Please introduce yourselves:
I'm Belle, and I'm Allison and together we are Love Letter Creative. We are originally from the mountains of North Carolina but are now based out of Chicago, Illinois. We are the artists who created the design for the Brave Trails DoubleNest Hammock Print titled, Room to Grow.
What is your mission?
When we created Love Letter Creative we wanted to be a group that had fun with design and didn’t focus too hard on creating the clean cut cookie cutter/corporate look we were used to seeing. We really like to blur illustration and design and have fun with the work we create. We truly want to give each client a unique look and something that is fun and will stand out from the crowd. We called ourselves “Love Letter” because we wanted to show people that our design work is done with as much care as writing a letter to a loved one.
When we started Love Letter we wanted to create a group together that really allowed us to put our values at the front. To us, art can be so celebratory, joyous and fun, so we try to always find that within the work we create. The name Love Letter came from wanting to put the same love and care into everything that we create.
How did your artist journey start?
Allison and I have been a full-time artists for over 5 years now, and 3 years with Love Letter Creative, however we have both been really involved in the arts our entire lives! It's a huge part of who we are. Allison is a full-time tattooer on top of doing design work, and Belle dabbles in many different fields such as illustration, design, animation, bookmaking, and fiber works.
What does giving yourself room to grow mean to you?
As queer people, it has been the biggest gift we have been able to give ourselves. Space to grow and evolve into the people we have always wanted to be. Whether that has been a physical space to find a moment of peace, or a more figurative space to work on ourselves and discover our individual selves is so important to have.
What inspired this hammock print and what elements are incorporated?
This design started from the main concept of exploring Victorian Flower language and how that has translated into our queer communities over time. Flowers have been used to tell stories for a long time, and the symbolism and cultural information that has been hidden within them has allowed queer people to communicate when it was not as safe to do so verbally.
What is the story behind the hammock print?
This print is a bouquet of love to our queer community: trans pansies for strength, Lily of the valley for happiness, dogwoods for rebirth and renewal, buttercup for friendship, chamomile for energy against adversity, and some other hidden elements are placed in this print.
We wanted whoever gets this hammock, whether it be for themselves or for someone special in their life, to know that they are loved, and they can have this space for themselves.
Why did you want to collaborate with ENO?
We wanted to collaborate with ENO again because of the immensely positive feedback we got on our last print (Woodlands, 2020). To be able to be told “we trust your perspective and skill” means the world, and working with such a staple company has been so amazing. It's really exciting to see our work out in different forms and to feel so supported by who we are working with.
What does the hammock’s connection to non-profit partner, Brave Trails, mean to you?
It's everything! As a kid I went out in the woods constantly, it was a space that I was allowed to be my true self, and feel freedom in ways that I was not able to feel in the spaces I was in as a kid. A connection with nature is core to my identity, so to create something that helps support such an amazing organization to help other queer kids get out in those spaces is a dream.
Who was in mind when designing this hammock print? What message do you hope resonates with the user?
Everyone was in mind when we created this, but specifically our queer and trans youth in the South. It is a challenging time to exist in that space, and we hope this reaches them, queer joy is an act of resistance. We are so happy you’re still here, we see you, we love you.
Get Your Own
Shop the Brave Trails DoubleNest Hammock Print, Room to Grow, while supplies last. As part of ENO's Giving Back Hammock Collection, for each hammock sold, $10 is donated to Brave Trails to help in their mission of building the next generation of LGBTQ+ leaders.