This week’s Spoonflower contest was crayon-drawn monsters – so I made some monsters drawing with (or occasionally eating – they are monsters, after all) crayons. It was a lot of fun, once I got over my fear of crayons (there’s no erasing!) and got into it. I think my favorite is the green guy with horns, or maybe the hapless orange one eating the blue crayon.
Usually when I think about resolutions, it’s in terms of dots per inch, the almighty dpi that can make or break a print project or keep things running smoothly on the web.
But for last week’s Spoonflower contest, I had to think about New Year’s resolutions – specifically, hand-lettered ones. I’d been itching to try more hand-lettering, so I came up with my list of aspirations, from the practical (do the dishes more often) to the creative (make art) to the esoteric (let it be) to the probably impossible (get more sleep), and wrote them out in my nicest, funkiest writing. It was fun to explore lots of different styles, and to think about what I wanted to improve this year. So far I’ve been flossing regularly, and making art. The rest of them I’ll have to keep working on.
As a nice bonus, my Manifesto fabric came in 3rd in the New Year’s Resolutions fabric contest. Thanks, Spoonflower voters!
It’s time for another Minted inspiration board, this one playing off the Watercolor Strokes Party Invitations by Shari Margolin.
Inspired by the bright, warm colors and casual style in the invite, I imagined an easy, fun summer brunch or afternoon party for all ages with paletas and gourmet donuts, papel picados, casual flower arrangements with dahlias and succulents, and cheery bubbles. (The embedded board gets chopped off by my layout here, but click on it to see the whole thing.) Planning a virtual party is fun — way less work than a real party. :)
Featured above (clockwise from top left):
- Watercolor Strokes Party Invitations by Shari Margolin
- Paletas from Las Paletas in Nashville, TN (photo from Tennessee Home & Farm)
- Blowing bubbles by Always Anne
- Donuts by Tiny Water Photography via Inspired by This
- Fabric bunting by Accidental Vix
- Succulent centerpieces by Flora Grubb
Here are a few more things I didn’t have room for in the inspiration board, but thought would go well with the party:
- Another great book about gourmet ice pops
- A make-your-own mimosa bar for a morning party or sangria for the afternoon — or go with strawberry lemonade
- Martha Stewart’s over-the-top giant paper flowers and lanterns
- How About Orange’s fun Compliment Bunting
- Perky orange stripe and dot paper straws from Delish General Store
- These pretty little grapefruit cookies from Une Gamine dans la Cuisine – perfect take-home favors
Hmmm…I may have to throw a party!
My “Persephone’s Garden” fabric came in second in this week’s Greek myths-themed Spoonflower contest. This was a fun fabric to research – I imagined what plants and insects might live in Persephone’s garden in Hades, and came up with a dark mix of thorny, carnivorous and poisonous plants, along with death’s head moths and black widow spiders and of course the fateful pomegranates. It turns out that dangerous plants like Castor bean pods, venus fly trap, mala mujer, poison hemlock and nightshade are all surprisingly beautiful.
Inspiration props go to Annie’s Annuals, where I won’t even walk near the table with the Solanum pyracanthum (“Porcupine Tomato”) seedlings; the dark and creepy Wicked Plants exhibit a couple years ago at the Conservatory of Flowers, which was in turn inspired by Amy Stewart’s book Wicked Plants; and Rick Riordan’s The Lightning Thief, which had a description of Persephone’s garden that, although different from what I envisioned, stuck in my mind. I love thinking about all the disparate threads from different parts of my life that get pulled together when I’m working on a design!
I took my first letterpress class at San Francisco Center for the Book last week — fun stuff. At the beginning of class, everyone in the class listed something they wanted to be reminded of, and we chose four of the reminders to set into a poster using vintage wooden type on a Vandercook 4 proofing press. We had to make some adjustments to our original plan to fit things in and work with the number of A’s we had available, but that’s part of the charm of working with real type rather than digitally. As someone who does a lot of design on the computer, often trying to make things that look like old type and posters, it was really fun to work with the actual thing.
Hey! I made it to the semi-finals in this year’s Fabric8 contest, with the theme “Geek Chic.” My design is one of 100 semi-finalists (narrowed down from over 750 entries) chosen by a team of industry professionals from Robert Kaufman and Spoonflower to go up for public voting. I thought long and hard about what “geek chic” meant, and I decided that the essence of geekdom is being passionate about something, whether it’s superheroes or knitting or science fiction or typography, so my design is titled “Do What You <3 What You Do” and features hearts with simple symbols in them for all sorts of things people geek out on.
No matter how many things I design, I’m still always tickled to see my work in print. The tote bags I designed for the Friends of Montclair Library, featuring the iconic owls from the library’s sign, just came in. Pick one up for $10 at the library – I donated my design work, and all profits benefit programs and collections at the Montclair branch.