Sarah's Favorite New Arrivals

It's that time of the month again where I share my favorite new items at the shop! Even though it's September, we're already thinking about Christmas here at Hippo. We've started the process of getting lots of new inventory in for you all and it's already started rolling in! Check it out below...

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"Sea Witch" Print by Tess Burns. Hailing from Somerset, MA and going to school at Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia, Tess Burns creates brightly colored prints featuring chic, stylish, and stylized ladies based on everything from fashion illustrations to her favorite musicians to the queens from RuPaul's Drag Race.


Laser cut earrings by I'm Your Present. Kelly Eident is a Providence, RI based jewelry and accessories designer specializing in laser cut work. We're totally obsessed with these bold statement pieces! 

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Mermaid Enamel Pins by Oh Plesiosaur. It's no secret we love enamel pins, and our customers love them too! One of our all-time favorite sellers, Serena Epstein, designs these inclusive mermaids in Baltimore, MD. We love hearing "Hey, that mermaid looks just like me!" from women and young girls who come into the shop. 

Musical Cat Pin by Natelle Draws Stuff. We heard about Natelle Quek through Serena at Oh Plesiosaur and immediately fell in love with her sweet and funny cat pins and stickers. Natelle designs and illustrates everything in Gainesville, FL where she resides with her partner and fur babies.


Mismatched Socks by Friday Sock, Co. The best socks around! Intentionally mismatched with things like 'bacon & eggs', 'coffee & donuts', and 'burgers & fries" these socks are super fun and comfy. Friday Sock Co., is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta Canada and run by owner Adam Thompson. Adam works closely with a family owned sock producer in Italy to ensure that his products are made in an ethical and environmentally responsible way. 

I hope you enjoyed this month's product round-up. I'll be back next month with some new favorites!

xo Sarah


Animation Station!

Last Thursday we hosted an animation night at Hippo. Every couple of months or so we have small animation sessions here at the shop. What is an animation session you ask? WELL... It all starts with LightBox Collaborative Animation Project. We round up a small group of friends and LBCAP's head honcho Eric brings portable light boxes, index cards, and permanent markers. I know you're wondering, "That's it?!" I wondered that myself when I saw him arrive with only a file box of materials, but it's true. That's it! 


After setting up, it's time to get to work. The goal of the evening is to create a giant flip book of sorts that Eric then takes home and digitally animates. You begin with a starter card of a random hand drawn image and over the course of a few minutes alter the image index card by index card (again think flip book) until the allotted amount of time is up. Now, this is where is gets really fun! You take your stack of cards and pass it to the person on your right. That person now has to build another mini flip book based off of your drawing and so on until all of the index cards are gone. If it sounds complicated, don't worry, it's totally easy! Detailed instructions are given and once you start and get a feel for it, it's simple.

When the night is over, Eric takes all of the index cards home and combines them into a digital animation video with music. In a couple of weeks he uploads it to YouTube and Facebook where everyone can see the finished product. It's the coolest! 


You're probably saying "Sarah, why are you telling me all of this?" I'm telling you because this Thursday, August 24 Shelley is hosting a Drawing Social at Groundwork here in New Bedford. From 6pm-8pm you can try Eric's LightBox Collaborative Animation for yourself, as well as drawing games, and a collage station. No experience is necessary. Bring your friends, bring your fam and go have a great time! 




Check out the links below for more info and to RSVP:

Drawing Social

LightBox Collaborative Animation Project

Subscribe to Eric's YouTube channel

If you're interested in hosting your own small group animation session, contact

August 12: A day to be remembered

People often ask how long ago we opened the gift shop and we very quickly blurt out "November 10!" We've thought of this date a lot as our anniversary date. Knowing the next time November 10 comes around, we'll be ready to celebrate.

As I was recently planning our trip to the NY NOW gift show it hit me hard that just a year ago on our first ride to the show, we were deciding if we should change the pop up and art market name from CRAFT-O-RAMA to something else that would fit the year round shop. We spent hours in the car to New York City brainstorming names. We talked about a color theme, we talked about the type of inventory we'd have. We purchased a few things and drove home with the name Hippo! 

I woke up this morning thinking it was a normal Saturday. Leave it to Facebook to tell me otherwise. I was scrolling through my news feed and a photo came up "On this day.... one year ago...." This was the day that we received the keys to 741 Purchase St in the heart of downtown New Bedford. This is a space I had the CRAFT-O-RAMA pop up shop in 2 years prior and I had been thinking about non-stop since and had probably a dozen conversations with the property manager to see how we could make it happen. 

Sometimes it feels so right being in this spot that it seems much longer than a year, but seeing this photo of my hand holding the keys in an empty space, I'm amazed how much we've accomplished in such a short amount of time. Since this day just one year ago, we painted the walls, we assembled a lot of furniture, we brought in inventory, we changed our name, we rebuilt our social media, we brought in more inventory, we rearranged shelves, we've done a lot to create this quirky little gift shop. The shop we both imagined in our dreams. 

So many people have supported us on this journey. I'm so thankful for the social media likes, comments and shares. For the in store purchases, the waves from out the window, the reviews, the customer comments that make us feel like all the work is worth it. And of course, the awesome artists, artisans, designers, and crafters that have put their faith in us to carry their one of a kind treasures. 

Sarah's Favorite New Arrivals

We're always getting lots of new inventory here at the shop. Check out my recent favorites below!

Sarah's Favorites

(1) Succulent in hand painted terra cotta pot with lace and turquoise accents by Planted in Simplicity. Our resident plant lady Amy Rapoza makes sweet little succulents in upcycled planters. These are perfect as housewarming, thank you, and "thinking of you gifts" or just for brightening up your own home.

(2) Woven Wall Hanging by Bloom into the Sea. Artist and soon-to-be Fibers Major at UMass Dartmouth, Gwynneth Burns makes the most lovely wall hangings and dream catchers with a variety of beautiful yarns and other textiles with crystal and found object accents. Her work is great addition to your bedroom or dorm room for good vibes and sweet dreams.

(3) Blue Moon Beer Soap by Earth & Anchor. This Providence, RI based company makes soaps, scrubs, bath salts, cleansing masks and other bath and body products in a plethora of amazing scents, but what really sets them apart is their beer soap! In scents like Mercy Brown, Narragansett Lager, Shiner Bock, Old Rasputin Imperial Stout, and Captains Daughter IPA, these are popular among the craft beer crowd. Plus the Blue Moon soap smells like a citrusy creamsicle! 

(4) Teeny Bowl by Michelle Phaneuf. Handmade in Barrington, RI Michelle's ceramic work incorporates unique glaze and decal layering. Much of her work features a nautical twist or local landmarks within the imagery. You can grab a shot cup, mug, bud vase, or the always popular teeny bowl, which are small all purpose dishes to use for ingredient prep, to hold your keys, bobby pins, rings, or anything else you can think of.

(5) Gold Feather Earrings by Winterhill Jewelry. All of artist Vanessa Templeman's jewelry is 3D printed in Somerville, MA, making it a sustainable and highly affordable option for jewelry. PLUS they are probably the most fun earrings you will own in. They come in fun bright colors with designs like flowers, hearts, birds, geometric shapes, and our personal favorite- pineapples!

(6) Labradorite and Snake Rib Rings by Project Om. Metalsmith Alisha Ray crafts fine jewelry at her home studio in Johnston, RI, using crystals, precious gems, and different specimens casted in silver and bronze. Her intent is to spread positive vibes and good energy and from personal experience, it works!. I have begun to amass my own collection of Project Om jewels and each piece is incredibly unique with so much attention to detail. These make lovely gifts for a special person in your life, even if that person is yourself.

I'll be back soon with another assortment of my favorites to share with you!

xo Sarah 

This card is Perfect! AHD Paper Co. does it Again

Friday afternoon, I was sitting in the shop and I heard a man yell from the greeting card racks "It's perfect! It's perfect! Oh my god it's perfect!" He made his way to the register smiling and laughing. Well I'm much too nosy to let that go, so when I took the greeting card to ring him up I asked about it. He said he was on a journey from San Francisco, through his home town of New Bedford MA, up to Maine to a friend's retirement party. They've been friends for years and they've always bonded over their love of music. This card from AHD Paper Co. has a stack of cassette tapes on the cover including Jane's Addiction, Nick Cave, Rage Against the Machine, Radiohead, Jeff Buckley, The Smashing Pumpkins, Massive Attack, Beck, and Bjork. A great collection for sure! He also needed a bit of ribbon. We don't sell that at the shop but sometimes my hoarding habits come in handy. I was able to gift him a roll which caused a bit more smiling from both of us. 

These are the moments at the shop I live for. Hearing someones excitement when they find a card or gift that means something. When I hear the story of a great friendship. When I hear about the journey someone is on. 

It's been a great weekend filled with special moments. I'm thankful for all of the wonderful visitors that shared their stories with me. 


Greeting Card art by Mark Drew. Printed by AHD Paper Co

Greeting Card art by Mark Drew. Printed by AHD Paper Co

Do you have ______?

Often times people come into the shop with something very specific in mind. 

"Do you have photo albums?" "Do you have jewelry with an elephant on it?"

We'd love it if we had everything that everyone was looking for in our little gift shop. .Wouldn't that be nice? It seems like often times when people come in with something very specific in mind, our answer is "Sorry, we don't have that in the store"

But you know what we do have?  We have the perfect thing that you don't know you or someone you love needs. One review we got on Google from our customer Mary Beth says "Great place to find one of kind items you didn't even know you were looking for! The shop itself is cheerful, organized and inviting too!"

Seeing that, we realized that we can't always fit the needs of people when they know what they're looking for but we can often help someone find the perfect gift they had no clue they were looking for! It's always so fun to hear someone exclaim "Wow! A cat mermaid pin!! My bestie will LOVE this!"