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night gardens march 6 2015

 

Here is one of my newest collages — assembled from assorted pages from an old map book and random images from some magazines.

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celebrating the art of a handwritten note

Here are some new letter pressed note cards I just designed. Although I do not receive a lot of letters anymore, I still love to write and send cards in the mail. It’s a joy to open a mailbox and see a hand addressed envelope tucked in with the bills and flyers. In an era of email and texting, corresponding with pen on beautiful paper, is still my preferred method of communicating.

Whirl around Paris with Belle (Day 19 collage)

Collage I created from a Toulouse-Lautrec postcard, scraps from a magazine, ripped pages from an old french dictionary, rick-rack & feathers. Visiting Paris in October was inspiring and I see how it is influencing the themes of my collage work.

Assemblage Day 16

Decoupaged wood transformed into an assemblage — wine glass, moss, a porcelain doll head, paint + other ephemera. My daily goal of posting of posting a project on social media is being realized as I am making the time to create everyday. Not easy with the amount of design work I have currently, but I have made this personal project a high priority.

collage cubed

New collage for my 2014 Day 10 project :: blocks of wood covered with papers I purchased in Paris, scraps and other little bits of ephemera. Fun addition to my desk; they keep me inspired.

Today’s project posted is a departure from the usual flat collages I have been doing. To brighten this January Monday, I post a collaboration between my husband and I: a small Parisian-inspired shadowbox. I had purchased two finials and when I opened the packaging, I realized the cardboard box it came in was an interesting shape. It resembled a stage. So with imagination, paper dancing girls, a horse, mirrors and a little bit of collage with french dictionary pages, and some lights, which Conrad enthusiastically contributed, we completed this small, rosy-glowing theatre. Peek inside; we hope it brightens + warms your day!

 

cancan theatre

 

 

After spending occasional afternoons creating little collages last year and randomly posting them to social media, I decided 2014 would be the year I attempt to create a collage/assemblage a day. It is an ambitious effort as my days tend to fill with other priorities, but I thought it would be fun to at least see how many collages I can create. The goal is to create something quick + fun; not to be labored. These fast exercises actually keep me sane when I am in the midst of massive deadlines with my design business and assist me with at creative solutions on a graphic project. I believe in play, the random joy a little collage can be + an unexpected solution. There are no mistakes here. Here’s to the beginning of a creative 2014.

Pages of collages week 1 2014

We survived! Our second National Stationery Show in New York City concluded on Wednesday. I am consistently amazed how we are able to transform a sparse 8’x10’ space with a concrete floor and black curtains at the behemoth Javits Center into our cheery, orange exhibit space.

Booth: Our booth was constructed with pvc pipes, spray painted silver to give a metal, industrial feel. Small aluminum lights hooked onto the pipes & illuminated the booth. The rugs were graphic orange & white polka dots. Orange draping is now our signature color and everyone identifies us with the “orange booth.” All of our letterpressed cards were strung from wire and hung with little metal clips, all brightly showcased.

Business: We received many reorders from our existing clients, all of whom were very excited to visit with us and see our new card designs. It was a reality check for me. I work as a graphic designer and design all of my projects for clients, but the cards are designed by me and for me. It’s my chance to “play.” I am realizing my cards fit a very small niche. Stores that carry my designs cater to “bookish” customers who appreciate great typography and design. My cards are not generic, nor are they a fit for the average stationery store around the country. I did learn that my cards sell very well in the stores that carry them!

Positive: Overall, the show was a fun experience. Breakdowns on my behalf were few. Kosher hot dogs were actually a tasty lunch for three days! We found most of the other exhibitors gracious. Coming to NYC to exhibit is a big endeavor and everyone has a great story to share. I love learning about everyone’s products, processes and what inspires them.There were some beautifully designed booths and creative new products, but I have to admit the International Furniture Fair, one level below, provided the true eye candy. The colors, shapes and textures of the furniture, lamps and fabrics truly inspired me.

Negative: Standing on my feet for eight hours is grueling and I attempted Day 1 in heels. Not advised. Saw some Big Egos peddling mediocre letterpress.­ I also think the NSS should do a better job vetting the attendees who walk the aisles. They should admit more people who want to do serious business and less folk who want “free stuff” and steal items while an exhibitors back is turned. And booth breakdown is at noon on the last day of the show. Not 11:50 am. Unbelievable.

Inspiration: We are looking forward to filling our all orders. Plates are being made for new cards and I already have some new designs in mind. Thank you, New York City, for the experience + inspiration.

 

 

photo of booth 2013

photo from booth 2013 w:cake

With the 2013 Stationery Show ready to begin in five days, I have officially shipped my last box of cards, catalogs and calendars. As much as I plan, it always feels like a marathon the last few weeks and days leading up to our departure to NYC. My to-do list was never-ending in April and early May. Design booth banner: done. Design card catalog: done. Design NSS mailers: done. On Friday night I was still designing cards — ideas were baking, and I wasn’t going to be happy until they were created, printed, paired with a bright envelope and sleeved. As stressful as this show can be, I also find it creatively inspiring. Some of my best work is done on deadline, and I am always amazed at how much creative I do produce when I am super-busy!

We invite buyers and retailers to booth 1966 to check out all of our fun cards. It’s going to be a great show!

NSS Collateral mailed 5.14

This year for the 2013 National Stationery Show, we have integrated some beautiful still life photography into our booth design and catalog. Our images echo the original look of our cards, evoke an memorable connection to our brand and communicate our strong aesthetic of beauty and creativity. Pops of color from fresh flowers, brightly patterned dinner plates and mercury glass ornaments all come to play! I love flea markets and have collected many frames, cake plates, rulers, coins, spoons, dice, wooden letters & numerals and other little treasures that work perfectly when composed with our letterpressed cards. As a graphic designer, I can happily declare I have now styled photographs and channeled Irving Penn. My hope is as we evolve as a stationery company, the letterpressed cards and photography will expand onto journals and calendars. It’s fun to explore new ideas. Visit us May 19th in New York City, booth 1966. Special thanks to Conrad Firestein, my partner, fiancé, and photographer. He possesses tremendous talent and I am so lucky to have him in my life.

 

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