Decorate your Desktop | June 2018

Another month has passed, another Decorate your Desktop Wallpaper Series is at your fingertips.

The month of May passed by in a blink of an eye over here, and we all welcomed the hot temperatures with open arms. We live for sun, the heat, the water, and the beach and Memorial Weekend honestly couldn’t have been better. Here’s hoping June will be just as warm and bring just as many sunny beach day memories.

This month’s Decorate your Desktop wallpaper is a little reminder of self-love. We always treat everyone around us with so much more kindness and grace than how we treat ourselves. Here’s to being okay with where we are at in life; don’t get me wrong, always striving to be better but being at peace with our present.

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Succulent-Inspired Barn Wedding Invitations, a Wedding at The Barn on Stoney Hill

Sharing a pretty succulent wedding invitation collection with you today to celebrate Mykayla and Jonathan’s one year anniversary!

Last year, Mykayla reached out to me to help with your wedding stationery. When I met with Mykayla and Jonathan at Starbucks (of course), I knew right away that they were going to be such a fun couple to work with. Our aesthetics matched and conversation was just so dang easy with these two lovebirds.

I had the honor of creating everything from their Save the Date cards to the succulent-inspired wedding invitations, wedding programs, a large ceremony hanging, and reception signage. From their beautiful wedding color palette of cream, sage, and lavender with the subtle pops of gold, their wedding at the Barn on Stoney Hill was nothing short of amazing.

Take a looksy at their pretty paper items below, and beautiful photographs of their wedding day (including the huge calligraphy wedding altar display I designed!) to follow.

Succulent Wedding Invitations

Wisconsin Barn Wedding at The Barn on Stoney Hill, Cornell, Wisconsin

Day-of Photography by Olivia Clare Photography

Congratulations Mykayla and Jonathan on your one year anniversary! And Happy Mother’s Day, Mykayla! What a special weekend for you two. I can’t wait to see pictures of that baby girl <3

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Decorate your Desktop | May 2018

Just when I didn’t think winter could get any longer, it did. Halfway into April and we were still getting snow, 12” on the 14th of April was so depressing. Even at the end of January, I was so over winter…being cooped up with two toddlers is no joke, but I kept trying to be positive. “If we can make it to March, things will be okay!” Then March came and we didn’t have a ton of snow, but it was so windy making it SO.COLD! And now with April, thinking we’d be in the 50s most days, I thought we made it through. (Yup, I was that desperate that in February I looked at the weather almanac for last March, April, and May, just so I could see the light—the warmth!—that was upon us.)

Just this past week it has finally felt like Spring and all of us Wisconsinites are welcoming it with open arms. It was kind of funny to see how many people were out and about last weekend, riding bikes, walking dogs, pushing strollers & swings. It’s like the saying goes…”what good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” This long winter will surely make us all extremely grateful for these warm, spring days and make us all get out every single day we can.

Cheersing to a warmer & sunnier month of May! Scroll down to get your free downloads!

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This is 32.

A blog post about motherhood in my thirties

This is waking up to the kids as alarm clocks.
This is slow mornings full of breakfasts, Mickey Mouse, and cold coffees.
This is spending countless hours cleaning that damn highchair.
And wishing we just had a dog.
This is one meltdown after another.
This is counting down the hours until 11am for naps.
And then counting down til 7pm for bedtime.
Does that make me a bad mom?
This is never knowing my husband’s schedule.
This is wishing he was home more, but knowing he wishes he was home more, too.
This is juggling being a stay-at-home mom & a work-from-home mom.
This is trying to find a balance.
I’m not sure that exists.
This is being so inspired to create beautiful paper things.
But knowing I just can’t do it all in this season of life.
This is a million trips to the park.
And a million tantrums to boot.
This is bribing my three-year-old to get dressed.
With three chocolate chips.
Because he’s three years old.
This is craving more one-on-one time with my husband.
But utterly exhausted when he walks through that door at night.
This is just wanting to stay home for a morning.
But knowing everyone will be happier if we just get out of the house.
This is the babysitter hustle.
Cramming work, the gym, and errands in those few precious hours each week.
This is a car ride sans-kiddos is a treat in itself.
This is prying rocks, sticks, and leaves out my of daughter’s mouth.
And knowing another tantrum is going to follow.
This is being a full-time diaper changer, butt wiper, boo-boo kisser, and blankie finder.
This is scheming up new meals that my toddler will actually eat.
And failing miserably.
This is pushing kiddos on swings.
And squeezing my butt down a slide with a babe.
This is dragging myself to CrossFit at noon.
But feeling so glad I went afterwards.
This is teaching words, shapes, and counting.
And kindness, determination, and independence.
This is my toddler helping himself to a full cup of water.
Ugh, who taught him to be so damn independent?
This is being so grateful for my hardworking husband.
The sacrifices he makes—I will always be indebted to him.
This is reading hundreds of books about dump trucks, bunnies, and babies.
And then reading them all over again a million times more.
This is playing chase and peek-a-boo and dance parties.
Endless crafts, play-doh creations, and picture making.
This is a million boo-boo’s and bandaids.
This is exerting tremendous amounts of patience,
especially when the babe is crawling up the basement steps,
at the speed of paint drying.
And I’m only carrying 9 bags of groceries.
This is goodnight kisses, bedtime books, and Twinkle Twinkle songs.
This is tucking the toddler back in 15 times.
This is diving into bed at 8pm, the minute he’s finally asleep.
This is 8 loads of laundry waiting to be folded for the past week.
And letting it sit for another week.
This is checking the monitors seven more times before we go to sleep.
Not because they’re awake, but because we miss them.
This is being so grateful for this life. For these kiddos. And for my husband.
This is ride together, die together.
This is me saying “thank you” which is never said enough.
This is thirty two.

XOXO

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Decorate your Desktop | April 2018

Another month has come and gone. March completely flew by and I’m welcoming any warmer temps with open arms. Although we started April with some rain and drizzle, I’m just glad it isn’t snow.

For this month’s Decorate your Desktop, I found this quote that I absolutely love. Not only is it a tribute to the rainy month of April, but it’s also another beautiful quote striving for a kinder world. It’s a good reminder to think before we speak. There is nothing wrong with being opininated and standing up for what you believe in, but you can choose to do so in a mature and eloquent manner.

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Six Ways to Personalize your Wedding Envelope

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the smallest details when it comes to wedding paper. After all, it’s those details that make your stationery unique and truly personal to you, your fiancé, and your wedding day. Most couples focus on the invitation itself, and the pieces inside, but today I’m going to focus on what’s on the outside: the envelope.

Often envelopes are overlooked when it comes to custom wedding invitations. And I totally get it. Your wedding invitations need to include the very important details your guests have to know, like the actual wedding date and the time of events. But most of my clients don’t stop to think about that first impression when your guests see the actual wedding envelope in the mail. I know when I run out to the mailbox I always flip through the stacks of bills hoping something GOOD is in there. Am I right? So don’t you want your wedding envelopes to make a statement? Make your guests scramble to open the envelope immediately, rather than throw it on the counter with the rest of the mail?

Let’s talk about my favorite ways to personalize your wedding envelopes, and make that first impression one that lasts forever.

1 | Calligraphy

Like I mentioned in my previous post about 2018 wedding stationery trends, calligraphy is such a elegant and heartfelt way to make your envelope stand out in the mail. As you scroll through Instagram, calligraphy is everywhere and all for good reason. There is something so beautiful in something handmade in a world where everything is engineered. Whether it’s a quick imperfect brushstroke or pretty script with flourishes, custom calligraphy on your wedding envelopes is totally worth it.

 

2 | Stamps

The United States Post Office has definitely upgraded their postage designs over the years, but I often find that the standard postage that is offered still doesn’t quite work well for my custom invitation collections. Maybe the color doesn’t coordinate quite right or the feeling and vibe is off, that’s where vintage stamps—and even custom stamp designs—come into play. There are so many beautiful vintage stamps out there, like you see below, and  if vintage isn’t your thing, I can easily create a custom stamp that coordinates with your collection as well (see right).

(Left image by Christy Janeczko Photography)

 

3 | Address Design

Another way to spice up your envelope is to add some flair to your guests’ addresses. Mixing a script font with a serif font, playing with font hierarchy, going bold with white ink, and off-setting the address are all ways to keep it fresh. Here, you can see how I off-set “kindly deliver to” in two different ways.

 

4 | Envelope Liners

This has to be one of my favorite ways to add an unexpected detail that makes a huge statement. The nice thing about envelope liners is that they are usually printed on text weight paper, so it doesn’t add any additional weight (aka postage cost) to the collection. Win-win!

(Left image by Christy Janeczko Photography)

 

5 | Wax Seals

This hot 2018 trend that I talked about in my last post also works with wedding envelopes. Wax seals are all the rage and all for good reason. They are beautiful, timeless, and there are so many different options, such as color, design, and execution.

 

6 | Color

Probably the most simple and cost effective way is to simply swap a plain, white envelope for a hint of color. It doesn’t have to be anything bold if you are more of a neutral gal, but even a subtle envelope color, as you see below, in the mix with all those dang bills really goes a long way.

(Image by Christy Janeczko Photography)

 

There you have it, six great options to personalize your wedding envelopes for your wedding day. I hope this gave you some wedding stationery inspiration and made your brain tick a little. Now which is your favorite? Comment below, I’d love to know!

 

 

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Stoney Hill Branding | Cornell, Wisconsin

Last Spring, Angie from The Barn on Stoney Hill reached out to me regarding new, fresh branding for her wedding venue business, which is a breathtaking wedding barn here in the Chippewa Valley. Angie and I connected on so many levels, and once I saw her stunning barn, I knew that this was a project I wanted to help with.

Once she filled out a branding questionnaire, we started off creating a custom moodboard, pulling colors that Angie adores and what she felt best represented the barn. Her love for rust and turquoise were a must, while a few softer hues and worn textures for a timeless, romantic feel balanced it all out.

The Barn on Stoney Hill Moodboard | Cornell, Wisconsin

Once the Moodboard was approved, which didn’t take long, we moved onto the logo. In the branding questionnaire that Angie filled out, she prided herself on the beautiful flowers and greenery that surrounds the barn. And when I went to visit, it was much more magical than any photograph of the barn that I had ever seen! Take a look yourself. So much care, love, and dedication to the flowers themselves were evident when I pulled up to Stoney Hill. Florals were a must-have when it came to her logo, and all for good reason. The barn itself is spectacular, but the gardens and the views are jaw-dropping.

A few adjectives that Angie used that I really kept in mind when designing these logo variations were vintage, nostalgic, and grand. She iterated that she didn’t really want the typical barn silhouette or a leafy vignette. I knew she really wanted an old-world feel to them, but also wanted something welcoming and timeless.

The Barn on Stoney Hill Logo Variations | Cornell, Wisconsin

Several logo options were presented to Angie, and after a few revisions and seeing the logo every which way, the final logo was chosen. I am so glad that Angie had so much trust in me, and really valued my opinion when it came to the final logo design and colors (see below). Angie is one of those clients that knows what she wants, but still values and trusts the expert to bring her vision to life. This logo is so successful because she was so detailed in the branding questionnaire, patient with revisions, and open to critique and discussions. I applaud and thank Angie for all of that! Seriously, ideal client status! <3 Once the logo was approved, I went on to create the logo variation and the submark, along with the brand colors, patterns, and font recommendations.

The Barn on Stoney Hill Branding Board | Cornell, Wisconsin

I created custom business cards in copper foil (again, IDEAL CLIENT!).  I also designed notecards for Angie; she couldn’t decide between the two designs I presented her, so she ordered them both! Lastly in her package were the social media graphics, including Stoney Hill’s Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram accounts. Go check them out 😉

The Barn on Stoney Hill Notecards | Cornell, Wisconsin

PS. Taking photos of anything metallic/foiled is so hard. So hard. These really don’t do it justice.

Beyond the branding package that Angie chose, she also wanted to update the folder she hands out to her clients, which includes Stoney Hill’s contract and venue/vendor information. Since the previous carbon-copy contract was working but just needed some beautifying, we stuck to the carbon-copy idea but just made it larger, formatted it making it easier to read, and made it match her new branding. I absolutely LOVE when clients think above and beyond to really make their whole brand come full circle & complete.

For the venue & preferred vendor inserts, I recommend updating her inserts to a booklet-style handout, much more inviting and professional. Inside the booklet includes a Welcome Page, Package Pricing, Venue Information & Rules, Preferred Vendors, and Reviews. Every page is filled with content, but also formatted and balanced making it easier to read and navigate. I wanted to make the booklet more than just information overload, so I included large, beautiful photos of Stoney Hill. Within the preferred vendors section, I included photographs from the actual preferred vendors themselves. Clean, beautiful photographs of the vendors’ services really speaks for itself and draws customers in, relating those specific pictures to their services.

Lastly, (I think!), Angie wanted a custom stamp for receipts and paperwork. So in one week, I put together a design and she had a custom stamp at her doorstep.

The Barn on Stoney Hill Booklet & Custom Stamp | Cornell, Wisconsin

I pretty much want to get remarried all over again just so I can receive the beautiful marketing materials that Angie now uses that are all completely branded and on-point. From her business cards and notecards, to her social media accounts, to even the custom carbon-copy contracts & booklets, Angie’s entire booking process of having a wedding or party event at Stoney Hill is now a beautiful representation of the barn and the services, itself, which is EXACTLY what your business branding should be.

It is obvious on so many levels how much passion and dedication Angie Popp has to Stoney Hill and the couples that book with her. This gal lives and breathes weddings and pours her heart into every detail of her barn & business. Angie is one of the sweetest business owners I know, and one of the hardest working ladies I know, too. You will fall in love with her barn, Stoney Hill, but I bet you even more so, you’ll fall in love with her.

Hugs, Angie! Wishing you all the best! <3 <3 <3

 

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Decorate your Desktop | March 2018

Another month has passed, which means another Decorate your Desktop wallpaper background is here. I couldn’t be happier that February is OVER. Like I said in the last Decorate your Desktop post, February always drags even though it’s the shortest month.

Pretty much all of February we spent sick. My husband was sick for the first half of February, and when he’s sick, I swear we all feel it 😉 Then right before Valentine’s Day, my little guy complained for a week that his tummy hurt. Just as that subsided, we got hit hard with the flu bug. It started with Everly; she woke up on a Sunday extremely hot and miserable. She wouldn’t eat, barely drank anything, and would fall asleep in our arms in the broad daylight. That in itself is not my daughter! It lasted about a day and a half, and her fever broke followed by a raspy cough & tons of snot. A snotty 1 year old is no fun, always dripping everywhere & a complete bear to wipe it clean. Not even 2 days after her fever broke, Emerson woke up from a cat nap in the car and was extremely hot. I thought maybe it was because he was in the car in his fleece & winter hat, and just got a little stuffy. That night was awful. He was up whining every few hours. Finally at 11:30pm, I crawled into bed with him. He would fall asleep then 2 minutes later he would start talking crazy talk…like saying Everly took his blanket, his farmer is lost in his bed. Just plain ol’ crazy. That went on for the next 4 hours. I gave him some Motrin and he finally fell asleep at 3:30am. Then Miss Everly wakes at 5:15am.

LONG.
DAY.

Emerson was miserable the entire next day. Obviously tired and didn’t move from the couch. Finally by dinner time, he was feeling a bit better and actually nibbling on crackers. Worried we had another long night ahead, we put the kiddos to bed early & they both slept through the night. Thank goodness! (When you have kiddos that sleep well, and all of a sudden they’re up at night, it hits hard. Totally not used to that, and makes me not miss the newborn stage at all!)

With that, March can only be better. A week away from Daylight Savings, more sunshine & it has got to warm up soon, right? We are so stir-crazy from being trapped inside with sicknesses and cold weather, we all are going a bit nuts.

I guess this turned  into more of a little life update, and I probably bored you to death. I guess that’s what happens when I have little to no adult interaction and literally feel like I’m on house arrest with two kiddos. I’ll stop blabbering and let you get to the good stuff below.

I hope you are enjoying the Decorate your Desktop series. And seriously, if you have ANY quote recommendations, color palettes, or imagery you want me to use, comment below! For some reason my wallpapers usually end up with flowers. (I’m obviously dying for Spring to get here.) Here’s to a better, warmer month. Let’s make each day count!

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Wedding Stationery Trends for 2018

As a wedding stationery designer, I absolutely love to see the new wedding themes & trends that pop up each and every year while some past trends tend to stick around & there is nothing wrong with that! If you are a 2018 couple with stationery on your mind and need some direction + inspiration for your wedding invitations this year, take a look at the top 5 trends that are hot this year (and I’m dying to incorporate into my designs)!

 

1. Calligraphy

Probably my top favorite trend is wedding stationery calligraphy. Whether it’s elegant, flourished calligraphy or quick, brush-scribbled lettering, calligraphy on wedding invitations sets the tone for the entire collection. Typically when calligraphy is used on wedding stationery, the design elements are very minimal letting the beauty of the custom calligraphy truly shine.

 

2. Dark & Moody

Another trend that I am LOVING are the dark, romantic & moody wedding collections. It’s evident through social media, primarily Instagram, that light & bright has been a huge trend in the past. However, you will notice how the bold, deep & dramatic palettes are coming out. I am loving & craving these deep tones with so much boldness. For example, when I did the rebrand of Mint for Hue, I had to incorporate the luscious emerald green & coal colors into my brand’s palette.

Photo by Christy Janeczko Photography

 

3. Minimalistic

On the contrary, some wedding stationery collections are starting to step away from all of color & artwork elements, focusing on beautiful typography whether it’s calligraphy, serif fonts, or the mix & play between the two. It’s true how the saying goes, “less is more.” Stepping away from a lot of heavy artwork allows the paper itself to shine, which brings me to the next trend.

 

4. Embellishments

By backing off on the artwork elements, special embellishments really make a statement. I am obsessed with handmade paper (aaahem, brides…who wants in??!) and the beauty there is the in the soft paper and deckled, torn edges as seen above. There is so much depth & story behind custom handmade paper; so raw & so romantic. Another embellishement that’s huge are wax seals (below); they have been a trend for the last few years and I’m so glad that they aren’t going away anytime soon. A few other items that can really make your invitation stand out are specialty silk ribbons and vintage stamps.

 

5. Monograms, Crests & Venues

Monograms have been a traditional wedding decor element over the past few years, displaying their beauty on everything from stationery to wedding cakes and embroidered napkins. Couples and stationers alike are loving the concept of taking the traditional monogram a step farther, surrounding the design with regal crests, ornate flourishes, and vintage-inspired wreaths. Another rising trend are custom venue illustrations on your wedding stationery. Incorporating a venue illustration introduces your guests to all of the beauty your wedding location has to offer, and captures the spirit and history of the stunning architecture which truly tells a story in and of itself.

Photo by Christy Janeczko Photography

So tell me, are you incorporating any of the these trends into your 2018 wedding? Which of these top five wedding stationery trends of 2018 are you absolutely loving? And the opposite, are there any paper trends that you’re not digging?…because I want to know! Comment below 🙂

 

 

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Favorite Website Features

This past fall, Mint for Hue got a much needed brand update & refresh, everything from my logo and brand colors to a complete overhaul on my website. There were so many features missing on my previous website, and it was really limiting my portfolio and my services. With my new website, I analyzed every page and category being intentional with the content, the imagery, and the resources necessary for my clients & visitors. While every single aspect of my website was a labor of love, here are my top five favorite features:

1. Accessible Blog Posts

On my new website, blog posts are now accessible through not only the top navigation but also on the homepage. I love that this keeps my homepage updated frequently, always current & fresh.

 

 

2. Portfolio Categories

My previous website didn’t have the capability of splitting up the three different services I have always offered: custom wedding stationery, branding & design, and event stationery & design. My new portfolio does just that, letting potential clients access the very information that they truly care about.

 

 

3. Services in Detail

With three different categories of work, I wanted to be able to go in-depth into each service, providing essential details for my potential clients that matters most to them. Each service is broken out into a description of the service, price points, and the entire process for that specific project.

 

 

 

4. Featured Press Page

I have worked hard to get where I am at over the past four years with Mint for Hue. I loved the idea of including a Featured Page, a place where all of my featured work in the press is housed. It allows my clients to see that I am serious about what I do, that I strive for the best, and that I have had the honor to be featured in some huge publications.

 

 

5. Custom Contact Form

I was able to create a custom contact form including several required fields so I could acquire necessary information from potential clients right away. This cuts to the chase and allows me to understand upfront what my clients are needing right off the bat.

 

Beyond these favorite features on my new website, I love all of the updated imagery that you see throughout my entire site. I spent countless hours taking photos for my website and pulling images from styled shoots so my entire site has a unified, cohesive look & brand. I wanted my website to really capture my current style and aesthetic, and show how my style has evolved over the past four years. I am still loving my new site, and I am so proud of where Mint for Hue is at. Thanks again to all of my family & friends for all of your love & support <3

Please stay tuned for some exciting news in the next few weeks!

 

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  • Megan - I just love how your site turned out! Congratulations…it’s beautiful!

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