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Amie Baker Creative is a boutique graphic design studio focused on helping businesses and their brands through visual identities, print design and web design.


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How To Speak Visually

MOOD BOARD DESIGN

I often hear from clients that they are having a hard time telling me what it is that they have in their head for their expectations on visual outcome. It can quickly become frustrating when you are trying to tell your designer in words and have it come out off target when translated visually. So what do you do?

Mood boards are magic, I promise. Take a look at this post in the archives to learn more about what a mood board is.

When you are having a hard time putting your thoughts into words to tell anyone, even your business partner then you need to take a different approach. Spend time gathering images off the internet that you’ve loved. Save those postcards you’ve gotten in the mail that made sense, take note of copy you enjoyed because it sounded great, pull those color swatches in the paint store because it is the perfect coral for your logo. Do all these things and compile them into a single image that you can look at and really see how all of these things you love visually work together once they are living in the same space together.

Once you have it all together, you may find that your love for glitter doesn’t belong in your brand, or you’ll find that it absolutely does. Visual clarity and focus will start to form. Take the time to do this and if you don’t have the interest to do this yourself, I can do it for you! Email me and we’ll start to pull it together.

Once you have a visual mood board it will be helpful for any designer that you choose to move forward with. A lot of things with design can’t be translated with words and so compiling a bunch of images together to do so proves very helpful on both sides with getting you up and running quicker and easier.

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The Last Monday Before Christmas

monday1It is Monday and it is a Monday before the merriest holiday- ever! That reminds me, the other week I was working at Starbucks for a bit and it was a Thursday. A lady walked in wearing an “I hate Monday” t-shirt. She must really hate Mondays. I hope she has a Merry Christmas and that next year she’ll start embracing Mondays! I don’t mind the first day of the week. It feels refreshing and I get to start a new to-do list no matter how many things are left unchecked on my old one! I start it over and re-focus. I’m addicted to making lists. I know I’m not alone with that either. My four year old loves to write his own list when he sees me going to town. You might be thinking I need to get with it and make it digital. I tried that. I missed the satisfaction of physically crossing things off.
Here is to a week of long holiday lists, fitting the last fill of eggnog in, the last chocolates in the christmas count downs, the last plays of holiday tracks and the last chances to wrap up any 2014 goals you’ve set. New Year’s is going to be here before we know it!


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Holiday Design Crush

You can ask just about any mom if they love Target and await their excited response followed by filling your ear with why they love it. The same goes for a Graphic Designer who loves Holiday design (me)! It is a treat to browse the holiday designs just to admire designs. So, I decided I would snap pics of my favorite finds to share with you!

Like these simple cards that all use die cut paper, silver and white. The font is the perfect sweet match.

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The more playful option with these cute little woodland critters. The illustration style using the straight lines caught my eye. Each card has felt incorporated on it, too!

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I’m so in love with this hand lettering phase in our world today. Keep it up!

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Craft paper designs usually get me. The days I worked at a printing press they never did seem to quite understand the draw designers automatically have to white ink printing. Obsessed with it, myself. Printers don’t love it 😉

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Metallic gold, yes please! Perfect gift tags found. See, there is that craft paper again!

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I think something Target does well is including illustrations. This isn’t something I typically go for. I tend to stick to simple, patterns and typography. If illustrations are your thing, you’re covered.

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Pinterest anyone? I don’t know how many times I’ve seen something in retail that exploded on Pinterest. Here is one again. Mason jars really do make great gifting containers. They make a lovely design tag pop.

Speaking of Pinterest, you’re welcome to follow me here.

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You’ll probably need these if you’ll be hosting an ugly sweater party this year.

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My favorite gift wrap theme.

 

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Back for more hand lettering love! Maybe a little Pinterest inspired here?

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Thanks for letting me share some of my faves with you. I’d love to see what you find!


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Part 2 :: Holiday Prep

santaPrompted by questions in my inbox, here is part 2 of prepping for holiday promotions!

The bigger your business, typically the more planning involved for your holiday. The smaller your business, this may be the item on your to-do list that gets moved to the bottom the most. This is why starting early will ensure you will get a promotion you will be proud of together and out the door!

Here are some things for your to consider depending on what your holiday needs are:
  • Consider your resources. If you are going to do a print piece, you need to build in time for your printer. In addition, if this print piece is a step above the norm, for example you will want to use a foil or emboss then your turn time will be extended.
  • If you plan to send holiday cards you will need to get your delivery list in order along with their information for the route your choose- digital or snail mail. Who doesn’t love snail mail, especially in December!
  • Coordinating elements can be tricky. Do you want to send a package with multiple pieces like chocolate, a card, a lovely box, and a custom label? That is a little list to manage right there and keep on track.
  • Do you plan on having a time sensitive holiday promotion? Allow yourself and creative resources to have the timeline needed to develop this for you and be able to implement it.
  • Inventory, don’t forget this important thought!

I hope this helps get you thinking about the steps behind your promotions. I’ve had my hand in many holiday promotions and would be a great resource to help you finalize your plans.


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Your Holiday Reminder

holiday design

We’ll wake up next week after Halloween is over and we’ll be hit with jingling bells, Christmas tunes and the merry spirit taking off. Like so many, I really enjoy this time of year not only for the season but for the designs! I love to help businesses create their holiday promotions, thank you’s and cards for their customers and clients. Combining two of my loves is quite a match for me and your designs are sure to benefit!

This is just your friendly reminder that if you haven’t started thinking and planning for your holiday promotions that you are already behind. Get started today and if you need help brainstorming, I’d love to help you! Send me an email.


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Why it Works :: Design Crush

I am really enjoying checking my mail box to find all of the holiday direct mail pieces. I will have to admit that I love paper and the printed goods more than the average person. I also tend to respond to direct mail with a purchase more than the emails I receive, but that is just me. We all have people and brands we admire, who influence our thoughts, and that we feel just get things right. I thought it might be fun to give you a look inside my mind and share those that influence me.

Thanks to direct mail, today I’ll share a piece I received from Bath and Body Works. Receiving this piece also confirmed a suspicion I had of a new trend moving forward of pop-ups. This is the second pop-up piece I’ve received this season. The first was from Victoria Secret.

Why I love this piece strategically: A fitting call to action on every page, holiday cheer, creative photography, the coupons are for 2 different dates which extend the life of this mailer’s relevance.

Why I love this piece graphically: The pop up was a great surprise, love the bold stripes, die cut tag coupons, bold colors and graphics with holiday cheer!