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1023 Springdale Road, Building 6B
Austin, TX, 78721
United States

Austin's favorite stationery shop and workshop studio.

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The Paper + Craft Pantry blog is home to our latest DIY projects, current inspiration sources, and small business advice. 

The Monthly Edit: July 2019

Pei Sim


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Happy July friends! I hope you are enjoying these little monthly posts as much as I have enjoyed writing them. In a way, it serves as a little monthly check-in with myself to pause and reflect back on the past month as well as a way to get excited for whats to come :)

There’s some fun juicy stuff in this month’s post so you’re definitely going to want to take a few minutes to read though!


A quick look back at June:

1. Officially celebrated ONE FULL YEAR in our new home at Springdale General!

Here are a few quick snaps of move in day :)

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2. Rearranged our entire shop inventory + grew our pen collection for you guys!

Seriously, it’s pretty magical you’re going to want to come by and see it for yourself.

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3. Attended the book launch + signing for a sweet frien'd’s new book- at quite possible the CUTEST spot in Austin.

You know I’ll be taking this book with me as we travel later this week (more on that below!) If you’d like to snag a copy and read along, you can grab one here.

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Things happening this month:

(in)SIDEWALK SALE

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Our first ever sidewalk sale- but inside because Texas haha!

Think of it as part studio + garage/yard sale with lots of things in our shop plus we invited in some other small biz friends to join us for an afternoon of fun and deals!


JULY WORKSHOPS

Y’all know how quickly our workshops tend to fill up, so don’t say we didn’t warn ya! We’ve been gently reminding you guys via our newsletter as well as through social media- so this is your third reminder ;) Several of these workshops are already down to the last few tickets!

Grab your ticket, and join us in our studio for some crafty + creative fun to beat the heat this summer!

From hand lettering to painting with gouache (pronounced as “squash!”) to drawing on your iPad to ceramics, we’ve got it all- but perhaps one we are most excited about is our first ever Candle Pouring Workshop. There’s no better way to try out a new craft and perhaps find your new hobby inventing incredible custom scents with your candles!

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CLOSED FOR THE 4TH

Our shop + studio will be closed starting Thursday, July 4th and we will reopen and resume our regular weekly schedule on Tuesday, July 9th. We’ve been open before in the past and it’s just incredibly slow days for us that we’ve decided to opt instead, to let ourselves spend time with our loved ones.

We’re open almost every weekend of the year so you can imagine it’s rather nice to get a few full weekends off a year :)

p.s. if you’re interested in following along, I’ll be in Hawaii for the week so definitely peek on Instagram for some updates and travel fun!

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LIFE LATELY:

Well…if you haven’t seen me in person you probably haven’t noticed anything different around here. I’ve (along with Evan) have chosen to keep it mostly to ourselves for the past 4.5 months for a variety of reasons- but a huge part was the fact I honestly had a lot of mixed emotions about all of this!

But we’re having a baby!

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We seriously just told our parents last week so we’ve definitely been very low key about it.

We wanted to tell them in a small but special way, and naturally I wanted to use stationery in some way. I found these really cute scratch off cards from one of the designers we carry in the shop and that’s how we decided to tell our parents. The card had an envelope inside that had the 12 week ultra sound that showed a pretty good profile view plus we also mailed a little Sugarfina box of piggie gummies since it’s the year of the pig.

Let me just say that I am excited- but just in a different, perhaps non-traditional way. I mostly have all the questions and have been googling and texting a few close friends “is this normal when…” Also, I’ve been sleeping a ton (which is not super unusual since I LOVE NAPS!) but more than usual. There were a few weeks where I swear I was asleep 16-18 hours a day lol

I experienced the typical queasiness/nausea (but with limited throwing up thank goodness!) and for the most part have just been swapping out random symptoms. Growing a human is super weird and a truly strange experience. I’ve never felt so unlike myself and so uncomfortable in my own skin- kinda takes me back to those teenage puberty days!

I’d be lying if I let y’all think I’m just happy and dandy with all of this- but I am honestly just terrified. I’m in my thirties and have always loved kids and have always wanted a family- I just have never been someone who was at all excited about pregnancy or new borns. We’ve talked about kids for a while now so it’s not like this was a surprise. I think I’m surprised by how this all feels and how it continues to ebb and flow. Don’t judge me but I want to be transparent about a few things that have been weighing on my mind: I’m scared of the pain and trauma that can happen with birth (I’m a huge weenie when it comes to pain). I’m self conscious AF of my changing body (I know this is so superficial and vain but ya’ll when thing don’t fit you and you can’t help the weight gain the struggle is real especially in the summer. In about 4.5 months, I’ve gained 10ish lbs so far), I feel a lot of guilt for not feeling “happier” about this when I know a lot of people and even close friends who would be happy to take on all of the horrible aches, pains and symptoms I have, I feel fear about what my life is going to look like and what business is going to look like (I love what I do with the business and I truly love being there and working!)…. the list could go on!

But again, inspite of all that it’s INSANE there’s a tiny human (and probably also a food baby in there lol) growing inside and I’m grateful. I remember freaking out when I saw a freakin’ hand basically wave at us at a pretty early ultrasound. In the meantime I’m soaking up the fact that both dogs have been extra obsessed with me lately- like they have to be near me and or touching me at all times and refuse to let me out of their sights.

I’ll share more here and there as the weeks/months progress via Instagram as well as give y’all updates in future editions of the Monthly Edit :)


A few questions y’all might have:

Was this planned?

Yes to an extent. I shared a bit already up in the body of this section but here’s a little more detail. I’m in my thirties and we’ve been married for over 2.5 years now. We’ve both talked about having kids and a family some day but let me tell you, it doesn’t feel real until that some day is literally now.

How far along are you exactly? When are you due?

Officially 19 weeks this week- basically almost to the half way mark which is nuts. And our due date is in November- I’m not really sharing the exact date because due dates are basically a super vague guesstimate and apparently babies have a mind of their own and can come as early as weeks before to a couple of weeks after!

Do you know the gender?

Nope. Not going to find out- mostly because I think I would welcome a surprise. And also because I kind of dislike that baby things are so gender specific- why does all girl stuff have to be pink and why does all boy stuff have to have some sort of sports ball on it?!

Biggest struggle so far?

Listening to my body. Some days I feel 100% and like nothing is different, and other days I feel horrible! I’m learning to slow down and not make so many plans because I hate canceling and rescheduling on people. But some days I seriously feel so awful I’m in bed most of the day :( But those days seem to be happening less and less now!

Also, it’s true that EVERYONE has an opinion. From how much weight I should gain, have gained, haven’t gained- what I’m eating, or consuming, what I’m wearing, how I’m sleeping etc. And I’ve already had some unkind and somewhat hurtful things said to me. I don’t think it’s intentional in any of those instances but still. It does make you hyper aware of how even if you don’t have ill intentions, you should definitely go out of your way to be extra kind to everyone.

Biggest fear?

A big personal fear that may seem silly is that I’m afraid Harley will hate it/try to bite it. Harley (the little chihuahua who is 11 years old) has been my little “baby” and I’m just afraid of a potential dynamic shift.

Biggest excitement?

Tiny baby things are super cute! You know how much I love tiny things so I’ve had a little bit of fun getting baby clothes etc. My favorite thing so far are a pair of tiny overalls (ironic since I can no longer fit into my favorite overalls haha) But besides that, I am excited in general- perhaps buried under a lot of layers of feelings!

What are you going to do about the P+CP?

Keep calm and carry on. Kidding but also kinda accurate. I’m grateful for an amazing team of girls who support the shop day-to-day and have been making plans to physically step back for a few months later this year. The P+CP will operate as usual with our weekly retail hours as well as weekly workshops and classes.

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Disclaimer: I always thought it was weird that people like to touch pregnant people. It hasn’t happen to me yet but I will straight up karate chop your hand if you try to touch my belly :)


Wow, that was a LONG post.

Hope you all have an amazing start of this new month and I really hope to see y’all in the shop + studio soon!

AROUND AUSTIN: SUMMER EATS 2019

Pei Sim


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We’ve noticed a huge increase in out of town visitors at the shop the past few weeks and it’ll likely continue as so many people like to visit Austin in the Summer time!

And I’ve personally had so many out of town visitors the past few weeks it’s actually been really fun showing them around. Let’s be real, it’s also been really fun playing tourist myself :)

There’s definitely no shortage of great local spots everywhere, and even new ones that keep popping up it can be hard to even keep up. But I do have a few places in my back pocket that (for better or worse- I know everyone has very strong opinions about food these days lol) are my go to places.

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Here’s what made the top 10 list of place I take out of towners to eat:

La Barbecue- Everyone has their favorite joint in town and this is my personal favorite.

Hopdoddy- Two words, truffle fries.

Pinthouse Pizza- I love that they have a gf option using cauliflower pizza crusts- plus their pint house salad is one of my favorites! I sub out the poppyseed dressing with their peppercorn vinaigrette and it’s SO good.

Tiny Boxwoods- Hands down my favorite spot for breakfast or lunch, in by far the cutest little restaurant. I only order two things on their menu, their eggs + avocado or their burger (sub for a gluten free pita crust = a burger burrito), you can thank me later after you order the unofficial burger burrito ;)

Komé- My go-to sushi spot in town. Huge fan of of their nigiri!

Bento Picnic- Because in between all the “heavier” meals, you need something on the healthier side. I love the combination of pickled veggies and sticky rice with quinoa. This place was particularly delicious for one of my friends who was vegan!

Tumble 22- Not like I need friends visiting for an excuse to go get fried chicken, but my friend visiting from the NE wanted fried chicken and I was not going to object! I get the hot chicken and always get the kale slaw, potato salad plus extra pickles. I love that they have a wimpy option for those not into spice!

Veracruz Tacos- A visit to Austin isn’t complete without breakfast tacos is it? Also the one located more North has a coffee shop tucked in- and I had a horchata espresso that was delicious.

Milk & Cookies - Right next to Tiny Boxwoods, they have a grab and go counter serving up all the coffee + pastries of your dreams.

Nadamoo Scoop Shop- I’ve only had Nadamoo once, many moons ago and I was honestly just indifferent about it, but holy moly- the chocolate peanut butter scoop I got in a gf waffle cone was so good. It definitely didn’t taste dairy free and I’m so glad my vegan friend wanted to swing by!

Where are some of your favorite spots to go to when friends visit?

Tell us in the comments below :)









The Monthly Edit: June 2019

Pei Sim


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Well yet again, it seemed like I blinked and it’s officially June. How crazy is it that it’s already the half way point of 2019?! I feel like everyone talks about how fast time flies but I swear 2019 has been a blur.

As we enter the summer months here in Austin, I’m excited for warmer days to swim, an excuse for sno-cones and of course, making our shop + studio the cutest little paper oasis in this heat!


A quick look back at May:

1. Taking an entire weekend off for Memorial Day weekend was just what we all needed! As much as we hate to miss out on visitors from out of town, we value our team’s work-life balance and wanted to honor us all having a true, full weekend off! Want to know what we did for the long weekend? You can read more here.

2. Y’all cleaned us out of Mother’s Day cards, again! Every year, we do our best to over estimate and usually purchase extra cards. And every year, we tend to run low the week leading up to Mother’s Day.

3. We firmed up a bunch of fun things for the rest of the Summer as well as Fall. It’s going to be a fun rest of 2019 you guys!


Things happening this month:

Shop Mini Makeover

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We heard a lot of you are having a hard time finding us! And as sad as we are that we don’t have our amazing wall mural like we did out our old space, we tried to bring a little bit of it with the vinyls on our windows! But we realized that once cars are parked out front, it’s a little tricky to see our signage!

We have plans to mirror the vinyls on the bottom of our window to the top! And another thing we’ve been working on is getting quotes for window coverings for our two large windows. We LOVE all the light we get in here but as the summer months approach, the sun streams in rather intensely on our precious paper products as well as into your eyeballs (also precious lol) if you take an evening workshop with us.

We appreciate you guys bearing with us as we continue to learn all the quirks about our new space (can you believe it’s almost a month away from ONE full year of us moving into this new space?


June Book Club

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We’re finishing our 6th book club read of 2019 this month and will be voting on our next three books at our meeting. If you’ve been looking for a community and some accountability to read more this year, it’s not too late to pick up this month’s book and pencil in our meeting date!


June Workshops

We’ve got several out of town (and even out of state) guest instructors headed to our studio this month for some incredible workshops. It’s always such a treat to welcome someone new into our studio- just a little FYI: we are not able to guarantee that we will be able to get these instructors into our studio again and they often swing by just once a year or even every other year. So you don’t want to miss out on your chance to learn from these incredible ladies!

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A Letter To You:

A new segment I’ve been wanting to introduce, a short + sweet story (anonymous of course) of a sweet guest interaction we’ve had in the shop. These small interactions and stories make small business ownership worth it.

This man pops into our shop every now and then to pick up a card/gift for his girlfriend. She loves our shop and it’s incredibly thoughtful he chooses to come by to find something for her for every occasion.

The last time he was in, he had mentioned how they were going on a ski trip together. He picked out a few belated gifts for her and was on his way.

A couple of months later, he comes back in- only he’s on crutches and has a cast on his leg. Turns out he broke his leg the first day on this ski trip :( He’s well on his way to healing and recovery but the mere fact he went through the trouble of coming all the way out to see us to pick up another card for her was just the sweetest!


Hope you all have a wonderful rest of the month and I really hope to see y’all in the shop + studio soon!

Small Business School: Balance

Pei Sim


The Paper + Craft Pantry Small Business Blog: How To Host A Workshop

The B word. The one we are all striving for and in search for. Balance.

The dictionary defines balance as an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady or a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions. Anything stand out with those definitions? Even distribution, elements are equal or in the correct portions… In my opinion, that sure seems pretty confining if everything is supposed to be even and equal 100% of the time to achieve balance.

Not only does it seem confining, it also seems insanely unattainable and a goal that is so out of reach it’s not even realistic. We’re all told our lives would be amazing and almost better if we figure out how the heck to balance out our life in every way. We’d be happier, wealthier, healthier etc. But most of the time I find that it just leaves us (me, anyway) extremely frustrated and defeated.

And when you throw small business into the mix of it all, things can just feel downright impossible especially if you’re yearning for that perfect balance.

SMALL BUSINESS BALANCE

Wearing many hats, for me it’s retail buyer, wholesale account manager, fulfillment, workshop and event planner + coordinator, merchandiser, studio manager, CEO, CFO, marketing director, art director, creative director, and even janitor (seriously!)...the list goes on. There’s simply too much that needs to be done for one person. Many businesses operate lean with just a one woman or one man show. Running a business lean has always been something I’ve strived for, the less frivolous expenses you have in business, the more profitable you are. It’s really that simple.

Trust me, I know everyone’s to-do list can literally be a mile long, but once you really look at that list, what on there is really important? It takes a lot to tell your pride and ego to let go, to only do what is essential. Only doing the things that are the utmost important and forgetting the rest. Being okay with things being undone. It takes a lot of courage to ask for grace from colleagues and fellow business owners when you turn down additional work or partnerships to honor only doing what’s essential to your life and business.

P.s. If you want to read more about essentialism, I really encourage you to read this book. It’s one of my all time favorites and I read it once a year.

SMALL BUSINESS + LIFE

If I’m going to be really honest here, I’ve put my business first in my life. Yup, it’s embarrassing to admit but I’ve put my business before my relationships, marriage, myself, and even my dogs on many occasions. I’m grateful that the people (and dogs) in my life understand my passion, but a big focus of mine in 2019 was to let the business work for me for a change.

Allowing myself to have days not physically at the shop and truly not working. Having actual weekends off for the first time in 6 years. Prioritizing to eat 3 actual meals a day. Seems ridiculous but I would opt to finish out an email or take a meeting instead of eat. I felt like if I wasn’t working hard all the time, I would be lazy and not deserving of success.

Small business is so personal, it intertwines with your life even outside of work. There’s no calling it a day after 5pm when you are literally your business. It’s a practice I have to remind myself of daily, to do less but with more intention. I really want to encourage you to do the same, let’s turn away from the glorification of busyness and lean into only doing what is essential to our daily happiness.


How to find YOUR balance:

Carve out time to sit down and evaluate what’s important for YOUR life. And then do the same for YOUR business. Make a list.

Now take that list, and only pick 3-5 things that are essential.

Things to consider: Ditch all the things you feel like you should do, simplify. There are so many things we feel like we should be doing- we should be exercising 5 days a week. We should be on all social media platforms for our business. I challenge you to pause, and only do what serves you and your business.Get down to the basics.  At the very core of your life and business, what is actually important to you?

It’s better to do a handful of things well vs. doing a bunch of things mediocre. Trust in the ebb and flow, of life and of business. If you allow things to flow, you’ll find a rhythm that resembles balance. But in a way that truly serves you in all areas of your life.


How do you find balance in your day? With your personal life? With your business? Tell us in the comments below.

D.I.Y. Fiber Necklaces

Pei Sim


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Anyone else counting down for the LONG weekend coming up? As a truly small + local business, we take full advantage of these 3-day weekends! We’re normally open every weekend so this allows us to all take an entire weekend off to spend quality time with our families and friends :) We know sometimes people may be bummed we’re closed on these particular weekends but we’re really only closed for Easter Weekend, Memorial Day Weekend, 4th of July Weekend, Labor Day Weekend, Thanksgiving Week + Christmas. So we think that’s a pretty fair trade since we are here for y’all the rest f the year!

As I shared in our May Edit Blog post, I’ll personally be heading down to Galveston for a little trip with Evan, the dogs + some of our family friends. And I’m pretty excited! There’s something about being by the ocean (and I know that Galveston isn’t the best beach in any circumstance) but I’m not picky at this point!

And this D.I.Y. is perfect to dress up your weekend plans/beach attire! Best part is you only need three, yup, THREE things that you more than likely already have in your crafty collection.

Remember this post a while ago where we used the same materials but made a cute wall hanging/decor for our home, it’s similar in materials and steps! You can check it out here: D.I.Y. Modern Fiber Home Decor

D.I.Y. FIBER NECKLACE

PROJECT TIME: 30-45 MINS

  • MATERIALS
  • Cotton cord/Rope
  • Yarn
  • Scissors
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D.I.Y. Fiber Necklace Instructions:

1. Cut a length of cotton cord/rope. *Pro-Tip: Cut your piece a little longer, you can always cut it shorter as you wish. Also keep in mind the entire piece should be long enough to fit over your head!

2. Pick your color palette and yarn color choices. Cut about 24” of yarn (you can use longer pieces but we wanted to color block our necklace + the longer the piece of yarn the more you have to maneuver)

3. Place one end of the yarn on the section of rope you want to wrap, run the yarn the length of the section (typically about 3-5”) and then create a loop back up to the start of your piece of yarn.

4. Start wrapping your yarn down the length of the yarn loop piece (you should be wrapping over 2 pieces of yarn at this point)

5. When you get to the end of the section, use the loose end of yarn to go through the loop at the bottom.

6. Pull tight from both ends to secure! *Pro-Tip: There is some flexibility in shifting/scooting your wrapped section on the cotton cord to get your color blocks closer together or to create a seamless look!

7. To create a closure, you will loop your cotton cord around each other and do the same wrapping technique to secure the cord.

8. Enjoy your new handmade, fiber necklace!

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The Monthly Edit: May 2019

Pei Sim


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Happy May!

Okay, I know I had said we would be introducing this monthly blog at the beginning of the month and I’m well aware it is officially May 14th today. I don’t know about y’all, but 2019 has been going by SO fast and I am not even certain how time is going by so quickly. So you’ll have to forgive me that this month’s Monthly Edit is literally 2 weeks late ;)


A quick look back at April:

1. Seriously, I feel like I blinked and the month of April was gone. Just me?

2. We sent out our first BIG wholesale order of our P+CP stationery to our first store!

3. Had our first workshop snafu in the first time in almost 4 years and even with hundreds of workshops + events under our belt, this was seriously hands down one of the worst things we’ve had to deal with. That being said, it was a huge learning in the best way! You can get a little more info abut what I’m talking about in this Instagram post.


Things happening this month:

The Paper + Craft Pantry: Austin’s Favorite Stationery Shop + Workshop Studio!

New Faces!

We’ve been growing our small but mighty little shop + studio team! You’ve probably seen someone else besides me around the shop :) You can meet our team here, or better yet, come by for a visit! We know how important it is as a small business to have a wonderful support system around us and we’re so thrilled to have some of the most hardworking, paper loving and fun women who will make your time in our shop + studio an amazing one!

Do you love paper? Do you love being a part of a local small business? If so, check out our open availability here!

The Paper + Craft Pantry monthly book club community event.

May Book Club- for more details + to RSVP.

What we’re excited about: We love opening up our studio on the last Wednesday of each month to host our book club meetings! Everyone is welcomed as long as they’ve read the book beforehand :)

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New workshops for June!

We’re introducing several brand NEW workshops- workshops we’ve NEVER hosted before in our studio! We’re also so thrilled to be welcoming back one of our favorite watercolor painter + artist all the way from Arizona- you’re not going to want to miss out on these incredible classes!


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Currently Loving

We LOVE that there’s more happening around our area! One of my current favorites is right across the parking lot which has been incredibly convenient but also extremely dangerous. I highly recommend the Yuzu Avocado Handroll :)

p.s. We know (and acknowledge) that parking has kinda gotten a little trickier as more things open up around us, but we are grateful for all the other wonderful thing this new space has allowed us to do. And even more grateful that each of you continue to support small + shop local with us!


Life Lately

On the personal front, we finished up part two of the renovation project we had going on at our house! I didn’t really get to share a lot about it on social media honestly because it was so chaotic. We redid the flooring on our stairs + upstairs. We don’t technically have a second floor, it’s more of a finished out loft/attic space that is barely used. I hate carpet and really wanted to swap out for hard surface flooring and we wanted to add a half bathroom upstairs to make the space more functional for when we had family and friends visit. The flexibility of not having to go up and down the stairs for the bathroom as well as giving guests a true separate space is something we think will really allow us to stay in our first home for as long as possible.

I’ll be heading to Houston in a week to judge dance auditions- it’s been a yearly tradition and something I find a lot of joy in doing/giving back to the community. Fun fact, I was a dance major in college and this is the one time a year I “use” my degree!

We’re also getting ready to go on a very short weekend trip over Memorial Day Weekend to visit one of my dear friends + spend time on the beach in Galveston. The plan is that Evan will drive in on Friday with the dogs to meet up with me in Houston and we’ll all head down to the coast for a relaxing weekend. TBD on how relaxing it will be with 2 dogs, plus our friends have 2 young and adorable kiddos. But regardless, I’m really looking forward to some time away.

Don’t worry, the shop + studio will still be open as usual we’ll just be closed for Memorial Day Weekend from Saturday, May 25th-Monday, May 27th.


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Meet The Plant:

This is perhaps one of the most underrated plant- it’s in the same “family” as the pothos but a variety that almost makes it seem velvet-y and I love the color variations on it’s leaves.

Meet the Satin Pothos. This plant is just as easy to care for than our triplets (who are also Pothos). This plant is sometimes confused with the Silver Philodendron which looks strikingly similar.

We only wanter this guy when the soil is completely dry, and his vines and leaves have grown a TON since we moved into our new space and gave him a home high up on a shelf with plenty of natural light :)


Hope you all have a wonderful rest of the month and I really hope to see y’all in the shop + studio soon!