February 6, 2013

Client Stories: Justin Blair & Company

Filed under: Client Stories — Tags: , , , , — lidia @ 12:55 pm

Client StoriesJustin Blair & Company is a Chicago-based manufacturer and distributor of foot and shoe care products. Their saying is “you use our products almost every day, but don’t know us.” They supply all the national shoe departments (Macy’s, Nordstrom, Nine West, Skechers, Steve Madden, etc.) with their shoe supplies such as shoe polish, foot measuring devices, tongue pads and disposable foot socks. They also market footwear and foot care products to independent pharmacies, DME’s, Orthotic & Prosthetic labs and Podiatrists.

Designs created for Justin Blair & Co.

Justin Bearak is the Chief Operating Officer of this family business supplying foot and shoe care supplies to multiple markets. Justin and I met through a mutual friend and started working together shortly after. We have collaborated on many projects for Justin Blair & Company, including the recent rebranding of their Ralyn shoe care (click to read a blog post about that project).

Justin Bearak of Justin Blair & Company

Tell us a little about your business.

The Bearak family has been servicing the shoe care industry for over 40 years.  Presently, we are the #1 shoe care supply vendor to the industry with high customers such as Macy’s and Nordstrom.  We also have a regional distribution business marketing comfort footwear and foot care products to “medical” style businesses. Recently we entered the health & beauty industry with our NightCare brand of foot beauty products such as our Gel Moisturizing Socks and Intensive Healing Foot Cream (shown above at right).

What do you love best about your job?

Every day is a different day. Because we are small I get to do many different functions that most people don’t get to experience. From designing marketing pieces to human resources, my daily schedule is always unique. Tying this all together is the fact that what I may do today can be almost immediately measured as an impact on the business.

How has your past work experience influenced your current career?

Coming from an engineering/manufacturer career definitely has provided some knowledge that has helped improve and enhance our warehouse activities. I also have learned what large companies do that suppress the ability to get things done, so I strive everyday to ensure that those environments don’t appear at Justin Blair & Company.

What do you like best about working with Lidia Varesco Design?

Lidia is truly a great partner to our business. We have worked on many different product designs and marketing efforts. Her attention to detail makes all the difference.

What is your favorite project that we’ve worked on together?

Our foot comfort line of fitting aids (pictured above at left) is my favorite. Lidia truly understands what we were looking for in the new packaging design. What’s even better is that this product line has experience great success as a result of her designs.

Editor’s note: the Justin Blair NightCare Foot Comfort line was also featured in The Big Book of Packaging, a book featuring examples of successful packaging designs.

Learn more:

Justin Blair & Company

Chicago, Illinois
Facebook: nightcareproducts

October 24, 2012

Client stories: Tribe Wellness

Filed under: Client Stories — Tags: , , , , , , — lidia @ 10:59 am

Tribe Wellness empowers parents to raise healthy kids. With a focus on healthy “real food” nutrition and physical activity that engages the entire family, they provide parents with the information and guidance they need through health education and coaching programs.

Owner Amy Nadelen is a mom, wife, and entrepreneur.  She began Tribe Wellness, Inc. in 2012 to combine her passion for health & wellness, with her education & business experience. She brings almost fifteen years of varied experience in the health care field. She earned her Masters Degree in Health Promotion and Education from the University of Rochester’s School of Nursing. Her career path has taken her from community outreach for the county health department, to working as a Wellness Strategist for a health insurer, where she developed and implemented employee wellness programs. Amy is a Certified Worksite Health Promotion Manager, as well as a Wellcoaches® Certified Wellness Coach.

Amy Nadelen of Tribe Wellness

Amy I met through a mutual friend (coincidentally, also named Amy). I was looking forward to working with Amy to design her branding and marketing materials because I love working with people who are excited about their new business, not to mention my interest in health and wellness. Being a mom myself, we also found we had things in common along the way.

Amy Nadelen of Tribe Wellness

Tell us a little about your business

Tribe Wellness provides health education and health coaching programs to parents to help them raise healthy families.  Our primary focus is on clean eating—eating a real food, unprocessed, balanced diet. We love to help parents convert their “picky eaters” into “healthy eaters”. Our programs include My Tribe Eats Clean, a four week telephonic coaching program that educates parents on healthy, clean eating and helps them to develop a customized real food plan for their family. We also help families get active through our My Fit Family programs, along with our transformational 12-week health enhancement program called Our Healthy Tribe. We have an active Facebook Community, along with a regular blog called “Kids Eat Clean”, and a monthly newsletter “Health Tips for My Tribe”.

What do you love best about your job?

The flexibility and autonomy that it offers. Allows more balance between work life and home life. I can create something that is truly mine in a way that allows me to positively impact other’s lives.

How has your past work experience influenced your current career?

It has helped me to become very goal-oriented, fine-tuned my business expertise, and gave me a great foundation in the arena of health and wellness.

What do you like best about working with Lidia Varesco Design?

Lidia’s creative and immediate understanding of my needs.

What is your favorite project that we’ve worked on together?

My logo. I am ALWAYS getting complimented on it! It is helping me to establish a very strong brand.

What has being a mom taught you about business?

The need to be flexible at all times! Sick kid? Work from home, move your schedule around, get things done on the weekend or after bed time. The “work day” is no longer defined by a standard 9-5 schedule.

Learn more:

Tribe Wellness

Rochester, NY (they serve clients regardless of geographic location)

twitter: @tribewellness
Facebook: TribeWellness

Biz Mama Featured Project blog post:

Tribe Wellness branding and marketing materials

October 8, 2010

Five questions with Tracy Dillard [client stories]

Tracy Dillard of Keonig & Strey RealLiving

Tracy Dillard and I go way back.

I met Tracy, an agent with Koenig & Strey RealLiving, over 10 years ago. We were both working in previous jobs and worked on a design project together (a New Year card). We kept in touch when I started my business and have been working together ever since. Like I did on that first project, I work with Tracy to design a New Year card for her business every year—as well as print and online promotional materials throughout the year.

Tracy is a joy to work with, we share a creative synergy that makes projects flow very naturally. She knows what she likes, but also trusts my design expertise. Not to mention, she is a friend who provides inspiration—and always recommends a great coffee shop! What more can you ask for in a client?

Five Questions with Tracy Dillard

Tell me a little about your business.

Tracy: My eleven-year-old (a year older than yours!) real estate practice is primarily referral-based. I specialize in architecturally interesting and unique residential properties in Chicago and nearby suburbs. These properties may range from architect-owned condos in Mies van der Rohe-designed high-rises — to authentic lofts in converted institutional and commercial buildings — to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie School houses.

What do you love best about your job?

Tracy: ‘Living temporarily’ in architecturally- and historically-singular spaces. The opportunity to mesh my aesthetic sensibility and business acumen. My smart, accomplished and interesting clients.

How have your past work experiences influenced your current career?

Tracy: I’ve worked with architects, artists, art collectors, corporate and foundation leaders, historians, government officials and developers in my past roles — which have included managing a mayoral committee on the arts and economic development in a major city, building public and private support for the arts in an historic community, and programming in a former torpedo factory and a zoo. My experience as a conduit or intermediary between competing interests has come in handy in real estate!

What do you like best about working with Lidia Varesco Design?

Tracy: You and I collaborate — in the best sense of the word. We come up with concepts over great coffee (key to our partnership), talk in shorthand (given our long relationship), review options via a few emails, and keep raising the creative bar on each other.

What is your favorite project that we’ve worked on together?

Tracy: Hmm. Hard to pick one. I think the New Year card with the black-and-white industrial photos you found to illustrate Carl Sandburg’s Chicago. What about you?

I agree…it’s hard to pick a favorite, but I love that one too! That project in particular had some lovely creative synchronicities: I saw the photographer’s work while browsing the Chicago Reader. I thought his style would be perfect for the card we were working on. I met with the photographer (Robert Murphy Photography) and the images he provided were truly perfect for the theme of the card.

New Year Card for Tracy Dillard (2002)

Thank you for chatting with me, Tracy!

As she mentioned, Tracy celebrated her 10-year business anniversary last year. See the anniversary card and other pieces I’ve designed for Tracy here.

To learn more about her business, visit Tracy’s webesite or follow her on Twitter.

Part of our series celebrating our 10 years in business. Read more here.