Because otherwise I’d be living under a bridge.

You all know I have sponsors. They’re people who pay to advertise on my site.  Today I’m going to tell you a little bit of insider information on each of them.

I don’t mean I’m going to tell you their various criminal records, I mean interesting things.  Like how they came to advertise on my site.  Or what astrological sign they are.  You know.  Important stuff.





The cement tile shop is exactly what it says.  A shop that sells every cement tile IMAGINABLE.
Yes you can order them over the Internet, yes they deliver to Canada.
They are a 2014 Award winner from Houzz for customer satisfaction.  I’m particularly in love with the geometrics.


Just 2 days ago my friend was over and said she had a bunch of antique frames she wanted to fill with inexpensive prints. She thought she’d rip pictures out of a magazine maybe.

I answered her printing prayers by introducing her to Disposable Art Shop.  Take a look around their site and you’re sure to find something you’d like to hang on your wall.   Just download and print.  Downloads average around $2.99!


Again, just 2 days ago I was doing a blog consultation and they asked who they should use to build their site. They had a web designer already but they weren’t completely happy with them. I immediately recommended WayLay. The reason I always recommend Wayne and Selina is because a) they know what they’re doing b) they’re incredibly nice c) there’s NEVER been a problem they didn’t solve for me and d) They will never, ever up and abandon you. What more do you want?


I met Daniela when I spoke at BlogPodium last year.  She contacted me right after to ask about advertising on my site.

I can honestly say I think her blog about travel, fashion, design and life is one of the BEST kept secrets on the Internet.

You should read it.


Noelle from Ellenoire is a friend from highschool. She left our hometown to travel around like a vagabond, becoming a custom fragrance specialist along the way. She returned home, set up shop making custom fragrances for people and branched out into organic, natural products. Not one to be satisfied with a booming natural products business, she has now trained to become a hairdresser that specializes in naturally curly hair. We are both Sagittarian, which of course makes us both pretty great.



Craft de Ville comes to The Art of Doing Stuff from a relationship I started years ago with the fine folks at Dollarama.  When I first started this site I contacted my most favourite store to see if they’d be interested in a collaboration.  They were.  Then they weren’t.  Then they were.  Then they weren’t.  Nothing happened on that road, but the gals from Craft de Ville (who are of Dollarama stock) started their own site and I’ve been working with them ever since.



All you need to know about Texas girl Amanda’s Diamond Dust Studio is she makes the CUTEST tea towels this side of the Mason Dixon.  I have no idea what that means, but trust me on the tea towel thing.





Anyone who reads my gardening posts knows about Laura from Cubits.  I get my seeds from 3 places, and Cubits is one of them.  Her seeds are organic, interesting and most importantly … GERMINATE!

If you want purple radishes or warty tomatoes, Cubits is your destination.



I came across Tricia Rose of Rough Linen the same way a lot of you found me.  Through Design*Sponge.  I saw her linens and thought … “I MUST own those”.  I couldn’t afford them at the time, but I loved them so much I had to someone contact the creator of these beauties to tell her.  So I emailed Tricia and we’ve been a team ever since.  Nothing, and I mean NOTHING in my home makes me happier than the things I own from Rough Linen.  The sheets, the napkins, the bread bag, the duvet cover and the soon to be curtains.  There’s something about her custom woven linen that makes me feel rustic and rich all at the same time.


And finally Brenda.  Brenda has been my longest running advertiser.  She’s been with me since day one.   Her woodworking is the best there is.  Her handmade  rolling pins glow.  Brenda has the eye of an artist and the hands of a craftsman.  She and her wares are special in every way possible.


At least once a month I get an email from someone complaining that there’s advertising on my website.  They don’t like it.  They ask me things like “Is money really that important?”.

At least once a month I reply to an email saying I got their complaint but was wondering where the rest of their email was.  You know.  The part where they complained about getting all of this entertainment and information for years and years for free.

And yes.  Money really is that important. It’s kind of necessary for the essentials in life.  Were it not for advertising on my site I’d be shouting these blog posts from a rolled up piece of cardboard from my hovel under a bridge while wearing clothing made from grass clippings I found in a park.  Because I wouldn’t be able to afford clothing.  Or a home.  Or a computer.  Or maybe even cardboard.


No one questions advertising in magazines, radio or television.  But when it’s on a blog people become incensed.

No one questions the fact that they get paid for their work.  Of course they do. They go to work every day and deserve to be paid. Duh.  For some reason when you have a blog there are still those who think you should be doing it for free.  I like to call those people stupid.

You fine folks, on the other hand are not stupid.  You are clearly Sagittarians.

 Have a good weekend and you’ll see me and my advertising again on Monday!

[shareaholic app=”share_buttons” id=”5342563″]


  1. Lisa says:

    Holy Crow Karen, I don’t think of your sponsors as advertising, they are more like shopping “heads up” notices! I was able to gift two of my MOST difficult to shop for people with awesome Christmas gifts last year because you pointed me to Cattails (french rolling pins – and I’m ordering one for myself as a “happy birthday to me! gift this year”). I love your blog, would gladly pay at least $1.00 per pday just to get photos of fuzzy butt chickens in my “in” box – so keep doing whatever it takes to keep you in chicken feed! (any chance of revisiting the Costco offer from last summer?)

  2. Denise says:

    where’s the advertising for the homemade eco-friendly organics woven grass clothing? you look ravishing in them! a few er *bits* may not be fully covered, but it’s hip and trendy and can be recycled for..something chicken related maybe? lol

  3. Shirley Curtis says:

    And I for one will be looking forward to reading it. Of course after I have checked out all your advertisers’ web sites. For the nay sayers that think the world turns on hearts and flowers and butterfly kisses, well too bad for them! Hard cold cash does better at keeping one out from under the bridge! Keep up the awesome blog(with the adverts)!

  4. Brittney says:

    Well said. I work full time (in education) and thought I could blog about my field-nope. I am in awe of bloggers, especially those that work full time AND blog. Blogging is a skill and it takes time-to do it well, as you do here. I love what you do and how you do it.
    I personally don’t mind advertisements, if done well, they serve as yet another resource (free for those that come across it). Come to think of it, I would pay to subscribe to some blogs because they are so useful.
    Shun the complainers!

  5. Anne says:

    I agree with Lisa. I’m on my way to download myself some ART!

  6. Kathy G-B says:

    I totally enjoy your posts…if there are folks out there that do not understand how advertisements support your efforts, then they are obviously misguided! Keep on doing what you are doing…

  7. Electric D says:

    From one Sag to another, love those chicks. And, I like browsing through your ads. They are interesting.

  8. MindyK says:

    You know, I actually *am* a Sagittarian. Also, what Brittney said. And since I’m a magazine editor when I’m not reading about chickens (and even when I am), I actually appreciate the ads because they help me learn about cool stuff that could even be work related, and therefore I feel less guilty about said reading. Advertising as professional development. Thanks!

  9. Sherry says:

    Advertising? I think of it as information. I love your blog, your writing and your sponsors for helping you keep it coming.

    “I like to call those people stupid.” Cracks me up and I’m a Capricorn.

  10. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Gemini here..and you have some of the best sponsors I have seen on any blog..Please continue what you do..I really don’t want to see you come running out from under a bridge with grass glued on your butt..

  11. TucsonPatty says:

    I knew it! I, too, am a Sagittarian and I now know that is why your humor speaks to me! I loved looking at all the sites today, and have looked before, and if I don’t want/need to purchase anything, I don’t. Easy peasy.
    Shut it off, close the book, don’t look – whatever – if it offends you – don’t partake.
    I love the linens, BTW.

  12. Janet says:

    I like your blog. I like your personality. I like your advertising. I really like that you just told me a bit about your advertisers. I’m an Aquarius.

    K. Are we good to go now?

    Hmmmm…. Gotta wonder if your readers might be my target market in a sort of incognito kind of way….. got any more room on that side bar over there?

  13. Susan says:

    Dont worry about those complainers. Just keep up the great work! I love your site…even if I am a Gemini.;)

  14. Stephanie says:


  15. Amanda says:

    Gemini sun, but rising Saggitarian here! I am thrilled you are bring paid for the wonderful work you do. You deserve every penny and more!

  16. Yvonne, the other one. says:

    I’m a Sagittarius too, and I love your blog! Out here on the west coast I get to read it before I go to bed, and one day I’ll be able to put a set of those Rough Linen sheets on my bed, and buy stuff from each of your advertisers.

  17. Michele preece says:

    Hey Karen just because I’m a Cancerian doesn’t mean I can’t like your blog and even though most of the Advertisements are irrelevant to me over the pond, I don’t mind them, they give the heads up on trends and ideas that may be coming our way. Can’t wait for that grass fabric to hit London Fashion week, mind you won’t be any less weird than some of the designer stuff, but we’ll all know whose blog they read! Just keep keeping on.

  18. Liesl Joubert says:

    Sagittarians for the win!
    I bookmark posts like these for lazy Saturday mornings. The ones with which series to watch, which books to read, whose pins to follow and most luxuuuriously, where to buy stuff online. I call them Internet Wormhole Saturdays. Not catchy, but hey, we can’t all be Karen.

  19. Alexandra says:

    “Is money really that important?” I can’t believe people actually ask that. How do they live? Photosynthesis?

    • Karen says:

      LOL!! 🙂 I think they think this blog is a hobby. Something that takes an hour or two a day. They don’t realize the huge amount of work that goes into running a blog like this. ~ karen!

      • Adrienne says:

        Hi Karen,
        I discovered your site a few weeks ago, while Googling for how to do something, and I chuckle with sheer delight over your writing style. I’m Libra, and I don’t know if being mechanically and spacial-relationship challenged goes with that (spacey, maybe?), but you impart the instructions so well that I don’t have to go anywhere else, or even YouTube.

        Having tried on a couple of occasions to both run my business (for money!), raise my family (where all the money went, and then some), and maintain a website (first one was writing all the code myself and daily data uploads; second was a daily blog where the host did the hard stuff), I’m tickled pink that you are actually getting paid enough to do it full time. And a little envious, too.

        Keep it going – you’re both jewels.

    • HAHA Photosynthesis !! Good one Alexandra…I think like most Sagitaurians, since i am one..Some peeps just don’t get it, they think that since our on line you don’t have anything better to do, like a stay at home mom…Which by the way should be paid too !! I think being able to check out your advertiser’s is an advantage, alot of them i may never have heard of if you or anyone else didn’t have them….So there…hehe

  20. Shuckclod says:

    All your sponsors are great… I only mind it if it pops up. None of your do that except, reads this one too 🙂 Your posts are great and the info is too. We might find something we never knew existed. Have a great weekend.

  21. Linda J says:

    Gemini, but that’s okay, one part of me forgives you. Besides, I feel a bit Sagittarian myself at times.

  22. Joslynne says:

    Yeah…you go tell ’em! Love the site, your videos, advertisers, etc. Hey, sometimes you have to take the bad with the good, but judging from your many commenters, you have waaaayyy more good than bad.

    Keep us laughing and learning!!!

  23. Pam says:

    That post made me laugh out loud, had to put down my coffee. It is the same garbage that musicians hear – play for free for the “exposure”! What you need to eat? Keep a roof over your head? Raise kids, dogs, budgies whatever!! Hmmmmmm! Tell your not-so-bright readers where you will place the contribution box!!

    Remind “em – people die from exposure!!

  24. marilyn says:

    i am a pisces, we just wander through life with our head in the clouds so i never really notice the ads but i will be taking a look now!

  25. Leisa says:

    I agree with Lisa – it makes shopping easier. I’m moving and just gave a friend a framed print from Disposable Art. I’m also turning 50 next month and treated myself to a set of Rough Linen’s sheets and a pinafore (which are beyond amazing)!!! Don’t go changin’…Leisa

  26. Su says:

    There is advertising here??? where??? I’ve found the people and business here offer some pretty cool stuff and have certainly helped me find wonderful and unique gifts for the people I love who have all the usual stuff…. I too love the rough linens and regularly browse the website drooling and wishing money wasn’t important so I too could have them in my home…. oh and I’m a Taurus – earthy and practical….we love our homes and the finer things….. which is not found under a bridge living as a troll….

  27. Darlene says:

    your blog is like going to an upscale shopping venue the I CAN AFFORD! I love the quiet elegance your sponsors add to your place!

  28. Ann says:

    The only time I don’t like advertising is when it very obviously slows the loading of the page down. Many blogs have these. So far, yours do not. I have a relatively new laptop running on Windows 8 so I know it is not my laptops fault. I have had some blog pages that took 2 minutes just to load and when it finally does, there is some fancy-dancy, flash in your face ad that changes every 30 seconds and I just know that is what is slowing things down. So if you would please, please, not use any that make it hard for us country folks with slower internet service bog down, I would really really appreciate it. Thank you.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Ann – For the most part the reason for the slow loading is the blog/website’s server. I upgrade my server a couple of times a year to meet the demands of my traffic. In other words, so my site doesn’t crash and loads quickly. I just upgraded (spent more money, lol) a week ago in fact. But you are right. The ads oftentimes really do slow down load time on certain sites. ~ karen!

  29. Diane R. says:

    Love your blog and love your sponsors. I recently ordered the black linen pinafore and adore it! I never would have found Rough Linen if not for you introducing us. Thank you and just keep on keeping on…

  30. jainegayer says:

    I love checking out your sponsors because every time, I discover something that has or will make my life better.
    I most likely never would have discovered these gems if it hadn’t been for you. Sleeping every night (and that’s 1/3 of my life, right) is pure joy because I sleep on Tricia’s linen sheets. My cooking hasn’t improved wearing her linen pinny, but I sure do look like I know what I’m doing.
    And I know all your advertisers here have the “Karen Seal of Approval.”

  31. Tigersmom says:

    Your ads are tasteful and selective. You run your blog with integrity, irreverent integrity (my favorite kind,) but integrity just the same.

    How ignorant to think that quality entertainment and education such as your blog comes easy or cheap, much less free. I’ve shopped your sponsors and they provide quality services and goods. You’re not just letting anyone throw up an ad for the money.

    To anyone with half a brain it should be blindingly apparent that the reason you choose to work for yourself was so that you didn’t have to compromise your principles. Forgive my rant, but I have serious issues with others’ stupidity.

  32. CraftALife says:

    I don’t mind many ads, and after hearing about some of your sponsors, I definitely want to check some of them out. So thanks for that. But. (You knew there was a but coming, right?) The banner ad at the top, just under your picture frame graphics, always seems slow to load. And less relevant to your audience. So the slowness is irritating. I can ignore irrelevant ads with the best of them.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Craft A Life! It actually just seems like it’s that banner ad that loading slowly. What’s happening is the very top of the page is loaded and then it stalls while the rest of the page (filled with pictures) loads. That banner ad is a Google ad and it’s where I make approximately 70% of my income if you would believe it! The small ads like you see today are the ones hand selected by me. The other ads (there are three of them, the top banner, and 2 big ones on the sidebar) are Google ads. And they provide the majority of my income. ~ karen!

  33. Aaron says:

    I really like your approach to advertising. Rather than treat it as a necessary evil (which I suppose it is), you use it as an opportunity to continue the mission of this blog; your advertising shows us a bit more about who you are, what you love, and points us to many great products and services.

    I don’t feel like the advertisers on your site foist their ideas on you, or that you’d put up just anything if the price was right. You carefully choose what to allow so that it complements what you are doing here.

    You get to make a living, we get to enjoy your wit. Win/Win.

  34. Mandy says:

    Love the sponsors, just like I enjoy ads in magazines. Unless you spend hours wandering the malls, which I do not, how else do you know what’s out there? Maybe it’s the Sag in me…

  35. Carolyne says:

    love love love

    you have a way with words!!

  36. Scott says:

    Most people think I’m a Sagittarian, but I’m actually an Ophiuchi. Its an easy mistake so I don’t usually get offended by it!

  37. Lynne says:

    Not a Sagitarius, I’m an Aries but I still feel free to weigh in here. Brava girl.

    Why is it that anyone in the creative profession (and it is a profession) has to bear suggestions that their work is not worthy or deserving of payment. As a trained illustrator and graphic designer I’ve had to put up with that BS all my life.

    As for your sponsors – I’ve been coveting one of those rolling pins from Cattails since I first perused their Etsy site (courtesy of one of your links). It’s only a matter of time before I avail myself of one. Or two.

  38. I’m a Virgo. And that brings with it what some see as problems. I see them as advantages…

    But good for you and the email you send them. Folks can contribute or complain and it looks like you have far more positive contributors.

    However in their own unwitting way, did you know that complainers with their narrow minded field of view have helped create a company ? I tripped over this company along the way and thought what a novel idea

    And you have a heck of a great blog. I enjoy reading it. Thank you.

  39. Patti says:

    I look at your advertising more like helpful information…kinda like when Oprah would do her ‘favorite things’ show. I trust your opinions and therefore, trust the people you recommend. Easy peasy!

  40. Rebecca says:

    Definitely thought the blog icon of you (stick figure) was going to be a Christmas related post.

  41. Elizabeth says:

    I noticed your ad from Spot this morning. I bought one yesterday at MEC while down in the big city. A couple of years ago I spent a night in my vehicle, just 8km from home, when I had a blowout at 11:30 PM on the way back from a church lady meeting in the next village, 30km away. I thought about walking, but then the wolves started howling. I did not make that up for effect. One of the workers headed for the morning shift at the quarry west of the village stopped at 5:30 AM, and I calledRoad Service when I got home. Where I live, there is no cell phone service. Now, I carry the Spot with me, and if I press the button with the little hands, a preset message will go to my daughter, and she can call for help. I’ll let you know if

  42. ~JackieVB says:

    I appreciate that the internet provides a way for more and more people to start businesses so they can be creative and not have to sit in a cubicle all day. Both you and your sponsors are entrepreneurs in this way. I enjoy reading your blog for its wealth of information and wit. And I have enjoyed shopping with your sponsors for their creativity and wonderful customer service they provide because they own their own business. People who make comments about ads don’t understand the amount of time, effort and talent that goes into maintaining a quality blog and they don’t understanding that you are cultivating relationships with sponsors who complement this blog very well.

  43. Ev Wilcox says:

    If someone doesn’t like the ads, they should not look! Simple! You keep on truckin’ Karen. You’re doing fine.
    We read your blog everyday and are glad it’s there! Capricorns know!

  44. kari says:

    I am a Taurus who realizes that without your beautiful, cool shops that advertise with you, I might have to pay a subscription fee to read your blog. I know none of those whiners would do that. I say it’s win-win. Off to look at amazing rolling pins now!

  45. SarahP says:

    I appreciate the ads – I’ve clicked on and purchased things because they were linked form your site – then again, I am a Sagittarius.

  46. kelli says:

    This Taurus will happily ‘play’ a Sagittarius in your honor. At least for today. 🙂 My day wouldn’t be complete without your blog!

  47. Nancy says:

    I can’t believe some people would complain about ads but I have read 2 bloggers -that I like pretty well- announce (sounding very virtuous) they are now advertisement free. Good luck with that.
    The floating ads for a Dodge truck or Barbie on my iPad are ferociously annoying. But that’s Google. Love hate Google. People really need to check out Disposable Art, you can spend hours there and every week or so they offer a free!!!! print!!

    • Karen says:

      You’re right. It is Google. And if I knew how to get rid of those ads I would! If anyone knows, feel free to let me know. I just don’t know how to ditch them! ~ karen

  48. Carol says:

    Just to let you know, I clicked on Cattails and got Cubits.

  49. Marion says:

    Another Sagittarius over here, and I say screw those who complain about your ads. I’m glad to know that my clicks and purchases will in turn keep you scheming and doing and writing and therefore keep me laughing. It’s a win-win situation! Kudos to you for making it work so beautifully 🙂

  50. Kevin Lepard says:

    I think the link associated with the Cat Tails picture is wrong, as it takes me to one of your other advertisers, Cubits, instead of Cat Tails. You may want to check that.


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