Cleveland native Sara Hoover fulfilled a life-long dream with the opening of a boutique retail store and graphic design studio in Cleveland’s historic Little Italy during the neighborhood’s Summer Art Walk.

Small Screen Studios is the brick & mortar extension of Hoover’s 15-year graphic design venture Small Screen Designs. “It’s been my dream to open a combined shop and studio space in Little Italy where my mother’s Italian grandparents settled almost 100 years ago,” says Hoover. 

Located in the heart of the neighborhood near the intersection of Mayfield and Murray Hill Roads, Small Screen Studios features Hoover’s original graphic prints, cards, gifts, apparel, housewares and accessories. In addition, the shop features jewelry and creations by other local artists, with an emphasis on Cleveland swag and Italian-themed mementos. 

“I’m from Cleveland--and, you know, everybody loves Cleveland,” says Hoover, who lives in the neighborhood and sits on the board of the Little Italy Redevelopment Corp. “So I like to make things that are cute and simple but that still scream ‘Cleveland.’”

Among Hoover’s homage to the city and her heritage are banners hanging in Little Italy that feature iconic images of Holy Rosary Church and the old Mayfield Theater. Her graphic design career spans two decades including lead designer positions at American Greetings Corp. and American Crafts. Custom projects include brand and identity development for small businesses, custom invitation design, event flyers for local clubs, and the Ford Zone Mural featuring the Cleveland skyline at First Energy Stadium.