Archive for March, 2012

Foto Friday!

March 30, 2012

Check out this week’s Foto Friday!

What’s Foto Friday? It’s our weekly blog post of customers enjoying their Zazzle products. Want to join in the fun and earn $5 towards your next Zazzle order? See details on how to participate in Foto Friday.


Don’t Tri Me Triceratops Tshirt


With a Great Stache Comes Great Responsibilities Pin
My brother has taken it upon himself to grow a fancy, curled-up at the edges mustache, much to the chagrin of my sister-in-law. This kind of stache requires hard work, dedication and respect, so when I saw this button on Zazzle, I knew he had to have it. Well done, Zazzle, well done. -Sara


When I meet my clients they are amazed at the clean presence of my business card. I tell them to try and rip it in half. They never succeed. -Jesus


G1 Autobot Shield BW Tee Shirts


I am the co-owner of Hound & Country Pet Care, a dog walking and pet care business in Beverly, MA. We LOVE these keychains, which we give to all of our new clients, along with homemade cookies shaped liked dog bones. Zazzle products are really helping us build our brand and create a great experience for our customers.
Thanks Zazzle! -Stephanie (Www.houndandcountrypetcare.com

Join in the fun now! Learn more about submitting your photos and videos to Foto Friday!

Zazzle Featured Seller Interview with ridgerooms

March 29, 2012

Ridge, from the Zazzle store ridgerooms, talks with us about her creative nature, her pop culture inspirations, and her advice to other Zazzlers.  Check out the interview below and don’t forget to check out her store ridgerooms.

Zazzle: Hey Ridge, tell us a little about yourself.

Ridge: I’m a freelance illustrator, product designer/developer and writer. I usually live in NYC, but I’m on sabbatical in the country until later this year, as I needed a bit of a break from the city. I spent 10 years designing in-house and/or freelance for a bunch of brands — everyone from “Peanuts” to Pepsi — but went out on my own about two years ago to work on my own creative projects. Starting next month, I’ll also now be in my favorite gallery in LA. It’s just one more piece of the puzzle, but I’m really excited about it.

Zazzle: When you’re not creating art, what are your other hobbies?

Ridge: I’m obsessed with music, and am an absolute sucker for old movies. But really I love consuming all of the arts … it’s one of the best things about New York — so many shows and galleries and concerts, etc. I also really love volunteering — especially with arts mentoring programs for kids. Unfortunately we didn’t have anything like that when I was growing up, so I like to try and help give the encouraging head start that I didn’t get as an awkward artist kid trying to find her way. But other than that, my interests change often. I’m so homesick for NY right now, since on weekends, I like just walking out your door without a plan. You never know what adventure you’ll find that day.

Zazzle: How many hours do you typically spend working on your Zazzle store?

Ridge: It ebbs and flows. Sometimes I go months without posting something new, and then I’ll have a burst and work every day for a week or two on it. I try to load up a bunch of pending items (I think I have 10 pages of them right now), so that if I get some free time and want to do an update, it’s mostly ready for me to post. For as much time as I spend doodling unnecessary silliness for my blog or making custom birthday cards for friends, I really should spend more time making general cards and things for my store. I’m trying to change that. Obviously freelance client projects come first, but I’ve started thinking of my store as another client that gets its own scheduled time. Lately I’ve been implementing an at-least-one-hour-per-day rule to my schedule.

Zazzle: When and how did you first become interested in art? How long have you been making art?

Ridge: I didn’t come to it as naturally as most of my artist friends who tell me that all they did as a child was draw. I had so many interests, of which art was just one. If anything, when I was growing up, I desperately wanted to be a film composer, but although I was classically-trained on multiple instruments, I had no talent for songwriting, so I went to college instead for cinematography (another passion), with English as a minor. But instead of working on films or writing papers, I always ended up sitting in my dorm room into the wee hours of the night drawing. After college, I used my music and English background as a music journalist for a few years (with some illustration gigs on the side), then one day a recruiter from Barnes & Noble called and asked if I wanted to interview for a job in product development. They’d seen my resume and needed someone with communication skills to convey specs, etc. to manufacturers, which was something that also required an artistic eye. I gave it a try and 12 years later, I now do product design and illustration full-time, with the writing now on the side. My musical and film training did not go to waste, though, as everything I’ve absorbed over the years goes into what I design and draw. Cinematography taught me composition and and how to tell a story with color, etc., and music pretty much feeds everything I do.

Zazzle: What’s your inspiration for your designs?

Ridge: For illustration projects, it’s almost always what I’m surrounded by at the moment — a band I’m listening to a lot, a movie I just saw that I loved, etc. For products, I mostly design what I’d like for myself but haven’t been able to find somewhere to buy. I tend to gravitate towards products with a mid-century style, which used to be hard to find, so I’d make it all myself. Although now with the popularity of “Mad Men” you can find more if it around. Sometimes to my chagrin — I used to carry a Pan Am flight bag as my messenger bag around NYC all day, but once that show came out, I had to retire it for fear of looking like some sort of “Pan Am” TV show fanatic. I still have some of that jet-set vibe in a lot of my design-work, though. I’ve studied that era extensively, and I think that “look” is just naturally a part of what I do, whether I try to spoof it on purpose or not.

Sometimes projects inspire other projects too … I was working on an Alfred Hitchcock illustration for a gallery show, and I’d lost my mojo for the project, so I switched to this little creative exercise I learned where you draw something fun just to recharge your creative batteries. I’d been listening to a lot of the Who while drawing, so I did this mod geometric cartoon of Pete Townshend, and while working on it, I got the idea to pull out some of the elements  — the 45 records, the union flag from his guitar, etc. — and turn those parts into designs for my shop. So now, what started as an assignment turned into a fun doodle for my blog and then ultimately inspired a couple hundred new products in my shop. That’s one of my favorite things about art … it’s so fluid.

Zazzle: What has been your favorite design you’ve created, and why?

Ridge: Probably my “Movie Night” pattern that I originally designed for the Keds men’s shoes (and which was chosen as Today’s Best), that has now started doing pretty well as an iPhone case. I’m very inspired by iconic imagery — Andy Warhol was a childhood idol of mine — and I like the representativeness of the different genres of movies on the tickets. Also I’m completely in love with designing repeat patterns. The more complicated the repeat, the better.

Zazzle: What got you interested in selling your art on Zazzle?

Ridge: I was actually with your competitor starting in 2005, but came over to Zazzle when you partnered with Keds. (I may have even heard about you through Keds, I can’t remember.) I had both stores for a couple of years, then ultimately closed down the other one since Zazzle was so much better. Now I wish I’d known about you sooner. Having a shop here has been world’s above my other experience.

Zazzle: That’s excellent to hear. What tips can you give someone who is just starting out on Zazzle?

Ridge: I originally said “patience” and “be yourself” here, but in reading a few of the other interviews, it looks like that’s everyone’s advice. So in addition to that, I’ll build on what I said before … when you’re working on something, don’t be afraid to think of how you can either continue the design as coordinating products or repurpose some of the art elsewhere. As a pop-culture-themed artist, I do a lot of projects for my blog etc. that I can’t sell because I’m not licensed by that property to, but plenty of those projects inspire something in my shop … in that way I don’t feel like any time was wasted. The green plaid that I added to my shop recently was originally made for a James Bond poster I did last year just for fun.

Zazzle: Do you have any fun stories about being a seller on Zazzle?

Ridge: It makes me laugh every summer when I get a few bulk orders of my Hot Dog “America’s Favorite Mystery Meat” tee, which are usually going to some sort of seaside town. Either that person bought them to stock in their gift shop, or they’re making their employees wear them. I get a weird kick out of supplying the uniform for disgruntled teenage snack shop workers everywhere.

Thanks for sharing Ridge!

Zazzle’s Birthday Pinterest Challenge

March 27, 2012


Who doesn’t love a great birthday present? Zazzle is the perfect place to find that custom, unique birthday present for even the most hard-to-shop-for friend or family member! To celebrate birthdays and making each and every one special, we are hosting a Birthday Pinterest Challenge with some awesome prizes. The Challenge ends April 6th at 11:59 pm PST, so make sure to enter soon!

 

A Little Info about Pinterest

Pinterest is a virtual pinboard that allows users to organize and share images that they find on the internet. You can create your own boards for any topic you can think of, pin images to those boards, and browse pinboards created by others. Once you create an account, you can add the Pin-It Button to your Bookmarks Bar which will allow you to easily “Pin” any image from any page on the web to one of your pinboards.

Challenge Details

Get to know all of the fabulous birthday offerings at Zazzle by joining in our Pinterest Challenge for your chance to win Zazzle Gift Certificates and glory! Here is how it works:

  1. Create a pinboard with the title of the category that you choose from below. We have 16 different categories (15 specified and a bonus round) and you can enter a pinboard in 1 category or all 16! Winners will be selected for each category.
  2. Pin your favorite Birthday products to your board that fit within your chosen theme. You can pin as many designs as you’d like, but make sure that at least 15 of them are from Zazzle! (you can definitely add more than 15!)
  3. Send an email to pinterestchallenge@zazzle.com with the Subject Line of the category that you chose. For example, if you are entering a pinboard in the “Princess Birthday” category, the subject line of your email should be “Princess Birthday”. If you enter the Bonus Round please use subject line: “Bonus Round – YOUR CATEGORY”. Please send a separate email for each category that you enter. In the body of the email please provide:
    1. Name
    2. A link to your Pinboard
    3. Any other special message you want to send us!
  4. That’s it! Have fun with it and feel free to browse other people’s pinboards! Winners will be announced on April 9th.

Categories:

  1. Birthday Cards, Invitations & Postage
  2. 1st Birthday
  3. 18th Birthday
  4. 21st Birthday
  5. 50th Birthday
  6. 70th Birthday
  7. Sweet sixteen birthday
  8. Quinceanera Birthday
  9. Safari Birthday
  10. Princess birthday
  11. Lady Bug Birthday
  12. Trains Birthday
  13. Surprise birthday
  14. Gag Birthday Gifts
  15. Awesome Birthday Brand gifts
  16. Bonus Round – Create your own unique category! The most interesting one will win a prize!

Prizes:

  • 1 winner in each of the first 15 specified categories below will receive a $25 Zazzle Gift Certificate and their pinboard featured on the Zazzle Blog
  • 1 winner in the Bonus Round who comes up with the most creative Birthday Category will receive a $50 Zazzle Gift Certificate and their pinboard featured on the Zazzle Blog

 

Good Luck… and Happy Pinning!!

Take a Trip to Reading Railroad – New Monopoly Store on Zazzle!

March 27, 2012

Have you ever really owned Boardwalk or Park Place when playing Monopoly? We now you can with the new Monopoly store on Zazzle! Featuring great products like the Go to Jail t-shirt and Pass Go, Collect $200 iPhone case you’re sure to live out your love of Monopoly on tons of great custom products. Want to make your own version of the properties? Customize one of the template game pieces in the store! Now everyone can be the race car…

What’s your favorite property in Monopoly (Marvin Gardens rocks!)? What was your favorite card from community chest? Share in the comments!

Gimme Some Skin! New Custom Device Skins from Zazzle

March 26, 2012

How do you take a mass customization platform to the next level? Launch over 270 electronic device skins in ONE DAY! The largest product launch in Zazzle history, custom skins are an ultrathin and super-durable vinyl adhesive that protects your electronic device from every day wear ‘n tear. Precisely designed for many common devices, these iPhone 4 skins, Kindle Fire skins, iPad 3 skins (just in time for your new iPad!) and so many more will display your photos, text, and designs in full-color with a high gloss finish. Check out some of my favorites below or create your own electronics skin.

What device are you going to put a custom skin on first? Share in the comments!

Foto Friday!

March 23, 2012

Check out this week’s Foto Friday!

What’s Foto Friday? It’s our weekly blog post of customers enjoying their Zazzle products. Want to join in the fun and earn $5 towards your next Zazzle order? See details on how to participate in Foto Friday.


Wall*e and Eve Pixel Heart Disney Shirt


My father died January 27, 2012 from complications due to obesity. While he was in the hospital I made him a promise that I would complete a 5k walk for him. I got my shirt made in his honor and I wore it proudly when I finished the 5k, boldly when I completed the 10k and I am looking forward to wearing it victoriously as I complete the Triple Crown of Races doing a 10 mile walk March 31, 2012. I know my dad would be proud and although he is no longer here with me, whenever I feel like quitting I look down at that shirt and I walk just a little bit faster! – Hannah


Open Ocean customizable template business cards

Join in the fun now! Learn more about submitting your photos and videos to Foto Friday!

Zazzle Featured Seller Interview with FINEandDANDY

March 22, 2012

Rachel, from the Zazzle store FINEandDANDY, talks with us about ditching her day job, teaching herself to design, and selling “awesome” products on Zazzle.  Check out the interview below and don’t forget to check out her store FINEandDANDY!

Zazzle: Give us a brief bio – where are you from and when did you start designing?

Rachel: I was born and raised in New Hampshire but now reside in sunny (hot and always humid) Cape Coral, Florida.

I’ve always had an obsession with computers and art since I was little. I started to combine the two when technology became more advanced and I found myself spending a ridiculous amount of time reading up on HTML codes on Google and watching tutorial videos on YouTube (a closet geek, if you will). I always thought that to be a graphic designer you needed a degree and never thought my passion/hobby would go anywhere.

But…. I was very wrong.

Zazzle: How would you describe your style?

Rachel: Vintage, Retro, Modern, Trendy, Chic, and…… awesome. 

Zazzle: What has been your favorite design you’ve created, and why?

Rachel: My ” & Be Married” Wedding Invitation Suite. It’s vintage and classic, yet modern and trendy at the same time!

Zazzle: How do you promote your store?

Rachel: Social media. It’s free and it reaches lots of people all around the world…and also very addicting.

 Zazzle: What is your favorite Zazzle feature? How do you use it?

Rachel: Templates! The best thing about Zazzle is the customization tool. Everyone wants something unique to them and that’s easy to use and fast. Let’s face it, not everyone is computer savvy these days (believe it or not) and templates make it easy for a customer to enter in their own information and purchase their design without having to do any hard work.

Zazzle: What got you interested in selling your art on Zazzle?

Rachel: My wedding.

It was by accident I stumbled across Zazzle (thanks to Google) back in 2010 when I was on an endless search for the perfect wedding thank you card for my guests. I found a really cool template from another shop keeper and then found out there was a customize button.

I clicked it. I created a thank you card in minutes. I loved it. A week later I was back on the site snooping around when I noticed the tiny “Sell” link on the Zazzle homepage. Long story short… I explored the “Sell” option, I designed day and night, I got a check in the mail, I left my full time job,  and 2 years later here I am! :) Now working as a full time employee for myself…. No college degree required.. and my work uniform is…well, my pajama’s :)

Zazzle: Who is your favorite Zazzle seller (besides yourself, of course)?

Rachel: I have to say I have a handful of favorites. I am fortunate enough to have established really good relationships with some of the best designers on Zazzle. They are inspirational, supportive and very helpful. When I first started out I was welcomed with lots of love by Oopsy_Paperie, Fancybelle and Beezkneez… all of which I remain friends with to this day. We even send each other awesome holiday cards….designed by us of course <3

Zazzle: What tips can you give someone who is just starting out on Zazzle?

Rachel: Be original. Be you. Be organized and be consistent. Follow trends but stay true to your style. Offer quality designs that are priced right (not too high and not too low).

If you establish your own sense of design that sets you apart from others, it will offer something unique to your customers that they can’t get anywhere else…. and most importantly stay positive. It may take some time to build up your shop and get consistent sales but it will happen if you stick with it.

 Zazzle: Can you give us a sneak peek of future designs?

Rachel: Right now I am all about Graduations – Class of 2012!

Thanks for sharing Rachel!

Mana, magic, 10 sided dice, and now custom products!

March 21, 2012

Your fantasies are now realized – Magic the Gathering and Dungeons and Dragons have joined Zazzle! Probably the two biggest fantasy games EVER, their Zazzle stores are rich with character art featured on all kinds of products. The best part is that you can shop and customize a Magic the Gathering iPhone case or Dungeons and Dragons binder (for example) with your own persona from the game; truly tying your experience in game back to your experience in the real world. Check out some of my favorite designs from the stores below. +10 charisma for everyone that gets a Dungeons and Dragons t-shirt.

Shop Dungeons and Dragons gifts

Shop Magic the Gathering Gifts

Which was your favorite, Dungeons and Dragons or Magic the Gathering? Do you play both? What was the name of your most hated Dungeon Master? Share in the comments!

Pictures from the 2012 San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Festival

March 19, 2012

Last weekend we sent a small team into the heart of greenness, the 2012 San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Festival! Armed with free stickers and t-shirts, the Zazzle Team spread the luck of the Irish to adoring Zazzle fans all over the city. Check out some of the pictures below.

Did you go to a St. Patrick’s Day parade? Did you see the Zazzle Team in the city? Share in the comments!

St. Patrick’s Day Foto Friday – Extra Post!

March 16, 2012

Look at all those beautiful Zazzle St. Patrick’s Day T-Shirts

From one Patrick to everyone: Have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day Weekend!


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