Community Spotlight: Chia & Hleeda Lor (Unicorn Eclipse)
Sisters: Hleeda & Chia Lor (shown below)
We are two Hmong-American sisters, Chia and Hleeda, who operate a small online shop called Unicorn Eclipse where you can find stickers, art prints and other stationery goodies that we design ourselves. We have always loved creating art simply for the sake of creating. We love the idea that anyone can make art and it doesn’t need to always be monetized or perfect. Unicorn Eclipse started because of our love for stationery! At the time, Hleeda fell in love with planning and bullet journaling and started building her own sticker collection. Both of us were still in school at the time, but we had always talked about wanting to start our own sticker shop until we decided to finally just start in the summer of 2016. The name comes from Chia’s never dying obsession of unicorns and Hleeda’s name which in Hmong translates to “moon”. Our art is inspired by bright pastel colors, magical aesthetics, and honestly just wanting to be cute.
Because we both attended UW-Stout, in Menomonie, WI, for graphic design, we were EXHAUSTED all the time because art school is seriously no joke. We barely had time to create just for fun or for our own mental health. And especially since we were first generation female BIPOC students, our time at Stout was really difficult at times and tiring because we were also student organizers. We have a passion for social justice and a desire to create things for impact. In our free time, when we weren’t working or doing homework, we were involved in Your Turn Stout, a social justice movement we created with our friends on campus, and so many other multicultural organizations. We’ve always had to cultivate these safe spaces for ourselves and others because they simply don’t exist at predominately white institutions. Eventually, we sort of forgot how it was like to have fun making sticker art because so much of our time was consumed by work, involvement, and having to design things for a grade.
After graduating, Chia became a full time organizer with Vote Mob where she mentored students at Stout to get out the vote and run campaigns about important social issues. Hleeda was a content specialist at Menards for about two years. After 2020, which was a hard year for everyone, we were especially burnt out from white supremacy and racism. Both of us find a lot of rest and peace in making art. So we started drawing more and eventually investing more time back into what once was just our little passion project. And then we realized that we kind of just wanted to make cute things that would bring other people joy too, so we pursued growing our small business in January of 2021. We have received an overwhelming amount of support and that makes us really happy.
What makes Unicorn Eclipse unique is the fact that we want to show creators, especially BIPOC creators, that they can excel in their dreams no matter how hard the system doesn’t want them to. BIPOC artists exist. We want to encourage people to keep dreaming, to keep fighting for a better world, and to keep uplifting others. There is so much to be concerned about all the time, but it is so worth it to invest in something you genuinely love doing. Whatever you are creating, if it brings you joy, keep doing it. We are planning to launch our own site unicorneclipse.com very soon! Meanwhile, visit our shop at unicorneclipse.etsy.com. Keep up with us on our Instagram and Tiktok @unicorneclipseofficial where we show our latest sticker designs, art, and tips for other small artists!
Company Website: unicorneclipse.etsy.com
Company Social Media: IG/Tiktok @unicorneclipseofficial