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HOW-TO: employing plain language as a UX professional AND as a small business owner

I read a great piece on Medium by Rachael Renk called Using Plain Language in UX Writing. In it, she makes a pitch for using plain English in UX work and making strong writing skills a priority for UX designers. The primary example she gives is microcopy on a website you’re building — and that’s hugely important; it can make or break whether someone interact with the content. But it also got me thinking about all of the other ways that I apply that same spirit of saying exactly what I mean across my business — from those UX components to correspondence with design clients to selling retail products.

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HOW-TO: Brainstorm the Perfect Custom Gift

Something I’ve really loved working on for the last few months is custom gifts. I’ve done a couple for other folks to give, but I’ve also made quite a few super different gifts that I got to give myself! When your options aren’t limited to stuff someone’s already manufactured, thinking up gifts is kind of fun. So I wanted to share my process with you. My questions and tips will help, whether you’re making something yourself, commissioning an artist, or just coming up with some new google terms to search.

The secret to giving a good gift is to ask yourself a few questions about your giftee — and then extrapolate. The first thing I think of is always relevant but boring, but a creative pivot will take you from a serviceable gift to a really thoughtful one.

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Making it Offish!

Hi friends! I’m super excited to share that I’m enrolled in a program at the University of Baltimore to get a Certificate in User Experience Design, or UX. My goals are to codify my many years of experience building websites for myself and to more effectively apply my understanding of customer and prospective member behavior to sites I’m working on for myself and my clients.

For the last little bit, I’ve been trying to firm up what exactly I want to offer, in terms of services, and after a couple months of offering every single thing I know how to do, I’ve narrowed it down to a specific slate of services and tools I can offer new and growing small businesses, nonprofits, and solo ventures — a cohesive web presence is a big part of that!

The other things that are a part of that – the things I’m excited about folding into my services are things like: logo design, cohesive branding design, product promotion, custom fonts, custom paper products, and multi-step planning.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be updating my hire page to better fit this vision.

If you want to be sure you don’t miss that – or anything – sign up for my newsletter here.

You can also help me keep making time to make art while I complete my program by supporting me on Patreon or making purchases from Managed Expectations on Etsy.