Never know what to do with your old calendars after the new year comes around? JHill customer Marcy has sent us some photos of how she recycles our old calendars! Marcy and her daughter have an annual tradition of recycling our calendar and using each month’s pattern to make cards for grandma!
Why not try out something similar yourself? Thanks Marcy!
JHill Customer Ruth sent us some lovely photos of her sister Ann’s trek through Bale Mountain in Ethiopia and we just had to share! We love the contrast of gold and green in the flora of the countryside!
A beautiful forest. Middle Earth for sure.
(left) Harvesting by hand.
(right) “Walking our final day through small coolies… guide book said “Biblical landscape” and we had to agree.”
Looking back over the pass.
Thanks Ruth and Ann for these fabulous photos!
Check out JHill’s Ethiopia print inspired by bright mosaics and contrasting textiles.
Kristen (left) and her sister Deanna.
In Kristen’s own words:
On July 9, 2011 my sister Deanna married the love of her life, Jeff. I was honored to serve in the wedding as her Matron of Honor, and my two little kids, Adam and Mae, were ring bearer and flower girl. It was a beautiful outdoor wedding, set on the historical Hendry House in Arlington, Virginia. Family and friends from New England, California, New Orleans, and beyond came to celebrate and dance the hot summer night away–so much dancing in fact that we separated the floor!
I gave the bride and groom my favorite choice for wedding presents: A JHill Print! I chose the Rome, Italy print as they had vacationed in Rome, Florence, and Cinque Terra the previous spring. The personalization is always the best as you can grab little moments of the wedding (if done after the fact) or create a touching tribute that captures the qualities of the couple.
Kristen’s sister Deanna and her husband Jeff
In Michelle’s own words:
I first came across JHill Design on a blog back in 2010. I loved her “Places I’ve Never Been” series, and was immediately drawn to her Bangkok print because I had studied abroad there, and then lived there for a year after college. While poking around the website, I noticed the “Personalize” section with examples using different city patterns to memorialize engagements, weddings, births, etc., and I thought that one of these pieces would make such a nice wedding gift! I love to give personal gifts when I can, especially to commemorate special occasions like weddings. I gave my first print to a couple in 2010, and since then I would say my now husband and I have given at least 10 prints as wedding gifts. I love choosing a pattern based on where the wedding is being held, the wedding colors, or something that is special and meaningful to the couple. And then I try to personalize the text to match the couple as well. The husband-to-be of one couple even said that the thing he was most excited for about his wedding (besides marrying his fiancé of course) was getting a print from me and my husband! He couldn’t wait to see what we picked out for them. This same couple had all their belongings in storage for a few months while house hunting, and their JHill print was the only piece of art they brought to hang in their temporary house.
I continue to give JHill prints as wedding gifts (three weddings this year!) and hope to be able to continue the tradition as our friends start to have babies, anniversaries, and special trips. It’s so fun for me to choose something personal for the recipients, which is easy thanks to the variety of prints Jennifer has created. And I know our friends appreciate the time and thought that went into choosing something unique just for them that no one else will have. Then each time they look at it, they can remember the special day and the celebration with all their loved ones. The only downside is that no one has given one to me and my husband! Maybe I’ll get him one as an anniversary gift one year. :o)
Meet our next Marathon Muse, Lauren Pedigo. She too is running for the One Fund and is almost at her goal of $12,000 (so amazing) help push her over the top here. Looking forward to making Lauren’s Personalized Marathon Print after she flies over that finish line! GOOD LUCK LAUREN!!
In fifth grade, I ran my first race. It was the Miracle Mile at Southeastway Park in Indianapolis, an annual tradition where students who participate in intramurals at the Franklin Township elementary schools come together to race one another. I ran a 7:04 and placed fifth – I remember being completely exhausted and so proud of my shiny medal. After that day, I was hooked.
I ran track and cross country through middle school and high school and played basketball. One race during my senior year, I was ‘spiked’ in the back of my calf and my right shoe fell off midway into the 5K. Of course, I couldn’t let those girls pass me, so I picked it up and ran the last half with a single shoe. Somehow, I set a personal best time! My Nana still the picture of that race – me in my FCHS uniform, running with one shoe and carrying the other — on her refrigerator. During track season, I was the chick volunteering to do the 2-mile race – that’s 8 laps around the track. Distance running was my thing. I loved the feeling of outlasting the competition, holding back at the beginning and knowing I’d catch ‘em by the end.
Throughout college and afterward, I continued running and have done three half marathons. Being from Indianapolis, running the Indy 500 Mini Marathon had to be my first. Completing a marathon never really appealed to me until I moved to Boston.
I moved to Boston shortly after I graduated from Butler University in 2012. Indianapolis had been my home since the day I was born; Butler is a 25 minute drive from where I grew up. I set my sights on a new adventure in Boston and in the sixteen months I’ve lived here, I’ve met people who will be lifelong friends. Boston gave me my first job, my first apartment, my first blizzard, my first lobstah roll and more New England escapades than I can count. It’s taken me by surprise how quickly this vibrant city found its way into my heart.
Last year, I was at work on Marathon Monday. Heartbreak didn’t pour into my life on April 15, 2013 like it did for thousands of other people. Yet, still, I received such an outpouring of support, just for living here — countless emails, text messages, hours of phone calls, cards, hugs and so much more. It felt like I wasn’t justified to receive such an immense amount of love. Other people needed it so much more than I did. But, there was a way to harness all this good and share it.
After the tragic events last year, I knew I had to be a part of the 2014 Boston Marathon. It’s been an honor to be a member of the One Fund team. Long runs through Wellesley and 6am workouts on the icy New England streets have prepared me for Marathon Monday. But, witnessing generosity from people I’ve never met, feeling the undying support from my family and friends and seeing our team of strangers turn into close friends has made this experience so much more than I ever anticipated. Thank you all for being a part of this marathon journey; you’ve made it all worth it. At the time of this writing, I’m 88% to my goal of $12,000. If you’d like to make a donation to One Fund, you can here.
With 2014 Boston Marathon being the first year after last year’s bombing, emotions in the city have been running high. Launching our Personalized Boston Marathon print for runners has let me get to know a few amazing women that are running this years race, its been great to focus on the happiness around this Marathon. This week we are going to profile a few of the runners that we are doing personalized Boston Marathon Prints for, I’m so excited to have them share their stories here. With that… I introduce you to Cecille Joan Avila.
Our studio is just a couple miles from the Boston Marathon finish line, it’s one of the things I look forward to every year. Especially this year when there will be more fans cheering on the runners than ever, (this year I’d hug every single runner if I could).
We have been asked for a few years to add a Boston Marathon Map Print to our Boston Sports Map collection, and we are finally doing it. The cool thing is that we are personalizing our Boston Marathon Map Print for the runners. For the month of April we are offering free personalization on the Boston Marathon Map Print to runners (and those who want to give them a gift) with the code “RUN2014″.
The idea came after my friend Holly had us do a series of Personalized Map Prints for her Marathon-running sister-in-law. It was really fun to do and the story the prints tell of travel and athleticism is really inspiring. We loved making the above prints for Tenely, here is a little about her running life:
“I’m Tenley Ludewig, 39, and I’ve been running since I started track in middle school. I ran my first marathon at 28 when I learned a number of my friends had run them and I wanted to see if I could do one as well. My first was the Marine Corps Marathon in my hometown of DC and it was memorable not only because it was my first but because my family all came out to cheer me on. In the last five years, I have trained with Capital Area Runners, a group with a very established coach. I have completed three more marathons during this time. I hate training in the winter, so I have not raced Boston yet, but I will one day when I get a thick skin. I enjoyed the last six miles of Boston helping my friend come in back in 2012 and that was exhilarating.”
For the month of April we are offering free personalization on the Boston Marathon Map Print to runners (and those who want to give them a gift) with the code “RUN2014″. There is also a unpersonalized version of the Map for those who love the Marathon as much as I do to add to their collection.
I’m so excited that we finally did this! We took a little video of how we make the maps for our City Maps series. First we draw the neighborhood map (not shown because it takes for-ever), the we make the drawings into clipping paths. Next we import jpgs of our patterns until the whole map is bursting with bright JHill pattern. Here you can see how Juliana made our new map for The Bronx.
Here is a look at the final The Bronx Map Print. We also just finished maps for St Louis, Washington DC, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Coming up next… Austin and Dallas! Which city would you want a neighborhood map print for?
This year my husband surprised me with a trip to California for our 5 year wedding anniversary. The best part… our sister-in-laws offered to watch our three year old for a night so we could getaway. We decided to drive about an hour and a half north of San Francisco to Mankas in Inverness. After calling and having the rooms described to me (which I LOVED having done) we decided to splurge and stay in the Boatsman Quarters and it didn’t disappoint. We also had dinner at their sister restaurant Sir and Star in Marin, which was delicious.
I’ve seen this “You have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyonce” mug everywhere and I love it. It is created by Sweaty Wisdom, (witty remarks from the yoga mat), visit their Etsy shop where there are more treasures to be had. I need to remember that “Oprah Wasn’t Built in a Day” and I would like someone to whisper “Your Fear is Full of Shit” in my ear on repeat as I am flying (and TERRIFIED) home from San Francisco today . *ps… still listening to ‘Yonce’s visual album on repeat. current favs: Mine and Flawless.
One ways I’ve been breaking free from my creative block is stepping away from computer illustration. I love my vectors, but it is time to incorporate more into them. My goal is to take some of my favorite existing patterns / places and recreate them using different methods such as watercolor, paper marbling, and printmaking.
I started with watercolor. Here is what I learned:
1. It’s hard
2. I’m a massive control freak
3.There is no controlling watercolor (for the beginner at least). It’s basically the opposite of working in illustrator for me.
As fate would have it my new studio mate is illustrator extraordinare Julia Denos. We have spent afternoons painting together, with her teaching me painting tricks and I educating her on InDesign and going to a spa. I have loved every minute of it. I’ve scanned these watercolor paintings and work will them into a totally new design for the Fairbanks, Alaska pattern – an imagined vacation to see the aurora borealis. And I’ll keep on painting, because I’ve barely scratched this surface.
One night, while laying in bed perusing graphic design on Pinterest, (a favorite pre-bedtime activity), I came across the work of graphic designer Kellyn Walker. I was so inspired! I’ve been killing my creative block by incorporating more handmade elements, scanned objects and collage-ness to my patterns and designs. She does it so very well. Check out her very inspiring Pinterest boards.
Last month I had some surgery, (deviated septum, an adnoidectomy – life changing, email me if you have any questions about having it done), and spent about a week and a half sleeping off pain killers and watching movies. I have been going through a bit of a creativity crisis and watching so many great process movies and biopics has really helped (God bless my Netflix, HuluPlus and Amazon Prime accounts). Here are some of my favorites that I watched while convalescing.
1. BILL CUNNINGHAM’S NEW YORK // I’ve watched this multiple times and never tire of it. “Fashion is the armor to survive the everyday life”. (netflix)
2. BASQUIAT // The story of Basuait’s rapid rise to fame. Plus David Bowie puts in an amazing performance as Andy Warhol. (netflix)
3. SCATTER MY ASHES AT BERGDORF’S // The history of the store and the making of their holiday windows peppered with interview from fashion’s frontrunners. (netflix)
4. GREGORY CREWDSON, BRIEF ENCOUNTERS // The process behind the making of Crewdson’s elaborate movie-esque photos. (netflix)
5. MARC JACOBS + LOUIS VUITTON // My favorite all time process movie. Watch Marc design multiple collections and throw a killer halloween party. I’ve watched this a billion times. (youtube)
6. THE RACHEL ZOE PROJECT // I am SO SAD that this show was cancelled. I love how honest Zoe is, especially in the last season as she becomes a working mom, insecure in her work and trying to balance everything. I totally relate. Plus she is quite funny and the fashion is to die for. (amazon)
Any creative documentaries that I missed that I need to see? let me know!