Friday, January 29, 2010

Thursday, January 28, 2010


I love these. I want one! (see more here on you are my fave)

Turquoise & Portugal

J. Crew has a little album from their most recent catalog photo shoot in Portugal. This is my favorite picture. I love, love, love this building. It's turquoise! (Which is code for my favorite color, teal. Haha.)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dear Chicago

Dear Chicago,

I really enjoyed the last two weeks. The weather was a balmy over 30 degrees. It rained once when it was 43 degrees - a warm rain! I even got excited for Spring, all the while knowing you would dash my hopes. But not knowing quite enough to protect myself. And now it's frigid. I woke up to 10 feels like -5. And I'm kind of upset. That was a nasty trick. Let's negotiate on this whole winter thing.


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

K. Barteski

I am in love with this artist I stumbled upon today, Kal Barteski. I love the graphic quality of her work and the way she incorporates text into her paintings and collages. I also love that she incorporates book pages in some works. Love, love, love. I had to tell myself, "Ok, only one more page of paintings." And then I'd keep going and tell myself again, "Ok, just one more this time. For real." See more of her paintings here. You can also check out her blog here and see some more of her work.

Monday, January 25, 2010


Monday's highlights (& lowlights) thus far:

Seat on the bus. (yesss.)
New train crew. (I have to make new friends??)
Not enough sleep.
New episode of This American Life.
Lunch with Ashley!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Hiccups + Puppies

How adorable is this puppy?? I want a fuzzy little puppy PRONTO.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cubicle Tags

I made some tags to organize my desk piles today in order to easily mark a book's progress from one stage to another. Here are three of the five...

Strange Bedfellows

I think this book cover is so quirky and fantastic. (It also sounds like a cool book.) Designed by David Drummond. (Who, it turns out, designs some book covers for us.)

Stopping Traffic

Recently I've been catching a later bus in the morning and it allows me to witness something I find terribly amusing. As a bus (that's not mine) turns the corner and is picking up passengers, this tiny old man dashes into the crosswalk. He doesn't have the right of way. In fact, cars are driving with the green light across his path. But that's his bus! And he has to catch it! So he dashes into the street, madly holding his hand up like a crossing guard, instructing all the cars to stop. And they do. So this little old man is crossing the busy intersection, holding his hands up, making everybody stop for him, and then he catches his bus. And that's that. I've seen it two days in a row now. Maybe I'll have to think of that trick next time I'm about to miss my bus... Apparently it's quite effective. Ha.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Need! Ok, just WANT...

I saw these home accessories at Anthropologie over the weekend and I couldn't help but stop, stare, drool, and pick them up over and over. I wish I had a good reason to buy them! The first are brushed metal letters, about 5"x8".

I'm also in love with these hooks. Can you tell I'm a sucker for anything letter-ed?

And look how cute this knob is!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Cut up billboards

I love collages. Therefore, I think these cut-up billboards are pretty cool. The site they're from has this to say about these boards (found in Mexico), "Rumors say that once a company’s advertising time is over and a new hirer is still to be found, the pieces are mixed up to disguise the sales message." In any event, I like them. See more here. via daily design discoveries


This hand-done Peanuts rendition is too cute. Mom, this one's for you. [by Phil Jones] via daily design discoveries

Friday, January 15, 2010

&: The Ampersand

My brother sent me this oh so interesting article on the history of the ampersand. (I love history & I love typography. Therefore, I love this find.) My favorite new knowledge? The ampersand comes from the latin word for 'and' - 'et.' In its earliest forms, and in some today, it includes both the 'E' and the 'T.' It's literally (well, Latin literally) 'and.'

The image is one of my favorite '&'s. It's Caslon italic. Lovely.

You can read the article here.

Light spots for a gray day

Today the sky is the same color as the lake which is the same color as the dirty snow... gray. But, in spite of this, there are many things to feel sunshine-y about today:
1. It's FRIDAY! And it's a three day weekend.
2. I'm going to northern Michigan to my friend's cottage this weekend. I intend to sit by the fire with a book and some hot chocolate the whole time. It will be lovely.
3. On Fridays I treat myself to a latte on my way to work. Therefore, I have hot drink in hand- already!
4. It's still so much warmer there than it has been for the last few weeks. When the wind isn't whipping your skin off your face, there's always reason to be cheery.
5. Did I mention that it's Friday, a three day weekend, and that I'm going away with friends??
6. I have friends at work and friends on the train (not to mention the other places, but this is relatively new). I am so thankful for this everyday when I catch up with them, discuss the weather, and share our current reading lists.

And while I celebrate these lovely six things, I also remember to be thankful for the ways I have been blessed. Again and again. And again.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Is the intended sarcasm not obvious?

So, for all those sarcastic people out there, there is now the "Sarcmark." Download it and use it to be a little more clear that you don't actually love Twilight, you're just being sarcastic. (Or do you actually love Twilight?)

check it out here.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Above freezing!

I would just like to say that it is above freezing for the first time since Christmas here in Chicago. I am delightfully in my cubicle, without a window, observing this via but... you know, I'll be outside to enjoy it an hour.

(Wait, did I just say I would enjoy 34 feels like 25? Shhh....)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Weather illustrations...

Artist Christoph Niemann has put together his illustrated forecast for 2010. I find it HILARIOUS and so, so true. Some of my favorites?

"January 21:
90 percent chance of me overestimating my ability to jump across slush puddles."

"February 28:
Local fog for bespectacled people entering warm room."

You can see his full forecast here.

via HOW


There's an interesting article in the New York Times regarding typefaces and the frustration of their transfer to the computer. I think it's so interesting that typefaces appear so differently digitally than in print. In any event, the article is pretty good (and short) so if typography remotely interests you, check it out.

I'd also like to give a shout-out to my roommate Kate who used the word 'typeface' for the first time last night. I'm so honored.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Here's to the heat wave

I just want to say that we're going to break freezing on Wednesday and it's supposed to be 40 on Thursday. This is fantastic news! Heat wave!

Saturday, January 9, 2010


Today we took down our Christmas decorations and I finally got around to putting up some prints that I've had for months, just waiting to be properly displayed. I started with a set of 2010 monthly prints by Orange Beautiful. I wanted to hang them without having to frame anything so I used wire, nails, and some bullfrog clips from the art supply store.

My next project was hanging a poster of Chicago from Ork Posters. I used the same method as the monthly prints. (I measured and everything. On both projects. Be very proud of me.) I also hung the framed photographs on the right above my dresser. That's been sitting, waiting for my measuring hand since August. Finally it was project day!

Friday, January 8, 2010


Oh, one more thing. There's a documentary about a printing shop and typography making its round of theaters and cities right now.
"Typeface focuses on a rural Midwestern museum and print shop where international artists meet retired craftsmen and together navigate the convergence of modern design and traditional technique."

I just bought my tickets to go see it in Chicago at the beginning of February! It looks really interesting. Well, maybe to some... In any event, if you like typography, books, documentaries, or indie movies, you might check out Typeface here.

Thank you notes

I've been shopping around Felt&Wire today, where I won the gift card a couple weeks back. I think I'm going to purchase these thank you notes with my winnings. They're letterpressed (!!), classy, and some will even double as regular old 'hello' notes! Excellent.

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I just discovered Wordle, a site that generates a "word picture" based on the number of times a certain word is used in a source text. Simply copy and paste a block of text or enter the url from a blog, play with the settings and, voila! A masterpiece of words. This is mine created using this lovely blog. Cool, huh?

Hanger Tea

I think these tea bags are way too cute. I love that they come in a little wardrobe.

via swissmiss

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Snow. And Salt.

We're expecting a winter storm in Chicago tomorrow, including 8-12 inches of snow. (Oh wow.) The Tribune posted this picture of the salt trucks picking up their loads in anticipation. HOLY COW, that's a lot of salt!

via Chicago Tribune

I love this.

The Baleine bookmark by Atypyk

via swiss-miss

Letterpress Printing

I had my first letterpress printing class last night at Columbia College. It was so wonderful! We had a tour of the printing equipment, an overview of setting up type, and assembled our names to print stationery next week. The whole time I was just blown away by how everything I was learning explained why typography and typesetting on the computer is what it is today. Here are some of my favorite new things:

- What we know in Microsoft Word as 'paragraph spacing' is called 'leading' in typography. In hand-setting type, you place leads in between each line (varying the thickness based on your type size). Thus leading. It's all about the leads.

- The pieces of metal that you set type with -- including the letters, punctuation, etc. -- are called 'sorts.' Benjamin Franklin was a printer and when hand-setting type would occasionally run out of letters (those dang e's are just so common!). Apparently he would get very hot and bothered by this and storm around his shop. Thus, his assistants would see him and say, "Benjamin Franklin must be out of sorts again." And that's why we have that idiom today.

- A 'font' is actually an amount of type. (Microsoft Word brainwashed us all!) The correct term is actually a 'typeface.' (That's going to take getting used to...)

This picture shows how each typeface is stored. Each of these drawers holds the complete alphabet + punctuation for a specific point size of a specific typeface. Roman, Italic, and Bold would all need their own drawers, in each size. So if you wanted to have 12 pt, 16 pt, and 30 pt in roman, italic, and bold available for a typeface, you'd need 9 drawers of 9 complete alphabets. That's a lot!

This is the organization for the 'California Job Case' which many drawers follow. You can imagine why it takes so long to hand-set something when you look at it.

This last photo is to show you what the type looks like when it's set. You have to place the spacers between words and leads between lines to make for easy reading.

I'm so excited for the next 7 weeks of classes!

all photos via google images.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

How cool is this? (No pun intended.)

There is a gallery of photos in the Tribune today showcasing Canada's Hotel de Glace (Ice Hotel). I realize that I regularly share my distaste for the cold, but seriously, this place looks awesome. Maybe only for one night though...

It's a hotel made completely from ice. They rebuild it every year using metal structural supports, packing the snow and ice, letting it freeze around it, and then removing the support. The walls are so thick that it usually stays about 25 degrees inside. Yes, this would require winter coats, etc. But yes, it would be oh so cool. They even supply you with the sleeping bags!

Check out the whole gallery here.

Monday, January 4, 2010

A love letter for you

I came across this cool project called "A love letter for you." It's a series of 40 murals in Philadelphia designed to be viewed from public transportation. It was hard choosing which ones to put up here... therefore I'm showing you lots. Haha. You can check them all out here.

via i love typography

Happy New Year!

How much do I miss sunny, warm Hawaii on days like today? On WEEKS like this week? Oh so very much. Especially when getting warm to your toes means you have to take a shower. The highest temperature we're getting in Chicago this week is 21 degrees. And that's before windchill. Thank goodness for warm clothes and radiators and hot showers!

Oh, and Happy New Year! Hau'oli Makahiki Hou!