait to see your posts! And stay tuned for next week's giveaway.

~jen pepper

Purple Rain at the {NewNew}

One of the hot new colors this year is purple. Whether it is shades of eggplant, aubergine, amethyst, lilac or grape, purple is popping up everywhere, including on The {NewNew} team. Of course, this great color is showing up in the Indie fashion front.

You can wear it with these shirts from team members
and east4thstreet.

Or carry your life in this eggplant bag by LaPistolera.
You can adorn yourself in fabulous jewelry like these earrings from Jantar and pulpsushi.
Or maybe this glamorous necklace from AdornmentsNYC.

For some fun purple, try this ring from Metalsugar.

Fashion is not the only place where we are seeing shades of purple.
Check out this fab lamp from YoursTrulyxxx.

Add these soy candles from Dewonapetal.

Who wouldn't want this bird from
littleloveblue decorating any part of their home?

Your skin will be happy to have these lovely
olive oil and cocoa butter soaps from ayelet17.

Purple is hitting the paper world, too.
Collect treasures, thoughts or creative ideas
in one of these great little scrapbooks from
Waisze or CollectiveElements.

Who wouldn't love to receive
one of these beautiful cards from
elbeescreations or fubabee.

And don't forget the kids with a
purple toy from KarensMonsters.
Patricia is my favorite!

Whatever your shade, let the purple rain fall!


Jewelry Trends for Fall/Winter 08/09

As the temperature drops and leaves fall, we start putting on more layers and find ourselves reaching for darker hues. After all us New Yorkers love black! I want to tell you how you can spice up your winter garb with some great jewelry from The {NewNew} Street Team following the hottest trends right now in jewelry for the Fall/Winter 08/09 season.

The first thing that is huge now is layering chain necklaces. This is great because we all have at least a chain necklace to start with. To create the desired effect you need to layer with different lengths. Your base would be this Amazing one of a kind piece by Sarah Kathleen Warner This 36" length chain is sterling silver with cast bones and hand carved wings out of acrylic.

A great addition to the multiple chain look is this piece by Brooklyn Things. This necklace is gold fill with turquoise, moonstone and fresh water pearls. This piece would totally add dimension, color and texture to your look.

Your last necklace to complete this look could be one of these hand pierced sterling silver necklaces by Caja Jewelry. Depending on how bold you are you can loudly exclaim for all to see you have some lust or maybe you want to show a more sensitive side with the oak tree necklace.
Bold pieces are all over the place for Fall-Winter 08/09. How better to show off this trend than on your fingers. This sterling silver ring by Metal Sugar is a double ring, you can ever have it customized to show everyone how bad ass you are.

So maybe you want bold but not in such a tough girl way. Well These rings from J Davis Studio will fit the bill nicely. Instead of saying hey I am a bad ass maybe you just want to say HI!

The house ring is such a eye catcher. On the hand it is so awsome!

To continue with the trend of bold pieces we move to your ears. These gold fill earrings from Lingua Nigra are very dramatic and elegant. They are 3" long and absolutely stunning.

Or if you are looking for something more fun and colorful try these yellow acrylic earrings by Pulp Sushi. I love the skulls they look like they are smiling but it might be the color yellow just makes me smile. They are also right on the next trend I am going to talk about COLOR!!

Color is important this season. With all the dark colors we inevitably find our selves wearing color is the perfect accessory for this season.

The earrings by Jantar are of red coral they are so cute they kinda look like Chiclets which I love!

These earrings by knit knit are just so adorable. They are hand felted, dyed and embroidered. They are perfect for this cold weather that is upon us.

This bracelet really embodies this trend I have been talking about. The green jewel tone color is right on. The piece is really a statement piece that will make you feel really powerful! This bracelet is by Adorments NYC and is made of vintage and new glass beads and spikes.

The last tend is wood. With everyone being so Eco conscious now we are seeing it spill into fashion through designs and patterns so it is only logical to see it in accessories.

This "wood" ring is by Salt and Pepper. It is made of polymer clay and completely fooled me! It looks like real wood with silver inlay, it is just so cool!

These wooden hoop earrings by Joanne Tracey Designs are the perfect large neutral piece you need to spice up your winter wardrobe!

These are just a few samplings of right on trend jewelry accessories for this season from The {NewNew} Street Team. I hope this helps for you to look fabulous this season!


Where to Find The {NewNew} on October 25 + 26

This weekend is really a doozie for Indie Artists and Crafters around town with specail themed shopping days down in Brooklyn and free crafting workshops at the Etsy labs as well as the Flea, let's start with Saturday Oct 25

From 10am to 3pm, Etsy Labs is sponsoring a FREE - that's right, I said FREE - Sock Monkey making workshop. All Monkeys made will be donated to to be sold to fund their programs for special needs artists. You can RSVP for this FREE event by emailing RSVP@ETSY.COM. And you can meet some of your local neighborhood street team their crafting it for charity.

And also on Saturday - you can find CollectiveElements and ShutterKate at the Handmade Faire in Medford New Jersey from
10 am to 4pm looks to be great fun - with door prizes for shoppers and goodie bags and oh yeah 100 vendors! Sounds great!

Also on Saturday - from 11am to 7pm the Brooklyn Indie Market has dubbed it - Steam Punk day! Plan to be there for their 2pm fashion show - with a steampunk reading - victorian inspired refreshments (!) and victorian photo sitting. Get that corset out of the closet and slip into that petty coat and come on down.

If you don't already know - the Brooklyn Indie Market is a NYC emerging designer market each Saturday and Sunday at Smith at Union - under a nice bright white and red striped tent. I can't promise a corset - but I'll definitely be there on Saturday.

Well if that isn't enough to make, do, watch an buy there' still Sunday!!

This Sunday at our spot at the Brooklyn Flea - we'll have handmade jewelry from Yaniamor, handmade soap from NordeaSoaperie, monsters and plush toys, tees and buttons from KarensMonsters, sterling silver custom nameplate jewelry from CajaJewelry (*new seller with us!), handmade jewelry using vintage findings from AdornmentsNYC and handmade jewelry using colorful glass and brass from Jantar.


BUST Holiday Craftacular - Application is up!

That's right - they've announced it!

This year the 2008 BUST Holiday Craftacular will be on Saturday December 13 from 10am to 8pm at the Penn Plaza Pavillion at 401 Seventh Avenue, between 32nd and 33rd Streets. [1, 2, or 3 subway to 34th Street Penn Station, or N, R, Q, or W to Herald Square].

Vendor application deadline is November 7 and 200 vendors will be chosen - so get your shop in order, get your display out of the closet and go apply!

And the other super best thing about it? It's not the same weekend of the Handmade Cavalcade - so you can do both!


watch band refashion

i love the classic, simple face of my trusty timex watch...


but i don't love the janky band, especially since it broke and i had to press a hair elastic into service to hold down the end:


clearly, it was time for an upgrade. i decided to go for a cuff style.

first i removed the band, leaving the crossbars.


then i found a fabric that i liked and cut it up. i made the length the circumference of my wrist plus an inch and a half for seam allowance and overlap for fastening, and made the width as wide as i thought looked good.


i then cut the same size in another fabric--because i had chosen corduroy for the front, i used a thin fabric for the back so that the end product wouldn't be too bulky.


i placed the two fabrics right-side-together, pinned them, and sewed up on both long sides and one short side.


i snippped the corners...


...and then turned it inside out, using a letter opener to poke the corners into shape (anything semi-pointy will do---a small crochet hook, a pencil...). then i turned the ends of the open side in and sewed them up. next came a fastener. i had some snaps in my sewing cabinet, so i went with that:


but you could go with lots of other options: a button, hook and eye, velcro, whatever.

then i sewed the watch on to the band. i realized as i was doing this--and having to be really careful to only go through the top layer of fabric so that my stitches didn't show on the back--that i should have sewn the watch on the the top fabric before i sewed the two pieces of fabric together. so, learn from my mistake! i just sewed around the crossbars, at the corners, using thin thread that matched my fabric:


but you could use embroidery thread or yarn, in the same color as your fabric or a complimentary one, and make the stitching more of a decorative element.

and, voila!


stylish and comfy.

- cakehouse

Our Spooky Monday Giveaway!

It's MONDAY! Which means its time for our brand new Monday Giveaway. Each and Every Monday Stop by to enter to win something fabulous from members of The {NewNew} York Etsy team. This Monday we are proudly giving away a Eyra, an adorable Halloween monster from Karen's Monsters

Eyra is a Jack-o-Rabbit, part Bunny Monster, part Halloween jack-o-lantern. He is especially fond of this time of year and likes to rake up big piles of leaves to jump in, or preferably to jump in a big pile of leaves that someone else raked up. He can't wait to go trick or treating and hopes to find a new friend that will take him. Made from fleece and polyseter and stuffed with fiberfill. He is almost 13 inches tall.

Karen Goetsch is a Brooklyn-based designer of monster plush toys for children and big kids. She began Karen's Monsters in order to offer toys full of creativity and sparks of imagination. Each monster is handmade, unique and kid safe. The monsters are excited about traveling to far off locations, like Indiana or Antarctica.

How to Enter:

1. To enter to win, tell the world why you want this crazy monster!
Post about your love of this monster and your love of Karen's Monsters on Myspace, Facebook, livejournal, wordpress, blogger, or your own personal blog or website.

2. Post a LINK back to your personal post right here in the comments section.

3. Entries can be submitted through 10pm Saturday, October 25, 2008.

4. Winners will be selected randomly and will be announced the following Monday with the New contest item.

5. To see the full legal contest rules click here.

Last weeks winner:

The winner of the last weeks soap from dirty loves clean goes to waisze ... from waiszedesigns.
Congrats to the winner and I hope you all enter this week!
Can't wait to see your posts! And stay tuned for next week's giveaway.

~jen pepper

Sock Monkey Workshop at Etsy

Join us for an afternoon of creating original sock monkeys for Fresh Art's sock monkey program. Fresh Art is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization dedicated to providing expanded artistic, personal development, and entrepreneurial opportunities to New York City artists with special needs. The sock monkeys we create this afternoon will be sold to raise funds to support fresh art's programs. All skill levels are welcome, though basic hand sewing skills are helpful.

Saturday, October 25, 2008; 10am-3pm
325 Gold St, 3rd floor, Brooklyn, NY 11222
Ages 12 & up are welcome.
Please RSVP at for this free workshop.

Hosted by Fresh Art, the NewNew York Team , and Etsy Labs.

How to Make a Tote Bag

If you're like me, you have TONS of clothes sitting on your shelves that you don't use. I am always going to thrift stores and buying random crap. I often buy things for their bold colors or vintage patterns even if they don't fit properly. I tell myself I will alter it and wear it to death...but this rarely happens. In any case, one simple thing you can do with an article of clothing you love but never wear, is turn it into a tote bag.

I especially like to turn skirts into totes. I find that because skirts already have a nice finished waistline, that when upcycled into a bag, it gives the illusion of excellent craftsmanship. But the work required is minimal. Here are the steps.

1. First, find your favorite skirt that you NEVER wear. I literally have had this skirt over 5 years and have NEVER worn it.

2. You'll also need something for the straps. You can easily use the scraps from the skirt, a necktie, or a fabric belt. I opted for the fabric belt. I had one lying around that never fit me anyway.

3. Once you have selected your items, turn the skirt inside out, and just fold back the sides until you find a size and dimension you find pleasing.

4. Then simply take a sharpie (or any marker) and draw a line right on the fabric along your folds. Remember this is not an exact science. I just eyeball my measurements. I hate measuring! (You're not going to see the marker anyway, since it's inside out.)

5. Take scissors and cut right along your line. If your line isn't straight, don't worry. Just try to cut as straight as possible. You should now have 2 squares of fabric (3 cut sides and 1 finished waistline which will be the top of your bag). Now you are ready to sew!

6. Just sew up the 3 cut sides. Make sure the inside of the fabric is facing out. I use a sewing machine because it is so quick and the stitches are even and tight. But you can certainly handsew it.

7. Now for the straps...Loosely measure the length you want your straps. Cut them to size. And decide how you want to secure them to your bag. I personally like when my details are revealed. Sort of a craftsman approach. I prefer to see the stitching because it gives it more character. Turn your bag right-side out. And sew the straps to the bag.

8. You now have a super cute totebag and I guarantee no one else will have it!! And now you can feel good that you are finally using that skirt!

Where to Find The {NewNew} on Oct 18 + 19

Drop by the Brooklyn Indie Market this Saturday and Sunday for decoupaged jewelry by WabisabiBrooklyn and skirts from our very own skirt fairy Fofolle.

Also on SATURDAY see KarenMonsters 9.30am to 4.30pm at 33-01 Greenpoint Ave In Long Island City at Kholer-Kon IV a fundraiser for a boy scout troupe in Queens.

SUNDAY - Drop by our booth at the Brooklyn Flea for jewelry and housewares inspired by the site of New york by CityBitz, hand embellished greeting cards and custom invitations by Fubabee, handmade jewelry by Jantar, silkscreened bags, dresses shirt and skirts by BetterThanJam, silkscreened bags and tees by RedBridge and handmade soaps by NordeaSoaperie.
G to Clinton/Washington. More directions here.