Signed, Sealed, Delivered…..

It is officially on the streets this week. Our 12th catalog – the best yet. We are offering so many new items & a few new vendors this season. Be sure to check it out and if you aren’t on our mailing list yet, join right here.

FW09 front - Signed, Sealed, Delivered.....FW09 back - Signed, Sealed, Delivered.....

catalog in the works

SF1 - catalog in the worksHi Buds!!

We have been working hard to create another great catalog experience for all of our buds out there. We just want to give you a quick preview of what is coming.

Our catalog designer, Mindy, has been hard at work on creating original artwork with a Soul Flower flair…she does an awesome job! Check out the cover for our fall/winter catalog. And check out Mindy’s site, MayDayDesign.net, for more information on her & her awesome work.

Peace & Positive Vibes,
Your Buds @ Soul Flower

More Bliss: Our winner Nana Jill

old port2 - More Bliss: Our winner Nana Jill

Thanks for all the fabulous photo entries you sent in to win a soul flower gift certificate – we had so many more than expected! It was so much fun to see everyone in their soul flower threads. We have picked a winner but we also decided, because there were so many great ones, that we are doing a CircleTee giveaway too for some of our “honorable mentions”. Watch for those pictures over the next month here on our blog.

 

Today, we are posting our grand prize winner, Jill. Jill & Max are pictured here in their cool threads. Here is Jill’s message she wrote with this entry.

 

 

“The attached picture is Max and me, Jill aka Nana walking in the Old Port section of Portland Maine last August, 2008. We were on vacation, visiting family and all I packed were Soul-Flower clothing items. The dress I am wearing is the very first item of clothing I got from Soul-flower. Actually, my daughter Hope Starr (Max’s mom) ordered this dress for herself and it fit me better. Since this dress, almost every article of clothing i own comes from Soul-flower. Same for Max. We love your clothing. It feels so right to me, to be wearing clothing I got from you. It fits my personality and essence, as it does for my daughter and my grandson.
Thanks for all the wonderful duds!
Jill and Max”

Blissful Pictures – Our Customers

Hey Hey Buds, We have received so many great entries for the blog contest, we just want to share a few of our favorites here. Thanks so much for the great stories & the fabulous pictures (especially those kiddles). We are here because of you & just love the vibe of all these photos. Our winner will be announced tomorrow. In the meantime, enjoy the pictures:

37 - Blissful Pictures - Our Customers

 

 

Meet Lucy, the grandaughter of our bud Gloria. She is wearing her gauza dress, looking out “at all the wonderful sites that await her to discover”.

 

 

 

41 - Blissful Pictures - Our Customers

 

 

This is Nolan, right after his mama voted for the 2009 election. He is sporting his not too young for peace shirt. (along with his I voted sticker).

 

06 - Blissful Pictures - Our Customers
Not all our pictures we received were of kids, some were of our buds too – here is on on Jam Cruise. Wearing the Kingston Roots tee.

 

 

 

 

30 - Blissful Pictures - Our CustomersFrom Glen –
“Here is a pic of me in your pants … hmm that didn’t come out right !!
Peace and Love
Glen”

 

 

42 - Blissful Pictures - Our CustomersAdorable Siena twirling in our twirler skirt. This was one of our favorite skirts we carried….and so cute on her.

 

 

19 - Blissful Pictures - Our Customers
And here is our bud Kim at Hueco Tanks State Park in El Paso, TX.
I will post more pictures & announce our blog winner tomorrow.

Follow Your Bliss

28 - Follow Your Bliss Are you hitting the road for a festy or two this season? Do you have your soul flower threads packed & ready to go? We are so glad you are taking us along. But also be sure to bring your camera & join in our brand spanking new blog contest.

We want more of our buds’ smilin’ faces on our website. Wearing Soul Flower threads. So, email us a photo of you in your kindest of threads, along with a story of the photo, and you can win a $50 gift certificate. We will publish the winning story & photo right here on our blog in June. Be sure to get us those pics by June 18th & we will inform you via email if you win. We are going to add to our collage of customers using all the entries. Check out our current images here: http://www.soul-flower.com/feedback.htm. Now email your photos & stories to peggy@soul-flower.com.
01 - Follow Your Bliss

Meet Ruthie Rainbow (our review winner)…

We loved reading all the great reviews on our site these last couple of weeks. While they are all fun to read and so many shine, one was extra special to us, and that one is…..drum roll please…..Ruthie Rainbow. Ruthie’s mama, Georgia, wrote a great review of the Rainbow Peace Skirt. And sent a couple of adorable pictures of her little rainbow loving toddler, Ruthie. Here is the review. Thanks Georgia, your gift certificate is on the way!!! And thanks too to everyone who participated. Watch for another contest out here by the end of the week.

Ruthie’s Magic Rainbow Skirt by our bud Georgia
rainbow+ruthie - Meet Ruthie Rainbow (our review winner)...“My little girl “Ruthie Rainbow” is full of magic, creativity, and imagination. At 3, she is strong-willed in her desire to create her own styles each morning, before we head out the door at 7 am. Often, she wakes up, groggily rubbing her eyes & announcing “I need to wear rainbow clothes”. When I showed her this skirt online, she told me, “this is perfect” and when it arrived in the mail, she hugged it to her chest and vowed, “I will wear this FOREVER”. Now, it is a struggle to get her to wear anything else! How perfect that there was one for her twirly-whirly mama too! We both wore this skirt to the CD release party of our Kid’s Band “Spiral Up Kids” and twirled on the dance floor. Our outfits brought many smiles and compliments and we both felt so special in our rainbow skirts. We just LOVE them! Thank you Soul-flower for designing clothing feels so good & let’s your true spirit shine through! These rainbow skirts are not only beautiful but magical too! (I guess we’ll need one in the next size too, as my Ruthie Rainbow is growing up on me, before my eyes!)”

Sign Sealed Delivered

icon - Sign Sealed DeliveredSign, sealed, and almost delivered….finally. After months of hard work we have our Spring Summer ’09 issue out the door. It takes while to get to you. Apparently up to 4 weeks. I am not really sure how that works but if you are impatient like me & just can’t wait to see your soul flower issue, click here to see the virtual version.

I have to send out a HUGE (or as cody would say – gynormous) thanks to our graphic artist Mindy Hoskin-Driscoll of mayday design. She continues to create unique and inspiring artwork for us.

So, let us know your thoughts and watch that mail – it will be your way shortly.

Treehugging Karma

Here at Soul Flower we are working hard to create some positive karma for the holidaze.
We have joined forces with the Arbor Day Foundation to help the environment by planting more trees. This year, we started planting two trees for every one that is used in our catalog production. It makes sense to replenish what has been taken, and this is just one step in a series of steps we are taking to help the environment. Read more here.
And here is a little karma for your pocketbook – we’re offering Free Priority Mail Shipping on all orders over $50 between now and Dec.15th 2008. That is $7.95 off of your order total, to receive it, just enter the coupon code TREEHUGGER when you are checking out.

Virtual Catalog out now

icon - Virtual Catalog out now

Our fall/winter ’08 catalog is now in the mail but this time we’ve provided a new way to view the catalog. While you’re waiting on yours, we invite you to check-out our new Online Catalog here. This is something we’ve been working on for awhile and we’re excited to provide another (and eco-friendly) way to view the catalog. You’ll notice a new layout that is easy to view and offers more product descriptions.

 

As exciting as it is to have this new format, it’s even more exciting to see what’s on the inside! Please let us know what you think.

Three Songs

Hi friends –
It’s 3:30am and it’s the crickets and me that appear to be the only ones up right now. I really don’t mind, it’s a great time to let the thoughts just pass through my head. However, there’s this one thought that just won’t let, go so here I am writing…

Being in an introspective mood, this idea came to mind to try and define myself via music. Specifically, if you could pick three songs that define who you are what would they be? I’d imagine that over the course of several years the songs would change as your circumstances in life change – but wouldn’t it be insightful if you could keep a list that from time to time you could go back and reflect on?

So, here I go – if you feel like sharing your list feel free – this is an exercise that hopefully will bring you closer to who you are – a reflection in the mirror type thing. Anyways, here’s my list:

Song #1 is Bruce Cockburn’s Wondering Where the Lions Are. This song has always puts me in a good mood and it’s always had this sort of spiritual, uplifting, the world can’t get me down kind of message that I think is great. This song has been on my list all along and I don’t really see that changing.
lyrics

Song #2 is John Lennon’s Watching the Wheels:
This song is a reminder to me to live my life the way I see fit, and not get caught up with what others are thinking. I need to be reminded from time to time – we’re not hamsters on a wheel or cogs in a machine. Jump off, reflect, take a break, blaze a trail, just be…

lyrics

The third song is Bob Dylan’s It’s Alright Ma (I’m only Bleeding). To me, this is probably the yang to Bruce Cocburn’s Wondering Where the Lions Are. There’s as much darkness as there is light (in this world) – it’s how we choose to deal with it that defines us. Not everything in this song I relate to – but to me it’s like Nirvana’s Teen Spirit. It’s angst, rage, cynicism – but it’s also saying hey, I’m going to be okay.
lyrics

So, there you have it – probably know more about me now than you care to but that’s where I’m at right now. ‘It’s alright ma – I can make it!’
Peace and positive vibes to you all. I can’t believe it – I just finished this at 4:20 – some things never change I guess.

-Mike

Welcome to Our Warehouse (and meet Chad)

Perhaps some of you have recently been sitting around a summer campfire, wearing your favorite Soulflower shirt and wondering, “What’s going on at Soulflower?” “What sort of place did these great duds that I am wearing come from?” Anyone? Well, even if not, here is your chance for a little behind the scenes tour of our warehouse.

Our “warehouse” is in St Paul Minnesota, and sure, its full of boxes, tape, shelves, and computers just like any warehouse. After that though, it diverges a bit from what you might normally expect. Hardly a minute passes during the day without music playing throughout the place, and we try to keep up a laid back atmosphere. (except during the catalog rush of course)

racks copy - Welcome to Our Warehouse (and meet Chad)Here’s a birds eye view of the main room with all sorts of new clothing folded and sorted and ready to be sent to you! If we ever get stuck in here in a disaster, we might not be too happy eating only lip balm, but we could each wear a new shirt every day for years!

packing desk copy - Welcome to Our Warehouse (and meet Chad)This is the spot where all of our merchandise is packed up to send out to the customer. We’ve got every shape and size of new and about-to-be-reused boxes and envelopes. Plus, we have a couple of huge maps so we can check out where all you folks live. If you look close you might even see Jenn through the window answering some of your e-mails!

feedback copy - Welcome to Our Warehouse (and meet Chad)We’ve got the place decorated a little like a funky apartment. Almost every bit of wall space (that isn’t covered by racks of clothing) is covered by tapestries or concert posters. This wall, however, is reserved for some of our favorite letters and pictures from customers!

packages - Welcome to Our Warehouse (and meet Chad)By the end of any given day we have a pile of packages ready for pickup, so we send them on their way and get ready for a bunch of new orders tomorrow! Hopefully now you have an idea of what’s going on around here, Thanks for coming on a virtual tour on the world wide web!

Your warehouse bud,
-Chad

p.s. I’ve been here at Soulflower for about 4 great years, working on the site, on our operations, and on getting better goods out to you faster! All the great customers we have make it a pleasure to work here in the Soulflower warehouse.

My favorite thing to do outside of work is to go out and see live music, but I also love building things from wood, fixing up my house, golfing, biking, and playing organized whiffleball. I lived in Madison, WI for several years where I also went to school at UW, before moving here to Minneapolis. I’ve come to like Minnesota a lot, but I’ll always stay the biggest Badger fan in town. Go Bucky!

 

Soul-Flower Mike!

mike - Soul-Flower Mike!

Meet Mike, one of the founders of Soul-Flower.com:

Hi folks – I must admit that writing about yourself is kind of a strange exercise – but here I go…

My role with Soul-flower is more specialized than it was when we first started. In the beginning I wore every hat since we didn’t have employee’s, but today we have a most excellent team of folks (many of which you may have met online or via phone calls) who handle the day to day operations and I can focus on where we’re going as a company – in terms of the catalog, website, and product selection. My life today is very busy, but also laid back.

Peggy and I both live in Des Moines now, which is where we’re both from originally. We both work from home (but in different parts of the house) and our children (Siera -age 6, and Cody- age 4) have a great time playing outside, going to their schools, and getting to visit their grandparents on a regular basis. However, as much as I love Des Moines, I still love the Twin Citie’s too and you can find me at the warehouse once or twice a month.

I miss answering the phones and having “live” contact with our customers – so I have to go up to get my fix 🙂 I also enjoy being where the action is and we have lots of fun at the warehouse while your orders are being picked, packed, and shipped. Through all these years we’ve always had fun, and hopefully you feel a little of that happiness and love when you open your packages. The rest of my lifestyle is pretty easy to figure out – all you have to do is visit our website, catalog, or this blog. Soul-flower is a reflection of our lifestyle, and nothing makes us happier than seeing others who have had a Soul-flower experience and subscribe to many of the same ideals. I like to think that we created a “General Store” that you can visit via online or thru the catalog – maybe you’re just wanting to see what we’re up to or you want to make a purchase – it doesn’t matter as long as when you leave you have a smile on your face, a bounce in your step, and know that you’re part of a larger tribe 🙂
Peace and Respect –
Mike S.

Hippie Onesies

treehugger - Hippie OnesiesSome of my favorite creations are t-shirts. I am pretty much a t-shirt addict – I love tees that allow me to express myself. I advertise that I am a treehugging, earth-loving, green mama. And that is getting easier & easier now. Even large department stores are selling tees expressing eco-friendly virtues and ideas in so many fun ways. But I always take my purchases one step further – I ask myself “where was this tee made?” and “what is this tee made of?” If I can feel good about the answers to those questions, I pretty much always buy it.

Sometime I see crazy $50 and up tees out there – I am not going to pay extra for some designer name or manufactured “green” statement. But there is one thing I will pay extra for – organic cotton. I love the feel of organic cotton, first of all, but I also love the feeling of knowing I am wearing something that was created free of toxins & chemicals. Something completely natural.

think - Hippie OnesiesMy addiction to tees spreads right into my buying and designing for Soul-Flower. Many of our Soul-Flower tees are designed in house, others are from small, independent artists. And as we continue to bring in more and more tees, our focus is now on organic cotton, bamboo, hemp and other natural fibers. Most of our t-shirts at Soul-Flower are now organic cotton. And I know a lot of you out there wonder, is organic cotton really that different than conventional cotton? I am here to say yes, it is different and BETTER. I did a little research and wanted to pass along what I learned –

Conventional cotton farming is one of the most damaging types of farming towards the environment. Producing cotton uses 25% of all insecticides in the world and 10% of all pesticides. It is second (corn is first) in the amount of chemicals used to produce it. To put it simply, a 100% cotton shirt made from conventional cotton is actually about 75% cotton and 25% yicky chemicals and residues used to produce the cotton. Nobody wants that touching their skin.

music - Hippie OnesiesWhen you choose to buy just one t-shirt made from organic cotton (versus conventional cotton), you are saving 1/3 a pound of synthetic fertilizers & pesticides from entering the environment. (These are the same chemicals that 1- damage soil so badly it can’t be farmed 2-harm animals in the vicinity, and 3-ultimately contribute to global warming ). So, that one organic cotton tee you buy supports environmental causes & helps to nourish the earth and the lives of all people involved in the process of growing, manufacturing and distributing the organic cotton. It feels good to wear that!

It might be more expensive, but that is because growing cotton organically takes skill. It takes time & patience. To me, buying organic cotton is worth it, especially for my young children, who are already exposed to so many chemicals & toxins in the environment.

Peace,
Peggy

 

Welcome to Soul Flower Blog!

booth - Welcome to Soul Flower Blog!Hello to all of our buds in blog-land. Better late than never, we are finally starting an official Soul-Flower Blog. So much of our day-to-day work involves talking with customers and hearing your stories, we thought we should take a little time to share some of our stories with you. Our blog will create another way to connect to you (our customers and friends), as well as a place to share more about Soul-Flower and the things we care about and take an interest in.

So, to start it all off, here is Soul-Flower’s birth story:

Mike & I both were working in the corporate world when we made a decision to start our own company. We liked our jobs, but were far from getting the most out of life when most of our waking hours were spent in front of our computer screens, coding in my case, selling in mike’s case. We thought, hey, let’s figure out a way to make a living out of what we love most. And what we loved most always came back to the music. We have been festival goers for years, starting with the Grateful Dead (various shows/tours from ’85-’93), then NO Jazz Festival, Horde Fest, and many regional gatherings. We had a couple of friends with a classic hippie shop in Iowa City, The Peaceful Fool, and they were kind enuf to give us tips and ideas on opening a store. Owning our own business was nothing we had done before, but we had the love and commitment to create what became Soul-Flower. With positive attitudes, a little capital, and alot of sweat equity we started off on our own ‘long, strange trip’…

We opened the doors (in october 1999) to our 1000 square foot shop on Grand Avenue in St Paul, MN. It was a little boutique full of Hippie duds, Jam Band T-Shirts, Posters, Stickers, Patches, and lots of other cool threads. We relied on the many college students in the area, and of course there were good days and bad days, but looking back it was a blast – especially getting to know the students and locals in the community. Folks like Mike M-our local Grateful Dead statistician who could name a dead show in just a few notes of Jerry’s storefront - Welcome to Soul Flower Blog!guitar; Carl-the guitar playing, bike-riding minimalist who would stop by daily to just say hello; Katelyn – the baby and now young girl whose mama owned the Thai restaurant next door (Pad Thai Cafe – one of the best Thai restaurants in St.Paul); all the SPA students who would visit after school each day; the list goes on…we had just a few employees – most of whom we are still in touch with, and some that are still working with us 🙂 We were also getting our name out in the midwest scene by vending various festivals and events – something that we finally have given up as our own Soul-flower family (Siera and Cody) grows.

Now fast forward 9 years and we’ve transformed from a brick and mortar boutique into an online boutique. Soul-flower
still resides in St.Paul, but now we work from the second floor of an old warehouse that has been funked up to suit the laid back and fun attitude of the team. Oh, and somewhere along this trip we decided to start printing a mail order catalog, which has been an absolute blast. So 9 catalogs later here we are, in front of our computers again…only now it is all good. I think that Soul-Flower, much like a child, has grown into it’s own entity – we created her but she has become her own, independent, growing experiment.

spring08catalog - Welcome to Soul Flower Blog!So now, Soul-Flower is a catalog and online store, a bit different from the original boutique – but we are more passionate and committed than ever to continue creating the same friendly, community-related atmosphere online that we had at our shop. It can be a tough act – i.e., personalizing the internet – but we believe the littlest things make a big difference. A thoughtful product (from concept to existence), a pleasant phone call, an extra note (and occasional random gift) in your package, a thank you to our customers. Our company has always been defined by the Golden Rule – treat others as you would like to be treated and everything else will be fine. When you’re happy, we’re happy.

So here’s to learning, loving and growing.
Enjoy the blog.
Your Buds (Peggy, Mike, Chad, Jenn & Joe)

1 7 8 9