MEET THE MAKERS: Slowly But Surely

We couldn’t be more happy for proud of these two - both Hopscotch Alum (Caroline was with us from the start!). Over the last couple years we have watched their styles and talent grow as individuals. Their newest collab has us gushing over the whimsical and vintage details and we can NOT wait to see what is next from these two!


You guys are both young forces - what brought you together to start Slowly But Surely?

Madelyn: Funny enough, we actually met through us both working at Hopscotch. Well, I guess it was initially through following each other on instagram (as all modern day friendships start), but we first met in person at The Hop. Even though we only worked one shift together, we got along really well and that blossomed into us launching Slowly But Surely. Before SBS we both had previous artistic endeavors, but I think that having one another to keep us accountable and on track is really a plus. 

What's the story behind the name Slowly But Surely?

Caroline: At first we did a lot of spit balling and brainstorming to try to come up with a name. After a few months of back and forth, "Slowly But Surely" got brought up and it fit super well, mainly because we are both procrastinators... We happened to get really lucky that our styles also meshed so well. 

Tell me about your product line and how you choose what will make it to market.

Caroline: Stylistically, I make a lot of nostalgic pieces, like the Kitchen Cabinet Print is full of things that I can still find in my mom's cupboard. While right now, we predominantly have art prints and earrings, we have plans for more. We have goals to expand our product line to be not just pretty things, but useful things too, like bags, tea towels, and ceramics. 

Madelyn: I think that since we both bring different skills to the table, it creates a lot of potential within our product line. For me, SBS is a way to make things that aren't necessarily commission based and it allows me to have more of a "for fun" mindset and to really explore all kinds of things that I am interested in. We have a lot of big ideas and they are all things that we love so our products are all made to the highest quality. 

What is your favorite goodie at The Hop?

Caroline: The sticky toffee pudding is my favorite desert of all time! 

Madelyn: I love it all, but anything with matcha is my weakness! 

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2018, you were great!

I’s hard to sit down and truly reflect during the holiday season. We’re swamped here, obviously, fueling your shopping trips and family gatherings - so taking a minute to take a deep breath and remember what has made our first (calendar) year here so magical has been almost an afterthought. We are in awe and in thanks for the thousands of customers and patrons that make this place home to us.

This past year we have been privileged to be a part with Boneyard Art Festival in collaboration with Southside Elementary School. We will be participating in Boneyard again this year! We also had the honor or hosting Gather for Good, a marketplace that is committed to giving 10% back to local charities.

Sugar addicts unite! You guys ate 4,273 macarons, 6,191 cupcakes, 15,653 cookies, 1,014 cakes and drank 4,164 fancy drinks. We hosted 20+ workshops, dinners, and pop-ups. We also added 5 new employees and a wedding coordinator to our team!

We made a few updates to building, adding a second awning to the bakery door, flower hangers and picnic benches to the backyard (yes! we have a backyard!!!).

Thank you, Champaign-Urbana and beyond, for supporting and loving us.

Cheers to a New Year!

All our love,


Christmas Pre-order

Have your self a Merry Little Christmas with some help from The Hop

Pre-Order items available for pickup on Monday 12/24


Peppermint Cheesecake with Dark Chocolate Ganache



Gingerbread Cake with Salted Caramel


8”- $52

Bûche de Noël with Woodland Meringues


Dessert Sampler Box:

Salted Caramel Brownies

Orange Cranberry Port Bars

Gooey Butter Cake (gf)

Serves 15-20


Holiday Macaron Box

12 cookies - $15

Cardamom Pear Pound Cake


Eggnog Cupcakes with Cream cheese icing

12  for $35

Gingerbread Cupcakes with Toffee Buttercream

12 for $35

Chocolate  Peppermint Cupcakes (gluten free + vegan)

12 for $35

Winter Berry Crumble

( Gluten-Free or Vegan or Regular)


Flourless Chocolate Fudge Torte (Gluten-free)

6” $35

10” $55

Key-Lime + Cranberry Pie


Orders will be ready to pickup on Monday, December 24 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at our shop at 802 w John Street Champaign, IL.

* All orders must be prepaid- no substitutions - all orders must be submitted by 12/22

Please call 607-5436 for any questions or to place an order

Upcoming December Events & Workshops

Buttercream 101 $50 - December 6th, 5:30 - 2 hours

Buttercream piping for beginners! Join Hopscotch in learning beginner piping techniques, color mixing, flavor additions, garnishing and recipe creation! You will be able to take home 6 decorated cupcakes, piping bags, and a tip set. Please let us know if you have any dietary restrictions. We will provide all tools and garnishes, and iced coffee and tea. Stop in early to grab another beverage or snack!

This will be a reoccurring class and prerequisite for our next class: Cake decorating 101

Sugar Cookie Decoration! $10 - December 10th through the 14th, 3:35 - .5 hours

Join us in decorating cookies! Each kid will be able to ice and decorate 6 cookies to take home. Space is limited to 10 kids a class- sign up in store today!

Sugar Cookie Decoration! $10 - December 17th through the 21th, 3:35 - .5 hours

Join us in decorating cookies! Each kid will be able to ice and decorate 6 cookies to take home. Space is limited to 10 kids a class- sign up in store today!

Card making: Letters to Santa $10 - December 17th & 18th, 4:15 - .5 hours

Come write and decorate your letter to Santa! We will supply all the things Santa loves - sparkles, construction paper ad stickers! Space limited to 10 kids - sign up in store today!

Holiday Wreath Painting Shindig $50 - December 13th, 5:30 - 2 hours

During this shindig, we will create a floral holiday wreath painting! During class, we will create flora-like shapes that will be used in your painting and explore the use of acrylic-gouache paint and an ink pen to add details to wreath painting. For the class fee, you will take home a completed painting, paint, pilot pen and a paintbrush.

Kelly Hieronymus is a local artist and color enthusiast who has created a fun color-filled class to celebrate artists of all skill levels and ages. Kids 10+ are welcome to attend with a parent present.

Cake Assembly 101 $100 - December 14th, 5:30

Learn to bake proper layers, tort a cake into layers, fill and smooth sides with basics on decorating and storage with a 6” cake

Old Town Flowers Holiday Centerpiece Class $45 - December 18th, 5:30

Come make a Christmas centerpiece worthy of gracing your table for the Holidays! We'll be talking about structure, support and design as students create centerpieces using various materials. Evergreens, dried/fresh fruit, pine cones, berries, and some bling will be available as well as a base for each centerpiece. We'll listen to some Christmas carols and have jolly time!

Please come early to purchase your drinks and/or sweetie. Kids are welcome with an adult as a helper!

Your instructor for this workshop will be Joan Jach from Old Town Flowers. Joan is a flower farmer and crafter with a keen interest in teaching folks how to bring more Nature, sustainability and joy into their lives. She has taught classes for every age from kindergarten to college and really enjoys when students ask her questions!

Recipe: Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookies are a must every holiday season: Valentines, Fourth of July, Halloween and of course, the winter holiday season. Use your favorite icing recipe or sprinkle them with sanding sugar to make a semi-sparkly treat! This is our in house sugar cookie recipe:



1 lb butter, soft

1 1/4 c sugar

1.5 eggs

1/4 t vanilla

1/4 salt

1/4 almond extract

3 3/4 c flour

1 t baking powder


  1. Combine butter and sugar in a mixer with paddle attachment and mix on low speed for 10 minutes - until light and fluffy

  2. Add eggs, vanilla, salt ,almond and baking powder, mix on low speed for 2 minutes.

  3. Add flour a little at a time until dough forms.

  4. Wrap in cling wrap and chill overnight before rolling.

  5. Roll and cut in to shapes. Bake at 325° for 10 minutes.


Roll + cut shapes and freeze before baking.



One of the most important things to us is shopping small. We are a small business and your support through the years has attributed directly to our success and we are forever grateful for you. Shopping small is also voting with your dollars - its voting to support and enrich our economic community. In our shop we carry a variety of local goods, we’ve compiled a list of our local vendors for you to keep in mind as your shop this holiday season. <3

Boneyard Bow Ties

Piper Pottery

This Loves That

Same Street Textiles

My Pipapo

Old Town Flowers

Carol Farnum Art

Page Roasting Co

Big Grove Apiaries

Sunshine Studio

Polished Prints

Jarahs Naturals

Polyvinyl Records

Weiskamp Printing

Wild & Free

And MANY more women-run businesses from around the state and Midwest.



Black Friday not your thing? Yeah, ours either. Swing by the shop (and other locally owned businesses) for Small Business Saturday! We will have a few deals going on:

25% OFF ALL MAGAZINES - Sweet Paul, Cherry Bombe, Short Stacks, Driftless and more!

DRINK SPECIAL - $3 FANCY DRINKS! (This includes the new drink menu!!!)

LUNCH SPECIAL - Your choice of a canned drink, sandwich and chips.

BUY A MUG get a coffee drink!


We will also have a 50% off cart - filled with all sorts of goodies!

Gift Guides to Make This Weekend a Breeze

Gift giving is hard, you guys. We’re here to hopefully make things easy! Here are some guides to help you shop for those who are hard to shop for! And all the while, you are supporting small business.

So, here are our recommendations:

For the Woman: Polished Prints ‘Heart of Gold’ shirt, Old Town Flowers flower bud salve, Sunshine Studio earrings, This Loves That wristlet, Jenni Earle Banana and leather tie


For the Man: Hopscotch ringneck teeshirt, The Bartenders Knife, Boneyard Bowtie, a deck of cards


For the Bartender: The Host Key, The Carry-on Cocktail Kit, The Pineapple Co metal straws, The Bartender’s Knife


For the Teacher: This Loves That necklace and keychain tassel, Pipapo earrings, Idlewild Co 2019 Planner


For Foodie: Big Grove Apiaries honey, Page Roasting Co. coffee, The Picnic Knife, These Are Things pretzel pin, Terra Cotta pinch Bowls


For The Chef: The Short Stack Cookbook, Organic Cotton Stripe Apron, Spice Grinder


For the Snuggler: Made Market Co matches, Beverly + 3rd Candle Co candle, Big Heart Tea Co, Hopscotch Enamel Mug, Same Street Textiles pillow



Do you know Mrs. Emily? You should - she’s pretty amazing. She has spent the last 8 years preaching that fashion can bring confidence and self-love to your life. That message is inspiring and I couldn’t tell you how many times I have texted her an outfit before I go and do something ‘big’. (She also helped me pick out my unconventional wedding dress - because that’s the kind of friend she is.) We are so very excited to have her at the shop for a pop-up November 24th from 12-4 on Small Business Saturday.

1. Tell us about Mrs. Emily and how you got started. 

Hi, I’m Emily Harris! 8 years ago I started selling handmade clothing on my website, I was living in NYC at the time and the plan was to build my business alongside being a mama and wife. 

To say there have been twists and turns in my journey would be a massive understatement. I went a couple of years without sewing at all somewhere in the middle there. Discouragement in my process has led to inspiration in my designing, and this past April, I added handmade skirts back to the shop. 

2. What does shop local mean to you?

Shopping local is about finding one-of-a-kind treasures. Things you can’t find anywhere else made by people you can’t find anywhere else. There’s nothing quite like it.

3. You’ve recently started a new Instagram chronicling your new jean wears, what is the importance of this?

I spent $100 on a pair of denim and I’m documenting each time I wear them. I want to show how spending more per item helps us find pieces we love rather than just like, which naturally clears our closets of clutter while upping our confidence. I also want to show how I can afford things at a higher price point by wearing them often, so each time I post, I add the cost per wear, which keeps going down. You can follow along at

4. What is your favorite goodie at the shop?

The. Pumpkin. Cookies. I buy them whenever I see them, often in multiples. Everyone I give one to gasps. And I love that when Kaya talks about them, she says how they’re almost healthy because they don’t have THAT much sugar in them and there’s so much pumpkin ;). I have half of one downstairs currently, and now need to go eat it (I ate the other half for breakfast).

5. What are you bringing to the pop up?

Every winter, I make scarves. But I’ve been sewing a ton of skirts lately, so when it came time to start designing scarves, my brain was still in skirt mode. The result? Skirts made out of blanket-weight fabrics. They’re warm and cozy like a scarf, but feminine and wearable. 

I’m bringing different lengths and sizes, and will be able to tailor the skirt on you, at the pop up.

I will also have the fabrics I picked up last time I was in NYC, so you can choose one and I will make a skirt custom for you. This Zebra print is one of those fabrics. See how I dressed it up and down? It’s the same concept as my $100 jeans. Buy something you love and wear it all the time for every occasion! 

6. Where can I find you online?

I love documenting the process of creating on Instagram ( and Facebook (! You can shop my tees and caps online at


MEET THE MAKER: Simple Palette


We LOVE Priscilla Putman! She makes it easy. She is a hardworking momma with a passion to teach young and ‘old’ alike. Priscilla will be back at The Hop this Friday teaching her SOLD OUT Brush Lettering Workshop.

1. Tell us about Simple Palette and how it came to be.

The Simple Palette is a hand lettered paper goods + gifts company owned and operated by yours truly, right here in Champaign, IL! 
As an artist and art teacher I have always loved calligraphy and hand lettering, but it was about 3 years ago that I created my first line of watercolor and hand-lettered greeting cards for an art show - and was immediately hooked! I opened an Etsy shop online with only a few cards and slowly began to add new designs over the last three years. 
I fell in love with the process of creating whimsical and playful watercolor illustrations and pairing them with hand lettered phrases - from food puns to heartfelt quotes - to create unique and meaningful cards and gifts to share with loved ones. I am a gift giver at heart - in fact, many of my designs are inspired by someone special in my life - so it always brings me joy when I can help someone find a meaningful gift for their own loved one!
After creating my original designs by hand, I work with local printers to produce my stationery, art prints and tea towel designs in small batches - then package everything with love in my home studio! You can find my work online at, or at local art markets throughout the year. 

2. As a teacher, mom, and artist, what does community mean to you and how does it affect your business?

Community inspires nearly every aspect of my life. As an artist, the artwork and gifts I design are created for the purpose of reaching out to others - for walking beside someone who is going through a difficult time by sending a thoughtful card, or celebrating life's joys with one another with a gift that brings a smile. I don't believe we were meant to "do life" alone. We need each other! I am always trying to extend this sentiment to my role as an art teacher. Every year I do an art project with my students where we hand-letter a quote that would encourage and uplift our school community, and we hang up the finished prints all over school! 

I've lived here for almost 10 years, but in the last few years as a mother and small business owner I have become especially aware of what it means to truly be a part of our community here in Champaign-Urbana. Little things like supporting local artists and makers, and shopping at the Farmers Market whenever we can for local produce can make a big impact, and teach our children about the inner-workings of a sustainable community. I make a point to produce and create products for The Simple Palette locally - putting money back into other locally owned businesses, and ultimately investing in my own community!

3. Can you tell us about the class you are teaching?

In addition to paper goods and gifts, The Simple Palette is now offering brush lettering workshops! It's the perfect combination of my love for teaching and brush lettering - and I am so excited to teach a class here at Hopscotch! I created a brush lettering practice book especially for our workshops - filled with tips and tricks for using both brush pens and watercolors to letter. I also hand selected lettering tools and materials for the class that I use almost every time I letter. Each attendee with get a copy of my book to keep, as well as a kit that has everything you need to start your own journey with brush lettering!

This class is for beginners - for students who have the interest but aren't quite sure where to start or what supplies they would need. We start the class learning lettering with brush pen markers and then end the class by using a specialty watercolor brush and learning how to mix up watercolors in our palettes to approach lettering in a more painterly way. For this class we will also try out our new skills lettering names on watercolor place-cards and gift tags, just in time for the holidays! 

4. What is your favorite goodie at the shop?

My favorite treat would have to be the scones - hands down - paired with a vanilla latte of course!

You can taste the love (and butter) in every bite! :)