artwork keepsake notebook

A year or so ago my niece made lots of simple paintings that she hung up in my workroom for an inspiration wall. I loved looking at them everyday, but it was time to take them down. Instead of putting the pieces in a recycle bin or shoving them in a drawer I decided to bind them together into a little book.
kids artwork notebook
The book is supper simple to make (especially if you have access to a binding machine).
– Make sure all of the pages have a straight edge for the binding to go on.
– Decide on a size for the notebook (Mine is about 8.5″ x 5.5″). All of the paper my niece used was from scraps so I had to do a little bit of trimming. Some pages are smaller, but I like the layered look in the book.
– Choose a cover (make sure it’s one of the largest pieces) and cut some chipboard for a back.
– Add holes and binding to make the book. I have a binding machine so I was able to do this myself. If you don’t have one your local office supply store or FedEx office can do this for you. There are some craft binding machines you can get on amazon if you plan on making more books. I haven’t used them, but if I didn’t make notebooks for a living I’m sure I would get one. An alternate binding option is to get binder rings and punch 3 or so holes in the pages and make a loose notebook. They come in plenty of colors and sizes.

Initially the book was curling up a bit so I placed it under some heavy books and overtime it has flattened itself some. There’s still a little curl, but nothing crazy.

Right now the book is in one of the piles on my desk and it’s fun to flip through every now and then. I’m hoping I get the chance to make more books from my niece’s artwork in the future.

camp vibes

after college i did a bunch of camping, including a long road trip to alaska, but since then my camping trips have been few and far apart. after my road trip to yellowstone last year, camping has been on my mind. so i pulled together a bunch of camping themed items in the shop – some new, some old. there’s lots of good stuff to take on a trip (or keep you dreaming about the next one). how cute is that little airstream? i’d love to get one for behind my house.

if you have camp vibes on your mind, use the code “CAMP” during checkout to save 15% off your order. (good until june 27).

happy may {and a free desktop}

free may computer desktop download

happy may. the pattern this month is a favorite – lemonade. it’s adding a little bit of cheer to this dreary day. right now my desk looks is in front of one wall of the booth for the National Stationery Show. soon the whole booth will be set up as a test, product will be placed inside and then it will be torn down, packed up and driven to new york city.

here are some free desktops to brighten up your day.

2555 x 1486
1900 x 1280
1920 x 1080
1680 x 1050

1920 x 1080
1900 x 1280
1680 x 1050

current notebook set up

current notebook set up

at all times i have too many notebooks on my desk.

i was a typical paper person since childhood. back to school meant picking out new notebooks and folders. in college i had notebooks for every course filled with lots of notes and mindless doodling (mostly from physics class – those classes were the worst for me). in my first job after college there was always a notebook on my desk to write down voice mail messages and things to do. i was right next to the office manger and made sure she ordered the correct notebooks. right now, i have lots of sample notebooks and planners around that i get to use everyday. here are the 5 that are currently sitting on my desk.

square notebookthis is the notebook i use the most. most mornings i will write down my to do list in here. i like the small page size so i don’t keep filling up the space with things to do. plus, it’s nice to start on a new sheet everyday. i don’t bullet journal – seems like there are way too many steps/rules/back and forth for me. i like a nice simple list of what needs to get done.
keeping track of big projects in a notebook
large project notebook
– the national stationery show is coming up and again this year i will have a booth (#2062 if you’re going to be there). this large notebook is keeping things (kind of) together. the combination of the dot grid and lined pages work great for project planning. on the dot grid pages i have calendars drawn out, booth sketches and charts. the lined pages have lots of lists, to dos and ideas scribbled. to keep track of the pages i refer to the most i have post it notes and folded stickers marking the pages. i use these clear folders to keep together all of the extra papers i need.
travel notebook – these notebooks are everywhere. this is the current on one my desk. there are random lists, recipes, sketches of new products or a desk i want to build. there are also a crazy amount of pages that have the same word written over and over. i use the words to create new products or other items. i keep writing the same word over and over again until i get what i am looking for. the dot grid pages keep things consistent and make it easy to digitalize the words without a lot of editing.
weekly planner to record memories
2016 weekly planner
– i’ve always a liked the idea of keeping a journal or diary to look at years later, but it’s just not my thing. this year i decided to use one of the weekly planners and just make a note of somethings i might want to remember later. about once a week i will fill in a couple of things that stick with me. it’s usually not much – maybe what i cooked when people came over or where i went on a walk with my sister. on the left side, i will sometimes clip a little drawing from one of my nieces or write some interesting fact i found out i want to remember – like when i figured out all of the names my grandma had. there are weeks missed, but in the end i am hoping to have a nice little recap of little memories for 2016.
monthly planner – here’s where i write down any appointments i have and when bills are due. easy.

there are so many uses for planners and notebooks. i would love to hear what you do with yours (or see – tag lettercdesign on instagram!)

gifts for moms and grads

gifts for moms and grads
mother’s day and college graduation is coming up. here’s a few gift ideas to show you care.
– pair address labels and folded notecards to make a cute gift set.
– personalized foil stamped notecards with lined envelopes – pick and choose the colors and patterns to fit any personality.
– notebooks for journaling or planning ahead. personalized or foil stamped.
– a set of thank you cards will come in handy for graduates when they are starting their career.

don’t forget to include a card with your gift:
– show your love for your mom with any of these cards
celebrate your awesome graduate

address labels are not just for envelopes

creative ways to use address labels
address labels are kind of like the gateway drug to letter C design – once someone buys them they come back for more letter C goodies. the labels are useful, inexpensive and with so many options you are likely to find one to suit you.

these little labels are not only great to add an address to envelopes, but since you decide what they say they can serve so many more purposes. here’s a few popular ways people have used them:

gift labels – add these personalized stickers to gifts, envelopes and treats.
book stickers – such a great gift to give to a newborn. you can even create a book themed baby shower.
wine labels – add these to a bottle of wine so people know which wine you brought to the party.
homemade goodies – if you are always whipping up yummy treats in the kitchen for friends a set of these won’t last long.
envelope seals – there are lots of stickers in the shop to use as envelope seals, but it’s lots of fun to create your own.
party favors – add a special touch to your party favors with some cute little stickers.
lunch – make sure your kid doesn’t get hangry by marking their food.
there are so many more uses for address labels besides envelopes

not only do address labels serve so many different purposes, they also make great gifts. here’s just a few reasons to send a set to someone you love:
hostess gift – whether you stayed at someone’s house for a weekend or just went over to dinner sending them a set of personalized labels insures you will be invited back again.
just moved – anyone would appreciate a set of address labels as a gift for their new home … one less thing they have to do.
starting or finishing college – if i had address labels in college i know i would have written home a lot more (but i’m old, email was barely a thing back then).
just because for a far away friend – let a friend who doesn’t live near you know you are thinking about them (also works as a subtle hint you want them to write more)

check out all of the labels here and free gift wrap is available so you can send them directly to your friend. if there is a label design you want but can’t find, let me know. i love to see how you use them – tag lettercdesign on instagram if you want to share.