Giving Local with honeygrow & Challenge Program

When honeygrow announced it’s expansion into Delaware, we were ecstatic. The Philadelphia start up offers fun and fresh “fast” food with locations in and around the Philly, New York, and Washington D.C. metro area. It approaches it’s menu with high quality, healthy food in mind. They’re dedicated to sourcing locally and even create in-house dressings.

In addition to the food, we love the authentic, industrial, and modern feel of honeygrow. In Delaware, you can see original photographs by local artist, Carlos Alejandro.

carlos alejandro photography

At their headquarters in Fish Town, Philadelphia, some of the furniture is handmade by the Challenge Program, which is an organization in Wilmington, Delaware, which provides vocational training for at-risk youth. The program seeks to empower them with the confidence and skills in order to help them achieve greatness. In addition to assistance in earning a high school diploma or GED, the Challenge Program offers on-the-job experience working with local restaurants and The Mill to create gorgeous, one of a kind pieces.

The Challenge Program created the coffee table at the honeygrow headquarters:

CP_Furniture_honeygrow_254

Trainee from the Challenge Program working on a project:
Challenge_CP_Furniture_431

photos by Carlos Alejandro

As a result of their great effort, honeygrow has chosen the Challenge Program in their Giving Local Program. All day on Friday, February 17th, honeygrew will donate 20% of your check to the Challenge Program when you present this flyer at the Newark or Market Square locations.

hg_givinglocal_CP_30JAN

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Boss Lady: Pamela Barsky

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. Today we chat with New York-based designer Pamela Barsky. She is the artist behind the sassy hand-screened pouches and clutches you’ve seen all over social media. (Both Kelly and Sydney love theirs!) Pamela shares how her business began, who handles her Instagram, advice for aspiring entrepreneurs and more.

PamelaBarskyHeadShot

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your career.
I  was born in Detroit, schooled in Colorado, spent most of my grown up years in Los Angeles, and the last five years in New York. I started out writing advertising which was really fun, but a bit like a game of musical chairs. Eventually the music stopped and I had nowhere to sit. After that, I opened what you’d now call a curated lifestyle shop, only then we just called it a gift store. When it got decimated by the Northridge earthquake, I started designing things to fill my shelves and the rest is how you say, history.

2. Have you always gravitated towards the creative world, in terms of work and/or your personal life
You mean there is something other than a creative life?

3. What prompted you to begin designing your own products? 
A big earthquake, a spiral binding machine, and a crazy machine whiz who helped me turn it into something that would punch through the covers of vintage books.

4. Do you ever get attached to your creations?
I do not get attached to things at all. In fact, I have very little of what I design at home. I guess being a designer is a bit like being a mom. When you are doing it right, your babies are supposed to find a life outside of the nest.

5. Where do you see Pamela Barksy, the brand, in 5 years?
Oh my gosh, I can’t even imagine where I’ll be in five years. However, I hope I have a printer that works.

reese witherspoon with pamela barsky

reese witherspoon

6. What is your most successful form of marketing?
I used to work the marketing thing a lot; sending out press samples and taking lots of people to lunch. It is much easier living in New York and having a store in Chelsea Market. The important people just seem to know. Oh yes, and my husband does the Instagram.

7. Who is a Boss Lady that you admire and why?
Nancy Silverton because I love that she spent a full year perfecting the dough for the pizza at Mozza.  I’d never have the patience for that.  Also, Diane Von Furstenburg because she doesn’t seem to notice everyone in fashion is younger than her, nor does it seem to let it bother her.

Lady Gaga with Pamela Barsky bag

lady gage

8. How do you gear up for work? Then, on the flip side, how do you relax after work?
I really work when I feel like it which is most of the time. Living here in New York which has such a hamster wheel work culture, I find it easy to think about work constantly. However, dinner at Prune with my wonderful husband, Fabio always helps me relax. And I never ever ever miss pilates.

bobby flay with pamela barsky

bobby flay

9. What inspires you and fuels your creativity?
Everything inspires me. Except housework. That just sucks the life out of me.

10. What advice do you have for those looking to go from employee to entrepreneur?
Don’t do it unless you really feel like you are going to die if you don’t because owning your own business is the most time consuming, annoying, difficult, frustrating job on the planet.  And while the rewards can be great, if you are not ready to give it every iota of your love and attention, you might as well stay working for someone who contributes to your 401k.

behind the boss Pamela Barsky

dedicated area  | illustrations | painting  | gift wrap | embroidery | coin purse | decor

 

More on Pamela:
Website | Shop | Instagram

 

 

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Boss Lady: Megan Carn

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. This week we chat with Megan Carn, an artist from South Carolina who paints with vivid colors and experiments with new subjects. Megan discusses how she grew her business and offers her best advice for those looking to do the same.

boss lady: megan carn

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your career.
I am 23 years old and I own my own business, Megan Carn, LLC. I graduated college in 2013, and spent the year and a half after college building my business on the side while I directed a museum. Then, in January of this year, I moved to Columbia and started doing painting full time! I have been steadily working on painting, website building, dealing with emails, and shipping– just trying to do everything it takes to run a business that has a tendency to get pretty crazy.

2. What draws you to painting and what prompted you to start selling your work? Do you only sell online?
I was an art major in school. After I graduated, I got into painting more than I ever had before. I love it! I was already selling during school and immediately after to family and friends, and after a few months I realized that it could be my full time occupation. I started selling online and it was great! I sell online in my store and then in select storefronts around the US. I’m expanding that now!

3. How do you navigate the work/life balance?
It’s tough! I have always held the belief that friends, family, and making real memories during trips and spontaneous gatherings is more important than working all the time. As an artist, I have to stay inspired and be careful not to get bogged down or burned out. To stay sane, I answer emails on a more limited basis, ship one time weekly, and I don’t stress about deadlines all the time (within reason). There’s nothing worse than being forced to be creative on a deadline! I do have to spend nights and weekends working sometimes, and that is never fun. Overall, balancing everything has been one of my biggest challenges so far.

megan carn art
4. What is your most successful form of marketing? 
Instagram, for sure, but honestly pinterest and facebook are a close second! Other than that, my own reaching out to people and word of mouth.
5. What inspires you and fuels your creativity?
I love looking at travel photos, I love flowers, and I love fashion. Other than that, just sitting with some watercolors and a sketchbook and thinking of new things to paint is my favorite.

 

6. Who is a Boss Lady that you admire and why?
Hmm. I am a big fan of a lot of different people! I have an art crush on so many different ladies- Susie Bettenhausen, Michelle Armas, Kerrie Rosenthal, Kristi Kohut, Sally King Benedict, Evelyn Henson, etc.– and that’s pretty similar!

 

7. What advice do you have for those looking to become an entrepreneur?
Be sure to have an original idea, and be sure you have an idea that you have a passion for. Otherwise, you’ll really quickly get burned out and over what you’re doing– OR, you’ll get in trouble for copyright infringement! I think in this wonderful time of social media and a rise in small businesses, there’s room for everyone that has a fire for what they are doing and a great product or service. (The worst thing is to see someone trying to build a small business on an imitation of another person’s hard work. I have had so many people copy my work to sell for themselves, and it is really discouraging!)

 

Just for fun…

 

behind the boss: megan carn

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Boss Lady: Katee Boyle

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. Today we chat with Katee Boyle, a local fine artist who paints and works with different mediums like fabric and metal. As a visual storyteller, Katee shares life experiences through her work and expects different reactions from readers. 

Katee Boyle
Image courtesy of Alessandra Manzotti

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your career.
Since as far back as I can remember, I have only ever wanted to be an “artist”.  There was nothing else I thought about being and my biggest supporters, my parents, encouraged that dream. I grew up in Chadds Ford and followed my dream to NYC for Art School (I graduated with Degrees from both FIT and School of Visual Arts). Naturally, I was inclined to stay in NYC and worked in a variety of artistic opportunities for 12 years before relocating back to PA. My husband and I have three children under the age of eight and work and life pretty much revolves around them.

2. What prompted you to make art your full-time gig?
A bad economy.

In 2009, When the market was souring, I was laid off from a very demanding operations/events position with a prestige company that I had been with for 11 years. Simultaneously, I was pregnant with our third child.

I had so much energy from working 50 + hr weeks, it was difficult to put the breaks on. It was also a very emotional time and I spent a lot of of that time worrying what I was going to do next. My husband reeled me in and reminded me that I had My Art and that it was time to get back to my work. It was there all along waiting for me to return so I started painting again. Career wise, that layoff was one of the best things that happened to me.

I have been educating and opening myself the last couple of years through a lot of exploratory work with different mediums but painting comes naturally and is the start and the end of everything for me. I also incorporate a great deal of fabric into my work and since September, I have had the incredible honor of apprenticing with a ridiculously talented blacksmith so now I pretty much love bending and twisting metal and have many plans for tying that in to my future art projects.

Katee Boyle
Image courtesy of Alessandra Manzotti

3. Do you have any rituals or routines before/during work?
I work at night. There is too much life going on during the day time hours to otherwise maintain focus. I have always been a night owl and now that my days are consumed with my families activities, my work day starts at 10pm. I don’t have time for rituals and although I love music, it’s not part of my work scene. I find music is disruptive to all the chatter in my thoughts while I am working. I process my life experiences through my work. My work illustrates what I might not otherwise articulate.

I do dream about the kind of badass work I will be able to produce once I am able to shift my work day so that I may be fully productive (and awake). My four year old is my full time sidekick and when he is in school full time, I will miss him dearly but will also be kicking up my heels in my workshop.

Katee Boyle
Image courtesy of Alessandra Manzotti

4. What is your most successful form of marketing?
Facebook was really great to me for work sharing and sales but now with their limiting availability of posts, that fell off. I love Instagram for networking with other artists. It’s a game changer.

The support of local community oriented businesses who share my work has been tremendous for local exposure and has offered me opportunities for spreading my wings into other communities. I really appreciate the chain reaction.

I had told myself that for one year, I would say yes to any opportunity to share my work but I found myself in some less than feel-good places with my art. It compromised my integrity so I am thankful that year is up and will be selective going forward. I would rather show less with quality work and surroundings that share my sensibilities. I think that is really important for an artist/creative to remember. Otherwise, you drown yourself out. Networking is easy but you really must pick and choose.

5. What inspires you and fuels your creativity?
My moods, my thoughts, my dreams, my encounters with other people. Emotions. Grit. The Trees, the sky, the unknown. I’m very analytical, I over process everything and pour it all into my work. My mixed media work would be most closely defined as abstract expressionism relying heavily on emotions.  My work is highly textured and often has upwards of 20 layers, some peeled back, thoughts scratched out, ideas gouged from the surface.

I pull out what I would not say aloud. My clients tell me that even years after purchasing my work, they still see different things popping out at them. We all have stories to tell, if you look close enough, you will find something to relate to.

Mending by Katee Boyle
Image courtesy of Alessandra Manzotti

Just for fun…

1. Favorite museum or gallery?
MOMA for it’s awesome representation of contemporary art. It gets five stars for being an extremely child friendly museum.

2. Who are your style icons?
As an extension of my personality, I am all over the place with my style. It would start with my mom in the 1970’s in her corduroy overalls and Frye boots, Kathryn Hepburn anytime, Cowgirls and Indians, Amelia Airhart’s flying outfits (including the cap and goggles) and women’s turn of the century undergarments (bustiers and pantaloons). Anything deconstructed catches my eye. If I could, I would wear some sort of costume/uniform everyday to suit my mood but I am really trying not to embarrass my children during their formative years so mostly, you will find me in paint covered denim, preferably bell bottoms, a tank top, and boots.

3. Cocktail of choice; Ice cold Prosecco is ALWAYS a good idea. 

Where to locally find Katee Boyle’s work:
– Shish Interiors in Wilmington, Delaware
– Blue Streak Gallery in Wilmington, Delaware
– Philter Coffee in Kennett Square, PA
– Mala Galleria in Kennett Square, PA
– Addiction Studio in Philadelphia, PA

More on Katee Boyle:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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