blog design

Cookies & Grace Brand Launch + We bought a house!

Somehow Christmas, News Years Eve, and 2016 all snuck up on me. I blame it on the void of routine in my life right now, but man I just love fresh starts so I am trying to still seize the spirit of a new year even though we are a few days in. Many of you follow me on social media so you know that Ben and I just moved to Clinton, MS, bought a house, AND are renovating said house (are we crazy or what?!). We are super happy, super tired, and super thankful for the provision that this house is for us. 

In the midst of all the crazy I nearly forgot to highlight this gorgeous client of mine, Cookies & Grace. Author and baking extraordinaire, Ali Grace, was a joy to work with and is so much fun to follow. Her blog is all about raw truth and sweets, so of course you should check it out. Ali Grace wanted a very professional look while still having some whimsy and pops of her favorite colors. 

For her inspiration board I pulled in images with elements that nod to her passion for baking while also giving off a cozy vibe that describes Ali Grace's personality to a T. The navy and mustard are such a fun color combo. 

Logo concepts are always the most daunting and exciting part of the design process for me. They are scary sometimes because you have no idea what the client will think, but exciting because your creative juices are allowed to flow at an all time high speed. I pulled in brush lettering, professional fonts, and some fun graphics to create four unique logo concepts. Ali Grace chose a variation of the first logo, and we got to work on the rest. 

I also was able to design business cards for this sweet lady and I loved being able to bring in all the shades of blue along with the logo. They turned out great! 

Overall this was one of my favorite projects to work on, it was so whimsical and fun, and getting to know my clients during our Skype chats and endless emails is always the best part of the job. Be sure and click the button below to see the live site in action, and say hello to Ali Grace! (you will seriously be drooling over her gorgeous cookies!!)

If you or someone you know is interested in logo design, website design, branding, or print design be sure to check out my design process, packages and portfolio. My 2016 design schedule has several openings and I would love to work with you! 

Also, for those interested below is my picture of our house, new post coming soon giving you the "before" tour! 

Why I Switched from Blogger to Squarespace

In the internet world there are so many hot topics, every seasoned blogger or business owner has an opinion on where to host, who to use for design services, what to write about, how often to write...and the list goes on. For me when it comes to where to host my blog I pledge my allegiances to Squarespace until the end! Many creatives are making the switch over to this clean, user friendly platform. I haven't always been a Squarespace user, I previously used the free Blogger platform. However my blog began to grow, as did my love for design, and I began to feel very discontent with my set up. I knew it was time for me to step towards something more suitable for me.

Then I read this post by my sweet friend Lauren, and knew I had to jump ship. It was time for me to make a change, and I was eager to host on a platform that could grow with me and my business in the years to come. So queue Squarespace...and all the praise hands! Why did I switch, and why do I recommend this platform to every client I work with? Let me tell you! 

1. ANYONE CAN USE IT + Bye Bye HTML!!

With many platforms out there customizing your blog or website requires a knowledge of HTML/CSS code. This is a language of its own, and it not only difficult to learn but is incredibly tedious and time consuming. When I was on Blogger I had to use HTML or CSS for every little customization...it was so much work. With Squarespace anyone can set up a website and maintain the website, without having to know how to write code. (Can you hear the angels singing yet?)

I do know quite a bit about writing HTML/CSS code but due to the tedious nature of writing code (I mean come on...one little comma or dot makes the whole code break! YIKES) I prefer to avoid it if at all possible. Squarespace makes this possible almost all the time. There are a few rare occasions in which I choose to still write my own code, but 9 times out of 10 I do not have to. With Squarespace anyone can get a professional and unique website without writing code, which was seriously enough to convince me. 

2. it is EASY ON THE WALLET

I knew at the end of 2014 I wanted to make a change when it came to my blog. I was heavily considering switching to Wordpress, but was hung up on the cost. It was adding up quickly to self host, and pay someone to help me export everything, plus set up my framework...and so on. I was overwhelmed and had not nearly enough money for all that the platform required. 

Squarespace on the other hand offers the customization I was looking for but for a fraction of the cost. There are different monthly payment plans, none of which are more than $30, that meet different needs for users. I was able to transfer my current domain and select the package that suits my needs. I pay no more than $20 a month and that is perfect for where my little blog and business is right now. (I use the Business plan but the Personal would be suitable for most bloggers that do not use ecommerce, view payment plans here)

3.there are ENDLESS OPPORTUNITY FOR GROWTH

This is my favorite aspect of the Squarespace platform. It is not just for bloggers. It is for small business owners, creatives, churches, shop owners, farmer's markets, fitness studios...and literally anything else you can think of. Squarespace has the capability built into the interface for ecommerce, so users that sell products or services can sell their items in one place rather than using third-party sites such as Etsy or BigCartel. 

Users are able to integrate so much in one place. I think of it as a one stop shop. I can have a cover page, portfolio, blog, contact page, gallery pages, and a shop all one one website without ever setting up account on other site! Hello simple expansion! 

4. UPDATING IS EASY AS PIE

Easy is the name of the game with Squarespace. Everything is updated for you so you do not have to waste precious time updating widgets and your framework. This is done for you. (does this make you want to do a little happy dance?!)

In addition, Squarespace has numerous templates to choose from. Each template offers a very unique look that can be further customized to create a one of a kind look for each user. Switching from template to template is literally as easy as pie and helps create fresh new looks. (like the one Oh Simple Joys is sporting this morning, what do you think?) 

5. IT IS JUST PRETTY

As a designer I am drawn to things that are pretty to look at, and Squarespace is just that. Without customizing a thing the templates are a beautiful. They are the perfect place to start for those that may be new business owners or bloggers, and for those that may be looking for a custom brand and website, Squarespace lends itself to so much potential for personalization and beautiful design. It really is the best choice in my humble opinion, and this is why I personally use it and recommend it to everyone I work with (and everyone I don't work with too! haha)


I am a huge fan of this platform, and after making the switch I truly never looked back. I love everything about Squarespace and sing its praises to everyone that asks me about it. Are you in a similar spot as I was before making my switch? Looking to step up your blogging game but not wanting to mess with the hassle of HTML/CSS or the price of self hosting? Let's work together to create a perfect website for you and your business/blog! 




Simply Sweet Melissa Brand Launch

Brand launches are my favorite, I love having the opportunity to work with creative bloggers, business owners, and dreamers to design unique websites and brands for such amazing people! This design was one of my favorites, it was designed using the Blogger platform, and is seriously my favorite blogger design to date. 

Melissa of Simply Sweet Melissa has been a blog friend for years, really since I started my journey 3 years ago. She is a sweet soul that loves feminine flair and whimsy just as much as I do with a little dash of sass thrown in. Her description of the vision for her brand was simple..."Sex in the City meets Steel Magnolias"! Classy meets sassy and southern and lovely! Done and done. 

We pulled images with that soft feminine touch that still gave you a little feeling of mystery. We originally had a few pastel colors included in the palette but as the design progressed we pulled away from those and primarily used the navys, blues, and copper accents. 

For her logo concepts I focused on whimsical fonts paired with more professional fonts to create the sexy but innocent look Melissa was looking for! 

Melissa liked the fonts from the third option best but wanted to combine them with the pineapple graphic and for the colors to be tweaked in order to pop more! Below is the final product for Simply Sweet Melissa's logo, and I just love it. The pineapple has become quite popular and is a symbol for hospitality! Perfect for that Steel Magnolias vibe.

For the brand board we also pulled in some patterns that are used throughout the design! And as mentioned earlier we tweaked the color scheme to better reflect the direction of the design.

The website just turned out so lovely! It is perfectly feminine while giving off an air of professionalism! I just love it! Now is the part where you go check it out, and swoon over all of Melissa's GORGEOUS wedding photos! Give her some love! 

If you are a blogger, small business owner, or creative interested in branding, logo design, or website design message me and let's chat about working together!

314 Productions Launch Day + Brand Design

Some of my favorite projects to work on are custom branding designs. Recently I have found that many of my clients are branching out of just blogging. I have been privileged to work with photographers, fitness boutiques, Etsy shop owners, small business owners, and even one amazing husband and wife videography team! It has been such a joy to learn more about design and share that love and passion with others while creating a unique brand to express a clients business online and in real life. 

Today I wanted to give you all a sneak peek into my latest brand design. This was a website/logo design project that I was able to work on for a dear online / real life friend Nicole Cole of 314 Productions. Nicole along with her husband Tyler use their amazing talents to capture some of life's most precious moments on film both through video and photography. Their work is literally amazing, and their hearts and passion for celebrating life shine through in all they do. 

Nicole wanted to take their brand to a more professional level and create something that was easier for them to grow into as their business continues to grow and evolve. She wanted neutrals, soft tones, and a very calm aesthetic. 

The inspiration board focused on clean lines, muted tones, and celebrating life! I adore the vibe that this little graphic gives off, it screams happiness! 

For the logo I wanted something very subtle but memorable, so I focused on very muted earth tones and soft feminine fonts. 

Nicole chose to go with the second logo so we began to craft the brand board. 

The website came together beautifully when I began to add in all of Nicole and Tyler's gorgeous images! Their photography style fits perfectly into the overall rebrand, it was simply gorgeous! 

It truly was such an honor to work for such a beautiful couple that have such passion for what they do! If you have not seen the new 314 Productions website in person yet please hop over there and check it out!


Interested in working together to create your own unique brand or website? Message me and let's start creating! 

Seasons with the Strattons Design

Earlier this week I shared about my new design services , and about my desire to grow more as a designer in the days ahead. So I wanted to take a minute to share my most recent blog design. Martha Kate and I went to the same college and even sat side by side in an English class once, we both kinda dreaded the class but the company was nice. So when Martha Kate came to me to help her with her design (for the second time) I was thrilled. Martha Kate had a pretty good vision for the fresh look she wanted, which makes my job easy. 

We spent a little bit of time emailing about colors, vision, and overall feel for the design and there was one word that emerged the main theme...peaceful. Martha Kate wanted something a little more professional than her previous design, yet still wanted it to be feminine and whimsical while exuding peaceful/calming vibes. We settled on pale blues, greens, and corals for the colors and a whimsical calligraphy font for the header. 

I love this design. I fall in love with design all over again every time I am able to work with a new client and help their dream become a reality. It is so much fun and such an incredible way to stretch my creative skills. 

MK's husband is a baseball player! While Seasons with the Strattons is not only about baseball there are mentions of it since the sport touches a large part of the strattons lives. I wanted to include some ode to this in the design, but wanted it to be subtle and whimsical. I made the O's into tiny baseballs and left it at that, subtle and adorable in my opinion. 

Watercolor elements were included to further create a sense of peace when readers visit the page, and grays were brought in to bring a depth to the color scheme and a readable shade for important text on the page. 

It was such a joy to put together this design for Martha Kate and Seasons with the Strattons. I hope you will pop in and give MK some love! 

If you are interested in working together on a design check out my packages, design process, and portfolio! I would love to make something beautiful for you!! 

Fresh Starts + Fun Lists


So as you all can see the blog has a new look. I have been dying to simplify it somewhat, give it a more mature but equally whimsical face lift...and after hours of slaving over it yesterday here we are. I have been debating making the switch to Wordpress...but for now this change will tide me over until I have the money to do so! 

So what do you think? I am in love with it...the neutral colors, and muted pink make me swoon, and the header is actually my hand writing! So it is all one of kind, and totally me I think! I am pleased, and now I need to sleep for a few days. Staring at a computer for hours on end zaps me!! 

Because I spent oodles of time yesterday working on this design, and tackling numerous coding issues...I neglected the Community Brew, so today I am catching up on all your lovely posts about marriage, replying to comments and emails and finishing up design orders before we head to the beach with my family in a few days! So bear with me, you all mean so much to me, and I want to get back to each one of you! 

In the meantime here is a fun list of things going on in my neck of the woods...(stole this from the lovely Rachel of Our Yellow Door)

Making | yarn pom poms...lots of pom poms, for a fun little project next month! 
Cooking | breakfast for dinner, or BRINNER! It is a favorite easy meal around here.
Drinking | lemonade...strawberry lemonade, blueberry lemonade, peach lemonade...get the picture?
Reading | 1,000 gifts....yes I am still reading it. Hoping to finish this weekend at the beach.
Wanting | a Chemex coffee maker
Looking | forward to some alone time with my husband in the car 
Playing | bluegrass music...my husband has a killer playlist, and it makes me more productive I think!
Wishing | for time to slow down...how is July already halfway over?!
Enjoying | slow nights, walks after dinner, cuddling watching TV...the best!
Waiting | to start my new JOB (surprise!!!!) I just got a part time job at a new funky bakery in town!
Wondering | how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop?
Loving | my sweet Piper girl...but y'all all knew that already
Pondering | What does it mean to love my city like Jesus?
Watching | The Office...and Food Network...don't know why we pay for any other channels
Marveling | at the beauty of my Creator in nature
Wearing | shorts, simple tee, and chaco's
Buying | groceries for the beach...does this count? unexciting I know! but it is all I am buying...
Getting | a free trip to Destin compliments of my awesome parents!
Bookmarking | pages in Blog Inc. I started flipping through it and it is loaded with information!
Giggling | at Piper and Ben playing in the living room...she loves playing tug of war with him!
Feeling | so overjoyed for this blog design to be finished!! WHOOP!