It’s been nearly three years in the making, so it’s hard to believe that the day is finally here that we can
share our longest-stretching side-gig to date. We’ve been designing a collection of products… and a bunch of them are now being sold exclusively at Target (!!!). Cue the sound effect of a cat sprinting out of a bag.
We designed three or four dozen pieces before the final mix was chosen – and those designs, which are an assortment of wall storage and hooks, are available right now at Target.com and will be on endcaps in most US stores starting March 31st.
You’ll be able to find them in the Home Improvement section where they’ll be hanging out for 14 weeks. Did I mention that we’re freaking out like Clara next to a furry mascot that she “just wants to hug and squeeze”?
To say we never thought something like this would ever happen to us might be the biggest understatement of our blogging careers. And even when this process started rolling waaaaay back in July of 2011, we never expected that it would end up here.
When you look at the collection you’ll notice that we’ve adapted a lot of things that we love – from bees and old skeleton keys to a certain ridiculously handsome chihuahua. And everything’s priced at $14.99 or less.
We even included a bit of DIY customization in the mix, thanks to these raw wood hook rails (one with a picture ledge on top, and one without) that you can personalize with paint, stain, wallpaper, decoupage, or whatever else you have on hand. Then you can choose any of the four hardware styles in either oil-rubbed bronze or white and screw them into the predrilled rail holes.
But let’s rewind back to July of 2011, when this whole thing started. At that time, a company called Liberty Hardware was a sidebar blog sponsor of ours and they asked to come interview us for some research they were doing about the do-it-yourself trend. A few months later, that research turned into an invitation to explore the possibility of designing some products with them. When we said yes there was no part of us that ever envisioned them ending up in a store like Target.
The next two years were an exciting and sometimes intense process of design and development. Never again will we underestimate the work that goes into making those everyday products that we see on store shelves. We were primarily responsible for the creative direction, which involved providing everything from rough sketches to color/finish input along with design tweaks and feedback at every step of the design process. Liberty’s team was great to work with, and had things like manufacturing feasibility and sales analysis covered – which was a huge necessity to taking our ideas from paper (and visions in our heads) to real-life objects.
The development process was hugely interesting to us because it was like nothing we had ever seen. From the drawings & images that we provided, the Liberty design team would illustrate some options, the best of which then got modeled either on a computer or in clay by hand (sometimes both). Those then became 3D printed models that could get cast to become real production prototypes and eventually the final product was born. There was feedback, tweaking, and even a few “back to the drawing board” moments at each step in the process. Questions of scale, symmetry, functionality, finish, price, etc. were always being considered – as well as how everything would fit together as a collection. Heck, there was even a focus group held at one point! So all-in-all we probably designed forty or fifty pieces before they got narrowed down to the current mix.
While lots of the design work happened virtually (through email and conference calls), The Liberty team – which is primarily headquartered about 3.5 hours from us in Winston-Salem, NC – traveled to Richmond on several occasions. We also found ourselves traveling to see them in North Carolina, meeting with their design team in Chicago (that’s Adam pictured, who has been bringing our ideas to life from day one of the project), and even flying out to the Target headquarters in Minneapolis at one point. Despite that meeting happening in late April of last year, we still happened to catch a major snowstorm. We’re not sure how you Minnesotans do it.
That trip in Minneapolis was especially surreal, since it happened just a few months after we had been there for our book tour. It was weird to be secretly traveling there after so freely Instagramming our previous tour travels. We actually got recognized a couple of times while standing outside of the Target offices, so we were pretty freaked out that our cover was blown (to the folks who said hi to us, we can now apologize for being SO INSANELY AWKWARD). Secrets are no fun.
We shot the images you see in this post (and that appear on the packaging) in our house last November. It felt a lot like our book shoots when we were trying to create a diverse mix of backdrops in a house with very few painted walls, so we had to get a little creative. You can see in this photo that we used a remnant piece of grasscloth wallpaper to spice things up behind the Burger hook. And that’s our brother-in-law/pro-photographer Todd who did all of the shooting. Nothing like keeping it in the family.
Once it was cropped, you’d never know there was painters tape and blue trim lurking just out of frame.
After all those months, all those trips and meetings, all those designs and redesigns, and all of the shooting/writing for the packaging, it still feels completely unreal that this project is out in the world now. And we’re even more excited to hopefully roll out more products as the year goes on. Yup, we’re actively pitching new designs that go beyond wall hooks and storage (Target prefers the idea of tight collections, so we’re working on different home/DIY themes that could be switched out seasonally).
We owe a huge thanks to all of the people who’ve been a part of this, especially those who have put up with our silly questions or nit-picky changes. So a big virtual hug goes out to everyone who saw something in our ideas, and helped bring them to life.
And of course we have an insane amount of love for you guys for sharing this crazy journey with us (and for putting up with our “secret project” for so long – we really wished we could have told you, oh, 32 months ago). Never in our wildest dreams did we think that first post back in 2007 would lead us here. Oops, I think the orchestra is playing me out, but picture me waving my chihuahua hook in the air while Sherry gracefully trips over her gown on the way down the steps. She’s the J. Law to my J. Leto (I just have to work on my flowing man-mane).
You can browse and buy everything now over on Target.com, and then it’ll be in most stores beginning March 31st. Fingers crossed that the sight doesn’t send Sherry into labor!
Update – Some of the most frequent requests that we get are for info about professionally blogging (how we made our site, how we grew our following, how we make money, etc) so we shared all of the details about how we started a blog, grew our traffic, and turned it into a full time job.
Congratulations! I love Target and I love your shelves and hooks with doorknobs! Can’t wait to check it out!!
I just KNEW it had to be something at target! Big Big congrats to you both! I know that was a lot of work and I’m sure everyone will love and buy them all up! :)
How insanely exciting for you guys!
Thanks you guys! It feels so surreal!
Congratulations! This will be a very good year.
Not only will you be birthing a baby, but your very own product line
Wow! That’s so awesome! Just another step in your plan of world domination. :)
Wow!!!!! So excited for you! That’s awesome! and I’ve been thinking we need some hooks for keys in our house….I like the bluish knob one, the key shaped hooks, the woven design one…hmmmm
(I checked early this morning in case your excitment got this posted early:>)
Rita C. (Panoply) says
Wowee – congratulations! (cue Peter Gabriel’s “Big Time”) :D
Ha! It’s nice to have a chance to cue up a Peter Gabriel song that isn’t “Sledgehammer” for once. :)
I’ve been trying to guess the secret project all year and this is super exciting! Target is the most amazing store for you guys to partner with. I’m loving those chihuahua hooks!
btw, have you guys seen this link to “inside a woman’s mind at Target”? So. Much. Truth.
Totally me!!! So funny.
Haha, that is spot on! And now I want to go wander around Target. Such a beautiful place.
That was funny and oh so true!
Hahaha! Thanks for sharing :)
Heather R says
WOWZERS!! Super Congrats!! Can’t wait to gets some hooks!! Thank you for sharing. Gotta go now so I can head over to Target.
Thanks so much Heather! They’ll be in stores beginning March 31st, so you might not find them if you head over now ;)
Congratulations! Any idea when the collection will hit Canada’s Target stores?
From what we hear if you guys ask for it on Target Canada’s Facebook page (or via their Twitter account), they’re a lot more likely to be responsive – so feel free to tell yours that you’d like to see it! We also have an international giveaway lined up in early April, so anyone in the world can win the entire collection :)
Yay, international giveaway! Negates somewhat my initial “grghh, something else cool that I can’t get in Aust”! Even if I don’t win (odds!) it’s lovely you’re thinking of us :)
(Sooo many places don’t ship down here, and the local selection is often stuck in 1984. What I see in Apartment Therapy etc hits our “trend” shops two years later. Chevron anyone?)
Rebecca Armtage says
Huzzah! Project harass the local Target store shall commence this afternoon. Hopefully they still have them left when we cross the boarder in May.
Sent a Tweet to Target (and Target Canada) :) the line looks great, congratulations!
I sent out a Tweet to Target (and Target Canada) asking them to carry your stuff :) Congratulations, it looks beautiful.
I will anxiously await your Canadian arrival. Congrats guys, this is an amazing accomplishment!
Love that Target Canada’s Facebook page is flooded with requests to carry your new line!!!
This was my exact comment. So I’ll be tweeting Target Canada within minutes….Very cool.
I cannot wait to get my hands on these! So awesome!!! Congrats!
Fantastic news!!! Congratulations!!!
I’m going to call my store every day until they bring this collection to Target in Canada. It’s a great collection of hooks!!!!!!!!!
Aw thanks Lila!
My son was born in July 2011, and I can’t believe that is when you actually started the project. It seems so, so, so long ago now!
I know, right?! It’s so crazy that Clara wasn’t even walking when this started!
No freaking way!! I popped on early to check for any Instagram updates, and was greeted with this announcement! Can’t believe you had a secret trip to the Twin Cities during one of our crazy spring blizzards last year! So excited to check out the collection, and congratulations!!!
Awesome! I love the really chunky circle hooks so much! I am collecting hooks to line up on the entry wall and I think a couple of those will be perfect among all the crazy ones we already have!
This is so cool!!! I work at Target Corp in Mpls…I would have freaked out if I had seen you there!!
Also – I was just thinking we should get some hooks for our entryway so that my 3 year old could hang her own coat up instead of throwing it on the floor! I LOVE the “build your own” but how am I ever going to decide how to finish it?!?!
Just going to have to buy multiples, I guess!
Lisa E says
OMG! OMG! OMG! Is it inappropriate for a middle age woman to want to jump up and down in excitement for you? I can’t help it, I am soooooooo excited for you! Wow. I am also so happy and proud of you two, as well. So well deserved. Really. So well deserved. Congratulations!
Gayle IdeasWoman says
I so totally agree with you Lisa E. Like everyone else who follows I would assume. Well deserved guys!
YAY!! How awesome?!!! Just one problem….I love them ALL!!
Wahoooo!! Awesome sauce!! Congratulations you guys!! Happy for you!!
Karen Q. says
HOLY AWESOME!!! YAY! So happy and excited for you guys- congratulations!!! Can’t wait to get my paws on these fabulous hooks- I’ll be the nutso in the store holding them Lion King style to the sky, petting them with a big ole grin! Can’t wait to look crazy! :)
Bahaha, I love you Karen!
What a fantastic secret project!! Congrats you guys!!
Kelly Goldman says
How exciting!! I had a professor at VCU once say we should design things for Target… which I found odd at first. And now?! It’s BEYOND exciting that you guys will have your own little slice of the Target line. Along with Nate, of course. OMG you’re in a store with Nate Berkus!
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! That’s so cool! I must run to Target immediately! Sherry, you could end up on an end cap with Nate Berkus someday really soon!
You’re so sweet Danielle! They should be in stores beginning March 31st, so you might not find them if you head over now (unless you want to live there for a few weeks, which could be doable with the grocery sections and Starbucks…)
Congratulations! So excited for you both. Can’t wait to see the stuff in the stores!
Mary | Lemon Grove Blog says
Holy smokes, guys!! HUGE congrats to you. Can’t wait to check this stuff out at Target – I love all of it!
Sooo happy for you! Congratulations! These are all adorable. I *must* have the octopus hooks for my sister who is a sailor.
Congratulations!! That is HUGE!!!
As always, you took something simple and you made it great. I really like the collection! I wonder what other secret gigs you might be working on right now…
OMG. I am pinching myself, and I actually checked my calendar just to make sure it wasn’t April 1.
Love the octopus the most. I must convince my husband that we can fit that into the nursery somehow.
WOW!! That is so awesome! I am waiting impatiently for March 31st so I can go touch and feel (and BUY) everything for myself. Congratulations!!!
That is so cool! I’m so excited to buy a YHL hook now, which is perfect timing because we’re finishing up a bathroom remodel and need some hooks. Congratulations J&S!
Brittany D says
I KNEW IT!! I had this feeling you were going to announce a collaboration with Target this Spring. Between the pics outside of the Target headquarters during the book tour, the opportunity to chat with Nate Berkus and the secret photo shoot in your new house….it was totally obvious. So excited for you guys and excited to see your collection in the stores! :)
Mrs. Money says
Congrats- how exciting!
So is it just hooks? Or will there be more to the collection?
Target likes really tight themes for certain departments (this is for their Home Improvement section), so for our first collection they went with hooks/rails (they chose from about 30-40 items to create the final mix). The other collections that we have in development are on other DIY/home themes, which we’re really excited about!
Nicole Kathryn says
Huge ginormus virtual hug and spirited jazz hands for your new collection! This is so incredible and much deserved! :) So excited for you guys!!
Theresa M. says
OTHER collections!!! Excuse me while I go swoon on the couch.
Melissa @ Loving Here says
I can’t wait to see future collections! Although this one is pretty great, I must say. Still, I have my fingers crossed I’ll one day be furnishing my whole house with Young House Love items!
Congratulations! Exciting news! Have a crush on these hexagon acrylic picture hooks. You said you`re working on other collections. Sure can`t say anything about it, but some door knobs like the hexagon acrylics would be to die for!
Doorknobs are on our wish list! Apparently from a manufacturing standpoint they’re really tricky but we’d love to get into those!
[email protected] says
So awesome! What a cool opportunity! You know you have arrived when you make stuff for TARGET!
Michele from IL says
WOW, that’s fantastic! I love the teal octopus! :)
Congratulations, y’all!! The hooks look great and can’t wait to get my hands on some and to give some as gifts as well. Again, congratulations and good job!
Michelle @ Ten June says
SHUT! UP! Guyssssssss! Congratulations! I am so happy for y’all. Seriously, you’re officially in a club with Nate Berkus and Emily Henderson now… just saying. That’s cool. I am SO going to buy up everything at my local Tar-jay. And freak out in the aisle when I see your display. “HEY! Random stranger! I KNOW them! Come buy this bada$$ stuff!” : )
Haha, thanks Michelle – you’re so sweet! Smooch that little girl (and H-dawg of course) for me.
Wow! congratulations! That is super duper exciting and I only wish I was still living in the states to get some of those hooks. I have a totally mismatched hook on the wall entry in my house, and I just love adding to the collection. My Fav. is the octopus.
Kinda a weird question: I’m an art teacher at an international school here in Singapore and my grade 4s are just starting a unit on designing a product (theirs are all silly “briefs” like “a pasta that makes you speak in an Italian accent”), but I really want them to get a handle on the process that goes into designing something from the drawing board to the the final product. Do you mind if I use that photo you have of the octopus going through the process? I’d love to read them snippets of your post too. And I was wondering how you’d feel if we sent you a little Q&A email interview about the process. They are 9 &10 year olds, so it wouldn’t be uber threatening, nor in-depth! Let me know what you think. I know you guys are super busy, but I thought you might get a kick out of it too.
My email: [email protected]
Thanks! and Congrats again.
Sure! Feel free to use that pic and send over a little email Q&A! Sounds like a fun class. Now I want pasta that makes me talk in an Italian accent…
Ok, having a line at Target. Oh. Em. Gee. But this. This is why y’all are awesome. Answering a Q&A for elementary school kids halfway around the world.
a) THIS IS SO COOL! I literally just covered a set of hooks with wrapping paper because I was so disgusted with how it looked (and it is STILL SO rough!) and here you guys are selling it and saving me the trouble of trying to squeeze around the hooks and cut perfectly! This will be a HUGE step up from what’s currently hanging on my walls! I cannot wait to place my order!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
b) What a great idea! I teach school, too, and we are about to focus on the career process. I may show them your website….and book….and products…and lights…wow, y’all are so talented!!!!
Thanks for sharing all of this with the cyber world. Congratulations from the bottom of my heart.
Now, don’t go into labor, yet!
Congrats, very exciting! I was thinking accessories but was thinking more like pic frames, mirrors, ceramic animals, vases/display bowls etc. I have been wanting a picture ledge with hooks but could never find the right thing…will have to check yours out.
Congratulations! Love the look of all of those and can’t wait to check them out in person. I love Target, and your style fits right in with their stores. I hope you have more products with them in the future. Good luck!
Squeeeeeeeee. That’s my first response. Can’t wait to check out your items. Congrats.
How insanely exciting for you guys! Congratulations!!!
Wow, what an amazing accomplishment! Congratulations, that’s so exciting! It’s funny because reading it I feel like a proud parent, even though I just “know” you virtually from reading along. Couldn’t be more excited for you guys!
Congrats guys! So exciting! You deserve it, I don’t know how y’all are so sneaky?!?!? Is this the last secret project? Anything else up your sleeves?
Just some future collections that we have in development that we mentioned – and the little boy I’m cooking up – but both of those are out of the bag. FEELS GOOD! Haha!