Paper and Digital Designer Workshop Review February 2012

This last weekend was the Paper and Digital Designer Workshop. I obviously wasn’t thinking straight when I scheduled it the weekend after CHA. Despite the back-to-back scheduling, we had a fabulous time and it went off without a hitch.

Truthfully, it doesn’t matter how many classes I have taught, I always get a little nervous about getting in front of a group. Thankfully, the group dealt with all the Illustrator techniques I, ahem, made them participate in relatively well!

I was so impressed with the doodling, papers, textures, techniques, and elements that these ladies came out with during this workshop. (I was equally amazed at the amount of food I managed to eat during the two days.) The group was a wide range from beginners to industry designers. You’ll recognize some faces and names from this group (and might I suggest some up-and-coming designers?). Though I was the teacher, I learned so much from them as they shared their tips and tricks.

A huge thank you to Riley Blake who donated fabric to the swag bags. We had a number of Riley Blake designers in attendance, which made the event that much more fun! I also need to thank Susan Haglund for taking all of these pictures over the two days of the workshop.

Lots of thinking, thinking, thinking (picture below). Mostly of how we could all get Diet Coke IVs inserted. Since Roxanne came up with the idea, I’m expecting a patent from her soon. You’ve gotta love Samantha Walker’s monster computer screen (she was banished to the back row)!

A few of the ladies posing in one of the Little America Hotel Rooms.

The picture above looks pretty serious. That’s the only reason I included it.

I know that all these pictures give the illusion that we had our heads stuck in our computers the whole time. However, there was a lot of unruly behavior from the blonds at the back of the room (aka mischief-makers assistant Susan Haglund and Heidi Swapp). It seemed like every time I left the room to do a portfolio review with someone, those two had everyone in an uproar.

Other surprises? That Samantha Walker can tell a great embarrassing story on command.

We had lots of locals (Deena Rutter was in-and-out since her boys were battling it out for the hockey state championships.) as well participants from as far away as Canada (Thank you for the maple syrup, Melanie Ritchie!). Meg Stocks, a mentor at, came all the way from Atlanta (I do love my southern girls!).

I was also thankful that Pam Meeks and Rachel McPeek (do you like how their last names almost rhyme?) made it in right before the Colorado snowstorm hit. I was also grateful that it didn’t make it’s way up to Utah! Kathy Sierra-Fernandez came from Washington and became our resident Illustrator expert (we all learned a thing or two on how she magically builds patterns!). Roxanne Bergener of Close to My Heart cracked us up with her wit and  dazzled us with her industry experience.

The picture above is of Audrey Hanks (traveled from Wendover) and Christine Chodil(traveled from Chicago). It was fun to chat with both since they came from your non-typical designer backgrounds (Christine’s degree is in Musical Theater and Audrey has a MA in Mathematics).

Heidi Swapp gives her two cents on our typography exercise. We will certainly take her two cents along with any other change she has on her.

And who knows what I am explaining here? Obviously something to do with the itsy bitsy spider.

Don’t let the cool appearance of this one fool you (Kasey, Casey, Kasie, Casee…who knows how to spell her name?). She’ll slice you with her witty comments. And putting her next to Heidi wasn’t our smartest move.

You gotta love the work of Lori Whitlock. I just felt lucky that she came!

For our final dinner, we let a few guys crash our girl party. I’m pretty sure that I’m saying something extremely important here (photo below). Thank goodness for that pretty damask pattern behind me.

First off, there was no possible way to shrink down the picture of this slice of cake (scroll down, it’s hard to miss). Secondly, I thought it best for you to see the size of it in relation to Susan’s head.

Yes, we ate like that for many meals the entire two days. And yes, I was sick afterwards.

Lori Whitlock’s husband Doug, Eric Swapp of, and Jody Hunt of Echo Park overseeing our picture-taking.

In review—we ate a lot, designed a bit, had a number of “aha” moments (even me!), and had a pretty fantastic time.

Cheers to girl-design-time,


Design Workshop Workbook Mailed!

I finally got everyone’s packets mailed out for the Paper and Digital Designer Workshop. I’ve been promising myself that I was going to get these workbooks mailed out before the end of the month and I’m patting myself on the back because I did! Whoo Hoo!

I’m pretty excited about the stuff we are going to be working on and although the workshop isn’t until February, I managed to give the everyone a good amount of work before they even show up! (That’s the college professor in me.) Hope the participants all enjoy and have fun with it!

We still have a limited number of spots left open for this workshop, and you should check out the coupon from the most recent newsletter (page 4) if you are in Utah.

Tchau, Carina

Flannel and Oilcloth

I went to check my strike-offs yesterday at Riley Blake for Dainty Blossoms™ and found out some exciting news! Not only will cottons be available for the line, but oilcloth and flannels! The oilcloth and flannels will be in the large floral (the left-hand corner fabric in the digital magazine) and all the dots. I was practically jumping for joy!

In other news, my little Flissa started preschool this week. With Siri in school and Flissa in morning preschool, it’s the first time I’ve had the opportunity to work during the day. It’s pretty exciting as I’ve been hoping to get rid of my late-night design binges! heehee! Fliss has been SO ready to go to school (with big sister out of house and the entire neighborhood in kindergarten, there is only me to entertain her—not the coolest prospect).

So I’m going to happily (and hopefully) finish our new sewing pattern line this coming month (look for all the sneak peeks in the October newsletter) and finish teaching the Art of Digital Design 2 (It’s been a blast!).

We’re also finishing up the final touches of our new workshop this winter! Be sure and check it out! We’ve been so excited about the interest and would love to see you there for this design marathon! Bring your husband along to ski while you hang out with the girls!

Please note that this workshop has a cap of 20 students. Make sure and reserve your spot to attend this event.