I'm beyond excited about this post! I wanted to write about this last year, but things were sorta crazy and I never got around to it. Two years ago, I found someone on Etsy who makes custom made sock monkeys.
The kiddos love monkeys, and Alex was starting to have an inkling of a desire to start collecting sock monkeys a few years ago, so that is how I stumbled across Marsha and her amazing talent. Back in '09 (wow, that sounds long ago!) I asked if she could play Santa's elf and make Mario and Peach monkeys for me for Christmas - the kids were really into Mario that year and were even Mario and Peach for Halloween.
She seemed really excited by the challenge, and I eagerly awaited my package. Let me tell you, I was not nearly expecting the quality of the monkeys she made, especially the clothing! They were marvelous! Fabulous! Amazingly cute and sturdy and gorgeous and... well, you get the idea!
Aren't they adorable?! Peach even has a necklace and earrings!
Santa usually puts a stuffed animal in the kids' stockings each Christmas, but these bad boys were so big he couldn't fit them in with everything else there was! Santa must have thought this was a cute presentation for their tvs anyhow :)
Can you tell they were a wee bit excited?
Last year The Last Airbender was a big deal in our house - remember when we went to see it at the movies?
I asked Santa's very best elf if she could work with me again, and I was again floored by the quality and talent of her work! She was very thorough, looking through pictures online and asking her husband (a fellow Avatar fan) for ideas and making sure it was as authentic as possible. You have to admit, there is no mistaking who those monkeys are supposed to be!
Details!! Look at the beading in her hair!
She gave me a few options on how to do the arrow, and I thought the cross stitching might look more "tattoo-like," and it turned out phenomenal!
Tee-hee, I'm nerdy like that! <3
Santa managed to stuff them in this time it seems
And yet again, another major success!
Now that the holidays are upon us, I contacted Elf Marsha through her Etsy shop and asked her to be a part of our new Christmas tradition again. She is in the process of creating Harry Potter and Hermione monkeys!! I cannot tell you how much I'm geeking out right now and impatiently waiting on the newest members of our family. I swear, I love these so much that I just want to make a list of awesome characters and have Marsha make me my very own collection! I promise I'll share Harry and Hermione as soon as I get them!
I love these monkey so much that not only am I writing to you sharing my obsession, but to prove how amazing they are (and to help promote Marsha's shop "A Barrel Of Sock Monkeys", which allows her to stay home with her son!), I'm doing my very first giveaway! Not because I was paid to do this, not because I was given these for free to write about them. Nope, I'm paying for this out of my pocket because they are worth it :) Credit must be given where its due :)
Below are the rules to my giveaway - you don't have to do them all, but the more you do, the more chances you have to win! If you are the very lucky winner, you will be in contact with the Barrel of Sock Monkeys store to design your very own monkey. Please, only people in the US or FPO/APO addresses (hey Atsugi peeps!), I don't want to stress Marsha with shipping to Timbuktu!
I will accept entries until midnight Pacific time November 20, 2011 and announce the winner the following Monday.
~ Rules ~
(contest now closed)
(contest now closed)
1. Follow my blog! (only required one)
2. Leave a comment letting me know what your favorite Etsy store is
3. Leave a comment with some of your custom sock monkey ideas
4. Leave a comment sharing an interesting or unique gift idea
5. Share this post - via blog, Facebook, whatever! We need to spread the word of worthy self-employed artists and put money back in their pockets, rather than those who ship production overseas for a higher profit yield :P
Let me know in your comment all of your entries so I can count each of your entires. Also, if I don't know you personally or through FB, please leave your email address so I can contact you :)
Good luck, this is a great giveaway!