Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Diary of a Freelancer: Where have I been

I have been consumed by a few new jobs and a beautiful baby girl and all of a sudden I looked at my blog and realized I haven't shared a thing since late in October. How is it possible that nearly two months have gone by? I've worked on some pretty cool jobs (that I can't wait to share), have been getting ready and enjoying the holidays, and spent as much time as possible bonding with my little one... and I guess I got sucked into a black hole along the way!?! But my New Year resolution will be to get back to blogging! For now though I thought I'd share a sketch that I loved while working with a client. Their final design - which I will share in the New Year - looks nothing like this, but there is something about this one that I just personally loved.

I hope you enjoy and I hope you are having an amazing Holiday season!

xoxo
Michelle

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Bridal Party Gifts


I know, I know, I'm a little biased but I think this is such a cool and unique gift for a bride to give to her bridal party. I worked with the lovely bride, Amanda, on these custom illustrations for her beautiful bridal party to thank them for everything they did helping her get ready for her big day and standing there with her as she says "I do."

Aren't these ladies lovely!?

What are some gifts you love to give, or would love to receive if you were, members of a bridal party!? I'd love to know!!

xo
Michelle

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Custom Illustration

You can get your own custom illustration here!


Okay I just need to start by saying how cute are these little curly haired blondies?! I mean seriously! I was contacted by a repeat client, and their mama, who was looking to have an illustration created to use as the card for her daughter's upcoming birthday. She was hoping this would be the start of a series of illustrations she will have created each year. She wants to commission these as a way to remember each birthday and the things that her children are really loving from year to year. This year her daughter is loving "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" and her son loves Spiderman.

I thought this was such a cute and creative way to celebrate the birthday as well as make a special keepsake that they will have forever. 

Do you love this idea as much as me? What characters or themes are the kids in your life loving right now?

xo
Michelle

Friday, September 25, 2015

Fashion Illustration Friday



I'm taking some time to work on the 2016 calendar, to add to my etsy shop in October, and drew this pretty lady for one of the spring or summer months. You can also purchase the print here!

What do you think? Any styles or trends you'd like to see in the 2016 calendar? 

xoxo
Michelle

Monday, September 21, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Baby Showering Coloring Game


Illustrated "coloring book" pages being cut out and prepped.
I colored one before I mailed them down :-)
The finished colored pages in the frame and ready for the nursery as well as a peek at their quilt!

Finished colored pages framed and ready for the nursery as well as a peek at their quilt!
Back in August I worked with my extremely creative friend Gina to put together these adorable illustrations/coloring pages for our friend Trish's baby shower.

-- Side Note: Trish makes the most beautiful quilts and the one she made for her nursery is no exception! She created an adorable animal quilt of little hipster woodland creatures that is just so charming and ultimately served as the inspiration for our coloring pages. You can see bits of the quilt behind the colored and framed illustrations in the bottom two images. --

OK so back to the point of this post... Gina's idea was that, as a shower activity, we create black and white line illustrations that guests could color in like pages of a coloring book. And then these colored pictures would be framed for art for Trish's nursery. I just thought this was one of the most unique shower activities and was more then happy to help out!

What do you think? Isn't this such a cool and creative idea? If you love this idea and would want to do this for your next shower email me for more information!

Also a special note to Trish I can't wait to hear about your baby's arrival and to meet her! See you soon!!

xo
Michelle

Friday, September 18, 2015

Where's Karl Book Signing at Barneys New York






Ok can I just tell you I've had a "pinch me" week! Where's Karl?: A Fashion Forward Parody was released on Tuesday and then Wednesday night I got to take part in a book signing with the lovely authors, Ajiri Aki and Stacey Caldwell, at Barneys New York! which was so much fun! (Above are some highlights from the signing.) And then Thursday Instyle.com featured an article Meet the Women Behind Wheres Karl?: A Fashion Forward Parody About Karl Lagerfeld. I still don't think any of this has quite hit me yet, but I'm so excited and I just have to say one more congratulations to Ajiri and Stacey! This has been amazing and I hope it only continues to surpass your expectations!!

So back to Barneys, they had life size cutouts of Karl throughout the event and cookies with illustrations of Karl printed on the front. It was beyond cool to see my illustrations like that! I also got to sign books for and meet so many amazing people, including some who are illustrated in the book!! All I could think was just "wow!"

If you can, stop by a store; in NYC, Chicago, or LA and take a selfie with Karl and use hashtag #bnywhereskarl to enter for a chance to win a signed copy of the book!

Did you get your copy of the book yet!? If so I hope you enjoyed it!!

xoxo

Monday, August 31, 2015

Where's Karl? A Fashion Forward Paroday

Pre-Order your copy today!! 




Featured in People Stylewatch Magazine!!! 
I hinted a bunch of times last year about a super secret job I was working on and literally couldn't share anything about it with you. And considering how excited I was (and still am!) it was really REALLY hard not to share. Well, today I am SO happy to share that job with you!! I had the privilege of working on the illustrations for an Amazing book, Where's Karl? A Fashion Forward Parody that is coming out September 15!! You can pre-order your copy anywhere books are sold!

Where's Karl? is about Karl Lagerfeld the iconic fashion legend and is a parody of the Where's Waldo books I'm sure you loved as a kid (I know I did!).

For the back story, a little over a year ago, I was contacted by the amazing Ajiri Aki, a fashion video producer based in Paris, and Stacey Caldwell, Vice President of Global Wholesale at Thakoon, about being an illustrator for a book they co-wrote being published through Potter Style a division of Random House! I remember thinking "seriously!? Pinch me!!" Just to even be considered for this was amazing. So I worked for a few weeks submitting artwork in order to be considered and eventually I was selected as the illustrator. Over the months that followed I worked closely with Ajiri and Stacey creating the 15 scenes from the book featuring hundreds of fashion and celebrity icons following Karl's travels around the world. And in a little over two weeks this book that we worked so hard on will be a reality! I am still thinking "Seriously!?! Pinch me!!" Maybe even more now then I was then!

The Synopsis: Always on the go, Karl Lagerfeld is everywhere and nowhere all at once. Now, fictional fashion blogger Florence de la Sabine (you can call her Fleur) must find him-- surely an interview with him will set her website apart from the rest. But where will he turn up? Roll up your Alexander McQueen skull sleeves and bust out your vintage Chanel monocle as you follow Fleur all around the world's hottest fashion scenes searching for Monsieur Lagerfeld. Is he at The Met Gala in New York City? Strolling Coqui Coqui Beach in Tulum? On the slopes in St. Moritz? Directing a photo shoot in Dubai? In these stunning, full-color illustrations, you'll spot all of the industry's finest glitterati along the way, turning this book into a full-on game of who's who from Anna Wintour to Beyonce to Woody Allen to Kim Kardashian to Suri Cruise to Prince William, and many, many more.

You can follow along with other readers and Karl fans on Instagram @whereskarl, on Twitter @whereskarlbook, and on facebook at Where's Karl!

I hope you enjoy and order lots of copies!!

xo
Michelle

Friday, August 28, 2015

Diary of a Freelancer



Hi there... last I blogged it was my due date and I shared a maternity inspired Fashion Illustration Friday. That day I felt like I was going to be pregnant forever and the baby didn't seem to want to go anywhere anytime soon... well what a difference a day makes because the next morning, August 8 at 9:15 am, my lovely Riley Elizabeth was born!

Over the few weeks since then I've just spent my time getting to know and enjoy her and figuring out my new world as a mom. It's been pretty incredible and I swear the more I look at her the more in love I am!!

So today I'd like to introduce you to my beautiful daughter, Riley meet readers, readers meet Riley!

xoxo

Friday, August 7, 2015

Fashion Illustration Friday - Maternity Edition!



Well let's just start by saying I don't look at all like this pretty lady. I'm like the shorter rounder version of her (also the one wearing flip-flops, a comfy tent like dress and no jewelry) but still a girl can dream can't she!? I felt like since today is my due date, although baby doesn't seem to want to be going anywhere anytime soon, it would be nice to do a maternity inspired Fashion Illustration Friday. I haven't done one my entire pregnancy and thought I should before it ends.

I hope you enjoy and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

xo
Michelle

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Shopaholic's Wish List

Leonie Rancher Hat, J. Crew Favorite Shirt, Ann Taylor Saddle Bag, T Alexander Wang Stripe Tee,
J Brand 2387 Tailored High-rise Flare Jeans,  and J. Crew Marlow Mules


I don't know what it is about today but I really REALLY want to go shopping. I'm nine months pregnant, due in two days, and literally won't fit into anything... but I want to go shopping. I know nothing about this is rational but who said I need to be rational anyway...

So as a form of shopping without actually buying anything I decided to share some items in my shopping cart that I'd like to buy as I start to loose the baby weight over the coming weeks and months. These items include a great floppy hat (I'm loving the gold chain on this one!!), wear anytime white blouse, easy cross-body saddle bag, perfect striped tee, a great pair of flared jeans, and comfy mules.

Does anyone else have this, the desire to go shopping, like right now? And, if so, what will you be buying? Help me to vicariously shop through you :-)

xo
Michelle

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Ice Cream Social

Get your Ice Cream Social Print Here!


For those of you who follow me on Instagram you've seen the version of this "Ice Cream Social" art print (the one below) that I created for my nursery. Well knowing how unique my dog is, he is a beagle husky mix that we rescued about seven years ago, and very few people out there have a beagle husky mix, I thought it would be best to make this more universal. So above is the print as it is listed on etsy.


I changed Hamilton to be an adorable golden retriever. And, just like all of my Petite Chic prints this Ice Cream Social print can be customized with various hair and skin combinations to fit any child. I plan to add to the listing in October with a part that you can customize the dog to be a buyers personal pet but for now, while I'm taking a break from custom orders for the next few weeks, I haven't listed that part yet.

Hope you enjoy!

xo
Michelle

Friday, July 31, 2015

Fashion Illustration Friday

love this illustration? Get your own print here!


Im calling her my Casual Chic "It" Girl. Easy and put-together... with no fuss French inspired style. Wishing I looked like her today!

Looking for a similar outfit?! Try these: Scarf, Tee, Skirt, handbag, and loafers!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

xo
Michelle

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Shopaholic's Wish List: My "fall is coming and I can't wait" picks from Zara's AW15 Collection

Some of my favorite Zara AW15 Collection picks: Cropped Top, Navy Wide-leg Studio Trousers, Faux Leather Dress,
  Dress with necklace neckline, Top gathered at the side, And Cotton Trousers


I know I know it's still July, what am I even doing posting this?! But I am loving Zara's AW15 Collection and couldn't wait to share.

Fall is probably my favorite fashion season and since it's basically August, with only two more days left in July, it means September is right around the corner. So I feel like it really isn't that early... at least that's what I'm going to keep telling myself!

Above are some of my favorite picks from Zara's AW15 Collection. I love the silhouettes of each of these items and how comfortable and yet still polished they look.

Are you as excited for Fall as I am? What looks are you loving for the coming season?

xo
Michelle

Monday, July 20, 2015

Diary of a Freelancer: Nursery Tour, Wrapping up my Freelance Jobs, and Preparing for Maternity Leave

View from the doorway to the nursery, pretty wardrobe and decor!


Entering the nursery! (And please don't worry I know I can't keep the pillow or blanket in the crib, it's just in there for decoration for now.) The pillow will actually move to the glider once that arrives and the blanket will be put away/stored.
Continuing around the room, the space for reading and where the glider will go. We ordered it From Buy Buy Baby and it should be in late August/September. It's a grey tweed and the white heart pillow (see above) will look perfect sitting on it. 
Dresser/changing table with pretty decor and my custom illustrations. I still need to add two more, but it's almost ready!
Some of my favorite details, Gorgeous Classic Books, French Bulldog bookends, and a pretty dress for display.
I spent a long time writing this post. Work/life/baby balance is something I have been thinking about a lot over the last few months. Should I feel guilty that I still want a career post-baby or should I feel strong and proud that I will be showing my daughter that she can do both? And it's something that I thought about not sharing, and wrote and rewrote and thought about deleting this post... and then ultimately I decided that I would share in hopes that fellow freelancers, pregnant ladies, and working moms going through similar feelings about this balance could relate and maybe could even share some advice.

It's been a crazy month and I thought I'd take today to share a little about where I'm at and what I've been up to since somehow July 2 to July 20th went by without a post! I've been working hard on illustration jobs and home "nesting" type work and it's literally been a blur. This week I'm hoping to show you some of the jobs I've been working on, Wrap up all of my outstanding freelance work, and, in addition to that, I really wanted to share pictures of my nursery as it currently looks. So those pictures are above and overall I'm SO happy with it. I can't wait to see it completely finished, and show you the finished pictures, which will probably be sometime in September.

So those pictures are my life update and then for work update, I have a goal for myself to finish up all of my freelance work by this Friday. My reason for this is that if baby chooses to come early (which seriously I would love but I'm not counting on it I'm just being cautious) then it leaves me in a tricky situation work wise. I'm left with having to potentially let clients down. If this happens my options become; finishing work/jobs while I have a brand new baby, have clients wait two months for their work, or have to stop their work in the middle and send them to a new illustrator/designer and then all of the work I already did becomes a waste / I don't get paid for it and my clients have to start over and loose time on their jobs. All options just seemed like "no way" to me and I can't let that happen. And while I am over-the-moon excited for baby I do still want to keep my clients happy and get them a product they love on time.

This brings me to my inner battle and future goals. I love being a freelancer. I love working from home, the variety of jobs I get to work on and the amazing and interesting clients I've been able to work with, it's literally a dream. It's been fun and challenging to learn how to be an artist, a business manager, an assistant, a CFO, etc., all rolled into one person. And so knowing what I have done, and what I do (and what all people who work from home/for themselves/freelance do) it's been really frustrating that I've had numerous people tell me it's easier for me, to get ready for maternity leave, then if I was working at an actual office for someone else. This comment upsets me because it makes me feel like the people who said it don't think I work as hard as someone in an office and that it's no big deal to just let my career go for a little bit. And I know, I know, who cares what other people think, but sometimes I do and I can't help it. I'm hoping maybe my fellow freelancers and work-from-homers understand, while yes there are some amazing perks to working from home (like I can take a nap in the middle of the day when being pregnant makes me really sleepy) the other side is that I do have to make up that time. If I don't work I don't get paid and my client relations would suffer. And just like people who work in an office I need to make sure I get every single job done and every client is happy before I go on leave. And since I have done both... worked for myself and in an office... I can truly say it's not any easier working from home. Basically, I feel that, no matter where you work or who you work for, it is hard prepping to take a pause from your career.

And it's funny... I start to feel guilty... like I'm being selfish for even thinking about this when I'm expecting a baby. So I'd love to hear from mom's how they balance and make it work. How do they continue to push forward in their careers and still are amazing moms. Please share your tips and advice! I'd really love to hear it.

xoxo

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Fashion Illustration... Thursday?!?... Fourth of July Edition



I'm signing off early this week just as I'm sure many of you are and wanted to take this time to say I hope you have a wonderful fourth and that your weekend is filled with good friends, family, camp fires and s'more roasting... or any other activity that makes you happy (I think the girls above will be sailing with lots of champagne.. but that's just me!)!

See you next week!

xo

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Shopaholic's Wish List: Sale Picks

I love how around any major holiday stores have great sales! Here are a few of the items on my wish list from my favorite stores:

BANANA REPUBLIC
BANANA REPUBLIC PICKS!!! My current stop for bold prints and texture!! Loving this Striped Crossover-Hem Tank, Black Crossover Hem Tank with the Floral Jacquard Shorts, Amirah Flats, and Drapey Swing Tee with lace shorts! Don't forget code BRGOBIG at checkout for 50% off all of these awesome items and many more! With the sale the total for these six items is right around $155! 
ANTHROPOLOGIE
ANTHROPOLOGIE - one of my favorites for really unique and beautiful pieces - Here are my Summer Tag sale picks! Don't forget code SALEAWAY at checkout for an extra 20% off! Shadow Pane Tank, Lacework Tank, Eyelet Empire Blouse, Pearl Front Barrette, Netherlands Scarf, Mitered Stripe Peplum Tank, Miura Silk Blouse, Livnah Gown, and Lucite Bangles!
LOFT
MY LOFT PICKS!! Lou & Grey Catalina Dress (I have this one and it is seriously SO comfortable!) currently 50% offLou & Grey Strapped Dress 50% offLoft Beach Swing Dress extra 60% off, Lou & Grey Perforated Tee 50% off (I basically want this entire outfit including the necklace although the necklace is not listed on the site...boo),  Lou & Grey Whisperknit Cardigan 50% off, and Loft Floral Stripe Square Scarf extra 60% off
And here are some highlights of sales going on right now:

Loft Extra 60% off sale styles and styles for the fourth start at $7 no codes needed

Anthropologie is having their summer tag sale with an extra 20% off sale styles with code SALEAWAY

Kate Spade is giving an extra 25% off sale items with code SETSALE

Banana Republic is having an extra 50% off sale styles with code BRGOBIG

J.Crew is offering 30% off select wear-now styles and an additional 30% off sale items use code SUMMERSTYLE

Old Navy is having a "red, White, & blue sale with items starting at $2, $4, $6, & $8! no codes needed. This has become one of my favorite place for easy and comfortable maternity pieces. I can shop here with zero guilt since the prices are great and I will be wearing the maternity items for such a short amount of time. My favorite includes this dress at $13)

What are you looking for/shopping for right now? What stores do you always shop at when they are having a sale? I'd love to know.

xoxo

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Baby Shower Highlights

Soap labels I added to the custom soaps from Rogue Valley Soap on Etsy


Finished soaps ready to be given to shower guests!
These Bags were used at a popcorn bar with custom labels made by me! Buuuttt... I forgot to take photos of the bar so this is all I can show you ... womp wa

The pretty table with my Guest "book" Print ready to be signed and a Baby Shower bag game
Pretty dessert bar including gorgeous baby theme sugar cookies made by my mother-in-law! 
Just some additional pretty shower details
All of the coordinating stationery and paper items from the shower. Available here!
I told you last week that I would share more of my shower decor and details with you and I finally have them up today! In typical me fashion I had every intention of taking photos... and then didn't take any! Woops!! But above are some of the photos from the shower that I stole from other people and took as I was prepping the stationery.

So anyway... I just have to say my mom did such a wonderful job with my shower. Every detail was so elegant and lovely. She painted mason jars light pink and mint, and filled them with pretty flowers and placed them with children's books on top of pretty coordinating table runners for the center pieces. So simple but pretty! She also had a bubbly bar (or for me lemonade with fruit added in a champagne glass) because who doesn't love a nice glass of bubbly at a celebratory event! We had a beautiful dessert table with cake pops and gorgeous hand-made baby themed sugar cookies by my mother-in-law! And the last table was the table with my guest "book" print and fun baby shower game.

We played this game that we found on The DeVore's Blog, The "Guess What's in the Bag" game where each bag is labeled with a letter forming the words "baby shower" and has an items inside that starts with the letter on the bag and is for baby. So cute! And the last game we played, to follow the storybook theme from the invitations, was a nursery rhyme game... which I have to say was really hard and I have a lot to learn in the next month or so!

Also a quick shout out to Rogue Valley Soaps on etsy! It's where we purchased the soap shower favors and can I just tell you how amazing them smell!! Great product, I really loved their soaps! For my shower though, since I was making all of the paper items to coordinate with my invitation, we just asked them to send the soaps and the gift bags and leave the labels off. Everything came ready to put together and I just added the labels, popped them in the pretty bags, and they were ready to give out.

So that's it, this lovely shower was such a wonderful event and I can't wait for my baby girl to meet everyone who was there and who already loves her so much!!

Hope you enjoyed the sneak peek at all the details!

xo

Friday, June 19, 2015

Fashion Illustration Friday - With a Twist

Tea Party Print from Petite Chic Shop by Michelle Baron


Tricycle Print from Petite Chic Shop by Michelle Baron
Today's Fashion Illustration Friday has a little twist, it's all about the kids! If you follow me on instagram you've already seen these two, but I couldn't wait to share the finals here.

I've been working on a line of little girl fashion illustrations for awhile now. They were originally available in my Michelle Baron Studio etsy shop but as I've been adding more I decided to create a shop specific to them. My new shop Petite Chic Shop on etsy features just kid friendly fashion illustrations. Here are two that I created this week and are available in the shop, Tea Party and Tricycle prints. They are playful and fun and adorable and ready to be added to your kids room, playroom, nursery, etc and all prints are available in a variety of hair and skin colors to fit the specific child!

What do you think of these latest fashion illustrations?!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Illustration Reveal: My Baby Shower Guest Book



There are so many things going on right now that I can't wait to share with you but one that I keep hinting at I can show you today!! This past Saturday was my baby shower and my parents threw such a pretty and elegant party. I had a wonderful time! For the shower I got to design all of the stationery and paper products to coordinate with their decor and can I just tell you how much fun I had! Today I wanted to show you the illustration we used as a guest book.

We had each guest sign their name in a balloon so that as it hangs in the nursery our baby girl will already see how many people love her and are so happy to have her in their lives. The top picture is the actual illustration and the bottom pictures show you the illustration framed with all of the signatures! I also have it next to one of the other illustrations that will hang in her room. I'm creating a small gallery wall for her of roughly six illustrations that I'm hoping she will love. I'll show you those soon too, but currently they are still in process. I'll also show you more details from the shower tomorrow!

For now I hope you love this print as much as me!!

If you love this guest book illustration and/or giraffe print you can get them now in my new Children's Fashion Illustration specific etsy shop (More illustrations, prints and designs will be added in the coming days and weeks)! Or see other items available in my original etsy shop!

xoxo

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Shopaholic's Wish List: Pattern Cravings

Loft Embroidered Babydoll dress, Inslee by Design stationery on her instagram account, Lauren Ralph Lauren Somerset Island Floral Collection,  Accessories 212 Floral Embroidered Infinity Scarf, and
Eliza J Print Crepe de Chine Mermaid Gown,


Lately I feel like I'm seeing indigo and white floral all over and on everything. I'm loving how it can work in styles that range from romantic to boho too. Here are a few of my favorites on clothing, home decor, and even stationery!

Have you noticed this/been seeing this too? What other styles are you loving right now?!


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Baby Shower Invitation



Invitation, Insert card, and Thank you note, all available in the etsy listing
I'm really excited to share a new listing I've added recently to my etsy shop with you! It's a baby shower card, available in pink or blue, a little playful, a little sweet, and just makes me happy. It's also available as an electronic file and has a 24-hour turnaround time for all those last minute invitation seekers :-)

And also, as a side note, it was created for my baby shower! Can't wait to show you more pics and tell you all about it next week!

xoxo

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Illustration Reveal: Little Louis' Adventures

The Scariest Dog on the Street, Little Louis' Adventures






Back in the fall when things were crazy busy I was working on a few super secret jobs that I couldn't tell you anything about. Well today I can finally reveal one of them!!

I had the privilege of working with the author J. C. Gordon on her book The Scariest Dog on the Street part of her series Little Louis Adventures. The story is very cute and gives children a great message about judging based on appearances. Hope you enjoy the peek at a few of the pages, and illustrations, above.

Get your copy here!