Search Results for: ice cream month

Food / Tuesday, 23 Jun 2015

Sweet Spot: The Monkey Business Sundae


I’m so happy to introduce you to a new contributor to Lars. Sarah Coates from The Sugar Hit, based out of Brisbane, Australia, will be sharing a new monthly column on the blog called Sweet Spot and as one who has a major sweet I’m both excited and worried about my soon to be growing waistline. She has a cookbook coming out in the fall and it’s now on pre-order!


There is nothing I love more than working with people who inspire me, and who know how to have fun. That’s why I’m so excited to be here contributing to The House That Lars Built. Brittany’s eye for colour and design is a major inspiration to me. Getting to bounce ideas and work around with inspiring creative people is what makes it not feel like work at all – it just feels like play.

And that’s the idea behind this sundae – Monkey Business! Nobody plays around better than our primate friends. So I wanted to do something that had a really fun mix of hot and cold, soft and crunchy textures, sweet things and salty things. From there, I couldn’t help but get a little more literal. So this sundae turned into what I imagine would be Curious George’s dream dessert.

Get the full recipe below! 

Read on →

Life + Party + This week / Friday, 20 Mar 2015

This week

Girl holding tons of balloons

Have you ever taken the Meyers-Briggs personality test? If so, do you agree with the outcome?  I remember taking it in high school, then a few times in college. I’ve been a wishy washy ENFP/INFP. The line between E and I is super close—E meaning extrovert and I meaning introvert. In my adult years I determined that I’m more of an introvert than an extrovert because I could spend weeks without seeing anyone if I had to just cooped up in my studio making things. And for a lot of my adult life I’ve spent a lot of time by myself (especially in Denmark when I didn’t know too many people). However, I don’t identify as an introvert when I read those dozens of articles and tests. I don’t lose energy from being with people. I don’t wish I was someplace else at parties. On the contrary, I love seeing people and being social when it happens though I don’t actively seek it out—I’m not a social planner.

However, last week I was with some friends and the test came up once again and I mentioned my wavering E/I situation. My friend C said that she was ENFP and “Did you know that ENFPs are the exception to the Introvert/Extrovert rule?! ENFPs LOVE their down time more than any other personality. They could spend tons of time on their own and be just fine.” Also, ENFPs love each other, which explains why from the moment we met C and I had a ball together.

A ha! My E/I dilemma explained!

But with any type of test that “determines” your personality I sit here thinking…what does a personality test mean? I don’t full know if it helps me per se but I suppose it identifies my strengths and weakness and I can choose to improve on those.  It does help me explain why I’m always the last to leave the party…I just can’t bear not seeing some people! But it also explains why I could sit at home making paper flowers and letting my work life be my social life for months upon end.

SO, have you taken it? What are you? Did you learn anything new?

With that, have a happy weekend! Here are some fun links to pass the time:

These Easter Eggs are so adorable

Embroidery basics

Every crafter needs a pair of these

If you’re in Houston

I just got my copy yesterday and it’s so good. Pre-order yours now! 

I love ice cream!

Modern tea party

I’m SO into these shoes and these ones too 

Lars elsewhere:

Wedding dresses based on the decades


Photo from an upcoming post! Stay tuned! See more on Instagram

Crafts + Design + Friends of Lars + Life + Party + travel / Thursday, 6 Mar 2014

Meet Make Do Part 1

This, my friends, is how life should be:
Palm Springs pool with palm trees
Am I right? Sun, pool, oversized blow up swan. Bliss.
If you follow me on Instagram you’ll have seen a lot of pictures about the most magical retreat I attended last week called Meet Make Do sponsored by Bing.  It was a craft bloggers getaway organized by three wonderful ladies: Brittni of Paper and Stitch, Kelly of Studio DIY, and Chelsea of Lovely Indeed. They’ve been planning it for months and months and by some mystical power I made it onto their invite list. And I’m sure glad I did! 
The whole premise was for craft bloggers to come together to just make stuff. It’s thanks to the kind folks of Bing, particularly Katie and Natalie, who made it possible. Guys, I have to say that Bing is THE BOMB. They brought us a whole bunch of Surfaces for us to use as we researched our projects and I have to say that having been familiar with it for a bit now, I find the features super helpful. There’s even a travel feature that provides great info for on the go so you better believe we used it for all things Palm Springs.
As a kid my family would go to Palm Springs for a little vacation (which now I find a bit odd to travel to the desert when you live at the beach, but whatever). BUT, I didn’t know that Palm Springs was cool. We would only go to a resort and swam in the pool the whole time. I had NO idea that there were amazing houses and shops and an amazing mid-century vibe. I’ve been puzzled over the years why anyone goes there on holiday. And now I know. This place is the unreal, bizarre even. Beautiful, perfectly preserved houses and the most phenomenal shops. If only I had oodles of money to spend…
So, I arrived to this
…and I thought, “really?” 
And then I saw the house
Palm Springs mid century home with yellow door
and I was all, “Yup,” I really do.
And then I saw the crafting closet filled with all sorts of goodies that are way cooler than anything I have
closet for crafts
and then this fabric happened to me:
fabric sorting
Like Project Runway, we had a limited amount of time to create something so my anxiety levels were HIGH! I learned that I am a thinker. I dwell on things. Usually I don’t even create unless I have a really stellar idea. But here I just kind of dilly dallied (and ate and chatted) until I realized that here I am in this beautiful place with an amazing photographer, the wonderful Mary Costa,  who WANTS to shoot my projects. Then it was time to get down to business. I went through the fabrics from the brand new Fabric Store in LA, which I would be at ALL the time if I lived in LA (speaking of…why don’t I???) and Melanie from You are my Fave got down with the crepe paper from Shop Sweet Lulu.
crafting with You are my fave
Jenn Elliott of Scout blog got her craft on making a beautiful tablescape with Ashley of Sugar and Cloth. She even stitched some napkins. Erin of House of Earnest got down with the Surface to research her lovely projects.
Palm Springs crafting retreat
I mean, look at the details: huge beach balls, bright colors, SUN! I’m dreaming about it as I type while looking at the grey Utah skies.
meet make do
I was off sugar for two months and sadly it coincided with this trip so I didn’t get to try the cups of cookie dough from Edoughable. Saliva drops.
cups of cookie dough
And, we got a fabulous Swag bag full of all these goodies. I mean…look at it all! Wonderful items from Almond Milk LA, Coveted Things, Etta & Billie, Fat Eye Design, Fletcher and Fox, Landis Carey, Lovely Pigeon, M. Greenwood Jams (delish!!!), Michelle Dwight Designs, Mr. and Mrs. P, Oh So Pretty, Seoul Little, Striped Cat Studio, Twedle Dee Designs, We Love Citrus, Wind and Willow Home, World Reclaimed
And the group of ladies. Now, it’s rare to bring together a bunch of crafting ladies who are so kind and generous and overall good people. I went in knowing most of them only as an admirer, but I came away feeling like I had gained genuine friends. That’s rare, right? 
craft bloggers in Palm Springs
pool in Palm Springs with blow up swan

And I’ll leave you on this image…because again, this is how life should be. More tomorrow. You won’t want to miss it but find out the reason why we suddenly had to get up and leave this paradise. Dum dum DUM!

all of this wonderful photography is by the stellar Mary Costa, who I wish I could bottle up and take with me wherever I go.

DIY + Life + printable + Projects / Thursday, 9 Jan 2014

Let’s do this 2014–thoughts & printables

photography by Trisha Zemp. To print off the posters, see below.
I was recently reminded that Janus was the Roman god of beginnings. He was often depicted with one face looking back to the past and the other to the future. Hence the name January. Last year I found myself survival mode versus enrichment mode, so now that there are no international moves and such, I’ve decided to embrace what is truly meant by January: a new beginning.
2013 was not a bad year. There were highs and lows like every year, but I was in desperate need of a clean slate. For example, I had taken such poor care of my body. I mean, I was eating ice cream for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In the same day (thank you Haagen Dazs). Sadly, I’m not joking. (“It’s just easier than making something!”). I wasn’t exercising, but definitely rationalized my runs to the fridge as quality aerobics. I don’t even know how to organize my studio even if I wanted to.
Things needed to change!
I don’t anticipate nor necessarily need a total life renovation. Sometimes I don’t think drastic and substantial changes are sustainable long term–we are much better than we think we are–but I’ve already implemented a number of changes and have some goals that I’d love to work on this year. I know some of you hate resolutions, others love them. My feeling is, something is better than nothing, so I’m rarely disappointed in what little I achieve. Call it low expectations (and if you want to know more about that, find out why they call Danes the happiest people on earth.). I thought I’d verbalize them in public so that my forgetful mind is held accountable. I had verbalized my mid-year resolutions back in August (I’m doing really well on #9) but here’s my updated list:
  1. Schedule things immediately onto my calendar–my iphone and large calendar. I’m on my phone too much and sometimes it just seems like a chore to be on tons of apps all the time. I want to write them down tangibly. I haven’t been able to find a huge-o plain basic, utilitarian calendar that just gets the job done, so I made one. I printed it off at Kinko’s for $4.50.
  2. Well being. I committed myself to a program with some ladies for 8 weeks starting this past Monday. There are a certain amount of points we accrue each day for accomplishing certain things. I usually detest gimmicks, this is precisely what I needed to get my bum in gear. It includes things like exercising for a 1/2 hour 5x a week (so far, so good wipe the shoulder), eating 6 servings of vegetables, 1 serving of sugar (I decided to go sugar free), read 20 minutes of holy text or something personally inspiring, write 1 thing you’re grateful for, and a few others.
  3. Grow this blog 50%. I just read Emily Henderson’s 2014 resolutions and I love how unabashed she is about the things she wants like growing her blog traffic. Ha! I’ve never thought to be so public about things like that. But, oh yeah I want to grow this blog. The more Lars grows (he’s about a teenager now), the more I can do really cool projects for you (and turn him into a man–rawr). And, just like her, I’ll be specific in how I want to grow it:
    1. NEW WEBSITE! Long time readers will know that this is something I’ve been talking about FOR AGES, but I’ve had some hiccups along the way. Ultimately, I’m my worst client and need someone to conspire with. And money to pay them for the things I want to get done.
    2. Beautiful content. As you read above on the logo, Lars is about living an artful life. I want every single post to be beautiful and bring a daily dose of beauty to your life. Sometimes I end up putting a last minute project together to have some content for the day. Sometimes that works out. Most times it looks last minute. Get it together Brittany!
    3. Have at least one week of content ready. With #2 in mind, sometimes I won’t make something until the day I publish it and then quickly photograph it and put it up in a flash. NO CAN DO. I would love to have a number of projects/posts in the cue.
    4. Work with great companies. One of my favorite parts about blogging, especially recently (like this Trumpet and Horn collab or MSN), is the ability to partner with some great companies whose aesthetic and mission align with mine. I love the collaboration and creativity that ensues from it. I would love to collaborate with many more. And consequently, the more I collaborate in this way, the more I can create beautiful content for you. It’s a win-win.
    5. Collaborate with creatives regularly. I LOVE collaborating with other creatives. Especially when the projects turn out like this, this, or this.
  4. Grow my Instagram and Facebook by 50%. If you’re not into blogging/social media, I’m sure this goal sounds lame-o, but it’s important if you intend to work with businesses as a blogger. They’re into stats like that. To me, it’s most important that those numbers are true and that I’m really engaging with my audience, otherwise it’s meaningless.
  5. Find a business mentor or partner or both. I’ve grown Lars organically, but now it’s time to find someone who knows more than me. Someone I can sit down with periodically who would love to impart their wisdom. And/or someone who shares my vision and wants to go in on the business side. The more business I learn, the more there is to know and it’s a bit consuming.
  6. Work with sponsors on decorating my home. There, I said it. It’s out there. I’ve been wanting to decorate my home in a lovely way since moving to America but I haven’t focused on it at all. Now I do, and I want to make it good.
Ok, that’s it for now. I’ll probably do another mid-year resolutions at some point. If you’re in a similar situation and want to get in control for 2014, I created those two posters above that you can download and print off at your local Kinko’s for about $5 each with their engineering print. The “We hereby” poster is also available as “I hereby”. Paul and I did the same thing so we did a “we”.
Or here are the links directly:
Blank calendar download (all 12 months, you fill in the days)

advice + Design + Life / Thursday, 11 Apr 2013

Scoring your dream design internship

It is about this time 5 years ago that I spent my spring break cooped up in the computer lab at school creating my portfolio and applying for internships for the summer. I don’t think I emerged from that dark cave for any vitamin D the whole week–and you know that’s hard to do in Washington, DC during the spring time (cherry blossoms!). It was just my second semester of my graduate degree in interior design at Corcoran College of Art + Design and I wanted to DO SOMETHING COOL! I thought that I might go abroad to work since I was interested in Swedish interiors, but anything cool that gave me experience would suffice. I ended up scoring some pretty awesome internships for the summer that have helped shape me into the designer that I am today.

I’m assuming that some of you might be in the same boat? Are there any students out there? Are you wanting to make your mark in the design world?

I’ve had a few people email me for advice so I thought it might be handy to dish on some things that I did. I definitely don’t pretend to know all so I’ve enlisted the advice of people much wiser than me including Charlotte Hillman Warshaw, who hired me at Jonathan Adler that summer, Jessica Williams who interned with me at Jonathan Adler, as well as Aimee Miller, creative director of product development and design at Real Simple, who I met the summer I interned at JA. My experience is internships in interior design, but I’m thinking that this could be helpful for all types of design jobs. Well, this post is a doozy in information. Some tips are specific while others are more inspiration. Read on!

That spring break I took the work I had–pretty much one semester’s worth–and made a simple portfolio in InDesign. I put one picture on a page and in the bottom left corner indicated what it was in Helvetica Neue Ultralight (not good for reading, I might add). It was simple for sure, but did the job. I printed it at school on 11×17″ page and cut it down to fit an old record album that I used to store it. It was quirky and memorable. In fact, in interior design, it’s more common to not be as quirky and you might store your portfolio in a normal portfolio case with plastic sleeves, but I knew a place that expected a portfolio like that was not the right place for me. 

So, first thing, know who you are and what you want to be! 

While I was making my portfolio I researched what city I wanted to work in and who I wanted to work for. I made a spreadsheet of all the places that interested me. If you know me, I’m definitely not the most organized person around, but I do buck up sometimes to make spreadsheets. They’re essential. I think I must have googled “best interior design firms” and “high end residential design firms” and “Swedish gustavian interior design” because those were the types of companies I was most interested in. I found a website at the time that I had a list of about 100 firms. I went through each one to check out their portfolio and see if it was a fit for me. If I was semi attracted, I would write it down with the link to the website. I was interested in working in a place other than DC so I looked into NYC, San Fran, Boston, London, and Lisbon (because I had some possible connections there and I had lived in Brazil for 1 1/2 years so I speak Portuguese) and noted that on my spreadsheet. I also looked at all the Domino magazines (RIP) where they often featured designers whose work I loved. I noted down all of them, too, and went onto their websites.
Am I boring you yet? Good! It can be really boring! But also exciting thinking about where you could go. 
Then I just emailed away. Cold. Mind you, I had spent the previous year working at a hospitality interior design firm so yes, I was already “in” the field but it wasn’t the direction I wanted to go. I did try using the contacts I had made with other firms throughout the world, but I found that working abroad, especially if money is involved, is tough. There are a lot of legalities to work through and most likely the company will not know how to do it nor want to. But, if you’re working for free, which is most common in design, and only stay for three months on a tourist visa, you could approach them that way.
So, I approached about 30 companies and wrote a simple email. Here’s an exact one that I emailed. I included 3 PDFs (not Word docs!): my portfolio, resume, and cover letter. If you notice, my portfolio file size is HUGE–you’ll read later here about NOT doing that. Whoops. Newbie! ALSO, I just noticed there’s a type-o. No wonder I never heard back. *cringe*.
Emailing 30 people you start to form a standard email and I am embarrassed to say that I did mix up names with failed copy and pasted attempts. BE CAREFUL! That most likely will not get you the job! Note everywhere that you use specific names and make sure it’s correct. I also included their names in the cover letter file names because each one was personalized and I didn’t want to confuse them. 
It’s important to note that I had no idea if these designers were actually looking for interns. I just tried anyway. Can you tell that I’m a naturally hopeful person? My goal was to get paid because I was a poor student on student loans. I didn’t realize at the time how rare that is, unless you’re going for a job in a commercial firm, which tends to have more money for it’s interns.
I received one email back from a designer in San Fran who noted interest and asked how I heard about her. I mentioned the website that I had found and said how much I loved her design. Never heard back.
Then I received a response back from a designer in NYC whose work I had found in Domino. Score! She invited me up for an interview and I said of course. I packed a bag and took a DC>NYC bus (just 4 hours!) and asked a friend if I could bunk for a night or two. I showed up in the same exact outfit that I’m wearing in the first picture of this post. Apparently, that was my uniform that summer. I knew I didn’t need to wear a suit (blah!) so I thought I would try and show who I was as a designer. The designer herself wasn’t at the interview but her current employee was, whose job I would be taking over. The studio was a shared space with a fashion house in the back. I remember being totally intimidated by the fashion people. They were all in black. The girl showed me around and then told me I would be doing AutoCAD (not my favorite) and reception stuff. And…I would be PAID! Score! I really liked the designer’s work, so I thought this was great! 
The next day, while I was still in NYC, I received an email back from Celerie Kemble of Kemble Interiors. I was quite familiar with her work from various magazines and was shocked to receive a response. The email was even signed “xo C” and I thought there was no way she was writing her own emails so I goofed and said something about “tell Celerie” or something. She responded back with a “this IS Celerie :)”. Whoops again. Well, I indicated that I just happened to be in NYC at that moment and she invited me in for an interview the next day. SCORE! I was thrilled! The interview was to be at her apartment, which was a bit intimidating– I mean, it’s her personal space!–which is an awesome space btw. In the interview she was frank with me. I told her where else I was applying to and she pretty much said, “look, if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere”, which sounded awfully familiar… She offered me the internship on the spot, though she wasn’t able to pay. I needed to think about it because I really needed monetary compensation. 
Later the next week I received a call from Charlotte from Jonathan Adler who said she liked my portfolio and if I’d like to interview at JA headquarters in NYC. So back to the Big Apple it was! I got back on Bolt Bus again and jumped straight off the bus to the interview complete with my suitcase. Charlotte was very passionate and good at what she did. She showed me around the office, which at the time was only one floor and now it’s a few. She also invited me to a book signing of Jonathan’s husband, Simon Doonan, later that night at Barnes & Noble. I showed up at the book signing and met many of the other designers. Side note: I had switched outfits at that point and later found out that one of the designers was impressed with my choices. gah! You always have to be on your guard because you’re constantly making an impression! 
Well, JA offered me an upaid internship too so now it was a matter of who do I work for? Kemble Interiors or Jonathan Adler, the paid job, or wait to hear back from more companies?  Well, I didn’t hear back from any other companies so that was easy. Ultimately, I took Celerie’s advice and went for the companies that couldn’t pay but thought would be worth it. I chose to work 2 days a week at Kemble and 3 at JA. 
At Jonathan Adler I worked with 2 other interns, Jessica and James, pictured in the top image, who were my buddies. Sometimes we did fun things like help out at a photoshoot like the one for House Beautiful in Bedford, NY. Other times, it was helping to assemble press packets, like below. Not as much fun, but somehow I didn’t mind. I started out in the interior design department but found that I was more interested in the products so I did all sorts of projects throughout the departments.
Though I officially worked 2 days a week at Kemble, I ended up working weekends too. Somehow Celerie gave me some pretty fun assignments to work on like designing a plate for Tiffany & Co.’s Evening of Style, stationery for Dempsey and Carroll, and a trash bin for Helena Christensen’s charity with VIPP bins. I knew they were projects that could be great portfolio builders so I spent time and energy on them. I was the old fogie 26 year old out of the intern bunch (most were undergrads in their early 20s), so I was a bit more on my own and there to work hard.  And I think it paid off. 
Practically speaking, how did I survive? I lived on a bunk bed in the West Village with some girls who I ended up liking a whole lot and are my friends to this day. I could have chosen to live in a much cheaper place, but I thought if I was going to live in NYC I wanted to love it and I LOVED where I lived, who I lived with, and the friends I made. NYC has a special place in my heart and I would be back in a heart beat if we could. Everything that I love in life is found in just one city: art, design, music, interesting people. Since I was getting school credit for my internships I could use my student loans and yes, I have some big fat loans to pay off now, which I’ll be paying back for a LONG time.
But what if you can’t do that or live in NYC? There are so many wonderful design houses all over. Research them, talk with them, express your interest. Do a good job! 
I have found that my internships provide credibility to what I do. Though some of the tasks were not interesting, I did them and hopefully they were enough to stand out. 
Aimee Miller, creative director of product development and design at Real Simple, and illustrator
To put it mildly, I was as dumb as a box of hair in college.  I had not set my sights on anything other than making things– and I didn’t– nor to some degree do i still understand the fine art of networking. In retrospect I had turned down jobs with Elaine and Willem DeKooning while he was experiencing dementia but still a productive artist.  Elaine, who intimidated me was fiery and vibrant and actually passed before Willem. 
I passed up the opportunity to go to an elite Yale Norfolk summer program because I somehow thought my nomination and award from the faculty was a mistake.
I also passed up the opportunity to be an art assistant and nanny in the south of France because I hated flying, didn’t want to be alone, oh, it’s complicated….
So.  My first suggestion is to be fearless– because clearly, I wasn’t.
When I did graduate with my BFA my motivations were all fear associated– so I tossed myself into my work.  I could draw and paint and make things but I had no marketable skills– or so I thought.  I wanted someone to recognize the talent in me without having to conventionally sell it. I was terrified which is a unique motivational tool (that I am not recommending) but rather my suggestion is:
Get to know thyself and get over yourself. I don’t care in which order– hopefully at the same time.
I think we all have aspirations to do or be something specific or we look at other people’s paths and try and emulate them. The ideal situation does not present itself– but it’s up to you to make it so. 
My first truly creative job that I believe set me on my course was a few years out of college.  It was for a woman that had a fabled retail store on Broome Street that people likened to a work of art.  And it was. She sold clothes that the sewers made behind giant curtains with vintage industrial machines.  They dyed the linen and silk in the back as well. Large plates of metal lined the walls with huge magnets holding scarves or art and ropes and pulleys hung across the vast expanse of the industrial space.  Dresses hung on wires, some dipped in beeswax.  There were tables made out of huge rotary steel blades, rusted.  The floor was red dirt, Georgia clay it turns out. It inspired me in ways I did not think possible.  I was moved and excited.
This was a place where I had no discernible connections to–and had no hope working there in any capacity but I took a leap and made something– not a mood board, nothing like a portfolio or any other conventions of post collegiate expertise but a little trinket; a gift that was a little piece of me inspired wholly by the store and the artist.  I sent it without words or a CV but with a phone number or a return address– I can’t remember.  Needless to say I got a job, they made one for me and  it was the beginning of a very freeform creative career that I still think I’m on.
I would always stay true to yourself but always accept influence. Don’t judge yourself too harshly and keep moving forward.  Make things that YOU like and when you are applying to a developed brand that you are equally in love with– do personal projects that speak to them.
Also be consistent.  A common thread is better in developing your point of view than being a complete convert to someone else’s.
I would also suggest to keep moving forward.  Don’t look over your back or to your side. This is not a competition amongst friends.  I have to say, once I did get the job– it was among the most challenging things and often one of the most unpleasant experiences I can imagine but I did it and I learned so much– and I did so much, myself.  That’s not going to change.  A dream situation is never the dream you have in your mind.  It usually happens in retrospect when you’ve repaired yourself from working long hours and for cranky egos.
Since then, I’ve hired interns and designers many, many times.  I have been in environments where I’ve seen some interns rise like cream over other equally or more talented interns because of their social abilities.  I cannot say that talent trumps social skills, but I never had them at the time– so I prefer to evaluate people on raw talent. Not everyone feels that way. 
Another thing I would add is sometimes things are not what they seem and you have to know when something isn’t a good fit. Still, don’t quit, and don’t compete unless it makes you stronger.
Lastly, stay hungry.  Keep making things that come from your heart and continue to respect that part of you and keep growing.

Charlotte Hillman Warshaw, VP of licensing and business development at Jonathan Adler, who hired me at JA

What advice would you give to designers looking for an internship?
I think it’s always good to start with the basics — first, make a list of the companies you love. I think it’s particularly important early on in your career to work for companies that inspire you. You need to know what you want to be able to go after it, and making this list will help that happen.

I’m a big believer in friendpotism, aka utilizing your relationships and connections to their full potential. In addition to your company list, make a list of relationships you already have – family, friends, friends of friends, teachers etc. It’s not always the high-powered connections that open doors for you, so think broadly.

Use Facebook and LinkedIn to their full potential. These sites are not just for social purposes; they are an excellent tool for furthering the contacts you might have and relationship building. I can’t tell you how many messages I’ve received that starts with, “I see you know…” or “I’m friends with.”

Sometimes the companies you want to work for don’t have any openings, but you should reach out to them anyway. If there’s an email address on a webpage, someone is looking at those emails, so go ahead and email them.

The materials you send out — resume, portfolio — must be impeccable. Too many people, especially designers, work in a bubble. Be sure to share your resume and portfolio with people whose feedback you trust. These materials represent you and they’re the first chance you have to make an impression, so make it count.

Always treat your internship like an extended interview. A connection might get you an interview, but you get yourself the job, and ultimately your work on the job is what’s most important.

I’ve noticed that some young interns come in with an entitled attitude. When I started out, I did it all, no matter what it was. At my company, we have an all-hands-on-deck culture and the people who embrace that, generally thrive most.

What sets someone apart over another candidate?
It starts with your resume and cover letter. Obviously, no misspellings, but also take time to be thoughtful about your cover letters. We really do read these things, so make an impression and skip the generic fluff. Also, know the company or research before approaching them. For example, if it is a retail company, go visit a store first. If it is a web company, spend time on the site.

What are you looking for in the initial contact?
Make an impression in your cover letter, but don’t take two pages to do it.

What about sending a portfolio in person?
Tangible mail is a bit too much in the first instance. A PDF is great, as is a website.

Do you have advice on a portfolio?
Different schools have different requirements. Design process is great to see once, but not for every
project. Showing versatility in design style and category (graphic, product etc.) is important – the more
jobs you’re qualified to do, the more opportunities you might have to be hired.

What makes someone memorable?
Having a great work attitude, being focused, and willing to do anything, but also fun. I’m a big believer in that you want to work with people you would have a meal with. Be committed to the work and follow-through with your assignments. Lastly, to reiterate, always treat your internship like an extended interview – the company you interned at might just turn out to be the company you work for.

Jessica Williams, global visual coordinator at Kate Spade, who interned with me at Jonathan Adler

Before I started my internship at Jonathan Adler (where Brittany and I met) I believed that my career would consist of package design and surface graphics. I think my landing of this coveted internship was a combination of the points below.
-perfect your resume, portfolio, and cover letter. make them stand out, in a classy and subtle way from others. you will email a digital version, so be sure the quality is crisp but the file sizes are not too large. (12MB is plenty) you will also need a printed version for your interview, to leave behind, be sure to consider the presentation of it all.
-email and follow up and follow up to the follow up. people in charge are busy and your email may get lost in the sea of messages. 
-start researching your living situation (especially if you will be moving out of state) as if you already accepted the position. you should have a plan and they will be more likely to choose a person who won’t have a hard time with transition.
-buy/design beautiful stationery to send your words of gratitude.
-research everything you can about the company, history and projects. it helps to make casual references during your interview.
JA exposed me to the whimsical world of interior design and I knew it was the perfect fit for me. i learned so much during my  internship and it was more inspiring than I could ever imagine! 

Thank you ladies for your input. Isn’t it great?! 

Now, once you get your internship, check out Emily Henderson’s advice on 15 do’s and don’ts to keep one.