Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

It has been so long…but I wanted to pop in and wish you all much happiness & love in 2014! 

2013 was not without its triumphs and challenges - but I cannot wait to see what this next year has on its horizon!

Cheers to good times & good friends! 

We have so much exciting news for this up coming year - so stay tuned!

See you next year!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Fall & Winter SHOP OPEN DATES!

Just a quick note to announce our open dates for the shop through the rest of 2013!

We had such a huge response last year to be open more during the Holiday season - so this year we will be open EVERY WEEKEND until Christmas in the month of December!


You can always find updates and photo previews of shop goodies before each opening on Facebook!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

We have WINNERS!!!!

We have WINNERS for my giveaway sponsored by 

Anne Marie at Nada Farm Life

Anne Marie was gracious enough to give away 2 spots in the Creatively Made Home e-course!

{THANK YOU, Anne Marie!}

And the winners are......

Carrie Corson & Our Rosey Life 

please email me {urbanfarmgirl@yahoo.com } so I can forward your info to Anne Marie!

Congratulations, and remember for all of you that entered but did not win, you can click over here and get registered! The fee is $58 and the class and it starts October 15th! (look for the PayPal link on Anne Marie's sidebar). 

THANK YOU to all that entered! 

I have another fun GIVEAWAY coming tomorrow, so stay tuned!!!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

creatively made home {for the holidays} GIVEAWAY!

I am SO happy to be part of a fun & creative GIVEAWAY today for the Creatively Made Home {Home for the Holidays} edition!

What exactly is the CMH {Home for the Holidays} series? 

I think Jeanne Oliver, the creator, said it best...” My hope is that this course will help you slow down and find the joy and beauty in the holidays.”

It is not about the hustle & bustle of running around, finding gifts. It is about enjoying the season, your family and your home. It is taking a deep breath and a step back to create and enjoy the spirit of the season. 

My sweet friend Anne Marie, from the NaDa Farm blog, hosts the Spring & Fall Barn Sale I participate in, and she is showcasing her creative talents for the Creatively Made Home Series. 

Jeanne Oliver is the creative genius behind the Creatively Made Home series. 

 I am sure most of you know of her, she is the woman behind an ever growing creative network…she is also a terrific clothing & bag designer with an eye for detail and a heart for comfort.

In addition to Anne Marie, she has assembled an amazing group of women to participate in this season's event. 

To sum it up: In Jeanne's own words. here is what the e-course is all about:

You will be encouraged as you hear honestly from each woman about the times things did not go as planned during their holidays.

 You will hear honest discussions about their own journey of hospitality.
 You will walk away inspired as you hear about the traditions and special moments from their childhood and how they create special moments with their families today.

You will be able to watch beautiful videos with gift giving ideas, decorating projects and favorite family recipes.

 We all want to create authentic moments with our friends and families.
 We all desire for the ones we love to leave our homes knowing that they were welcomed and loved.

 My hope is that this course will help you slow down and find the joy and beauty in the holidays.

 *There will be 30+ project videos

 These will be incredible videos that include everything from cooking, gift giving and decorating

 *Tons of beautiful house photos from each of the nine women
 *Supply Lists and PDFs for each project
 *A digital recipe book of the recipes shared in this course

Now, on to the FUN part - the GIVEAWAY!!

Anne Marie has graciously provided me with complimentary spots in the e-course for 2 of my readers!

How do you put your name in the hat to win??

Just leave me a comment on this post telling me what you love to create most at the Holidays! Do you bake with your kiddos, deck  your home out with all the trimmings of the season?

 Give me the scoop...I want to know what you do to be creative during the Holidays!

(giveaway will be open until midnight Tuesday September 3rd - winner will be announced Wednesday morning, September 4th!)

Are you excited and can't wait to see if you have won? Get signed up today!

 Registration is NOW OPEN! 

You can click over and get signed up for the course. There is a $58 registration fee - and you will have full access to all the course, and these 8 talented ladies have to offer for this season! 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

goin' to the chapel...y'all

tap...tap...tap...is this thing on??


How long has it been since I have done a blog post?? Waaaaay too long. 

And as usual, I am coming late to the party on my post about my new ADVENTURE for the fall. I was going to post this some time ago...started to type...then became a little sad realizing no one probably reads my blog anymore since I haven't done a meaningful post in well...like...forever!

So, I announced what was happening over on Facebook and Instagram and left it at that. But lately I have had a wave of "hey, I can do this! I can hunt down my vintage goods, run my shop, sell at the flea, paint a bazillion pieces of furniture each month, have a meaningful life AND blog."

I can..................right?? {hee...hee!}

So starting with THIS blog post I am back at it. 

(cue the trumpets, I am standing with my hands on my hips, Super-Hero style!)

Urban Farmgirl is going back to being a regularly active blog. I can do this!


Anyway, on with the fun stuff. 

A couple of months ago, I had the pleasure of once again spending some time with this amazing couple. 

Kevin and Layla from The Lettered Cottage were traveling through the Midwest and we had planned to meet on her way through Illinois. 

When Layla first texted me and asked if she could stop by my shop...I about died. The shop had just come off an 'open weekend' and it was a hot mess. It was practically empty, and looked like a tornado had ripped through it. Talk about wanting to just DIE. Layla is coming for a visit and this is what she is going to see?? But, after my usual quick panic and freak out session, I reverted back to my calm self and thought 'it is what it is' and I just rolled with it. It was real. It was authentic. And it meant we had an awesome weekend at the shop. How could that possibly be embarrassing, right?

{it still kinda was, but don't tell anyone - ok?}

So, there was a little of little of this...

And a whole lot of talking and laughing!

A few minutes after they left, I get a text with this amazing photo....and the idea to sell vintage goods inside that ridiculously amazing chapel!!

Ummmm....and since I suffer from serious wanderlust, LOVE selling my vintage wares, and a fly-by-the-seat of my pants kind of girl, I of course could not type YES fast enough! I think I responded within   about 2.3 seconds that I would be there! No need to give me details, just tell me when and where and I am there!

So, on October 19th I will be found selling my vintage wares at the chapel building in Layla's neighborhood along with some of the most AMAZING ladies in blogland. I am so honored to be among those selling, and I have no idea how I fit in with all their greatness, but I am sooo happy to share their company! You can go here to check out the vendor line up and the details. 

Oh, and the other REALLY fun part?? I get to road trip with this girl all the way down to Bama because we are going to be sharing a space that will be decked out with all the vintage goodness we can pack in a trailer! Remember when Oprah and Gayle would go on their "Big Adventure" trip every year?? 

Yeah, I have a feeling it's gonna be something like that. 2 girls in a truck, hauling a trailer we have no idea how to pull, and trying not to whack it into everything in our 1,600 mile path from Illinois to Alabama.

The question is...which one of us is Oprah and which one is Gayle?

Someone call us a camera crew, I feel a new reality show coming on!

Hope to see some of you there! It is going to be SO. MUCH. FUN!!

Friday, May 31, 2013

owning a shop - my most important rule!

Each week, I get tons of email and Facebook messages from girls with a dream like I once had. They want to open a little shop that is all their own. 

I sometimes feel as though I should write a series for you all on opening your own vintage shop, so I am working on that idea. I am taking mental notes of lessons learned and when I have been at this a little while longer, I will give you some helpful hints of what to do to help your dream come to life. It is very different than a 'gift' or 'decor' shop....there is a whole side of things most of you wouldn't even suspect would be involved in a 'mostly' vintage type brick-and-mortar shop. 

My immediate circle hears my one most important rule all. the. time so I thought I would give you this tid-bit as my 'mantra' of the moment...

Honestly, I think they are sick of hearing me. But, to know me is to hear me. So they will have to deal. :o)

My number one rule for anything in business, or life for that matter...is:


Simple as that. As the owner of a new and pretty successful little shop, I cannot stress enough how important it is to acknowldege that fact that you cannot do it all. 

Let me repeat that.

You CANNOT do it all. Try as you may, it is impossible to do all the things necessary to make your shop the very best it can be! Learning to recognize that and be willing to let go of the control a little is not easy. Because lets face it, if you have the ability to steer the ship enough to own your own shop, you have to have a little bit of 'control' in your personality. That is not a bad thing, to me it just means you can carry the weight. You bear the responsibility and you are not afraid to act and guide in the appropriate way. 

That being said, what I mean by 'don't waste your resources' is this. You need to surround yourself with the very best people you can. This may mean an accountant, employees, a cleaning crew, a handyman and for me...a stylist

I am sure you all know Susan from the blog fame Maple & Magnolia. Well let me tell ya, bringing Susan on board was one of the best things I have ever done in my LIFE!

She is my wing-man. Wing-woman? Wing-girl? Whatev. She is my words of wisdom. The girl that snaps me back to reality when I am thinking crazy. We plan. We plot. We work out the details. She cracks. me. up! She is my friend, and she is my stylist. And it could not work out any better to have her be a part of Urban Farmgirl. 

And here is why. 

When you work a bazilliion hours hunting down the vintage goods, dragging them home, cleaning them up, painting 80+ pieces of furniture each month, repurposing things. pricing them, selling it all, sometimes shipping it and doing all the millions of behind-the-scenes details that go along with owning a shop, you NEED help. {whew...I am tired just typing all that!}

That is my advice for the day. A little something for all of those that have asked me about how to bring their dream to reality. Do what you love. And be prepared to work double the amount of hours you think you will. {wink...} but most importantly, surround yourself with good people. 

Did I mention that since the shop is only open twice a month, we tear and down and rebuild it with new displays and merchandise each time we are open?? Crazy. But important!

So I guess what am trying to say....it is ok to let go. It is ok to ask for help when you just don't have enough hours in your day to get it all done.

And if you have someone as fabulous as Susan available to give you the hand you need...you grab her and hold on tight! 

And did I mention she sews some pretty fabulous pillows, too?? They are amazing. We carry them at the shop! And all those cute buntings you see? Yep. She sews those. too. 

See. Told you she was awesome. {wink...}

If you haven't read her blog post today, you have to click over and read it...and the one before that since they go together. The girl is hilarious!

Are you close to Rockford, IL?? We would LOVE to see you in the shop sometime! Stop by for a visit! Here are the open dates through Summer. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Nada Farm Sale - GIVEAWAY!!

Anyone have time for me to sneak in a last minute giveaway???

Entries start today, and I will pick a winner Thursday night at 9pm central time! 

The lucky winner will receive 2 admission tickets to the Nada Farm Sale, and 2 of Anne Marie's dreamy cupcakes AND a little surprise from my shop! (you will LOVE it...I've made up a little basket of vintage goodies AND a little something extra from my shop for the winner!)

Here is all you need to do to enter:

 Leave me a comment on this post telling me what one vintage item you would like to find at the Nada Farm Sale that would make your heart flip!

For additional entries:

 Hop over to my Facebook page and SHARE my post about this giveaway. (leave me a separate comment here letting me know you did!)

(photo take at the May 2012 Nada Farm Sale)

I am sharing a HUGE booth again this year with Anne & Julie from Tattered Tiques in Barrington, IL! 

Ok, girls...GOOD LUCK! Hope to you see you at the Sale this weekend! And if they are still calling for a little rain, don't let that scare you away. The barn is BIG and most vendors are inside. Along with the Bakery, which has the cupcakes. That is the most important part, right?? {wink...}

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

2 fun events in Illinois this weekend!

Just a quick shout out for 2 fun things happening in Northern Illinois this weekend!

Urban Farmgirl will be open Thursday 10-6, Friday & Saturday 10-4. 

Saturday come meet Anne Marie from Nada Farm & Traci Thorsen of Traci Thorsen Photography! They will be at the shop for a book signing for Pie*ography! 

Both of these lovely ladies were contributors to Jo Packham's latest project. Anne Marie did all the styling, and Traci was the photographer for the book! If you are in the area, stop by from 10-2 to meet the girls!

Also, Polly is holding her spring Vintage Market this weekend, too! She will have 15 lovely ladies selling at her home Friday & Saturday from 10-4. It is always a great event!

I am off to style the shop today. We have some amazing furniture pieces this week, too! See you this weekend!

Monday, April 15, 2013

just a peek around the shop...

Happy Monday, everyone! 

I just thought I would stop by and show you a few photos from around the shop. These were from a previous sale event, but thought I would just give you a little peek into what goes on around our world. 

This time around the shop was very colorful and happy! It was right before Easter and we were craving color! Did I ever mention that we totally tear the shop down and restyle it before each opening?? It is crazy - but so FUN! We bring in tons of new things, change all the displays around...it keeps it fresh and exciting. And I LOVE the change! Sometimes it is more rustic, other times more industrial, and like this time...more cottage-y and colorful!

This gorgeous pale blue dresser is looking for a new home...can you believe that gorgeous blue paint is the original, chippy finish?? Loooooove!

18 drawers of aqua industrial goodness...and do you see that buffet hiding on the right side? My favorite piece EVER! I have painted probably thousands of pieces of furniture in the last 13 years, but this one was just so unique & beautiful! I will show you tomorrow where it lives, now. 

At Easter we had these fun paper cones...

This bookcase was repurposed from a french provincial dresser that was missing its drawers. It sold from Facebook before I even opened the doors on Thursday...

The dining set was a hit, too. The arrangement in the middle found a new home, too - it is made from 100% Alabama cotton. Love. 

The pillows are always popular at the shop! Cozy down inserts...zippered covers - and I am happy to ship, too!

I try to post preview photos on Facebook the Wednesday night before we open. Most of the time it happens. {smile...} Who knew being open 2 weekends a month would be more insane than if I was just open every day?! You girls know how to keep me hoppin', thats for sure! I am off to find more treasures today - and don't forget the shop is open this week! 

Thursday 10-6, Friday & Saturday 10-4!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Exhilarate Rockford - Put on Some Positivity!

{ This post is a shout out to my peeps from Rockford, Illinois. }

We all love our Hometown. It is the place that wraps its arms around you, no matter how long you have been away. Familiar faces, streets, businesses...it is home. 

I live in Rockford, Illinois. And I love my town. The hubs and I travel quite a bit, and when all is said and done...we always end the trip saying what a great time we had, but we are ready to go home.  I want to see my guys behind the counter at my local hardware store. I want to eat a Hawaiian Burrito at my favorite restaurant. I want to drive the tree-lined streets with the houses I dream about living in. It is the simple things that make me love this place. 

Recently, it has been sad to see Rockford making a certain 'list' that a large magazine publishes, ranking cities based on their perceived desirability. {I am not naming names because I think the whole idea is ridiculous, so why even go there.}

Rather than feed into such negativity...I give you the "Put On Some Positivity" campaign!!

Daniel & Michael Hopkins of Oblique Ideas are the great minds behind a website from my town called Exhilarate Rockford. It is an organization that collects snippets of appreciation and improvement (all phrased positively) about Rockford and publishes them online. They want to uplift our city, give everyone a chance to express their pride and love for the town where they live. They have a simple mission. Share and spread positivity about Rockford, Illinois. 

Simple as that. It really is not a hard task. Focus on the good. Spread the love. Pass it on. You can do it!

While they have been providing a format for people to share the reasons why they love it here online...they have taken what you have said and turned it pride you can wear!

I don't think I could say it any better than the brothers have said it themselves...

"It is about reminding people of the good things so that they will care more about their city. It's about changing the way we think, to know why we want to work so hard to solve the problems we face. That is what we are all about. We don't want to ignore the problems, but we do want to highlight the assets, the organizations that are helping, and the great places in town people should visit. It is all about sharing some love."

Amen to that!

So if you want to show your support...and share some Rockford love...visit Exhilarate Rockford. Leave a short note telling everyone what you love about this magnificent city!! 

Rockford has shown my little shop an unbelievable amount of love and support. It is because of all of you that I am able to be a part of this great city!! To return the favor, I want to help spread the positivity, too! This weekend, Urban Farmgirl is carrying the shirts that are the cornerstone of the "Put On Some Positivity" campaign! Want to wear your pride on your back?? Stop by the shop and pick up a t-shirt in support of Daniel & Michael's project! 

{Shirts are $23...come in sizes XS-XXL. They are a heathered charcoal gray, 50/50 cotton blend. Super cozy and comfy, I promise. I am wearing one as I type this!}

Want one shipped to you? I am happy to spread some Rockford love across the miles...just drop me a note with the email address you use for PayPal and what size you would like and we will get one out to you right away! 
(Shipping is an additional $5)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

this and that around the shop...

So much fun has been happening around here! The shop is AMAZING, life is good and there are new adventures around every corner! Although I have not had too much time to blog, I have been thinking about all of you, trying to keep up on what is going on mostly through Facebook and Instagram.

They have taken the place of blogging these last few months since the shop has opened...I love how quickly I can post photos from around the shop, or keep in touch while I am out hunting for cool old stuff. 

 I feel like I don't have much going on these days other than what happens at the shop, and hate to bore you over and over with more of the same..but...it's what I've got going on lately, so here we go. My girl, Susan {from Maple & Magnolia} was kind enough to snap some photos between customers the last time we were open so I actually have something to show you! Things were already a little picked over, but you get the idea of what we've got goin' on!

Since we are only open only 2 weekends a month, we have this crazy need to change it up each time it is open...we tear it all down, bring in new things and style it completely different each time. Crazy - but SO MUCH FUN!

The displays are all about color these days...must be because we are so over this gray Midwest winter weather...so we are rollin' spring in, ready or not!

All these photos were from the last weekend we were open...but you should see this weekend's display!  Spring-like - but a little rustic {which is my FAV!}, mixed with new painted furniture pieces and finds from my latest picking adventure through Indiana!

{I will try to show some preview photos on Facebook tomorrow night!}

The shop is open this Thursday 10-6, Friday & Saturday 10-4. 

I hope this little cutie stops in again this week. This is sweet Miss Georgia Claire. She came marching in with her cape on...spotted my vintage tiara's and we KNEW it was the perfect photo op with one of our new chalkboard style prints...

I could not have planned this better if I TRIED!! 

Some things are just meant to be!

Isn't she just adorable??

Ok, I am off to bed. It has been a busy week!

Hope to see some of you Thursday at the shop!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

just a little peek around the shop...

Well, hello out there! Anyone still reading this little ol' blog??

 I still trying to find the balance between the new shop, getting my Etsy shop off vacation mode, painting furniture and my 'real' life. I just wanted to stop in and say "hi" today and give you a little peek into what has been going on around here. I will be back to blogging very soon...I just need to find my groove again. 

I have been getting a lot of emails and Facebook messages asking me to show pics from around the shop...so here you go! I had to snap these quickly between customers, so they are not the best pics, but you get the idea of what we've got going on over here at Urban Farmgirl. I only wish I could have taken them earlier before the displays were picked apart. I need to remember to 'schedule' photo time for before the shop opens! {maybe I should write a book later on all those little things a new shop owner needs to know but it too busy to think about on her own! Haha!}

Anyway....we go...

I'll just be quiet and let the photos do the talking!

 I can't believe I made it through all those photos without any 'talking'...so rare for me! Haha! I am off for another day of fun at the shop! Maybe I will see you there!

{We are open 10-4 today...but our next sale event isn't until Feb 21-22-23}

If you are in the area, stop out and say "hello"...I am putting a few new things out today that were not available the last 2 days!

2202 Rural St - Rockford, IL