The Silent Auction for Katie is now complete! The auction took place on Friday, March 19 - Sunday, March 21. A huge thanks goes out to our generous sponsors who donated such amazing items, and to each and every bidder who participated! Now let's all walk away REAL WINNERS by donating our bid amounts directly to Katie to help pay for her medical care. After all, that's why we're all here in the first place!

Learn about our incredible Sponsors by reading our "Sponsor Spotlight" series, with interviews and insights into these unique artisan's work! We encourage you to support their shops.

Be sure to read more about Katie's inspiring story in her fight against cancer on the right hand column below. And follow our blog for updates... there's more to come!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sponsor Spotlight - Mel's Bells Cloche Hats

Mel's Bells Cloche Hats is a shop full of gorgeous hats, all handmade by artist and NY native, Mel. With a variety of styles, sizes, and every color combo imaginable, Mel can keep your entire family toasty in style. Plus, her new collection of organic cotton hats are the perfect option for an environmentally-minded gal. You'll definitely want to check out this adorable collection!

Want to know more about the artist behind it all? Read on in our interview below!

Donations for Katie: Thanks for chatting with us! First, why don't you tell us a little about yourself.

Mel: Hi. I'm Mel. I'm a native New Yorker who will be moving to Philadelphia soon. I love creating things and would have to say that for me a day without creating or being inspired by something is a day that's missing something.

DfK: How did you get started in your craft?

M: My grandmother taught me how to crochet and knit when I was a little girl. I started making simple things like potholders for my mom, an eyeglass case for my dad and then hats and clothes for my dolls. Yarn and crochet have since become my passion and my hands have not been idle since.

DfK: What do you love most about your work?

M: I love hearing about how the items I create bring a smile to someone's face. I love the excitement of it all. Sometimes when I'm creating a pattern for a hat I envision one thing and something else entirely new develops. It's a happy accident! I love working with colors and putting together color combinations. I also really enjoy the freedom and independence that self employment offers. I'm my own boss and, while it's a lot of responsibility, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.

DfK: Where do you get your inspiration?

M: I have to admit that I'm not a slave to fashion trends. I keep it simple when dressing myself and wear lots of black. That being said I take inspiration from colors I see in nature or if I see a certain painting or photo I like I'll imagine how the colors would look in a hat. I also get inspired from browsing in yarn shops.

DfK: What made you decide to support Katie through this auction?

M: Even though I haven't had the pleasure of meeting Katie personally I feel that I already know her through the wonderful things that have been said about her by those that do. Her zest for life and positive attitude are truly inspiring and something that we should all aspire to. We all have something to be thankful for no matter how worse off we feel. I also feel very strongly about supporting those with cancer since my mom is a thyroid cancer survivor.

DfK: Anything you'd like to say to Katie directly?

M: Katie, you are wonderful, gorgeous gal inside and out. You truly inspire me. Don't ever give up the fight. We're all here for you. :)

You can learn more about Mel and her work by visiting her shop!

~ Don't Miss Out! ~

Want to see what Mel kindly donated for this weekend's auction? Browse the auction now to find out... and remember the auction ends Sunday night!