Wednesday, January 14, 2015

closing doors.

I still remember the conversation I had with my mom, as we sat eating crepes by a sunny window in my favorite little restaurant on Oahu. She and my dad were visiting me while Chris was deployed, and that day, she was encouraging me to start selling my paintings on Etsy. We talked through the logistics of packaging, and about how good it would be for me to have something creative to pour myself into while Chris was gone. I had just quit a painting class at a local art school, and was feeling rather like a failure, but determined to discover what I really wanted my creativity to look like.

It took me 6 more months before I opened up shop. My first sale was from my Aunt in Texas, and I spent copious amounts of time packaging two 16x20 canvases for her, and probably 20 yards of bubble wrap. Pretty soon, I was selling little 6x6 paintings (I called them Cuties) faster than I could create them. It was so much fun for me to send out those tiny colorful squares out into the world, to sit on shelves and hang on walls, and make people smile.

After we moved to Florida in 2012, I was determined to figure out how to make my artwork into prints. I was tired of tediously packaging canvases, and after having Silas, I needed to simplify. Selling prints of my work allowed me to spend less time packaging, and more time creating new products. Soon, the shop filled with smaller, easier-to-manage products, and large canvases were reserved for custom orders. One of those new products was my hand-painted mahogany necklace pendants, and they remain one of my very favorite products to date.

This month, I'll be closing the doors to HelloHue Studio. I'm excited for the freedom it will bring me-- to spend more time kissing little cheeks, to explore new areas of creativity, to create artwork without the pressure of making it sell-able. But closing this chapter is certainly bittersweet. This shop, and my artwork, has been a part of my identity for a long time. For some reason, 'stay-at-home mom with a small blog' sounds much more dull when I don't add in the "and I sell my artwork online in my "free" time". But the reality is that it is not dull at all- it's a beautiful, difficult, precious calling to be a mom to these kids, and I'm ready to sacrifice a few things up to be a better one.

I'll still be accepting custom orders for paintings, necklaces, and canvases, so feel free to email me if you are interested in that! In the meantime, in order to get rid of my current inventory, I'm offering 50% off the entire shop with the code HELLOGOODBYE at checkout. Many pieces are sold out already (I'm pretty amazed they went so quickly!), so hurry if there's something you really want.

It's really been an honor and a joy to share my artwork with you over the past few years. My hope is to continue sharing artwork and my creative endeavors here, even if there's not an Etsy shop behind them. 


  1. Good luck on your future endeavors! Mommy and blogger are not dull at all! Both are full time jobs in themselves.

    I look forward to seeing what the future brings you :)

  2. I loved your original acrylics!... I hope after your hiatus u will post another site where we'll be able to enjoy your creativity!.

  3. I have to admit I got a little teary-eyed when I read this post, but I am so very excited for you!! I discovered your blog back in 2010, and I remember reading every post and just smiling from ear to ear. I then fell in love with your artwork, and it wasn't long before I bought my first Hello Hue paintings. They have made several moves with us, have adorned many a wall of our homes, and they now hang so beautifully in our daughter's nursery. Every time I look at them, I'll think of your precious shop, and I wish you all the best, fellow stay-at-home mama. I have loved keeping up with your growing family, and thank you for inspiring all of us every day!

  4. So excited for you and proud of your wisdom! It is a closing door, but its opening one too, as everything has an opportunity cost. This will take you somewhere new, I know it!

  5. Good for you for knowing what you need to do and doing it! I am also a mom of two (2.5-year-old boy and 1-year-old girl) who tries to do too much. I've often had the urge to quit a few of my side endeavors, but I worry about what people will think if there's only a "stay-at-home-mom" title behind my name. Thanks for the reminder that "not now" does not mean "not ever." Dreams and ambitions can wait as we do our most important work of nurturing our littles!


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