Out & About #15: The Butcher’s Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

If you’re a creative that also loves juice, then The Butcher’s Daughter may just be heaven on earth.

I spent the last week in New York (yes, during the epic blizzard), and this place was at the top of my must-visit list. Due to that aforementioned blizzard, the normally fully-stocked shelves were nearly bare but I had to show you anyway because this place has that perfect balance of being ridiculously cute and having healthy, hearty food choices.

Design firm Wanderlust crafted the cozy space The Butcher’s Daughter calls home with an old school butcher shop feel. Think wooden counters, steel hooks holding hanging fruit baskets, plenty of subway tile and rustic brick walls.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

The name may seem counter-intuitive considering that The Butcher’s Daughter is meat-free but it does hold a distinct purpose as they explain below:

“At The Butcher’s Daughter, we treat fruits and vegetables as a butcher would meat: We chop, fillet and carve fresh produce into heathy vegetarian dishes and press them into pretty juices.”

Around the corner from the picturesque cafe is a small juice and sweets shop, also owned by The Butcher’s Daughter. It’s full of fresh baked goods that are free of refined sugar and gluten and a wall of juices arranged by color.

The overall experience at The Butcher’s Daughter is one that’s full of simple pleasures, bright pops of color, an abundance of plants and the feeling of knowing that everything from the soups to the sandwiches to the sweets are free of the unhealthy additives that fill so many of our basic meals these days.

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

Nubby Twiglet | Out & About #15: The Butcher's Daughter

As I sat at a butcher block-style counter eating butternut squash curry soup and staring out at the slushy, slippery streets on Monday, I was happy I made the trek. This place is truly a ray of sunshine.

Featured: The Butcher’s Daughter.
Check out even more Out & About columns here.

The Week + Links: 1.25.16 | New York

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links


Hello from New York!

The last few days have been hilariously random with many firsts: a rave, a personal training session, and an epic blizzard (in that order).

On New Year’s Eve, I made a promise to myself: to travel more in the new year, just for fun. To kick things off, I booked a ticket to New York in January, ignoring the obvious: snow would be very likely.

New York is my home away from home since most of my close friends live here and I had another important reason for making the trek: closet cleaning. Yes, really (more on that in a minute.)

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links

As soon as I touched down and took a cab straight to Gala’s place on Thursday, the fun started. First up, we headed to a rave in Brooklyn complete with a massive disco ball and people typing up haikus on request (mine was about Palm Springs — no surprise there!)

Post-rave: Indochine for dinner. I’ve been obsessed with the place since my first visit in 2002. Think palm wallpaper, a soundtrack of David Bowie and Duran Duran and a feeling that the 80s never ended. Warhol, Madonna and every downtown art star dined there and not much has changed as New York constantly morphs around it.

After Indochine, I hit up Three Of Cups till the wee hours — nothing beats Journey, Van Halen and Iron Maiden tunes cranked up.

On Friday, I had my first personal training session ever, feeling ever so slightly hung over from the night before and sporting a shirt reading LOOK BETTER NAKED with metallic gold sneakers.

Rumor had it that a blizzard was quickly approaching so Gala and I hit up the Container Store (a Virgo’s dream) for closet organization goods and headed home to get to work. We focused in, cleaning out her main closet by midnight with 100 items easily gone.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links

After tossing and turning, I woke up at 2 am to look out the window and the snow storm rumors were no joke — it was piling up fast. By 2:30 in the afternoon, the snow was over 2 feet deep and the city officially shut down. The scene was surreal — literally the most snow I’ve ever seen in person.

The blizzard was the perfect opportunity to stay inside and finish Gala’s closet project — another 100+ items hit the floor and we made such good time, we were able to clear out her entire spare room AND organize her books by color. Mission accomplished!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links

By Sunday, we were truly stir crazy and braved venturing out in the 2 feet of snow for photo booth fun, an adventure at ABC Carpet and Home (the mecca for stylish interior designers) and hot chocolate at Caravan of Dreams.

Today, I’ll be out exploring even more — and plotting how I can come back again soon. I’ve missed being here so much and reconnecting with so many of my close friends has given me renewed energy and artistic inspiration.

New York, I love you. For even more snapshots from this trip, check out my Insta. And stay tuned for more New York-related posts coming up soon!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links


These are my favorite links gathered from around the web this week. There’s always a mix of design, business and life tips topped with a dash humor. Enjoy!

• What happens when blogging and social media take over your life? Such an interesting read!

57 small things to do for yourself this year.

• If you want to get something done, follow the manifesto of a doer.

• An interesting history lesson about swearing in movies — I had no idea it was banned from 1930 to 1968!

10 warm weather movies to watch while you’re snowed in!

• I’m looking forward to the new Michael Jackson documentary produced by Spike Lee.

• Made me laugh: absurdly challenging recipes from actual cookbooks!

• If you’re interested in learning more about the Flatiron Building, here’s a brief history.

• What happens when the people of Myanmar are newly exposed to cell phones and Facebook?

• 10 female writers share their big ’aha’ moments.

Taking A Trip WAY Back To Collages and Notebooks. Hello, 2000!

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

Last night, I pulled out an old hard drive and started digging deep for some ancient photos that I ended up not finding…because a decade ago, I didn’t yet understand the fine art of file organization!

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

All that digging ended up paying off in an unexpected way when I found a treasure trove of hand-collaged pages I used to put together in an oversized sketchbook I’d christened the Fashion Notebook. The Fashion Notebook was my style bible I kept from 2000 to around 2008.


Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

Long before Pinterest existed, I’d spend my nights and weekends collaging into the Fashion Notebook, pulling pages of inspiration from the stacks of fashion magazines I always had in my room. To give the pages structure, the focus was always on specific themes, whether it was all black and white, a pop color or a style I was draw to, like plaid, stripes or polkadots.

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

I started these collages years before I was a graphic designer and in a way, making these layouts trained my eye to zoom in on specific details and play around with compositions long before I knew what the “rules” were. There’s nothing like the art of exploration with no clients, no deadlines and really, nobody watching (social media wasn’t around yet).

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

Nubby Twiglet | Fashion Notebook

It was pure and fun. There were no likes, there were no followers. Looking back, it’s so nice to have something from those years. I actually still have the notebook here in my office and it’s tattered but somehow intact after many moves.

I miss the OG Pinterest! Did any of you keep similar notebooks / scrapbooks?

Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane with me!

Here’s to creating…just for fun.

Creative Chronicles #10: 5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

As a creative, social media is one of your most powerful marketing tools. The premise is simple: the more work you share, the more work you’ll get. My earliest freelance opportunities came to me thanks to Flickr and as the platforms have evolved, I’ve done my best to keep up.

Today I want to share a short but sweet post on Instagram since that’s where a lot of the social action is these days. I’ve had many client inquiries lately with specific mentions of discovering my studio on Instagram so I’ve been dedicating more of my efforts specifically to that platform.

Running a personal account is pretty straightforward — selfies, vacation photos, latte art, your killer new shoes and photos of your cat all pass the test. But what about business? When you have a business account, there’s more pressure to step it up and yes, be on brand. I hate to even say those two words because they’re so overused but it’s true — the more polished and pulled together your brand is, the easier it is for a potential client to feel at home and hire you.

Like many of you, I’ve struggled in the past with what to post to my business account. Through many trials, I’ve defined five key things that work well and are easy to produce.

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

1. Inspirational Messages

Everyone loves a positive message and an inspirational story, especially when they’re having a bad day. The key is to make the graphics your own. Don’t just grab them from Pinterest and re-post without attribution! Use your fonts, brand colors and any imagery or patterns to pull in your brand style. I format these in bulk in InDesign and then share one a week under the hashtag #branchquotes.

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

2. Work From The Archives

If you’ve been producing creative work for awhile, chances are that you have some rarely seen pieces and / or plenty of rejected client concepts. Instead of letting them gather dust, brush them off and share the story behind them! What was your process? What did you love about this particular project? Remember, much of your audience hasn’t been with you since the beginning so this “old” work is all new to them! I love this page from a portfolio I designed for Luke Copping a few years back and will be sharing it soon under the #wearebranchfiles hashtag.

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

3. Workspace Still Lifes

Make the objects you already have in your office work for you! I often spend 10+ hours a day at my computer so to switch things up, I’ll pull together simple still life compositions. The art of arrangement helps you think in a new way and work with your hands. I’ll often share these on Instagram to break up the monotony of just posting work.

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

4. Work In Progress

What are you working on right now? Do you have a project that you’re super excited about? People love to see what you’re up to! One of my current favorites is a branding project for Kate Eckman ( I LOVE her — more about her story and project soon!) and though we aren’t wrapped yet, I got permission to share her brand icon. Sharing work is also a great way to tag your clients and give them a shout-out.

5 Things To Share On Your Instagram Business Account

5. Travel Photos

Of course, you can’t spend all your time hiding in your workspace — you’ve got to get out and live! I love sharing photos that remind me of my brand when I’m traveling because it gets me inspired and thinking of ways it can evolve while also allowing my audience to discover somewhere new. The Parker Palm Springs was a defining factor in the visual style of Branch so I tend to share photos every time I’m there. Ask yourself, “What places feel in line with my brand?” Is there a coffee shop, store, park, restaurant or something else that sums it up perfectly?

I hope these five tips help you get the creative juices flowing for your Instagram business accounts!

Your turn: What kind of content do you find works well on your account? Any themes, tips or tricks you swear by?

For even more Creative Chronicles, please click here.

The Week + Links: January 15, 2016

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links


How was your week?

I’m so happy it’s Friday! I’m taking a few hours off later today to have a girl’s day out with my friend Alex. We’re getting our nails done which is a HUGE deal for me because that happens maybe once a year. I’m going to try gel again and will probably default to solid black because hey, it looks good with everything!

The weekend was rough and I feel like I’ve been in catch-up mode ever since. On Saturday, I discovered 40 (!!!) fraud transactions on my business card, spent the day unsuccessfully downloading massive files from a client and then….my brand new computer crashed. HARD. By the end of the weekend, things were back on track but damn, it all threw me for a loop.

Luckily, the week is ending on a high note because I just wrapped up Project Prescription with Paul Jarvis. We’ve been working on this offering for a solid six months and it’s a dream come true because I’d had the idea taped to my wall for YEARS.

Creating products to help creatives, freelancers and small business owners has been a passion of mine for a long time but honestly? I didn’t know where to start. Too many ideas, too little time. So I pitched my idea to the most successful freelancer I knew — Paul. And we got to work.

In just a few weeks, you’ll be able to instantly download the 15 documents we personally use while running our respective studios. Fully customizable and ready to go! If you want to be the first to know when it launches (and get a sample download!), sign up here.

Finally reaching the finish line on my first digital product offering feels monumental but behind the scenes, I struggled with fitting it into my schedule. There were multiple weeks that I had to push it to the side to focus on client work but I kept re-adding it to my to-do list until it was finished. What I thought would take maybe 3 months took 6.

Now that it’s finished, I’m glad I didn’t give up. It’s still written on my wall and I can’t wait to cross it off when we launch on February 7th. Creating a new offering is hard and some days, it will drain you completely. But the feeling of finally getting it done is worth it.

“Nobody said that it’d be easy. They just promised it would be worth it.” —Anonymous

P.S. I don’t know about you but I’m tired of staring at my designs on the screen. I want to hold them in my hands! Did you know that you can print flyers through Moo with up to 50 different designs per pack? They have a front and back side and the quality is AWESOME.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week + Links


These are my favorite links gathered from around the web this week. There’s always a mix of design, business and life tips topped with a dash humor. Enjoy!

• I’m in love with this photo gallery of New Yorkers on their lunch breaks in the 1970s. The fashion is so ridiculously good!

• Marilyn Manson shares his thoughts on the passing of David Bowie.

• If you live in a small space, these 14 tips will help you make the most of it.

• When you get a new job, this is the one question you should ask.

• Germany now has a bicycle highway!

• 10 ways you’re making your life harder than it has to be.

• Design critiques are an important factor in improving your work.

• Would you prefer to organize your Gmail messages in labeled columns? Sortd is for you!

• Rolling Stone just rounded up David Bowie’s 15 best performances.

• Who knew?! Writing out a to-do list actually has calming powers!

Inspiration Can Start With A Pair Of Metallic Gold Sneakers

Inspiration Can Start With A Pair Of Metallic Gold Sneakers

What’s inspiring you lately?

This year, I’m trying to be more mindful about setting aside time to explore my personal visual style. Instead of aimlessly grabbing images online and dragging them to my desktop, I’m paying more attention to visual cues.

What are the things I naturally gravitate towards?

How can those same things I love most play a part in my personal brand?

As you’ve probably noticed in the posts here this year, the visual style of Nubby Twiglet is continuing to evolve and it’s a purposeful move. 2016 marks my 15th year of blogging (that sounds so weird to say!) and for that milestone, I wanted to add a dash of gold to the branding and graphics.

Metallic gold has been a huge obsession of mine ever since I found a pair of Marc Jacobs sneaker wedges six months ago. Every time I laced them up, whether it was for a day in the office, a conference talk or exploring Florence, Italy (above), I noticed an extra pep in my step. That simple addition of metallic gold to my wardrobe started popping up in the design elements I was drawn to. Whether it was a gold sink in a kitchen or a metallic gold texture, I couldn’t get enough.

Inspiration Can Start With A Pair Of Metallic Gold Sneakers

Of course, all gold can feel a bit over-the-top and very Liberace. To balance it out, I started pulling in more organic, black and white patterns. Sometimes it was a marbleized pattern here on the blog, other times it was a hand-painted windowpane pattern on a jumpsuit. I started adding more hand-done fonts and illustrations to projects. Overall, that rough-hewn, looser look added a nice contrast to the gold.

Sometimes, it can feel like small shifts and changes aren’t worth talking about. Maybe they don’t feel grand enough to mention…but I want to change that here. Even the smallest elements you find yourself drawn to start to pile up. Pretty soon, the visual evolution you’ve been seeking, whether it’s in your brand, wardrobe or the way your room is decorated doesn’t feel so out of reach — it’s right there in front of you because you’ve taken notice along the way.

As I begin the redesign of this blog soon, I’m taking these organic black and white patterns and plenty of gold with me to explore.

Evolution feels great. Never be afraid of change — it’s what keeps things fresh, exciting, and makes life worth living.

Your turn: What are you noticing yourself being drawn to these days? Are there colors, styles, patterns, eras or something else that’s making you super excited?

Italy photo: Lisa Jane Photography.

Image sources: Radical Self Love Coven Almanac. Jonathan Adler brass ring holder. Marni shoes. Gold sink. Hand painted stripes. Lost My Mind graphic.

Creative Chronicles #9: Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number. Use It To Your Advantage!

Nubby Twiglet | Creative Chronicles #9: Age Ain't Nothing But A Number. Use It To Your Advantage!

Over the years, so many emails have landed in my inbox with variations on the same theme:

“I’m [insert age here] and just realized that I’m meant to be a designer. Am I too old?”

Those emails always sting big time because they hit so close to home. I wish I could meet each and every single one of you who write me those messages, give you a big hug and tell you that it’s never too late. Instead, I’ll have to do it virtually, right here.

If you’re contemplating a career in design, it really isn’t too late.

Nubby Twiglet | Creative Chronicles #9: Age Ain't Nothing But A Number. Use It To Your Advantage!

Ignore your age and get to work

I now spend my days running a graphic design studio but it wasn’t always that way. During high school in the late 90s, I was a late bloomer and had no idea that being a graphic designer was a viable career option.

Unsure of how I would make a career as an artist anyway, I went to school for business which was super practical but completely crushed my creative spirit. After graduation, I worked some stints in offices but those those so-called real jobs I thought I was supposed to have as an adult left me feeling empty and hating life.

After I met a few graphic designers in my early 20s, it was a wake-up call. I knew I was definitely in the wrong profession. By the time I got into a program at my local community college in 2006, I was 25 years old and mostly surrounded by a bunch of fresh high school graduates.

Instead of feeling old, I used my life experience to my advantage and poured it into every single project. Why? I knew that age was just a number and was well aware that many people who are now the best known in their professions also got a late start:

1. Oprah Winfrey’s talk show didn’t go national until she was 32 years old.

2. Debbie Harry didn’t release her first album with Blondie until she was 31 years old.

3. Jon Hamm debuted as Don Draper on Mad Men at 36 years old.

4. Julia Child published Mastering The Art of French Cooking when she was 49 years old.

5. Martha Stewart founded her catering business at the age of 35.

Nubby Twiglet | Creative Chronicles #9: Age Ain't Nothing But A Number. Use It To Your Advantage!

Being older is an asset

By the time I graduated and got my first full-time design job, I was 27. In the grand scheme of things, that isn’t old but designers at the studios I worked at that were the same age often had 5 solid years of experience under their belts while I was just scratching the surface. Instead of feeling bad about where I was, I decided that I would work harder to catch up and spent most nights and weekends working on any project I could get my hands on. I actually still do that!

Trust me, your age can actually be a huge asset. These are 4 reasons why breaking into the design industry when you’re older is beneficial:

1. You’re more focused.

All that background noise is long gone. When I started my program at 25, there were a handful of students who were older than me and their work was the strongest in the class by far. They showed up on time, did the work and gave every project their all because they were serious about wanting a design career.

2. You have more life experience.

This trumps everything. You can only learn so much in school but real world experience is where serious growth comes in. When you go back to school as an older student, you’ve worked at a larger variety of jobs. You’ve traveled more. You may have a family. You have a firm sense of who you are as a person. Life experience gives your work depth, grit and provides a sense of perspective.

3. You know yourself better.

Knowing yourself on a deeper level develops naturally with age. As you discover more of who you are, your personal style becomes more defined — you’re able to draw a line in the sand, assert yourself and that confidence shows. Period.

4. You’re more driven.

As you get older and work more jobs, it becomes clear that you’d be happiest supporting yourself doing something you truly love. A few bad job experiences will propel you on the path to search out a career you actually like. Before I got into the design world, I worked in an accounting department, did a bunch of other entry-level office jobs and worked retail at a few shoe stores. The second I got my first design job, I felt like I’d finally found my home.


The only obstacle is you

Once you’ve made up your mind to be a designer and attend school at an older age, there’s no reason to hold yourself back. Trust me, once I made the decision, I had to push off a constant barrage of questions from well-meaning people who were concerned about me racking up more debt and another degree. I was lucky to land a full-time design job as soon as I graduated and paid off my student loans two years later. Nine years after enrolling in that design program, I’m happier and more fulfilled than I’ve ever been.

Quotes about doing what you love fly around so often now that it feels like a bit of a cliche but you really have to do what makes you happy. There’s no point in going through life feeling miserable and looking back, wishing you’d given your dream a real shot.

The truth is, nobody cares how old you are except you…so get started.

Photo: Shell de Mar Photography.