MADE in the USA Gifts by Women Friendly Businesses. Our Story.


Tahirih Cahill
Owner, E11even Shades Studio
Boise, ID

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“Be patient, both for success and with yourself.”

I am 28, a mom of two elementary age boys, and have been with my husband for 10 years. I went to BSU on partial scholarship my first year after high school to pursue a BFA in Graphic Design (with minor in Spanish) however, the arrival of my first son interrupted my formal education and led to my 5 year career doing Developmental Therapy, first for adult groups, then one-on-one with special needs children. After the birth of my second son, I briefly pursued an educational path in Occupational Therapy, but ultimately art came back into my life with full force and I realized that it was truly the path I was to follow. In a bittersweet parting of ways, I left that career to refine my art skills and began building my personal portfolio and picking up commissions for acrylic and charcoal pieces.


My decision to go into business happened by chance, as an opportunity to try out teaching painting to a group of interested friends á la other brick-and-mortar painting party businesses. It went amazingly smooth, and my initial investment in supplies was paid off with the first party. Building on that, and finding creative ways to pay as I went, so as not to accumulate any

I am now closing in on the first year of officially owning my own art studio and mobile art party business. Right now, I am gearing up to face 2014 with profitable momentum and setting my sights on expansion.

What inspires you? My parents- for teaching me to love arts and always learning, My husband- for working tirelessly to help me see this through, My children- for reminding me to look at the world as a place of wonder and creation, The Earth, good food, yoga, philosophy, music, swimming and all forms of water.

Do you have a favorite quote? “I am not afraid of storms for I am learning to sail my ship.” -Louisa May Alcott and “I believe in kindness. Also in mischief.” – Mary Oliver

Too many more to list. 😉

What are the most pressing issues facing women today? Balancing the demands of the workplace and home. Breaking though deep-seated gender stereotypes, and the ability to choose non-traditional lifestyles. Realizing the need, then allowing and making time for personal space, creativity, and self-care. …and many more politically based ones.

What are the biggest keys to your success? My husband, and his financial and emotional support during this formative year. My family and their willingness to offer help and support. My ability to be flexible and problem solve. Being an artist allows me the mental dexterity to look at multi-faceted solutions to obstacles, or to create a new path to follow.

What are the biggest keys to the advancement or success of women? Perseverance. Owning our successes, then talking about them. Supporting and empowering other women. Not following the traditional paths to success that have been laid by centuries of patriarchal thinking.

Where did the inspiration for your business come from? A group of local moms sparked the idea. The concept comes from the growing popularity of art parties, and my business model is based on direct sales in-home parties (minus the multi-level marketing aspect).

Where is your product sold? Prints from my personal works are available at my webstore on, as well as in-shop at rosieMADE and Miss Courageous.

What advice do you have for a woman who is considering starting a business? Do your homework, (and keep doing your homework!) Don’t wait until you feel ready, because you’ll never feel 100% ready– It’s a leap of faith. You will have doubts , but go with your gut. Build relationships, even unlikely ones. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, even if it’s a lot. Don’t be afraid to share about your successes– no matter how big or small. Be patient, both for success and with yourself. Always find a way to give back.

What are the biggest hurdles you’ve faced in starting or growing your business? How did you overcome these? Not having startup capital, and continuing to solely reinvest any earnings. Finding my business sense, amidst a very right-brained personality. Balancing being mom-wife-artist-businesswoman-friend-daughter-homemaker. Working on organization in all aspects has been a huge benefit in these areas, but these all still continue to be challenges for me.

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