Under The Tree: D.I.Y. Design it Yourself

Ok, you guys, wish me luck. This is my first post, on our new blog, yipppeee! (Insert Kermit the Frog happy squeal there). Cross your fingers!

Under the Tree: D.I.Y. Design it Yourself
Edited by Ellen Lupton
Princeton Architectural Press
196 pages, 2006
Paperback, $19.95

I took a lot of design-related classes during college and post graduation. Had this book been published a few years back, I bet those classes wouldn’t have been necessary in my Spartan schedule.

Brought to you by the uber-artsy folks over at the Graphic Design MFA program at the Maryland Institute College of Art (talk about an impressive business card!) A combination of guest posts and student projects, the book defines design and shows you how you can make it a part of everyday life, from making flyers for your band’s next show to publishing your own zine.

But what’s really great about this book is that it makes design readily available to everyone, no matter what “artistic” level they’re at.

I really enjoyed the projects on branding yourself, whether it be business cards, your own stationery and even crisp blog design. I saw how important it was to have one unified look for our craft group when we first started discussing the Detroit Urban Craft Fair last year. By having uniform logos, site design, etc., people skeptical of a “craft group” took us more seriously.

I had my best bud Jen take a look at the book last night, too. She agreed that the book, at times, gets a little technical, but provided a lot of ideas she wouldn’t have come up with on her own. And that’s what I like about it- the book makes your brain think, and think creatively.

This book is a great gift for yourself, of course, but for anyone who’s fascinated by design and the inner workings of it.

Phew. That wasn’t too bad! Let me know what you think!