Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Christmas Pinspiration - 3 Holiday Decorating Styles

I'm not usually one to get ultra prematurely excited for Christmas. But this year, something's gotten into me, and I was ready to start adorning the mantel with garland the moment Halloween was over. The housemates and I agreed to wait until after Thanksgiving, but that hasn't stopped me from pinning a zillion holiday decor ideas in the meantime. Here are some style moodboards I've put together in preparation for the upcoming season.

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Dreaming of a Natural Christmas - I know I don't have to tell you, but I am not a red-and-green-and-plastic-santas kind of xmas decorator. Instead, I like bringing natural elements into the house (scrap cuttings from the tree farm, pinecones, branches) and wrap all my gifts in brown Kraft paper with jute twine and a sprig of pine.

Get the Look - This is such an easy (and potentially free) look - which is why it's always my favorite. Gather pinecones to display on your shelves, in a bowl, or even make your own ornaments. Take home scrap cuttings from the tree farm (most trimming stations have a trash bin they'll gladly let you scavenge from) and stick them in vases or make your own natural wreaths and garlands (check out Molly's DIY triangle wreath tutorial).

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Sugar, Spice, & Fur - I love the warm cozy vibe of glowing candles, deer pelts, and deep brown tones everywhere. Makes me want to bundle up under a fur throw and sip chai by the fireplace while waiting for a batch of gingerbread cookies baking in the oven.

Get the Look - Okay, maybe this look is a bit dreamy and out of budget for most. But if you've got it, arrange luxurious natural elements like pelts, antlers, drift wood, and feathers around the house. Collect an assortment of candles and votives. And of course, constantly have fresh baked cookies lingering in the air.

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Glitzy Copper Christmas - Dave and I have been obsessed with copper this year. It seems to be popping up everywhere now, so why not try to incorporate some penny into our Christmas look?

Get the Look - A few metallic accents can really go a long way. Try Rachel's DIY copper foil branches or check out this super easy DIY for glamming up those tea lights you probably have a million sitting in a junk drawer. It's also always good to have a can of metallic copper Rust-Oleum around to give a spray paint makeover to any kitschy Christmas figurines you might find at a thrift store.

Hope some of these ideas have inspired your Christmas decorating style for this year! I'd love to hear your favorite looks or crafty DIYs for the holiday season. Let me know in the comments below or on Facebook!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Recent Work - BrewPrint

Woo! I'm so excited to finally share this project with you all. Over the last couple months, I've been working with the (previously) A3D Labs team to develop a branding system and front-end UI design for a 3D printing app they're in the process of engineering. The BrewPrint app will allow users to manage their print jobs, buy and organize models, and reward usage with "BrewCoins" that can then be used to purchase more filament in their store. The actual app is still in development, but here're the designs I've created to get them started.

For the brand identity, they wanted something fresh, energetic, people friendly, and approachable -- something that would help make the technology feel more accessible, easy to understand, and also fun to use. The playful organic hand-drawn lettering was inspired by contemporary beer branding and craft breweries, while the nice clean lines of the symbolic mark acknowledge the technical preciseness of 3D printing. The circular symbol depicts a wheat stalk (a literal interpretation of the word "brew" that also symbolizes creative growth) with expressive lines radiating on the other side to convey a sense of "bright ideas" and energy.

I wanted to stray away from the typical 3-dimensional design elements commonly used by other 3D printer companies, and instead used very simple flat lines for the logo and supporting icons. The bubbly feel of the icons and the energetic color palette help make all the technical information feel less like a sterile device manager and more like a mobile game.


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

2014 Reader Survey Results

The results are in! Thank you to everyone who took the time to participate in my reader survey. I had a lot of fun going over your answers and each response gave me some super helpful insight and inspiration on how to improve this blog. :) Below I've nerded out over the stats and created this little infograph.

The print winner will be emailed later today! Congrats to Daughter Zion for winning the randomly selected print giveaway! If you don't win this time, don't fret. I plan on doing a few more art giveaways in the near future.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Moodboard - BrewPrint

I'm finishing up gathering the results from my reader survey, and one of the most frequent requests was that I post more of my design work and more of my process. Ask and you shall receive!

Here's a moodboard for a project I've been working on for the last couple months developing the branding system and UI for a 3D printing app. You may have remembered me post a similar board for a similar company. Welp, this is the same company, except they've decided to take an entirely different route with their model. Rather than introducing a new 3D printer to the market, they've instead developed 3D printing software. We stuck with the same general vibe of the previous design concept (energetic, people friendly, and approachable – technology with the human element) but this time, played off the name BrewPrint to bring in some fun stylistic elements of craft beer.

Hope you guys enjoyed this little sneak peek! I'll be sharing more from this project next week!

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Instafavorites - November

I've seen a few other bloggers doing these Instagram roundups, and I absolutely love the idea. Instagram is definitely my favorite social site for sharing photos, getting inspired, and building community with other creative minds all over the world. So I wanna share with you some of the inspirational, beautiful, and just plain awesome accounts I follow on the daily. Depending on how it goes, I might make this a monthly feature, so please feel free to share your favorite IG'ers and even your own account in the comments below! :)

I just discovered Becca's feed this week and I'm officially hooked. Not only is she a kickass creator and curator of taxidermy art, she also does the most incredibly beautiful stick-n-poke tattoos I've ever seen.

I found Cat a while back via Bloodmilk and I fell in love with her desaturated foggy photos of the Pacific Northwest. Not to mention she's absolutely adorable in a Zoey Deschannel meets Wednesday sort of way (haha). Plus her claws are fantastic.

Jessika is a dark artist and photographer from Sweden. Her images are gritty and haunting in the most beautiful way.

Mountaintalk's feed is full of nature, wilderness adventures, and wwoofing in North Carolina. I can smell the mountain air, fresh chopped wood, and sweet pipe tobacco in every one of her photos.

Another Swedish artist specializing in gloomy and witchy imagery. Mimmi is so uniquely beautiful, even her mirror selfies take on a mysterious ethereal vibe.

Hope you guys enjoyed this little roundup! Please do feel free to share some of your favorites or even your own link below! :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Anniversary Overnight at Ace Hotel DTLA

This last weekend, Dave and I headed up to Los Angeles for an overnight anniversary trip. October 28th was our 7 year "first-date-iversary" and we figured that seemed like a pretty good date worth celebrating after all the chaos of October died down.

After a 4-hour drive from San Diego through brutal traffic, we finally made it to the newish Ace Hotel in the Broadway theater district of downtown LA. A bottle of wine and a handwritten note from the hotel greeted us in the room. Our king-sized bed faced out two large windows overlooking the LA skyline, which made for some really fun photos in the morning. It's still so bizarre to me that I get to wake up every morning next to this guy and call him my husband (anyone know when the weirdness of that normalizes?).

Anyways, here are the highlights:
• Our whole morning was spent lounging around in bed before checkout. Comic Con preregistration was that day, so we both had to stay near our computers. And after all the stress and waiting, tickets sold out before we had to chance to get em. :( At least we got to pass the time taking all these photos.
• We ate brunch at Square One, a little cafe in East Hollywood right across from the massive blue Scientology building. I ordered the brioche french toast with bourbon-pecan topping and vanilla whipped cream, which was absolutely delicious.
• Next on the agenda, we thought about going to the Hello Kitty exhibit, but decided we had enough of LA and headed down to Orange to do lots of antiquing. The historic Orange Circle has SO many antique malls, I can't believe I had never been before.

All in all, it was a great little anniversary getaway to kick off the next 7 years. ;)

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