The Nerdware Story

Stories have shaped so much of who I am. I grew up as an avid reader, and then in high school and college caught up on all the TV I wasn’t watching when I was reading. The Lord of the Rings was the first epic story I read and watched, and it taught me so much about friendship, family, courage, and purpose. And I have continued to discover and grow my love for stories like Star Wars.

Photo of Lilian Aluri, a brown skinned woman with dar brown hair smiling with her hands in her jean shorts pockets on the beach. She's wearing a hawaiian shirt.

When I think about my favorite things about stories, I often think about words and music before characters. I have always felt that the best stories teach us something about ourselves and the world we live in, and lines from my favorite books or movies have become the mantras giving me peace and courage when I feel none. Stories can make us feel less alone and can help us to make peace with our own reality.

In the last few years, I have been coping with “an anxious depression” as my psychiatrist called it. During my darkest times, it is often my favorite quotes that I cling to when things are shrouded in shadow. Many of my favorites come from the Lord of the Rings, and many are about coping with difficulty, finding hope, and clinging to the good things in our lives. One of my favorite quotes is “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us,” said by good ole Gandalf. I also take great comfort in pretty much anything written by Morgan Harper Nichols.

Illustration of Ahsoka in her citizen's jumpsuit and the words "all we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.

From an early age my love for stories and quotes was rivaled by my love for art and creating things, and it was inevitable that these two passions would come together. At the turn of 2020, a year that went wrong in so many ways for so many people, I felt that life was too short to let fear and doubt keep me from sharing my nerdy creations with the world. I spent my holiday break planning and researching and setting up my Etsy account and on January 16 of 2021, I launched the Nerdware Store!

Thank you for taking the time to read the story behind The Nerdware Store! I’m definitely still in a growing and learning phase as I figure out what goodies I am most excited to make with my art (and which are financially feasible). For now, I’m focusing on making enamel pins, stickers, and tees celebrating some of my favorite quotes and elements from beloved stories. I hope you find something that makes you smile and connects with something you love about stories.

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