The Walt Disney Family Museum and the World of Mary Blair Exhibit Trip Report

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This past weekend I got to experience the Walt Disney Family Museum—finally!

We made a trip up to San Francisco, just to make it in time to experience the Mary Blair exhibit at the museum. With only 2 hours in total to spend there, we started with Mary Blair as the thought was, the Walt Disney Family Museum will always be there and we can always come back.

So that’s how I ended up spending a whole hour in Mary Blair world and had to rush through the Walt Disney Family Museum at lightning speed. Yes, rush, as there are 11 galleries to experience and each one is pretty big and unique! I really didn’t get to read much but just get the overall impression of each gallery and move on… but I still walked away feeling inspired by both Walt and Mary and charged up to get to work and to follow my own dreams that I am so passionate about.

Between the two, my big take away was a continued encouragement to tackle your passion, your work, your dreams with your whole heart and give it all you got. Whether your passion is design and art or not, both Mary Blair and Walt Disney did not do anything halfway. Everything they did and everything they touched, was done 100%. If they ran into a problem, they researched, they dug deeper, they clung to it harder. They tried again and again and got it done. Beautifully and epically done.

Sidenote—Before I go on, you may even be wondering who Mary Blair even is…. she was a conceptual artist for Disney. So she created a lot of the ideas and overall feelings for the animators to base their final drawings on for movies like Peter Pan (my fave!), Alice in Wonderland, and Cinderella. She then left Disney for a time, but then came back to work on the attraction its a small world for the World’s Fair. That ride then came back to make its home at Disneyland—and is one of the few rides that are actually in every single Disney park.—end very long sidenote.

Recognize this scene from its a small world from Mary Blair's sketchbook—her rough sketches are as bad as mine!

Recognize this scene from its a small world from Mary Blair’s sketchbook—her rough sketches are as bad as mine!

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From Mary Blair, I loved seeing how her style so drastically changed from her trip to South America. There, she learned about color and reinvented the way she drew children. This getaway with her husband and the Disney crew—including Walt Disney himself—opened her eyes to the way color is used and gave her an entirely new perspective on her work. Her work drastically changed from that trip. So from that I take 2 things:

1. Take a vacation when you can. Even if its a working trip. Get out of your box and experience life.

2. It’s okay to totally reinvent yourself no matter your age. It’s okay to gain new interests, new perspectives, and a new style. (Sometimes I feel so behind in starting this Etsy shop of mine, it’s totally different than anything I’ve ever done and I’m getting “older”)

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Similarly, I had encouraging take-aways from Walt Disney as well but on a much grander and different scale.

I love how Walt would come up with some crazy new idea, and without having a means to get the idea done, he would then create the tool to get it done. One example of that would be the multi plane camera that enables their animations to have that layered quality… from the foreground to the background. Okay, I’m getting rather technical now… so back to the feelings part…. Walt had a vision, he had a dream… he actually had a lot of visions and a lot of dreams… so he made these teams of like-minded people and together they accomplished world changing creative endeavors. I think its amazing to see where he started… he taught himself how to draw, how to animate… and from that planted seed he grew a company and a brand that was then able to grow to such a giant scale of an amusement park. That road from A to B…. was marked with so many failures but then so many wins…. so many struggles and problems but then so many victories and solutions.

A bench from the park where Disney was first inspired to create his own amusement park: Disneyland.

A bench from the park where Disney was first inspired to create his own amusement park: Disneyland.

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Of course, while I love the animation and film side of Disney, my heart truly is captured by Disneyland. The museum kinda lacked in this area. However, it did have a “massive” minitature model of Disneyland. Not Disneyland of any certain year, but the Disneyland that Walt knew and loved. It showed all the rides that he had a hand in, whether or not they had opened before his death (like Haunted Mansion). To view this model, from above, was remarkable. To see the imagination it took to create this larger than life amusement park that was done in the quality it was down to the smallest detail. He left no stone unturned, seriously, even the ground slowly changes theme as you walk from land to land. Walt knew quality, and expected nothing less.

The earliest known drawing of Mickey Mouse.

The earliest known drawing of Mickey Mouse.

So to sum up… from Walt Disney I continued to learn:

1. You have to start somewhere, no matter how small. He started with a sketch of a mouse. “If you can dream it, you can do it” “I only hope that we don’t lose sight of one thing – that it was all started by a mouse.”

2. Once you get started, don’t let anything get in your way. “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible”

3. When you’re going after your dreams, go all the way—giving it your all. “When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable.”

sam and walt disney family museumThank you Walt, for being such an inspiration to me… ever since I was a little girl, but more so since I grew up to be a big kid. A kid that wants to explore her creative boundaries and push the limits. To be inspired and to inspire. To have dreams and follow them through. A kid that wants to spark that light in others while continuing to burn my own creative juices. And to do everything I put my mind to with every ounce of strength I have.

All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.

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A Year Spent at the Happiest Place on Earth / 2013-2014

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Today my Disneyland pass expires. After having an annual pass to the Happiest Place on Earth since Christmas of 2004, I am so heartbroken to not just be able to head down there whenever I want. Looking back over the years, I feel so blessed and am so thankful for all the little moments and celebrating all the major milestones. It’s the place I fell in love, it’s where friendships were strenghtened, its the place where my little nieces and nephews saw a whole new world with a sparkle in their eyes. And oh my gosh, I miss it already.

On the other hand, Disneyland to me has always been a creative and artistic masterpiece. Every single nook and cranny has been thoughtfully executed down to the smallest detail. It has been crafted with love and a passion for the ideals of one man, Walt Disney. Walking down Main Street, I am just filled with so much creative juice that my heart just feels full and my mind is racing with ideas.

And while I am taking a break from having a pass for awhile… I will forever cherish all these days and nights spent in the most beautiful amusement park ever created. Okay, I think Paris and Tokyo Disneyland are the prettiest, but I haven’t been to those—yet.

So here’s to yet another great year spent at the Happiest Place on Earth—and my last for a little while! To the memories and photographs, to the friends and laughter.

See my 2010 year at Disneyland, 2011,  and 2012.

May 7

The day I got my pass was just to be able to get in for the day to take Rachel’s maternity photos… it was great to be back after not having a pass for 2 months. And of course, great to be there for sun kissed moments such as this…

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September 22

Saying goodbye to the Courtyard of Angels as they closed it down the following week to make it the new entrance to Club 33. It’s my favorite spot in the park, see my post on it here.

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November 11

My first trip with my newest Disneyland ride buddy!! I was pretty excited, can you tell?

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November 15

First time seeing Amie as Mrs. Pankratz since the wedding! So much catching up to do while exploring Disneyland at its Christmas finest!

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December 8

Before going on Splash Mountain with the newlyweds… and before Amie was very upset with us for making her sit in the front row and get totally drenched.

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January 12

Celebrating our annual trip for Rachel’s birthday.

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January 17

Because I just couldn’t pick which Ryan boy to post! And because they are both just so darn cute!!

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February 9

One last trip before the husband’s pass expired.

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April 9

Molly’s first trip to Disneyland! And her buddy Grayson and my buddy Jess looking at ducks… again, couldn’t decide which kiddo to show! More photos from this trip here.

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April 11

Mia took her first spin around the teacups during what we thought would be our last trip together! Another couple photos from this trip here!

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April 30

Another “last trip before the pass expires…” I just love watching the kiddos experience the joys we take for advantage. Like the fun of a carousel.

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May 4

Since I started my pass and this post off with 8 month pregnant Rachel, I thought it was only appropriate to end with 11 month old Mia in her mama’s arms.

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Wow… what a year it was! I can’t promise you that I didn’t cry a few times going through photos to create this post. I love these friends of mine who are more like family. And this park that sometimes feels more like home.

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Friday Footnotes

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1. Grand Budapest Hotel Graphics

I really don’t know much about this movie but without even seeing the film, I’m already loving the graphic design! Since the entire world is fictional, a design team came in to design EVERYTHING. The film’s lead graphic designer, Annie Atkins, said:

This film was particularly fun, I think, from a graphics point of view, because we were creating this entirely fictional country that Wes had written – the State of Zubrowka. It meant that every little detail had to be made from scratch – flags, banknotes, postage stamps, everything.

Now that sounds like fun! See so much more here on Graphic Exchange.

2. Brittney Lee’s Wedding Invitations

After finally seeing Frozen, my love of Brittney Lee (previously posted about here), the movie’s visual development artist, has exploded! Not sure why I wasn’t before, but I am now following her blog and have found her wedding invitations. How unique are these? Seriously loving the color combination and the whole pop-up package!

3. Disney’s March Magic Teams

I love when my passions overlap… so I just knew I had to share this when I saw it in my blog reader. What if Disneyland ride’s were basketball teams ready to compete in March Madness? Well, whoever wins that one, the team’s logos are pretty neat! The Hecklers team is pretty funny to me too! See the rest of the team line up here.

4. DIY Chipboard Album

I’ve shared my love of scrapbooking on here before, so I definitely am loving this DIY chipboard from A Beautiful Mess. My favorite part is how it folds out, really opens up a lot of creative layout ideas. Is there anything those ladies haven’t thought of to create? See their DIY post here along with a video!

5. Propogating Succulents

Now that I’ve managed to keep more than a dozen plants alive in my backyard, I think I have quite the green thumb. But in truth, I just got lucky. There are quite a few little “hard to kill” succulents that are wasting away though and this article blew my mind on how to keep them alive. I’ve planted new succulents from old before, but seeing them just come from a leaf at a time is pretty neat. Plus, the photos are just gorgeous! Read the whole post here.

 

 

Friday Footnotes

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1. Jeff Roger’s McDonalds Ad

I love putting a face to a design that I’ve known and loved. I had seen this McDonald’s ad awhile ago, loved the painted textures and typography but never knew who created it. THen I ran acorss Jeff Roger’s portfolio. And his behind the scenes process images! And then I loved this ad even more. It’s just gorgeous work! See more of this campaign and more of Jeff’s work here.

2. Seasons Cover by Eiko Ojala

I’m obsessed with the intricacies of paper cutting… largely because I have no patience for it so I am in awe of what people can create with it when they take the time and have that inherent passion for creating art from scraps of paper. All that to say, I thoroughly enjoyed looking at all the teeny tiny details of this magazine cover for Seasons, from Eiko Ojala‘s portfolio on Behance. It is so intricate and chock full of details. See more here. Found via Mr. Cup.

3. It’s a Small World Book, Illustrated by Joey Chou

Not long ago, I posted about this new Disney show inspired by the It’s A Small World Disneyland attraction . I really loved the look of the show since it was heavily inspired by Mary Blair’s work. So when I saw this book at the Wonderground Downtown Disney gallery, I just had to have it! Illustrated by Joey Chou, the layouts are just gorgeous and so full of life! See more images of the book on Joey’s blog, purchase on Amazon here.

4. Classic Disney Animation Recreations

Speaking of Disney art, you may have seen this image floating around the web this last week or two…. artist Tyson Murphy took a screencapture from 101 Dalmations and then painting over it to practice and explore the lighting of the scene. Really beautiful work. Love the little bits of debris and other items caught in the light. Also see one from Sword in the Stone.

5. Aged Wood DIY

I love Jess’ Whip It Up Wednesday posts… where she posts a quick little craft project. They’re usually pretty easy and something that can be “whipped up” within an hour or so. But I was super excited to see this DIY!

A few months ago, her hubby Scott made me the most amazing shelves that used this painting technique. And I seriously love them—for so many reasons—but the paint job is my favorite!

Follow this link to see the rest of her post. I’ve already painted a frame following her tutorial, it was seriously so easy!

Disneyland Secrets: Hidden Mickeys and other Fun Facts

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Many people are shocked to find out I only truly fell in love with all things Disney[land] just when I met my hubby 10 years ago.

I grew up on Disney’s movie magic and loved the random trips we took as kids but it wasn’t until Andy pointed out the random holes in the wall on the Pirates of the Carbibbean ride and asked if I could see the Hidden Mickey—that my love for Disney grew into a passion.

From there, my obsession with all things secret—and even mythical—about Disneyland began. I found an outdated website with Hidden Mickey sightings, printed out pages and pages and went through the park marking them off one at a time. Yeah, Andy kept his distance from me on those days. 🙂

What kept me so entranced by these hidden gems is the artistic detail the park Imagineers tended to. All this “hidden stuff” is just bonus fun to an already amazing place to visit. It’s what kept me going back trip after trip, year after year. It’s these small details that place the quality of Disneyland over an other amusement park.

So I just wanted to take some of these little gems and share them with you! And just like Andy sparked my curiosity oh so many years ago, hopefully I can spark yours!

All the photos below were taken by me, or friends, over the last 10 years of having our annual passes.

Hidden Mickeys

What is a Hidden Mickey anyway? According to the Hidden Mickey Guy:

An official Hidden Mickey: a partial or complete impression of Mickey Mouse placed by the Imagineers and artists to blend into the designs of Disney attractions, hotels, restaurants, and other areas.

The 50th anniversary celebration really brought Hidden Mickeys to the forefront. Where to many, the idea of Hidden Mickeys were somewhat mythical and unofficial, the 50th anniversary placed 50 “hidden” Mickeys throughout the park. Many were very obvious finds while a small percentage were trickier to find.

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But these small hidden gems, go beyond just those three interlocking circles. There are many more nods to other characters, and even past rides—or whole restaurants!

Let’s take a grand circle tour of the park, shall we?

Disneyland

Starting with Main Street….

There are a great many nods to the past found in the Main Street windows. Many of the painted window advertisements acknowledge past Disneyland Imagineers, artists, and animators. One of the more famous windows is for Elias Disney, Walt Disney’s father. Another famous window, and room, is above the firehouse where Walt Disney used to stay after hours in a furnished apartment. There is still a light in the window that is always on in his memory.

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Find this Hidden Mickey in the Main Street Cinema.

 

Fantasyland

My favorite Hidden Mickey is found in the top windows of Big Ben, of the London scene in the Peter Pan attraction. You can see just a silhouette of Mickey Mouse waving to you just as you finish circling the tower.

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Look closely in Mr. Toad’s left eye to find a little Hidden Mickey

 

Pixie Hollow Hidden Mickey

I was quite excited to spot a Hidden Mickey at the entrance to Pixie Hollow!

Adventureland

Indiana Jones has so so so many amazing finds! In the projector room, ask the Cast Member at the front of the line if they have a flash light. If so, they can show you, up in the rafters, an old Eeyore sign from the parking lot that stood in place before Indiana Jones was built over it! And then just before you leave the projector room, look back at the left wall and you can see a very subtle but GIANT Hidden Mickey on the wall made from the rocks and cracks.

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Another Hidden Mickey lies in the very next room, on the desk on the cover of a magazine is a scene from one of the original Mickey black and white cartoons from the same time period that Indiana Jones took place. These are my favorite kinds of Hidden Mickeys… where they seamlessly fit with the theme of the room and are pretty out in the open but still subtle.

Indiana Jones Hidden Mickey magazine

Another amazing fun Mickey find is on the ride itself. As you’re entering the first skeleton/bone room, look back over your left shoulder and you’ll find a skeleton leaning against the wall that is wearing those classic Mickey ears hats! So fun but so very hard to find! We once rode it over and over until we found it and now I can’t-not see it!

Like I mentioned, there’s a lot more “hidden” than just Mickeys. Sitting on top of the Jungle Cruise building sits a familiar totem from the Tiki Room.

Tiki Room totem in Jungle Cruise line

And notice any other familiar characters from our beloved Beauty and the Beast sitting in the Tarzan’s Treehouse camp?

Mrs. Potts in Tarzans Treehouse

New Orlean’s Square

I mentioned the Hidden Mickey on the Pirates ride earlier (in the top center of the right wall in the big ship fight scene)… but another fun fact is that the skull in the bedroom scene on the left is from an actual real life skeleton! At the time, 1960s, the technology to create realistic skeletons wasn’t quite there yet, so they got a hold of a bunch of real skeletons from a doctor friend of Disney’s. Since then, they’ve replaced the majority of the skeletons with artificial replicas but the skull in place above the skeleton in bed is still one of the originals! You can see the difference in the color tone as well, the original is a darker brown while the replica in the bed is whiter.

A very well known and easy to find Hidden Mickey can be found in the dining hall of the Haunted Mansion attraction. With an always changing display, you can find the tri-circle Mickey among the dinner plates.

I’m not sure if this really counts at this point, but Club 33 (posted about last year’s visit here and here) is a somewhat secretive restaurant. The more appropriate word though may be “exclusive.” It remains to be a secretive location because it is so exclusive and so expensive!

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Critter Country

Like the Eeyore sign, I love when the new rides give nods to what once stood before. On the Winnie the Pooh ride, you can see the deer, buffalo and moose heads that once hung on the wall of Country Bear Jamboree! It’s easiest to see them when you’re sitting in the front row of the honey pot, turn all the way around when leaving Pooh’s dream scene and they’re found just above the archway. Also, find a Hidden Mickey along the right wall after that in the honey.

Country Bear Jamboree in Winnie the Pooh Disneyland

Frontierland

Find this next Mickey while riding Big Thunder Mountain… however with the recent overhaul of the ride, this may not be there anymore!

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Golden Horseshoe Hidden Mickey

Can you find the odd ball out in the Golden Horseshoe?

Tomorrowland

You may remember the attraction that once stood in place of Innoventions… America Sings. Some of those singing chickens found their way to Star Tours—just without the feathers!

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You can see the chicken-like resemblance in the feet of the robot on the right!

Find this Hidden Mickey on a tile in the first room of Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters

Find this Hidden Mickey on a tile in the first room of Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blasters

Toontown

Toontown is on a whole other level when it comes to Hidden Mickeys. These Mickeys are so obvious and more just for decoration, so they’re called Decor Mickeys. So many examples of which can be found in Mickey’s house itself. Even the music notes are little Mickeys.

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California Adventure

I don’t know nearly as much about California Adventure as I know about Disneyland so we’ll just head over there for a moment or two…

 

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Lasseter wine label

You may recognize the owner’s of this mock wine label as the Creative Director of both Disney and Pixar: John Lasseter!

It was once said that there are no Hidden Mickeys inside of the Tower of Terror. I heard that the creators of the ride wanted to distance themselves from Disney. Not sure if that’s true or not, but the only Mickey I’ve ever found happens to be my favorite one in California Adventure! When watching the ride preview video, and again on the ride itself, watch out for the little girl’s stuffed animal. 🙂

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There are at least 3 hidden Mickeys in this map to the Redwood Creek Park. There’s usually a cast member on hand to aide in the search as well.

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Find this little guy toward the end of the Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train ride on the right side.

Ariel Line Hidden Mickey

There’s a good chance in all splashes of bubbles, water, or even honey (Winnie the Pooh) that there lies a Hidden Mickey. Find these bubbles in the ironwork outside Ariel’s Undersea Adventure.

Outside the Parks

Mickeys and other secrets aren’t just confined inside the park walls. There’s lots to find outside “the berm.”

Keep your eyes out for those pesky Disney cats… it’s my hubby’s absolute favorite secret of the parks. When the park first opened, it had such a horrible mouse infestation that they unleashed a plethora of cats to capture them all. Only that led to a bunch of cats that have remained escaped all these years. We’ve found them mostly around the Rivers of America and along the train route but once had a cat spend quite a lot of time with us in the area that now houses California Adventure’s Radiator Springs.

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This has to be one of the biggest and well kept Hidden Mickeys of all the parks… (photo found on the D23 site)

Along Disneyland Drive, near the corner of Katella, you can find this giant Mickey made out of the sidewalks. Many pedestrians walk this every single day and probably never really know or care to think about its odd shape!

Hidden Mickey Harbor

Here I am excitedly running around the Mickey with my Hidden Mickey book in tow. haha nerd alert!

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This cleverly hidden Mickey is within the concierge counter of the Grand Californian Hotel… there’s also a hidden fairy (not pictured)!

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Do I really need to help you find this one? You’re a pro now!

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Find this fun Mickey on the Daisy level of the parking structure!

Hope you enjoyed this post and will have fun finding some of these and more yourself!

Many thanks to my friend Lindsey who scampered around the park finding many of these little guys with me!

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If you want to try to find some of the above secrets and many many more… check out this great resource: Disneyland’s Hidden Mickeys: A Field Guide to Disneyland Resort’s Best Kept Secrets. It goes much deeper than just the Hidden Mickeys. Also has two routes to take, a very descriptive way of finding stuff (like a cheat sheet), or a harder and less obvious hint to find them.

There’s also a fun app, for the less serious secret finder called Wishing Stars.

 So what are your favorite secrets of this beloved park??

Evernotes Every Friday

This will be my last Evernotes Every for a couple weeks… but do not fret, you’ll still be getting your Friday fill with guest posts by Amie on some wedding DIYs as well as from photographer and mommy Jess from J. Rose Photography so please check back!

1. Design*Sponge Travel Guides

So why will I be taking some Friday hiatus’? Well I will be jetting around the north east corner of America! So of course I had to delve into all the travel posts on Design*Sponge! I love the division of these posts between Shop, Eat, and Experience. So helpful in finding things to do and most importantly, where to eat. To see more Design*Sponge travel guides, click here.

2. 21 Signs You’re Dating a Designer

I found myself goofily smiling while reading this post on 21 Signs You’re Dating a Designer. And I bet any of my friends who read the article will find the humor in just by knowing me as well… in particular [#1] my pointing out ugly restaurant menu typefaces, [#9] the stress of buying me gifts, [#14] custom handmade gifts, and most importantly, [#17] always making sure they have stellar wedding invitations, and now baby shower invitations! Read the rest of the list on buzzfeed.com, found via swissmiss.

3. Saving Mr. Banks Movie Poster

Oh how I have been impatiently waiting for any and all news updates on the upcoming Disney movie, Saving Mr. Banks. Just last week the movie trailer finally came out and then this week I saw this poster on Facebook. Couldn’t be more excited to see “Walt” walk down Main Street, USA, this coming December.

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4. The Pixar Theory

Speaking of Disney, this site was cracking me up with their witty creativity! The Pixar Theory proposes that the entire Pixar family actaully exists within the same universe. Starting with Merida’s (Brave) discovery of the magical wisps to The Icredible’s Buddy releasing the Zero Point Energy that ends up powering toys to come to life (Toy Story) and the advancement in fish I.Q. (Finding Nemo). All this culminates in the destruction of the human population on the Earth (Cars and Wall-E) and the evolution of the animals turns them into Monsters (Monster’s Inc). Whew.

Go read the Pixar Theory for yourself, so entertaining and mind blowingly creative.

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5. Lumi Co’s Print Fabric with Light

I originally saved this for the design on the front of the box, but the more I looked into the more I want to buy the starter kit. Seems like a pretty neat idea. Design*Sponge even posted a DIY using these photosenstive dyes. Found the Dieline.

Once Upon a Time, Rachel’s Fairytale DIY Baby Shower

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Okay now that you’ve seen Rachel’s maternity photos at Disneyland and you’ve officially been invited, now you’re ready to see the baby shower in all its storybook glory!

Rachel didn’t want the traditional “cutesy” type shower—and I am right there with her. We definitely aligned in the rustic and eclectic vision for the shower… Having an overall storybook theme thankfully came alongside the Pankratz wedding decor that will be used this coming November. Big thanks go out to the bride to be for letting us borrow her treasures!

My favorite piece of the decorations from Amie was this very old typewriter that totally fit the theme! It was the perfect welcoming item for the guests as they arrived at the shower!

Our guest table also included the bookmark favors as well as a photo of the mama to be.

(all tutorials for our many DIYs can be found at the end of this post)

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The shower was held at the grandma-to-be’s new home which had this gigantic side yard for us to set up the shower. Each table’s centerpiece was different and ranged from books and glass bottles to vintage trays and lanterns.

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Hanging above the gift table were a dozen paper pom poms crafted by Rachel. And along the backwall and a perfect backdrop, was Amelia’s name written out in letters from Michael’s and a few paper rosettes. (see DIY links below)

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Inside the house, was the cake table and the buffet. The rosettes were all hand crafted along with the cake stands—a DIY I featured on here last year.

Remember that fabulous florist from Lauren’s wedding? She was able to grab us some bouquets of flowers, and Rachel DIY’d the cake toppers to perfection herself.

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The day truly was a success… Baby Amelia made out the best I think. 🙂

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And here’s one last photo of the grandma, mama, and aunt to be!

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You can see more of what inspired us with this shower and even more storybook theme ideas by looking at my Pinterest board and the mama-to-be’s.

DIYs used in this shower:

Once Upon a Time, Rachel’s Fairytale Baby Shower Invitations and Bookplate Stamp

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Now that you’ve seen Rachel’s maternity photos, the next glimpse into the shower would be the baby shower invitations!

I drew inspiration from Mary Blair’s work on the credits from Cinderella and then applied Rachel’s nursery’s color palette with its pinks, peaches, and mint greens.

The “Once Upon A Time” mark was handwritten as well as Rachel’s name, then a combination of two other typefaces, a modern serif and a medieval display text completed the invite.

This really was a work of love, and definitely one of my favorite invitations yet!

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In addition to the invitation, I created a bookmark with Rachel’s favorite verse, Jeremiah 29:11, as the shower favors. Along with a print to go along with it for the nursery as well.

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All of these pieces of the invitation can be bought in my Etsy shop: Your New Friend Sam.

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In addition to the invite pieces—and to go along with the storybook theme—I created a custom bookplate stamp for Amelia’s baby books.

Also available in my Etsy shop.

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So many fun projects were created and designed for Rachel’s shower! I can not wait to show you rest of the photos from the day of… tomorrow!

Disney Ornament, Christmas Traditions 2012

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One of my favorite traditions is buying our annual Disney ornament! I featured our 2011 ornament last year along with several others from previous years.

This year’s ornament, similar in look to last year, is our 8th annual ornament from Disneyland.

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I think some of my favorite Disney ornaments though are from their more rustic collection—which feature a more vintage Mickey and Minnie—wish they had these out again this year.

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Another new ornament this year was from our trip through Oregon, from Mutnomah Falls!

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And lastly, remember this beauty from the Vintage Marketplace? Well, I had a migraine and had to miss the ornament exchange, so look who is sitting pretty on my tree?

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What are some of your favorite ornaments?