Millennial Homeowner

Homeownership for Americans 35 and under declined to 36.2 percent, down from 36.8 percent in 2013 and the lowest on record since the census’s Housing Vacancy Survey began tabulating homeownership by age in 1982. (source USA News)

When I came across this stat after I had my closing date set, I actually studied the facts further and even started to doubt my decision to buy a home with my husband.

I have had three close friends go through foreclosures and now are renting. I have no single friends that own homes right now that I can think of.  A few that are newly married that have chosen to wait to buy a house “until it’s the best time in the market”. Then finally the friends that do own homes all have children and are in the construction industry “when it just makes sense”.

Really, the facts have always been clear that the millennial lifestyle is just not like our parents.

card from lindsey

New homeowner cards filled the mailbox the first week. My favorite card from a college friend and fellow millennial.

 

nicesmile_withkeys

It wasn’t taken on the day of our closing…but the photo holds the memory and the key that doesn’t work anymore (we changed the locks of course) to our home.

 

I think of one of the earliest research stats I can remember, the average number of children per couple. Gallup has been asking Americans “What do you think is the ideal number of children for a family to have?” since 1936, when the ideal number per family was 3.6. This number declined between 1957 and 1978 to an average of about 2.5 children, where it remains today—OK enough on that stat that’s another blog post, and no I’m not pregnant.

Steve and I celebrated our 1 year wedding anniversary in our home this weekend. Just for the record, we have also already done 91 Home Depot, Menards and Lowes visits in just three weeks (glad the 11% Menards rebate was going on too). Don’t worry friends this blog won’t turn into a BEFORE and AFTER or DIY picture over-share… we will save that for Pinterest.

Thanks for stopping by. Three advertising and marketing events this week, so stay tuned for strategic updates and thought-starters (now I really have to write about at least one).

Your newest millennial homeowner,
MN Design Gal plus Steve 

fun in front of the home

Drive Your Business Forward

Fast Company is a news source with the following of innovative and creative thought leaders who are actively inventing the future of business. What is happening this month is the judging of their Drive Your Business Forward contest.

drivebusinessforward

The submission process started with seeing the ad for small businesses on a promoted post on Facebook and then taking a look at the past winners on YouTube. My Dad is the sole owner and operator of his vending machine company who works 14+ hour days with a Sprinter van with over 340,000 miles on it. He has never owned a new work van or truck ever.

A Plus Vending

favorite smile

We met Dad at one of his Minneapolis vending stops on a late Thursday night in May and filmed him in action.

After explaining more to him about this mystery contest, he insistented in a follow-up shoot where he would be more prepared with commentary on why he deserves a new Sprinter van. A new Sprinter van or even the $10K would be an unforgettable experience and dream for him and the really-the entire family.

What is the GRAND PRIZE you ask?

The Grand Prize consists of a 2014 (or 2015, if available) Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van together with $10,000 worth of customizations. 
Additional second place is BEST VIDEO: The Readers’ Choice Prize is $10,000 in cash.
 
The eligible entries will be judged on the following criteria: 
1) how the proposed use of Sprinter van will help Entrant’s business grow (50%)
- Keith is all about efficiency on his route being the sole owner and operator, the more variety of snacks in his machines and the more stops on his route the more sales will be made. So with the help of Fast Company if he could customize and create the best layout in the Sprinter van, meanwhile drive a new safe and quality vehicle, this would grow his business. 
2) overall business strategy (25%)
Keith needs to transfer all of his machines to credit card acceptance and that is a huge investment; so his route and sales need to increase by 30% to be able to do this by 2015. With the business strategy to keep his route efficient with the best possible transportation as possible, it will help this sole business owner. 
3) quality of performance on submitted video (25%)
- Trina (my younger talented sister) used Final Cut Pro to develop this entertaining and customized video, so the quality is super- just see for yourself!
keithaplus_blkwhite
Taking all this into consideration we went drafted a quick outline for the 60-90 second video submission and used iCloud to quickly upload video clips from iPhones and labeled them in sequential order for efficient editing.
With the deadline being May 30th we had no time for multiple revisions. While Trina found music that wasn’t copyrighted, I created Dad a Google+ Account, YouTube Channel and added photos captioned from the submission video shoot.
Without any further details, please comment, encourage and LIKE our 90-second video submission for the Fast Company’s Drive Your Business to Success starring Keith Severson:

 

Ready for more? Trina made an extended version with an overview of a day in the life of attending to vending with Keith:

Lastly, for Father’s Day we had to make sure to release the uncut version. At the end there is a shout-out to Fast Company and how brilliant of an idea this contest is because not only did we spend time filming our hard-working Dad, but he may the underdog but he’s still the Winner to us!

Cheers to hard-work and stop by after July 7th for the update to the Fast Company contest. We hope our Dad wins because he needs a new Sprinter soon!

Staying creative as the Vending Man’s Daughter,
Tricia jo

pic of this mndesigngal

GoPros Aren’t Just for Pros

GoPros have been around since 2005 and really has become a household name over the last few years.

The company was formed by Nick Woodman. Woodman said he was inspired to start the company following a 2002 Australia surfing trip in which he was hoping to capture quality action photos of his surfing, but could not because amateur photographers could not get close enough, or obtain quality equipment at accessible prices. His desire for a camera system that could capture the professional angles inspired the ‘GoPro‘ name. Learn more from Wiki.

My personal love for the GoPro came when my little brother Troy started in the Air Force as a loadmaster. He filmed his first video and uploaded it to Vimeo to show the family what he on the job. It truly feels like we are on flight with him as he mounted the camera in multiple places to experience the journey.

troy air drop 2Troy air drop

Family and close friends met in Cabo for my wedding and Troy brought 2 GoPros with all the accessories to document the wedding week.

poolgopro

The slightly awkward part about a GoPro is the fact you actually can’t look through the lens to see what your recording. Farmers place it on their tractors, hunters mount them in their hunting shakes, surfers on their boards and they need to use their smartphones to trigger a feed to see what they are recording or just hope it’s capturing what they need.

On the wedding day, Troy mounted both GoPro’s in the palm trees to film the views birds in the trees and a unique perspective to the day.

wedding go pro set up Capture_setup2 gopro


The best part about GoPro’s is the accessories that can go under the water and also be mounted on someone’s head to give a feel of experience. Many videos for brands are being user-generated content and this is an original and real way to connect with the brand advocates.

prices for gopros

Now I’m not getting any product placement from GoPro’s or even Best Buy to write this post- but I wanted to let people know where to buy them and that they aren’t a cheap fun camera. They start at $199.99 with no accessories, but who wants to not have the waterproof case for vacation?

GoPro shows us how you can throw a waterproof GoPro on your head and swim with dolphins.

Let’s dive a bit deeper and see how it works with a shark snack also provided by GoPro’s YouTube Channel.

I recommend the cameras for trips, weddings, family fun and random Saturday days at the park with the kids. Learn more about my lifestyle brand by visiting video playlists on LovinRlife.com. Remember you can also make your own memories with video. I edited my footage in iMovie, which is now free with the latest Mac purchases.

“GoPro” for capturing those memories in the near future – you won’t be disappointed.

your MN Design Gal

mndesigngal

 

 

Linkedin – My Long Lost 326

“It was nice to meet you. Are we connected on Linkedin?” I bet you have said or heard that line before.

LinkedIn is a business-oriented Social networking service. Founded in December 2002 and launched on May 5, 2003, it is mainly used for professional networking. As of June 2013, LinkedIn reports more than 259 million acquired users in more than 200 countries and territories.

I find myself checking this social network on the mobile platform while riding the bus rather than logging-in on the desktop website. This week commuting to work, I went through my Twitter, Business Insider, Vine and Linkedin routine when I stopped in my tracks.

Checking the home feed, new messages and request, I noticed the +326>

326inboxonmobile_review


I scanned the invitations to see friends, current co-workers, past co-workers, 1-time meeters, a few never-met-head-hunters and people that I respect in the industry sitting in this pool of 326. Did I miss something? Was I really ignoring their invitations?

I opened a current co-worker to find the invitation date of Fri, February 14, 2014. (By the way thanks for thinking of me Rachel on Valentine’s Day).

IMG_4533

I quickly texted Rachel to ask if she had really requested my connections on Linkedin, and she didn’t remember but was pretty sure she did some time.

What did these people think when I didn’t accept their invite within a few days? Was it something that they could have taken personal? Are they still waiting to this day for my acceptance?

Thinking through all the possibilities of why this would happen, I waited until I arrived to my MacBook Air at home to see if the desktop version was truly showing the same thing or if it was a mobile app mishap.

Linkedindesktop2 LinkedinDesktop3

It was true! My desktop version had 326 messages waiting for me to check-mark and accept.

I sent a Tweet to @Linkedin and see if they just did an update. Why would this just show up now? My mailbox would have surely alerted me if I was missing messages.

Tweet to @linkedin

No feedback from @Linkedin.

I decided to look a bit closer at the UX and invitation structure of Linkedin. If you’re a mobile user, when a new connection request comes in to your mailbox it will not appear new again in the desktop version.  If the user clicks to review them quickly on the mobile version but doesn’t take the time to accept they will NOT appear on your desktop version later when return to the home screen. This leaves it up to the busy user to remember to go back into the invitations within messages and see them. In the past there never was any inbox alert unless it was active or a direct message that wasn’t clicked and viewed on.

If there is no action done to the invitation they’re put in a blocked category by default.

Clicking into the mailbox then invitations tab, it shows 326 blocked invites. Wait a minute– when did I ever “block” these people?

yellow_blocked

When I think of blocking, I think of Facebook. When a person usually blocks an ex, an ex’s ex, a random creeper, a current boss or future boss, possibly a mother-in-law…

I’m surprised that Linkedin mark the unattended invites as blocked as default, maybe this will be changed in the near future. Let’s just hope my 326 don’t think that I truly blocked them.

blockmeonlinkedin

LinkedinDesktop4

My Public Viewing Linkedin Profile

I decided to take the night off and not think too much more about my neglected 326 invites. How did this affect my career?

The next day I launched my Linkedin App on my bus and noticed the Linkedin intro screen with the random lady walking the pavement on a busy undefinable street.

whosthislady on Linked

Who is the Linkedin splash screen gal?

Is that a blurred Coach purse she is wearing?

I’m liking the demin jacket with the black pants. Wonder where I can buy that jacket?

Is the ponytail too casual for Linkedin?

Isn’t this suppose to be the professional network featuring people like this?

businesspeople businesspeoplerandomsearch

I decided to  take a look at a few alternative shots that Linkedin could update their app splash screen with.

walking gal with bag, coffee and late

The attractive fashionable woman walking the suburbs streets with a briefcase, coffee, painted red fingernails (I have never ever worn red nail polish like that to work) while making sure she is right on time for that important meeting.

istock_onthestreets

The streets are always crowded and you have to watch your back in business. He is your boy next door, always late but has the best ideas co-worker wearing purple and a skinny tie. She is known as the multitasker and problem-solver, while she used to model and someday hopes to be the first advertising executive on the cover of PlayBoy.


live is hard from shutter stock

Life’s city streets are just too busy for the special Linkedin user, you are above the rest. Wearing 3-inch heels and holding a true leather portfolio you can balance it all and be above all the rest with your success.

 

on the phone always connecting shutter stock

She is focused always connected even after leaving the office. How does she do it all?

 

Did Linkedin make the right choice with their current image? Did she get any paid for modeling or was this just a random New York City day and she clearly isn’t identifiable.

All silly-ness aside, Linkedin is always updating and I’m glad that they have stuck around and are always improving their UX, integration with other products and are one of the leading social networks.

Now, I will work the rest of weekend weeding through my 326.

Always thinking for the better of your brand,
MN Design Gal 

Photo by 507 Studio and Trina Severson

Photo by Trina with 507 Studio

 

Minnesota Made

Recently I was asked to write down two things that people may not know about myself.

My response was “A Packer Fan” and “Lived in 20+ homes over the last few decades”.

I am a Minnesota born gal. My dad was in marketing and sales for almost 20 years so the family moved around quite a bit growing-up. We moved over the border to Wisconsin and a few cities between Green Bay just in time for the Packers to be at the Superbowl 2 years in a row. The family then came back to Minnesota just in time for me to start 7th grade and I ended-up graduating High School successfully from the same town and with no awkward teenager moves to ruin those valuable years.

57percent_notlived

[Info according to 2008 Pew Research Social and Demographic Trends]


37percent_infographicMost stayers say at least half a dozen members of their extended families live within a hour’s drive.

40% said that more than 10 relatives live nearby. A majority of the stayers also cite a feeling of belonging as a major reason for staying put.

I had to sit back and think of those friends and advertising socialites that packed-up and moved away from the Minnesota winters over the past year or two.

 

ad2national

Another long-time advertising friend and fellow Advertising Federation board member Forest aka @ColossalRaptor makes the list of digital guys that headed out West. Can you find him above? (hint: he’s not smiling to the top right). Forest moved from the Midwest to sunny San Diego. He requested a transfer from the Minneapolis location of Digitaria last year to help grow and collaborate with their Cali digital strategy team. He hasn’t been out there too long to shake the town up too much but I wouldn’t put it past him to do some amazing digital things out there. Smart move Forest- it’s been one of the longest and coldest Winter ever in Minnesota.

forestcrop

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Photo taken by Jamie – Steve and I at the garden wedding

I met Jamie aka @jutzinger years ago through the Student Advertising Summit and later found out I was going to a wedding in her family’s backyard (pictured above a photo she took at the wedding in her parent’s beautiful backyard). Jamie is #MNmade and after being at a top local agency she felt herself ready for a new city and a new challenge. She took it upon herself to reach out to a past supervisor who completely supported her idea on getting to San Fran and she immediately landed a planner job (and promotion) at Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners. Nicely done. See you soon Jamie!

flowergardenpush

 

phongwithhisbrand

If you have ever met Phong aka @phonghtran, you will never ever forget Phong. We met at an AIGA event back in 2008ish, then we kept crossing paths through other organizations and agency events. Phong is super-bad-ass talented in design, development and even photography and he pushed himself out of Minneapolis because he knew there was more out there for him (plus he was really freaking cold). He went out to California then down to Texas where he works now at IBM. Now that is smart thinking.

Do you know more #MNmade advertising and marketers that have broke the mold of being born and raised Minnesotans that have inspired you? Send them my way and I’ll do a follow-up post with additional friends that are doing cool things in different cities.

Stay inspired.
Take chances and remember… you can ALWAYS move back.

your MN Design Gal

SideBar_smile_flipped
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The Power of a Poorly Designed Website

I’m sure you have seen the MN Sure healthcare commercials that is encouraging people like you and me, to sign-up before March 31 to enroll in healthcare savings.

A reliable source had this on his large list to do since the first of the year. I share his experience.

As the solo owner and operator of his business, my dad, Keith knew it would make sense to sign-up at MNsure.org especially after owning his own business for over 15 years and not being able to find affordable insurance. My mother works nearly full-time at a locally owned store and isn’t offered benefits. My parents pay almost as much as I pay for rent on my townhome in the Twin Cities for their monthly health insurance. Seriously.

Keith logged-on to MNsure.org several times over the last month and read about the process before just jumping into the registration process.

He started at 8 AM yesterday and moved his business route back just an hour to get this done and off his list.

The website says it will take 15-20 minutes to finish.

The first problem he encountered was the M002 online service message.error message mn sure

After many tries and exiting out and restarting his 2-year-old PC computer he called the 1-800 number. The first question he got from the operator was what browser are you on?

He was on Internet Explorer 11. As many developers know IE11 is a standard practice,  The IE11 changes help, in part, prevent poorly written user-agent detection mechanisms from (incorrectly) identifying Internet Explorer as an earlier version. As a result, sites that rely on modern standards display as intended.

The MNsure.org operator told my dad that the website was compatible on Firefox or Chrome. He was told to google it then download one of them and that should be the fix or at least help the process.

So Keith downloaded the Chrome browser.

He got to start the form! A few pages in he was looking for the NEXT button for several minutes. Because the size of the website and the right aligned button was pushed so far to the right of the screen with no horizontal screen bar, it wasn’t visible. He’s on a standard 20 inch screen, with a 2-year old PC– there is no need for that problem. Luckily I was near by and I showed him the quick trick of zooming the page itself out to make it smaller to see the NEXT.  ON a PC (Control + Shift – ).
This trick luckily eliminated a call to the 1-800 that is open just 8 AM to 4:15 PM. Who doesn’t work Monday to Friday those hours? When would you talk to customer service?

I took a look at the form myself and the form size was OK on MAC Safari, but I was surprised on how poor the form’s UX was. The alignment of the form fields and titles are horrible. So are you asking me for my middle name or last name on the first line? Simple spacing change could help this.form on mn sure

After getting through most of the website, Keith saw the SAVE button and thought it was a great idea to SAVE just in case another error or something timed him out. He hit SAVE & EXIT and was moved out of the entire process back to the homepage. Shortly after hitting the button he realized he should be fine, he will just log-in again and go back to his drafts or find a resume. He has a log-in and password where his sign-in info should be. That is why they make you sign-up right?

Keith logged in to his MNSure.org account to find there are NO DRAFTS, RESUME or SAVED areas on the site to find anywhere.

So he called the 1-800 number. It is now 11 AM.

The operator said that Keith qualified for a specific NAVIGATOR because it sounds like he is having some troubles online. Keith was given a phone number to call his NAVIGATOR who will schedule a time to call you back and talk him through his site problem.

thepromotedeasyprocess

When Keith called his NAVIGATOR he/she quickly said they were booked up to March 31 and had no openings.

Keith quickly asked the NAVIGATOR if he could just explain his simple problem of finding his RESUME or SAVED DRAFTS. The NAVIGATOR seemed knowledgable and was nice but they had never heard of where this info was saved.

She advised him to start over.

This 20 minute process turned in over 4 hours and Keith had to get to his customers and start his work day.

MNSure.org would have to wait again.

Not only did I feel the pain of this process but there is no excuse for this to happen to anyone.

A website should:
– Always be programmed for a 15-year-old up to a 75-year-old to operate
– Be tested on all standard browsers (like IE) and eliminate issues with up to date browsers
– NEVER have a SAVE button if there is no way to access the information again
– Have experts, like NAVIGATORS, but please don’t send someone to them if they are fully booked up
– NEVER change the shape of a logo

GOOD LOGOScreen Shot 2014-03-21 at 3.33.44 PM

BAD LOGOScreen Shot 2014-03-21 at 3.33.28 PM

I did offer to finish or restart the form for Dad.

Thanks MNsure.org for making this hard for an educated and busy business owner to apply for your assistance. I know he’s not the only one.

Was this done on purpose? Let’s just hope not.

Remember it’s not always your computer– it could be the website.

Always curious,
Tricia jo

Tricia_BW_thinking_2

Severson to a leanger

As the bride, when the wedding is over, there are many things that still need to be done–like changing your name. The name change is a big deal and there are many steps that are involved in converting an identity you have been born with to a brand new one. It isn’t just practicing your signature and changing the name on your checks anymore…

I knew that changing my name after decades of being a Severson would be hard, and actually wasn’t really looking forward to it. As a designer your name is your brand, your digital footprint. I branded myself MNdesignGal after starting a Twitter handle for myself and other social channels soon followed, so transitioning in the social space actually helped it become pretty seamless.

newlywed

For email, I secured triciajoleanger@gmail.com months before the wedding to make sure my new name wouldn’t need a number 69 or 21 after it to make it unique.

My Google + account and circles was luckily pretty easily transferable with all the attached history with them. It takes about 7 days, but once that is up and running you can shut down your old maiden name Google+. You do lose your Google +’s on webpages from the past name but that can be quickly made-up for right? Right.
Also you can only combine accounts twice in a lifetime, so beware. [As of December 2013]

google+tricia youtube tricia

YouTube videos and history can NOT be transferred or combined to a new account. So no more TriciaJo22 from 2006, it will now be TriciaJoSeverson connected through my new Gmail account. All videos need to be re-uploaded losing your stats and views. This leaves yourself wondering if should keep both accounts active. #WhatAPain

Facebook name change is easy, my question is how long do I keep my maiden up in as “formally known as (Severson)”? 6 months? A few years? Forever?

Work email transfer will never be perfect, a co-worker will always reference you with your maiden name because of the history the email account will have. I will always need to have an email re-direct from the maiden name. Google chat doesn’t let you change you name, everyone would need to delete you and re-add you with your new name (that is a waste of time and who will do that?).  I’m also not putting on the bottom of my signature ” as of November 16, please refer me as Tricia Leanger” – who am I Prince? Formally known as? No ones reads a signature anyway.

US social security office line

Finally, the social security card change. Get ready ladies for a fun little day trip. I found the 6-county area office that is off of Chicago Ave downtown Minneapolis. Find your location before heading over. In most cities it’s a different office than your friendly and local DMV (I learned the hard way). I thought it was such a great idea to take off work the Monday after my honeymoon to mark this one-off my TO-DO list. From the research I have had, there is never a good time to get there. I stood in line for 2 hours (outside in November) then made my way through a metal-detector and got questioned by an officer (for real). Then I waited over 3 hours in a crowded DMV-type-office with about 100 other people. Ladies don’t worry, the only times you have to go there is if you lose your card or change your name. Thankfully hospitals file for your new baby social security cards.

us social security office 1

What to bring to the Social Security office:
– Wedding License
– Driver’s License
– Current social security card
– Hand sanitizer
– Something to drink (you may be able to sneak something in)
– A snack
– Your phone / iPad fully charged

TIP: Get 2 copies of your wedding license when you go in with your fiancé. It will only be $10 more. This way you can send it to get your Passport changed and even your Social Security without being too nervous about losing the only copy you have. 

Overall the name change has been successful and I have re-branded myself.

leanger_MNdesignGal

tricialeanger_nameonly_lockup

leangerLockUp_nameonlydesign

Cheers to a new name and an exciting time in any gal’s life. It only happens once–right?!

your MN Design Gal TRICIA jo leanger

a new bride

Pinterest Interest – content done right

Are you on Pinterest? Are you using Pinterest for a search engine for ideas? Is your brand on Pinterest?

Many companies are experimenting with Pinterest. I’m very observant (and sometimes slightly obsessed) with Pinterest campaigns, sweepstakes and contests. I participate in them to see how they are run and what goes wrong or how it makes an average Pinner like myself feel. In this case, it was about a brand and their experimental marketing of their own content to drive traffic to their e-commerce website.

I just read last month in the Minneapolis Egotist (must check out if you haven’t yet) about a very unique brand I don’t know much about UNIQLO. They made a big splash with a campaign that they claimed had no paid media, with over 55 Million Impressions in just 5 days.

This post isn’t about critiquing this campaign actually– even though it would drive me crazy seeing pins like that– I literally would curse this brand’s name. As of December 11th though the pins can’t be found on their board (good call they actually do remove them). Content that was done well caught my eye within their profile: UNIQLO Hairdos.

Incredible imagery to drive traffic to even more info on how to style the hair.

uniqlo's hairdo

How much effort probably went into this content? Hiring a stylist for 1 day and then shooting the girls doing their hair (the stylist doing it in between takes) then a designer / Art Director to review photos and compile either gifs or single panels to describe the “how-do”… then getting the images on Pinterest through the URL’s on the website is easy; it takes about 30 seconds do that for each Pin. Probably will need a writer on that to cleverly draw users to the website and people to relate to the pin.

Estimated time and cost break-down:

1 day photo shoot – 8 hours, Photographer $6000
2 hair stylists (10 total looks) (5 would be ideal) $1500
1 fashion stylist $1000
5 models – 8 hours each total $10000
production for shoot including, lighting, space, Food and Snacks for shoot $5000
Graphic designer for post graphics (approx. 10 hours) agency bill rate: $150, freelance bill rate: $70
Writer for web page and Pinterest (approx. 8 hours) $800
Social media designer to post graphics (approx. 3 hours) $300

Now let’s try and cut some costs shall we?
CUT COSTS:
Get an Art Director that knows simple everyday fashion themselves. Also someone who is social savvy to think about the layout of the images with the photographer and different shots to use later (after the Pinterest content). Sounds like you need someone like this MNdesignGal on set.

Wait– is that you MN Design Gal? Uniqlo blonde

uniqlo relief

The clothes could be donated by a related or Co-Promoted brand, or unmarked Wal-Mart turtle necks that mean nothing.
The hair stylists should be interviewed and provide feedback to a copywriter. Really cut costs and get a hairstylist that also is a copywriter.
The photographer could be an up and comer too (like my sister Trina), someone who has their own blog that can shoot many photos with fast editing time, it also helps to get friends and models that have little acne or facial hair.
Who ever said you need real models? Local celebrities or bloggers can make perfect models too! This also will help with your impressions and reach on the campaign. They will for sure share their hairstyles with their incredible following.

serious look from uniqlo's

DON’T FORGET:
A behind the scenes tweet, blog post or content for the brand’s Facebook is perfect. It can also create buzz before the final content is up, think of writing a preview piece. Don’t worry about competitors taking your idea, your turn-a-around time isn’t 10 weeks, it is MAYBE 10 days. Your copy is already written before the photo shoot right?

POST TIMING:
Think of Prom and Homecoming, New Years and Spring break timing for a hairstyle focus posts. Many people will be looking for pins on this topic. If you can ever bring in a #wedding tag or two, that can also help drive traffic since that is 24/7 – 365 pin traffic.

Overall, great job by this unique brand UNIQLO. I now follow all their boards. Feel inspired?

your pin gal 

PinneditliveditA little side project I started last year in my attempt to demonstrate some easy to publish fashion content. #PinneditLivedIt

Stowe Away Holiday Sweaters

This year for the family, I decided to design a logo and propose something different for the Severson family to participate in. Introducing the Stowe Away Holiday Sweater Spectacular Family Gathering.

StoweAway_HolidaySweater_2013

Ages 5 to 85 are all encouraged to wear a sweater of their own or borrow one. To give the family some ideas I also sent along these photos found in random Google searches for inspiration. These are NOT family members, friends or co-workers (wish they were though).

sweater2 sweater1

 

I wish everyone a fun, safe and unforgettable Holiday. Remember you can introduce new things into your family traditions. Check back for up the results of this event happening this weekend.

Happy Holiday Sweater wearing!

TRICIA jo

 

FLASH-BACK to a party I planned for a past agency. This invite I designed to introduce the “ugly sweater Holiday party” to them bowling-style.

SweaterBowling_12.08

Engaged then Married the Same Day Story

What would you do if you were proposed to and your wedding day was all in the same day?

  • Would you run?
  • Would you un-accept the proposal after learning about the wedding day surprise?
  • Tell the groom your crazy because you’re not even on Pinterest.
  • Be SO happy that it was your childhood dream?

This concept worked for a couple that had been together for almost 5 years. The video is below and feel free to watch it at any time because I got to experience their story this weekend.

The Pinterest board that was done by the bride wasn’t a success, it must be taken down or blocked because I couldn’t find it anywhere online. Only a few photos of the couple that bloggers posted to gain traffic to their boards.

Amanda Leak Pinterest

 

Where I get confused on this story is, how did that mermaid dress fit so perfectly? What if she was plus or minus a good 5 lbs before the wedding? (that can happen easily we are women).

And what about the “I Love You” in the car on the way to the proposal? There is no way that a woman would be able to go 5 years from being asked out to not hear those words… right?

I’m guessing it isn’t made up but that is the exception to the rule that a woman wouldn’t push the ego of a man or leave them all together to hear those 3 words.

The TODAY show has a write-up of an interview and in that the groom says, “She already knew that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her and that we wanted to get married someday,” Leak told TODAY.com about the wedding, which he says took him roughly a
year and a half to plan. “I asked her to write down everything she wanted on a sheet of paper: What are we wearing? Who is invited? Who is officiating? She wrote it all out for me a year before I even started thinking about planning.”

So she did see this coming?
Probably not that day, but she had it on her mind that it would happen one fine day.

Does knowing this make this story less exciting? Unfortunately yes, but it’s still a nice 30 minute fill-in time to watch and be entertained by.

It really cracked me up when the 2 ladies at the Hotel catch the groom off-guard and he spills the truth to the camera crew following them. I wonder if he actually regrets doing that because that element of surprise was for sure slightly taken away from him by doing that.

Well, I’m glad I’m not going to be proposed to and married on the same day. My Pinterest board dress would be tricky since there isn’t one consistent style (and my wedding dress style isn’t even pinned).

pinned wedding dress

Some of my favorite wedding inspirations come from:
thedazzlingdetails.com and Pinterest boards

idea for picture and wed

 

 

Another blog and Pinterest account I enjoy is:
stylemepretty.com or Pinterest boards
Style me prettyRemember you can always search within the source too when others pin things from the site. Like this URL >>> http://www.pinterest.com/source/thedazzlingdetails.com/

Keep on dreaming and pinning though ladies because you never know what your story may be and the last thing you need is a fake not up-to-date Pinterest board to stir him wrong.

Your Bride to Be Blogger and Friend,
TRICIAjo

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