Fall & Winter Collection Sneak Preview 👀 (Pt. 1 of 3)

If you’re following me on Instagram and seeing my Stories, you may know that I’ve been working on my new online shop.

What prompted me to move my shop from Etsy was that Etsy Wholesale closed at the end of June, and I needed a new platform to sell my products to retailers online.

I was originally planning on moving only my wholesale shop to elsewhere and keep the regular Etsy shop. But after talking to a few people, I decided it makes the most sense to have both shops on one website.

I’ve been wanting to have my own online shop for quite some time, so it was the kick in the pants I needed to actually make it happen! 

So I’ve been chipping away at it for the last couple of month as I juggle my full summer show schedule  – I have lots of products to transfer (150+ if you include all the variants) and it’s a slow process. I swear​ everything takes 3 times longer than I expect. And my deadline has been extended at least twice now 😬

I’m hoping it’ll be done in time to launch my new collection in early September. 

It’s gonna be a lot easier to shop in my new shop than Etsy – no pesky coupon codes, and I want to reward your loyalty even more in the new shop, so stay tuned!!

In a meantime, I wanted to share some sneak previews for my fall & winter collection to get you excited.

Be warned, it’s full of cuteness ✨

Of course I’ve seen my new collection so many times, but my heart still skips a beat when I see it (or maybe I have some kind of heart condition. Hope not.)

I’ve got several new everyday cards and am especially in love with this “Have a Wild Birthday” card 😍

Sometimes my customers ask for more gender-neutral birthday card, so this was my attempt at it 😀

Ok, and I’m super excited about this next one, too!

“Foods of the Pacific Northwest” design’s got all the delicious gifts this lovely region has to offer.

You know I love food. I’m so very grateful to call the beautiful PNW my home – the foods here are just SO good!

And this design will also be available as 8″x10″ and 11″x14″ archival giclee art print.

How cute would it be for your kitchen or dining room?? 😍

And I wanna end today’s post with a new llama design!!

And they come in many gift-able forms 😍

I’ve been more intentional about embracing the joy in my design lately.

​Believe it or not, I didn’t always feel that “cute” art was a “real” art.

Many of you know that I didn’t go to an art school or have an art degree. And it’s been a source of my insecurity for a long time.

But, I’ve been finding that the more I embrace the cuteness of my work unapologetically, the more it resonates with you.

​And, not only that, it just makes me so darn happy when I create stuff that are so stinking adorable 😆

​So stay tuned for more cuteness as I share previews for the next couple of weeks!

xo


p.s. No need to wait for the new collection if you wanna shop the existing cuteness in my current shop or in person in a meantime 😉

Mini sabbatical report – making art the old school way

I took my mini sabbatical week the last week of July.

I’ve been taking every 7th week off since October 2015 to rest and recharge.

(This brilliant idea was created by Seanwes, one of my biz heroes.)

I swear having to turn off my hustle switch regularly is the biggest reason why I haven’t burnt out yet.

And burnout is the worst thing that can happen to you when you’re pursuing your passion (for a living or for fun.)

I often get asked what I actually do during my sabbaticals.

Short answer is, you can do whatever you want to recharge your energy!

For me, It’s a time to relax and do things I don’t normally get to do.

I might work on personal projects, read more, or focus on a big picture visioning for my business.

One rule I’ve set for myself is I don’t do any work for other people during sabbaticals.

This is not super relevant now as I don’t do custom or commission work any more.

But, I wouldn’t schedule my video making for Sakura of America during sabbaticals, for example.

See, that’s the beauty of having a regular time off – you can actually schedule things around it way in advance!

(I have every 7th week blocked off on my Google calendar. Forever.)

Anyway, I did some fun things like getting a facial, going to Fremont art walk, and taking myself out on a solo lunch and shopping date.

{Fish tacos at Poquitos, Capitol Hill. Yum!}

I also enjoyed making art the “old school” way.

a.k.a. making art without tech 😀

Here are some of the highlights!

1. Pottery class

I’m in my pottery class at South Seattle College every Tuesday whether I’m on a sabbatical or not.

It definitely felt more relaxing, though, when I didn’t have to mentally track what I needed to do afterwards.

I glazed these cuties last week.

Tuxedo kitties were very popular last time and sold out pretty quickly, so I made more!

(Go check it out today if you want them. There are only a few left at the time of writing this post.)

2. Watercolor painting

I’ve been drawing on my iPad Pro almost exclusively since I got it last Christmas.

I love how quick I can make and process art digitally, and my most favorite function of all, “undo.”

It’s been very exciting to learn a new way to create art, and I’ve been immersed in it for the last 7 months.

Lately, though, I’ve been missing drawing and painting on paper more and more.

So I played with watercolor and gouache (an opaque watercolor) and made a fun flower drawing.

There is just nothing like drawing and seeing the paint do its thing on paper.

Seeing the luminance of the paint and brush strokes made me so happy!

While I still love drawing on my iPad, I’ll be painting and drawing on paper more in the coming months.

3. Block Printing

I used to do a lot more block printing.

But since I stopped making block printed things to sell (got burnt out) and have been focusing more on teaching, I haven’t been block printing as consistently.

I saw a couple of my friends make beautiful block printed work on Instagram and got inspired, so I worked on a small piece on Sunday afternoon.

I created a design based on the flower watercolor drawing I made.

The whole process probably took me about 2.5 hours from sketching the idea to finish printing.

I really liked the end results a lot. I wanna make more of these small prints!

During my last sabbatical, I had a two-day festival at the end of the week. This time, I decided I wasn’t gonna do any fairs and just enjoy the entire week off.

It usually takes me a few days to come down from the hustle mode and get into a resting mode, so having the entire week and weekend off was great.

Oh, and Dave had just come home from a 2.5 week out-of-town work stint, so it was double awesome to get to spend some time with him, too!

My energy reservoir is full again, and I’m feeling more centered and grounded.

I’m ready to tackle the second half of my summer, my friend!

Don’t forget to do something to recharge your energy today 😘

xo

Artist Manifesto from 3 years ago

I wasn’t gonna publish a new post today because I’ve been taking this week off to rest and recharge.

I still took a time off and enjoyed it throughly, but I posted this on Instagram on Just 31st, which is my 3-year full-time artist anniversary and got so many encouraging responses.

So I thought you may enjoy it, too.

(Copying and pasting doesn’t count as work, does it? 😉)

***

3 years ago today, I left my 14+ year career in the non-profit domestic violence work to grow Honeyberry Studios full-time. I’d been working on my art biz for a few years on the side but I really wanted to give my 100% to my creative endeavor to see where it can go. So I took a week off from work, and Dave and I sat down to crunch some numbers and decided his income alone could support us for a foreseeable future. That following Monday, I gave my notice.

A day after I left the office for the last time, I went on a solo retreat at my friend’s studio on Whidbey Island. I sat there alone to really think about my intentions for the next chapter in my life. I ended up creating this manifesto during my solo retreat as a visual reminder of why I do what I do and how I’d like to act in my business.

3 years later, my business is finally feeling like a real business, not an expensive hobby 😀 Though I have many moments of self doubt and insecurities, I’m super grateful that I get to do what makes me so incredibly happy for a living and sharing what makes me happy brings you joy ✨ Everybody wins in this scenario 😉

Most of my intentions I set in the beginning still hold true (except for making art everyday – I don’t. But I don’t beat myself up about it any more 😜)

Thank you for your support and encouragement so far – without you, my loyal fans and amazing retail partners, I would not be here writing this message today. Running a profitable small business is not easy. I’m so grateful for you. I’m only just getting started and can’t wait to bring you more joyful creations for many years to come✨

***

Have a beautiful day!

xo

Just because…

Hey friend,

I was gonna write about my reflections for the past 3 years today (July 31st is my 3-year freedom anniversary a.k.a. the day I quit my regular job) but didn’t finish it 🤷🏻‍♀️

It’s been very hectic juggling fairs & markets every weekend, working on moving my online shop to a different platform (Shopify if you’re curious), and just managing life without a working car (it broke down, in a process of buying another car) and a helping hand of my husband (he’s been out of town for work the last 2 weeks).

So, I thought I’d just show you a happy art to make you smile 😊

Do you love llama? I thought so 😊​ This is one of my new designs that are going to be available soon.

Hope you’re having a nice Sunday!

xo

p.s. I’ll be taking a week off for my mini sabbatical this coming week. I may or may not post a new article next Sunday. If not, I’ll talk to you in a couple of weeks 😘

Fall Block Print Workshop Registration is Open!

I’ve got a great news for you!

Registration for my Fall Introduction to Block Printing on Fabric workshop is now OPEN!

I’m so excited to be offering this workshop in two locations: IGIMO Seattle on Saturday 9/29 and Redmond on Sunday 9/30, from 1:30-6pm.

If crossing the bridge has stopped you from coming to the Seattle workshop in the past, come join me in Redmond 😉

Workshop size is kept small so I can pay individual attention to my students, and I’m offering an early bird rate ($125) until August 16th.

After that, the rate goes up to $135 per person.

(Hot tip 💡: you can also sign up with a friend and get a “buddy” rate!)

Learn more and register on my website here.

If you love learning new crafts in a supportive, casual environment, this workshop is for you! 😊

xo

p.s. I plan on offering an open studio time to my students sometime before the winter holiday season so you can work on your handmade gifts. However, I may not offer another workshop until next year. FYI!

NEW Archival Canvas Prints in Shop!

It’s full-on summer mode here in Seattle.

That means blue skies, sunshine, and beautiful flowers everywhere.

Ok, this photo was not exactly taken in Seattle – we went to Orcas Island last weekend for a short visit.

We stayed at Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead, where Dave used to live for 7 years when we were first dating.

Such a magical place Orcas is… If you haven’t been there, I highly recommend you make a trip up there! It’s not that far from Seattle (about 2.5 hrs one way, including the ferry ride) but feels so far away from everything.

Plants and nature have been a big part of my creative inspiration.

Especially flowers, I can’t get enough of them!

I’m often daydreaming of converting our veggie gardens into flower gardens (don’t tell Dave!!)

So it is no wonder why I created 2018 calendars full of flowers and uplifting messages.

Though the calendars are long sold out, I turned 6 of my illustrations into 8″x8″ archival canvas prints for an art show I’m having at Tin Umbrella Coffee in South Seattle right now!

First of all, if you live in/hear Seattle, go visit this cute coffee shop this month and enjoy the artwork in person!

Plus, their coffee is amazing.

These canvas prints turned out SO nice.

The colors are so crisp and vibrant. And the canvas texture is oh so yummy.


It’s scratch and smudge resistant, so you don’t have to be super precious around it, which may be a plus if you have little ones around 😉

It’s got a metal piece on the back for easy hanging, too.

Since many of you live far away, I wanted to invite you to the show virtually and make them available for purchase online, too!

You can now enjoy the gallery and shop your favorite canvas art here

(** Please note that since I only have one of each prints, the artwork you purchase won’t be available to ship until the show is over at the end of July.)

Oh, and if you live in the US, shipping is FREE! Isn’t it exciting?

I hope you get to check out my work in person if you’re in the area, or online if you don’t live nearby 😊

Enjoy!

xo

p.s. in case you missed the link, you can shop my new canvas prints here.

 

Magic of summer time craft fairs 🌞

Earlier this year, I set my goal to do more in-person fairs and markets.

Be careful what you wish for…because it could totally come true!

By the time this post goes out, I’ll have done 15 shows so far this year.

It may not be a big number for someone else, but around the same time last year, I’d only done 4 shows. FOUR. Whoa.

I’m super grateful that Seattle area offers so many opportunities for independent makers to sell their wares in the community.

I used to dread the craft fairs because it’s SO MUCH work.

I’d have to pack everything up, carry heavy boxes down to the car, fit everything in our tiny Honda Civic, drive, set up (often by myself), take down, carry them back up to the car etc. etc.

Well, it’s still work but as I do more of these events, I’m able to streamline the process a bit more, so it doesn’t take as much time and effort.

And as I do more fairs, I get better at it.

My booth looks a lot better now, and I’m more comfortable selling in person.

(Hint: as soon as I realized the most important thing you do at fairs was to connect with the customers, selling became easier.)

It may be weird to hear an introvert say this, but I come home more energized after a market✨

Sure, I don’t think I can do it every day, and I do need introvert recharge time afterwards.

BUT! Since my love language is words of affirmation, hearing my customers say nice things about my work all day long has such positive effects on my mental health!

And because I’m an introvert and a home body, I tend to stay home a lot if I don’t have a (compelling) reason to go out.

Summer outdoor events get me out more, be more physically active, and that’s giving me more energy, too.

(The other day, my hair stylist commented I’d gotten tanner. Tanner than when I went to Hawaii 😂)

And don’t forget the cute dogs at these events… I love it when people bring their adorable pups to the fairs 🐶💕

😍

So now I crave doing craft fairs and markets. It’s kind of addictive.

If you live in the Seattle area, do come by and say hi at one of these events this summer 👋

South Lake Union Saturday Market | Saturdays, 7/21 & 8/25

Fremont Sunday Market | Sundays, 7/22, 7/29, 8/5, 8/19 & 8/26

(*Please note that dates for above two markets are somewhat tentative (for me) – I’ll be there unless it rains or I’m too pooped 💩 Check my Instagram for updates the day of.)

Tin Umbrella Coffee | My art will be on display and available for purchase during the month of July!

9th Annual Redmond Arts Festival | Fri. 7/13, Sat. 7/14 & Sun. 7/15

17th Annual Ballard P-Patch Art in the Garden | Sat. 7/28

Kirkland Summerfest | Fri. 8/1, Sat. 8/11 & Sun. 8/12

You can always check my events page to see the most updated calendar.

Come get a healthy dose of vitamin D, get inspired by the beautiful creations, soak up the good vibes, and just generally have a good time 😊

Hope to see you this summer, friend!

xo

Kitty ornaments are here! 🐱

A few months ago, I made ceramic pet ornaments for my friends who’d recently lost their pets.

I loved them so much that I decided to make a handful to share with you!

If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you may have seen the makings of these ceramic cat ornaments.

It’s taken me longer than expected to finish these… Making ceramic anything is a long process!

But good news, the wait is finally over.

They’re here and looking for a new furever home 😀

They come in 3 colors: Tuxedo (SOLD OUT!), Black, and Dark Grey Tabby. (* note Grey Tabby is very dark and appears almost black at a first glance.)

You can select the color upon checkout.

They’re hand crafted and painted/glazed individually by me.

Each one is slightly different and makes it a one-of-a-kind artwork.

They’re about 1.5″ round (35 mm) and attached to a waxed cord for easy hanging. The cord is about 4″ long (95mm).

You can hang them on your wall, from the rearview mirror in your car, your houseplants, or on your Christmas tree during the holiday season.

You can also switch the cord to a longer string/chain and wear it as a necklace! It’s lightweight but pretty sturdy.

These cuties will make a perfect gift for someone who’s lost their cats or for any cat lovers who just want to be surrounded by anything that has cats on them 🐱

I only made a handful of each and am not sure if I’ll make more in the future.

I may, but it all depends on the time/energy I have… I’m not promising anything… 🙊

If you want them, go get them NOW!

Enjoy 😘

xo

p.s. If you missed the link above, you can shop these adorable kitty ornaments here.

p.p.s. Are you a Seattle local? I won’t be selling these at fairs and markets, but I’d be happy to bring them to you if you want to pick up in person! Just write a note indicating which event you’d like to pick up your purchase at, and I’ll refund your shipping. You can check out my event calendar here.

Working & Resting Sabbatical

I was on my mini sabbatical the week of June 11th.

It was a part work sabbatical because Etsy Wholesale is closing and I need to move my online wholesale shop elsewhere 😱

Sabbatical is a good time to work on a project like this because I can just focus on it and not the mundane little tasks or other deadlines I would normally juggle.

I chose Shopify as a new platform to have my wholesale shop at as I’ve heard good feedback from other makers, and some of my favorite online shops use Shopify.

I’ve been thinking of having my own online shop for a while, so Etsy Wholesale’s announcement to close the platform has kicked me into action!

I didn’t make as much of a headway as I would’ve liked to, though.

I guess when you’re on sabbatical, your brain just doesn’t want to do much work after all 🤷🏻‍♀️

Well, at least I started the process. It’s a work in progress and needs to be done in the next week and a half so I can share it with my retailers!!!

Wish me luck 🤞

(I need it 😅)

On another note, Dave and I have been searching for a property to do a land-based project in western Washington. 

We went to look at a couple of potential lands during my week-off.

There are so many complicating factors surrounding this project, so it’s taken a long time to find the “one.”

I can’t share much more than that publicly right now but will be sure to tell you more in the future 😊

I did take some extra time to read, too.

I read “I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual” by Luvvie Ajayi.

It’s funny, insightful, and heartfelt. I laughed out loud at several moments in the book😂

Highly recommend it if you’re looking for honest truth about life, internet, relationships, and oppression.

After having a relaxing, slow week, I participated in the Fremont Fair during the weekend of June 16 & 17.

photo by Rocket Buddah

There were so many people and cute dogs!

We had an amazing weather, too. Blue skies. No clouds.

I did get a little overheated in my booth but had a great time.

I just enjoy connecting and re-connecting with wonderful vendors and customers so much 😊 It makes my heart happy.

I have a really busy summer coming up with more fairs and markets – I’m glad I had a moment to breathe before jumping in!!

How’s your summer shaping up? I hope you get to take some time off and enjoy yourself!

xo

Lots of fun in the pottery class

Hey friend,

I’m taking my mini sabbatical week off this week, so I thought I’d share what I’ve been working on in my pottery class.

I’ve been taking a continuing education pottery class at South Seattle College every Tuesday morning since the beginning of 2017.

{These are the pieces I made in my first class. I still use these cups almost every day. I use the pinch pots for displaying my stickers at craft shows, and I get people asking if they’re for sale, too. (The answer is “no” 😀)}

I love my class and the nice creative community there.

Making something with my two hands, away from my computer, feels so nice and meditative!

I mainly hand build my pieces. I tried to throw a couple of times, too, but it’s hard 😅 and I was more stressed than having fun, so I’m sticking to hand building for now.

I’m making a small batch of kitty ornaments.

They’re glazed and being fired as we speak, and hopefully they’ll come out ok 🤞

When they do, they’ll be available for purchase.

If you wanna hear about it first, be sure to sign up for my newsletter.

And THIS. This Kitty Garden vase is the largest piece I’ve made so far.

And I LOVE it!

​The body was supposed to be more cylindrical, but I call it good as long as there is no hole and it stands up straight 😀

It makes me super happy to see this in our home!

I have to have pretty flowers every day now. 

Good thing our farmer’s market just opened up 💐

I just started working on small bowls. My goal is to replace our chipped cereal bowls with my handmade bowls!

I’m continuing to take the class this summer and am looking forward to learning and trying different pinch pot techniques.

(​If you’re interested in pinch pottery, I love this book and refer to it all the time.)

Having a creative outlet outside of my biz has been really awesome. 

It allows me to just play and experiment without worrying about it being “successful.”

Do you have a “thing” you do just for fun? Just for yourself?

Or if you’re in a maker/art biz yourself, how do you balance making things to sell vs. just for fun?

Tell me in the comments 😘 I wanna know!

xo