Ahoy Mates! Announcing the 2014 Better Than Jam Pop-Up Shop on Governors Island!

Join Etsy New York Artists at the 4th Annual Better Than Jam Summer Pop-Up on Governors Island at the grand opening on May 24th 2014.  

WHAT: Better Than Jam Summer Pop-Up

WHEN: May 24th-September 29th Fridays through Monday             

WHERE: House #16 in Nolan Park on Governors Island

WEBSITE: www.betterthanjamnyc.com/governorsisland

For the 4th year, the Bushwick Brooklyn boutique, Better Than Jam, will be once again hosting a collective of local designers in its summer location on Governors Island.  The Brooklyn shop of all locally handmade products will be taking the ferry ride over, and bringing with it the creations of New York City's most talented designers, artists, and crafters.  From May 24 through September 29, house #16, a yellow Victorian house in Nolan Park, will be filled with the work of talented people who have created some amazing products for the island shop.  And this year, for the first time, the shop will be open 4 days to celebrate the greatly anticipated grand opening of new park land The Trust for Governors Island has been working so hard on.

In coming to Governors Island, Better Than Jam hopes to create context around artisanal processes and inspiration. Better Than Jam’s gift shop will complement and add to the Island’s growing popularity, allowing visitors to take home a tangible memento from their Governors Island visit—a souvenir that was designed and crafted nearby with the island in mind.  With the help of the Etsy New York Street Team, the shop will also host family-friendly demonstrations and workshops on Saturdays, to show and teach visitors some of their skills.  On June 28th Alison Grande of Koto Designs will be teaching embroidered cards and on July 19th Lu Lasson  of Lu Crafts will be demonstrating bookmark making for those interested in learning a new skill.

About Better Than Jam

Established 2010 in Bushwick Brooklyn, a neighborhood rich in history and brimming with an artistic community, Better Than Jam showcases a variety of clothing, jewelry, accessories, and artwork  created by some of NYC’s most talented artists and craftspeople.  It brings to the forefront local accomplished designers that make 100% handmade and high quality items at a fair price.

Learn more on our Events page!

Upcoming Workshop: Blogging Basics with Rekha Krishnamurthi

Join the Etsy New York team on April 29, 2014 at the Etsy Labs in Dumbo, NY (Brooklyn) for a workshop on the basics of blogging hosted by Etsy New York Team Member Rekha Krishnamurthi of DivineNYCo

Blogging Basics
In this workshop, you’ll learn practical steps to build a blog for your business and how to strategically leverage your blog into a key-branding channel.

Discover how to increase readership, subscriptions and engagement with target followers and make blogging the hub of your social media master plan.

Host Rekha Krishnamurthi (ETSY shop:  DivineNYCo) will share with you her tips on how to best leverage your time to create an effective blogging strategy.

Topics that will be covered:
·      Defining a clear goal for your blog
·      How to develop compelling content and a blog editorial calendar
·      Integrating your blog content with social media
·      Blogging and SEO
·      Posting frequency
·      Time management

This workshop is free to all EtsyNY teamies.  All non-members who are interested in attending can purchase tickets ($5) on Eventbrite. Check in will occur at the door, so please have your tickets and ID available. The door will close at 6:30pm.

A Survey, You Say?! Calling All Blog Readers!

Spring is almost in the air. Almost! This week alone we've partied in parts of the World - In New Orleans, Louisiana, we call it "Mardi Gras," in countries like Brazil, it is called "Carnival"- before ushering in the Lenten season for Christians.  We're also celebrating Women's History Month in the United States, and on Saturday, March 8th, International Women's Day that has a theme designated by the United Nations, "Equality for Women is Progress for All."

All of this has to do with today's post in that it is all a sign of change. Change in how women are treated and viewed globally, albeit we have a long road to global equality, and in how we think and behave.  Lent is really a chance to shed old perceptions and habits and move into new enlightenment. Well, if you believe in the idea of enlightenment and the practice of shedding old perceptions and habits.

I am a huge believer in change. Sometimes I don't always like it, but I know that change is the only constant in life.  Half the battle of dealing with change is accepting that there is a part we can not control. Scary! Change rarely brings out the bad, it usually brings out the good.

We at the EtsyNewYork Blog are undergoing a bit of change. We're under new management and we're looking to get feedback to bring about change. Don't worry, we're not going to do anything drastic.  We'd just like to know a bit about our readers, YOU, and what you like, dislike, and would like to see more of in the future.

The survey below has only 10 questions and I promise it won't take you longer than five minutes. There are no prizes for completing the survey, just undying gratitude and the knowledge in the coming weeks, that you had part of the changes you see on the screen.

So please, won't you help our team usher in change?

Thank you!

A Quilt for Elias

My brother has two little boys, and when the first one was born, I knitted a blanket for him. He was born in late March, so I had plenty of time to knit this blanket. I am not the best knitter, so it took quite a while to finish. My second nephew was born in late June...right in the middle of crafty season (the picture above was taken when he was 5 days old...he was awake and ready to meet me!) I was busy making soap, lotions, etc., so knitting a blanket was not possible. Just not enough time to get it done, so I decided to make a quilt. This is not really a tutorial, but more of an inspiration for you to try something new. If I can do it...anyone can!

I have never made a quilt before, but I was determined to make a nice keepsake for my little nephew. I scoured the internet, and found some basic instructions. Traditionally, quilts are made with different squares of fabric pieced together. But, for my first try, I decided to keep things simple. I purchased 4 yards of a colorful fabric and another 1/2 yard for the trim, I also purchased some crib size quilt batting.

First I cut and measured the fabric and batting, then pinned them together (right sides facing each other.) I sewed them together and turned the fabric right side out. I passed a light iron over the whole thing to smooth out any wrinkles.

After I had everything assembled, and sewed up all edges, I used a fabric pencil and marked off 12" sections. I then ran the whole thing under the sewing machine to "create" the quilting. I must admit, the lines were very wonky, but not that noticeable.

Using a bias tape maker, I made a 2" trim for all 4 edges of the blanket. I pinned the trim in place, and sewed three of them in place.

Before sewing on the last piece of trim, I decided to embroider his name on it....just to personalize it a bit more.

Here it is....the finished quilt. I was able to give him the blanket when he was two weeks old. I was so proud of my efforts! Maybe with the next quilt, I will get a bit more fancy, and try to piece different squares together.

Until next time....happy crafting!



Etsy NY Team Crafting Demo at Montague St. Summer Space

If you're looking for a fun activity to do this weekend to celebrate the first day of fall, join me this Sunday, Sept. 22 at Montague Street's Summer Space in Brooklyn Heights from 1pm - 4:30pm for a free crafting demonstration with the Etsy New York team. I'll be showing how to make cute mini books like this one I made as a gift for my boyfriend A. for our one year anniversary. Two years later, it became the inspiration for Porcupine Hug's Why I Love You card.

While you're there be sure to check out the Afro-Brazilian samba reggae performance by an all-women's drumming band, free yoga and Zumba workouts, food and games courtesy of local merchants, and the Brooklyn Heights dog show.

Montague St. Summer Space

September 22, 1pm - 4:30pm

Montague Street between Clinton and Hicks Streets in Brooklyn Heights

See you there!

Dorkys - Porcupine Hugs

Cards, Flowers and Candy for Valentine's Day

Yesterday my daughter's boyfriend sent me a clandestine email asking about a necklace she'd mentioned she liked last spring when it was her birthday. He is planning to purchase it for Valentine's Day.

It may seem to be early for Valentine's Day gifts, but walk into any drug store today and you will be bombarded by wall-to-wall aisles of red cardboard hearts filled with inexpensive chocolates. Anyone planning on purchasing something on etsy should order early to make sure their gift arrives on time..just 29 days till


The Reimagined Past offers a selection of vintage cards. This one, Valentine's Day Card with Bouquet of Flowers, sells for $5.


An alternative to roses...this beautiful wreath of tulips, for $80, is from Elegant Holidays.

 and Candy...

Linda's Edible Art offers the candies we love from childhood in a cookie form.  The cookie is 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" and sells for $36 for a dozen.

Here's hoping your Valentine's Day is sweet!

Wink and Flip / WINK AND FLIP


As many of you I frequently turn to Pinterest to find inspiration for new projects. The Etsy New York team has a beautiful collection of boards that is carefully curated by Martin of Adornments NYC. Here are some of the things he has put together for us:

Looking to get organized? Organize your sewing bobbins on a magnetic strip. Use CD spindles to store your ribbons.

Seeking some balance? Become inspired by the soothing shapes of the Geometric collection.

Hungry? Try the avocado lime salmon or the baked parmesan zucchini.

Currently we are maintaining 54 boards with lots of interesting ideas and beautiful images. So on your next creative break stop by and share some ideas with us in the wonderful world of Pinterest.


Jammin' Out on Governors Island

It's finally here...opening weekend at Governors Island! GI is my favorite "undiscovered" spot in New York and with Better Than Jam's shop opening this weekend, I couldn't be more excited!

As Simone mentioned last week, it is curated with some of the best handmade items from Etsy New York artists and is open from 10am to 6pm every weekend during the summer from Memorial Day Weekend to September 3rd. The shop is located this year in one of the island's historic apartment buildings named "The Governors Galleries."

Shop owner, Karin Persan spoke about the store's concept, “Ultimately, the goal of Better Than Jam’s collaboration with Governors Island is to offer visitors a handmade and local shopping experience, with craft demonstrations, all within the setting of a unique, peaceful and historically rich public space.” The selection includes items designed and crafted with the island in mind, and will allow every visitor to take home a tangible memento from their Governors Island visit.

Here's a sneak peak to how the shop is shaping up:

As an added bonus, every Saturday the shop is collaborating with the Etsy New York Team to share their wide range of artistic skills by hosting crafting workshops. For opening weekend, the Team is helping kick off our craft workshop series with a face painting booth at the Governors Island Family Festival this Saturday, May 26th from 12 to 4pm at Nolan Park.

The crafting workshop schedule thus far is as follows:
- May 26th: face painting (at Nolan Park)
- June 2nd: toy making
- June 9th: sun prints
- June 16th: TBA
- June 23rd: beaded ladder rings
- June 30th: card making
- July 7th: sachet making

Happy Spring and we're all very excited to see you on the Island!