Posts Tagged ‘eco art kit’

Artwork by You!

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

One of the best parts about selling a creative product is seeing what people make with it!  We always welcome submissions from customers and friends.  Here are two recent submissions.

Beautiful earrings and pendant from the Collage Jewelry Kit

A gorgeous art book made with our Bookmaking Kit

Feel free to email info@artterro.com or share it on our Facebook page whenever you have a new project to share.  It can be very exciting for kids especially, to take pride in their art by sharing it with the world.  Happy crafting!

Inside Our New Bonus Projects

Friday, April 25th, 2014

Happy Earth Week!  As you may have noticed, we’re celebrating with a huge relaunch of our products, tons of giveaways on Facebook, free shipping on any order at our web store (see below), and much more.  Today on the blog, we wanted to highlight one of the most exciting new features of our line–now each kit comes with TWO bonus projects!

bonus projects!

The outer box can turn into a dollhouse, mailbox, special storage case for art supplies, or anything you can imagine!  In the example above, Forrest covered it with scraps of denim, including a pocket for the front, and our production assistant Sierra sewed on all sorts of felt and ribbon to jazz it up.  Now it’s a fancy place for extra felt pieces, beads, etc., plus tiny scraps can fit in the outside pocket.  Pretty creative, huh?

felted box

Here’s another special storage box adorned with needle felted trees and birds.  The possibilities are truly endless.

When you open up a kit, you’ll see a sturdy cardboard tray that slides out.  Once you’re done with the project, the empty tray can be transformed into a beautiful frame for your finished artwork.  Here’s one we painted and filled with Wire & Bead Art Kit samples for an upcoming trade show display:

wire and bead frame

We hope that everyone who buys or receives one of our kits will be inspired to create something special with the sturdy packaging, and maybe even looks at packaging in general in a new way.  Imagine all the fun stuff you can make when you see boxes as art supplies rather than garbage!

This week at our web store, enjoy free shipping on any order!  Use code FREESHIPNOW through May 1st.  We can’t wait for you to give the new kits a try!

Introducing Our New Deluxe Bubble Wand Kit

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

Deluxe Bubble Wand Kit

We’re very excited to debut our new Deluxe Bubble Wand Kit along with the rest of our relaunch.  It is a great spring and summer activity, so keep it in mind for any upcoming birthday boys and girls!

You might be wondering how it’s different from our original Bubble Wands Kit.  Well, when we were planning the relaunch, we decided to combine the Garden Art Kit and the Bubble Wand Kit.  They’ve never been our best sellers, but they are way too much fun to discontinue.  One brainstorming session later, we thought, “Let’s turn them into one awesome kit called the Deluxe Bubble Wand and Garden Fun Kit!  Well that would be quite a mouthful.  So we decided to simplify the name, but still include all  the gorgeous materials and fun project ideas from both kits.

star wand

The kit includes enough sturdy copper wire (thin and thick gauges), glass, wood and shell beads, to create two beautifully intricate bubble wands plus several wire and bead sculptures for decorating your garden or potted plants.  One of our favorite bloggers even made a Wire-Wrapped Tree Suncatcher with her kit!

suzy's suncatcher

It’s a great kit for families to enjoy together, especially because you end up with two toys to play with all summer (and many summers to come)!

We hope you like it!

Family with bubble wands

A Look Back at Artterro’s Eco Packaging

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

Did you know we have had over five different kind of packaging over the years?  Developing a product is a complicated process, and we’re always trying to improve and make our customers happy.

Packaging 2006 and 2007

Here are our first two packaging versions, back when our name was Arttogo (Art-to-go).  The one on the left is minimal in the extreme!  All the focus was on providing beautiful, quality materials, rather than a big fancy box.  At that point, Forrest was selling the kits mostly at community events and to friends and family.  The version on the right came about after she started working with Jennifer Conn.  Jen was then working as a freelance graphic designer, and now she is a co-owner and the Creative Director of Artterro.  The packaging was a big improvement, but still quite minimal and eco-friendly.

packaging 2008 and 2010

Here we have our redesigned inserts in 2008 (still in a reusable bag that hangs from a hook).  In 2010 we took a big step forward–we created a box that made our products look more like the special gifts they are, while still being eco-friendly and allowing customers to see exactly what they’re going to get.  Plus, it turned into a bonus project–a frame you can decorate to display your art!  Pretty fancy, huh?

You’ll have to stay tuned until Monday (aka Earth Day Eve) to see what our next big step forward looks like.  We couldn’t be more excited to share it with you.

Sneak Peek of the new Artterro line!

Thursday, April 17th, 2014

We can’t show you everything until the official debut next week, but here are a few sneak peeks of our new packaging.

Artterro: Where creativity comes naturally.

What do you think of our new tagline, Where creativity comes naturally?

made in madison

Now we can show off our hometown pride right on the box!  And we wanted to let people know that our packaging will be greener than ever.

new side panels

The goal is for our kits to jump off the shelf–how do you like the bright colors we chose?

sustainability

We wanted to make sure everyone knows what Artterro is all about: Creativity, Beauty, Joy and Sustainability.  And of course that it’s fun for all ages!

Stay tuned for the big announcement next week, which also happens to be the week of Earth Day – what a coincidence!

Eco Valentine Crafts: Decorations for Kids

Friday, February 7th, 2014

Valentine Decorations for Kids

It’s awfully fun to to spread the love with heart-shaped decorations on Valentine’s Day.  You can go the traditional and elegant route with doilies and pink tissue paper, or try something a little more offbeat.  Here’s a perfect Valentine-themed project for a play date, classroom activity or family craft night.   It’s open-ended–pick out whatever papers, beads and other materials you want, and create Valentine ornaments to hang all over the house.

DIY Paper & Bead Valentine Ornament Project

What you’ll need: sturdy paper, thread, beads.

  1. Thread a needle (if you’re using small beads) and tie a big knot at one end.
  2. String some beads.
  3. Glue two hearts together with the thread in between.
  4. String more beads.
  5. Repeat as many times as you like, leaving enough room to tie a loop at the top.
  6. Hang your lovely ornament from your mantle or attach it to a special gift.  If you make several extra-long ones, you could even fill up an entire door frame–perfect if you’re hosting a Valentine party!
Creative, simple valentine decoration

For more Valentine craft ideas for kids (and adults!), check out last year’s Valentine blog posts.  We also made Valentine paper bouquets, a heart garland and heart cluster ornaments!

Easy Ways to Fill Your Summer With Creativity!

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

Are you kids home from school and in need of engaging activities?  Or maybe you home school and want to add a little extra creativity to your summer days?  Art projects are the perfect way to fill up long, sunny days on the deck, rainy days indoors, or vacations on the road.

Projects that can go from indoors to outdoors are ideal.   One fabulous summer project for little ones is to make fairy houses and bug habitats out of natural materials.  You can start inside by sketching a design and making a list of materials, or just improvise while you look around the backyard or a nearby park.  Then pick a location where you can imagine fairies nesting or bugs working, and make them a house with natural found items.  Here’s a paper version of a bug habitat we made with our Wool Felt Bug Kit and some other supplies (imagine what you could make with branches, stones and leaves!):

Inspiration for your bug habitat!

Our Bubble Wands Kit is another great example.  You can design and make the bubble wands inside or out, and then play with them outside for hours.

Bubble Wand Kits

Image via Magic Cabin

Art journaling is a great way to keep the creativity flowing all summer.  You can set a goal of one page a day, and throw it in a purse or tote bag to bring it along on vacations and long car rides.

The Perfectly Portable Art Journal Kit

Art journaling is great for all ages, and doesn’t require a big investment in materials.  The Artterro Art Journal Kit makes it especially easy to get started, with helpful tips and inspiring examples included.

Exploring Their Art Journal Kits

We love to decorate our gardens in the summer!  Whether you have a small patio garden or a flourishing urban farm, your already-delightful garden will be even more beautiful with some garden art.  We put copper wire and glass beads in our Garden Art Kit, which are perfect for reflecting light and adding visual interest to a potted plant.  You can also make decorative plant labels out of recycled materials and collect stones to make small garden paths.

Add some art to a potted plant!

What are some of your favorite creative summer activities?

Top 5 Reasons to Go to the Green Festival!

Friday, May 11th, 2012

1. The Green Kids Zone!

This photo of the Chicago Green Festival can’t even capture all the fun being had:

- Artterro bookmaking project       – Story Time Yoga

- Hula hoops & balance boards     – Delicious snacks from Cliffbar

- Two very different petting zoos (one with fuzzy bunnies and one with less fuzzy millipedes, roaches, worms and tarantulas!)

2. Scary Styrofoam Monster!

It’s huge, right?  Actually, this big, unfriendly giant is made up of only a fraction of the Styrofoam containers that the New York city school system uses Every Single Day.  Now that is scary.  But it also seems like something that would be easy to fix, if enough people speak out about it.  The Green Festival is a great place to learn about problems while simultaneously brainstorming solutions and making connections with others who want to help.

3. Delicious Organic/ Fairtrade/ Handmade/ Heirloom/ Raw/ Nutritious FOOD!

There was something for everyone in Chicago, from raw lemon bars to vegan lasagna.  I think we sampled every brand of fair trade chocolate known to man.  Yum.

4. The message of “Less Consumerism and Better Consumerism.”

So many of us buy more than we need, wasting money, resources and space.  Events like the Green Festival remind us of the cost of excessive consumerism, and also give us great alternatives to consider.  Some of our favorites from the festival are Mata Traders for gorgeous fair trade dresses and accessories handcrafted by a women’s cooperative in India, Malia Designs for beautiful bags and wallets that support organizations dedicated to ending human trafficking, and Cliffbar, one of the event’s sponsors and a great green business role model.

5. Meeting future leaders of the Green Movement:Seeing so many kids running around the Green Festival, learning about their world and what they can do to protect it from harm, is so inspiring and hopeful!  These kids will grow up very aware of the challenges we face and they’ll have the tools they need to think of CREATIVE solutions!

Thanks to everyone at Green Festivals for organizing a wonderful event and inviting us to be a part of it.  You inspire us!

NY Gift Fair: Finding Our Niche

Saturday, February 11th, 2012

One of the coolest things about the New York International Gift Fair is how it promotes sustainable ideals and innovative products.  We were thrilled to have our Art Journal Kit and Wool Felt Bug Kit selected for the SustainAbility: Design for a Better World display, which meant being eligible for one of the exclusive Eco-Choice Awards.

SustainAbility Display

Only about half of the applicants were chosen for the display, so we felt incredibly honored to be included!

Here’s the bug habitat we made to show off our Wool Felt Bug Kit.

Art Bug Habitat

We also tried for the Best New Product with our Art Journal Kits.  Here they are in the Baby & Child display:

Although we didn’t take home any awards this time, it felt great to be recognized for our values along with our product design, and we left the gift fair feeling like we had connected with just the like-minded retailers we’ve been looking for.

We wrote orders for eco-boutiques on the hunt for sustainable, sophisticated gifts, museum stores looking for the next generation of arts and crafts for their art-loving customers and eclectic gift shops that are responding positively to consumer demand for US-made products.

Our Eco Art Kits were just what these buyers were looking for!  People told us over and over that they were grateful we were there.  We are proud to partner with so many stores that share our values.  Here are just a few of our newest retail partners:

The Guggenheim Museum

Fair Indigo

Contemporary Jewish Museum

greendesign

Green Ink

Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture

We can’t wait to reach a whole new audience through these great accounts.

As always, if you have a favorite local store that you think should stock our kits, please tell the manager!  Or tell us and we’ll contact them for you.  Word-of-mouth is the best advertising for a small, sustainable business like ours!

Bringing Art into the Community

Friday, August 5th, 2011

We’ve been having lots of fun on the road this summer, offering a free art project at all sorts of community events like the Chicago Green Festival and the Midwest Renewable Energy Fair.  It’s a great opportunity to connect with our customers and see how people of all ages and backgrounds respond to our products.  Kids light up when they see all the colorful papers and beads, and dig in without needing any instructions.  Their parents often sit down and join them, with assurance from us that it’s “not just for kids!”

Bookmarks

Bookmark Art

Our fans prove time and again that when you start with beautiful materials, like our handmade papers…

Handmade Paper

Showing off our 100% recycled, handmade paper!

…you’ll end up with something lovely!  Here’s a colorful collage bookmark complete with threaded border:

Flower Collage Bookmark

Flower Collage Bookmark

This is definitely the most beautiful, sparkly chicken we’ve ever seen on one of our bookmarks.  Look how the artist used our textured paper to make different kinds of feathers:

Artterro Chicken Bookmark

Pretty Chicken

These young ladies spent the better part of a day at our table, proving that our kits appeal to a wide range of ages:

Artterro Fans

Artterro Fans at the Energy Fair.

Check out the detailing on this artist’s tree and river collage bookmark:

Tree & River Collage Bookmark

Tree & River Collage Bookmark

Just beautiful.  Every time we pack up to leave another fun festival or fair, we leave with renewed purpose, excited to bring creativity and open-ended art to as many people as we can!

I hope you can make it to one of our frequent community events to make something beautiful yourself!  Follow us on Facebook or Twitter to find out where we’ll be next!  Our growing company relies on word of mouth to reach new customers, so your support truly helps us bring more art and creativity to the world.  Thanks for being a part of our success!