Posts tagged Shopping
Interview: E. Smith Mercantile
esmith1.jpg

I know I say this every time, but I'm really excited about this interview! I sent the lovely ladies of E. Smith Mercantile some questions, and Jessie Poole kindly responded. E. Smith really is my happy place.

(You may remember our trunk show in August.) Everything inside is perfectly curated, and they serve coffee in the daytime and cocktails at night in their back bar. I can't overstate how much I love this store and these ladies!

Q: What inspired you to open a retail shop in today's economy?
As a family business, we were very excited about the opportunity to create a space that allowed each of us an outlet for our many interests. We're also so lucky to be participating in a resurgence, if you will, of Pioneer Square business. It's important for us to create a community space and offer services for this great, historic piece of Seattle.

Q: You're a family business through and through. What is it like, working so closely with family?
We've always been very close. The vast majority of the time it's a truly spectacular experience. We've found it helps people feel like they're in our home, they can be comfortable and feel taken care of because they truly are our guests.

esmith3.jpg

Q: What have been your biggest challenges at the shop?
I think like any small business finding the right balance of obsessing over what you do and maintaining your outside interests can often be a challenge. Luckily there's more than one of us so we can all take turns picking up the slack.

Q: What have been your biggest joys?
In the beginning it was watching people's faces the first time they came in. Now people tell us that they want to live there. It's heartwarming and continues to be inspiring to have other people inspired by the space.

esmith2.jpg

Q: Where do you go for inspiration? (Your decor, products, and food/drinks are very obviously inspired!)
Personally, I love my nature time. There's nothing like a weekend in the woods with a fire place and friends. For a quick afternoon pick me up the Pacific Antique Galleries is a wonderful place for inspiration.

Q: What's your favorite place to shop in Seattle? (Other than E. Smith, of course!)
I love to wander through Elliott Bay Books, and while I'm up there, might as well stop into Totokaelo and touch the pretty things, right?

Q: What's your favorite place to eat in Seattle?
We're big fans of the Walrus & the Carpenter. Also wouldn't say no to a dinner at Lark, a brunch at Toulouse Petit, or the entire menu at La Carta de Oaxaca.

esmithbar2.jpg
Etsy Pop Up Shop at West Elm!
Seattle_EtsyPopUp_Promo.jpg

Etsy and West Elm are teaming up to showcase Etsy sellers in Seattle, and we'll be there!

Working with decorating blog, The Inspired Room, the folks at both companies chose 12 Seattle-based Etsy artists for a one day pop-up shop. We are absolutely thrilled to have been chosen, and can't wait for the event!

The pop-up shop will take place on Saturday, November 9th at the Seattle West Elm store. Each of the featured Etsy sellers will set up within the store to share and sell their homegoods, accessories, stationery and more. There will also be a Smilebooth, DJs and snacks, a.k.a. FUN!

Join us! Date: Saturday, November 9th Time: 1:00 - 6:00 p.m. Location: West Elm, 2201 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, Washington

More info: Facebook EventWest Elm's Blog The Inspired Room's Post

These are the featured Seattle area Etsy Shops you'll get to shop!

Constellation Co.
Love, Daniella
Wallingford Co.
Herbivore Botanicals
Lily Emme Jewelry
Dahlia Press Shop
Fremont Candle Co
Garden BonBons
On Your Case Store
Tutta Lou Press
Three Bad Seeds
Rouge and Whimsy

Visit Seattle Constellation Style
seattlepc.jpg

We LOVE Seattle, and have spent the last 4 years getting to know our amazing city.

I stumbled upon our friend Luz's See/Eat/Do Seattle blog post recently, and I loved it. Luz and her husband Cole also sent us an amazing list for San Francisco last summer, which we followed closely. While planning our upcoming New York trip, I've been pretty obsessively looking for guides to NYC as well. Since everyone has such different tastes and desires for sight seeing, I think there's room for a Shop/Eat/Drink list from our point of view! I'll focus in on neighborhoods I have "expertise" on, only include my MOST favorite places, and include the stores that carry our products. Cool? Cool.

PIONEER SQUARE
Seattle's oldest neighborhood, and where our studio is located. I spend most of my time here. It's quirky and has a bit of a reputation, but it's very lovable and growing cooler by the minute.

Shop:

E. Smith Mercantile
On the lovely treelined street 1st Ave South. Super cool western themed mercantile. Vintage boots, curated clothing, craft cooking & cocktail ingredients, and stationery from yours truly.

Cuttysark Nautical Antiques & Flags
Also on 1st Ave. South. Nautical gifts, supplies, etc. Pleasantly un-hipster. Think old guys in boats.

Magic Mouse Toys
Closest thing to Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium that i've found. Fun to just look around.

Rivet & Sway
Super gorgeous eye glasses for women. Open by appointment only.

Linda Hodges Gallery
My favorite art gallery in Pioneer Square. I walk by it several times a week to go to the post office, and I always linger in the window.

Eat/Drink:

Delicatus
THE best sandwiches. I dream about the Mudd Honey. You guys. Sliced roast beef, turkey, Zoë’s slab bacon, white cheddar, horseradish aioli, house BBQ on a toasted Italian roll.

Cocoa Banana
Good gosh darn smoothies. Right next door to our building. The William is my favorite.

INTERNATIONAL DISTRICT
Walkable from Pioneer Square, lots and lots of cultures coming together.

Shop:

Kinokuniya Bookstore (Located in Uwajimaya)
I love this place. Washi tape, sketchbooks, rubber stamps, unique pens, and everything Japanese and cute that exists.

Eat/Drink:

Thai Curry Simple
Inexpensive, large portions, and deeeeelicious. I didn't know I liked curry until we started eating here.

WEST SEATTLE

Shop: I'm not going to lie, the only place I go frequently to shop in West Seattle is Target.

Eat/Drink:

Beer Junction
Best selection of local & imported hard ciders in the city. (I love hard cider.)

Bakery Nouveau
Twice baked almond croissants. They're huge and perfect.

Husky Deli
They carry Canadian candy bars. For me, that's enough of a draw.

DOWNTOWN
When you're alone and life is making you lonely, You can always go downtown When you've got worries, all the noise and the hurry, Seems to help, I know, downtown

Shop:

Paper Hammer
Great stationery store, founded by the owner of publisher Marquand Books. I find something I can't live without everytime I walk in there. They also carry our cards.

Watson Kennedy
Beautifully curated, full of fun gifts. Their window displays are always impressive and engaging.

BELLTOWN

Shop:

Peter Miller Books
Every design book you could ever want to flip through. Almost too many for my brain to handle.

Endless Knot
Great independent clothing boutique. Love browsing this place.

Eat/Drink:

Top Pot Doughnuts
Best doughnuts anywhere. I eat the chocolate glazed old fashioned almost exclusively. There are lots of other locations as well, but this one is the coolest building.

Lucky Diner
Greasy spoon kind of place - good food, but the main draw for me is that you can order a bowl of Lucky Charms as a side. So cool.

Yellow Leaf Cupcakes
My favorite cupcakes ever. They're all good, I can't pick a favorite.

LaVita E'Bella
Had one of the best meals of my life here. (It was Osso Buco.)

Spur
Western themed decor but fancy-shmancy craft cocktails and desserts.

QUEEN ANNE

Shop:

Stuhlberg’s
Great high end gift & stationery store. Carries our cards from time to time.

Blue Highway Games
Nerdy board game store. Has an area to try out games, which is fun.

Eat/Drink:

Macrina
My favorite Seattle bakery to spend time in. I love their buttermilk biscuit with preserves.

Homegrown
Awesome sandwich place with several locations. But this is one I went to last.

FREMONT

Shop: There are a ton of cute boutiques in Fremont, but I haven't spent a ton of time shopping there.

Eat/Drink:

Paseos
Messy Caribbean sandwiches. Long line, but worth it. Grab your food and take it to Gasworks Park.

Brouwer’s Cafe
More beer on tap than anyone could ever try. But also a lot of unique cider choices!

Uneeda Burger
There is some argument about burgers in our family (Brad's favorite is Red Mill), but this is my favorite burger in the city. Must have the over easy fried egg on top. Perfection.

CAPITOL HILL

Shop:

Elliott Bay Book Co.
The first time I visited Seattle, Elliott Bay Books was in Pioneer Square. While i'm sad not to be able to browse their crazy selection in our own neighborhood, i'm happy that they carry our cards! They have an amazing kids section as well.

Marigold & Mint
Super cute boutique in Melrose Market (close to a Homegrown location as well!) with a unique selection of plants, gifts, and books. I like it lots. They have a selection of our Constellation Sketchbooks right now.

Nube Green
Very hip gift store, featuring U.S. made and sustainably sourced items. They have a broad selection of our cards, and several of our limited edition prints.

Eat/Drink: We lived on Capitol Hill for 6 months, but we were super broke at the time. We kind of only ate burgers and black beans and rice.

Lil Woody's
Yummy burger joint. Plus, you can order french fries with a side of milk shake to dip them in.

BALLARD
We spend a lot of time here.

Shop:

Card Kingdom
Nerdy to the core, with designer board games that would take you a month of Sundays to figure out how to play. (Just how we like 'em.)

Eat/Drink:

The Sexton
Three words: fried brussels sprouts.

Bitterroot
My favorite barbecue in the city.  They also have an amazing happy hour.

Moshi Moshi Sushi
Fun place to go and sit at the sushi bar. Everything is delicious. Love the giant sparkly cherry tree inside.

Hot Cakes
Dessert at its finest. Molten chocolate cakes in mason jars. My favorite? The sundae: homemade nutella, brown butter caramel, candied hazelnuts and vanilla caramel. (You can also add bacon.)

MAGNOLIA
Highly underrated by our fellow Seattleites. Small town feel in a "big" city.

Shop:

Magnolia's Bookstore
I really like this place. Great selection of cookbooks and magazines. The perfect small town bookstore experience.

Magnolia Ace Hardware
The only hardware store in the world that doesn't stress me out. Plus, they have a ton of random non-hardware items that are fun to browse. And free popcorn!

Eat/Drink:

Nook
Cute little bar with a great atmosphere. I had 2 consecutive birthday gatherings here.

Finn's Bakery
Great spot for a pastry and an Americano.

Newbies Around the Shop
cab4.jpg

We've added some new "friends" to the shop recently, and are excited to show them off!

Jules of Stern & Faye recently sold the print farm and held an estate sale to share the pieces that wouldn't fit in her new studio with the letterpress community. While it was really sad to be visiting the farm for the last time, we were also really excited to buy a full cabinet of beautiful type and a slant-top work surface (among other goodies). You really can't beat a letterpress estate sale!

cab1.jpg

We're been busy reorganizing the shop and babying our new type, but we're working on a full catalog of print samples to show you - check back in for updates!

rolly7.jpg

We recently drove by Alafair Antique & Estate Co. in SODO (always a fun spot to drop by on the way to the paper store) and picked up this charming metal cabinet for our print shop tools. It was another bittersweet purchase - Alafair has lost their lease, and will be closing soon. If you haven't ever stopped by their unique store, now's the time. Everything is 40-50% off!

rolly6.jpg

The cabinet was originally dark brown (as you can see inside the door), but was painted a pastel pink at some point in its life. It's grimy and chipped, so it needs some love - but I can't decide whether or not to keep the pink. The knobs and tapered legs are so sweet and feminine, the pink kind of works. I'm a sucker for anything with wheels - you can use it anywhere!

newshelf1.jpg

While in Port Townsend for our anniversary trip, one of the little boutiques was selling some of their fixtures. We were really excited when we saw this quirky shelf for $15! It's perfect for our craft show display. It's a little bit shaky at the moment, but with some tweaking and paint, it will be ready to go! We'll be debuting it soon for the holiday show circuit! (Be prepared for a fun before & after reveal!)

Our 3rd Anniversary Printing Press
newguy3.jpg

Last month, Brad and I took a weekend trip to the Olympic Peninsula for our 3rd Anniversary. We had an amazing, restful adventure.

In our opinion, that's the best kind - a little bit of both! We rode the ferry, stayed in a castle, did a cider tasting, made sun prints, ate lots of delicious food, walked on the beach, and did some shopping.

On our return home, we stopped at an antique store in Bremerton before we got back on the ferry. While browsing, we found this little treasure! We don't usually do large anniversary gifts, but instead save our pennies to shop together on our anniversary trips. It's pretty fitting that we'd find and buy a tiny new printing press on our weekend away. It's something we'll always have around to remember our amazing third year!

newguy1.jpg
newguy4.jpg
newguy2.jpg

The press was packed in an ancient looking wood box, like it was sold as a "kit" - with a tiny brayer, a font of type, tweezers, and tiny sheets of paper. I've searched the Briar Press online museum, but can't find exactly which press this one is. It's similar to a few of the small hand inking lever presses, but i'd love to know exactly which company and model it is if anyone knows.

The whole thing is really unusual - the press uses type that isn't the traditional "type high," which makes it pretty impractical in a print shop. This teeny tiny press is even smaller than our little Sigwalt Annabelle - when something is that tiny and cute, how could we resist?

Renegade Shopping Summer 2012
renegadeshopping.jpg

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!

Crafty and counting...

Here's the scoop: Crafty Wonderland is this weekend in Portland, and we are so excited!

I checked out a bunch of our fellow vendors, and blew several hours of my morning... these folks are a-maz-ing! You don't want to miss this one. Here's a run down of the booths i'm most excited to check out:

Things I want: Beautiful, feminine jewelry from Amy Wing Gorgeous textiles from Anna Joyce Nerdy goodness from Betty Turbo (I've gotta get me some of those Buffy cards!) I feel like my summer needs feather earrings from Bird Crap Featherwear I love these cut paper shadowboxes from Bird Mafia Cut Paper Design How amazing are these mounted trophy magnets by bishoplennonart? The pillow pincushions by Chet & Dot are too cute for words. Makes me want to take up sewing! Tiny felted mushrooms in bottlecaps? Yes please! Gonna have to stop by House of Moss. I simply can't wait to see Wee Green Spot's sweet terrariums in person! (Been crushing on them for awhile.)

Things Hubby's Gonna Want: Ultra nerdy accessories by Pixel Party Felted Star Wars Mobiles? OMG. Sheep Creek has too many cute things for words. I don't know what Beard Balm is for, but my hubby's got a beard so i'm sure we'll find out! Looking forward to dropping by Man's Face Stuff.

Familiar Faces: I've got a Berkley Illustration print hung above my desk, and I can't wait to see more! We've got Mary Kate McDevitt's Abe print hung up in the studio - a very sweet reminder, even on rainy days. Can't wait to see what she's been up to! I totally stalked the gorgeous hats by Humperdinck His and Hers Haberdashery at the last Urban Craft Uprising, and can't wait to see them again!

Working Hard or Hardly Working
desks1.jpg

In many ways we've been working much much harder than usual (late nights, long days, lots of manual labor): hence, the working hard. But in the midst of that, we haven't been doing the work we typically do: hence, the hardly working.

Soon the new studio will be in order and we'll be back to printing - but for now, here's an update on what we've been doing in the meantime.

We picked up two new-to-us desks for the studio. The first desk, for me, is a lovely warm desk with lots of drawers and just enough of a decorative feel. The second desk (for Brad/interns/friends/freelancers, etc.) is a Singer sewing table that's been turned into a desk. It's got cast iron legs, 3 drawers, and a whole lot of character. We found both desks Antique Liquidators in the South Lake Union neighborhood of Seattle. Antique Liquidators has 3 floors of amazing antique furniture - and their prices are insane. We found two desks we LOVE for about the same prices as we've been seeing on Craigslist, at estate sales, etc. And they're in pristine condition. I really love this store. They even deliver. It's definitely worth a trip.

diy1.jpg

We've also been working on several DIY projects this week to get the studio ready to roll.

One of our biggest needs in the new studio (and any studio, really) is storage. We've searched and searched, and most of the available options (in our price range) are unattractive or just not appropriate for a print shop. We need something sturdy, unfussy, and something that goes well with the feeling of our equipment and work. Brad stumbled upon this blog post & tutorial by The Brick House, and fell in love with their DIY plumbing pipe shelf. It's industrial and structural, yet vintage-y and poetic. So, we've embarked on our own shelving project. All the materials have been purchased, the wood stained, and we're nearly ready to build it. More photos and info to come.

The black trim in our new studio (windows, baseboards, doors, etc.) is so lovely and classic - we noticed right away that several of our light colored pieces looked pale and dull next to it. A few cans of spray paint later, some of our least attractive furniture pieces (estate sale finds, etc.) are now bold and black and lovely as well.

For more on what we've got planned and what's the come for our new studio, check out our Studio Inspiration board on Pinterest.

Fab.com is Fabtastic
colorwheel.jpg

We looooove Fab!  Brad and I eagerly check the new deals every morning, and we've ordered several wonderful items at really great prices. This color wheel necklace from Yellow Owl Workshop came in the mail recently. It's gorgeous, well made, and it's packaging is just too darn cute. (That's our cat Scout's paw of approval.)

If you 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.

Consider this your official invite! It's really worth a look - hardly a day goes by without them offering something we "can't live without!"

New Studio Inspiration
studio2.jpg

With all the 619 hullabaloo, we've been excited to put it behind us and start planning for the new studio.

We've found the space (details coming soon, I promise!), and we'll be moving sometime before October 1st (as soon as the new space is ready). We've got a plan brewing for the new studio that takes into account the style of the building, the additional space (Yes, it's going to be bigger!), and our aesthetic desires. We love our current studio and had so much fun designing the space, painting, decorating, etc. - but we're even more excited to take what we learned on that "project" and improve upon it. Here's some of the photos we've been gathering on Pinterest for inspiration.

[DIY Built-in Shelving from The Brick House, Metal Truss Work Table from West Elm, Architect's Boom Sconce from Restoration Hardware]

Henry Ford’s Design Studio for the Model T  - This is such a gorgeous space!

Henry Ford’s Design Studio for the Model T - This is such a gorgeous space!

Mechanic's Beacon Light from  Anthropologie , Bookshelf Made From Antique Apple Crates found on  Pinterest

Mechanic's Beacon Light from Anthropologie, Bookshelf Made From Antique Apple Crates found on Pinterest

Urban Craft Uprising Vendors
materialandmovement.jpg

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.)