Episode #51: A Beautiful Mess x Etsy

We are so excited to share our Etsy collection with you today! Below you’ll find photos of each item and the link to shop.

You can stream the episode here on the blog or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayTuneInPocket Casts, and Stitcher. You can find the podcast posts archive here.

Shell Pillows in blush (large) and peach (small) from À la maison & co.

Rainbow Blanket by Calhoun and Co.

Pour Over and Mug by Katie M. Mudd Ceramics.

Star Planter by Katie M. Mudd Ceramics.

Pink Planter by Katie M. Mudd Ceramics.

Pink Tumbler by Katie M. Mudd Ceramics.

Vase by Gabrielle Silverlight.

Agate Coasters by Design Pretty.

Small and Large Wooden Trays by C by M Creative.

Ceramic Tray Trio by Dovekie & Finch.

Headbands in rust, vanilla, and apricot sparkle by Bardot Bow Gallery.

Knit Hats in pink and brown and creme and earthy orange by Hazel Bea.

Rainbow Earrings and Terrazzo Earrings by Kaju Creations.

Elephant, Triceratops, and Giraffe Animal Hooks by The Jungle Hook.

Orange Rosemary Body Oil by Brown Butter Beauty

Thanks (set of 5), Hey Y’all (set of 5), Home Sweet Home (single), and Sweater Weather (single) Cards from Posterity Paper.

Doormat by Proper Letter.

Rainbow Wall Hanging and Cream Roving Wall Hanging by Sunwoven.

We are so excited to share this collection with you!!

xo, Elsie, Emma, and our amazing team of Etsy sellers

Miss an episode? Get caught up!

Episode 51 Transcript

Emma: You’re listening to the A Beautiful Mess podcast, and today we are beyond excited to share the project that we have been so excited to talk to you about all year long, our collaboration line with Etsy, we are going to share all about the pieces from our line, the handmade artists that we worked with and what the process was like.

Elsie: And at the end of the episode, we are answering a reader question about how much wall art is too much wall art. Ok, so this episode is going to be super show notes heavy. We are sharing all of the 15 different sellers that we collaborated with for our Etsy line. So this is A Beautiful Mess and Etsy line we will tell you all about it. It’s an exclusive collection. It’s coming out today. It is so cute. We’ve been working on it all…like what, since last spring? For months and months.

Emma: Yeah, I think since I think January was the first email, I want to say. Oh yeah. So all year.

Elsie: So yeah, it’s super pretty. Everything matches. It’s kind of our ultimate fantasy because it’s — we made it so that we could shop it for our own holiday gifts. And since it’s 2020, actually I was talking to someone on Instagram this week who was like “I started holiday shopping, did you?” And I was like, yeah, guilty as charged. (laughs) I already started holiday shopping this year. So I feel like any little thing that brings you like a little bit of joy in your day, especially when it’s online shopping, I don’t know. I kind of feel I have a free pass.

Emma: I agree. Yes. And in case you don’t know, you probably do. But if you don’t, our show notes are at abeautifulmess.com/podcast. Or if you’re listening in real-time today, then it’s just what’s on our homepage. But the reason you might want to check out the show notes is because we’re going to link all of these products and the Etsy sellers. So you can also check out the other things that these handmade artists make, because they’re not only making the items that we collaborated on for our line, they have their whole own shop with lots of different things, lots of different offerings. So you may want to check that out, too.

Elsie: So let me know a rundown of what it, what it is.

Emma: Yes. What what is this? What are you talking about? (laughs).

Elsie: So this is a collaboration where we kind of got to curate a collection, but it’s all from Etsy sellers. So some of the sellers made more than one item. Actually, most of them made more than one item, some of them just one. So we will link all the items and all the shops in the show notes. Everything is kind of on a matching color palette. It’s our like, 1970s pastel color scheme that we love so much. There’s a lot of ceramics, there’s velvet, there’s so many pretty things. So, yeah, I guess we should just go through each one, one by one and gush about how pretty they are.

Emma: Yeah, that’s that’s basically what this episode is…

Elsie: Gushing. But I think it’s a shopping episode. And if I know our listeners so far, I know that they have this in common with me. They love online shopping.

Emma: Yes. And I always love hearing a little bit of like what someone, like what someone else loves about the thing that I’m shopping, because sometimes it’s different or just hearing, like, how they use it or I don’t know, it’s fun. So we’ll do it. Plus I just want to…I don’t know I already feel like you hear pastels and you might not think autumn or holiday, but to me it’s a very like autumn, but an interesting take on it.

Elsie: There’s a lot of orange in it. So think like the muted, a muted burnt orange, like a pastel version of burnt orange.

Emma: Yes.

Elsie: Paired with like lots of pinks, lots of like the pickle green that we love some mustard. It’s really, really cute. You guys are going to love it.

Emma: It is.

Elsie: OK, so in the show notes, we’ll show a picture of absolutely everything. And so let’s kind of go back and forth and share what the items are and then talk about the design process. And I don’t know, kind of just like every, every little detail.

Emma: Let’s do it.

Elsie: Cool. The first item is a set of the velour shell pillows by Caroline Roy. Her shop name is La Petite Boite Co. And it’s located in Quebec, Canada. She has tons of beautiful things, including throw pillows, tea towels, zip pouches, fabric baskets and planters. But for our collection, she did shell pillows. So what they are is it looks like a giant seashell pillow and there’s a big one and a smaller one. There’s a pink one and an orange one. They’re both super pretty and they look really good as a set, kind of nestled together. So probably in the picture we’ll put in the show notes, we’ll have both of them together. You don’t have to purchase them together, but I think they look really pretty together and the colors really work.

Emma: Yeah, I have them sitting on the couch in my office right now and my dog Steve keeps like laying on them. They’ve basically kind of become his pillows, which they are some of the cutest throw pillows I have in my whole house, so it’s funny that kind of like been taken over by him, but they’re really cute.

Elsie: Actually, now that you mention it, my dog Dolly also loves the shell pillows, so I guess they are pet friendly. But you know what? I think that velvet or velour fabric is one of the most pet friendly fabrics, because all you have to do is use a lint roller.

Emma: I agree.

Elsie: I love it.

Emma: Yeah. It doesn’t even, like, mess up the, like, texture of the pillow. So it’s actually great.

Elsie: Yeah. These are super pretty. I’m so happy with them.

Emma: The next item is a rainbow throw blanket, it’s from Calhoun and Co. and the shop owner’s name is Carrie Stokes and she’s based in New York. So their shop does lots of different throw blankets, tea towels, wall hangings and more. They have really, really cute throw blanket designs. So definitely go check out her shop. But the one that she collaborated on with our line is rainbow, and it’s the colors of the entire collection all put together. So it’s it’s a rainbow, but it’s not like your traditional rainbow.

Elsie: It’s a 70s rainbow.

Emma: Mmhmm.

Elsie: Yes. And it’s a very wide stripe. So when you think rainbow, don’t think like a traditional rainbow blanket with like it doesn’t have an arch, it’s just a striped blanket really. But yeah it’s really, really cute. Draped over a sofa or a chair and her stuff is really beautiful. Yeah.

Emma: Yeah. It’s the perfect throw for like your couch for like watching TV. I don’t know about you but especially in the fall and winter I just will get a little chilly and a lot of times I’m not even wearing socks in my house because I’m an idiot I guess. But so we have a lot of throw blankets. So this one’s not only really cute, but I love the, like how thick it is, because if you just have one layer, it’s not crazy warm. You’re not going to get hot under it, but you can also double it up…Anyway. It’s just a really good it looks good draped. It’s also really useful for watching TV, which I feel like is my main chill activity this year. So.

Elsie: It’s gorgeous. It was a dream come true to make this blanket with Calhoun and Co and yeah, I just I can never get enough blankets. It’s definitely our cozy season as well. And I’ve been working on our movie room. That’s like one of my first, you know, rooms that I’m working on and I’ve been working on collecting blankets for a basket. So yeah, it’s definitely a very, very giftable item. If you have a friend expecting a little one or just, you know, a friend who likes cute blankets. Yeah, it’s a good one.

Emma: Yeah, for sure.

Elsie: All right. So the next one, Katie M. Mudd from Portland, Oregon, made us a bunch of items. So there’s a couple planters, there’s a cup, there’s a coffee mug, and then the coffee mug also has a pour-over component. So you can purchase it if you want to as a set where…and they match. And the thing that’s really, really special about these mugs is that she did this resist pattern with little stars on the coffee mug and the pour-over. So you’ll just have to see it in the show notes and on the blog today. But it is I think it’s the cutest pour-over set I’ve ever seen in my life.

Emma: It’s so cute. Like I feel like it might be one of the items that goes super quick because I just feel like it’s great for personal use. It would be a great gift if you have a coffee lover in your life and it’s just the most adorable pour-over set. But you don’t have to buy the pour-over part. You can just buy the mug if you want, just FYI. But yeah, I love the mug too. I have a big handmade mug collection. Elsie and I are both really big on handmade mugs. We have lots of different artists we love. But what I really love about Katie M. Mudd’s that she made for this collection is it’s a large-sized coffee mug. So great if you need a big cup of coffee or really hydrating yourself with some herbal tea. But also it gets smaller at the top. And I like, I really like I know it’s a subtle thing, but I really like it when mugs do that because I feel like it keeps the liquid hotter, whereas when it’s kind of like straight up and down or the mouth, the top of the mug is a little bit wider, sometimes I feel like the liquid, the coffee or the tea cools faster. Anyway, I’m I drink tea all day, every day and coffee. So I have a lot of like, things that I care about with that (laughs). But anyway, these are great. The Tumblr she made is great. The drinking glass and the planters are really, really cute too.

Elsie: Yes. OK, yeah. Just trust us. They’re totally and completely gorgeous. There are also some pink pieces so there’s a glass. It’s kind of just like a cup I guess it’s called the tumbler. I yeah. I feel weird calling a ceramic thing a cup though for some reason, but yeah it’s yeah it is…

Emma: Tumbler That’s a good…

Elsie: Handle-less mug, it’s a tumbler and also a planter that are in kind of a subtle pink glaze. So those are super pretty as well.

Emma: Yes.

Elsie: Oh, the next one. This one, the next one, is so crazy.

Emma: OK, the next one is super, super special. I mean, they’re all special, but this one’s just so pretty. It is a flower vase and planters and the vase, it kind of looks like. OK, so the artist name is Gabrielle Silverlight. Definitely go check out her shop, check out the mugs she has. She has lots of different ceramics and different items and they’re so pretty. So we were really excited whenever she was going to collaborate on this line with us. And the vase, it almost looks like there’s like clay design of flowers, like pressed into the outside of the vase. So it’s just a really special item. I have it sitting on my kitchen counter right now with flowers in it, and I keep buying myself flowers right now because I love this vase and I keep wanting to refresh the flowers.

Emma: It’s just really beautiful. So I’m excited to let you see it.

Elsie: Yeah, it’s extremely special. I have one of her mugs as well. It’s one of my favorite mugs in my collection. I use it all the time. But yeah, I think that the way she does, I think it’s an inset. So I think that it is actually pressed in there, although I’m not completely sure what her technique is. So yeah, we’ll link to her shop. She also makes necklaces. So she has a lot of…

Emma: Oh yeah. I didn’t mention that.

Elsie: …unique things and yeah. Just one of those really. All the sellers are so special. I feel like I’m just I’m like very gushy on this episode, but it’s because this is a dream come true for us, like floating on a cloud right now if you can’t tell. So…

Emma: Yeah!

Elsie: It’s one of the coolest things we’ve ever gotten to do as bloggers.

Emma: It really is, because it feels like we got to like collaborate and make beautiful products with a company that we love Etsy, but we’re also basically just promoting a ton of really cool handmade artists and I’m like, that’s so fun and something we’re down to do anyway. So this is such a fun collaboration for us.

Elsie: Yes. So we have a rose quartz coaster set by the shop is called Design Pretty and the owner’s name is Onika Ben. And so these are kind of like cut pieces of rose quartz like a slice of roze quartz with a golden edge. They’re super pretty. They’re very fancy. And yeah, I’ve been, like, moving mine from room to room in our new house because I can’t decide like, where they look best. They’re very special. So, yeah, Onika is located in New Hope, Pennsylvania. She has a really gorgeous shop with all different crystal things. So she has lamps, book ends, serving trays, yeah, the rose quartz serving tray was one of the things I was like, whoo! When I saw it. So, yeah, it’s very, very pretty and very special.

Emma: Yeah. Her shop is beautiful. You should definitely check it out. If you have, if you are fancy or if you have a fancy friend on your list of gifts to buy this year…

Elsie: I feel like we all have a fancy friend, right.

Emma: I think so. And if not, maybe you are the fancy friend. (laughs) Anyway, her shop’s beautiful so definitely check it out. So the next one is a couple. We have wooden serving trays and they come in two different sizes and it’s by C by M creative. And the shop owners name is Mary Kim and she’s located in Arkansas, which is kind of cool because it’s kind of nearby where I live. And these are just really beautiful, really sturdy, well-made wooden trays you could use for serving, you could have like a cheese plate on it. You could have a breakfast plate on it. You could use it for having, like, more non-food items if you want they’re just a very, like, standard, beautifully made, sturdy. I don’t know.

Elsie: They kind of look like a just a beautiful, polished serving tray. And then they have feet, too. So, yes, they kind of both have little feet, so they’re elevated. And I really love that because I feel like they make good, like, yes, you can use them for food. Obviously, that’s the most common thing.

Emma: Right.

Elsie: But you can also use them to kind of like set like in the corner of your kitchen cabinet or in the corner of your bathroom cabinet and make a little vignette with like a hand soap and, you know, like things like that, too. So I really love this.

Emma: Or a centerpiece. If you wanted to put, like, some flowers and some candles and things have like a centerpiece and a table, it could be useful for a lot of things. I’m going to use mine for cheese boards because as I mentioned in the food episode, it’s got to be a cheese board at the party. That’s how I roll. Our cheese board pictures are really pretty. We’ll put some of those in the show notes. But yeah, we went back and forth on this one quite a bit, getting the sizes perfect. And so the small one is, I would say the small one is what I would describe as a medium, and the large one really is a large. So they’re good sized. And really, really pretty I’m just so excited to use them in our new house to build little special moments, so the next item is a trio of ceramic display trays and they’re kind of like little gem shaped trays. And then they kind of like fit together like kind of like Tetris-y. If that makes sense. Like, I’m trying to explain it. Not, not really Tetris-y. They’re not Legos.

Emma: Kind of like gems. I kind of look like. Yeah, like gems. Like if you looked at the top of a crystal or a gem.

Elsie: You’re going to have to see it. The colors are amazing. There’s like a little bit of an orange one, a little bit of a pink one. And they come as a set of three. And the shop is called Dovekien Finch. They’re based in Halifax, Pennsylvania. And they have many other beautiful things like little planters, ring holders, business card holders, candle holders. But we chose the trays just because I feel like it makes a great jewelry tray. So right now mine are currently in my closet and I have like jewelry on all of them. And then a lot of the photos we did, we ended up styling them with the earrings because they just look so pretty together.

Emma: Yes.

Elsie: Yes.

Emma: Next one…

Elsie: Oh, this is a fun one. This is one of my favorites.

Emma: Yeah. The next item is we have headbands that are for adults and they can fit kiddos. They’re from Bardot Bow Gallery and the shop owner. Her name’s Emily and she’s based in Cincinnati, Ohio. And these are just really, really, really cute headbands. We wanted to have a few things in this collection that weren’t just home items. We wanted to have some accessories because, you know, it makes a great gift. But also some people are like, I have enough home stuff. Maybe you want something for yourself or to buy for a friend. So this is one of those items. And yeah, they fit both adults and kiddos. You’ll be able to see some photos of them. I think there’s a really cute one where Goldie’s wearing one.

Elsie: They’re super super high quality and they’re the perfect trendy headbands. If you’re into the headband trend like I am, I have like way too many, like probably like twenty, and that’s like crazy.

Emma: And these ones feel perfect for like a holiday party. Like they’re a little bit on the fancy side. They’re not really like an everyday headband. You could wear them if you are that fancy in your every day.

Elsie: There’s two velvet styles and one glitter style. And so the interesting thing about this item is that when we first started working on it, we said that we wanted to make an adult version and a kid’s version, and then we started doing testing. And then any time I would see one of my friends and their kid had on a trendy headband, I would be like, where’d you get that headband? And they always said, Oh, it’s just my headband. And I was like, What?! Adult headbands fit two year olds? So I actually had no idea. And then I started trying it on Goldie with my headbands and they fit. So yeah, I think I wanted to note that because I think a lot of people don’t know that these adult headbands, they have the plastic base on the inside and then they’re covered in fabric. They totally fit, I guess, like all ages because they fit on my two-year-old and yeah, they’re super cute. So the sizes are not different for kids and adult, but they really do that both and they’re comfortable. You can wear it, you know, for hours and not get a headache and stuff. So, yes.

Emma: Yeah, I’ve worn mine all day and it didn’t it wasn’t like too small for me. And I would say I have an average size head, so they’re really cute. And also Bardot Bow Gallery, she has lots of other things in her shop, other headbands, head wraps, lots of scrunchies. So if you are into scrunchies, I she’s got some really beautiful ones. And I also saw that she was selling face masks.

Elsie: So I’m so excited about this next one. This one really does come in kids and adult sizes. So we did knitted stocking caps for fall with HazelBea by Kate Hunter. She’s based in Canada. She does lots of knitted items, hats, scarves, booties, crocheted stuff like decor. But with us for our collection, she did two colors of knitted hats and they each come in a kid size and an adult size. Goldie and Nova were in pictures just basically just to demonstrate that they really fit kids heads. It’s like the only reason we had them in the photo shoot for this. And yeah, they really do fit. They look so, so, so cute. So I can’t wait until the weather cools down enough to really, really wear them in real life. But if you’re a person who loves hats, I’m a big hat wearer I am, you know, not so much on washing my hair, very much on wearing hats, especially knitted hats all winter long. So this one, I would say, is like the very thick yarn and a very big fluffy hat. Very comfy. It’s not too big, like it doesn’t look bad. But it’s big, it’s not a small, tiny, tight one like, you know, the ones that make your head look small? Not one of those.

Emma: No, no. It’s like thick, lush yarn, very high quality, very warm and cozy. Like this is a autumn transitioning into winter hat. It’s beautiful.

Elsie: They’re gorgeous and they have fluffy pompoms on the top. So I hope that a lot of people buy these to match with their kids because that was our visualization whenever we started working on this. And just remember that we were working on these knitted hats all spring and all summer so that you would have them for fall time to wear with your family. (laughs)

Emma: You’re welcome. (laughs).

Elsie: Please, someone wear it in a Christmas card! Oh, my gosh. That would be so cute.

Emma: Yes.

Elsie: Yeah. So super excited about the hats. And that is our one. No, that’s not our only thing. We have two things that are kid. OK, never mind. We have three things. Oh yeah.

Emma: Yeah, we have another thing. And next up is another accessory. It is statement earrings by Kaju Creations and they are based in Canada. And we have two different styles. But definitely check out her shop because she has lots of different kinds of statement earrings and they’re just really, really beautiful. We were really excited to get to collaborate with her. Our statement earrings are similar to some other designs she’s done, but they’re in the colors of the entire collection and they’re just a really beautiful statement earring. And probably my favorite thing about them is they’re…sometimes ceramic earrings can get a little bit heavy and these ones are very lightweight. So they don’t, like, pull on your ear. If you’re wearing them for hours and hours at a time, they just feel very comfortable. But they’re still like a statement. They still are like bigger and dangly. So they’re just really, really pretty.

Emma: Yeah, they’re super cute. I’ll just describe real quickly what the two styles look like. So one of them is Terrazzo, which we all know and love. It’s so pretty. And then the second one is a rainbow and it is again in that 70s kind of rainbow color scheme. OK, so the next item is our last kid-friendly item and this one is made just for kids and it is animal wall hooks. The shop is called The Jungle Hook by Alex Ehrens in Austin, Texas. His shop is super cool. And so what these are, we did two dinosaurs and a, wait no, no, no, no, no. We did one dinosaur, one elephant and a giraffe. And it’s in our color scheme and you just have to see it. They’re these beautiful wooden hooks for a kid’s room wall I’m putting them in our kids new shared bedroom. And they’re just so gorgeous and they look so cute with hanging like a little straw hat or their little bag, you know, their little sweater. They’re just really, really, really sweet. So I’m so happy that we could add a couple things in that were kid-friendly just because I’m living my best mom life right now. And I know that we all have kids on our shopping list for the holidays.

Emma: And if…I’m sure you’ll like the colors that we chose for our collection, but just doesn’t have why I if those colors don’t suit your child’s room or the scheme of your home, still check out The Jungle Hook because they have lots of different like they have raw wood options and other colors. So there’s lots of other options. So if you really like this, this hook, there are other colors available. They’re just not in our collection.

Elsie: You’re going to love it. The elephant and the giraffe and then we picked the triceratops dinosaur were my favorite ones. But he also has tons of other animals and. Yeah, they’re so cute.

Emma: Very cute. Next one is a natural beauty product. It is a natural body oil. It’s from Brown Butter Beauty. And the shop owner’s name is Christine Gant. She’s based in Brooklyn, New York, and she has lots of other natural beauty products in her Etsy shop. She has face oils, body oils, face masks, a shampoo and a conditioner and also some sugar scrubs. But for our collection, she did a natural body oil. And it’s just great. Like it’s, you know, autumn. It’s going to be winter soon. I don’t know about you, but dry skin, I have that all year around. But it definitely is worse in the winter. So having something that smells amazing and feels amazing on your skin, it’s a great item for self-care. It would also make a great gift for, like, your mother, your mother in law, your sister, whatever.

Elsie: For sure. The scent that we chose is rosemary citrus. And it smells so good if you think that the rosemary part like you’re not sure, just take my word for it. I tested quite a few different ones and it was by far the most amazing one. So our next item is greeting cards. So it’s fall time and we were able to partner with Posterity Paper, the woman’s name is Tiffany Grimes, and she’s based in Georgia, let me just say what the four designs are, so there’s one a home sweet home one that has my old, you guys remember my old rainbow bookshelf, so she illustrated that. It’s so cute. And then there’s a thank you card and there’s a hey y’all card. And then there’s also a sweater weather card. So I just sent some yesterday to my realtor and the loan guy we worked with I like sent them thank you cards. (laughs)

Emma: Wow, that’s nice.

Elsie: Yeah. And I just felt like, I don’t know, kind of like happy feelings. So yeah, the cards are super cute and you’ll definitely want to stock up. I feel like I can never have enough thank you cards.

Emma: Yes. And this year, especially since we can’t always see everyone as much as we, you know, would like, I think that it’s a really great year to be stocking up on stationery and being able to send out cards and just say hi and have a way other than social media to connect. And so definitely check out her shop. I love the one she did for our collaboration, but she has lots of really cute designs.

Elsie: Yeah, beautiful.

Emma: OK, this next one is a super exciting item. It is a welcome doormat. It’s from Proper Letter and the shop owners name is Aislinn Minardi and she’s based in Washington, DC and her shop is really, really cute. She has lots of different doormats. And then personalized items like wedding signs, dog tags. You can get your wedding vows like made into kind of a piece of art for your wall. So she has lots of really, really cool stuff. So check that out. But for our collection, she did a welcome doormat that’s really cute.

Elsie: Yes. It says “Howdy Y’all” it is. So cute. And yeah, it was like one of the first things I put out when we moved.

Emma: Yeah. I just love a cute doormat, honestly. Like my mail carriers often will comment on my doormat, just like it’s kind of like a conversation starter with the people I see, which is my mail carriers. (laughs) So yeah. This one’s really cute. All right. Last seller! Drumroll…

Elsie: So our last seller is actually one of our good friends, Erin Barrett from Charleston, South Carolina. Her shop is called SunWoven. And so she does handmade weavings and she did two designs for our collection. One has our seventies rainbow and one is all white and gold. So I’ve already hung them both up in my house. They are. It’s so easy to find a place for these. They’re so, so beautiful. So one of them I put above a bed and then one of them I put kind of in our stairway. Anyway, no one cares. Elsie noone needs to know where you hung your weavings. (laughs) But anyway, they’re really, really pretty, great gift items. They’re also not too giant. So they’re more affordable because weavings, as I’m sure you all know, can become extremely expensive because they’re handmade and they’re…they actually take forever to make. We took a class on making weavings before and it was really, really fun. So anyway, Erin from SunWoven is super creative and you’ll definitely want to check out her site and follow her on Instagram as well.

Emma: Yep.

Elsie: Awesome. So let’s talk a little bit about the process of creating the Etsy line, because it really, truly is a dream come true. Like there’s so many partnerships that come across our, you know, “desk” every day. But as soon as we heard the word Etsy, we were like, yes, sign us up. No matter what they want, we’ll just do it. We’re just so excited to work with them. It’s definitely one of those like dream come true moments for us.

Emma: Yes. Yeah, we were like sign us up right away, we don’t even care. (laughs). Very into it.

Elsie: Yes. And we knew that our readers and our listeners would love it as well just because it’s 2020. I feel like it’s been such a tough and sad year for so many people, especially small businesses. So being able to support small businesses is really like I feel like it’s the one thing that I can do every week that kind of gives me hope and like feels, you know, like something positive.

Emma: Yeah. Yes.

Elsie: We started the collection in January, so it started off. We made a mood board and we showed like the colors we wanted. And then we had a bunch of different, it was kind of random, it was just like all the home things we like, all in a mood board. And I remember at the time there was like a fluffy, dried flower wreath and I can’t remember all the things, a pillow. And we ended up doing a lot of it. And some of it wasn’t possible. Some things we ended up pivoting a little bit due to covid because I remember we were going to have a backpack and then they were like maybe not so much on the backpack, which was a good call. Now that, you know, not everyone’s been returning to school.

Emma: School’s weird.

Elsie: Yeah.

Emma: Yeah.

Elsie: So, yeah, we had phone calls and meetings all year long.

Emma: Yeah. And towards the end, one of our last calls with the Elsie team they had put together…basically kind of like a shot list, so it was things because not only all the images that you see on our blog and that you’ll see us showcasing on our social media accounts, we kind of know like what we need for that. You know, we have our blog. We’ve done our blog for years. But when we work with companies like Etsy and also with these other handmade artists, we need we needed to make sure that we got the shots that they also might want to feature for their website, for their social for their shop listings. So we, you know, had this big, long shot list and kind of talked through like different ways. We were going to showcase the products and then we had a big shoot date…

Elsie: That was definitely the biggest shoot that I’ve ever done before, it was like 400 images. Woo!

Emma: Yeah, it was a lot. And that’s what I was in Nashville for right before Elsie moved.

Elsie: Yes.

Emma: This was the secret shoot that I kind of mentioned but didn’t say what it was. This was it. And so it was really fun to do that. And then like two days later, Elsie moved. So…

Elsie: Yeah I begged Emma. I was like, please stay for like a whole week. And she did. She was aunt of the year, the ultimate moving helper.

Emma: Yeah. But it was just funny. I don’t know. I feel like when you see these some of the images, they’re like in a very obviously styled home, which was your home, but like two days later than you were in a completely different home. And it wasn’t styled. It was just like what it was when you made it’s just funny.

Elsie: It’s true. Just to give everyone a frame of reference, a big part of why. So we were we knew we were moving for a few months, but even before that, I was decorating my home ever since we moved at the beginning of the year for this Etsy shoot, because I wanted it to be ready for the shoot and it was like my motivator. And it was in the summertime. So we had, you know, months and months to get ready for it. And I was like, I want to use the front door. I know. I want to use this room, this room, the kitchen. And yeah, it ended up being a great motivator. And then literally the day after we did the shoot, we took everything down and started moving. So as we said before, our Etsy collection is out today. You can find it on our website. You can find it on Etsy’s homepage. I hope that you love it. We hope that you, you know, buy something if you want to. And then they’re also doing Etsy is also doing a lot of other collections. So we wanted to shout out to some of the other people, Tia Mowry, who is from the do you guys remember the show Sister, sister? We used to watch TGIF and stuff. So, yeah, she had a beautiful collection. I think I’m actually going to buy some of her berry bowls. And then our friend Zoe from Zoella has a beautiful collection. I’m buying her bag of secrets bag. And then Jojo Fletcher from The Bachelorette has a beautiful collection as well. So, yeah, there’s so many and there’s more coming. So we’re not allowed to say who, but it’s like pretty cool…

Emma: There are some really cool ones coming out. So if you don’t follow Etsy on social media or follow them on their blog, you really should because…like, I wish we could tell you some of the ones that are coming out because I’m so excited to shop them. But anyway, you can just follow along and see them as they launch. If you want to see the entire collection you can visit etsy.com/abeautifulmess or you can check our site abeautifulmess.com it’s all there and you’ll find all these amazing handmade artists. And we hope that even if the colors of our collection or whatever don’t suit you, please check out the artists because they’re making such beautiful amazing things…

Elsie: They’re going to love the colors Emma! They’re going to love it.

Emma: Well, I’m just I just want people to shop all the artists because I’m excited for our collection…

Elsie: No totally.

Emma: I truly am. But I just really do feel like of all the years, this is the year to shop small. So I love that we get to promote in this way. And I just want to really put the handmade artists forward. That’s all I’m really trying to say (laughs).

Elsie: Yes. Hell yeah. Support everyone you can. Ok, so let’s switch segments real quick. And we wanted to do a ‘sparks joy’. So I had something very joyful in my week. Emma what was joyful in your week?

Emma: OK, so I don’t know what you’re going to say. So ours could be so different…

Elsie: They’re so different, I promise. (laughs)

Emma: Okay, well, one thing that’s sparking joy for me is I’ve mentioned this a little bit, but I moved my home office into our guest bedroom because I really want an office with the door. So since then I’ve been turning the space that used to be my home office, it’s like part of an open area in our home. So it’s, you can see it when you’re in the kitchen, in the dining room. Most of the time you can see it. And I’ve been turning it into a library. So lately I have been shopping online and in stores, thrift stores with my mask for lots of books to fill up this floor to ceiling book display…

Elsie: It’s totally gorgeous.

Elsie: And I’m having so much fun shopping for the books. I do kind of think the collection will evolve over time, but I just I have like a romance section…

Emma: Of course you do.

Elsie: …I have a mystery section. I’m just like in it to win it. I have so many authors that I love, who I admire. And it’s just sparking like a lot of joy for me to pick out all these books and to just know that I have these books in my home. Something about having books around is just kind of therapeutic for me, I’m very cool. (laughs)

Elsie: That’s no, I think that it’s therapeutic as well. We are waiting and waiting and waiting for this shelf to arrive in the mail and then we get to unpack our cookbooks and we can’t wait. It’s been, you know, like six months since we’ve had our cookbooks unpacked. So we’re so excited. OK, so mine is OK. I’m very late to the game on this, but I just watched the finale finale of Schitt’s Creek. The one with the wedding. Yeah. And oh, it was so cute. I was crying a lot. I was actually crying a lot for like the last three episodes and I love to cry during a TV show. It’s one of my favorite things. So yeah, it was so wonderful. And I’m not going to give like a hard spoiler but a soft spoiler is that the Mariah Carey song part was my favorite part and I can’t stop thinking about it if you’ve seen it or if you do see it, it’s just like, okay…

Emma: Love it.

Elsie: Next level. So we got a reader question via email. Our email is podcast@abeautifulmess.com. If you ever want to send us a question, here’s a little trick. If you want to write an email to me, write it really short, because I have a very bad problem with long emails (laughs) like just like…

Emma: (laughs) Oh my gosh!

Elsie: I’m serious! When they’re like five paragraphs, I never get to the end. Like, oh it’s like questions and stories and questions and stories. OK, that was so, so mean.

Emma: So everyone who’s been pouring their heart out, Elsie is not reading it. Just so you know. (laughs)

Elsie: I have focusing issues. (laughs) Ok, but this one from Mackenzie, it got straight to the question and I and I love this question. OK, so this questions from Mackenzie. I recently bought my first home. Congratulations Mackenzie, and I’ve been a bit slow to hang things on the walls. I found that I’m drawn to gallery walls and hanging a lot of photos in general. My hesitation comes with the fear of making the space too busy. I’m curious about your take on this. Can you have too much art and should you leave some walls blank? So I wrote a three-parter. It’s not too long. Don’t worry, it’s a quickie, but…

Emma: A three-fer.

Elsie: Oh, it’s four parts. OK, four little tips.

Emma: Well I’m not going to get to and end. It has to be much shorter than that.

Elsie: (laughs) You can tell me if you agree or disagree, I’ll just read them, OK? Number one,go off your feelings and your instincts keep building until it feels done. I think that’s like the most important thing is that you don’t need to worry about how it looks before you’ve done it. You need to worry about how it feels and how it makes you feel.

Emma: I like it. I like it. I agree. Also, it’s kind of vague. So what are your next ones?

Elsie: Ok, what I’m trying to say there…

Emma: I’m trolling you.

Elsie: …Is like I’ll just give you my real life example. I’m at the stage with our new house. We’ve been here for about a month now where I’m walking around like looking at walls, just like turning my head, looking, looking, looking, looking and thinking about like, could a wallpaper go there? Could a wallpaper go there? Should I do a gallery wall there? What about the family photos from our old house? I put them there and I think that, you know, I’m not really going to know until I start hanging things and seeing how it feels. It’s not the end of the world. If it doesn’t feel right and I take it back down and fill a few holes, there’s that.

Emma: And there’s also this really cool thing called command strips. So if you want to just try something. You can always put it up that way, which those can be not permanent, but like you can leave command strips up for a long time. But it’s also a great way to try something out. Then you don’t even have to patch the hole. But it’s not that big of a deal to patch a hole.

Elsie: OK, you know that I love spending money, but the one thing where I’m cheap is command strips because when I go to, like, buy a bunch of them, I’m like, this is too much.

Emma: They are expensive.

Elsie: Like forty dollars for command strips for a wall, like I’d rather just use nails. So that’s my one place I’m a cheap ass.

Emma: Yeah. If you’re ready to commit nails are cheaper. That’s true.

Elsie: The second tip is to stay in a color scheme. That’s obvious, but I don’t think that things. It can, it’s not going to look too busy if it’s in a limited color scheme. It’s going to be interesting. It’s going to you know, your eyes are going to go from place to place to place. But if you use every color in the rainbow or you don’t unless rainbows your theme, maybe. But, you know, if you kind of just put it all together and it doesn’t really go together, it might feel busy because it doesn’t really go together. The third tip is to mix, mix things up, mix art, abstract paintings, line drawings. We have a lot of those in our print shop, photos. So don’t only put one kind of art if you want it to look like a curated, mixed up gallery wall, definitely put different things. And if you’re doing a lot of photos, then I would mix the composition of close and far. If you put all close up pictures, that’s what makes it look like a Facebook grandma’s gallery wall, so don’t put all close-up photos, put some far away ones that are more artsy, I even have some framed fortune cookies — or not cookies, fortunes from the cookies and then some framed airline tickets…(laughs)

Emma: Just the cookies, it’s a shadow box.

Elsie: It’s very crusty and then some framed airline tickets from our adoptions. So I think little things like that that are, you know, like a memory, but it’s kind of obscure. Like if you have a movie ticket from your first date, like, what are you doing if you don’t just put that in a frame? Mm hmm.

Emma: Yeah. Scrapbooking for your wall.

Elsie: Right!

Emma: No I’m just kidding. A little bit.

Elsie: It pretty much is. I mean, but better than scrapbooking because, you know. Just better.

Emma: You see it all the time, it’s not hidden away in a book.

Elsie: Yeah, yeah. And my fourth tip was just don’t stress because this is not a big deal. Just decorate from your heart. And if you don’t love it, take it back down and try it again in a slightly different way. I think having matching frames can help. I think staying in a color scheme can help. I think really loving every single piece, if it’s very eclectic, can help. And I think if something, if you’re keeping something because someone gave it to you or because at one point in time you spent money on it, but you’re not loving it anymore, I think. Let that go.

Emma: Yeah, you can always regift, haha.

Elsie: Yeah.

Emma: But yeah. And I definitely really agree with your advice about if you put things up and it’s just not feeling right, you can change it. I just feel like that’s really something that you shouldn’t be scared of with home decor. I know that sometimes people feel like, oh, I moved in and now I’m going to set up the room and now it’s going to be that way for the next 10 years. And maybe it will be maybe the way you do things the first time will be great. But I, that almost never happens for me. I usually try something and then I’m like, I’m not quite loving this. I’m going to rearrange it. I’m going to move the pictures around. I’m maybe going to get a few new frames. Maybe the frames aren’t working, you know, so don’t be afraid to kind of, you know, like that doesn’t mean that it was bad. It’s not a fail. If you put things up and then you’re like, this isn’t quite right. That’s part of the process.

Elsie: I think it’s an important part of the process. I think like I already…I just moved in a month ago and I’ve already put some things up that I’m like, oh, I’m going to take that down. I’m going to move that here, you know, like, just go for it. Yeah. Because I feel like if you wait, the only thing that’s really bad is if you wait too long and you get used to all the blank walls and then you like that, then it’s like there’s no hope for you, you’re stuck.

Emma: Or if your partner gets used to all the blank walls and the like, hey, what are you doing? Why are you putting stuff up? You’re like, well, I was always going to, but I just didn’t get around, you know? (laughs) So that can be tricky, too.

Elsie: I love decorating. I could talk about that all day. OK, so thank you so much for listening. You can find our new Etsy collection out today. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast. If you haven’t taken yourself to that commitment level yet, please do, because this is episode fifty one. I feel like you probably know…

Emma: What are you even doing? (laughs) Subscribe!

Elsie: …Whether or not you’re going to stay or not. Please stay though. Yeah. And we’ll be back next week with more.

Emma: Bye.

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  • Hey y’all 🙂 Love your podcast and everything you guys do! One teeny tiny comment…a backslash is not the slash used in website URLs :)) that’s a regular slash…aka a forward slash. Back slashes lean to the left at the top and the right at the bottom, which might sound silly to mention it’s important. I’m only popping up my head to say this because I work in IT and I end up saying that sentence *many* times a day and it makes a big difference to why people get stuck and call us 🙂 // Also, love your house tour Elsie…ignore the haters, you do you xx And Emma…so sorry to hear about Love Love aka Lovers. Big hugs to you. My furkid is in his later years at 18 we will be so lost without him when the time comes. xo

  • I love, love, love the ABM podcast, but this episode was a huge miss for me. It felt like an infomercial. I do think it’s awesome that you’re promoting small businesses, and talking about the collaboration is cool, but describing every item was really tedious. I still listened to the entire episode, because I do love the ‘cast, but … I think this topic would have been better suited for a video or a blog post.

    (Just feedback I wanted to give! I realize not all episodes are for all people, and that’s OK. Keep up the great job! I look forward to new episodes coming out every week.)

  • This collection is so pretty & I can’t wait to gift a few pieces & pick up the body oil for myself 🙂

    I laughed SO HARD at your comments on reading long emails bc I am the exact same way. When I’m trying to get through more than a couple paragraphs all I can think is.. I’m only dying one blink at a time here! When people call me out about wanting to skim over the context & get to the actual point I say “I’m an accountant – I like a bottom line!”

  • Loved this episode and so excited about your new Etsy collection!
    I was wondering if we will get so see Emma’s new library? Sounds like such a fun project!

  • Love that WOC were included in this collection.

    Is there any way you can make it easier to see which products are made by shops of POC? As someone who wants to make sure a certain amount of my etsy/decorating purchases support black and minority owned businesses, clicking through to each shop was a tedious process.

    • This is not exactly what you asked for but a place to start (in the beauty realm) that aligns with your intent!


  • Such a fun project/episode. I was curious how the collaboration process went- how did y’all pick the artists and how did y’all come up with the items for this?

    • Hi! We started off with a mood board of the types of items we wanted to do and thought our readers would love and the Etsy team helped us to match with sellers who fit the categories and would be able to take on the extra production (since these orders are in addition to their already running shops). XX! We couldn’t be more happy with how it came out!

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