Monthly Archives: September 2014

Out & About #2: Courier Coffee

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Courier Coffee, Portland

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Courier Coffee, Portland

A few weeks ago, my friend Vivian was in town visiting from San Francisco and after some quick research, she invited me over to Courier. The tiny downtown shopfront had been a variety of different businesses over the years and I hadn’t noticed Courier pop up…but now I’ll never forget it.

Walking up to Courier, the first thing I noticed were the sunshine-hued chairs. Before going in, I began reading the menu emblazoned on the window. As I got to the bottom, I noticed “Portland Tap Water. Sparkling or still.” Haha. A coffee shop with a sense of humor!

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Courier Coffee, Portland

The inside of Courier is very simple and unassuming and there’s a small, handwritten menu on a piece of cardboard. The baristas spin an eclectic mix of tunes on vinyl. Vivian had heard rave reviews about their iced vanilla lattes so we each ordered one, which were served up in Mason jars with oversized ice cubes. And I have to say, they lived up to their reputation of being some of the best in Portland.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Courier Coffee, Portland

As I was ordering my coffee, I spotted some muffins fresh out of the oven and boy, have they mastered their recipe. They’re perfectly done on the outside without being burnt and moist on the inside. I love the fresh berries piled on top.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Courier Coffee, Portland

If you’re looking for a nice little meet-up spot downtown, give Courier a try. I can’t wait to go back.


Featured: Courier Coffee.
Check out more Out & About columns here.

The Week In Pictures: 9.12.14

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Hey, how was your week? I’ve been feeling that pre-birthday drive kick in that makes me want to wrap up a lot of loose ends. Just made a list of what I want to accomplish over the next year, bought accounting software, handed off all my receipts to my mom (she’s the assistant over at Branch and is whipping us into shape!), cleaned my office and got new tires (gotta hit the road for the Mt. Angel Oktoberfest this weekend!).

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I threw on a t-shirt and jeans for a weekend walk through Reed College with Joey and Rocky, not even realizing I’d be in the midst of some urban camo. I love it when that happens!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

The campus is so beautiful. I love hanging out there during the summer when it’s super quiet. This view reminds me of the venue I just taught at in Amsterdam!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Yesterday I did a little exploring — there’s a really great perfume shop here in Portland that has the most exquisite, rarest scents. I thought this packaging was especially cool…and it reminds me of Gala.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Elle is the one magazine subscription I’ll never, ever give up. The September issues are always the most fun to flip through.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I’ve passed by this hand-painted sign hundreds of times and finally stopped yesterday to take a picture to share with you. Isn’t it great?!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

And with that, I’m signing off. Branch developer Star is in town, I’ve gotta get crackin’ on the design of Gala’s first book and my dad is taking me out to dinner at Gustav’s tonight (yes, my obsession with all things German runs deep).

P.S. Chubs is doing really well! In some funny news, a few days ago he took off from my office and I was searching everywhere for him…only to walk into my room where he was casually chillin’ on my pillow! King of the mountain!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Link Love: 9.11.14

2013_linklove_header

Nubby Twiglet | Link Love: Hiroyuki Kubo

• We’ve all been there: why did those clients hire someone else?!

• Once you’ve established yourself as a freelancer, it’s time to get your finances in order!

• This realization is so powerful: who is living your dream?

• Here’s how Crayola crayons are made.

• Do you feel like you have a strong social circle? I love Jessica’s thoughts on the girl group she never had.

• Photos comparing sites across the East Village from 1984 to now. Wow.

• I can’t believe how bright, airy and colorful this studio is. Looks straight out of a magazine!

• It’s easy to say no if you love something.

• New Yorker music critic Sasha Frere-Jones recently compiled a series of five playlists on Spotify of “perfect” songs for your listening pleasure!

• Wikipedia has pulled together a list of common misconceptions. Now you have some new content for small talk at parties.

• So cool: a rock and roll club in the middle of the desert!

• Remember, like attracts like.


Photo: Hiroyuki Kubo.
Check out more Link Love columns right here.

Out & About #1: Heidi’s Of Gresham

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Heidi's Of Gresham

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Heidi's Of Gresham

I’ve been wanting to start a column focusing on the places I love to visit and share them with you. They say that variety is the spice of life so I’ll be mixing it up big time in Out & About. Some places will be very well known while others will be hidden gems. Some will be the height of sophistication but don’t worry, I’ll balance it out with the occasional dive bar. Collectively, I hope these suggestions will help you out when you’re planning your next trip and stumped about where to go.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Heidi's Of Gresham

For the first installment of this column, I wanted to start at the beginning. When I moved to the suburbs of Portland in 1986, one of the first restaurants I ever visited was Heidi’s. Founded in 1968, it’s become an anchor of Gresham — the exterior is bound to grab your attention as you drive by.

Growing up, I used to eat breakfast here all the time. The breakfast was always awesome but the truth was, I was actually more obsessed with the cuckoo clocks, waitresses in dirndls and the rotating display of pies. I have nothing but good memories of the place.

Once I got older and moved to the city, I never made it back to Heidi’s…until this week. It’s easy to glamorize things as a child. Everything looks better, smells better and tastes better because you haven’t experienced what the world has to offer. Since it had been so long since I’d last visited, I was a little apprehensive. I didn’t want my childhood dreams to be shattered!

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Heidi's Of Gresham

I walked in, obsessively scanning every little detail around me from the decor to the pies to the uniforms. Heidi’s was literally frozen in time. Everything was exactly the same, including many of the waitresses. The gift shop was still full of cuckoo clocks and our sweet elderly waitress made me feel like I’d suddenly inherited a German grandma.

Dining in the middle of the day in the suburbs proved to be quite a trip. Most of the patrons were retired and I didn’t spot anyone using a smartphone. Everyone was just enjoying the company at their tables. What a revelation! In a way, felt like I’d been transported back to 1986, besides the cars in the parking lot.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About: Heidi's Of Gresham

I sat in a booth that I’d probably been in 28 years before. I ordered fish and chips and the food was just as good as I remembered it. It was so good that I cleaned my plate in record time…and ordered a slice of homemade pie to go. Fruits of the Forest, anyone?!

“Family dining” inside a themed restaurant is a total trip. If you’re ever out in Gresham, skip all the chains (because it is full of them) and head straight to Heidi’s.


Featured: Heidi’s of Gresham.

The Shift: Thoughts On Seasons, Birthdays And Seeking Out Change

Nubby Twiglet | The Shift

Last week, I started thinking about Fall and how these months are such a pivotal time for me. Maybe it’s because my birthday is on Sunday the 14th (I’ll be 33!) and I feel like I need to get as much accomplished as possible before I check off another year. Maybe it’s because I sense the feeling of heading “back to school” (even though that has long since passed for me) and I feel that collective sense of hustle and drive set in after a long summer of slowing down and exploring…I’m not really sure.

This year has felt really good though, unlike some of those in the not so distant past. I’m not a huge astrological buff but I do believe in Saturn Return. At the time it hit in my life, I actually didn’t even know what it was until I felt my ass getting collectively whooped all at once by the universe and my aunt offhandedly mentioned it in a conversation.

I also clearly remember that right as I was turning 30, I was freelancing at a great little design studio and making great money but something felt off. The week of my birthday, I had a mini breakdown one morning. It hit me hard because I was designing full time, my blog was going strong and technically on paper, I was living my dream. Perceptions aren’t everything, though. I wasn’t content. Even though I was designing professionally, it was mostly for sports brands. It was a great job…but it wasn’t my dream job. No matter how many times I sucked up those feelings and told myself to just be thankful for what I had, it didn’t change how I felt. I felt like I was living someone else’s life.

Around that time, I made a conscious decision: I was going to hustle as hard as I possibly could. I wasn’t getting any younger and if I didn’t create the life I wanted, it was my own damn fault.

I began taking on more freelance projects that felt good. Lifestyle and beauty brands like Shien Cosmetics, Rock n Roll Bride and Olivine Atelier were my sweet spot. I worked nights and weekends on client projects that I loved while showing up by day to put in the hours that guaranteed a sense of stability while I carved out my niche and style.

It wasn’t a sudden shift; I think it took about two years to see things come full circle. I got more comfortable with change as I moved onto an intensely inspiring agency that burned the candle at both ends (I still remember the first day I showed up — I didn’t walk back out to the parking lot until midnight!) and then, onto another agency that I’d been dreaming of working at for years. I kept learning, saving, taking on new clients and dreaming about that next step to stay motivated.

The more energy I put in, the more quickly things began to unfold. What I learned is that the universe will kick your ass when things aren’t right to help you shake them loose but it will also conspire to help you when you put your effort towards the right things. Towards the end of 2012, I’d co-founded The Blogcademy and we’d taught our first class in New York City. An 8 page feature followed a month later in Computer Arts. And then in 2013, I quit all outside work cold turkey to launch Branch. That cycle of uncertainty I’d began feeling right before 30 was completed and replaced with new things that felt like a better fit.

Birthdays come and go and there’s no way to turn back the clock. There’s so much opportunity out there and the biggest lesson I’ve learned that there’s never going to be a “right time” to go after it. Planning can only take you so far…and then it’s time to give your dream everything you’ve got.


Photo: Taken in Berlin by Shell De Mar.