Friday, December 26, 2008

sale, sale, sale ...

Two things:

1. We're havin' a sale!  You can check it out online, or in the store.  But if you happen to be in Milwaukee, your best bet is stoppin' by the store, as we haven't been able to update the website yet with all sale items.

2. In the process of selling the store, I've had a retail consultant come in and evaluate what I've been doing {I sure wish I'd done this a couple years ago!}.  Anyway, one of the things she recommended was 'branding' our store better.

We used to be pretty good about that, but over the years we've really steered away from our bwp look, and incorporated a lot of 'pretty' designs {with our signage, ecards, mailers, etc.}.  Soooo, our graphic designer {the lovely Nellie} worked on putting together a couple different looks and this is the one we decided on.

I love the mix of the fonts and the bubble graphic.  We've moved it into our instore signage already and I really like how it's come together.

I think it's funny how you don't notice little things, little baby steps each day.  And then one day you look back {or have consultants take photos of your store and show you} and you realize how far you stepped away from what you believed in, in the first place.

Gosh, that suddenly sounds deep!  I promise I'm just talking about our signs here!  :)

Friday, December 19, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {winner}

Last week's weekend greeting winner is ... ShellyW!  I had a hard time deciding, as all the comments were deserving ... but adoption has a special place in my heart.  My one and only godchild was adopted from Guatemala.  She just celebrated her very first 'Forever Family' day, and I feel so blessed to be a part of her life.

Shelly, please email me your mailing address and I'll get the cards out to you {after the new year, as I'll be traveling 'til then}.

And since I love posting a photo when I can ... I thought I'd leave y'all with a peek from my new office.  Check out the wallpaper {I love, love, love it!!}.  I first saw it here and knew I had to have it.  Do you love it?  It's from Graham & Brown and you can buy it here.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

real simple {list pads}

Oh my goodness!  I was not quite prepared for the apparent overwhelming need for list pads!

Thank you, thank you Real Simple for contacting us and featuring two of the list pads we carry.  One from LobotoME {who so awesomely shipped us a truckload on Monday!}, and the other from Knock Knock.

If you're shopping the site for one of these, both are out of stock right now.  {sorry!}

LobotoME's 'list me' pad should be in today or Thursday.  But Knock Knock can't guarantee we'll have theirs in by Christmas.  If you're not in a hurry, please put them in your cart and we'll ship out as soon as they arrive.

Thanks everyone!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

good morning america?

If you watched it, you realize you missed it.  If you didn't watch it ... you didn't miss much!  And so it goes with the press.

Good Morning America has a feature called, "Just One Thing," which suggests different ways to 'green' your life.

This particular segment, that we were to be mentioned, talked about 'greening your holiday.'  GMA contacted the Green Paper Company, who in turn contacted a few great designers ... Snow & Graham being one of them.  And Snow & Graham were kind enough to say they were going to mention Broadway Paper as the featured retailer of their products.

Anyway ... take a look.  You have to laugh at how everything comes out in the end.

Monday, December 15, 2008

parting is such sweet sorrow ...

What else does one title the biggest blog post of her life?  I've got big news, bittersweet news ... and I'll just come out and say it ...

I've decided sell Broadway Paper.

There.  I've said it.  Whew?  I'm not sure.

I've struggled with this for so long, but the truth is ... the time has come.  It's bittersweet ... the store is my baby.  I've taken it from a 1,200 square foot outlet with $400,000 in annual sales, to a 3,200 square foot boutique with over a million dollars in sales.  I'm not a boastful or proud woman, but I do feel quite honored by that accomplishment.

We get national press.  Our little paper store in Milwaukee, Wisconsin is listed in national magazines ... I guess that causes me to 'puff my feathers' a bit!  :)

We have web clients from all over the United States ... amazing to me!  Some are celebrities even.

That's hard to let go of ... but unfortunately, I must.  I have four children at home.  My oldest is in 8th grade, and very recently having a really hard time with bullying at school.  Middle school ... yuck!

As much as I would've liked to be home with them when they were babies, I'm realizing that it's almost more important to be home with them as they're older.  When they walk in after a bad day at school, I don't want to be so distracted that I 'miss' what their faces are saying, even if their words don't.

I used to be a woman who wanted to do it all.  But I just can't anymore.  I'm not superwoman, and I don't want to try to be anymore.  Sweet Jenny {of LobotoME}, has ever so kindly thanked me for not being a superhuman!  :)

{The baby just woke up crying, and yeah okay, so she's not exactly a baby ... but still.  So she was just screaming for me, and as I'm holding her, smelling her sweet baby smell (yeah, she still has that smell), thinking of this post that I'm in the middle of ... I know I'm doing the right thing.}

It has taken a lot of thought, consideration and tears to come to this conclusion.  But I knew that, one day, if this was the conclusion I came to ... it would be the right one.  No regrets.  And that's where I stand now.

The thing is, I'm blessed enough to be able to stay home.  I feel God has been leading me in this direction and I need to take advantage of it.

I'm in the process of listing with a broker.  I've also had some discussion with Paper Source.  I'll keep y'all updated as I begin this journey ... and hey, if you know someone that is looking for a paper store of their very own ... give me a holler!

I'll continue to post, as I'm still completely inspired and drawn to beautiful designs.  You may have noticed though, that posting is light.  I'm really trying to keep my focus on my family right now.  Not to mention I'm feeling the stress of Christmas {really? 10 days away??}.

I thank you all ... deeply thank you, for your continued support and love of all things paper ...

more calendars

There are so many great calendars this year, that it's hard to choose a favorite.  So why have just one?  This is a wall in my new office and I'm dedicating it to awesomely designed calendars.

I've got SusyJack*, Linda & Harriett, and emilee rose.  This is just a start to my collection though ... I still need to pick up this beautiful calendar from Orange Beautiful.

And here are some more shots of the Linda & Harriett calendar.  I love the cover page, which seems to be a gently letterpressed journal entry.  I could only read bits of it, but those few words reeked of inspiration!

Friday, December 12, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {eighteen}

We had a great run ... but sadly, this will be the last weekend greeting giveaway.  Thank you so much to everyone that's participated over the last few months!

This weekend greeting is from the lovely Tiselle line.  Please leave a comment saying who you would send these cards to and why.  I'll pick my favorite and send all the cards out to you.  You can find more rules here.

Tiselle also has a promotion right now and you can check it out here.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

lucky magazine

Well folks, here we are! You can find the product featured in January's Lucky magazine here and here.

This experience has been troublesome to me, as I mentioned here and here ... but the worst of it came last Friday night when I received an email from my contact at Lucky. They tried to enter the promo code on our site, but it wouldn't work. What's up?

Do you know that deep moment of panic ... the kind that reaches into your core and your chest feels like it's going to cave in? {or is that just me?}

I. never. set. a promo code! I'm desperately looking through my paperwork and contracts {thank God I carry my stuff home with me} ... and there I see it ... a code ... right in my contract.

Another panic attack creeps in as I realize the {already in print} code is 4 characters longer than my system will allow. Full-on freak out mode!

After much sobbing {am I sharing too much?} and a call to my former manager extraordinaire, we settle for a message on our website that explains the new code. And fortunately, my system is web-based so I'm able to make changes from home.

Once I settle down, I send an email to Lucky and tell them my situation, and what I did to fix it. They seemed okay with the fix ... and I'm sure knowledge of my break-down helped a bit too. :)

Friday, December 5, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {seventeen}

Oh where, oh where have I been?  Sorry it's been a couple of weeks and thank you for your patience!

We are now back on track and I'm pleased to announce this weekend greeting is from Egg Press.  They've got a great variety of Holiday cards, but I'm digging the little birdie on this one best!

Who would you send this card to?  Leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by next Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is Terri!  Terri, my heart goes out to Kim and the girl she's 'blessing.'  Please send me your mailing address and I'll get the card out to next week.  Congrats and thanks everyone for playing!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

good morning america update

The Good Morning America segment won't run this morning.  Right now it's scheduled for next Thursday, December 11.  Stay tuned ...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

a little bookbag for me

A little gift from Anthropologie ... isn't it lovely?

This ...
Turns into this ...
And here's how ...
{i'm super excited to say these photos were taken in my new office!!} I hope to have photos of our completed construction project soon.

Personal note: After a great vaca with my girl friends {to Exuma in the Bahamas}, I left the next day for Mexico with my family and some friends for a 40th birthday celebration. My husband had planned the hugest surprise party of a lifetime down there. I'm still reeling from it. Thus, the slow posting ... thanks for hanging in there with me! :)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

good morning america!

Good Morning America is airing a segment next week called 'Greening Your Holiday Cards.'

They contacted the Green Paper Company to help out with the segment, who then contacted Wiley Valentine, Sycamore Street Press, Delphine Press, and Snow & Graham.  Snow & Graham then contacted us to be listed as a featured retailer.  As you can imagine, it'd be a fruitless effort to even begin to try and explain my excitement!

The show is scheduled to air on December 4th.  If anything changes, I'll let you know.

Friday, November 21, 2008

taking a break ...

I'm headed here today, so no weekend greeting.  But I'll be sure to have a daiquiri for y'all!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

calendar crush ...

I'm in love with this calendar and I thought you might be too.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

thank you real simple!

Our web orders have been nuts lately {yay!} and Emily's been kickin' it big time getting them out the door! Today's orders were super crazy, so I lent a hand ...

A huge thank you to Real Simple for helping to boost sales, Lord knows we needed it! Unfortunately, the stationery biz isn't immune to this economic crunch.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

baby announcement envy

I think I could be talked into having another baby if this was my baby announcement!  Isn't it precious?  Beyond precious?  Do you see the monkey on the envelope?

This piece is from our Spark Stationery custom album.  All the pieces are beautiful and as an added bonus, the ladies at Spark are absolutely the greatest gals to work with!

Monday, November 17, 2008

real simple press

So this is why our websales went crazy this weekend! Our Snow & Graham mini noteblocks were featured in December's Real Simple. Thank you ladies for recommending us as the featured retailer. You know we love your stuff {as do our customers}!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {sixteen}

This weekend greeting is from 8mm ideas.  I love their quirky, handwritten greetings.

"Our 2nd grade class has a kitty for a mascot.  One weekend Kitty came to my house.  We take turns.  I didn't like all the responsibility."

Do you know someone that doesn't like 'all the responsibility?'  :)

If you'd like to send them this card, just leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by next Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is Midwest Modern Girl!  Please send me your mailing address and I'll get the card out to next week.  Congrats and thanks everyone for playing!

Friday, November 14, 2008

susyjack* calendar

I mentioned it here and now you can get it here.  I've already bought mine!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

get'chur gap on ...

I could watch this again and again ...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I am nursing a major case of carpal tunnel and really need to step away from the computer for a bit.  I'm afraid that means posting will be light over the next few weeks.

Not necessarily a bad thing, as I'm up to my ears in construction details {we're in the midst of moving in!}.  And I've also got a couple of vacations planned {one is for the big four-O I'm quickly approaching} ... oh! and a photography workshop this weekend in Chicago with Me Ra & Brian Koh {can. not. wait!!!}.

I love posting daily and finding things that inspire me, so I'm sad to slow down.  And chances are, you'll hear from me more often than I should be posting.  I always chuckle when someone says they'll be taking a break and then start posting the next day.  That'll probably be me!

Til later ...

Monday, November 10, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {fifteen}

This {belated} weekend greeting is from Fugu Fugu Press.  Their cards are beautifully letterpressed and I love the quirky designs.

Is there someone in your life in need of a 'big thanks?' If you'd like to send them this card, just leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is Meghan!  The world is a better place because of the friendships we have ... and there's nothing better than hearing of a reconciliation.  Yay for you guys and cheers to Parker Posey!  Thanks everyone for playing!

Thursday, November 6, 2008


I may be taking a bad-karma risk here, but I'd really like to talk about this. This is the box of items we received back from a magazine that wanted to feature some of the products we carry.

We sent them a slew of things, and then when they decided to push our feature back a month, they called for even more items, which we gladly sent.

I realize I'm a paper freak, and dare I go so far as to call myself a paper snob?  But really? Tire tracks on the Jack & Lulu {yellow} box? And I'm positive we sent the Snow & Graham memo cube in one piece.

That's probably all I should say about that.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

more calendars

Just in from susyjack* ... 2009 wall calendars!! I'm not sure they get any prettier than this.

{They're not in in the store yet, but I'll let you know as soon as they arrive ...}

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

inspired birthday party

My daughter turned five yesterday, so we had a Halloween party for her this weekend.  I've been super inspired by what I was seeing here and here for Halloween party ideas.

One dilemma.  No time.

This is my equation for parties ... big idea + no time = Gracious Events.  They've done most of my 'big idea' parties for the last 8ish years, including my wedding.  In fact, the featured party on their website is my husband's 50th {also our fifth anniversary}.

Once again, they did a fabulous job!  The kids were on a sugar high ... but fortunately, I had a ginormous bounce house to work off some of the energy!

Happy Birthday big girl Wynt!

Friday, October 31, 2008

all play {no work}

This is me.  Today.  At work.  They said I wouldn't do it.  I did.  But I couldn't sit.  :(

weekend greeting giveaway {fourteen}

Who doesn't love Parker Posey? This awesome card is from La Familia Green.

Do you know someone that thinks Parker Posey is the greatest? If you'd like to send them this card, just leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by next Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is Jenny {from the awesome LobotoME ... fun blog too}. Yay, new wall art for Sam! :) Jenny, I know where to find you ... no need to email me your mailing address. Thank you everyone for playing ... I do love to read your comments.

Happy Halloween!!

awesome ad

December's issue of domino was fabulous as always. I particularly enjoyed the article and photos of Jenna Lyons {creative director for j.crew} home. The colors are inspiring, closet worth coveting {excuse me ... it's a whole room!} ... and well, she just couldn't be any cuter.

So there's all this inspiration and color and great ideas going on throughout the mag, but what did I enjoy most? This awesome ad from Motrin ...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

more new products

Just added ... I'm so excited to have madebygirl at bwp!  I've only got some Holiday offerings in the store right now, but stay tuned for everyday goods in the future.

Jennifer's designs are printed on materials that are good for the earth.  I love this quote from her website, "All my cards will be printed on recycled or post consumer paper, with the hopes of creating a positive change in others."

Check out her inspiring blog and if you're in the market for some fun prints, take a look at her etsy site.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

new product availability

I am super proud to announce that emilee rose products are now available in our webstore.  She's also got a pretty cute blog you should check out.

construction update

As you can see from the photos, progress has been made {and it's also been a long time since I've posted about it}.

Construction should be done in two weeks.  Honestly, I don't think you'd guess that by walking through ... but I'm all about trust!  :)

I tried some fancy numbering on my photos:
#1 - where the girls beds will be placed ... one by each window
#2 - a view of their playroom
#3 - another view of their playroom
#4 - the fireplace in my office!!!!  {giddy? just a little}
#5 - an alcove {the color is actually fuchsia} above each girl's closet, where a personalized illustration of each of my girls will hang. {emilee rose is hard at work on them}

Monday, October 27, 2008

awesome idea

{found via cool mom picks}

This is the most awesomest idea ever!  As I may have mentioned {ahem}, I do love personalized things ... and what is more personal than a doll made from your child's art work?!?

Do I hear Christmas idea?

Want a chance to win one?  Check it out here.

creative thank you 'note'

Remember this party invitation?  Well ... this {above} is the thank you note.  My-oh-my Miss Heather, I do think you've outdone yourself {and everyone else}!  :)

This is the most awesome thank you 'deck' I've ever seen!  What I didn't catch on to at the party, was why Heather was asking all the kids what their fav recipe was, and then writing them down.  Here's an example of my daughter's favorite:

Recipe for:  Cheese
By:  Wynter
Ingredients:  cheese, bread
Oven temp:  3 degrees
Cook time:  4 minutes
Directions:  Put it on a sandwich

Heather put together all the kids recipes on separate cards.  Then put a stack of photos together, with a photo of the guest behind their particular recipe.  Brilliant!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {thirteen}

This weekend greeting is a subtle beauty from a fairly new designer of ours ... Sweetbeets.  I love using these cards for simple hello, or thank you.  They're too sweet to pass up!

Can you think of someone who needs a subtle hello? If you'd like to send them this card, just leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by next Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is Nancy!  Come on ... it involved a trip to the store! :)  Nancy, please email me with your mailing address and I'll get the card out to you.  Thank you everyone for playing ... I do love to read your comments.

Happy weekend everyone!  We're forecasting snow in Milwaukee {it's too soon, it's too soon!}.

more personalized fun!

Did you know you can personalize stamps too?  The site also offers a free download to Mac users, which allows you to customize border colors and give a bit more control to the final design.

Along with creating stamps for my personal correspondence, I've given them as gifts and always use them to personalize my children's invites and thank you notes.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

it's a cookie swap party

Member the awesome designer I touted in this morning's post? This. is the awesome project she was working on.

We feature different design tips on our website and Nellie's latest creation is a Cookie Swap party. Everyone here was ooogling over this party invite and idea ... we wouldn't leave her alone. I love everything about it!

Thank you Nellie ...

winter wedding favors

I love {in a strictly professional way of course} my graphic designer and her intern {Nellie & Katie, respectively}. contacted us for some winter wedding favor ideas they could feature.  We didn't have any in the store, so Katie started whipping some up {while Nellie was working hard on a project I will share later today}.  Nellie joined in when the other project was complete.

I love these favor ideas!  And I love how these creative minds work ... seems they can pull creative ideas out of their booties {can I say that?} and put something awesome together.  If it were me, I'd still be sitting at the drawing board.

Or ... I would've given the project to Nellie.  :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

personalized kleenex

Did you know you can personalize a box of Kleenex?  I am so giddy right now!  I love, love, love all things personalized ... love!

The first time I made personalized tissue boxes was last year ... made lots for gifts and lots for myself.

So when I recently received our new family photos, the first two things I did was order my new personalized purse {which I'll post about when I receive it}, and new Kleenex boxes.

Shouldn't everyone have personalized Kleenex?

Thank you Christine for taking a Kleenex-box-worthy photo!  :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

trick or treat

My kids love Halloween.  They love spiders, snakes, insects ... so a few ghosts, skeletons and evil looking birds are nothing!

I thought it'd be fun to show you how our house is decorated for the holiday.  Thanks to Pottery Barn Kids for offering up some great decorations!

i'm feelin' creative!

We at bwp, received this ...

saw this ...

and made this ...

Do you love the Snow & Graham wrap we used?  And look very carefully, you'll see a little mug 'tag.'  In looking at the photo, the bag may appear larger than it really is.  It measures about 5ish inches tall, by 4ish wide ... and it's absolutely cute as a button!

I'm lovin' all these designs too!  My creative juices are flowin' ...

Monday, October 20, 2008

blessing from the nienie auction

You all remember the Nielson story? I had mentioned that I bid on a couple of items on other blogs.

One was personalized stationery from Susann at Simplesong and I just received the second from Bethany, who also writes a fun blog.

From Bethany, I bid on a personalized quilt. I sent her about 20 old baby items {actually, a couple current ones were in there too} and she put together this amazing quilt. Could it be any more awesome?

I cried when she sent me a teaser photo. Each square holds a special memory or moment. There are a couple items from my 13 year old {she wore as a baby}. They were my favorites, so I saved them and all 3 other girls wore them. Then there's the hospital gown baby Hunter wore when she had her ear tube surgery. Some personalized t-shirts they got from daycare with their photos. Monogrammed sweaters, hooded towels, a pair of training 'undiEwears' {as my 'baby' calls them}. Big sigh ...

And what I love the most is the attention to detail. Bethany kept buttons & snaps visible, and cut out just the right detail of the clothing piece. Thank you, thank you, thank you Bethany.

The best part is that we were able to participate and help out the Nielson family in their time of need.

Just a reminder you can stay updated on the Nielson's here.

this is sophie

My daughter loves Sophie.  So does our puppy {but that's another post ...}.

I spotted Sophie over here and thought I'd give her a little shout out too.  A couple of months ago, I was in our local children's boutique {Freckle Face} looking for some cute baby gifts, when the lovely Deanna clued me in that Sophie's where it's at.

I took her advice and picked up a couple for baby gifts ... but not without grabbing an extra for my two year old 'baby' ... like she needs a teether, right?

And as I'm writing this, I remembered that Sophie made a recent appearance in our yearly photoshoot.  {exhibit's below}

{photo courtesy of christine plamann}

Ya see how the puppy is eyeing up Sophie?

{photo courtesy of christine plamann}

Note in this photo ... Sophie was causing a bit of distraction to Hunter, so we needed to give Sophie a little nap.

Anyhoo ... Deanna was totally right ... if you're looking for baby gift {or possibly trying to extend the timeline of your own 'baby'} ... Sophie's where it's at!

Friday, October 17, 2008

weekend greeting giveaway {twelve}

This weekend greeting is from one of my favorite designers ... Linda & Harriett.

Do you know someone who is the best? If you'd like to send them this card, just leave me a comment saying who you would send it to and why {by next Friday}. I'll pick my favorite comment and you'll get the card. You can find more rules here.

Last week's winner is a tough one for me! 89 year old woman vs. friendship? I think I'm going to have to go with cheering up the elderly. I hope I'm still celebrating when I'm 89! Amymarie, please email me your mailing address and I'll send you the card and candybar.

Happy weekend everyone!

new products & blog

I found a new blog to love.  emilee rose also happens to make some pretty cool paper delights {which will be in the store soon}.

Should I also mention that Emily is pretty cool herself?  How do I know?  She's a manager at bwp and keeps things flowin' smoothly for me.

Enjoy!  And I'll let you know when we have her stuff in the store.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

neighborhood fun

Our neighborhood, the Historic Third Ward {in Milwaukee} is hosting a trick-or-treat event on Halloween.

Broadway Paper is handing out candy to the little ones and will offer at 10% discount to any adults in costume. Fun?

Find more information here.