Handmade Jewelry

Monthly Archives: October 2013

Meet Marybeth Johnston from Jacabums

We have had so much fun with our Creativity is Contagious, Pass It On series during the month of October.  Since the month is coming to a close we thought we’d post our final installment in this series.

Meet MaryBeth Johnston, who has been a friend of mine for almost 40 years now…which must be impossible because we aren’t nearly old enough to have known each other that long.


MaryBeth is an extremely talented seamstress with an environmental conscience and Mom to 6 children.  She has a home business called Jacabums offering a long list of handmade re-useable products for babies including:

  • diapers (Pampered Cheeks patterns)
  • covers (poly-urethane laminate, wool and fleece)
  • washable wipes made of 2 layers of flannel
  • wetbags for dirty diapers and swimsuits
  • change pads
  • nursing covers
  • washable breast pads
  • training pants
  • p-pads for carseats  & baby swings
  • diaper bags
  • bibs

That is a LONG list of handmade products that seriously reduce landfill waste.  Marybeth started the business in 2006 because she needed cloth diapers for her son Jacob. Check out how cute her diapers are:

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MaryBeth’s creations can be found online at and at a store called Le Capucin ( located in Sherbrooke & Victoriaville, Quebec, Canada.

As if this list of amazing products isn’t enough, Marybeth also makes beautiful purses, bags and pencil cases…and just about anything else people ask her to make.  I have ordered several purses from her and she has come up with gorgeous, unique fabrics for me each time.  For example, Kristi is the proud owner of a retro bike patterned purse by Jacabums.  If you are looking for a unique, earth-friendly and affordable gift for the holidays or baby showers check out Jacabums – you won’t be disappointed!

Stay tuned for our Ornament DIY series in November… just in time to help you with your handmade Christmas gifts or ornament exchange.  Happy Halloween!

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Hang Ups in KC Partners With Literacy Kansas City

Literacy Sign Blog

Kristi and I are thrilled to announce our brand-new partnership with Literacy Kansas City.

I’ve had a few people ask me what Literacy Kansas City is and it occurred to me that not everyone is aware of the desperate need for literacy programs in all geographical areas.   For example, approximately 225,000 adults in the Kansas City area function at the lowest literacy level.  Literacy Kansas City’s goal is to help raise awareness of our community’s significant literacy needs and provide free one-to-one and small group tutoring programs.  Their volunteers give the gift of self-esteem, new opportunities, and capabilities that literacy brings to virtually every aspect of a student’s life.

Why are Kristi and I so passionate about literacy?  Because we LOVE to read and believe that everyone should have the opportunity to love it as much as we do.  Kristi was a reading volunteer at her kids school in Liberty for years.  She also loves that her children have started to share that passion for reading, they will even recommend books for her to read. I have an English Literature Degree and a background volunteering with the Barrie Literacy Council in Barrie, Ontario, Canada.  I’m also the daughter of a school librarian and I am a school library volunteer.  I LOVE (it’s that big and bold love again) working in the school library.  Who knew?  I guess I really am my mother’s daughter.

So where does Hang Ups in KC come in?  We are in the process of creating a brand new line of jewelry dedicated to the joy of reading in the form of inspirational words and quotes.  The jewelry will be in our usual eclectic style using mostly vintage and repurposed items.  A portion of every sale in this line will be dedicated to Literacy Kansas City.  Our brand new Literacy Kansas City line of jewelry can be found on our website by clicking on the jewelry tab.  To make it super easy, here’s the link:  Here is a sneak peak of what we have available online right now.

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We would truly appreciate it if you could help us to spread the word about our new jewelry line in support of Literacy Kansas City.  This is the link to our website’s home page  (  We would also love to hear what you think we should create – so many of our friends and followers have brilliantly creative minds.

For more information about Literacy Kansas City and their initiatives please visit

I guarantee that your city has the same needs as Kansas City.  Go ahead and google literacy programs in your area.  They are looking for all kinds of support like tutor volunteers, book donations, sponsors, etc.  If you are as passionate about literacy as we are maybe there is something you can do to make a difference.



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Meet Tracy Spisak from Gallery Portraiture

We love our Creativity Is Contagious Pass It On Series because it gives us a chance to tell you about our creative friends who we admire so much.  This week we’d like to introduce you to Tracy Spisak of Gallery Portraiture.


In our opinion, Tracy is one of the best photographers in Kansas City.  She is fun, creative and has a knack for finding everyone’s best side.  DSC_0024

Today we discovered something new about Tracy; like the postal service neither snow nor rain keeps her from doing a great job.  She managed our scheduled outdoor photo shoot this morning in sleet and heavy rain.  We are excited to share the results on our blog and website ( in the next few weeks.

This is not the first time that Kristi and I have worked with Tracy.  Last year we had Tracy do our kids portraits.  She captured our children’s personalities perfectly.

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The first portrait is of Kristi’s amazingly artistic girls.  The brightness of the artwork shines from the wall like a sun beam.  I love my boys portraits because they are edgy and artsy while showing how fun and goofy they are.

Gallery Portraiture is a full service portrait company specializing in custom children’s & family portraits.  Additionally they create unique wall art and custom art work. Tracy and her team take the stress out of photo shoots, making picture day feel more like a play-date.  You can visit their website at  Like them on Facebook for updates on special deals and events.

We hope you all have a wonderful fall weekend!

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Creativity Is Contagious Feature Artist: Holly Shaw of Haleighanna’s Hands

We love our “Creativity Is Contagious, Pass It On” series so much that we are going to extend it for the entire month of October.  Send a short bio on you or your creative business as well of some photos of your creations to me at and Kristi & I will share your creations with our friends!

We would like to introduce to our friend Holly Shaw who is the artistic genius behind Haleighanna’s Hands.  We met Holly at a show last March and immediately hit it off with her.  She has a wicked sense of humor and her creativity is off the charts.  This is how Holly describes herself:

“I am a Midwestern girl who decided to follow a dream and moved to Portland, Oregon. I left a corporate job so that I could work on getting to know myself better as an artist. Most of the day is spent in my studio, working with paper, paint and glue. I actually started out scrapbooking and then moved on to mixed media. I opened my Etsy shop so that I could recycle my stash (turning my art into cash to buy more supplies to make art). It was an outlet for my hoarding.”

Here are some of Holly’s most recent pieces:

KCHangups2 KCHangups1 Full shot

Please visit Holly’s online store at

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Lariat Sale!

Happy Lariat Sale Week!  All of our lariat necklaces are on sale starting today until next Saturday, October 12th.  Lariats are versatile pieces of jewelry.  They are open-ended; you can wear them around your neck like a scarf, wrap them around your wrist several times and tuck the ends in to make a funky bracelet or even wear them around your waist as a stylish and unique belt.  To check our lariats out visit us at  They make great gifts for that person in your life who has everything.  All lariats orders will arrive in a gift box wrapped with a pretty ribbon. 1385736_604994512872330_1245381470_n[1]

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Meatloaf Sandwich from The Brick – a Triple D Featured Restaurant

It’s foodie Friday and we don’t have a recipe for you but we do have a great place eat if you are in Kansas City.  A couple of years ago The Brick was featured on one of my favorite Food Network shows, Diners Drive-In’s & Dives.  I had the meatloaf sandwich with a spicy Chipotle Ketchup (yum!) and Kristi had the Pubby Burger with Bleu cheese crumbles, bacon, and topped with an onion ring…how could there possibly be anything wrong with that combination?  The sweet potato fries with sea salt rocked, service was great…and we were thrilled to be eating in a one-of-a-kind restaurant instead of one of the big box restaurants that seem to have taken over.

The Brick is located in the  Crossroads Arts District downtown Kansas City, Missouri.  You can find them online at:  This is First Friday weekend so if you want to find some cool art or vintage finds head on down there and check it out!

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Meatloaf Sandwich: Meatloaf, Pepper Jack cheese, spicy chipotle ketchup on wheatberry bread.
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Our First “Creativity Is Contagious, Pass It On” Share

Meet Nicole from Ni-Chern Designs:


We met Nicole a few years ago when she was our neighbor at the Zeleny Arts & Craft Fair.  We immediately struck up a friendship and are always excited when we are exhibitors at the same show like this past weekend at the Overland Park Fall Festival.  Nicole has been sewing for almost 20 years and clearly loves her craft!  Her sewing is high quality and she has GORGEOUS fabrics.  Trust us, her faithful customers, Ni-Chern is definitely worth checking out.  Visit her new website to take a peek at her fabrics, products and upcoming sales:  If you like what you see go ahead and share her site with your friends and family.  Shopping small business rocks!

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Creativity Is Contagious, Pass It On

Kristi & I love and are inspired by other people’s creativity and thought it would be fun to spend some time sharing YOUR creativity on our blog and Facebook Page.  Please send us a picture of your favorite product that YOU made and a short bio of you personally or your business (if you have a business selling handmade) and we’ll share it with our friends.  If you’ve never met us in person that’s OK – we love to make new friends.   We’d like to start posting next Tuesday so please send your info to by this Sunday.  Let’s have some fun supporting our creative community!



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