30 April 2009

Deer'est Roundup

We've done mustaches and octopi, why not deer? They're pretty cute and with spring here I'm seeing Bambi's face plastered on everything. I scoured all my favorite site for you dears (pun totally intended), and here's what I found.


Circle Fawn Necklace
Peacocks and Deer Print
Butterflies for Kathy Print
Messenger Style Laptop Bag
Happy Deer Candle
Oh Deer Top

29 April 2009

Playlist Wednesday: Hit the Snooze

I am not a morning person. The number one thing I do not miss about living at home is my mother trying to have deep and meaningful conversations with me within the first ten minutes of being awake. It was awful. My brain was not functioning yet. I'm only semi-conscious when I first wake up. I want a half hour and some coffee. That's all I ask. I have to be eased into morning, not smacked in the face with it. In honor of morning smacking you in the face, here are some great songs.

Always exciting.

I know it's Playlist Wednesday, and we'll get to that later, but I forgot to share this with you. I had another circular ad I designed in last week's Tribune. Seeing work in the real world never gets old for me.

28 April 2009

Advertising Fail

All ads are designed to grab your attention. Internet ads in particular do everything they can to catch your eye. They make sound, they move, they do whatever they can. I came across this particular ad, and I had to share. It caught my eye because it's a bunch of dancing pandas. Typical.

Here's my issue, as fun as dancing pandas are, one would think they'd relate to the content of the ad. Design 101: Images should relate to content. You don't really see non sequitur imagery. For whatever reason, if degrees.info wants to use dancing pandas, perhaps they should have made them all look different? By not differentiating them this ad is telling me an accountant is the same things as graphic designer. It doesn't take a genius to tell you that those are VERY different occupations. I can't explain this ad. It has no credibility. It's just really, really bad advertising. I surely hope no pandas were harmed in the making of it.

27 April 2009

Monday Story Time: Havliks Like Bunnies

I love my family. Sometimes I forget how alike we are.

Last night we all piled into one car and went to dinner. On the way home we saw about three rabbits run across a yard. Simultaneously my dad, mom, brother and I all started yelling things.
Mark: Eeeee! Eeeee! (Making bunny noises)
Dad: Oooooo! (High pitched squeal)
Mom: Bunnies everywhere!
Me: Bunnies! Bunnies!

As a group, we can be ridiculous, but I think it's great. I also adore my sister-in-law because she takes it all in stride. Here's to family and understanding. :)

24 April 2009

Loris & Friday Potluck

If you are in the Chicagoland area you must spend some times outside today. It's too perfect outside. As usual, I've got links for you. I've also got an adorable baby loris. Don't know what a loris is? Doesn't matter. Watch.

Recycled Waste Basket
Customize your dress
Gwyneth gives us recipes
Dost thou knoweth what Thursday was?
Bunny Ring
I want Message Tape
I find this funny
Paul Rudd + Earth Day+ Muppets = This
Beat the rain in style
Spoons makes their own music festival

Enjoy the weekend!

23 April 2009


Have you ever had some food and wondered to yourself, can I still eat this? Is it still good? Is it still tasty?

I wonder all the time! How long can I have chicken in the freezer? How long should I keep bottled water? Do dried herbs even go bad? I give you Still Tasty- the answer to all of life's food questions.

22 April 2009

This Week: Read Between the Lines

It's entirely possible that fiction has ruined me. It's even more possible that I don't care. I do not claim to be a writer. I claim to be a reader. I'm a designer with a literary bent. Nerd confession: When I read a lot, I sometimes develop an internal narration of my daily events, like I'm a walking novel. It could be worse. My point is that books effect people strongly. It's no surprise that so many songs are about fiction, writing and novels.

21 April 2009

Double Check It: Dejarnette & Coffee Poster

I've got two, count 'em two, Check Its for you today.

First, I have a new store to share. File this one in the vintage looking jewelry category. Dejarnette is a New Orleans based company that creates one-of-a-kind pieces. The jewelry is organized into four categories: elegant (my fave), modern, natural and found object. Browse through the shop and be ready to want things.

Second, I love this poster. It combines two things I love: Coffee & Metaphors. There's a line in a Ludo song, "You fit like coffee to my cup" it's always made me happy. This poster does the same thing. How great would it be in a kitchen?

20 April 2009

Show & Weekend Recap

Friday night was the Death Cab for Cutie show. Recap time.

Ra Ra Riot and Cold War Kids opened. I wised I'd seen more of Ra Ra and less of Cold War.
Front man Ben Gibbard has slimmed down since I've last seen him. Sherry put it best, "He's less round and more angular." I was a little torn when he walked on to the stage ten pounds lighter, longer hair and sans glasses. How should I feel? This isn't the Ben I know. A few seconds later, he started singing and all was right in the world. He was really energetic. I think the weight loss and recent engagement have made him spunkier. They opened with Marching Bands of Manhattan. At that point, the gates of rock opened and an amazing set followed though. They played a decent mix of old and new, with a few very early songs and new song off an EP. I got my 2-minute joy-fest when they played "Sound of Settling" and my 4-minute acoustic swoon with "I Will Follow You Into The Dark."

All in all, I enjoyed them more that the last time they came to town. I will note that it was a sweaty time. It's always warm in side the Aragon, even when the crowd isn't big. When it's a sold out show you aren't going to walk out of there looking pretty. Ew.

The rest of the weekend sped by. Natalie spent the night, Saturday service, dinner at Jackie's, BBC movies and book reading. I leave for California in less than a month. Plans are coming together. It also gives me an excuse to go shopping. I want to wear these sandals in California.

That's all for now. I'm still warming up. After all, it's Monday and I'm not even finished with my coffee. How are all of you? Good weekends? Find me clothes for California.

17 April 2009

Potluck Party

POTLUCK! It's finally feeling like Spring around here. The sun is shining, it's Friday, it's payday, the weekend is booked and I'm going to see Death Cab for Cutie tonight! Squeeze my hand and let's dream together. Okay, I might be on happy overload. I'm going to stop typing. Sorry. Just check these links and come back on Monday.

Best cook book packaging ever.
Crafty necklace, wish it actually cut though
White Rabbit approved chocolate
We love typography
Screen printed band posters
Minimalist or Modernist?
Ben Folds A Capella album
Who is your Austen man?
Bunny dish rack

In searching for 'potluck' images, I found this beauty on page six. When you least suspect it, Google Cats gets you.

16 April 2009

Monkey Packages

In college, I worked for the student paper. On of my reoccurring features was called "Proofreading the World." I found misspellings, typos and other design disasters around the city and critiqued them. My underlying point always being that such mistakes could be prevented if someone took a few minutes to proofread before sending to press.

Yesterday, I proofread. I'm working on a brochure, and had to type in a portion of the text. It's always risky when that happens. I spell checked, and everything was spelled correctly. Then I read through it. Spell check doesn't catch everything, my friends.

If you don't proofread "Monthly packages start at $500 a month" could accidentally read, "Monkey packages start at $500 a month." That's right. I typed "monkey packages." What does that even mean? Since the brochure is still in the early stages of design, the typo is hilarious. If it went to press, I might be in a bit of hot water.

Words of warning my lovelies: If it's going to be read by the public, if it's important to you, if you want to save yourself trouble- proof it! If you don't trust yourself, get a second set of eyes. If you don't, you just may end up dishing out $500 for a monkey package.

15 April 2009

Playlist Wednesday: Themeless, Yet Seamless

It's tax day. I considered a tax/money themed post. Then I went to a government theme. That brought me to a 'down with the man' theme, but if it's my blog, technically I'm the man. How do I go anti-establishment on myself? I'm all about the themed lists. Today, instead of a theme, I'm just giving you songs that have had heavy rotation on my playlist as of late. I am also admitting that today's image doesn't relate either. Again, I just like it.

(I toyed with naming this week's list, "Stick it to the Man-da." Yeah... )

Weird & Facinating Music News: Lupe Fiasco & Justin Timberlake are going to scale Mt. Kilimanjaro for charity. Wait, what?

Unrealted, but funny: Sarah found this.

14 April 2009

Orange Beautiful

I have a new stationary swoon. Orange Beautiful is a Chicago-based company that creates all things paper: handmade envelops, custom invites, letterpress stationary, you name it. They've covered their bases with a well-designed site, an etsy shop and a blog. Check them all out. In particular, I'm in love with their envelopes & cards. Look at these. The envelopes are even packaged in letterpress printed paper boxes. Come on!

As an apology for no blog post yesterday I give you this. I could eat this pug it is so cute. I cannot stand it.

10 April 2009

Friday Link Potluck

Hello, my dears. It's Friday and not a minute too late. I've got a mess of links for you that I came across during the week. Enjoy and have a fantastic weekend! Onwards!

Crayon Rings!
Obsessed with this packaging
Not if I get one first.
Did you know the Field Museum has an exhibit all about Pirates?
Clever doormat
7 Ways to Eat Free At Work
Beach towel bag
Who knew badgers were cute?
Want and may need this dress

09 April 2009

Pink Roundup

I can't believe I'm typing these words, but it's time for a pink roundup?
Confession time: As a kid I had a pink room, a basket of giant pink bows and was the poster child for all things carnation hued. This was not by choice. My mother thought it would be wonderful to bathe her only daughter in all things pink. As I got older, the tolerance I once had for the color turned to hate and I went on a pink rebellion. My room was repainted and the pink mysteriously disappeared from my wardrobe. Now here’s another confession (although not nearly as scandalous): After a decade of disgust, I kind of like it again. Since it's spring, pink is popping up everywhere. Here are a few items I'm loving.

Pink Radios Poster
Inside Out Bowl

Strawberry Burst A7 Flat Invitation

Silence & Noise Colorblock Ponte Dress
Pink Partridge Pin
Add Subtract Tee

08 April 2009

Playlist Wednesday: Crayola Should Hire Me

It's obvious when I say I like colors. I am a designer. I like looking at paint swatches at the hardware store, I like when stores organize clothing by color family and a box of unused Crayolas is still exciting to me. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way, so it's not surprising that color names are a part of so many song titles. This week's playlist came together pretty easily and there are dozens of other songs I could have included.

News! No Doubt has a new single titled 'Stand and Deliver.' Listen.

First listen, I am skeptical. Yes, that is a horse neighing in the beginning. The song is a cover, originally sang by Adam and the Ants. They had a horse neigh too. It is catchy, however "da diddley qa qa"? It sounds like Ned Flanders speaking French. I can't blame No Doubt for those lyrics though, they didn't write the song. And as much as I don't want to love it, the song is stuck in my head. It's a departure from their reggae influenced songs. They tried to go back to their old sound, but they went too far back. Remember, Trapped in a Box? This song could be the follow up. I'm eager for the rest of the album, and I can't wait till they come to Chicago.

07 April 2009

Love that Laundromat

I love the laundromat next door. It's like a television show every time I go in. The last time I went, the door on my machine opened a little and bubbles spewed everywhere. This time the cops showed up. What? Story time:

I went to the laundromat after work yesterday. When I walked in, it was me, a few other girls my age and a crazy looking older man in the back. I ignore him, load my machine and start reading my book. A few minutes later he starts talking to me. He tells me his machine "ate his clothes." I looked at it from where I sat, and he legitimately had a problem. The machine was stuck on the wash cycle. According to him it had been stuck there for half an hour. Because it's a smaller laundromat there is not always an attendant on duty. He wanted his clothes out, and there was not an override or stop button. Dude, has a problem. I told him I couldn't help, but he should wait for an attendant to come. His words, "I don't know your name, but if the cops come you told them I had to do what I had to do." Yeah, I sat down.

More time goes buy, more people come in, I'm at the dryers. He comes up to me, points at me and says, "You, you broke my machine, now you go fix it." What? Everyone in the place sort of stares and laughs. He's a little crazy, but harmless. I ignore the guy and go back to my book. I hear him yell about a few things, he bangs the machine a little then I head him on his cell phone. More time goes by, I look up and the cops come in! I approached them and we chatted. Apparently, crazy dude called them. I gave them the story and they couldn't help but laugh. Disturbance in the laundromat. Really?

They talked to the guy and the owner of the place (a little older lady) came in. They told her even though the laundromat is small, there still has to be an attendant on duty. The man, crazy or not, has a legitimate issue. She needs to help him, and make sure the customers don't get so mad that they call the police. They shook my hand for being helpful and left. What did the owner do? She unplugged the machine! That's it? An hour of the wash cycle and all she had to do was unplug the machine. The door opened, dude got his clothes (which were sopping wet) and he left. A trail of water on the floor that followed him out was all that remained.

Everyone who had seen the comedy unfold exchanged smiles and chuckles. I love the laundromat.

06 April 2009

Ting Tings recap

My friends, it's Monday. I wanted to start this week off good, but when I woke up last night's snow was still here. It thought it was April, but I digress.

Last night, Natalie & I caught The Ting Tings at the Metro. A-MAZ-ING! We saw them last summer at Lollapalooza. It was about 90 degrees out and twelve-thirty in the afternoon. Not the most ideal conditions to see a dancy British indie pop band. Despite the setting the rocked. Fast forward six months, to an indoor venue at night when it's not sweltering- how can it not be great? Since they only have one album, they played everything on it. I was a little suprised they didn't play anything new, but I'm not complaining. They are so much fun live. The bass is infectious. There wasn't a single person who wasn't moving. To quote lead singer, Katie White,"If you can't dance to this song, you can't dance." I want to see them again tonight.

When we got home, Natalie I were still hyped up. Below is the result of snow in April + the need to dance + cameras.

03 April 2009

Doodle + Link Potluck

It's no secret that I doodle. You should see my notes from college, so many drawings. I've been at it again, but this time I'm doodling in Illustrator rather than in a notebook. Fancier, I know. I present to you the first of my new doodles. They have names, that's right. Meet Olive & Pepper (I really do like food). I have no idea where this project is going, but there will be more. I've chatted with Darcy (college buddy, in marketing, would make a good art director) about this and it looks like these two girls are getting a canine friend next. Keep on the lookout for Tater the dog.

Since it is Friday, I've got a potluck of links I came across during the week that I haven't shared with you just yet. I think this is going to be Friday protocol form now on. Enjoy!

Salvaged drawers = modular bookcase
Makes me want to invite people over for tea.
Fun Italian jewlery.
Proving you can sell anything: the apple jacket.
You can't fit any books in Rhode Island.
I got a new desktop this week, you want one too?

02 April 2009

Say Hello!

Meet Natalie's new niece! Lilia Kathryn Marie Skoglund.
Born March 31st at 11:30 a.m. 19" long. 6 lbs, 14 oz.
That is a good looking baby.

01 April 2009

Playlist Wednesday: Get A Move On!

Referring back to an earlier post this week, I have a bike now. I've got a new way to get around and explore. This week's playlist honors transportation. By plane, by train, by canoe? Yes by canoe. Sorry if you were expecting me to include Bicycle Race by Queen. That's just too easy.

Other music fun:
Feist is working hard these days. She collaborated with Ben Gibbard on a track for the charity album Dark Was the Night. They sing Alasdair Clayre's 'Train Song' (so appropriate for today's post). You can preview the song on iTunes and get more info about the album at Dark Was the Night.

If that wasn't news enough, Feist is going to collaborate with Wilco. According to an article from Pitchfork News, "Everyone who's heard the song has been 'blown away." Well, yeah, it's Feist and Wilco. Read the full article here.

Finally, Pitchfork also posted their guide to upcoming spring releases.
A few highlights:
04-14: Death Cab for Cutie: The Open Door EP [Atlantic]
04-21: Super Furry Animals: Dark Days/Light Years [XL Recordings]
04-28: Wilco: Ashes of American Flags [Nonesuch] [DVD]
05-19: Iron & Wine: Around the Well [Sub Pop]
06-16: Tiny Masters of Today: Skeletons [Mute]


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