{My Soul Shines :: feature + giveaway}

This giveaway is now closed.


Do you remember this print? I blogged about it here.

“Sew much time & sew little to do.
Strike that. Reverse it.
Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”

My blogging friend Becca made it for me. Just for me!!! Of course I loved it instantly and had it framed and now it sits on a shelf just outside the Sweat Shop. It makes me so happy to have met great people like Becca. Life is about the journey — Becca has definitely been a part of mine.

Becca loves to design things that touch souls. She is an artist, has two Etsy shops {this girl is so talented!} and she’s a wife & mom :]

Her most-recent Etsy shop, My Soul Shines,

…is a place to come and be inspired to let your soul shine. In a cold world, we all need little reminders to get us through, and help us remember that we are, indeed, miracles.

Becca and I met last summer from blog hopping {visiting one blog, that leads you to another blog, and to another, and another…}. We’ve been in contact more recently, and here’s what she’s up to:

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What inspires you?

I am truly inspired by SO much in life. First and foremost, I’m inspired by God and his awesome creation. Everyday I see glimpses of His handiwork, and am awestruck.

I am very inspired by strong women who follow their dreams. A few of my favorites are Audrey Hepburn, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Marilyn Monroe. I love quotes, as you can tell from many of my prints.

I have very eclectic taste, and have trouble committing to one style of anything! There is so much out there to be inspired by, that I’d just have to say that I’m inspired by LIFE!

How did you come up with your shop name?

I came up with the name My Soul Shines just playing around with words I like in my head. I love words and language. To me, when people are truly happy, they just seem to radiate light from their souls (Gussy does, for sure!)

Lovely Yellow Ribbons came to me in kind of the same way. I knew I wanted to incorporate a military-ish theme to the name (hence, yellow ribbons) but I wanted it to sound a little more girly. I enjoy all the “L” sounds in the name too. ;]

Share a little bit about yourself.

I was born in Lebanon, PA. My father was (is) a minister at a small church there, but when I was about 4 years old, he felt called to join the Navy as a chaplain. So my family and I packed up and moved to the Marine Corps base in Albany, GA. We spend four years living there. After his service in the Navy was up, my family moved back to the Allentown, PA area where he became the pastor at another church, and we’ve been there ever since!

When I met my husband, he was going to college and had already enlisted in the Navy and was going to be going to Officer Candidate School after graduation to become a submarine officer. So I knew what I was getting into going into it ;] I’m from a military family (my dad was a Naval officer, my brother and grandfather are Marines, my other grandfather was in the Army, my uncles were in the Air Force and Navy) so I was excited to do my part as a Navy wife, haha!

My husband and I will be married for 5 years this July, and we’ll have lived in Charleston, SC; Groton, CT; San Diego, CA (where we are living now); and we’ll be moving to Blacksburg, VA this summer. Whew! It’s exhausting, but SO exciting, and I LOVE every minute of it!!

If you had to describe yourself in a word, what would that word be?

Whimsical.

What made you decide to open up shop?

My husband is a Naval officer on board the fast attack submarine the USS Albuquerque. When we found out that we were expecting our first son, I decided that I’d like to decorate his room with sort of a submarine theme. I couldn’t find anything that I liked! So I decided that I’d just have to make some artwork for myself. I started off just doing paintings and mixed media pieces for myself and friends on base (in Charleston, SC) who were also having babies. Someone suggested that I try selling my military artwork, so I decided to give it a try! I opened my first etsy shop, Lovely Yellow Ribbons to sell “Whimsical Military Artwork.”

My work has evolved so much over the few years I’ve been selling. I’ve worked with acrylic on canvas, watercolors, gouache, and I’m really into digital designs and blog designs these days.

As much as I LOVE supporting our troops and military families with my art, I’ve always been interested in opening a non-military shop. That’s when I decided to open my My Soul Shines etsy shop to sell inspirational and happy artwork and prints.

Do you have a day job or sell on Etsy full-time?

I am a stay-at-home mom to my 2-year-old son, Noah (he’ll be three June 2!) so I’d say that “Baby Wrangler” is my full time position. I work on my Etsy shop part time, although I’d LOVE to be able to start working more, possibly get it going to a full-time job as Noah gets a little older and starts preschool.

What would you like to learn to do?

This is SUCH a hard question for me, I have so many goals I’d love to accomplish in this lifetime! I’d love to learn to play guitar, and I’d love to learn several foreign languages fluently. Specifically, Spanish and Russian. Maybe Japanese. I want to learn how to ski (I hate the cold, and am DETERMINED to find something that I enjoy about cold weather, lol!)

What are you listening to right now?

Right now I’m completely obsessed with John Mayer (I could listen to “In Your Atmosphere” and “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room” all day!) and Joshua Radin (“Brand New Day” and You’ve Got Growin’ Up To Do”). I also love to listen to Ray Lamontagne (“Empty,” “You Can Bring Me Flowers,” and “Sarah”) while I design. So I guess I’m into brooding male singers at the moment. Ha!

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Becca is offering one reader an 8×10 print from her shop

To enter, leave a comment sharing what you’d pick out!
This giveaway is open to US residents only.


For additional comments {leave a comment for each one}:

-become a follower of Becca’s blog

-become a follower of my blog

-tweet it: Enter to win a soul-inspiring print from My Soul Shines, @beccasw via @GussySews http://u.nu/6mxq8

-blog about this giveaway

Giveaway ends Thursday night at 10 CST.

Winner announced the following day.
Good luck!



{new product :: wristlet/clutch}


New in the shop: Ruffle Gus – wristlet/clutch

Perfect for carrying a small wallet, your cell phone and a set of keys.
Perfect as your purse. Perfect inside another bag. A Gussy tote bag, perhaps?

The floral prints are perfect for the upcoming Summer season.
If you had a Gussy clutch, where would you bring it?

Clutches measure 8.75″ x 4.5″
Wrist strap is 4″
A soft layer of quilted fabric is sewn between the outer and inner piece.


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Maybe you want to carry your clutch inside your
*choose your ruffle color* Damask or Lattice laptop bag, also new to the shop?



PS. The winner of the Ruffle Gus checkbook cover,
drawn randomly from my newsletter subscriber list is shelleys_ _ _@gmail.com

Want a chance to win next month?
Click here to sign up.