Be who you are

I created this print as a gift for my niece, Emilia, who turned thirteen this summer. My sister had recently decorated Emilia’s room, painting over the babyish pink and polka-dots with a teenage-approved duck-egg blue shade.

I decided that an inspirational quotation, prettily designed and set in a cute frame might be nice addition to the transformed room and began searching for the appropriate words of wisdom. I googled hundreds of quotes attributed to film stars, poets, and historical figures, and I kept coming back to the plain and simple quotes of Dr. Seuss:

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You’re on your own, and you know what you know.
And you are the guy who’ll decide where to go.
― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.
Dr. Seuss

Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So. . . get on your way.
 Dr. Seuss

The more that you read, the more things you will know.
The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.
― Dr. Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!

Today you are You, that is truer than true.
There is no one alive who is Youer than You.
― Dr. Seuss, Happy Birthday to You!

They are all so fab! I finally settled on:

Be who you are and say what you feel,
because those who mind don’t matter
and those who matter don’t mind.

This quotation is commonly attributed to Dr. Seuss, but there is some debate whether it actually is one of his or a mash up of American financier Bernard Baruch’s quote regarding how he handled the seating arrangements at his dinner parties: “I never bother about that. Those who matter don’t mind, and those who mind don’t matter.” 

Either way, it works for me and it could be a good mantra for a teenager (and for myself, in my thirties and still learning.)

I illustrated the bird/vines and typeset the copy in Adobe Illustrator.
The grey/blue flecked paper was specially chosen to match the new colour of Emilia’s bedroom, and was purchased from Kate’s Paperie.
The frame was a lucky find at Home GoodsA shabby blue tone wood frame that just so happened to be the perfect size for posting to the United Kingdom.


As a side note, Kate’s Paperie was once the best paper shop chain in New York City selling every imaginable style, color and size of paper by the pound, fantastic textured wrapping and tissue papers, handcrafted filigree decorative papers, japanese sheets printed with pretty florals, and a massive selection of letterpressed cards. Whilst shopping for papers for this project, I was shocked to discover that Kate’s have dramatically scaled down and are now just one tiny store located on Broome Street! What happened, Kate? Such a shame. And they are no longer selling paper by the pound in store, which is the biggest shame of all. On the bright side, because of the downsize I was able to purchase a mystery bag treasure trove of beautiful and unusual odds and ends with plenty of perfect paper options for this print. Thank you, Kate!


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