Simple and elegant with an eye towards exceptional - words to describe both my client AND the awesome work we did for her! It begins, as most projects do, with nailing down the logo design! Our logo designer took this one and ran with it, creating a look and feel that matched Karen’s kind personality and bringing that to the forefront. The website works to highlight both her new brokerage and her clients new listings. We wanted to create a website that was easy to wander through and even easier to get lost on, showcasing a blog and her newest listings.
A Collection of Stunning Backyards & Outdoor Living Spaces
As the busy season starts to wind up there’s a rush to showcase gorgeous new listings, and since it’s my favorite time of year, and my favorite projects are always the ones that highlight pretty new properties. And if I get to showcase beautiful backyards while I dream of getting my own hammock out of storage, so much the better!
Marilisa Vergottini is a lovely broker with Marketplace Sotheby’s International Realty who has a passion for good staging, a smashing sense of style and a desire to help her clients find the home of their dreams. She finds her joy in the connection with her clients and she works to do more than just sell her listings - she wants everyone to know the story of the home.
Our team partnered with Marilisa and her innate style to create an elegant website, a Mediterranean look and feel for her logo and property pages that showcase the high-end photography that she uses to tell her stories. She also brought us some of the most gorgeous homes to play with! This project was so much fun and we got to be so creative throughout!
We started with a cup of coffee, as all good conversations do; walked through what he needed his website to do, what his next steps were with his marketing and what he loved most about real estate.
We scheduled a time to do a photoshoot – which was a kick! Matt has smashing taste and style, and it came across on camera so beautifully!
Matt started collecting high res photos and collateral for me and I reached out to one of my favorite logo designers. She took one look at Matt’s photos and said “Vogue. All the way.” And headed off to design a logo that felt like high-end fashion.
This was my first time working with an individual brokers’ IDX so I had a lot to learn and there were a few late nights with a glass of happiness. Thank heavens for youtube and a couple of stupid talented web developers who also speak designer and have a metric ton of patience. (Though I’m pretty sure by the time they were done with me, they’re giving up their jobs to become roofers. Maybe they’ll let me design their website…hmmmm.)
This project challenged my knowledge base, encouraged creativity and pushed our team to create an incredible website that collects leads, offers easy IDX searches and showcases his sales successes and his testimonials in a clear and creative way. We included all the bells and whistles on the site but managed to keep it clean and elegant. Matt loved it and I’m beyond thrilled to add this to my portfolio! Big shout out to an amazing client and an incredible team who made this website shine.
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world's a sunny day…”
There’s something magical that happens when you take someone’s photo, when that person sees - for just a moment - the way that you see them. Not only is Sheri Putzke of Windermere a complete treat to work with in real life, she’s amazing to take photos of. Stunning in her own right, with a sense of style that shows across everything she touches, Sheri’s smile starts in her eyes and she played to the camera flawlessly. And we can talk about pearls and pink? I was swooning before I even turned on my camera.
There’s something magical about logo design. I don’t do it as often as I’d like, and it’s easily one of the most challenging projects that I take on. It’s like creating a version of someone’s heart while driving clients to grow their business and oh, yeah - it should look cool. Piece of cake.
My job is to make you look good. But it’s also my job to understand your business and your clientele well enough to fill in the blanks where the heart of your idea bumps up against the needs of your business.
All of that being said, it’s quite rare that my favorite logos make the cut, and I wanted to share some of my personal favorites with you. Please remember, these are just my drafts, but they were too much fun to leave behind.
Marilisa Vergottini of Marketplace Sotheby’s International Realty needed a logo that was glamorous and classy and she wanted something with a Mediterranean flair. Luckily, my toolbox includes the lovely and talented Sarah Alston who is an incredible designer; she worked tirelessly to create a series of drafts for her to review and we were able to create a balanced and classic logo for her new brand.
Nancy Klinck is a Seattle broker with Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty, and I had the privilege of designing her logo, branding and website along with multiple properties websites as well. She needed a logo that was elegant and classy, without being pretentious. The end result feels wonderfully “My Girl Friday” but with a certain Cary Grant-esque stability about it.
Okay, don’t judge me…I love the door in the logomark. I just love it so much I squeed outloud when I designed it. But, just because I think it’s fabulous doesn’t mean that my client will love it. Nine times out of ten, the one that I absolutely love gets set aside for a better connection to a logo that speaks to the clients’ heart.
Work Hard. Be Nice.
RE/MAX Northwest is the largest RE/MAX in Washington State and they are still growing. They needed a website that was dynamic and engaging, but also useful. So, it needed to be pretty, but they also needed to be able to showcase properties, build out a Market Report and blogs, and showcase their current and new brokers.
It started with their tagline: Work Hard. Be Nice. We wanted to capture the kindness and values of the people that work there, embrace the largeness of the company and welcoming to potential brokers. Wordsmithing is always important; the owners had done an incredible job of putting these values into words, which made my job much easier, and helped me understand what they needed to showcase. We made recommendations on the direction for the site, but they gave our team a lot of freedom to be creative.
Each of the ten locations is highlighted individually, with custom coded IDX feeds for each location, highlighted properties and beautiful images. Custom map design, market report design and tons of research went into this project, and the clients were thrilled with how it turned out!
According to Pantone: “Vibrant, yet mellow PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral embraces us with warmth and nourishment to provide comfort and buoyancy in our continually shifting environment.”
All I can think when I see this is color is my best friends dumb little antique chair that she painted this wonderful, shocking color that matches nothing in her home so it sits on the porch.
It’s wonderful, bright, cheery and ridiculous. Pair it with blues and it feels like a beach house. Pair it with grays and it becomes elegant.
Pantone’s goal was to create an authentic color that is both sociable and spirited that symbolizes our innate need for optimism and playful expression. Mission accomplished.
And speaking of coral…
Dr. David Vaughan is a marine biologist who works specifically with coral reefs. Due to an actual “oops” in science, he found out that while the coral reefs are still in danger, he could speed up the growth of the reefs by - get this - breaking them. Just a “happy little accident,” as Bob Ross likes to say. But this happy accident is going to change, and possibly save, our oceans.
This year I am hoping to raise $500 to send to help the Kopila Valley women and children and I need your help! Every little bit counts, and every penny helps!
From the very beginning of their story, they built this community together. Every red brick, every hot breakfast, and every amazing breakthrough – all made possible by dedicated people like us. There are many ways to get involved, create something, and build a brighter future for the children and women of Kopila Valley.
There are so many needs in this world, and this young woman gave everything she had and then she gave more. And with gratefulness. There’s no chance that in this life I will be able to be this brave, but I am honored to help her in every way that I can.
I can’t say it loud enough: support small business this year! It’s the backbone of our economy, your gifts are made with love and you’re supporting your next door neighbor! Happy Shopping!
I love kitchens; I’m not completely useless in a kitchen, but outside of the best toast and coffee that you’ve ever had it’s not really my forte. Meanwhile, the man that I love is constantly in the kitchen trying new things. Smells of slow roasting garlic, fresh spices and simmering something on the stove that makes me drool.
Needless to say, I’m much happier on the other side of the dining bar with a drink and a good story while he cooks. But I still love a good kitchen. Here are a few of my favorites from this year.
Listed by Olga Dyckman, Windermere | 737 Olive Way #2705, Seattle
Condo kitchen are always a challenge, but Olive 8 certainly does them well. Pedini cabinetry, neutral colors, inset lighting and soft finishes play with the open spaces and the floor-to-ceiling windows. This kitchen makes me dream of dabbling in fine cuisine, puttering over buttery sauces and warm breads while soft holiday music plays in the background.
Pending by Marilisa Vergottini, Marketplace Sotheby’s | 24280 NE 26th Court, Sammamish
I love the modern lines, the subway tiles and the use of both light and space in this kitchen; I just envision lots of laughter, tiny conversations going on throughout the room, Holiday music blaring and someone yelling not to let the dog out.
SOLD by Scott Whittlesey, Marketplace Sotheby’s | 4020 94th Avenue NE Yarrow Point WA
There’s something magical about including the outdoors as part of your kitchen; not only does it add an entirely new space to the inclusion, but it also brings nature into your home. My husband enjoys cigars and we both enjoy the outdoors, so to be able to finish dinner and head to the patio to curl up next to the fire for a hot toddy and a cigar? Smashing.
Listed by Jamie Michaud, Realogics Sotheby’s | 28 Forest Glen Lane, Lakewood
The granite countertops are the most delicious shade of sunshine and the glass subway tiles mirror the color and bring warmth to the entire kitchen. I love the french window cupboards with glassware and lighting; the shape of the kitchen could easily become cramped, but the skylights, curated lighting and use of different textures creates an open and welcoming space.
As the holidays approach there’s a rush to showcase sold properties and to highlight the work that the year has wrought; it’s my favorite time of year because it’s not about selling - it’s the celebration of a job well done, a highlight of happy clients!
Who doesn’t love getting mail? I mean, really? Not the bills. Not the random coupon papers that inevitably fill the box. But real, actual mail. There’s always something magical about it. Someone thought of you. Someone cared enough to stick a stamp on something, walk out to the mailbox and connect with you in what has become a unique way.
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At this point in time, only my Aunties send cards in the mail, usually with a sweet note and a photo or two that they found in their rummagings. But it always makes me pause. There’s the moment of surprise - what? A handwritten note with my name on it? Me? Wow.
Then there’s the walk into the house where I ignore everything else and turn the letter over to see if there’s any indication of the why I received such a gift. I am always in a wonder, excited to get inside and open it up. Junk mail goes in the garbage and then I get to focus on anything fun that came that day. (Anything from Amazon is a happy surprise too! A box for ME?)
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Anyone can send a postcard; what makes yours different? Is it the high-end paper? Is it the custom design? The size? The shape? The textures? The headline? There are a myriad of options and customizing your connections with your clients adds a magical touch to something that might just as well have ended up in the trash bin. My clients work with high end stunning homes and the designs that they require need to be just as beautiful.
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This season, I’m in love with simplicity, elegance and whimsy. It’s the time of year where a cup of coffee and a good book are high on the priority list, so if something shows up in the mailbox, it had better be worth curling up with.