Introducing: New Minted Mentors!

This is a very exciting time of the year for Minted. With the launch of the 2011 Minted holiday assortment fast approaching and a huge wedding design challenge on the horizon, we thought this was an excellent point to select three additional Minted designers to join Amy Ehmann of Design Lotus and Sydney Newsom as Minted Mentors! It is my great pleasure to announce that Ann Gardner, Hailey Myziuk of Hello Hailey and Jennifer Wick will be joining the Mentor team. We feel very lucky to have these inspiring ladies as part of the community and feel their shift into officially guiding, engaging and informing their fellow Minties is a completely natural one. In the weeks and months that follow, our community has a lot to look forward to. The Minted Mentors will be kicking off fun, interesting and informative threads in the Forum, connecting designers with the resources they need to participate in design challenges and making sure that Minted receives the feedback we need to constantly improve the community and customer experience. Newbies take note; these are the ladies you want to chat with.

Ann Gardner was Minted in February of 2010. Not only does she have a ton of well-deserved wins under her belt, including three first place prizes, Ann has also been extremely active in the challenges by voting and commenting on her fellow Minties’ designs. Ann doesn’t just create incredible paper creations either; she’s also a formally trained pastry chef. You can see some of her gorgeous edible creations and learn more about this Minted Mentor here.

Hailey Myziuk of Hello Hailey was Minted in March of 2010. It’s been wonderful to see Hailey’s warmth and personality shine through so many of her winning designs. Her bubbly personality also comes through while she’s actively commenting on submissions and threads in the Forum. When Hailey isn’t creating beautiful designs for Minted, she freelance designs for some amazing causes and created illustrations for an adorable children’s book called ‘Daddy Can You.’ See more of Hailey’s work and learn more about her here.

Jennifer Wick was Minted in September of 2010. Happy first anniversary of being a Mintie Jen! We’re so pleased to have Jen as part of the Mentor team as her enthusiasm and energy are contagious. Her big wins in a variety of categories, coupled with the thoughtful comments she leaves on design submissions and in threads in the forum have made her such an asset to the community. Find out more about Jen and her budding design business here.

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A Few Holiday Card Design Challenge Winners…

We know that the Minted design community probably wants to know the winners of the “Sending Good Cheer” holiday challenge – NOW.  We thought we would surprise you with a sneak preview of winners in three special award categories, the  “Advertising,” “Trailblazer,” and “Whimsy” categories.  Enjoy!

Advertising Award

Our Minted holiday card advertisement in Real Simple Family has hit the newsstands, and it features the first of the new Minted community designs to be featured this year in a national Minted print ad!  Congratulations to Cecile Kotsch of Cecile Paper Lounge on her beautiful “Fleurs de Noel”, a combination birth announcement-holiday card that we thought would be perfect to showcase in this family magazine.  Here is the advertisement:

We love how the beautifully illustrated floral garland frames the image, and the hand-drawn style script is the perfect complement to Cecile’s illustrations.  This delicate design is perfect for a birth announcement any time of the year, but the addition of the rich reds, greens, and pinks in the garland added just enough holiday cheer. Congratulations to Cecile on being named in our advertisement and her $250 award.

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The Summer is Born Birth Announcement Challenge: Guest judge Ali Wing’s award

Last week we announced the winners of our ‘Summer is Born Birth Announcement Challenge’, as voted by our community. Today I’m delighted to announce our guest judge Ali Wing’s award.

Ali is the founder and CEO of new parent store Giggle. She is also an advocate for today’s new parents and the author of the giggle guide to baby gear. If you’re in the market for baby items be sure to check out her fun (and very well designed) store. There certainly couldn’t be anyone who knows more about babies and new parents than Ali so we were thrilled to have her guest judging birth announcements.

Ali’s Judge’s award goes to:
1. baby makes three by Susie Allen. “Simple, graphical …yet whimsical, fun and fresh.”

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Sending Good Cheer Holiday Challenge: Guest Judges’ Awards

We won’t be announcing the winners in our Sending Good Cheer Holiday Card Design Challenge until all of the new holiday cards launch, but we know you’re like us and dying for a little news… and our guest judges were so over-the top-cool, that we’re delighted to share three of their awards with you today. Out of a staggering 2,554 submissions, three holiday photo card designs stood out to our judges.

Kristin van Ogtrop is the managing editor of Real Simple, the bible of the Minted consumer. Kristin, in addition to being a wonderful person to hang out with, oversees all of Real Simple’s brand extensions (from the website to books to mobile apps), and is a many-times published writer. She chose “Year in Review” by j.bartyn design.

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The International Celebration Challenge: Judge’s Awards

A million apologies for this delayed post… several of our esteemed judges were traveling and a bit hard to reach… but, alas, the winners of our International Celebration Challenge. Each winner will receive a prize of $200. Congratulations to all!

CHINESE NEW YEAR: Alan Lo, the Chairman of the Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design, chose Neon Dragon Chinese New Year Card by Kristen Smith.

“Interesting use of vintage inspired textures and also use of dragon reference makes this an easy to understand yet timeless design.”

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Chronicle Books chooses Minted Designers!

Today is an exciting day for us… we are thrilled to announce the designs that Chronicle Books, our first-ever partner, has chosen designs submitted to the Chronicle-Minted challenge to print and launch in stores around the world.  Christina Amini, Executive Editor of Chronicle, along with her colleagues, has chosen:

Ballooning, by Momo

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Meet a Mintie: Coco Paperie

I know everyone is probably either exhausted from the holiday challenge or needs a break from voting for all of the amazing designs, but luckily we have Deb from Coco Paperie to take you back from December to June! Read on for amazing Pinterest boards, straight-forward advice on how to design, a suitcase inspired by a holiday card, and “incredibly sexy” typefaces!

When did you first realize you wanted to be a designer?
Ever since I was kid I gravitated toward art: watercolors, clay, macrame, painting, you name it. I didn’t have label for what I loved until high school. There was a teacher at Pittsford Mendon H.S. who really encouraged me to follow my dreams. Back then it was called “commercial art”. Does that date me? LOL.

I would spend hours redecorating my room: rearranging furniture, painting the walls… I spent a lot of time expressing my creativity with my clothing. My poor mother put up with crazy combinations from the ’80s and ‘90s.

Really though, the icing on the cupcake was a trip to NYC to visit my cousin Helen while she was in school at Parsons. She took me around to her classes and allowed me to tag along while she finished a catalog design. I was hooked. Check out one of her gorgeous bridal shower invitations available on sale at Minted!

Deco Lights Bridal Shower Invitations by Coco Paperie

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Special Awards from the International Celebration Challenge

Dear Readers,

I am writing this post from the Gansevoort Hotel, where a few of us are staying as we attend the National Stationery Show in New York.  The Gansevoort’s location in the Meatpacking District, by the way, is spectacular – right across from Pastis, where I plan to have breakfast every morning, and around the corner from too-tempting shops like Scoop.  I have yet to try the rooftop club at the Gansevoort, but I hear good things from the Minties who have scouted the place out and several us are planning on hitting that tonight to celebrate a successful trip (join us if you are in town!).

Alright, now down to business on the International Celebration Challenge.  I was really moved by this challenge, and here is why:  The Minted design community threw themselves into learning about other cultures with dedication, and they were willing to take risk in submitting designs around holidays that they were not necessarily familiar with.  Designers like Lena Barakat and Sheila Sunaryo, and many others tried to help other designers out with language and cultural expertise.  I am continually astounded and thrilled by how helpful this community is to each other.

Here are the winners of the Special Awards, and Runners Up:

Customer Favorite and Best Rosh Hashanah Design: The Matisse by Jess Taich

Jess Taich’s “The Matisse” was the favorite design as voted by customers in this challenge and Minted Editors wholeheartedly agree!

Customer Favorite and Best Rosh Hashanah Design - The Matisse by Jess Taich

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Thrilled to be partnering with Chronicle!

We are beyond excited about our just announced partnership with Chronicle Books. If you don’t immediately think of highly curated, beautifully composed books, gift and stationery when you hear the word Chronicle, you undoubtedly have seen their great products and just not realized they were the work of this design leader and independent book publisher.

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