Feature: 42 Nerdtastic Place

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Happy Monday, Hackers!

Today I want to tell you about a wonderful place you should all visit: 42 Nerdtastic Place.

Last month, I was working at a convention out in Schaumburg, IL for the television show, Gotham. It was a small show, it only had a few vendors but there was a new booth that I hadn’t seen before. I was intrigued. A friend of mine and I went over to check it out on Friday night during pre-registration and the young woman I spoke to was an absolute delight. She told me all about her products and that they are all handmade. I told her about my quest to become truly cruelty-free in my product usage and asked about that. She said that not only are her products cruelty-free, they are 100% vegan. What caught my eye was the comprehensive selection of lip balms she had out (and it wasn’t even all that she offers). I had found out that the balm/chapstick I had been using most of my adult life wasn’t something I was comfortable using anymore (short version: the company itself is cruelty-free but the parent company is not). So I had been looking for a balm to replace it and was finding it difficult. You don’t want to spend money on something like that only to discover you hate it and you have this whole tube of it you won’t use. So a lot of the online options I was finding, I was hesitant to purchase. But here, I had testers.

Long story slightly less long, I fell in LOVE with these balms. It was like smoothing silk onto my lips and the scents were unique but still heavenly-scented. The best part was that they are GEEKY. This woman taylors her recipes and products to a myriad of fandoms.

I walked away from that convention with four new lip balms (two of which were Gotham-themed).

Now, I want to share this fabulous person and her equally fabulous products with you all!

Amanda Mayer launched 42 Nerdtastic Place on Etsy in 2014, starting out with fandom-themed jewelry and coasters. But Amanda’s crafty mind didn’t just stop there. She branched out, wanting to provide a plethora of items for shoppers. She started making other items, like scented candles and melting waxes, lip balms, room sprays, etc in addition to original items like necklaces, bracelets, and bag clips. Her site’s About page states that they “wanted the feel to be of a place you would go to when shopping for your Hogwarts school list or a place you might go to cozy up to fellow enthusiasts.” Amanda and her crack team have accomplished this goal resoundingly!

42 Nerdtastic Place sells both online and maintains a presence at local fan conventions so you have different ways to purchase products. They are also always expanding. The Gotham blends, for example, were created specifically for the Gotham convention (though Amanda had been asked by shoppers in the past). And it doesn’t just stop with television and movie fandoms. There are products that feature animation (both American and Japanese), fantasy creatures, literature, even musicals (I personally need to try the Forgotten Spot in the Caribbean – Hamilton body spray).

42 Nerdtastic Place offers the following items: Bag clips, bracelets, necklaces, Hogwarts House combs, air fresheners, candles, hair care & grooming products (like Asgards’s Finest Beard Oil…You too can have the beard of a god!), lip balms and lip sheers, perfumes, and wax melts. They also have some lovely gift sets and they offer samples (not something you come across for online stores much, in my limited experience).

Amanda has also generously provided all our Craft Hacker readers a discount code for 15% off any regular priced items. Simply input code CRAFTHACKER15 to receive 15% off any of their regular priced items!

Hope you all enjoy as much as I do, Hackers! Be beautiful to each other.


Beautiful and Spooky

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Happy Sunday, all!

I know I hinted at some fall décor in the next post but then something came across my feed that I simply HAD to share. These amazing little embroideries and artwork from French artist Petrichor are something that should be sought out and purchased immediately:

Not only does she hand embroider each of the delightful, dark images on the pins but many of her pieces of one of a kind. She also has an impressive line of lino-printed keepsake boxes:

So lovely and perfect for storing all of your precious bits and bobs.

Her main line of artwork is just as gorgeous, with more wonderfully witchy prints to be had:

These could arguably be considered fall décor but I’m more inclined to keep them up all year round.

If you fancy yourself some spooky items to adorn your walls or yourself, she can be found on her website, Etsy, Facebook, and Instagram. Please note that she also does custom designs! Also note that she is based out of France so some of her pages are in French.

Stay crafty!

~Laura


Tons of Tentacles

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Happy Sunday, all!

I’m not sure how much I have expressed my love of all things with tentacles. I am also not sure where this obsession started, save perhaps vague memories of the large octopus sculpture at the Shedd Aquarium. So I figured this week I would highlight some of the lovely pieces of cephalopod paraphernalia I’ve come across lately. First up being all of these wonderful clay pendants from Indolent Jellyfish:

The teeny pink dumbo octopus is soooooooooo cute! I also adore the sweet purple octo and the awesome vampire squid. The artist also has a plethora of very life-like nudibranchs, nautilus, cuttlefish, and (of course) jellyfish. I would like one of each, please. Up next, I wouldn’t mind giving our living room a bit of a bump with some gorgeous pyrography from Glenouther Crafts:

The patterning and shading really makes it!

Or perhaps if you or someone you love has a special occasion coming up (or maybe an important interview), consider one of these beautiful ties from one of my all time favorites, Cyberoptix:

It comes in the shade of your choice, of course.

Last but most definitely not least, I present a mug I’ve been lusting after ever since they made their debut…tentacle mugs from Dryad Pottery:

I love the blue ones best.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my tentacle-y romp this Sunday, next week will be a perfect time to start thinking about fall décor (yes, I can’t believe it’s that time, either).

Stay crafty!

~Laura


Etsy Shop Featurette: Identity Metals

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Who loves jewelry? I know I do, especially fandom-inspired things. I have a TARDIS necklace that is just the best. So when I stumbled across this little Etsy shop, my eyes just about popped out of my head.

Identity Metals is run by Katie Hroncich and is all about hand stamped metals. Every piece is unique in the smallest way. Katie explains in her Etsy bio that hand stamping means that no two pieces will ever be aligned or straight and that the pressure of the stamp gives a different depth and alignment to all the characters. These pieces are truly original and best of all, they go with everything.

There are bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. Fandoms featured include Supernatural, Teen Wolf, Game of Thrones (I personally adore the Game of Thrones Inspired – Moon of my Life, Sun and Stars Keychains), The Walking Dead and more. The best part of Katie’s shop is that she does customized pieces as well.

I highly recommend this shop to anyone who loves to wear their fandom heart on their sleeve…or neck…or ears. You can browse through the wonderful items at Identity Metals here.


Miniature Jewelry

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It’s well  documented how much I love jewelry, even thouogh I hardly wear it. 😉 Well I’m back with another artist that makes awesome jewelry; this time of things in miniature.

Design by British artists Milla and Olya of AllimYalo, their jewelry is all hand made replicas of foods and plants in miniature. The detail that they’re able to achieve on such a small scale is just amazing. The fruit pieces show it off the best, imho, but it’s all fabulous work.

You’ll have some shipping time to wait for if you live outside of the UK, but everything is reasonably priced for the excellent craftsmenship that’s gone into it. If you’re looking for early holiday shopping, I recommend giving them a look. 🙂


Moon Jewelry

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I love hand made jewelry. 99% of the time it’s so unique and unlike anything you’d find mass produced. Things that are also great? Space. In this case, the moon specifically.

This pair is just one of many pieces of jewelry hand made by the German shop, VillaSorgenfrei. They’re a group of 9 artists and artisans who design and make hundreds of unique piece of jewelry that are all inspired by nature. Their moon based pieces are hands down my biased favorite with this wrap watch taking the number one spot.

It’s beautifully simple so that it could easily pair with just about any outfit. 😀 Their items are all very reasonably priced too, which is just a bonus with good jewelry. If you haven’t heard of them before I recommend giving their shop a look through at the very least to enjoy all the pretty. 🙂


DIY Mermaid Crown

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My sister is expecting her second child within the next few weeks (aka not soon enough if you ask her) and has been nesting. She’s constantly fiddling with the baby’s room and fussing over it being “not ready” with her latest obsession (since the room actually is ready and has been for some time) being the decorations in the room. Since she lives by the beach doing a beach/mermaid theme appealed to her and she’s been bombarding me with every mermaid print/decoration she’s fallen in love with for the last 2 weeks.

Basically you have her to thank for today’s topic, lol.

Now this wouldn’t work well with a new born outside of a photo shoot of course, but she loves the idea  of using found shells from the beach near her home to make one. Personally I’d like a more tiara styled one, but that’s the beauty with this type of thing, once you know the basics, you can easily adjust it to suit your needs. 🙂


The Solar System on your Finger(s)

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Inna Monastyrna of Etsy shop jamincjewelry has created a pretty cool set for all you space enthusiasts out there.

They have the full 9 planets as a stackable ring set that you can wear all on one finger or dispersed about your hand. Made from sterling silver and a combination of glass and stone beads, this set is pretty beautiful. The Jupiter one is especially on point with it’s coloring, but I also love that Pluto got love and was included in the set. Forever in my heart you will always be a planet.

It’s sold out right now, but you should definitely check out their shop for some more excellent jewelry. 😀


Beaded Dragon Brooches

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Okay, I know we’ve all dabbled in beads for bracelets and necklaces at one point. Maybe you used seed beads and a stand to weave one just made some nice jewelry, but these? These dragons are something else entirely.

This is one of many custom designs by Russian artist Alyona Lytvin, and they are all just jaw dropping amazing. They are made mostly from beads and thread, with some wire and paint reinforcements for the fins.

I know they’re brooches too, but man I’d just want to keep it as a decoration piece! No way I’d risk something happening to this!! I love the addition of the sequins as scales for the sea dragons. Man they’re just all so beautiful!

I wish I could give you more info about the artist and the process but little it up in English about it on the store front, so I’m afraid we all just have to admire the shop and wonder. Perhaps even buy one yourself so you can study it up close. 🙂


Adorable Sterling Silver Origami Necklaces

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Inspired by her kids and with her parents background in art, California based jewelry artist, Cindy, designs beautiful tiny sculptures that resemble origami folding and cats them in sterling silver as jewelry.

Her shop is called Jamber Jewels and she specializes in minimalist jewelry. Her pieces can be bought as necklaces, charms, bracelets, and even earrings in all sorts of simple animal designs. I personally love the turtle and the elephant.  🙂

If origami isn’t your style she also has some simple geometric style pieces to appeal to any minimalist out there. All her work can be found at her etsy shop and extremely well priced. I highly recommend giving them a look. 🙂