Recharge and smell the roses

Recharge and Smell the Roses
Yesterday was a dreary day – it was raining and miserable. My friend and I decided to meet up at a new tea place – Pansaari. The owner, Rano, is from India – Jaipur to be exact. She’s aimed to create this city’s ‘slower pace and a seasonal rhythm’.  The home page of their website encourages everyone to stop in and say hi. We did just that. What a way to recharge and smell the roses

It was a pleasure to enter this jewel. It’s bright and welcoming on a miserable day with the intoxicating aroma of the spices they sell. You can see their wonderful space in this blog post. We tootled up to the chai bar. I enjoyed a freshly ground and traditionally made marsala chai – the extra spicing immensely warm and cheering. My friend had green darjeeling. It was served in a teapot with a colorful tea cozy and jewel of a cup an saucer, both sitting on a beautiful inlaid counter.

We sipped our tea and relaxed and enjoyed each other’s company. Rano came over to chat. We talked about how mostly we don’t take time time to savor our meals but grab a paper cup of coffee and bolt. I looked a my half full glass cup of chai with its tantalizing aroma. It sat next to the jewel blue and gold cup with steaming green darjeeling. I felt myself unwind.

The three of us agreed that tea is a slow drink, just right for unwinding. There’s something about it that affects you. Maybe it’s the ritual surrounding tea – the boiling the water and letting the pot steep – but you can feel it going down your body in the most wonderful way. It helps me relax and unwind. Perhaps it affects you differently.

W.H.  Davies begins his poem Leisure in this way:

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?

and concludes it’s a poor life.

We lead frenetic lives – rushing to the next task as soon as we’ve taken care of one responsibility and feeling such pressure to juggle so many things. What do you do to slow down and smell the roses? How do you savor life and take a bit of ‘me time’? I find that a relaxing cup of tea with good company in lovely surroundings not only helps me recharge, it’s invaluable to my own creative process.

Interior Design and Graphic Design

Interior Design and Graphic Design

The view from where I work

Recently the intersection of interior design and graphic design has been consuming my thoughts. It all started when I went to the Andrew Wyeth exhibit at the National Gallery. His paintings are of intimate interiors – and even intimate exteriors. The exhibition shows studies for his painting that illuminate how Wyeth pared down and arranged the composition of his interiors. His paintings are at the same time cerebral and natural. What brings together Interior Design and Graphic Design.

How do you go about the interior of your home – or your workplace? You’re probably like me and aim for your home to be a retreat to relax and inspire. Do you go hunting in vintage shops, exclaiming over item after item? Do you breeze though Crate and Barrel creating a homogeneous look? Do you click around Etsy.com getting lost in discovery?

How do you create the atmosphere you crave? It will not surprise you to hear that I’m all eclectic and all about color and texture. The view from where I work has crazy chairs, tea and dancing graphics, vintage lamps and books – lots of books. Also windows – if possible I like to see outside when I’m working. It all creates a warm, welcoming, fuzzy feel.

Though that’s my personal look, I appreciate different vibes – minimalist, ornate etc. I’ve been obsessing with design blogs in the past few weeks and it’s fueled my vision and my passion. Isn’t it easy to get all tunnel visioned and not let other areas inform your own niche? I’m reminded of how much richer I am for varied experiences. A richness that I bring to my graphic designs.

When you’re creating a meaningful graphic design there’s a vision that will speak to who you are. How do you tap into it? One way to start to articulate that vision is through your home or decor – actual or inspirational. Let me help you capture your heartbeat in your graphic design.

Thank you card visuals

We all love receiving hand written thank you cards. It makes us stand out from the pack. There’s no need to dread sending them. They can be short and sincere – there are guidelines to help, like this blog I wrote on writing thank you cards for you wedding gifts. But what should be your thank you card visuals?

Your Visual Representation

To make the process a breeze, have stamps – and a box of thank you cards on hand. A thank you card is also a visual representation of who you are. What better way to make this statement than to have one designed for you.

Personal Thank You Cards

When your friends and family have given you pressies at say your wedding or milestone birthday, you can use a photo from the occasion or a design which will make your loved ones smile and think it’s so ‘you’. I’m a bold, colorful, exuberant, fine arts person so I love sending out this thank you card. Did you notice the homage to my often-mentioned Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Rose and Teardrop design?

Thank you card visuals

Professional thank you cards

We all know we’re supposed to send a thank you card for a job interview, but what about sending them for other occasions? I recently sent a card thanking someone for introducing me to a great group I’m enjoying. You could thank someone for meeting with you. When you do that, it makes quite a positive impression. If you’re worried that your thank you card will take too long to arrive in the mail – make it into an e-card that you can include inline in the body of the e-mail.

Sending a thank you card is also another opportunity to show who you are visually. This is a great thank you card for a winery – rustic with handsome grapes and leaves.

Thank you card visuals

How about something sleek and contemporary?Thank you card visuals

Whatever your vibe, let me help you design a thank you card. Then you’ll have a box of them on-hand to wow people effortlessly.

Child’s birthday party invitations

Child's birthday party invitations

Child's birthday party invitations

Children get so excited about their birthday party and are passionate about what they like. One year it’s all about monkeys, the next dinosaurs rule the world. Let you – and them – be part of the process in helping to create a brilliant custom children’s birthday party invitation. It’ll be so much fun.

The invitation introduces the guests to the theme – so first you and the birthday child have to decide where you’re headed.

Things to think about are:

  • your theme – hopefully this won’t be a tug of war between you and your birthday treasure
  • what colors you want to highlight – soft watercolor, primary or …
  • your style – whimsy, pizzazz, or …
  • the text – are you going to stick to the details or do you want to play around a bit?

Whether you’re looking for, I’ll help channel your ideas into a delightful invitation your guests are sure to give pride of place and you’re sure to want to frame and put on the wall.

What other stationary do you need for your party? We can put our heads together over plates, stickers, tags – really make sure that you showcase your amazing birthday design. We could even make a pin the tail on the monkey – wouldn’t that be grand!