Friday, February 27, 2009

Sneak Peek: Bear and Bunny

So, as I mentioned earlier in the week, there is lots in the works here. Weddings are of course my main gig and never fear there is certainly more to come this year for Bride Design, but over the years I've noticed that as life changes your needs change as well. Not the least of which are my personal stationery needs. In recent years, I've ended up designing a lot of social stationery on the fly...invitations for kid's birthdays, note cards to give to a friend, play date calling cards so I would no longer have to rummage through my diaper bag for a pen or a slip of paper.

They say necessity is the mother of invention and my latest project, Bear and Bunny, is proof of that. I figured I'd finally take all the cute and cool designs I've been creating over the years for kids and grown ups and share them. A web shop is coming soon. In the meantime, take a gander at our new logo! It's still a bit of a work in progress, but the main idea is here. The logo and the majority of the designs included in this new line were inspired by my own little bear and bunny (which are my husband's nicknames for our daughters). I'll be back to share some pictures of new designs in the next week or two and I'll let you know when we're up and running officially.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Coming Soon: Brand Spankin' New, Self-Hosted, Blogging Goodness!

I know I've been quiet here for the past month or so, but that's about to change! March will see Bride Design celebrating it's 5th Anniversary in business and there will be links, launches, events and more to celebrate. Perhaps the biggest change for you guys will be the upcoming switch to our fabulous new self-hosted wordpress blog. I'm a little nervous about making the switch, but I hear only amazing things about the wordpress platform, so I'm actually getting pretty pumped! I'm in the process of working out the kinks and getting the new blog together, but I did want to share this little tidbit of excitement in advance so that when transition day does take place, I won't be over there all by my lonesome. I'll let you know when we've got a date. Thanks for being the heart and soul of this little blog! I look forward to many more years of design discussion, fun finds, and occasional rambling. I love me a good makeover!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bride Design's Interview with Genevieve Fridley Photography

For those of you who saw my personal Christmas card, you'll probably remember the shots of my dancing daughters in their tutus by incredible local talent Genevieve Fridley. Today, I have the distinct pleasure of being Genevieve's first victim (ahem, I mean guest) over on her blog. Her interview questions were fun, challenging and even taught me a little bit about myself. I was reminded of how much I deeply love weddings and creating invitations. Weddings are in my blood I think! As well as how much I love working from home in my slippers. Genevieve's keen photographic eye and easy-going way with her subjects are only a few of the things that make her an amazing photographer. In fact, I wish I could see my life through Genevieve's lens on some days, because I think it possesses the useful super-power of making ordinary (or even somewhat messy) things, look just plain, beautiful. So head on over and check out her photos, or more of my ramblings. I borrowed the picture above since it includes one of my favorite shots from our session, the one of me and my Pantone books.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Love List: Places I Love

After my last post on motivation (thanks for all the sage advice by the way, some of which I've already put into practice!) I was delighted to see the most recent post from Melissa of Operation Nice. Her challenge today? Make a list of places you love. I'm eager to do this since I find writing these lists really inspiring and motivational. Try it yourself, I think you'll find you love it! Here's mine:

I love Chicago. I loved sitting by Lake Michigan right near where I lived on Pine Grove and Diversey. I also loved riding through the city in a taxi with the windows open on a summer night. Most of all, I loved to lay on my bed in my Chicago apartment and look out of my window...just sky and thousands of little lights from all the other apartment buildings. I Love Alfred where I went to college. One stop light, two colleges, and not much else. Unless you count hundreds of college kids. A strange place with lots of quirks (and snow) and that you just might not "get" unless you lived there. I love the art building especially. It was like being in an amazing museum everyday, except everything was changing and growing. I loved to watch other artists' pieces evolve and felt inspired at every turn. I LOVE New Paltz, NY. It is the most beautiful place on earth to me. The craggy, ridge of the Shawangunk Mountains stirs me every time I see it, which is crazy since I lived there for years. It is a symbol of home to me. I love Awosting Falls in Minnewaska State Park. It's where my husband proposed to me. And what's not awesome about a cool waterfall? I love Providence, RI for all the amazing restaurants and fun memories. I'm planning a trip there solely to eat at all my favorite places sometime soon. I love the apartment where I grew up. The crazy closet doors that never worked, the parquet floors, the stereo with huge headphones where I would lay for hours listening to records and 8-tracks, the flowered couch, my blue bedroom and all my "stuff" which mostly consisted of "stuffed animals." I love Ireland. And promise myself I will go back and drink tea and eat brown bread in Galway while looking out at the ocean. I love Peter Island, in the BVI, where I went on my Honeymoon. Tropical. Beautiful. Amazing. Enough said. I love Strathmore, my neighborhood where I live now. I love that this is a place my children will remember and hopefully love. Our park, the close-knit community of people who truly care for each other, the events, our first home, and the warm homes of all our friends. I love my parents' house. It is where my family comes together to celebrate or mourn. It's always VERY full with children and grandchildren, but I like it sort of means there's more love.

"Where" do you love? I hope you make your list. And if you do, share the link here. I love to read these. And in fact I find reading others just as inspirational (if not more!) than I do writing my own. Thanks Melissa, for another challenge. IT's back to work for me now!

Friday, February 13, 2009

How do you stay motivated?

I don't often struggle with motivation, but lately I've noticed myself getting off track here and there and failing to manage my time as well as I should. I've got lots of creativity flowing and I'm definitely pretty busy these day, but I need to get some momentum, maintain it, and stay focused. Not always an easy task when you've got work and technology, clients you love, colleagues, and a husband and two kids vying for your attention. For goodness sakes, even this little blog here has been a bit neglected!

So my wise readers, I ask you, how do you stay on task? What are your tips and tricks for staying motivated? Do you have a special method for triaging your projects? Do you use a reward system? I'd love to know. Comment now and my burgeoning schedule thanks you in advance! Happy Friday!

Monday, February 02, 2009

Fab Find: Etsy's Amalia Versaci Design

As we all know, there's a recession going on. As a result I've curbed my buying habits, which were never all that crazy to begin with. Still, every once in a while I see something so perfect, so different, and so cool that I have to have it. That doesn't always mean I buy it. But when that perfect, different, cool item also speaks to me in a very meaningful way, I do make that purchase. Such was the case when I stumbled upon Amalia Versaci Design's shop via the etsy front page the other day.

With a love for all things zipper, Amalia's shop offers bright, colorful, fun jewelry and more, created from vintage and custom painted recycled zippers. I haven't even received my order yet, but I am so thoroughly excited about the vintage Talon brand zipper earrings (for me!) and the zipper pendant from the 1930s (pictured above) that I couldn't wait to blog about them.

So what's so meaningful about this jewelry? When I was a kid, in the suburbs of New York City, my aunt worked at Talon as a receptionist. The company produced (awesome) scissors, sewing notions, and probably a whole lot of other stuff, but we're working from my 5-7 year old memory here. I probably only went to visit her once or twice at the company's Manhattan offices, but that was enough to etch in my mind exactly what I was going to do when I grew up. I was going to be just like my aunt and work in the city. Although, I swore I would never wear sneakers with my skirt suit, no matter how uncomfortable that made my commute.

Eventually, I took off for another city (Chicago), but I always felt proud to have honored my childhood dream by working in Manhattan for several years. I solved the sneaker/commute problem by living there as well. Every once in a great while I'll buy myself a little something to celebrate a milestone. When I saw these earrings I instantly felt they'd perfectly commemorate the times "grown up me," has made "little girl me," proud. I bought the pendant as a gift for my aunt, for always being a mentor and source of unwavering encouragement, whether she knew it or not. How serendipitous that I should come across Amalia's delightful shop. But I wonder, what do you do to celebrate yourself? And what do you give to others to thank them for impacting the complicated but beautiful design that is your life?