Design Horror Stories: Unprofessional Attitude – 2

There is this one designer I constantly saw at trade events. I could recognize her because she always carried her dog in her arms. That poor thing seemed to have given up and never made a sound or move. Besides being unprofessional, isn’t this a kind of animal abuse?

Sales representatives also have stories of designers behaving badly. They lack respect for other professionals in the trade and often demand to be accommodated. One example is some designers do not draw out tile layouts and calculate quantities. They buy more than necessary (with the clients’ money) and insist on returning the excess. Most tile stores do not accept returns unless the products are defected. It is possible the refund did not get credit back to the clients.

Some people just have problems being prompt. Once I referred an engineer to a residential renovation project. He connected to the homeowner and made an appointment to visit the jobsite. I was shocked when the homeowner called me and said the engineer missed the appointment with no explanation. We were concerned if anything bad had happened. It turned out there was no good reason.

Project CELEBRATE

I chose “CELEBRATE” as my word of the year for 2022. I simply felt we didn’t put in enough effort in celebrating what we have. After some thinking, I decided to make e-cards available to spread the love!

project-celebrate-01

Please check out the CELEBRATE page on this website. You can save the images or go to the OneDrive link and download the cards you like. Use them in emails, texts, and personal social media. The collection will continue to grow. Please check back often. These images are for personal use only. 

My multimedia journey started in 2020. I quickly found my desire to express beauty in this world. I am still new to graphic design and illustration. Hopefully this project will help me develop my skills while providing others a way to express their feelings and spread positive energy. 

Design Horror Stories: Poor Finance Management

A designer I had known for many years contracted with me for drafting for a few projects. I believed her when she wasn’t able to pay a couple of invoices and continued providing my services. One day we had a falling out and terminated our working relationship. At the end, there were 5 unpaid invoices added up to over US$3,000. I have been sending her reminders regularly for many years and not receiving any money. 

I do not understand why a reputable seasoned designer cannot prioritize taking care of team members. I guess it was my fault to trust her since this was not the first time she owed me money. I learned my lesson that when it comes to business, it is important to stay on top of money. Fortunately, this is the only person I have had money issues with  in over 20 years.

2021 Holiday Gift Guide

This list is being updated frequently. Please check back often for new additions. Feel free to share your suggestions in the comment section!

It’s that time again! At the end of the year, we love to express our gratitude and good wishes with gifts to people around us. Through the COVID-19 pandemic, our living styles and purchasing habits have shifted. With the current situation of the supply chain, we may want to find gifting options that support small businesses and artisans, are environmentally friendly, are digital, or create an experience. 

Send Cards

It is so joyful to receive a handwritten note. For those of us who can’t quite make our own cards, there are wonderful artisans who help us to say what we want to say. 

Playa Paper

Handcrafted paper goods. All cards include postage.

Pretty by Post

Curated greeting cards for snail mail lovers available as single collections or subscription.

Handmade Goods

There is something charming about handmade goods. Artisans make jewelry, soaps, candles, pottery, and food. 

J&S MakeScents

Lower Level at 555 The Shops at Mission Viejo, Mission Viejo, CA 92691

Hand poured soy wax candles with intoxicating fragrances that only come in one color – white. No worry about choosing the right colors to match the decor. The brand just recently opened a store space at The Shops at Mission Viejo.

My Creative Outlet

21758 Devonshire St. Chatsworth, CA 91311

This creative space has an Artisan Boutique featuring local makers. 

Art for Sale

There is something charming about handmade goods. Artisans make jewelry, soaps, candles, pottery, and food. 

Andres Palos

Andres Palos is a Los Angeles based digital and film photographer. Prints are available in different sizes and frame options on this website.

Matt Spangler

Matt Spangler is an artist who draws robots. His website has prints, original arts, and merchandise available. 


Studio Channel Islands

2222 E Ventura Blvd. Camarillo, CA 93010

This art organization has a gift shop within its gallery. Beautiful and one-of-a-kind art objects fit all budget levels.

Creating an Experience

With some imagination and planning, this gift can be memorable without necessarily costing a lot of money. It could be a trip to a museum, self-guided architectural walking tour, a spring picnic at the park, etc. The options are limitless. You can create a ‘gift certificate’ to be redeemed after the hectic holiday season.

Other Ideas

With some imagination and planning, this gift can be memorable without necessarily costing a lot of money. It could be a trip to a museum, self-guided architectural walking tour, a spring picnic at the park, etc. The options are limitless. You can create a ‘gift certificate’ to be redeemed after the hectic holiday season.

Sustainable, Eco-Friendly Guide by Elemental Green

Elemental Green has gathered some of our favorite eco-friendly products to help infuse your home with healthier, more-sustainable gift-giving ideas. Whether you are looking for something for loved ones or dropping hints about a special treat for yourself, we are continually curating this list with fresh products that members of our team have vetted, tried, and recommend enthusiastically.