How do you get your invitation or brand logo to say it all at a glance? Deanna Nalbandian, owner and designer of Cordially has a built a successful business doing just that (she even worked her magic on our very own “High Heel Jungle” logo!) So we were thrilled she agreed to open her toolbox and share a few of her secrets…

For female entrepreneurs who are thinking of opening a business- how important is logo and branding?
Logo and branding is one of the most important aspects of starting a business. I say this not only because I am a designer and I am trying to promote my services, rather because I know as a consumer that I make my judgments based on first impression of the brand. Also, for instance a fun and sexy logo is very different looking from a reliable and serious logo.

Biggest mistakes people make when creating a logo or branding?

I think the biggest mistake someone can make when creating a brand for their business is prioritizing their personal taste over what identifies the brand itself. Another mistake can be to limit themselves to an aesthetic that they already see in their market.

They say that the font can change the emotional response of the person reading it- any tips for picking the right look/ feel to represent us?

Absolutely. Typography is a very powerful tool that can be used to evoke emotion. I can tell you the basic things to know such as serif versus sans-serif, contrast in weight and distinction of hierarchy, however the most important thing is to trust your own emotion. Ask yourself how it makes you feel—if you saw a stop sign with a script calligraphy typeface would you take it as seriously?

What are the biggest trends in invitations and branding at the moment?

The most current trend for invitations is mixing different materials such as a thick cardstock with a vellum wrap and wax seal. For branding I would say it has become more important for people to keep their design simple and to the point.

What trends do you feel are on their way out?

I think the type of clients I attract are the ones who like a more elegant “less is more” look, so I think the intricate laser cut options are being ordered less frequently unless the design of the laser cut itself is minimal.

Tip for sending a killer invitation?

Make sure whoever is creating the invitation has great typography skills. If they do, your invitation will look great regardless of what your budget allows.

Biggest challenge you’ve had to face in starting your own business and what it taught you?

The biggest challenge I have had to face is finding the right resources to help fulfil my orders. It’s difficult when you don’t have in-house machinery to conduct all aspects of the process yourself, so I have learned to manage the right partners for outsourcing materials and labor when needed.

What made you launch Cordially?

I graduated from Art Center College of Design with my second Bachelor Degree and as I spent several years at large corporate firms, small boutique firms as well as the startups—though I gained a priceless amount of knowledge, I felt that being my own boss would allow me to grow on my own both personally as well as professionally. It would also allow me the freedom to be a stay-at-home mom while I ran my own business (as I was pregnant at the time). I built a website and tailored my portfolio to a more niche market for invitations; I felt it was a happy place for design as I could be a part of so many people’s wonderful milestones and celebrations. I also continued to offer branding services as it has always been a passion of mine to tell someone’s story through a multitude of platforms. Two years later I have no regrets. The hours are crazy and the work is endless but that is a great problem and I feel blessed to have had the support to make the leap!

What projects are most excited about at the moment? 

We are so proud to announce our first annual Baby Bump expo! This event combines an educational conference, trade show and consumer day into a single venue. We strive to create a movement in pregnancy and motherhood through an environment to connect, motivate and inspire. Attendees will receive a custom tote bag with complimentary gifts from our exhibitors and have access to informational speakers to help new families with their transition from pregnancy to parenthood. They will also have the chance to enter the Baby Bump raffle upon donation to Taguhi Oganyan’s The Journey, benefiting children battling cancer in Armenia. The raffle winner will receive a mommy makeover, including health, beauty and fitness surprises announced at the event! The winner will be revealed on our Instagram page @babybumpexpo the following day. The event is on September 24, 2017 at Vertigo Event Venue and tickets can be purchased at thebabybumpexpo.com

What makes you excited to get up in the morning?

Currently I am most passionate about my one and a half year old son and making sure that I can provide the path to his bright future. He inspires me everyday and always reminds me how important my work is to the people celebrating who they love most. He is the biggest reason why I even created Cordially!

Did your career change at all after having a child?

My career completely changed after having a child. My entire schedule revolves around his and I have to make sure to give my 100% to both. I have learned to separate my time rather than trying to do everything at once and so far it has been a difficult but great balance.

You recently teamed up with Kathryn to help design the logo for this blog, High Heel Jungle- what was that process like/ what were you looking to achieve?

Kathryn is a great person to work with because she has a vision and she knows what she likes. Our taste in design is parallel so it allows us to feel comfortable in sharing what works and what doesn’t. She gave me a brief about the blog and what she would like to achieve with the brand and it was very clear that she wanted to portray being strong and feminine at the same time. After discussing and sharing some inspirational illustrations and typography we were able to finalize the logo in a collaborative effort.

Baby Bump expo launches September 24, 2017 at Vertigo Event Venue and tickets can be purchased at thebabybumpexpo.com

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