I designed some new styles and decided to give a couple to two of my good friends for their birthday. But before I wrapped them up I made sure to document them with a mini photo shoot in my backyard.

shadesasatchel2may2013 shadesasatchel3may2103

And here’s a pic of my photographer and one of the best people you’ll probably ever meet with an oversize version of the bags above



Spreading the Joy


Joy Duo Ring Set via Instagram


Last week I created a new satchel bag design that I will be sharing pictures of soon. In the mean time I wanted to reveal some materials that will be used for upcoming mini messengers:

Lace and crochet trim for a boho-inspired mini messenger



Chevron patterned mini messengershadesadesignschevron


The Shades A store is now open!

The main product photos are posted on each listing. You can check out additional views in the Product Photos section of this blog!


All the products in the store are designed and produced by me. My bags are hand sewn and my jewelry also created by hand. I’m always working on new projects, which means that the shop will be updated randomly throughout the month. Check this blog and my Instagram (@Shades_A_Designs) to see what’s coming soon. Upcoming products may be completely new designs or variations of existing styles.

Mini messengers are a signature Shades A Designs item. You can count on new styles arriving in the store fairly often!



Coming Next Week!

shadesa designs ad1

Exciting EXCITING news! The online store is opening next week and the first eight products are up on shadesa.bigcartel.com (on “Coming Soon” status). I’m still editing descriptions and pricing, so you won’t be able to hit “add to cart” until next week. But until then check it out and do some browsing, and be sure to come back once the store opens!

Here’s a few of the products:

Jewelry and Accessories

Made to Order Ocean Jasper Necklace. 7 color tones available

shadesa ocean jasper

Joy Duo Ring Set

shadesa joy duo

Promotional Coffee Cozy

shadesa coffee cozy

One-Of-A-Kind Bags

Urban Medium Convertible Tote

shadesa urban convertible

Cafe Convertible Mini Messenger Bag – iPad Bag and Bookbag

cafe mini messenger

Growth and Progress

photo by shades a

The primary purpose of my blog is to share product updates and photos that I can’t include on my online store. But more than that, my desire is to have my blog communicate who I am as a creative individual. I want my pieces to have a story and a persona behind them… and no matter how private I am, I think it’s impossible to completely exclude posts about my life if I want the things I produce (whether it be writing, photos, or products) to be genuine.

I realized two things about myself recently. One is that I love being by myself and exploring places on my own. The other is that I always need a new project or creative venture to keep myself refreshed. The whole process of planning out and creating Shades A Designs has been a great learning experience and it constantly reminds me that I can only do so much at one time. And there have been so many times in the past three months where I’ve had to pause and do something not bags and accessories related in order to keep myself sane.

shades a berkeley cafe

One thing I’ve been getting into is gardening. I was not born with a green thumb. But in the past couple weeks I’ve had a growing (hehe) desire to learn how to garden and basically keep a plant alive. So I bought some plants to fill my small garden and now I even call them my “babies” (I know, I’m pretty strange). I also had to train myself not to get freaked out by earthworms. Another thing I’ve picked up lately is photography. I read a magazine with articles written by some amazing bloggers and I was inspired to learn a little bit more about how to take good photos. I still fumble with the settings on my camera but at least I have ventured away from the Auto setting. So today I picked up my camera to snap photos of my small garden. The first and last photos are my honest attempt at photo editing. I am just so thankful to have the time and ability to learn new things in this season of my life. Shades A Designs is encouraging me to exercise every inch of my creative brain.

shades a garden

Oh, and my site is launching this month! More about that soon 🙂