Friday, December 25, 2009


Jack <3 cars
Roanoke Road

New Jersey's been wintery and great so far...lots of time communing with the new little members of the family, and many, many movies viewed. Hope everyone is having a fantastic holiday!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Chris is in two bands, Son Ark and Coyote (pronounced "kai-yoat"). It's sort of a musical collective; everyone in Coyote except the drummer is also in Son Ark. Son Ark is the brainchild of singer/songwriter Robin Harris (the guy that's always all the way to the left in the photos below) and Coyote is Jessi Williams' baby (she's the tiny little cutie in the floral dress). Both bands are amazing indie rock with very strong country/bluegrass undertones. I love both these bands so much, and felt so lucky to be "obligated" to go to several shows per month when I lived in LA, because it was like getting to see your favorite bands play for free over and over.

These promo pics for Coyote that were taken a few weeks ago by Nikola Dupkanic are really beautiful/funny, no?

Find Coyote here, and Son Ark here. The music on Son Ark's myspace page is all live because they're allllllmost done with their album, but here's a sneak peek: click here for a great recorded version of one of their first songs, Gone Grave Diggin'.



I love this electro interpretation of Alice in Wonderland... if you know me, you know my love of the Wonderland (I might have a belt buckle with the White Rabbit engraving somewhere in my closet).

Thanks, Chris <3


Monday, December 21, 2009

The Beatles USB Stick

Today, my cousin pulled out a small, dense, acid green apple with the Beatles logo imprinted on it. He pulled a USB flash drive out of it by the stem, connected it to my computer, and proceeded to upload remastered versions of every Beatles album in 2 high definition formats, remastered album artwork, and several short documentaries to my hard drive.

What floored me the most was that this amazing little piece of packaging, which holds so much Beatles joy, was manufactured in such small quantities- about 30,000 were made. Also, apparently nary a quality product shot was taken.

Apparently there are 13 available on Amazon, so throw it on the last-minute Christmas list if you'd like- or be very, very nice to me. Although all I can offer are the files, and the apple itself as a specimen of fine packaging is really half the charm.


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

I was on set for this GAP spot that was shot for last year's holiday season, and let me just say: Jon Heder did that nutso dance for literally 20 takes in a row. The man is dedicated. Also, Janelle Monae is THE awesomest.

I'm home in New Jersey for the month, and already we've been snowed in! Feeling all kinds of holiday cheer......


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

For Carol.

Yes, I know, hush up, get back to your finals. But I think you're going to be glad I did this:

Can You Imagine puzzle by Trey Speegle via Even Cleveland.


Letter Love

I'm sure lots of people are familiar with Darren Booth's hand lettering, but I just came across it again and it's still awesome.

Work/Life Cover for Uppercase Magazine

Royal Bank of America

Out Magazine


Lots more where that came from.

--Dara (yes, back to work. 2 more days of finals!)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Gift Guide, sort of: Bazaar Bizarre SF

I'll tell you what I should NOT have been doing today when finals are next week: going to the Bazaar Bizarre in Golden Gate Park. Particularly when I'm going to see Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros tonight (because at the time, when I bought the tickets, I thought to myself, "Well, that'll be a much-needed break in the midst of all my work"). But when I saw a chance to catch a ride with my friend April and her man friend Cameron, I couldn't pass it up.

I'm so glad I went; the booths were fantastic. Some of my faves from the Ho Down were there, and I of course developed some new faves. Definitely of note was the abundance of mustache throughout.

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Admission hand stamp

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Cupcakes by Cynically Delicious

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Embroidered bandanas by Cindy of Archicraft (she also had some killer handknit cowls and some lasercut wooden doilies....)

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Nif Naks

It most certainly did not stop there, though.

Bazaar Bizarre SF
Bazaar Bizarre SF

I just loved this couple at Paper Pastries. I'm having the hardest time just picking 2 photos right now; go to my flickr for more, or better still, their website. They were just the cutest- they're dying to get out of LA (sound familiar?), and she clearly is doing what she loves.

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Beautiful letterpress calendar from Ilee Paper Goods

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Hilarious stuffed fruit from the Felt Baron

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Amazing prints from Sycamore Street Press- I LOVE the heart on your sleeve print. Might have to obtain that at some point. They were another event superfave.

Bazaar Bizarre SF

Awesome scarves by Loomlab. One of their designs is actually a poem written in braille!

Bazaar Bizarre SF

This necklace by Ach Ach Liebling had the distinction of being my sole purchase of the day. If I gathered this correctly, it's a vintage nail head from a train track, and the number represents the year it was put in. She was so lovely, too. (update: on the website, it says that this necklace design was inspired by "a song by the Magnetic Fields about trains," which I'm assuming is "Born on a Train," which is like, my favorite song by the Magnetic Fields. Even more awesome.)

Bazaar Bizarre SF

This hilarious print by Willow of willotoons is only a taste of what she's got; she's a super cute maker of onesies and tees.

All in all, 10 stars to the Bazaar Bizarre!


Friday, December 11, 2009

Clean White Love

This reminds me of a certain magical weekend I had this summer.

via Little Glowing Lights

(just peeking my head out of the finals fog....1 week to go!)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nubby Twiglet

A few days ago, I was chatting with my roommate Dawn (a freelance graphic designer), and just discussing that crazy world of employment that we're all peeking at trepidaciously, with our hands covering our eyes. She referred me to the blog of Nubby Twiglet, a graphic designer who's my age and fresh out of school. Her blog is insightful, engaging, and definitely a great source for any designer; from people like me who are in school through the most experienced. I was just reading this post, called "The Life of a Graphic Designer (in Training)." If you're at all in my position- just starting out or just starting your learning process or even just beginning to have an inkling that design might be the direction for you- it's worth a full read. This quote she included from Saul Bass on some problems students and new designers tend to run into struck me in particular:

‘They are not privy to process,’ he noted. ‘They may have the illusion that these things really spring full-blown out of the head of some designer. This is a very unsettling perception for young people, because they struggle with their work. They have a go at it… They redo… It gets better… It slips… It gets worse… it comes back… It comes together. And maybe it’s something that’s pretty good, even excellent. But they say to themselves, “Gee, it comes hard and it’s so difficult. Am I really suited for this?”

The blog itself is a fun read for non-designers too; her outfit posts are adorable and her Thursday feature, Link Love, is full of goodies. Thanks for the recommendation, Dawn!


Monday, December 7, 2009

Dee and La La

I was so grateful to Erin from the Handmade Ho Down crew for solving the mystery of the letterpress company I'd spaced on identifying at the event. They're called Dee and Lala, and if I thought their HHD booth was great, their website is even better.

"Let it Glow" Chanukah card

"Naughty/Nice Fireplace" holiday card


whale cutting board that I SO wish weren't out of stock!

Fondue pot card ('cause why not??)

If you're down in LA, you might have seen them this past weekend at Unique LA. If you're up here by the bay, fear not- you haven't missed them! They'll be at the Bazaar Bizarre this weekend (so many amazing crafts, so little time!). I'm hoping to be there.....

...Furthermore, LOVING Erin's etsy shop,Eristotle. She uses vintage, upcycled, thrifted and eco-friendly materials whenever possible. These pillows especially are so great.

The Last Leaf pillow

Rustic Modern pillow

Great job to everyone on the HHD staff; that event was seriously amazing. Can't wait for round two!


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Galaxy print

These galaxy-print pieces by Risto Bimbiloski are ridiculous. Clearly nothing is less than $300, but I suppose we can all cross our collective fingers they go on super sale in the new year.

Risto Bimbiloski via unruly things, though I originally saw them on even cleveland a while back...

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Handmade Ho-Down

Handmade Ho-Down

Handmade Ho-Down

Last night, my friend Kate and I braved some sketchiness in SOMA to attend the first-ever Etsy craft fair in San Francisco: The Handmade Ho-down. It was equal parts amazing and completely overwhelming; there were 3 floors filled to the brim with vendors, all of whom have Etsy stores. There were SO MANY PEOPLE there that it was kind of difficult to concentrate on how awesome everything was; hopefully the event was a financial success for all these intrepid Etsy-ers.
I did have a few favorites. I don't know if I'm developing a specific affinity towards it or if maybe some of the rest of the stuff just happened to fall on the Regretsy side of the spectrum and so I had no choice to be drawn to it, but the majority of business cards/photos I took were for letterpress companies.

Handmade Ho-Down: Design des Troy

Design des Troy was so lovely, and they are my newest bookmarked blog (love!). I love the font on this holiday card; it's used a lot in the latest issue of Uppercase, and I can't seem to find it. Kate and I also loved these skull and crossbones holiday cards; she pointed out that they would be perfect for Robin and Jessi (mom of Lily, thrower of the infamous Pirate's Tea Party 3rd birthday last month).

Handmade Ho-Down
Handmade Ho-Down

Loved these two companies, but I FORGOT TO GET A CARD from the one in the top photo, and the girls from the bottom photo forgot to bring cards. Anyone know who these are?

All the photos I took in the Noteify booth came out blurry, but check them out for yourselves; really cute.

Handmade Ho-Down: Jon Carling

Jon Carling had me at the giant whale illustration, but the rest of his prints are pretty great, too.

Handmade Ho-Down: Sweet Meats

I LITERALLY could not stop smiling when I was over at the Sweet Meats booth. I mean, some things are just here on this earth for the express purpose of making your mouth hurt from smiling so hard.

Needless to time had by all. I am poor (yes Dara, we get it), and so I could not support them monetarily...but that's your job! Go support Etsy and the economy!


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

For the baby in your life this Christmas

I'm THIS close to buying this (with Monopoly money) and storing it in the back of my closet until I one day (years from now) have a baby. I've emailed the link to three people who know a baby in the last few minutes, but I stopped myself there, because this is a far more efficient way to share information. Do the right thing. Babies need this.

by Decoylab


In which we post belated Thanksgiving-y photos

I can't believe it's already been a week since Thanksgiving. Finals time will do that to you, I suppose. We had a lovely day, particularly because of our far more manageable guest list- 26ish to last year's 40- and our al fresco dining experience, compliments of our new hosts (we had held our east-cost-expatriot Thanksgivings at my old apartment in LA for the past 5 years).

(Above photos by Haley- yes, that is a deep fried turkey in addition to a traditional turkey. Below photos by me)

oxford club
al fresco
magical pumpkins

Hope you all had a great Holiday too!