2019 HOLIDAY SNAIL MAIL CARD SWAP

I am so excited to be co-hosting a Holiday Snail Mail Card Swap with my good friend and fellow animal lover Jenna of Paper Wilderness! We created this swap as a way for us to get into the holiday spirit, encourage snail mail, support local artists and businesses, and to connect and have fun! :) Join us and receive a fun mix of holiday cards that you’ll be able to use this season! Below are all the details or you can find them on directly on the sign up page as well.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE SWAP!

WHO CAN PARTICIPATE IN THIS SWAP?

We welcome card designers, snail mail enthusiasts, makers and shop owners, card and stationery lovers, and everyone in between–if you would enjoy getting mail and some holiday cards to use this season, we would love to have you join us! It’s also a fun way to show your work and support the artists and designers you love!

International participants are welcome!

WHAT WILL I RECEIVE/WHAT DO I NEED TO SEND?

The idea is for you to receive a variety of holiday cards that you’ll be able to use this holiday season.

By joining the swap, you are agreeing to send 1 unused A2 (4.25″x5.5″) holiday card to EACH of your swap matches. (Do NOT write inside the card–the idea is for each person to get a brand new card that they will be able to use.)

You will be put into groups of 3-5 matches. You will be sending each of your matches 1 card and you will also receive a card from each of your matches as well.

CARD REQUIREMENTS

We ask that the value of your card be $5 minimum. We encourage you to support small businesses and purchase from local artists or shops.

We also think it’d be nice (but not required) if you add a separate note to say hi to your swap match :)

Optional: If you’d like to send a bigger card or one of more value, feel free! You can also add a short note or extra goodies (stickers, gift tags, etc.) if you’d like.

IMPORTANT DATES TO REMEMBER

Swap sign up ends on October 23rd.
You will receive an email with your swap matches on October 27th.
The deadline to send your cards out by is November 11th.

SHARE / SOCIAL MEDIA

The more the merrier! We’d love for you to spread the word about this swap and let everyone know you are participating!

The hashtag for the swap is #2019holidaycardswap
Olivia’s Instagram is @atiliay
Jenna’s Instagram is @thepaperwilderness

We will also be sharing the swap on our accounts so feel free to repost or use those images!

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE SWAP!

After you sign up, you will receive an email with your swap matches on 10/27/19 that will also include helpful tips on sending out your cards. If you have any questions, feel free to email Olivia at hello@atiliay.com.

We hope you’ll join us and are as excited as we are about swapping holiday inspired mail!

CANDIDLY CAFFEINATED PODCAST INTERVIEW

I was so excited when Hannah invited me to be on Candidly Caffeinated! Her podcast is all about learning to thrive in our creativity and we met up last week to chat about my journey with Atiliay, expanding our comfort zones, and personal growth.⁣

I really enjoyed our conversation and if you want to check it out, the episode came out today!

Here are the links to listen to Episode 57 of Candidly Caffeinated, “Finding Your Path with Olivia Lin of Atiliay”:

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

⁣⁣Hannah gave me such a wonderful opportunity to share about myself and Atiliay so I wanted to tell you a little more about her! Not only is she the creator and host of Candidly Caffeinated, Hannah is also a writer, speaker, and a consultant on content strategy as well as a coffee enthusiast and believer that EVERYONE is creative (I completely agree!)

You can connect with Hannah on:

Website | www.HannahJMoyer.com

Instagram | @hjmoyer

Twitter | hjmoyer

She made this interview so fun and comfortable and I appreciate her support very much—thank you Hannah for having me on!⁣
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PS: Anytime I hear my recorded voice I’m like, that’s what I sound like!? Lol Maybe one day I’ll get used to it!

MEET THE MAKER – PART 5

This is Part 5 of the Meet The Maker series!
To learn more and start at Part 1, please click here.
Links to all other parts of this series can be found at the bottom of this post.


DAY 25 | HOW IT’S MADE: Every card starts with brush lettering that I do by hand with a brush pen on paper—it’s not a font! But to keep my fingers from falling off and to be able to mass produce, I digitize and vectorize the lettering so that I can print it out. Here’s an example of what the process looks like at each stage:⁣

1) This is an image of the original lettering I did. I took a photo of it, cleaned it up in Photoshop by removing the background and saved it as a PNG file.⁣

March Meet The Maker - Day 25 - Atiliay.com
2) This image shows what the lettering looks like after I open it in Illustrator and turn it into vector art. I use the Live Trace – Make and Expand function in Illustrator (swipe to see a photo where you can see all the vector points) to do this. I then go in and adjust all the points until the lettering is smooth. There are tools in the program to help with this like the Smooth Tool but I find that nothing gets it as good as going in manually to adjust. Yes, this part of the process can be tedious! But I’ll usually put music/a podcast on or catch up on The Voice or a TV show I can just listen to while I do this.⁣

March Meet The Maker - Day 25 - Atiliay.com
3) This last image shows the final lettering that I use on the card–everything is smoothed out and I can resize it and create the layout with it now! ⁣

March Meet The Maker - Day 25 - Atiliay.com

DAY 26 | SELF CARE: Going to Bounce Society’s trampoline workout classes has been my form of self care the past few years! I never thought I’d say that in a million years bc I worked out zero before going and after my very first class was over, I felt a mix of wanting to throw up and feeling like I was going to die—it is hardcore! But the more I went the more I realized how much better I felt, physically and mentally, after each class and I love going now! Every time I step up on a tramp is a chance to get better and stronger.⁣

It can definitely be hard to find an activity that works for you and then find the time and motivation to go do it, but I think it’s something we need to make a priority because we have to take care of ourselves too!⁣

I have also felt that staying active is important, especially since I’m no spring chicken anymore lol Instead of dreading getting older, I want to look forward to it and be the strongest I’ve ever been at 35, at 40, at 45, etc! What does your form of self care look like?⁣

PS: Local friends, classes are in Costa Mesa if you’d like to join me

March Meet The Maker - Day 26 - Atiliay.com

DAY 27 | ANYTHING GOES: I’m excited to share that a box of Atiliay’s card for a cause are headed to Boston to the More Than Words Bookstore!⁣⁣⁣
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MTW is a nonprofit social enterprise that empowers youth who are in the foster care system, court involved, homeless, or out of school to take charge of their lives by taking charge of a business. I love what they are doing and am very happy to a part of their bookstore!⁣⁣⁣
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Their order provides 40 meals for The EEC and will help to find a micro-loans for a mom entrepreneur! Check them out at @mtwyouth and friends in the area, stop by!⁣

PS: If you’re interested in having Atiliay cards in your shop or space, please email me and I’ll send you wholesale info!

March Meet The Maker - Day 27 - Atiliay.com

DAY 28 | PACKAGING:  I mentioned in the reducing waste post that I like to keep it simple when it comes to packaging. Cards are put into clear sleeves and sealed (I’m excited to be switching to a compostable version soon) and packed in a non-bendable mailer with an info/thank you postcard. I finish each package with washi tape around the mailing label and they are ready to be sent off!

March Meet The Maker - Day 28 - Atiliay.com

DAY 29 | MOST DIFFICULT MAKE: And most difficult to photograph! One of the hardest parts was seeing the reflection of the letters and also freaking myself out with my own reflection a few times lol Honored to have been able to create this for a lovely bride and check mirror seating chart off my to do list—although this might’ve been my first and last time doing a project like this! Big props to the mirror sign makers out there!

March Meet The Maker - Day 29 - Atiliay.com

DAY 30 | SUPPORT: I feel super lucky to have had years of support from my friends as well as finding an awesome community of letterers and makers here on IG who have become real life friends too! My journey would’ve been so much more difficult and lonely if I didn’t have them in my life! Here are some of these special people:

Top left: My very first workshop ever! Made possible by my friend Kristen, who I’ve known since 6th grade and who also helped me at one of my very first craft shows, and her sis-in-law Nikki! This was the push and encouragement I needed to start teaching and I am very grateful!

Top right: Me and Susan–we’ve taught together, did this pop up together, I’ve bounced so many ideas off of her, and she’s been such a good listener and given me great advice. She’s also subjected to tons of long rambling texts from me whether it’s about work or reality TV. I’m always thinking, where have you been all my life!? ⁣

Bottom left: Some of my favorite makers and all around awesome women I’m so glad to know: Andrea of Luna Reece Ceramics, Jenna of The Paper Wilderness, Jackie of 3x3Inspire, and Meredith of LB Love Organics.

Bottom right: Lauree of LG Collective was the first to host my public workshops! This was one of the first ones I taught together with Susan!

March Meet The Maker - Day 30 - Atiliay.com

DAY 31 | PRODUCT IN THE WILD:  Here are some of my favorite shots of Atiliay’s cards for a cause and lettering out in the wild—and that’s a wrap! Thank you for reading these Meet The Maker posts and I hope it helped you get to know Atiliay and myself a little better :)

March Meet The Maker - Day 31 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 31 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 31 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 31 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 31 - Atiliay.com


Thank you for reading Part 5 of the Meet The Maker series! In case you missed it…
READ PART 1 HERE
READ PART 2 HERE
READ PART 3 HERE
READ PART 4 HERE

MEET THE MAKER – PART 4

This is Part 4 of the Meet The Maker series!
To learn more and see Part 1, please click here.
Links to all other parts of this series can be found at the bottom of this post.


DAY 19 | DREAM MASH UP: I used to make custom cakes and I think it’d be so fun—and messy—to have my lettering and cake worlds collide! My favorite part about making cakes was the decorating and I think it’d be pretty yummy to letter with frosting or paint with food coloring! Might be something I’ll have to try in the near future! (Top left is a cake I made for my friend’s husband of his tattoo and bottom right is an Up inspired cake—one of my favorite movies!)

March Meet The Maker - Day 19 - Atiliay.com

DAY 20 | DESIGN PROCESS: Here’s a little bit more on how I created this card!⁣

* I had been wanting to add more teacher appreciation cards to my line. I thought this phrase would be perfect to gift with plants or flowers! (Anytime I get an idea I jot it down in Evernote!) ⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣* I start off every card design with quick thumbnail sketches to figure out the layout and finalize which words will be lettered and which will be printed. Sometimes I know exactly what I want but other times it takes a lot more to get the configuration right!⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣* Next, I get busy lettering! I usually do this on scrap paper with pencil until I am happy with it—if I get lucky I like what I letter in a few tries but normally I’ll do at least 15 or more versions before picking one! Then I go over it with a brush pen.⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣* After that, I take a picture of it, email it to myself, and use Photoshop to clean it up and Illustrator to vectorize it.⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣* Once it’s in vector form, I’ll go in and adjust as many of those little dots as I need to! It’s time consuming and can get tedious but I think this creates a really clean finished product!⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣* With the lettering done, I’ll size it and combine it with the print and layout the card in Illustrator and add the blurb for the back—and it’s done! ⁣⁣⁣
⁣⁣⁣* The last part is to print, cut, pair it with an envelope, take photos, and share it with the world! ⁣

March Meet The Maker - Day 20 - Atiliay.com

DAY 21 | THROWBACK: Some of the first cards for a cause I ever listed on Etsy were these stamped and stitched cards! They were truly a labor of love—each was hand stamped and hand stitched and I eventually phased them out because they were time consuming to create and I was focusing more on being able to mass produce. But as I’ve learned more about what I want from Atiliay and what kind of business I want to be, I’ve realized how much I love these cards and really miss making them…so I’ve decided to bring them back! I’ll be giving the designs a little update and will produce them in limited quantity batches throughout the year. Stay tuned or if you’re on my mailing list, you’ll be the first to know!

March Meet The Maker - Day 21 - Atiliay.com

DAY 22 | PROUD OF: I am proud of myself for doing this (Atiliay) and I am proud of the people I know and follow here on IG who have shared their work—even if they are scared that it’s not good enough, started or are starting their biz or Etsy shop, are trying a new hobby, or are doing whatever it may be that they feel in their heart they should do without letting fear, circumstances, or negative vibes from others get in the way! I don’t think we give ourselves enough credit for taking that leap and starting, for the small wins, for the big accomplishments, and for everything in between. Let’s do that today!

March Meet The Maker - Day 22 - Atiliay.com

DAY 23 | TOP TIP OR ADVICE: If I could go back and tell myself something when I first started, it’d be to focus on what’s pushing my goals, dreams, and biz forward and these numbers $$ rather than focusing on social media vanity numbers. Sure, it might look great to have 1000s of followers but that doesn’t automatically mean your business is successful and on the flip side you can have 100 followers and be killing it! I think it’s more important to prioritize your limited time and when it comes to social media to ignore the numbers and keep showing up and connecting with the people who are already there supporting you!

March Meet The Maker - Day 23 - Atiliay.com

DAY 24 | CUSTOMERS/FEEDBACK: I am SO appreciative of every customer who has taken the time to leave a review, write an email, or my favorite–send me pics of the products they purchased next to human and furbabies! (“Grand dog”?? These are def my people!) It seriously makes my day to know that something I created has made someone happy or helped to express love and gratitude. It is also really special when people share that they connect with the cause and giving back! These are the reasons why I love doing what I do and makes all the late nights and tough times worth it!

reviewMarch Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 24 - Atiliay.com


Thank you for reading Part 4 of the Meet The Maker series! In case you missed it…
READ PART 1 HERE
READ PART 2 HERE
READ PART 3 HERE
READ PART 5 HERE

MEET THE MAKER – PART 3

This is Part 3 of the Meet The Maker series!
To learn more and see Part 1, please click here.
To read Part 2, head over here.


DAY 13 | PHOTOGRAPHY: This is where I take my photos—behind the couch in the corner of the living room that gets a lot of natural light (luckily the couch hides this so I can leave my set up there)! My background is a white foam board sitting on top of a short wood side table with extra boards to reflect light with. And I usually take pics with my iPhone. Here’s a pic of set up, final photo, and the table (it’s one of my favorite Craigslist finds from years ago!)

March Meet The Maker - Day 13 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 13 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 13 - Atiliay.com

DAY 14 | HOW I LEARNED: Here’s a sample of my work from when I first started learning how to letter—the page from the journal is one of my very first attempts at it! I also found an old “learn” that I lettered and it’s next to one I lettered in pencil not too long ago!⁣⁣⁣⁣
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I am self taught and started by following lettering IG accounts/blogs that had tutorials and guides about 4 ish years ago. It was difficult in the beginning because I had no idea what kind of pen to use or how to hold it or what any of the rules were and it was discouraging. But I started to make progress when I⁣:⁣⁣⁣
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1) Joined the #handletteredabcs challenge and practiced one letter a day⁣⁣⁣⁣.
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2) Found the Zebra brush pen at Daiso and realized smaller/stiffer brush pens are more beginner friendly!⁣⁣⁣
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After that it was a TON of practicing, refining, and studying letters. ⁣⁣⁣⁣
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There’s still so much I want to learn which I think is one of the cool things about lettering or any art form—there’s always room to progress and grow and I’m looking forward to it!
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PS: If lettering is something you’ve been wanting to try or you’ve dabbled but feel discouraged like how I did, I’d love for you to join me at a workshop if you’re in the So Cal area! I wanted to teach because I wanted to share the things I *wish* I knew when I first started and I feel like it’s one of those things that’s easier to learn face to face. (I’m also working on a workbook and videos for those of you who are not in the area!) To view workshop dates, click here for the Workshop Calendar.

 March Meet The Maker - Day 14 - Atiliay.com

DAY 15 | MOTIVATION AND GOALS: Atiliay started out as a fundraiser and the foundation of what I do is still built on that idea—I love the thought of creating products/workshops that enable customers and attendees to easily join me in giving back! This is what motivates me and my goal is for us to continue to give back together!⁣
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One of the ways Atiliay’s cards for a cause help is by funding micro loans for mom and dad entrepreneurs around the world through Kiva.org. Because of Father’s Day cards, Atiliay was able to lend to Denis! This is his story and a photo of him with his business. ⁣

To date Atiliay has funded over 80 micro loans in over 36 countries with your help!

March Meet The Maker - Day 15 - Atiliay.com

March Meet The Maker - Day 15 - Atiliay.com

DAY 16 | WORKSPACE: Here’s an old photo of my workspace at its best—see my post for Day 7 for how it actually looks most of the time! There’s also a cameo below of my two assistants, Valentine and Bernard :)

March Meet The Maker - Day 16 - Atiliay.com

DAY 17 | WHAT I’M WORKING ON: I’ve been working on getting wrapping paper made! It’s taken quite awhile to find a printer who will print on kraft paper and recreate the design below but I have found one and am excited to move forward in the process! Stay tuned!

March Meet The Maker - Day 17 - Atiliay.com

DAY 18 | MISTAKE OR LESSON: Strive for progress, not perfection–this is something I’ve learned throughout my journey and something I continue to work on. It’s easy for me to get caught up in making things “perfect” which is impossible and holds me back from getting things done! I love this quote and it reminds me to focus on progressing by finishing projects, putting my work and myself out there, and continuing to move forward!

March Meet The Maker - Day 18 - Atiliay.com


Thank you for reading Part 3 of the Meet The Maker series! In case you missed it…
READ PART 1 HERE
READ PART 2 HERE
READ PART 4 HERE

MEET THE MAKER – PART 2

This is Part 2 of the Meet The Maker series! To learn more and see Part 1, please click here.


DAY 7 | LESS GLAM SIDE: What can I say, I’m no Marie Kondo! In case you’re wondering, the disaster that you are looking at is part of my workspace and my desk!

⁣This is probably the realist pic I’ve ever posted lol FYI that little corner where you can actually see the table is where I put my laptop. In my defense, I’ve been doing most of my lettering and workshop prep at the dining room table which is why this has gone untouched but it’s the last big area I need to tidy up—the rest of my space is actually somewhat decent lol⁣

March Meet The Maker - Day 7 - Atiliay.com

DAY 8 | PRODUCT RANGE: Here’s a spread of the things I offer (top to bottom, leftish to rightish)! Stamped favor boxes, greeting cards, lettering worksheets, baby milestone cards, and brush lettering workshops. To do a little shopping or to view workshop dates, click on the link in my profile—there’s currently a little over 90 products to browse through.

Every item gives back by providing meals for The EEC Preschool & Nursery (pictured), microloans for mom and dad entrepreneurs, and vegan chili and meals for folks across the US!

March Meet The Maker - Day 8 - Atiliay.com

DAY 9 | STORY BEHIND THE NAME: Atiliay (Eh-ti-lee-ay) is based off the French word “atelier” meaning workshop or studio specifically for an artist or designer. I wanted a name that nobody else would have so I changed the spelling to how I think the word sounds. I also liked that the name and meaning is versatile enough that if my business were to ever evolved into something else, the name would still work. Fun fact: So far, since 2013, I have only met 1 person (at a craft show) who saw “Atiliay” and immediately knew it was a play on “atelier”! I was very impressed lol The downside of having a made up name is nobody knows if they are saying it right at first! Sorry about that!

March Meet The Maker - Day 9 - Atiliay.com

DAY 10 | YOU: Hello! I’m Olivia! Here’s a little bit more about me for today’s prompt…
* My current obsession is World of Dance and watching dance videos! It’s inspired me to sign up for a dance class!
* I’ve been vegan for 10 years and I love animals! A few of my fave food places: Mitasie3, Freesoulcaffe, The Donuttery, and Huglife ⁣⁣⁣⁣
* My other half is Justin who is my COMPLETE opposite! He is a full time podcaster and produces and narrates a family of podcasts called Optimal Living Daily. If you’re into self development, minimalism, and similar topics, I highly recommend them!
* I live in Irvine with my pom Valentine and 3 kitties: Makani, Jefrey, and Samone.
* The dog in this photo is Kingston who came to a workshop!
* I just started reading Wild Swans by Jung Chang and it’s been hard to put down ⁣⁣⁣⁣
* I have a fear of heights and clusters of circles (trypophobia)

March Meet The Maker - Day 10 - Atiliay.com

DAY 11 | REDUCING WASTE: This is definitely something I’ve been trying my best to do! Here are a few steps I’ve taken to be more eco-friendly and waste less—

* While I love intricate and beautiful packaging, I’ve kept mine as minimal as possible without a lot of extras because I feel like most of it ends up in the trash! Each order comes in a non-bendable mailer made from 100% recycled paper board by family owned company @upaknship along with an info postcard that doubles as a thank you note.⁣
* I recently saw that ClearBags has new eco sleeves made from plants that are compostable so I’m excited to switch to those!⁣
* Anytime I have paper scraps I keep them to practice lettering on or use for other projects. And anything I can’t use anymore is recycled!

March Meet The Maker - Day 11 - Atiliay.com

DAY 12 | HANDS AT WORK (This photo is part of the DIY Calligraphy Wrapping Paper Tutorial Post!)

March Meet The Maker - Day 12 - Atiliay.com


Thank you for reading Part 2 of the Meet The Maker series! In case you missed it…
READ PART 1 HERE
READ PART 3 HERE