Blog

Welcome to my special blog about Ivy & Innocence. I hope that creating your quaint village will bring you as much joy as it has brought me. I invite you to follow my journey as I venture back with the introduction of a new storybook and, eventually, release pieces to expand the wonderful village.

May your heart fill with Ivy wonderment and all your dreams come true.

Warm Blessing and Sweet Ivy Dreams,
Susan Reader
Artist & Creator
Mother, Family & Friend
 

My first post on the new website begins with a dream!

Just before Thanksgiving 2014, reflecting and giving thanks for everything in my life, I explored the internet to see if it was possible to renew my dream. Ever since, every free moment in my life has been dedicated to bring back a special place in time. And it is exhilarating.

I apologize that it took so long. (Where has all the time gone?) I can tell you in 1996-97 when Ivy launched, the internet was not what it is today. In 1996, financing our business was the traditional route - finding an angel investor and going into debt, using everything we had as collateral for loans. Even our family, who believed in Ivy, invested to see my dream become a reality. 

In 1997, with Ivy's overwhelming demand at its premier show in Atlanta, I entered a licensing agreement because our little company did not have the infrastructure to keep up and my recovering health condition. 

Surviving on a royalty basis, our situation remained extremely tight. What few know, after signing, we continued to carry the load of developing Ivy & Innocence and bringing inventory into the country, not to mention, the additional medical expenses accruing.

Two years later, this corporation merged with another and in a short twenty-four months, this united company folded. At the time, due to my condition and financial situation, it was not possible for me to pick up and continue Ivy.

Twenty years later, we continue honoring these expenses from the bumps in life. I do not regret one pothole because this bumpy road has brought me to where I am today, blessed with three wonderful children and a deep faith, knowing the best part of my life is yet to come.

Here with my two boys, Andrew, 3 (shown in the distance) and Alex, 2, cooling off at the wading pool at the park in the summer of 1997.

For me, Ivy & Innocence was never about the money. I wanted the line affordable so everyone could build an Ivy village and dream. I think as we get older we lose touch of our childhood aspirations but we shouldn't because our dreams are amazing.

Ivy represents a deeper meaning that I wanted people to connect with. I want people to create a special place that reinforces the things that matter most, focusing on the positive elements in life, to instill hope in a world void of hope. A place where they would love to live. An imaginary place that builds inner strength, if not in them, planting the seed of inspiration in their children to go out and do the things they aspired to do.  To invest in their future by giving them the courage to dream and believe in themselves... a huge advantage as they maneuver through life. 

Ivy & Innocence nurtures these positive principles that translate into having an optimistic attitude and giving a brighter outlook, teaching our children to hope, is priceless. Have you ever noticed talking to a person about their dreams, how they light up? They come alive. It is amazing.



Ivy & Innocence does this to me. It brings me to life. And with the internet where it is today, through a crowdfunding platform called Kickstarter, a path of hope emerges. It would mean so much to me to be able to pursue my passion and continue a journey I began twenty years ago. Ivy & Innocence's principles and underlying values are worthy of another chance. Tears of gratitude fill my eyes with the thought of its return. Last Thanksgiving, I humbly began the first steps to bring Ivy & Innocence back. You can be an part of it. By supporting the campaign, you are helping preserve a vintage lifestyle and old-fashion principles. You are planting Ivy seeds of hope in so many others, encouraging them to achieve things they never thought possible. It is exciting.

The Return storybook will be unlike the other storybooks released. I want it to be filled with my artwork and illustrations. I wish to make the book itself extra special by turning it into a keepsake work of art. A timeless book you will be proud to pass to your grandchildren and future generations to come. I will strive to improve everything I can adding content and value to astonish you with Ivy wonderment.

Sample Cover and Layout

Let's make our world into a magical place. Share its wonder with others. Encourage each other to dream. Let's bring inspiration back into our lives. Together we can aspire toward building a future full of opportunity in a world filled with hope and inspiration.

Thank you for the possibility to dream again,

Susan Reader
Artist & Creator
Wife, Mother, Family & Your Friend