Fabulous New Books.

I treated myself to two new design books! It all started innocently, wanting the new Vera book, but I just had to get the Orla Kiely design book to qualify for free shipping from Amazon! What a great excuse to get both books!

I just found out about the designer Vera Neumann recently after purchasing the linen calendar in this post. I had to research to find out her last name, and then found this book about her life and design career was just published recently, and it seemed so fortuitous. Once I got the book, imagine my surprise to open it and find pictures of her with Alexander Calder, my favorite artist of all time.  They were close friends and she had lots of his artwork and sculpture in and around her home, there is a spread of photos from a magazine layout feature about her reproduced in the book and you can see all of the pieces all around her home! She also created several designs in tribute to him, one scarf design even says “Calder, I love you” Vera!  She was one of the first designers to start copyrighting her designs because they were being ripped off so deliberately by other companies, which no one had done before. I can’t wait to read every word in this book!

And the Orla Kiely book is going to be a great pattern design reference. Her designs are so amazing at being so simple and complex at the same time. They remind me that you can take a classic shape and repurpose it into a fresh new design with color and selective repetition. And the photography is awesome!

In other news, I finally figured out the design of my holiday cards! I have the design mostly worked out, I just have to make the final mockup today and then I will move on to the production of all of the cards once the final mockup is perfect. I treated myself to a large new self-healing cutting mat that is 24×36 and covers one of my work tables completely, and I declare it amazing! I have a smaller cutting mat that I use all the time, but having one larger than a sheet of Canson paper is something that I have always wanted! Every year when I make my cards I purchase at least one new tool for crafting. Seems like a good excuse, right? And the fact that it was 50% off made it a great deal!

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