Upcoming Workshops

BYOB Acrylic Painting — Let’s Get Spooky  


Enjoy playing and experimenting with acrylic paints on canvas.  In this class you will learn techniques in creating a composition, sketching, and working with acrylic paints.  You may follow along with one of the Halloween themed paintings that I’ve created, or create your own masterpiece.  The teacher will work closely with students individually as needed. Whether you’re a beginner, advanced, or somewhere in between, you will have flexibility to add in your own creativity in both design and color scheme. All materials are included, so all you need to bring is your beautiful self! RSVP FOR TUESDAY, OCT 18TH! 


DIY Candle Making 



Transform your favorite mug into an adorable soy wax candle in an interactive candle-making class. The class, led by Chicago candle-maker Jessica Snively, creator of Milton and Margie’s Soy Wax Candles, teaches you everything you need to know to make a soy wax candle in a reused or vintage container.

She’s poured candles in nearly everything that can be described as a “container”—quirkier finds have included a glass cowboy boot, vintage egg cup, honey bear jar, and mug that says “He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother”—so feel free to go on a thrift-shopping spree before class.

Throughout the process, you’ll create your own signature fragrance from a blend of scented soy-based oils. I’ll supply a bunch of eclectic oils with options from floral (e.g., Lavender and Juniper) to natural (e.g., Cedar and Eucalyptus) and sweet (e.g., Buttercream and Fudge Brownie) to rugged (e.g., Leather).

All the supplies are provided, including wax and fragrance oils. You can bring your own container or purchase one from my collection at class. You’ll get 2 lbs. of wax, and depending on the size of your container(s), you’ll leave with 1–3 completed candles. RSVP FOR SATURDAY, OCT 29th!





West Town Art Walk 2015



West Town Art Walk is just around the corner! Join us for a weekend of meeting neighbors, pop-up galleries, food trucks, and great deals along Chicago Ave! Event runs Friday, Oct 2nd at 5pm and Saturday 11-8pm.

We’re turning our back gallery space into an Original Print Room where 5 amazing artists will be featured with original works on paper. Works showcased span from screenprints to letterpress, mixed media collage to paper cuttings and more! We’re thrilled to introduce you to pieces by independent artists Amy Rice and Michele Maule, as well as local artists Shawn Stucky, Nathan Vernau, Kristi Kohut and Katie Vota (plus a curated selection of surprise additions too!).

We’ll have special deals and drinks on hand for your enjoyment throughout the West Town Art Walk, so be sure to stop by, enjoy original artwork and be surrounded by handcrafted goods galore!

Follow the West Town Art Walk on Instagram and Twitter at @WestTownArtWalk and the facebook invite is here!

//Last Fridays// Join us for After Hours on Chicago Avenue


We’re happy to announce, in collaboration with the West Town Chamber of Commerce, that over 15 local businesses along West Town’s Chicago Avenue corridor will open their doors after hours and offer exclusive promotions, sales and complimentary refreshments. Join us the LAST FRIDAY of every month for this fun initiative in support of local businesses! 

After Hours on Chicago Ave was formed as a group effort to encourage the community to discover all of the great new and established businesses in the neighborhood.

Please join us for celebratory drinks and special offerings at participating independent businesses, such as Ad Hoc, Study Hall, Paperish Mess, Tarnish, Sprout Home, Permanent Records, Epic Spices, Seek Vintage and many more!



“Muddled Dreams” By Kelly Parsell, February 13, 2015, 7-10pm

KellyParsell_PaperishMessFEB2015PostcardBack2Paperish Mess is excited to announce their February 13th art opening titled “Muddled Dreams” by local artist Kelly Parsell. Parsell is an interdisciplinary fine artist and the woman behind recent side-project Nerd Press paper goods and novelty gifts. Her artwork has been exhibited both nationally and internationally. Parsell’s work can be found in numerous libraries and collections, including those of Yale, Indiana, and Duke universities.

Through the process of gathering materials—collected objects from her own youth as well as those found in secondhand stores—Parsell finds comfort in and gives meaning to both savored and discarded remnants of adolescence, often attaching more worth to the objects then they originally held. By manipulating, reproducing, and appropriating stuffed animals, sleeping bags, and children’s books, Parsell blurs the lines of past and present, constructing a fuzzy world of contradictions and nostalgia for a past shared by her generation and gender. Parsell’s exhibit will be open February 13th through March 13th, 2015.

Celebratory libations and hors d’oeuvres will be served throughout the evening.



Event Title: “Muddled Dreams” By Kelly Parsell

Event Type: Art Show and Opening Reception

Event Date/Time: Friday, Feb 13th, 2015 from 7-10pm

Event Address: Paperish Mess, 1955 W. Chicago Ave Chicago, IL 60662

Contact Info: (email) paperishmess@gmail.com, (phone) 312-265-1597

Website(s): paperishmess.com, kellyparsell.com

Two Year Anniversary Party, Etsy Trunk Show & Art Gallery Opening!

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Hey all! We are SO excited to announce our 2-Year Anniversary Party on Small Business Saturday, November 29th, 2014 from 6-10pm! 

The celebration will feature an Etsy Trunkshow with local artists iamhome and art gallery opening titled “Cut Away: an aesthetic dissection of scientific methods” with featured artists Katie Vota and Heather Beardsley.  The event will also take place in conjunction with After Hours on Chicago Avenue, a monthly neighborhood wide event featuring over 25 participating independent businesses.

Celebratory libations and hors d’oeuvres will be provided throughout the evening. 

iamhome will be debuting brand new functional home decor products, as well as featuring their best selling Original Chalkboard Skulls, wall artwork, fantastical trophies and more! 

Please see below for more details about all of the night’s featured artists.

ABOUT iamhome:

iamhome strives to make colorful, imaginative and playful objects and decor that will reside in your home and be that thing you cannot look at without smiling. The husband-and-wife team behind iamhome fell in love within moments of meeting each other in an art store in Chicago ten years ago. They currently never leave each others side. Over the last five years they have grown from a few products into working with design firms on large projects, working one on one with customers on countless numbers of custom projects and expanding their ever increasing line of exciting products.

ABOUT Katie Vota & Heather Beardsley: 

Katie Vota and Heather Beardsley’s work explores the intersections of art and science, two of the largest  influences on culture today, using one of the most ubiquitous materials: paper. These bodies of work play with the audience’s expectations for both disciplines as colors are depicted without pigment and reference books are rendered unintelligible. Although these pieces share a similar language of intricate cutwork, the artists apply them to opposite ends.
Like two sides of the same coin, Katie’s work is about tracing the coloration the eye sees through the subatomic structure of its source, while Heather’s work draws the viewer into a world within their bodies that normally remains unseen. Pairing these works together creates a dialogue about the power, but also the limitations of human perception, an incongruity enhanced by the contrast in the ways we’ve chosen to display our cut paper works. Heather’s cutwork is embedded in found textbooks, art hidden within the confines of science and although Katie’s cut-paper drawings are sourced from micrographs they are stripped of their original content, as science is transformed into an art object.  Combined, the artist duo demonstrates the complexity, nuance and conditional nature of dealing with these themes.

We hope to see you on Small Business Saturday for the Paperish Mess 2-Year Anniversary Party, Art Opening with Heather Beardsley and Katie Vota and Etsy Trunk Show featuring local artists iamhome! 

If you are on Facebook, check out the online invite here! If you like eventbrite, then check it out here instead! or both!


Paperish, Messy & ShopKitty

Chicago Artists Month: Rattle The Cage, Kinetic Installations by Jonah Ortiz & LIVE MUSIC by The Oarsman


Paperish Mess, located in Ukrainian Village, is excited to host Rattle The Cage, Kinetic Installations by Jonah Ortiz as part of Chicago Artists Month 2014, the 19th annual celebration of Chicago’s vibrant art community presented by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. The event will also take place in conjunction with the West Town Art Walk. Please join us on Oct. 3rd, 2014 from 5-10pm and Oct. 4th from 11am-10pm and experience Jonah’s collection of installations and 3D creations.

Opening night (Oct 3rd) will also include live music by local musicians, The OarsmanCelebratory libations and hors d’oeuvres will be provided throughout the evening.


Jonah Ortiz’s work is a complex blend of high and low-brow pop-media references, coupled with a subtext of analogies to personal stories.  Grounded in concept and wild in form, his work plays on noise and color to create an aesthetic style which offends the senses and challenges the mind. Using familiar games and toys as rudimentary models, the artwork aims to bridge the gap between the creativity of childhood, and the reality of adulthood. The ironic message behind each piece is partially derived from personal experience, but the all-inclusive style of the work allows for a unique experience no matter what level of fluency one has in the art world.



EventPhotoFull_art walk logo

Event Title: Rattle the Cage, Kinetic Installations by Jonah Ortiz and LIVE MUSIC from the Oarsman

Event Type: Art Exhibit Opening, Art Walk and Live Music Performance

Event Date/Times: Fri Oct 3rd, 5-10pm and Sat Oct 4th 11am-10pm.

Event Address: Paperish Mess, 1955 W. Chicago Ave. Chicago, IL 60622

Contact Info: (email) paperishmess@gmail.com or (phone) 312.265.1497

Website(s): paperishmess.com, chicagoartistsmonth.org, youtube.com/user/jonahortiz, and ilovetheoarsman.com

Public transit accessible via #50 Damen, #66 Chicago.

Closest subway lines are Chicago (Blue), Damen (Blue), Division (Blue).

“Passed Glances” by Ilyana Schwartz, Show Runs Through Feb 12th


1549279_591078624295090_1692114754_nPlease join Paperish Mess on Saturday, January 11th from 7-11pm for the opening night of Passed Glances by Chicago-based wood block printer, Ilyana Schwartz.

To celebrate the opening of the month-long installation, we’ll have complimentary drinks and libations on hand throughout the evening! This will be our last show until Spring, so we hope you’ll join us, hang out and enjoy sweet artwork by this *absolutely* fantastic artist!

Artist Statement from Ilyana Schwartz:

This work explores pattern, mark, and shape making
through the medium of woodblock prints. I am drawn
to how the harsh lines of the wood and the sectioned
patterns can depict emotion on a human face. It is for
this reason that I originally chose to make portraits. As I
began my process of carving people, my work ultimately
took the form of a crowd.

Opening Reception Date/Time: Saturday, Jan 11th 7pm-11pm
Show Runs through Feb 12, Tues-Fri 12-7, Sat & Sun 12-6

Address: Paperish Mess, 1955 W. Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Contact Info: (email) paperishmess@gmail.com or (phone) 312.265.1497

Website(s): paperishmess.com and ilyanaschwartz.com

Public transit accessible via #50 Damen and #66 Chicago. Closest subway lines are Chicago (Blue), Damen (Blue), Division (Blue).




Opening Night!


Opening Night!


ShopKitty hanging with her new friends

Urban Perspectives by Tim Jarosz // Opening Reception on Sat. Dec 7th: 7-11pm

unnamed-2Please join us at the opening reception for “Urban Perspectives” featuring the work of Chicago-based artist, Tim Jarosz on Saturday, December 7th from 7-11pm. We’ve loved Tim’s work for so long now and we’re thrilled to feature a large collection coming up THIS Saturday, Dec. 7th for the month of December. Included in the show are brand new pieces, large-scale works and everything in between! Complimentary libations will be on-hand from the amazing Allagash Brewing as well! Seriously delish and sure to make it a great night.

More from Tim Jarosz: 

The Work.

Overall, I would say my work can be described as “Gritty digital urban landscape collages”. It’s a bit of a long process, even though sometimes my artwork only takes a few hours to create. It pretty much always starts with photography. Shooting lots of photos, mostly street photography. It then moves to digitally editing and collaging those photographs together and then adding my own color and texture treatments. I wouldn’t be able to create my style of work if I didn’t use photography and design equally. For me, they go hand in hand and both are a crucial part of what I call art.

The Process.

The process I use to print my work is called Sublimation printing. It’s basically a two-part printing process that includes printing my work out with special inks on paper and then heat pressing the image into the material it is mounted on. This process is what gives the work that super glossy look. The images are printed on chromalux wood board, similar in style to masonite, but with a beautiful glossy finish.

Check out the ONLINE INVITE HERE! 

Saturday, December 7th 2013, 7-11pm
Paperish Mess
1955 W. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622