Give Back

We say, "Stand Up, Give Back and Take Naps" but how, precisely, are we giving back? 

Since 2020, Ladyfingers Letterpress has raised and redistributed like, a bunch of money (see below), and we will continue to give back to the communities, causes and celebrations that bring us together and raise each other up.

 

 


2022

 

When a new AAPI and LGBTQ-owned barbershop opened in town, Arley went for a visit and not only got a great haircut, but he had the most affirming experience he ever had at a barbershop. We wrote about it on social media, and when our post went viral, a scholarship fund for LGBTQ+ customers was born. Our community donated over $3,500 to establish the “Ladyfingers” haircut fund. Anyone can access the fund by booking an appointment and receiving a free haircut, no questions asked. Customers of Sunday Barber Co. continue to donate to the fund and it is an ongoing effort to provide free, affirming haircuts for anyone who needs it. 

 

 

 

 

Pikes Peak Pantry Mutual Aid

Pikes Peak Pantry Tea Towel and Tote Bag Sale 

This is an ongoing project, as we aim to consistently fund food and necessities our neighbors need while engaging our community in also supporting by donating and purchasing totes and towels

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • First project phase January 1st to June 30th, 2022
  • Sold in-store and online by Ladyfingers Letterpress
  • Sold out initial production run of totes and tea towels in record time
  • Donated $1,422 in gift cards

The Pikes Peak Little Free Pantry provides food and personal items available 24/7, no questions asked on the west side of Colorado Springs, in a particular location that is accessible to many people.

The pantry started in January 2021 with one set of plastic
drawers and has blossomed into a permanent cabinet structure, covered mini-fridge, metal drawers, and two water coolers to provide drinking water.

Their motto is, “Give what you can, take what you need.” The pantry is not a non-profit, but aims for mutual aid, where the community members themselves help to stock, clean, and organize the pantry.

After finding out about the pantry, we began participating as members of the mutual aid effort by giving food, funds, social media support, and thinking about how to do more.

Our pals Fixer Creative concepted and designed a custom illustration to be printed on totes & tea towel donated by Ladyfingers to be sold and fulfilled at our shop. We also reached out to Creative Consortium, a local sign and screenprint shop Fixer works with frequently who is also active in our community, to donate the printing. 100% proceeds of every purchase of a gold tote or tea towel went to support the the Pantry through gift cards (their request). In addition to goods for sale, we also printed a sturdy grey tote to be provided free of charge to neighbors picking up goods at the pantry. 

  

Protect Kids Not Guns

Protect Kids Not Guns Posters

As a response to yet another senseless act of gun violence, we shipped over 12,000 posters in under 48 hours at a discounted rate of $1 for 15 prints.

That's 800 sets of 15 posters, which normally would have cost $30 per set, or $24,000 in revenue. Thousands were given away for free locally from our two locations. 

We hope to be able to retire this design sometime soon, but it's not going to happen without major reform. And major reform isn't going to happen without support from the masses. And the masses need a message. We continue to 

 

 

 

 

Pikes Peak Pride Ladyfingers

Pikes Peak Pride

Pikes Peak Pride is a newly formed nonprofit organization created by local LGBTQ+ volunteers and allies.

Their focus is to create an annual inclusive Pride event in Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region.

The inaugural Pride was held on July 23 - 24 at Alamo Square Park and included a parade, family day and a temporary public art installation.

Ladyfingers designed a print and hosted a Pay What You Can Print night June 3rd to kick off Pride Month and collect donations to support Pikes Peak Pride as an event sponsor.

We welcomed new printmakers young and old for several hours to join us in cranking out this message which felt fitting after years of pandemic Pride shutdowns and as a mantra for the event. Prints were also created & shared with the organization who in turn was able to sell or thank donors with them.

 

Print Day at the Fine Arts Center

Print Day at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College

In conjunction with the Robert Blackburn & Modern American Printmaking exhibit at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College, we offered to the public the opportunity to partake in a day of printmaking. For many, this was their first time pulling their own screen print, and hopefully it will not be their last! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Colorado Mountain Doula Project

 

Colorado Doula Project

In the immediate wake of the destruction of Roe v. Wade, we created a series of Reproductive Rights posters. We chose to use these designs to raise funds for a local organization who helps to provide abortion access in Colorado to people from all over the US who are now finding themselves without it. Through the sale of t-shirts and tote bags and donations from the community, we were able to send $1000 to the Colorado Doula Project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Queer Stained Glass Sticker Recovery FundSticker Sales for Queer Stained Glass Recovery Fund

We've had the pleasure to employ Parker, the artist and purveyor of Queer Stained Glass at Ladyfingers.

When they designed a series of stickers to fund an upcoming gender-affirming surgery, we offered to purchase the stickers outright to help increase their margins on the effort. The stickers are for sale in our online shop and in-store and we handled all shipping and fulfillment.

Parker shared this writing on Instagram about how we have worked together, the process, and the impact that had on their life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poetry719

Poetry 719 Event Hosting 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Printmaking Free for All

Printmaking Free for All

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inside Out Youth Services

Inside Out Youth Services

Ladyfingers Letterpress continues to support Inside Out Youth Services as we believe in the life-saving aid they provide. We designed and letterpress printed the annual fundraiser invitations for Inside Out Youth Services, the Colorado Springs-based non-profit that services LGBTQ+ youth in El Paso County. The value of our design and print services was estimated at $9,430.

 

 

 

 

 


2021

Cultivating Luminescence

Cultivating Luminescence

In October 2020, Ladyfingers began a mentoring relationship with Cultivating Luminescence, a Black, LGBTQ+, and locally owned candle company started by Kristina Henderson. After selling her products and listening to her goal to support her family with her business we have been working alongside each other toward that vision.

We are dedicated and proactive in the way we support our community and focus on sharing our resources and experiences with other marginalized-owned businesses, projects, programs and organizers.

FUNDING

One of the first things we did was add a virtual tip jar to our website. Upon checkout, customers can donate to a fund we direct towards LQBTQ and BIPOC-owned businesses. All those funds have been directed to supporting Cultivating Luminescence as Kristina grew her business in the early stages. 

To support the next chapter of Cultivating Luminescence, Kristina wanted to invest in her logo, brand, and comprehensive packaging in order to expand into wholesaling them nationally. Together we hired Houndstooth Design, a queer-owned business based in Denver to lead that process. We worked virtually and in person due to the times and the outcome is an incredible translation of scent into visuals. 

Once this work was complete we knew we needed to find more funding to complete the packaging for products.

We designed and letterpress printed a postcard and a print with Kristina's words and vision for her company. We set to raise $10,000 as seed money to fund packaging production, the bulk purchase of raw materials at a rate that allowed for greater profit margins that would sustain the business/her. 

Through social media, we shared how we came to work together, and all the challenges of running a product-based business at home during a pandemic with your kids as a part of the equation. In two weeks we collected $11,000 for Cultivating Luminescence from our community allowing for the next phase to begin. Contributors were thanked with postcards and prints. 

Upon completion of the packaging, we were able to connect Kristina with a local photographer who volunteered to professional shoot her product line to prepare for wholesale. Currently she is also working with another volunteer designer on a product catalog for the holiday season.

MENTORSHIP

We provide ongoing mentorship to Kristina, as well as sharing resources and connections.

STUDIO SPACE

Since September of 2021, we have provided free studio space with needed build-out and upgrades specific to candle making.

ONGOING

We continue to work together, Cultivating Luminescence Candles are a top-selling product in our shop - benefitting both of our queer, parent-owned companies.

 

Artist Pop Up at Ladyfingers at the FAC

Artist Pop Ups

We have welcomed the following makers, artists and designers to exhibit and sell their work free of charge at our second location at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College: 

-Cultivating Luminescence 

-Fixer Creative 

-Houndstooth Design

-Queer Stained Glass

-Ellen’s Flowers 

-Caitlin Gobel

-Noel Dolan Designs

-Southern Colorado Pink and Black (An organization supporting incarcerated LGBTQ+ people and those living with HIV and AIDS)

 

TESSA Holiday Shop

TESSA Holiday Shop

During the holiday season, we engaged our community of supporters to purchase gifts on the wishlists for families currently in temporary housing or receiving support from TESSA to ensure each client had something to unwrap during the holidays. TESSA is a Colorado Springs-based non-profit that empowers victims of partner and sexual violence to take back the life that is rightfully theirs.

 

 

 

 

Bitchstix TESSA Ladyfingers Donation

Bitchstix/TESSA 

In our two locations we sell a lip balm made by an Indiana-based company called Bitchstix. Every year, the company asks their retailers to nominate a cause to donate a portion of their sales to. We nominated TESSA and in December of 2021 we got to deliver a giant check to their offices and surprised them with a donation from Bitchstix of $15,000 in unrestricted funds. 



 

 

 

Project Wildflower

Project Wildflower

Together, Morgan Calderini of Ladyfingers Letterpress and Sara DeRose of Fixer Creative organized a community effort to fill the gap of District 2’s Adopt-a-Family Drive to help make sure all of the families were adopted and taken care of in the last 5 days of the United Way Holiday Drive.

Due to our efforts through engaging our community:

  • $20,550 was raised by 525 donors
  • Gifts provided to 157 people in 25 families
  • Additional gift cards and gifts for caregivers and parents were able to be provided on top of the wishlists
  • 30+ volunteers were organized to shop, wrap, and deliver gifts

As the project evolved, we reached out and listened to program organizers and school counselors to prioritize funds and time to families with the most urgent need. In-kind donations from our community relationships provided warehouse space, giftwrap, bikes, gift cards, food & drink for volunteer shifts. During a pandemic-related bicycle scarcity, we were able to purchase high-quality bikes for all who requested them through our relationship with Pedal Station, a local non-profit, who also ensured each biker had safety equipment, pumps and locks. The community mobilized to problem solve as challenges arose, including working together to deliver gifts when the United Way truck was grounded due to gale force wind that knocked power out all over the city.



 

 

 

Pikes Peak Pantry

The Pikes Peak Pantry

In lieu of offering a generic store-wide sale on Small Business Saturday, we elected to donate $1,200 to the local free pantry in our region called the Pikes Peak Pantry. This mutual aid effort is organized and supported entirely by the community. The donation supports $100 in monthly purchases of needed items that are often not donated like deodorant, menstrual products, toothpaste and toothbrushes.

 

 

Inside Out Youth Services

Inside Out Youth Services

Ladyfingers Letterpress donated printing services for the annual fundraiser invitations for Inside Out Youth Services, the Colorado Springs-based non-profit that services LGBTQ+ youth in El Paso County.

 

 

 

 

 

 

General Donations

We donated to Lil Miss Story Hour, a Colorado Springs-based donation-run literacy program which was founded and directed by Vanessa Little in 2019. 

We donated to Poetry 719, a Colorado Springs-based poetry collective whose mission is to uplift BIPOC and marginalized voices through art and poetry.  

We donated to Porch Fest, a one-day community music festival held in the Patty Jewett neighborhood of Colorado Springs.

 


2020

Protest Posters

Protest Posters

We raised $6000 through the online and in-store sales of our Protest Posters and evenly distributed the funds to Black-led organizations and artists, including: 

-National Birth Equity Collaborative 

-Trans Justice Funding Project 

-Pile of Bricks; Amos Kennedy, letterpress artist 

-NAACP of Colorado Springs 

 

 

Inside Out Youth Services

Inside Out Youth Services

Ladyfingers Letterpress donated design services for the annual fundraiser invitations for Inside Out Youth Services, the Colorado Springs-based non-profit that services LGBTQ+ youth in El Paso County.

 

 

 

 

 

TESSA Holiday ShopTESSA Holiday Shop

During the holiday season, we engaged our community of supporters to purchase gifts on the wishlists for families currently in temporary housing or receiving support from TESSA to ensure each client had something to unwrap during the holidays. TESSA is a Colorado Springs-based non-profit that empowers victims of partner and sexual violence to take back the life that is rightfully theirs.