I don’t know about you, but when I travel or go to craft shows, I always end up buying blank note cards.
It’s not that I “need” them… And I make greeting cards for a living, so you know I’ve got plenty! It’s just when I see pretty cards, I can’t help myself 😀
I’ve got several blank note cards in my shop and wanted to share how you can enjoy them!
1. You’re ready for any special occasions that sneak up on you.
Because they’re not meant for any specific occasions, you can use them for pretty much everything: birthdays, wedding, sympathy, congratulations, thinking of you, I love you, I’m sorry, baby shower, going away… You name it, it’s gonna do the job.
For example, maybe you’re gonna see a friend for lunch and remember her birthday is in 3 days. You can grab a blank card like this Eat a Rainbow card from your stash and turn it into a birthday card. Perfect for a summer birthday! (And bonus points if she’s a veggie gardener.)
2. You’ve got a small (and inexpensive) artwork to enjoy.
I live in a small apartment and don’t have much wall space. So when I buy blank cards what I often end up doing is hanging them up as an artwork.
Because they’re small and less expensive than buying an actual art print, I can buy and hang up more pieces, and it’s easier to switch them up as I get more cards!
(Currently, I have 10 cards posted at my desk, and they all give me the visual inspirations when I do my work. )
4. You give your loved ones a warm blanket for their heart ❤
When was the last time you sent someone a handwritten note? We’re so used to emailing and texting nowadays. And I’m so guilty of that!
I used to write letters a lot to my friends in Japan when I first moved to the states 20 years ago, but now we connect mostly on Facebook. There are lots of great things about internet and social media, but handwritten notes are so much more special.
Unlike email or texts, you can actually hold the card in your hand, see their handwriting (which is my favorite part), and physically display and store them to enjoy later.
I have a shoebox full of letters and cards I got from my husband, Dave, while we were dating – we were in a long distance relationship for almost 5 years and only saw each other a couple of times a month.
Of course, we’d talk on the phone or email (neither of us had a smartphone then, so not much texting), but we also wrote and send each other cards and letters just to say hi and give each other updates about our life.
I’d get his notes in a mail at random times, and his handwriting and little smiley faces (the original emoji!) made me feel loved and warm. I felt like I could hear his voice and feel his presence more closely.
I could picture him sitting down at the small folding table in the corner of his little cabin on the farm after a long day of work still steaming from the nice hot solar shower. I could picture him writing with his black ball point pen he always carries around in his pocket and thinking of me as he wrote me a letter. He’d take the time to find cute kitty stickers to put on the envelopes because he knew I loved cats!
Anyone who’s been in a long distance relationship knows it sucks.
It was always bitter sweet when we did see each other in person because I knew the visit would end and we’d be separated again. I remember being overcome by sadness every time we said good bye, and it’d take me a few days to feel normal again.
When I was feeling sad, I’d take my “box of Dave” out of the closet and look through the cards and letters he’d sent me. Sometimes it made me cry because it was so tender and I missed him even more.
But they also gave me the strength and kept my heart warm.
It still lights me up to read those old love notes from him. It reminds me to not take our time together for granted and helps soften my heart when something he does annoys me 😀
My Cat Violinist card is a perfect vehicle for sending a loving message to your favorite person ❤
I hope this post has given you some ideas of what you can do with your blank note cards!
I can carry my wallet, phone, and keys in this bag to go grocery shopping, or throw in my favorite snacks to go when I go to my pottery class.
And these coasters are a great way to use up your scraps! Easy, peasy.
(Basically, sew around two squares right sides together with 1.5″ hole, turn inside out, press and top stitch all the way around.)
Now, if I were a more skilled sewist, which you may be, I’d be making cute summer dresses, more zippered pouches, aprons, bags, table linens etc. etc. Can you imagine making anything kid-sized with these?? SO ADORABLE ❤
You can shop these fabrics in 24 different materials in my fabric shop now!
Make fun things and share your photos with me 🙂 Tag your pics on social media with #honeyberryfabric so I can see them.
What’s cool about shopping your favorite fabrics on Spoonflower is you can choose from so many different fabric types (24 to be precise!) from basic cotton to flowy chiffon to snuggly fleece. The possibilities are truly endless!
Hope you enjoy 🙂
p.s. Be sure to use the hashtag #honeyberryfabric if you post your sewing project with my fabric on social media! I’d love to see what you come up with.
I don’t know about you, but I pretty much love ALL the flowers! I just can’t get enough of them… sigh.
Poppies are one of my favorite flowers.
I love how they come in so many different colors and sizes. I also love how their paper-like petals sway in the breeze and how their buds slowly come up and turn their face toward the sky as they start to bloom ❤
I swear my heart skipped a beat when I noticed these pink oriental poppies in my neighbor’s sidewalk one afternoon.
It had the warm and gentle, almost pastel-y pink petals that reminded me of the embroideries on vintage French linens, and a stunning, dark, velvety violet center.
I made a couple of paintings inspired by their beauty and created a congratulations card based on my paintings.
I can imagine it’ll work perfectly for the summer garden weddings!
Order your Pink Poppies Wedding Congrats card here.
When I said I love poppies, I really meant it.
While I love the big, showy oriental poppies, I also love the understated, simple beauty of California Poppies. They pop up around our garden and sidewalk every spring and keep feasting our eyes with the bright orange flowers throughout the summer.
If you’ve been thinking about someone you haven’t talked to for a while, instead of texting or emailing, why don’t you send her a handwritten note?
The message will take a little longer to get there, but it’ll make her feel extra special 🙂
Shop your California Poppy Hello card here. It’s also available as an 8×10 art print here.
I loved the simple image of Croc & Bird design a lot and thought “why don’t I draw more reptiles??”
So I created this painting of a simple black and white iguana – since I didn’t know if iguanas had birdie friends like crocs did, I gave him a hot pink flower 🙂
For the greeting card design, I added a simple handwritten message, “For you.” which will make a great love or friendship card.
I never thought reptiles were particularly cute (I’m more of a furry animal lover), but I ended up proving myself wrong 😀
I took my mini sabbatical during the July 4th week, and it was so refreshing and relaxing.
(In case you are not familiar, I’ve been taking every 7th week off to relax and recharge since 2015. This brilliant concept was inspired by Seanwes.)
Mini sabbaticals are like staycations with intentions, and I try to do things that refuel my creative and spiritual reservoir.
I used to schedule a bunch of lunches and coffee dates with friends during my sabbaticals because I never saw them otherwise. But then I realized it was not very relaxing 😀 (introverts, you feel me.)
Lately, I try to keep my sabbatical weeks open and unscheduled as much as possible and decide what to do when I’m actually on my sabbatical.
It’s also a time for me to pursue things I normally don’t get to do – like spending hours exploring and organizing recipes online (which I’ve done during this sabbatical) and read books on my couch in the middle of the day.
Here are some of the highlights from my most recent mini sabbatical!
I’d been meaning to check out the exhibit for some time, and I’m so glad I went before it ended!
The show was absolutely STUNNING. I loved all the beautiful designs, colors, and art… Sigh.
And, what I appreciated the most about the exhibit was that you know they’re not trying to be like someone else or please everyone – they have a very recognizable style and that’s what makes them so iconic.
I sometimes feel self-couscious about my style, feeling it’s too simplistic. But, after visiting the exhibit, I felt inspired to keep doing “my thing” and be myself creatively!
2. Sewing with my new fabrics
I’m a fabric lover and love spending time at fabric stores ❤ I love examining beautiful fabrics and dreaming of all the things they can turn into.
However, I’m not very good at sewing (yet!) so I have stacks of fabrics I’ve collected over the years in a bin on my craft shelf 😀
I’ve recently created my own fabric designs on Spoonflower and ordered them to see what they look like in person.
I’m very happy with how they turned out, and it’s a special feeling to see your art come to life on fabric 🙂
I’d originally attempted to make zippered pouches with the new fabrics but realized it was a bit beyond my current skill level.
So rather than stressing about it, I sewed a few things that were easy for beginners.
This bag was really easy to sew! I could carry snacks or use it to organize things in my big bags.
Simple coasters with the grey and pink succulent fabrics! ❤
And even made these hoops – no sewing involved 😀
Pssst… If you want to know when my Spoonflower shop opens, be sure to sign up for my newsletter!
3. Block printing
After the Marimekko exhibit, I was inspired to create block print repeat patterns.
I came up with this original design when I was making my daily painting a few weeks ago.
An image of simple blue birds in flight came in to my head and I thought it would make a cute pattern!
I’d love to print this on a simple linen to make a scarf sometime. Or a T-shirt?
And I created this mushroom design – just because.
Wouldn’t it be a cute tea towel or tote bag design for fall?
Most of my sabbaticals go by really fast, but this one felt like it went by slowly.
It was a good combination of staying home to work on my creative projects and going out to see friends and family.
Since I’ve got a pretty busy summer coming up preparing for my very first trade show in August (!!), I really enjoyed this break.
Hope you get to have some creative fun this summer, too!
p.s. Wanna see what else I do during my sabbaticals? You can check out the archive here.
My new challenge did help me tremendously to develop a habit to sit and paint every day. Once it became a habit, I’d feel uneasy if I hadn’t painted by mid-afternoon.
But, I was also getting really stressed out.
It wasn’t the act of painting that was stressful – for the most part, I looked forward to my painting time, and it was calming and relaxing – but, I began to pressure myself to create something my followers would “like” on social media.
I knew intellectually the daily creative practice was ultimately for me but would feel bad when I got fewer “likes.”
Rather than creating something I felt like creating, I began painting something I thought my followers would respond to better.
Rather than being playful and curious, I was carefully crafting works that were attractive and well put together.
And to do so in 30 minutes became so exhausting! It’s like creating a concept, writing your first draft, editing, and publishing an article all in 30 minutes. I was making so many micro-decisions while I painted, and that was not enjoyable at all.
Plus posting my artwork every day became a chore – not only did I spend 30+ minutes for prepping, painting, and clean up, but it took extra 30 minutes to take a decent photo, edit the image, write the captions and hashtags for Instagram, and schedule the post every day.
It was taking the time and energy away (not to mention my social media real estate) from the work I should’ve been focusing on, which is making products and promoting them to generate more income for my business.
So I decided to quit posting my paintings on social media after day 183.
I still sit down to make something every day. But rather than focusing on finishing a presentable piece in 30 minutes, I might just make a quick 10-15 minute painting or take longer if I feel like it. Or I’d collage. Or draw with pen and markers.
It just depends on what I feel like making that day, and since I don’t have the pressure to share and get more “likes”, I’m more relaxed and free.
The practice was actually enjoyable again!
(I still do share the peek of it on my Instagram Stories every day. But since the images go away after 24 hours, and you don’t have the “like” counts, it’s a lot less pressure.)
I realized it was more important for me to exercise my creative muscle every day than to create something that looks good every day.
I did lose some followers as a result, and I hate backing out of my word – but, I allowed myself to quit because it was no longer helping me to achieve my goal.
So far, not posting my work hasn’t stopped me from making art every day (I’m on day 213 as of the time of writing this article), and I call that a success!
Who knows, maybe I’ll change my mind again in the future, and that’s OK, too.
When you set a goal, it’s important that you pay attention to the little voice inside of you and course correct when something doesn’t feel good to you any more.
There is absolutely no need for you to keep doing something that doesn’t bring you joy or bring you closer to your goal! Your work will suffer in a long run, and you’ll eventually get burned out.
And, burnout, my friend, is the worst enemy of an artist.
We all suffer from the “like” addiction, and recognizing how it hinders you from expressing your authentic creative voice is the first step in overcoming that addiction.
Now, go do your thing 🙂 The world needs you to keep creating the things only you can!