Posts tagged Event
Etsy/West Elm Pop-Up Shop Recap
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Last weekend was the Etsy and West Elm pop-up shop! We (and 12 other Seattle area Etsy sellers) packed up our products and set up shop at the Seattle West Elm store for the day.

Local decorating blog The Inspired Room curated the event, and were honored to be chosen. Thanks to everyone involved! It was a great day.

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I'd been sick in bed with a cold all week before the event, but I rallied my energy just enough to park myself in a comfy West Elm dining chair with an unending supply of London Fog from Wheelhouse Coffee. So if you met me at the event, that's why I was half dead. (I hate being sick!!)

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It was really fun to see our cards and prints in the beautiful store. We set up at a dining table, under this amazing chandelier. I "window" shopped from my chair all day, and Brad added about a dozen new things to his Christmas list. West Elm is definitely one of our favorites.

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We're not doing a ton of events this year (focusing our energy on preparing for NSS), but we have one more pre-Christmas event coming up! We'll have the studio open on December 5th & 7th for our annual 57 Biscayne holiday open house. Put it on your calendar and come see us!

More info about the West Elm event: West Elm’s Blog The Inspired Room’s Post

Trunk Show at E. Smith Mercantile!
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Last night the lovely ladies behind E. Smith Mercantile hosted our sneak preview trunk show!

We packed up what we have of the new card & gift line and carried it on our backs (not really) the three blocks to our favorite Pioneer Square shop. We set up in the (soon to be) E. Smith Back Bar and welcomed the neighborhood to come see what we've been working on. (It was a low light scenario that was lovely for shopping but tough for photos, so please pardon these instagram-esque photos that I actually snapped on our real camera.)

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It was a lovely summer evening, with lots going on in the neighborhood! Our friend Meggie came to help me carry things and set up.

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We were lousy with cards for sale!

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Lots of friends came to shop and hang out!

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Our baby presses were in attendance to remind folks that everything is letterpress.

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Wine was served, conversations were had.

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There was a special guest performance from Eric Freeman, who played everything from Jimmy Buffet to Johnny Cash, and had us dancing in the aisles.

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Can we talk about how cool E. Smith is? Really cool.

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Bad mirror selfie with my baby sis - the wall & display look great! ;)

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Hello friends!

Thanks to E. Smith for being very gracious hosts, and thanks to everyone who stopped by! We had a great night, and we hope you did too.

Don't Miss Cosmic Sans!
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Cosmic Sans has sprouted legs and taken off running!

Submissions are coming in every day, and we are so impressed by what our fellow space lovers are coming up with! This show is going to knock your proverbial socks off. Just look at this sneak peek!

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Insane, right!? Yes, that is Zoidberg! (Left by Zac Schwiet, right by Lisa Schneller) And that's just the beginning. We've got light sabres, space monkeys, and Gordon Freeman's crow bar coming your way!

So here's what you're going to do.

1) Plan to come to the show. And then do it!

2) Print out this flyer and hang it up somewhere that nerds cool people will see it.

3) RSVP that you're coming on our Facebook event so we can make enough space snacks for you.

We can't wait. We'll see you there!

Our CreativeMornings Talk
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July's Seattle CreativeMornings was hosted at Maker's Space, a rad new coworking space in downtown Seattle, and featured a talk by us! (Crazy, right!?)

Sara presented a talk entitled: Analog Passion & Craft in an Economic Downturn: How I Became a Small Business Owner (and Why it Was a Good Idea). Video of the talk is available on Seattle Creative Mornings' Vimeo page, and the presentation slides are available on Speaker Deck. (We've also included the text of the talk below.)

CreativeMornings is a monthly breakfast lecture series for "creative types." Each event is free, includes a 20 minute talk & 20 minutes of Q&A, and brings together creative folks to share their work and experiences. CreativeMornings was started in New York City in 2009 by Tina Roth Eisenberg (SwissMiss), to create an "accessible, inspiring morning event for people to meet." We're big fans of CreativeMornings - we love attending the Seattle events, and enjoy impromptu CreativeMornings in the office, listening to the wealth of content available from all over the world!

These photos of the event are by the lovely and talented Jenny Linquist.

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It was a huge honor to be asked to speak. We have by no means "arrived," and are learning more and more every day. Writing this talk was an awesome opportunity for the two of us to think and talk through our story and our experiences. We have a tendency in our busy life to get bogged down in minutia and forget to step back and look at where we've been. It was incredibly refreshing to get to share about what we love to do and what we've learned along the way. We have a heart for the creative folks in Seattle. We want to be honest about our journey and  the reality of owning a business in order to support, inspire, and be in community with more and more creative small businesses in our city.

Holy plaid, batman!

Holy plaid, batman!

The response to the talk was mind blowing. We received so many kind tweets, e-mails, and even a sweet blog post on With Design in Mind. We've been meeting with folks here in the studio since then - having great chats about business in design and working in community. It's opened a dialogue that we are so excited to be a part of. I (Sara), have never thought of myself as a businesswoman or a writer, but I've so enjoyed learning, writing and talking about these topics. I'm planning to continue to share our ideas and journey here on the blog. (The first thing will be to share how I'll learn the time management to be able to do that! Updates to come.)

Here's the text of the talk - for those of you who prefer reading to listening or watching my quirky self.

Analog Passion & Craft in an Economic Downturn: How I Became a Small Business Owner (and Why it Was a Good Idea)

I'm Sara McNally. My husband Brad and I are the founders of Constellation & Co., a small studio in Pioneer Square. We offer full service graphic design and letterpress printing for a variety of client projects, including: wedding invitations, branding and print collateral for small businesses, and a line of letterpress greeting cards and paper gifts that is available in stores in Seattle and nationwide. We use a mixture of modern and historical technologies to produce work that is sometimes sweet, sometimes sarcastic, but always inspired by handmade processes, vintage ephemera, and collaboration.

While in design school, I got to the section of Megg's History of Graphic Design about printing in the industrial revolution and found my calling. In my mind, they'd reached the pinnacle of craft, and I wasn't interested in moving forward. That dream of the 1890's thing totally hits home for me. Since then, I've become passionate about collecting, restoring, and preserving artifacts from the history of design and printing, and putting them back into use. I love that our cast iron printing presses have lasted for over one hundred years in a world that is constantly changing and reinventing itself. There is something so satisfying about this tangible method of printing and design - it's something we desire more and more in our digital world. I'm honored to be preserving and continuing a historic craft, and making a living doing it.

We founded Constellation & Co. on the idea that community is important in life and in business, and that business and life should work well together. It starts with us - we're a married couple, and we collaborate closely on each client project, even if it's just talking out ideas over dinner. We also work closely with our clients, getting to know them beyond their preferences about paper and pantone colors, so we can offer them a design that feels authentic. Our clients bring us into their lives at important moments like planning a wedding or launching a business, and we take our involvement in those times seriously. We have two employees that are dear friends. And (this is my favorite story) we even had an intern that went on to become a wedding invitation client. She then launched her own business, we did her branding and business cards, and now we're her client - she does all of our studio and product photography. She's responsible for the pretty pictures you're looking at today. Outside of our company, we work with a large network of creative people and small businesses whose skills and products enable us to tackle bigger projects and offer more exciting work to our customers. The big picture for us is, we can't do this alone.

Now that you know us a little better, I want to share with you how we got here. And I promise to be honest. I would really love for the design community to believe that i'm crazy rich and glamorous. But I believe that our genuine selves are a lot more interesting than the things we put on Pinterest. Although, I still love Pinterest. My career has been a series of reality checks, and this is an effort to present them honestly to you. And it might as well be a timeline, because, as you know, graphic designers love timelines.

In 2008 Brad and I visited Seattle with friends on our winter break from school. We fell in love with the city and spent the next couple years daydreaming about moving here. I even had a poster of the skyline in my dorm room.

While dating, Brad and I had a daydream about someday (after our crazy successful careers), starting a company together that focused on the handmade. We knew it was something we wanted to do… but in a really long time, after we'd filled a swimming pool with cash.

I loved my time in college and went to a great school. I learned a lot about type, workflow, taking critique - but I was naive and self-entitled. I fell into the "designers will save the world" mentality that's too common in school. I had big plans for myself after graduation. I was going to graduate with an impressive job, move somewhere exciting, and buy a VW bug. (Sidebar: I still don't own a bug.)

Spring break of our senior year, we spent a week interviewing at several Seattle companies, including Hornall Anderson, Methodologie, etc. etc. In every interview, we heard about layoffs, closed intern programs, and the economy. Absolutely no one was hiring junior designers. As graduation approached, our professors made grim predictions, family friends suggested we start practicing "welcome to Walmart," and "can I take your order?" All in all, there was a lot of sad head shaking.

We graduated, and although we didn't have jobs or a solid plan, Seattle was were we wanted to be. So we got in the car with our limited belongings and we drove here. And when we made it to Seattle, we took a lot of trips to IKEA.

And then we started applying for jobs. And we got married! (Because there is no one in the world I would rather walk through this crazy life with.) And we applied for more jobs. And the abstract concept of debt became a concrete concept. And the recession we'd been ignoring became the recession that was defining our adult life.

Along the way, we did a lot of jobs. We worked as much as we could, wherever we could. Some of the jobs were great - we both spent time working freelance for some fantastic people. But a lot of the jobs were terrible - I spent a week as a receptionist, I worked retail, and I spent several months with an ad agency, taking photoshop files the "ad guy" did and reproducing them in illustrator for print. And I did that 12-14 hours a day. Often with no food breaks.

Right around this time, I had a realization. Hating my job isn't working for me. I was absolutely miserable. We paid way too much for school for me to already hate my career. Around this time, Brad started a contract at Microsoft, which was awesome, because my realization was great for my personal satisfaction, but terrible for paying the bills. But once I realized that I was okay being broke doing something I love, I knew that I had nothing to lose. I quit my terrible job, took an intro to letterpress class at the School of Visual Concepts, and sent a lot of "please let me work for you for free" e-mails to the letterpress community in Seattle. Thankfully, my e-mail bombs worked, and I spent a year apprenticing with Rebecca Mullins, the owner of Myrtle Alley Press in West Seattle. I got really hands on, spent a lot of time doing "pay your dues" type projects around the shop, and eventually got to learn the finer points of letterpress printing. And I absolutely loved it.

Towards the end of my year apprenticeship, Brad and I started taking clients, producing products of our own, and launched our website. Around this time, I read a lot of articles on the appropriate way to start a business. I realized quickly that the articles were not written for me. I was 23, broke, and didn't know the first thing about starting a business. I was a very unlikely candidate for being an "entrepreneur." I sat at my computer for days trying to write a business plan. It was really daunting. Maybe you've been there and given up. (I really wanted to.) But here's the good news: at this phase, your business plan is more like writing on toilet paper than carving a stone tablet. You have to get started before you'll know what you want to do, what you're good at, and what you can get people to pay you to do. Our website launched with copy that said something like, "Dear client, if you give us money, we'll do whatever you ask." As we took on more client work and got to know our business better, it became clear what our specialties were, and which kinds of jobs we'd never take again. If you don't get started, you can't even learn from your mistakes. You have to get started.

So we got started. We moved into a tiny corner of the 619 Western arts building, and bought our first full size press.

Before I continue, let me show you a photo of our first printing press. It was a glorious mess. The press was in pieces, covered in rust, and had been dropped off a truck. But I took one look at this press, and I said: I'LL TAKE IT.

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I saw the potential in this press, and I wanted to be the one to save it. So we paid the lady, and put it on the truck. It took us well into the night to actually get it into the building. Moving a printing press is the most humbling thing i've ever done. And it's just as humbling every time I do it. I like to think of myself as an island. I want to do things by myself, take responsibility, and work as hard as I can to make them happen. Moving this press the first time forced me to ask others for help and depend on them to get it done. I was completely powerless to move this press on my own. It's something I fought tooth and nail. But that lesson has been more and more important as our business has grown.

Let me take a moment and admit that this whole thing sounds crazy. We purchase, restore, name, and operate 100+ year old machinery that is incredibly heavy, a nightmare to move, and difficult to repair.

If I didn’t passionately love this nonsense, I would be crazy to do it. Nothing about letterpress is glamourous. It's a greasy, inky, sweaty, exhausting business. And I love it.I've found, that in small business, love is mandatory.

When we finally got the press into our studio, I spent upwards of 40 hours with WD40 and wire brushes, scouring untold years of rust, dirt, grime, and nonsense off of the press. But we put in the time and elbow grease, and were printing our first client job in the new space with our new press by the end of the month. It took us 30 days from decision to printing.

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That January was really stressful. We had overhead for the first time, and after moving the press, I felt the weight of our decision all too clearly. I had a lot of "WHAT HAVE I DONE" moments. Those first few days, I felt like I was swimming in the ocean with this printing press tied to my ankles. Getting into small business is difficult. I won't belittle that. The "just get started" enthusiasm is not enough on it's own to get you through the "we're going to go bankrupt" fears. You have to love what you're doing. Love is mandatory.

Here are some highlights from what we learned that first year:

We learned to start with what we could handle. We knew that at $325 per month, we could afford our overhead even if we never got a client job. That price meant we were at the top floor of a questionably safe building, in a space that had been previously occupied by an adult film studio, but we could afford it. We had to manage our expectations for that space - It wasn't perfect, but we were doing what we loved, and that had to be enough.

We learned to make our space home. It was tiny and windowless, but we treated it with love. You have to want to be in the place where you work. You'll spend the majority of your life there. Make it a place you want to be, and your clients will want to be there too. We packed dozens of people into the space on art walk nights, and over the months, taught hundreds of people about the history of printing. It was amazing.

We also learned that we have freedom to produce quickly and often. We designed and printed most of our products for the first time in this tiny space. We would get an idea, talk it out, sketch it out, and then produce it. We bought a printing press so that we could produce our ideas quickly and get them out into the world. We try to avoid putting our ideas into a folder on our desktop labeled "things i'll get around to." It's been my experience that those just don't get done. We have the technology to keep the time from idea to release short and sweet. It's been important for us to have the machinery, materials, and strategy in place to jump on good ideas. The things we make are ephemera. They're made to send, enjoy, and keep or recycle. They aren't forever. Nothing we create is forever. So why all the pressure? Create and release your ideas into the world. You won't know how they'll be received until you send them out. Some ideas will fail. Some will succeed. Some things will surprise you! And you'll have that information to revise the idea for the next iteration.

And lastly, we learned to expect change, because it's always coming. After 8 months in the 619 building, we were notified it was unsafe, and given 2 months to find a new space. That was a rough day. There was a lot of yelling. But as we talked it through, we realized that this was great timing. We'd grown a ton in those 8 months. Our business had really taken hold. We'd had our first intern, and were taking on our second. We needed more room, and we knew a lot more about our business than when we'd started. Constellation had gone from a question mark to something we knew intimately. And this was a great opportunity to find a new space to fit our growing business.

So, within a year of buying our press and moving into our first studio, we were doubling our square footage and moving into in a building with other artists and small business owners.

We love our studio. It's been a joy to work in, and our clients have loved coming into it! We used to meet a lot of clients in coffee shops for their convenience, but now we only meet with folks in the studio - it does a better job at selling our work than we do! And in very tangible ways, it feels like home. We share events, meals, conversations, and collaborations in this space. And we work. A lot.

In the Spring of this year, we brought on two part time employees. The work had gotten too heavy for me to tackle on my own. And the "weight" of the work is lighter when distributed. This thing is bigger than me. I've learned that not only do I need help, but I must accept help, and even more importantly - ask for help. For awhile, fear of failure kept me from bringing people on. It's scary being responsible for other people. But bringing in fresh eyes, time, and enthusiasm has allowed me to breathe, to invest my time in parts of the business that are otherwise neglected, and I get to share what i've learned with others. I'm so thankful for the ladies that support me on a daily basis. I sleep better at night when I know I have help, and my life is sweeter having more people to share what I love with.

We are continuing to grow - we've taken on more space in the collective, and brought in a second press. There are a lot of growing pains, but we're learning a ton.

So, that catches us up to the present day. When I sat down to write this talk, I started out with a list of questions. These are questions that I've asked myself these past 3 years, and continue to ask myself as we move forward as a business:

Why am I doing this?

I work a lot, and there are certainly days that I ask this question in frustration. But I always come back around to this: I love that my job is a way to build relationships. We work with creative people, clients, and other small businesses. I love getting to know these people. I love that I get to collaborate with my husband, and I love that someday, we'll have print shop kids. I continue to do this because I love to do it, and I love the people it's brought into my life. On the days when i'm overworked, underpaid, and exhausted, it's these people that keep me pressing on.

Where am I? What is specifically needed and desired in my city? I love this city, and it's an honor to be a part of what's happening here. I have to continually remind myself to get out of the studio and be in the city. It's easy to isolate, but it's so important to be aware of what's happening around us.

Who are my clients?

What do they value and what are they looking for? It has been so important to get to know my clients, not as a demographic, but as individuals. And working for clients has been a continually humbling experience. I'm constantly learning to put their joy above my pride. Their happiness is more important than my idea of good design.

But that leads me to: How can I educate my clients?

It's my responsibility to teach my clients what good design is, so that they know it when they see it! And in addition to my clients, how can I educate the public about the history of what we do? Education is a big part of preserving this historic craft, and we're glad to do it. We've done several tours with college classes and homeschool students, and bring people into the studio during open house nights to give them demonstrations of how printing works. And next month we'll be launching a monthly one day workshop for graphic designers on how to design and prepare files for letterpress printing.

Who are my peers? How can I collaborate with them? We're in the process of launching a large scale collaborative project with 26 designers, who are each tackling a letter of the alphabet and producing an art piece with the concept of Cosmic Sans - a space and/or sci-fi related interpretation of comic sans. It's really nerdy. But how better to engage 26 of our peers and create something together? We're excited.

So, back to the title of the talk. What does this have to do with the recession? What recession? My whole career has existed in the recession. I love what I do, and not getting a job forced me to pursue it. In many ways, this recession is the best thing that could have happened to me. These past three years, we've been hard at work, building something. I haven't taken away a large paycheck, (or often any paycheck) - but If I could go back and pick any of my "dream jobs" from college, I wouldn't. I LOVE my job, and I'm blessed to do it. We've built something that is growing, I can't wait to see what's in store for the several years.

Renegade Shopping Summer 2012
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Renegade was awesome. Sincerely awesome. We got into a ton of mischief while vending - our fellow vendors' goods were way too rad to resist.

Every time one of us took a trip to the bathroom (on the opposite end of the building from our booth), we'd come back with something fun for ourselves or a gift for someone else.

[The show sign (I cheered when we drove in!) and fun new artwork in the studio by Paper Parasol PressHello, Lets Be FriendsOf Hearty Stock]

Things we came home with:

We bought an ultra rad tee shirt from Gnome Enterprises for our friends' son Jackson. His 2nd birthday party was the day we got back from SF, and we were really excited to bring him back such an epic shirt. He's at the age where he likes to pick what he wears every day, and I'm pretty sure that dinosaurs and robots are the best thing ever when you're 2.

We got an awesome chicken shaped cutting board from Mac Cutting Boards for my mom's birthday. My parents had chickens when they moved to Florida but can't have them at their house here,  so we're always on the lookout for fun chicken themed things.

We procured a sweet art print from Nourishing Notes for the friends who leant us their beautiful home while we were in SF.

I finally got a new laptop (my previous one was purchased in 2006), and picked it up at the Apple Store while we were in SF. So of course I had to get a lovely felt sleeve from Your Felt Case. It's the prettiest shade of blue!

Brad got a fun and type-nerdy Futura shirt from The Medium Control that he'd had his eye on for awhile.

We did an awesome trade for "Pillow Fights" pillow cases featuring old time-y fencing dudes with our "next-door" booth neighbors, Zerobird Studio.

We swapped for a sweet anchor card with the folks from Of Hearty Stock.

Folks we met:

The fine fellows of The Social Dept., whose tees we've purchased on Fab (and absolutely love).

Danni from Oh, Hello Friend, a blog i've read and loved for quite awhile!

Cindy from Paper Parasol Press - a Ringling alum who I'd chatted with online early on in the process of starting Constellation. It was so sweet to finally meet her and talk shop! We also enjoyed some good old fashioned swap-age.

Felicia from Hello, Lets Be Friends - another lovely Ringling alum! I stopped in my tracks when I saw their flywheel card. It was awesome to chat up Ringling alums running such similar businesses! Super fun.

Things we really wanted:

Glass terrariums made from repurposed antique windows by Meg A. Myers Designs

Every single doll made by Mimi Kirchner - because they are all amazing!

Sweet, slender pottery by Sara Paloma

Yummy food themed prints by Drywell Quality Meat Art

I'm not exaggerating when I say that it was an amazing group of craftspeople. We were honored to be among such awesome folks!

Renegade Craft Fair SF Summer 2012!
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This was our first time as vendors at any Renegade Craft Fair, and let me tell you - we are hooked!

The turnout was incredible, the organizers were highly organized and helpful, the vendors were suburb, the shoppers were excited... and we had so much fun. It was such a great show. We can't stop raving! Here are some photos of the goings-on.

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Our booth - lots of natural light in Fort Mason center!

Our booth - lots of natural light in Fort Mason center!

The two of us on a button, how fun!

The two of us on a button, how fun!

Check back tomorrow for a post about our favorite fellow vendors and all the things we brought home!

Urban Craft Uprising - Winter Show 2011
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We made it back from our Florida trip just in time to set up for the Urban Craft Uprising winter show! We did the summer show this year, so we assumed that we knew what to expect. But instead... holy 10,000 people, Batman!

Our expectations were far exceeded - the amount of people in attendance was astounding, and we were busy all day, both days. We really had a great weekend. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who came out to see us! For those of you who couldn't make it, here are some photos of our booth (taken by our stellar intern, Jenny).

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Our tiny tree was laden with Holiday Coaster Ornaments

Our new apple crate shelving...

Our new apple crate shelving...

...was strung with  tiny lights!

...was strung with tiny lights!

We debuted an assortment of new holiday cards

We debuted an assortment of new holiday cards

And the typewriter came along for fun

And the typewriter came along for fun

The everyday crew made a card pyramid

The everyday crew made a card pyramid

And it was all in all a great weekend!

And it was all in all a great weekend!

We really enjoyed browsing the other booths, too! Here is linkage to a few of our favorite fellow vendors:

Gorgeous handmade hats by Humperdinck Hats Nerdy baby clothes by Katy and Zucchini Amazing colorful yarn by Spincycle Yarns Delicious and soul warming lunch by Got Soup?, And (to quote Brad): "Tiny dessert burgers" (Macarons) from Lilli-Pilli Patisserie.

We're Fab, too!
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We're big fans of Fab (as you can tell from our gushy blog entry a few weeks ago). So, we're proud and excited to announce that we'll be a featured seller on Fab this coming week, September 20-23! (We're super excited. Seriously.)

We'll be offering two of our letterpress art prints and several of our boxed card sets at a huge savings! Make sure you check out the sale and stock up!

If you still haven’t heard: Fab.com is “design online.” The Fab.com website offers daily design inspirations and sales 70% off retail. Membership is free but by invitation only. Members receive exclusive access to daily curated design sales featuring the world’s leading designers and manufacturers. And you can join by clicking here!

Wayzgoose 2011
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This weekend we participated in the 10th annual Wayzgoose event at the School of Visual Concepts.

SVC is a great school with relevant classes on web topics, digital media, advertising, etc., as well as a full print shop, offering letterpress classes each quarter. (The best of both worlds, I'd say!) SVC is also the host of the Seattle Wayzgoose, and has been for 10 years! (For general Wayzgoose info/history, check out our previous blog post.)

I took a letterpress class at SVC the first fall we lived in Seattle, and I loved it. The teachers are amazing, and it's a really great way to figure out if letterpress is for you. (That class inspired me to quit the job I hated and pursue Constellation full time. And if you're wondering: Best decision ever.)

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We were honored to have a table at the Marketplace, which was filled with designers and printers that we love and admire. It was wonderful to reconnect with old friends, teachers, mentors, and meet some great new letterpress-y friends. Printers tend to be solitary people, but when we get together we know how to have fun!

Here are "shout outs" (do people still say that?) to some of our favorite fellow marketplacers: Stern & Faye, Myrtle Alley Press, Anagram Press, Physical Fiction, and Beautiful Angle.

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After the big Urban Craft Uprising push, we didn't need to produce any new products for Wayzgoose - which made the week before the event virtually stress-free. (A nice change from last year, which was completely manic beforehand!) Every time we set up a table, it comes out differently - like the cards and things have a mind of their own! I tend to move things around an inch or two for awhile until i'm pleased with the arrangement.

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It's also always nice to hear positive feedback from our customers. We met so many lovely people at the event, and are so thankful to get to sell our things to so many kind folks! We really are humbled and thankful to get to do this for a living. We are blessed! Thanks to everyone who came by our table - we're thankful for you!

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Wayzgoose is such a fun event - I wish we could participate AND attend. I found myself wanted to be everywhere at once! Make sure to become a fan on the SVC Letterpress Wayzgoose Facebook page to get all the info for next year's extravaganza! For more photos of the Steamroller Smackdown and misc. fun, check out the SVC Letterpress Flickr pool.

Urban Craft Uprising Vendors
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We loved browsing the Urban Craft Uprising. Our fellow vendors were super talented, and offering such exciting things! Here are a few of our favorites.

Heather of Material and Movement makes beautiful jewelry from recycled vintage china. Her pieces are beyond beautiful, and definitely on my wish list.

Alexa of Foamy Wader has delicate and fun jewelry. This axe necklace has me written all over it. I visited it several times throughout the show - too bad my birthday isn't coming up!

Mary Kate McDevitt is an illustrator & hand lettering artist from Portland. We fell in love with her chalkboards and art prints. I was super thrilled to do a trade with her at the end of the show - she went home with one of our Wood Type Calendars, and we were super excited to go home with one of her Abe Lincoln prints! Couldn't be more up my alley.

Robyn of Pepperjack Home was our next door booth neighbor, and we loved her fun and useful home goods. After hearing about their many uses for two days, I was totally sold on her Wetbags - they are so cool, and would be so handy with kids! We were excited to do a trade with her and the end of the show - Robyn headed home with a set of our new Recipe Cards, and I was able to give one of her gorgeous aprons to my friend Holly as a thank you gift for spending the weekend supporting us. Yay!

The ladies from This Charming Candy did a sweet write up about us on their blog, so it was really sweet to meet them in person. We also really enjoyed their lollipops! They have a wonderful flavor selection, and they last a really long time!

We had a really wonderful weekend, and there were way too many great vendors to mention here! We'll definitely be applying for the winter show - and if you missed this one, put the next one on your calendar now!

(Photos belong to their perspective owners.)

Our 1st Urban Craft Uprising Booth
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This weekend we were a vendor at the Urban Craft Uprising! We attended our first summer show right after we moved to Seattle two years ago, and we loved it! At the time, Brad and I shared a daydream/goal of selling at the show, and we were so excited and pleased to see that come true this weekend!

We've done small shows in the past, but this one is the best, and we wanted to rise to the occasion! We built a display shelf from scratch. It was a fun project, but it taught us that we definitely prefer working with paper than with wood! Nonetheless, we really like how it turned out, and it was so fun to see all of our new designs displayed.

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My favorite part of the show was getting a chance to interact with the shoppers. It is so exciting to see people engage with our work - to see their smiles, laughter, and interest while looking at our cards and gift products. We love what we do, and it's so gratifying to see that other people love it too!

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Some of my favorite things about the show are in this photo:

1) Our newest addition to the Constellation family, a tiny Sigwalt printing press! (Blog feature to come soon.) It was such a wonderful tool to show everyone how the printing process works on a small scale.

2) A collection of vintage photos and ephemera for sale - I've been collecting these kinds of items for years, and it was so fun to hear how each creative person who bought some planned to use it in their own art!

3) Our hand painted star tablecloth! I spent the few weeks before the show doing all kinds of DIY projects, and I love how they came out.

4) Our Vintage Stamp Postcards (soon to be available for sale online), were a big hit! People loved seeing the history in each stamp, and it's exciting to know that lots of our postcards will be going through the mail soon!

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Thanks so much to everyone who came out to see us this weekend! It was a joy to meet you, and we are so excited to continue to offer you letterpress goodies, made by hand with love! All of the new products that we debuted this weekend will be available on our Etsy and Felt & Wire shops soon. Check back on the blog in the coming weeks as well for features on some of our most favorite new things!

Open House!
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Hello Friends! We're preparing for an Open House at our new studio in a few weeks, and you're invited! If you're in Seattle (or willing to travel), we'd love to see you there.

Come see where we work, what we do, and enjoy an evening with us. We genuinely believe in an open door, open heart policy - we want you to know us, and we want to get to know you. This is an opportunity to celebrate this new step for the company with old friends, and make new friends!