Meet McCrea's Candies

Posted on November 27, 2017 | 0 Comments

The story behind McCrea's Candies and why VelvetCrate loves their caramels.

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Tags build your own, Candy, Holidays, McCrea's, products, VelvetCrate

The Anatomy of a VelvetCrate

Posted on October 10, 2017 | 0 Comments

“Taking the guesswork out of gift-giving”—that’s what VelvetCrate promised in 2014 with their carefully curated gift boxes. Not surprising, just three and a half years later they continue to bring joy to recipients all over—all year-round.

But did you know you can build your own?!

This fall, explore the anatomy of your own VelvetCrate, tailored to your recipient with their interests in mind. The founders set a precedent early on for each collection, with a variety of gifts, each VelvetCrate touched on four main areas: stationery or fine paper goods, artisanal treats, luxurious scented items, and useful/fun items.

With those themes in mind, they maintain the VelvetCrate shop with a manageable number of items (too many choices can add the guesswork back in!). This in turn allows gift-givers the chance build their own and still achieve the VelvetCrate panache! 

Check out these American-made items to go into your own VelvetCrate this fall.

Early Bird Kiss My Oats Granola – Checking the artisanal food box, this yummy blend of oats, and 100% real maple syrup almost reminds us of fall morning breakfast. For your food conscious friend, this Brooklyn-made granola is a treat by the spoonful or the bowlful.  

Illume Copper Rose hand cream - This lavishly scented hand cream is ideal for someone who enjoys the finer things. Made from coconut, jojoba oil, and mango butter (among other ingredients), this rich blend will leave hands feeling soft and beautiful.

Sideshow Press Message Pencils – For the one who loves to write notes. This set of five playful pencils will brighten up any desk. Sayings such as, “Happy Campers,” “What’s yet to be Discovered,” “Doing Good Deeds,” there will be a pencil for every occasion.

Rifle Paper Co. Lively Floral Set – Speaking of handwritten notes, the husband-wife team of Rifle Paper Co. know just how to make the perfect notecard. The Lively Floral Set offered at VelvetCrate is a creative mix of feminine and masculine floral patterns. Blank inside, one of the cards can easily make its way back to you as a Thank You!  - Katy Ibsen

Tags build your own, Early Bird Kiss My Oats, gift giving, Ilume, products, Rifle Paper Co., Sideshow Press, VelvetCrate

Rescuing after a Hurricane

Posted on September 14, 2017 | 0 Comments

We at VelvetCrate care deeply about those affected by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma; to so quickly have your life turned upside down is unimaginable. At this time we can only attempt to fathom the chaotic aftermath experienced by all—especially the voiceless animals without their families … without a home.


We adopted Tex in 2008 when he was about 2 years old. He had been a dog that had essentially been passed around through a few fosters/owners during his first few years of life. 

Tex the CatahoulaTex is a Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog (“Catahoula”). According to our unofficial research, they are the only dog native to the United States and were used by Southern Indian tribes as hunting dogs for alligator. This of course makes me laugh considering the meek demeanor of my dog—granted I’ve never put him face-to-face with a gator, so who knows? They are the state dog of Louisiana, and quite a few were displaced from Hurricane Katrina to shelters in Houston and Waco. We can trace Tex’s origins to Waco, and have come to the conclusion in our minds that his mom was a Katrina rescue dog. The timing is just all there! Flash forward a few years and now I can’t imagine our lives without our rescue. He definitely has his weird quirks and we can’t attest to where they came from, but he is the most fiercely loyal, lovable dog. Now, everyone in my family have at least one rescue dog. We’ve all adopted the motto “Adopt Don’t Shop.”

Fortunately, Tex had the opportunity to thrive after that, and it is our hope that many more animals will, following the recovery efforts of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.


So how can we help?

Regardless of where your home is, you can support the animal rescue efforts by donating to the ASPCA; 100 percent of donations go toward the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response Fund, which at this time is supporting efforts in Texas and in Florida

You can also consider donating directly to local organizations, such as the Houston SPCA, who are working fiercely to rehome stray animals separated from their families. As for shelter pets still seeking their furever homes, contact your local shelter to see if they are transferring in any animals from the affected areas, and how you can donate or volunteer.

In a time like this, every effort helps. As we’ve seen firsthand, it did for Tex. We hope you’ll join us in making a donation in the name of pets everywhere. - Katy Ibsen


Blogger Katy is a Midwest-based freelance writer and publishing consultant. When she's not pawing through a never-ending stack of magazines or traveling, she's catering to her two skinny hounds; Flint and Milo. And after a long day, for Katy, there is nothing better than a glass of wine and listening to old records with her husband.


Tags Animal Sheltering, ASPCA, Harvey, Houston, Irma, South Florida

Posting the Parks

Posted on August 23, 2017 | 0 Comments

National Parks Postcards

Just because summer is coming to a close doesn’t mean the parks are. There is still time to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the National Parks Service—especially through these imaginative postcards! 

A handful of designers at Anderson Design Group based in Nashville, created an award-winning National Parks poster series featuring iconic scenes from all 59 parks. Crafted with a healthy dose of early 20th century-inspired design, the poster series—turned postcard series—provides an illustrative look at the parks’ natural calling cards such as the famed balanced rock at Big Bend.

Whether you’ve made it to all the parks, or only a couple in the last decade, these cards will give you all the cred you need for the centennial celebration. Not to mention they make a surprisingly fun gift, and as you know, we like gifts at VelvetCrate!

More than just a postcard, use these beautiful designs to decorate a nursery or office, keep in touch with family and pen pals, use as an invitation to your next camping trip, or inspire an adventure themed holiday with these as gift tags. –Katy Ibsen

National Parks Postcard Set

Grab your own set at a National Park near you, or online at Anderson Design Group

The Best Granola We've Ever Had — Early Bird Foods

Posted on July 28, 2017 | 0 Comments

Early Bird Foods Granola | VelvetCrate | Curated Gift Packages | Granola in Brooklyn

We're big fans of Early Bird Granola and have included nearly every flavor in their line up for the past two years. From Jubilee (dried cherries, pistachios, and pumpkin seeds) to Choc-A-Doodle-Doo, (decadent dark chocolate and coconut), their flavor combinations are truly magnificent. 

This summer, we've included Kiss My Oats, which is made with maple and oats. It's been a best-seller in our Celebrate curated gift package and it's also available for you to include when you Create-A-Crate. 

Early Bird Granola is artisanal granola made in Brooklyn and we can't get enough of it! We know she'll enjoy it by the handful.