Blaise and I just closed on our first home together! A fun, mid century home with lots of character. In the spirit of all fab things modern – Here are 5 pieces I’m digging for our new mid mod living room. Shop ’em here : One, Two, Three, Four, Five
Definitely caught spring dreaming in this lovely palette. It’s been a little crazy ’round here, but hoping to catch up and bring you some stellar posts soon! ‘Til then, I’d love you to follow me on Pinterest, it’s one of my most-loved designer utopias. Click here to find the pins for all of these happy images »
“Wine is a grocery, not a luxury.” —Richard Betts
One of my amazing friends gave me this Scratch & Sniff Guide to Becoming a Wine Expert and I can’t put it down! I have happily read & sampled wines with it about 10 times since, so I thought it could be ‘wine-derful’ to share it with y’all. The most important thing I adore about this book is that Richard Betts completely eliminates the snooty feeling of wine tasting. I’ve been on this wine discovery hitch for about a year now, & it’s amazing to me that so many wine lovers are so damn serious. It’s wine – relax! The best part about the relaxed feel is that he’s actually from my very own Boulder, Colorado. I can definitely grasp our Boulder-esque vibes all the way through his non-technical wine lingo.
Here’s me, absolutely amazed (ha!) by my detection of blackberry notes (btw – I’m trying to find a perfect blue/teal for our dining room, hence the swatches & more on our home renovation later…)!
& here’s a look at the inside of the book. It’s full of fun, perky illustrative spreads that take you through each sip, scratch, & sniff to help develop your palate:
As a surprise in the back of the book, he’s tucked in The Whole Wine World! OOooooh, AAaaaaaahh…
Here’s a glowing review :
Richard Betts is one of fewer than two hundred master sommeliers in the world, but he’s no wine snob and he hates wine-speak. In the first book of its kind, he helps readers scratch and sniff their way to expertise by introducing the basic components of wine—the fruits, the wood, the earth—enabling anyone to discover the difference between a Syrah and a Sangiovese and get the glass they love every time. Humorously illustrated, with 16 scents, this irresistible gift puts the fun back in wine fundamentals.
My beloved friend found this playful book at Urban Outfitters, but you can also find it at Indie Bound! If you love the idea of a refreshing non-snobbery take on wine, you’ll probably love his perfect concoctions, my ESSENTIAL Red & my ESSENTIAL Rosé, too! He also has a trio of Saint Glinglin wines for you french white lovers as well. You can find more fun info right here »
Enjoy, & cheers!
One of my most-loved resolutions this year was to write more beautifully packaged, calligraphed letters.
I love to write, love to send little hellos, & most of all, love the design of the letterforms, envelope, & stamp combinations – is that the crazy designer in me? Yep, I’m mesmerized by calligraphy & was just recently overjoyed to find that my hand-written world will be forever changed. Enter, Antiquaria Design Studio. A beautiful collective that is dedicated to fine stationery, modern calligraphy, & beautifully designed tutorials stroke by stroke. In other words, the exact resource I’ve been dreaming of during my swashy-letter excursion. Speaking of which, here’s their post on getting started with calligraphy »
Below you’ll find a beautiful video of these lowercase letterforms being calligraphed by one of the founders. Isn’t this stunnnnnning? Check out their blog for more details and tutorials. They’re currently cycling through capital letters!
If you’re in love with them (as much as I am) by this point in the post, check out their shop for calligraphy supplies, stationery, & more. Enjoy & cheers!
Here’s a collection of recent links I’ve adored :
ART & DESIGN
Unsplash from Ooomf has just released a new set of their fabulous royalty free photos (as seen above) »
Paperless Post is killin’ it this Valentine’s Day. So Many fly greeting card designs »
Take a thrill ride with Jody Mac Donald’s photographic journey and interview. Under the ocean, over the ocean, so stunning »
A pigeon color palette you won’t want to miss »
Swim Club Bath Salts on Etsy are rocking my minimalist lovin’ deisgn world »
Joe Cruz. Enough said. »
10 Best Wine Destinations in 2014 »
My favorite wine of January 2014 »
Travel with Food and Wine’s Ray Isle through 35 years of Cabernet»
Identifying Fruit Flavors in Wine from my faves at Wine Folly »
My fave Valentine gift for wine lovers? Still standing strong from last year »
HAPPY LIVING & SUNSHINE
One of our friends Alex, a bartender at Boulder’s Acorn, is competing against two other Denver mixologists for Colorado’s State Cocktail »
If you have a brown thumb (like me), you might find these simple winter plant care tips useful »
Clementine’s speaking with kindness, & waking up with peace »
For my resolution of wanting to write more letters, here are some simple ideas on penning the perfect thank you note »
If you have too many dogs per home square footage like us, stock up on these amazing pet odor eliminator candles, pronto! »
The perfect rucksack for travelers »
And on that note, 24 Best Travel Blogs of 2014»
I’ve been thinking of trying out green smoothies for breakfast lately. Lovin’ this recipe for a “Green Smoothie (That Doesn’t Taste Like Grass”. »
Enjoy, & cheers!
… or atleast the only Valentine’s gift this designer longs for…
shop Ugmonk’s exquisite wooden ampersand right here »
Futura has been a favorite typeface of mine since I first studied & traced it in 2004 (say what?). The perfectly geometric (stunning) letterforms are clean, refreshing, & modern with chic style. In the design world, I’d say it’s a great go-to when your client wants a minimalist or simple, yet professional sans-serif, with more design than Helvetica. Here’s a look at this typeface in one of my fave wintertime mantras from Albert Camus :
See? Futura has a huge family of weights to play with, within the same exquisite blueprint. I love that it can be super clean, or super bold – but still retains a cool, minimalist style. It knows how to have fun, too – kind of like the dream girl that’s as smart as she is funny + beautiful.
A couple pieces of advice, when working with Futura :
1. Your “»” will always be disproportionate to the x-height of any of the font’s sizes. It will also set pretty low. In order to feel balanced, I always increase the “»” size, and drop the baseline until it feels nicely centered.
2. Watch the kerning with your 0’s. Since they’re so fat, they stretch with a wide leading that needs to be trimmed.
Here’s one of my fave type geek videos showing the precision of Futura’s creation. Enjoy!
FUTURA LE SPECIMEN ANIME from Thibault de Fournas on Vimeo.
The happy palm image above can be found here »
As a web designer + wine lover, I’m SOOoooo loving this newly discovered site of Hanzell Wines. Their story is beautifully curated throughout their site in conversations of the vision, vineyard, & vinting process. You can tell there is a rich, delectable history behind this label with lots of love and happiness for the art of winemaking! From a design perspective, I adore their use of negative space, HTML typography, stunning script logo & gorgeous screen print-styled label. Love this quote from the Director of Winemaking, Michael McNeill :
“To embrace, understand and produce the Hanzell signature style requires great diligence in all facets. As we continually strive to elevate our wine to an even higher level of quality, great care is required in research, study and examination of each and every detail, both past and present.” —Michael McNeil
Hop over to Hanzell & enjoy all the beauty »