philly creatives gift guide



Every year I share gift ideas from makers + creatives in Philadelphia, in honor of Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. There is so much talent in this city I could make numerous gift guides, but I’ve narrowed it down to a festive twelve. Help support these talented small business owners + creatives, as well as the artisans in your own community.

happy shopping + happy holidays!


1…PEG + AWL waxed canvas tote in spice // use code SPOLIA for 20% off thru 12/1

2…FORAGE HABERDASHERY lady bow in metallic gold // use code HOLIDAY for 35% off thru 12/8

3…NORMAN PORTER frontier belt // use code BUTTERBALL for 20% off thru 12/1

4…ABJ GLASSWORKS teardrop terrarium kit // free domestic shipping on orders over $75 with code thanks14

5…HONEST ALCHEMY + KING OF THE BEASTS indigo dyed wooden necklace // enjoy 30% off thru 12/1

6…HAND IN HAND SOAP orange blossom liquid hand soap + lotion // use code GIVETHANKS for 25% off thru 12/1

7…GIRLS CAN TELL eco-friendly pocket notebooks // use code YAY30 for 30% off 

8…BABY JIVES CO personalized mini cloud ornament // offering a variety of holiday deals!

9…NEUARMY SURPLUS CO waxed canvas U.S. field pouch // visit site for details

10..ZOET BATHLATIER tangier candle // use code BF2014 for 15% off thru 11/30

11..THREE POTATO FOUR philadelphia pennant // use code 3P4THANKS for 30% off thru 12/2

12..ART IN THE AGE craft spirits // spirits not sold in store but support other local talent with numerous deals in store!


philly creatives – andrea fairservice



Allow me the pleasure of introducing you to Andrea Fairservice of Song & Dance Design. Full time graphic/textile designer by day, painter/photographer/craft enthusiast by night. Between juggling her full time job and independent work as an artist, Andrea lives a very busy lifestyle, but stays centered through yoga (wow). Drawing inspiration from nature, her detailed, watercolor crystal paintings have become one of her favorite things to paint, and has garnered her great press (they’re to die for). Andrea’s etsy shop offers a variety of goodies, including art prints, custom stamps, notecards, and drawings. Check out her impressive portfolio + be sure to wander over to her Etsy shop!


define creative.

The process of feeling inspired and acting on it.

how did you get into the business of making things?

My Mom has always been a crafty/artistic person. For as long as I can remember she would take part in local craft fairs and as I got a little older she began to encourage me to make my own things and sell them with her at her table. Over the years I’ve held onto that little spark of making and selling my creations and it’s begun to blossom into something different with my design and fine arts work.

at what point did you decide to make your passion a business, and what inspired you?

After so many of my friends and family kept telling me I really should try to sell my work and get out there more. Then, once I had a few people outside of that circle request work from me, I really felt like I could do it.

what brought you to philadelphia, and how does the city inform your work?

My senior year of college I got an internship with a toy company right outside of Philly. I was extremely lucky and they offered me a designer position when I graduated so I packed up and moved. Now I work at a textile studio in Fishtown and find that I spend more and more time exploring in the city. I find so much about the city inspiring from the different neighborhoods, to the people and changes in scenery. In college most of my peers (including myself) focused on moving to New York for designer opportunities. I never really considered Philly until, through a lucky series of events, I got my job. Now I absolutely love it, and coming from a small town up north Philly is just the right size for me.

what is the most challenging aspect of running your own business?

Finding enough time in the day to accomplish everything I want to accomplish!

how + when did you get your first sale?

My actual first sale of something I’ve made was probably at a craft show with my Mom as a child. My first freelance client however came soon after graduating college, I helped out a friend from high school design a website for a local salon. It was definitely an interesting learning experience.

has social media helped to further your business?

I’m not a big social media person. I ditched my Facebook years ago and only really tweet something if I post something on my Instagram. I’ve interacted with a few successful people in the blog/self employed world and was really taken a back by how much of a slave they were to their social media outlets. So because of that I’ve made the conscious decision to just casually stick with Instagram and my blog. Although I only really post something maybe once a day I’ve received many job opportunities with clients all over the place and have made many valuable connections through my followers. It’s also helped me take on creative projects that I otherwise may not of perused on my own, which I am very thankful of.

when did you know you’d “made it” as a creative entrepreneur? 

I’m not really sure if I will ever feel like I’ve totally made it. Just because I know as I grow my goals will grow with me.

what projects are you most proud of?

The originals I’ve made for clients always hold a special place in my heart. Recently I finished a series of watercolor birthstone paintings for a family and I also just collaborated with a local artist to hand letter a Ketubah for her niece’s wedding that I was so honored to be a part of.

what drives you most as an independent creative?

The practice of always learning something new. Each new project is an opportunity for me to learn and grow as an artist and professional and I love that about the field I’m in.


please check out andrea elsewhere… etsy | blog | instagram | pinterest

**philly creatives is a regular feature…browse the archives here**

philly creatives – confetti + co.



I have a feeling that anyone who works with Confetti + Co. gains three new best friends (ok, four – including Millie the company mascot). Owner + designer Sara Murray and her team create stylish, fun and memorable affairs, and make sure clients have fun along the way!  From edgy glam to rad nautical, they’ve got you covered. Their latest venture was the most fun to date…a beautiful dog wedding, which has already gone viral! Seriously, if you’re having a bad day, just watch this video. Sara decided to pursue her passion of planning + design full force in 2013, after a successful career in the industry, including a stint as decorations stylist for BHLDN. She finds joy in helping lovebirds share their happiness with the world, in the most beautiful way possible. So without further ado, meet Sara + learn what inspires her and the team!


what is the story behind your business name? 

confetti & co. happened really organically. I thought… well… maybe I should have a name for myself, so I wrote a list of things I loved. Confetti was at the top, and so were other things like the word YAY and the word HOORAY. I toyed with many combinations but in the end, let’s be honest – I added the & co. because it sounded super official. For a girl who starts a business by her lonesome there was something empowering to thinking “one day… I will have an “& co.”

explain your business and the idea behind it.

I wanted to have a business where people knew they were being given a luxury service but also felt like they were hanging out with a friend. Confetti & co. is full of fun whimsical details and we never take ourselves too seriously. We love cheekiness, we love laughing, we seriously just love love and the idea behind all of this is we try to make things easier on couples and make environments pretty for couples so that they can have one heck of a celebration.

at what point did you decide to make your passion a business, and what inspired you?

I was at BHLDN and I missed wedding days. I missed those “holy jeez my feet hurt but look how happy everyone is” moments that make you believe in true love and yadda yadda. I’m insanely organized and love design, so after spending some time in the strictly styling world, I decided to put my planning pants back on and head out into the world as a business owner. I equipped myself with a ton of real world experience and enough money to last myself until my lease was up. I had 4 months to make it work and miraculously, it did.

what are the most rewarding aspects of your work/passion?

Happy people. My job as a planner and designer is to get inside my clients head, learn what they need to enjoy their day to the fullest and give it to them. For some, they want that amazing band and totally amazing dance party with their friends and family, and seeing them dance the night away is the most rewarding thing. For others, it’s managing potentially stressful situations by taking things off their plate so they CAN have fun. It’s knowing that we made someone happy and tried our best that feels so rewarding and fulfilling.

as you’ve developed your business/brand, what has surprised you most?

Honestly, I’m so surprised by how amazing the wedding industry friends I’ve made are. I was sad leaving my full time gig – I thought… I’m not going to have “work friends” and soon, I got adopted into the Philadelphia Weddings committee, started the #phillyloveclub and watched how people come together, connect and share and realized – I was totally wrong, there’s such a huge community here and I’m not an island.

what brought you to philadelphia, and how does the city inform your work?

I came to Philadelphia by way of freshman year of college many years ago. Being from a small town in the Poconos I had no idea what I was in for. I easily got overwhelmed and moved to the suburbs to finish college. Immediately after college (lets face it… even during college) I knew I had made a mistake. I missed Philadelphia and it’s quirks. This city is thriving with artists – creators and crafters. I especially love my neighborhood of Fishtown, which is chock full of some of the most talented people I’ve ever met, all within a 10 block radius. It’s magic. I never want to leave.

where do you work from? tell us about your office and/or studio.

confetti & co. is making moves! Right now we work from my home, where episodes of reality TV are often on as we craft the day away, but soon we’ll be in a new studio with our friends Love Me Do Photography. We’re excited to branch out into the new space and layout some rooms. I’ll be honest – I’m excited to get up, put on real clothes and “go” to work.

what does a typical work day look like for you?

I wake up. I have my coffee. I answer some e-mails (and by some I mean a ton – let’s be real, weddings never sleep). After e-mails are out of the way, I work on the day’s projects, which is the fun part. Whether it’s working on a new design plan, sourcing special props, meeting with our super awesome clients, pinning inspiration, crafting sensible timelines, reaching out to vendors to get everyone on the same page for clients’ big days – it’s always different and never gets old to me. I love this job. Before the day is done, it’s back on e-mail again to tie up loose ends before I shut it down and spend the evening snuggling with my little family.

what inspires you?

I am constantly inspired by people. Being an event designer and planner who works mostly with weddings, I get excited learning how the couple fell in love, and the things they love to do together. Their favorites, their personalities. The most fun part of my job to me is to try and capture someone’s essence in a design – and these people, their ideas and who they are keeps me going and always inspired to create something new, fun and uniquely them!

what drives you most as a creative entrepreneur?

Excitement and passion. I’ve always had this energy within me to do something exciting and fun, and to make something great for people. Knowing that it’s my job gives me the drive to really hustle and make things happen.


please check out confetti + co. elsewhere… facebook / twitter / instagram / pinterest

**philly creatives is a regular feature…browse the archives here**

philly creatives – sarah stone



Meet Sarah Stone – graphic designer, artist, fellow redhead and hard-working mama (we’ve bonded over the last two especially). We first met online thanks to mutual friends and a love for all things design. She has a clean and modern aesthetic, and a knack for making her clients’ dreams a reality! Her portfolio is varied and includes logo/brand identity, social media campaigns, packaging design, and more. Most recently she has started offering workshops at her studio, and has an upcoming modern calligraphy workshop + brunch with Christie Jones of bedsidesign (click here for more information). Be sure to visit her blog for design inspiration and photos of her little redheaded lady Eva…so sweet.


explain your business and the idea behind it.

I own a boutique design studio called cleanline studio. I typically work with small-scale, mostly female creative clients in design related fields like interior design, blogging, photography, etc. I love really getting to know my clients before the process starts to ensure that result is even better than their original vision. I also blog, create stationery, and now host creative workshops in my studio!

how did you get into the business of making things?

After I left my advertising agency job, I really wanted to diversify the way I make money and create some design work that isn’t dictated by the interests of a specific client. That’s why I started my stationery shop. I’m a pretty artsy crafty gal in general; I like to sew, paint, make jewelry, etc. and it’s possible that I’ll stock such items in my shop in the future.

at what point did you decide to make your passion a business, and what inspired you?

I left my ad agency job when my daughter was almost two, because I was sick of the brutal commute and lifestyle of the advertising world. Ironically, I devote more hours to work now than when I had a salaried job, but my time is spent on projects I truly enjoy. It’s better for me, and the flexibility of being self-employed is better for my family.

as you’ve developed your business/brand, what has surprised you most?

The amount of time I spend sending emails, writing proposals, meeting new clients, and networking really shocked me in the first year of owning my own business. In the ad agency world, I almost never interacted with clients. I’d go to work, sit down at my desk, and do JUST design work for 8+ hours a day. Now, I maybe spend half of my day designing. I actually like working with clients, so this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, just something to be aware of when setting your rates.

when did you know you’d “made it” as a creative entrepreneur?

I’m not sure I’ve had that specific moment just yet, lol. Honestly, being a creative entrepreneur is a rocky road. On slow weeks I question if this is the right business for myself and my family, then other weeks I’m on top of the world because of an amazing opportunity that’s presented itself thanks to my business or blog.

how has social media helped to further your business?

Tremendously! I think it can be pretty tricky to break into an online client market and social media is a big help with that. I’ve found social media to be a great way to expand my blog and website’s reach, and meet creative entrepreneurs whom I’ve been able to collaborate with since starting my business.

what brought you to philadelphia, and how does the city inform your work?

I’m originally from about an hour north of Philadelphia. I went to SCAD in Savannah, Georgia for college, and it felt like a natural progression to be in Philadelphia after graduation. I am constantly inspired and impressed by the art and design community in Philadelphia. From co-working spaces, to art galleries, to fantastic blogs, to incredible designers of all shapes and sizes, Philadelphia has got it going on. In the eight years that I’ve lived in the city, I’ve seen such growth in the independent design community and I feel that I really feed off of that momentum.

where do you work from? tell us about your office and/or studio.

Since the beginning of the year, I made the commitment to myself to get a studio space outside of the home. In February, I moved into an awesome, light-filled space in Fishtown. It’s large and quiet with a cute lounging area, whitewashed brick walls, high ceilings, and open floor plan that make it ideal for blog and product photography. I’m also planning to start using the space for occasional creative classes in the fall.

what does a typical work day look like for you?

It actually varies quite a bit throughout the week! Mondays and Fridays I’m in my studio all day. I try to get in by 9AM, and I stay til about 6:30. During that time, I’m blogging, designing, emailing, sipping coffee, and skyping with clients. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, my daughter is in preschool until noon, so I’m only able to put in half days of work. I am a total list-maker which enables me to stay organized and on schedule when I have limited time. On those days when I don’t have a full 8 hours in the studio, I’m often on my laptop in the evenings after Eva’s in bed. It’s a little crazy, but I make it work!

what inspires you?

My garden, photography, vintage botanicals, fabric, pinterest, street art, fine art, and sculpture (to name just a few). I find inspiration comes when you least expect it. Sometimes it comes from the most predictable place like a design magazine, and sometimes it comes from a tiny flamingo painted on a fire hydrant near my house. I just never know until it happens!


please check out Sarah elsewhere… facebook / twitter / instagram / pinterest / bloglovin

**philly creatives is a regular the archives here**

calling all philly creatives!



Hello friends! I’m anxious to get back to featuring philly creatives on a regular basis, so in addition to the people I’ve already invited, I’d like to open it up for submissions! If you’re a creative, in any field, and living in the Philadelphia area, please get in touch so we can connect…I’d love to meet you (whether in person or via email)! I continue to be inspired by the talent here, and the supportive community surrounding it. I enjoy sharing stories of artists and entrepreneurs…they are always inspiring. For immediate inspiration, you can check out my archives + twitter list! Also, pay a visit to the awesome new project by husband and wife team Jen + Dave Cooper, South of Brooklyn. They’ve already featured some amazing creatives, including my friends Shauna Alterio + Stephen Loidolt! I guarantee you’ll be inspired.

merci…I look forward to hearing from you!