July 27, 2012

July 25, 2012

Traverse City: guerilla knitting!

Glad to see the craft scene is alive and well in Traverse City. Check out this wild and beautiful guerilla knitting (follow the link to see a great collection of images on Flickr).

July 23, 2012

Traverse City: super-cute SugarKissed!

Mmmm... graphic design and ice cream. What could be yummier? Enjoy a delicious peek at Traverse City's newest sweet shop: SugarKissed (cute name!).

Cute logo:

Cute entry:

Cute signs:

Cute decor:

Cute bathroom:

Cute kids (I may be biased):

July 20, 2012

princess party tablecloth

One thing I always beeline for in antique shops is the stacks of linens. I am curious about old quilts, interested in embroidery, amused by aprons, and always on the hunt for a tablecloth for my big old dining room table.

This fabulous find is a girly pink with a metallic gold and silver pattern on the sides! Since I have two daughter, one who is very girly and one who has yet to voice an opinion on such matters, I can easily envision this being put to good use come birthday party time.

It even had the original tag still on it! Love the vintage style illustration!

July 18, 2012

summer sign design

One of the things I routinely do is design book display signs for the library. At the Main Library there are multiple displays and they rotate on a monthly basis. Due to the sheer volume of sign requests, I simply cannot spend a ton of time on them.  So if I do come up with a graphic or illustration, it is generally something I can produce quickly. Like the simple lines that made up the grass in this sign. Doesn't it just say "summer" to you?

July 16, 2012


My hubby and I played hometown tourists on a recent anniversary "trip." One of my local discoveries was the eccentric and unforgettable shop Elements.

It is full of decor items and art and baubles and other such trinket treasures. Some look old, some probably are old, the best are new but created from the old. This lady* knows what she is doing and her entire shop is an awesome reflection of her personal esthetic and I loved loved loved it. That is not to say that her style is my style or that I am going to redecorate my home to match Elements. But it is an incredible experience to step into a store that is so clearly a world of its own.

I splurged on a pair of earrings made with old gears (from a watch or clock maybe?) and a scientific looking poster of butterfly species – the price was great because it is actually intended to be wrapping paper!

*Please note this article references an old address for the store. It is currently at 1503 Lake Drive in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

July 13, 2012

lovely lilies

Lilies are my very favorite flower. Accordingly, I have many of them planted in my yard. Although I think the Asiatic lilies look a bit ridiculous, a bundle of blooms perched atop a very tall stalk  like a floral jack-in-the-box, they are beautiful indeed!

July 11, 2012

elegant invites with lovely lace

I had the honor and pleasure of designing invitations for my sister's August wedding. Her gown is creamy lace, which inspired both the lace pattern and the paper choice.

One of my favorite things to do as a designer is come up with the art I need in a unique and interesting way. In this case, I wedged a cardboard envelope inside a shirt with lace up near the collar, mashed it down in my scanner, and then went to town in Photoshop.

I am also quite happy with the typography. I think that is one of thing that sets apart a piece done by a graphic designer – a real attention to the type. Not only the font choice, but the size hierarchy and the arrangement. I used Bodoni, a dramatic and elegant classic.

And I really liked making everything a nice, matching set! Besides the invitations and enclosures, I designed the program and created table numbers and table tents and blank advice postcards to be used at the reception.

July 9, 2012

succulents of summertime

Ok, I gushed about these last September. And I am still excited about them now. I have seen pots of them at farmer's markets and at local greenhouses. I finally splurged on my own container. Since it is healthy and growing, I think I am going to start one of these frames soon. Ooh la la! Gardening and crafting combined!

July 6, 2012

we heart nature

My sweet, observant four-year-old discovered this walnut half on a recent walk. "Look, Mom! It's a heart shape!" Just what I have always wanted for my little ones – a sense of wonder and love for nature.

July 4, 2012

quite a Q

From the Pere Marquette, a train on display in Grand Haven, Michigan. I am going to be more diligent this summer about taking photographs of letters and signs. A virtual collection, so to speak.

July 2, 2012

Found, Free & Flea

 Do you love old things? Do timeworn treasures, clearly loved, appeal to your senses? Can you appreciate the thrill of a treasure discovered at a flea market or in your grandmother's basement? Then you too will find great joy in read this book!

I found this fabulous new book for free at my local library on the new shelf. The full title is Found, Free, and Flea: Creating Collections from Vintage Treasures by Tereasa Surratt. The book tells the story of an old summer camp she and her husband purchased and all the items they found within the buildings. Since the camp also had many previous lives as a time a speakeasy, a "house of ill repute," a resort, and a retirement home for Latvian priests, you can only imagine all the objects left in the all the nooks and crannies.

The book, which is truly eye candy for anyone with a love of home decor and vintage finds, showcases how the author has restored the rooms and lovingly decorated them with collections found, or at least started, from objects discovered on the grounds. I devoured it in one lovely summer afternoon!