Renee's Blog

Thoughts on Design, Branding and Architecture in the Wild

redesign review: diet coke

january 12, 2018

Diet Coke is the first major brand to ring in the new year with a fresh look. The big push for this rebranding was the introduction of four new flavored variations of Diet Coke. Coke has been shoehorning their Freestyle machine in anywhere they can, from movie theaters to fast food chains. While I appreciate the quick access to any flavor your little heart can dream up, I’m more of a traditionalist, and I side eye the leftover drips of fluorescent pink falling into my cup of soda.

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Diet Coke


redesign review: chobani

november 29, 2017

Chobani introduced its new brand and packaging yesterday, done in house. I have to say, I’m a bit disappointed. While I love the color palette of rich, earthy tones (who doesn’t love a nice burnt umber?), the font change is really reminiscent of a cookbook I’d find at my grandmother’s house. I thought the old Chobani font was really unique, with its sharp edges and a cute little overhang on the H and B. The new font feels a bit tired, and not nearly as unique.

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art & architecture: intricate india

october 29, 2017

It’s been a year since our trip to India and in looking back through photos, I realize that I’d taken nearly twice as many pictures of the architecture than I did of our everyday adventures while there! I was (and am still) completely fascinated by architecture that outdates most everything on this continent. Having lived all my life in the US, and specifically in Chicago, it’s easy to forget that not all world cities are built with organized structure. Not all buildings are variations on Van der Rohe’s glass cubes.

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a new little cheema

september 13, 2017

In August we welcomed our daughter Sophie Cheema to the world! She was born on her due date weighing 6lb 7oz. Life has been quite the whirlwind since.

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designing for yourself is the hardest job

july 23, 2017

There’s honestly nothing I love more than when someone asks me to help them with a wedding suite, a child’s birthday party invitation, or create printed artwork for their home. I really enjoy the structure of design for a corporate world, but there’s nothing quite like flexing your creative muscle. These “personal” jobs allow me to crack open a wide palette of colors, patterns and textures. Requests are usually very broad and flexible, with a client saying something along the lines of “do whatever you think is best!”

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Door County

a quick getaway to door county

april 16, 2017

We traveled up to Door County, Michigan this weekend for a small celebration of our wedding anniversary. Door County holds a lot of fond memories for me. My family would go up in the summers to horseback ride, eat ice cream, and sail around on catamarans.

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art & architecture: gold blooded

february 23, 2017

Thailand loves gold, there’s no two ways about it. You can’t get very far in Thailand without running into a wat – a Buddhist or Hindu temple. These temples are built with the most intricate architecture I have seen anywhere in my travels.

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art & architecture: game of stones

january 5, 2017

We’ve just returned from our second trip to Ireland to visit family. The first time was during the summer months, and this visit crossed over New Years, but surprisingly the weather was pretty much the same during both visits. Having lived in Chicago all my life, I find something comforting in consistent and predictable weather. Oh, to be able to survive an entire year with just one capsule wardrobe!

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redesign review: taco bell

november 17, 2016

Taco bell released a new logo this week along with a fancy new flagship restaurant (can we call them “restaurants”?) in Las Vegas. I know ragging on Taco Bell’s…er… refined cuisine would probably be the popular thing to do, but let’s be honest – the Crunchwrap Supreme is a masterpiece.

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Taco Bell