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now on sale!

2011 March 30

I’m proud to announce that I have several new designs for sale at Minted, as well as a few more winning designs that will be posted on the website within the next couple of weeks.  Many of these were editor’s picks, although a few ranked in the top 20 among viewer’s votes.  Please take a few minutes to browse through my collection, and then share with your friends!

film reel save the date

“Film Reel” Save the Date

tradition bar mitzvah card

“Tradition” Bar Mitzvah Invitation

tradition bat mitzvah card

“Tradition” Bat Mitzvah Invitation

blue ribbon bat mitzvah card

“Blue Ribbon” Bat Mitzvah Invitation

blue ribbon bar mitzvah

“Blue Ribbon” Bar Mitzvah Invitation

letter bar mitzvah card

“Letter” Bar Mitzvah Invitation

letter bat mitzvah card

“Letter” Bat Mitzvah Invitation

All the Bar and Bat Mitzvah invitations can be ordered in a suite that includes response, direction, reception, and thank you cards.  The Save the Date card is available in two other color ways.  Please take a look at these other wining designs that will be for sale in the near future…

my how you've grown birthday card“My How You’ve Grown” Birthday Card

butterfly mobile baby shower“Butterfly Mobile” Baby Shower Invitation – ranked in the top 20 with viewer’s votes!

furniture designer card“Furniture Designer” Personal Calling Card – ranked in the top 10 with viewer’s votes!

Of course, I can’t forget to mention my wedding and holiday card designs that are also for sale on Minted.  I’ve been fortunate to have my designs be a part of these two very competitive categories. Wedding and holiday stationery are by far the most popular among design challenge participants.  And speaking of design challenges, click here to read about The International Celebration Challenge.

mr. and mrs. wedding invitation

“Mr. and Mrs.” Wedding InvitationJudge’s Pick Award

winter birch tree holiday

“Winter Birch Tree” Holiday Card


starting in the den…

2011 March 24
by lina

In hopes of keeping up with my New Year Resolution list, Dan and I began working in the den not too long after completing our home office painting project.  We’re expecting my parents and grandparents in a couple of weeks, and I wanted to remove all evidence of orange paint before their arrival.  Like the home office, we want to bring a sense of maturity and freshness to this space.

den before

The room has been mostly empty for the last year.  Early on, it went through several phases like storing moving boxes and turning into a workshop for assembling kitchen cabinets.  In recent months, it’s been fairly empty with the exception of a few decorative items or this new ottoman that I bought at West Elm Outlet.

den before

Here you can see the built-ins, which need quite a bit of work.  Our painting project in this room won’t stop with just the walls.  We’re also planning on painting the fireplace, built-ins, trim, and ceiling. Basically everything but the floor will get a new coat of paint.

den before

In keeping with the style of the other rooms that we’ve redone, we’ll be introducing much lighter and less saturated colors to freshen up this space.  I love grey and have been very eager to paint a room in our house with it.

den mantle

In preparation for priming the walls and the fireplace, we removed the old mantle and found this 2 x 4 bolted into the mortar.  Dan used his tools to remove it so that we could start work with our paint brushes.  We don’t plan on keeping the old mantle; it’s just too bulky and traditional.  We’ll be shopping around for a more contemporary piece to replace it once we get further along with painting.

den primed

Here’s our lovely after priming shot.  This was the first time either Dan or I have worked with wood paneling or brick.  I’ll be honest, it really sucked!  I didn’t bother getting primer into each reveal in the paneling, because it just wouldn’t have been worth the time.  The fireplace, on the other hand, required getting a paint brush in between each brick.  I have a feeling painting it won’t be much fun either, but at least I know it’ll look great when it’s all said and done.

den primed

I always love how bright each room looks after it’s been primed and most of the old paint color is hidden. Of course it’ll look about a hundred times better with the final coat of paint, but it’s just such a relief to move past the old colors that we weren’t very fond of.

paint choices

I spent a couple of days staring at paint chips before I narrowed down our paint choices to these two colors.  On the left is Benjamin Moore Grey Owl, and on the right is Porter Paints Whiskers.  I apologize for the poor lighting in this photo, I realize it makes it difficult to see the colors.  Grey Owl actually has a slight green tone in it, while Whiskers tends to look more like a traditional neutral color.  In typical fashion, I stared at these swatches for a couple more days before making my final decision.

Check back next week for more updates on the den makeover, along with information on the latest stationery design challenges.



2011 March 22
by lina

Welcome back blog!  Yes, I’ve been incredibly bad and have not updating about our most recent home adventures.  Usually I don’t have a very good excuse (it’s merely my own procrastination), but this time I really do have a good reason for my absence.


That cute little punim is the newest additional to the Goldberg family.  Dan and I are both dog lovers (obviously), and have actually been discussing the pet subject on and off for about two years.  So, it’s not really as sudden as most of our family and friends had thought when we made the big announcement. We’d thought about it carefully, even getting into topics like: has the time come for it to be more than just the two of us?  We eventually decided to just start looking and see if we find a dog that feels like the right fit for us.  That led us to Molly.


Molly (formerly known as Ruby), is a three month old black labrador/golden retriever mix.  She was living in a foster home with a few other dogs when we found her, and we were impressed with her right away.  She was playful as puppies should be, but had a calm and loving nature about her.  We really wanted a dog that would be active but also want to cuddle.  She seemed to fit all that criteria!  Of course Molly has a lot if learning to do and she does tire quickly, but we’re really excited to see how her personality grows as she gets bigger.


Molly is Dan’s first dog and my second.  As a kid, I had a golden retriever named Brahms and he was the best dog in the world.  I sometimes tell Molly stories about her uncle and she enjoys hearing about them. She definitely has some tough shoes to follow, but I know she’ll be a wonderful part of our family.

It didn’t take long for her to take a liking to us (especially Dan).


Our schedules have definitely adjusted with the addition of Molly to our family.  Of course this doesn’t mean that home improvement projects will completely come to a stop.  We’ve already begun work on the den and it’s looking great.  Updates will be posted soon!


the february showers design challenge picks

2011 March 8

The voting period for the February Showers Design Challenge has officially come to a close, and as always, I’ve gone through the list of submissions and picked my favorites.  There was definitely a wide variety between the baby and the bridal themed stationery, which showed designs ranging from very elegant and traditional to themed and modern styles.  The voting period for this challenge closed last week and I’m already feeling anxious to know the winners.  Here are a few of my favorites…

all-aboard!_Jennifer Postorino

“All-Aboard!” by Jennifer Postorino

an evening for the baby_robin ott design

“An Evening for the Baby” by robin ott design

bonne amie_Lovell Avenue

“Bonne Amie” by Lovell Avenue

couple's recipe_Ana Gonzalez

“Couple’s Recipe” by Ana Gonzalez

farmers market_pottsdesign

“Farmers Market” by pottsdesign

keep the love cookin_pottsdesign

“Keep the Love Cookin” by pottsdesign

perfect penmanship_ Ann Gardner

“Perfect Penmanship” by Ann Gardner

petite rattle_robin ott design

“Petite Rattle” by robin ott design

red hot_Ana Gonzalez

“Red Hot” by Ana Gonzalez

shower of flowers_Cheer Up Cherup

“Shower of Flowers” by Cheer Up Cherup

Check out my submissions for this challenge here:  Showering Hearts and Butterfly Mobile.


the +3 holiday design challenge

2011 March 3

Bunnies, pumpkins, and turkeys?!?

design challenge


Challenge Deadline: March 21, 2011 10:00 AM PDT

Minted recently announced their newest design challenge, which includes almost every “other” major holiday.  That’s right – Easter, Halloween, and Thanksgiving!  It’s for those customers who are so eager to send out cards at all possible times.

Minted is an online stationery store that offers fresh, modern designs from independent brands. In addition, they host monthly design challenges that are open to the public. Meaning, if you enjoy stationery design but do not own your own business, this is a great way to get your name out there! Note, Adobe InDesign and Illustrator are required to submit designs.

I have to admit, I’m kind of at a loss on this one.  I keep visualizing a very cheeky Halloween card with “Boo” written in bold letters.  I’m just not sure I want to design something that’s so obvious. On the other hand, Dan’s idea of an Easter card is a take-off of the The Last Supper.  Oy!


office color makeover: complete

2011 March 1

Last time I shared our home office makeover, the room looked better yet far from complete…

office walls painted

I’m happy to say that after a couple of distraction filled weekends, we finally took the plunge and put the room back together.  Just to give you the full comparison, I’ve included the original photo from when we had just moved into the house.


And here’s the home office now…

office now

office now

office builtins now

The room feels much more grown up with the light beige walls and green accents.  Although we kept things casual, there’s definitely a sense of maturity in the space.  It’s amazing what a difference color can make!

I’d been wanting to use green as an accent color in the room, and I got just that with the addition of the Pottery Barn rug (from our local Outlet store) and Ikea storage cubes.  There are a few more updates that I still want to tackle including new window treatments, a cushion for the bench between the built-ins, artwork for the walls, and possibly a new desk arrangement that is more central in the space.  Our sights on purchasing new furniture are currently geared toward the den, but if time and budget permit we’d like to revisit the office layout in the future.  Also, for a while I’d considered painting the back of the built-ins an accent color, or even apply a graphical wallcovering, but in the end I decided to keep things simple.  I may reconsider this idea in the future, but for now I’m just satisfied to be rid of the purple.


the february showers design challenge submissions

2011 February 25

April showers in February?  Yep, that’s what it looks like here in Memphis!  We just had our first real thunderstorm complete with lighting, tornado warnings, and showers.  So I figured: what’s more appropriate than to share my submissions for the February Showers Design Challenge!?!  I decided to tackle one baby shower and one bridal shower invitation this time around.  My thought process was to keep things simple, illustrate objects that are relatable to the theme, and create stationery designs that are fun and casual.

web_butterfly_mobileButterfly Mobile

web_showering_heartsShowering Hearts

Voting is now open for this challenge!  Please take a moment to vote for me!


the stay in touch business card picks and winners

2011 February 22

Before I get to my favorite submissions for The Stay in Touch Business Card Challenge at Minted, I have a special announcement…

furniture designer card

Furniture Designer placed in the top 10 with viewer’s votes!  That’s right, I officially have a “winner” title on my Minted designer profile!  I’ve shared a few of my other designs that have received either an editor’s or judge’s pick, but this submission is my first actual winning design.  I’m so ecstatic about the news and thankful for everyone who voted for me!

Usually, I reveal my top picks before Minted announces the actual winners for a challenge.  The process of counting votes can take a few weeks.  But I guess the editor’s were really anxious to get the next challenge rolling, because the turn around time for the business card challenge was super quick!  Either way, I didn’t want to miss a chance to list my favorites.  So here they are…

Alethea and Ruth-clean cut florals“Clean Cut Florals” by Alethea and Ruth

Avie Designs-oh hello birds“Oh Hello Birds” by Avie Designs

Carrie O'Neal-drop me a line“Drop Me a Line” by Carrie O’Neal

Hello Hailey-hey barber“Hey Barber” by Hello Hailey

Jennifer Postorino-clean and classy“Clean and Classy” by Jennifer Postorino

lehan paper design-personal chef“Personal Chef” by lehan paper design

Lizzy McGinn-banner + stripes“Banner + Stripes” by Lizzy McGinn

marabou design-pin“Pin” by marabou design

nocciola design-fave teddy“Fave Teddy” by nocciola design

SimpleTe Design-ikat design“Ikat Design” by SimpleTe Design

Congratulations to the other winners of this challenge.  Click here to view the full list.


february showers design challenge

2011 February 16

Under my umbrella, ella, ella…

minted challenge

Challenge Deadline: February 21, 2011 10:00 AM PDT

Ok, so I may be a bit late with this post, but I had to make sure to discuss the newest design challenge over at Minted.  As the umbrella may have hinted, the subject is wedding and baby showers.  Both are very familiar topics for me, as lately it seems that everyone I know is either getting married or having a baby.  Hopefully that’ll help me find inspiration for my submissions!

Minted is an online stationery store that offers fresh, modern designs from independent brands.  In addition, they host monthly design challenges that are open to the public. Meaning, if you enjoy stationery design but do not own your own business, this is a great way to get your name out there! Note, Adobe InDesign and Illustrator are required to submit designs.

There are only a few days left to submit designs!  I’ve already seen some amazing submissions, and I have a feeling it’s going to be quite a good race for the grand prize.  So with that said, it’s off to the drawing board…


one year blogiversary

2011 February 9

It’s hard to believe that I’ve been writing a blog for one whole year.  I remember sitting in our old apartment thinking, “well, now that I’ve set up this thing … what do I write about?”  I’d spent a good amount of time learning Dreamweaver to create an online portfolio, and decided it would be fun to create a blog section that I could use to talk about design.  However, it really wasn’t until we moved into our house a few weeks later that the blog really found its place in my life.  Knowing that Dan and I would transform this house into our home, I needed a way to document the process.  And so began the one-woman design discussions that inevitably circled around our personal experiences.  Let’s recollect…

memphis snow

It started on an unusually cold and snowy day in Memphis.  The photo above is one of the last photos I took of our old apartment.  Recently, Dan asked me if there’s anything I really miss about the apartment. I told him that it’s a shame we don’t have the lake view and the sound of the fountain to listen to at night. Besides that, I’ve definitely enjoyed owning a home and being able to transform each room to fit our personal style.

elevation now

And speaking of our home … here’s the front facade.  Ah, I can smell the home improvement projects inside!

spackling paste

We moved in prepared to get right to work fixing, cleaning, and painting.  Little did I know, my first actual home improvement project would be the closet in the bathroom.  Those walls were in desperate need to get primed and painted!  Of course, I didn’t stop with just the walls.   The door got nixed out and small storage compartments got put in to organize our toiletry items.

dining room primer

The dining room was the first big transformation.  Knowing that it’s a space we’d often use, I had to get right to work and find a paint color that would lighten the room.

wedding flowers

This silvery-blue shade turned out to be the perfect combination of a neutral tone with a slight hint of color that adds some interest.  Needless to say, the room feels bigger and livelier.


In the midst of our home improvement schedule, we went on a few shopping inspiration trips.  I still can’t believe I talked Dan into posing in front of the camera with this turquoise parrot.  We didn’t buy it, but it would have been a cool display piece.

Ikea kitchen

Speaking of inspiration shopping, we fell in love with these white Lidingo kitchen cabinets from Ikea. This time, we bought our inspiration item!

mr. and mrs. stationary

In the midst of settling into our first home and preparing to remodel the kitchen, I received exciting news that one of my wedding stationery submissions had been awarded judge’s choice from Minted.  Check out the entire wedding suite here.

old kitchen_color

Eventually, we began what would be the toughest and longest remodel of the year.  I guess most people would normally start smaller than the kitchen, but both Dan and I can be rather ambitious.  Oh, and did I mention, we did all the demo and construction work ourselves?!?

kitchen demo complete

The demolition process.  It looks much prettier in the later photos!

assembling the new bed

We must be good at multi-tasking, because we bought a new bed during the hype of the kitchen remodel. Here’s where I’m thankful that we live close to a West Elm Outlet, and the back seats of my car fold down.

living room4

Did I mention we like to multi-task?  We also painted the living room to match the dining room.

wedding cake

As the heat of summer began to wind down (it was literally over 100 degrees for several weeks), we celebrated our one year wedding anniversary by enjoying some thawed out wedding cake.  And it tasted pretty good!


Just before the holidays, I received a second stationery award from Minted.  This time, an editor’s pick for my holiday card.

dining after

When it seemed like we went through a couple of dry weeks on the home improvement front, I decided to throw in a few last minute projects.  The first was to replace the old light fixture in the dining room with a bold and contemporary piece.

office walls painted

The second was yet another painting project.  This time the office was up for some much needed improvement.  We’re still in the midst of putting this space back together; and believe me, I’m excited to share the after pictures.

kitchen after

We took our time, but eventually, the kitchen did receive some much needed after (eh, 95% complete) photos.

house in winter snow

Oddly enough, my first year of blogging started and ended with snow.  It sounds surprising, but it is Tennessee!

We’ve got plenty of projects on the to-do list for this year, which will most definitely be shared on the blog! Check out this post for a full rundown.