Tuesday, November 2, 2010

New Crochet Pattern Now Available: Amigurumi Giraffe Rattle!

I have a feeling that my fellow crochet-ers out there are getting a start on their homemade holiday gifts, as I have had an increase in crochet pattern sales these past few weeks.  This prompted me to finally post up another one of my original patterns...the Amigurumi Giraffe baby rattle!  It is a spin on my monkey rattle, and a great gift for babies or new moms at baby showers.  I designed this one for a friend who has a jungle themed nursery.

The pattern is available for just $2, and is sent to you via email in the form of a 6 page pdf.  Each page is full of color photos of the whole process, making it super easy to follow along and check your work as you go!  My favorite part is the mane down the back...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Core 77's "Play Doh Kicks" Contest Winners

This looks like so much fun, and I'm KICKING myself for not having found out about it soon enough to enter.  I love fun contests like this, as you can see from my design website on the bottom of my portfolio page!  I also have a hard time getting out my son's Play Doh out without getting very much into it myself. 

Core 77 recently challenged their readers to recreate their favorite shoe out of Play-Doh as a tribute to shoe design.  Check out the winners on their site!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Amazing table designs

I just stumbled upon this website today...check out these awesome tables.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Free 3D Paper Toy Pattern Now Available!

I've been having a lot of fun working on various retail and other design projects lately, but if I tell you about them I'll have to shoot you.  But, that wouldn't be a very nice start to this rainy Minnesota day.  So, instead, I've decided to share my latest personal project.  I've added a new section to my online "shop" section...3D paper toy patterns!  There's only one up there now, but it's FREE so check it out.  Whether you're looking for something to do with your kids on this rainy day, or stuck in a cubicle looking for a way to pass the time, GF Design's new 3D Paper Road Construction Playset is perfect for you!  Download your free pdf (in color or black and white) here!  For more detailed photos of it's construction, as well as a few paper folding tips and tricks, check out my IDMommy post.  If you do end up building one, please post a comment...I'd love to know how it went!

Monday, July 12, 2010

"White Box" by Makoto Yabuki

Check out this gorgeous video by Makoto Yabuki. I just love it!! (via ReubenMiller)

White Box from makoto yabuki on Vimeo.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Design work spills out of my studio and into the home!

GF Design has been busy with a bunch of random projects lately!  I've been working on everything from retail displays to brochures to working my Photoshop magic on some photos for my Realtor.  I love the variety of projects I get as a freelancer! Even more than that, I love being able to do what I love while still being home with my kids, and being able to use my skills and talents for their benefit as well.

One such project is this toy barn that I recently refurbished from a thrift store.  You can read more about it on my ID Mommy blog post.

 I've also been letting my design skills spill over into the kitchen, in the form of cheeseburger cupcakes and bbq grill cupcakes

I have to admit I was a little sad this past week though, when one of my kid-related design projects backfired on me.  My 2 and a half year old informed me that he was scared of the robots in his room...which is half of his robot-slash-space theme.  So, together we took down the robot paintings Mommy did, and packed up all his robot toys into boxes, including the one Mommy crocheted for him.  Oh, well.  I'm not so sad about having to pack them up, as I'm sure he'll still have fun with them when he's a little older.  But, I was sad that his room was making him scared!  I don't blame him...I suppose if I woke up in the middle of the night and saw twenty pairs of gigantic robot eyes staring at me under the low lighting of my night light, I'd be pretty freaked out too.  Oh, well, lesson learned...wait to decide what theme to make your kids' room in until they are big enough to show you what they like! ;-)  For now we'll stick with just space, and maybe once we sell our house and move, we can talk about a new theme!

Today I spent about 2 minutes turning a cardboard box into a tunnel for Sammy's train.  It came complete with a little gate arm that swivels on a brad.  Man, that thing kept him busy playing for hours today, and I have a feeling the fun will last through this holiday weekend!  Gotta love how easy to please these little clients are!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I Just Want to Go Home...

I don't know who did this illustration but I love it! I totally swiped it off an illustrator/designer friend's Facebook profile photo collection.  I can recall feeling like this at times while working at some of the large corporate offices I've worked at in the past, as I'm sure every designer has!  And I'm not knocking any of the companies I've worked for as I have LOVED all of my previous positions.  But, everyone has had those days when you're up to your eyeballs in emails, meetings, expense reports, and corporate politics, and you just want to get back to the heart of what you love to do!

Just had to share... So glad I get to "draw bunnies" at home every day, so-to-speak, as a freelancer!  I love my job, and now especially it's location!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Pantone Gifts!

If you've spent any time designing for any large corporation, chances are you have a few exact Pantone color codes ingrained in your memory.  I know I will forever know the exact color match for Scotts green and Best Buy blue.

I love these Pantone products...great gifts for the designers in your life!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hand-inspired products

When you think about it, the human body is like the best designed "product" there is.  It is incredible what the body can do.  Hands are particularly amazing, especially to me as an artist and designer.  Every one on the planet is unique, yet perfectly suited for each person's use.  Hands can crush and caress, create and destroy.  They can hold and maneuver the brush that created the Mona Lisa, they can carve a block of raw material into a famous sculpture, they can design and build amazing architecture and create the tools needed to do what they cannot do themselves.  So, it's no wonder that hands have inspired so many products out there now.  Here are a few that I've always thought were clever, showcasing the many talents of "the hand!"

Book end  hands:

Coat hook hand:

Hand shaped hand soap :

Hand shaped vase or candle holders:

Hand shaped bowl:

Friday, May 7, 2010

Cool Concepts from Lufdesign

Check out these "leaf ties" by Lufdesign.  The leaf tie is designed to be used in the same way your average cable tie is used, however, in the end it transforms your ugly snarl of cables into twisted vine.

Their website has some more beautiful photography of the product in use.

Such a cool, simple way to blend something so utilitarian with something beautiful and organic, and the proceeds go to benefit causes for ecology.

In addition to painting things neutral, with a house on the market, I'm also finding myself sweeping even more than I already do.  So, this fun product design idea caught my eye. I totally agree with the Core 77 blogger's skepticism of the chunky lip picking up anything other than uniformly crumpled pieces of clean, white paper.  But, the idea behind something that can double as a dustpan and a trash can via a simple 90 degree rotation is pretty neat. The only problem I see here though, besides the chunky lip, is if you already have garbage in the can and then want to sweep up some more, tipping it over would spill things back on the floor. It's pretty obvious (to my Photoshop user's eye anyway) that these are 3D computer models dropped into real background photos, so I'm guessing it hasn't been tested in the real world.  But, like I said, the concept behind it is very cool, and that's what "conceptual design" is for!   (via Core77)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

New Industrial Design Blog: "I.D.Mommy!"

I'd like to introduce my latest blog project, "I.D.Mommy.com!" Here I will write about how and where industrial design meets motherhood. Being a work-from-home industrial designer with 2 boys, I find that the two constantly intersect. You can expect to see honest product reviews with my unique perspective as a user and a designer, as well as other items like fellow "MOMtrepreneurs," recipes, personal stories, DIY projects, and more. So, swing on by and check it out when you get a chance!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Portfolio Additions: Powerpoint Design and Personal Projects

While I did just have a baby 6 weeks ago, I've been back to work designing for my clients since 4 weeks ago! Things are definitely still hopping here as usual at the GF Design studio. Being that it's the weekend though, I thought I would put a little bit of time into updating my website, adding a few more items to my portfolio.

One is a project that I worked on last year, designing a powerpoint sales presentation for Acrylic Design Associates. Having seen many, many bad Powerpoint presentations given to me by vendors while working for Best Buy, I was really excited to see a vendor who realized the importance of presenting good design to designers, and couldn't wait to get started on this one.

So many salespeople overlook the design of their actual presentations, not realizing that something as small as a strange font, pixelated web image, or misaligned graphics can distract a designer's attention enough to cause them to miss the entire presentation. I know I have spent many presentations as a viewer with the only thoughts going through my head being, "why on earth did they use that font?," "Why did they use such small text and so little contrast on a Powerpoint?", or "why can't they find a higher resolution image of their own logo?"

So, as you can imagine, I was thrilled to be able to help design a sales presentation that would be clean and clear, and solve all of the issues that I knew distracted me from others' poor presentations in the past. Utilizing graphics, buttons, colors and contrast, the new design was able to present a wealth of information without overwhelming the audience, and let them know where in the presentation they were at any moment.

Along with this project, I also have added a couple more to my online portfolio: a space wall mural, and the space/robot-themed bedroom that it was created for...another fun design project done within my own home! While these were not done for "paying" clients, of course, they are fun examples of projects that I literally live with every day!