We have some serious Mom’s rockin’ it over on Instagram that are living in WNY. Isn’t it weird how one day you find a new person to follow and you look…*boom!*…they’re from Buffalo? How did I know about you before!?
Here’s a list of some Mama Bear’s you should start following ASAP on Instagram. They have killer followings (ugh, and here we are in the corner like a newbie loser…), they share fun insights in to their lives and of their kiddos, some have a great blog game, others are like us and share their adventures strictly on social. Take a look at some of our favs! (*all pics from Instagram accounts):
I’ve known Kristina since I was 16 and it has been so fun to watch her with her twin boys, baby girl, empire of fitness, and daily life. There’s a ton of real-life commentary here that will have you saying ‘yassss, girl’ for days.
Okay, how can we travel the world like this fam?! Major international envy here! Sarah and her boys travel the globe frequently and shows their experience plus writes about how to do it!
Who are some of your fav Mom blogs from Buffalo? Or even abroad? Isn’t it fab that we can connect so easily with one another in this tech age? I don’t think there’s anything cooler than future, current, and past mama’s sharing real life stories and offering up the best advice possible while balancing everything life throws at them.
It was one of those serendipitous meetings while strolling along Hertel Ave. last fall. The cutest pop-up caught our eye inside a popular local shop and we hit it off talking about Buffalo, Instagram, and the love of WNY artisans. It was buffBOX– a newly launched curated Buffalo box design that was the hit of all that walked by.
We were so impressed by this unique business that we caught up with owner Heidie Buffomante (I mean, c’mon, even her name is totally Buffalo!). Check out the inspiration behind the boxes and how you can get one, too:
Okay, we gotta start with the basics like…what is buffBOX and who are you?!
H: buffBOXes are curated collections that offer style, function, and feature items from small businesses. Each is thoughtfully created with a lot of love.
My husband, Adam, and I live in Williamsville with our sweet pup Daisy. I work as an Assistant Principal at a Middle School (which was also my favorite grade level to teach).
People in life matter, a ton. Gifting a custom buffBOX evokes feelings of importance and connection. Your gift recipient will feel like they have just received something extra special as they notice the unexpected details such as the elevated packaging or the handwritten note on linen paper. buffBOXes also support Buffalo’s small businesses and entrepreneurs. When purchasing, you are building into the resurgence of our city. It is my hope that the quality and uniqueness of your buffBOX items will get you right back into that small business to buy more and of course, connect with the owner/creator/artisan/entrepreneur.
This is new to the scene! How did it all begin and what was your inspiration behind it all? Everyone has a story about their creations!
H: After a brain injury in August 2014 I spent a significant amount of time at home recovering. It brought me immense joy to remix items throughout our home to optimize their function while also creating something beautiful. I needed to be in a space that elicited feelings of comfort and coziness as Adam and Daisy spent many evenings and weekends tucked inside with me. I evolved into styling spaces for my mom, sister and friends. All the while, I would have consistent FaceTime sessions with my dear friend Aubrey in California where we would dream about this turning into a business. Most recently in October 2017 I decided to share my curated pairings of home goods more broadly, did a big shop, came up with 30 variations, and had a “First Look” with family and friends a week later. Very shortly after that Adam picked me up from work on an afternoon we planned to hit up the small businesses on Hertel. It was a very rainy day and we considered just going home. Instead, we braved the Buffalo weather, had a conversation with a few local entrepreneurs about this passion project, and weeks later we were popped-up inside their store. This launched buffBOXes being featured in local blogs, a segment on Channel 7 news, collaborations with local entrepreneurs, and most importantly Adam and I met a lot of new people in our city of Buffalo. We are forever grateful to Bri at Modern Nostalgia, Matt with Scout & Cedar, and Katie creator of BKindCity for believing in buffBOXes and embracing us on that rainy night.
It’s nice to have a creative-type put these gifts together as a gift! Where do you frequent to find pieces for the boxes?
H: I create buffBOXes with functional and unique items I find on our travels around Buffalo and day trips on the weekend. This ensures there is a small business feature in each box. This is important to me and part of why I enjoy curating buffBOXes because each has its own authentic story that is shared on the personalized stationery packaged inside. I also have my stores I frequent often like Hobby Lobby and Marshall’s. I can always find supporting pieces to the anchor item in each box.
What are some good uses for a buffBOX? What kind of gifts could it be for?
H: Reason- (birthday, baby shower, housewarming, new job, just ‘cause, treat yo’ self)
Season- (spring tablescape, essential summer decor, fall vignette, hot cocoa station for a winter wonderland)
In each custom buffBOX there is a handwritten note sharing the small business feature, where the items have traveled from, or how it will compliment their lifestyle based on the information the gift-giver provides on my custom order form.
What are the ranges of buffBOXes if readers are looking to send a gift?
H: Custom buffBOXes come two ways: Regular $69, and BIG buffBOX for $99
For Pop-Ups at local businesses prices range from $4 to $45 for the Build-Your-Own buffBOX option. You can pick and choose which items you want with attractive price points.
How do the gifts get to the people?
H: Free pickup, $10 delivery within 20 miles of Williamsville. Shipping adds on a cost of the flat rate box.
Where can people see the buffBOXes?
H: Instagram @buffboxes is the platform I use to share what’s available for purchase, dates/locations for pop-ups, completed custom orders (with permission from the gift-giver), and information on how to order your own.
My personal Instagram @heidiebuff is a place to checkout how I style our home through the seasons and behind the scenes footage of my creation stages of buffBOXes in the Instagram Story. I just saved our adventure to Rochester to find some new goodies in the Highlight section.
What visually inspires you?
H: Casual simplicity of Skeem Design, color palettes of Kate Spade NY for spring, craftsmanship of Mariposa, timeless pieces in Mackenzie Childs courtly check, lush blankets in neutral color tones by Barefoot Dreams.
You recently had your home featured in Buffalo News! Yay!! How do you envision certain rooms and looks? What is the style you aim to achieve?
H: I am committed to creating our home spaces that are functional and truly evoke feelings of comfort and coziness. To do this, I start with an anchor item and monochromatic color palette. This helps guide my purchasing of other complementing pieces. For example, our oversized coffee table in white washed wood drove the tone of the wooden tabletop tray stacked with books and the hammered metal coaster set. Our hobbies are also sprinkled throughout the home, like Adam’s fondness of sports and collector items and our board game collection. See more pics here!
So you guys are in the Northtowns- what is your go-to place to eat? Any good date night suggestions?
H: Sandwiches and salads at D’Avolio or Japanese at Kumo for lunch. Roccos, San Marco Restaurant, Share, and Sinatra’s for dinner. The best date nights always involve an activity like bowling, games like Spot It, or popping in to play with our nephew Little Rick.
Working on a new custom order form that will be available soon!
Check out buffBOXes in person and meet Heidie! Pop on over to the Ellicott Square Building for the City of Buffalo Artists Market on Saturday 5/12/2018 from 11am-3pm. And remember- Mother’s Day is coming up on 5/13/18 so you’re going to want to send Mom a super fun buffBOX. 🙂
The cool thing about our lives right now is that we can share our stories on different social media platforms. Media that speaks to us. Some of us are writing it (yea, we wish we had more time to write), some are visual documentarians (yea, we wish we had better camera skills), and some are mixing both into their platforms to share their lives and experiences (we like to think we’re in that realm).
A few are focused on straight up Buffalo and others have a more broad scope that appeals to the world (will we ever get there?). We’re sharing a short list of those who live among us here in the 716, but may be missing out on since they aren’t necessary screaming ‘Buffalo’ in your face. But they’re sending out gorgeous shots, fun stories, and cool vibes. (*all pics from handles)
I actually met Kristina when I was 16- seems like yesterday. A blogger turned social storyteller, follow her for fam life, punny real AF shirts, and inspo on getting off your a** in order to get healthy with her workout coaching.
Rachel is a fashion blogger mama who channels through her site and Instagram. Follow her for all of the things we think silently in our heads as we try not to fall asleep at 8pm while attempting to Netflix & chill.
I pretty much hint beg Beau for one of these rings one day (for a right hand ring). Follow for custom engagement ring ideas and drooling all over your screen. A local handcrafted jeweler designing unique and stunning sparkly things.
Did you know we have some of these incredible Instagrammers? Make sure to follow them! You’re missing out if you don’t.
There is some badass hidden talent that sprinkles Buffalo nowadays. We get a glimpse of it at festivals, craft fairs, and pop-up shops…but we also have some cool people blowing it up on Etsy and Instagram- cause let’s face it, Insta has become our new omg-I-gotta-get-what-that-blogger-posted place to scroll.
One such hidden gem in our city is Jill of All Trades– an online blog and shop filled with style inspo, fun graphic-wear, and unique gift boxes to send out to WNYers. We had to talk to Jill and get the scoop on her!
Hi, Jill! Tell us a little bit about you:
Name: Jill DiGioia – Jill of All Trades
Currently living in: Downtown Buffalo – Hi! I’m new here!
Day job: This is it! I am a T-shirt Maker, Gift Box Curator, Baker, New Blogger, and I also do some Social Media Management on the side!
Insta:instagram.com/jillofalltradesofficial Being new to the area, we have to ask- what is your favorite place in Buffalo?:Canalside! There is always something going on there. Concerts, movies, workouts, festivals, Artisan Markets, and my favorite- water activities! How did you first begin Jill Of All Trades and when?: I have many passions in life which has lead me to be a “Jill of all trades”. I’ve always had trouble narrowing it down to focus on one main trade, so about two years ago I thought why can’t I do them all? This lead to the name and now the new blog! Gift boxes- I have always enjoyed putting together thoughtful gifts and really going outside the box to find something different for every occasion. A couple years ago, I was a Concierge in Las Vegas and received many requests for unique, personalized gifts. So I began customizing gifts for the guests and now to everyone! T-shirts- I am a big believer in spreading kindness and good vibes. Two years ago I tried to find a shirt to promote this and at the time there was not much out there. So my husband and I designed a “BE KIND” shirt and learned how to screen print to make our own. To this day, the “BE KIND” shirt is my biggest seller in the shop and I couldn’t be happier!
It looks like Florida is your original home- what brought you to Buffalo?: While living in Vegas, I met my husband who is from Buffalo. At the end of last year we both decided it was time to be near family and he received a great job opportunity here, so we made the move! This is my 1st time living anywhere with a “real” Winter, so please send any tips/tricks! Your gift boxes are what caught my eye- how do you design one and what do you typically have in one?: I love customizing every box for each client and special occasion. I try to get as much information as I can about the recipient to really put some thought into each gift and make it aesthetically pleasing. I like to include fresh flowers, gourmets chocolates, special soaps (I’m a sucker for pretty packaging), candles, a t-shirt/tote bag, fun mugs & glassware and of course any special requests! How can people get their hands on a gift box to send to someone?: You can order them here: jillofalltradesofficial.com/gift-boxes Your t-shirts are fun, too! Do you make them or have a printer? Are custom orders available? Thank you! We design and screen print all of the shirts ourselves! I am happy to make custom orders too.
Who are some of your favorite local bloggers/shop owners in Buffalo?:stepoutbuffalo.com and buffalovebirds.com! Before moving here, I spent a lot of time on both sites reading about Buffalo and all it has to offer! Since moving, I still love to follow along on the adventures in and around buffalo. Also, I have recently found nickelcitypretty.com another awesome blogger who is fun to follow and has a great page showcasing many of the amazing murals and public artwork in Buffalo! Your blog covers your clothing style- how would you describe your style and how do you hope to inspire your followers with it?: I would say my style is bright and cheerful! I am drawn to things that are colorful, feminine, fun, and in a perfect world- on sale! I love a flowy maxi dress & sandals but also like to glam it up in a cocktail dress & heels. My goal is to inspire followers to have more fun with fashion, try wearing new colors and even add a little sparkle! Where do you see Jill Of All Trades going next/next steps for you?: I can’t wait to explore and meet more of Buffalo! I hope to keep spreading joy through my Gift Boxes, T-shirts and the Blog 🙂 We’re gonna say it– Jill of All Trades is where you will be getting your next gift. Her customizable gift box is what sold us: we had her create a box to send to someone who helped us with something big (*hint: Chloe) and it was a huge hit. Something different, something fun. That’s what Jill of All Trade is all about.