Tuesday, November 18, 2014

We're On Each Other's Team...

When I first thought about starting a line of cards... I didn't really know what I was doing. I drew 6 cards out and put them up in my shop and then I took them down. And then I deleted my shop. And then I renamed my brand... and then, and then, and then.

And then my husband told me to stop being a chicken and suck it up. So I re-opened up a new shop and then I uploaded those 6 cards back up. My first order was... my friend. LOL but who cares I was too excited. And then my second order was my other friend. But by the third one, it was a random person. And so on... I think in total I only sold about 20 cards the first half of the year. And I was ok with that cuz I had no idea what I was doing. And then I got an email from a large company, who wanted to use one of my cards... By use I mean license. And I had no idea what that was about. But I said yea anyway. I asked my friend's dad who is a lawyer what I should do, and he told me that I should copyright the card. So I did. Which kinda sucked because it cost just as much as the company paid me to use the card... That was almost 2 years ago. And they still haven't used it... and I don't know if they ever will. And I don't really care. Its not one of my favourite cards anymore... I see it all over Etsy, in different styles, and even though I own the copyright to the words... how do I go around telling a bunch of people to take down their cards? And really, I think I only own the rights in Canada. I dunno, its all so complicated. So... don't ask me about licensing cuz I have NO IDEA what I did.

But I did love the process of making cards. I have always lettered in my spare time. I have sketch books filled with lyrics. I'm not lying. I used to put my iPod on shuffle and blog to that song. Finish writing and then letter out whatever song was on at the moment. It was my ritual... before I had kids and time. So when I started making cards, I felt overwhelmed that it was taking me forever to create one design. I thought that maybe I was doing something wrong but really who was I supposed to ask? So I started googling card makers and letterers, but I was too scared. And then I came across Emily McDowell... She seemed funny and relaxed. So I wrote her. (keep in mind this was 2.5 years ago and now she's like a major superstar) I wasn't expecting a reply... But then I checked my email and guess what? There it was. An email from Emily. Answering my questions. What did I ask her? Well, I told her my process and asked her what she thought, and what she did differently. She did everything differently and gave me advice. Which I will always be grateful for and remember. But what I want to tell you is that... her process, while it worked for her, did not work for me. At all. I tried. But it didn't feel like me. The lettering was off, the feeling wasn't there and I reverted back to what I was originally doing, but modified it slightly. I already knew my brand. How? I dunno. I just did what I thought came to me, and well... we all have our own style, really, I think my lettering is based on my own handwriting so for me it worked out ok and colour scares me so I kept that to a minimum. For you? Just do what feels right. You're never going to be able to reproduce what Emily McDowell does or what Jasmine Dowling creates. And thats ok. Find what you love and what comes to you. It doesn't even have to be lettering.

I get a lot of emails asking how do I make my letters like that? I honestly don't know. I just write and it comes out. I've tried other styles... it doesn't work. I can't do typography so I letter everything. Even though I went to design school, I could never put type together to make it brilliant! It always looked messy and so... I drew out my letters. I remember my teacher telling me I was wasting my time drawing out the letters when I had a whole folder full of fonts. Maybe she was trying to save me some time. But isn't that the worst thing you can say to a student? Don't. I think so.

I got an email the other day from someone who was just starting out on a card line and they said almost the same words that I said to Emily... It made me smile and sad because she said a lot of people aren't willing to help. Well, what harm could a nice reply do? I wrote her back. Maybe I won't have all the answers she needs, and maybe they won't suit her. But I wanted to give her that feeling that I got when Emily wrote me back. Hope? Happiness? Excitement. Oh what kind words can do for you. I get that you aren't going to share everything you've learned in life with someone you don't know but couldn't you just give them a little shove in the right direction? I hope I helped, and if anyone is starting out doing anything creative... don't be scared to ask... whats the worst that could happen? Stop being a chicken and suck it up! But if you really want to start your line of cards... there are these great posts on Emily McDowells blog. She has a whole series, about starting your own line. Read it!

I hope I kind of pointed you in the right direction! xx

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Happy Winter!

Guys! I love winter. The cozy sweaters. The red cups at Starbucks. The snow. Yea, even shovelling it. The smell. The way your nose hairs freeze that very first time. Scarves. Mittens. Fires. EVERYTHING!!! So I thought I'd make you some prints so you can start getting into the winter spirit too! Hope you love them!

xoxo
Brenny.

Download Here

Monday, June 2, 2014

What If I Fall Download

I love pretty words… guys if you haven't you MUST start reading e.h… AKA Erin Hanson. She is something fierce. Um, shes only 18 and writes as serious as Walt Whitman, I can't fathom thinking so straight and intelligently at that age… pretty sure the only serious thing on my mind then were the NBA Playoffs.

Anyway I was watching TV with the mister and doodling and this is what came to be… hope you guys enjoy it! And thank you Erin for writing such loveliness.

Click image to download.

Monday, January 6, 2014

be my valentine

I'm so excited about these Valentine's Day cards! I know... to some people they are plain and simple and maybe nothing special... but I really love how they turned out and I really had fun working on them. Also can I tell you how most of them were designed to the sounds of Alexisonfire?!!! What! I know... weird.

Cards are available in the SHOP and will ship until February 11 for domestic orders and February 7 for international! Happy shopping!

xo

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

christmas time is near!

I know. I know. I'm a terrible blogger... its one of my New Years Resolutions... keep everyone in the loop. I'm pretty good at Instagram, Etsy and Facebook... I just need to blog more and tweet. But seriously... its all so much work!

Anyhoo, just wanted to remind everyone that its the last week for us over here to be able to ship Christmas card sets... we can do individual cards, gift tags and prints... but for some reason Canada Post has cut the parcels shipping a few days short! So get your orders in while you can:)

Also we have a few items up for clearance... they're perfectly fine, they're just printed with our old logo and we're trying to have everything old gone for the new year!

xoxo

Friday, October 18, 2013

Black and White.

I posted some new prints up on the shop last week. Three prints in various medias, handlettering, calligraphy, watercolour and brush and ink. It was fun... the last print, the Bukowski one, isn't for sale, I did it for my own personal use to put up in the office but if anyone is interested I do have extra copies:)

Happy Friday!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Oh Hey Stamps!

I've been working on these for a long time it seems... its hard when you have a toddler who doesn't like to sleep and wants to stay up watching How To Train Your Dragon until midnight, have a full-time job and a messy house. Anyways, they are done! And I'm so happy they are here. I've been busy setting up our new studio space and have lots more things coming!

Ssstho exthited!




Custom monogram stamps are available on Etsy!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

ella's birthday invitations.

I keep meaning to post these and... well I keep forgetting. Our daughter turned 2 this past June and I wanted to have a pinkish theme. But not barbie pink... my inspiration was this:



which I ended up doing only I have to warn you... they pop easier after the paint has dried. Any little touch and they would just burst... so put them somewhere where no one will bump into them. We also built her a tipi and I made her cake a fluffy pink with gold candles. I think she had a fun day.



Anyways these are the invites that I ended up designing. I had ella help me paint dots on the liners so she had a hand in it;)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Green North

My husband asked me to design and brand his new company a little while ago... normally I'm excited to do something like this but when its your BFF/Partner in Crime/Person I can't lie to... well its kind of daunting...

So I sat down with him and talked to him about Green North. Then I asked him to make me a pinterest board with everything that he though he might like. That ranged from colours to typography and textures... basically anything that he though he liked. It had two consistencies when I looked at it... A lot of black and white and a splash of colour and a lot of white space and clean type.

So we worked on a few designs and had one fight because, I don't understand what design build means and because he doesn't understand that normal people (who don't work in construction) don't know what design build means.

Anyway I think he was pretty happy about the whole thing in the end...

Heres the final logo, the final brand brief and the business cards that we printed on pretty cotton paper. Textured paper was a big deal to Kane, he wanted simplicty but weight to his cards.


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sorry!

Ok. How terrible am I at blogging? The Worst. But I've been super busy with you know summer fun and all that stuff. And it really seems like everyone is slacking so I don't feel so bad. Also, I got a new office space and my lovely husband is currently painting it and doing the floors and all that jazz. I'm really going to try and finish it for the end of August... but you know... who knows what will happen;)

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