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Thoughts on books, design, storytelling, family, and more. From my little corner of the world to yours.

Archive for 2008

vote for good stock!

Monday, December 22nd, 2008

Today we were nominated for DailyCandy’s annual Sweetest Things contest! Yay!

So now, of course, I’d love your vote. And your friend’s vote, your family’s, your hair dresser’s, your mailman’s, etc…

Click below to cast your vote, then go tell a friend (or 10!)

DailyCandy Sweetest Things 2008

Thank you so much!

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your christmas card photo collection in a book

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

If Christmas card pictures are an annual tradition in your house, here’s a no-brainer book idea: your family’s Christmas Card Collection!

Here’s an example to inspire you. The Thomas Family Christmas Cards, from 1958-2005, compiled by mother-daughter duo Maggie and Anna.

book cover 

For the endsheet pattern we used some of the family’s old Christmas songsheets.

endsheets with old song sheets 

We used a color palette of browns, red, and teal and included a caption for each year explaining the events in the family’s life alongside the Christmas card picture.

caption for 1958 

picture from 1958 

1964 caption + photo 

Start collecting your pictures now, or email me if you’ve already got your collection ready for book form!

Thanks, Maggie & Anna!

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thanks, junebug!

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

Christy over at Junebug Weddings wrote a very sweet blog post about our new photo accordion books yesterday.

If you don’t know Junebug, go check them out. Even if you’re not a bride, it is such delicious design eye candy!

Thanks, Christy!

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10 ways to start your own memoir

Monday, December 1st, 2008

life is good! 

My mom sent me this link to Oprah’s site over the weekend. It has a great article on how to write your own memoir.

The hardest part to writing any memoir is, of course, getting started. What I loved about this article was the 10 writing exercises to help you get started. They are all 2-page exercises, intended to jog your memory and just get the words flowing.

What I’ve found working on books is that once you’re engaged in the project and writing and gathering the material, it is so much easier to complete it. (The same is true for me designing it…once I get started and know where I’m heading, the design just flows.) So exercises like these can be invaluable to get you going.

The 10 “getting started” exercises:

1. Write two pages of something you can’t deny.
2. Write two pages of what got left behind.
3. Write two pages of something you wrote or did that you no longer understand.
4. Write two pages of apologizing for something you didn’t do.
5. Write two pages about a physical characteristic you are proud to have inherited or passed on.
6. Write two pages of what you had to have.
7. Write two pages of humiliating exposure.
8. Write two pages about a time when you felt compassion unexpectedly.
9. Write two pages of what you have too much of.
10. Write two pages of when you knew you were in trouble.

Let me know if you’d like to talk about starting your own memoir, or helping your parent or grandparent get started with theirs. I’d love to help!

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5 accordion books

Friday, November 28th, 2008

OK, this should get your creative juices flowing…here are 5 examples of accordion books and the types of photos you can turn into a book of your own.

old santa photos - accordion book 

dog photos - accordion book 

wedding photos - accordion book 

child's photos - accordion book 

honeymoon photos - accordion book 

Order your accordion book here by Monday December 1st for Christmas delivery!

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to all who have supported this journey of mine…

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

thank you. 

[thanksgiving 2008]

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new accordion books!

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

photo accordion book 

Have you seen our new photo accordion books?

I’m so excited to finally be offering these. We worked really hard to get the design and construction just right, and I love how they turned out.

They are perfect gifts for the holidays – for grandparents, in-laws, or proud dads who seriously need to update their kid’s photo collection on display at the office. Order by Monday, December 1st for Christmas delivery.

Check back later this week for some accordion book inspiration. We’ll share 5 different real-life accordion books…from old family photos to pet photographs to kid’s photographs. You’ll find lots of creative ideas for capturing your family in one of these great little books!

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could my grama be any cuter?

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008

me + grama in real simple 

I didn’t think so.

The Real Simple article is out, and for those who haven’t seen it…here it is!

I have loved hearing from people who have been inspired by the article. So fun! But mostly, I just can’t get over how cute my grama is.

I’m going to see if I can get my hands on some of the photos that weren’t included in the article. The photographer took oodles of pictures that day and I’d love to share them here. Will keep you posted.

Thank you for all the sweet notes everyone!

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real simple

Monday, November 10th, 2008

I have some exciting news to share! I am going to be in the December issue of Real Simple magazine! I have been keeping it a secret of sorts but just heard the issue is already out (on November 10?!) so I figure now is a good time to share.

Here is the story. In early September I heard from a writer for the magazine. She was working on a feature about women who had done creative family history projects. They were looking for one more woman to profile, and did I possibly have any personal family history projects that might be a fit? Um, yes.

Within a day we were scheduling a photographer to come photograph me, my project, my workshop, and even my Grama (of course it’s a family affair!) And I started answering all sorts of interview questions about the project.

The project they featured is one I made in a collage class in LA, before I even started Good Stock. It is not a book and I didn’t touch a computer while making it. So in some ways it’s different than what I do now. But in so many ways it inspired what I do now.

I call the project my Grandparent’s Story Box. I took old maps from places my grandparents liked to visit and collaged them into a handmade box. Inside, I made loose-leaf, oversized pages that tell different stories about my grandparents. For materials I used old photos, a thrift store typewriter, my grandparent’s maps, our family tree, old papers, and all sorts of vintage looking string and grommets.

And of course, because I always think in chapters, I divided the story into 4 chapters:

1. My Papa’s Story Growing Up
2. My Grama’s Story Growing Up
3. My Grandparent’s Story Together
4. My Own Story of My Grandparents

For my own story of my grandparents, I wrote 2 pages about their influence in my life and my memories of them. I gave them a typed copy of my story for Christmas that year.

What touches me most about having this project featured is I have always loved it! It was such a personal project for me, and I still add things to it when I come across something from or about my grandparents. In fact, my Grama uses it for reference sometimes because she knows I have so much of her history in there!

So that is my Real Simple story. I thought about taking photos of the box to share here, but our good cameras are currently in Nepal with my husband. And besides, the Real Simple shots will be so much better anyways. So I promise to post them here when I get my copy!

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my obama mama

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

OK, here is yet another reason to never throw away your old high school yearbooks…

Your friend’s son may someday become president! Woo hoo!!

And trust me, when that happens your kids will want to see your old yearbook photos.

Yes, my mom was high school friends with Barack Obama’s mom, Stanley Ann Dunham. So today I made my mom drag out her high school yearbooks. And here is what I found.

French Club, 1958. Look for the sassy glasses and serious look. That’s my mom. Obama’s mom is the next row back with the dark shirt.

my mom + obama's mom 

Mercer Girls, 1960. Look for the girl who forgot her sweater that day. That’s Obama’s mom. My mom is right next to her.

my mom + obama's mom 

Now, if that’s not cool I don’t know what is!

Thank you for not tossing your yearbooks, mom. And more importantly – thank you for your son, Stanley.

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