19 MaySimple Challenge: The Coffee Shop

A simple challenge. Is there such a thing? I say yes! I’ve got a simple challenge for you this week. It’s super easy and I think it will be super fun. Ready?


This week, I want you to treat a stranger to coffee, just to see what happens.

I’ve always thought of doing this, but I’ve never actually done it. I’m writing this on Sunday night and I’m totally going to follow through on Monday. I’ll update everyone on how my first attempt at a planned act of kindness panned out for me. Of course I’m hoping to make somebody’s day so that they will do the same for somebody else. What does this have to do with design, you ask? Oh, absolutely nothing… but it has everything to do with being awesome… kinda my thing.

So… are you up for the challenge? If you are, please commit to doing this in the comments below by saying, “I’m in!” and then come back to share your story! Ready… Go!



10 MayPoop’s Scoop: Starting a Business


Allow me to introduce Jerry Geroulis, my dad! My sister and I have lovingly nicknamed him Poop. Don’t even ask how it came about because I totally forget. I love my dad and lots of people who know him think he’s QUITE a character. He also happens to be a pretty successful small business owner and the guy I can count on for awesome advice. And while it may take 3 hours of story telling to get to the heart of the message, it’s always something good.

So, I’ve done everyone a favor and asked my dad some questions in a new blog series I’m calling POOP’s SCOOP! Do you love it? Yeah, funny. I’ve interviewed my dad, tossed the fluff, and I’m sharing his advice with you. So here goes.


Q: What advice do you have for someone starting their own business?

A: Do something you love. Something you’re passionate about, but not your hobby.


Q: How do you know the difference between a business and a hobby?

A: Your gut! Go with your gut! You have to always go with your gut!


Q: How long do you give a business before you hang it up?

A: Your whole life! Everyone is cut out to do something that they’re good at. I truly believe that. You’ve got to be good at something. (insert stories of Thomas Edison and Colonel Sanders, which you can Google, but I’ll spare you)


Q: Is it hard work to have your own business?

A: Uhm. I think because you’re passionate about it, it is hard work, but you don’t think of it as hard work. If you’re watching the clock, you can’t do it that way. You don’t even think about it being hard, you’re just doing it because you’re passionate.


Q: How do you know if you have a burning desire?

Well, that’s something you have to ask The King (as in Elvis). I said a hunk-a-hunk of burnin’ love! Poop says burning desire! Even if you have 1,000 failures… you never give up on your dream. There’s probably a little insanity there. People thought Henry Ford was insane.


Q: How do you start?

Look at people who are successful. Success leaves clues. You’re not gonna start on top. If you’re gonna start a pizza company and you have a burning desire to do that… go to the best pizza place and start by sweeping the floors until you find out the tricks! Every business has tricks.


Q: What did you sacrifice to be in business?

Everyone in business has made a sacrifice. I sacrificed my time. That’s what you’re giving up. Time where you’re learning the hard knocks of what it takes to be successful. But if you keep putting out good, there’s no way it’s not gonna come back.


Q: Any other gems to share with the group?

You can’t take advice from other people when they’re squashing your dreams.

Let me know what you thought of this post in the comments below and don’t forget to sign up for e-mail updates as well! Until next time…



1 MayEight Great Free Fonts

Eight great FREE fonts with links to download.

I’ve recently been on a free font-downloading spree. Nothing beats finding a gem with a price tag of $0. Of course I buy my fair share of fonts and nothing beats the old favorites that stand the test of time, but it’s always fun to try something new. Maybe you can find a great use for these freebies.

Just click the name of your favorites and you’ll be taken to their online home for a download.

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23 AprWhat I’ve Learned: Year One

Saturday marked the anniversary of what I like to call “My First Day of Freedom.” So, I’m going to share with you some things I learned during the first year of taking the leap and leaving my full-time job.


1. It’s Thrilling!

If you’re dreaming of marching into your boss’s office to let them know that you are DONE, savor that moment. You may feel sick to your stomach, totally nervous, questioning everything, but feel the fear, and do it anyway. That’s kind of my mantra now. But the thrill doesn’t end there. Oh no! Thrills and emotion come with the territory of running your own show. Clients come, clients go, things change. Highs and lows.


2. It’s HARD WORK.

I have never worked for anything as hard as I work to make Cormier Creative awesome. When I worked for someone else, I would count down the hours until I got to leave. I know I’m not alone on that! I would drag myself to work for another day at the office. But now, I wake up early and I’m excited about the day. Time goes by super fast and I want to work later and longer. It’s tough to drag me away from the computer. I’ve said goodbye to the 40 hour work week and hello to working around the clock.


3. Trust. Your. Gut.

From clients to products to anything you want to do in your business… If it feels right, go for it. I recently threw a very successful networking party. I knew it was a good idea, trusted that it felt right, and followed through. Not only was the turnout AWESOME but I was getting amazing feedback about how great the party was. I’m glad I trusted in the process and followed through. The same goes for that nagging negative feeling. Ditch the negative stuff… fast.


4. Be Giving and Positive.

While you can’t give away services to anyone that comes a knockin’, you can share advice, helpful tips and tricks and possess a generous attitude. It will take you far. Everyone is grateful for a little help along the way. If you’re the one giving it, I promise it comes back times 10. Nobody ever failed in business from being a great mentor, a ray of sunshine or for going the extra mile.


5. There’s No Turning Back

I’ve had a taste of freedom and there’s no way I’m ever going to work in an office full-time again. That means a life full of the unexpected, constant game-changers, crazy taxes, and, as luck would have it… impromptu trips to the playground, coffee dates without time limits and answering to the only boss I know now… Me.

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17 AprAnn Arbor Art Show Poster

Last year, I collaborated with artist Julie Beyer to create the Ann Arbor Art Show poster. And this year, the poster was recognized by Sunshine Artist Magazine as the “Overall Best” art show poster!
They received 58 entries from 20 states… so as you can imagine, I’m quite honored. The judges were so convinced that this entry deserved the top prize that it was the first award they assigned. “It was an instant reaction,” said Jules Davidson. “It kind of does everything right,” said Ken Hannon. “It’s big, it’s bold, it’s colorful and if you’re familiar with Ann Arbor at all, it fits. Everything works,” said Hannon. Concurring, Davidson added: “The text and the information all works perfectly with the image.”

So that’s a little toot of my own horn. Check out more work I’ve done for Julie Beyer here.



7 FebMeet the Intern!


Ladies and gents, Cormier Creative is proud to present Rachel: part-time intern, full time mother of her darling 7 year old (a domestic shorthair, Yoshi). She is following in her boss’s footsteps as a second year graphic design student at DAAP. When she isn’t designing, she is either designing or getting in-over-her-head with a DIY project. A die-hard coffeeist and mint green’s biggest fan, this girl is ready to help out on some awesome projects!



16 JanSarah and Sloane’s Wedding

Sarah and Sloane’s wedding invitation design is right up at the top of my list of favorites. And, while the design itself is fabulous, there are several more reasons why this projects rocks. I was given complete creative freedom, in coordination with Rachel Murphy, wedding planner extraordinaire. Together, we decided that a die-cut pocket of sorts would make this invite pretty rad. And, we were right! Special touches like that are always fun.

Another reason why I love this project is because the couple is so great. They chose a super-cool venue, The American Sign Museum, in Cincinnati. If you haven’t checked it out yet, it’s totally worth a visit! The main directive from them right off the bat was to have fun and when that’s the priority, you just can’t go wrong!

And finally, this is my first time designing an invitation for a same-sex couple. And to avoid going off on a tangent about that, I will simply say that Cormier Creative is all for people being happy, people being themselves, people being in love, people who are awesome, people who are real and people living their dream.

Thank you to Sarah Babcock Wedding Photography Studio for the lovely images!






15 JanDream Big Desktop Wallpaper

It recently occurred to me that I’m a bit of a cheerleader. Noooooo, not that kind. I’ll be honest, I’ve never even come close to doing a cartwheel, even as a child. I’m an even better cheerleader… the kind that can make my friends and clients feel awesome… pump them up to do things a little better. I’ve been noticing a trend this year among business owners and people who inspire. The theme is to dream big… and as cliche as that sounds, it’s fun to think about. So when you have an idea, I want you to think about how you can make it even better. Dream big. You can do it.

So, here’s a little treat as a reminder. Some desktop wallpapers designed by me.

2560 x 1440 / 1680 x 1050 / 1440 x 900 / 1280 x 800 / iPAD / iPHONE / iPHONE 5



11 JanLooking for an awesome intern!

Cormier Creative is seeking our first ever design intern! I know, it’s pretty darn exciting! If you or someone you know is interested in working in my home studio in Cincinnati, please apply! You can find all of the details and application here.

Internship Description
3–6 month part-time internship (non-paid) for those interested in the graphic design, wedding
invitation, and social media industry. School credit is preferred but not required. Please read the
duties below and let me know if you are the perfect fit! If you are, please send your portfolio, resume
and application to sara{at}cormiercreative.com

Duties Include:
• Assisting with design projects
• Prepping blog posts
• Research for upcoming projects (fonts, mood boards, etc.)
• Wedding invitation design and assembly
• File organization
• Designing promotional materials
• Still photography of existing projects
• Quoting and invoicing
• Promoting Cormier Creative via Facebook and Twitter

• Proficiency in InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator
• Great understanding of typography, balance and color
• Available 20 hours per week
• Understanding of social media
• Ability to write in a fun, upbeat style
• Pleasure to be around
• Great work ethic, proactive
• WordPress knowledge is a big plus
• Laptop with the Adobe suite downloaded on it
• Working with me in my home studio in Cincinnati

Sound like the perfect fit? Let’s get to know each other. I look forward to hearing from you!
Please apply by January 25, 2012. Here are the details and application.