DIY Halloween Candy Bags and Halloween Gift Wrap

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays.

I love that it can be just as fun for kids as for adults, and it’s a perfect opportunity to exercise a ton of creativity, both in choosing AND creating your halloween costume (here’s my zombie costume from last year and here’s one of Chris‘, a mad scientist).

I also love handing out candy (and scaring the older kids)—but it wasn’t until this year that it occurred to me that I could combine my love of cute gift wrapping with my love of Halloween.  I am working on some new styles, but for now, here are some of my favorite…..

DIY Halloween Candy Bags

….plus other Halloween-themed gift wrapping!

 These super simple and fun googly-eyed paper ghost candy bags by Craft-o-Maniac:

DIY Halloween Candy Bags

These cute little owl candy bags you can make with a free printable from Paper Crave:

DIY Halloween Candy Bags

 

This fantastic witches broom candy bag free printable from LollyJane:

DIY Halloween Candy Bags

 

Lastly, here are a few Halloween Gift Wrap ideas—they take a bit more time so might not be as good for handing out as DIY Halloween candy bags, but if you have only a few kids you’re giving a special gift to for Halloween, they’d be just the ticket!

This adorable “What’s in there” box from Growing Spaces:

DIY Halloween Gift Wrap

 

This gothic Black & White Gift Wrap style from Nordic Bliss appears to be made for Christmas, but I think with very few tweaks (say a spider on the white ones, a little pumpkin or dead leaf on the black ones) they could make great Halloween gift boxes!

Black White Gift Wrap

I’ll be working on some of my own styles this weekend that are a bit more generally Autumn-themed, so stay tuned…

Popular Subscription Service : A Wait List Solution

We get a lot of questions from fans about our subscription wait list, so I thought I could go ahead and answer a bunch of them here.

The scenario:

We are overbooked.  We started out as a small subscription service 5 years ago, but now find ourselves amongst some of the most popular subscription service out there in terms of customer demand vs. our ability to supply everyone with subscriptions!

We want to be able to bring everyone on board, but it’s tough.  We only work with a single individual artist each month, which means there is a limit to the number of items they can produce without losing any of the care and quality they put into each one.

Popular Subscription Service : Fair Ivy's solution

Popular Subscription Service : Our solution

A wait list has been implemented, but it’s quite lengthy!  Whenever a current customer’s subscription ends, we offer that spot to the first person on our wait list.  In the past we have had no more than 5-6 spots open each month.

But there is hope—even if you are far down the wait list!  Sometimes people on our wait list hope to get invited in time for an important occasion, such as a girlfriend’s birthday.  If the timing isn’t right when their invite does arrive, they may sometimes pass on the invite.

Secondly—we DO hope to someday soon open up a second subscription, sending very similar items each month but with different artists.  That way we can offer twice as many subscriptions per month and let more people in on the surprise fun.  If that happens your spot on the wait list could jump you right on board!

Thirdly, we plan to start doing a blog post each month on a popular subscription service that we personally love (but send different types of things than Fair Ivy, such as Panty by Post), so you can check those out while you wait for your subscription to Fair Ivy to begin.

Want to sign up for our wait list?

With a Fair Ivy subscription, a new artist delivers a high-quality handmade (& hand wrapped) gift to your mailbox every single month—for just $30/month.

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Recycled Gift Wrap DIY – Or, Gift Wrapping Handmade Products

I’m not sure when it happened, but at some point in my life I became nutty about cute gift wrapping. Combine that with an eternal love of crafting, upcycling, and generally being thrifty….and you have the perfect storm.

Part of my job here at Fair Ivy is to ensure that the gifts sent to our monthly surprise subscribers are wrapped in a cute and unique way.  We know that a good chunk of the experience of getting a monthly surprise package is the actual unwrapping event—so the gift wrap is definitely an important part!  However, a lot of our new favorite artists are facing gift wrapping handmade products for the first time, and it can seem like a daunting task.

But over the years, the great thing I’ve realized about gift wrapping is that the more mis-mashed, recycled, and made-up it is, the cuter and more personal it looks.  Take the image below for example:

Recycled Gift Wrap DIY - Or, Gift Wrapping Handmade Products

To make this, I started with the inside of a brown paper grocery bag.  I found a piece of random scrap fabric and cut a strip, and used 5 pieces of blue/green string to go on top of it.  I made the little white dots with paint, and plucked a small leaf from a plant outside.  The tag I just cut out of a scrap of paper I rescued from my recycling bin.

I spent nothing on the wrapping whatsoever, yet it looks a lot more adorable than your generic wrapping paper job.  It also feels a lot more like it contains some kind of quirky artisan bath product or handmade jewelry—in other words, it looks thoughtful.  It took about 10 minutes, but most of that time was waiting for the white paint to dry.

Wouldn’t you squeal with delight if you received that as a gift from a friend?  They probably would think it was wrapped by a fancy store, rather than recycled gift wrap from your own home!

Recycled Gift Wrap – A super straightforward DIY

So, using recycled gift wrap is a great way to gift wrap handmade products if you have a store (like on Etsy), or if you just want your personal gift to have an extra thoughtful vibe.  There are a thousand ways to do something like this, but I’m going to do the absolute simplest version I can come up with—in the hopefully unlikely scenario that you are at home and literally have no crafting materials like ribbon or paint or even gardeners twine.  In my opinion, it isn’t the absolute cutest way you could wrap something—but it takes a very bare-bones approach if you have no materials.

This style is best suited for a smaller gift, like jewelry.

Recycled Gift Wrap - Easy gift wrapping ideas

Materials:

  • Brown paper (e.g. grocery bag)
  • White paper strip
  • Pen
  • Some sort of a piece of a plant—flowers, leaves, dead twigs
  • Tape or glue

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With your pen, create all kinds of linear floopity patterns (that’s a Lucy-ism) on the brown paper.  You can really do anything, but if you know of something in particular that your gift recipient likes, include a line of some of those—like cats, for example.  I included a line in cursive that says “Happy Birthday Sarah!”, since this gift is going to Sarah for her birthday.

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This took a few minutes.  Wrap it on up using tape or glue.  I like the pattern to go diagonally across the box, but if you’re more of the straight-laced-variety, you can align it.

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Add a white strip of paper around the thinner part of the box, and then a smaller strip of the same brown paper on top of that. Slip your plant piece underneath—and you’re done!

Recycled Gift Wrap - Easy gift wrapping ideas

Recycled Gift Wrap DIY - Easy gift wrapping ideas

I hope you give it a shot—if so, tag a picture on Instagram or Twitter (@fairivy #HandmadeGiftWrap).  You could probably even create this from random papers sitting in your car, if you’re seriously having a last-minute panic—I may give that a shot next and see what happens!

Anywho, wrap on!

Fair Ivy: Now a Vegan monthly subscription box

Fair Ivy - vegan monthly subscription boxBeen looking for a vegan monthly subscription box?  Well you’re in luck….Fair Ivy is now a vegan-friendly subscription box!

I have been toying with the idea for awhile, but it wasn’t until I started doing some work with the vegan film and recipe company Forks Over Knives that things really started to click.

Fair Ivy is now vegan-friendly.  Get handmade monthly surprises in your mailbox with this vegan monthly subscription box

 

Vegan Monthly Subscription Box : What does it mean?

Firstly, it does NOT mean:

The move towards Fair Ivy being a vegan-friendly subscription will not change the style, vibe or quality of the items you find in the hand-wrapped gifts mailed out each month.  It also does not mean that the subscription is targeted only at vegans (e.g. you won’t be receiving any vegan cheese!).

It does mean:

What it means that we will not be selecting artists or handmade gifts that are not vegan-friendly.  None of our handmade surprise gifts are made from animal products, nor are tested on animals.  This also includes the gift-wrapping for each of the surprise gifts.

We think this is a positive move towards a healthier and more kind gift box experience, and we are happy our company can make this move for both ourselves and our subscribers.

I hope you enjoy the changes, and would love to hear any feedback you might have on this new concept of our handmade subscriptions now also being a vegan monthly subscription box.

Warmly,
Lucy
Fair Ivy Owner

 

Handmade Floral Scarf

Handmade Floral Scarf - one of the surprise gifts that get sent monthly from fairivy.com!

In June, subscribers received a gorgeous floaty handmade floral scarf just in time for summer fashion!  Made by TingLisa, this was our first surprise scarf in a really long time and our first-ever summer scarf!

Shall we open up the package?  Let’s go!

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We always love cute handmade stickers or tags.  It really just drives that handmade feeling home!  And that sparkly paper?  Too cute!

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Handmade Floral Scarf - one of the surprise gifts that get sent monthly from fairivy.com!

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TingLisa’s artist info card reads:

My name is Ting Ting, full time MIT employee, part time Etsy shop owner.  I grew up in an artist house, where my grandfather was an architect; my aunt is a music conductor.  Upon their influence I started making crafts since elementary school, won a few awards in the school district.  When I became adult, I developed tremendous interest in beading and jewelry designing, made a lot of jewelries for friends and coworkers as wedding gifts.  Lately, I shifted my focus into designing fabulous and stylish women’s fashion items.

At TingLisa, I strive to create fun, vibrant, unique and functional fashion accessories.  This month I am very excited to present my newest product—the Cutest Floral Print Scarf.  This light weight scarf is super soft!  It hugs your neck with the gentlest touch and incredible amount of happiness.  I chose this floral print because it is perfect for warmer sunny days, and I designed the scarf wide enough to be worn as a shawl and long enough to tie around your neck twice as an infinity scarf, to create a versatile look.  To see more of my unique creations, please stop by my Etsy store.  Happy Summer!

Handmade Floral Scarf - surprise in the mail from Fair Ivy

Handmade Floral Scarf - surprise in the mail from Fair Ivy

Handmade Floral Scarf - surprise in the mail from Fair Ivy

Handmade Floral Scarf - surprise in the mail from Fair Ivy

Handmade Floral Scarf - surprise in the mail from Fair Ivy

Handmade Floral Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Floral Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Floral Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Floral Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Floral Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Flower Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Flower Scarf - Fair Ivy surprise gift

Handmade Summer Scarf Print - one of Fair Ivy's monthly gifts they mail out!

It’s hard to express in photos just how soft and lovely this scarf is.

So we suggest scooping one up to see—if you weren’t a subscriber in June, head on over to TingLisa to pick one up yourself!

Handmade Silver Pinecone Necklace

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This June, our subscribers received a lovely dainty handmade silver pinecone necklace from Song Yee Designs.

Shall we open it up?  Let’s begin with the shipping envelope (A little Did You Know for those of you who aren’t current subscribers: Every surprise comes from a different artist each month, so the way they are shipped and packaged is always different!  That’s why we always show the shipping box/baggie, so you can see how even the way it arrives is a surprise!):

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Song Yee’s info card reads:

“Hello! My name is Song Yee and I started making jewelry for myself just for fun, but I enjoyed it so much that I decided to open my online shop in April 2013.  Song Yee Designs is based out of Costa Mesa, CA and features a handmade collection of minimalist and gemstone jewelry.”

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Cute natural gift wrapping

Cute natural gift wrapping - Fair Ivy

Natural gift packaging from Fair Ivy

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Handmade Silver Pinecone Necklace

Handmade Silver Pinecone Necklace

Handmade Silver Pinecone Necklace

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We absolutely adored this addition to the Fair Ivy surprise jewelry collection and heard from a lot of you (and bloggers!) that you guys did too!  And we loved how the packaging even resembled the nature-inspired design! So rest assured—you’ll be seeing a lot more of Song Yee’s wonderful designs in our surprises in the future!

Have a wonderful surprise-filled week!

– the Fair Ivy team

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