Category Archives: Reviews

I love this pen

It’s a J Herbin metal pen. It’s a rollerball but it takes any standard ink cartridge. I use it with the J Herbin ink cartridges as they come in loads of different colours and packaged in cute little tins. It’s taken me years to find my ideal pen. I have small hands so I need… Read more

Psychology for designers

This week I went all out and bought all the currently-released Five Simple Steps Pocket Guide digital books. I say “went all out”, they’re an absolute bargain at £6 for a collection of four, or £2 per book. Reading this book thoroughly, following the links in the text, took me about an hour. I’m a… Read more

Why I love Unfinished Business

I know, this is a funny topic on which to base a blog post but I love the Unfinished Business podcast, and I’d like to elaborate why in something more than a few fawning tweets. Business, but not suits Business doesn’t feel like the right word to describe what I do. It’s a hobby that… Read more

SMACSS – Scalable and Modular Architecture for CSS

I bought Jonathan Snook’s Scalable and Modular Architecture for CSS five months ago and, embarrassingly, I’ve only just read it. As a “flexible guide to developing sites small and large”, it’s fantastic. Last month I was lucky enough to see Jonathan speak about State-Based Design (a concept which he covers in SMACSS) at the FromTheFront conference… Read more

A Practical Guide to Designing with Data

Another ubelly post from me, this time a review. Much like my other reviews of books on this blog, just in another location! A Practical Guide to Designing with Data

Six months of the Fitbit (and the new Fitbit Aria)

Skip to the main review! The backstory I’m a fit and healthy person. Probably not your typical work-from-home desk-based screen-faced designer. I go to the gym 4 to 6 times a week, walk my dog every day, I eat fairly healthily and I’m a good weight. I wasn’t always though. I’m not pretending I was… Read more

Mobile First

Continuing on with my chapter-a-day, last week I finished reading the brilliant Mobile First by Luke Wroblewski. Mobile design and development has gained momentum over the last few years; with responsive design and designers regularly going giddy over iPhone app UIs, it’s surprising how little the industry discusses the design issues. We seem to prefer to… Read more

Designing For Emotion

I bought Designing For Emotion as part of the A Book Apart deal, alongside Mobile First. After listening to Jeffery Zeldman talking about the release of these books with Dan Benjamin on The Big Web Show, and hearing how they were perfect books to read before a redesign (my site is in a constant state… Read more

A Practical Guide to Designing the invisible

After reading Mark Boulton’s A Practical Guide to Designing For The Web and Andy Clarke’s Hardboiled Web Design, I was keen to read another Five Simple Steps’ design book. Robert Mills’ A Practical Guide to Designing the invisible definitely didn’t disappoint. It took me a few reads to start getting into it. I haven’t been dedicating… Read more

Responsive Web Design

I had ordered Responsive Web Design by Ethan Marcotte as soon as it came out, but being at Ampersand conference, and hearing so many people recommend it, really spurred me to take a few hours out to get on and read it. Responsive web design is a term summarising design that has a flexibility allowing it… Read more

Future Of Web Design 2011 – The Review

Another great event from Carsonified, I really enjoyed Future Of Web Design this year. The Cost I was actually really lucky to get a ticket. I seriously couldn’t afford the £714 2-day conference pass, even at the super early bird rate (that was about £200 less, I can’t remember exactly.) My lovely friend Scott Coello… Read more

Notebooks and Getting Over Moleskine

I’m a notebook and sketchbook-aholic. Actually I’m addicted to stationery of any kind. Pens, pencils, post-it notes. It’s incredibly easy to convince myself I need these items when I mostly don’t. Notebooks and sketchbooks (and maybe some nice accompanying pens), however, are an absolutely vital part of my working life. Why bother with physical notebooks?… Read more

Hardboiled Web Design and Transcending CSS

My history with Transcending CSS In 2006/early 2007 I read this amazing book. I was half way through my first year studying Digital Design, and I’d only been experimenting with standards-based web design for about six months after reading Web Standards Solutions. I was already well on my way to being a standards fiend, but… Read more

How the iPad is saving my sanity

Fan girl I’ve had an iPad since the day it was released in the UK. I bought it because I’m a fan girl. I admit it. I could pretend that I wanted it to take to conferences or use for testing or when I didn’t need a laptop when I went to visit clients. In… Read more

HTML5 For Web Designers

Even though the specification for HTML5 isn’t yet complete, those of us who are a bit eager to get into it now have the perfect book to get us started. HTML5 For Web Designers by Jeremy Keith is the first offering from A Book Apart. It’s a very easy read, not an endless reference, which… Read more

Autodesk SketchBook Pro

I’ve always been a kind-of arty person. I took Art at school, did an Art Foundation and a Graphics degree. I totally loved art when I was small, but as I’ve got older, and more technology and web-obsessed, a lot of the old media went a bit out of the window. Though I was still… Read more

Zootool — The best and most beautiful tool for storing inspiration

Since I started using Zootool in March I’ve been totally addicted. I’d been looking for a scrapbook-style app, to stash all the inspiration I find, for a while. On cool sites like Dribbble, Drawar, FFFFound and all over the web, I’m always finding pretty things I’d like to keep and use when I’m designing later… Read more