Saturday, 13 October 2018

The Easiest Banana Bread Recipe


Sunday, 16 September 2018

Studio Life: August 2018

August was a big month for Sighh & I. I moved into the new Newcastle city centre flat with my boyfriend and excitedly put together my own designated studio (aka second bedroom, once the bed and chest of draws were negotiated away). Jack took a week off work to sort the place out, which helped as everything I ordered seemed to arrive on a different day. This all happening at the same time as the largest sale I've had in years was something to navigate, as was dragging sacks of envelopes through the cardboard strewn corridors of our flat... but it was all finished in just over a week. And then graduate life really began! Well, partly. August has felt like a battle between me being so excited to start my new life and genuinely incredibly happy, while also definitely procrastinating and doing things very slowly, in summer mode. Anyway, here's what I did, according to my overflowing camera roll...


Thursday, 23 August 2018

My Best of Leeds

OH I have grown very attached to this city. I walk around feeling at home, and maybe more than most students as I stayed through each summer, truly accepting the place I studied to be the place I lived. Being the bougie foodie that I am, my mission from the September of first year was to seek out all the best hangouts and eatouts and eatins and drink-coffee-and-work-for-hours-eries. Three years on, and 21,000 steps later (this Tuesday), here is the mother list, broken up into appropriate titles so we don't get overwhelmed.

This post is written with students in mind, specifically LAU, Leeds and Beckket which share the same-ish proximity. However I'm not directing anyone into the rowdiest dwellings of the city, come on, it's me. Really, this could have been several blog posts but I wanted to create a proper resource to keep in your bookmarks and check back to instead. 

Walking around the city centre after running errands, I was always stuck trying to figure out where to go work. Understandably, I never found many spots that had the right ambiance, plug socket to chair distance and staff understanding that you yes you require a table for one, no menu and a latte. My favourite places may be a little out the way, but if that's a problem there's no lack of Prets, Starbucks and Caffe Neros. 

Union Coffee House   LS1 3BB
On Great George Street, this is a relatively short walk from the main uni campus and city centre. I've escaped to write many an evaluation here. With a calm vibe, great menu and very comfy seating I find it easy to concentrate. Their homemade chunky soups are heavenly in the colder months, too.

Fettle LS1 3BR
Scandi as fuck. A very I'm-getting-important-work-done spot. Their menu also looks incredible, so you can congratulate yourself on every new paragraph.

An absolute favourite of mine to work in, just down the road from uni and on the way home for many students in Hyde Park/Headingley. Loads of seating, ample plug sockets and a very tasty and Instagramable menu. Love it. It has a sociable vibe but that sort of creates the illusion you're hanging out with people while typing an essay in the corner.


Thursday, 2 August 2018

Big Ass Sighh Sale

Out with the old, in with the new. That's my mantra for this sale - even though there isn't a great deal of new and ready on the horizon just yet... JUST yet.

I went to university to develop my style, which I knew was stagnating. Back in 2014/15 I was making things that sold very well (by the standards of a 18 year old) however I knew I wasn't quite ready and had so much more to develop and learn before I could confidently fly the nest. And now, thank god, I have actually seen a progression in my design style and general industry know how. I've been ITCHING, YEARNING, to graduate and get on with it!

Throughout my 3 years at uni I brought out several new product lines, but eventually had to focus on my degree and let Sighh shred water until the FMP came and went. This means although the well loved items have stuck around, they don't really represent my style any more, and it's time to say goodbye.



Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Repeat Pattern Tutorial

Since launching my very first phone cases I've been questioned for design tips & tricks by fellow aspiring designers (well I guess I better start calling myself an actual professional now!!) who also want to turn their ideas into beautiful products but don't quite know how.

Once you have a repeat pattern, you can paste it into any product template and send it off to print. I've actually always made my existing products' patterns organically (example from the archives), but wondered how on EARTH people could be bothered to do that for wallpaper or hundreds of meters of fabric. I now think back to that time I tried to make 3m of patterned Christmas wrapping paper by eye with copy & paste. Well *cough* it turns out designers do not do that. Queue one of the only days at uni I thought the £50k might be worth it. 

I'm honestly surprised how many college students still say they haven't been introduced to Photoshop & Illustrator (we'll be dealing with Photoshop in this tutorial so I'm afraid you need to at least have your 30 day free trial running!). But even then, I've found there is SO much you can do that you don't even know to ask how to do. You know? That's why I'm happy to start adding to my 'Design Tips' Instagram highlight. I would LOVE to see my favourite illustrators doing the same, because once you've left design school and you no longer have that community to learn from, what can you do but fester in your own techniques?

WELL. You can seek out tutorials like this, and I also have another (very good) recommendation at the end of this post, so scroll on!

Saturday, 14 July 2018


Recently there has been a surge in (public) popularity for true crime - probably stemming from the infamous Serial podcast where millions got hooked on the did he/didn't he story of Adnan Syed. I think that's what started it for me too. These days at any silent interval - be it walking to the post office, cooking dinner or sat down designing - you'll find me listening with two ears or one eye to the story of an unsolved disappearance or a solved and fucking mental murder. Podcasts, books, Youtube & Nextflix - I'm over it all! In this post I'm going to share a few of the Youtube channels that I think are killing it at true crime.

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Leeds Arts University Degree Show 2018

Next month I'll be graduating from Illustration at Leeds Arts University. Omg. I've been to the degree show each year, and wanted to continue the tradition of blog posting my personal highlights. This year I've tried to show the breadth of style on my course, as I know so many younger students may be interested in considering studying at LAU. Once I've managed to gather my thoughts I hope to write a few reflective posts about my three years here, so look out for that, but for now here are some pretty pictures!

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