How to build a real-life moodboard

Real Life Moodboard, DIY Moodboard

 


 

What you’ll need:

+ bulletin board
+ inspiration pieces

 


 

Real Life Moodboard, DIY Moodboard

 

 

 


 

Happy moodboarding!

xx,
Ariel

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My Daily Blog Roll

 

Blogs are one of my many loves. They are a source of information, inspiration, and connection for me. Over the years, I’ve read hundreds of blogs. These, however, are the ones that have become to feel like old friends. They inspire me on the daily so grab a cup of coffee and have a read.

 


 

Designlovefest.com 

Founded by Bri Emery, this has been one of my favorite blogs to read since I can remember reading blogs. Bri and her team share design & home inspiration, recipe ideas, fashion posts, DIY projects, lots of flowers, creative direction & beautiful photography. It is a one-stop shop for inspiration with a side of happiness. Bri is super down to earth and honest about her life as a blogger, influencer and creative.

 


 

Almostmakesperfect.com

I discovered Mollie and her blog a few years ago and it has become my go-to source for non-cheesy DIY projects. I’m in love with her minimal aesthetic and get my daily fix of good design by scrolling through her posts. Here you’ll find everything from free printables to beautiful DIY projects to posts about her new little one.

 


 

Jasminedowling.com

What can I say other than this girl is everything I hope to grow up to be. She is a talented letterer & photographer and her posts are filled with business advice, lettering, stunning styled photography & flowers. Oh, did I mention she’s Australian?? It really doesn’t get much better. This is a daily MUST READ for me.

 


Girlboss.com

I honestly didn’t know much about Sophia or Girlboss until the Netflix series came out. But since watching, I’ve been obsessed. I’ve really enjoyed Sophia’s perspective on womanhood, owning a business and life in general. Her voice is sarcastic & humorous and the Girlboss blog is an amazing, transparent resource for non-traditional and taboo topics for the working woman.

 


 

Designforallmankind.com

This is a recent blog find for me and I cannot believe I didn’t know about it. You will quickly be captivated by the beautiful honesty in Erin’s words. She speaks to the soul and you’ll come away from her posts feeling like she just gave you a warm hug and all of life’s secrets.

 


 

Accordingtobbooks.com

I met Becca almost a year ago on Instagram. She is exceptionally wonderful and her blog is filled with posts about freelancing, social media, health & skincare. Her words are relatable & humorous and you’ll come away from reading her posts feeling like you just had a cup of coffee with her.

 


 

May your days be filled with whatever it is that fills you with life.

xx,
Ariel

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Kim Vollendorf Styled Shoot

Kim Vollendorf Styled Shoot

 


 

Content creation is a new service I started offering this year. A styled shoot is currently included in all custom web design packages, as well as offered a la carte.

Styled shoots have quickly become one of my favorite ways to work. The creative process of planning and executing a shoot is both inspiring and rewarding. It’s so fun to create and deliver beautiful, branded images for clients to use on their website and social media platforms.

 


 

Kim Vollendforf Styled Shoot, content creation

 


 

This particular styled shoot was part of the custom web design I did for author, Kim Vollendorf. Her branding included neutral colors with minimal, artistic design elements. For the shoot, I wanted to include lots of soft florals and small beautifully packaged vanity items. Each prop gave a little piece of insight and importance to the overall message of her book and brand.

 


 

Kim Vollendorf Styled Shoot, content creation

 


 

Good imagery can HUGELY uplevel your branding. If you’re not ready to invest in custom web design, branded, beautiful content is a great place to start as you’re building your brand.

What kind of imagery speaks most to your brand?

xx,
Ariel

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Cultivating creativity when you’re “not creative”

Cultivating Creativity when you're not creative

5 years ago, I would never have described myself as creative. Organized, yes. Friendly, yes. Driven, sometimes. But creative, never. I’ve always admired creativity, as most “non-creatives” do. I was fascinated by the artistic work of others, but I knew my place was as the observer. In college, I dabbled in interior design & event planning but decided to pursue a more practical, predictable route. Because unless you’ve defined yourself as an “artist” is there really a career for you in the creative world? I certainly didn’t think so.

It wasn’t until my second “corporate” job that I began recognizing my creative instincts. After months of weekly trips to the craft store, secretly writing blog posts at my desk & an increased interest in brands like Darling Magazine, I finally realized that I was creative. And had been my whole life, it just hadn’t fit the mold of the “typical” creative I’d built up in my mind.

Maybe you have a similar story, maybe you’ve been an artist your whole life or maybe you’re nowhere near ready to label yourself a creative. But the fact is, whether you’ve discovered it or not, you ARE creative. And once you realize it, your world will change. You’ll be able to contribute to society in the way you were made for.

 


 

In an effort to help you speed up the discovery process, here are 7 steps to cultivating creativity when you’re “not creative”.

Recognize things you already enjoy doing

When I look back on my journey, my biggest regret is not giving more significance to the little things I loved doing. I can name hundreds of moments of creativity over the years that I thought nothing of. Be intentional about recognizing the things you do in your free time and the small life-giving moments in your life. What are you doing? How do you feel when you’re doing them? What do you think about during the day and how could you cultivate this excitement into something tangible and regular?

 


 

Find Inspiration

One of the biggest misconception among creatives is that great work can only come when “inspiration strikes”. But in reality, inspiration is also something that can be cultivated. For me, this isn’t something that comes naturally. I have to intentionally put effort & time into seeking out inspiration and discovering what inspires me. Inspiration will look different for everyone. It’s about making the space in your life to find out what that looks like for you. For me, it’s seeing new places & gaining new perspective. I’m also inspired by print & packaging design. I could flip through beautiful books for hours and come away inspired to create. I’ve also recently started listening to podcasts and the stories of others, which has been hugely inspiring in my creative journey.

 


 

What resources do you already have?

If you are just getting started on your creative journey, it can be daunting to think about all the resources you don’t have. Your new creative habits may not be something you’re ready to financially invest in. One of the biggest pieces of advice I can give is to utilize resources that you already have. Think outside of the box. Want to take better pictures for your Instagram but you don’t have a clean white wall to pose against? Hang up a white sheet. Don’t have the finances to take a class on how to use Photoshop. Hop on Google, read a blog post, watch a YouTube tutorial, sign up for someone’s free course. We live in a world FULL of free information and free resources. You don’t need the nicest, fanciest tools at the beginning of your creative journey. Learn how to work with what you already have.

Invest in your skills

Once you’ve pinpointed the creative direction you want to cultivate, put a little money aside to invest in your skills. Maybe there is software you need that would take you to the next level. Or maybe you want to turn your creative passion into a business and you need a session with a business coach to get you over the hump. Use discernment and choose a few things that will help you move farther faster in your creative skills.

 


 

Remember, it takes time

The truth of the matter is, cultivating creativity takes time. A lot of time. If your first attempt at creating something lands far from what you had hoped, don’t be discouraged. Even the most talented of artists still feel like they haven’t achieved the level of skill they want. Just like everything else in life, practice makes perfect. Obviously, if you’ve never done something before you are going to be bad at it. Give yourself the time and grace to practice and persevere. Creatives are some of the hardest working people I know. They are ONLY as good as they are because they’ve invested much of their life practicing. Don’t be discouraged if you’re not a creative genius the first or second or third time you try something.

 


 

Share your work

I know, I know, I know – this step probably makes you want to die. I’ve been there, I get it. And no, you don’t need to post the very first, embarrassing thing you create. But after you start to get the hang of your creative process and are busting out things you’re proud of – share that ish with the world! If you never share your work with the public, no one will ever know it exists. I was TERRIFIED to post my first piece of personal work on my Instagram. What if I actually wasn’t that talented? What would people think of me? But by being courageous and sharing my work, I’ve developed an entire business that allows me to do what I love and collaborate with other artists and creatives in my industry.

 


 

Ultimately, creativity is in you. And whether your dream is to sell your work or just use creativity as a way to decompress at the end of your day, YOU CAN DO IT.

What’s your biggest hurdle when it comes to cultivating creativity in your life?

Xx,

Ariel

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Winter Casual

 

Wearing jacket: Topshop | sweater: Topshop | jeans: Asos | booties: Forever 21 | glasses: Quay | clutch: ASOS

A girl can never have enough oversized sweaters. They’re my absolute favorite thing to pair with light denim and a good pair of sock booties.

 


 

WEAR IT


 

 


Why sweaters:

1. They’re warm & practical

2. They still fit even after those extra winter treats (can I get an amen?)

3. They are an easy way to add some texture to your look

4. They’re easy to wear alone or with a jacket for extra warmth

 

How to pair an oversized sweater:

1. It can be paired with practically anything!

2. Wear with high-waisted skinnies for a pulled together casual look

3. Wear with a pencil or midi skirt for something a little more formal

4. Pair with flares & platform tennies for a weekend play date

 


 

Wear it:


 

What are your winter go-to’s? Let me know in the comments below!

xx,
Ariel

 

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New Years Thoughts

The start of a new year typically comes with fresh hope, dreams & resolutions.

But for me, this January is more of a hump day in my journey towards the next big thing in my life. It’s the gross, stale, relentless halfway point of a ton of already really hard work. And January means that I still have another 6 months of toil ahead of me before I finally get to partake in the fruits of my labor.

And to be completely honest, December was jam-packed with new projects & long hours. And all I really want to do in January is rest. Seeing everyone’s posts about resolutions and planning for an exciting year ahead is overwhelming right now. My friend (and fellow biz owner) Jacque told me she is building her business to be seasonal. Because she too would rather just hibernate in January. And I think she is genius because that mindset is totally ok. Healthy even.

So for those of you feeling like your new year should be full of fresh energy and perspective, and it’s just not, keep your chin up. Rest & take care of yourself. Because YOU WILL get there. And I will get there. And our work will still get done and inspiration will still come, whether it’s right now or in mid-February.

HERE’S WHAT I KNOW FOR SURE:

I have an amazing, supportive husband who is just as committed to our dreams as I am.

I love creating. And that will never change.

Big change takes time & patience.

There is purpose in EVERY circumstance & experience, no matter how seemingly dull.

Greatness requires hard work, practice & faith – there are no exceptions.

 


 

For now, I’ve made a list of small goals I’m striving to maintain in my day to day life this year.

P E R S O N A L  G O A L S

STAY HYDRATED

My goal is to drink a gallon of water a day. Hydration has been the one consistent thing that improves my overall health & well being.

BUY LESS

No more justifications or excuses. I want to think about every purchase & what real value it will to my life.

SAVE $1000/MONTH

Budgeting has been a huge tool for me these past few months & I hope that I can carry that into the new year! Much of my long-term goal relies on this baby, right here.

B U S I N E S S  G O A L S

CREATE MORE STYLED SHOOTS

This is one of my favorites parts of my work. I’d love to get a few more content creation clients on the books this year!

PAINT MORE

I do so much work on the computer. This year, I’m hoping to spend more time with ink & a brush creating the old fashioned way.

GO MOBILE

I have BIG plans for this year. And they require my studio to be completely mobile, so time to downsize!

xx,
Ariel

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