Tag Archives: Mara-Mi

voila party

My co-pilot and I are opposite when it comes to blogging. He has the wit, and at times bizarre, inside-baseball kind of humor. Me, I’m more practical and sing-songy. Nick handwrites all his posts before logging in and I, on the other hand, need to type when organizing my thoughts (I realize, a bit anti-Brown Ink). Nick stores all his ideas in his head. For me, I collect ideas and store them under a specific category using my awesome filing system (with the help from russell&hazel file folders).

Funny enough, even with well-intended folders spilling over with post ideas, for me it always comes down to what feels fresh at the time. I often wait for the right topic to knock me over. So this past week, buried under stationery catalogues while narrowing down the goods to premiere on Brown Ink this fall (so excited!!), I had no time or room to let an idea surface. But leave it to a morning run to solve or at least sort out my present problems. Summer humidity finally arrived and out came my need for a summer party…voila. Who doesn’t love a little social gathering in the heat of the season!?!

invite1 Take the time to handwrite an invite! I used these invitations from MARA-MI for a Bon Voyage party for my neighbors this spring. I adore the origami and gold foil print inside the envelope.

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 And for more of the garden party…

Garden Party Invitations

Rifle Paper features a beautiful party invitation which can be used for many occasions.

 

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Use this nautical, summer themed gift tag from MARA-MI with a bottle of bubbly for the host.

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0040 Make your drinks labels stand out and feel festive with a celebratory stamp!

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Letterpressed Neon Coasters - "Bottoms up"

These chic, neon coasters from Haute Papier use an added touch with the letterpress handwriting.

Find a way to make a statement as your guests arrive. A good friend of mine welcomed her friends by using chalkboard paint in her front entrance. An easy feel good.

 Find chalkboard paint around town or make it temporary with peel & stick boards

 

Of course, if your party has many people chatting it up with one another, they will love the napkin notes for the last minute thought, much easier than digging for you iphone to message yourself.

With these food writing pens, your handwriting is actually edible!

iPad Step example

If you’re not a big Thank You note writer, make it simple by shooting a photo with the host and send a card using inkFelt, RedStamp, or Postagram, all phone or tablet apps which send an old-fashioned written card, on real paper, delivered by a mail carrier. All before you exit the party.

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Let the festivities begin….

we love our Mothers

Mother’s Day is only two weeks away. So I thought I might share some ideas which hopefully will be passed on to the fathers, husbands or in-laws in your lives.

First off, I can’t more strongly suggest gifting your mother this Phone Pouchette from russell+hazel. I know, I know, I’m preaching technology but just listen…

phone1This has become my go-to when it comes to note taking outside of the home. And it can easily act as a purse with the interior slots for business or credit cards. Handsome and functional. And for a mother (no mention of names) who misplaces her phone from time to time, you will always know where your phone is ringing and where you last scribbled out an appointment or two.

My mother tends to subtlety “hint” at what she might like for Mother’s Day. Lucky for me, she’s in need of stationery!!! Love that kind of research.

Peacock Feather Pattern Flat Notes-set of 8

These Peacock Feather Pattern note cards from Michelle Brusegaard are lovely for a note to a loved one.

letter1I grew up near the Walker Art Center so my mother was known to reproduce art pieces which spoke to her (once she even painted a canvas orange and stuck a piece of toast right in the center of the painting). This lovely Mekko Note Card from MARA-MI reminds me of a piece she would have replicated.

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My mother-in-law, also a Walker fan, would easily enjoy sending these Piet Note Cards to any one of her lucky friends.

mom2I don’t know a mother who wouldn’t be thrilled to receive these Valencia Note Cards which scream spring has arrived.

(All three MARA-MI cards can be found at their flagship store in Stillwater or their sister store, russell+hazel, in Minneapolis.)

coral letterpress notecard

I’m crazy about this elegant, letterpress Coral note card from Fig & Tulip.

Here’s a little something to help send off a letter in style…

imm living arcadian pig stamp

Mad about the pig stamp from imm living. I mean, come on? I would find excuses to use this cute little Wilbur on any rainy day!

Here’s an idea. Not only surprise the mom in your life with an unexpected trip but plant the airline ticket in this handsome Traveler’s Notebook from Baum-kuchen. An unforgettable Mother’s Day gift, no doubt.

journal_akolamarketThe beautiful selection of journals from Matta are covered with archive fabrics filled with market paper. (Why not pick up a scarf before you click off the site!)

Most mothers these days have some sort of stress on their minds. You can help by gifting her a Massage Pen from Kikkerland with an actual vibrating massager at the tip! (now 20% off site-wide with coupon code MOMSDAY13)

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For the mom who likes to keep an orderly desk, the slick acrylic pen and pencil holder from Russel+Hazel makes your writing utensils look like art.

Copper Foil Recipe Cards - product images

Why not send your adult daughter a few family recipes on these copper foil recipe cards from Yellow Owl Workshop?

Sometimes a few words is all a Mother needs to receive. Which is why Shanna Murray illustrated decals is a wonderful gift for any mother figure in your life!

Of course no gift is complete without a card…

Make it! Blooming Mother’s Day Card

I love this Blooming Mother’s Day Card from Moomah. It’s a little DIY project, possibly a perfect card from a grandchild!

Rosy Blooms Mother's Day Card

Rosy Blooms from Rifle Paper

Lipstick Mother’s Day

Lipstick Mothers Day from rocket ink

I Heart Mom from Gold Teeth Brooklyn

But when it comes down to it, we feel the written expression is the most authentic and meaningful. A Mother of any form or nature will cherish this reminder of love.

P.S.

Gotta love a Post Script…

Don’t miss out Twin Citians, TODAY ONLY>>>>>>

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Held exclusively at their flagship store on 44th & France, russell+hazel is hosting a 30% off event on all r+h and MARA-MI products. I plan on picking up a few pencils, stationery, and party invites. This is a fantastic deal and also perfect timing with the beautiful and fresh MARA-MI Reo Collection hot off the press.

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Also, if you are near downtown Minneapolis (Brown Family headed to The Walker Art Center’s Free First Saturdays to check out our favorite children’s author, Chris Monroe), make sure to stop at Lunalux for the ever-popular Stationery Saturday.

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This month Jenni Undis and her crew will be helping you create personalized, letterpress printed stationery with lovely ding bats (love the state of MN) to bring home the same day. An early Mother’s Day gift, perhaps?

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So get out there in the midst of some needed spring rain and support our local peeps. And for all you Los Angelianos, don’t miss our locally created NorthernGRADE National Pop-Up Shop hosted in your town this weekend. At least go for the paper products if not the hip facial hair.

How Does Your Garden Grow?

I ask myself that question every spring, trying to recall which annuals I planted the pervious year in our urns, including which dahlia tubers I picked out from the annual Bachman’s tuber sale and my favorite Two Pony Gardens.

So this year I’ve decided to make a conscious effort to record which plants, both annuals and perennials, have survived, thrived or disliked our backyard throughout the summer.

I had been eyeing this Moleskin Gardening Journal for the last few months up at Tangletown Gardens and broke down the last time I stopped by (needing to replace the many kale and swiss chard veggies destroyed by squirrels and other four legged critters… AHHH!!). I’m giddy about what’s inside this Moleskin. Aside from helpful information regarding leaf shapes, plant habitats, etc., the journal includes five themed sections such as notes on plants, garden design ideas and observations during garden visits, as well as blank tabs in the back for more creative, personal use. Now all I need to do is actually enter in the information before baby Brown arrives in a month.

There are many out there to select from…

I noticed the Lifestyle Notebook Gardening during my visit to MARA MI last month and was taken by the Japanese influence seen through its organized journal, shopping list, garden dictionary (in Japanese however), and seasonal plan sheet. Very fang shui.

 

Gardener Cathleen Hands decided to design and sell this journal after many friends and students praised her for the homemade journal she brought to class. The water resistant Garden Journal has everything you need for an organized garden with monthly planning sheets and a pouch to hold seeds, and the helpful coil binding provides a strong surface to write. This gardener knew what she was up to!

There is always the classic Archie Grand notebook, Gardeners I Met and Liked, which is an ideal size when taking notes while wandering through the MN Landscape Arboretum, Brooklyn Botanical Garden or Portland’s Rose Gardens. Or your neighbor’s backyard.

 

Or for the artistic gardener, this light-hearted garden journal from cartoonist Brave Mable would suit their green thumb marvelously.

Now if only my new journal would get rid of those kale-eating little buggers.

Stationery Nirvana Part 1

I’ve been in a stationery fog this past week (being 34 weeks pregnant with insomnia probably doesn’t help. Ha!). It all started with last weekend’s National Stationery Show.  It’s this annual, mega-stationery trade show in NYC where all the hot-shot stores and designers, large and small, display their current paper products. My heart starts to beat faster when I imagine walking the aisles, scouring all the creative displays, letterpress cards, colorful notepads, etc. (As a side note, I have dreams of one day opening a brown ink paper store so you all can have direct access to the most unique, beautiful material around!).

For the past few weeks, I’ve been drooling over the many blogs featuring the hundreds of vendors, my favorite being Oh So Beautiful Paper with a 12-part series of the show.  Thought I’d share a few lines that caught my eye…

Studio Olivine from Portland, OR

Fat Bunny Press from San Francisco

 

Dear Hancock from LA

 

Banquet Atelier & Workshop from Vancouver

Sesame Letterpress from Brooklyn

Seedhouse from Philadelphia

Fine Day Press from Brooklyn

And Printerette Press from St.Paul. Speaking of local…

Since I was unable to attend the show this year, my other option was to create my own adventure. I decided to throw the boys in the minivan and take an afternoon trip to Mara-Mi in Stillwater, MN. Just to give you some background, I first noticed Mara-Mi at Target a few months ago. Their bold print and fantastic prices made it an easy purchase.

I soon realized this was the same stationery company my father had been raving about located right in his little old downtown. Of course it doesn’t hurt they sell tasty Izzy’s ice cream right there in the store just to help you get your happy feet on.

The store is not only filled with Mara-Mi lines (my favorite was the Bazaar Collection, see below), but they also sell Russell & Hazel, Moleskin, and more. I promise it’s worth a trip out east for you Twin Citians.

And just when you thought my week of paper madness ended in Stillwater, another local go-to stationery source, Lunalux, is back to their old tricks with tomorrow’s Stationery Saturday. With Father’s Day around the corner, they have dads in mind and are using a collection of lead dingbats including purple Jolly Roger, red griffin, green tree or blue pan.

If you can’t catch tomorrow’s run, head back to Lunalux for their Letterpress Lock-In, a part of the Northern Spark event June 9th-10th. And please report back to brown ink all about the overnight letterpress creations! Now off to dream of paper clouds.