Site Design

March 15, 2007

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As many of you have been so kind as to write in with compliments about the Q.H. website, I’d like to take a moment to share credit where it is due and direct your attention to the people who created this little outpost on the web.

The design for the site can be attributed to two talented gentlemen in Boston (There must be something in the water.) who, it must be said, probably never imagined they would find themselves playing with toys at this point in their lives.

The technical brain of this operation is Tom Filepp of Paper, Scissors and Glue. As a boy, he started “putting together computers from spare parts before they had any cool cachet.” Years later, he is a graphic and website designer of wide-ranging abilities, as well as a musician with mastery over an intimidating array of instruments. He took this techno-phobe in hand and patiently walked me through every step of the design process, never forgetting that the ultimate goal was to create a site with a pared-down look and streamlined shopping experience. He helped me make the artisan-crafted toys we sell the stars of the show – not fussy, cluttered graphics – and on a limited budget, too.

Tom will be helping me update the site with some new features as time and budget allow, and is in the process of re-designing his website to showcase more of his current projects. In the meantime, you can contact him at this link. If you do, you will be in good hands.

As for the look of the site, I have artist Robb Ogle to thank for sharing his expertise and eclectic design sensibilities. Robb is responsible for illustration and lettering. He has been obsessed with type for some time now and fills his hours working for the renowned Font Bureau in Boston and juggling his own projects. He has a marvelous ability to translate cryptic stylistic directives into magical images, and didn’t bat an eyelash when I did things like this:

1. sent him a copy of a Victorian watercolor of a little girl dressed in a white nightgown with a giant teddy bear tossed over her shoulder and said, “Please make this girl into a logo for the shop. Tone down the nostalgia and make her into a more modern figure with stronger, graphic lines.”

2. told him how much I loved the lettering for the logo but then asked him to “make the “Q” less elongated. It’s a bit angular, cerebral and art-nouveau-ish right now. Could you make it fatter…a little more warm and fuzzy?”

And, of course, he did. What a guy. Robb, too, is building a site of his own, but a sampling of his work and contact information can be found on his wittily named Houndofthe.com home page. (Yes, he’s an Arthur Conan Doyle fan.)

Thanks, guys!

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