Monday, November 26, 2012

Pink Door Facebook Facelift

My grandmother began volunteering for The Pink Door Thrift Shop a few years ago and that was when I first started frequenting the shop. I have always loved antiques so when my grandmother asks me to help, I gladly lend my services in hopes that I'll get paid in some sort of treasure!

Tonight the project was to help promote the Pink Door's Facebook page. Being 6 hours away from the storefront created a challenge but I quickly realized that I had a vast collection of thrifted treasures to photograph instead...

My goal is to encourage other Pink Door thrifters to contribute to the gallery and follow their page. The shopping is fun, but showing off your bargains is the real prize! 

Monday, November 19, 2012

langeneckert branding

Today I am excited to share the new brand I created for Langeneckert Homes. I created the logo, color palette, business cards and stationery. I could easily relate to this project because, much like my own family's business, Langeneckert Homes was passed down from one generation to the next. They are a small team of highly skilled craftsmen, powering through in the midst of unfortunate economic times.

The new logo keeps true to the family brand by keeping the column, but provides a stronger presence with the bold serif type. The three words "elegance, craftsmanship, integrity" are the promise of quality the Langeneckert company has been delivering for two generations.

The old logo (below) was comprised of a hand-drawn script overlapping a sturdy column. It was unfortunate to lose the custom script but we made the sacrifice in the name of legibility. We feel that the new logo will be more versatile overall; it will command attention and ground their (soon-to-be-updated) website, be easy to read even from the side of a truck, and still provide a formal presence on their stationery.

I love that the Langeneckerts decided on the vertical business card option - it is a blend of traditional and modern. It reinforces their design taste as classic yet still willing to take the necessary risks to have cutting-edge products. One of my favorite elements in the set, is the full bleed color on the back of the cards with motto. I think this new brand is sophistication at its best.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

time out

I bought this clock a few months ago at one of those Rummage Sales where you fill a grocery bag with as much as you can and the whole bag costs $3.00. I thought it was pretty cute but I soon realized that those tennis rackets make it hard to actually tell time from the other side of the room....

...So I took it apart, scanned it into Photoshop and designed my own version. When I watched my dad fix a clock a long time ago, I learned that clocks can be easy to take apart. Since then I have wanted to re-design one and here was the perfect opportunity! No money lost if I completely messed it up!

I love the way it turned out :)

Sunday, September 30, 2012

let your conscience be your guide

I LOVE the way these business cards turned out!

Front                                                Back

Book Club

When Joanna asked me to design her book cover I was thrilled! She wanted something feminine, modern and sophisticated to enclose her writing. We went through a number of drafts to get this perfect, final cover. This is the first cover I've ever done, and I can hardly wait to hold the final product in my hands!

The design sequence - 1st draft on the left, 2nd draft in the middle, and final design on the right

Thursday, March 22, 2012

flower power

I made something pretty for someone special.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

{3 Days of San Francisco in a Nutshell}

Ok, I went to San Francisco two weekends ago and I am just posting about it now... I've been a traveling crazy person lately - living out of a suitcase for three weeks in a row! First I moved to St. Louis, then pretty much the following weekend Ted took me to San Francisco and THEN the next weekend we drove to Chicago and back. I lost my toothpaste somewhere along the way. Luckily my cousins don't seem to be noticing that I've been borrowing theirs ;)  

Lava Bowl...
Anyway, San Francisco in a nutshell {AMAZING!} I could totally live there. Except for the part about walking up those ridiculous mountain/hills... If you are wondering why I took a vacation to California after being at my new job for hardly one full week, it's because Ted took me there for my birthday! He's the best! We left on Wednesday after work and after a quick layover in Chicago we arrived safely at our destination. 

On Thursday morning we were having breakfast and Ted said "Ok, just so you know, it's in my genes to plan vacations around food." I laughed, but he was serious. This trip really was a LOT of eating! Which is never a bad thing. :) That morning I had a  banana pecan pancake and Ted had a bagel with capers and onions at a cafe downtown. For lunch we had a "snack" of fried calamari at Fisherman's Wharf, and let me just say, that was not "snack" sized. Delish!! And for dinner that night we went to the highly recommended Wayfarer's Tavern which serves gourmet American food. We had oysters, I had macaroni, and Ted had fried chicken and a vegetable. After this we met up with Bill and Nicole, our hosts for the trip, at The Tonga Room for a drink. We shared a "Lava Bowl" and had a great night.  
Just a little something we found in Chinatown

On Friday we had breakfast at the hotel and headed to Chinatown for hours of exploring. We were total tourists, stopping to look at everything and take pictures. We asked a shop owner for a lunch suggestion and we headed up the street to a local favorite. Only about half of the items on the menu were translated into English, so we ordered what we recognized; hot and sour soup for Ted and pot stickers for me. Next time we will have to be brave and ask for the best item they have. After Chinatown we were ready for a fresh scene. We headed to the Ferry Building to explore, shop and, (not eat) but taste some local drinks! Ted had a beer and I had wine. Mmm :) After this we did some more shopping and went to meet Bill and Nicole for Sushi. I need them to help me remember some names of items and the restaurant, but we tried some fun and different dishes. The best part was that one roll, The Inferno, was delivered to our table on a flaming plate! Unfortunately, the flame was not for roasting sushi like a marshmallow (yes, we tried that), but rather for display purposes only. Afterward, we went out and met Bill and Nicole's friends, drank some more drinks, and laughed some more laughs. We pretty much closed the place down. 

Taste tests at the Ferry Building

My roomie!! xoxoxox
Saturday we woke up and went to brunch at "Eats," a really great place close to Bill's apartment. I had a waffle with bacon pressed inside it and Ted had chicken and waffles. A remarkably good combination! We then headed to pick up Megan Aimola in Haight Ashbury and continue our adventure. We walked through neighborhoods, a park, the pan-handle, and finally found Megan and stole her away from her other friends. :) We explored the Haight and the Mission and then went in search of an ice cream shop. This was not a regular ice cream shop though. They served flavors such as Green Curry, Butterbeer, Pepper Mint (not to be confused with peppermint, which is what I thought I was ordering) and something with bourbon and cornflakes. Anyway, you may think I'm crazy here, but these flavors were delicious! After the ice cream, I was exhausted so we headed to a park to relax. We found a grassy spot on the top of the hill to people watch and sit and chat. But not without stopping at the food truck which was selling delicious tacos! We all tried a little something and nibbled in the shade. I'm getting tired writing this part, so as you can imagine, by day 3 I was literally pooped. We went back to Bill's where he cooked us a delicious lentil soup and we had a wonderful dinner conversation. You would have thought we had all known each other for years! 

We went out for one last hoorah at an Irish bar and called it an early night. Ted and I had to get up at 4am for our shuttle to the airport, so we said our goodnights, gave big hugs, and promises to come back soon. San Francisco is a wonderful place! There are so many places I have yet to explore. Not to worry California, I'll be back again soon! 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Meet Me In St. Louis, Louis

Well friends, I did it! I went wild and left McHenry.

I accepted a position as an Associate Graphic Designer in St. Louis and they asked me to start immediately so I bought a car, filled it up, and drove south. Tomorrow marks one full week of my life in Missouri and my head is still spinning. I have to remind myself that moving six hours away (still within driving/train/or a one hour flight) from home, is really not that big of a deal. Some people move to another country without a blink of the eye! But this is coming from a girl who moved once in her life - from 1608 to 1621 of the same street.... Yes, you read that correctly, my parents moved five houses down. (We used the lawn mower and a snowmobile trailer to haul things between houses instead of hiring a U-Haul like normal people.) So for me, St. Louis is a big, scary, freakin' deal!

So here's the good news. I get to live with my aunt and uncle! (THANK GOD!!!) They have a beautiful, cozy house and they made room for me at the drop of a hat. It really does feel like a second home. Well... except for the spiders and snakes I found in my bed tonight when I got home... Haha! My little prankster cousins are in kindergarten and 2nd grade, they are so incredibly cute. This sight made me laugh out loud especially when I pictured them sneaking these toys in there. :)

The other great part is that now I am close to Ted :)

So, in conclusion; I have a job! I have family. I have Ted.

And I really, really, really miss home.

Sunday, February 19, 2012


A direct mail piece I designed for the Boy Scouts! 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Order Up!

Today I'd like to share a little something I whipped up for my mom's Art Studio!
All of these classes are a blast! Please come support an awesome local business!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Great Balls of Fire!

This weekend I was strolling down Jackson Blvd. when I unexpectedly came upon a window display that I helped create! It was quite exciting to see in real life! This was one of my freelance projects for DRT - to basically take the flame and popcorn bucket images and make them ready for the printer. :) Now I'm sort of interested to try this spicy popcorn...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Blues, Brews & BBQ

Hello Friends! Last month I designed this logo for the McHenry Rotary Club's Blues, Brews & BBQ Event. I'm excited to share it here along with the website concepts I developed today. These are just samples in the super early stages of the design process, but I think they look pretty neat! Let me know which is your favorite by commenting on Facebook - vote for Choice A or Choice B!

Website Choice A

Website Choice B

Let me know which is your favorite by commenting on Facebook - vote for Choice A or Choice B!


Monday, January 23, 2012

Blog About It

Last night I whipped up a blog header for my friend Hilary. We were going for the clean, elegant crafter look, and I believe we accomplished just that!
Working on this Hilary's reminded me of some fun blog banners I designed in the recent past...

I created a blog for my freelance client, Disruptive Retail Thinking (commonly known as DRT, pronounced dirt), back in October. Apparently they haven't had any drty thoughts because the only posts on here are from when I created it, but I still think the design is cool!
And this was one of my favorite blogs to follow! It was written by one of my college friends and is unfortunately no longer in existence... Maybe seeing this will inspire her to bring it back to life!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

- Sugar Blues -

Wow! Today I'm blogging my 44th blog! I think when I get to 50 I should throw a party. I love a good excuse to throw a party... :)

Speaking of parties, today I'm proud to display a poster I created for my friend Joanna. This past year she began her own holistic health business called Heal 'N Glow and I love to support her in any way I can. She is brilliant, beautiful and has the best line of holistic products around. If anyone can attend this event, I strongly recommend it!

Links to her websites: and
And for more on the event: - Events & Workshops

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Courtesy Replied

The other day I applied for a job online. I skimmed the job description and emailed my cover letter and resume right away and put it on my list of jobs to follow up with. The very next day I got an email saying “thank you for your interest but your qualifications did not match those needed for this position,” and I was happy! You must be thinking that I’ve totally lost my mind, but I haven’t! A large majority of my applications get sent in to a black hole where no one ever emails, calls, answers the phone, or maybe even exist. Just by sending that quick little email, she eliminated a lot of unnecessary following up from unqualified candidates. How not annoying that will be! This company is brilliant, or wait, actually they’re simply courteous. Dear Company, thank you for your prompt rejection letter, I thoroughly appreciated it. 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Card Me

In todays world of social media, texting and email, many elements of a designers job are being, well, re-arranged. What used to be print based, like postcards, letterhead, mailings and annual reports, are now becoming internet based. I get it, internet advertising is less expensive, less maintenance, and overall more effective. But one thing that seems to be retaining its print value in the millennium is the business card.

A few reasons why I think business cards are still popular:
      1.     they are cute and fun to hand out
      2.     they signify professionalism
      3.     they fit in our miniature clutches, wallets and clips
      4.     they aren’t a pain to keep around, they fit in rolodex’s, organizers or old watch containers.
      5.     they look great on your desk
      6.     they make you feel like you know a lot of important people
      7.     they’re actually quite helpful –clean, to the point, and just plain wonderful
      8.     they are the best way for people to give their contact information, whether it be just a phone number or their life story. Only a business card can fit office, cell, home, fax, address, second address, email, second email, screen name, website, portfolio, blog, twitter, and Facebook URLs without looking cluttered and confusing!

      In the past year or so, I’ve started my own business card collection. I am always on the lookout for great designs to keep in my stash. My collection is small right now with just over 50 beautiful cards, but it will grow!! Send me your card if you think it’s really great and is not pictured below!! J

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Fashion Show!

I had fun designing this poster for the high school :)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Wrapping Up 2011 And Our Trip

The last two days in Mercer were wonderful. I'm writing this post from home, but I wish I was still Up North... On Thursday night we cooked a huge pot of chili over a fire on the ice. Ted and Garrett built a tee-pee to hold the pot and Megan and I combined the ingredients. Maybe it was the fire, maybe it was just being Up North, but we all agreed, that was the best chili ever. My mouth is watering just thinking about it... I don't know if we'll ever be able to make it the same. There wasn't one spoonful left.

Friday was spent relaxing, ice fishing (surprise...), and snowmobiling. We loaded up the snowmobiles and decided to try a neighboring lake for some fish. Ted and Garrett were not having any luck on our lake, but we didn't have any better luck on Cedar Lake, either. After all that ice fishing there was only one fish worth keeping, all the other catches were little. I would have given up much sooner, but men will be men...

After spending all that time out in the cold, we were ready for a good, warm dinner and a celebration. We grilled steaks and asparagus and baked some potatoes and said so long to 2011. We drank champagne, played games, and counted down to 2012. And we saw flying squirrels! What better way to celebrate than with good company, good food, good wine, and finally, a good snowfall. We woke up in the morning to about 8 inches of fluffy snow to see us off. Of course, it snows on the last day...

We were all sad to leave. Packing, cleaning, and saying goodbye was painful as it always is. We left with promises of more adventures in the very near future! Let's make the next year even better than the last.

Thank you to everyone for reading! Best wishes to you all in the new year!

Getting Crafty...

I was very excited to invite close friends to the cabin so I had some fun with the invites! These are a miniature pocket with three inserts - an invitation, an accommodations and a new years card. I used some leftover recycled card stock to make the pockets and used the sewing machine to close the sides with a red zig-zag stitch.  I didn't invite very many people... these wouldn't have been a good idea for a large quantity.

I got creative Up North before Garrett and Megan arrived while Ted was ice fishing. I made these place cards from paper scraps and wine glass tags from felt and embroidery floss. I had fun with the Up North theme and used only scraps. I can't believe I didn't get a photo of the dinner on the table! Oops.