Coming of Age: No. 9

We are in for a very sweet surprise today with Jana Volfova’s Tweet Sixteen.

Now I love Twitter as much as the next gal, so it’s no surprise that this little riff is a phrase after my own heart! The cheery colors is what really makes this design stand out to me–magenta and orange are so perfect together. And surprisingly, we have had two designs with cross hatched background in a row, which is kind of fun. I especially love how you can see the striped pattern behind the letters in ‘sixteen.’ Jana joined the community six months ago and although she is on the newer side of things, she is already producing incredible work! We can’t wait to see what else she will come up with!! Congratweetations!

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 2

This breezy design, Fantastic Birthday, by b.wise papers takes home the 2nd Place prize of $500 on the Happy, Happy Birthday Challenge countdown. Congratulations Alston!

Alston channels retro inspiration and makes it feel fresh again. Let’s start with the “fan.”  It looks structurally accurate, yet it carries a sense of whimsy and lightness that makes it feel downright perky. The personalized banner of the cupcake flutters delicately in the fan’s breeze, and the graphic stripes of the cupcake wrapper gives this stand-by treat a decidedly modern and sophisticated upgrade. And then there is the color palette, which pairs mint green and coral in a way that feels easy and relevant. It takes a skilled and confident designer to pair these colors for such an unexpectedly refreshing effect, and this win is an affirmation that b.wise papers is a designer to watch.

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 3

Celebrate an ultra-special day with an Ultra Official design by J.Bartyn Design, the 3rd Place winner of $250 on the Happy, Happy Birthday Card Countdown. Congratulations Cambria!

Look closely at any J. Bartyn-design and your eyes will slowly uncover the many layers of details and touches that Cambria builds into her designs. A delicate hatching of the “Please” to catch your gaze and hold it; a delicate, orange grid that offsets the type and adds a soft, modern elegance; a clever interior panel composed entirely of fonts. Cambria consistently submits designs that are deliberately conceived and flawlessly executed, and she shows us that perfection is really in the details.

Cambria has been a fantastic contributor to the design community since her first design challenge, the Breakout Wedding Challenge, and we are thrilled to congratulate her on yet another win.

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 4

As I write this, I am imagining the many items squashed-stuffed-and-stashed in my too small closet that would fit perfectly in today’s winning design. Without naming names, I will confess to having received an Extra, Extra, Extra Large fleece with a corporate logo, a wonderfully soft but hard-to-match maroon boa, and several pairs of super-thick, furry, argyle socks with fake crystals glued onto the ankles (please keep in mind that I reside in SF, a decidedly socks-optional kind of place). We all have received one or many of these kinds of presents, which makes Many Happy Returns, the 4th Place winner of $100, totally amazing. Congratulations to Leslie of Unless Someone Like You! You know EXACTLY how we feel.

An Unless Someone Like You design can be spotted from a mile away. Leslie has a knack for creating light-hearted, cheeky, and slightly retro-feeling illustrations that are as evocative as they are fun (check out her stationery design Elliott! or her wedding invitation Destination for example). Her latest winner, Many Happy Returns, is no exception. It strikes a tone of familiarity and adds a sassy twist to make you laugh. Rather than roll your eyes at the gifts and the givers, this design is so good because it joins the giver and recipient in a joke with a wink and a smile.

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 5

Is there anything as elegantly handsome, nostalgic and quirky as a well-tied bow tie? If you think no, definitely not, then you’ll love the 5th Place winner of $100. Congratulations to Ashley of Fine Day Press for her winning design, Tie One On!

Ashley originally hails from Savannah, Georgia and is now based in Brooklyn. It’s highly probably that a combination of the two locations have inspired the design’s spirited, patterned bow ties and whimsical color palette. This design manages to feel both distinguished and celebratory and would be a wonderful addition to a variety of special occasions — a birthday, anniversary, or even a graduation. So go ahead, tie one on.

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 6

I couldn’t be more thrilled to announce today’s 6th place winner of $100 — Birthday Suit Dance Party by Melissa and AJ of We Hold Hands.

This is Melissa and AJ’s very first Minted design challenge (adding yet another newbie to the top 10!), and I already can’t get enough of their textures, typography, and cheeky spirit. A quick scan of their 4 design submissions reveals an illustrative style that is whimsical, tactile, and incredibly fun, and we are expecting to see big things come out of this Philadelphia-based design duo. Congrats guys, and welcome to Minted!

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 7

The designer who created the No. 7 design on the Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge Countdown is quickly becoming a familiar name. Since entering in her first design challenge in February 2010, Ann Gardner has established a reputation as a versatile and talented illustrator with a penchant for creating handsome designs that encompass a broad range of styles – from bold and typographic to illustrative. Her design, The Manly Type, takes home the 7th Place prize of $100.

Ann referenced vintage cigar labels in the layout and typography of this design.  Keeping her potential customer in mind, Ann prominently incorporated the name of the recipient to make customization simple. The design’s discreet flourishes and message to “have some cake” add humor and whimsy, meanwhile maintaining the elegance of the overall design. Congrats Ann!

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 8

Fresh off her win as the Best New Designer from the 2010 Holiday Spectacular, Robin Ott has made waves again with her 8th place win of $100 for “Love Story.”

This design taps into the retro romance of typewritten notes and feels understated and handsome, but still celebratory. Plus, this design is effortlessly versatile. It could be reworked in a variety of color ways, for a variety of recipients. Congratulations Robin!

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 9

Mandy Gordon is one of those designers who has been with Minted since the beginning, and her illustrations always leave an impression. As her 9th Place win of $100 for “Bloom” shows, voters have also taken notice of her illustrative prowess and have awarded her a spot in the top 10.  Maybe I’m just a sucker for illustrative type, but her floral type just takes my breath away. The blossoms have so much personality and substance, while still feeling very delicate. Laid out against a rich cocoa background, the bright type sets this design apart and leaves us begging for more. Mandy’s made quite the splash with her imaginative and personable illustrations, such as this adorable clown from the recent  Make A Wish Children’s Birthday Party Challenge. “Bloom” is no exception, and we are thrilled to congratulate Mandy on a well-deserved win.

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