Letterpress Sample Sale!

Have I ever mentioned how many designs I've created since the beginning of a. favorite design in 2005? To be honest, I'm not even sure I know. I do know we have over 400 active styles. FOUR HUNDRED. That's a lot of cards. And printing. Through the years we've discontinued dozens, if not hundreds of styles. When this happens, the stock just sits. Occassionally I'll make mystery bags but mostly, the stock just sits. Which is a shame. They are perfectly good cards and still capable of delivering a long distace warm fuzzy to the recipient. So this year I've decided to gather all those vintage a. favorite design cards and sell them at our first ever Letterpress Sample Sale.


For one day only, four hours only you can get a supercute, maybe even a cheeky, letterpress printed card for $1. ONE DOLLAR! They originally sold for $4.50-$5 each. It's a HUGE discount! We'll also have some sheets of gift wrap for $1. each, originally $3.50 each. Plus we'll have "scraps" which are letterpress printed cards that are slightly imperfect for only $1. an ounce (two-three cards). Most people wouldn't even know they weren't perfect. They can be mailed, used for scrapbooking, collage, making gift tags, garland, the possibilitites are endless! 

Come see us! Stock up on some letterpress goodies, gift wrap, pencils and scraps.

Saturday, Jully 22nd
11 am to 3 pm

a. favorite design
4222 N Ravenswood
Chicago, IL 60613 

Cash encouraged but cards accepted.
Hope to see you there!

Christmas in July sale at our vintage shop!

I love Christmas! Decorations, shopping for the absolute perfect gift for your loved ones, baking, decorating, sending snail mail, wrapping pretty presents! I could go on and on, it really is the most magical of seasons. This love has led me to collect lots of vintage Christmas goodies.

vintage Christmas ephemera

I've always had a passion for finding vintage treasures & rescuing them. Over the years I’ve gathered a large collection of vintage stationery and trinkets. I’ve decided it’s time to share some of my treasures on ETSY.

vintage Christmas ephemera

At If Found Please Return, you’ll find a beautifully curated shop filled with vintage ephemera. During July all items are 25% off. Each item is original and vintage, once it’s sold out, it’s gone. Get some vintage ephemera shipped to your door! It's like a flea market but without the dust, humidity, sweaty crowd or bartering...


Beach Vacation Daydreams

It's February. Which honestly feels like the longest month of the year in the Midwest despite what the calendar says. Most years there is a giant snowstorm in February, followed by subzero temperatures and ridiculously frigid wind chills. It’s winter’s last hurrah & she leaves with vengeance. Chicago is typically a frozen tundra all month long. This time of year always gets me daydreaming of vacation. Especially beach vacations, which I’m very fortunate, my Mr. and I try to schedule once a year. While daydreaming of vacation I visited Etsy. I never have a problem finding items that are handmade with care or vintage goodies; both of which I adore. Below are just a few of my Beach Vacation themed favs.

Vacation Dreaming on Etsy

From top Left: 
Greena Organics – Double Duty Body Bar – Sunscreen & Nourishment // Twininas – Lace up Boho Leather Sandals //  korpita – Quirky House Key West Print // Nautical North – Florida Keys Wood Chart // Cocomutz – No Top Palm Frond Hat // Goofy Moose – Green Florida Sea Glass Earrings // Robert Paris – Capt. Tony’s Saloon Original Watercolor // Curio Boxx – Vintage Florida Map Glasses // Ivy Chilly – Family Size Hammock

Be sure to visit Twininas on Etsy. Maria is graciously offering a. favorite design blog readers 10% off! Use code TWININASFAVORITE

Click to see my ever growing list of items I love on Etsy.

Please note: All artist have given a. favorite design, inc. permission to use their photo for this blog post only. If you wish to use these images you must ask permission directly from the artist. Thanks for understanding.


Treasure Hunting

I'm a treasure hunter. And I come by it honestly, from both sides of the family. My grandma on my dad's side loved garage sales. Grandpa on my mom's side enjoyed visiting auctions and couldn't resist a bargain whether he needed it or not. I take after both. Treasure hunting at garage sales, rummage sales, flea markets & visiting stores is a favorite pastime of mine. During the summer most weekends you can find me treasure hunting. I'm also a romantic, which feeds my desire to purchase items with a past instead of new. I like the idea of owning something that has a great story. A history. I thought it might be fun to share some of my favorite scores. I'll start with the highlight of my hunting this summer....

This is what I saw as I walked up to a gigantic rummage sale in Evanston this past July. I was immediately smitten with the piece in back! It had the look of a Sheldon Rose (another story for another time...), which I have been hunting for, for several years now. This may sound dramatic but the moment I saw it my heart raced. I'm not kidding. I was so ecstatic. All I could think is “I need this.” The only issue... it was in a box of purchased items, sitting next to the owner outside. I stopped a few feet away and told my mom “I have to have that. Should I offer him some money for it?” It had a $10 price tag on it, so I knew what he paid. She encouraged me to go with my gut. Without even seeing what kind of shape it was in I counted my cash and threw out an offer of everything in my wallet. No joke, I really wanted it. The guy was very kind but I could tell a little leery. He told me his wife picked it out so I would have to ask her & she was getting the car, wouldn't be back for awhile. I gave him my card and walked inside nervously.

I was so distracted while inside shopping. I couldn’t focus on anything except the amazing letterpress block wall hanging outside. My poor mom & shopping partner kept talking to me but I was not very responsive. She decided we should leave after not finding anything. As we walked out we saw the wife hopping out of her car & coming up to talk to her husband. Again, my heart started to race. I was so anxious but really wanted them to know how much I loved the piece & how perfect it was for a letterpress printer like myself. I approached again, after the husband explained my offer. I think they were both a little baffled by my excitement. I might have come on a little strong but it was just so perfect. I'm very happy to say after considering it, the wife agreed. HOORAY! I am still so grateful. It's absolutely beautiful and every time I look at it I smile and even say a little thank you to Rebecca (the wife). I did have a moment of “did I overpay?” which thankfully, my mr. (Tom) quickly dismissed. 

Here I am with my treasure immediately after money changed hands! And below is a not-so-great image of the piece on our living room wall. The lighting was a little dark but you get the idea.

Also I'd like to mention the very kind Rebecca is a collage artist and jewelry maker. She has a great etsy shop called Shop Industrial Grace & can be found on facebook.