Interviews, Life + Style

a girl to know | life + style

life + style cecyj

Sage Raval is a talented artist with a brilliant studio called smallSHOP that provides private or group art classes for children.  She is also a friend of mine.  We met at BLOGSHOP in Los Angeles last summer, suffering through Bri + Angela’s intense (and incredibly fun) class.  We put our heads together and agreed it would be fun to do a Q&A segment every month or so for “at home” art project ideas with the kids, inside tips on art, and much more!  We will start our Q&A with Sage next month but first, I thought you might want to get to know her. Definitely a girl to know…


small shop life + style cecyj

 How did you get your start as an artist?


I was always supported creatively by my family, but never really thought of myself as an artist, per se.  My friends were better at drawing or painting than I was and I never considered myself very good.  But I am a communicator and I soon realized that creating art is just another way of expressing yourself.  Then I felt more confident and inspired.


Who was your mentor?  Who encouraged you to dive into such a fun profession?


I owe it all to Coach Bob, my college art professor who made me believe in myself by hammering into my head that there are no mistakes in art and to just go for it.  To not think of each piece as so precious, but as a building block to something else.  Not to throw away a “bad” piece, but to revisit it later to find something inspiring.  And most importantly, not to take myself or my art too seriously, but to enjoy the process and hopefully the product.  Teaching art just happened… I love kids and art and voila!


Textile, print or style you love?


I cannot get enough of ikat! It is on my chairs and pillows alike at home.



Best day of your life (so far)?


I have been lucky to have many, but a few top my list.  Personally, the day each of my children were born.  It is pretty hard to top the amount of emotion and love that surrounds those events.  Professionally, when I was 23, I started working at Los Angeles County Museum of Art.  I remember going after hours to drop off art supplies in the studio.  I took a wrong turn and ended up in the Impressionist wing of the museum, I saw a guard and I asked if I could be in there.  He looked at my “new” work badge and said yes and he walked off.  It was unreal, I was the ONLY person in the entire museum.  My footsteps were all I heard and the lights were dimmed.  I sat on a bench and looked at Monet and was in awe of the moment.  Me+ Museum+ All Alone+ Quiet+ Monet+ A Feeling of Accomplishment and Inclusion.  It was pretty rad!


sage raval cecyj life + style


If you were not an artist, what would you be?


Chef and run my own Bed and Breakfast somewhere warm, on a beach with lots of friends to come and visit.



Describe your home decor style?  Modern and chic or are you a bohemian and causal girl?


I am Bohemian Modern.  I love straight clean lines with raw texture and materials.  I love natural woods and beautiful fabrics paired with slabs of stone and lots lot light. I do not like clutter, but I do love collected items.  I want my home to represent my family and me.  We live here and it should look like us.


Free time…?


What is that?!  When I have free time I love to cook big meals with friends.  I am always up for a walk on the beach.  Putting on a great album (I mean playlist) and having a glass of wine while reading children’s stories with my kids is a lovely way to spend the evening as well.


Okay, honestly I want an art lesson with you!  Can I take a class?  Girl’s night out classes?


Yes please!  Anytime!  We do adult classes and a girl’s night out class sounds pretty amazing!



{photograph of sage + family by charley star | smallSHOP logos designed by bri emery | fabric background designed by caitlin wilson |
ikat pillow made by marthaandash | pan sourced here| beach sourced here}