InstaThis-1-Design Crush


This past summer I shot one of my favorite Instagram photos ever, an overhead of a container full of Rainier cherries. Super simple, and not the least bit styled. Just a few weeks ago I heard of InstaThis, a shop that prints your Instgram photos on wood or acrylic. I’ve never had any of my Instagrams printed in any capacity so I was intrigued, and too tempted to have my photo on my wall to resist. So off went my photo and back came something that exceeded my expectations – a stunning, saturated wooden canvas with my image practically jumping off! You can even see the striations in the wood, as if the cherries were printed under the first layer of fibers. I can say without a doubt that I’ll be ordering more very soon, so many possibilities not only for my own home but personalized gifts too. Thanks, InstThis!


InstaThis-2-Design Crush


Disclaimer: InstaThis provided my print free of charge. However, all words and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep Design Crush going!


Valentine’s Day + Uncommon Goods

Valentine’s Day is for friends, family, kids… and yes, couples. Hands down I think the best part of any holiday is the hunt to find the perfect gift – something that’s equal parts surprise and want, personal and sweet, useful yet slightly extravagant. Not everything has to be clichéd hearts, boxes of chocolates, and red roses you know. So it’s lucky for us that Uncommon Goods has helped everyone out by amassing a fantastic selection of Valentine’s Day gifts for you, your love, and the both of you to enjoy together! See all of their available gifts right here.



FOR HIM: A technically drawn Dog Blueprint of his favorite pooch. // Custom Beach Cufflinks as reminder of that incredible beach vacation you two took together. // A Wood Bow Tie to dress things up for date night.



FOR HER: Love Birch Cuff with a sweet heart cutout that will make her think of you. // A Gold Astrology Necklace of her sign to wear every day. // A Personalized Stump Ring with both of your initials.



HIS + HERS: A Personalized Tree Trunk Glassware Duo for relaxing on the couch together. // A Scratch Map to track your adventures in life. // A framed Mates for Life print as a romantic reminder of your devotion to one another.


You can check out more gifts here!


Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post, however all words and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the companies that keep Design Crush going!


Lindsay Letters

Lindsay Letters-1-Design Crush


Lindsay Letters, boy does she ever. Modern freestyle calligraphy steals my heart and Lindsay’s style is beautiful. See that persimmon gold foiled guy on the left? It’s a special edition print with lyrics from Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire and I’d do just about anything to own it. Get this – it’s free with the purchase of two other prints! Lindsay also does some sweet mini sizes, all of which might just be perfect to give your girl friends this Valentine’s Day!


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Cerise Doucede

Cerise Doucède-1-Design Crush


Cerise Doucede creates beautiful photographs of people in the midst of everyday situations. With the exception of the swarming objects all around them that is. Each photo takes three days to prep before shooting and the end result is pure magic.


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Cerise Doucède-3-Design Crush


Heart ‘Splosion


ROW 1: Bing Bang Oversized Ray Heart Button Earrings // DIY Painted Heart Bag //Valentine’s Heart Attack    ROW 2: Neon Screenprint Valentine Poster // Easy Pixel Heart Cookies // Home Is Where the Heart Is Print (Pennsylvania)    ROW 3: Giant Geometric Wall Heart // Heart Shaped Donuts // DIY Be My Valentine Heart Kite    ROW 4: Heart Straws // DIY Tree Heart Installation    ROW 5: Red Heart Pillow Cover // Heart Pendent Necklace // Modern Welsh Lovespoon    ROW 6: Joyceanne Sunglasses // Valentine Sorbet Sandwiches // DIY Gold Heart Piñata    ROW 7: Heart Serving Bowl with Ladle // Stuck On You Valentine // Heart You Leather Wall Flag


Moorea Seal



A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to be gifted a pair of Moorea Seal earrings, the Brass Triangle Grid set below. I fell so in love with them that I had to see what else the Seattle-based shop had to offer in their line of nature-meets-urban jewelry. Every piece is really versatile and will most likely end up being your favorite accessory addition. Trust.





I Went to Alt! (And Caught the Plague)


PHOTO: Alt Summit

Alt 2013. It happened.

No doubt by now you’ve already read countless posts from other bloggers speaking about everything they learned, how awesome the other bloggers are, and how inspired they left. And you know what? It’s all true. This year marked my fourth year attending and speaking at Altitude Design Summit (affectionately Alt) and I’m still not tired of the feelings I leave with every January. It’s basically impossible to not bond with these people who are on your wavelength, who get your obsession with analytics and tolerate you anyway.



PHOTO: Alt Summit

Most attendees arrived in Salt Lake City sometime Wednesday. Past years I’ve had punishing early morning flights, but this time around lucked out and didn’t even have to depart Oklahoma City until after one o’clock. I had a lovely traveling partner in Rachel Shingleton of Pencil Shavings fame, and we arrived in SLC shortly before everyone started heading off to their Wednesday evening sponsored dinners.

I has signed up for a lovely meal with Joss & Main, a members-only site that curates 3-day long shopping events, at Sapa Sushi Bar & Grill. I ended up having such a great time and so many quality conversations that I forgot to snap even one photo! That has to be a record.



Thursday morning’s sessions started bright and early at 9am, and in the main hallway I immediately noticed what was one of my favorite new additions to Alt this year – three sheet metal boards ripe with magnets for showing off business cards! Business cards are the equivalent of gold at this conference, and the boards were the perfect way to showcase everyone’s creativity and long hours. They also unintentionally gave me recognition of someone before ever meeting them face to face. I can’t recall how many times I exchanged cards with someone only to say how I’d hoped I would meet them after spotting their card first.



PHOTO: Alt Summit

Thursday night brought with it the much anticipated Clue party. We had all been instructed to dress in the color of Mrs. White, Miss Scarlet, Professor Plum, Colonel Mustard, Mrs. Peacock, or Mr. Green. I thought for sure one color would be dominant but nope, the room was a rainbow of vibrant color! All of the board game’s rooms were represented, sectioned off and identified in the classic Clue font and projected in light from the ceiling amidst the apropos furniture setting.



I loved all of the little touches that went into the planning, from the huge array of colored flower arrangements to the artistic takes on each weapon, to the colored lights in the rear of the room! (This is obviously the end of the night, these tables were packed!)



This is the lone good photo of me from the entire conference – as Miss Scarlet! – because the next morning I woke up with a raw throat and aching ears. I’d been sick for most of January and traveling lots, so I don’t know why I was surprised. But I was. Guess I should have taken more note of all the hand sanitizer being handed out and not put that plastic bear mask on in the Bing photobooth. But speaking of Bing



PHOTO: Alt Summit

… they had a great footprint on the entirety of Alt, in a very genuine way. Their support of creativity and voice were palpable, starting with the amazing lounge they put together around projects nominated by the attendees. (And from what I hear, people ended up winning and taking each one home!)

Land of Nod also threw one heck of a tea party, complete with a full-size plastic swan boat (you can see a photo of me and my roommate, Jaime Derringer of Design Milk, canoodling in it on Instagram!) and plenty of polka dots and stripes.

Three cheers for Bing, Land of Nod, and all the sponsors of Alt for helping it reach its full potential!



PHOTO: Alt Summit

We had the opportunity to see three fantastic keynotes, one Thursday and two Friday. First up was Chris Anderson, CEO of 3D Robotics and former longtime editor-in-chief of Wired magazine. To be honest Chris’s talk was a little over my head, but I’m looking forward to reading the copy of his book – Makers: The New Industrial Revolution – we were all gifted at lunch.

Friday’s lunch keynote resonated most, no doubt because it was one of my long-standing graphic design crushes – Stefan Sagmeister of Sagmeister & Walsh. His talk focused on the exploration of happiness through his projects The Happy Film (which finally has backing) and The Happy Show. We had the chance to preview twelve blissful moments of the movie, which will be at film shows this coming year. Needless to say, totally amazing.

The closing keynote was the lovely Katie Sokolov of Color Me Katie and street art fame. I have to confess that I didn’t make it to this one, cold meds had me taking a short nap in my room instead. But this is what I missed out on…



PHOTO: Alt Summit

So yeah, disappointed doesn’t even begin to cover it.



PHOTO: Alt Summit

Friday evening brought with it the much loved Mini Parties! Each sponsored room has its own distinctive decor and vibe, I think my favorite was Go Mighty‘s valentine-themed crush party with plenty of red, balloons, and candy. I also had a great time visiting with Better Homes and Gardens and Hayneedle!




PHOTOS: Alt Summit

Oh, the trends! Alt wouldn’t be Alt if the ladies (and handful of gents) didn’t bring their A-game. I was excited to see the latest (colored denim, mixed patterns, fascinators) and the reliables (topknots, big glasses, totes).




PHOTOS: Alt Summit

Some sights became old hat by the end of the conference – water to fight dehydration, Sagmeister kissing everyone in photos, and killer calligraphy to name a few.


Alt13-BusCards-1-Design Crush

Every year the business cards get better and more outrageous. This year was no exception with trends like thick cotton letterpress, blind embossing, and colored edges making their mark.

La La Lovely // South Holly Road // A Blog About Love // Artifact Uprising // Emily McDowell // The Artful Desperado // Citizens of Humanity // Design Milk // House of Earnest // Creature Comforts // Grassroots Modern // The Cuisinerd // Pinegate Road // Hitch Design Studio // Cloth & Kind // Leslie Fandrich // Meg Biram // Paper & Stitch


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It seems like this year more than ever people were above and way beyond with their cards, some were flat out gifts. Prints, notecards, calendars – even a hamburger yoyo and wooden corgi pin!

The Proper Pinwheel // Melissa Esplin // Engaged & Inspired // The Cuisinerd // The Ravenna Girls // Donuts, Dresses and Dirt // The Paper Mama // Twig Creative // Shauna Younge


If you couldn’t make it to the conference you should definitely look into it for 2014! In the meantime, here are a few links to reviews of some of the panels. I’ll continue to update the list as new ones come out!



Up and Coming Blogs
How to Craft for a Living
Organizing Social Media + Advanced Blogging
Collaborating with Sponsors + Earning Revenue
Planning Offline Events
Advanced Blogging Skills
Getting Past Zero
Building a Killer Portfolio
Personal Branding
How to Organize Your Online Life
Being a Contributor
Stefan Sagmeister’s Keynote


Win It: Curio Road



Mondays are tough, so we’re starting this one off with a lovely little giveaway from Curio Road! Curio Road was founded last year by Sonali Bloom and Michael Segal with the mission to help us discover unique and inspiring products from exceptional designers. One look at their members-only community site and I’d say they’ve accomplished their goal in spades. Oodles of goodies from jewelry to accessories to home decor that combined make for some serious eye candy! In other words? There is no way to visit this site without buying something incredible.


Curio Road-2-Design Crush


This giveaway is now closed, congratulations to Thea!

To Enter the Giveaway:
1. Register as a member on Curio Road.
2. Like Curio Road on Facebook.
3. Stop back here to leave a comment letting us know!
4. Do it all before Sunday, February 10th at midnight CST.

A winner will be chosen randomly and announced here once the giveaway closes.

Full giveaway rules + disclosure.


Happy Weekend

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01/ Shetland ponies in cardigans. Enough to make me visit Scotland.
02/ How to ride an escalator.
03/ Amazing things that could happen after just one more cup of coffee.
04/ Fire + Ice.
05/ Horses inside out!
06/ Pretty fruits + vegetables cross-sectioned and organized by color.
07/ Geometric skull ice cube molds.
08/ A bird ballet.
09/ The Wobble Chess Set makes me really want to learn to play.
10/ So that’s not fabric. It’s wood.