Monthly Archives: June 2015

Summertime Bounty

Last night while the Brown family ate dinner on the porch (roughly 7.5 minutes before the kids jetted off to play in the yard!), we began counting the weeks left in Summer. Yes, I’m aware this conversation was taking place way too early! But here’s the simple truth…Minnesotans have both the beauty and frustration of living with clear beginnings and endings to the four seasons. Summer is fast, fun, messy, full, exhausting and tremendously entertaining.

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Which is why I’ve decided to take a temporary pause from blogging over the next two months and spend more time with my three young children, handwriting as much as possible, sharing the bounty of our garden and participating in the family circus. You’ll still hear from Brown Ink Paper Goods regarding a sale or two over the Summer (check out the latest discounts here!) and posting new products on Instagram, TwitterPinterest, and Facebook. Otherwise, I’ll rejoin you all in late August. Until then, put the phone down and let your closet, inner-youth take over whenever possible! Before I leave you, here are a few highlights from the past month worth checking out…

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Cocorrina’s current obsession with brass office supplies from Kohezi!

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The always creative USPS Stamps blog recently spotlighted two experts to help us style our cards as well as find the right words while corresponding!

Enjoying the Lettres Grandes from Nowness, a film series of French actors reading letters such as correspondence by Van Gogh to his brother.

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No one highlights the National Stationery Show quite like Nole from Oh So Beautiful Paper (I finally met the gal in person at the show this year and expressed my appreciation for her inspiring site!). Check out her favorites, 13 post series, from this year’s show!

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The new NYC boutique, C.W. Pencil Enterprise, is a must-visit for all pencil enthusiasts headed to The Big Apple. Speaking of traveling…

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Did you hear the latest? Boutique hotels are now offering letter-writing amenities in hotel rooms, one even has personalized stationery awaiting their guests!

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Recently released More than Words: The Illustrated Love Letters, Thank-You Notes and Travelogues of Great Artists is one to add to your coffee table collection this Summer.

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Make it a memorable Summer. Be daring, share what you love, and write when you can. xo

    Behind-the-Scenes with Brown Ink Paper Goods

    A few months ago I was asked to be a guest blogger for the Better Homes and Gardens Style Spotters blog, a little behind-the-scenes of what goes into creating my personal line. Of course, I jumped at the chance to share my world with its followers.

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    Collaborating on card design with Jean Glenn from Pomegranate Press is truly my most favorite aspect of selling the Brown Ink Paper Goods line (aside from others enjoying the cards as well!). Through the lens of the talented Louisa Podlich, our making-of this years Father’s Day card was beautifully caught in Jean’s home.

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    Between finalizing the card details such as color, typeset and layout in her dining room, to creating the final piece of work on her Chandler and Price Platen Press in the basement, we work together like a well-oiled machine…vintage, of course!

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    To have the chance to work so closely with a talented and professional letterpress printer such as Jean is simply a dream. I believe our commitment to the authentic beauty and nature of letterpress, creating hand-touched products using an antique letterpress printer and vintage print blocks, can be seen in each card in the the Brown Ink Paper Goods line. Thank you for the support, friends! And be sure to check out the full blog post here on Better Homes and Gardens!

      Summertime and the Writin’ is Easy

      If you’re a parent like me, goals for Summertime are big in vision yet small in nature. Right about this time of year our kids look forward to writing a Summer List on our pantry white-board with wishes for the season such as bike around all three, Minneapolis city-lakes, canoe to visit Minne the Lake Creature, sell popsicles at the local South Beach, pick berries, and lots more…most involving ice cream. We check off the items as Summer moves ahead, providing the kids some say on how they’re spending their Summer Break.

      In addition to the kids’ list, I have my own Summer Wish List stirring with this theme: How to subtly slide handwriting into our family’s day-day life. No surprise here, right? Here are some ideas and resources I’ve found which will support this vision, starting with…

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      My Nature Book from All for the Boys. This book is perfect for kids to have control over their experience by taking photos, researching plants and animals, and writing in their own book!

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      Be a thoughtful pen-pal and write multiple letters to friends at camp. As I have mentioned before, nothing beats a letter from a friend or family member while being away from home!

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      Kraft Journal = Perfect set up for Summer Journal Writing!

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      Travel Journals aren’t just for out of state trips. Create a Summer Journal for all the explorations in your Stay-Vacation with space for movie ticket stubs, dried flowers, thread from friendship bracelet making…anything that fills your Summer with joy.

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      For rainy Summer days, grab this DIY Mini Card-Making Kit to have on hand. Get your creative on and create memorable cards to mail to friends this Summer! (or simply use cereal boxes!)

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      Create a Summer short story or fairytale journal shared within the family, each taking turns as the story progresses over the days and weeks. By the time Autumn arrives you might have your own family novel! (Check out the new Journals in the Brown Ink store to store your tale.)

      To my pleasant surprise, on the first day of Summer Break I found my boys writing their own newspaper, The Brown Times, on the kitchen island the other day…no prompting whatsoever. Did they continue to write the last few days, well…not so much. But at least it’s a start!

      Bottom line, it’s a tricky balance this time of year, allowing for lazy, youthful moments which free our minds and bring creativity to our days, yet finding structure with activities and creating or documenting memories. So good luck with all of this folks. I’m write there with you!

        Favorite Fatherly Finds

        With all the Father’s Day Gift Lists roaming around, someone has to narrow down the good stuff, right? Thankfully, Brown Ink has compiled the most creative ideas for the Dad in your life!

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        No one makes a more classier Gift Guide than our friends at InsideHook and this year their Father’s Day Guide exceeds all expectations. I’m especially found of the handsome, leather Moleskin notebook covers from Inkleaf to protect a Father’s written word! Speaking of leather…

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        Local J.W. Hulme created a handsome, leather, savvy Dad’s Day List for all kinds of needs. My favorite is the new, gently distressed Brown Leather Envelope for letters, a pen, important receipts or tickets to the ball game!

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        Thanks to the ever tasteful Tomboy Style, I found this Father’s Day Gift Guide filled with multiple ideas from Huckberry for the “outdoorsman, sportsman or dashing dude” in your life!

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        Terrain created a Dad’s List for the Nature Lover/Entertainer kind-of-a Father — But also included this thoughtful I Love You Dad Journal with room to share memorable moments.

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        For the foodie, head to Food52 for their highly crafted list of ideas for Dad. This Abner Universal Tool Box would be perfect for storing stationery, pens and written letters to treasure.

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        The Walker Art Center lists some awesome pieces of Dad Gear! I’m especially keen of the Scottish made Alwych all-weather notebook, unchanged since the 1930’s. To this day it’s recommended in the UK by police, delivery drivers, gardeners, mountaineers, golfers and explorers!

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        Of course, no gift is complete without a Father’s Day Card. Make sure to check out the variety of Dad cards at Brown Ink Paper Goods before June 21st arrives. If I’ve learned anything over the years, a Father needs to be reminded (in written words) of his importance to you. Cheers!