about us

Blonde Designs is an inspirational blog focused on invitations, parties, and good design. We are Angie Gubler and Kristin Rees, best friends, graphic designers and moms.
We are both former art directors at Martha Stewart Living and Martha Stewart Weddings, respectively. 
We own Blonde Designs, an invitation and stationery company.


art party details

Last week, Angie and I spent a few days in New York City at the National Stationery Show. (We'll have to do a post later on what we saw and bought and ate!) When I returned, I only had a couple days to get ready for my daughter's birthday party. She loved seeing Charlotte's pottery party and wanted to do something similar.

For the favors, I bought note pads and muslin bags at Muji while I was in NYC. My friend, Abby, is a fan of these bags too! I filled the bags with the paper, crayons and Rees' favorite candy.

I personalized the bags with the girls' names by using t-shirt transfer paper. It was super easy!

Because I was short on time, I ordered cupcakes from our local bakery. They were delicious and Rees was thrilled that they came from a store. My sister, Laura, made the cupcake flags with this cool machine. The party was a hit and I loved that it required minimal effort.


a pottery party

I cannot believe it but my oldest daughter, Charlotte, just turned 8. Please tell me that my children are aging but I am staying the same (ha!).

Charlotte wanted to have an art party but I was not quite up to the task of putting one on at our house (work deadlines have gotten the better of me). Hence, our local pottery studio was the perfect venue.

With aprons sewn by my mom, the pottery-painting table looked quite festive.

The invitation was a take-off from the ATC Swap logo I designed (which is also available as a party invitation on Shutterfly) – I love design multi-tasking!

When the girls arrived at the studio, they first picked out their desired piece of pottery and, with a bit of instruction, set to work cleaning and painting. I loved listening to them chat and craft.

Water bottles with coordinating labels looked cute on the snack table.

Charlotte's favorite food is Oreos (I cringe) so we created an Oreo pyramid, secured together with dabs of royal icing. It was a big hit. Boxes of organic milk somehow made me feel a bit better about serving Oreos.

The guests left the party with aprons and a bag of paintbrush cookies and homemade lollipops. Their finished pottery pieces were delivered a few days later with a thank you note from Charlotte tucked inside. All in all, a totally successful and relatively fuss-free party!


kids' artist trading card swap

I totally love this idea of a Kids' "ATC (Artist Trading Card) Swap" hosted this year by Bright Eyes + Blue Eyes. The whole concept is this: you register your child and then they submit five small works of art (sized at 2.5x3.5") to other children in their group. Any medium can be used. 

Your child must be at least 4 years old to participate. The deadline for registration is April 4th; submissions are to be mailed out around April 18th.

My girls are super-excited to participate! Not only does this give them a chance to flex their artistic skills, but they will also look forward to receiving five different works of art from children around the country. 

Happy swapping!


favorite freezer meal recipes

I have waxed poetic about my love for my freezer meal group before. It takes me about 2-3 days of shopping + meal preparation per month and I am left with a freezer full of excellent meals. The benefits are enormous.

I have compiled some of my favorite recipes. Just click on the image below for 7 pages of tried-and-true recipes. Here's to happy family meals and, perhaps more importantly, happy mothers! :)



latest shutterfly designs

Our latest collection of birth announcements, graduation announcements, save the date and wedding announcements just launched on Shutterfly.

Here is a small sampling of our designs...


pasadena flea market

Oh, how I love a good bargain. When we lived in New York, my husband and I spent many Saturdays wandering around the flea market. The old adage, "one man's trash is another man's treasure," certainly holds true. The black steel dresser in our bedroom and the fantastic 1960's school chairs in our kitchen all come from the NYC 16th St. flea market.

I love the imperfections of all my flea market finds and the imaginative tales I spin in my head about their origins. I wonder about the children that sat on our jadeite green school chairs and who owned our dresser before us.

A few weeks ago, some very good friends from Book Club and I decided to take a brief sojourn to LA. High on our list of priorities (which included sleeping in, eating good food, and staying up late talking) was a trip to the Pasadena Flea Market at the Rose Bowl.

We all had so much fun and found plenty of treasures. Some of mine included vintage leather belts, wood sugar molds (which I am using to house art supplies), a globe, vintage lockets, and an oversize glass soda bottle with the most beautiful type I've ever seen.

The flea market takes place once a month, on the 2nd Sunday of the month. I highly recommend a trip, if you can swing it. You may just find me wandering the aisles, laden with more treasures. Let me know what you find....


simple valentine labels

Last week we were snowed in for 4 days so I tried to come up with a valentine idea for my kids with things I had around the house. There wasn't much! My daughter wanted her picture on her valentines so I did a quick silhouette in Illustrator. My son wanted robots (he'd seen this announcement). I had a box of conversation hearts (my favorite), so I sized the labels to cover the side of the box. After the snow melted, I was able to buy more boxes of candy and we affixed the labels. Today we are snowed in again! I hope it's gone before their valentine parties later this week!


love mail

I picked up these mini tin mailboxes at Target a few weeks ago. I personalized them with my kids' initials and have been using them to store little notes (like these Angie made last year) and valentine treats for the 2 weeks before Valentines' Day. My kids love getting their mail each morning to see what surprise has been left for them. They have also been leaving notes and drawings for each other. It's a fun activity for the whole family and adds some cheer to these cold days in February!


robot announcement

My good friend, Heather, recently had an adorable baby boy and wanted to introduce him with a robot-themed birth announcement. I was happy to oblige and was surprised how much fun I had drawing these little robots. Heather requested larger prints of the individual robots to frame and hang in baby Major's room. What a cool idea for a hip nursery!


paper flags

Last week I made cupcakes for a baby shower and adorned them with little paper flags. I cut 1-inch strips from my stash of pink wrapping paper and folded them over toothpicks using double-stick tape. I love seeing the pink patterns together, but they would also be cute in shades of pink and red for a Valentines dessert.