Sunday, November 18, 2018

Shannon's Harry Potter Baby Shower Invitations

This year has been a huge year for babies in my life. Between my family and friends, seven babies have been born. Seven in one year! We threw a baby shower for my youngest sister, Lauren, earlier in March which I designed the invitations for, so I wanted to do invites for Shannon as well. And because we decided to have a Harry Potter-themed baby shower, this was actually a dream come true for me to design!

I went completely all out for this baby shower. I made a lot of the props and decorations myself and spent a ton of time looking for printable signs and Harry Potter-paraphernalia. The snitch in these photos was made by me and Shannon knit the Gryffindor scarf for herself a few years ago. Most of the other items we bought when we went to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in 2016, so we had many props to use for this shower!

As for the invites, I wanted to focus on the "magic" aspect of Harry Potter, rather than dive into the more obvious directions, like the Hogwarts acceptance letter or the Maurauder's Map. I decided on the Hogwarts castle because it seems to capture the most wonder and amazement in the whole series. Much of the novels take place there, it's where Harry learns to be a wizard, and is certainly the most magical place to hold a baby shower. The invites were double-sided with the Hogwarts logo on the back. I hand-lettered all of the text and the kraft envelopes were stamped with a Hogwarts emblem red wax seal.

I will likely never get to throw a party like this again, so I definitely put my all into it. Shannon, who loves Harry Potter as much as I do (maybe even more?!), set me free to do whatever I wanted to with the invites and the decorating of the shower. It was tons of fun to organize and I cherish all of the work that went into making her baby shower as magical as possible.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Shannon and Augusto's Wedding Invitations

My sister Shannon and her now-husband Augusto got engaged on their trip to the east coast last year. When she got back from her vacation, she asked me if I would help with the wedding by working with them on the invitations and all of the special day-of pieces. Of course, I said yes!

She wanted something romantic but not too overwhelming and she loved the idea of a wreath. Her wedding flowers were going to be pink roses, so we decided on pretty florals for the invitation theme.

She had the cutest text for the RSVP card! I love the simple greenery to tie the pieces together. We also gave the backs a little pattern of florals and some pretty hand-lettering with their names on the back of the RSVP. (My sister said she liked this part the best of all, haha.)

I also designed return address labels and stickers (!!) to go with their favors. I love designing stickers, it's kind of the best thing ever. For the day-of, we had place cards at every seat and a seating chart made from an old window frame. The venue was wonderful, the weather was perfect and my sister looked gorgeous!

I was also the wedding photographer for this particular event and I am now working on editing all the photos! This is the second wedding I've shot for my family, I also did the photos for my youngest sister Lauren and her husband Adam. I feel honored to have been so involved in both my sister's weddings, especially them trusting me to take photos during their wedding day. These invitations were wonderful to work on and Shannon was basically the best bride ever ("just do whatever you think is good," she said, you can't beat that!).

More photos of the actual wedding once I've done all the editing! For now, enjoy the invites!

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Max & James Baby Annoucement

When our best friends told us they were expecting, Aaron and I were over the moon with happiness! Then they asked me if I would design an announcement for them so they could share their new addition with friends and family who weren't on social media and those far afield who couldn't come visit. This was probably the most honored requested I've ever had in my life, so I was so pleased to be able to work with them.

Since they weren't finding out the gender of the baby, we decided to go with a neutral design that would work for either a boy or a girl. Max liked the idea of a woodland animal and we settled on a baby fox. I did all the painting and designing almost two months before the baby was born. The only thing missing was the name and date! When Elouise was born, I got the phone call to start practicing their lovely lady's new name and add it to the card.

Something special about these little cards is there is a secret inside ...

When I was designing the card, I did a little doodle of a baby to illustrate where the photo would go. Max and James both loved the scribbly baguette baby, so it stayed in! We decided to hide it under the photo so when unsuspecting recipients took the picture of Elouise out, they would get a little surprise! We also added her birth stats too, as a keepsake inside. On the back I made a tiny logo with their last name and the date, just because I love having the year printed on the back of cards.

I also gifted them the original fox mama and baby for Elouise's room. It's something they can have when the card gets put away. This was such an adorable and lovely project to work on, especially with good friends of mine. I am so proud of them and their little girl, and I can't wait to be part of little Elouise's life as she grows up!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Website Launch!

Something I've been meaning to do for a long time (a very long time ...) is get a website up and running to act as a portfolio for my work. The blog is fun and all but it makes it difficult to highlight any specific work as people have to sift through lots of posts to find anything. So over the Christmas break, I got to work, for reals. May I present ...

It's about time! I've been working on getting more work up recently and really editing the pieces I want to share. Moving forward I'll be featuring more work on the website and posting more on Instagram and my Facebook artist page. My blog will remain here as an archive, but at the moment I'm still deciding on what role it will be playing in the future.

One thing I'm really excited about is having a domain name all to myself! I've been thinking about it for a while now and I finally took the plunge into just purchasing it. That finally pushed me to get something up and running to really show my artwork. So go check it out! Update your bookmarks if you still roll that way!

Also check out my shop for some new work, like the peonies and poppies above. Also available is my blue jay from my Christmas card! Let's celebrate the end of 2017!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Blue Jay, Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! I am a little late sending my Christmas cards this year. I wasn't able to get them out until mid-December so I'm only sharing them now! In any case, it's a nice thing to share on Christmas Eve, don't you think?

All of my Christmas cards have featured some kind of Canadian wildlife in a winter scene. Last year, I went on a little bit of a bird kick and painted a chickadee. Chickadees are very common in the winter in Ontario. Aaron and I have a bird feeder on our back deck for the cat to be entertained by and there are always chickadees around. This year I decided to continue the theme and paint a winter blue jay. Blue jays are also common around here, though none have visited our back yard bird feeder just yet!

For my cards in the past, I would have them printed two-to-a-page at Staples and cut and fold them myself. This year I used the same printer who did our wedding invites and thank you cards so they cut and fold them for me! I love the way the matte cardstock makes my paintings look, so much nicer than the glossy paper that Staples uses to print on. It's definitely a personal thing, but I am so happy with the printing of these cards! Especially with the inside message, there is much less trial and error happening when the printer does it for me. I've learned a lot creating these cards; getting my artwork to print correctly and to look clean and beautiful, how to set up a file for print so there are minimal issues, setting up for double-sided printing. It's been a lovely learning process! Looking back on previous years, it's really neat to see how my work and the cards progress.

Wishing everyone a wonderful holiday season this year and a fantastic new year. Thanks for reading!

You can see my Christmas cards from previous years here! 2011 and 2012, 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016.