Working Girl

I worked at a friend's studio a couple of days this week, and it always throws me off course when I have to leave the house for work. It always amazes me that:

A) People do this ALL THE TIME. And

B) I used to be one of those people (seriously, you guys. How on earth did I used to be so pulled together?? OK, not SO pulled together, but enough that my kids and I got where we needed to be, with what we needed for the day--I'm talking to you, LUNCH--and ON TIME).

Monday might've been the longest day, ever, followed by Tuesday, and then Thursday. Monday there was snow in the forecast, and it was almost like I didn't live in New England, and people were panicking unnecessarily. Case in point: all after school activities were cancelled a half hour before school got out. Oh, and it wasn't snowing at this point, nor was it forecast to start snowing until, oh, 6:00. But whatever, schools. Cancel activities, not like it's going to affect me...


Yeah, so Monday my middle daughter has math tutoring (after school. Which qualifies as an after school activity. I know, who knew?), and I had arranged for a neighbor to pick up the intern, so I could stay at the office a little later than the norm. I got the text, laughed--literally out loud--at the sheer stupidity of canceling for snow that isn't supposed to start falling for another 4 hours, and kept on working.

Yep, I kept right on working, because my child is going to after school activities disguised as tutoring. It was only 15 minutes later--when my friend texted me asking if I could grab her kids (because I am admitting on the internet I did NOT figure this out on my own)--that I quickly shut down and made the 15 minute drive home in just 8 minutes.

Did I mention that oh, I also sprained my finger over the weekend, and wanted to get to the doctor to make sure it was just a sprain (because OMG sprained fingers hurt)? AND Monday was the one day (ONE DAY) that my middle daughter could make candles for a class project, because Tuesday they were making candle holders. Can you imagine a greater injustice than being in 4th grade and having a candle holder but no homemade candle to put in it? Fortunately, the candle making happened at someone else's house, or that might've just sent me spiraling out of control.

We had take out for dinner Monday night, followed shortly by a slight breakdown on my end. I think I went to bed around 9:30, just to get up and do it all over again on Tuesday.


Just stuff I see that I like: 3.15.13

Well hey there! I know, it's been a while (I was on a roll, too!). The good news is that it's been a while for a good reason: busy, busy, busy! These past 2 weeks, I've designed, approved, and had 2 stationery suites on press (you'll see them next week, I swear!), designed a website, project-managed another site that's currently with the developer, and designed both Word and Powerpoint templates (which on their own could've taken me 2 weeks. I mean, have you ever tried to make ANYTHING look good in a Microsoft program? It's like the programs are designed on purpose to make things look BAD). Seriously, head. Spinning.

Seen + noted the past 2 weeks (yeah, sorry about last week):

Funniest Home Wifi Network Names: Yup, Mattio's parents definitely need theirs to be renamed to Dad, use this one.

Usually internet comments are literally the worst of the worst. Literally. But this little blurb, about dictionaries are sanctioning the use of the word literally (see what I did there?), has some gems in the comments section. Well played, New York commenters.

What Coke Contains is a bit of a long read, but interesting--it's like a written How It's Made.

LOLZ: Every Fucking Website. A Third Goddamned Header, so true. 

LOLZ: The Soprano Diaries.

The 2012 Feltron Annual Report. If you've never seen one of these, they're really a thing of beauty. Imagine making an annual report for each year of your life. Crazy, right?

Cool: Graffiti Artists Spray Paint a Church Fresco. It wasn't graffiti, though--a priest hired the artists. Pretty cool story, really cool outcome. 

The Great Gatsby, NES-style. I mean, why not?

Instagram of the week:

Late last week we had some snow, so Saturday we took advantage. It melted pretty much 24 hours later (but not on the mountain, WHEW), and ended up being close to 50 degrees all last weekend, so it was great spring skiing weather. Hoping to repeat that tomorrow.

Here's hoping your weekend is springy, too!



While I thought that the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy wasn't as great as the first, I am still beside myself excited about the Catching Fire movie (which comes out in November. NOVEMBER, people). 

To ramp up excitement (I mean, really; NOVEMBER), Capitol Couture is releasing a new Capitol portrait a day via their Instagram.

I have to say that I really like them. I loved (loved, loved, LOVED) the original Hunger Games portrait posters--maybe because it was the first look at all of the characters, but I'd also like to think that they're pretty badass design-wise, too.

I like this current crop because they're SO different than the originals. Kudos, movie studio: I'm excited.


Just stuff I see that I like: 3.1.13

Not a lot of action on the ole blog this week, and I'm sorry for that. I can't even say that I was crazy busy with one big project--just lots of little things. Good news: more stationery files released to printer, and not one, but TWO websites released to developers. That coupled with an awesome logo presentation this morning can keep a girl on her toes.

Seen + noted this week:

If you're all caught up on Downton, you might want to check out a Working Draft for the First Episode of Downton Abbey, Season 4. First, I'm pretty sure this "John Kenny" guy is really Julian Fellows. Second, OHMYGOD that's funny.

If you haven't seen Jennifer Lawrence's post-Oscar win press conference, it's totally adorable (When questioned about her falling up the stairs to accept her award: "What do you mean what happened? Look at my dress. I tried to walk up stairs in this dress, that's what happened.")

Photographer Chris Buck's Isn't series: ordinary people who look like celebrities. In the 90s, people told me I looked like Winona Ryder--but I'm pretty sure most girls in the 90s looked like her--or at least aspired to.

I don't think I could ever be a tattoo artist, because WHAT IF YOU MESS UP? Fortunately, a Turkish tattoo shop came up with a good test to see if tattooing is really for you.

So Jason Kottke and I have something in common:
Because who has two thumbs, disposable income, an interest in excellent films, and is not subscribing to Hulu Plus because it seems like too much money and too much effort? This spoiled idiot right here.
Oh, also, free movies on Hulu.

I'll leave you with this wonderful story of a gay couple, an abandoned baby, and a judge who had a hunch. Goosebumps.

Instagram of the week:

The intern has always loved climbing into our laundry baskets, and don't think because she's 5 now, age is stopping her. She climbed in one over the weekend, playing on her iPod, proclaiming she was bored. I wish I were 5, and my biggest problems were being amused outside of sitting in a laundry basket.

In exciting news, today is the teenager's birthday! She's 18. Yup, 18. Wanna feel old? She was born in 1995. 1995 was 18 years ago. I'll just wait while that settles in.

Seriously, she's a pretty awesome 18 year old (can I say kid? Yeah, I can still say kid). This weekend we're celebrating with pizza, more pizza, cake, and skiing. I can't think of a better way to ring in 18 (other than voting, but, you know, November and all...)

Hope you're celebrating something fun this weekend, too! 


Derek Jeter's pants

Mattio and I love to watch those How It's made shows--when you buy a pair of running shoes, or a lawnmower, or, I don't know, Christmas ornaments, you don't really think about how many people it takes to make that one object.

The same is true for baseball uniforms; I would love to spend the day in this factory, watching Derek Jeter's pants get made.

Of course this clip immediately reminded me of George Costanza: "Cotton BREATHES."


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.22.13

I had a crazy week last week, so I really could've used some downtime. Fortunately Monday was a holiday and Zoesmom was off, so we shopped until we dropped. Actually, I could've used a recovery day from all that shopping, but I think that might be borderline ridiculous. Work-wise, I handed off files to my super awesome developer, got these super cool envelopes for a client (can't wait to show you that whole stationery suite once it comes in from the printer), sent out more stationery to be approved, and right now I'm gearing up for a web design kick off next week. Now I definitely need some downtime, and fortunately the Berkshires will provide that to me tomorrow.

Seen + noted this week:

...And this is why the internet is awesome: somebody bought the domain for Guy Fieri's Times Square restaurant, and published a fake menu. I'd like to shake this guy's hand (fake menu guy, not Fieri guy).

This Google Glass thing could be pretty cool. Especially when I'm on my bike and there's like, a thousand pictures I want to take but ohmygod I am not going to stop because what's the point of riding if I'm stopping every thirty seconds to Instagram?

What happens when you give up your cell phone, social media, AND email? This guy didn't go as crazy as one might think.

I'm not sure this is the Worst Logo Ever (caution: you most likely will have a seizure), but the article does contain sound design advice (especially coming from a non-designer): If you are ever thinking of designing an app, or a website, or literally anything, make sure it doesn't look like someone welded 3D glasses to your face and them bombarded you with gamma rays.

I leveraged this article to socialize it on my blog. Or, I used crazy jargon to tell you about the crazy jargon article. Drink the Kool-Aid, kids, and due diligence.

I think Jason Kottke hits the nail on the head when he says that he could watch this compilation of goats yelling like people once a day for the rest of his life.

Instagram of the week:

3 feet of snow doesn't take as long as you think to melt; but you know, it is 3 feet, so there's still plenty left to sled on. And that's just what we did this past Saturday. I'm not sure who had more fun: the kids or the adults. Hope you're having fun this weekend, no matter what you're doing!


Official calligrapher? Sign me up!

You guys, did you know there is an official White House Calligrapher? Like, that's a real job; to hand letter invitations and certificates FOR THE WHITE HOUSE.

I know, I couldn't believe it either. But it's a real thing, and here's a little C-SPAN video to show you a little more about the White House Graphics and Calligraphy Office (I mean, really. The White House Graphics and Calligraphy Office? How did I not know about this?)

The Graphics and Calligraphy Office (GCO) is a unit of the Social Office at the White House, the official residence of the President of the United States. Located in the East Wing, the Graphics and Calligraphy Office coordinates and produces all non-political social invitations, place cards, presidential proclamationsletters patentmilitary commissions, and official greetings.

I want to work at the GCO. Can you even imagine? "Good morning Mr. President. Can you just approve this presidential proclamation, and I'll have those invitations for you to look at tomorrow?"

Alright, I know that's not really how it works. But I've been watching a lot of the West Wing lately, so that's how I'm imagining it goes. Oh, and by the way, we are of course walking down a hall while I am handing off said files to the president, because everyone in the White House walks and talks. And then Josh Lyman comes by and interrupts us with some witty banter, and... oh, alright. Focus.

Seriously, you guys, carpel tunnel aside (OHMYGOD, THE CARPEL TUNNEL), how awesome would that be: "Today we're working on place cards for the Queen's dinner. Just hand lettering Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge right now..."

Awesome. I'm planning a tour right now, as I type. Because I so want to meet these people (especially the guy who's worked there 27 years. 27 YEARS AND HIS HAND HASN'T FALLEN OFF DUE TO CARPEL TUNNEL) and spend a day in the GCO. Who's coming with me?


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.15.13

This past weekend's epic snowstorm brought us the February break that Fairfield Public Schools had taken out of the calendar this year. Seriously, the kids were off Friday, Monday and Tuesday; the intern was home sick on Wednesday (seriously. Five days she had to be sick, and she chooses the first day back to school), back to school Thursday, and they're off again for a teacher development day today, and President's day on Monday. So, the bright side of all this parent/child bonding (said through clenched teeth) was sledding! Movies (No, we didn't watch Lazy Sunday, but come on, can you really say Chronicles of Narnia without thinking of it?)! Books! And maybe a little too much time on their iPods so I could get something done. Because when you work from home, you really don't get snow days, do you?

Seen + noted this week:

Loving this new campaign from Expedia using airport codes from luggage tags to send a message. Clever.

And while we're on the subject of travel, here's AirBnB's annual report. I love the stories that it tells.

Because I'm a type nerd.

About a month ago, I was called for jury duty, and man, was I stressed about being chosen to serve. I wish that I had read this beautifully written article about an acquaintance's experience being called for jury duty before I had to go. Not only is it so eloquent, but it really puts things in perspective.

Instagram of the week:

I'm not going to bore you with snowstorm pics. If you live around here, you're still living it. Instead, how cool is this? This is Mattio's great-grandmother's passport. Unfortunately, his grandmother passed away this past week; one of his relatives brought this to the luncheon after the funeral. This was his grandmother's mother. I hope his grandmother was a well-behaved child, because something tells me you do NOT want to be on the wrong side of this woman.Weekend plans, anyone? We are--FINALLY--taking advantage of the snow and going skiing, and then since it's a long weekend, and Monday is a holiday, and there are sales to be taken advantage of, Zoesmom and I have some plans to do serious damage at Kate Spade. I mean, unless you are Mattio reading this, and if so then we are just going to window shop.Happy weekend!


Opt out

I am so annoyed by the existence of the phone book. Seriously. Who is still using this antiquated mode of getting in touch with someone?

Yesterday I needed a snow plow. I didn't dig out the phone book, I searched online for someone who could dig me out of my driveway. To tell you the truth, it wouldn't even occur to me to look in a phone book. At all.

And yet it keeps getting delivered to my house, and I keep piling them up in the mudroom (because in some sick twist of fate, the recycling company will not accept them; and I have too much environmental guilt to flat out throw them away). I know I can bring them down to the phone company to be recycled, but OH. MY. GOD. Talk about unnecessary steps to get rid of something I never wanted in the first place.

Enter the National Yellow Pages Consumer Choice and Opt Out Site. Register with them, and you can choose which phone books you don't want to receive (ALL OF THEM). No joke, we were registered to get FOUR phone books. Four. It's mind boggling that these companies are still in business, and in business so much that there are four phone books in my area.

I've gone and unchecked every box--no more phone book piles in my mudroom!


Watch this

Current state:

Seriously, you guys. If you're not in New England, I can't even begin to describe the amount of snow--here in Fairfield we got 35 inches. THIRTY FIVE INCHES. The majority of the snow fell Friday into Saturday, and as of Monday morning we are still not completely dug out.

It's insane.


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.8.13

File approved, release to printer.

My 5 favorite words this week. 1 client has said them to me--waiting on 1 more!

Seen + noted this week:

From the "This Person Has Too Much Time on Their Hands" department: Gangnam Style, drawn by hand.

Last week was the final episode of 30 Rock--and while I haven't watched the show in a while, I did enjoy it in it's prime. Here's a fun list of infographics based on 30 Rock jokes ("It's after 6. What am I, a farmer?" gets me every time. If there was one role Alec Baldwin was born to play, it was Jack Donaghy).

Last week was also a pretty big, fancy football game. During the game, the lights went out. And people tweeted about it. Some of those tweets were funny.

People: pay your graphic designers. Well, really, pay anyone who does any sort of work for you. But seriously, when you don't pay the person who has access to your web server, this happens.

Memos from the 80s (30 YEARS AGO, if you're into feeling old) are funny, especially this one from the New York Times, citing their computer policy.

It's getting real in the Whole Foods parking lot. Funny.

Instagram of the week:

This past weekend, we traveled to Philadelphia... basically for lunch. We had a crazy night Saturday night, and our kids all had to be in different places at different times, but the teenager's photography was going to be on display at Drexel University, and the opening day was Saturday, so how could we not go? Logistics wouldn't allow for us to make a weekend out of it, so Saturday morning we dropped the other 2 kids off with helpful friends and family, and we drove 3 hours to Philly, ate lunch at Drexel Pizza, saw Ashlee's artwork, and drove the 3 hours back home. We might've been in Philly for an hour and a half--but very worth it to see the teenager's work up on a gallery wall. And, quite frankly, the talent on those walls was amazing. So the Instagram of the week is the teenager's gallery debut--hopefully the first of many.

The weather forecast here is snow, snow, snow--and I for one, can't wait! We are hunkering down Saturday, and saving our energy for Sunday when we'll hopefully be skiing on fresh powder. I hope you guys all have a great weekend, no matter what the weather brings you!



Sometimes I come across something so jaw-droppingly beautiful, it leaves me speechless (hard to imagine, I know). But seriously--these graphite drawings by cuban artist Jorge López Pardo? I can't. There just are no words to describe the beauty.

López Pardo uses a plane as a symbol of the modern man who undergoes the trials and tribulations of life—struggling with inner dilemmas, from loneliness to one's own personal path. They are artistic portrayals of the plight of man. 
To explain his chosen subject López Pardo says, "A plane has no boundaries—in fact, it’s always breaking them." He also points out their globally recognized form and the multicultural cargo and passengers any given aircraft holds. His message about the contemporary man's internal struggle is a universal one. The artist explains, "The sobriety and the formal synthesis, as well as the vague environments, make these works spaces for a gaze toward the interior, a search that exceeds the limits of the machine and becomes eminently human."


Watch this

Football is stupid, and Downton was on, and you've probably seen most of the commercials anyway so I'm not going to be doing any Super Bowl recapping today.

Instead, I'm going to show you a commercial that aired locally in CT during last night's game. It's for the Smilow Cancer Center at Yale, and features the Chamber singers of my 9 year old's children's choir (she's not in the Chamber Choir--yet) singing Smilow's feature song, Closer to Free, in a flash mob at Union Station in New Haven.

If you can't watch this without crying (and maybe it's just me; some of the singers are friends/siblings of friends with my kids--and, you know, the whole, people surviving cancer), then you definitely should not watch the 3 minute cut, which is even more impressive.

Everything about this is so amazing: the singers (that kid that gets up to sing at first--can you imagine being him??), the dancers, the looks on people's faces... Love, love love it. Much better than some of last night's national ads, no?


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.1.13

This week has been filled with lots of little odds and ends for me: I'm working on a couple of website designs, some stationery suites, and a client just got back to me regarding a logo I worked on before the holidays. She didn't pick my first choice, which is a little more than the usual bummer; as I worked so hard on the concept behind it, and I truly, truly loved it. Don't get me wrong, I still like the logo she ended up going with--just not as much as my first choice. Ah well, you win some, you lose some; and--in this case--some just end up coming in second place.

Seen + noted this week:

Ladies and gentlemen (but mostly ladies): may I present John Slattery at the SAG Awards. Normally I'm a Jon Hamm kind of girl, but really, the suit? The glasses? THE HAIR?? I die.

Speaking of I die... check out these Underwater Dogs photos. A small handful of the dogs look vicious, but most are completely head-over-heels adorable.

I'm embarrassed to say how I came across this link for calligrapher Rajiv Surendra's website (I'm not saying I did, but I might have found it in a Buzzfeed article titled Where the Guys From Mean Girls Are Now. I said MIGHT). Anywho, don't read that Buzzfeed article--if I did read it I would report that it's 100% useless and not that entertaining--instead check out Rajiv's beautiful work. Much more visually pleasing.

I love the idea behind this This Downton Abbey Super Nintendo game, even though it looks more painfully boring than "tastefully exciting." The video is cute, especially the background theme music.

Speaking of Downton... Recapping This past week's episode, or what I like to call, HOLY CRAP! Or the much lighter Season 3, episode 4 recap via Facebook.

Claire Danes + crying = Claire Danes Cry Face Project. Made me giggle.

I can't decide if I like this new Vine app or not. I think if my kids knew about it, they'd have a field day (they love making videos). Have you used it yet? What do you think?

Instagram of the week:

Wednesday morning was super foggy here--you could barely see in front of you. I made the girls walk to school, because prior to that it was raining, and prior to that it was about 2 degrees--for a week. When I got home from Wednesday morning's walk, my hair could best be described as "Afro." But the fresh air and the dense fog blurring everything was worth it.This weekend we're off to Philly for the teenager's photography exhibit! I can't wait! We usually go skiing Super Bowl Sunday, but because we have such a busy Saturday I'm not sure that's going to happen. We will be hunkered down Sunday night, with Mattio more interested in the game and myself more interested in the ads (and Downton, natch). I hope your weekend is just as fun as ours promises to be!


Watch this

More video... this time, from Disney. 

If you suffered through Wreck It Ralph this summer, than your patience was rewarded before the movie even started with this beautiful, silent animated short, Paperman.

From Time:

First-time director John Kahrs employed a technique—a groundbreaking hybrid approach using a software called Meander—that fuses the hand-drawn 2D animation that gives Paperman its old-school look on top of a CG world. Producer Kristina Reed said, in her official comments on the film, that the goal was not to make a photorealistic CGI look but instead to bring an artistic touch, with drawings that were transferred to computer without losing any of the original expressiveness of the work. Art director Jeff Turley added that the graininess, soft focus and style of photographers like Ansel Adams and Berenice Abbott inspired the unique look of Paperman.

Makes me smile every time I watch it.


Wish I could watch this

One of my favorite Twitter accounts lately is @SeinfeldToday. The premise is pretty simple: "What if Seinfeld were still on the air?" Basically, it's a Seinfeld plot--in today's world--in 140 characters. And, really--if you're a fan of the show, can you not see these totally working?

Hysterical. I can envision every single tweet as an episode, and I love it. Even better is that they are good about posting a couple per day. It's like a gift-wrapped present every day, designed to make me giggle.


Watch this

Volkswagen's pretty funny pre-Super Bowl ad (featuring viral YouTube "stars" best known for being upset):

It's no The Force, but it's cute.


Just stuff I see that I like: 1.25.13

I know, I know, I've been writing a lot about Caliber Collection--but it is truly exciting to see all of the press they are getting! The LA Times, NY Post, Yahoo... I could go on and on, but instead, I'll just link to the Buzzfeed article that has a lovely banner image of the packing.

Speaking of Caliber Collection packaging, I'm thrilled to tell you all that I recently won an American Package Design Award for it (man, we have a house FULL of winners this week!). The American Package Design Awards are put out through the trade magazine GD USA, and I am so thrilled to be a part of it.


Seen + noted this week:

Mad Men season 6 cast photos are here! Mad Men season 6 cast photos are here!

The Fascinating Business Cards of 20 Famous People: Not sure how real this is, but in any case, my faves are Steve Martin and Andy Warhol. Super cool to see Abe Lincoln's business card, no?

Speaking of Lincoln, have you seen his inaugural ball menu? With items like pickled oysters, tongue en gelée, and boned and roast grouse, I don't think I would have enjoyed it very much--no wonder there was a food fight. Although. That whole right column is dessert-type food, yet there is a separate (and lame) dessert category at the bottom. Huh.

Here's food (OK, drink, but hello? Segue?) I can get behind: beer. Specifically, The Intersection of Color Design and Beer. I love the idea behind a swatchbook of beer colors! Also, cool logo.

I want this job: graphic designer for film and television. I mean, really. How freaking cool is this?

And finally, yet another well-designed (and fun to look at) annual report, this time from Mail Chimp.


Instagram of the week:

The temperature has been hovering around 10 degrees here in CT--certainly not the winter norm. While I like to ski, and I like the winter, 10 degrees is far too cold, and 5 straight days of it is ridiculous. So I've got my fingers firmly crossed that Mother Nature is going to ease up a bit. In the meantime, I am dreaming of wearing these cute gold sparkle flats that I scored at Target for a mere $7.


Winner, winner, chicken dinner

Two photography celebrations at my house this week:

First, one of the teenager's photos has been included in the Drexel University High School Contest Exhibition! Out of 1825 entries received, hers was one of the 140 chosen to be in the exhibition. We're going to the opening reception on February 2, and I'm sure I'm going to be the mom that teenager's nightmares are made of, because I am just bursting with pride. Here's the photo that was selected, Burned:


Second, the 9-year old dabbled into photography for this year's PTA Reflections contest, and ended up winning 2nd place in her school! The theme was, the Magic of a Moment; and if you don't know the intern, then you should know that not only is this the perfect representation of her personality, but there is a lot of magic in this moment.

I couldn't be more proud of both of my budding photographers!


Whatever, paper cutter

Sometimes I have to comp things up for clients and sometimes I might be a big baby about it. Cutting out 1 or 2 business cards is fine, but 5 different stationery suites? Ugh. I usually cut myself; and heaven forbid there's any spray adhesive involved--I'm sticky for like, a week. I swear it's like I'm a kindergartener; except that kindergartners probably handle x-acto knives better.

So it is with great awe that I watched this video, depicting the re-creation of Beck's new album cover (lettered by the fab Jessica Hische) in paper art. Like, this person is CUTTING and CURLING all those little pieces of paper. And if that's not enough, they then glue them in specific places to mimic the album cover design.


I need to hire this person, stat.


Just stuff that I see that I like

The other day, I blogged about Caliber Collection, a project I was fortunate enough to work on. They've been getting CAR-RAZY amounts of press lately (yay!), and I think the ultimate was Newark mayor Cory Booker presenting Rachel Maddow with 2 bracelets on her show:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

YOU GUYS. I can't even explain to you how excited I am about this. First of all, Cory Booker is like, holding packaging that I designed. AND THEN HE GAVE IT TO RACHEL MADDOW. And then, she held up the bracelet... with the tag dangling just so... and the super cool tag that I designed... was backwards, and not shown on national television.

Ah, well. It's been a super great week for Caliber and I couldn't be happier for them. Tag, or no tag.


Seen + noted this week:

Old(ish) news: The White House officially denied a petition to build a Death Star.

Not to be outdone, the Galactic Empire then responded back (Some might say the Empire Strikes Back. Heh heh).

Warby Parker released their 2012 annual report, and it's a treat to look at (and read).

This made me giggle: 20 of the Most Ridiculous Job Titles in History (The guy who's a Bear Biologist and Paper Folder makes me curious).

This note--taped up in a university bathroom stall--is beautiful.

Finally, here's a super cute Instagram pic of my dog, who (clearly) likes to sleep in weird positions. Yes, she is sleeping with her front paw straight out in front of her, way up off the ground. Someone told me that dogs who sleep all weird like this are happy dogs. Mine must be thrilled.

Happy weekend!


Everything Ipsum

Way back in 2011, the internet seemed like it was a flutter over "ipsum" websites (for those who don't know, Lorem Ipsum is placeholder text in a layout [It's Latin, and doesn't really make much sense]). There were sites like Gangsta Ipsum and--Mattio's favorite--Bacon Ipsum--basically nonsensical gangster and bacon gibberish that could be used in lieu of regular, boring, plain Lorem Ipsum.

Mattio and I had a brilliant idea of making all kinds of Ipsums: shoe ipsums, beer ipsums, you name it; and host them all on one website called Everything Ipsum--basically choose your own Ipsum (OK, how many more times can I say Ipsum in that sentence??). And way back in 2011, I must have had hella free time on my hands, because I even designed a logo:

Unfortunately, the hella free time didn't last long, because aside from a logo, not much else got done. But still, cool idea, right?

Right it is, because somebody else has gone and done all of the hard work and cataloged all of the Ipsum websites for us!

It's not Everything Ipsum, it's Choose Your Ipsum. And internet, you don't ever let me down. Romney Ipsum (which is spectacularly hilarious)? Bluth Ipsum? DOWNTON IPSUM??? Awesome, awesome, awesome. 

Going forward, clients, you might want to take note of placeholder text. You never know when I'll be slipping some Samuel L. Ipsum in there.

(I mean, really. Samuel L. Ipsum? So mother f*cking funny, as he might say).


I'm back. For reals.

The past few weeks I've had thoughts and ideas that make great blog posts bubbling to the surface, but no time to get them written down. The 5 or so months before that, I was just lazy. And busy. But mostly lazy.


One of the thing that kept me more busy/less lazy the past few months was a super fun new project: Caliber Collection. I had done some work a few years ago for a Greenwich, CT-based jewelry designer, and she called me up over the summer with an exciting new project.

When I got to her house for our kickoff meeting, the only thing I knew was that I was there to help with the aforementioned exciting new project. After quickly catching up, she showed me... a box of guns, and another box of bullet casings. Ummmmm... OK.

The project was Caliber Collection: the guns and bullet casings were from Newark, NJ. They had been processed as evidence and the case had been closed on them. At this point, they were just taking up space. Enter my client, who'd like to melt them down into bracelets, sell them, and donate a portion of the proceeds to Newark's gun buy back program. She had Cory Booker, super cool mayor on her side, and since the launch in late November, she's sold so many bracelets that she was able to donate $20,000 back to the city of Newark. So cool!

Here's the final logo:

And the logo for 250, the first 250 pieces from the collection:

Here's my mockup for the packaging: manilla "evidence" envelopes, with stickers that can be checked off for "suspect" size, and "weapon" of choice; as well as a rubber-stamped logo:

And here's the real deal:

"Evidence" tags were affixed to each bracelet, mimicking the envelope labels:

The back of the envelope:

And finally, the bracelets themselves:

I am so super proud of having worked on this--it was a blast to design, and it's so awesome to follow all of the press and attention it's getting. It's pretty awesome when your friends are texting you to tell you that Cory Booker is on Rachel Maddow, talking about a project you helped make come to life!

Here's Jessica, the woman behind it all, presenting Cory Booker a check for $20,000.