Beer Sweet Beer

There are few things in this world I love more than beer. Close to the top are actually the things that make great partners with beer — namely pizza, burgers, anything salty, and summer. I'm craving summer so badly, it feels like torture.

For now, all I can do is stare at this print and dream. I recently got a tip from a pal that spotted it over on the Food Network blog for a St. Patrick's Day round-up — super exciting! If you're feeling like a lush, you can head over here to get yourself one, to further tempt you into warmer days.

What's your favorite summer beer? Do you see it in the print?

House Renovation: Week 1

Amidst our efforts to unpack, I was finally able to compile all of my photos of our house progress. These are all from our first week in the house — starting September 24th — and it's weird to look back and think this was only a couple weeks ago. We got so far in such a short amount of time, thanks to 12-hour days and having lots of help from our families. 

Since we were having our hardwood floors refinished throughout the house, we were on a very tight timeline to get our projects done before the floor guy showed up. It was a crunch, but we accomplished all of our goals (and then some).

Here's everything we accomplished in the first week — I'll follow up with weeks 2 + 3 later, because it was just too much to show all at once. So, let's get to it!

This was the second floor hallway — the linen closet is behind those white doors, the master door is on the left and the guest room is across the hall, on the right. The door in the front right goes to the attic, and the third bedroom (which will be an office) is behind me to the left, at the top of the stairs.

The night we got our keys, we looked around, took some 'before' pictures, and got to work demolishing stuff. This is Jim ripping down the wall in the linen closet, which backed up into the master bedroom closet (below). Meanwhile, I got to work taking down the wallpaper.

The linen closet was very deep, and had some removable wire shelves in it — pretty makeshift. Our plan was to expand the master closet into that space, thus making the linen closet shallower. We also wanted to install some permanent wood shelves and replace the bi-fold door.

This was the master closet. It was actually pretty large, but the small door opening made it very difficult to access the space. This door fit the linen closet space, so we planned to use this door as the door for the linen closet (which would match the other original doors in the hallway) and install large bi-fold doors for this closet. We also removed the carpet so the hardwood floors could be redone. *I also just realized that "tah-tah!" should have been spelled with an 'h' but it's late, and you get the point.

Jim and his dad are cutting open the new door I stand and chew my nails.

I was a little scared when I saw this plaster disaster (hehe) but they knew what they were doing. Fun fact: did you know they used to mix horse hair in with the plaster in these old homes? It acted as a sort of "mesh" to hold the plaster together. I'm not sure how I like the thought of 90+ year old horse hair in my walls, so I'll just pretend I didn't hear that.

My mom, Jim's mom, and I handled the wallpaper, and it was a bitch. To make matters worse, we found a BONUS layer of wallpaper underneath! Oh joy. So we were at it for an entire day.

Hallway has been sanded, cleaned of old glue, and primed...

Here's the living room — the plaster ceiling had some damaged areas from previous problems that had been fixed, so that was at the top of our list.

These photos make it all look so easy, don't they? ;) Oh, and the walls have been painted! They look a little weird in the bad lighting, but they are Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray. While the guys handled the construction work, I was on paint-till-I-drop duty. I actually enjoy painting, but this definitely tested me! Thankfully, everyone pitched in so we could stay on track.

Here's more closet progress...

Getting there! We are just waiting on the doors at this point — they were a special order —and we've just added some finishing details. And I am digging this wall color. Majorly. It's Sherwin Williams Gale Force.

That pretty much ends the projects from week one — the other two bedrooms and the hallways got painted but I'll be able to share those in my next post since they were a bit of a mess during all of this. Next up: floor sanding and moving in!

Just Moved!'s been quiet over here!

I just recently moved in our house (that we bought back in JULY!) and things have been very, very crazy. We've done a lot of cosmetic work to the house, so things are still a bit of a mess and we're still living out of boxes. We've made a lot of progress lately, though, so I can't wait to share some photos after things get settled. AND we now have wifi — so I'm back on the grid!

I will have some fun, budget-friendly home decor DIYs to share, as well as before and after shots of our projects.

See you soon!

Ragged Row Opening Party

A few weeks ago (I can't believe how fast that's gone) my friend Brigitte opened her new store in Sewickley, PA with private party and preview. All of her hard work over the last year produced one amazing result and I'm so excited for her new adventure as a business owner!

Window looking out to Beaver Street — flanked by Mother denim

The fitting room features this incredible metallic chevron wall - that she painted herself! Girl is crazy talented with painter's tape.

Shore Society has hit Pittsburgh! Brigitte has featured some of my prints in her store (thank you!) in addition to selling some of her own prints and cards (the chevron watercolor and the cards mixed with mine are her designs). She and her boyfriend Dave have also designed some PA-pride prints and silkscreened t-shirts with the designs. They look awesome.

We had a great time at the party and I wish I could have bought everything. She's carrying quite a range of styles and brands for fall — my favorites have to be the snakeskin leggings she had, and a Milly wool triangle skirt. She also carries some of my favorite jewelry lines — Gorjana, House of Harlow, and low luv x erin wasson. If you live in the 'burgh or are wanting to take a road trip, definitely stop in and check it out. Sewickley is such a cute neighborhood (Clevelanders, think Chagrin Falls but bigger) and I wish we could have explored a bit more. Next time!

Lake Erie Love tanks

A few weeks ago, I worked with a group here at American Greetings to produce my "Lake Erie Love" prints into some cute tanks for summertime.

The display looked so cute, and the tanks went over so well, so I decided to make some on my own and add them to my shop. 

They came out great and I love the little anchor on the back. There is still plenty of summer left, so you can head over here to check them out. I'll definitely be wearing mine on our next boating trip!

WMC Fest 2012 Wrap-up

What an insane weekend. I honestly don't even know where to start! Not only was this weekend really big for me personally, but I was also just so psyched to enjoy the fest like last year—in the presence of some incredible people, design, and music.

I wish I saw enough talks to give a play-by-play of the speakers like I did last year, but with working a table both days, it was very tough to be in two places at once. However, I can at least share a bit about my experience and what it was like to be on the other side of the fest. If you're looking for some great write-ups, check out here, here and here (you will also be able to see the true fluorescence of my pants somewhere in there).

This was my first time speaking {ever} and I had so much fun. I can't wait to do it again. The first time is always the hardest - but the ice has been broken! My talk was called Side Hustle, and was aimed at encouraging young designers to continue working for themselves even after getting a steady 9-to-5. It's so vital to remain relevant outside of your job, and I gave some tips about how to make this process less overwhelming.

After the talk I made a beeline for the Happy Dog to get some food (and a big, cold beer! woo!) and then we checked out some of the bands at Saigon Plaza. You can tell I'm pretty relieved at this point ;)

I had a vendor table set up in the iLTHY Workshop gallery both Saturday and Sunday, and we had a great little crew. It was a tight space behind the tables so we all got reeeeal familiar with each other (occasional ass bumps will do that).

We had a great crew in the gallery - behind me was Dan Cassaro, Nate Utesch, Dan Christofferson, and rocking the other side was JenBrandon Rike, Aaron from OKPANTS, Oliver Barrett, and Brian Jasinski from Grey Cardigan

I met so many amazing people – who were either working with me or passing through the gallery – so that was a benefit of being at my table all day on Sunday. I don't think I would have met half the people I did if I was just hanging out seeing the bands/speakers. 

The fest was amazing as always, and it was incredible to see the amount of people who came out this weekend – WMC is definitely growing and gaining some serious momentum. It's just proof that there's such great strength and energy in the creative community, and that "if you build it, they will come." So if that doesn't give you a swift kick in the ass to get your latest project off the ground, I don't know what will. There isn't anything we can't accomplish with our passion, networks, and relentless hard work.

Big thanks to all my friends and family who came out to help, support, be there, etc. You guys are THE BEST. And thank you to Dean for taking these photos – I pretty much blinked and the weekend was over, and had barely any pics to show for it.

So did you guys attend WMC? Who was your favorite speaker or band – and what did you love about the weekend?

Announcing: WMC Fest 2012

I am so {insert descriptive expletives} excited and honored to be a speaker at this year's Weapons of Mass Creation Fest, right here in Cleveland! The site just launched yesterday and I can finally blab to the whole world about it. 

I attended last year and it was the most phenomenal creative weekend I've ever experienced (here is my wrap-up post and also a video about last year's event). I saw so many fantastic speakers and was able to catch a few bands over at the Happy Dog in between, not to mention all of the friends I got to see and reconnect with.

This year will prove to be no different, so if you're local (or not!) be sure to check it out. Weekend passes are only $50 and that includes ALL speakers and bands. Follow along or ask questions at @wmcfest. Hope to see you there!

New year, New workspace

I've been wanting to revamp my workspace for quite some time now, and just randomly got the bug to do it last weekend. I had this small, old corkboard hanging above my desk, and it always falls down (the adhesive sucks), and it finally fell down for the last time. Enough! I threw it away and decided it was time to start over.

I moved into our place a year ago and never really gave my work area the attention it needed. It worked sometimes, but I also found myself using my dining room table to spread out and draw because I just had too many things cluttering up my desk. I got this Ikea desk years ago, and I love it because it's just a big, flat work table, which is really what I need. I have to be able to easily push my computer to the side when it's time to draw or paint.

I also had a messy collection of art paper and wrapping paper shoved along the side of my desk, and my cards and envelopes were all over the place. So I headed to Target to solve my problems :)

My favorite purchase has to be this woven black and white arrow basket. We were looking for something to store my paper rolls, and I spotted it in passing on a random endcap. I basically started jumping up and down because it was so perfect.

*p.s. YES I know, it's time for us to take our Christmas tree down.

My desk surface is now much clearer, I'm no longer storing bills and coupons and junk that only gets in the way, and everything has a place. Joy!

And my corkboard is now bigger, better, and actually functional! Now I can just sit back and let the organization vibes transfer into productive energy...

Shore Society Christmas Products

I have been so busy lately that I'm clinging to the light at the end of the tunnel—ten glorious days of Christmas break. There's so much to buy, wrap, bake, clean....all while keeping up with holiday shop orders. It's exhausting, but in a great way!

I also want to say a HUGE thanks to designworklife and Burrs & Berries for featuring my holiday gift tags on their sites...thank you, thank you, thank you!

Shore Society is also now selling in Poppytalk Handmade's Holiday Market, which has been both exciting and inspiring—there are so many talented makers selling their goods, I encourage you to head over there and check out all of the amazing shops that are participating. I want to buy everything!

Sets of the aforementioned gift tags are still available in my shop, in case you are a procrastinator and haven't started wrapping yet. I still have some last-minute things to grab but I'm in the home stretch...have you finished your shopping yet?

After I finish my shopping, the holiday parties and get-togethers begin! I'm so excited to hang out with all of my amazing friends and family coming in from out of town, and to take a break from working and sitting behind my computer. Sigh...won't that be nice?

Made in the 216 Holiday Shoppe

I am so happy to be part of another wonderful Made in the 216 event! This year's Holiday Shoppe takes place inside Room Service and lasts for a whole month—so there's plenty of time to get in and snag your gifts for the season. I'll have some new mini-prints for sale as well as some gift tags to add the final touch to your wrapping. There are so many other talented vendors participating, you're sure to find something wonderful (and locally made!) for everyone on your list.

The event kicks off on Black Friday with a DJ and some good drinks, with an after-party to follow down the street at Market Garden Brewery. It's always a good time so I hope to see you there for the opening!