2018 in 12 Images

DIGITAL CHRISTMAS CARD

Wow! I can’t believe it’s that time of the year again. Maybe my New Year’s Resolution should be to blog more, ha! Since there is only 1 blog post between last year’s top 12 highlights and this one. It was a busy year after all. I still love capturing my top 12 highlights of the year as a time to reflect and journal various memories I never want to forget. Especially this year, so much to be grateful for!

Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.
— George Addair
#1 MOVED TO CALIFORNIA // No doubt the biggest highlight of the year, maybe my life. It had been a dream of Danny & I to do a big move out west. I am so happy to report it was 10000% worth it. Everyday it’s roughly 75 degrees, filled with beaches, tacos and magical marine life. Surreal pretty much covers it.

#1 MOVED TO CALIFORNIA // No doubt the biggest highlight of the year, maybe my life. It had been a dream of Danny & I to do a big move out west. I am so happy to report it was 10000% worth it. Everyday it’s roughly 75 degrees, filled with beaches, tacos and magical marine life. Surreal pretty much covers it.

#3 FIVE YEAR ANNIVERSARY // This guy is everything I need. No doubt this year has been filled with exciting adventures, but honestly what I am most grateful for is how happy I feel very day to come home. Mushy, mushy forever!

#3 FIVE YEAR ANNIVERSARY // This guy is everything I need. No doubt this year has been filled with exciting adventures, but honestly what I am most grateful for is how happy I feel very day to come home. Mushy, mushy forever!

#5 SAN FRANCISCO TRIP // First time visiting SF. Started the trip with dim sum in china town, explored Muir Woods and took a beautiful walk along the Golden Gate. I can’t wait to go back, I feel like we barely put a dent in our SF bucket list.

#5 SAN FRANCISCO TRIP // First time visiting SF. Started the trip with dim sum in china town, explored Muir Woods and took a beautiful walk along the Golden Gate. I can’t wait to go back, I feel like we barely put a dent in our SF bucket list.

#7 SURFER GIRL // This year I tried surfing for the first time ever. Key world there being, tried. First and most likely last, ha! I’m proud to check it off my bucket list, being a Kansas girl who only saw the ocean a few years ago after all. But damn, it was HARD.

#7 SURFER GIRL // This year I tried surfing for the first time ever. Key world there being, tried. First and most likely last, ha! I’m proud to check it off my bucket list, being a Kansas girl who only saw the ocean a few years ago after all. But damn, it was HARD.

#9 MOM VISITS SD // No doubt a highlight of my year was my Mom coming to visit us in San Diego. It was her first time to California and it was special to be the one to show her how freaking awesome it is. (Move to California Mom, cough cough)

#9 MOM VISITS SD // No doubt a highlight of my year was my Mom coming to visit us in San Diego. It was her first time to California and it was special to be the one to show her how freaking awesome it is. (Move to California Mom, cough cough)

#11 OCEAN KAYAKING // First time kayaking on the open ocean! La Jolla Sea Caves are not a bad view. In June, Danny and I went kayaking out to La Jolla Sea Caves and then dropped anchors to snorkel. Then in October, when my Mom came to visit we also took her kayaking. She was nervous at first, but ended up loving it.

#11 OCEAN KAYAKING // First time kayaking on the open ocean! La Jolla Sea Caves are not a bad view. In June, Danny and I went kayaking out to La Jolla Sea Caves and then dropped anchors to snorkel. Then in October, when my Mom came to visit we also took her kayaking. She was nervous at first, but ended up loving it.

#2 NEW JOB // The main motivator for the move out to California was accepting a new position as a Senior Designer at Elum Designs. Elum’s offices are in San Diego, California which means a few weeks after my interview Danny & I were driving across the country for our biggest adventure yet. Everyday is filled with illustrating for letterpress greeting cards, adorable stationery and designing lifestyle products. It’s a dream!

#2 NEW JOB // The main motivator for the move out to California was accepting a new position as a Senior Designer at Elum Designs. Elum’s offices are in San Diego, California which means a few weeks after my interview Danny & I were driving across the country for our biggest adventure yet. Everyday is filled with illustrating for letterpress greeting cards, adorable stationery and designing lifestyle products. It’s a dream!

#4 ETSY SHOP // I’ve wanted to start an Etsy for years, but always put it off. This year I finally did it, and I began to build up my own personal brand — Elle.Dot Studio. Named after my mother & grandmother. Hoping to grow this venture in 2019!  Check it out here.

#4 ETSY SHOP // I’ve wanted to start an Etsy for years, but always put it off. This year I finally did it, and I began to build up my own personal brand — Elle.Dot Studio. Named after my mother & grandmother. Hoping to grow this venture in 2019! Check it out here.

#6 WELCOME KANOA // On March 10th, 2018 my first ever niece was born! Welcome little Kanoa Mae to the world. William is loving being a big brother, while squeezing her cheeks telling her how cute she is.

#6 WELCOME KANOA // On March 10th, 2018 my first ever niece was born! Welcome little Kanoa Mae to the world. William is loving being a big brother, while squeezing her cheeks telling her how cute she is.

#8 SNORKELING THE COVE // This year captured a lot of firsts, including my first time snorkeling in the ocean. Then my second and then my third. I have a feeling this one is going to be a reoccurring new hobby. Nothing like swimming beside seals through a school of garibaldi fish.

#8 SNORKELING THE COVE // This year captured a lot of firsts, including my first time snorkeling in the ocean. Then my second and then my third. I have a feeling this one is going to be a reoccurring new hobby. Nothing like swimming beside seals through a school of garibaldi fish.

#10 MR & MRS ROETTER // My dear friend Audrey got married! Of course it was the coolest wedding I’ve ever been in or to for that matter. I’m so happy for Audrey and Chris as they’ve entered married life — and grateful I got to be apart of their big day.

#10 MR & MRS ROETTER // My dear friend Audrey got married! Of course it was the coolest wedding I’ve ever been in or to for that matter. I’m so happy for Audrey and Chris as they’ve entered married life — and grateful I got to be apart of their big day.

#12 CALI ADVENTURES // We have only lived in California for 9 months but we have covered a lot of ground so far. Couple day trips to Los Angeles, couple road trips to Julian and my favorite — a weekend trip to Joshua Tree. The National Park straddles the cactus-dotted Colorado Desert and the Mojave Desert. Wonderful days filled with great friends and star filled skies.

#12 CALI ADVENTURES // We have only lived in California for 9 months but we have covered a lot of ground so far. Couple day trips to Los Angeles, couple road trips to Julian and my favorite — a weekend trip to Joshua Tree. The National Park straddles the cactus-dotted Colorado Desert and the Mojave Desert. Wonderful days filled with great friends and star filled skies.


BONUS HIGHLIGHTS

It was hard to narrow down to 12, so for the first time ever I am adding a bonus section!

2019 — I CANNOT WAIT FOR WHAT IS UP NEXT.

Posted on December 29, 2018 .

Starting an Etsy Shop, Finally!

ETSY HUSTLE

I've done various illustration here and there in my free time, really just for myself. People would ask if I had a website they could purchase prints on, and I'd just moon walk away. It always just seemed like so much work and time. (Which it totally is, ha!) I guess the big difference is I've gone from agency life to illustrating full-time for Elum Designs. My work life balance is much improved, my happiness overall is night/day. Which makes me more inspired and more motivated to finally do the damn thing. I hope you guys enjoy it!

HOW DID I START?

First off, I needed to name my shop. I started by writing a bunch of words that I associate with drawing and designing. But to be honest, every time I thought I had a cute unique name I'd do the trusty Google search and find out how NOT special it was. So I started to write down a list of more personal words, specific to me. That's how I ended up with a name that gives me warm fuzzies. 

ELLE.DOT STUDIO

Named after the fierce women that have carried me, shined the way and make a mean biscuit and gravy. 

My Mom / Ranelle — Elle

My Grandmother / Dottie — Dot

These two women have never wavered in their support of me and my art career. To say I wouldn't exist without them is obvious, but to say I wouldn't be who I am, where I am without them is just the truth. I wish I could afford a giant gesture to honor them, but all I have is this baby Etsy shop. So I thought, I will start here. 

INTERESTING FACT

They have the same birthday. Guess great people are born on Sept 26th. 

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You can explore the Etsy shop here

Posted on August 20, 2018 .

2017 in 12 Images

It is all too easy for me to forget all I've been through in a year, especially the good. I have a hard time only focusing on the frustrations. I do this for me. Forces me to sit down and carve out some time to be grateful for the good. Consider this my digital "Christmas card", the top 12 highlights of 2017! 

#1 PLATINUM // I took the icey plunge! I'd been wanting to do this for years but could never justify spending that kind of money on myself. This year I decided to invest a little bit in feeling good about myself. I absolutely love it! 

#1 PLATINUM // I took the icey plunge! I'd been wanting to do this for years but could never justify spending that kind of money on myself. This year I decided to invest a little bit in feeling good about myself. I absolutely love it! 

#3 ARIZONA ADVENTURE // It is really difficult only choosing one photo from this amazing trip visiting my bestie, Mariel with Danny by my side. We hiked the Grand Canyon, simply stunning! We also hiked Camelback Mountain, elevation gain 1,235 feet. Along with exploring various towns and trails around the state. 

#3 ARIZONA ADVENTURE // It is really difficult only choosing one photo from this amazing trip visiting my bestie, Mariel with Danny by my side. We hiked the Grand Canyon, simply stunning! We also hiked Camelback Mountain, elevation gain 1,235 feet. Along with exploring various towns and trails around the state. 

#5 RAN MY FIRST 10K // This is something I never in a million years would have thought I could do. But surprising yourself is the sweetest feat. 1:04:36

#5 RAN MY FIRST 10K // This is something I never in a million years would have thought I could do. But surprising yourself is the sweetest feat. 1:04:36

#7 MAKERS GONNA MAKE // Personal creations of the year included hand painted necklaces, pillows and a lot of pom pom earrings. 

#7 MAKERS GONNA MAKE // Personal creations of the year included hand painted necklaces, pillows and a lot of pom pom earrings. 

#9 VEGAS FOR OUR BIRTHDAYS // Mom & I hit  some big birthday milestones this year. 25 & 50! We treated ourself to a trip to Vegas and saw Celine Dion! Long time dream, check!

#9 VEGAS FOR OUR BIRTHDAYS // Mom & I hit  some big birthday milestones this year. 25 & 50! We treated ourself to a trip to Vegas and saw Celine Dion! Long time dream, check!

#11 ALLIE IN MILWAUKEE // My sister Allie graduated from High School & moved to Milwaukee, WI for art school. Which means she is now only 5 hours away instead of 10, I'll take it! First trip was a success!

#11 ALLIE IN MILWAUKEE // My sister Allie graduated from High School & moved to Milwaukee, WI for art school. Which means she is now only 5 hours away instead of 10, I'll take it! First trip was a success!

#2 RAN MY FIRST EVER 5K // I ran my first ever 5k, and then another, and then another! My PR was set at the Color Run at 27.64! Not too shabby. 

#2 RAN MY FIRST EVER 5K // I ran my first ever 5k, and then another, and then another! My PR was set at the Color Run at 27.64! Not too shabby. 

#4 FOUR YEAR ANNIVERSARY // There is no limit to the amount of wonderful things I could say about this man. Cheers to 4 years with my Danny!

#4 FOUR YEAR ANNIVERSARY // There is no limit to the amount of wonderful things I could say about this man. Cheers to 4 years with my Danny!

#6 BALTIMORE + DC ADVENTURE // Danny & I traveled to Baltimore for my lovely friend Jen's wedding. We extended the trip to take the train up to DC. Crabs, monuments and the most charming brick row home airbnb ever!  

#6 BALTIMORE + DC ADVENTURE // Danny & I traveled to Baltimore for my lovely friend Jen's wedding. We extended the trip to take the train up to DC. Crabs, monuments and the most charming brick row home airbnb ever!  

#8 FIRST TIME OUT OF THE COUNTRY // Hello Canada! Hello Niagara Falls! 

#8 FIRST TIME OUT OF THE COUNTRY // Hello Canada! Hello Niagara Falls! 

#10 BUN-AVERSARIES // Theodore celebrated his 3 year adopt-aversary and Aurora celebrated her 2 year adopt-aversary. These little guys are the sun & moon of my life! 

#10 BUN-AVERSARIES // Theodore celebrated his 3 year adopt-aversary and Aurora celebrated her 2 year adopt-aversary. These little guys are the sun & moon of my life! 

#12 FACING MY ANXIETY // It is crazy to think that this time last year I was paralyzed by my anxiety. Christmas travel was torture. I wont fixate on the negative, but I need to applaud myself on doing what I had to do to get my anxiety under control. That this year I can find peace is a true blessing. 

#12 FACING MY ANXIETY // It is crazy to think that this time last year I was paralyzed by my anxiety. Christmas travel was torture. I wont fixate on the negative, but I need to applaud myself on doing what I had to do to get my anxiety under control. That this year I can find peace is a true blessing. 

Posted on December 22, 2017 .

THE WALL | 04

CHEERFUL DAY

Rotating Inspiration Wall — Round 4 by Haley Fischer

Posted on November 21, 2017 .

THE WALL | 03

SPOOKED MOONLIGHT

Rotating Inspiration Wall — Round 3 by Haley Fischer

Posted on October 13, 2017 .

THE WALL | 02

PMS 185

Rotating Inspiration Wall — Round 2 by Alex Lohmann

Posted on October 10, 2017 .

THE WALL | 01

BLUSHING BANANA

Rotating Inspiration Wall — Sometimes the hallway to your office needs a little TLC. I placed 12 clipboards in a grid as our very own rotating wall of inspiration. Clipboards are a great way to hang up artwork that can be changed up easily. I will curate a new set of 12 images into a collection every couple of weeks to inspire the office! Below is round 01 — Stay tuned for future collections!

Posted on September 5, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

PLANTS I CANNOT KILL

THE BEST PLANTS ARE MADE OUT OF PAPER

When I worked at Igloo Letterpress we used to spend many Saturdays building flowers out of paper for installations in the retail store. I try to sprinkle a little bit of that joy into my life today. Even better when I can place them in surprising spots around my office building and delight my co-workers. 

Posted on August 29, 2017 .

BUNNY COTTAGE

I AM A CARPENTER OF ELABORATE BUNNY COTTAGES. 

If you don't know this about me yet, I am a crazy bunny lady. I have two, Theodore & Aurora. I believe they deserve to live a life of luxary. Including handmade cardboard and paper homes. It is a fun challenge because they eat them in about 2 weeks. Ha! So I always am challenging myself with how to make the next one even better! 

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ALPHABET

START WITH A

After a year of creating downloadable monthly wallpaper. I needed a new prompt to challenge myself to learn new techniques. Stay tuned to see how this series turns out!

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Posted on August 29, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

JOYFUL PLANTERS

SLEEPING SUCCULENT 

Find an interesting container & pop a plant into it. From tiny tea cups to antique swans. It is a great way to add a wink of fun into a serious office space. Another way to spice up your plants is to add miniature lawn ornaments. Found at Michaels. The tiny flamingo is my favorite! 

Sleeping tea cup from Surprise Modern Party. Swan from local antique mall. 

Posted on August 28, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

GET YOUR ANALOG ON

DIY PHOTO ALBUM

Why are there not cuter photo albums out there? Am I the only one who still loves to have hard copies of photos? I printed our photos from our Arizona vacation and could not find a worthy photo album book. So I created my own!

1. Buy a blank canvas book. 2. Buy appropriate iron on patches to accessorize your photo album. 3. Iron away! 4. Place your finished customized album on your coffee table to show it off to all your friends.

Posted on August 28, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

Brunch Party

I ALWAYS BRING THE PROPS

What better reason to gather than friendship & brunch? Some people offer to bring quiche. Some people offer to bring mimosas. I always offer to bring things no one asked for, but will be happy to receive! Including donut glasses & egg brooches. 

Credit where credit is due. — I was inspired by Studio DIY's Kentucky Derby Hats! 

Posted on August 28, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

CHALK IT UP

HAND DRAWN BOTANICAL

The HR department asked me to spice up their office space with a new chalk wall design. Ta da!

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Posted on April 11, 2017 .

#BDAY

CUSTOM BIRTHDAY BACK DROP

My group of friends at work have kept the epic birthday tradition of decorating each other's offices for our birthdays. But not just your usual streamers or the standard balloon. We go hardcore. Check out what I did for my wonderful friend Jordan, aka the biggest Kayne West fan. 

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Posted on February 15, 2017 and filed under Makers Make.

2016 in 12 Images

Like any year, 2016 has had its conquests and its struggles. It is important to remember the good, to write it down and to reflect on it. Consider this my digital "Christmas card", the top 12 of 2016 if you will. 

#1 AURORA // We adopted our 2nd gorgeous rex rabbit. She is a velvet loving spitfire that brings so much joy into our lives. 

#1 AURORA // We adopted our 2nd gorgeous rex rabbit. She is a velvet loving spitfire that brings so much joy into our lives. 

#3 WALLPAPER // I began a self-motivated desktop wallpaper series. 

#3 WALLPAPER // I began a self-motivated desktop wallpaper series. 

#2 OCEAN // I saw the Ocean for the first time ever in my life. It was exciting to say the least. 

#2 OCEAN // I saw the Ocean for the first time ever in my life. It was exciting to say the least. 

#4 GUTS // Won 1st place in the AIGA GUTS Pumpkin Carving Competition.

#4 GUTS // Won 1st place in the AIGA GUTS Pumpkin Carving Competition.

#5 MAGNOLIA SILOS // Traveled 1,030 Miles to Waco, TX to see Joanna Gaines silos. Worth it!

#5 MAGNOLIA SILOS // Traveled 1,030 Miles to Waco, TX to see Joanna Gaines silos. Worth it!

#6 CHICAGO // First trip for work. Headed to Chicago for brand research.

#6 CHICAGO // First trip for work. Headed to Chicago for brand research.

#7 ADOBE COMPETITION // Won 1st place in the motion design category at the Adobe Cincinnati Creative Jam.

#7 ADOBE COMPETITION // Won 1st place in the motion design category at the Adobe Cincinnati Creative Jam.

#9 GO HIKING. BE HAPPY. // First trip to Kentucky's Red River Gorge. 

#9 GO HIKING. BE HAPPY. // First trip to Kentucky's Red River Gorge. 

#11 GET OUTDOORS // I made a goal to go canoeing at least once this Summer. Achieved and then some. Including a trip out to Indiana to try some new rivers. Shout out to my canoeing buddy, Jenn! 

#11 GET OUTDOORS // I made a goal to go canoeing at least once this Summer. Achieved and then some. Including a trip out to Indiana to try some new rivers. Shout out to my canoeing buddy, Jenn! 

#8 ANNIVERSARY // Woo! Danny & I celebrated 3 years together! & I'm still not sick of him. 

#8 ANNIVERSARY // Woo! Danny & I celebrated 3 years together! & I'm still not sick of him. 

#10 DREAMY B&B // Danny & I went and stayed at the Willis Graves Bed & Breakfast. I day dream constantly about going back.

#10 DREAMY B&B // Danny & I went and stayed at the Willis Graves Bed & Breakfast. I day dream constantly about going back.

#12 GET AFTER IT // Last January I joined a new gym, got a personal trainer and set (at the time felt like impossible) goals for myself. I am ridiculously proud to say I've lost almost 50 pounds this year. That is insane to say out loud. Go me!

#12 GET AFTER IT // Last January I joined a new gym, got a personal trainer and set (at the time felt like impossible) goals for myself. I am ridiculously proud to say I've lost almost 50 pounds this year. That is insane to say out loud. Go me!

Posted on December 31, 2016 .

I LOVE BEING THE HOSTESS

THANKSGIVING

First time hosting my family for Thanksgiving. Perfect opportunity to set a beautiful table! Laid a linen table cloth, craft paper runner and fresh picked mini pumpkins. Topped off with glassware I had collected from various antique malls and filled with fresh flowers. Made for a dinner to remember!

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Posted on November 29, 2016 and filed under Party.

1,030 Miles to Waco

THE MAGNOLIA SILOS

My Saturday routine involves coffee, bunny cuddles and watching HGTV's Fixer Upper. Obviously, I am a pretty big fan to have traveled 1,030 miles to see Magnolia's new famous property. It did not disappoint.

Joanna Gaines is a woman after my own heart. Every single inch of this place was designed, considered and artfully selected. Even down to the 2x4 wooden swings out back for children to play on. A+, 5 Stars, all the kudos! 

THE MAGNOLIA GARDEN

The Magnolia Garden is a charming little green space on the northwest corner of the property. Various plants have grown up handmade wooden teepees, adorable little mushrooms and their store, Magnolia Seed & Supply. This is where you wanna go to buy fun Magnolia styled garden goodies, kid inspired fairy gardens and even seeds of your own. 

THE MAGNOLIA MARKET

The holy grail! I was beyond excited to check out all the home goods inside the Magnolia store, but of course I still had time to take a selfie or 2 or 9. 

WHAT IS IT LIKE INSIDE?

AMAZING, DUH! I wish I could have gotten more wide pictures of the main store area, but as you could imagine it was fairly congested. We did not have to stand in any lines to get into the store, but it was a wee bit crowded inside. The image above is the back of the store where it opens up into the warehouse like section. 


OUTDOOR SPACE

On the Magnolia property there is an outdoor space, perfect for kiddos to burn off some energy. A square of turf equip with a box of sport balls, food trucks and 2x4 wooden swings. And of course we had to get a picture in front of the famous Magnolia Jeep. 



HARP DESIGN CO.

Anyone who watches Fixer Upper knows the infamous Clint Harp. He pops into many episodes always building stunning wood home pieces in collaboration with Joanna Gaines. We just had to stop by his shop while in Waco. It was very charming, full of rustic home goodies, custom wood pieces and the famous blue Harp Design Co. T-Shirt we always see Clint wearing. I cannot wait for his new HGTV show, Against the Grain, to begin. 


COMMON GROUNDS COFFEE SHOP

Another famous spot in Waco. If you remember, the adorable couple that owns this shop hired Joanna & Chip Gaines to create their dream house for them. Boy, was it a good one! Rustic centralized fireplace among a cozy living space, exposed shiplap and amazing cathedral windows in their master. So, we stopped here to grab our afternoon pick me ups. Delicious coffee, very close to the Baylor college campus. 

HERITAGE CREAMERY

After a long day in the sun at Magnolia, ice cream felt like the perfect way to top of the day. Heritage Creamery is right next door to Common Grounds. Delicious, adorable branding and a very helpful staff. 

Posted on July 3, 2016 .

International Market

JUNGLE JIM'S


Great place for a package design field trip. 

Posted on March 22, 2016 .