One Year into Full-time Freelance, Here's What I've Learned

Last September, I committed to making The Homegrown Studio my full-time job. A year in, I can say that this has been the fastest, craziest, most challenging, and most fulfilling year of my life, and I’m not looking back. Last September almost feels like ten years ago when I think of all I have learned, and the good news is that I feel like that shows most of all in the work I’m producing now.

I had shared some of the lessons I’d learned in my first month of freelance life, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to reflect now on a few key things I’ve taken in during a whole year of The Homegrown Studio. 

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1.     How to make connections.

 I talked about this a lot last time, but it still holds true and is still the single most important element to the success of my business. Pushing myself to meet people in-person and genuinely get to know them has been essential for gaining and keeping clients, but more importantly it has given me the opportunity to be part of a community that is full of amazing people, valuable resources, and fulfilling experiences. Sticking my neck out there was hard at first, but now it’s just something I require and expect of myself. I set a date, put real pants on, get in the car, get a stomach ache on the drive over, awkwardly locate the person I’m meeting, engage in an interesting and inspiring conversation, and leave saying THAT WAS THE BEST MEETING OF MY LIFE. Then I drive 100 mph back to my studio to sketch out ideas and send a note of thanks. It’s always, always, always worth it.

 Also! Ladies Drawing Night is going better than ever. Created with the sole purpose of meeting cool, creative people IRL, it has served that purpose and more. Thank you, thank you, thank you, to everyone who has bravely come out to join our little group each month. I still get a stomach ache every time I leave the house, always have an amazing time drawing and chatting, and wake up the next morning feeling energized and excited about the women I met.

 Bonus tip: when you do meet people, no matter where or who, tell them about what you are doing! Whenever I’m heading to an event or meeting or even a family gathering, I make a mental list of the big projects I’m working on right now so that they’re on the tip of my tongue. People are interested, and you never know what it might lead to!

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 2.     How to make money and manage it.

 Money has taken on a whole new presence in my life since I said goodbye to the regular paycheck twice a month. There were months where I barely made enough to pay the bills. There were months where I raked in more than $12,000. There were new, large bills to pay, there were Quickbooks to routinely screw up, and there were hefty taxes to fork over. The good news is, through prosperous times and plain old loss, it all evened out. I am on track to nearly double what I was making at my full-time corporate job at the end of 2019. I’m not bragging; I’m letting you know that this is all very doable. This is the tangible result of a lot of hard work and careful management.

One of the hardest parts was learning how to deal with the finances, and I’m still figuring it out. I hired an accountant as soon as I could afford it, because I knew this wasn’t exactly in my skill set and I wanted to do things right. I wouldn’t do well in jail. My accountant helped me understand how to pay my self-employment taxes quarterly, explained the correct way to pay myself, gave me a crash course in Quickbooks, showed me how to reconcile (I should really do that), and more.  I asked so many dumb questions, twice sometimes, and she was always patient and informative. I’m feeling much more comfortable now. 10/10 would recommend.

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 3.     How to streamline my process and become more efficient.

 I love working for myself, but sometimes I could really use an extra pair of hands. My cat does not have hands. Hiring help is not in the cards just yet, so something I really had to work on was my process, and finding where I could save myself time and effort.

 I’d say I really hit my stride with this in late spring. I completely standardized my client on-boarding process, vowing to never waver from it, even if my own mother needed a logo (turns out she does, by the first week in October). I created several presentation templates that are on-brand, display my work beautifully, and are easy to use and reference for clients. I created a file system that isn’t a complete embarrassment, and have regular deadlines for the reoccurring monthly tasks that must be met at all costs. This is all stuff that is easy to get bogged down in, but once I took the time to really streamline it all, I found I had much more time to spend where I ought to be: creating brilliant work for clients (and sometime for myself!).

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 4.     How to get clients saying YES.

 I hit a big rut in the depths of winter, and felt like I was banging my head against a wall. I had a full schedule of clients I was excited about, who had hired me because they liked my work and style, but repeatedly, my logo concepts were being rejected. They all appreciated what I’d come up with, but for one reason or another, it wasn’t what they’d had in mind. I deeply questioned my abilities and whether I could handle all this critique. And, going back to the drawing board so many times really backed up my schedule, pushing back deadlines again and again. I needed to take a hard look at what was going wrong here.

I talked to a lot of fellow designers about this, took part in an AMAZING workshop with the Hoodzpah gals, and concluded that I needed to put a lot more effort into two things: discovery, and selling my work. Discovery is the marketing research work that takes place before any designing happens, and while I was doing a little of this already, I wasn’t diving in nearly deep enough to make sure my designs met all expectations. Now, I include a thorough Discovery Meeting and Discovery Presentation in all of my branding packages. As far as selling clients on my designs, I knew I could do more there. I invested a lot of time in creating professional, engaging presentations that showcased the value of my work, explained my process, and allowed my designs to really shine. I learned how to speak about my work with confidence, and defend it when anything came into question.

 This has all made me much more deliberate about the design decisions I make, and ultimately it’s pushing me to create better brands. I’m happy to report in the last four logo concept presentations I’ve submitted, every client has chosen Option A (always my favorite, shhhh…) with little to no revisions. You can bet I am breathing a sigh of relief, and I can’t wait to share some of my strongest work yet!

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 5.     How to balance work and life.

Work and life balance, whatever that means, was something I was really grappling with my first month into freelance, and for a while after. It’s something I still think about a lot, but do feel like I have a much better grasp on what feels right.

 In the beginning, I was having a lot of trouble sleeping because I was thinking about all the things I needed to do. I was excited about work, but I couldn’t shut it off. I never knew if I had done “enough” at the end of the day, and there was certainly no one to tell me if I had or not.

List making was the savior here. I’ve always believed in writing things down, but now I’ve taken it to an extreme. Each morning I write a list of everything I’d like to work on that day, and each evening I write a list of things I need to follow up on tomorrow. Even the smallest of tasks. This empties my brain sufficiently; I can leave it on the paper. Each Friday, I write down a list of my accomplishments for the week, and the big objectives I need to focus on next week. I find this weirdly satisfying, and feel like I can stop working for the weekend – I’ve done enough. I do not work on the weekends. There have been a few small exceptions, but I do whatever it takes to keep to this rule. I feel great about it.

I’m very fortunate that work and life are beautifully intertwined, my passions commingling happily and creating interesting tensions that I’m inspired by over and over again. Whether it’s digging in the garden and incorporating sketches gathered there in a logo, or spotting a particularly lovely typeface on a weekend excursion, or noting the color palette during a trail ride, I’m so lucky that my daily experiences can so often be translated into my work. Freelance design has allowed me the time and space to make a living out of these moments, and I’ll sure be grateful if I get to do it for another year.

Photos by the amazing Jennifer Bakos Photography

Up the Coast of Maine

As I’ve mentioned before, Maine is a neighboring state I’ve spent very little time in. Short of a family vacation to Ogunquit circa elementary school, and a very brief stop in Portland a few years back in which more time was spent in traffic than in the city, I haven’t experienced Vacationland much at all. 

After completing an all-time favorite branding project for The Belmont Inn last winter, and further enticed by a Lord Huron concert happening in Portland, Jake and I decided to plan a July long weekend. We’d catch the concert first, head to The Belmont Inn, and round out the stay with some hiking up in Acadia and add another National Park notch to our belts. 

So last Friday, on the dawn of a heat wave, we headed North. We largely avoided the apocalyptic traffic of my memories and arrived in Portland just after lunchtime. It was hot there too. We strolled along the docks, up and down the hilly streets, and in and out of quirky shops. I lusted after summer hats and bags in Peyote Moon, and marveled at the branding (and bread) at Standard Baking Co. We noted many delicious-looking restaurants along they way; in case you hadn’t heard, Portland has good food. 

But we had reservations set at Little Giant over in the West End, which had come highly recommended by my girl Ariel. We were so glad that the restaurant brought us out of downtown, and into a quieter, more residential neighborhood that had all kinds of Maine charm. The restaurant itself was set just perfectly on a corner, door wide open and framed by cottage roses. Inside was minimal and classy, with the prettiest gilded cocktails to match. We ordered buttered radishes on thick toast, a citrusy farro salad, a dreamy green goddess salad, and salmon. Each plate was a gem.

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We headed to the Lord Huron concert over at Thompson’s Point afterwards, and the atmospheric songs seemed just perfectly set to the glowy sunset over the coast. 

After that was a sleepy drive to Camden, with one stop to pick up a toothbrush (my bad). We arrived at The Belmont Inn later than is typically courteous, but the lovely innkeeper, my Godmother Kim, waited up for us. It was so wonderful to see her. 

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Biased or no, The Belmont Inn is hands down the nicest bed and breakfast I have ever stayed at. Jake agreed. Tastefully styled, impeccably clean, delicious breakfast, complementary blondie treats, bursting gardens…I could go on and on. I was so proud that my branding represented such an excellent establishment; Kim had really made this place shine. We would have happily stayed three more nights. 

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But Acadia called! First, we spent Saturday morning around Camden, admiring the Schooners setting sail, poking around the local farmers market, and driving the top of Mount Battie to take in the harbor town from above. Camden is just adorable. 

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Heading up Route 1, we stopped in Belfast for lunch, another cute costal town. We wandered into Chase’s Daily, which was part farm market part restaurant, and marveled over the crates of fresh summer veg. I had a delicious cold cucumber dill soup, which was particularly refreshing in the sweltering heat. Maine was definitely not spared of the heat wave. 

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Back in the car, we continued to wind our way North, lobster shack after lobster shack guiding our path. Arriving in Bar Harbor a few hours later, we checked into The Primrose Inn. This was also a lovely accommodation, but we had definitely been spoiled by The Belmont. 

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Kim had given us a hot tip on the way out the door to eat dinner on the terrace at The Bar Harbor Inn. National Parks are amazing, but one typical symptom of these tourist inundated spots is that food options leave something to be desired. We took her word for it and found a great seat overlooking the bay, and were not disappointed. I enjoyed fresh fish tacos and Jake indulged in a lobster roll, and toasted blueberry sangrias as we watched every sort of sea vessel come in and out.

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After dinner, we took a walk on a “sometimes” path out to Bar Island. It’s a sand bar that only reveals itself at low tide, providing pedestrian access to the nearby island. Don’t get stranded though! We turned over rocks to hunt for crabs which was a good feeling I’d forgotten about. 

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The next day was just as hot, and although we were ready to start exploring Acadia, we nixed some harder hikes we had planned and decided it would be best to go easy. So we set off on the Jordan Pond Loop, an easy going three mile trail around the idyllic Jordan Pond. The views of The Bubbles (majestic butt-shaped mountains) were gorgeous, and most of the trail was shaded and pleasant. The only frustration is that swimming isn’t allowed at Jordan Pond, and it is borderline torture to hike around the crystal clear waters for hours on a 95 degree day. It was all too tempting. 

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Completing the loop, we arrived at the Jordan Pond House, one of the top-rated restaurants of any National Park in the country (I’ll say it again, this isn’t exactly a competitive category). They are famous for their popovers, of all things. We ordered up two popovers with a side of blueberry jam and a pair of blueberry lemonades, and they totally lived up to the buttery hype. The Jordan Pond popovers are not to be missed.

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But we were still very, very sweaty. It was kind of them to serve us, actually. If we couldn’t swim in the Jordan, we were going to need to find another water source. We scoped out Lakewood Pond, and took a quick dip before a little thunderstorm rolled in. It brought to mind that E.B. White essay

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After a good shower, we went to dinner at Project Social Kitchen & Bar. We had prime seats on a little front porch and enjoyed a spread of small plates. The crab cakes were some of the tastiest I’ve had. We took another stroll around Bar Harbor afterwards and finished up the evening at Mount Desert Island Ice Cream, which offered genuinely creative flavors. Jake’s Cardamom Cinnamon was the winner.

We went to bed way early because our alarm was set for 2:00 a.m. That’s the time you gotta wake up if you want to hike to sunrise on Cadillac Mountain! We managed the early wake up call, which involved me blow drying my sports bra still wet from the pond swim (ew) and drove to the dark, dark North Ridge trailhead. 

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This was my first night hike and I wasn’t as spooked as I thought I might be. The headlamp gives you a sort of tunnel vision and I just followed Jake right on up to the top. It took us about two hours, and after seeing just two other happy hikers out on the trail, it’s a little strange when you arrive at the summit and suddenly find 200 friends. They all drove to the top and were awaiting the sunrise in the their PJs. I felt accomplished snacking on my granola bar, anyhow. 

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The sunrise was completely worth it - absolutely breathtaking. We watched the red, glowing ball hover above the water and all of its little islands, casting beams of color every which way. It was special. 

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We descended the Gorge Path, which was just beautiful and lined with wild blueberries. Did you know blueberries are the only thing you can take out of the park? Up to two quarts! We were at the bottom by 6:30 a.m. and had only one thing on our minds: blueberry pancakes. 

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Our needs were met at Cafe This Way, which served up two larger-than-your-face blueberry pancakes each complete with the crispy, raggedy edges. So so so so good. 10/10. Better than I could have hoped for. 

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We napped after that. 

And woke up for a carriage tour of the park! I was so excited about this. Acadia offers horse-drawn tours along the famous carriage roads designed by John D. Rockefeller Jr. Wildwood Stables is home to about 30 draft horses of all breeds that pull the carriages. This is a must-do in Acadia; all of the best views are from the carriage roads - it’s designed that way. And, we learned so much about the history behind the park along the way. Most importantly, I got to love on the drafties. 

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After a little more exploring and a visit to the picturesque Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse (and a cute seal sighting!)  we turned in early, still beat from the high energy morning. The next day we began the journey home - Jeeze, when did we get so far North? 

Our lunch stop en route home was by far the most highly anticipated food event of our trip. I’ve had a brand crush on Rose Foods of Portland LONG TIME, and wanted to try their bagels, too.

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Everything about this place. Is perfect. The unassuming brick storefront, the takeout menu, the little apple juices, the fucking tote bag. I fan-girled out (I wasn’t the only one, this is a destination) and then the bagel sandwich about put me over the edge. Art. I got The Good Deal, Jake got the Classic Nova. I wish I could go there right now and eat it all over again. 

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But instead, I’ve got a pink souvenir mug that is keeping me inspired for a restaurant branding project of my own I’ve got going on. Maine as a whole totally inspired me; it’s always refreshing to get out of your backyard. Glad I finally got up there, and can’t wait to return. 

Logo & Packaging: The Shelburne Honey Company

I met Tim Smith and Courtney Basil of Apex Orchards last winter, at a marketing workshop I taught with CISA. While a lot of the farmers in attendance were just starting out, Tim and Courtney were there representing a farm that had been in business since 1828. Tim is a fourth-generation farmer, and Courtney helps him manage the operation, which is largely focused on apples and other tree fruits.

Marketing a farm with so much history is an interesting challenge, as the needs of modern consumers and the rich heritage of a place press up against each other. One area of the business Tim and Courtney really felt needed updating was their honey products, which are sold under the name The Shelburne Honey Company. The delicious honey was lacking a consistent logo, and the labeling needed a refresh.

Tim has been producing honey since 1972, and wanted to maintain the heritage of the locally established honey, while making sure his products were standing out on shelf. The original label included hand drawn floral details by his aunt, which I thought was really special. I thought playing with the original design would be a great way to transition the products into a new era, while still paying homage to its roots.

I spent a lot of time cleaning the original floral drawings up, rearranging, and creating a brand new logo out of them:

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Tim, Courtney and I really liked the results; it felt like a great balance of old and new. When applied to labeling, it really cleaned the products up and made them look like a family.

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We used the established Apex Orchards red color to draw a subtle connection to the main business, and color-coded the banners to distinguish between different products: Original, Clover, and Creamed Honey.

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I really like the way they all look together, and can’t wait to see them printed out and on the shelf in the fall!

Branding: Cara Totman Photography

Cara Totman’s work has been catching my eye for years. Her photos have always stood out to me as having this magical atmosphere about them, capturing light and shadow in a way that elevates every one of her subjects and makes them sparkle. Whether it’s an engagement shoot, a wedding party, an intimate portrait, or a lush landscape, there’s this consistent mood in Cara’s photos that never fails to intrigue me.

Photo by Cara Totman Photography

Photo by Cara Totman Photography

So I was thrilled when she got in touch to work on some branding; designing for artists that inspire me is the very most satisfying!!! And, I was just so happy to finally meet Cara IRL! Turns out she is just as magical as her photos.

Cara wanted her logo and branding to embody a vintage, ethereal style, and wasn’t afraid to get a little quirky. She loves retro surf poster typography, and is very inspired by Oaxacan culture and art, where she recently spent time taking some seriously incredible film photos. My goal was to make sure we came up with something that complemented and spoke to the consistent style and atmosphere of Cara’s work.

Taking all that inspiration into account, we arrived at a logo that we both agreed was very her:

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Cara is particularly good at capturing the female form, and it is a subject that speaks to many of the avenues she pursues with her business. I also think Cara is exceptionally good at inspiring a sort of radiant confidence in her subjects, no matter the context, and I wanted to convey that here. The woman in the logo is inspired by an actual photo by Cara, and when framed by stylize flora and vintage typography, the result is that retro, mystical, playful feeling we were going for.

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The fun part was expanding this logo into its larger branding. Secondary logos and marks came naturally, a feminine and earthy palette was pulled from themes in her photography, and the brand pattern was actually the crowning piece, where a fleet of ladies joins our logo woman, to create several little repeat scenes. I’m a little obsessed.

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This was a dream project for me, and I’m so excited to see it shine alongside Cara’s work as she begins her 2019 wedding season, holds super fun and empowering events like Celestial Sessions, and continues to flex her creative muscles in capturing the beauty of every day moments. Thanks Cara!

Branding: Field Notes

When I first met Joan and Kyle of Field Notes, we were still in a February deep freeze. I shuffled over a very solid layer of Hudson Valley ice to the Lansing Farm greenhouse, where it was nice and warm and smelled like dirt. Joan and Kyle pointed out all their varieties of newly started plants, which naturally flowed into their many plans for Field Notes’ second season of farm dinners: the seedlings were destined to feed many mouths this summer, after all.

Field Notes was established when the two chefs came to Colonie, New York from Vermont, looking to gain a better appreciation of where the food they were cooking came from. They did this by teaming up with the Lansing Farm family to establish a farm-to-table restaurant, using crops grown right on the farm to serve weekly meals on the same land. The first year was a success, with many delicious meals and memorable evenings against the backdrop of wildflowers and farm sunsets, and they were looking forward to expanding in their second year. They knew it was the right time to refresh their brand, and I couldn’t have agreed more.

We wanted the new logo and branding to not only reflect the beautiful experience of a rustic dinner on the farm, but also the hard work that goes into harvesting and preparing a meal. Joan and Kyle are big believers in understanding what goes into growing and raising the food we eat, and aim to tell that story with every meal. Their branding should of course do the same.

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In developing the logo, I wanted to give significance to the elements of those meals, as the ingredients journey from soil to plate. This approach really gives the details of that process an elegance, and makes it clear that there is a whole lot that goes into a well-prepared feast.

In the branding process, we expanded that concept even further, making the illustrations of the farm, kitchen and table elements front and center, translating them well into secondary logos and pattern, all in deep eggplant and leafy green colors that evoke the pallet of a late summer harvest.

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This really came together in the menu design, which showcases Field Notes’ ever-changing and artful preparations of the freshest ingredients available.

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And, because we didn’t want the warm, intimate aura of a summer farm dinner to be lost, this additional illustration is going to work in concert with the rest of the branding to call to mind those late moonlit evenings filled with laughter, good food, and great company.

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I am so pleased with the way this project came out, and am grateful to Joan and Kyle for inspiring me with their vision and then turning me loose with it. It was a fun one to work on and I can’t wait to see it come to life as they kick off their 2019 season!

Branding: The Belmont Inn

Maine is the New England state I’ve unfortunately spent the least amount of my time in. Who knows why; everyone is always raving about the beaches and the forests and the quaint towns with their lobster rolls. This is probably a side-effect of being a child of Cape Cod; summer vacations rarely strayed far off Route 6 growing up. We did go to Kennebunkport once! If I were to spend some time in Maine though, the town of Camden would be first on my list to visit; and I’m pleased to say I will be doing so in July!

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This came about by way of The Belmont Inn, a historic bed and breakfast which is under new ownership this year - a perfect time for a brand refresh! I was so excited when the proud new innkeeper, Kim, reached out wanting to give the Inn’s look a facelift. The elaborate Victorian script and lilac illustrations she had inherited were feeling a little dusty.

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The Belmont Inn is a big, gorgeous Queen Anne Victorian home tucked away among bursting gardens on a quiet street just a stroll away from the ocean, and I wanted to make the logo all about that iconic structure. Kim agreed. Making the Inn the face of the brand seemed obvious; it was the image that welcomes vacationers first to their home-away-from-home, and what they anticipate returning to summer after summer. So, I made a little drawing of the Inn and it quickly became the logo.

Kim didn’t want to lose the nautical culture and tradition of the location as well, so we complemented the logo with seaworthy blues, whites, and greys, as well as a fun sailboat pattern that really brought the branding together.

This is best seen in the Inn’s print suite, where the logo, pattern, and pallet come together and really shine on business cards, letterhead, a postcard, and note cards. The envelope is actually my favorite part, with sailboats peeking through in the lining.

I can’t wait to see The Belmont Inn’s new branding be put to work this season, welcoming new travelers from around the world. Including Jake and I, when we venture out to coastal Maine at the end of July!

Some logo outtakes for your consideration: still love that fly fishing gal!

Branding: Keeler Concepts by Design

Branding for an interior design firm was a first for me, so I was thrilled when Brittany and Robyn of Keeler Concepts by Design in Chatham, New York got in touch. I genuinely loved the style and designs of their spaces, as well as the process behind each project: every room begins with hand drawn plans that reveal thoughtful, informed design and an artistic eye. The branding process is always easiest when I am excited about the client, and I was immediately tempted to ask the mother-daughter team to have a go at my outdated kitchen. I just loved their work.

Photo courtesy of Keeler Concepts by Design

Photo courtesy of Keeler Concepts by Design

Robyn Keeler’s kitchen and bathroom designs have been featured in Better Homes, Women’s Day, and more, and she is well sought after in the Berkshires, Hudson Valley, and beyond. We wanted to create a logo and brand that spoke to that high quality, but also conveyed the warm, intimate feeling characteristic of her spaces, totally refreshing their look. I noticed that it was keen attention to details that really made these spaces deeply personal, and wanted to bring that into the branding.

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The logo was built from pattern details I pulled from a piece of antique wallpaper, cleaning them up and arranging them around a wordmark. I love the elegance of the arrangement balanced with a boldness - the brand has a definite presence while remaining very stylish.

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Bringing in secondary marks, pallet, pattern, and texture, I wanted to keep things very bright and clean; I love the contrast of nude pink with a deep, rich turquoise for this. Complemented by an earthy green and white marble details, this branding speaks to many of the elements of interior design while remaining very versatile.

I love the way the business cards came out in particular: clean, stylish, and professional!

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This brand was a pleasure to work on, and I am so excited to see Robyn and Brittany put it into action. I’m thrilled we could collaborate towards branding that well represents such beautiful and intelligent interior design work.

A few logo design outtakes too, always like to show a little of my own process behind the final results:

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Branding: The Gilded Oyster

When Quinn’s Fine Jewelry closed its doors in my hometown of Wilbraham, everyone was sad. No more little green boxes under the Christmas tree! My father was perhaps the saddest, as Denise Quinn, the owner, had made anniversaries and birthdays very simple for him for years - he knew to always check my mom’s wish list for the perfect sparkly gift.

So Dad was awfully pleased when I told him Denise had gotten in touch with me about some branding - for her new shop on Cape Cod! After relocating to Falmouth, she and her husband Brian had the itch to have a storefront once again, this time embracing the heritage, culture, and aesthetic of the Cape that they love so much. They settled on the name The Gilded Oyster, in reference to an all-time favorite golden oyster piece her son had created. I rejoiced: gold foil EVERYTHING, please.

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Denise wanted the logo focused on the oyster for which the shop was named. I played with that symbol in a few different ways, including adorning a little mermaid illustration with an oyster necklace (I had to try it), but the design Denise chose combined one of my all-time favorite script fonts with a simple line drawing. It reflects the elegant, natural designs characteristic of the shop’s jewelry collections, and nods to that timeless Cape Cod nautical aesthetic.

Developing the branding and website was just as fun, and allowed me to gild to my heart’s content. Denise was after a calm, beachy look and feel and loved the combination of sea glass aqua with gold, so we brought that in to most all elements of her shop.

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My favorite piece was the business card - gold foil oyster! The sign for the front of the shop is going to look just like these; it’s in production now and I cannot wait to see how it comes out.

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I love the way all these pieces came together to bring a fresh, classy brand to Main Street in Falmouth. Now I just need to get over the bridge to check out the shop - Denise opened the doors just before Christmas! This was so much fun to work on, and I’m excited to see the Gilded Oyster flourish when visitors make their way to the shore this summer - my dad included.

Oh, and a couple logo outtakes!

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Anyone want a mermaid logo???

Interview with T.E.L.L. New England

Just before the craziness of the holidays, I had the opportunity to sit down with Jenn Bakos of the wonderful T.E.L.L. New England and talk a little bit about my business. Jenn and T.E.L.L. do such a great job of celebrating the local businesses and people that give New England its heart and soul, and I was so honored to be included in their mission.

T.E.L.L. put together a blog post on The Homegrown Studio, interviewing me about what I do, how I do it, and why the New England community has been so essential to the growth and success of my business. Click here to read the whole post.

More than anything, it was such a pleasure to chat with Jenn, and learn more about the important work that T.E.L.L. is doing to grow community. I’m looking forward to seeing what they have in store for 2019, and am hoping to contribute to their efforts in whatever way I can!

Thank you Jenn and T.E.L.L. New England for this fantastic opportunity!

Special Offer for CISA Local Heroes!

CISA has been doing some incredible work in the Western Massachusetts community for 25 years, providing resources and support for the local farmers that feed us all. Most notably, they’ve established the Local Heroes campaign, which is the country’s longest running and most comprehensive “buy local” program for farm products. Farms, restaurants, retailers, and more join together to raise awareness and sales of locally grown products.

Good news if you’re part of that awesome movement - The Homegrown Studio has partnered with CISA to offer Local Hero members 15% off any graphic design or branding project! Let’s work together to tell your story, and tell the larger story of what it means to farm, buy, and eat locally.

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Send me a note if you’re a Local Hero and want to take advantage of this offer, I’m booking projects for January. Winter is the best time to develop your branding and marketing, and prepare for a bountiful 2019 season!

AND, I’ll be teaching a branding workshop through CISA this February! Stay tuned for details.