CRAFTED Brand Relaunch

"I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next." - Steve Jobs

The past year has been an incredible whirlwind and there are still days where I pinch myself and wonder how I got so lucky to be able to live this life doing what I love. Because I just can't manage to sit still, I'm constantly teaching myself new techniques and skills, pushing myself outside the box. That being said, Crafted is getting a bit of a refresh if you will. Think of it as a revitalizing face mask, removing all the impurities and revealing the better and brighter version of it!

One of my favorite aspects of this business has been continuing to stay innovative and crafting my brand to reflect my personal style. Crafted by Anamarie will now have several different avenues - Brand Styling, Social Media Consulting, and Calligraphy. Through my brand styling service I will work with clients to develop custom logos and branding packages including web graphics, business cards, and stationary. Both digital designs and hand lettered designs will be available. Through my social media consulting platform, I will be offering one-on-one coaching and platform management for a limited number of clients. And as always, calligraphy will continue to be my rock, and I will still continue to take on orders at a limited basis - so get those orders in! 

Below is a snapshot of my new brand style guide with custom hand-lettered logo designed by me. Did anyone else notice before that my initials were actually in crAFted?! With this design I stayed true to me - minimalist yet edgy, blacks, whites, and neutrals with a tiny pop of metals. I hope you love it too!

I look forward to working with new clients who are ready for a brand refresh or who are interested in build their business or personal brand from the ground up. Let's chat!

5 Essentials For Every Girlboss On-the-go

You can tell a lot about a woman by what’s in her bag.  For all my Girlbosses out there, I’ve curated my top 5 essentials to keep on hand for your daily grind.

1)   Business Cards – I love to network every chance I get, and I wouldn’t be able to do that properly without a stack of business cards in my purse! You should always have a few cards on hand at all times, so if you don’t have them already, take the time to get some really nice professional cards printed.  Moo is a great resource for that! And while you’re at it, invest in a really cute business card holder!

2)   Portable Charger – Long days of meetings and errands call for a portable charger for your phone.  This little device is so great to have on hand, especially for those of us who spend so much time on social media (yes, I’m guilty too!). Urban Outfitters makes a really slim, yet fashionable one that I love.

3)   Dry Shampoo – Woke up late? Dry shampoo. Heading from yoga to lunch? Dry shampoo.  Rainy day? Dry Shampoo. I think you get the idea. Dry shampoo is the ultimate quick fix for any bad hair day! I love the one from R+CO.

4)   Water Bottle – Good for your mind and body, I always take my Swell Bottle with me wherever I go. As you probably already know, drinking water helps you to stay hydrated, alert, and ready to take on the day!

5)   A Notebook – Sure, I love using the notepad on my phone, but sometimes the day just calls for a good notebook to jot down your ideas. It’s also much more handy to use when taking quick notes in a meeting.  Moleskin makes some great ones in so many different sizes and colors.

Using Social Media For Building Relationships

If I can tell you the one thing that has been most beneficial for my business it’s connecting and collaborating with other brands and companies. Over the past few months I’ve had the opportunity to work with some amazing people through the power of social media. I’ve collaborated with some dream businesses, had a feature in a local television segment, CT Style, and shared my story with a local newspaper, Greenwich Time. Because I do believe in good karma, I am passing on three of my favorite tips for using social media to boost your brand:

1)   Use Instagram direct message – This is a feature that I think is often highly overlooked, but it’s one of my top go-to tools on social media. Is there a business you’ve been wanting to work with? A blogger you’ve been dying to collaborate with? Send them a brief direct message explaining why you’d like to chat further. It’s more likely that they’ll get the chance to read your Instagram message versus seeing your email in their likely cluttered inbox. For me, whether good or bad, I’ve gotten a response 8 out of 10 times and I’ll take that any day!

2)   Build relationships with the media – Do a little research and find reporters that cover stories in your industry and make sure your work is relevant to them in some way. Read their stories, follow them on social media, and continue to stay engaged with them – liking and sharing their posts. If you’re feeling brave, send them a brief message – by putting yourself out there you’re already making things happen. It’s just a matter of time.

3)   Network! – OK, so this sounds like a no-brainer, right?! Well, not everyone masters this skill right away. The first step to good networking is finding relevant groups in your area. While MeetUp.com and a quick google search can do the trick, I’d say taking a step further and sourcing groups on Instagram or Facebook is the way to go. Search relevant hashtags like #nycnetworking to find the events in your area. I promise you, they are out there, you just have to start thinking outside the box!

Crafted by Anamarie is expanding services to include social media consulting – Looking to step up your social media game?  Need a social media management team? Let’s chat!

A Boho-Luxe Lettering Workshop at Lovely Bride

When I approached Lovely Bride about hosting my brush lettering workshop at their NYC boutique, I knew it would be the perfect collaboration. With my modern and laid-back lettering style, coupled with the “cool girl” vibes Lovely Bride was known for, I was confident we could really take this event to another level.  I decided to approach it as more than just a lettering class, but as a party that could very well inspire someone’s bridal shower, brunch, or a just fun get together with your girlfriends.

For this event, I was inspired by the store's beautiful color palette filled with blush tones, grays, and rose gold. The beautiful dusty rose couch, rose gold-wired chairs, and faux fur white throws were decadent and elevated the atmosphere, while the white brick walls added both a modern and industrial element. With such a beautiful set-up as my canvas, the small details I brought in only helped to enrich the space even more.

I have to add that it really takes a village, and I am so lucky to have been able to work with a team of fabulous women entreprenuers on this beautiful event. Again, Instagram for the win as I used the platform to connect with my vendors: Cassie Castellaw Photography, Doe & Jay, Esselle SF, and Macaron Cafe

Thank you to my students for making my very first class a special one! This will forever go down in the books as one of my most memorable events, and I look forward to hosting many more!

My next Brush Lettering Workshop will take place at West Elm in Red Bank, NJ on May 21st. Sign up here. Private workshops are also available for groups of 4+ upon request.

photography: Cassie Castellaw Photography // styling + calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie // venue: Lovely Bride // florals: Doe & Jay // place card holders: EsselleSF // macarons: Macaron Cafe

PANDORA Event in New York City

Two weeks ago, I had the honor of working the PANDORA Spring Launch Event in New York City. Their new campaign, #DOPandora, encourages women to celebrate and be true to who they are -- a strong message that I could really relate to. Held in an empty event space at the SOHO Lofts, they transformed the venue into a beautiful springtime atmosphere. I led the interactive part of the event, creating special custom mantras for each guest to serve as daily reminders to take action, be fearless, and just DO. It was really inspiring to hear the quotes that guests chose to have created, and the stories behind their drive and passion. Knowing that my handwritten message continues to inspire them each day as it hangs in their office, bedroom, or house is a humbling feeling, and I am so happy to have been part of it.

dopandora1
calligraphywriting
pandoraevent
All Photography courtesy of Noam Galai, Getty Images

All Photography courtesy of Noam Galai, Getty Images

Top 5 Photo Editing Apps

Believe it or not, I’ve somehow managed to survive the past year on Instagram by merely taking photos on my iPhone. While digital cameras are great, if you’re not ready to shell out the money for one, camera phones can really take a good photo if used properly! Snap a good photo with lots of natural light, fine tune it with a really great photo editing app, and you’ve got yourself an insta-worthy photo.  Below is a list of five of my favorite photo editing apps, when to use them, and why I love them.

  1. Snapseed – Snapseed is definitely up there when it comes to one of the best photo editing apps. Not only is it free, but it’s incredibly easy to use and caters to all of your basic photo processing techniques.  You can adjust exposure, color, sharpen and straighten, and contains advanced editing features like selective adjustments. You can also selectively choose to brighten an area of your photo that is too dark, or select specific areas to adjust contrast & saturation. If you only download just one of these apps, I highly suggest this one!
  2. VSCO - VSCO is an incredible app that has a ton of awesome filter options. The free version only gives you a limited number of filter options, but go to their app store, and there are a ton of extra filters to choose from. I highly suggest testing out a few different sets until you find one that fits your style – I promise it’ll be worth the money!
  3. Adobe Photoshop Express – There are a lot of basic features in the free version of this app that’s really useful. You can crop, rotate, resize photos, in addition to the standard editing options light brightness, saturation, and contrast. I love using this tool for the “blemish” correction tool that works really well if used properly.
  4. Over - Want to include quotes or words into your photo, but aren’t skilled with Photoshop? Over is the perfect app for that. You can add text to your photos in seconds, use a variety of styles and fonts, and publish it to your Instagram right away. Oh yeah, and did I mention it’s free?!

  5. Instagram  - So obviously using the tools in the Instagram app is a no-brainer. Typically I’ll dial up the brightness brightness or use the contrast tools to give my photo that final finishing touch.

Crafted by Anamarie is expanding offerings to include social media consulting and content creation for small businesses. For more information, please reach out

Spring Style Must-Haves | '17

When I was working my corporate job in NYC, my favorite part of my day was getting dressed in the morning and putting my own looks together. Since leaving my job last fall to work in this business full-time, I've felt a huge dip in my personal style. There were some days where I was working from home and I just didn't see anyone at all, so the effort I put into getting ready didn't feel worth it. Eventually my style progressed into the black hole of yoga pants and leggings on a daily basis. Almost six months later I've finally begun to level out, and I'm slowly changing my wardrobe into a nice mix of minimalist and trendy pieces that are comfortable when I'm working from home, when I head out to client meetings, or when I'm just running errands. So in honor of the first day of Spring, I'm sharing with you a few of my favorite transitional pieces for the hustlers making moves from corporate to #GIRLBOSS life or just for the ladies just looking for some Spring Style Inspo. Click to shop all of my faves below!

 

 

 

 

Anything But Paper - Non-traditional lettering materials

By now you might already know that I am a lover of the non-traditional, the modern, and the different. While I love paper, invitations, and all that good stuff, when I get the opportunity to write on anything but paper it makes me really happy. There's something about the element of surprise and the challenge that's so much fun to me, and because it doesn't come along everyday, I just love it even more! You know that saying, "absence makes the heart grow fonder" - well it's just like that. So that being said, here's a round up of a few of my favorite things to letter on that's anything but paper.

1. Macarons

Other than being really pretty to look at (and really good to eat!), macarons are so much fun to letter on. Wilton makes a really great brush set that's safe for all types of food applications. I'll then use edible gold dust and mix it with a few drops of pure alcohol to create a creamy paste to paint with. It takes a steady and light hand to work with this delicate pastry, but the results are so worth it!

Photo courtesy of Laura and Rachel | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Macarons: Antoinette Boulangerie

Photo courtesy of Laura and Rachel | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Macarons: Antoinette Boulangerie

2. Balloons

Balloons can instantly elevate a party, and adding lettering to them creates a really one-of-a-kind decor piece that all of your guests will love! Here I used a white sharpie paint marker on this latex balloon, and within seconds had a decor piece that doubled as table signage!

Photo courtesy of Shaina Lee Photography | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Styling & Planning: Jack and Grace Events, Kate & Co Events

Photo courtesy of Shaina Lee Photography | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Styling & Planning: Jack and Grace Events, Kate & Co Events

3. Leaves

For the nature lover, leaves are a really fun material to work with. There are many faux options out there that you can get your hands on at your local craft store, but if you're looking for the real deal, you can pick some up from your local floral shop (or your backyard!) and design them within a week of your event date. Place cards, table number signs, or favor tags, the options are endless for these little beauties!

Source: A Fabulous Fete

Source: A Fabulous Fete

4. Glass

Calligraphy on glass gives such a clean and finished look. It's also a fool-proof writing surface because if you make a mistake, rubbing alcohol will take the paint marker right off!

Photo courtesy of Shaina Lee Photography | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Styling & Planning: Jack and Grace Events, Kate & Co Events

Photo courtesy of Shaina Lee Photography | Calligraphy: Crafted by Anamarie | Styling & Planning: Jack and Grace Events, Kate & Co Events

For more ideas, or to commission me to write on one of these fun materials for your wedding or event, contact me and let's chat!

Wedding Invitations: Let's Get This Straight

With constantly evolving traditions, and more brides opting for the modern twist to their wedding, the details of what should actually be included in a wedding invitation suite (other than the actual invitation itself) gets lost in the shuffle. To help you put things in order, I’ve assembled a quick cheat sheet of the what’s what of wedding invitations.

weddinginvitations

The Timeline

  • 6-8 months prior to wedding - save the date cards sent
  • 3 months prior to wedding - destination wedding invites sent
  • 6-8 weeks before wedding - wedding invitations sent
  • 3-4 weeks before wedding - rsvp date

The Wedding Invitation

Your wedding invitation should include names, your wedding date, the location, the start time, and the dress code – that’s it! To keep from overcrowding your main invitation, the following invitation inserts will allow you to share additional information with your wedding guests and keep your invitation looking nice and clean.

Wedding Response Cards

If you choose the minimalist route and decide to trim the number of pieces in your invitation suite, this is one that definitely must stay!

The wedding response cards, also known as the RSVP card, allow guests to let you know whether or not they will be attending, how many will be attending and their meal choice for the reception (if applicable). It should also include a response date and a stamped return envelope with your address printed on the front as a courtesy to your guests.

Alternatively, many modern brides are turning to technology in lieu of response cards by mail. Many wedding websites offer guests the option to respond via the website, which can save both money and paper!

Reception Cards

While the wedding invitation will contain details about the ceremony event, the reception card will specify the location and time of the reception. This important especially if your ceremony and reception are held at two different locations.

Directions and Maps

It is standard that you include directions or a map with your invitation as not all of your guests will know the area. You can either print directions in the same style as the rest of your invitation, or go the extra mile and have a unique map or drawing created specifically for you.

Accommodation Cards

Accommodation cards are essential for destination weddings or for local weddings with many out-of-town guests. Here you will want to include an overview of travel options, recommended hotels, in addition to your wedding website URL if you have one.

Web Sites

Your website allows you to round up everything we discussed above! All the information in your inserts should be reiterated on the website so your guests will have a one stop shop for all things related to your wedding.

To shop some of my semi-custom wedding invitations, click here. Or submit a complimentary inquiry on my homepage for a completely one-of-a-kind suite.

 

 

A Mountain Adventure Baby Shower

When my cousin announced her pregnancy with her first child, the planner in me was immediately thrilled at the thought of planning her baby shower! (I mean, who doesn't love a good excuse to throw a party?!) With her and her husband's love of the outdoors, I knew right away that "mountain adventure" would be the perfect theme. Graze Restaurant in Little Silver, NJ set the stage for the rustic look we had in mind, while also providing us with an array of farm to table options for our brunch. With their wood floors, farm tables, and beautiful plants lining the walls of the restaurant, we already had the perfect foundation for the look we wanted to achieve. Together with her sister, Marie, we planned and styled a shower filled with lots of creative elements to welcome their new little adventurer.

This "barely there" cake...need I say more?

This "barely there" cake...need I say more?

A S'mores Bar courtesy of our friend Leah, brought us all back to our childhood and tied in perfectly with the outdoor adventure theme.

A S'mores Bar courtesy of our friend Leah, brought us all back to our childhood and tied in perfectly with the outdoor adventure theme.

Trail mix favor bags for the road! - Using Avery Labels, I hand-lettered the design to create a look reminiscient of the invitation.

Trail mix favor bags for the road! - Using Avery Labels, I hand-lettered the design to create a look reminiscient of the invitation.

A hand-lettered "I love you to the mountains and back" Sign grazed the table where guests designed their own Baby Bibs and Onesies for the new baby.

A hand-lettered "I love you to the mountains and back" Sign grazed the table where guests designed their own Baby Bibs and Onesies for the new baby.

A clothesline lined the restaurant wall to later display all of the adorable onesies that guests created.

A clothesline lined the restaurant wall to later display all of the adorable onesies that guests created.

Throwing parties for family and friends are the most rewarding, aren't they? Baby Sarnicola, you are already so loved. We can't wait to meet you!

Venue: Graze | Invitation, Signage, Planning & Styling: Crafted by Anamarie | Cake: Normandie Bakery | S'mores/Dessert Bar Planning & Styling: Leah Ubaldo