Now Accepting Sponsors for May

Ciera Design Accepting Sponsors May

I’ve got some fun posts planned for May and I’d be thrilled to help you promote your blog, small business, vintage store, band or Etsy shop to my readers during the month!

If you’re interested in finding out more about how to become a sponsor and all the benefits which come along with sponsorship, click over to my advertising page. With my new sponsor system your ad will run for 30 days from whenever you purchase (if space is available) or will automatically start when a space opens up! If you need more info or have questions, please feel free to contact me!

What I Wore // Leopard Print and Crochet

Happy Monday, hope you guys had a great weekend! I had a crazy few days full of wedding festivities for one of my best friends. So while I recover from my overwhelming weekend, today I’m sharing an outfit that I wore a few weeks back out to dinner with friends. The tunic sweater is so soft and comfortable and I LOVE the detail of the back! It is just perfect for when there is still a little chill in the air. These are my go-to jeans, I pretty much wear them with everything. The ring was my grandmothers, it is a little big on my finger but I wear it anyways… because I love it.

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Vfish Rosemary Sweater – Abeille NOLA // Jeans – Citizens of Humanity (similar) // Nicole Shoes – Abeille NOLA // Ring – Vintage from my grandma // Bracelets – Vintage and H&M // Earrings – Hemline (present from my sis)

Etsy Favorite – Parrish House Photos

These photographs from Lisa of Parrish House Photos make me want to live at the beach! Lisa shared, that in the past, she had always shied away from color photography, but boy am I glad she got over that! These color images are just gorgeous!

I have a deep love of teal, aqua and turquoise so you’ll find a lot of that reflected in my work. I’ve also spent a lot of time in southern California and you can see that influence in the sun-drenched feel of much of my recent work. – Lisa

Lisa does all of her own fine art printing on a velvet matte paper that creates prints with amazing tonal detail. Parrish House Photos is offering 30% off to Ciera Design readers when you use discount code “PHP30″ at her Etsy shop! Visit Parrish House Photos on Etsy and Facebook for more of Lisa’s beautiful work!

Home Again, Home Again

I’m back in New Orleans for 13 days! My best friend is getting married and then I’ll be attending the first weekend of Jazz Fest (my favorite thing in the whole world, see why here and here). Sooo, that said, I have actually scheduled some posts (yay for planning ahead). If you don’t hear too much from me in the comments, it’s because I’m partying it up in NOLA, and I’ll respond when I return to Boston!

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New Orleans

Say Hello… [April]

A new month and a new group of fabulous sponsors! Take a couple of minutes to click on the links below so you can see for yourself how wonderful these guys are!

 

Website // Facebook // Twitter // Ciera Loves >> Before and After

The Creole Cottage is an upcycled home goods boutique specializing in recycling old home furnishings and turning them into new treasures for your home, second home or small business. Located on Magazine Street in New Orleans open Wednesday through Friday from 12-5, or by appointment.

 Blog // Twitter // Pinterest // Ciera Loves >> Foto Friday: Sweet Hoot Before & After

Jen Whitfield makes art, writes words and lives life. Then she blogs about it on Whitfield Awesome. Check out her three regular features – Obsession Confession Sunday, Touché Tuesday Advice Column and Foto Friday – interspersed with drawings, paintings, DIYs and such.

Blog // Shop // Twitter // Ciera Loves >> Project: Blogging Buddies

Hello there! My name’s Nat and I’m a bit of a font fanatic, dessert foodie, and bookworm. My blog focuses on my interests: inspiration, design and my daily doings.

Blog // Portfolio // Etsy

Hi! I’m Erin, aka “eef”. I’m a 20-something, freelance artist and graphic designer who enjoys webdesign, drawing silly comics, taking photos, and doing crafty things. EEF Etcetera is my personal blog where I house stories about my travels, free graphics, and my adventures in crafting. Grab a cup of coffee and stop by! 

Blog // Twitter // Goodreads // Ciera Loves >> Would You Rather

Hi there! I’m Alycia and I live in California with my husband and dogs Monty and Mabel. I’m a huge bookworm and I love patio gardening. I like to blog about life, crafts, and inspirations from around the web. Come by and say hi!

Blog // Twitter // Facebook // Ciera Loves >> What’s In My Bag

Hi, I’m Bex, a 22 year old mum of one from a leafy village in the UK. I blog about a little bit of everything – food, beauty buys, all with a helping of life as a first time mum.

Blog // Facebook // Twitter // Ciera Loves >> Print Party

I am edgy but sweet, vintage yet modern, unconventional yet composed. I never think less is more when it comes to fashion, especially accessories! Sequin Crush is a blog about my personal style and my fashion crush’s of the moment. I hope to inspire others to explore their inner sequin crush and find as much love in fashion as I do. -Jasmine

Blog // Flickr // Ciera Loves >> Homemade Cold-Brew Iced Coffee

Zander is a photo-journalistic chap with an eye forged from the likes of Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank, and Josef Koudelka.

Blog // Twitter // Ciera Loves >> Megan’s Beet illustration

Daily Foodles is a project by designer and illustrator Megan Pendergrass documenting through illustrations and typography something or everything she eats in a day. Daily Foodles is a merging of food love and a passion for drawing/doodling/creating.

Want to take part in this post next month? Ciera Design is now accepting sponsors for May! Click HERE for details!

 

The Meal – Documenting a Global Snack

One moment. One meal. One photograph. Let’s eat. On February 24th at 12pm EST, thousands of people around the world joined in a simultaneous global meal… and I was one of them! Whether it was breakfast in LA or a midnight snack in Beijing, we took a moment from our hectic lives to share it with strangers around the world. We all snapped a photo of ourselves and our meal and sent a print to the Art House Co-op. On April 5th, they exhibited these self-portraits, documenting the world’s largest communal snack.

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Our aim is to inspire a feeling of community across geographic and cultural boundaries, while addressing the statement that “you are what you eat.” However, for nearly a billion people around the world, hunger is a constant daily reality and “what you eat” is never enough. In conceiving of this project, our thoughts immediately turned to the chronic problem of global hunger and the amazing organizations that struggle against this persistent crisis. Take a look at the many ways to get involved today. – Art House Co-op

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Visit Art House Co-op on Flickr for all of the submissions and more photos from the exhibition. If anyone spots mine on the wall PLEASE let me know! All photos (except my entry) from Art House Co-op.

How I Stay Organized

A few readers have asked about my methods for staying organized as a freelance designer. Working from home can be difficult but here are some simple methods that I use. Overall, I try to keep it simple because the more difficult you make the solution, the harder it is to keep up.

 

 

No Such Thing as Too Many Calendars or Lists

I have used both Wunderlist and TeuxDeux for task management and love them both! UPDATE: I recently started using Todoist since I can add tasks directly from Gmail and really liking it so far! All three options are FREE and sync with your iphone! This is really a personal decision on how simple or complex you need your system to be.

iCal works best for my events and meeting. I really like that you can create multiple calendars, set alerts as messages or emails and it syncs right to my phone.

Last but not least, I’ll always have sketchpads and notebooks around. No matter how many lists and reminders I have scheduled on my computer, I still need to have written reminders, by my side, at all times… and I like the feeling of crossing items off. I also keep a separate paper calendar for blog post scheduling.

 

Staying Organized Drawers

 

Easy Access for Supplies

I love using pretty cups or jars to keep my clips, washi tape, pens and office supplies organized. It keeps my desk neat while I still have easy access to supplies.

 

 

Photos At Your Fingertips

I upload all of my photos to Flickr and organize them into Collections and Sets. I also use Flickr to host most of my blog photos. It is an easy way to keep backup copies of images and a great way to search through old photographs.

 

Inspiration Overload

Delicious comes in handy for bookmarking blog posts or articles that I find inspiring or want to remember. I add tags to organize them into categories and personalize each link with my comments. You can choose to keep your links private or share them.

Pinterest boards are a great way to keep track of visual inspiration and pretty things in one central location.

Feedly is where I keep track of all the blogs I follow. You can save posts to read later or add tags to organize them. It’s a great way to save your favorite blog content.

 

Staying Organized Binders

 

Files, Files, Files

On the Computer:

Folders, I use lots of them and color code like crazy. When clients hire me for a design job, it’s important to keep everything organized. If I need a file a few years from now, I will not have any trouble locating it.

Dropbox is a free service that is great for accessing your files from multiple computers and for sharing files. Anything you save to your Dropbox will automatically save to all your computers, phones and even the Dropbox website.

In real life:
I use a file cabinet and binders to store paper files. I have a basket that I drop everything in until I get to file it properly. I also use flat files for loose inspiration, reference materials, samples of work I have done and any artwork or larger files.

 

Staying Organized Time

 

Get Timekeeping and Billing Straight

Billings keeps me sane. I use it for timekeeping and invoicing. If I did not have a timer running I would never be able to keep track of how long I was spending on something. Once a job is complete, I just mark the tasks as done and send an invoice right from there! I really don’t know what I would have done if I never discovered this.

Rescuetime is my new favorite thing. It’s a personal analytics service that shows you how you spend your time and provides tools to help you be more productive. It runs securely in the background on your computer and mobile devices and then sends you weekly updates!

 

Sync It and Back It Up

It is important for calendars, contacts and files to be synced and backed up! Keep your really important files backed up on TWO separate drives or an online system, Dropbox can also be used for this. I use LaCie external hard drives and Mac’s Time Machine for my backups. I just plug in and don’t need to think about it again! UPDATE: I added Backblaze to backup system, it automatically backs up everything on your computer except your operating system, applications, and temporary files and store is securely online!

This is what works for me and hopefully it can be a starting point to help you discover some methods that work for you! Is there anything you think I left out or would like to hear more about? Just let me know in the comments below!

Top left image via Poketo all others are by me. Some affiliate links are used but these are all products  that I use and love!