Browsed by
Category: Random

Surprise! Happy 70th birthday, dad!!

Surprise! Happy 70th birthday, dad!!

Planning a surprise party is not easy. Especially when you have a year for everyone who knows to screw it up. :p But with all of the secret convos, gathering of old photos, and getting our dad out of the house without suspicion, we managed to pull it off! I’ll avoid getting into all the boring-to-strangers details, but I wanted to share a few of the things we did to make it extra special.

I spent the past few months focusing a lot of my time on my dad’s surprise 70th birthday party. Last August I put together a website to get my extended family members excited about coming to Michigan to help surprise him, and it apparently worked since we had several show up! I had family and friends who he’s closest to send me video messages of memories, what they appreciate most about him, or just a simple happy birthday to be compiled into a video to be played at the party (which I was quite proud of considering it was one of my first videos). I designed t-shirts printed by Custom Ink (toddler shirts were made via iron-ons) which were rolled and tied with a personal tag as well as homemade banana bread & jams, all of which were provided in a Sharpie-designed paper gift bag with a bottle of Michigan wine to those who made the trip. We had old photos enlarged and printed by Costco (a much better deal than Staples or Kinkos) and decorated the crap out of our rental with bright and shiny things. I also created a mini book of messages from my dad’s former coworkers. He was crazy surprised and overwhelmed by all the details we put into it…aka yessss, Success!! 😉

Below are a few samplings (you’ll have to excuse my images, I neglected to photograph all the details).

website mac
The website provided visitors with information to get them excited about coming to MI and celebrating my dad’s 70th.
website ipad
I took advantage of Wix to create a responsive site. My goal was to make it as easy as possible for family to make the trip.
animated logo for video
I animated the t-shirt design for the end of the video to bring the event full circle.
t-shirt design
The design for adult tees; toddler shirts were similar, but created as iron-ons.
shirts rolled
Each t-shirt was rolled and tied with a custom label so our visitors had an easy time finding their name and size in their group bags.
gift bags
We wanted our guests to feel special for making the long trip, so we put together a gift bag with their t-shirts, a bottle of local wine, homemade banana bread and jam and some goofy bday glasses and noisemakers. We used craft paper bags and decorated each one differently with a sharpie.
banana bread
The bread was wrapped and tied with string and a plastic knife for easy snacking on the go.
jam
I made three different types of jam and topped each jar with a cute napkin (for snacking on the go and easy clean-up), tied with string and a tag which had the type of jam on the front and the recipe on the back.
Coworkers book
My dad was a physicist, so I wanted the book from his former coworkers to be science-themed and more than printed email messages.
tshirts on guests
T-shirts on some of our guests while at the beach for sunset.
New Beginnings

New Beginnings

To put it bluntly, I’m in the process of rebranding myself, which includes a revamp of my site. SO… if you happen to come upon my portfolio and blog and realize they don’t match, well… now you know why. Cheers!

We’re Having a Baby!!

We’re Having a Baby!!

My husband and I decided to start a family this past August and on September 4 found out we were expecting! We’re so excited to start this new chapter of our lives together, which should be happening close to May 17, 2015!

5 Stellar Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, and Web Tutorials from 2013 (Tuts+)

5 Stellar Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, and Web Tutorials from 2013 (Tuts+)

I’m a frequenter of the Tuts+ Network, they have some great free tutorials, tips, tricks, galleries, etc. I picked five tutorials or tips (InDesign, Photoshop, Photography, Web Design) I thought were helpful, interesting, and/or applicable to current trends in print and web design. Feel free to share any tutorials you found useful from 2013 or years past. 🙂

Site of the Day – station.ch

Site of the Day – station.ch

I first saw this site as a nominee for the 2013 Webby Awards. The image of tweets being projected onto a wall in their studio caught my eye.. perused their site, finally finding myself on the livecam, twitter wall. Took a stab at tweeting using their #stationwall… and 10 seconds later my tweet appeared! So impressed by this concept and style, I’m trying to see if someone here could get on board. Check out the rest of their site, it’s just fun to see others ways in which they engage their visitors. #funuserexperience 😉

A Designer’s Holiday Wish List

A Designer’s Holiday Wish List

Ever wonder what to get a designer for Christmas? Or perhaps YOU’RE the designer and don’t know what to ask for? Well I’ve got a list of 10 fun gifts any designer would appreciate.

Can’t…stop…pinning!

Can’t…stop…pinning!

Current Obsession: Pinterest.

I always heard people talk about Pinterest, but never really cared to see what it was all about. As a designer, homeowner, DIY junkie, photography lover…shame on me. 😉 If you haven’t checked out Pinterest, you need to. It’s a place to save all your favorite images, DIY project links, future ideas for your house, places to visit, fitness tips… you get the idea. There are all sorts of things out there that you may not find by just searching via Google.

Here’s a link to my Pinterest page. Sign up, it’s free. Happy Pinning!