Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Meet the Maker - Kiser Krafts

I'd like to introduce to you a good friend, and fellow Handmade in KC member, Kelly Kiser of Kiser Krafts. Kelly is a sparkly, bubbly, fun SAHM of 2 kids under 5, and the creator of sock animal friends for kids everywhere to love.
I met Kelly a few years ago online in a crafting community, and later in a local meetup, and we've been fast friends since. She has one of those bright personalities that lights up a room. You'll know her booth at a craft show, because she's the one calling people over to tell them about her work, and praising the work of her neighboring booths regardless if they are competitors. She's everyone's best salesperson!

Before I tell you about Kelly's epic creations, I'd like to share more of her story. In August of 2004, Kelly was in a car accident so severe that she had to be revived 3 times, and it left her with clinical amnesia amongst other injuries. Kelly, being the fighter she is, was able to find a way to deal with the amnesia by crafting. She found the art of crochet helps her brain to heal, and her to remember. How amazing! (read more details of her journey: A Shattered Memory)

Kiser Krafts has been making socks playful since 2012, and has expanded her line of signature sock lions and bunnies to include foxes, owls, snowmen, and "sock-in-my-pocket" dolls.

Kelly also carries crocheted cuteness in the form of amigurumi animals, frilly flowers, and buntings. Rounding out her home decor line is a collection of fun and whimsical hoop art pieces.

You can find Kiser Krafts online at Facebook, Storenvy, Twitter, blog, Pinterest, & Instagram. If you have the opportunity to meet Kelly in person, I think you'll enjoy her happy personality as much as I do!

Thank you to Melanie Gipson of Violet's Buds for sharing Melanie's inspiring story with us. 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

June is National Candy Month

June is National Candy Month!  Who knew?!  We thought we'd get in the spirit by sharing some of our Handmade in Kansas City Artisans' candy-inspired handmade creations.

Marie Antoinette was known for her love of sweets.  We love this Marie Antoinette necklace by Ivory Isis.

Marie Antoinette Rococo Lady Necklace - Choice of Three Designs
These Citrus Sorbet Beaded Soda Tab Napkin Rings from FabTabulous are fresh and would make a great hostess gift.

Beaded Soda Tab - NAPKIN RINGS - Citrus Sorbet - yellow, hot pink, lime, orange - set of 4 - eco-friendly/upcycled - under 20.00
Love these cheerful Tutti Fruitti Storage Bins from Life's Gems.
Tutti Frutti Fabric Storage Bin
This cotton candy colored Cross Body Bag from The Geek Chic Boutique is so fun!
Pink Jem Inspired Cross Body Bag with Original Fabric Design
These Truffle Drop Earrings from Nuggets of Goodness are mouth-watering.
Truffle Drop Earrings
Adorable Nikki Narwhal from Kiser Krafts looks like she was inspired by Skittles.
Nikki Narwhal, amigurumi crochet plush

Love this sweet ice cream key fob from Ni-Chern Designs. 

These Candy Girl Fabric Button Bobby Pins from Violet's Buds are delicious!

Candy Girl fabric button bobby pins

A Mon-Stor Tooth Pillow from Lu & Ed will keep any sweet tooth safe while waiting for the Tooth Fairy!

Mon-stor Tooth Pillow
This blog post was created by Carolyn Adams from Hang Ups in KC on behalf of Handmade in Kansas City.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Meet The Maker: Aunt Christy's Country Kitchen

One of the great benefits of being a part of the Handmade in Kansas City collective is the opportunity to get to know the other makers and sharing their stories!  Today’s Meet the Maker features Christy Bean from Aunt Christy’s Country Kitchen – maker of  small batch, hand-stirred, unique jams, jellies and chutneys.

I first met Christy at a craft show in Blue Springs and could not keep myself away from her table.  Partly because she offers free samples of her unique jams, jellies and chutneys but also because she was just so darn nice and funny!  She brings her sister or her mom along to help and you can just feel the love and family support that help her business thrive.  I loved her and her jelly so much I bought cases of it to give for Christmas gifts (and ended up keeping it and eating most of it myself!!).  After eating so much of her jelly, I decided to find out a little bit more about Christy’s story….

Christy is the oldest of 5 kids and is married to Rick Bean.  While she is Aunt Christy to several human children; she has one furry baby of her own, a sweet kitty named Blitzen.   Even though making and marketing her jelly keeps her very busy, Christy works full time as a preschool teacher with 1-2 ½ year olds.

Christy first started making her jellies for some handmade Christmas gifts for her family.  Her mom and sister loved the Cabernet Sauvignon jelly so much…they ordered some to give as gifts to friends and clients.  So, in December 2012, she quickly came up with her business name (from her own name and adorable little cottage type house, which kind of looks like it could be in the country), packaging and price point.


Her product list has now expanded to included wine jellies, beer jellies, fruit jams, herbed jellies made from herbs that she grows in her garden, and cocktail jams.  You can see the full list here.
Some of the unique flavor combinations are inspired by her Dad, but others just came from taking complimentary flavors and experimentation.  Christy is always trying new (and sometimes crazy) ingredients, like Dandelion jelly and her newest, Southern Peach Smash with just the right blend of peaches, cinnamon, vanilla beans and bourbon. Both are AH-MA-ZING!
While most of her creations are simply incredible, she does have one story where her idea did not turn out the way she hoped.  You can read the story of her Key Lime Marmalade disaster on her blog,

Christy’s inspiration comes from seeing people enjoy the flavors of her jellys and jams.  She feels like making people happy is truly a wonderful thing and motivates her to create.  She leans on encouragement from her Mom, her fans and the other makers in the Handmade in KC group to keep her going when things get tough. 

What does the future hold for Aunt Christy’s Country Kitchen?  The short term goal is to find retail locations like wineries and breweries, but the when asked for long term goals, Christy says, I will see what happens from there. The possibilities are truly endless!”

Find and follow Christy online at:
Thank you to Laura Graybill from Handmade By Lolo Z for creating this blog post.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Raise your hand if you have one of those Dads who already has everything.  I'll wait.

It looks like most of you. Well, not to worry.  This Father's Day, we're offering a great line-up of things he's guaranteed to NOT have.  How, you ask?  Because they're all handmade here in Kansas City by totally unique artists in a variety of mediums!  

First up, I'd like to share this awesome handmade wallet by The Geek Chic Boutique!


It'll bring a smile to his face and really, who doesn't need a new wallet?

Next up, and continuing with the theme of “Superhero” (because we all know Dads are actually superheroes in disguise), we have this awesome goodie from Ni-Chern Designs:  a new collar for Man's best friend.

Sure, it's not exactly “for Dad” but it's a great gift that he and the whole family can enjoy. 

Don't have a dog but wish you did? Problem solved!  It's easy to love this Robot Dog named The Hoz by Remnants by RJ.

If your dad is more of a Bruce Wayne than a Batman, we've got some stylish trumpet key cufflinks he needs to see from Hang Ups in KC.

 And last but not least, for the dad who truly has everything and needs a place to store it, we offer the following from Life's Gems.

It's a sweet, reusable, reversible, upcycled storage bin that can be used to organize all sorts of cool stuff.  

Let us know in the comments if you end up choosing any of these great gifts for your dad this Father's Day!

A big thanks to Handmade in Kansas City Team Member Larissa Uredi from Unravelled for writing this blog post.