Montana Artist – Canty® Boots

When I met Nikki at a Boss Lady Bash in Bozeman last April, she was teaching kindergarten, raising 3 young children, annnnnd running her own business, Canty® Boots. I tend to get a little overwhelmed by the whole parenting + building a small business thing… so needless to say, I had a serious case of how-the-hell-do-you-do-all-it’s. But here’s the thing about Nikki, not only is she passionate about what she does… she’s seemingly unruffled by all the things she can’t get done and focuses on what she can. I was in the early stages of figuring out the next step in my own career and feeling stuck and unsure about how to strike out on my own. Nikki was a great reminder that forward movement was possible… hemming and hawing over my imperfect website/business cards/(insert to do list item here) wasn’t getting me anywhere. I left that night feeling inspired and slowly but surely, over then next few weeks I made some progress. So, I’m happy to show off some Canty® Boots goodness with you today. Thank you Nikki (mama, boss lady, and boot visionary) for motivating me and other fellow designers to get out and make it happen.

canty boots

Photo by Taylor Kent

How did you get your start?
I got started making these boots when I purchased a pair of tall boots that were too small in the calves, I cut them and folded and the rest is history.  I have certainly made MANY changes along the way to better my designs and become more refined and efficient.

canty boots

Photo by Taylor Kent

How do you manage the family/building your own business juggle?
Managing family and business can be exhausting.   I know that I need my husband to be 100% for me and supportive of my ideas, goals and visions or I cannot possibly be successful.  Thankfully, I have been blessed with more than just his support — he has become an integral part of every event and every major decision.  He is pretty awesome and I am grateful for his love.  I am so fortunate to work from home.  It has its drawbacks… it is NEVER quiet and I do not get to put in a ‘full work day’ ever but, I don’t pay childcare and I get to walk away from the work I am doing at any given time to spend time with my kids and not feel guilty about it.  I have to balance my energy, our schedules, and my workload with every family member and it can be stressful but it is doable.  Patience is required by everyone to make a home business work.

canty boots

Photo by Taylor Kent

Best advice for new designers just starting their business?
The best advice that I would give to new designers just starting off is to surround yourself with artisans.  Take part in events and shows that showcase talents of other artists.  You can draw inspiration from just about anywhere and it feels so good when you spawn a new idea.  Also and MOST importantly, draw inspiration from others but never ever try to duplicate another’s work.  You can always create the same finished product but you can’t duplicate the creative process…   stay true to YOUR visions and your own flow — it will take you so much further than a piggyback ride.


Favorite shops/fashion resources in MT?
My favorite place to shop for treasures is in a little store in Lolo, MT called Crazy Horse Consignment.  It is a small building PACKED with unexpected gems.  I am a FAN of consignment but this place has my heart.  The owners are genuine and fun and the store never disappoints. I love Head West on Main Street in Bozeman– for Old Gringo boots and pretty hand made goods and they also have a consignment basement. I love the antique stores in Four Corners and try to hit them up as often as possible. I am a fan of vintage and handmade items. They’re my jam!

Click here to visit Canty® Boots. 

Montana Wedding Venues – Guest Ranches

Ok, so I swore that when I set out on my own blogging adventure, I wasn’t going to start a wedding blog. I’m still not, I promise. While this blog remains a space for design, inspiration, etc… it’s also about helping you connect to other people and places in the Rocky Mountains. I’ve also had a few requests for ranch recommendations lately, so I thought I would take advantage of the info round up and share it with all of you.

There are endless incredible barns, cabins, backyards, and bluffs for your Montana wedding, but this particular post will focus on venues with 1). on-site accommodations and 2). activities for guests (i.e. fishing, hiking, horseback riding). So if you’re tying the knot and ISO of the a ranch getaway , here are a few suggestions.

** Disclaimer: Do not send me hate mail because some of these venues require a second mortgage/the sale of a kidney. The internet is vast. Some of you might be trying to plan an intimate destination wedding, some of you might fly to NYC on a private jet to shop for your wedding dress. I’m not a mind reader… I’m just a MT girl standing in front of the internet asking it to love her (bonus points for knowing the movie reference).  ANYWAY, I’m not going to touch on budgets in this post… you’ll have to do your own digging in that department. **

In no particular order…

1. Lone Mountain Ranch, Big Sky

lone mountain ranch wedding
Photography: Britt Rene Photo || Design & Styling: Buzzworthy Events SF

2. Rainbow Ranch, Big Sky

Rainbow Ranch Wedding by Tori Pintar
Photography: Tori Pintar via Black Tie Bride || Flowers: Katalin Green

3. Bar W Guest Ranch, Whitefish

Photography: Green Door Photography || Design & Flowers: Habitat Events

4. The Resort at Paws Up, Greenough

Paws Up Wedding by Michele M. Waite
Photography: Michèle M. Waite via Elizabeth Anne Designs || Event design + coordination: Carter & Cook Event Co. || Floral Design: Habitat Floral Studio

5. The Ranch at Rock Creek, Philipsburg

ranch at rock creek wedding
Ranch at Rock Creek by Rebecca Hollis
Photography: Rebecca Hollis || Design & Florals: Beargrass Gardens

6. Chico Hot Springs (this might fall into the “resort” category but it’s one of my favorite places in Montana… plus there are horses… and a pool… and this view.)

Chico Wedding by Treehouse Photography
Photography: Treehouse Photography

7. 320 Guest Ranch, Big Sky

320 ranch wedding
Photography: Cluney Photo via SMP || Design: Social Hour Events

8. Mountain Sky Guest Ranch, Emigrant, outside Yellowstone National Park

Mountain Sky Guest Ranch Wedding by Lauren Brown
Photography: Lauren Brown || Design + Flowers: Lukas Trudeau Events

9. Grizzly Creek Ranch, Emigrant (outside of Yellowstone National Park)

Photography: Mary Dougherty

10. Green Valley Ranch, Coram (outside Glacier National Park)

Photography: Angela Cox Photography via Montana Bride

11. E Bar L Ranch, Greenough (I can find very little about the E Bar L online. This link is for their FB page. If you have more info for them let me know… better yet, if you are the E Bar L Ranch and you need a website, tell me!)

E Bar L Ranch Wedding
Photography: Green Door Photography || Design: Habitat Events

The Dude Ranchers’ Association has a great list of Montana ranches. I do know some of them have weddings. Even if you’re not looking for venue, one of them might be the perfect honeymoon location. Here are a few more locations on my radar. Sadly, I couldn’t find any wedding related images for this post and/or the wedding info was lacking, but I think it’s worth reaching out if you’re on the venue hunt. Good luck!

- Triple Creek Ranch (I mean… how is it that a celebrity hasn’t had a big to-do here yet?!?!)

- McGinnis Meadows Ranch

- There’s this Elkhorn Ranch and this Elkhorn Ranch. As if that’s not already confusing… there’s also Elkhorn, Montana… which is actually a ghost town.

- Sweet Grass Ranch

- Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch

- Covered Wagon Ranch

- Nine Quarter Circle Ranch>/a>

Will someone get married in one of these places and send me the pics!! Please.

Modern Fish Inspired Designs

Confession, I’m probably 1 of 10 people in Montana that doesn’t fly fish. I’m totally on board with the whole quiet-solitude-in-the-great-outdoors part… but it’s just never been my go-to sport. Growing up, my dad and brothers fished. I rode horses (thankfully I wasn’t totally deprived of western hobbies). So I put flyfishing into that maybe-one-day folder. Maybe when I’m older. Maybe when I have more time. Maybe when I’m retired. Maybe not. So in the meantime… I’m here with a slightly different angle (sorry) on some aquatic inspiration.

1. Cole & Son Acquario wallcovering by Fornasetti via Design*Sponge

fish wallpaper

2. Candlefish logo via Fuzzco

candlefish branding by fuzzco

3. La Dorada Branding by Bunker 3002 Design Studio and La Conceptualist via Behance

la dorada branding via behance

4. Illustrated Business Cards by Harrison C Lemire via Behance

Harrison C Lemire Business cards

5. Vintage Kaarina Aho Fish Platter via Etsy

platter via etsy

6. Mini Rodini Fish Skirt via Chic-oholic Kids. And before you start sending hate mail about the price… no it’s not is USD.

fish skirt

7. Fish and Dots Wallpaper by The Make House

Fish and Dots Wallpaper

8. Fish by Izzy Matthews

modern fish print

Favorite Montana Designers and Bloggers on Pinterest


I love some beautifully curated inspiration as much as the next gal, but when it comes to Pinterest, I get a little overwhelmed by all the pretty, all the perfect, all the seemly-out-of-this-world… more specifically, California. Not that there’s anything wrong with that but after awhile, all the gorgeously styled homes, perfectly coiffed hair, and endless sunsets start to run together. I need some homegrown pinners to get me back on track and get me reinvigorated for all things design brewing here in Montana. So for your viewing pleasure, a little round up of some of my favorite pinners that are keeping things fresh in Big Sky Country.

1. Vintage Whites

Visit Vintage Whites’s profile on Pinterest.

  2. Everything Golden   Visit Everything Golden’s profile on Pinterest.
3. Pitchforks and Pomegranates

Visit Pitchforks and Pomegranates’ profile on Pinterest.

4. 114 WEST   Visit 114 West’s profile on Pinterest.
5. Elizabeth Rider

Visit Elizabeth Rider’s profile on Pinterest.

6. Sarah Cauble   Visit Sarah Cauble’s profile on Pinterest.
7. Lindsey Stewart

Visit Lindsey Stewart’s profile on Pinterest.

8. The Pretty Palomino   Visit The Pretty Palomino’s profile on Pinterest.

Anyone you love I need to check out??

5 Yellowstone Inspired Designs

We took a little jaunt down to Yellowstone last weekend and it was, as usual, breathtaking. It got me thinking about some of my favorite icons of Yellowstone… geysers (duh), buffalo, The Old Faithful Inn. Naturally a few vintage designs made the cut, but I was also happy to track down a few fresh pieces from one of our favorite neighborhood getaways.

5 yellowstone park inspired designs via @ms_elaineious

yellowstone invites

|| Invitations by Ladyfingers Letterpress, Photo by Mark Cluney via SMP ||

Heather Gatley illustration

|| Heather Gatley Yellowstone Map Illustration ||

yellowstone coaster

|| Yellowstone Coasters by Brand Oldham Illustration via Jackson Hole Marketplace ||

yellowstone poster

|| Vintage Yellowstone Poster ||

Wonderful Forever map

|| Just Wonderful National Park Poster via Best Made Co. ||


A Copper Convention

Copper is hardly new on the scene, but I’m pleased to see this rosy metal seems to be sticking around for the long haul. From your home to your wardrobe, there doesn’t seem to be a single place it doesn’t fit right in.

copper bathroom

|| A copper hopper (I COULD NOT resist) via Houzz. Design by San Francisco Architects & Building Designers, Andre Rothblatt Architecture ||

copper dining room via @sfgirlbybay

|| Image via SF Girl by Bay and alvhem ||

|| Oxidized Copper Entry by Turquoise Interior Design LA via Erika Bierman Photography ||

Eames Copper Wire Chair

|| Eames Copper Wire Chair via Reeves Antiques ||

|| The Gippsland farmhouse of Tamsin Carvan. Photo – Eve Wilson, Production – Lucy Feagins. Source: The Design Files ||

|| Overalls and Birkenstocks via Ascot Friday ||

** Dear sweet baby Jesus, thank you so much for making flat, comfortable, affordable, and otherwise, ugly shoes fashionable again. I’m forever grateful. #birkenstocksarethenewblack **

Copper necklace

|| Necklace by Young Frankk, Photography: Kate Edwards, Stylist: Christine Young ||

This also seems an appropriate time to give a shout out to everyone’s favorite Montana mining town. Butte has a rich copper history and is certainly worth exploring if you happen to be in the area. Stop by the Bonanza Freeze for some classic drive-in fare. Definitely cruise uptown to take in the sights… rumor also has it the iconic M & M will reopen this July.

Butte Montana

|| Butte Montana via Butte Public Library on Flickr ||

Now as Mother’s Day nears, my pinterest feed and head are buzzing away in the gift department. I usually have better luck narrowing down possible presents when I have a general theme. Since I was already in a copper frenzy, the choice was clear. Here are a few treats to make Mother’s Day a little more shiny.


Copper Gifts Ideas via @ms_elaineious

|| 1. Two-toned leather tote via West Elm || 2. Modern copper clothing rack by TheOther on Etsy  || 3. I rarely need an excuse to eat out, but if you do Mother’s Day seems as good as reason as any. If you happen to be in Amsterdam (which you probably aren’t) there is the copper clad Cafe De Ebeling (Image via Framework Architects). If you’re in Bozeman (a more likely scenario), consider the obvious choice given this post, Copper. I dream about their caramel drizzled popcorn. Heaven. ||  4. Smart and simple, The Aether Cone (in copper of course!!!) is one sexy speaker. || 5. This Luxurious leather card holder by Anve is no ordinary envelope. || 6. World Market never disappoints…  add this copper colander to the winners circle. || 7. I have a copper confession… I’ve added rose gold to my metal collection. But this watch by The Horse was just too beautiful to pass up. || 8. I know I’ve featured a similar pair of these sneaks before, but New Balance can do no wrong and these 574 Precious Metal kicks are no exception.  || 9. Chic copper planter via Yield Design Co. ||

5 Ways to Be More Productive at Work


My job is the internet, but it is the hugest distraction. I’m also a total procrastinator so sometimes the combination of the two is a disaster. I’m always looking for a quick trick to help me save time, gain more focus, and be more efficient. Low and behold, the simplest solutions are sometimes the hardest. Here are a few quick tips for squeezing more out of your work day.

1. Don’t look at Internet.

2. Don’t look at Internet.

3. Don’t look at Internet.

4. Don’t look at Internet.

5. Don’t look at your phone either.

This is all especially ironic since you’re looking at this post on this internet. But that’s a subject for another day. Until then, get back to work.

|| Illustration: Me ||

Spring on the Black and White – The Gift Guide

kids and new mom spring gift guide

|| 1. Eye candy for the little guys with these Black + White Baby Art Cards via Amazon || 2. Schlepping baby gear made chic by Skip Hop Onyx Diaper Bag via || 3. Keepsakes can be cool, thanks to this Elephant Bank by Jonathan Adler ||  4. Baby. Zebra. = endless awwww’s by The Animal Print Shop || 5. Go everywhere, Lotus Crib by Guava Family || 6. Help the whole family sleep tight with the Serenity Star from Aden + Anais || 7. Mini Hunter Boots… bring on those April showers || 8. The Honest Co.’s 2-in-1 Organic Nursing Cover + Scarf is the one nursing product that will truly transition with motherhood  || 9. Land of Nod Teepee, three cheers for kid gear that your don’t mind having in your living room || 10. Huggable Jellycat Bunny via || 11. Baby Jumpsuit from H&M, because it’s important for kids to own something that’s impractical too || 12. This baby blanket from Scout Mob speaks the truth ||

Spring on the Black and White

Whether it’s Easter, spring cleaning, or a baby shower on your radar, chances are you’ve taken to the good ol’ world wide web in search of inspiration. No doubt you’ve uncovered a plethora of pastels… but if this spring has you feeling a bit more moody (New Yorker and Bostonians, am I right?!?!) then here are 5 reasons to knock pastel off its perch this spring…

1. Easter is edgier:

marbled easter eggs by hello natural

|| DIY via Hello Natural ||

bunny iphone case from etsy

|| iphone case by The Small Print Cases via Etsy ||

rocking sheep from smallable

|| Rocking Sheep via Smallable ||


2. Can’t go wrong in gingham:

gingham dress

|| Image via A Stitch in Mind ||

Full disclosure, since I’m not 20 and don’t live in LA, the above look is a bit more aspirational. This flowy piece ↓ is a little more my speed. 3 Cheers for anything that does with jeans!

nordstrom - joie gingham shirt

|| Joie shirt via Nordstrom ||


3. Insects are always in fashion:

beetle photograph via House of Ideas

|| Image via House of Ideas ||

butterfly prints

|| Prints via Cool Republic || *similar versions available from Natural Curiosities* ||

bug print by Josh Polan

|| Print by Jason Polan via 20×200 ||


4. Because You Can:

kal barteski script

|| Script by Kal Barteski via Crated ||


5. It’s Just Cheekier:

booty two by kate roebuck

|| Original Artwork by Kate Roebuck via Bowerbird Collective ||

Rethink Pink

As Valentine’s Day approaches I find myself a little hungry for some inspiration alternatives. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for love, but I’ve never been a particularly big fan of the rose petals, heart shaped chocolates, buy your sweetie something sparkly part. I also have a long standing struggle with all things pink. Then a few years ago I had little girl and despite my protests, pink worked its way into our lives and hasn’t budged since 2012. (Great article here if you’ve shared this experience). So in honor of Vday and that radiant, “girly” hue, I’m rounding up some internet gems that may even make my fellow pinkaphobes swoon.

lindsay cowles fine art

|| Print by Lindsay Cowles Fine Art ||


|| Image via ||

|| HelloTwiggs VW Van Print via Etsy ||

Now the real test is basking in the glow of some pink all your own. If you or your sweetheart is in the giving spirit this Valentine’s Day, may I offer the following suggestions to add a little more (haute) pink to your holiday?

pink gift guide


|| 1: Volkl One W || 2: prAna E.C.O. Yoga Mat via || 3: Fitbit Flex via Rei || 4: Commando
Marrakech-Print Thong via Bergdorf Goodman || 5: Ray-Ban Aviator || 6: Mountain Huckleberry Tea via Montana Tea & Spice Trading LLC || 7: New Balance Classics WL515 via Zappos  || 8: Buck Products Coral FlapSack via Everything Golden  || 9: Alice in Wonderland Collectible Edition via Barnes & Noble || 10: Rose Quartz Coasters via Rablabs ||

Enjoy and Happy Valentine’s Day.