JWH Designs

4xForth: Johanna Winter Harper of JWH Designs by Natalie Pavela

4xForth-Chicago-Johanna-WinterEach Friday we’re highlighting one of the lovely women in our community by learning about her favorite Chicago places and restaurants, hearing what websites she’s all jazzed about, and gaining some inspiration from destinations she’s dreaming of traveling to next.

It’s 4 x Forth Friday and today we’re talking to Forth alum Johanna Winter Harper - artist, illustrator and designer at JWH Designs. Johanna will be speaking at our Etsy Shop Ownership Panel Talk on July 8th (details and tickets here).

Places I frequent in Chicago:

1. Beans & Bagels (Rockwell location) - Best coffee in a cup (or a bag). Best lox breakfast bagel. Best lemon poppyseed muffin, best tables to spread out and work on. Right around the corner from my house too!

2. Chicago Park District - There are so many hidden gems in this city. We love (shall I tell?) tiny Jacob Park right at the end of Leland by the river. We also love the swimming pool at River Park and the sledding hill at Horner.

3. Supreme Beauty Parlor - I recently cut my hair short and so I have to go to the hairdressers a lot more. This tiny gem of a salon is right off the Francisco brown line stop. All vintage 50’s decor, two lovely pups, and a sweet-as-can-be owner, Christina, who used to work at a salon in Logan Square. She's down to earth, fun, and gives stellar hair cuts (and I’m picky).

4. The El - we are a car-less family and so the El (and bikes and scooters) are our mode of transportation. We spend a lot of time on the train. It’s a great place for interesting conversations with kids about architecture, rooftop gardens, friction, politeness, storms, city living, rural living, not licking windows in public places, who owns shops, why do rainbows happen, why doesn’t the train fall off the tracks? Yes, why?

Places I'll go someday:

1. Scandinavia - pattern, design, fjords, progressive education systems - need I say more?

2. North Africa - for the pattern, architecture, ocean, sun, and history.

3. India - textiles, printing, history, literature!

4. Down under to Australia and New Zealand - the land - desert, mountains, oceans - I love extreme landscapes. I’d also love to have Christmas on the beach!

Best Bites in Chicago:

1.  Los Nopales is a family-friendly Mexican restaurant in Lincoln Square. Get the Guac, it's delicious! Bonus: It's BYOB.

2.  Beans and Bagels has the best croissant bar none, baked by their French pastry chef.

3. First Slice Cafe for delicious quiche, and pie. Great eats, and a worthy cause. They serve over 4,000 meals a month to Chicago’s hungry.

4. Baker Miller. The lovely couple who started Bang Bang in Logan Square will be opening a bakery soon in Lincoln Square. No ordinary bakery, the Millers (yes, that is Dave and Megan’s last name), will be milling their own flour and promoting heirloom food trades.

Sites I lurve:

1. www.color-collective.blogspot.com - I go here to swoon. What a simple and effective concept: find a photo that inspires you. Match the colors in it. Create a color story. I have used specific color combinations from this site for inspiration many a time.

2. www.patternpeople.com - Everything pattern under the sun. I go here for inspiration and to look at their ebooks on everything from rising trends to how the print industry works, and tutorials.

3. www.bigkidsmagazine.com - Just go here. The animation on the home page alone will have you transfixed. The whole concept just makes my heart glad.

4. www.ablersite.org - I have a better understanding of complex ideas, and am more willing and able to tackle the status quo after I read posts on this site, written by my friend (and smartest gal I know) Sara Hendren.


Thank you for sharing Johanna! We're just as excited to try Baker Miller once it's open, and are eager to try the pies at First Slice Cafe. We love that you use rides on the El as an immersive learning experience for your kids. Oh, and you're totally rocking that short do...might need to follow your lead and make a visit to Supreme Beauty Parlor one of these days!

Follow Johanna and JWH Designs on Twitter, Instagram and through her Etsy shop!

Forth Favorites From The Online Shops of Our Etsy Shop Owner Panelists by Natalie Pavela

You may have heard that on July 8th we're hosting a panel talk on the Ins and Outs of Etsy Shop Ownership at Design Cloud. Oh boy, are we excited! We're lucky enough to have some talented Forth alums who are also experienced Etsy shop owners. Four of these gals are going to be sharing their wisdom at the panel talk - Olivia Suchman Joffrey of Vigilante Paper, Johanna Winter Harper of JWH Designs, Julie Morelli of Nourishing Notes, and Vana Chupp of Le Papier Studio. Today we're sharing a few of our favorite items from each of their Etsy shops.

Vigilante Paper is a purveyor of unconventional, colorful wedding invitations. Their collection marries hand-drawn illustration, pattern and lettering with the affordability and color of digital printing technology. We're loving this Mexican themed wedding invitation for a destination wedding and this sultry floral wedding invitation

Vigilante Paper Mexican Themed Wedding Invitation

Etsy Vigilante Paper Wedding Invite

JWH Designs creates whimsical dish towels, tea towels, and prints. We're swooning over the abstract layers flower sack dish/tea towel and the set of blue windmill flour sack napkins (perfect for jazzing up your table when dining alfresco!).

JWH Designs Abstract Design Dish Towel

JWH Designs Blue Windmill Napkin

Nourishing Notes makes letterpress printed greeting cards, art prints, screen printed kitchen towels. The preserve fruits and family recipes flour sack kitchen towel looks awesome when hanging on a blank wall in your kitchen. Julie's also got a great sense of humor, incorporating food into her messages for special occasions. We're especially digging the thank you berry much & cheese louise you're old cards. 

Etsy Nourishing Notes Towel

Nourishing Notes Cards

Le Papier Studio specialize in custom silhouette creations for young and old, fine art prints, silhouette jewelry, gifts for home, custom invitations and stationery. The father and son on swing silhouette printcouple on bikes gold foil print and gold foil birth announcement are a few beautiful ways to commemorate your loved ones.

Le Papier Studio Father and Son Etsy Le Papier Studio Goldleaf Print

Le Papier Studio Birth AnnouncementWant to hear more from these wise, wonderful women? And drink the first bottles of Penrose beer? We thought so. Seating is limited so get your ticket.