The Week In Pictures: 3.7.14

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Since I got home from LA last Tuesday, I’ve been consumed a whole lot of catching up around the house, on the blog and with work. One of the coolest projects I just wrapped is a newsprint piece for Luke Copping and it was really fun researching printers. I now have a stack of newsprint samples I collected along the way and I’ll be sharing some printer information next week on the blog if you’re interested in doing a similar style piece!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Eating breakfast at my desk every morning, even if it’s really simple always gets my day off to a great start. I love that early morning solitude as I put the finishing touches on a blog post and work out my to-do list.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I’m kind of obsessed with this metallic coffee mug that mysteriously showed up in our kitchen cupboards one day. I felt like I’d hit the jackpot! Haha. Turns out that it was a gift my brother got while on a business trip and he shoved it in there without a second thought…good for me!


When I need to take a time out from work, I like to put together mood boards in my office and just see what flows. This is what came out this week.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I’m missing the abundance of citrus trees in Southern California so much! Our fix has been to fill the bowl on our kitchen table with lots of lemons.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures class=

One of the projects I enjoyed working on most this week was an updated media kit for Kat. We doubled the size and basically turned it into a mini magazine. I’ll share more peeks into it on the Branch blog soon.

And now it’s time to get ready and head out for an early movie with my cousin Matt. It’s been a long week and I’m looking forward to a few hours of hanging out in one of my favorite neighborhoods and unwinding. Enjoy your weekend! Joey’s putting the finishing touches on our new bathroom and I can’t wait to show you!

Link Love: 3.6.14


Nubby Twiglet | Loren Hope Lookbook

• What should you write about? If you’re feeling stuck, Alexandra Franzen has 33 prompts to get your creative juices flowing!

• Is the act of being busy taking over your life? It’s time for some outside perspective.

• 5 myths that may be keeping you from going freelance.

• I just shared my favorite design and style era over on the FIDM blog.

• Create a stamp of your face!

• When it comes to Facebook, here’s how to get more interaction.

• Are you addicted to criticism?

• The Chanel Shopping Center fashion show was on another level completely. Check out all that custom packaging!

• I love this post all about false eyelashes!

• No surprise here: most Amercians would choose an internet connection over TV or cell phones.

• Take your photos to the next level with embroidery!

• What should you do when someone attempts to steal your clients?

Photo: Loren Hope S/S 2014 Lookbook.
Check out even more Link Love columns here.

A Reminder For Designers: Search Out And Define Your Niche

Nubby Twiglet | A Reminder For Designers: Search Out And Define Your Niche

Most of the early professional design work I did revolved around sports. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, it’s pretty obvious that I’m not a person interested in sports. At all.

I really enjoy working with creative small businesses, especially those with a focus on lifestyle and beauty. These niches have long been my passions but when I was first starting out, like most designers, I had to take whatever jobs I could get. I needed a steady paycheck and there’s a lot of consistent, well paying work to be found connected to sports. So, that’s what I did. I did a lot of work for sports-focused brands and campaigns for the NBA and the NFL.

While the work I did professionally wasn’t a perfect fit for me personally, it got me out of my little, perfectly styled bubble. I learned how to design based on specific style guidelines. I learned how to quickly knock out massive production files. I learned that design wasn’t all about me or my personal vision. I learned how to work successfully in a team environment. Overall, these assignments made me a better designer.

But still, my dreams were rooted in those other worlds. Those brands felt very far aways as I worked late nights on sports-focused projects. What I quickly realized though is that when I left these freelance gigs for the night, they didn’t define me. I had a design & lifestyle blog I was obsessed with posting on, I had stacks of fashion magazines sitting in my home office and beyond that, I didn’t have to share the projects I did to make a decent living in my personal portfolio.

My portfolio could be comprised of whatever I chose to share.

I started really narrowing down what I showcased in my portfolio, knowing that what I shared would draw in more of the same. While I didn’t share the NBA All-Star campaign I worked on for three months straight, I did share the branding and magazine I did for Rock n Roll Bride. While I didn’t share the NFL campaign that I spent two months on, I did share the media kit for Veronica Varlow. Slowly but surely, I was able to cultivate an image and a focus. And, the work I wanted did follow.

Spending your days on projects you’re not completely into on a personal level might seem grueling but the thing to remember is that the “cool” brands you want to work with don’t always have the biggest budgets. Still, these are the projects that can really define your portfolio. For me, working on the big-name sports projects allowed me to take on those smaller budget dream projects and get my portfolio more focused.

It took me about five years of slowly building my portfolio with the right mix of projects. I now run Branch full time working with the types of clients I focused on courting early on. A lot of them have been long-term relationships we’ve slowly built as their budgets increased. We’ve grown up and evolved together.

From the outside, it can seem like everyone else has it together, working with a roster of exclusive, dream clients but that’s not always the case. This post is a reminder that the path to finding your niche, then courting the people you want to work with and then getting to a point where you can charge enough to make a living isn’t easy. There is no magic bullet. The new catch-phrase I hear everywhere is “work smarter, not harder” and while that’s a great mindset, in the beginning, you’re going to have to work extra hard to build the portfolio and relationships you need to draw in those dream clients. There are no shortcuts.

Carve out your niche, that place in the industry that makes you really happy. Build relationships that matter. Only share your best work. Over time, the pieces will fall into place.

P.S. If you need a little help landing those dream clients, my post about creating self-initiated projects may be helpful.

Designers: How long did it take you to find your niche? What was the turning point for you in your career? And, do you now focus on that niche full-time?

Photo: Made U Look.

The Typofiles #133: Neutraface Slab Lookbook


Nubby Twiglet | House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook

Just like everyone else, my mailbox seems to be overflowing with junk mail on most days. So when something really good does show up, it definitely stands out. A catalog from House Industries is always a welcome arrival. The latest issue is dedicated to the very awesome Neutraface Slab.

Nubby Twiglet | House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook

Nubby Twiglet | House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook

I grabbed a stack of catalogs and magazines (including this beauty) to peruse when I hit the road — my (very) temporary digs in Venice felt like the perfectly cozy place to play catch-up on reading material. Sidenote: I want a table like that someday!

Nubby Twiglet | House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook

I’ve long admired the extreme care House Industries takes when it comes to the details of their products and they put that same attention into every one of their catalogs. They’re definite keepsakes.

Nubby Twiglet | House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook

The best part about House Industries catalogs? They’re completely free! Finally, your mailbox doesn’t have to be such a pit of despair.

Have you signed up yet?

Featured: House Industries Neutraface Slab Lookbook
View more of The Typofiles here.

What I Wore: Poolside In Palm Springs

Nubby Twiglet | Poolside in palm Springs

It’s true that I was camped out in Palm Springs for a boatload of work but I was determined to get that work done as quickly as possible…because right outside my bedroom door was a glistening pool, torturing me at every side glance.

Working from sunrise to sundown, Kat, Gala and I finished our project two days ahead of schedule and I wasted no time slipping on a slightly ridiculous look to enjoy the 80 degree day (while my Portland friends texted me photos of the so-called snowpocalypse happening right outside their front doors).

Nubby Twiglet | Poolside in palm Springs

You’d think that based on my ghostly pallor, I hate the sun, pool and beach but I actually love all three — I just rarely make it outside because my job calls for me to be chained to a computer most of the time. But when I do make it poolside, I try to live it up!

I’m all for overdressing, even when I’m perched by the pool. The best part is that a glam look doesn’t need to break the bank. My swimsuit and kimono were each under 50 dollars a piece.

Nubby Twiglet | Poolside in palm Springs

My poolside look consisted of an ASOS swimsuit (sadly sold out), an ASOS striped kimono (now on sale), an H&M wool hat, lucite buckle shoes from Quelques Shoes De Plus and some very fancy Cutie Dynamite sunglasses.

Nubby Twiglet | Poolside in palm Springs

Palm Springs feels like a million years ago as I sit in my office in Portland, bundled up with a blanket draped over my lap, clutching a cup of piping hot coffee. Take me back!

Do you have any fun getaways planned? Where are you dreaming of going next?

All photos: FX Media.

Project Spotlight: Kristin Cofer

Branch | Kristin Cofer Branding

I’m so excited to unveil the branding my studio Branch did for photographer Kristin Cofer. A dear friend of mine, Kristin was one of my very first clients back in the day and it’s been inspiring to watch her body of work grow. This branding system was especially fun because we created a lot of variations that can be switched up as she continues to evolve (she’s now doing film, too!). Click through to see the full project!

The Week In Pictures: 2.28.14 | Snippets Of Venice & Goodbye To California

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

After spending three and a half weeks in various parts of California, I am now back home. Home in Portland, settling back into my office chair, juggling many, many projects and freezing my ass off. Ha! For my first week away, I was working in Palm Springs and then moved onto West Hollywood. Following that, all last week was spent in Venice (and I loved every second of it).

If you’re interested, all three places I stayed in on this trip were booked through Airbnb — I’m a fan of staying in places that have a little more charm and personality, not to mention cool locations that don’t feel too corporate. Plus, depending on the amount of people you have with you, going the Airbnb route can be substantially more affordable than a hotel. In Palm Springs, there was a larger group of us so we stayed here (the photo above was shot in front of this house!). Then, in West Hollywood, I stayed here. And finally, in Venice, I stayed here. I highly recommend all three — let me know if you have questions about any of them in the comments!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Though I’d been to Venice a number of times, it was always for a quick afternoon of exploring the shops lining Abbot Kinney or an entertaining stroll along the boardwalk but I never really got to stay long enough and let my surroundings sink in. This time, I had seven days to do that and really fell in love with the place. I’m not big on driving and I LOVE the beach so the small-ish neighborhood feel coupled with the beach being just a five minute walk away was my dream scenario.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I don’t know why I hadn’t been told sooner about the Venice Canals! What a hidden treasure! On my second to last day in Venice, Joey mentioned them offhandedly in a conversation — we immediately walked over the next morning and it was honestly one of the most beautiful spots I’d ever seen. There’s a wide mix of house styles, bridges and skinny little sidewalks lined with colorful boats surrounding the canals and it’s pure magic. I’ll be sharing more photos soon!

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I had a lot of fun window shopping in Venice — I don’t recall the name of this store on Abbot Kinney but the displays were really unique.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

The oversized floral rug in our all-white Venice loft was ridiculously awesome.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

I loved all the greenery cascading up the buildings in Venice.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

There are some majorly lush, overgrown sidewalks in the city. We walked down this one every single morning — I wish I had something similar in my neighborhood. So beautiful.

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

As soon as I got home, I laid out all my California treasures. Whenever I travel, I like to pick up business cards, postcards, treats and photo booth strips to remind me of that time. A few things included above: an empty macaron box from Bottega Louie, a business card from Chateau Marmont (no name needed), a hangtag from Kelly Wearstler, a postcard from the Ace and a photo strip from Le Labo (they have a free photo booth in the back of their store).

Nubby Twiglet | The Week In Pictures

Traveling and changing up my surroundings always reminds me to notice the little details and to find contentment in the everyday. A coffee from a new place, a small bunch of flowers, a photo strip with a friend, a cool business card, a piece of street art, or even just talking a detour from the way you normally walk can make all the difference. It’s good to be back home, unpacked and ready to get back to work but in the back of my mind, I’m still California dreamin.’

Have a beautiful, energizing and inspiring weekend, everyone.

Top photo: Made U Look.