6 Ways to Bestow Spring in a Mug!...

Spring is certainly a time of celebration and smiles as mother nature slowly wakes up from her long winter's nap. I always look forward to the warming of the mornings and the chance, to at last, take my hot cup of coffee or tea outdoors and explore the latest buds and blossoms in the garden. It's a lovely way to wake up and start the day. As the two go hand in hand, I thought I would have a litte fun and share with you 6 Sweet Ways to Give the Gift of Spring in a Mug! I currently have 2 illustrated mugs available in my Zazzle Shop that promise to make the perfect spring gift to both family and friends (or yourself!). Whether it's in celebration of Easter, the changing of the seasons, a birthday, a thank you, a hostest gift or just an act of simple kindness, these suggestions promise to bring smiles to those you share them with. The mugs are certainly custom and unique and serve as a functional base and vase for whatever you choose to fill it with in your presentation. The ideas are certainly endless, and if you have more, please feel free to share them here with our readers. Enjoy and THANK YOU for spreading smiles through my art!

~ Johanna


* Idea # 1 gets top ranking with me as it is probably the easiest and most cost effective to produce. Plus, the results are so dear! Spring invites a whole host of flowering bulb plants that often pop up all over the landscape. Snip a few from here or there. Daffodils are always a favorite, so just trim them to height and place in water. If your flower-filled mug must go on a journey before it is gifted, then anchor your flowers in wet floral foam, cut to size. This keeps those pretties fresh and firmly grounded while eliminating the splashing of water and potential spills.


* Although Idea # 2 takes a little more work, the results are too sweet for words! A tuft of fresh wheatgrass spells out spring, and health-minded folks love to juice it in their smoothies. Wheatgrass can be found at most health food grocers in the produce section. Purchase a square of it and cut it to size and stuff it into your mug. Alternatively, with more time and patience, you can grow your own with organic soil and wheatgrass seeds. With a little care, your grass will be perky in 10 days or less. I poked a pink lollipop in for pizazz, but again the ideas are endless. The recipient can keep the lively mug in their windowsill till the grass is used or fades, or they can even share it with their feline friends who also adore this green treat. In the end, they are still left with an adorable mug. Just wash well and enjoy!


* Idea # 3 is the choice for your chocolate & coffee loving friends! I chose dark chocolate covered coffee beans to go with the coffee mug theme. A simple cellophane bag and pretty bow will do the trick. Other suggestions may be chocolate covered nuts or other cocoa-themed sweets. Take it a step further and fill a cellophane bag with homemade chocolate chip cookies ~ YUM! Now, that woud certainly taste quite delightful with a cup of spring coffee in one of my sweet mugs :)


* Idea # 4 is certainly for those with a sweet tooth! Fill carrot cellophane bags with orange jelly beans and ground them in a base of spring green paper packing grass. These bags are easily found online. Do a search for "cone shaped cello bags" or "carrot cellophane bags" and you should find a variety of vendors offering cone shaped packaging, perfect for this sweet application!


* Idea # 5 takes sugar to a higher level of sweetness! Make a bouquet that celebrates the well-known "peep"! Poke these marshmallow bunnies or chicks into wooden skewer sticks, cut to length if necessary and anchor them into a mug fill with spring-hued candies, such as M&M's. What an adorable hostess gift this would make at a spring party. Suddenly, your unique gift takes center stage!


* And Idea # 6 showcases the traditional chocolate bunny. Make sure to purchase one that will fit snuggly in your muggly :) With a little spring green construction paper and scissors, cut a continuous strip of zig-zaggy paper grass. Cut to fit the diameter of your mug, tape it end to end and tuck it down & around your bunny. If you find him wiggling around too much, tuck a little tissue paper down below and around him to set him just right, and add those decorative blades as your final touch!

I hope I have inspired you with these 6 Sweet Ideas to Bestow Spring in a Mug! As I said earlier, please feel free to comment with more fun ideas. Sharing is caring, and it is always FUN to hear from you.

Now, go pick up a SPRING MUG or 2 from My Zazzle Shop!  Thank you for your support & kindness...

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Postage with a Spring Flare...

Spring will soon be in the air, and I look forward to its arrival! Due dates for spring 2013 licensed products have been my focus this month, and the imagery I have been creating inspired a new series of 6 spring-themed postage stamps. I know that the USPS is in decline, as we all become more and more computer savvy with our communications and correspondence. But, I personally dislike the thought of losing its service. I always enjoy receiving cards, notes and parcels from family and friends. And sometimes, opening the mailbox can be quite a treat!  The very way a letter can be beautifully addressed with the personal touch of a dear friend's penmanship is like nothing else. The color of the envelope, feel of the paper pressing against your anxious fingers, along with stickers and sweet postage stamps complete the package and raise the level of anticipation to open it! In celebration of this centuries-old tradition, I am now offering to you, a whimsical collection of my illustrated postage stamps, now available in my Zazzle Shop. Apply them to your Spring & Easter cards and correspondence or to seasonal party invitations, promising both smiles and lots of fun. These butterflies, bunnies and birds will bring frolic and cheer to those lucky recipients. Make your messages memorable and sweet while also keeping the history and tradition of sending and receiving postal mail alive.

Than you!
~ Johanna

To Purchase my Illustrated Postage Stamps & more delightful products, click HERE...

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Grand Opening @ Zazzle + Door Prizes!....

HOORAY! Finally the day is here and the doors are now open at my Zazzle Shop!  Zazzle is a unique, online marketplace that allows me to add my illustrative images to a VARIETY of goods and then offer them in a customizable way to you. SEE the examples below featuring just one of my images & how it can be applied to various shirts! These are just a few examples out of whole slew of products to choose from. And as a Gift of Thanks for your patience and support, I am offering 3 Door Prizes to my patrons! To celebrate the first 3 weeks of my Grand Opening, I will be tossing your names into a hat. For every $25 you spend (before shipping fees) your name will be entered for a Door Prize. For example, if you spend $75 in my Zazzle shop during these first 3 weeks, your name will be entered 3 times! At 11pm EST on July 6th, this contest ends, and I will be drawing the winners! The winners' names will then be posted here on my blog! What's there to win you ask? Just keep reading, and please scroll down for my Tips on ordering my products on Zazzle. Make sure you save and bookmark the JohannaParkerDesign Zazzle Shop and visit often. THANK YOU!


Yes, you're right! That's me flaunting my new Zazzle chandelier owl shirt! In surround, are a handful of styles you can choose from for the same design, and when you go to my shop, you'll see even more! For a peek at a recent At Home photo shoot, you can see JP and myself modeling a couple other designs of mine. Visit my "Gearing up for Zazzle" blog post.

.... And here's a collage of various products that you can choose to place my art on! This is just a small sampling of the items available on Zazzle!

Now for those PRIZES.........


1st Prize: 
Dear Patrons, You could WIN this ORIGINAL Mini Ghost Bust named "Boozazzle!" 
He is signed by me and dated, 1/1... and I just finished this little sweetie. 
Again, every time you spend $25 (before shipping fees) in my Zazzle Shop, you will be entered to win this unique guy along with the other prizes listed below!


2nd Prize: 
WIN this pair of VERY LIMITED Nut Cups that I designed for Bethany Lowe Designs. As cute as they were, they never made last year's catalog, and only 70 of each were made. So, the winner of this prize will win a pair of collectible Nut Cups, marked 1/70, on the underside of each.


3rd Prize:
Straight from this year's product line of via Bethany Lowe Designs are these 2 illustrated cardboard cone hangers that I designed for Halloween.

Remember, this Giveaway ends on July 6 at 11pm EST when the winning entries will be drawn. Please check back in July for the list of lucky winners and THANK YOU for celebrating my Grand Opening by shopping at my new Zazzle Shop and spreading the word to your family and friends!

* Tips when Shopping on Zazzle.........

Now that I have had a few chances to order and purchase some of my items via Zazzle, I have learned a few tips that I would like to pass on to you!

First of all, please be aware that you can "Choose your style and color" on any of my products. For example, if you see an image that you like, preferably on a different style of shirt, just choose another shirt! This option appears once you have clicked on any product. To the right of the product, you will see several thumbnail images displaying a variety of options for the particular illustration you have chosen! Take notice that many products come in a variety of colors too. If you want something other than white, I recommend choosing a lighter hue so that my images show nicely on your product. Click and preview your top faves and click "Done" once you are satisfied. And do take note that the price will fluctuate depending on the type of shirt, type of keychain, etc etc....

For the advanced user, you can also choose the orange "Customize It" button on any of my items! Under this option, you can resize and position the image. The magnifying glasses allow you to enlarge or reduce the image, but be careful not to enlarge the image too much as it will be cropped off at the edges. Also, the four arrows allow you to move the image up or down and side to side to your desired placement. Once all is looking right, PLEASE click on the "Design" Button right above the image and then click the magnifiying glass that sits to the right of the "Design" button. If the graphic stays within the dashed boundaries and no clipping is occurring, ALL is well! But, if you see that part of the text or graphic have disappeared, then resize it or move it appropriately so that this is not an issue. Otherwise, it WILL print that way ~ trust me! And for apparel items, you can click on the "Model" button above the image to see how it looks on a model! Now, if ALL of this seems too complicated, don't click the "Customize It" button to alter the image! You can certainly leave it as is, and you should be pleased with the results.

Also, when ordering apparel, please scroll down and read Zazzle's sizing guidelines for each style of clothing. You'll notice that they offer NOTES on some of the items and may recommend that you order one or two sizes larger depending on the specific shirt, etc..... If you do receive an item that is not sized appropriately, etc... Zazzle has been very accommodating in replacing items until the customer is satisfied.

And to simplify your shopping experience, I have organized my products into Store Categories. The row of folders going across the top of my shop help to guide you to specific products. Use the left and right arrrows to view all of the folders, and do take advantage of this feature in case you get a little lost as you scroll down the main page of products.

Again, if you see an image that's not offered on a hoodie or perhaps as an infant's creeper, you can simply create what you want by clicking on they varying options in the "Choose your style and size" area. Fortunately, Zazzle offers you a preview of how each product will look! And if you have any troubles, please feel free to contact me or the Zazzle Team! Also, If you have any recommendations for illustrations not being offered on certain items, again let me know! I can certainly take note of your requests and update my shop as soon as possible with your favored suggestions. Thank you for your support!
Spread the word and tell your friends that Johanna Parker Design now has a Zazzle Shop!

~ Thank you & have FUN shopping! ~
( And check back often for NEW items! )

~ Johanna :)

Gearing up for Zazzle...

I know I've been teasing about opening my Zazzle Shop, and yes, I'm STILL teasing you! But, I promise to open shop this month with a Grand Opening Event and a few Door Prizes to boot! We ordered some sample shirts and a coffee mug, all featuring just a few of the illustrations that I will be embellishing my products with. Finally, as the weather and our schedules lined up just right, we had a chance to model some of these shirts yesterday afternoon. I wanted to make sure that the shirts fit properly and the prints were to my liking. So far so good ~ let me know what you think! I am finishing up a series of whimsical illustrations that too will be applied to shirts, totes, mugs and the like! So, please stay tuned!  Enjoy the teaser for now........

* Me, modeling my classic Johanna Parker Design jack-o'-lantern logo!

* Pure silliness here as JP passes me my dancing black cat coffee mug!

* My chandelier owl image in black, boldly marks the front of JP's Halloween orange tee!

* OH, is that an owl on my chest?!  Hehe!...  Again, the same owl image as above, but this time filled in with Halloween hues atop a field of white ~ very striking!

* Why not get coordinated!  If you love black cats, go ahead and accessorize!  :-)

* Just another couple shot to show off our new tees...


Thanks for peeking, and I promise to open the doors soon to my Zazzle Shop. You can certainly save the LINK to my shop for now and become a FAN for Zazzle updates. If you'd like to see a few more images from our silly photo shoot, please visit my Johanna Parker Design Facebook Fan Page. Hit the "LIKE" button once there to stay in the loop about my Grand Opening, door prizes and more!

Thanks for stopping by,
~ Johanna

Dazzled by Owls and such...

Here I am again with another quick update from the studio of all things whimsical and fun! My artist hand has been busy at work, illustrating and designing some fun new characters for my new line of products this year! I FINALLY finished my owl illustration that I introduced to you earlier this month. He is complete with a set of mesmerizing eyes and slated for various products SOON to hit my Zazzle Shop! I have been playing on my computer and have made various versions of this owlicious character, some for ALL seasons and some for my favorite holiday! Can you guess which one that is?? I am including a few peeks below, and I hope you return when the doors open to my new online store! I have ordered a few samples for myself for final inspection. Once those pass the test, I will let you know! Enjoy the peek and have a very happy week!

~ Johanna

* For a more all-season approach, I eliminated the jack-o'-lantern that this sweet owl is holding in my original illustration, added a calming field of soft green and will apply him to various products..... I'm thinking the tote bag below will be Oh-So-Fun and functional!.....

* Zazzle is great because you can Customize your purchase! So, if you love the image, but want it on a smaller tote, shopping bag, vertical tote, etc.. you can add my image to your preferred choice!

* Of course, this image was a pleasure to create! I applied a series of bold Halloween hues and filled in my base drawing with a warm, autumn palette! Check back later to see this spooky character on apparel and more....

* Oh, and lookie who we have here! It's my stylin' dancing cat from the previous blog post. "Lets' Boogie" will certainly be a fun way to kick start your day :) And, again if you prefer the image on the opposite side of the mug or perhaps a different mug, it's an easy click away!

I would LOVE your feedback! Visit Zazzle's Main page and click their CREATE link to see the various products they offer. If you have your heart set on something in particular that you would like me to to offer in my shop, please let me know!

Thank you......

PS: As you can see, I have been a bit preoccupied with illustration and graphic design this month. As a result, I will not be posting a new Halloween original on EHAG's Emporium this evening. Fingers are crossed that I will be more prepared in March!