Wednesday, October 3, 2012

New Patches for Central Coast Girl Scouts

As the Girl Scouts year begins, I have been given the opportunity to create a fall participation patch for the girl scouts of the Central Coast.

Recology hosted its annual "Hollister Downtown Fall Cleanup" this year and the Service Unit of the Central Coast decided that a new patch was needed. As I joined the Girl Scouts as a new Daisy Troop Co-leader just recently, they snatched up the opportunity to utilize the skills of a graphic designer, as quickly as possible.

With a little inspiration and some key elements a simple and timeless patch was created that can be used for years to come, as new girls join this great event year after year.

Now that one patch has been designed, I hope I get the opportunity to create many more for such a great organization.

On a side note, I have been given the honor of mentoring a Senior Troop that is working on a two part Silver Award project, one part featuring the design and production of a brand new Hollister Patch! The Hollister girl scouts have never had a patch designed for them, and the girls of this Senior Troop are taking on the challenge. I am so excited to be a part of this, and to help them along the way with my knowledge as a graphic designer and that of turning great designs into physical elements.  I'll keep you posted as we take the steps necessary to get the first Hollister patch ever, created!

Girl Scouts here we come! I hope everyone had a great first day of the season!

If you have a girl in the central coast that would like to become a Girl Scouts visit:

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Fall One Year Later...

If it wasn't for the inspiration from Buttons, Bows & Bling with all the wonderful post on her autumn decor, and the yummy handmade pumpkin spice candles made by Mystic Shimmer, my fall decor may not have been put together this weekend. With the weather being really hot here in Hollister (99 degrees), its hard to imagine the gorgeous colors of autumn, the cool breezes and the cozy nights. I guess I'm going to just have to use my imagination and the great colors of my fall decorations in my house to keep me happy for now.

Speaking of fall, I can't believe another year has gone by. And the first year of my blog has already come and gone. Some goals were achieved and others fell very short. It has been a year of challenges and new experiences. Raising my two little girls and working at home at the same time, being the biggest challenge. It hasn't been as simple as I thought, but I know with each passing year new goals will be reached, as new challenges will keep me on my toes.

What is to come of my "A Jewel'd Design" Blog?

Well the sky is the limits, and I will always have some design element to talk about, it might not be daily or even weekly, but I will share my design creations has they happen.

So keep your eyes open for posts about Girl Scout Patches, Fall and Christmas images for Sale, Invitation designs, the love for holiday decorations, and many more designs. There may even be a few Pinterest boards created in connection with my newest post. So follow my Pinterest boards if you like, for there are some great artist that I love to follow.

Enjoy the moments of Autumn when they appear, and I'll design with you soon!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Testing an error

As I am trying to work on a guest post for a good friend, I'm coming up on an error that is keeping me from uploading any photos onto her blog from my computer. But I can go into my blog page and upload photos from my files with ease. And just last night she added six photos to a new post from her computer, right after I was given the error here at home that she had run out of photo space. What the heck?

Anyone else ever have this issue with Blogger and guest hosting?

Well so much for writing a guest post via satellite location. Off to her office and using her computer and files when she is away to get this cute little post completed.

So come check out my guest post on Tuesday at Buttons, Bows & Bling!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Buttons, Bows & Bling!

Guest hosting on Buttons, Bows & Bling!  

I'm so excited! I've been given the honors of guest hosting early next week, over on Laurette's Blog, Buttons, Bows & Bling. Come check it out!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Typography: the Artistic Placement of a Word!

Typography is the art and technique of arranging type in order to make language visible. The arrangement of type involves the selection of typefaces, point size, line length, leading (line spacing), adjusting the spaces between groups of letters (tracking) and adjusting the space between pairs of letters (kerning). Type design is a closely related craft, which some consider distinct and others a part of typography; most typographers do not design typefaces, and some type designers do not consider themselves typographers.[2][3] In modern times, typography has been put into motion—in film, television and online broadcasts—to add emotion to mass communication.[4]
     Typography is performed by typesetters, compositors, typographers, graphic designers, art directors, comic book artists, graffiti artists, clerical workers, and anyone else who arranges type for a product. Until the Digital Age, typography was a specialized occupation. Digitization opened up typography to new generations of visual designers and lay users, and it has been said that "typography is now something everybody does."[5]  -  Wikipedia

Leave it to wikipedia to describe it best; typography is defiantly a craft to many of us that work within the entertainment and advertising world. And whether I give it justice or not, I love the act of typography when I am designing a lot of my graphic design projects.

There are times when a few well placed words can make a bigger impact as the graphic image then that  of an actual photograph or illustration; whether it be in an advertisement, business literature or a campaign to promote a product. High end luxury car advertisements can be good explains of this technique. Over my ten years of experience within the newspaper world and independent clients, I even have a few explains of my own typography moments that I'm proud to share.

The most recent moment of typography I created instead of using a generic graphic, was when I created a place card for the safety pin baby boy charm favors we made for my sister-n-laws baby shower. We found a scrap book paper we loved for a background but it needed a little something else, and why not state the obvious, it was for "Baby Boy Chandler".

I couldn't just type "Baby Boy Chandler" in a straight line, that would be boring. So I decided that the BOY was to be the big focus in this grouping of words and used that one word as the backdrop to the baby's nick name "Baby Chandler". As the header to the favor, it was a great addition to the cute charm pin we had made.

In many advertisements, flyers, posters and other printed material, a grouping of words can make a great header when there is to be a lot of graphics used within the majority of the page, and one more graphic image at the top of the page may be just too much.

As shown here in the RV Sales ad I created, the header is a grouping of words, in different colors, sizes and placements (stacked, side-by-side etc...) to get the customers attention, but without adding one more graphic to the page and distracting from the more important elements; like the RVs for sale.

Along with advertisements; mass mailers need to make a big impression, and quickly as possible. Most people take one look at the front of a magazine, brochure, post card or flyer; and either keep it or chuck it! If the color doesn't POP and the message isn't easy and quick to read; you wasted your money.

When creating a series of post cards for my brother's real estate business, we needed to come up with ways to keep the potential clients interested and him out in front of the competition! We had started with a seasonal theme; the jumbo post card below was a great start. The colors were bright and the text was placed in a way that didn't clutter the image. By using the different textures in the picture to frame the text, I was able to artistically place the words in such a way, a layer of imagery was created to enhance the message. A Great Start to a fun series of post cards.

Well as time goes on, I hope to continue to find fun and "WOW" popping ways to use the skills of typography in all my graphic design jobs.

New Post Still to Come:
   • The Ottoman transformation
   • Birthday Invitations - printed and digital
   • Fabric, note cards and home decor; great inspirations

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A Quick Re-Purpose of Items

  vartHere's an ode to moms and wasting nothing a little kid has or can enjoy for months to come.

In the past week and most of the summer, for that matter, I have been looking at things in a new light.

As my pre-schooler was coming out of a winter full of jeans and into a summer of no shorts, I had to do something to remedy the lack of wardrobe. I noticed that she was finally fitting into the waist of her jeans but the knees had seen their last days, holy as holy can get. Well a bit of wisdom seeped into my bank of knowledge and the idea to cut above the holes and make knee length jeans emerged. Thank you creative people, within my family; waste not, want not.

Then I bought 16" diameter tissue pom poms as decorations for a baby shower. When the shower was done we couldn't decide, do we throw away or try to get them folded back up into the packaging (yeah right). As we racked our brains on what to do, BAM! the idea came to my mom; place them on the ceiling in my daughter's room as clouds and fuzzy sky like items. Since I'm renting I can't put up her real clouds and butterfly decor, for they require too many push pins, so this was a great substitute. Hang them from their string and lots of tape.

Before                                                           After 

Last but not least; a hello kitty top sheet turned curtains for my adorable niece's new room. She just turned 7 and an extra top sheet ended up within her bedding. And there lay a naked window with the need for flare. So I cut off the extra length, cut them in half vertically, to make two curtain panels, lots of hems and a little sewing to create a pocket for the pressure rod, and the cutest set of curtains were born.

Lots and lots of re-purposing! Not too many sewing projects left. Just a few interior design pieces; One more hello kitty makeover... rework the old vanity skirt with the left over material from the top sheet, such fun! And the long over due Wicker Cork Wall hanging, along with a number of Graphic Design projects on the horizon.

The Summer should end with a bang of great designs; only leading into a year of great holiday treasures and creativity!

Keep a look out for these great new post:

   • Typography and ways to use it
   • Showing off Cute Baby Shower Favors - Graphics and Jewelry
   • Birthday Invitations - Jumbo Post Card Size (part 1) Digital Invitations (part 2)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Re-purpose the Great Room

The kids needed more play room, I needed a space that arranged everything in one central location and well the clutter was getting to me. So a family day of rearranging our "great room" was in order.

Most of the clutter cleaned up before we moved stuff
We had reorganized the office alcove and the under the window space a few months back after the baby was born and crawling around. But now she is walking and getting into everything. The toys were piling up, the playpen and the office chairs were fighting for space and I was tired of all the bruises I was getting from trying to maneuver around all these obstacles.

I had dreamed up a new layout when we were contemplating buying a larger unit very similar to our rental, so the brainstorming was already in play. I made a few adjustments, sent a few unneeded items to the garage for storage and "poof" the room was rearranged! Well with lots of help from my hubby, which without his help would not have been accomplished (I had pulled a nerve in my shoulder, while sleeping, the night before so could barely move my head let alone shift furniture) So HOORAY to my husband for all his hard work!

The great thing now is that the kids have a huge open area to play in the front of the great room where there is plenty of light and very little furniture & electronics in their way.

Better yet, both my graphic world and sewing/craft world are now just a quick 180 degree rotation of my body, away from each other. I don't have to go across the room, through the desk chairs, over the pile of toys and around the couch table to get to my crafts when I need to finish a multi-median project. And even better the kids are not using my sewing table area as a play area. This great alcove/horse shoe shaped area we have created is even easier to block off and tell them OFF LIMITS!

As you can see, the sewing area is already being put to good use, displaying all the projects I want to get accomplished within the next few weeks both for the house and for my online store Jolene Marie Designs. Already the Ottoman top is almost finished being re-padded and covered, and we have laid out the measurements for simple new drapes I get to sew up for the large window wall behind the TV.

Once the ottoman is done I'll show you its quick transformation and the progress of more projects that are in the making. And don't worry, I haven't forgot the red wicker charger project, still need to get those cork pieces cut and assembled. With this new arrangement I hope to work even more on my crafts and graphics, for I am so enjoying my new area and hope it last for months to come!

PS. Thank you Pink Chalk Fabrics and your "Where I Sew" article, for it inspired me to rearrange my great room, sooner rather then later. Now I have a really cute sewing/craft area that I'm proud to show off to everyone!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Little Something Yellow!

One afternoon, I was watering my flowers and knocked the head of one of the flowers straight off, clean cut! My daughter immediately decided we needed to place the flower into water so it wouldn't die. So humoring her, I decided to look for something small, besides the usual paper cup, to hold the yellow flower head. After a little searching, I came across the green shot glass. Perfect! I placed it on the window sill above the sink to get a little sun and figured it would probably die in a few days, but it made my girl happy so why not.

Well a week later it's still hanging in there, and it gave me an idea. I was just watching this past Tuesday's Design Star, and one of the camera challenges inspired me. One of the contestant suggested bringing the outdoors in, by placing greenery into a clear glass lamp for color and interest. So I took her advice, did a little more searching within my cupboards and found some unused margarita glasses, cut the rest of the yellow flowers I had that were in full bloom and arrange them on my kitchen sill. What a cute little center piece to look at when I do the dishes, throughout the day.

I have also noticed a pattern, lately I have centered a lot of my post around flowers. Now i don't have a very green thumb. It's a very seasonal thumb and a short season at that, but it seems my mother's love for flowers has been passed onto me and I can't help but admire them and use them for inspiration. I hope you enjoy the floral photos throughout the summer as I design, create and share my inspirations.

Still working on the design layout of cork pieces on the red wicker charger and hope next to figure out how to cut the corks into their 1/2 inch pieces without cutting off any digits.

Don't forget, all of you with the love of the countryside, there is still a wall hanging up for sale at Jolene Marie Designs.

Design with you soon!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

"Corkful" Charger

As I start my next project I go through a process that helps me brainstorm ideas and put some of my computer and art design skills to use.

First off, there are a lot of measurements of material, and doodles. 

Then depending on my project: PICTURES!

Some for inspiration, others to document the process of development from raw materials to the finished transformation. And of course, pictures for my blog. Colorful visuals are always wonderful when reading a little story.

For this project I am working with a table setting Charger, that is red and wicker; great texture and love the worn look. Along with a number of wine bottle corks. We have collected the corks over the past year and was about to throw them away when I had a brainstorm to re-purpose or even up-cycle them into something new. So into a bag they went for storage until I had a moment to create.

Now that the time as arrived to create something with the wine bottle corks, I measured a number of them, in diameter and length. With the right number of original corks, I can triple the number of cork pieces by cutting them into thirds with each piece now being around 1/2 inch wide, hoping to create a shape or cluster on top of the charger for some visual depth and contrast.

I've used the measurements, placed them into the computer and created some spec images to get a feel for what the final project "could" look like without having to actually cut up the corks, and arranging and rearranging these little pieces hundreds of times. This way I wouldn't lose a good design by trying something different and not being able to return to the first design. Great time saver!

After an hour and a half of brainstorming designs, I am not so sure if the computer rendition is depicting what the final design could look like, by not being able to really see the depth and texture of the material on the computer. It has helped me work out some of the layout concepts roaming around in my head but I'm still a ways away from a final design to glue in place.

On a side note, I realized that most of the wineries we drink from use the same style corks; the lengths of the corks to their diameters, were very close. The diameters only shifted in size by 1to 2 sixteenths of an inch and the lengths were either 1 13/16s or 1 1/2 inches. So either these are standard sizes or we drink a lot of the same type of wines; whites and blushes with occasional reds. 
Thank you Barefoot, Charles Shaw, Edna Valley, Camelot and Beringer for the inspiration.

So I continue back to the black board, and might have to cut the material into life size pieces and start arranging them to see what this new wall decor piece could actually turn out to be. Wish me luck!

Don't forget to keep an eye on my new "Jolene Marie" Online store to see what new design becomes available next.

Have a great week! The first day of Summer is right around the corner, go soak up some rays

Friday, June 8, 2012

Backdrops of texture

I finally bought my annual "Spring Potted Flowers" for my little back yard!

Once planted the colors always inspire me as an artist and graphic designer. Each plant is so vibrant in color and so different in texture, I must photograph them and work the images into wonderful backdrops for my next projects or designing adventures.


The  great thing about advertisements, post cards, greeting cards, banners, signs and such, is that they all need either a gorgeous background or a lively focal point to draw in the eye and grab the attention of the customer. Things like nature: flowers, trees, wood, leaves and water, are all great elements to use in the background of an ad or post card. There's plenty of color and texture to give contrast to the text that is to be placed on the page.

With an open mind and great photography, the simplest lines in a leaf, or the layers in a rose bud can give life to that much needed background, for the most spectacular piece of business literature.

Never limit your visions, for the most unexpected photo could have the biggest possibilities!

Have a moment? Take a look at my newest home decor design. The link is just to the right below some of my favorite websites and blogs, Hand Made Artist - Jolene Marie.

New Home Decor ideas brewing daily: wine corks, a red wicker charger, bottle caps and fabrics... just a few of the elements I'm working with in my newest concepts. Can't wait to give you updates on their progress!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fences in Spring

Its official, the country inspired wall hanging is complete, and up for sale!

"Fences in Spring"

The canvases are painted, the photos printed, the "bling" has been added. The shop to buy this fun wall hanging is up and running.

Visit my new little online shop, "Jolene Marie Designs", at this great website  or click on the link on the right hand side of my blog that shows this wall hanging on display.

I can't wait to add more wonderful wall hangings and home decor elements to my store, for all to enjoy. Many new ideas and designs are starting to show up on my workstation, its only a matter of time before I have them ready for you to add to your home.

So please be patient, for creativity is not always quick (especially with two little girls in the house) and keep a look out as I update you and send teasers out of what is to come!

Have a great First week of June!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Country Inspired Part 2

After my last post on the Country Inspired home decor item, I felt it still needed a little something to make it worthy to sell. And not just to sell it at a higher price, but to have pride in my work knowing I've taken all my skills and knowledge and used all the different medians at my disposal to really make a piece of art, not just another "thing". For the item is well within the country theme; from the photos of the countryside, to the great warn, beloved suede belt. But does it meet the likes and desires of today's country woman, so that she has to have it, and willing to hang it in her living room or bedroom?

© Buttons Bows & Bling
So I am thinking about taking a page from my favorite blogger Buttons, Bows & Bling, and playing with the idea of adding "a bit of bling" (her post on Friday, November 18th, 2011) to the canvas to get another dimension added to this printed, canvas-belted hanging Home Decor.

Wish me luck, and keep an eye out for the results.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Country Inspired

April is about to leave us and I have finally found the time and inspiration, on the same day, to complete the first of many digital print wall hangings.

We have been playing around with many nature inspired photographs we took back in Feb. and March. From wanting them printed on wrapped around canvas boards, to up-cycling and re purposing items from my "little" craft studio; home decor and my graphic design skills are working on a marriage of multimedia creations.

So some unused canvases, an old suede belt, great new photos taken as spring arrived and some paint; a country inspired piece of home decor was born!

Hope the pictures inspire you! And for those busy little bees out there, who love but don't have time to create this, keep an eye out, for I will post the link of the online store it can be purchased from, soon!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Digitally Hand Made

As we round into the last week of March, I have to apologize to my followers and new comers, for I have not kept you up to date with my graphic progress. For I have been busy this month, just not as many finished projects as I had hoped.

For two weeks of this month, my family was infected with a nasty head cold/flu bug, but when the moments allowed many creative events did occur. A lot of brainstorming, sketch work and photography was accomplished.

All the brainstorming has lead to projects and ideas.  Like up-cycling some vintage hand-stitched fabric panels and creating some digitally printed photo inspired wall hangings. And of course I am still working away at new fabric designs every moment I get, but I never realized just how time consuming these fabric designs could be.

I hope to have one of these great projects done within the next two weeks to share with you. I promise to post its progress, the outcome and where you will be able to purchase this great piece of art decor.

Thanks for your patience and loyal visits.

New post still to come:

• Creating web page store fronts
• Fabric design requirements

Special thank you to my hubby; for all his inspiration and wonderful photography moments!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Floral Inspiration

Its amazing how one set of gorgeous flowers can lead to a number of inspirational projects. 

Being a graphic designer sometime takes me into other fields of design. I'm still hashing out elements of a textile designer and once in awhile I get to play at interior design when the mood hits me. This past week, the interior design bug did just that. And these Gladiolus from Safeway were a great inspiration. Safeway had this great deal a few weeks ago, Gladiolus for around $3 a bunch. They are now two weeks old and still going strong. We have been so impressed with them we started photographing them just for the color that they displayed. This led me to think about posters and framed artwork for the house. The graphic designer in me says; crop, color and produce into a printed material that any interior designer could use.

We still have a few places in the house that could use a little more color. Once we took down the Christmas decorations last month I realized we really needed more color on the walls in our everyday lives. I love to think that great artist and talented professionals are my muse when I decide to venture into photography. When I see flowers, Georgia O'Keeffe immediately comes to mind as my artistic inspiration and I love to get photo inspiration from my dear friend who owns Delicate Moments.  So I thought maybe with just the right angle on the flowers, up close or the perfect vertical shot,  we could have a wonderful, colorful, framed photo on the wall between our office and downstairs bathroom. A black framed photo with color, edge to edge, sounds just about right to me for the space in question. Now which angle to choose and crop for the most impact? We have so many to choose from!

Then my husband wanted to take a stab at capturing the flowers, with our new Sony NEX-C3, which led to a great little photo session with my daughter and the flowers. Copies have been made for a few special birthday ladies within the family. Another way my graphic design brain takes an opportunity and creates something memorable for many to enjoy.

Can we say precious?

And last but not least, we finally decided a TV was not needed in the master bedroom, so why waste electricity on something plugged in, that we never use. What better reason do I need to utilize all the design tips I have been watching on HGTV every morning, then that of an empty surface space. With a newer bedspread and our new found love for Gladiolus as inspiration, I went shopping at Michaels for silk flowers, etc. They are having a 50% off Floral Stem Sale, going on right now and I made out like a bandit with all my sale items! Then I added a few extra accessories I haven't been able to use around the house; candles, a windup clock and a great painted mini sketch book by Shannon Grissom,  and my view every morning, as I get out of bed, is now a whole lot brighter.

One simple little flower, three great design inspirations!

Stores that were helpful in this moment of Interior Design:

Safeway:   591 Tres Pinos Rd In Hollister
Michaels:  6745 Camino Arroyo In Gilroy

New Post to Look out for:

• Creating web page store fronts
• Samples and Teasers of new designs
• Fabric design requirements

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Textile Designer: Trial and Errors

For me textile design is working with one of the raw materials: fabric. So essentially I'm designing the imagery you see on a piece of cloth.  I hope someday someone will buy them to make a skirt, purse or apron out of them. Or if I'm really lucky, a collection of my fabric designs, will inspire someone to create a quilt pattern for just such a collection.

Though the trick to fabric designing that I'm finding out, is what and where to start and end a repetition of a group of elements. How big of an area do I repeat? How many elements to have within the original pattern? And do I design according to my whimsical delight or to blend with the current trend that already exist and might already be well established everywhere for everyone to use. I've heard that it can take months if not a year plus to get a design bought and/or produced into a cloth rendition of what you created on the computer screen. Will I run out of time to join in with the current trend or do I branch off in a similar direction to start a new trend?  So again how do you decide which direction to go when creating something for that wonderful raw material!

I guess the answer is a little bit of everything and lucky for me, as a graphic designer, any and all of my fabric designs can be re-purposed into other printable material with just a few adjustments, if fabric just isn't in the appropriate time frame for me. So no creative time wasted!

New Post Still to come!

• Creating web page store fronts
• Samples and Teasers of new designs
• Fabric design requirements

Monday, February 20, 2012

A designer's soapbox: When we design.....

It's amazing how many people don't realize that not every design, creation or image is an universal piece. It takes a great graphic designer and a very open minded business owner to be able to create a logo that can transcend from one piece of business literature to another and not lose its shape, its message or its purpose. And for myself, it's one of my biggest challenges! To be able to help brand a business so perfectly that no matter where you see that companies logo you know the product and services in an instance.

Another great challenge most designers have to keep in mind when creating images for a client is it's ending appearance: print, screen, 2 dimensional or 3....small, medium or large! We cannot and should not design something 2 inches by 2 inches and expect it to look great on a billboard all blown-up. We should know that something printed on a 4 color process printing machine shouldn't be created with a 3 color process program. And if we are really good at what we do, we better be good investigators as well. The more questions we ask, the more information we gather from a client, the more likely we are to achieve the creation of an outstanding product the client will use successfully. And will come back for more.

Thanks for listening to my little soapbox moment!

new post to look for:

• Creating web page store fronts
• Trials and tribulations of textile design

Friday, February 10, 2012

Textile Designer: Creations

As I mentioned in my last post I've decided to dabble in the textile industry and see what I can design that can be transformed into raw materials like fabric and finished products like note cards and such. I know what I want the final products to be, but the designs themselves have left me. Designer block? NO..... Not That!

copyright 2011
No, not really! The creations are there in my head, so a better word(s) for my creation delays could be the "lack of motivation" to want to sit at my computer and create them. Of course having my 6 month old sick with bronchitis and pneumonia doesn't help with the motivation part. For I want to create these great ideas, but I also know I could sit at the computer for hours and never come up for air and that's not fair to either of my girls.

So how do I balance the want to create for hours (cause once you get started on a good design it's hard to stop) and the demands and responsibilities of motherhood?

I know the answer; time management, schedules and routines. Well at least the answer is there, now being able to create that schedule that works for everyone, will have to be my next project!

On another note, I'm looking into what to do with the designs once they are created. Do I produce them, sell them, loan them out or just add them to my portfolio? So if anyone out there knows of a good agent or a head hunter type in the textile world that I can talk to about selling and producing my designs, I'd appreciate the referral. Leave a comment or just email me at

copyright 2011
Well, I was given an unexpected free hour while my daughter slept to do some designing, so the graphics in this post are a sneak peak at what I was working on.

New post to look out for:

• fabric design requirements
• getting an agent for your designs
• creating web page store fronts

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Textile Designer

Every year a company needs to decide which direction to take the business. In my case as a graphic designer, I have many directions to choose from. Do I work for a large company as an employee, do I work independently and have companies hire me per project? Do I create business literature for those individual companies or create products to be produced and sold to the public? Many choices many decisions.

For now I believe working for oneself and creating the business literature a company needs when they need it, gives me the freedom to be a working wife and full time mom at the same time.

But recently, I've had a few new muses in my life that have made me think about creating items to produce and sell to the public. These wonderful muses being my mom's studio and her blog site, Buttons, Bows & Bling. They have given me ideas about creating outside of the business world and into the huge world of textile design and paper products.

Now a textile designer is simply this: Textile designing involves producing patterns for cloth used in clothing, household textiles (such as towels) and decorative textiles such as carpets. The field encompasses the actual pattern making as well as supervising part or all of the production process. In other words, textile design is a process from the raw material into finished product. Fiber, yarn and finishes are the key elements to be considered during the textile design procedure. (definition from Wikipedia)

As a computer graphic designer, my process can be seen as somewhat similar to this... I create a digital image of the business literature and require raw material (paper) to print this item on, in such a way that I can place the finished product in your hands. So for me to continue to create paper products like note cards, calendars and other great ideas you'll just have to wait to see (shh....its a secret) its nothing outside my comfort zone, just a great opportunity to create wonderful new items.

But as a textile designer, that is where the real adventure begins. I've just started the research on creating the decorative side of a raw material; FABRIC. Fabric design in the textile world is a huge industry right now. New designs and fabric styles are coming out monthly if not daily and whether I'll be able to catch a ride on this wagon in time, is still to be seen. I know that the fabrics in my mom's collection are huge inspirations to me and I hope that some of these designs rub off on me and I can create brand new designs. They may or may not become actual fabric, for the process is a long one... but no one says I cannot create paper products inspired by the idea of fabric and their complimentary elements. 

There is so much to look into, many ideas to create and many new printing procedures to learn and embrace. 

So here is a sample of some inspiring fall colors that may sneak into some of my up-and-coming designs.

Keep your eyes open for more teasers and hints on how my new design adventures are going.

New Post to look for:
   • Trials and tribulations along the way
   • Samples and Teasers of new designs
   • Design Hints and Tips when producing Printed Material

Monday, January 23, 2012

Offer ENDS Friday Night 11:59 pm PST

Order by January 27th (Friday 11:59pm) and 
get 8 more cards for FREE!

That's 28 cards and envelopes for just $30.... a $6 savings!

Email your order TODAY! 
Subject line "friendship discount" to get this great offer.

Limited time offer so don't wait! 

The day to show our love to the ones around us is quickly approaching. With just two weeks left, NOW is the time to order your own valentine cards! 
Be a kid again and pass out these adorable cards to all your friends this year.

$30 gets you 20 flat Valentine cards 
(combo of all three designs) with envelopes.
4.25 x 5.5 inches on bright white matted card stock 
(shipping included)

$12 for an electronic version to print at home.

PayPal and money orders accepted. Payment instructions sent with confirmation of order received.

I hope you enjoy these adorable cards. 
Many new creations in the works, so stay tuned for great things still to come.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Quilts! Well Almost....

As I finish up the last of the doll projects for my daughter, I have come to realize first hand what the appeal is to quilting. Now for me, its not so much the use of the sewing machine but the pattern and the matching, end to end, of one great piece of fabric after another. In how you get a wonderful image once you put together a number of fabrics. Fabrics that I would never imagine would go together in the first place. It reminds me of pointillism during the Post-Impressionism era... all those little dots; alone they make nothing but together they have this visual affect that you can only see once you step back and take in the whole canvas. I think of the same visual affect when quilting; single strips of fabric may or may not be appealing, but sew them together and a bigger image emerges and the quilt becomes a gorgeous piece of artwork for one's bed or wall.

The sad thing is these first few projects I've done are no where near "pieces of artwork". I've kept them simple but my daughter is in love with the ending results and their purpose; keeping her and her dolls warm, so I'm happy!

But my toes are now wet and the need to refine my sewing skills is upon me. Whether I get the time to actually cut and sew an actual quilt pattern is still to be seen, but I have my eyes on a few patterns, Heather Bailey's PICNIC Blanket is sure to be at the top of that list.

Below is the "No Sew Disney Fleece Blanket" that I re-purposed to make a larger bedspread. The hot pink fleece fabric for the backside was cut into strips (with help from my mom...fleece not fun to cut) to enlarge all four sides of the front panel, then two blues from a "Crystal" collection, bought at Homespun Harbor, were sewn together to make a new back, then batting in the middle and a few knots to keep it all in place.

I used all the same material along with some denim to make a quick piece together blanket for my daughter's 20" doll bed. I created the quilt design according to the size of strips I had left over; cutting squares, rectangles and triangles accordingly.

Daughter's Room...Done!

Thanks for sharing in my epiphany of quilting and my new found love for sewing.

More graphic design adventures soon to come.

Don't forget to order your Valentine Cards TODAY...time is running out to show your love to all your friends!  Look to "Valentine Cards" post on Wed. Jan. 18th for more details.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Valentine Cards

I decided this year that the adults should have their own Valentine's Day cards to hand out. Why should the kids get all the fun?

With some artistic sketch work and the joy of my computer design programs, I whipped up three simple but adorable designs for you to hand out to all your loved ones.

Why not have a flat card to write "To" and "From" on, along with room on the back to write a personal message for that special someone!

The valentine cards are 4.25 x 5.5 inches; printed on bright white matted card stock and come with envelopes if you need to mail them instead of deliver them.

20 cards to a package:
5 of two designs and 10 of the third design (words heart) 
$30 (includes the shipping)


An electronic 
PDF version and 
print them yourself.  

Order TODAY!
Valentine's Day is right around the corner.

I accept Paypal or money orders!

Email order to:
Subject Line:     Friendship
   Let me know if you want print or electronic version. I'll send payment instructions along with confirmation of order within 24hrs.

*Any graphic design advertisements that appear on my emails, posts and blog page are those of Google Ad Sense, that I allow to run but I am not affiliated with these companies, therefor they are my competitors and I make no profit if you order from these companies by mistake, thinking they are part of my business. *

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Julie & Julia

I was watching the movie "Julie & Julia" today and realized that when the movie came out, blogging was this new and adventurous thing. As I watched the movie, I realize you cannot be anything but inspired in so many ways. From wanting to cook, to achieving a goal for one's self.

Its funny to me though that I'd be writing about a lady who blogged about cooking and Julia Child, on my own blog. But the thing is, I realized that the movie made me think about my own business, my blog and my life. My "A Jewel'd Design" business has been around for about 8 years now... on and off as my life as evolved from daughter to wife to mother of two beautiful girls. And it's always been there as an outlet to my creative moments. But graphic designs have not always been the only creativity in my life. I love to draw, hand stitch fabric panels, scrap booking, painting, assembling greeting cards, the occasional room decor adventures and so many other little things that don't fall under the career skills of a graphic designer. So do I limit my blog to just the graphic design side of my life or do I include all that I do that is artsy and creative? And will the blog still be successful and thrive? For I have many great adventures to come; new designs, new avenues of the business and of course all the wonderful things I get to create and design for my girls.

I don't want "A Jewel'd Design" to be just graphics, for I'm inspired every day by many things but mostly by my mom. She does so much and is always inspiring me to do new things without even knowing it. Just being around her and her studio makes me want to be creative in every aspect of my life.

My mom is a great seamstress with a fabric collection to die for. Enough notions and supplies to be jealous of and so many wonderful ideas and plans that you can't help but get swept up in them. Every day I see her, I go home wanting to start or finish a creative project that I might have lost inspiration for: designing my daughters doll bed quilt (which means using a sewing machine which i still have lots to learn about) or pulling out the sketch pad and pencil and getting some Valentine card images created, or just fine tuning the look of my blog page because she had some great ideas for her own blog, and I want mine to look just as great as hers. I just love the creative energy she gives me when I'm around her.

And with all of this wonderful energy out there, I hate the idea of not share these creative moments just because I didn't do it with a computer or design it for some big company.

So I've decided you will see, not just my graphic design moments, but all my creative moments that arrive in between. For I'm not just a designer, but also a daughter, wife and mother, and want to share all those moments of creativity with you this year and hopefully years to come.

Things to be coming soon!

• My adventures with doll quilts and Disney character bedspreads
• Flat Valentine Cards
• More Logo creations
       and so much more!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Business Cards and Logos

With the new year comes new beginnings and great new businesses. A new business needs a new look, a logo and some marketing to help keep them out in front of it's competition.

A good example of this need for new looks, is a great little business I've come to know, Delicate Moments. A photographer with a talent for scenic images and the most precious portrait work with kids and family.

This year, she's decided a business card is an absolute need for her business's success. She gave me one of her favorite photos and the proper contact information, and I was able to design her four different business card layouts to choice from.

Now the photo is a sweet black and white rendering of its original and really gives me a clean black and white look to work with. I can really utilize the clean professional feel of just black and white, but still have a soft touch by using the photo as the focal point.

I did design two of the four cards, so that the photo shared the space with the contact information, but still gave the photo an artsy flare.

As you enjoy the new year and work towards your many goals both personal and professional, always keep in mind how you could represent yourself to the public eye: be creative, unique and individual.

Some new adventures and designs still to come by end of January so keep your eyes open.
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