Brand Brag: Kiko’s Kitchen

We’re super excited about this brand brag for Kiko’s Kitchen!  Sonya, Kiko’s Kitchen owner, talks a bit about the brand process and what Mentor, Ohio-based Kiko’s is all about!

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

I have always wanted to own my own food business and with the mobile food scene continuing to grow, I thought this would be a perfect way to enter the market! I have always had a love for food and serving food, being one of four kids, I was always the sibling whipping up some food in the kitchen for the others and I have never grown out of the love of that. With my mom being half Japanese we were heavily influenced by the Japanese culture. She cooked full meals every night and most nights I was right there along side of her.

Fast forward to now, hopping between office work or a restaurant job, I decided to think long and hard about the life I want. With my heart in the food business, I decided it is time to share the food I loved eating growing up.

What products or services do you offer?

We are a mobile food business, serving our home-style Japanese/American Fusion at local events, farmers markets and catered events!

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Ask as many questions as you need to and do your research, there are a lot of resources that are a good place to get started!

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

The branding process was so convenient and smooth, I would recommend to anyone looking who is creating a new brand or logo. Lily was so helpful and patient with my responses and my ideas. I knew what I liked and how I wanted my brand to be perceived, but wasn’t exactly sure how to communicate that to her. She was able to take all my crazy ideas and create brand that I am absolutely in love with. The process was convenient for my busy lifestyle and she was always very responsive. They offer options to get a feel for your style and allow you to give insight on what you like and what you don’t like. They never make you feel bad about the styles you aren’t crazy about and really refine the things you love.

With my brand complete I feel more confident taking my business to market. I was able to have marketing materials created as well so it has made getting things ready for my business a breeze. The brand itself is exactly what I was looking for, Lily took all my ideas and created a brand that really brought to life the brand I wanted created.

 

What does the future hold for you?

For now we are still finalizing our business and will be doing our first event within the next few months. Once we start our business we would like to build our reputation and customer base by serving our fresh food to different local events in the Cleveland area!

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ALP Tutorial: Would you like to resize that?

Would you like to resize that?

Yes, yes you would! And why would you want to resize it?  Oh, any number of reasons.  Optimization, fitting a specific pre-determined space…etc.  Oh!  And saving you money!

Bigger is not always better.  We provide our logo files in large format, with a resized file — this ensures you have top quality files on hand for your needs, whether it’s websites, printing, signage, social media, and so on.  But, the files we provide won’t always fit perfectly for every single application…and let’s face it, if we provided files like that, we’d be spending all day prepping them for you!  While we’re thrilled to design additional materials for you, we thought that it might be handy to know how to resize files on your own — save you time, $$, and you’ll become more adept at managing your own branding — fabulous all around, darling!

Uploading the wrong size files will take up space, it’ll make your website lag, or people won’t see things the way you’re hoping that they’ll see them.  Or, you might even experience some sort of file distortion or icky compression — not good or pretty!  We want to help you with that, so we’re going to give you a quick tutorial on resizing in Photoshop…and for those of you without PS access, PicMonkey!  Something for everyone!

 

 

Photoshop

Let’s start with Adobe Photoshop — not affiliated with Adobe in any way, by the way — just our go-to for making beautiful things for you!

 

Go ahead and open your image. This beauty is from the lovely Pink is My Favorite Color set, just released yesterday, and will work great to show you how to resize stock images too!

 

  1. Go to Image
  2. Down to Image Size
  3. The window that opens will give you some options, I typically resize in pixels so 800 x 800 (arbitrary numbers for the purpose of this tutorial), it’ll also adjust one side depending what you need. As long as you keep it fixed, so if you need it small vertically or horizontally.  Locking the proportions can be done by making sure that little link icon is clicked.

This is where you decide what size, which will depend on where you’re putting your image. Pretty easy peasy for Photoshop.

 

Just another tidbit of info for you — if you’re saving a resized file for website/social media go to EXPORT  under file and “save to web” — this’ll keep things nice and clean from web sharing.

 

PicMonkey

Now, let’s talk about the other option, PicMonkey.  We’re also not affiliated with PicMonkey in any way — we simply find that among browser-based editing programs, it’s easily accessible and it’s easy to learn.  These are two very important things business owners on the go that don’t have time to deal with learning Photoshop, which can be really daunting.

So step 1, if you’re using PicMonkey, sign up and create an account.  If you plan to make resizing, or any image editing a habit, you’ll be happy to have an account so that perhaps you can keep some of your projects organized.

Next, this is where we click Edit a photo, then it’ll prompt that create an account, and you’ll end up over here at this screen…

Then, “Open New” and choose where you want to grab the image you want to resize — I’m choosing Computer, since that’s where I have my images. Going to just snag one of the files from the pink stock set (these are perfect to resize for all sorts of needs).

Alright, we’ve got slider open (it’s the little line/dot that’s blue) you can crop, rotate, sharpen and boom, RESIZE the last one with the cookie cutters.

When you resize, check out what the source wants for best image quality. 800 is a decent size, it’ll load quickly and stay sharp.

 

After this, you go up by Open new, then SAVE. You have resized and now saved your file for use.

 

A few other good blog posts to check out, watermarking your images (here, and here) and how best to use stock images.

 

Until next time, arrivederci!

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Brand Brag: Discovery Counseling Austin

Meet Sara, from Discovery Counseling Austin!  She’s our latest brand brag!

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

I have had a private practice in counseling for years but I recently launched a group practice – adding clinicians to my team and expanding my services. I enjoyed seeing clients in a small practice but I wanted to be able to offer more services to our community so I needed to expand. At Discovery Counseling Austin we will be able to offer individual counseling, workshops and training for other clinicians. We’re here to help, support & encourage. Counseling is a unique opportunity for you to explore the difficulties of life without fear of judgment. We believe each client deserve a collaborative and compassionate partner on this journey through life’s adventures.

 

What products or services do you offer?

We provide individual counseling, group counseling, professional training and clinical workshops for clients and community members. Our focus is on mindfulness and self-discovery.

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Identify your ideal client- the person you want to help the most. Imagine yourself helping them find a path to well-being and contentment and envision what is will take for you to support them to achieve their goals. Build a practice around your ideal client by figuring out how to speak directly to your ideal audience with your marketing, blogs, talking events and social media presence.

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

The branding process was stressful because I was afraid I would choose the wrong ideas from my options. My guide, Lily, helped me by offering extra concepts to help me choose the aspects of each that I liked the best. In the end, I actually enjoyed being the expert on my brand. Once I got used to the back-and-forth process with Lily, I became more confident in my opinions and Lily gave me space to suggest design changes and modifications. I am excited that this new brand will provide brand recognition within my community. I also feel that the brand will give potential clients a positive feeling about our practice.

 

What does the future hold for you?

Discovery Counseling Austin will continue to expand and offer more service to our community. We look forward to doing more teaching and training as well so that we can enhance the quality of mental health services offered in our community.

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Brand Brag: Ashley Nachale & Co.

We’re excited to introduce you to Ashley, of Ashley Nachale & Co.!

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

Ashley Nachale & Co. , my personal blog, started as a challenge to myself. From a young age I loved writing, arts/crafts, and books! Sending and receiving mail, collecting stationary, scrapbooking, and stocking bookcases with planners and journals were natural occurrences for me. It was my own little world. The planner and journal addiction kept growing strong. The love of scrapbooking and stationary grew into handmade greeting cards. The love of books and writing grew too. I even went to school for writing. I earned a bachelors from Georgia Southern University in Journalism. While writing for my media business’ blog I realized I really enjoyed blogging. What was I thinking! Of course I liked blogging – it’s writing!

One day the thought came to me to just start a blog about the things I like to do. I was hesitant. Why you ask? Hobbies are activities you enjoy doing but finding pleasure in something does not automatically make you good at it. I felt a blog would scream “Hey come look at what I made!” This gave me pause. So I challenged myself! I reminded myself that the point of all my hobbies is enjoyment. What matters is that I like it! If someone else likes it, well that’s great too! So I went for it ! I started a blog that shares the on-goings at my home desk – the papercrafting , journaling, books, stationary, and everything in between.

 

What products or services do you offer?

Currently AN & Co. offers creative insight to paper crafting, journaling, and planning. Readers can also find book reviews and motivational content.

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Research is helpful before branding. Make sure you check out other bloggers and vloggers related to your content so you don’t end up running into copyright issues.

On a personal note, blogging can be very public. Be sure you are confident in who you are and confident about your content. If you have a vision head towards it and let no one ( not even yourself) stop you from fulfilling it.

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

The branding process was very detailed. This was a good thing for all involved. It helped me be specific on what I desired and gave the Autumn Lane team guidelines to work by. Once the detailed information what settled we moved onto the design process. I enjoyed this part the most. Although sometimes it was hard to make a decision on a graphic because I liked pretty much everything Lily sent me.

The communication is key. We corresponded by email heavily. I really like that about this whole experience. To me it was essential in developing the brand and creating a successful owner/client relationship. Lily was very patient, answered my questions, and found a way to use all suggestions.

I believe my brand and logo gives me room to grow. Though I have a blog now I can see my logo and assets still working when I add a commerce business to the brand.

 

What does the future hold for you?

The future is looking to be more than I imagined! Ashley Nachale & Co. is going to start offering various kinds of stationary, planner, and journal merchandise. Also, I’m currently writing a book!

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Brand Brag: HeartCrafted

We’re excited to show off our latest Brand Brag for HeartCrafted.  Meet Ashley, the owner of HeartCrafted and see what she’s got to say about her business!

 

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

I taught myself how to crochet just to keep my hands busy. I started to get really good at it and requests from friends and family started to pour in! I was getting orders from everywhere it seemed, so to be more versatile for my customers, I then taught myself to knit. More and more orders came in, so now my sister and I both run HeartCrafted full time!

 

What products or services do you offer?

We offer handmade custom and stock crochet and knit items.

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Keep trying. Starting your own business is very hard and intimidating, but you have to just keep pushing. Try, try, try!

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

Autumn Lane Paperie made this branding process so easy. They really listen to what you want and that makes the decision and review process so easy. I truly believe this branding will help elevate my business and makes it so much easier to recognize my products out in the world.

 

What does the future hold for you?

The sky is the limit with a small business and the only way we see ourselves going is up!

 

 

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Brand Brag: Strawbunny Bakery

We’re excited to introduce Emily, of Strawbunny Bakery as our newest Brand Brag.

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

Imagine yourself as a child, Saturday morning playing outside in the yard for hours on end in the fall weather. You come inside for a break and some lunch and- WAIT you all the sudden inhale the warm smell of brown sugar and chocolate and you immediately recognize the scent. A mother’s chocolate chip cookies are the best chocolate chip cookies. Growing up I was always drawn to the kitchen and loved the taste of homemade baking. From a young age I started baking bread from scratch as well as muffins, cupcakes, cinnamon rolls-is your mouth watering yet? Till this day I still get the same warm cozy feeling of the whole house filling up with the delicious smell of what is in the oven and I get to reach that goal on a daily basis with my home bakery!

 

What products or services do you offer?

My bakery provides birthday cakes, wedding cakes and all other baked goods for every occasion whether it be big or small.

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

-Don’t give up when your cake sinks or your cookies don’t rise. Failed attempts happen to the best of us and every single one of us. Think of every project as a gain in your experience. Therefore, each cake you bake is valuable in your journey. Do your research, find a solution to what went wrong, and get that booty back in the kitchen and make something beautiful!

-Know what you are worth. The cake you spent hours on does not compare to a store bought cake that was made in a matter of minutes. Baking is an art and your talent and skill is worth so much more. Give yourself the credit you deserve and don’t give handouts.

– Only good vibes! Find your support system, acknowledge the people in your life who want to see you succeed and cherish them. If your friends aren’t supporting your dream, it’s time to take a step back and reevaluate your relationships. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for my husband and my family’s support.

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

My branding process was a stress free journey thanks to Lily. She very closely paid attention to what I wanted for my brand and details that were important to me and delivered everything I expected. I think my new logo put the professionalism in my business and shows customers that I take my brand seriously. With my new logo I can move forward and create business cards, stickers, and signs for my bakery and I couldn’t be more thrilled.

 

What does the future hold for you?

In the next ten years I see myself branching from my home bakery to a brick-and-mortar location. In the mean time, I see myself at more events and watching my business grow. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for Strawbunny Bakery.

 

 

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How Do I Even … Use Stock Images

How Do I Even … Use Stock Images?

One question we’ve gotten since we released our first sets of stock images is exactly how to use the images, and why should you even use an image that you, personally, didn’t take.  We want to talk to you today about why you should be using stock images, and give you a few examples of how to leverage them for your business.

What, exactly, is a stock photo?

First, let’s cover what a stock photo is.  Stock photos are typically found on sites like Getty Images or Shutterstock, where you search for “small child walking” or another term/phrase. Often, you are given thousands of options to choose from, which then you can turn around and use to market for whatever purpose you’re intending.  You, the customer, pay to license the image — that is, you pay for permission to use the image.  It’s a nice little way to thank the photographer for taking the image and allowing you to use it — it saves you thousands of dollars in equipment, potential modeling fees, or even purchasing items to be photographed…and it also saves you a ton of time.

Larger stock image outfits aren’t for everyone, though.  Truthfully, you could spend hours looking for images and never scratch the surface!  Autumn Lane Paperie has a very specific type of client — the vast majority of our clients (probably around 97-98%!) are female small business owners — some professionals, some creatives, some looking to make their hobby look beautiful.  We wanted to create images that work specifically for you.  The ultimate goal is for the images to enhance what you, as a business, show other people.  Stock sets are specifically developed and created with you in mind and the general aesthetic you’ve already shown you appreciate!  Whether you’re an essential oil distributor, health coach, selling clothes at your boutique, love books or building your own little space on the web, we’ve got something that will fit for you.  (And if we don’t, just wait — we’ve got what seems like a bajillion sets in the works!)  The possibilities are endless and we will continue to think of you and grow along side you.

 

Why should you use a stock photo?

We can name a few great reasons why you should use a stock photo, or a set of stock photos…or even multiple sets!  Stock images are great “support” for your brand — the same way you might hire an accountant to crunch your numbers, or you might hire a cashier because you’re so busy yourself…stock images are a helping hand.  We mentioned above that it saves you time & money, and we definitely mean that.  It’s ok to rely on stock images to further your brand.  It enables you to promote cohesion within your brand, provided that you’ve chosen the correct pack of images to use in conjunction with your own materials.

 

What can you do with stock photos?

A lot, actually!  Let me preface this with … this is how you can use our stock photos.  Our licensing terms allows for this, but we cannot speak for licensing terms for other stock photographers or stock image websites.  Please, please, please, check the licensing terms for whatever you are purchasing & downloading to ensure that you are abiding by licensing terms!

We’ve whipped up a few examples for how to use these lovely things!  Feel free to click those images, too — it’ll take you directly to the image set we’re featuring!

Sharing on Facebook, Instagram, & more — we would recommend using a program like Photoshop or PicMonkey to overlay your own text onto the image, so that you have an interesting little message that captures attention!  Share an inspirational quote with your followers, tell them about your sale, and so on.

Blog posts, websites or marketing materials — similar to the above option, use these beauties on the front page of your website to put your best virtual foot forward, or use them in your blog posts.

You could use them to make business cards with your gorgeous new logo.  Don’t forget brochures, flyers or postcards, either!

 

 

The great thing about the stock photos is how cohesive, clean and versatile they can be. And easily they’re accessed. Digital downloads mean they immediately become available to use however you need them to be.  We’d love for you to check out our growing collection of images!  Feel free to reach out with any questions you have!

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Brand Brag – Beyond Perfection

We’re happy to introduce our latest Brand Brag – Beyond Perfection, a family-run events business.  Sharon is the owner of Beyond Perfection which serves the San Gabriel Valley, Orange County, and Los Angeles areas.

 

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

This business started as just a dream, we knew we wanted to transform venues and places into magnificent locations and finally about 2 years ago we decide to star gathering all we needed to run our business, it is owned by me but I work with my sister and mom and its an excitement to be able to work with the people that I truly love and will stay loyal to our dream.

 

What products or services do you offer?

We Specialize in event Decor which includes: event/ party design, centerpieces, tableware and Dessert/Candy tables.

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

The best advice that I can give is to be a very flexible and understanding, this field is very competitive but its up to us to put our own brand stamp.

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

The hardest thing of branding was choosing the correct name, once the name was set, everything flow so smoothly that I was surprised!!! I thought this was going to be
harder and realize that once you love something things come easily.

 

What does the future hold for you?

My biggest goal is to make it to the knot,we are very hard working and creative and I think that with patience , we will reach our goals.

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Brand Brag – Branch and Bloom

We’re excited to introduce you to our latest Brand Brag – Branch and Bloom!  Meet Adriane, who runs the Etsy shop, Branch and Bloom, where she takes orders for gorgeous centerpieces and arrangements.

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

I started making wreaths as a hobby to carry on a fond memory of my grandmother. It literally “bloomed” into a business after being asked and accepting local orders for friends and family and has expanded after I opened an Etsy shop this past summer. I ship all over the world and am constantly looking to expand the products and services I offer. I create custom silk flower boxes, bouquets and wreaths for every season in unique combinations that encompass texture, beauty & color.

 

What products or services do you offer?

Custom wreaths, flower arrangements and centerpieces for any and every occasion!

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Never be scared to start doing something. Belief in yourself is everything and if you are bold enough to try it for yourself and want to grow it into a business- there are no limits. I never thought I’d be doing something like this but I love it more than I ever thought and feel optimistic about the future. It is truly the best of both worlds when I can be at home with my little boy and raise him and dream up designs during nap time and nighttime. I am so thankful to have this time with my family and still feel like I am conquering the world in some way.

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

Branding is a hard thing because there are so many options and it’s hard to know which direction to go. Lily made me feel so comfortable in my decisions and ALWAYS was willing to try anything to give me peace of mind that I was making the right decision as we went through the process. You want to shine through your brand and you also want it to stand out amongst others that do something similar to you. I wanted to burst with color, texture and uniqueness and Lily definitely took my minds eye and put it on paper. I really believe that having a brand creates a strong foundation for your business and it helps people to recognize you. It acts as your store front in a lot of ways. I also feel that even though I could come up with ideas for a logo on my own that going through a branding process with a third party is important for your business. By doing this you obtain another perspective that helps you to see their view of your ideas without personally knowing you or your business. This speaks strongly for Autumn Lane because they took my vision from what I verbalized to them and created it to be something that I could not have created myself. This adds a professional look to my business and makes me proud to show it everywhere.

 

What does the future hold for you?

This is just the beginning for Branch and Bloom. It will be one year old in a few months and I can’t wait to see what happens this year. Having a business is a roller coaster but if you keep hustling everyday and dreaming- creativity will help you grow. I truly can’t wait to branch ( pun intended ) into the wedding world, decorate for businesses and more. I always say there are a lot of doors in the world, and I can’t wait to dress them.

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Brand Brag – Huckleberry Cloud Photography

We’ve got another brand brag for you! We’re happy to introduce Huckleberry Cloud Photography, owned by Brandy. Huckleberry Cloud Photography is a Boise-based portrait photography company, specializing in documentary and lifestyle photography.

 

Tell us a bit about how you got started with your business / blog / venture that we branded.

Documenting my family life lead to documenting other family’s big events such as maternity, birth stories, newborn and all other milestones. Taking a passion and turning it into a business was the only thing that made sense, now I love my daily career of sharing stories!

 

What products or services do you offer?

Photography services

 

What’s the best advice you have for someone that is interested in doing something similar to you?

Practice! Follow your heart and learn about the business side of everything. Your passion will get you through the rest!

 

Tell our readers a bit about the branding process!

When I started my big re-brand I had something in mind but wasn’t sure exactly what it was. From the start of the process we were headed in the right direction and little by little my vision came to be my new brand logo! The decisions take research and thought. It helps so much to start with a vision but once it is all started, the only thing that is difficult is narrowing down the wonderful ideas you and your designer will create. My new brand fits my current business and looks very professional. No one else has my brand logo or branding items, I stand out from the very start with potential clients.

 

What does the future hold for you?

If I were to need any additional branding information added I would be using Autumn Lane Paperie again in the future. For now, I am updating all brand information and undergoing lots of work behind the scene of my business to prepare to offer more amazing services in 2018 for Huckleberry Cloud Photography!!

 

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