Weekly wrap up

Wow. This week was dizzying.

Construction update: We have lumber. That's something, right? Right??!

Work update: Lots going on: 2 brochures; 1 which is going to print first thing next week. Lots of website updates (not mine. Insert whining here). Fantastic logo approval--yay! Round 2 logo designs + meeting for a completely separate logo. Oh, and a new business meeting at--are you ready for this?--a BROWNIE factory.

It was pretty much what I envisioned heaven to be like.

To do: This weekend, it is not only Mattio's birthday (Whee!), but it's also both my parents' as well. So there's going to be lots of cake (insert lots of happiness here). Tonight we are dining with zoesmom and friends, tomorrow night is birthday madness, and Sunday could be ski day, if it's not too, too cold.

Enjoy your weekend!



365 Typefaces, from 180 designers and foundries, in 30 countries, for 2010.

Yes, I need to order the Typodarium font calendar before it gets any later in the year.


New work!

Late last year, I was referred to a local real estate team who were looking for a logo. We met, they threw a bunch of adjectives at me--the most consistent being "Barney's. We want to look like Barney's." and I left that meeting with a new project.

Challenge accepted.

First rounds:

Normally I'm not a big helvetica fan in logos, but here it just worked. Plus I was showing them like, 6 other logos that weren't helvetica.

It wasn't easy coming up with variations on their initials with out it reading MD, as in doctor. But I think this mark worked.

The ladies are Westport-based, so I thought I would try adding something Westport-y: the Saugatuck bridge railings.

When I first got this project, I was all kinds of excited about the endless ampersand possibilities. I quickly became overwhelmed by said endless ampersand possibilities.

A door-type icon, that, well, opened up so many doors...

Fancy-pants ampersand incorporation #1...

...and #2.

Each woman liked different logos, for different reasons. the one they agreed on? Version 1. A little tweaking and color, and voila! A logo is born:

It's kind of hard to see online, but the last m in Miriam and the d in Dee are a shade darker than the rest of the letters; which lends itself nicely to the icon:

As I said earlier, while I love, love, love helvetica, I don't always love it in logo form; but here, it works. I think this gives them the fresh, modern yet timeless--and most important--overall Barney's look that they were going for.

Next up: working on incorporating the new logo into their website and print materials, as well as developing a fun, fresh color palette.

I love projects like this!


Weekly wrap up

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that this week (well, Wednesday, anyway) stuff. Got. Done. Let's get to it:

Construction update: None. Sigh.

Work update: THISclose to finalizing a math website I'm working on. Yeah, that's right. I said math. Look, I'm not doing the actual math, just designing the site for those who choose to do it. Don't go all freaking out.

Also: had a great first round critique of some logos I worked on for a sandwich-type place. Got some great feedback, and I'm really excited to get going on some revisions so they are client-ready. I built a website, which should be going live next week (actually, if all goes as planned, I'm hoping to have 3--that's right, three--websites go live next week). I'm also juggling 2 brochures for Hospital for Special Surgery. I expect any moment to get my honorary degree in either hips or knees.

This weekend, I'll actually be working most of tomorrow. But don't worry, I'll be playing slope-side all day Sunday to make up for it. In the meantime, this week has taken it's toll on me; I'm very much looking forward to spinning away my stresses tonight, followed by dinner and drinks with Mattio and friends. He needs it just as much as I do.


Looks Good to Me, Too

I happened upon a new blog this week: Looks Good to Me (tagline: Things that look good, sound good, feel good & taste good). I really like it--it's very fashion-focused, but not in a severe-Vogue kind of way.

But I think the thing I like best about it are the quirky watercolors that adorn each post. It's one thing to have a fashion-y blog, it's quite another to really personalize it with these adorable paintings.

Bonus points: Blog author Caroline actually sells her prints. I'm thinking about getting one, because they're so darn cute. Bet you can't guess which one I've got my eye on?


I heart Crayola

Have I ever told you that I love crayons? Ok, well, technically, I'm a crayon snob because really? I only love Crayolas (the original Binney & Smith, thankyouverymuch). Down to the smell (A Yale University study found that the smell of Crayola crayons is one of the most recognizable scents for adults, ranking at number 18, trailing coffee and peanut butter that were number one and two respectively, but beating out cheese and bleach which placed at 19 and 20." Thank you, Wikipedia), there is nothing I don't love about a Crayola crayon.

So since this was all over Twitter the other day, and since I'm a sucker for Crayola crayons and all, I had to share:

The number of Crayola colors doubles every 28 years.

Bonus: in the original Weathersealed post, the author talks about feeling like a dinosaur. Which made for a nice segue from yesterday, don't you think?


Guess what? You're old.

Today a colleague called me old.

Allow me to explain: We were talking about the word fresh. Fresh as in, "These vegetables are really fresh." However, growing up, I remember my mother and grandmother using the word fresh to describe a smart mouth. As in, "Don't you get fresh with me." This colleague very nicely tried to explain that fresh meaning naughty was an older term, and kids today (which should have been my first clue) might not get it. When he couldn't come up with the right words, he finally looked at me and said, "we're old."

Then, this afternoon, I came across this: Timeline Twins, Music and Movies. The teaser really grabbed me:

If Back to the Future were made today, Marty would have travelled back in time to 1980.

Boy, talk about making a girl feel old.

Listening to Michael Jackson's Thriller today is equivalent to listening to Elvis Presley's first album (1956) at the time of Thriller's release in 1982.

Say what??!

I'm not going to go spilling my age (there's just no need for that), but let's just say I'm old enough to remember listening to Thriller when it came out.

I'm not sure of the point of this post, except that misery loves company. Read the rest of Timeline Twins, and feel a little older with me.


Weekly wrap up

This week began and ended with illness; with some illness thrown in the middle for good measure. A nasty little stomach bug took 3 out of 5 of us down this week, in addition to one annoying head cold. But, fair readers, illness could try and stop us, but it can't keep us down. Here's the traciedesigns weekly wrap up:

Construction update: Sadly, none. Builder stopped by earlier this week (hopefully avoiding all the germs) and said perhaps next Monday, weather permitting, of course. So you can be absolutely sure that it is going to snow like a mother out there 1 week from Monday. You heard it here first. Also? Sorry 'bout that.

Work update: Logo for CFO approved! Yay! Onto business cards. Also worked on a dental logo, saw a fair amount of crappy dental sites (dentists: call me), did some research for another food logo--my favorite--and worked on some hospital materials.

Cool work update: Guys, brace yourselves: I'm a little more famous than I was before. I am a published woman! I found out that 2 of my logos were published in Basic Logos. I found this out via email, letting me know that because my logos are in the book, I got a free copy.

But I had to pay for shipping.

Which was 20 Euros.

But totally worth it. The 2 logos?

Saturnia (Which sadly, I found out recently, is no longer in business)

and Mari the Studio (Which is still very much in business. And if you are looking for a rockin' cut and color, you'd best see her)

So that is definitely reason to celebrate. But unfortunately, we won't be celebrating tonight, as this stomach bug insists on hanging around.

Next week on the to do list: Food logos--and lots of 'em (oh, and celebrating my fame. Duh). Happy weekend!


Stuff I love

I love this new graphic print from Coach. Not sure how I feel about it on the purse (your welcome, Mattio), but the print itself makes my day.


Remember this?

With the much-anticipated Apple Tablet unveiling at the end of the month, there's been much hoopla over what exactly the tablet is going to be. Is it going to be like a mini-MacBook? Or a large iPhone?

Then I read an interesting article that points out that Apple does not take what they already have and improvs on it; they reinvent it. Revolutionize it.

Buried in the comments was a link to the unveiling of the iPod, 9 years ago. It's pretty amazing to see how far we've come in just 9 short years.

"The biggest thing about the iPod is that it holds a THOUSAND songs." Remember when that was a lot? :)


Carbon Copies

I am loving Cardon Copy. The premise is simple:

Designer "hijacks" ugly homemade fliers posted around neighborhoods.

Redesigns them.

And hangs them back up.


(via Twitter/mtlb)

Al Gore and the inconvenient... number 1?

Last night I had a chuckle reading this account on how Al Gore requested that the number 1 be changed in the font for his new book. Can you even imagine?

Last summer, I received a phone call from Michael, a designer from mgmtdesign in Brooklyn, New York. After the initial how-do-you-do’s, he explained that they were designing a new book for Al Gore, Our Choice, the sequel to An Inconvenient Truth.

“Great project”, I said.

And it got even better. They had chosen Brioni, one of our typefaces, for the body text.

“And this is why I am calling now”, said Michael, his voice dropping a level. “You see, Al is really involved with the project and we spend a lot of time working together in the publisher’s office. When he was reviewing the proofs, he had a comment about the typeface.”

I took a deep breath and asked what the comment was.

“Basically, he wants you to change the numeral one.”

It turns out the numeral 1 looked more like a Roman numeral (I), which caused some confusion when paired with capitals, so the font designer touched up the number 1 so it looked more traditional.

Fun story; I can't imagine very many times where an ex-Vice President (and Noble Prize winner) calls regarding a font, nevermind "I like your font so much that I'm going to use it, but the number 1 really isn't working for me."

(via Design Observer)


Trader Joe's does good

OK, if you guys are regular readers, than you know I have a special place in my heart for Trader Joe's. The food is awesome, the employees are the BOMB, and the general atmosphere of the store rocks.

So the other night, I found myself in need of shopping bags--preferably with handles (we were packing up some books to donate to the library, and boxes are starting to be rationed here). I figured I would just go to Trader Joe's, pick some stuff up, and ask if I could have a couple extra bags. No problem, right?

No problem at all, it turns out. I explained my need for extra bags to the cashier, and he immediately called to the back of the store to see if they had any boxes to give me (I didn't even ASK for boxes!). Unfortunately, they had just crushed them, but still. So instead, he told me to take as many bags as I needed. Like, the whole stack.

Let me back up here for a second, lest you think I am wasteful, and say that we use Trader Joe's brown paper bags a decent amount--especially for the newspaper recycling. I do try and bring my own bags to the grocery store, but when we're running low on bags for recycling, I am all about the TJ's brown bag.

So the cashier gave me an entire STACK of bags, which really came in handy packing up some of our belongings--due to our lack of boxes. And then those bags will in turn be recycled once we are done with them. And Trader Joe's, my friends, is the hero.


Mr. Contractor, tear down this wall!

Neither Mattio nor I have never lived in New York City. We've never had the pleasure (or discomfort, some may say) of loft living, complete with exposed brick and beams.

Well, all of the changed the other day, as THE WALL came down. The wall that I speak of is the one that used to separate the front room in our house (the dining room) from the back room (our bedroom). The removal of THE WALL was the first step in a long series, as we try to make our teeny tiny cape a bit more roomy.

So here's THE WALL before it came down:

And here, my friends, is where THE WALL used to be:

We're trying to keep some sort of "bedroom barrier" with my desk and the armoire there, but that won't last long as we've just been informed that the demolition of the upstairs could start as soon as this week. Which means that traciedesigns HQ will be temporarily relocating during construction (cause the house is cold now, I can't imagine what it's going to be like sans roof!)

Here's our exposed beam:

And our exposed brick:

Of course, the exposed beam will eventually be covered with sheetrock and crown molding; and the brick--that is, the chimney--will definitely get covered up.

But there you have it, folks; Mattio and I are living with all the amenities (and I use that term very, very loosely) of a swanky NYC loft. Of course, it might not feel real until we start storing my shoes in the oven...