Welcome to Bubby and Bean : Living Creatively

Welcome to Bubby and Bean!  My name is Melissa Baswell Williams, and I'm a Chicago-based sustainable fashion designer, art print/card designer, and blogger.

Bubby and Bean: Living Creatively is a lifestyle + design inspiration blog, born in late 2010, that focuses on what I like to call 'all the wonderful things.'  For me, these include design, fashion, home decor, DIY projects, travel, music, photography, green living, fun food + drink, and other musings about life, love, and learning.  What began as a companion blog to my businesses has blossomed into one of my favorite projects of all time.  Think of it as a little online magazine/journal that encompasses many aspects of living an inspired, creative life. 

Some of you who know me for my other gig of the last 13 years, as the head designer for eco-fashion label Mountains of the Moon, have asked me what made me decide to start this blog on top of my already very crazy schedule.  During the summer of 2010, I lost one of the most important people in my life to suicide after years of struggling with him daily to prevent it.  This tragic event forced me to take some time away from my workaholic lifestyle and reevaluate everything.  I traveled for a few weeks, visited old friends, and spent some time away from the city exploring nature, staring at the stars, making art for fun, following my bliss, and re-learning how to be inspired in the everyday.  From this, combined with inspiration from a very special old dog nick-named 'Bubby,' Bubby and Bean was born.  (*Update: On December 22, 2011, we had to say goodbye to our sweet Bubby dog after 16 years.  He continues to be my muse.)

Some random 'about me' facts: I love animals (with an especially weak spot for dogs), traveling, summertime, margaritas, the colors grey and yellow, minimalist design, vintage + sustainable fashion, live music, avocados, Audrey Hepburn, estate sales, and all things lemon.  I am a huge fan of spontaneous, last-minute adventures.  I have an amazing group of friends who laugh a lot and don't take themselves too seriously.  I studied Theater and French at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, which continues to be one of my favorite cities.  I've been a vegetarian for 24 years.  I've lived in 9 states in the last 12 years (from Colorado to Oregon to Florida to here in Chicago), 3 of which were spent living and volunteering at a Tibetan Buddhist Center in Indiana.  Several summers in my 20s consisted of traveling the country in a 1978 Southwind RV, which created life-long memories but involved way too many hours broken down on desolate roads.  My husband, Robbie, is the Stage Manager for a band that tours the country (and world) on a regular basis.  He is really good at what he does, and I am incredibly proud of him.  It also very challenging to have your partner gone for half the year.  We got hitched on October 1, 2011 in a casual, nearly 100% D.I.Y. wedding at a local nature center.  On or around New Year's Day (my birthday) of 2014, I will become a first-time mama. I consider myself to be a very political person but I very rarely mention politics on this blog.  I can't whistle (trust me, I've tried).  My little sister Morgan is my life-long BFF and also Bubby and Bean's official food editor.  When I was a baby, I lived on a hippie commune in Wisconsin.  My first word was 'moon.' My mom named me Melissa after the herb Melissa Officinalis, aka lemon balm.  Maybe that's why I love all things lemon. 

I'm very grateful for the awesomeness that is my readers - each and every one of you.  I mean this sincerely.  I read every single one of your comments, and I truly enjoy hearing your thoughts and getting feedback from you guys.  If you're a new reader, sit back and enjoy taking your time to explore, see, and read. 

If you're interested in learning more about my career, you can check out my bio here
.  If you'd like to view my art and fashion design, you can visit the Bubby and Bean Art Shop and Mountains of the Moon Eco-Fashion.  And if you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to drop me a line any time right hereSometimes it may take a few days, but I will always respond.

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