Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Take a Coffee Break in the Retro Cafe!

I am so excited - we have a new online shop on board!  Introducing - Retro Cafe Art Gallery!

Isn't it funny how things work out?  I have been buying Coffee Break Design items (Retro Cafe's wholesale line) for YEARS, and then I got to meet Kristin, the owner, at CREATE! on Friday (their booth was kiddy-corner from ours on Vendor Night).

I knew a lot of the line already but was overwhelmed with the amount of AMAZING stuff for sale (like the vintage skating stickers I just talked about on Monday!).  Kristin is the heart and soul of the business but she had some great helpers that night too.  I was so impressed with the booth and the merchandise display - couple that with the fact that I've been supporting her business for the last five years and it seemed like a great fit for Ephemeraology!

Here, in Kristin's words, is how she came to Retro Cafe Art Gallery:

Hi all! My name is Kristin Hubick, and I’m a full-time artist, crafter, and owner of Retro Café Art Gallery and Coffee Break Design. The name Retro Café Art Gallery came from my high school dream of opening up a retro inspired coffee shop/art gallery. And while that never happened, the name stuck and took on new meaning in 2004 with a presence on the web. Over the years, the site has grown and continues to grow. On the site you will find many unique art supplies including antique german doll parts, Dresden foils, glass glitter, nichos, jewelry supplies, collage sheets, and of course Coffee Break Design products. The Coffee Break line includes awesome Shrine Kits, Stencils, Acrylic Tags, Incredi-Tape, Vari-tone Ink, Collage-Cut Outs, ATC Frames, and so much more! In addition to running the websites I also sell my handcrafted jewelry at several art & craft shows and boutiques throughout the Midwest (and sometimes beyond). My first jewelry sale was when I was 6 years old. I started making “worry doll” earrings and convinced my mom to put an ad in the back of a craft magazine to sell them. I sold one pair, and to this day I still wonder if my mom was the buyer!

All of this began as a passionate hobby and a far away dream to “do art” full-time. Last December I quit my FT job as an Occupational Therapist to make it a reality, and have not looked back. I work harder than I ever have and certainly more hours, but I love it! Nothing brings me more joy than seeing art created with Retro Café Art Gallery and Coffee Break Design products! I truly appreciate each and every one of our customers, who make the site possible! Be sure to stop by our blog where we often showcase customer and Design Team work. We also love to host giveaways and contests!

There you have it, ladies and gents!  I love stories about how folks have quit their full-time jobs to follow their bliss (I wonder why?).  :D

In honor of Retro Cafe's debut on Ephemeraology, we're going to do a giveaway of our own!  Here's what to do:

  1. Make sure you follow this blog (just hit "follow" on the top in the blue bar)
  2. Make sure you follow Kristin's blog (just hit "follow" on the top in the blue bar)
  3. In the comments below or on my Ephmeraology FB page, let me know what your favorite item is from Retro Cafe Art Gallery (if you subscribe you can also e-mail me)
We'll run the giveaway until Monday at 5 p.m. CDT!  Because it's Labo(u)r Day in the US and Canada, if you're the winner we'll give you until Tuesday at noon CDT to acknowledge that you won.  Otherwise we'll pick a new winner.

And what, pray tell, does the winner receive?  A $25 GIFT CERTIFICATE to Retro Cafe Art Gallery!  WOO HOOOOOO!!!!  :D

But we're going to up the ante a little bit - if the winner also "likes" both Retro Cafe's and my Facebook pages, she'll throw in another fun prize!  :D

I know you're going to love this shop as much as I do - stop by Kristin's blog and give a friendly hello!  :D

Oh, and here are just a few of the pieces I've created using Retro Cafe's products:

"When Doves Converse" ATC (the bird stencil
 is from Coffee Break Design!)
"Et Red" ATC (the woman button is from Coffee Break Design -
I just left the backing on!)

"Guys' Weekend" ATC (the acrylic "guy" buttons
are from Coffee Break Design - I embellished
with black alcohol ink!)


  1. Well I've liked and followed both of you everywhere! And I love love love LOVE the shrine kits at Retro Cafe! Those are so very awesome! We've been making portable shrines out of cigarillo boxes but these will be great too! Thanks for the referral Mel!

  2. Retro Cafe is AWESOME! I stumbled on their wholesale site awhile ago and use their products in my classes. So gald you got to meet her. I am still bummed I didn't go to CREATE so I could meet YOU!

  3. I liked the large tower shrine kit the most. Someone used it in my resin flooding workshop at Create last weekend.

  4. Happy to have found you through CBD and I am following both of you :) I LOVE all of Kristin's cool stuff but my very favorite is the Mini-Dash Shrine Kit. It is supper versatile and easy to use :)

  5. I found Ephemeraology vis Retro Cafe. LOVE your "Guys Weekend" ATC! Would love to win the gift card to Retro! Thanks!

  6. I'm a long time follower of Kritin's and really glad to find your blog through her. Keep up the good work!

  7. I've been following Retro Cafe which brought me here. Now I'm following here and Liked on FB. My friend purchased some mini shrine earrings and mini flaming hearts. I love the arch windows and dresden glass and mini doors...oh heck I love it all and want to get my hands on more. So...I'm loving this giveaway!

  8. A friend told me about your blog because she knows what a fan I am of Retro Cafe products! If I had to pick a favorite it would be the mini-shrine trinkets (by Coffee Break Design)- but I love everything from Retro Cafe!... and now , your blog!

  9. Wow, Mel...thanks for the link to another gorgeous site/blog!! I have liked you both and followed Retro Cafe's blog too. Just began looking at all the goodies offered there, but I especially love all the vintage ephemera sheets!

    Thanks again!

  10. Cool to 'meet' you, Mel! I've been a fan of Retro Cafe and Coffee Break Designs for the past four years or so. I think I like the one of a kind items and the stencils best. I've got some pink bottle-brush Christmas trees that I adore that came from Retro Cafe. It's all great stuff!

  11. A fabulous new addition to retro cafe! Asking to name my favorite article from Retro is like asking me to sort through dew drops. I love the stencils for ATC's - and use them for journal pages. I'm also very fond of the chipboard birds!

  12. i've been a long time fan of retro Cafe Art..all her products are awesome!!So many on-of -a-kind items. Love the shrine trinkets and the little flowers in her shop!..among MANY OTHER ITEMS!!Liked you both and follow both of you!

  13. I follow you and Retro Cafe on Blogger! I love the collage sheets (recently purchased a steampunk and a doorways from Retro Cafe) and their eco and chunky windows and frames/doors..actually I love so many of Retro Cafe's items and have been purchasing from them over the last few months:) Many thanks for the terrific giveaway!

  14. This is a great store with awesome product and terrific service. I highly recommend the tiny coffins...not only do they make great statements on cards and tags but image then as earrings for Halloween or perhaps you have someone bugging you and you want to make a little clay doll...oops - did I actually type that? My fingers must have slipped - that's what I'll tell the judge anyway...bwahahahahaha.

  15. omg fans of both, follow both, and love both of you. What could be better! I absolutely love my german dollhead sheets "hello dollie" and my halloween cd of various sheets!

  16. What a fantastic prize giveaway! I follow Kristin and you publicly via Google Friend
    Connect...( windycindy ). Also, I follow all
    of you on Facebook. ( Cindi Hoppes )...
    Many thanks, Cindi

  17. I love the shine kits, but the stencils are great, and I love the charms and collage papers and EVERYTHING!
    Thanks for the chance to add a few of the above to my stash :~) ~Erin Glee

  18. I love the atc bases she sells but by favorite are the little tiny bird pendant kits!!!

  19. I love it all! it is hard to pick just one thing ;). My fav is everything Halloween related.


  20. I have to say that I love Retro Cafe and Coffee Break Desigsn stencils. Thanks for the opportunity to win. Love your work!

  21. WOO HOO!!! We've got a winner! Luci Brito, you're the winner of the $25 Retro Cafe Art Gallery gift certificate! :D Congratulations! I will e-mail you also! :D

    Thanks so much to everyone who played along - check back soon for more fun giveaways! :D