One thing we love most about having both a stationery line and a retail store is the way our space invites interactions with other artists that may otherwise be missed. This is true of our latest line of wearables, a collection of onesies with bold, empowering statements for your bitty adventurer.
Olivia of Voyage Lettering reached out last year and we started collaborating with her immediately. We started with a fun, motivating 2017 wall calendar we call HER Calendar. From there we have created cards, wall prints and now onesies.
Like our other products, we wanted to have these onesies printed locally and happened to connect with Treetops Collective
just at the right time. They are a new West Michigan organization passionate about connecting local designers and businesses to refugee women who are in need work — to create cross-cultural friendship, community development and meaningful jobs for this skilled, eager workforce. They were instrumental in connecting us with Love Works
, a social enterprise started by retired teacher, Sally VanEck, who is dedicating her time to teaching screen-printing and other creative vocations to refugee women.
One such woman, Mang Pha, a 20 year old woman from Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, worked on our project with Sally. Because living in Burma was next to impossible due to dangerous conditions associated with oppression and corruption, Mang’s parents decided to immigrate to the USA. From the moment Mang arrived, she along with her siblings, have worked diligently to help their family forge a new life. It hasn’t been easy. This spring Mang will graduate from Potter’s House High School and hopes to attend college. She is a person who loves and appreciates her very close family as well as learning about her world. Mang has learned to sew and screen print. She is eager to learn so much more and collaborations like this make that possible.
Additionally, LoveWorks values being good stewards of this earth and sources their materials responsibly and uses water-based ink to keep our beautiful Great Lakes clean for generations to come.
We couldn’t be prouder of what this line represents, and are grateful to be a part of such purposeful collaborations. We hope you and your littlest global citizen enjoy and share in this important story with us!
The onesies as well as other products from Olivia’s collection are available in our retail store in downtown Grand Rapids, online and for wholesale inquiries, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Side Note for GR Peeps: Shop these onesies and other wearables from the Treetops Collective at the Eastown Street Fair this weekend, Saturday, September 10 9am-8pm.
Sure, you could fill a basket with waxy chocolate, cheap toys and handfuls of plastic fluorescent grass and be done with it, I mean that’s what our generation found hiding on Easter morning OR you could shop sustainably by finding fun, thoughtful items at a local shop to wow your little bunny this Easter.
With the second option closer to our hearts, we’ve come up with a few ideas to get you excited about bringing a little spring surprise to your sweet ones.
For our Children’s Basket we’ve chosen items that promote learning, creativity and thoughtfulness. The pop-up art history book about Alexander Calder explores what inspired the artist to explore the colors and shapes he did. This is particularly intriguing to us since his work, La Grande Vitesse, was the first publicly commissioned sculpture in the US and happens to be the heart of our home city, Grand Rapids! There is also a whimsical bag by K Studio, a DIY Felt Animal Craft, A set of bookplates, an organic chapstick and the softest I LOVE Michigan Tee from Michigan Awesome. Since April is National Letter Writing Month we included a pack of 6.25 Paper blank stationery with cheery envelopes to encourage children to write more. Lastly, from local GR business, SO AWESOME — unique and beautifully illustrated non-toxic wallet cards that teach ABC’s, Numbers, Colors and Shapes, and Emotions.
I don’t know about you, but Easter baskets didn’t stop as I grew up since I had younger siblings, so here is a little inspiration for putting together a Teen Basket that is sure to excite! This gift is inspired by Rifle’s spring florals, showcased in the journal, stationery set, and pencils paired with a K Studio pencil case to protect these beauties from being lost! You can never have too many headbands and no-crease hair-ties as we enter warmer months, and the “Do Your Best” Keychain adds some inspiration to the everyday! Lastly, a little keepsake like funky, sleek metal and leather ring will ensure this Easter surprise is not soon forgotten!
So, this awesome GR mama,
Marie-Claire, inspired by her awesome twin boys,Owen & Silas (who happen to be two of my daughters BFF’s), is trying to fund this awesome project
on kickstarter. With just 9 days left.
Children’s ABC Wallet Cards
Please help to make this project happen this project so that we can carry this awesome product in our store! (9 DAYS LEFT – PLEDGE NOW!)
Read more from Tarah about the ABC Cards on here blog, Sustainably Smitten.
A quick update to share our joy and explain the lack of posts. A week ago, we welcomed our lovely little girl, Zoie, into our family. She is an energetic little monkey, quickly adjusting and loving her new surroundings. And ridiculously adorable!
I apologize for putting this blog on the far back burner. We’ve been a little busy in preparation, but hopefully we’ll get a routine down and you will soon see some lovely real weddings from 2011 plus more store news.
If you stop into the store in the next couple months, you will find either Dayle, Alexa or Tarah readily available to assist you! I am not completely MIA, just working from home during the transition. I’ll be focusing on all the lovely custom orders. Can’t wait to share the 2012 weddings in the works!
Okay, one more photo – our first time eating out (at Hopcat of course:)
This has been a reflective week for me as one of my very best friends from elementary school had her 30th birthday. I went through one of my old boxes of journals to find something fun to send her, hopefully bringing back a fun memory. I did so and while reading through the thoughts of my 10-year-old self, I found an interesting little entry that has stuck with me all week. It goes like this (un-edited):
“… For my shirt design I would put
“Save the Earth!”
I would put that because, I believe
in saving animals, people, and the world.
Its a terible thing to waist.”
-Feb. 25th 1993
I remember being one of those hippie kids, drawing peace signs and hearts everywhere, but I guess I’ve forgotten how much motivation and confidence I had at such young age to make meaningful changes. We tend lose a little of that “activist” personality as we age, gain responsibilities, lose time and get overcome with our consumerism culture.
I look forward to the energy and motivation of our daughter once she comes home. I think having a young spirit around will help me re-gain that sense of individual capability & activism.
For now, I’ll relish a little more in my deepest thoughts 18 years ago.