Friday, November 22, 2013

Fairly Crafty

One down, and two more to go!

Warren Tales made its craft fair debut last weekend, and I am happy to consider Patchwork Long Beach a success. While a flash mob of fans didn't come stampeding through the show to find me, and I didn't have to worry about selling out of stock, I supported a steady string of customers, received invaluable positive feedback from the many browsers, and came away with a profit. I think the only way I could have learned more was if it was a complete disaster.

The best thing about these winter shows—aside from product refinement and developing selling strategies—is that they impose three hard mini-deadlines on Warren Tales, before I attend the National Stationery Show in May. They push me to create and finish new products, which might have otherwise sat waiting in my sketchbook. I debuted EIGHT new cards at the Long Beach show, two of which stormed ahead to became instant best-sellers. And now they've come to a shopping cart near you:

Non-Traditional Holiday Cards

Yes, it's the holidays, but it's also cold outside, and we love a good break from the summer heat as well as time to don our ironic ugly sweaters. Who doesn't. So celebrate hot chocolate, winter coats, and pumpkin/peppermint everything (and if you're on the East Coast, please mail them all to California, care of Warren Tales). It's winter in SoCal too—just last week it was overcast for a few hours...Available in red and white, in singles and sets of six. 

We drink tea, we reminisce, and we catch up—and when we don't, we miss each other. No matter what, we're missing someone on the other side of the kettle, so send them a note and let them know. Available in singles and sets of six.

Have yourself a geometric Christmas; let your cards be bright. From now on, your snail mail will be "out of sight!" Okay, so my cards are more colorful than my spoof-lyrics. Brighten up the shortest days of the year by adding an abstract touch to tradition. Available in singles and sets of six.

Other Occasions

Support with a touch of dark humor, because shit happens. You don't always get the best out of a situation, but it does get better. An instant best-seller, by popular demand.

An interactive card to amuse and appreciate—just connect the dots to reveal a message of thanks!
Available in singles and sets of four.

Happy balloon day to you and yours! These cute doodles are a great way to celebrate any occasion, from a birthday to success. Blank inside, and full of possibility.

Thank you's, well-wishes, or just because: it's not often you find triangles that are so well-rounded (couldn't help myself!) Write what's on your mind, and send a notable note.
Available in singles and sets of four.

Warmth can be read on more than just a thermostat, and even after the snow melts, we're missing you.

Next up: Coronado's Artisan Alley on December 7th!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Festivals, Fatigues, and the Future


So much has happened for Warren Tales in the last two months, that I (clearly) haven't even got around to telling everyone about it.

The biggest news is that—along with the Long Beach Patchwork Show, the Los Angeles Renegade Craft Fair, and Coronado's local Artisan's AlleyI have been accepted to exhibit at the 2014 National Stationery Show in May! 

Obviously, at the news of attending the National Stationery Show, I was encouraged, inspired, clear-headed (read: quaking in my unintimidatingly small boots, considering whether I could fit in the gap beneath my bed, and utterly indecisive about whether it was a good idea). I was understandably unsure, but decided I have what it takes to push forward (forgo almost all sleep) and give it my best shot.

As I buckled down into extensive research, designs, and budgets—feeling better about the chance of a looming disaster—I meandered into an announcement for Tradeshow Bootcamp's phenomenal Paper Camp seminar course, and what? A scholarship opportunity. I had heard how invaluable a TSBC course was in preparing to enter the stationery scene, but I had no idea just how perfectly they had crafted their curriculum (no pun intended...) for everything a start-up needed. I applied at once, but went back to my research without thinking much would come of it.

So imagine my surprise on Halloween when I get a treat of an email in response and realize I should have dressed up as a soldier: I had won the Bootcamp scholarship!

In the last few months, I've achieved significant goals in my aim to bring Warren Tales to a legitimate and competitive business level: including (but not limited to) executing necessary licensing and tax law requirements, ongoing development of a successful product line, and creating an all-inclusive e-commerce website (check out the beautiful new site!). I've been accepted into retail fairs, a national tradeshow, and now a program to pull it all together and really give Warren Tales a shot. I'm flummoxed and beyond grateful for all of the support, patience, and encouragement everyone has showed me, and I thank you all so much for sticking through it all with me so far.

To give you an updated idea of where Warren Tales sits in its efforts to legitimize (and to hold myself accountable to all of you), I though I'd share my scholarship application:

Name: Lindsey Warriner
Business Name: Warren Tales

Where can we follow you online (social media handles):
Facebook: WarrenTales // Twitter: @WarrenTalesMail // Instagram: @warrentales // Pinterest: warrentales

Tell us a little about you and your business. Don't be shy!:
Warren Tales is an independent paper craft studio, producing original products from stationery to limited print publications. Over the past two years, Warren Tales has matured from a passion to an enterprise, and continues to grow as it transitions into a wholesale endeavor.

After a lifetime of finding, folding, making, and molding any paper I could get my hands on, I was struck with the cockameme idea of going into business.

My greatest influences can all be accredited to innate dexterity, my Mother's insistence on recycling, and my Father's fabulously (terribly) punny sense of humour; all of which shaped me into the bowler hat-wearing Warriner (etymology: "rabbit keeper" . . . get it) you see today.

What are your business goals for 2013-2014?:
-Bolster product line of greeting cards, invitations, prints, and calendars
-Produce and distribute sales kits to potential clients (include catalog, samples, and marketing materials)
-Build wholesale client list through brick-and-mortar placement opportunities
-Create new and develop connections for business growth

How do you think TSBC can help you reach your goals?:
With an introductory background in marketing and publicity, and previous NSS attendance (as an observer) at the front of my mind, I feel that Tradeshow Bootcamp's Paper Camp is the perfect program to turn research and practice into applicable success. I am looking to learn how to be efficient in production and marketing; effective with design and placement; and sustainable in business growth.

Which store would you love to see your cards in? Why:
While I aspire to secure retail placement in independent gift and book stores, I would consider it a marker of true success to be distributed by Paper Source, as it reflects the interests and spending preferences of a mass market. As a former employee of Paper Source, I am familiar with featured stationers and the exposure (and awards) they have since achieved.

Are we in the stationary or stationery industry?:
I like to design new stationery while exercising on my stationary bicycle.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Ticking Along to "Africa Time"

For the past month, I've been traveling through southern Africa with family. This trip not only fulfilled a lifelong dream of everyone involved, but also marked the final lapse in responsibility and general conclusion to my experimental "gap year." In the last year I've traversed the country, accomplished significant life goals, (stretched the limits of my sanity...) and now experienced a world I hardly new existed. Here are a few trip highlights:

Bungee jumping off the highest jump in the world, from the Bloukrans Bridge in South Africa (approx. 600 ft)

Shark diving with 14 Great Whites in Gansbaai, South Africa

  Walking (and scoring a little light petting action) with lion cubs in Victoria Falls, Zambia

 Hanging out with the locals on the Okavango Delta, Botswana

 Minding our Meerkat manners in the Kalahari Desert, Botswana

And taking in the expanse of the Makadikadi Salt Pans, Botswana

"Africa Time" is the perceived cultural tendency, in most parts of Africa, toward a more relaxed attitude to time (Thank you Wikipedia for that neatly-wrapped definition). While it's sometimes said as a pejorative reference to tardiness, I defend the good nature of wrapping yourself up in the less-crucial, and getting lost in the irrelevant. I'm not fast enough to process the world in "real time," and am irrevocably 15 minutes late to my own life, but it's this time that gets me where I need (and want) to be.

Learning anything from scratch is hard. Trying something new is hard. Taking a risk is hard. Following through is hard. Pushing forward is hard. Accepting it is hard is hard. The whole business bonanza is hard, but after a year of fumbling down this slow road——house-hopping, odd-jobbing, first-trying, and outright-guessing——I'm marching on, undiscouraged. It's uncomfortable not to know how things will turn out, but I have a fire under my ass, and there's no comfort in that either. I believe that Warren Tales can carve out its chance at success, and even if I wheel it in on "Africa Time," we'll get there when we're good and ready.

This week's gleaming accomplishment and celebration: 
Business License and Tax Registration

Thank you to everyone who's loyal support and readership continues to encourage me to whine less and design more. —WT

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Coronado, CA Dreamin'

Back in January, I created my first hand cut depiction of Coronado, and I am pleased to announce that prints of this piece are now also available for purchase on Etsy.

This print depicts a hand cutting of the unique and celebrated island of Coronado, California. Coronado is a beautiful vacation destination off the San Diego coast, and home to generations of proud locals.  The print also highlights such popular San Diego neighborhoods as Downtown, the Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy, Seaport Village, the Marina, Harbor Island, Point Loma, the Cabrillo National Monument, and of course the city's beautiful harbors.

Prints are available in 12" x 18" or 8" x 10" and fit standard frame sizes. Designs are printed on Strathmore 400 Bristol paper stock, and in Black, Harbor Blue, or Red in recognition of Coronado's renowned July 4th celebration. In addition, consider pairing a red frame with a blue print, or a blue frame with a red print for a fun, festive combination (frame not included in purchase).

For local purchases (no shipping required), prints will also be available for cash purchase in Coronado from July 2-5. For such requests or inquiries, please contact me at, or check out updates and announcements on Facebook. Selling locations will be announced for July 4th.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Strength of Boston Supporters

I am so pleased and proud to announce that with all of your support and contributions, the Warren Tales Art Fundraiser raised $435 for donation to The One Fund to help the victims of the April 15th Boston bombings. Over the course of the fundraiser week, I shared some wonderful stories of people who's lives were touched by Boston, and in gratitude to the city and those who call it home, I'd like to share them again:

We celebrated with 3 generations of Boston ladies this Mothers Day: My grandparents met at a party in Anne's Commonwealth Ave, 5th floor walk-up apartment. "She had jet black hair and blue blue eyes, and my, she was just so pretty" says Oscar. And the rest is family history.

Emma's first memory of Boston is of being snowed in to the Copley Plaza Hotel during a freak April Fool's blizzard. "Boston is where all my memories are from." She says. "It's where I feel at home."

Sara's parents met, lived, and married in Wellesley, but with a twist of fate (and two young daughters) they were off to California. Despite the distance, Sara was never far from home, and has spent her life rediscovering Massachusetts with great pride in the strength of her Boston Blood.

Sarah and Don met in grad school, and started dating shortly after. Unwilling to part after an early date, they walked the long way home, along the marathon route from Downtown Boston to Brookline, and spent the rest of the evening baking together. As Don describes, "It was love at first pie."

Though heartsick in the wake of last month, Michael sees only love in the City of Boston: "In our 36 years together, Linda and I have followed the route of the Marathon: We started our life in Hopkinton; Made our first home in Framingham; Married and raised four kids in Sherborn; And with our youngest now grown, we've settled happily in Natick. Despite the heartbreaking events of April 15th, people have come together and helped in any way they can and have shown such caring and love for each other that it has pushed the hatred right out of Boston and replaced it with a unity not seen in recent times."

Together, we are all Boston Strong.

The best-selling Boston Paper Cutting Print (see above), as well as the other Boston prints, will still be available on Etsy for purchase as part of Warren Tales' permanent collection. As the fundraiser is now closed, prints will not be signed and proceeds will no longer be donated. Your continued support is sincerely appreciated, and I hope you'll keep Warren Tales and in mind for future purchases.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Boston Strong Fundraiser Kick-Off

Like everyone, I was shocked to hear about the Boston bombings in April 15th, 2013. But like slightly fewer people, this attack happened in my neighborhood, by my office building, to my friends, at an event I knew well, and on streets I knew even better. It's been almost a year since I left Boston to pursue new cities and experiences, and the absence of a place I consider home, in itself, was straining; let alone the pain of watching it suffer. Needless to say, I really wanted to do something to help.

For one week, Warren Tales will be selling special edition Boston Strong prints and postcards, from which all proceeds will be donated to The One Fund and the people most affected by the tragic events.

Boston Marathon Route Map
(9" x 16" -- fits nicely within a standard 12" x 18" frame, with/out mat)

This typography-inspired print highlights not only the route of the world's oldest marathon, but calls out the neighborhoods that annually host thousands of runners and supporters in the name of sport and charity, making the Boston Marathon possible and what it is today.

Boston Marathon Route Map Postcard Set
(8 cards at 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" each)
(Also available in 8" x10" prints, sold individually)

Each postcard honors a neighborhood involved in hosting the Boston Marathon. This postcard set makes for beautiful correspondence, commemoration, or decoration.

A print edition of the Boston paper cutting, depicting the city's downtown area
(8" x 8" print; 5" x 5" design)

This print celebrates the thriving City of Boston and includes the famous Boston Common, historical neighborhoods such as Beacon Hill and the North End, and the city's beautiful harbors.

All designs are original works by Warren Tales, and printed on Strathmore 400 Bristol paper stock. They are printed in "Celtics Green" to commemorate Boston's strength and drive. Each print will be marked with the unique tag of "Boston Strong" and the product's edition number out of the total number ordered (example: "Boston Strong 1/100"), to signify the limited charity edition.

Orders will be taken from Saturday May 11th through to the following Saturday, May 18th. As the special edition prints are limited in time, but not quantity, production will continue through the following week, and all orders will be shipped upon completion (no later than Tuesday May 28th). Sales will be processed through Etsy (Link).

You can find up-to-date information about the fundraiser on Facebook, and I encourage you to share the event with friends so as to raise as much money as possible.

Please email with any questions.

Thank you for your enthusiasm and support!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Equal Parts Work and Play

While researching web design and bothering every person I have ever know that has been even loosely connected to website building, I visited my friend Isabel Greenberg's online portfolio, only to stumble upon my own face in comic form!

When I traveled across the country, I was delighted to connect with this lifelong British bestie—on a trip through the States, herself—for a chance to share all the American joys I've come to love. This would include hiking, log cabin camping (S'MORES), large novelty foods, and a lot of driving. And as a pseudo work/play project, she ended up turning it into a little Zine diary (I'm the one in the glasses, of course):

Isabel is a fantastic graphic novelist and illustrator: she's amazing, she's talented, she's a wonderful human being, she'll kill me for saying all this, blah blah blah, check her out! She won the Observer Jonathan Cape Graphic Short Story Prize in 2011 for her beautiful story Love in a Very Cold Climate, and her big debut graphic novel, Encyclopedia of Early Earth, is being published simultaneously in England (Jonathan Cape), Canada (Random House), and the US (Little Brown) in 2014.

I don't think I can actually classify this is "Headline News" publicity for Warren Tales, but it's not every day you get to cameo in a comic! Besides, it's Friday...which means very little when you're self employed haha happy weekend, all!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Warren Tales of Two Cities

I recently (finally) got to make the move up the California coast from San Diego to Gaviota, where I will be spending my time working on website and product design. I am working out of a small studio space out in the beautiful coastal countryside, and am so happy to be mostly settled in at this point.

My plan for the next six months is to:
-Develop a new, all-inclusive website
-Design a 2014 product line of greeting cards, invitations, prints, and calendars
-Produce a 2014 catalog with product samples for distribution
-Build a wholesale client list through store placement opportunities
-Register as an exhibitor at the 2014 National Stationery Show

As I post updates of new designs and accomplishments, I hope you'll share them with your friends, and keep Warren Tales growing into a thriving competitive business. Warren Tales can also be found on Facebook, Pinterest, and Etsy.

Thank you all for your continued support!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Roadyssey & The Sketchbook Project

After such a great experience participating in the Chronicle Project, I couldn't wait to color my hands dirty with the 2013 Sketchbook Project:
The Sketchbook Project is a collection of creative works in the form of sketchbooks that are contributed by individuals from around the world. Thousands of people are adding their voice to this project annually. Together, they have formed a library of over 22,000 sketchbooks from over 130 countries and growing.
My submission to the project, entitled ROADYSSEY, is an illustrated account of my cross country road trip, during which I drove 13,000 miles through the quiet routes and back roads of Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Ontario (Canada), Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, South Carolina, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California phew!
Take a look at the following pictures to see how it turned out, and visit a tour event near you!

Davis Avenue in Brookline Village, Massachusetts

Nation-Wide Wildlife Sightings / Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts

Cambridge, Massachusetts / Acadia National Park, Maine
 White Mountains, New Hampshire / Ticonderoga VermontNew York

Upstate New York

 Detroit, Michigan / Cleveland, Ohio

Baraboo, Wisconsin & St. Paul, Minnesota / Commentary

Whiting, Indiana & Chicago, Illinois / The Mississippi River

Starved Rock & Matthiessen State Park, Illinois / 
Metropolis, Illinois

Nashville, Tennessee / The Blue Ridge Parkway

The Appalachian Trail / Washington, D.C.

New York City / North Carolina

Batesburg-Leesville, South Carolina / St. Augustine, Florida

New Orleans, Louisiana / Houston, Texas

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Arizona / California

In Conclusion / Nation-Wide Road Kill Sightings

The End

Thanks to everyone at the Brooklyn Art House for their endless supply of creativity, patience, and organization.