On: October 23, 2014
    In: News
    Views: 919

    From a PR Daily article by Beki Winchel

    The baristas at your corner Starbucks will soon have permission to sport their tattoos and a few piercings while whipping up your triple-venti-soy-extra foam-latte.

    The company recently announced a new dress code with an internal email. The code allows visible tattoos that aren’t on the face or throat, as long as they don’t include lewd depictions or swear words.

    The dress code also now deems ear piercings (including small gauges), nose studs, black jeans, scarves, and ties acceptable accessories to the iconic green apron. The change came after 25-year-old employee Kristie Williams created a Coworker.org petition asking the Seattle-based coffee behemoth to allow employees to show off their ink.

    “Being able to show off our tattoos lets us connect with our customers in more ways than we already do,” Williams said in the petition.

    With more than 25,000 signatures, the petition couldn’t be ignored. However, Starbucks is not the only company accepting tattoos in the workplace: Petsmart and Peet’s Coffee & Tea have also approved a more chill dress code.

    Will more join the trend?

    Companies have to find a delicate PR balance between not turning off customers while increasing employee retention. This trend is becoming even more relevant as company cultures embrace individuality and creativity; younger employees may decide to work at startups and other organizations where they don’t have to hide bodily embellishments.

    Attitudes seem to be changing, as well: A recent poll conducted by Entrepreneur reported that 78 percent of respondents thought tattoos should either be allowed in the workplace or addressed on a case-by-case basis.

    It’s not just about individual attitudes and customer preferences: There are practical problems that come with covering tattoos that execs should consider.

    For example, Starbucks employee Sara Frandsen told The Huffington Post covering up the ink “looks really unappetizing when you’re helping a customer and your arms are covered in milk, but you can’t roll up your sleeves, because, heaven forbid, they see your tattoos.”

    The move to allow visible tattoos hasn’t made Starbucks’ dress code completely lax. The company still doesn’t allow unnatural hair color, additional facial piercings, or fingernail polish (although the latter is due to the risk that it may chip off into food or beverages). However, it is a sign of change, one that will continue to affect businesses.

    One thing’s for sure: Starbucks’ move is making a lot of caffeinated hipsters very happy.

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  • More Reasons to Delete Comic Sans From Your Fonts Favorite List

    On: October 15, 2014
    In: News
    Views: 991

    From an article by Kate Harrison, a Forbes.com contributor

    The Best Fonts and Spellings for the Environment

    Selecting a font for branding, accessibility, and recognition has always been more of an art than a science.  However, some fonts are specific to certain uses: graduate students are encouraged to use 12 point Times or Times New Roman, many Mac lovers prefer Cambria, a font specially designed for easy on-screen reading, and most email programs default to Arial, Helvetica, or Gill Sans.

    A new infographic from Pixartprinting.co.uk offers some interesting insights into both the economic and environmental costs of font and word choice.

    “We felt that our decades of experience in the printing industry put us in a unique position to answer some of the quirkier ‘what-ifs’ that we encounter every day. We wanted to provide a fun exploration of some hypothetical printing questions, whilst also demonstrating that even trivial printing choices can have surprisingly far-reaching environmental consequences,” explained Olivia Wiltshire, an executive at BuiltVisible.

    “The project is intended as a fun yet thought-provoking experiment, to demonstrate that even small printing decisions impact many areas. Additionally, we were more than happy to give people another reason to avoid Comic Sans!” she added.

    So what does the infographic show? You can see the full version here, but the most interesting highlights are as follows:

    • Printer ink costs $4,285 per liter — almost three times more than expensive perfumes like Chanel No. 5.
    • Garamond and Times New Roman are the most efficient fonts. Comic Sans and Helvetica are the least — they use almost 1/3 more ink to print.
    •  If everyone switched to the inefficient and unfortunate Comic Sans, it would cost an additional $87.3 million per year for printing, and would be the print equivalent of 1.5 million copies of a tome the size of the first book of the Game of Thrones series!

    The infographic also explores British vs. American spellings of words. If we all selected the shorter spellings of words in general use, they argue, we could cut our printed pages, and the cost to print them, significantly. For example, if we all used color instead of colour, we can save 145 trees a year; labor instead of labour would save 305.

    This infographic makes you think, and is another great example of how small everyday choices can add up, both in terms of cost and environmental impact.

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  • From a Toddler’s Doodle to a Mother’s Work of Art

    On: October 2, 2014
    In: Design
    Views: 1082


    As artists, many of us were always doodling or drawing as kids. We’d create our works of art and then stump our parents as they tried to make out what it was we drew. Artist Ruth Oosterman has no problem seeing a masterpiece in her 2-year-old daughter’s work.

    Her daughter, Eve, workes in black ink pen and creates sketches that Ruth then uses as the foundation for her watercolor paintings. The transformations are amazing as mother and daughter work together.


    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40IffBm-GF4&w=420&h=315] Toddler02 Toddler03 Toddler05

    Kristen Oaxaca, Graphic Designer

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