We thought this would be a great reference for anyone who is new to our shop! Below are some frequently asked questions and our answers to them! If these don't help, please feel free to reach out to us at any time. We are always here to help!
Q: How often do you update the shop?
A: Every 2-3 weeks. We always put the next shop update in the banner on the website and in our bio on Instagram! If it's on a Saturday, it's at 12 PM ET. If it's on a Sunday - it's at 3 PM ET!
Q: Do you ship internationally?
A: YES! We will ship anywhere.
Q: I checked out in multiple orders to make sure I got the sketchbooks I wanted - do you refund shipping overages?
A: We have for a long time but we are trying to get away from this. This process is complicated and takes a lot of time that we could be using to bind more books.
In addition, more other than not, we end up having to pay extra for shipping. This is because once a package weighs over a certain amount, it must be shipped priority. This is a much more expensive rate that we end up having to pay for ourselves.
We believe that if we stop doing shipping overage refunds, customers will be more deliberate with their ordering. Hopefully this will slow some of the mayhem at shop update times and allow for more artists to get one.
Q: How much does shipping cost to _____?
A: The best way for you to determine the cost of shipping is by adding something to your cart and entering in your shipping address. You will be told the shipping cost before you pay. No hidden astronomical shipping fees!
With that said, shipping through the USPS is the cheapest option!
Q: How quickly will the package arrive after I order?
A: We pride ourselves on shipping as quickly as we can. With premade products, we ship in 1-3 days. Once it is in the mail carriers hands, domestic orders typically take a week or less to arrive. International orders can take from 1-4 weeks to arrive if there are no issues. With the pandemic, mail times are slower!
Preorder and custom made items take time to make. Once the items are made and shipped, you will get a shipping notification via the email you used to check out!
Q: Why do your sketchbooks sell out so fast?
A: Each sketchbook is completely unique. The covers are made from real vintage books and are dependent on what it is we can find that needs repurposed! There are times that we can find multiples of a cover, but more often than not, each cover enters our hands just once.
Q: I've been trying to get a sketchbook from you, but as I'm checking out, the sketchbook is sold. What's the deal?
A: We totally understand that this is frustrating. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be an easy way to code a cart save timer into our website. We are working on making it possible to make an account, though. This will help you have your info ready to go to make purchases quickly.
We suggest getting on the website right before we update. The most popular ones sell fast, but with some patience, I know you'll snag one you like!
We also hold a custom order event twice a year where we will make a book specifically for you! So if you've been feeling frustrated or overwhelmed, don't worry, we've got you covered.
Q: Do you do custom orders?
A: Yes - twice a year during our biannual event, the Custom Order Extravaganza. One is usually always in November, but the other kind of floats around. So if you want to know when the next one is, just ask!
With this said, if you have a very special birthday, anniversary, etc. coming up and want something custom made. We are open to squeezing in a few orders every once in a while. When in doubt, ask us!
Q: What papers are in your sketchbooks?
Our go-to paper is Fabriano Studio 140lb watercolor paper. This paper is great for all media, it's thick and can take a beating. We now offer this paper in both Cold Press (textured) and Hot Press (smooth)!
Occasionally, we have sketchbooks filled with Strathmore Drawing 400 Series and cotton watercolor papers like Shizen, Arches, and Kilimanjaro. The best way to know what paper the sketchbook you are looking at has is by checking out the description in each listing!
Q: Are your sketchbooks vegan?
We typically do not use any products derived from animals. The closures we use are faux suede cord. We have made a few sketchbooks with leather covers - but we will explicitly say if it's leather. Some old books that we get are made from leather. But most of the time, these are not suitable for reuse as leather is usually the first thing to deteriorate over time.
Q: Where do you find your books?
A: We get a lot of our covers from a friend who rescues them (libraries throwing them out, estate sales, etc) and uses the inside pages. We do our own hunting at thrift stores, antique stores, estate sales, yard sales, flea markets, and online. But we take care to not destroy books that are rare, important, or are totally legible. Most books we repurpose are ones with failed binding.
Q: What do you do with the inside pages?
A: As stated above, most of our books come from a friend who uses the inside pages. The insides of books we gut ourselves are reused in every way possible. We use them to make little ephemera packs that go out with every order, package our watercolors, make new paper, send them to a friend to also package her small business goods, and paint on them for personal artwork. If there is anything we can't use, we recycle at a local paper recycling pick up bin that fund raises for our community.
If you want some "book guts" (as we so affectionately call them), let us know. If we have any and you are willing to pay for shipping, we are happy to send them to a place they can be reused before putting them through the recycling system.
Q: I or someone I know is getting rid of a ton of old books, can I sell/donate them to you?
A: Of course! We will happily look at what you have to offer.
Q: I have an old book I want you to convert, do you do this?
A: Yes, during our custom order event! Read above!
Q: What type of material do you ship your products in?
A: We used to use bubble mailers but recently decided to switch to a more environmentally friendly option. We are using thin recycled/recyclable and compostable poly mailers from Ecoenclose and Noissue.
Each order will be padded with reusable and compostable tissue paper (all tissue paper is unless it has sparkles/tape on it). The books themselves are wrapped in reusable, recyclable, and compostable kraft paper merchandise bags. They are tied with vintage, reused twines and yarns.
If something in your order is wrapped with plastic bubble wrap (or any material that looks used), know that we hoard packaging from our own online shopping. So your order may come with some bits of padding that have been reused! We hope you will continue the cycle of reuse!
If you have a ton of packaging and don't know what to do with it, we would be willing to take that off your hands so that we can keep it out of the trash/recycling system.
Q: What determines the price of the sketchbooks?
A: The cost of materials and the time it takes to make each one.
Q: Do you ever have sales?
A: Yes - best way to find out what sales we are running is by following us on Instagram!
Q: Do you have a newsletter?
A: Not yet, but we would like to get one up and running soon!
Q: Do you take returns?
A: It depends. We are passionate about making sure your shopping experience with our small business is as pain free as possible. With that said, mistakes happen. Please email us and let us know what's going on! We will happily evaluate the situation and help you to the best of our abilities. Along those lines, we do not take returns on custom orders unless there is an actual issue with the sketchbook!
Q: Where do you get your products made?
A: I used to get our prints made at a company called CatPrint. I am now printing my own. Stickers are made by Sticker Mule, Sticker Ninja, and StickerApp.
Q: Do you ever sell originals?
A: Occasionally! I'll post about it on Instagram if I do!
Q: Do you take commissions?
A: Occasionally as well. Just ask and I'll let you know if I have time!
Q: I'm looking for this specific painting as a print - can you make one?
A: Probably! Since I'm now printing at home, if I have the original to scan, I can print it! Just send me a message!
Q: Do you offer any other prints anywhere else?
A: Yes! I make exclusive prints for Patreon. It's a monthly subscription service where you get access to tons of content, videos, our Sketchbook Co. Club, coupons, exclusive prints, original paintings, and handmade paints.
Q: How often do you make watercolors to sell?
A: We are just starting our paint making journey - so our schedule for this is random. We will always advertise on both the shop and my art instagrams when we have a release date.
Q: Are they vegan?
A: We don't use anything like ox gall in our paints, but we do use locally sourced honey. We also use a glycerin but its derived from vegetables.
Q: Will you be bringing back this color, _______?
A: We will bring back colors that have enough interest. Let us know what colors you are looking for and we will take it into consideration.
Q: Are they similar to store bought paints?
A: They reactivate the exact same way. They will arrive in panned/dried form. With the combination of our honey and glycerin binder, the paints are easy to reactivate. They have the longevity of store bought paints but with the personal care, design, and mulling process of just two people.
Q: How do you make them?
A: Pigments and binder are mulled together. A color is designed by me (Autumn - the watercolorist of the two!). Some pigments can take an hour to mull up. Once mulled, they are poured in layers and dried to cure.
Q: Will you offer some of your wildcrafted pigments?
A: Eventually. I often find rocks ready for processing. But breaking, grinding, sifting, and grinding (some more) is a long and hard process. I want to eventually sell both watercolors made with the pigments, and the dry pigments themselves.