Recently at Cotton & Flax HQ

Cotton & Flax business cards on press

Things have been bustling at Cotton & Flax the past few weeks! So many wholesale orders have been going out the door, I had to have my letterpress tags and business cards reprinted. Laura, who designed and printed my cards and tags, shared this photo of the printing process.

The Spring collection debuts next week, can’t wait to show you the new designs!

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Retiring the DNA Pattern

DNA Pillows from Cotton & Flax

I’m preparing to add lots of new products to the Cotton & Flax shop this spring, which means it’s time to retire an old favorite pattern: the DNA print. This pattern was inspired by dozens of conversations about genetics with my boyfriend, who studies molecular biology at USC. It’s my abstract take on a form that scientists will be very familiar with.

There are just two DNA pillows left, so snatch them up if you’re captivated by the impossibly small things that influence our lives.

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Cotton & Flax for CB2

Cotton & Flax plus tea towels for CB2

Remember how things got a bit quiet here on the blog in January? I was working on an exciting wholesale order: a selection of two of my favorite tea towels made for CB2! Check out the navy plus and the linen plus tea towels on the CB2 website (they should be in stores in March!)

Cb2 Santa Monica and CB2 SOHO

Have you shopped at CB2 before? I think of it as the quirky younger sister of Crate and Barrel. I am thrilled to be part of a collection of handmade goods being sold at all CB2 stores this season, which was curated by the folks at Renegade Craft Fair!

Both tea towels are printed with my popular “plus” pattern, and lest you forget, these were all screenprinted by hand. Each tea towel was sewn in my studio, and printed by yours truly.

I have to admit, I’m excited to see Cotton & Flax products on the glossy page of a CB2 catalog. If you live nearby one of their stores, stop by CB2 and check out the collection, and tell me what you think! I hope you love the handmade collection as much as I do, because if it sells out, I think it sends a signal to larger retailers that working with small domestic manufacturers and indie brands is a worthwhile venture!

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6 tips for writing a letter

Tips for writing to friends from Cotton & Flax

Do you still send snail mail? I’m a pretty avid letter writer, and when I find some free time, I love to spend a while writing cards and short letters to friends and family. As things have gotten busy with Cotton & Flax, I haven’t been writing as many letters, but I’m renewing my snail mail efforts year. I’ve found a few ways to make it easy to brighten a friend’s mailbox.

Keep it short and sweet
I love writing postcards! So much so that I designed postcards for Cotton & Flax! They have limited space, so there is less pressure to write something brilliant. You can keep it very simple and just say, “Hello, wish you were here!” or share a favorite joke. Sometimes I’ll even draw a picture instead of writing a message!

It’s OK to get nostalgic
Snail mail is a naturally nostalgic way to communicate. Don’t fight the format – reminisce about a fun memory, or experience you shared. The super-personalized letters I receive are the ones I treasure most.

USPS ferns stamps

Keep stamps on hand
I keep two sheets of stamps in my desk at all times: a sheet of postcard stamps, and a sheet of forever stamps. USPS has some really great designs out this year, and you can order stamps online if you want to avoid the post office altogether. I love these new fern stamps!

Remember the everyday
It’s sweet to receive a card on a birthday, anniversary, or around the holidays, but a simple letter on a random Wednesday is unexpected and could brighten someone’s whole week.

three patterned envelopes

Make it beautiful
Set your letter apart from the typical bills and junk mail. Using beautiful stationery makes all the difference. Check out my tutorials for hand stamped envelope liners as a simple way to personalize a letter.

Return the love
It’s the number one rule of snail mail: you have to send mail to receive mail, so if someone sends you a letter, don’t forget to write back!

Need more inspiration? My favorite resource for snail mail inspiration is Letters of Note, a blog dedicated to posting fascinating letters from notable people. If you’re looking for beautiful postcards to send to a friend, check out the collection of postcards in the Cotton & Flax shop!

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Free Patterned iPhone Wallpaper – Mint Diamonds

mint diamond wallpaper from Cotton & Flax

Back by popular demand: my series of free patterned iPhone wallpapers! This mint diamond pattern is part of my most recent Fall/Winter collection, and will soon be featured in a few one of a kind pillows!

Click here to download the iPhone 4 and 4S wallpaper.

What’s that? You have the iPhone 5 or 5S? Well, aren’t you fancy! Click here for your download.

To Download: Click the link and it will take you directly to the image. If you are on your phone, you can simply save the image to your phone, and set it as your wallpaper in the settings area of your phone. If you’re on a computer, save the image to your computer, then email the photo to yourself. Open the email on your phone, save the photo to your phone, and set the photo as the wallpaper!

patterned iphone wallpaper from Cotton & Flax

You might be asking, “Why is iOS7 stretching my wallpapers?!” Unfortunately, the iOS 7 update changed the way your phone plugs in wallpapers, and each images is auto-zoomed to fit with the new 3D motion aspects of iOS7… luckily, there’s an easy fix! Before uploading your new wallpaper, simply follow these four steps:

  1. Launch the Settings app from the Home screen of your iPhone.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Tap on Accessibility.
  4. Choose the option for Reduce Motion and turn the option to On.

Then just upload the photo and set to wallpaper as normal. This change will keep your iPhone from automatically resizing the photo!

Just a note, this wallpaper should work for many phones, not just the iPhone (although it may get cropped depending on the screen size). You can always download the many other free wallpapers from previous months, too!

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Cotton & Flax in HGTV Magazine

Cotton & Flax in HGTV Magazine

I searched through the archives just to be sure, but it looks like I somehow managed to neglect to mention one exciting bit of news from 2013: a Cotton & Flax pillow was featured in the July/August issue of HGTV Magazine!

Cotton & Flax in HGTV Magazine

Designer Haskell Harris showcased the mint brushstroke pillow in a piece that compared her own style with her mother’s decorating style – both women have incredible taste. She styled my pillow in a backyard dining area, I loved seeing this fresh take on where you can add a pillow for extra color and comfort.

Want to see where else Cotton & Flax has been featured? Check out all our press mentions, and let me know if you spot a Cotton & Flax piece in a home tour or somewhere notable online!

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Weekend Recap + LA Modern Quilt Guild

Cotton & Flax in progress

I spent a couple days recharging after shipping out my largest wholesale order ever on Friday. It was great to step away from work for a moment, work/life balance is something I’m trying to recalibrate in a thoughtful way this year. For me, that means more time spent with friends, and reading more of 1/3 of all the books I check out from the library… working on it!

Sew Modern in Los Angeles

Yesterday felt like a continuation of my fun-filled weekend: I had the opportunity to speak to the LA Modern Quilt Guild about how I run my business, and what it’s like to print and sew textile home goods from a cozy 10 x 6 foot studio space. The members were so welcoming, and it was a pleasure to chat with everyone about their own textile projects. Plus, the meeting was held at Sew Modern in West LA, a great little shop with a lovely selection of quilting cottons. I hope to return to the shop soon to add them to my ongoing series of favorite fabric shops in LA!

Don’t forget: I’m hosting a giveaway over on the Cotton & Flax Facebook page this week! Enter by 2/6 to win a pair of pillows from the shop!


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Win a pair of pillows from Cotton & Flax!

Cotton &Flax Pillow Giveaway

January is usually a very restful month for me, a time to recharge and make plans for the new year. This year was a bit different. 2014 started with a bang, and I was preoccupied with a wholesale order for almost the entire first month of this year.

blue triangle small

Now that February is upon us, and most of the US is bundling up indoors under heavy blankets (all the snowstorm photos I’m seeing on Instagram are mind-boggling!), I thought it would be a great time to do a big giveaway! This week, I’m giving away a pair of pillows from the Cotton & Flax shop! The winner may choose any two pillows they like from the Cotton & Flax online shop – big or small, matching or contrasting, you choose!

Cotton & Flax pillows

To enter the pillow giveaway, visit the Cotton & Flax Facebook page, and follow the instructions to enter the giveaway! The giveaway runs all week, until midnight on Sunday. I’ll announce the winner here, as well as on Facebook.

One of the ways to earn an entry is to leave a comment here on the blog, so feel free to tell me your two favorite Cotton & Flax pillows in the comments! **Please note that this giveaway is only open to residents of the US and Canada at this time. I hope to do another worldwide giveaway soon!**

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I spy Cotton & Flax on Instagram

Instagram Diptych

I love seeing your posts of Cotton & Flax goods on Instagram! These are just a few I grabbed from Hollin Brodeur, Mattie Babb, and Sonja Rasula. Dying over Sonja’s puppy – I love seeing pets enjoying Cotton & Flax pillows as much as their owners.

Sonja Rasula Instagram

Share a photo of Cotton & Flax in your home! Tag @cottonandflax in the photo or in the caption so I can see how you style Cotton & Flax goods in your own space.

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New projects in 2014

cotton & flax fall 2013

Things have been quiet here on the blog for a while, but I’m excited to be back! Much of what’s been keeping me busy was just standard-issue holiday craziness: craft fairs, pop-up shops, as well as an influx of holiday orders – thank you for all the support in 2013, by the way! Cotton & Flax is still primarily a one woman show (although I am extremely grateful for the extra help I received over the holiday season), and I’m still trying to find the best way to keep in touch with all you awesome folks when things at C&F get busy.

Cotton & Flax care tags

I know you’ll forgive my temporary absence when you see all the projects I’ve been working on. Unlike previous years, I had a few exciting side projects piled on top of the holiday sales madness. Those projects are getting finished up this week, and I’m really looking forward to sharing the final products with you soon.

cotton & flax coasters and tags

Now that things are starting to return to normal around here, I’m dreaming up all sorts of new products and fun collaborations that I’ll finally have time to pursue. Is there anything you’ve been dying to see in the Cotton & Flax shop? Something you wanted to see documented here on the blog? Let me know in the comments!

Happy 2014 – may it be a fruitful and creative year for us all.

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