Join Us For the Final Blogcademy Live Classes and Get the Online Course FREE!

Nubby Twiglet | Join Us For the Final Blogcademy Live Classes and Get the Online Course FREE!

This September, we are wrapping up the current format of the live Blogcademy workshop. Since launching the class in 2012, there’s been a whirlwind of 30 classes across three continents and 1,000 women have joined us for the fun.

After three years of meeting, teaching and befriending so many wonderful, amazing women, we’ve collectively decided to refocus our energy, regroup and come up with something new. Change is good and it’s time to evolve.

Our final two classes will be as follows:

SAN FRANCISCO: September 12th – 13th
NEW YORK: September 19th – 20th

Nubby Twiglet | Join Us For the Final Blogcademy Live Classes and Get the Online Course FREE!

For our final classes, we wanted to offer you something special as a way of saying thank you for all your support over these last few years. For one week only, if you book into San Francisco or New York, you will receive Blogcademy Online, the digital version of our in-person workshop, for free. This is a $497.00 value.

You’ll receive Online after you’ve attended the in-person class meaning that if you weren’t able to take as many notes as you’d hoped, you can play the video lessons over as many times as needed. The added bonus is that it also includes a bundle of bonus worksheets and prompts.

This offer is available until midnight on Sunday, August 2nd, 2015. All you have to do is book into San Francisco or New York and we’ll send you course access after the live workshop.

Have questions? Email us anytime at headmistresses@theblogcademy.com and we’ll help you out.

See you in September!

The Evolution of Branch

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

Most of my time is spent dreaming up ways to make other people’s brands shine even brighter but over the last few months, I’ve been putting more effort into thinking about how I want Branch to evolve. In September, it will be two years since I quit all outside work and threw my energy into starting a boutique design studio of my own. It was a lifelong dream of mine and while it’s been the hardest work of my life, it’s also turned out to be the most rewarding.

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

I miss doing more off-the-cuff blog posts here so I wanted to share a few snippets of things I’ve been working on over in Branch-land.

For me, the most fun always comes from creating the visuals of a brand. Here’s a taste of how things are starting to shape up! The evolution isn’t a complete facelift from where the brand was (the wordmark is staying the same) but there are a few subtle nips here and tucks there with pattern, color, imagery and copy.

Nubby Twiglet | The Evolution of Branch

The new website and media kit are being developed right now and both will be out in the world sometime in August. More soon!


Photos: Afsoon Zizia, Made U Look, Janneke Storm and Shauna Haider.

The Week In Pictures: 7.24.15

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

How was your week?

Mine was all about big stretches, some exciting, some uncomfortable. The first half of this year, I felt like I was crawling towards my goals. I completed a lot of huge client projects (some of which I still have to share) but felt frustrated personally because the dreams and ideas I had were collecting dust, literally taped to my wall and staring me down every day.

In the last month, that’s all shifted dramatically. The new Branch site is finally in development and I’m collaborating on four new projects that light me up every day.

I’ve always felt like I was a late bloomer and maybe you can relate to this feeling, too. Things never happened as fast for me as I’d hoped but then one day, everything would click and a seedling of an idea would bloom even bigger than I could have imagined.

Looking back, even just six months ago, I get it. The timing wasn’t right, the idea was half-baked, the right person to collaborate with hadn’t come along yet. It’s all clear now. So if you feel like you’re sitting in limbo with an idea or a big life change, I feel you. It sucks. But, that’s part of the adventure. If we had everything we wanted just handed over to us, we wouldn’t appreciate it as much. Hang in there. #peptalk

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

One of the best parts of being a designer is seeing your work in print. It never gets old. When I started Branch, I never imagined that the B icon would end up in a book sandwiched between the work of design legends I’ve admired for years. So surreal.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Big flowers forever. I’ve said it a million times but Trader Joe’s has the best, most affordable selection around. These were $1.99! No, that’s not a typo!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Chubs wanted to stop in and say hello to his internet fan base. What a cutie.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

My friend Erika surprised me with this book of Karl Lagerfeld quotes and it’s the perfect balance between genius and ridiculous. I love it.

I hope you have a relaxing weekend and if you’re feeling stuck on a project, always remember to…

“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” —Francis of Assisi

Link Love: 7.23.15

Nubby Twiglet | Link Love: 7.23.15 | Pommel Lane

• 10 unsung graphic design visionaries you should know.

• I love this new business model for fine artists which connects them directly with their fans.

• The next time you have an idea that gets rejected, read these emails.

• 12 TED talks on how to be a great leader.

• The secrets of budgeting as a freelancer.

• It’s totally possible to win your dream clients.

• A look back at the glory days of Fiorucci.

• 14 girls explain why women should learn to code.

• Door Sixteen just got a fabulous makeover!

• 15 stories from people who unexpectedly found their dream jobs.

• If you’re on the lookout for some solid copywriting tips, these are the 6 roles of a great communicator.

• 5 stress management tips from the pros.

• Have a $1,000.00 day in Paris for a tenth of the price!

• 8 ways to strengthen your password.


Image: Pommel Lane.
Check out even more Link Love columns here.

You’re Awesome. And, I Have 3 Questions For You.

Nubby Twiglet | You Are Awesome

First off, you’re awesome. Yes, you.

Never change who you are for anyone. Conformity kills uniqueness, the very thing that makes you stand out.

Next, I have a few questions for you below. As many of you know, my big goal this year was to create helpful products to inspire you to build a career you love. Erika Lyremark, a whip-smart business coach who I adore has joined forces with me to produce a new course and as we dig into the content outline, we want your input in an effort to make it as helpful as possible.

Please answer the below questions in the comments — it’s important for me to know what you’re struggling with most when it comes to sharing who you are. I want to know what holds you back and makes you second guess yourself. Life is too short to dull who you are and we are on a mission to fix that!

1. Where do you have a hard time expressing yourself and your ideas? Online? In person? On a certain platform?

2. In your day-to-day, where do you find yourself toning down your magic in an effort to get by and blend in?

3. What kinds of things are you curious about when it comes to expressing your creativity? What techniques do you want to know about?

Thanks so much for your time and I’ll have more to share on the course as it shapes up!


Awesome Print: Fresh by Sian.

My 15 Must-Have Items For Running A Graphic Design Studio

Nubby Twiglet | My 15 Must-Have Items For Running A Graphic Design Studio

I love what I do but without the right tools, it would be difficult to get my work done. Every day that I’m in my office, I reach for these tried and true items to keep my projects running smoothly. I’m always on the hunt for products and services that have the right mix of looks, value and functionality and these are what I’ve personally found to work best.

I hope this list saves you time on your search for the perfect mix of gear:

Nubby Twiglet | My 15 Must-Have Items For Running A Graphic Design Studio

1. Samsung Digital Camera:

I love this camera so much. After going through a total of six others over the last 15 years, this is hands-down the best one I’ve ever owned. While I loved my Sony, this is leaps and bounds above in picture quality, durability and looks. The best part is that it’s WIFI compatible so when you’re on the go, you can snap a photo, send it straight to your phone, edit and upload on the spot. The quality of this puts phone cameras to shame so for the last year, I’ve been exclusively using it to shoot photos for my Instagram stream, not to mention every single photo on my blog.

I could go on forever about this camera and its awesome features but the real proof is in how many people around me have the same exact model — Kat, Gala, Pam and even my mom swear by it!

2. Canon Scanner:

I used to have a big, clunky scanner until I was introduced to this model at one of my agency jobs. Besides being affordable, it’s super slim and the quality is fantastic. I’ve been using this for the last 5 years and it’s still going strong.

3. Samsung Color Laser Printer:

Years ago, I had an ink jet but once I started doing larger scale projects, the cartridges just got to be too expensive. I knew laser printers were the way to go but had always assumed that the color versions were out of my league. After some research, I came across this Samsung model and it can print hundreds of color copies on the same set of cartridges. Plus, it’s so small that it fits right next to my desk. The days of those massive copy machines in offices are over — the quality of this is on-par with them! While the printer comes boxed with a starter set of color cartridges to get you going, I’d recommend bundling it with the separate full set of cartridges as well so you never run out mid-project.

4. Aesop Body Balm:

When you’re designing for long stretches, it’s nice to have quality basics nearby. I picked up this Aesop lotion on a whim and love its non-greasy texture and super citrusy scent. I’m a minimalist at heart and it’s one of just a few things I constantly keep on my desk.

5. Pantone Coated and Uncoated Swatches:

I still send projects to print all the time and as you know, what you see on your monitor is not always accurate. It’s also nice to have these on hand so you can list the PMS swatch equivalents in a client’s brand guidelines. This is the set I have and it comes boxed with both the coated and uncoated books so you’ve got the basics covered.

6. Western Digital External Drive:

When I needed an external hard drive a few years back, I started my search on Amazon and kept coming across rave reviews for Western Digital drives. They’re solid, a great value and both Mac and PC compatible. I now have multiples and recommend them to all my friends and clients. I always keep two on hand to run backups — one is plugged into my computer at all times to run Time Machine and the other is a complete backup of my computer I do every few months and store in a separate, safe place.

As a sidenote, when I bought my first external hard drive, I threw it in my purse and was hard on it which led to the connecting cable going bad. Now, I’m much more careful and always carry it in a case. These cases are cheap, lightweight and fit the Western Digital drives perfectly.

7. Adobe Creative Cloud:

I renew my membership once a year and updates for the Adobe Suite download straight to my desktop. I use these products for a solid 10 hours a day and couldn’t do my job without them. If you’re curious about all the plan options, you can check them out here.

8. Apple 27” iMac:

My everyday workhorse, I’ve been on the same iMac for the last four years and it’s still going strong.

9. Dropbox:

When I finish a client’s suite of brand files, I send them a Dropbox download link to access them. It’s nice to have their assets stored in a place that they can grab as needed at any time. I have the Pro account and it’s more than paid for itself — I literally use it every day.

10. Fellowes Paper Shredder:

I’m super careful when it comes to printing out comps of my clients’ works in progress, dealing with junk mail and any other documents I don’t want end up in the wrong hands. This shredder takes care of business, handling up to six sheets at a time. Yes, there are cheaper shredders but they jam constantly and there’s nothing more annoying than that.

11. Kikki K Weekly Planner:

I’m super basic when it comes to tracking what needs to be done. There are a million apps and digital calendars out there but nothing has worked as well for me as good old fashioned pen and paper. I love these weekly planners because you can see exactly where you have gaps of time for meetings, projects and calls at a quick glance.

12. Spotify:

When I’m busy, I don’t have time to sift through a million new albums. I love the endless amount of playlists on here, especially those by Tim Schlesser, who does the Ace Hotel mixes. I turn one on and it lasts all day, allowing me to star the best of the best songs to revisit later.

13. Apple MacBook Air:

I used to have the regular MacBook but after a series of 10 flights in less than a month, I was left with an aching back and knew that the Air was a necessity. I travel with this 13” model everywhere and even though it’s super thin and lightweight, it’s solid. More importantly, the battery life lasts and lasts.

14. Wacom Tablet:

This medium size gives you room to sketch and explore and you can also pick up an optional mouse to use on the surface when you’re not drawing.

15. Poppin Ballpoint Pens:

I splurged when I moved into the new Branch studio last year and bought coordinating Poppin office supplies and not only are they fun but the quality is awesome. I reach for these ballpoint pens constantly.


Okay, now it’s your turn! What products and services do you swear by to keep your creative business running smoothly?

The Week In Pictures: 7.17.15 | Cannon Beach

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

On Monday night, I was sitting in my office chatting with a friend who’d had a hard day. An hour into catching up on life, I blurted out, “You know what I love most about you? How spontaneous you are. You’re always up for anything. Wouldn’t it be funny if we decided to get up tomorrow and drive to the beach?”

A moment of silence hit.

Then, she responded with, “This is really weird but I was just meeting with a mentor earlier today and she said that I should go to the beach or forest to clear my mind and take a long walk with someone I trust.” I took that as a sign and we wasted no time setting up an out-of-town adventure for the next day.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

Beach, pleeeeeease.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

I packed the bare basics and we were sitting in the sand by noon.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

We first visited Manzanita and then Cannon Beach, which was calm and serene mid-week. The most beautiful flowers lined the sides of the road.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

I love the weathered, quaint look of houses and businesses at the beach.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

After the long walk my friend’s mentor had recommended, we found a log along the edge of the beach and spent a few hours just chillin’. I still had some work to do via email but anyone that needed anything immediately was met with, “Sorry, I can’t work right now. My feet are in the sand.” Luckily, my clients are cool and laughed it off!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

No stop to the beach is complete without some sweet indulgences. This candy shop is always a favorite.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

The one and only Haystack Rock.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

Every time I visit Cannon Beach, it’s a personal tradition to snap a photo of this place. So unbelievably cool.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures: Cannon Beach

As we said goodbye, I was happy I made the time to get away, spend time with a good friend and ignore all the things that needed to get done, at least for a day. If you, a family member or friend is having a difficult time, I know how hard it can be to work through an issue when your mind is spinning and just a day out in the world exploring can provide you with some much needed clarity.

“Every adversity, every failure and every heartache carries with it the seed of an equivalent or a greater benefit.” –Napoleon Hill

Have a great weekend, friends. xo