Wedding Season Is Here!

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Summer tends to be the season of weddings, and can I tell you I’ve had many summers where it seemed I had a wedding every weekend. It’s fun to celebrate with friends on such a momentous occasion, but I kind of got “wedding gift wear-out” if such a thing exists. I just got so tired of running to Bed Bath and Beyond to buy cooking utensils they probably already had and didn’t need more of. Eventually, I started giving cash.

Now, I’m not knocking cash as a gift. It’s certainly needed, and I was certainly grateful for it as a bride myself! But it didn’t feel at all personal, and for me, gift giving is only rewarding when it’s personal. Ask my husband: gifts are my love language.

The hubs and I have been married five years (next month!) and I still remember to this day one of the best gifts I received when getting married. I have a cousin who’s a very talented artist, and for my bridal shower, she gifted me a painting of my husband and I. It was beautiful, and it was personal, and it’s still one of my favorite gifts I’ve ever received.

There’s just something about personalized gifts. They show thought, effort, and love to the person receiving the gift. Plus, as a gift giver, I think they’re just more fun to give!

For this reason, I’ve started a new section of my Etsy shop inspired by the love of personalized gift giving during this wedding season. It’s small right now, but keep checking because more prints will be posted.

displaymck4I love this mason jar custom wedding print with watercolor hydrangeas (in fact, I love it so much, I’m probably going to print one for my own home!). There’s 7 different colored backgrounds to choose from to make it more personalized for each couple.

Isn’t it darling? I love the textured background, and how the mason jar “glass” reflects the color differently for each background. It’s simple enough to look great in any home, but adds enough character and personality to be noticed.

Birch-Tree2mckAnother new print I’m featuring is this Birch tree print with lovebirds. How cute is this? The background can be customized to any color your heart desires, and the lovebirds can change to any color as well, to really give it that truly personalized feel.

I love the “carved” initials in the heart of the birch tree, symbolizing a love that is permanently etched. The background adds a good pop of color to any room, and a great idea for the color of the background and birds is to find out the couple’s wedding colors. It’s a way they can forever remember their special day.

mck1-s1If you’re looking for something a bit more simple and modern, check out this black and white last name initial print. This is a great print for the modern couple. Is it simple? Yes, but it still has that personal, thinking-of-you feel that shows you put in more effort than buying them a spatula (not to knock spatulas, who doesn’t need those? I have personally “killed” many a spatula in my effort to cook over the years).

If you’re looking for something that shows you put in time, effort, and love for your gift giving wedding season, check out these prints. Order the print, then head over to Hobby Lobby or Michael’s and pick out a beautiful frame to go with it, and you’re set! You’ll be giving a gift you know they’ll love, and won’t sit dirty in their sink, or hidden away in the cupboard.

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Web App “Coolors” makes it easy to find and create color palettes

I’m a sucker for color palettes, whether it’s designing prints for my etsy shop, or searching for inspiration for my home. Having a good color scheme is vital to any kind of designing you might be doing.

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 10.46.20 AMCoolors is a web application I found recently that makes finding and saving color palettes extremely easy. All you have to do to browse thousands of random palettes (with colors that complement each other) is to hit your space bar. Save the palettes, or individual colors, that you love. Like one color but not the others? Lock in that color and browse for other colors that go well. Copy hex codes to easily import into any photo editing or illustration software.

The web app is free, but it looks like Coolors also has an iOS app as well, that only costs $0.99. Not bad for having colors on the go!

Check out the free web app here: http://coolors.co/app/ 

*Taps Mic* “Is this thing on?”

Because I have a major, exciting announcement to share with you.

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As of this week, my etsy shop is now selling printed items! I feel I’m a bit behind on the times with this, and it’s something I had hoped to start doing a while ago. But it’s here now, so let’s celebrate that!

I’m still going to be offering some digital files for those who’d like to print it at home, but for my friends who don’t have access to a printer, I’m now offering for my art to be printed on heavy duty card stock paper. I can’t tell you how excited I am about this!

Bike-Plain-mckI have added a TON of listings to my site (think: weddings, nursery art, etc) so if you haven’t been over there in a while, be sure to pop over and give it a look!

Here’s just a taste of what I’m now selling, and I am just IN LOVE with this vintage bicycle print! Isn’t it so cute? I might just have to print it for my house as well! It’s just too cute not to share with you!

And in case you didn’t know, I happily accept requests for a custom piece. Obviously my store is still small and growing as I go, but if you have a request for something and don’t see it in my shop, don’t hesitate to reach out to me!

And as always, check out my facebook page for contests and freebies!

New Printable: Sugar, inspired by Maroon 5

sugar-mockupLately I haven’t been able to get the song “Sugar” by Maroon 5 out of my head, and if you haven’t seen the music video for it, go watch it because it’s adorable. Even my husband loves the song (and he isn’t the biggest Maroon 5 fan), but as he says: “It’s just so catchy!”

I’ve been messing around with some typography and came up with the idea for this print, inspired by the song. At first, I wanted an ink blot for the print; something darker, but then I thought about coffee (which has become a sort of life blood since my son was born) and how the print can have sort of a double meaning.

I kind of fell in love with this design, and thought, “shoot, this would look super cute on a coffee mug.” So I headed over to cafepress and whipped up a couple of cute designs I thought I’d share with ya’ll.

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They are currently running a sale on their mugs for 12.99, so if you’d like to purchase the “Sugar” mug, now is the time to do it! It’s super cute and I am definitely planning on ordering one for myself!

If you hop over to cafepress, there’s a few other styles to choose from, like an Acrylic Double Wall Tumbler or a Travel Mug

What do you think? Do you like the design?  Leave a comment and let me know!

To purchase the 8×10 printable, head on over to my etsy shop.  It’s only 5 bucks!

And be sure to Like my Facebook Page, or you’ll be missing out on contests and giveaways!

FREE Spring Printable!

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Last summer the hubs and I decided to redo some of the landscaping in our front yard, and in this process bought a flowering cherry tree. Unfortunately we bought it after it’s blooming season (late spring) so we never got to see it in it’s true beauty. I don’t have a green thumb by any means, but all summer I worked hard to keep that little tree alive.

It was a dry summer, so I was definitely paranoid about the tree drying up. I watered it like crazy. I remember a few times seeing the tips of the leaves turn red, as if the tree had decided to take a turn into an early fall. I’d frantically water it more. By some miracle, I managed to keep it alive.

Just the other day I was out in the front yard, the weather being at least nice enough to enjoy, and even though everything is brown and there’s not a leaf on any tree in sight, the promise of spring is definitely in the air. To my delight, my little cherry tree has buds on it. This might seem silly to you, but to me, this is a big deal. I can’t keep plants alive for the life of me! (It’d be so much easier if they were like kids and cried when they needed something!) I am just thrilled I managed to keep it alive, and I’m so looking forward to seeing it in full bloom.

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I love spring. I love the colors, the warmth, the sounds of birds chirping and kids playing. there’s just something so lively about it after a long winter. That’s where my inspiration came from for this print. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it! The print is free for personal use, and you may print it as many times as you like!

If you’re loving my printables, please like my facebook page and check out my etsy shop.

Click the button below to download. Enjoy!

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Free Kids Chore Sheets!

PicMonkey-CollageHappy Thursday!  So far I’ve been able to offer at least one free printable per week, and I hope to keep up with that. Who doesn’t like free stuff, am I right? And I like making stuff like this, so it’s a win-win.

This week I’m offering 4 variations of a chore chart for you to use with your kids. Click on any of the four images below to download a jpeg to print out at home. Each chart fits an 8.5×11 sheet of paper. Feel free to print over and over for every week!

Click on any sheet below to download!

Chore-Chart-Blue-TextChore-Chart-Pink-TextChore-Chart-Purple-TextChore-Chart-Drk-Blue-Text

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As always, if you’re enjoying these freebies, please consider liking my facebook page or checking out my Etsy Shop for more goodies, like wall art and printable invitations.

Feel free to share these printables with anyone you think might enjoy them!

 

 

 

* Design contributions: fonts by www.kevinandamanda.com 
*Background vector designed by Freepik

Free Kitchen Cheat Sheets!

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It’s time for another freebie because I love giving stuff away. I might be a little crazy. This time I’m giving away two Kitchen Cheat sheets. Both fit standard 8.5 x 11 sheets of paper. The link to download them is below.

The idea for these came to me in a weird way last night as I was laying in bed unable to sleep. I was thinking of ways to use my Wacom drawing tablet and had the idea for a seamless repeatable pattern. I’ve really enjoyed making patterns lately and thought I’d try my hand at something other than lines and polka dots. In my head I sketched out a simple measuring cup and thought to myself “I can do that.” And I can make other things too.

I am by no means an artist. If you gave me a pen and paper, the best you might get out of me are some shaky stick people. Regardless, I was really quite pleased with how the pattern turned out. I wanted to use it for something fun, so I came up with two Kitchen Cheat sheets. One is a simple conversion sheet and the other is for if you ever need to cut a recipe in half. Hope you enjoy!

To download the Kitchen cheat sheets, click here.

Woodland-Deer-Invite-mockup]I made this announcement on my Facebook page, but I thought I’d also make it here. I’m now selling customizable shower invitations over at my Etsy Shop. There’s not much there yet but as time goes on I’ll be adding bridal showers, birthday invitations, and others to the store.

Quatrefoil-Invite-MockupIf you’re enjoying the freebies, I’d love it if you became a fan on my facebook page (which also means you’ll stay up to date on the latest giveaways and contests), or head over to my Etsy Store to find some really affordable deals for wall art or invitations.

Thanks so much for stopping by the blog, keep checking periodically as I’ll be posting more freebies in the future.

Happy cooking!

9 FREE Printables for your home!


PicMonkey-Collage4   I’m not sure if this is typical of other designers, but for me, there are days… weeks even, where I’m just not feeling the creativity. Inspiration ebbs and flows for me. Some days, all I want to do is immerse myself in my designs and other days I don’t even want to look at a blank artboard.

The past few weeks my artistic inspiration has been pretty dry, but this week apparently has been the opposite. Many hours have been poured into these designs, and I’m simply thrilled with how they turned out. I’ve also learned new techniques that I’m excited to put into practice, and have used some of those techniques to make these freebies.

All printables are high quality and will fit 8×10 frames. Due to screen resolutions and printer quality, colors may vary slightly when you print them out.

If you like the freebies, please consider becoming a fan on facebook or even shopping at my etsy page. Choose any of the links below to download the printable of your choice!

  1. Believe You Can and You’re Halfway there
  2. You are Capable of More than You Know
  3. Her Children Rise Up and Call Her Blessed
  4. Psalm 56:3
  5. Philippians 2:14
  6. Philippians 4:13
  7. Love heart printable
  8. What I love Most about My Home is Who I share it With
  9. Love Lives Here

Also, be sure to check out my latest design on my etsy shop if you’re in love with the floral design like I am. It can be customized to any name, any letter:

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– Stephanie

Valentines Freebie!

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Just in time for valentine’s day, snag this cute little 5×7 printable absolutely free!

I am absolutely in love with this sweet little print and I hope you’ll enjoy it too! Please note that due to screen resolutions and printers, the colors may vary slightly when you print this out at home. How cute will this look on your buffet table, next to a picture of you and your sweetheart?

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If you can’t get enough of this artwork, consider going to my etsy store and ordering the Love Heart Customizable print. This 8×10 print is made to order with your choice of names and dates. A great gift for a wedding, or a great little decoration for your own home. And it’s only $5.00!

I don’t have the capabilities to make these myself, but if you are looking for a neat gift, consider heading over to Zazzle to purchase the Love Heart coffee mug or phone case for your special someone!

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Hope your valentine’s day is extra sweet!

To download the free 5×7 print, click here!

To order the customizable print, please visit my etsy store!

To order the Love Heart phone case, click here. 

To order the Love Heart mug, click here

The Drawing Tablet: The Next Step

office-272813_640As a self-educated designer, a lot of what I learn about design comes from my own research. The internet has been my best friend on this journey, and I have been eternally grateful to forums built around graphic design, like the few I’ve found on Reddit.

So I began my journey, or passion, or whatever you want to call it many years ago. Honestly, I can’t pinpoint a specific date, because I remember doing things as a child that set me on this path of pursuing my graphic design passion. I remember as a kid, staring at my Windows 98 computer screen, working with Microsoft Publisher to create a fake restaurant menu for my fake restaurant. I built websites, however poorly created, for my pretend stores. This to me was all a part of play.

It wasn’t until my senior year of college though, that I really began to understand just how much of a desire I had to do graphic design, and even then it took two more years for me to really get serious about learning and teaching myself. So my story is one of being self-taught and learning as I go. I look back on things I’ve designed over the years, and I can see how I’ve improved. Still, I’m critical (and somewhat shy) about what I have created. But I’m learning. I’m growing. Design for me has been a journey, not a destination.

In my learning and education, everything kept pointing me to purchasing a drawing tablet. I’ve definitely noticed there is limited capability in design when it comes to using a mouse. The tablet I wanted was, in my opinion, a pricey investment (hey, I’m a pastor’s wife, we don’t have a lot of money). My goal for my etsy store was to provide beautiful home decor (and other printables) at an affordable price. Would the investment into a drawing tablet be worth it?

I thought so, and decided to take the plunge. I purchased a Wacom Tablet and was excited to get to work with it this weekend and get accustomed to it. So far, I love it, and I’m excited about the world of design it will open up for me. I think this is a good step forward, because I was starting to feel like my design was going in circles. Finally, I think I’m headed in the right direction.