Hand Lettered Lovin’

Hand Lettered Love | Champagne & Chambray

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As a designer, I’m always in awe of some of the hand lettered type that I see in ads, on blogs, on Pinterest, basically everywhere. And while I wouldn’t say that I’m an artist by any degree, literally, worst drawer ever, I would say that I’m not terrible at hand lettered type. I love doodling, so it sort of comes natural. But I will say that there have been cases of co-workers asking if i’m a serial killer because my notebook looks like something out of movie Prisoners. No, I am not a serial killer. But when I look at the things that other people are creating, I’m in awe and envious  and jealous and full of all sorts of other emotions. I want to be able to make things as beautiful as these fine hand lettered subjects before you.

I took a calligraphy class once, but it was highly questionable in the actual ability to gain the skill. It was in the dimly lit upstairs of an Irish bar in Chicago. Does that say anything about perhaps how great it was? It wasn’t. But, I went with friends and got drunk for $20, so whatever. But in all honesty, this is something that I want to learn. Who knows when I’ll be getting married, but when I do,I want my invitations to have beautifully hand lettered envelopes. And I want to be the one to do it. Good thing I’ve got nothing but time on that front!

Anyway, I rounded up some favorite hand lettered works of art that I’m currently loving on. Does hand lettering geek you out as much as me, or is it just a designer tendency?  Take a look, let me know if you’ve seen anything equally beautiful while perusing your Pinterest feed at 2am.  Or you know, during working hours. I won’t tell if you don’t! Oh plus, if this didn’t fill your hand lettered type quota for the day, pop on over to my “typographia” board on Pinterest for even more beauties!


PS – Something in my gut tells me that this is going turn into a regular feature. Or it’s just growling because it’s hungry as usual. I guess only time well tell what that means!

Etsy Shop to Know About: MofEHome

You Always Look So Cool via MaidservantOf

Ahh! You guys, I came across this Etsy shop this week and I’m dying. I feel like I need to order everything. The shop is called MofEHome, which stands for Maidservant of Encouragement. The artist behind all these fantastic pieces is Morgan Cecil and I already have a girl crush on her. I was so happy I found her shop.  And then all of a sudden I was even more happy because I discovered her OTHER Etsy shop, MaidservantOf, which has even more work. Most of her stuff is hand written quotes that are perfect for the home. My wallet is about to hate me because I’m pretty sure I’m going to order up one of each. Well, I won’t be that drastic, but basically I want them all. Below are some of my favorites. Make sure you check out both her shops because this stuff is just fantastic. I mean, all the pieces are screaming “I belong in your gallery wall if you ever get around to making one!”. One day gallery wall, one day. I PROMISE! Plus, on MaidservantOf she has a deal happening where when you buy 3 you get 2 free or if you’re not in the market for that many pieces, buy 2 get 1 free. Thanks lady!

Oh, and I forgot to mention the best part! These are all instant downloads! Which means all this awesomeness can be in your home within the hour! You’re downloading a high res jpeg that you can pop onto a zip drive and take over to your local FedEx Kinkos or print shop and have them print on whatever size you purchased. Boom, done. Ready to be framed and hung by the weekend, holla!

Chicago Ain't No Sissy Town via MofEHome

Don't Quit Your Day Dream via MofEHome

Lets Love Wildly via MofEHome

Home Is Whenever I'm With You via MaidservantOf It Has Always Been You via MaidservantOf

Free Font Resources

8 Free Font Resources

As a designer, fonts are an incredibly important tool. Using the wrong font (read: bad font) is basically designer suicide. Quick lesson: there are fonts that work, and fonts that don’t. Don’t use the ones that don’t. I guess what I’m trying to say but failing at is, fonts make or break every piece of creative. You can have the right content, the right colors, the right hierarchy, but if you’re using the wrong font, boom, you’re dead.

So to combat the messy designer-suicide situation, I make sure to have plenty of great fonts on hand. The only problem is, a lot of the good ones cost more than I’d like to spend, because I’d like to spend nothing. I’ll pay zero dollars please. Since, unfortunately, money is not something that I’ve got just piling up  waiting to be spent on pretty typefaces. Said money is being saved for pretty bags, obvi. Purses trump fonts any day of the week. Except for when you redesign your blog and you decide it’s worth it to buy a $60 font for your header, but that’s the exception not the rule.

Anyway, a bunch of my non-designer friends are have asked me where they can find some fun fonts to spice up a resume, powerpoint, newsletter or what have you. So today I wanted to share with you guys some of my favorite free font resources. I will warn that some are only free for personal use, and if you want to use them for commercial use (which means you’re making money of whatever you’re using the font on) you’ll have to shell out some doll hairs, so make sure you look at individual fonts’ specific usage rights.

1. Font Squirrel 

This is my main stay when I need a new free font, all of them are good, you’ll find no trash here.

2. Da Font 

This site has a bajillion fonts, organized into very specific categories making it easy to find what you want.

3. Fonts for Peas

This site is awesome because this woman takes handwriting submissions and turns them into fonts. And she updates pretty regularly, so make sure you check back for new ones.

4. Type Depot 

This is small Bulgarian design studio that has a few free fonts, quality over quantity right here folks

5. 1001 Fonts 

Self explanatory I’d hope, but  honestly, not my favorite. Lot of novelty fonts though if that’s your jam.

6. Lost Type 

A foundry that accepts whatever you’re willing to pay to download, I choose $0 because I’m poor and I suck at life and am a terrible person. Sorry?

7. The League of Movable Type

No more bullshit. Join the revolution. The first free and open-source type foundry.

8. Font Fabric

This is an independent type foundry that has a lot of typefaces, good amount of them cost money but they’ve got almost 70 that are free.

I’m fairly confident that this list is the most comprehensive on the entirety of the interwebs, so it seems doubtful I missed anything. But in the unlikely event that I did, I’m always on the hunt for new resources, so let me know of your go-to sites for free fonts down in the comments section!

(That top part is a joke. Sometimes it’s hard to get my sarcasm across via the written word. If anyone stumbles across a sarcasm font, hook it upppp!)

8 Chicago Instagram Accounts to Follow

Chicago IG Accounts to Follow

As promised, I bring you another installment of “Who You Should Be Following on Instagram”. This time, I’m going to keep it to local, within the good ol’ 312. Chicago is probably one of the most Instagram-able cities around. There are just so many different places that you can take outstanding photographs. Plus our skyline is one of the best in the world, in my opinion, which I know doesn’t count for much, but I don’t care. Only lucky for you (and me), there are plenty of other people that feel the same way I do. Which means there’s a whole slew of IGers that you should be following if you want to get a daily dose of Chitown in your feed. Some are all Chicago, all the time. Others put a bit of their personal lives in there. Some are architecture, others are people, others are nature in the city. Check them all out, see who you like, and give ’em a follow, you’ll be happy you did.

Now, I can’t promise that these people aren’t taking the photos with their fancy DSLR and uploading it to insta after they’ve spent hours editing it, but honestly, what does it matter, it looks pretty and that’s all I’m lookin’ for. I personally don’t like to post photos that haven’t been shot or edited specifically on my phone, but in the rare event that I do, I say so. Based on how awesome some of these pics are, I’m gonna just go ahead and assume that’s what they’re doing. But anyway, here are a few of my favorite Chicago IGers. (Again, this will be revisited because I have a lot more to share!)
























Between Lenses : Color

Between Lenses Challenge

Remember when I had that goal of participating in a linkup? Boom, accomplished. Between Lenses is a photography challenge/link up hosted by Tara of TaraVictoria and Latrina of Of Trees and Hues. Every month they pick a topic for everyone to share a photograph of. This month’s topic was Color. I think the challenge is to post one photo with the story behind it, but I tend to make up my own rules, so here are three photos I’ve taken recently that really scream color. They’re all of flowers, and lately I’ve been obsessed with shooting flora of all kinds. I wouldn’t call me a gardener, I tend to be a terrible daughter and just stand around watching when my mom asks for my help. But my mom and grandma love love love it, so I’ll let them do the planting and I’ll do the shooting. The second shot is from my mom’s garden, the other two are just flowers I peeped around the city. But they’re all too beautiful not to share. Speaking of flowers, Max sent me some pretty ones today as a congratulations for getting the new blog live, what a guy! (I don’t care if I’m being braggy, my boyfriend is pretty awesome!) Now he just needs to send some flowers to my dad, that’s probably my job though…and maybe not flowers? We’ll table this discussion for another time seeing as Father’s Day is right around the corner.

Purple Flowers

Purple Yellow Flowers