Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Changing Perception

Here's an interesting Ted Talk by Rory Sutherland. Funny and insightful. Worth the 15 minutes of your time.

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Sunday, October 12, 2008


It's not always easy to find additional design resources when you need them. Sometimes the people you want to work with are working full-time, busy on other projects, or out of town. There's now an interesting new website called CollabFinder. Creatives upload their profiles, highlight skillz, and link to samples of their work. It's a great concept. I'm anxious to see how it grows and develops. Right now it seems very web-focused, but I'm hoping it will branch out different areas of design as more people sign up. And a search function would be helpful moving forward. Let's see how it goes...

Click here to take a look.

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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Starbucks - Back to basics

Ok, I'm back! But I'm a bit tired from all the moving, etc. So I'm going to cheat today and use a post that I just wrote for the dieline. I think it's worth sharing here as well....

(Photo: Powerbooktrance via Flickr)

After 37 years, Starbucks has gone back to its roots with their new "Pike Place Roast" and redesign of the iconic cup. The retro logo showcases a modified version of the original "siren" logo designed by Terry Heckler. (You'll notice that this one is a bit more PC).

Although, is it still a redesign if it's an old design? The design is part of a back to basics campaign focusing on the history of the brand, and establishing their place as coffee experts - but is only a temporary move. So if you're a fan of the green logo, have no fear, it will return.

So what do we think? I personally like the return to their roots. I like the brown color-scheme and the historical reference. If nothing else, it really makes you look twice, as we're so conditioned to seeing the Starbucks green. It's no secret that Starbucks sales have been down lately... they've rapidly opened stores, created drive-thru windows, and have started offering all kinds of food and beverage options, that have diluted their original brand. They also have a lot of competition from the likes of Dunkin' Donuts and McDonalds, which all now offer coffee and espresso drinks. Perhaps this marks the beginning of a return to what Starbucks does best - good coffee.

Click here for a brief history on the Starbucks logo.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Pantone universe

Pantone has certainly taken steps lately to move into the realm of the everyday consumer. Or at least, into the realm of designers' everyday lives.

While designers live by their inks and color chips, Pantone is now creating a range of everyday products called: Pantone Universe.
They're teaming up with interesting retail partners as well. Fendi (!) will sell a limited edition bag with a market set, and Uniqlo will be making cashmere sweaters in 20 different Pantone colors.

You can purchase coffee mugs, Pantone house paint, furniture, notebooks, and now glasses and sunglasses with interchangeable colored arms. I can certainly see the appeal of being able to match your glasses to your outfit!

To see the full range of Pantone products, click here.
For the eye wear website, click here.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Jobs you wish you had

As first seen listed on the How Design Blog... Fast Company has released it's picks for top ten jobs in 2008. These include Sleep Coaches and Brew Masters! But the one that I found most relevant was "Interaction Designer." Not, mind you, Interactive Designer. That is a very different job. Here's a brief description:

Interaction designers don't just design. They work with executives to define goals for the products and systems they help develop. And they mix reporting, psychology, and anthropology to see how people actually use what they design. By creating "personas" -- hypothetical users with constructed life stories -- interaction designers predict how people might approach a product. With a healthy dose of fiction and regular hat changing, this job provides constant stimulation.

It's interesting. I think a lot of designers and marketing professionals do offer some of these services. But this is the first time I've seen it given a title. Well, it sounds great to me. I always say that you can have the most beautiful design ever, but if nobody responds to it, or it doesn't hit the right market, then it's a wasted design.

Click here to see the full list.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

I Heart Method

Ok, so I've written about Method before. But it deserves another honorable mention. A while ago, I started reading the blog of Tom Fishburne. He's a blogger, a cartoonist, a marketer, a creative mind, and he is working on launching Method in the UK. Busy guy.

Anyhow, I've started to frequent Tom's blog. He has interesting insights on brands and marketing, and he really cares about eco-products. When I asked Tom about finding Method products in London, he was kind enough to send me a box full of fabulous products. I love the thought that went into it... a personalized note, all the products were the same scent and color (see pix above), and he sent some of their coolest products, since he knew I was a designer.

It's that attention to detail that really makes a company stand out from the competition. There's such a difference between a company that "talks-the-talk and walks-the-walk" and a company that just talks. These guys know how to walk.

The products are now proudly displayed on our kitchen counter. And, if you know the size of our flat, that really is a place of honor, since there's not much room to begin with!

The best part is that they smell great, look great, and really do work. Thanks, Tom!

Visit Method here.
Visit Tom's blog here.

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Thursday, October 4, 2007

Lime Interlude

Just a quick break from 100% Design, to announce the launch of a new website for Blue Lime. We've been working on the site for a few months now, and it's nice to see it up and running. I worked on the design, while an interactive company (Shazamm) did the programming (thank goodness!).

The challenge was to create something fresh and fun, with just enough information. I can't show too many pix here because it would spoil the surprises. But take a look for yourself when you have a bit of time.

Click here to enjoy Blue Lime's website.

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Thursday, August 9, 2007

Just because...

... it's too pretty to pass up. Veer always manages to find new and creative promotions. From quirky fashion and accessories, to "summer activity" books, and beautifully designed catalogs. I love them because they talk to designers in a language we appreciate... beauty.

Here are some pix from their stunning "type city." Who would have thought typefaces could be so gorgeous! They now sell these images as perfect letterpress prints. A set of 10 is available here for $55.

Click here to explore the city for yourself. (The interface is equally sweeeeeet.)

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Monday, July 9, 2007

Street Art

It's called the "Grand Tour" and it's bringing the art gallery to the people. Out and about on the streets of London you will find full-size reproductions of work from the National Gallery... complete with museum guards and velvet ropes. The campaign was created by the Partners, and it's such a great piece of advertising because it actually adds value and beauty to the streets.

From the Guardian:
"The National Gallery is encouraging people to hang around the streets of Soho and a corner of Covent Garden once infamous for its filth and debauchery. But it is not suggesting they indulge in anything mucky; it merely wants them to admire some art.Full-scale framed reproductions of 30 masterpieces from the National Gallery - among them works by Caravaggio, Rubens and Constable - are going up on the outside walls of buildings including a bookmaker's and a pub.... The gallery hopes the spectacular reproductions will lure visitors to the real thing in Trafalgar Square."

Click here for the story. And here for some more pix. Below photos by David Levene of the Guardian.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Moo Two

I just returned from a fabulous visit to Italy, to find the most exciting thing waiting for me... my
Moo Cards! It was like Christmas.

They are so totally cute. Here are a few pix, but they don't do them much justice. The cards themselves are 1" x 2.75". Teensy tiny, and all the better for it. They're printed on heavy paper, with a nice feel to it. The printing is ok, but for £9, who can complain? I'm lucky to get a coffee for less than that. Anyhow, enjoy the pix. If anyone gets a set, let me know, I'd love to see them.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Moooove it

Moo Cards are all the rage... or so it seems to me. For those very familiar with the "blog-o-sphere" or "New Media", this may not be news. But I've seen them popping up a lot lately, and I've finally jumped in myself.

Basically, you load up to 100 photos of your choosing to the website. You then enter the info you want on your card, and in 10 days you receive a set of these adorable, skinny-mini cards with full-color images on the back. I've put mine together as business cards, with portfolio pieces on the back. But I can see them being great as save the date cards, birth announcements or moving cards. You don't have a lot of control over the formatting of the information, but the imagery makes them so personal, that it's unlikely you'll ever see one just like it.

Additionally, Moo Cards work with sites such as and second life. So if you're already signed up with those, you can transfer your imagery rather seamlessly.

Now these cards have taken on a life of their own. People leave them around major cities and form treasure hunts. Others trade the moo cards of popular artists, much like baseball cards. Perhaps someday someone will want on of mine??

I'll update you with pix once I receive my set. Below is a picture from the Moo Cards website.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

I've got IT

As a follow up to
my post a while ago. I got my hands on the £5 "it" bag today! Yippee!!!! We waited in line early this morning, and it's paid off. I'm the proud owner of a new Anya Hindmarch bag! And it's so pretty!

I have to admit, this campaign proves the effectiveness of buzz marketing. The response was overwhelming, and these bags are now being sold on eBay for 10 times their original cost. I love it.

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