It’s FEATURE FRIDAY again, and I want to introduce you to my friend Lucia from Isreal!

~1.What is your name? My name is Lucia Verona.

~2.Where are you located? I am located in sunny Tel Aviv – Israel!

~3.Tell me a little about yourself and how you got started doing what you do?
I’m a 29 year old independent fashion designer, originaly from Slovakia. Shortly after moving to Israel in 2005, I fulfilled my
life long dream of becoming a fashion designer, and started studying at the prestigous Shenkar fashion institute.
Soon after, I started selling my designes in various boutiques in Tel Aviv, working from my home studio.


~4.What type of items would I find in your shop?
My designs are always about creating timeless and elegant pieces with a strong emphasys on fit, comfort and versatility.


~5.How long have you been crafting?
I’ve been crafting for as long as I can remember, always trying to transform things that surround me.

~6.What inspires you the most to create?
It sounds funny but I draw my inspiration from everyday life events.


~7.What is the one “must have” item you need with you when you create?
The one “must have” item I need in order to create is my sketchbook which I carry with me everywhere.

~8.What is one of your favorite items from your favorites list on Etsy?
One of my favorite shops on Etsy is “Ellemoss” , a photographer which I adore.

~9.When you aren’t crafting, what do you do?
In my spare time I love to cook and invent new recipes.

~10.Where can we find your shop?
Six months ago I had a great opportunity to start selling my clothes on http://www.Etsy.com
You’re always welcome in my shop:
http://www.luciaverona.etsy.com

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Now for the review of my newest product….Organic Bath Salts made with Dead Sea Salts!

Spring is a time for renewal and cleansing of the old. Dusting off cob webs, cleaning the curtains, scrubbing the floors…Also a time to scrub off old winter skin to reveal your new Spring skin! A great way to do this is to start out with a soak in a hot tub with some of my Organic Bath Salts sprinkled in it!

Dead sea salts promote healthy skin regeneration, skin permeability, elasticity (who doesn’t need this!), and helps your skin absorb and retain moisture! Dead sea salts are sourced from the Dead Sea in the Meditteranean. It is loaded with many minerals such as magnesium, potassium, calcium and bromides. Since your skin is the largest organ that absorbs almost ANYTHING into your body, why not make it beneficial sea minerals! I have combined these beneficial salts with some of my Organic Herbs & Organic Essential Oils for maximum benefit!

♥~Organic Rosemary Mint Bath Salts~♥
This combines Organic Rosemary leaves & Organic Peppermint leaves to help loosen up muscles and combat fluid retention. It is also a mind stimulator helping with memory and recollection.

♥~Organic Lavender Rose Bath Salts~♥
This combines Organic Lavender buds & Wild Harvested Primrose Flower Petals to help soothe away the stresses of the day while helping to relieve depression. It also helps heal bruises and skin ailments with its antibacterial constuients. This would be great for those who suffer from any types of dermatitis.

I have featured the Organic Lavender Rose Bath Salts in my Organic Lavender Gift Set which would be great as a Mother’s Day gift!! Check it out here

I will be offering larger sizes very soon at My Etsy Shop and my Website!

It’s Feature Friday! I would like to introduce you to my new friend Samira of Sam’s Crochet on Etsy!

~1. What is your name?
Samira Loflin

~2.Where are you located?
I am from a bit of everywhere. I was born in San Diego, spent grade school in upstate NY, and a year back in California, before my family settled back in to the Willamette Valley in Oregon where my parents are from. I lived in Seattle for about 6 months, and Louisiana for a couple years. Back to Oregon for a handful of years, and now I’m living in Missoula, MT. I ADORE Missoula, and have had an awesome time here in Montana. I expect to stay here a long while with lots of trips back to Oregon to visit family. Go Griz!

~3.Tell me a little about yourself and how you got started doing what you do?
I’m 26. I finished massage school last June, and hope to be licensed here in MT at some point in the near future. Health and fitness has always been part of my life. I spent afternoons doing homework in the back of aerobics classes while my Mom was up front teaching. Her studies have been in the medical field, and I have been browsing her books for years. Now I have my own selection of bodywork books.

I started to crochet when I was about 8. My grandma taught me the basic stitches. The last few years, I have been crocheting more regularly, and have self-taught myself some more dynamic styles.

The tattoo I have in the middle of my upper back.

~4.What type of items would I find in your shop?

Handmade Health & Fitness: Apple Cozies to Yoga Accessories!
Health and exercise accessories. Water bottle and yoga mat bags, blankets and slings, apple cozies, and leg warmers, headbands, and beanies.

~5.How long have you been crafting?

My aunt was a big yarn crafter, and loved both knit and crochet projects. As the only one in the family with a love of yarn, I was the one who received her closets full of yarn when she passed a few years ago. I have used almost all of her yarn, and am still going strong, so most of my sales will drop right back into the purchase of new yarn, so I can continue that which I love to do.

I dabble in cross-stitch, and am working on my first knit scarf (started about 3 years ago). I have done some latch-hooking, and a bit or plastic canvas work.

I think I’ve crocheted at nearly every one of my jobs. I was working front desk at a local gym, and had lots of time to crochet. Many of my customers would compliment my work and mention that I should sell my items. I eventually did some research online to see where there might be a good place to do so, and came across Etsy. The very first item I made with health in mind, and not just hats and scarves, was a ribbed/spiral yoga mat bag. It was so much work, and way too bulky. I would have had to charge about 2x what anyone would want to pay for a bag. Lots of lesson learned though, and my mom got the first one in the style I currently create my mat bags in.
That First Bag

Mom’s Bag

~6.What inspires you the most to create?

I see items to be made everywhere. If I see something, I automatically work out in my head how I would recreate it. I do this especially for anything healthy and useful. Most of the new things I’ve done lately are customer requests. One of the most recent things I’ve recreated is a bag I use all the time which my best friend thought would be good for her mother in-law. First photo is the bag I use for my yarn projects. It’s a reusable wine bag that you can get at your local grocery store. I don’t go anywhere without Mountain Dew. The pink bag is my version that her yarn-using-mother-in-law loves! Her husband saw this bag, and requested a 6-pack Frisbee golf bag in a similar style. Things just seem to grow from previous samples.

~7.What is the one “must have” item you need with you when you create?
I have yarn everywhere. If I emptied my space of yarn, it would be pretty minimalist. I have plastic tubs, drawers, and a couple laundry baskets full. I recently acquired a car-ful of hand-me-down yarn to overwhelm my little space. Organization is one of my fortes, though, so I mostly know where everything is. If I am not organized, I can’t get anything done. I’m the sort that cleans house before I can do anything, so I’m always rearranging, and sorting in my little space.

~8.What is one of your favorite items from your favorites list on Etsy?
My purchase from CamdenCreations has been my all time favorite Etsy purchase. http://www.etsy.com/transaction/43762996 I have been collecting items for my soon-to-be niece in this lovely fabric, and the apron is phenomenal. Reversible, customized, and will be well loved.
I am a member of TradeAHolics, so I am always wandering new shops, and finding great new things. If you are a new shop and would like to increase your sales, and show some feedback, trading is a great way to do that!

~9.When you aren’t crafting, what do you do?
I love sociology, and theology. When I am crocheting, I love to listen to audio books or documentaries about all sort of history and philosophy subjects. I bowled and played tennis in HS, and carry my racquet around in my car trunk. I definitely bowl more often than get to play tennis though. I have two brothers and a sister in-law that I love to be around. We are a crew of board game fans, and so can usually be found competing over cards with snacks and drinks nearby. I love to camp, and be in the water and woods in the summer time. I’ve been caught crocheting in front of a campfire pit barefoot and happy. To tell the whole truth, I’ve been caught crocheting nearly everywhere I’ve ever gone. (Shhhh, I can crochet and drive at the same time.)

~10.Where can we find your shop?
http://www.etsy.com/shop/samscrochet
http://www.facebook.com/samscrochet
http://samscrochet.blogspot.com/
http://twitter.com/samscrochet

I have a few places where I have an online presence. I have been on Etsy since February 2009, and have recently added a shop at ArtFire, Storenvy, Big Cartel, CraftIsArt and Zibbet. I especially love Storevny. It is easy to navigate and mixes well with Facebook.

One last thing I’d like to add is some advice for fellow Etsians:
Keep going. Work at your pace. Be the shop owner that you want to deal with when you shop.
I work with the “if there’s time to lean, there’s time to clean” theory. There is always something you can do to improve your shop. My three daily goals are (1) Make Something (2) Sell Something (3) Tell Someone. When I first started it was mostly making, and telling, finding more online places to show put my link, show off a photo. I posted in the crochet FB links just to share what I’ve made, and to pull some ideas. The selling goal can be tougher, but I can often make a trade through the TradeAHolics team most days. This adds feedback and sales to my shop. One of the things I am most proud of is with nearly 400 feedback, not one has been negative or even neutral. I try to go above and beyond for each customer. Part of the sell something goal also, is to post a new listing everyday that I can. Sometimes that a renewal of a sale, and sometimes it’s another size of multi-pack option, just to get a new listing up.

Dandelions shout SPRING really loud if you listen!

So it has been a crazy week so far. Lots of orders to fill, soaps to wrap & herbs to pick and dry! Spring does not wait, it is here and then its Summer before you know it:) My favorite Seasons are Spring & Fall. I love the changing, plus the cooler, not too cold or hot, weather!

With the official arrival of Spring with cool mornings and warmish afternoons I went out to pick Dandelions!

Most people have become accustomed to thinking of Dandelions as weeds. Well I guess they are, but really they are a medicine chest just waiting to be unlocked! The most recent discovery of mine was when I picked up the book “Healing Wise” my Susan Weed again! I figure that if I saturate my mind with herbal information and their uses, it will stick. Then I will know it by heart. I found out that not only are Dandelion flowers good for toning your face helping to reduce large pores and help acne sufferers, but when it is steeped in oil, it makes a great muscle relief & all around relaxer releasing trapped emotions! I just had to pick them ALL!

Dandelions grow primarily in wet, poorly drained soil. There is a lower pasture past the blackberry bushes down the hill from the cabin where they grow by the hundreds!

It is fenced off from the cattle so they are protected from their munching☺
They were really watching me too!

At one point they were a ways away in the pasture, then before I knew it they were right by the fence seeing what I was up to! They are so goofy☺ The head cow started “mooing” at me. Funny!

I set out with my basket and my boots on to go trudge through the soppy grass and pick some Dandelions! I just have to introduce it into my arsenal of herbal remedies. My idea is to make a herbal muscle rub with the oil once it is ready!
I am also going to pick some Dandelion leaves while I am at it so I can add it to my herbal tea I am putting together for Energy & Circulation.

So as you can see not only do the cows like the Dandelions, but the slugs do to! I was careful to avoid them, but took a picture of this one munching away:) Anytime I found one that was slimed or had a little slug on it I left it alone. There are enough to go around!

So as you see I came out pretty good after 1 hour of picking. It was good exercise too! I always need another way to fit in some fitness somehow!

The oils steeping are Organic Olive Oil & Organic Grapeseed Oil packed with fresh Dandelions sunning in my kitchen window. I have topped each off with fabric so the air bubbles and moisture can escape.

The Olive Oil one will be ready next week and the Grapeseed a few days after! I will definitely be posting about my new product I will be inventing to use the Dandelion Oil in♥
The Herbal salts are still curing, so I will review them possibly tomorrow, Stay tuned!
Don’t forget to sign up for the giveaway! It is a go now that we have 342 Fans! If we get to 350 there will be 2 winners, so tell your friends to tell their friends☺ http://www.facebook.com/honeybeeholistics

We have reached 337 Fans on Facebook! The giveaway of one of my New soaps is a go! Two winners if we reach 375!

How would you like to “Win” one of my newest soaps? You get to choose a 6 oz. bar of either Organic Oatmeal Honey, Organic Clay Tea Tree, Organic Spring Blossom, Orgaic Exfoliating Almond, or the newest Organic Walnut Apricot!!

Here’s what you need to do to gain entries into the giveaway drawing!!:

Mandatory entry: Follow this blog via google friend connect (on my sidebar) and leave a comment letting me know. (1 entry)

Extra entries are not required, but will give you a better chance. You can do any, all or none, just please leave a comment for each extra entry letting me know what you did so they will be counted Also, include your e-mail or it will not be counted. You can put your e-mail as youremail(at)gmail(dot)com if you wish to avoid spammers.

Ways to get extra entries:

1–“Like” Honey Bee Holistics on Facebook and leave me a comment there as a post on the wall. http://www.facebook.com/honeybeeholistics

2–Share the giveaway on Facebook and tag it with @Honey Bee Holistics, leave a comment here with your FB name and a copy of your FB post.

3–Blog about the giveaway. Please leave a comment with your blog post link.

4–Make a treasury on Etsy including one of my products. http://www.honeybeeholistics.etsy.com

5–Visit my website and fill out the “form” on my About page. http://honeybeeholistics.com/about.html

If we can get to 375 “Likes” by the end of the giveaway, there will be two winners. AND If we make it to 425, I’ll add an Organic Lotion to each of the prize(s)!

The Giveaway starts now and will run until Saturday, April 30th. The winner(s) will be announced on May 1st.

Ready…..set…..go!!

Now my Organic Walnut Apricot soap!!

So now the review you have been waiting for…..My newest creation, Organic Walnut Apricot Soap!

“Organic Walnuts? Organic Apricots?” you say. Well Walnuts have been prized for centuries for its properties that help to soften and tone skin. It contains skin nourishing Omega Fatty acids that moisturize as well as plumping up wrinkles,rich anti-oxidants that help repair free radical damage & contains a high amount of natural Vitamin E which is awesome for the skin! It is also a great choice for those who suffer from eczema, warts and psoriasis. I only use Certified Organic Walnuts which have not been sprayed with pesticides, an important factor to consider, which I do! ~So how do you extract all of the skin loving proponents of Organic Walnuts?~
Well first I soak them overnight and make a nut milk out of them. I use the nut milk as my water base in my soap recipe. Very moisturizing!

It is so moisturizing that I have to let it cure some extra time because it is so soft at first from all of the natural oils in the walnut that come out in the soap!

And Apricots….They have been used for toning skin for a long time as well. Not just the Apricot Oil which is extracted from the Apricot Kernels, but the Apricots themselves. They are a natural source of Vitamin A which serves as a great toner for the skin helping to soften and repair skin cells. It also helps the skin stay moist, and produce the enzymes that stabilise the production of collagen, what keeps our skin firm & young!Again, only Organic Unsulphured Apricots! The Apricots you find in the regular grocery store that are not Organic have not only possibly been sprayed with pesticides when they were growing as Apricots, but also have been dunked in a sulfur solution so they retain their bright orange color even when dried. As you can see, the Organic Unsulphured Apricots are not a bright orange, but a muted brown orange. It is no problem because it doesn’t matter what they look like, as long as they don’t have any chemicals on them!
So I have taken the Organic Unsulphured Apricots and soaked them as well. Then I puree them into a paste that is then incorporated into the soap at the end as well as all of the Organic Walnut pulp left over from making the nutmilk. Nothing is wasted, it all goes back into the soap for that much more skin loving punch!

You can see the bits of orange in the soap, that is the apricots peeking through!

This soap will be available for sale on April 29th!! Look for it on my website http://www.honeybeeholistics.com
and at my Etsy shop
http://www.honeybeeholistics.etsy.com

Next up for review is my Herbal Bath salts! They will be featured in my Mother’s Day baskets available this next week!!