Sewing Hope: Missional Crafts by Jessica K.

Some people craft for their business, and others just create for fun. Jessica Kenenske has paired both her love for crafts and running a business with a mission: to help raise money for those in need. Read on for a great and inspiring story! (There’s also a giveaway at the end of this post.)

1) Tell me a little bit about your handmade shop and how/when you got started?

I’ve been selling my handmade stuff for probably about 6 years now. I started out creating and selling handmade dolls, softies, pillows & etc., using all vintage materials. I did that for a while and even had a couple segments on HGTV that aired about a year ago.

In 2008, I had my first (long awaited) child and then 22 months later I got pregnant with my second, so I was a little pre-occupied for a few years there! When I finally started getting back into crafting again I wasn’t that interested in making dolls anymore and found myself designing and making handbags….over an over again. I never get tired of them because, well, because I’m a girl and the possibilities are endless with bags!

It allows me the creative outlet to do something I love and to raise money for a mission that is close to my heart.

2) What is the overall purpose or vision behind your shop?

One of my best friends spent 5 years as a missionary in Haiti. Being able to see the people and their needs through her eyes has really given me a heart for that country. During her time in Haiti she met Roberteau Desilhomme who grew up in a village in the Mountains of Haiti called Fond Baptiste. Roberteau and his wife Carolyn have taken first aid and cultural development and amazingly were given an unfinished building to be used as a medical clinic. They are now in need of supplies to make the building usable. They have a doctor, and a few nurses willing to give of their time. Together they will help to care for physical and spiritual needs of those who come through the clinic.

My friend will be visiting Haiti again this summer, along with some others from my church who went last summer constructing a roof for the clinic, and will bring any funds raised to be sure they are used to help with this clinic. I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Roberteau this year, his passion for his ministry is very inspiring and I wish to do whatever I can to help.

I have found that I am WAY more productive and inspired to keep creating product to sell when I know it can help someone in need. It feels much more purposeful.

Kids from Haiti

3) Do you have any advice for someone who is looking to raise money for a charitable organization through their craft or handmade store?

I have participated in fundraising events like auctions and live music shows. It is a lot of work and sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to get people to donate items and/or their time but it’s definitely worth it. Fundraising events are a great way to raise money if you’re willing to do the work.

The only advice I have at this point (I’m pretty new at this) for someone interested in crafting for a cause is, please just do it. There are so many people in need in this world. What we spend a week for coffee could save someone’s life, so even if you sold one thing, that could change someone’s world. It seems like a selfless act, but really, it will totally bless you too.

Thanks Jessica, for sharing your story!

Etsy store

Be sure to check out Jessica’s website, blog, and Etsy shop, where 100% of the proceeds go to help the clinic in Fond Baptiste, Haiti.


Craft Buds is so impressed with Jessica’s mission and quality handcrafted bags that we are giving away this adorable bag from her shop to one lucky reader!

Handmade Bag

Online Quilting Class

To enter:

1. Visit A Winding Road on Etsy. Leave a comment telling us your favorite bag! (1 entry)

2. For a bonus entry, follow Jessica’s blog and leave another comment. (1 entry)

3. If you make a purchase from Jessica’s shop, come back here and leave 2 comments! (2 bonus entries, and a huge warm/fuzzy feeling)

That’s 4 possible entries! This giveaway closes on Friday, July 15 at 11:59pm (EST). Giveaway open worldwide; one winner will be chosen via

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  88 comments for “Sewing Hope: Missional Crafts by Jessica K.

  1. July 11, 2011 at 12:19 pm

    I’m following the winding road

  2. July 11, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    I like the Curvy Vintage Style Clutch

    Note: sorry if my comment printed more than once.

  3. July 11, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Thanks for introducing us to this shop! I LOVE seeing folks use their talent to help others! I “heart” the etsy shop and follow A Winding Road blog now! :)

  4. July 11, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    Gorgeous giveaway too! I love the Little Girls Strawberry Tote and posted about it on my facebook page! :)

  5. Lorie Smith
    July 11, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    I love the curvy vintage style clutch…all of her bags are amazing!


  6. July 11, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    I like the ruffle pocket tote bag.

  7. July 11, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I like Colourful Floral, but they are all nice.

  8. Amy
    July 11, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Love the Navy Ticking Buttercup Bag.

  9. Christy
    July 11, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    I love the blue nautical one with the big button.

  10. July 11, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    I like the Curvy Vintage Style Clutch, very pretty colour

  11. July 11, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    I am following Jessica’s blog

  12. July 11, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    I’m really loving all the wood hoop handle bags, especially the one up for grabs and the gray and yellow floral :)

  13. July 11, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    I’m a follower of Jessica’s blog!

  14. MaryBeth
    July 11, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    I really like the blue nautical print purse in the Etsy shop. Thanks for the chance to win.

  15. July 11, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    My favorite bag is the Wood Hoop Handle purse. Love the colors;.

  16. MaryBeth
    July 11, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    I’m a new follower of Jessica’s blog. Thanks for the chance to win.

  17. Debra
    July 11, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    I’m in love with the yellow chevron bag!

  18. July 11, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    great feature! i really like the curvy vintage style clutch. so cute!

  19. July 11, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    I love Jessica’s shop! I’m already following her blog . . .

  20. July 11, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    . . . and my favorite bag is the yellow chevron tote!

  21. July 11, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    My favorite bag is the Rain Drop Tote Bag with Front Pocket!

  22. July 11, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    i’m torn between the one in this giveaway and the rain drop tote bag. what a cool artisan & story!

  23. suzee
    July 11, 2011 at 8:07 pm

    Love the ruffled pocket tote bag!

  24. suzee
    July 11, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    following her blog = )

  25. July 11, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Great shop and mission! I like the Yellow Chevron tote. Thank you :)

  26. Sue D
    July 11, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    I like the navy ticking Buttercup bag.

  27. Sue D
    July 11, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    I follow Jessica’s blog.

  28. annabelle g
    July 11, 2011 at 10:41 pm

    I love the colorful foral bag , so pretty :)

  29. hueisei
    July 11, 2011 at 11:21 pm

    I am now following A Winding Road..
    Such a lovely blog..

  30. hueisei
    July 11, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    All the bags are so lovely..
    I adore the Nautical Print ‘Buttercup’ Bag and Yellow Chevron Tote Bag with Front Pocket…..

  31. Alli
    July 12, 2011 at 2:24 am

    My favorite is the wood hoop gray and floral purse. What a nice shop! :)

  32. July 12, 2011 at 4:59 am

    Wow she is amazing – my favourite bag in her shop is the wood hoop handle bag in colourful floral it is delicious.

  33. July 12, 2011 at 5:00 am

    I’m following her blog too.

  34. July 12, 2011 at 6:18 am

    i love Yellow Chevron Tote Bag with Front Pocket :)

  35. Keri Schorah
    July 12, 2011 at 7:44 am

    Amazing post and woman! I love her raindrop tote on the etsy site! Unique colors! Thanks for this chance and I’m inspired to give give give…some more!

  36. Evelene Sterling
    July 12, 2011 at 8:00 am

    I love the Raindrop tote bag. Thanks for a chance to win a cute bag.

    esterling1923 at gmail dot com

  37. Evelene Sterling
    July 12, 2011 at 8:03 am

    I am a new follower of her blog A Winding Road.

    esterling1923 at gmail dot com

  38. July 12, 2011 at 9:44 am

    What a great story! Her bags are great — and affordable too! I’m a sucker for the wood handles — my favorite is the Wood Hoop Handle Purse/Handbag – colorful floral. Thanks!

  39. christy
    July 12, 2011 at 10:27 am

    i love the Nautical Print ‘Buttercup’ Bag

  40. Jessica
    July 12, 2011 at 10:41 am

    They are all awesome! I especially love the gray and yellow floral wood hoop handle purse!

  41. Lee
    July 12, 2011 at 11:28 am

    I love the nautical buttercup bag! great bags!

  42. Lee
    July 12, 2011 at 11:28 am

    i am a new follower of a winding road

  43. lynn
    July 12, 2011 at 11:40 am

    i love the raindrop tote bag! (they’re all beautiful)

  44. lynn
    July 12, 2011 at 11:41 am

    i’m a follower of a winding road.

  45. KC
    July 12, 2011 at 11:45 am

    I actually like this one the best! Though, they’re all wonderful.

  46. dee
    July 12, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    I am following her on etsy and I love the yellow Chevron tote bag.

  47. dee
    July 12, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    Following her blog!

  48. Kimberlee
    July 12, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    I love her Raindrop Tote Bag. Great designs and fabrics to chose from!
    SpunkyDiva at

  49. July 12, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    Love the Nautical buttercup bag! Super cute!

  50. July 12, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    I like the bag with wood handles and yellow & gray fabric

  51. July 12, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    That bag is so lovely I’ve pinned it! And it is the best bag on the Winding Road Etsy site.

  52. July 12, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    I’m following!

  53. Deborah in Atlanta
    July 12, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    Since I always seem to carry simply everything in my bags, I love the Raindrop Tote Bag with Front Pocket

  54. Deborah in Atlanta
    July 12, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    I’m a follower of Jessica’s blog

  55. Diana
    July 12, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    I visited her shop and this bag is actually my favorite! RESERVED – All Proceeds go to charity

  56. Diana
    July 12, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    I follow her blog via GFC as Diana Z

  57. July 12, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    Love that little Strawberry bag.
    Happy days.

  58. Beth T.
    July 13, 2011 at 1:17 am

    She has so many great bags. I think my favorite is the Ruffled Tote. Thanks for the giveaway.

  59. Gill
    July 13, 2011 at 4:13 am

    I love the Raindrop Tote Bag!

  60. July 13, 2011 at 6:51 am

    Wow… that is a hard choice. Tied for my favorite are this bag being given away and the gray and yellow floral – total cuteness :)

  61. July 13, 2011 at 6:52 am

    I’m now a follower of Jessica’s blog!

    … O and I changed my mind, the yellow chevron back is 100% my favorite :)

  62. July 13, 2011 at 6:54 am

    I like the raindrop tote bag.

  63. July 13, 2011 at 6:57 am

    I am following ‘a winding road’ now. Interesting front pockets.

  64. July 13, 2011 at 7:29 am

    My favorite bag is the reserved one that’s in the giveaway – loving the print and the handles!

  65. July 13, 2011 at 7:30 am

    I’m following Jessica’s blog

  66. Michelle
    July 13, 2011 at 10:28 am

    I follow Jessica’s blog :o)

  67. Michelle
    July 13, 2011 at 10:29 am

    I love the Nautical “Buttercup” bag and the yellow and gray Hoop handle bag :0)from her Etsy shoppe!

  68. Carla G
    July 13, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    I love the Yellow Chevron Tote Bag! The yellow just makes it pop!

  69. Carla G
    July 13, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I am a new follower of Jessicas blog!

  70. July 13, 2011 at 3:15 pm

    My favorite is the Raindrop Tote Bag with Front Pocket. VERY CUTE!

  71. July 13, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    I am a new follower of Jessica’s blog.

  72. Susan
    July 13, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    My favorite is actually this hoop handle purse. I just love the shape and the print. Thanks for the giveaway. But, more importantly, thanks for opening our eyes to little ways that we can be more giving.

  73. Susan
    July 13, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    I’m now following the Winding Road. I consider myself a pretty generous person, but I’m hoping her blog will inspire me to be more productive in my crafting so I can give back a little bit more. Thanks!

  74. Shanea
    July 13, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    I love the yellow chevron tote!

  75. July 14, 2011 at 3:21 am

    I love the Navy Ticking ‘Buttercup’ Bag with Ruffle!

  76. Sandy N.
    July 14, 2011 at 10:39 am

    Love the Colorful Floral bag. Thanks for the opportunity to win!=)

  77. July 14, 2011 at 11:46 am

    my favorite is woodhope bag!

  78. July 14, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    I love the Raindrop Tote Bag with Front Pocket.

  79. July 14, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    I follow Jessicas blog and left a comment.

  80. Sarah C.
    July 14, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    I like the giveaway bag best but the little girl’s strawberry bag is cute too!

  81. Sarah C.
    July 14, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Following Jessica’s blog. Glad to have found it!

  82. Erin
    July 14, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    My favourite is the Wood Hoop Purse!

  83. Erin
    July 14, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    I followed jessica’s blog! (erin)

  84. July 14, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    I really like the curvy vintage style clutch.

  85. Charlotte
    July 15, 2011 at 6:27 am

    Ooh! I love love LOVE the Navy Ticking Buttercup Bag, but they are all beautiful!

    Fab giveaway, thanks :)

    C x

  86. Chris
    July 15, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    My favorite bag is definitely the nautical print one! Thanks for the giveaway.

  87. Amber
    July 16, 2011 at 11:55 am

    I really like the yellow chevron bag!

  88. TDM
    February 20, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    I’m not here to enter the giveaway. LOL! BUT I wanna say that your mission to save others/lives is something that we can all look up to.
    I’m also planning to do the same. Only diff is, I am helping Animals in need because I think they too, deserve something better. :)

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