Daily Blog

Meet Abbey—She's Amazing!

Abbey Holden is my best friend's daughter, which kinda makes her feel like my daughter too. Lucky me! I've watched Abbey learn to ride a bike, fall down steps, swim countless laps at swim meets and giggle with my daughter, Emmie for hours on end. 

When Abbey started at a new high school, I wrote her a letter—telling her how brave I thought she was. When she left for college, I cried on my way over to give her a hug and another "you're the bravest Abbey note." When Abbey graduated, she was hired (no surprise to anyone that knows her) on the spot at Lily Pulitzer. How cool is that? This beautiful young lady, packed up her bags and moved to Philadelphia and started a new life. I know...So brave right?

What I love most about Abbey, (besides her amazing art) is her steadfast yearning for what is true and real. Yes, she had the glamorous job in a fun city, but something just didn't feel right. The job was amazing, but that comfort and knowing that you're in the right place, was off. And being as brave as she is, she quit her dream job.

Abbey loaded the life she had made in Philadelphia into her car and headed home to Minneapolis to find her art, herself and the true meaning of home. Watching Abbey grow her business, Abbey Holden Studio  is like watching God wave a magic wand directly over her heart. "Here, my child. This is where you will shine." Well, that's what I imagine he said anyway. :)

Following God's lead, Abbey started her own business—taking commissions and listening with a thoughtful ear to people like me! Abbey has an amazing eye for beauty as seen in this American flag that she brought to life based off my simple idea. It's even prettier in person! Fun fact, Abbey is the lead designer for my BOX! I cannot wait for you to see it! It's magical....Just like Abbey.

As you can imagine, I am not the first to highlight this amazing talent. Abbey has been written about on TBH By Emmie, Artful Living magazine, Milk & Honey magazine and her art has also been seen in one of my favorite magazines, Domino. Her gorgeous pieces are for sale at Gray Home and The Sitting Room in Excelsior MN and currently on many of Lily Pulitzers best selling prints and walls. 

My favorite thing about how God works is that His timing is always spot on. Abbey has been home for a year building her own brand, when Lily Pulitzer called and asked if Abbey would travel to stores and paint in house! So now—she has her own growing business and still gets her "other" dream job on the side. I mean...How awesome?!

Isaiah 60:22 When the time is right, I, the Lord, will make it happen.

Contact Abbey:

abbeyholden@gmail.com                                                                             www.abbeyholdenstudio.comFollow her on instagram @abbeyholdenstudio

XO ~Heather

Follow Heather on instagram @sweetshadylane and subscribe to blog for updates on design and all things lovely!

Patiently Waiting

Here's the thing...I thought my big reveal would be June 1. Well, that was a little naive of me. But, it's okay. I'm learning. You see, I want everything to happen right now. I want to reveal my full business with pictures and words and videos and snap my fingers—Wallah—and have it all be done. But I can't. I have to wait.I love this quote, because it literally reminds me that waiting is being in action. And I love being in action. Wait, I can say that better...I love POWERFULLY BEING IN ACTION! In my relationships, my novel, my new business, my yoga classes...Action is what keeps me trucking along even when the wheels are getting worn and tired. And if they brake, I just ask for help and boy, do I need a lot of it!I need help with marketing advice, in having more patience when people I need are busy, in finding the perfect products, in the shipping of said perfect products, with my website, my branding. I need help when doubt creeps in...Why do you think anyone would even want this? Ahh, yes, I need lots of help.

I hope my box (yep, box—that was a hint from a previous post) is something you'll want to save and possibly collect overtime. Oh, how I hope you'll want to collect them!! P.S They are beautiful!!

But for all this to happen, I need patience. A lot of it! Even when my excitement is through the roof! Even when the merchandise is piling up on my dining room table and overflowing onto my countertops. I have to wait, because waiting is the right thing, the smart thing.

Wow, Pinterest, you nailed it today! What a great reminder to enjoy the process. To harness my eagerness into a beautiful time of discovery and exploration. You win Pinterest. You win!

So, it looks like I have some more waiting to do— before I can reveal the entire collection. But just like me, I hope you'll actively wait in anticipation! I promise, it won't be much longer! 

Thank you Pinterest and God, for that last shout out! :)

XO ~Heather

My friend, Hayley

I am so excited to highlight a very special lady in my life! Meet Hayley Stoen—Owner of The Atelier Collection. Isn't she darling? I sure think so! Not only do I buy most of my vintage art from her, I also take her stylish tips on all things fashion. She is the epitome of classic and chic. I mean...Just look at her!

"Hayley is an art historian and dealer who curates and restores original works of art that she acquires at auctions, estate sales, and antique shops throughout the United States and Europe. Hayley has her B.A. in French from the University of Minnesota and has spent time living and working abroad in both France and England, cultivating her love of history and culture." She's the real deal!

I love when I find out Hayley has gone "hunting" for new pieces. She has "an informed and thoughtful selection process and offers an array of timeless seascapes, landscapes and genre paintings." My favorites are the nautical clipper ships that I cannot stop collecting! She also has "a variety of artistic styles and movements represented in the collection including realism, impressionism, fauvism, cubism and abstract expressionism." She has it all!

Not only does Hayley have (in my opinion) the very best collection of vintage art, she also has the talent to pick out the perfect frames that are unique to each and every piece. Every time she restores (yes, she does that too!) and frames her collections, she brings old art back to life! I love this!

Hayley started selling her art on Etsy a few years ago and had such success that she opened up her very own gallery! If you are lucky enough to live in Minnesota, you can stop by her AMAZING space, Le Petite Gallery in Excelsior. And if Hayley herself doesn't charm the socks right off your feet—her art surely will! Don't worry, you can still shop her collection on Etsy or her website. Both highlighted above. 

For my oldest daughter's birthday, as a surprise, I brought her to this sweet gallery and told her to pick out her very first vintage piece. She was thrilled! I loved watching her deliberate over each and every one...Holding them up in different lights, stepping away from them and looking at the perspective and wondering, "will I still love this years from now?" Well, the answer was and is... YES! I left knowing I had just started a new tradition...A new piece of art every year! Can you imagine the beautiful collection she will have over time? So fun!

For inquiries or to set up a gallery appointment, please contact Hayley Stoen at hayley@atelier-collection.com or text 858-692-3207. Don't forget to follow her on social media: Instagram @ateliercollection and facebook.com/ateliercollection. 

The Atelier Collection-200 Water Street-Suite 204-Excelsior, MN 55331

It has been my absolute pleasure introducing Hayley to you all! 

xo ~Heather

Follow me on instagram @sweetshadylane and subscribe to blog for daily design inspiration!





A Rare Bird

Today I stumbled upon a hidden Minneapolis gem...A Rare Bird on West 5oth Street. Kelly Wallace, the shop owner was a true delight and I fell in love with all the beautiful antiques and treasures that fill up this quaint little shop. Take a peak inside...

Kelly always had dream of owning the exact storefront that she currently occupies and still has to pinch herself that it's an actual reality. I love this! Growing up in the area, Kelly feels like her store is right in her own back yard and as a customer, I felt that same familiarity, almost like meeting up for coffee with an old friend. The store is so warm and welcoming and filled with treasures...I could hardly contain myself.

As most of you know, I am currently OBSESSED with Myrtle topiaries...And get ready for it...Kelly has at least a dozen currently for sale. Run—don't walk!! I even picked up a few more. I simply cannot resist these beauties!

This is one of my favorite images from the store. Kelly has an amazing eye and in every vignette—her store reflects it. Sorry, there are a couple of shell boxes not pictured, because I had to have them!

Just look at those sweeties beneath that fabulous mirror! I am in love! Myrtles everywhere!!

This is what the store front looks like...There are a few more antique stores on this street and surrounding corners that I have gone to for years (but now— this one is my FAVORITE!) It's funny, I always went to the same shops, and for 2 years simply just didn't take a few steps more until today. I'm so happy I did!

I promise, you are going to love this little rare bird of a store and her second store a few steps down, A Rare Bird 2. 

A Rare Bird ~Beautifully Curious Antiques and Goods

3016 W. 50th Street Minneapolis, MN 55410

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

XO ~Heather

Well Done

Having a presence on social media—most often leads people to believe or make assumptions that I care a lot about who is reading my blog, liking my posts or following me on instagram... And the truth is, I do not. Don't get me wrong, I love hearing from readers and I'm always in awe when something I've written or posted touches someone in an inspirational way, but my day won't be ruined because a picture didn't get many likes or no one seemed to notice what I wrote. With that said, I am having an absolute BLAST with a platform that allows me to share my thoughts (most days I simply cannot believe that people are even slightly interested in what I'm up to,) explore what inspires me through design and hopefully through the process—lead others to be inspired and creative as well. But to attach to the comments or likes I receive would be a dangerous route, that I am unwilling to take.

Today at River Valley Church, I was convicted (like I am most Sundays) by the powerful message that was delivered with absolute love and care for my life. You can watch the entire message here. In my chair, I sat upright and at attention as my pastor asked, "Who do you want your well done to come from?"

Too often, I come across individuals who find worth in their friends, jobs, relationships, outcomes, wealth and even social media.  And if you take the question my pastor asked and let it sit in the authenticity of your existence, "who at the end of the day, do you most want to please?" Maybe the answer will surprise you. Take a look at what comes first in your life. The list— thankfully can be rearranged and appropriated.

So why did this question strike me so personally this morning? Because lately, I've been starting my day first—by seeing what picture I will post—instead of beginning with my devotion. And maybe you don't think that's such a big deal and that's just the thing, my devotion will happen, but I had things out of order. And having things out of order can cause havoc on the rest of the day, not to mention—can create a habit that ultimately won't serve me or others.

So my new rule is this...Prayer and time with God first, then instagram and blog after. And isn't that amazing that God gives us the freedom and will to come to these kind of changes on our own time. I love that!

I've said before that I believe it pleases God when we pursue the passions that He has put on our hearts and my instagram and blog are great examples of His goodness in my life. I'm also thankful that I'm paying attention to what comes FIRST in my life, because I know for certain that I won't find my well done in my comment column or number of likes on a picture. 

So I ask, "who does YOUR well done come from?"

XO ~Heather

Matthew 25:21