You May Be Right, I May Be Crazy…

Be True To Your Work, And Your Work Will Be True To You

…But it just may be a lunatic you’re looking for. —Billy Joel

A long, long time ago (the early ’90s), in a land far, far away (Brooklyn), I was a student of design. I suppose I still am a student of design, but back then I was given specific (and sometimes not-so-specific) assignments. Okay, that’s still the case too. But at that time I had full creative control as well as very few design prejudices. And so it was for a packaging assignment that I conceived of a line of aerosol home air fresheners. At a time when the available options on the supermarket shelves were this or that floral fragrance, my line was based on food aromas. Although my entire portfolio of work from that period was lost when I moved to Colorado, I still remember that the two scents I fleshed out were Roasted Coffee Bean and Warm Cherry Pie. And that as part of my idea for a boutique line of higher-end home fragrance, the predominant color of the packaging was black.

I don’t recall my overall grade for the project, but I do remember that my professor lambasted me during the classroom critique for using black on a product that had any relation whatsoever to food. Black, it seems, is not an appetizing color.

Ahem. The following case studies were all gathered via the dieline (a collection of “the world’s best packaging design”). Clicking on any image will take you to a brief article about its product and creative process.

Okay, I’ll stop here. I think you get my point. There were certainly features of my presentation that day which could have been improved upon, but I firmly defended my color scheme. The professor overruled my argument, but I’ve never once doubted my decision. We never got the chance to do a second round of drafts in school, but real life is different. If you believe in a particular feature of your design but the client says no, you may yet be on the right track. What can you do to improve your concept so that the client falls in love with your vision? After all, that’s why the client hired you, instead of The Other Guy.

Mond…TUESDAY Rounderp!

You never call, you never write. Oh wait, that’s me. I skipped a whole week (plus) and you said nothing. Nothing at all. I will assume that this is because you are all so polite, and not because you simply didn’t notice.

The last 10 days, in summary: stuff and things, things and stuff.

Winners!

The Highlights

  1. Hey, remember my other “family” over at Reminisicin’ Racing? The last race of the season was held on Saturday, and not only did Reminiscin’ and her sister, Mile-Hi Flyer, finish first and second in the day’s races, but they finished out the season #1 and #2 in points. And there was much rejoicing!
  2. Throw another hat on the stack; I’m now working part-time for a local estate sale company. I know you’ll ask: Yes, I do get first dibs on stuff, but I pay full price and I have to be nice to every jerk who shows up on every day of the sale. There are far more nice people than jerks, but if you’ve ever been to an estate sale as a buyer, you know the people I’m talking about (arguing about prices, “secretly” switching price tags [we know], and/or flat-out rude). Also, my very first sale as an employee was in a mountain home that has been vacant for many months, meaning its corners and recesses were riddled with mouse poo. I went through a small bottle of hand sanitizer in three days. Yuck!
  3. My rack of unlisted stock for Tiddleywink is still packed as full as it can get, but I kinda sorta wound up with yet more stuff for you because my dear friend Erin of Theda Bara’s Vintage Boudoir and I just had to go shopping yesterday. I also acquired 4 more foofy wedding dresses that would fill up the whole rack on their own anyway. If any of my local readers can help me with the overwhelming task of photographing (and/or measuring) all this stuff, I pay in home-cooked food! Or maybe one of these lovely vintage coats! Help! ::buried under vintage clothing::

Coming Up

For the immediate future, my Thurs/Fri/Saturdays will be spent working at estate sales. Between the on-site hours and the travel time, those days are pretty much used up, and with fitting in design/production work on my days “off,” I won’t likely be able to post to the blog every weekday as I have been. Particularly if I ever want to list new items to Tiddleywink or Winkorama again! I’m once again running out of time to get the Christmas crafts magazines listed in enough time for you guys to actually craft from them, so it’s a priority I really need to work into my schedule. Tomorrow sounds good, right? Tomorrow it is! In the meantime, you can follow my daily “antics” visually via Instagram, where I’m @ampersandwich. If you don’t have an Instagram account, you can instead follow along at Followgram, where there’s an RSS link to make things easy.

And with that, I’m off to start putting up Halloween décor and to rummage the pantry for dinner. Until tomorrow, dear readers!

Monday Rounderp

Whoa. Number of things I’m getting done today: Zilcheroonie.

Well, that there’s the “beauty” of the way my disorganized mind works. It’s not that I got nothing done, just nothing on my list. I was going to work on finishing Friday’s “To Do” list, which got preempted by spending an afternoon with a friend whom I don’t get to see enough (which describes most of my friends, really, but I digress WHAT A SURPRISE) and so Friday’s list was to become Monday’s list and then I woke up this morning with an idea for reorganizing some bakeware in my overburdened kitchen cabinets and I figured I’d better act on it before the brilliance wore off and that led to my completely rearranging my living room furniture. Which kind of cut into my morning plans. By the time I took a lunch break, I’d pretty much written off getting anything done today (outside of a little freelance and packing weekend orders). But I have an obligation to you guys, and I shall not shirk my responsibilities! So here is this week’s Rounderp:

Nifty frosted glass Kansas tumbler from 1961 picked up at a thrift store.

Whoop whoop, after a day of errands and a brief thrift store adventure, I picked up my newly tuned-up and re-tired bike from the fine folks at The Bicycle Shack on Saturday! Buuuuut I didn’t have so much as a minute to test ride it, as we were leaving promptly to go to Colorado National Speedway, where I had my first experience with watching figure-8 races. I had no idea that these existed in real life, I thought they were just the domain of slot car tracks! We had a good time, and the Speedway is close enough that we were home before midnight. Yup, I’m apparently an old lady now.

New Schwalbe “Delta Cruisers” on my 1972 Raleigh Sports.

Sunday morning started with a first come, first served come-and-get-it offer on Facebook, and I didn’t think Woody should pass it up. It wasn’t until after the (surprise, you’ll find out later) was loaded into the back of his pickup truck that we looked at each other and asked, what are we going to do with this? But we’re smart cookies, and between the two of us, we’ll think of something. After all of the fetching and depositing was complete, I finally got a chance to test the newly-tune Raleigh! The brakes, even with brand new pads, are still a disappointment (if not outright dangerous) but I doubt I’ll be zooming around at high speeds. The next project is to find myself a helmet that looks appropriate with an old English 3-speed, which may take some doing. So far, friend Erica’s idea to don an English equestrian helmet is sounding like a not-entirely-wrong option!

Now, how to fill the rest of the week?

Tuesday: A couple of simple tips for taking better photos of your friends.

Wednesday: Mmmmm, tiramisu!

Thursday: I’ll show you how to “upcycle” ugly old TV trays into customized decorator trays with spray paint and water-slide decal paper. Or how not to. Depends on how it goes. 🙂

Friday: Vintage Victuals. What are your suggestions for this week, dear readers?