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Stephanie Cooper

A MOON SHOWER

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I of course, planned and decorated my own baby shower. That might sound crazy to some people but I think it’s impossible to be a creative being and not be hands on for this kind of celebration. Not only did I envision the theme of my shower around my son’s middle name but I had a second shower theme planned in my mind 6 months ago incase it was a girl, revolving around her middle name. (Keeping that a secret incase one day we have a little baby girl, too). Type A personality here, nice to meet you. Although I definitely have some type B traits, the event planning part of my brain does NOT fall into that category whatsoever. So due to this really fun trait, I did it all. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. First of all, I love the idea that every person who I want to come and celebrate with me, gets to show up and just enjoy. I think I would feel guilty making them do the work. But fine I’ll be honest, I just have to execute every detail exactly as I want and there’s few people who I think could bring that vision to life. Control freak. So who better than me and John? At the end of the day, after the days and hours of work and stress, it’s so rewarding to see it all come to life. Worth it. (NOTE* THIS IS NOT SOMETHING I RECOMMEND DOING FOR YOUR OWN WEDDING. FIND VENDORS WHO CAN DO IT FOR YOU! SMALL GATHERINGS ONLY!) Sorry for screaming. I just feel really strongly about that.

Below I’ve compiled some of my favorite shots from what we we’re calling our “baby moon bash” because the party ended up being kind of huge and it was not your traditional shower. Obviously. Because we are not very traditional. We like to create our own path. Even if it’s slightly insane and definitely unusual. We welcome anyone who wants to join us down this strange but exciting and modern road (my opinion).

The invitation and other paper goods were all designed in the theme of a woodland night sky. Lots of blue watercolor wash details and hand lettering. I don’t always do hand lettering since I’m not technically trained in calligraphy, so I save it for the whimsical and bohemian style stationery items where I think it’s better suited for its freer look. Of course there was a little watercolor fox/wolf family on the invitation as well because I couldn’t resist the cuteness of a little animal in there somewhere. We did after all get the name Logan PARTIALLY from the movie Wolverine (John’s fave…I like it too). Next to the stationery, the second most important detail to me was the photo backdrop. I envisioned this setup with big white paper lantern stars, macrame, greenery and a hand painted, hand lettered sign saying “Love you bigger than the moon.” Shocker, I know. So that took some time to execute properly and then actually set up but I’m so happy with how it turned out (pictured below). In my mind this was the focal point of the party (next to the dessert display because, cake). And I couldn’t have done any of it without help from my shower elves. My brother, sister and her boyfriend. Greatest little team ever. *John setup the “big picture” stuff like, the entire restaurant. NBD. That’s why we make a great team. He does the big details and I do the small details. We’re having a baby guys, we’re really in love right now so the sappiness has only just begun. Sorry, kinda. 

It turned out to be quite the bash. Live music performed by local artist Dan Lopez, really set a fun tone. Phenomenal buffet spread from one of John’s restaurants, Cicero’s. And to die for cupcakes and custom cake by local bakery Caked Up. We like to shop small and support local incase that wasn’t just made obvious. ALSO I had my makeup done by my friend, neighbor and local artist Dominique Zebrowski (her brand is “Dunique” and she’s amazing). AND my hair was done by Melissa Price from Visible Changes Hair Group who are also local! I know I know you get it, I love the talent in my town. I’ll stop now. 

You can see what a bash it was below with these awesome pictures taken by Christina Anthony Photography!

The end. JK it hasn’t even begun yet. We’re still awaiting the arrival of this little moon baby! I know it’s weird that we call him “Moon” and not “Logan” and no we are not going to change his name to “Moon” it’s just way cuter to think of him as a little moon while he’s currently residing inside of my uterus. Run on sentence, it’s fine. Thanks for reading!

Wild Baby

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Candy Flowers

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Calligraphy by: Nancy Favorito

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Seashell Paradise

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Grape Vine Greenery

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Calligraphy by: Nancy Favorito

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I Am Now A Renegade

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PSA guys… I left my design cave. I entered the real world. With real people. To set up a booth that caused me so much agada I don’t even know where to begin. To (hopefully) sell my cards to human beings and interact with them and hear what they think of my work. Cue panic attack. But, by the grace of some magical being, it was actually, AMAZING. First of all, the Renegade Craft Fair (which by the way, is where all the above ridiculousness took place) is run by such kind people who really support artisans and makers and allow them to express their creativity in every way. As aforementioned, I had to plan a booth display. They literally give you the dimensions of a completely blank space and say “Do what you want with it!” Sounds like a dream, yes? Also though, a nightmare. I was stressing hard core over what to do to really make my booth stand out and also represent my products in an efficient but aesthetically pleasing way. It’s all about the aesthetics. Always. You might not even realize but the right window display of a store is going to get you in there, even if you don’t know what the heck they’re selling. Or maybe you do know what they’re selling and it’s something you have zero interest in but you’re so enticed by the window that you just have to go in and then BAM, you buy something and you leave wondering what just happened. Proper merchandising happened. FYI you all just learned something super valuable and I was glad to provide the lesson.

So now that I’ve given away the secret to tricking shoppers into spending more money than they’d like, let’s talk about how I did it. Just kidding. I really didn’t. I’m not a salesperson by any means. I actually dread selling because as a shopper myself, I know what I like and I don’t need it to be sold to me. If I want it I’ll buy it all on my own. So I assume other people are like that too. Especially when it comes to greeting cards. They speak for themselves, literally. If no one you know is having a baby, you probably don’t need a “yay for baby!” card. And if it’s your best friends birthday, then you’re most likely going to shop for a birthday card. So I think I’m in the right industry. I can make the pretty things and let them sell themselves. Love it.

I did the Renegade two weekends in a row, December 9th – 10th and the following, December 16th – 17th. The second weekend was a last minute decision since they allow rolling applications for the last fair. And I was fairly certain I had lost my mind. May I remind you that I’m pregnant. 7 going on 8 months pregnant. So like, I really can’t do anything on my own that’s physical. Cue best husband of the year, John. This ANGEL of a man helped me not only setup both weekends after working his already jam packed week in the brewery, but he stayed the entire first weekend with me to work the booth. So I was able to stuff my face every hour and sit my pregnant rear down for almost most of the day. While he sold cards. And loved it, I think. And I had multiple anxiety attacks because why would anyone want to buy my cards? Who am I even? A little pregnant lady who paints things all day and then makes them into cards and has no idea if anyone cares. But guys, it turns out a few people care. Not only a few but a few few. It was such a cool feeling to see people stop at my booth and pick up a card and either relate to it and smile or find it humorous and laugh or compliment me on my artwork. I mean, just blushing. I really had such a great time meeting new customers and talking to them about their reason behind buying certain cards. Who is having a baby or who loves llamas or who is totally nutty around the holidays. Just a HUGE thank you to anyone who stopped and even just looked and told me they loved my work. It means the world and it reinforced my passion to carry on and push forward.

Below I’ve compiled some photos from my weekend at Renegade which took place at Industry City in Brooklyn this year. I’ll absolutely be doing this fair again next year, this time with a little moon baby on my hip, who by that time will be practically one, holy god. That was a lot of commas. I hope you enjoy the pictures and if you didn’t make it this year, maybe next year you’ll venture out to see me and all the other incredible vendors who make the coolest things!

^ Anddd that’s a wrap. I think I wiped this guy out, just a little. But isn’t he just the best for being so patient and taking 90 million photos of me until I liked just 1 of them? All the love for my man. Thanks for reading!

 

Location: https://industrycity.com

Host / Renegade Craft Fair: http://www.renegadecraft.com

FREE PEOPLE STYLE STATIONERY SHOOT

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Guys, this morning I had a hormonal meltdown. I made a plan to go on a day trip up to Cold Spring, NY. The plan was to see some cute shops, have a nice lunch and maybe take a few photos, since it was a beautiful day and I finally had my part time photographer husband with me. But then my computer was going too slow and I couldn’t find anything to wear that seemed “photo ready” and then I accidentally stepped on my cats paw and she cried probably because I’m a giant monster these days aka a regular pregnant person who was abducted by demon hormones. John came home from a run to me, the monster, trying to put this amazing outfit together in knitted tights that are definitely tighter than they used to be and partially see through, topless, complaining into my closet. After the cat paw debacle took place, I admitted defeat and sat on the floor crying. I know, this story is a real upper. BUT then John picked out an outfit for me (Yes ladies, find a guy with a good sense of style. It’s a pain in the ass sometimes but it can also be super helpful) and told me we could do this. So we did. After crying through 2 attempts at foundation, I finally dried up and got it together. Mostly.

We made it to Cold Spring and had a quick lunch at Hudson Hill Cafe because we were on a mission. Take social media worthy photos of my stationery and of me, not looking like a total watermelon. Easy. Except even when not pregnant I’m definitely a weirdo when I’m the one in front of the camera. I MUCH prefer to be the photographer, offering direction and setting the scene. Bossing around another person and posing them is where I’m comfortable. On the flip side, not so much. I must have asked “How do I look?” 1,876,542 times until John was finally like, please stop talking. But I didn’t, obviously.

But then something amazing happened. I started to have a little fun. It got super windy, which automatically makes you loosen up because you’re shaking hair out of your face and laughing. We also found a really scenic spot by the water (John found it, I know, he’s so annoying) and we got into a groove. I titled this post a “free people styled stationery shoot” not because I think I’m that cool (I wish), I’m certainly not. It was mostly because his shots with the lighting and the nature just felt free people-esque. I was feeling more care free, wrapping paper was blowing in the wind and I had some embroidery on my shirt which is standard free people style. Also I foraged a little berry branch that made my life. I like props. Hands are weird alone. Like what do you do with them? You hold stuff with them, that’s what. It turned into a time and I do hope you all enjoy the photos. I’m also really excited about my new holiday wrapping paper this year. It was my first time designing gift wrap and I put a lot of thought and intention into it. I am looking forward to working on some everyday wrapping designs to add to the shop soon. Thanks for reading!

I don’t know guys, like should we call Free People and tell them we have some brand new, stellar material for them? I’m thinking yes…

 

 

Holiday Madness

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Well, Thanksgiving is over so let the madness commence. It’s so sudden. As soon as we clean our plates from an incredibly delicious meal, it’s immediate Holiday mode. The sales and the deals and the insane retail hours (I do not miss those days). It’s all just thrust upon us in the blink of a turkey’s eye. I do love that small business Saturday follows Thanksgiving though because it seems fitting. Feeling grateful and appreciative of all the things so why not carry on the spirit a couple more days to go out and support your mom and pop shops, right? Or in my case, mom-to-be ecommerce site and holiday markets. I myself love to spend time preparing my small business gift ideas by perusing Etsy and marking favorites or shopping on my favorite clothing sites like Piper and Scoot and Roolee. I’ll even go as far as to email myself with all the gift links so I can come back to it when I’m good and ready. Another favorite activity is to attend holiday craft fairs, pop ups and markets. You’re absolutely going to find some super cool and obscure gifts at any of those.

This season I’m participating in just two holiday markets because I’m getting bigger every second it feels so my abilities are becoming limited (7 months pregnant, nbd). But I’m VERY excited about these two. The first is another pop up at our local Anthropologie. It’s taking place Saturday December 2nd from 11am-3pm. I’ll be posting on social media as a reminder! The second is the Renegade Craft Fair in Brooklyn at Industry City on December 9th & 10th from 11am-6pm both days. This is my first year partaking in the awesome renegade fair. I had a chance to peruse one that took place this month and what a time. Your eyes are having serious ADD while your hands develop what I can only describe to be “mind of their own” syndrome. All of a sudden I’m touching, holding, feeling and smelling everything before my mind has caught up to what I’m doing. But glad about it. Of course. I hope I enticed you enough to come see the one I’ll be at! I promise you’ll enjoy. And probably leave with some super cool gifts. My husband brought home a handmade slingshot with felted balls. He says it’s to play with the cats but I know it’s really just for him. I brought home the cutest handmade stuffed animal dolls by a small company named King Soleil. I’ll post pictures below of our adorable findings. I wanted to take home like 9 candles all smelling like balsam fir but I refrained because I literally just bought 5 and haven’t burned through them yet. Give me a week though and they’ll be gone.

So that’s my fall and winter in a nutshell. Prepping and gearing and growing in all the ways. Two months time until there’s a third person living in this house. Bananas. I may or may not get another blog post in before little Logan Moon arrives but I’ll be sure to get one up after. Probably just images of me covered in baby throw up and crying while trying to package a greeting card. Yesterday I sneezed and actually peed my pants. It’s all gorgeous and life and miracles.

Below are some shots of life from the last post until now. Sometimes I fancy myself a food blogger. I love Sally’s Baking Addiction and pretty much only bake her recipes. And then I photograph them because they’re so pretty. All recipes have been taste tested by yours truly who, if you’ve read past blog posts, you’ll know I am a major foodie so, trust ya girl. And my whole family. And Friends.  I’ll add links below to everything in the photos! Thanks for reading!

  1. Cornbread – Sally’s Baking Addiction
  2. Apple Crumble Pie – Sally’s Baking Addiction
  3. The Great Pumpkin Pie – Sally’s Baking Addiction
  4. Handmade Sling Shot – Brook & Wade
  5. Owl/Fox Stuffed Animals, Mom & Baby –  King Soleil

Harvest and Autumn and Fall and Babies

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…Still waiting for the leaves to change and the cool nights to come. But apparently, it’s fall. I normally feel sad when summer ends because I loathe wearing shoes that require socks. This year feels different though. And it might be because I’m pregnant? (YAY! smooth, I know) And one of the things that’s not as fun when you’re pregnant is the sun and the heat. Which means the beach. And the pool. And being outside walking around for longer than ten minutes. So I began the hibernating season quite early. As early as July. I have no fading tan to worry about because, I didn’t get tan at all. So I welcome fall this year and all the exciting things to come. Like planning for a baby (wtf). There’s so much to learn and to do, I already know it will be impossible to be as prepared as I fantasize about. One of the first things I’ll have to let go of now that my world is about to change entirely, controlling all the little details. From what I hear, when a kid arrives, that’s no longer possible. Ouch, major reality check. Don’t tell my husband but I am for sure a control freak. I love neatness and organization but like to the extreme. I’m sure I’m not unique. Other people like this stuff too. But just so you all know, those of you who love this stuff and thrive on it, join the control freak club. We’re all members. Deal with it.

Anyway, baby Potenza is coming in February and in the mean time I’m trying my best to get prepared in all the ways I can without becoming psychotic. There’s the obvious decorating, the shower planning, the cocoa buttering and the yoga-ing. And then there’s the mental prep. The emotional prep. The financial prep. A part of me loves this because, again, it all requires organizing which is my happy time. But there’s also a part of me that’s lost. How do you prepare for something you’ve never done? Seen? Been through? Had? Birth? What? So yeah, I can’t do it all. Another reality check. Stay tuned to see how quickly I end up being committed. And if we’re being honest it would probably be me, committing myself. Everything is beautiful don’t worry.

For now though, my biggest focus is on another baby. My stationery business baby. This I can control. And grow. So that when human baby arrives and starts growing on it’s own, whether I like it or not, I did all I can for my business and now we can all figure out how to coexist together. Me and my babies. Being a modern woman is both exciting, liberating, stressful, inspiring, overwhelming and empowering. I have to remind myself of these dynamics everyday because even when the stress and overwhelm take over, I remember that having them is the only way I get everything else.

Below are some images of what’s new in life, love, business and adventure.

Enjoy the apple picking, cider drinking, pumpkin patches, lattes, cupcakes and carvings, the sweaters and the inevitable changes that come with every fall season. Follow along on Instagram for all the updates here in the studio!

Tuscan Lemons

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Tuscan Lemons Close Up

June 29, 2017

Tuscan Lemons Invitation

June 29, 2017

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