Our holiday show train is rolling north this weekend for Urban Craft Uprising, Seattle’s largest indie craft show. With a mission “to build a fun, successful showcase for indie crafters and to nurture a supportive DIY crafting community,” UCU is now in its ninth year of providing shoppers with a thoughtfully selected line up of vendors at no cost to attend. And thank the retail gods because from what I’ve heard, you’ll want to save your pennies for what awaits you inside.
Lacey & Kelly will be reppin’ betsy & iya, so please stop by to say hi, ask questions, and of course, see our jewelry if you’re in the city. Here’s a sneak peek of our new & improved booth sinage, painted by Miss Lacey herself! Woman of so many talents.
Hope to see some of you this weekend! If you attend the show, please tag us in your photos so we can follow along —-> @betsyandiya. Happy shopping!
To Seattle With Love,
***Song of the Moment: Alive by Pearl Jam***
Little Boxes is officially in the books for 2013 and we can’t help but feel the way you do as a kid when December 26th rolls around. All that build up, speculation, expectations, and then, ‘poof!’ it’s over. What’s that saying about “don’t be sad that it’s over, be glad that it happened?” Yeah, that.
Friday and Saturday were cray-zee. Not only were shops bustling and mimosas flowing, but we were overjoyed with the response on Social Media. This made me particularly happy, as it allowed us to view the event through the eyes of those participating. Seeing people collecting stamps, watching app raffle entries pour in, and reading comments from people saying they hit 22 Little Boxes in one day (ya can’t make that stuff up!)- many visiting shops for the first time – was energizing in a way that I can’t eloquently explain right now. Just know that we saw each comment, like, post, share, emoji, etc. and it means that you were felt led to engage with the Little Boxes shopping experience; aka what it’s alllll about, people.
To recap further, I’m going to use our Instagram Roundup format, as the pictures say so much more than my words can. Especially the pictures that are composed of several tiny pictures – I mean, those are worth AT LEAST 6,000 words. (shout out to my Pic Frame app!)
1. Blog: The Little Boxes blog was the place to find info about participating shops, raffle prize donors, as well as Guest Posts by Portland peeps who were kind enough to write Gift Guides and Recommended Routes to share with readers. We hope this will continue to be a resource for people seeking a guide to Portland shopping all year.
2. Community Support: We felt the Little Boxes love like whoa this year. Commissioner Nick Fish, Portland’s First Lady Nancy Hales, and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici are some of the notable locals who voiced support for Little Boxes. This photos shows “Commish Fish” at our shop handing Betsy & Will a proclamation officially kicking off Little Boxes & Small Business Saturday week.
3. Sweet, Sweet National Press: With such buzz around Little Boxes, it was only a matter of time before the rest of the country took note. And this year, they did in a few big ways- Bloomberg Business Week, and a mention on The New York Times Small Business Blog were certainly “crowd around the computer and squeal” moments.
4. On Repeat: Yeah, our 2013 Promo Vid is going to be on heavy rotation throughout the holidays and beyond. It’s just… it makes me feel things, goshdarnit!!!! Thanks again to our friends at The Backwuds for putting this piece of magic together and to all who appear in the video.
6. Festive Fun: We weren’t lying about the mimosas, ya see? Store owners, you all went above and beyond creating a welcoming atmosphere for shoppers. Whether it was a cup of hot cider in the morning, a slice of pie around lunchtime, or a late afternoon Red Bull, you made sure people’s needs were met.
7. It’s All Happening: Seeing you all collect discounts for purchases and log raffle entries was the best part about staying glued to our social media channels. You guys rock for making this event the success that it is!!
We are still calculating final numbers of raffle entries and will be in touch with more information in the next few days regarding prize winners and maybe even more exciting information.. stay tuned, wink!
Even though the two-day event is over, Little Box shops aren’t going anywhere. The rich experiences offered at these stores are available all year round and we hope you’ll continue to support them.
Thank you all for participating and sharing your photos with us. #littleboxespdx for life!
Onward, also Upward,
***Song of the Moment: “The Load Out” by Jackson Browne***
For the third year in a row, we are heading up Little Boxes, the Portland-wide effort created by Betsy & Will that encourages people to shop small on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday -Nov. 29th & 30th this year. We believe the Little Boxes offer the type of experience that makes the holidays special: a warm greeting, unique gifts, and personal customer service. If you live in Portland or are visiting for Thanksgiving, it’s super easy to join the fun; check out the list of over 200 participating shops, plan your route using our iPhone app or printable map, enter the raffle to win one of our fabulous prizes (no purchase necessary to enter!), and earn discounts at other Little Box shops by making purchases.
This year, there are over 200 shops participating representing every neighborhood in Portland and providing something for everyone (yes, even the kilt enthusiasts!) on your shopping list. Also new and exciting this year: bigger and better raffle prizes (grand prize= four day trip!) and a super user-friendly iPhone app that will guide you around town and log your raffle entries and purchases.
Here we are, mere days away from the event and we are moving full steam ahead. Each day closer to Friday & Saturday brings fresh energy and enthusiasm from business owners, shoppers, and both local and national news outlets. Check out our promotional video for appearances by Portland’s First Lady Nancy Hales, plus several other notable locals and shop owners. We recommend viewing daily leading up to the event – and anytime you need a dose of local love – just make sure you have a tissue handy.
On a personal note, this has been an incredible experience for me- one of learning, loving, and working harder than I ever thought I would. I believe in this event so very much and am excited to hear how it goes for all of the businesses, shoppers, and supporters near and far. To all who have interacted with us, shared &/or liked our posts on social media, and given us news coverage, THANK YOU. Most of all, thanks to Portland for making this all possible. We all feel incredibly lucky to live in a community where there is such a strong independent business community.
No matter where you live, we hope you’ll consider supporting indie biz this holiday season (& all year long!).
***Song of the Moment: Run This Town by Jay-Z featuring Rihanna & Kanye West***
Here we are, mid November, and it still doesn’t seem possible that 2013 is nearly over. One thing that’s sure to help us feel the reality of the season is our Holiday Show schedule. We love the opportunity to interact with so many people, connect faces with Internet personas, and of course, show off our handiwork. This year, as always, finds us with a jam-packed list of events and collective sales in an effort to provide you with all the betsy & iya jewelry needed for your gift giving needs (gifts for yourself also count & are encouraged).
Kicking things off this year is a pop-up at West Elm on Saturday, November 16th from 1:00-6:00pm in the Portland Pearl District. Chelsea Fuss of frolic! blog has brought together a group of local designers to show off their respective selections of art, crafts and other handmade goods. We are excited to participate along with some of our fave peeps like Nell & Mary and Grey Goods. Stop by and meet your local Etsians <—- because yes, that’s a word now. #wecomeinpeace
More details & a full list of participants on the Facebook event page. West Elm, 1201 NW Couch Portland, OR 97209 (503) 224-4480
Soon after (and perhaps most near and dear to our hearts) is Little Boxes, the Portland-wide event founded by Betsy & Will in 2011 that encourages people to shop at small businesses the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving–but we’ll dive more into that next week!
Heading into December we’ll really ramp it up! Here’s a rundown of where to find us:
- Urban Craft Uprising: Seattle, WA- Dec. 6th & 7th
- Crafty Wonderland Super Colossal Holiday Sale: Portland, OR- Dec. 14th & 15th
- The Makery Winter Market: Portland, OR- Dec. 14th & 15th
- Renegade Craft Fair: San Francisco, CA- Dec. 21st & 22nd
We’re approaching this busy schedule much like a seasoned performer prepares to head on tour; lots of preparation, legal stimulants (we’re talking caffeine here, people), and a healthy dose of holiday cheer. There’s simply too much to look forward to and be thankful for to let any hint of Grinch-iness get in our way.
Hope to see some of you at these events. We’re always a wi-fi connection away, so please follow along!
Happy shopping (is there any other way to be when shopping??),
***Song of the Moment: “The Late Greats (Live)” by Wilco***