Local Loves: West Park Creative

October 27, 2015

Did you know October is a hopping wedding month? It’s second only to June, by a mere 1%, according to The Knot’s 2014 survey.

To one of our local loves, West Park Creative, this is not news. Bill Bubenik, co-owner with his wife Maggie, and the artist behind the operation, was busily printing the word “October” onto wedding invitations, RSVPs, and programs long before the month hit.

Photo credit: westparkcreative.etsy.com

Letterpress is an art form that sounds just like what it is. Traditionally, letters made of wood or lead are locked into the machine and pressed into the paper. Using photopolymer, ink, and a machine manufactured in 1893, Bill adds each color of ink onto the paper layering it one press at a time. The finished product has an undeniable wow factor. You can see and feel the difference of letterpressed pieces by running your eyes and hands across them.

Photo credit: westparkcreative.etsy.com

The West Park Creative designs leave an impression. (Just a little letterpress humor for you!)

Photo credit: westparkcreative.etsy.com

The company makes more than wedding suites. We visited their booth at Strange Folk Festival, and Paula fell hard for the "Oh La La" piece. But frankly, it's hard to not swoon for everything. 

Photo credit: Paula (mid-swoon)

You can pop into the couple’s Etsy store anytime to see the rest of the letterpress and screen printed work, or you can visit them at some of the area’s best festivals for makers and crafters. They were at the Harvest and E’ville Festivals this month.  

Check them out today to see why to us, West Park Creative is a local to love.


To do in the Lou

August 21, 2015

Hi guys! I’m Andrea Martin. I’m guest posting this week about two things I hold dear: saving money and St. Louis. 
People assume I’m in debt when they size me up. (I know because they’ve told me. Maybe because I own a lot of clothes…?)
First: Wrong! Second: How rude! 
Truth is I enjoy going out just as much as I love being thrifty. Those two things can be at odds though. It could leave you pinched and feeling stressed and stifled, or you could get creative. Guess which one I am. 
Correct! I’m creative with how, when, and where I go and what I spend. That’s important to note. You are in control of your disposable income.
That said, what would I do this weekend (August 21- 24) in the Lou and beyond if I were you? To answer accurately, let’s do a gut check. It all depends on how I feel.

Feeling Free
Saturday August 22, 2015
Indie N Summer Night Market

If I want a 0 down commitment activity, I have my sights set onthe Indie N Summer Night MarketGranted, gas does cost money, but for me, being an Illinois born and bred girl, I need some Big River Road Tripping in my life. This craft fair is allSTL Craft Mafia Members and promises to be good. Of course if you find a “must have” item to buy, do. The Makers will love you for it. And, fun fact, Alton and St. Louis were rival sister cities back in the day. If you love historic lore, go. If you love crafts, go. If you have no plans and limited funds, go. 

Feeling Thrifty
Sunday August, 23, 2015 
Perennial’s Women’s Clothing Swap

10 dollars gets you in, supports Perennials mission (read more here) and you as many clothes as you can or want to carry away. Oh and if you have nice clothes but you aren’t using them, bring them so someone else can!
I get plenty of cool vintage or “oh why not try it?” new-to-me sundries for my wardrobe. Check out their posts on the event here and buy a ticket beforehand here
You will see me there. Last year I diverted 16 pounds of clothes from a landfill. 

Feeling flush (ish)
Skyview Drive-in Theater
Okay, flush is relative. If I still don’t want to splurge, but I don’t mind spending a bit of dough, Skyview Drive-in is the place. Sorry St. Louis. If you had a drive-in, I’d stay in town, but this weekend Belleville is calling my name. Venture over the river, get a 10 dollar ticket (per adult) and you’ll get 2 movies (if you can stay awake), a nice breeze, plenty of people watching. The season lasts until late summer early fall. What’s showing? Find out here!
And for further money saving tip, you can skip the concession stand and mosey on over to Schnucks to buy snacks, or pack your trunk full of them instead. You’re welcome!

Feeling Spendy
Evenings through August 30, 2015
Missouri Botanical Garden’s Lantern Festival

To me a 26 dollar ticket is a lot of money, and if someone wants to take you on a date there, it’s a whopping 52 dollars. I measure my purchases against the price of food, and this equals a lot of burritos. It’s later on in the year, so hopefully the crowds have thinned. There is plenty to see, ooh and ahh over, to be sure. 
The festival started on May 23 and has been extended through August 30th. Check out times and order tickets here. But if the lantern festival isn’t your thing, go and splurge on some burritos. And by some, I mean many, or try one of other gut levels. 

Make good-for-you choices, and have fun this weekend. I’m glad we’ve met!


Favorite shop feature: Finley and Bub and a GIVEAWAY

July 30, 2015

Happy Friday and happy summer! I just got home from a very happy vacation with my sweet boys to New Orleans and Florida, and since I have so many reasons to be happy (cue Pharrell Williams), I thought I should give you a reason to be happy too. ;)

My friend, Natalie of the adorable shop, Finley & Bub, is giving one lucky reader a chance to win a $30 credit to buy whatever you want from her etsy shop. 

Being a self-professed accessory junkie, I became an insta-fan of Finley and Bub the moment I discovered it on Instagram. Natalie makes all of her items by hand...from boho headbands & flower crowns for big & little ladies alike, to scarves & hats to keep you and/or your little ones cozy in the cold.

Atticus loved his adorable FB hat in the winter and his cowl scarves that were the perfect transitional pieces for chilly Spring mornings. He also couldn't stop wearing his custom party hat with little trains on it that went perfectly with his train birthday party theme.

I couldn't get enough of my FB hair flair and had so much fun styling the clips, headbands, and leather tassel piece that I wore as a belt on vacation in New Orleans, and as a headband on the beach. All of the FB pieces can go easily from casual to elegant paired with jeans and a t, a crop top & pencil skirt by ShopOne, or with a simple summer dress and strappy sandals (while eating macarons from Sucre in New Orleans with your favorite little buddy-so good, I couldn't not give a shout out...make sure to try the banana fosters and chicory- insert heart eye emoji here).

Photo Credit: Shop One Outfit details: skirt & crop, Shop One, headband, Finley and Bub

Tassel leather belt, Finley and Bub, macarons: Sucre in New Orleans

I love all of Natalie's one of a kind pieces, and I'm sure you will too. Be sure to enter this giveaway to pick your favorites- just in time for back to school or that last minute summer bash or vacation! Because Natalie and I became friends through Instagram, I thought it would be fun to have an Instagram giveaway.

Entering is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

1. Follow @finleyandbub, @acolorfulchaos, and @lapetitepaula on Instagram
2. Like the picture posted on IG below (the one of me on the beach wearing the tassel headband) and tag as many friends as you would like in the comments section on IG under the pic (one friend per comment)
3. Tell us what your favorite Finley and Bub items are and what you can't wait to buy if you win.

That's it! Easy peasy, right?!

Winner announced on Monday, August 3rd!

Good luck & may the odds be ever in your favor!

*This contest is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 18+ yrs of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's terms of use.

National Donut Day/Local Loves: Vincent Van Doughnut

June 5, 2015

Happy National Donut Day! If you're from St. Louis, we think you should celebrate at one of our favorites- Vincent Van Doughnut! It's fun chasing their truck, but their charming, new shop in Clayton reminds us of a cozy corner cafe in Paris that invites you to stay all day (or until they sell out of their quality creations). We love that their deliciously decadent donuts are made fresh from scratch. A winner of the We heart STL award for top donuts given by Alive magazine, you "donut" want to miss Vincent Van Doughnut!  

The staff is so super friendly. They even gave Atticus a complimentary donut hole, which he accepted with no hesitation. He can't resist these delicious donuts either!

Be sure to check them out, especially today on National Doughnut Day! Or catch their food truck around town. You can't miss out on these delectable donuts. They'll have you coming back for more!

Choo Choo! Atticus is 2

June 4, 2015

Two years of kisses on soft, squishy cheeks, and gap toothed grins that melt my heart into puddles. Two years of tickling tiny toes and holding hands on walks, and wide eyed wonder at "da moon up in da sky." Two years of watching him grow from a tiny blueberry with a beating heart to a blue eyed boy with my heart in the palm of his sticky banana scented hands. I can't believe my sweet Atticus is two.

We had so much fun celebrating over Memorial Day weekend with family and friends who all made his special day perfect.

I knew I wanted to have a train party because he loves trains & I loved all of the sweet vintage charm that a train theme could bring. 

We went with a red, white, & blue Americana color scheme since his birthday fell over Memorial Day weekend, which was perfect, because it was easy to find decor in those colors. I incorporated gingham, burlap, & bandanas on the tables & fresh flowers for added ambiance.

Sweet Sharon snapped some pictures of Atticus dressed in his conductor gear by the train station in Kirkwood a couple of weeks ago because I wanted to use those photos as decoration. She also took photos of all of the party fun! My lovely friend Amanda used her design skills to make an adorable invite & came over early to decorate. My dad & hubby helped decorate & put together the birthday boy's new train set, my mom was in charge of getting balloons & an emergency Coke that got rid of my migraine (she saved the day!), and Sharon used her craft skills to turn a little red wagon into a train & some empty boxes into a bigger train for the littlest guests to enjoy. 

Since the train party left the station at 3:30, we offered light sweet snacks- some donut "coals" from Vincent Van Doughnut (local loves coming soon), Gus' Pretzels in the shape of 2s, blueberries & raspberries as a healthy option, & a banana & chocolate cake made from scratch by the chef at La P√Ętisserie Chouquette.

 All in all, it was a very fun day!

Atticus says thank "choo" to everyone who came & everyone who helped!