Go-To Tips: Uncertain Times and What You Can Do to Help

Uncertain Times and What You Can Do to Help

Who else has been feeling overwhelmed with negative news these days? Our country and communities have been put through the ringer. Hurricane after hurricane has caused massive destruction, swept away people’s entire lives and left little in its wake. Forest fires aare devastating Northern California (including my near and dear home county of Mendocino) and the West Coast. Political squabbling instead of action. Mass shootings. It’s overwhelming, to say the least. And so tempting to look the other way when you’re not directly affected. I know I’ve felt that way too. And it’s hard. I’ve felt guilty for not doing more, giving more and participating more. In my experience, guilt rarely does anything but make you feel like shit so clearly, it’s ineffective. What keeps resonating with me is something the incredibly insightful Melissa Wert of Print Therapy said the other day on Instagram

“…just because we can turn off the news doesn’t mean we should. In fact, it’s because we can that we shouldn’t”.

We have the option where other’s don’t, we shouldn’t forget that and instead of pretending like nothing is happening, we need to do something to help those around us.

At Etta + Billie, being a part of our various communities is a core part of what we do. Because of this, I want to continue supporting our communities and our friends as we all deal with these tragedies. Here are some ways we’re taking action:

Right Now

Donating 10% of online sales in October to the Redwood Empire Food Bank

Donating 10% of sales from our Studio Sample Sale to the Redwood Credit Union Fire Relief Fund

All Year Round

Donating 5% of all event sales to various non-profits helping with disasters (like the Houston Food Bank) or working to aid causes we believe in (see list here)

Donating office supplies and craft supplies to SCRAP

Donating unused electronics and equipment to our local Goodwill

Looking for ways to help? Here are a few ideas from some people-in-the-know around the web. 

Help North Bay Fire Victims at SF Chronicle

Help Hurricane Victims in Puerto Rico at PBS.org 

Help those affected by Harvey at NPR.org

https://hellogiggles.com/news/help-victims-las-vegas-shooting-case-youre-feeling-powerless/

 

Happy New Year: Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017

happy-new-year-2017This year has been one full of lessons, both personally and professionally. There is beauty in all experiences, whether joyous or painful. Something I’ve often had to remind myself of over the course of the year; whether adventuring in Portugal, dealing with product set-backs or feeling a gut wrenching sense of sorrow over the hate-fueled rhetoric and actions of my fellow Americans. As frustrating, maddening, and at times, disheartening, some of those experiences have been, I am grateful for the chance to grow, re-focus and keep moving forward. I am grateful for the greater sense of community, love and purpose I feel from my supporters, friends and family. I don’t know what 2017 will bring, but what I do know is that I will continue to build my business, nurture my relationships and continuing to do what I can to fight for those in need. What are you looking forward to in 2017?

Cheers to a peaceful, prosperous and joyous New Year!

xo
Alana

The Giving Season: Your Choices Matter

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UPDATE: Since we started our Move Forward campaign we’ve been able to donate over $1700 to a variety of organizations (listed below). I am so thrilled and I know that both my grandmothers would be so proud. We were able to do this because of your support!

As you continue your holiday shopping (and even everyday shopping), I hope you’ll continue to purchase from makers and local businesses, especially those that are committed to giving back. Know that every time you buy something from a small business owner, you are supporting their dreams and simultaneously helping build your local community. Total win, win. 

Thank you again for helping make my maker dreams a reality and for helping support the organizations that I believe are working to make the world a better place for everyone. We are all in this together.

xo
Alana

DONATIONS SO FAR

Etta + Billie: Move Forward, It’s the Only Direction

Yowza, what a week. A lot of emotions and a whole lot of uncertainty but I will not let those feelings dissuade me from doing what’s important to me. Now more than ever, we need to come together to support our fellow humans and the organizations that uphold the values we hold dear. I refuse to go down without a fight. I refuse to lose hope. I will persist. I hope you’ll join me by taking some action in your community to help those around you. We are all in this together. We must move forward.

xo
Alana

move-forward-small

What is your favorite tattoo?

In celebration of National Tattoo Day, I wanted to share my own tattoo story and the stories of two local shop owner/makers. Tattoos are such a personal (and permanent) art form that I always find it interesting to learn about why someone decides to get one (or a few). Read on for the why behind some great tattoos.

Alana_Soap Maven_Etta + BillieMe, all soap geared up.

How many tattoos do you have?
Three total. One on my ankle, one on my abdomen and one on my forearm.

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
My favorite tattoo is the newest one on my forearm.

Alana Rivera Makers Gonna Make TattooWhat is the story behind your favorite tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
About two years ago, I purchased some amazing temporary tattoos from Tattly and one of them was “Makers Gonna Make” from the graphic designer Jude Landry. I was instantly in love. The use of traditional tattoo lettering combined with the phrase really struck me. It became my mantra, a reminder of my strength as an artist and maker (and lover of handmade things), that helped push me to keep growing and moving forward with Etta + Billie. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen me use it along with almost every photo of product being made or being wrapped. After wearing the temporary tattoo on multiple occasions, I finally decided to get the real thing.

Any ideas for your next tattoo?
Yes, I’m toying with a few different ideas for images that honor my grandmothers and family.

Nicholas Weinstein of Homestead Apothecary, Gardenista_TattooNic Wienstein of Homestead Apothecary

I had the very good fortune of connecting with modern community herbalist and advocate, Nic Weinstein, a few years ago when he opened the magical Homestead Apothecary in Oakland, California. His shop has an amazing collection of dried herbs, tinctures, healing objects, books and of course fabulous apothecary products. Nic is a wealth of knowledge about herbal healing and travels all over California giving workshops.

How many tattoos do you have?
I think I technically have 6. Half sleeves on both of my arms. One on each of my forearms plus one on the inside of my right forearm. My back and my chest.

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
I think my Never for Money Always for Love tattoos but its a tough call!

What is the story behind your favorite tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
Strangely enough my tattoo artist finished the lavender piece on my arm and she realized that it took her a lot less time than she anticipated so she asked if I wanted something else. I told her about the Talking Head lyrics that resonated so strongly with me and she loved it and it felt right so I went for it! So I got 3 tattoos in one sitting!

Any ideas for your next tattoo?
Working on a cover up. What can I say? I started young!

Homestead Apothecary
486 49th Street
Oakland, CA 94609
510.541.5225

Open: Monday 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm + Tuesday – Sunday 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

 

Tammy and David of RedemptionTammy Liu of Redemption

When Tammy reached out to me months ago about joining the stylishly curated makers in her Campbell, California based shop Redemption, I said “Hell Yes!”. Tammy and boyfriend, David, are extremely passionate about finding and sharing well crafted hand made goods with their community. I’m so honored to be a part of the their shop! Read on to find out more about Tammy’s collection of tattoos.

How many tattoos do you have?
7: 2 on back, both wrists, ribs, stomach and thigh.
Tammy Liu Tattoo RedemptionTattoo Close Up

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
Thigh piece, as it represents my mother.

What is the story behind your fav/only tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
It incorporates a picture of my mother and a dream catcher that she passed down to me. I got it done just before traveling to Australia for a year as a way to keep her close to me throughout my journey. The tattoo depicts her as a warrior/survivor and commemorates her optimism and positivity in overcoming her strokes.

Tammy Liu Redemption TattooAny ideas for your next tattoo?
My boyfriend and I are thinking about getting our store logo done!

Redemption
241a E Campbell Ave
Campbell, CA 95008

408.628.4877

*all photographs were provided and posted with permission from the artists.

Happy Thanksgiving! Thankful.

Thankful for my customers.I’m spending time with family today cooking a massive meal (we like our food in the Rivera household) but wanted to take a moment to say how incredibly thankful I am for the continued support of my customers.

Thank you for helping me make my dream come true!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Store Spotlight: Lilify

Lilify Monterey California Shopping Lifestyle StoreHanni and Jesse are the team behind the well curated boutique Lilify, located in the beautiful California coastal town of Monterey. You’ll find hand crafted items, vintage and other one-of-a-kind treasures there. Plus, they are home to coffee roaster, Bright Coffee. Coffee + shopping = my idea of heaven. When not running the Lilify boutique, you can find Hanni creating incredible natural and sophisticated floral arrangements. Check out the amazing images on their site. Find out more about a few of Hanni’s favorite things below. Lilify boutique Monterey California Shopping Destination

  1. What is your favorite color? Black
  2. Favorite smell? Rosemary
  3. Go to cocktail or beverage? Rose
  4. What would you choose as your last meal? Salmon with asparagus (prepared any way) served with Rose
  5. Favorite thing to cook? Salmon with asparagus (prepared any way) served with Rose
  6. Favorite dessert? Rose
  7. Furthest place you’ve traveled? South Africa is probably the furthest geographically, but southern Guyana was the ruralist.

Floral Design Monterey California at Lilify

Follow Lilify!

instagram: lilifydesigns

facebook: lilify

pinterest: lilify

blog: lilify.com

Lilify
281 Lighthouse Avenue
Monterey, California 93940

Open: Mon – Sat: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm and Sun: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Retailer Interview: Egg & Dart

Egg-and-Dart-Etta-Billie-Display
Painter Chris Wyllie and designer Kristen Coates collaborate to bring you Egg & Dart, an eclectic collection of art and home decor. Their flagship store is located at Bowen’s Wharf in Newport, Rhode Island or you can find them online at egganddart.bigcartel.com. Both shops are filled with a carefully curated selection of local art, handmade objects, fine linens, table decor, gifts, books, apothecary and seasonal greenery arrangements. What’s not to love about that? Read Kristen’s interview below!
1. What is your favorite color?
I got back and forth between favorite colors. Gold, grey, white, blue, white, grey, blue, gold. Lately I have been in a big black and white phase, but as I am putting the pieces together for our store, we are getting all sorts of sandy beachy palettes of gold, grey, white, blue with some hints of black.
2. Favorite smell?
My favorite smell is my dog. I have 9 month old Cavalier King Charles, Sofia Banana, that pretty much rules my life right now.  Her fur smells of cinnamon and hints of almond and the beach.  So treats and salt water basically.  Traditionally I am drawn to espresso in the morning, tuberose and lilac throughout the day and then rose and patchouli in the evenings. I love when people can pick up on scents in my home and more often than not, when someone comes in my store they say “It smells delicious in here”.
3. Go to cocktail or beverage?
We keep a couple of bottles of cava on hand for impromptu cocktails along with bitters and some sugar. A bit of sugar in a glass, a dash or two of bitters and top with champagne.  If there are roses in the garden I add a few petals for garnish or a slice of strawberry or even nasturtium just for the color. I don’t drink a lot of alcohol, but when I do drink, I like it to be pretty. I think guests appreciate the special touches.
4. Favorite thing to cook?
I grew up as a vegetarian that did not like cooked vegetables. In the last year or two as I have transitioned out of living in NYC full time, I have taken to visiting farms near our home in Newport and going to the farmer’s markets as much as I can and have fallen in love with cooking vegetables and experimenting with different flavors.  While in LA this winter, we were very much in love with Summerland.is – they deliver local famer’s market items to your door! I love a thick, baked cherry tomato sauce over polenta cakes, or soup with butternut squash, caramelized onions, an apple and a little white wine and grilled radicchio, I could eat it every day.  I don’t know if it is tastes changing or actually paying attention to food and cooking that makes it all seem better now, maybe a combination.
5. Favorite book?
Daily Rituals is a series of short essays on how writers, artists, filmmakers, composers, poets, musicians, novelists and the like go through their day. The book details each person’s work ethic, alcohol consumption, eating habits and sleep (or lack there of) patterns. Maya Angelou works from a hotel before heading home to make dinner for her husband and makes sure she has time to unwind her brain before dinner is ready.  I find this type of information to be fascinating and inspiring.
egg-and-dart-art
Follow the team behind Egg & Dart!
blog:
my blogs vary in states of neglect…
Egg & Dart
57 America’s Cup Avenue at Bowen’s Wharf
Newport, Rhode Island
Open
Mon – Thu: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Fri – Sat: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
Sun: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Retailer Spotlight: Greenhouse

Etta + Bilie Retailer
Greenhouse is a shop located in Serenbe, Georgia that focuses on one-of-a-kind vintage pieces and lovely found objects. Owner, Kenya Brantley is an absolute sweet heart and has a seriously good eye for fabulous goods! If you are in the area, you must stop in and check it out (and post photos!). In the meantime, check out my mini interview with Kenya below and be sure to follow Greenhouse on social media.

instagram: greenhouseserenbe
facebook: GreenhouseSerenbe
pinterest: shopgreenhouse
twitter: ShopGreenhouse
website: greenhouseserenbe.com

  1. What is your favorite color? Grey
  2. Go to cocktail or beverage? Sex on the Beach. Don’t ask. 😉
  3. What would you choose as your last meal? Crab legs with lots of butter!!!
  4. Furthest place you’ve traveled? Fiji!!! It was amazing!!!
  5. Favorite book? The Bible. I need it to live by…

Greenhouse
9117 Selborne LaneChattahoochee, GA 30268

OPEN: Thu – Sun: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm