A few months ago, my husband and I happened upon the aesthetically beautiful Aesop store here in Seattle and I promptly dragged him inside so I could drool over the packaging. The next thing I knew, he was having his hand washed, toned, and moisturized three different ways. Five minutes later, we were plunking down a card at the cash register in exchange for a bottle of the B & Tea Balancing Toner and the Moroccan Neroli Post-Shave Lotion which were presented to us in a handsome cotton bag. (Side note: 2 weeks later, a girlfriend visited this Aesop shop and couldn’t get the time of day from the salesperson – even as she was purchasing product – so if you go in and want to test out product and ask questions via the special hand treatment session, be persistent!)
My assumption was that he’d use the products for a few days, maybe a week, before letting them retire to the bathroom cabinet, but….miracle of miracles! – he just went online and re-ordered the moisturizer for himself! It’s the first time he’s ever: a) used up a whole tube of moisturizer b) ordered any sort of skin care item for himself at all.
He likes that it’s light and absorbs quickly, there’s no shiny oil slick left behind, and he can forget about it once it’s on. I like the warm woodsy fragrance that’s not overpowering, and somehow doesn’t set off his allergies. He didn’t use much of the toner, I think 2 steps is asking too much for his “routine”, but believe me when I tell you, this is a ringing endorsement for the moisturizer!
B & Tea Balancing Toner
Moroccan Neroli Post-Shave Lotion
Here is Part II of Laura’s interview! Read Part I here.
//VECTORIZE YOUR LETTTERING//
Some of you may have heard the term to ‘vectorize’ your lettering or artwork and were either not sure what that meant or are familiar with the term but don’t have access to a program like Adobe Illustrator to do so. The why to vectorize may be an easier way of explanation–vectorizing allows you to scale your images very large (say for signange) without your image losing quality and becoming the dreaded pixealated. Also, if you wanted to do professional printing with your lettering or artwork, a printer may ask for vector artwork (many letterpress printers need to make printing plates from vector artwork) , which may send fear in your heart but fret not friends! We found a FREE desktop app you can download, upload your artwork, hit play and viola! You will have a vector file! It’s by no means perfect, but people are raving about the ease of use and the price (free!), even people that are familiar with Illustrator have been using it because they believe it trumps Illustrator’s Live/Image trace. We’ll let you be the judge of that! Download here.
P.S. If you want to try Adobe Illustrator without the huge investment there is a monthly subscription available here.
P.P.S. You’ll still need to clean up your lettering before vectorizing may we suggest these?
//IMPROVE YOUR PENMANSHIP//
All this discussion about lettering and all you want to do is improve your penmanship? Emily of Jones Design Co. has created a course just for you! I was super excited when I found out about this online course, I really would love to take it. It is an investment at $80, but the joy of being able to love your personal hand to create handwritten letters and other mementos of your life is priceless. Penmanship Simplified.
//CREATE YOUR OWN GUIDELINE TEMPLATES//
Fozzy Book, the calligrapher with the quirky name but the seriously good resources has a most excellent download to create your very own hard copy guideline stencil so you can turn any notebook into one where you can practice your calligraphy with a proper slant. Download the template here.
We hope you enjoy these resources! Please let us know if you have any questions!
Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.
Oh boy, the studio has been hopping! Dream projects are coming to fruition, the sidewalks are lined in pink petals, we have a brand new interview we can’t wait to share with you (an illustrator this time!), and we are both feeling artistically and creatively inspired thanks to the end of the short and dark winter days. Are you feeling it too? We hope so!
A few things to help you hop into spring:
Need a crowd-pleasing but pretty Easter dessert option? How about our edible floral-topped Banana Cake with Dulce de Leche?
Tristan has been diving into Kindle First new releases, which are FREE for Amazon Prime Members! I had no idea, so thought you’d appreciate the heads-up as well.
Just when I banned myself from adding any more stripes to my wardrobe, I came across this 100% cotton not see-through, 5 star reviewed, steal. Yeah, I caved.
Pollen. If you have allergies, you know what I mean. If you’ve maxed out on allergy meds, but still have sinus pressure, try adding a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to hot water. Around here we put it in apple cinnamon tea with a bit of honey – it helps!
Need a spring break art project idea? Stuffing flowers in between the pages of my parent’s vintage books was a favorite childhood pastime, but this flower press is way cuter (and probably less annoying for vintage book collecting parents)!
We’re not ashamed to admit to falling head-over-heels for a pretty package. Who hasn’t swooned over the elegant minimalism of Rodin, the mercantile charm of Merchant and Mills, or the graphic goodness of Mast Brothers Chocolates? The packaging is seductive, and its allure becomes an integral part of the value of the product. Sometimes this infatuation is fleeting, dissipating as soon as the product is put to the test, but when the stars align and the quality and care taken with the package design mirrors the quality of the goods within, we tell our friends (you!), we give them for gifts, and generally shout our adoration from the rooftops.
If you are putting together your own brand / line of products and are working on your packaging designs, here are a few things you may want to consider and avoid:
how it will photograph.
how it will look grouped on a store shelf.
if it will be Pinterest – worthy.
less is more! Especially when it comes to copy (unless you are Dr. Bronner).
following fads: there’s no faster track to a dated look!
colors that are tough to print: those berry reds and teals can be extremely difficult to color match.
chaos! Keep your line simple, cohesive, and branded, you don’t need 14 different looks for your packaging.
resting on your packaging laurels. You’ll want to re-evaluate how your packaging is working for you as your brand evolves.
Need more inspiration? The Brooklyn Candle Studio candles in the photo above perfectly complement their heavenly scents by leveraging botanical illustrations. Karla put such thought into the packaging for her wax seal sets – just add a bow and it’s gift-ready. For an entire line of beautifully packaged products, look no further than Ila from Sunday Suppers!