Sticks News Feed and Blog


Sticks Installation at Greenwood Elementary School 0

Sticks is honored to have recently been commissioned by local elementary school Greenwood Elementary here in Des Moines, Iowa.

Read on to learn more about this fun custom project!

The mural is located in a new entry atrium that was added to the school just last year.  The school itself however was built back in 1901!  It was a big, open space that was calling for some public art to fill it up and greet the students and staff as they enter each day.

The concept and title for the piece is "What We Love About Greenwood Elementary" and all of the students, over 300 of them, were involved from start to finish.  Before any art began every student told Sticks what they personally love about their school.  Some kids drew us what they love, some told us stories, and some made lists.  This became our inspiration and a condensed list of the students' thoughts are what make up the poem at the base of the mural!
Once all the artwork was completed in our own Des Moines, Iowa art studio, it was finally time for installation in the school!  This is where we brought the students back into the process.  As we were hanging and installing the panels, we brought in each class and gave them a bit of a presentation.  We told them about our artistic process and talked about the importance of public art.  They had a lot of fun finding and chatting with us about some of their favorite things that made it into the poem.  Unveiling it to everyone was so exciting!

The public art aspect also ties into another fun part of the project - this board that highlights artists of the week!  We adore how it focuses on the students' creativity and free thinking, and each grade level gets some love.
We had such a blast creating this project with the students and staff, making bright and inspirational art is a true joy for us.  We hope they love it as much as we loved creating it.❤️

Do you have interest in a Sticks installation or a unique project we can help with?

Our Special Projects Representative Fran would be happy to chat with you more!  

(515)246-8361 ext. 201
  • Lisa Stark

HUGE After Christmas Sale!! 0

It's one of our biggest sales of the year and it's back! The holiday hustle is over, treat yourself and start of 2018 with some Sticks!

This week only receive 20% off your entire purchase on using code 20JAN2018 and with your Sticks puchases with our participating retailers:

ArtQuest Gallery
14 W Hinsdale Ave
Hinsdale, IL 60521
Ph: (630) 887-8281

28 W St. Charles Rd
LombardIL 60148
Ph: (630) 495-6909

Quirks of Art
423 Prince George St
WilliamsburgVA 23185
Ph: (757) 645-4366 

Sticks Gallery
400 E Locust St
Des Moines, IA 50309
Ph: (515)282-0844

Stowe Craft
55 Mountain Rd
StoweVT 05672
Ph: (802) 253-2305

Wildcat on a Wing
10061 Ball Ground Hwy
Ball GroundGA 30107
Ph: (770) 735-6923

Hurry this sale ends Saturday the 27th and a deal this good won't be back around for awhile! Shop Sticks today!

  • Lisa Stark

Sticks ❤ Shawn Johnson East 0


A few weeks ago we were lucky enough to have a visit from Shawn Johnson East.  She's a bit of a local celebrity - we're all very proud to have an Olympic athlete from Des Moines, Iowa!


And while she's stopped in to see us before, this occasion was a little more special.  She partnered up with Google to share her favorite hometown small businesses and we were lucky enough to be featured in a full vlog while she took Andrew on a date around DSM.

Watch the full video here, featuring our art director Amy:

Thanks for the visit and hometown love Shawn, hope to see you again soon!

  • Lisa Stark

6 Beautiful Gifts that Serve a Purpose 0

One of the most stressful parts of the holiday season is trying to find the perfect gifts for all of your loved ones. Growing up I remember opening gifts at my family Christmas gatherings from distant relatives and thinking to myself, "what the heck am I ever going to do with this?!" From that day on I made it a point to make sure I was giving gifts that people would want to use. Some of my favorite gifts have been those that I am able to use on a daily basis. One year for my birthday my mom gave me an electric toothbrush. At the time I was disappointed with the lack of excitement I got when I opened the gift. However, it turned out to be one of my favorite gifts because it is something I use daily!

There are so many wonderful gifts out there that it can be overwhelming trying to find the best products to buy for the holidays. Here are six wonderful gift ideas that are sure to serve a purpose. The best part... Products from these designer lines can all be found at the Sticks Gallery in the East Village. Making Sticks your one-stop shop for the holidays!


1. Adorable magnet sculptures from Prairie Dance that can be personalized by attaching and displaying your favorite photo memories. 

2. Wild cherry utensils by Jonathan's Spoons, beautifully unique and crafted to be useful in your daily life. 


3. A festive holiday tray from Sticks to display all of your holiday cookies in style!

4. Custome cutting boards from Maple Leaf to carve your holiday meats in style.

5. Pure soy candles from 1803 Candles to flood your home with sweet smells this holiday season.

6. Catstudio state glasses and tea towels to honor your favorite vacations and home sweet home.

Leave a comment below with some of your favorite holiday gift ideas! :)

  • Alaina Riley

Make the Holiday Season Stress-Free with these 9 Tips! 0

Why does it seem as though the time goes by even faster during the holiday season? I spend so much time getting ready for the holidays and always look for different ways I can make the most out of my time. Every year after the holidays I come up with time-saving ideas and think, "why didn't I think of that earlier?!"

Here is a list of a few tips and tricks I have learned over the years to help you feel like you're conquering the holidays:

  1. Use blue painters tape to hang all of your favorite holiday decorations without worrying about damaging your wall paint.
  2. To prevent your wreath from falling off every single time you close the door- attach a command hook upside down on the opposite side to secure the wreath.                   
  3. Put frosting into squeezable condiment bottles for easy and mess-free cookie decorating!                                                                                                               
  4. Pass on the stress of last-minute cooking by making some dishes beforehand and putting them in the freezer. On the day of your get-together, take them out to thaw and reheat! 
  5. Avoid trying to untangle a string of lights by wrapping them around a hanger for easy, tangle-free storage.
  6. Travel without all of the extra bulk over the holidays by giving gift cards. Still need one? We've got you covered with Sticks gift cards
  7. Make a batch of hot chocolate in a crockpot. It will be large enough for the whole family to enjoy!    
  8. Rather than throwing away your empty boxes from your rolls of tin foil, decorate them and use them to gift Christmas cookies. 
  9. Give your home a festive smell by putting some water in a pot with some cinnamon and clove, bring it to a boil and enjoy the cozy Christmas smells!

We hope you can put these tips to food use this holiday season and spend less time stressing and enjoy more time with family and friends.

Do you have any holiday tips or tricks? Comment them below, we would love to hear about them. :) 

Thank you to for the wonderful photos! :)

  • Alaina Riley

Employee Spotlight 0

Twenty-three years ago, after the floods of 1993, a young painter walked into a building in downtown Des Moines with muddy boots, leaving a trail of footprints behind her. The young painter was Amy Putney Koenig and the building was one of the first Sticks, Inc. studios.

Amy is an art director and drawer here at the studio. She started her career with Sticks as a painter and within her first year with the company, was transitioned into drawing. Not only does Amy play a huge part in the production of our handmade pieces here at the studio, but she also does her own artwork outside of Sticks, Inc. Some of her pieces include murals that can be found on the side of the Roca building and at the Power Life studio, both located in Des Moines, IA. She also creates beautiful and moving collages. When Amy is not working on art she can be found teaching yoga at Power Life Yoga. 

Being a part of the Sticks family for over two decades means 23 years of memories. One of Amy's most memorable moments with our company was 18 years ago when she found out she was pregnant with her daughter, Helen. The founder of our company, Sarah Grant, was the first person to find out about the exciting news. Amy and Helen spent the holidays with Sarah for five years making wonderful memories.

No two days are the same here at the studio, however, on an average day during the summer, Amy arrives at work around 7:00am. Usually the first thing on the agenda is to review files from the day before. There are always projects to be working on, some of which are products with a must-have-by date that get priority depending on when they need to be completed. The duration of her day is spent drawing, designing and composing custom artwork for galleries and clients, drawing artwork on the chalkboard for weekend weddings, attending meetings and walking through the studio to answer questions if there are any. Amy's day ends around 2:30pm which allows her time to pick her kids up from school.

Interested in learning more about Amy or seeing her artwork? Check out her website at: :)

- Alaina Riley

  • Alaina Riley