Minted Artists in the Press August 2018

Congratulations to Minted artists who are featured in The Knot, HGTV Magazine, Seventeen Magazine, Buzzfeed.com, and Eva Chen’s InstagramJoin the fun of spotting Minted artists in the press by uploading PR clips on your social media with the hashtag #mintiespotting.

The Knot Magazine (Fall 2018), “Style & Planning: Forest Green” featuring the “Painted Canvas” menu by Robin Ott


Seventeen magazine (September 2018), “Back To School Awards” featuring “Nice Work” art print by Heather Francisco


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Art and design run through Minted artist Christine Taylor’s veins

Written by Jenny Griffin

Christine Taylor reads a story to her daughter, Isla, at home in Hagerstown, Indiana.

Minted artist Christine Taylor grew up in small town Indiana surrounded by artistic people. “As a kid, I remember my mom was always doing something creative,” says Christine. Her mother delighted in arts and crafts and calligraphy, always ready to help Christine and her younger sister Jessie make homemade Valentine cards, personalized greeting cards, and clever Halloween costumes. That early exposure to the pleasures of design stuck. Both Christine and her sister would grow up to become graphic designers.

The creative impulse spilled down and across generations with an array of artists on both sides of Christine’s family. A maternal great grandmother and great aunt shared their love of painting and the arts with Christine’s mother and her sisters. Various family members are engaged in music, writing, architecture, photography, and filmmaking. Art and creativity flow freely through this big family.

“Oh Baby!” baby shower invitation and “Let’s Party” by Christine Taylor

As a child, Christine loved holding and thumbing through the pages of picture books, novels, and magazines. She still does. “I loved to touch the pages, and to admire the colors, typography and layouts.” She relished the comforting smell of the paper, the residual scent of the ink, and the tangible sense of promise contained within. In high school, Christine scored a job working at her local public library. “I loved dealing with all the books, especially when new shipments would come in and I could flip through the books and delight in the cover designs and illustrations before they hit the shelves.”

Those early influences fueled a slowly developing desire to learn her craft. Years spent paging through publications (always wondering why things were placed where they were), admiring book and album covers, and scanning store aisles for just the right greeting card made her recognize design could be something even more. “I realized I wanted to create and package things that would communicate to other people,” Christine explains.

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Minted artist Eric Clegg navigates the changing landscape of graphic design

Written by Jenny Griffin

Really good music, chocolate, and a Coke. That magic combo gets the creative juices flowing for Minted artist Eric Clegg. Current Spotify favorites: The National, Natalie Prass, Washed Out, and Yumi Zuma. The Smiths are always in the mix. Eric clearly has a soft spot for independent artists. No surprise there.

Eric works at night at home after he’s put in a full day as an art director, managing the in-house creative team for the Utah-based company Chalk Couture. His limited time availability concentrates his focus. At the moment his work space is neat and spare, but it wasn’t always that way; it’s evolved as his family has. “I’ve shared the space with my wife’s and kids’ crafting supplies, and it’s doubled as a storage room at times,” Eric laughs. “We’ll see how long the grown-up look lasts before one of the kids comes home and asks if they can store a few boxes in my office for ‘a while.’”

Eric’s first exposure to graphic design came in high school. “I had the opportunity to take a commercial art class at a vocational center. “It was the first time I’d heard the term graphic designer. When I learned you could actually get a job being one, I knew that was what I wanted to do.”

That impulse drew the SoCal native to Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, where he had the good fortune to meet his wife Elissa. Eric graduated with an BFA in graphic design and was ready to hit the pavement. Or the beach as it turned out. Right out of school, Eric landed a sweet job working for the graphic design firm Clarence Lee Design in Honolulu, Hawaii. “My wife and I had the best 6-year honeymoon there!” Eric enthuses.

The birth of their son Palmer and the desire to be closer to their families drew them back the mainland. The trio returned to Utah, settling in Pleasant Grove near Salt Lake City. “The Wasatch Front has been an awesome place to raise our kids,” Eric says. “We can be up in the mountains within 15 minutes from our home with skiing and snowshoeing in the winter and hiking in the summer. It’s an all-around great outdoor environment.”

We asked Eric some questions about his creative approach, his influences, and his experience working within the Minted artist community.

“Aspen Ridge” wedding invitation by Eric Clegg

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Minted Artists in the Press July 2018

Congratulations to Minted artists who are featured in Martha Stewart Weddings, Graphic Design USA, Good Housekeeping, Real Simple’s Instagram, and The Knot. Join the fun of spotting Minted artists in the press by uploading PR clips on your social media with the hashtag #mintiespotting.

Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine (Summer 2018)
“True Colors” featuring “Circlet” wedding invitation and “Circlet” directions card by Kelli Hall


Graphic Design USA (June 2018)
“Fresh” featuring “Missed Connections” wall mural and “Abstract Forms” art print by Ilana Greenberg

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It Takes a Village Baby Shower Invitations Challenge : Special Prizes

Announcing the special prize winners of our It Takes a Village Baby Shower Invitations Challenge! Family and friends of expectant parents come to Minted seeking a baby shower invitation that not only sets the stage for this event, but is also special enough to serve as a cherished keepsake for the parents-to-be. Congratulations to the winners!

Out of the Box Award
For the most design-forward, innovative baby shower invitation that you would only find at Minted.

Baby shower cut outs by Eleanor Mayrhofer

Runners-up: Aloha Baby Pineapple by Alethea and RuthFarmers Market by Karidy Walker, and Caterpillar and Butterfly by Morgan Ramberg


Couples Shower Award
For the best design that celebrates both parents-to-be.

Over the Crescent Moon by Lisa McLean

Runners-up: Baby Shower BBQ by Robert and StellaAloe, Baby! by Erica Krystek, and Modern Block by roxy

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Melissa Egan finds design success by diving in, asking questions, and learning by doing

Portraits by Ashley Poskin

When I met Melissa Egan of Pistols in 2016 at a Minted artist paint-and-sip meetup in Chicago, I immediately sensed her creativity, down-to-earth spirit, and ability to laugh off the small stuff. She had recently relocated to the Windy City from Portland, and was settling into a pretty packed life that included a full-time job as an art director, freelance design work, and a burgeoning body of work on Minted.

Fast-forward to now to 2018, and Melissa has recently added another piece to the the brimming pot of life: her first child, Henry, whom she can’t wait to see every night after work. “One smile from him, and I’m dead,” she says, attributing much of the hustle and bustle to the support of her husband, John, her son’s primary caretaker. “I’m trying my hardest to enjoy Henry while he’s so little, and not worry too much if I’m not able to do it all,” she says.

When we dug into how Melissa learned her craft, she described landing on design after dabbling in a few other fields (Maybe business? Why not try enironmentalism?). Her try-and-see career approach also extends to her view of the design discipline. “In my opinion, there really isn’t a ‘right’ way to do design,” she says. “I try to design around an idea, rather than a particular style. My designs are most successful when they come from a concept I’m really excited about.” She loves illustration and most enjoys creating characters with personalities, like “Cakeasaurus Dinosaur” or her award-winning “Party Sloth.”

In this interview, Melissa talks about her experiments in environmental activism, creating Anthropologie store displays, and how cool dads don’t get the credit they deserve.

In 2017, Melissa Egan won a prestigious Louie Award for her “Party Sloth” children’s birthday party invitation. Melissa’s stationery designs are fun, attention-grabbing, often including winks of humor and whimsy.

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Time-Saving Tips for Faster File Prep

By Olivia Goree 

While a Minted challenge win is exciting and exhilarating, the file prep that follows can be, well, not so fun. Formatting text boxes, building out colorways, and getting that foil sheen placed just right can be time-consuming and exhausting. We get it! Illustrator is an extremely powerful and complex program that can be overwhelming at times, but there are tons of tools and shortcuts to help you work in the program more efficiently. We’ve gathered our favorite “time-saving tips” to help speed up your file prep and make the process a little less painful.

 

1. Eyedropper Tool

The Eyedropper is a handy tool that allows you to pull styling from one element and apply it to another. Use this to match the color between two design elements (or even text settings from one text box to another) to ensure consistency.

2. Paste in Place

A simple but commonly used feature, Paste in Place allows you to copy one element and paste in the exact same spot it was copied from. This feature comes in handy when you need to either copy something from one artboard and paste in the same spot on another artboard, or if you are copying elements from one colorway file to another. You can find this feature by going to Edit > Paste in Place, or by using the shortcut Shift + Command + V on a Mac (or Control + V on a PC).

3. Shortcuts!

Keyboard shortcuts in Illustrator are by far the most helpful feature in speeding up your file prep process. Although they can take a while to set up and get used to, they are life-changing within Illustrator once you become comfortable with them. While some shortcuts are automatically programmed into Illustrator, others are open for you to set up on your own. These are the Minted Production team’s favorite shortcuts; you can set up these same ones or set up your own by going to Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts.

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Minted Real Wedding: Brittany & Jesse in Tuscany

Following a romantic proposal during a family trip to Mexico, Brittany Sturrett and Jesse Olson decided to host their nuptials in the Tuscan countryside. In front of their 60 guests, the Brooklyn-based couple exchanged vows at Villa Medicea de Lilliano, a beautiful 13th-century villa that was once a hunting lodge used by the Medici family. Following the intimate ceremony, guests made their way to the alfresco garden-party reception amid groves of lemon and olive trees.

The couple: Brittany Sturrett and Jesse Olson
Occupations:
Fashion and wedding photographer (Brittany); Executive Chef at NoMo SoHo Hotel (Jesse)
Based in:
Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn
Wedding date: 
June 9, 2017 (City Hall to make it legal); July 3, 2017 (our Big Italian Wedding)
Venue: 
Villa Medicea di Lilliano, Grassina Italy
Number of guests: 60
Invitation suite: “Al Fresco” by Haley Warner
Ceremony program: “Al Fresco” by Haley Warner
Place card: “Gold Bars” by Fig and Cotton
Favor tag: “Botanical Name Plate” by Shiny Penny Studio
Menu card: “Field” by Toast & Laurel
Wedding planner: Alise Taggart
Florist: Annalisa di Federico of Isa Events
Catering & Rentals: Guidi-Lenci
Cake: Tuscan Wedding Cakes
Makeup Artist: Sandra Lovisco from My Wedding Mirror
Bridesmaid dresses: Reformation
Groomsmen tuxedos: The Black Tux
Music: Slightly Out
Lighting/DJ: The Alma Project
Cinematographer: Cinematictide
Photographer: Paula O’Hara

How did you and Jesse meet?
We met at a restaurant that we both worked at—it was called A Voce and was located in Columbus Circle in Manhattan. He was a Sous Chef at the time and I was a front-of-house captain. 

Tell us about the proposal!
We had a family trip planned for Mexico. Jesse had the ring on him the whole day and was trying to find the perfect place to pop the question! The day was filled with swimming in cenotés, zip-lining, climbing pyramids; he ended up doing it after a family dinner. We all took a walk down the beach and I remember looking up and seeing the bright full moon; at the same time, I could sense my family slowly backing up. I turned and looked at Jesse, just as he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! There were a group of people around us clapping after I said “Yes!” and the rest is history.

How did you find your wedding venue?
Our amazing cake designer Melanie! We had a cake tasting and she asked us what we were envisioning, and when we told her she knew just the place for us to check out!

Why did you decide to host a destination wedding?
We wanted it to be a trip our closest friends and family could check off their bucket list. Just a big vacation and event to share all together.

What were some of your fondest memories from the day?
Our “first look.” Hearing and saying our vows to each other for the first time. Sitting down at the end of our long table amid the Tuscan sunset, seeing all of our friends and family enjoying themselves and smiling.

Who made your wedding dress?
Mark Zunino. 
We went to Kleinfields and it just worked out perfectly!

What did Jesse wear?
A tuxedo by Kooples.

Any advice for couples who are starting to plan their wedding?
Pinterest boards!! They saved my life and put everything into perspective.

How did you choose your wedding invitation (“Al Fresco” by Haley Warner)?
It was the perfect pick for our olive-branch wedding theme.

What was the process like working with Minted to make your stationery vision come to life?
Great! The colors and process was so easy, and I love the quality of paper.

Click through for more from Brittany and Jesse’s wedding

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Mariam Naficy on NPR’s How I Built This with Guy Raz

Ever wonder how Minted got started? Our founder and CEO Mariam Naficy talks with NPR​’s How I Built This with Guy Raz on how she built Minted into one of the biggest crowdsourcing platforms and global artist communities in the world.

In the late 1990s, Mariam started, an online cosmetics store called Eve.com, and eventually sold it for $110 million. Several years later, she got the entrepreneurial itch once again and she founded Minted.com, an e-commerce site that sources designs from a community of independent artists around the world. Mariam went against the advice of critics who told her not to crowdsource, and not to sell holiday cards. Sometimes critics are wrong!

Today Minted is one of the biggest crowdsourcing platforms on the Internet.

Listen to the exclusive podcast HERE.

About How You Built That:

Guy Raz dives into the stories behind some of the world’s best known companies. How I Built This weaves a narrative journey about innovators, entrepreneurs and idealists—and the movements they built.

Illustration by: Phuong Nguyen for NPR

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Festive Holiday Fabric & Wrap Quickfire Challenge : Special Prizes

Announcing the special prize winners of our Festive Holiday Fabric & Wrap Quickfire Challenge! For this challenge, we were looking for winter, holiday, and Christmas themed patterns and placed images that could be used on a variety of products. We were so excited to see your fresh and festive designs. Congratulations winners!

 

Visionary Award
For the design that feels truly differentiated and new

Multi-Cultural Santas by Melanie Mikecz


Runners-up: 
Main Street by Julie Murray and Bonney Woods by Cindy Willingham



Santa’s Little Helper Award
For the best fun and festive pattern or placed image design that appeals to children

Gumdrop Buttons by Jackie Crawford

Runners-up: Nutcracker Suite by Peetie Design and Stacked Arctic Animals by Jennifer Wick

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