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Animal Lovers - Sunbeams of Summer Part 2

Amanda Coen

Hi, as I mentioned in the first part of this blog, this time in my gift guide, although florals will feature greatly of course, I have focused on creatures. Yes, animals, birds, insects, and such. I will gather all the lovely nature-inspired pieces on the website in addition to my new additions to create a beautiful guide through all of the unique handmade gifts and stunning art cards. It will be called, quite befittingly I believe, my ‘Sunbeams of Summer Gift Guide’. Having thought about and talked about it, I have decided not to include paintings in the gift guides but to keep those collections a separate tangent, at least for now. That will develop on another timeline and in a different direction theme wise and otherwise, but I promise to keep you posted on further gallery developments.

Paintings are underway for my new gallery - Parade Handmade

Trusting the Process

I have to admit that at this stage of developing another gift guide, I freak out somewhat, and this time is no different. I know what I have to do and how to do it, but I am not a natural planner and have not learned (yet) to trust the process. In fact, that is going to be my new mantra: ‘Trust the process’. There, I feel better already. Still, there’s always so much to do, and it will probably never get completely done. ‘Reach for the trees and you’ll fall on the ground, but reach for the stars and you’ll fall on the trees.’ The old adage goes something like that, doesn’t it? We’ve all got to choose our own goals.

Roller-coasting Energy Levels

Given all of the work required and my roller-coasting energy levels, I have decided to create just three gift guides this year. I am currently working feverishly on my Sunbeams of Summer guide and am hurtling towards the finish line. It’s fun, it’s frantic, and it’s tough to stay focused. I have decided to keep the Summer edition tight and focused as my festive one will be a big one. Nonetheless, it’s very hard to limit the collections and to finish off each piece before moving on to the next idea. This is one of my more tricky challenges.

Five New Handmade Gift Collections

  1. Lapanda Designs Jewellery - To give you a little insight into what to expect, I have about five small handmade gift collections planned and two or so larger ones taken from the burgeoning handmade gift reservoir of Parade Handmade. The smaller new ones feature new additions to Lapanda Designs jewellery, including some more pretty floral pieces—though different this time. 
    Potted Bloom Flower Earrings with three colourful blooms and crystal detail - Parade Handmade
  2. Handmade Felt Animal Brooches - I have created some pretty felt brooches inspired by creatures of the landscape which, if successful, could develop onwards. You can see some of them at the beginning phase of creation below. I believe these would work beautifully and give a little extra pizazz to woollen hats, scarves, capes, and shawls in the chillier months. Especially if you are going out to the theatre or another creative event. They would really compliment a great birthday gift such as a hand crafted scarf or hat for someone special.
    Funky felt brooches and felt accessories creation underway - Parade HandmadeSunbeams of Summer gift guide funky felt brooch- Beautiful bird - Parade Handmade
  3. Embellished Berets for Women - Resulting from some very interesting and ongoing polls with customers and newsletter members, I have introduced an embellished collection of berets for women. This has been a fun collection for me as it is akin to doodling, which I championed in at school, let me tell you. If I ever lay my hands on some of my old textbooks, I will show you some! The hand-knit berets are each a unique pattern and feature simple decoration depicting the love of animals this time round since our love of animals and nature in general is foremost for this collection. 
    Embellished beret for women from my Slouchy Berets collection - Parade HandmadeSunbeams of Summer Gift Guide - beret with appliquee butterfly - Parade Handmade
  4. Handmade Berets for Men - Developing this collection is a challenge least of all the knitting. I am not sure if men really like embellishment on their clothing that much. I have embellished these berets but in a pared back way compared to the more flamboyant designs of my berets for women. It remains to be seen which way the mens collection will develop. Of course the brackets are not made in stone. 'For men' or 'for women' is only directional and not rules so I imagine some women will prefer the pared back designs and some men will prefer the more flamboyant fun ones. 
  5. Bandanas with Animal Designs - The final new collection is one that sneaked in under the post. It is a small collection of summer-inspired gingham and polka-dot bandanas. Yes, you read that correctly. I found a way to incorporate a hark back to the 1970s with yellow and white and blue and white gingham bandanas. Remember how I said I love yellow and white gingham but didn’t quite know how to incorporate it into my life in the 2020s? These are completely hand-sewn and feature embellishments depicting the love of our pet cats and dogs. Each one is different and unique. I have scratched that itch now, so let’s see where it takes me. 
    Handmade Boho Bandanas with Pet Animal Appliqued Designs - Parade HandmadeHandmade Blue Gingham Boho Bandana with Appliqued Yellow Love Cats Design - Parade Handmade


I hope this gives you a little insight into what’s going on behind the scenes and a few hints of what’s to come - very soon.. and don't forget..


Get Exclusive Early Bird Access 10% Off for the First Week

Note: All email members get 'Exclusive early bird access to my 'Sunbeams of Summer gift guide' featuring links to all my new collections with 10% OFF for the first week before it goes public'! I will send my members the link as soon as my Gift Guide is ready. Sign up here so you never have to miss a new gift guide! You can always unsubscribe easily from any email.


Until very soon, Amanda


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