Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Gifts For Mom Worth Consideration Year Round

Versions of Mother's Day are celebrated around the world with varying traditions. In the United States it was first celebrated when Anna Jarvis saw it as a way to honor the sacrifices mothers made for their children. In 1914, US President Woodrow Wilson established the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. 

I have to think that many people believe Mother's Day should be something we celebrate everyday. There are times throughout the year when we simply want to surprise mom with a special gift. So to help with some ideas, I've put together  items you might consider for year round selection.


My bag design below features a multilingual word cloud thank you design in a variety of typography styles and sizes. This leather tote is part of the special Zazzle Heart project. The Zazzle mission is to give people worldwide the power to make anything imaginable. When you purchase products from The Adventure Collection, you are participating in a unique collaboration that is changing lives and communities in Kenya.

Multilingual Thank You Word Cloud Tote

If you are thinking of something small, you might consider a custom designed watch. Zazzle watch offerings for mom include wristwatches and pocket watches These can make a great personal gift especially since many styles allow you to customize color, type and more. Some designers also off templates where you can add text personalization too. 

Colorful Confetti Toss Over Orange Wrist Watch


Clothing is always a good gift choice for mom. If you live in a cooler climate or have an active mom you might consider leggings. They come in five sizes and Zazzle says "our leggings hug in all the right places and suit all body types" due to compression fit from high spandex content. I purchased a pair as a gift and it was well received. 

Curls Over Purple Artwork Leggings


Is your mom into technology? Most mom's carry cell phones these days so maybe she would love a new phone case with here name and initial letter like the Speck designed case below. Zazzle has thousands of choices and if it shows up for one phone brand you need to check right on that case page if it's available in other brands. Many of the phone cases are available for several phone brands and some offer different styles. You'll find case makers Otterbox, Speck, Casemate and more. 

Colorful Wildflowers | Initial Letter Monogram Speck iPhone Case

Colorful Wildflowers | Initial Letter Monogram Speck iPhone Case


The last gift idea I'll share with you for Mom is a bag. Zazzle has messenger bags in a variety of sizes, tote bags galore, luggage, backpacks, clutches and more. The clutch bags like the daisy photograph design below come with a custom design on the outer flap. The bag is available in six colors: black, teal, charcoal, eggplant, cinnamon, and indigo. It has a detachable leather strap and button magnet to secure the fold-over flap. When folded it is 9" wide and 5" high.

Shasta Daisies Photograph Clutch

Shasta Daisies Photograph Clutch

Leave a comment to let me know if this was helpful or if I can direct you to specific gift. Thanks. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

5 Dog Related Gifts To Celebrate 2018 Chinese "Year Of The Dog"

I've often said that I'd rather spend time at home with my dogs that go out in public. I'm not alone according to a recent study of 2000 people.  So it's a pleasure to know that 2018 is the Chinese "Year of the Dog".

That's a good enough reason to check out some cute and creative dog related Zazzle products for gift ideas or just because we love our pets.

If you need something special for someone else or even want something for this auspicious year, you'll find some very cute ideas on Zazzle.

I have done a number of searched and selected a few ideas to get you started. I found some cute and fun ideas whether you're looking for a creative gift for a four-legged friend or for humans who love their fur babies.

Pet Bowls

Pamper your fur baby with a custom designed white ceramic pet bowl. The bowls are dishwasher and microwave safe and come in two sizes: 40 oz., 3" high by 7" diameter and 25 oz., 2.5" high by 5.75" diameter.

You can start your search with Zazzle Pet Bowl Best Sellers to finding that perfect custom gift.

This bowl features my multicolor dog treat photograph repeated around the bowl. The bowl offers the option to customize it with a name or other text.
Multicolor Dog Treat Photograph Bowl

Multicolor Dog Treat Photograph Bowl

Soup and Chili Bowls

How about an adorable 28 oz capacity soup cup? This is such a cute design. The white ceramic bowl is 3.4" high by 5.4" diameter. This gift idea too is microwave and dishwasher safe.

You can find hundreds of Dog Designed Soup and Chili Bowls like this one in the Zazzle marketplace.

Illustration Pattern Dogs Soup Mug

Illustration Pattern Dogs Soup Mug

Doggie Tee Shirts

Do you know a human companion that loves to dress the dog? Here is a small collection of doggie designed tee shirts to get you started that includes this adorable one. These gift idea tee shirts come in four colors when they are all in stock: white, pink, blue, and heather. You can order in six sizes including 2XL and 3XL.

Wicked Cute Halloween Shirt

Wicked Cute Halloween Shirt

Pup Post-It® Notes

You will find a variety of adorable custom Post-It® notepads in three sizes: 3" square, 4" x 7", and 4" x 3". Each size notepad had 50 sticky notes. You'll find some with template fields to personalize and others that allow you to go into the customize option to make it perfect for your needs. This is one of the very many adorable designs I found in the Zazzle marketplace.

Cute dog nose horizontal post-it notes

A mug of any material makes a great gift especially when you can personalize it. The Zazzle marketplace has thousands of custom indie and brand name designed mugs from which to choose.

Yoga Dog - Upward Facing Dog Pose Coffee Mug

Yoga Dog - Upward Facing Dog Pose Coffee Mug

So there you have five fun custom designed products to gift and celebrate the "Year of the Dog".  Remember these can make great gifts for you too. 

Go take a look and see what might help you solve a gift giving dilemma. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

5 Creative Ideas For Adding Pizazz To Interior Walls

There's that empty wall that needs a little "somethin' somethin'" but you aren't sure what. I have a few ideas that you may not have considered.

Easy Peel Wall Decals

Whether you're looking for something fun, inspirational, or abstract these easy to peel and restick wall decals are a way to easily change a wall design. They are made to be moved and can be pasted and peeled up to 100 times without damage the decal or the wall. The designs are printed on high-quality fabric paper and don't require glue or frames. You'll find the wall decals designed in a variety of themes and shapes such as hearts, ovals, unicorns and so much more in the Zazzle Marketplace.

The majority of mine are designed on the square decal such as this12" square that shares a photograph of a homemade petroglyph with an inspirational comment.

Sun Petroglyph Sketched On Lava Rock Wall Decal

Acrylic Print

An acrylic print is another frameless, no hassle idea for mounting on any wall. An image is printed in full HD color on archival quality photographic paper. The print is sealed with .25" thick Grade A acrylic for art gallery quality. Each print has a french cleat backing for easy hanging. These high definition prints are water-resistant and easy to clean. There is a huge selection in the Zazzle Marketplace including triptych designs.

My red color-splash photograph of the historic Route 66 street corner made famous by a song in Winslow, Arizona is available as an 11" x 14" print. Click the image to visit the product page where you can see the back with the french cleat for hanging.

Winslow Arizona Red Splash Photograph Acrylic Wall Art

Metal Print

When you think metal, you may consider heavy. These .045" thick aluminum prints are lightweight, durable, and easy to clean. The high gloss finish accentuates rich colors adding to any wall and all corners are rounded for safety. As with the acrylic prints, these metal prints are pre-fitted with a mounting frame on the back that floats .75" from the wall. These are also easy to clean and water resistant. These metal prints are available in 9 sizes includes three square styles of 8", 12", and 16".

The image below is my digitally altered red Anthurium flower. This print is available in the three square sizes. You will find more of my photography designs in the Art & Posters Department of the store.

Single Red Anthurium Flower Metal Print


Zazzle offers prints that can be framed with a wide variety of designs and mats. Prints are available in standard and custom sizes on four paper types.

This is a photograph of towering Quaking Aspen Trees near the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA. The print that is 24" x 36" and available for a standard or custom frame with mats. You can find more of my photographs in the Poster Sub-category in TheAspenStand.

Wrapped Canvas

This wall art style offers three thicknesses (.75", 1.5", or 2.5") on most designs. These are also available in single, two, or three-panel designs.  You may also select to order a design in sepia or black and white if the designer allows those options.

Below is a southwestern style digitally altered wind chime photograph featuring pitchers and bowls. You can find two other styles in the Wrapped Canvas department of the store.

Spiraled Clay Wind Chimes Still Life Canvas Print

Spiraled Clay Wind Chimes Still Life Canvas Print

If you aren't looking for wall art at the moment, you can find some of these same designs/photographs on other products in the store. 

If you have any questions, let me know and leave a comment with your thoughts. 

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

7 Recommendations for Personalized Valentine's Day Gifts

I am well aware that there is a love, hate relationship with Valentine's Day. I've observed that people either love Valentine's Day or totally oppose the concept. I have found there is no in between for a mediocre appreciation of it. People get stressed over what to get, whether a certain gift will insult someone or whether someone might feel left out. So to avoid the stress some people don't even recognize the day.

So if you don't plan to go all out by sending cards to all your acquaintances, friends, or loved ones just to let them know you care, I offer you some ideas that might be best individual valentines gifts for her and for him.

You will find quite a few great ideas for a total surprise on Valentine's Day in the Zazzle marketplace. I'm sharing two of my products and five others I found to be simple yet send a special message.

Personalized Teddy Bear In 3 Sizes

Zazzle recently offered this adorable Teddy Bear in three sizes ~ small 11", medium 17" and large 21". The eyes, nose, and mouth are embroidered for safety and durability. The tee shirt allows you to add a message, photos or digital art. The adorbs Teddy Bear below with my lighted heart fractal design allows you simply fill in template fields to change the text and it's personalized. You'll find more than 350 Valentine's Day themed Teddy Bears from which to choose in the Zazzle Marketplace.

Lighted Heart Fractal Artwork Teddy Bear

Personalized Sweets for the Sweet

Sweets for the sweetheart may not be for everyone but if it is for your special someone, I am betting that you didn't know Zazzle offered personalized boxes of chocolate. Well, now you know it chocolate is an option at Zazzle.

You can order chocolate with a specialized message on the box cover and on the chocolate. The chocolate is available in a mixed selection of 45 pieces of milk and dark chocolate as you see below with my lighted heart fractal cover design. You can also get a 2 lb block of your favorite chocolate.  You can peruse more than 1900 boxes with a Valentine theme

Lighted Heart Artwork Design 45 Piece Box Of Chocolates

Lighted Heart Artwork Design 45 Piece Box Of Chocolates

I went cruising the Zazzle marketplace to find some cute and simple ideas for those of you still wondering what do to for a unique gift. I found this adorable designed candy tin for you. This sweet teddy bear tin can be ordered empty for you to fill with a special surprise disguised as candy (hint, hint).

And if you don't have a surprise to fill it, you can choose something sweet right there on the product page. The tins can be ordered with mints or a favorite flavor of JellyBelly™jelly beans. 

Keeping with the sweet theme, you can choose a more sophisticated design like on this Snip Snap candy tin featuring an elegant heart design. Although the title says "gold glitter", the details are simulated in the artwork and no actual glitter is used in making the tin cover.

This can also be ordered empty or filled with a favorite jelly bean flavor or mints. You can find more than 4800 candy tins, bottles, and jars featuring the Valentine theme.

Gold Glitter Flourish Valentine Candy Tin

Gold Glitter Flourish Valentine Candy Tin

For The Guys

As I mentioned earlier in the post, I'm not going to forget some ideas specifically for the guys. There is a fun collection of more than 25 Men's Boxercraft Cotton Boxers designed specifically for Valentine's Day. The100% cotton boxers come in black or white and are available in sizes S-2XL. The design features a classic boxer cut, false fly and longer out-seam with an elastic waistband. These are unisex fit so they can be worn as underwear or sleepwear. You'll find the design below in that collection. 

Custom PROPERTY OF heart boxer shorts for men

Custom PROPERTY OF heart boxer shorts for men

Although not everyone wears ties to work, this Valentine's Day Zazzle Apparel Tie Collection of more than 600 ties might offer a great gift for those who do. The ties are 100% polyester with a silky finish. The tie is 55" long and 4" at the widest point on the bottom. This elegant gold heart outline design below is part of the collection. 

Red Gold Hearts Valentine's Day Men's Tie

Red Gold Hearts Valentine's Day Men's Tie

And for the guy's who are more accustomed to a casual look, I narrowed my search down to Valentine themed tee shirts with more than 1100 designs currently showing. This adorable Labrador design is included in that collection.

Black Lab Valentine Dog holding Red Rose T-Shirt

Black Lab Valentine Dog holding Red Rose T-Shirt

So there you have some recommendations and links to peruse for more ideas before giving up and waiting until the last minute for a gift. 

I look forward to you letting me know your thoughts on the holiday and the post in the comments. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

4 Talented Social Media Connections You Too Might Like To Know

As each year near's end I like to think back on what I accomplished, whether I left good along the path and what I can do better next year.

We've said "Buh Bye" to 2017 and I think back to folks who touched me throughout the year on social media. These are people I've never met in person but feel a connection to for all we've shared in this virtual whirlwind we call the internet.

I learned from people who spent time on my posts, followed, and interacted with me on social media and who are simply nice to stay in contact with throughout the year. These are a few of those wonderful connections I've made.

I have to lead off with Carol Stephen since she is the most interactive person I know on social media. You'll find Carol on several social media platforms. I probably visit with her most on Twitter where you'll find her as @Carol_Stephen.

You'll see Carol's Twitter bio shares that she is a "Conscious soul. Gym Mouse. Blogger for #Startups". She is also quite active on Pinterest. I learned how to make a slide presentation at the top of my Pinterest page by following Carol's blog.

Carol posts great information on a variety of social media subjects and publishes a new blog post each Thursday. She runs the weekly Twitter chat, #DigiBlogChat, on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. pacific daylight time. If you follow her on Twitter, you'll see her posts announcing the weekly chat. You should check it out.

I am happy to add Joe Valencia, a New Jersey native, to this round-up. I met Joe on a now-closed community blog site. We interacted there and when we both left that site we continued to stay in contact.

Joe is a photographer, blogger, and also has a YouTube channel. You can find Joe's photography portfolio and more at Joe Valencia Fine Art Photography.

Joe is active on Twitter, where I'm most likely to be chatting with him. You will find him there as @WanderPhotog posting his photography, motivational quotes and more.

I definitely want to mention Ariane Corminboeuf. I met Ariane sometime mid-year 2017 through someone's Facebook posts. She is such a sweet and sharing person. She's also a Zazzle designer who posts adorable art and is also active on Twitter as @iCraftcafe.

Ariane sells her work on several print-on-demand sites. You can also find her on Facebook where she shares her products from all the sites she sells along with other fun and interesting information.

In 2017 she asked for suggestions to add to a sketch story she was doing about traveling pumpkins. It was fun to see her final production on YouTube ~The Little Pumpkin Summer Trip.

Annette Sugden is another creative individual I wanted to mention in this post. Annette is a talented artist who kindly visits and comments on my Facebook page often.

I've followed Annette for some time after seeing her fun, creative designs. She can be found on Google as +ArtVixen. Annette's Facebook page is titled Art Vixen where you're sure to find fun and interesting art like her mermaid page banner above.

Annette also shares her work and products at print-on-demand sites Redbubble and CafePress.

You now know some of the interesting and interactive folks who I am very grateful to know via social media. I urge you to go check them out.