How great is this? Vanessa, the inventor of these, rush-shipped it because she is awesome.

 Portland was my very first mini design camp. I did not know what to expect. I want to do it again.

We somehow crammed two days worth of information into one extended day (the fact that there was no individual instruction helped). It was a lot to take in, but these girls were quick studies.

I became best friends with Lia, the owner of the campsite studio and also the fabulous shop Ellinee, and I am so grateful that she was sweet enough to offer to let me mess up her impeccable studio for a day. (PS, don't miss her blog, it is awesome.)

Seriously, Portland. The birds.

After much learning, it was hands-on flower and photography fun times. I split the girls into two factions, and there was much competition over who would cut/arrange/style/photograph the best. One team ended up using baker's twine and washi tape as props, creating the most Portland-y twee vignette the world has ever known. It was amazing.

Goodie bag contents included such items as glow sticks and Slinkies, and the aforementioned tape/twine combo. Another big thanks to Katnawlins for the beautiful cards!

Some of the campers' Instagram photos from the day. See them all here. PS, how cute is Lia's dog? He was a mess.

In closing: I love mini camp, I love Portland, I love Lia, I love dogs, I love my intern Sarah (not pictured because she was BUSY), and I especially love everyone who came. Y'all are my favorite. See, I told you I said that after every camp.

I couldn't resist one more photo of Portland's coffee. And chocolate sprinkle donuts, OK!

Want to come to design camp and learn stuff? There are three left this year -- NYC, DC, and Chicago. Go get your spot!

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp
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Hello and happy Monday, all you fine people! I have returned from my week in Seattle and Portland, and both design camps (including my first MINI camp!) exceeded all of my expectations and then took those expectations and turned them into pretty unicorn fairy dust and rainbows. Also, I drank a lot of coffee.

I will post more detailed recaps of each camp soon, but in the meantime, please enjoy these Instagram pics from our Seattle camp. (For more, see #designcampseattle.)

So much fun, right? All photos courtesy of me, @notmartha, and @jessaspen. Thanks, ladies!

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp
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Photo: Karen Mordechai

1. Hey, guess what, y'all? A couple of people have switched their camp locations from Seattle to Portland -- AND I decided to raise the Seattle class size to 20 -- so I currently have FOUR openings in Seattle. Get on it, all you waitlisters! I am very excited about this development. Sign up for Seattle HERE.

2. Speaking of Portland, I still have openings there too. And the price is now $250! (PS, the price is also $250 for those of you who signed up before I did the discount. I didn't forget about you!) Mini-camp, yay! Sign up for Portland HERE.

3. The NYC camp is going to be held in the GORGEOUS new Sunday Suppers loft, pictured above. It's located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, which I hear is sort of a happening place. Oh, and I've raised the class size of that one to 20, too. Because I love y'all. Oh, and Nick Olsen will be there. What? Yes. Everything is beautiful, go sign up, the end.


*Unrelated: Thanks so much to everyone who's written/commented to ask about us -- we are fine and safe and despite being surrounded by downed lines/trees, somehow even have power! Around 7,000 people here don't, though, so if you're one of them, you are welcome to come over. We're having tortilla soup tonight.

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp

Portlanders, friends, and countrymen! I have a special announcement for you. Yes, YOU.

Due to y'all's excellent communication skills, I am realizing that many of you are having to take off work to attend my Thursday mini-camp on Sept 20. Also, I must confess to you that this spur-of-the-moment thing has meant that I don't have as many campers signed up as I had hoped. ALSO, I would love to hold more camps in a one-day format (which would mean I could accommodate more of you in fewer days, hooray!), but this is my first time doing it, so y'all are basically guinea pigs. But extra cute ones. (FEAR NOT: it is still going to be awesome.)

So, taking all of that into account, and also just because I am feeling fabulous after Bathroom Week, I am knocking $100 off the price of the camp. Yes! I know! I am real excited, and I can't wait to see your beautiful faces there, so let's make it happen! A hundred dollars! Exclamation points!!!

Sign up here. You can still pay the deposit and bring the rest to camp, or you can just do the whole shebang right now. There are options!

Also, champagne cocktails. And this beautiful studio. And SO MUCH learnin'. GO!

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp
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I think I should announce last-minute camp additions more often, because Portland is coming together more easily than any other city thus far. FIRST OF ALL: A lovely lady named Lia (alliteration!) wrote to offer her GORGEOUS studio space, and I could not be more grateful and happy. I mean, just look at it. I LOVE YOU, LIA.

The studio, which serves as headquarters for Ellinée Design House, is located on the 4th floor of an old warehouse in something called the Pearl. I hear that is a pretty cool area. I also hear that there is an awesome cupcake shop right around the corner, so. We'll be getting some items from there, believe it.

In case you didn't know, Ellinée Design House is a design studio specializing in wedding, holiday, and baby stationery. They also have a blog where they teach you to make, oh, I don't know, beautiful paper flowers like this?

I cannot wait to have the very first mini design camp in this beautiful space! I cannot also wait to just be in Portland, since it's my first time. Y'all, do I have to get a tattoo?

Don't you want to join us? Yes. Yes, you do. I mean, what else are you doing this fun on Sept. 20? There are still spots left, so sign up here!

(All photos courtesy Lia Griffith.)

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp
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This is how I picture Portland: a cute girl delivering cupcakes to me on a bike with a puppy in the basket.

Photo: Portland Sunshine

Portlanders! I've checked it all out, re-arranged my schedule, consulted my tarot cards, and the stars are aligning on your mini-camp. It is HAPPENING!

Here are the details:

When: Thursday, Sept. 20, 10 am - 5 pm.*
Where: TBA (and I need help with this so if you own a beautiful art studio that holds 15, CALL ME.)
What: You'll learn the same things the regular campers do! (What's missing: the day of individual instruction.)
Class Size: 15
Cost: $350
Misc: Tuition includes lunch, snacks, and one of those cute neon goodie bags.

Sign up HERE!

*I am sorry it's a weekday, but that was all I could wrangle in time. And if none of you sign up, I'll know it's because of that and not because you don't like me OR my camp OR my stupid hand gestures. Right?


Whee, I am so excited! Y'all! Cupcakes! Birds! Bikes! Let's do the damn thing.

AuthorAB Chao
Categoriesdesign camp
7 CommentsPost a comment