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a panel all about licensing with mixbook!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / Turning Influence into Commerce // How to Licences your Creative Work /// via Oh Joy!

Two weeks ago here in Los Angeles, I was part of a panel that our friends at Mixbook put together that was all about licensing. I am a big fan of licensing as a way to get your art and design work out in the world. The panel was a great mix of perspectives on the licensing process and the brand/client relationship.

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

The panel included a range of experts including Leslie Albertson from Mixbook representing the brand making the products (licensee), Kim Muroff from Hightide Brands representing licensing agents, Jen Campbell from Green Wedding Shoes representing a brand who is licensing their art/design/name (licensor), Joy Cho (that’s me!) representing a brand who is licensing their art/design/name (licensor), and Tara Nearents from Rad & Happy moderating the panel who also has some experience in licensing.

Check out this fun recap video above to see all the amazing details that went into the gorgeous and informative event...

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook // Drink by Sip Matcha /// via Oh Joy!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook // You Grow, Girl goodie bag /// via Oh Joy!

So many of you wanted to be there but couldn’t because it was in L.A., so I wanted to share with you the big three take-aways we learned from all the talented and experienced ladies on the panel that you can apply if you’re wanting to start licensing your work!

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

1) Do Your Research on Potential Partners! It can be so tempting when you’re first starting out to want to see your designs at your favorite stores and on your favorite brands. And it can be also be tempting if you’ve been in the game for a while to take on a licensing partner simply because they showed interest. But avoid the temptation of thinking that every brand would be a good licensing partner for you...and DO YOUR RESEARCH first!

Has the brand you love done licensing deals before or are they new to that type of business? Does the brand’s audience and your audience or aesthetic overlap? (For example, if your style tends to do well for kids' items, then a collaboration with a high end fashion brand may not be the best fit.) Is the brand one you really believe in? Once you’ve done your research and found a list of brands you’d love to work with that seem to fit you and your art, it’s time to start pitching...

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

2) Send A Pitch...without Giving Away All Your Artwork! The first step to securing a licensing deal is to send an email (or letter) with a brand deck about you and your work. This is called a pitch. Your email should be short, sweet, and to the point. Your deck (which can be in the form of a PDF) should be visual, nicely designed, and include information about:

- You
- Your company
- Your style/aesthetic
- Your audience (if you have one)
- Any awards or recognition for your work
- Examples of your part work and mood boards
- What YOU can bring to them that is DIFFERENT than what they already have

The panelists all agreed this last part was the secret ingredient to really catch a brand’s attention. Yes, you want to have your stationery at Anthropologie. But what sets you apart from everyone else that wants the same thing? How are you different from artists a brand already carries? Prove in your deck and in your email that you are that special something they’ve been missing. But a word of CAUTION: don’t give away your designs in your deck. Share mood boards, examples of past campaigns, and general ideas of how you want to work together. But don’t send over final realized designs without a contract...

A Pannel All About Licensing with Mixbook / via Oh Joy!

3) Contracts Contracts Contracts! If it was said once, it was said one hundred times on the panel...make sure you have a contract. And have a good, thorough contract. As in, work with an agent or attorney and make sure you have all the terms listed out. This spans literally every part of your agreements. Everyone knows (we hope) to put in your rate and how many designs you are submitting, but it should also including everything else: from delivery dates of designs, to rounds of edits, from seeing final samples before production to how many Instagram posts you’re expected to put up.

“Contract” can seem like a bad word, or like something that shouldn’t be hard or take work if you really trust each other (and you absolutely should trust your licensing partner). But EVERYONE on the panel discussion agreed that it’s absolutely crucial to have talked through every single thing before you get started. A good contract should have both sides winning and getting what they want. And usually a bad contract simply forgets or omits something that should have been discussed as both sides had different assumptions. So do the work up front, get a good contract signed, and feel completely comfortable knowing you’re protected.

The event was so good and everyone learned a lot. Mixbook did an incredible job putting it on, and because it was so well received, they’re thinking about another one in 2020, so stay tuned!

P.S. Speaking of licensing deals, have you seen our Mixbook collection?  Check out our photo books, trading cards, and yearbook. And, stay tuned here for a new collection coming soon...

(Event planning by Bonjour Fete and But First Party; Images by Mary Costa; Film by Amanda Benson; Drinks by Sip Matcha; Food by Olive and Thyme; Goodie Bags from Mixbook and Erin Condren.) 

from print to nursery...

From Print To Nursery... / via Oh Joy!

Kids' rooms are one of our favorite spaces to reinvent. We took inspiration from a floral print and built an entire nursery around it...take a look!


oh joy builds a house: our master bedroom!

oh joy builds a house: our master bedroom!

We all spend A LOT of time in our bedrooms (sleeping, relaxing, getting ready for the day), so the bedroom for me needs to be peaceful space that still brings joy and surprise into it. Blues and greens have always been my go-to colors of choice when it comes to a relaxing space—maybe it's the tie to the ocean or nature? But I find those shades to always feel just right. When working with Cleo and her team at Project M+ on our interiors, I wanted to create that dreamy vibe but also have a playful element as well.

oh joy builds a house: our master bedroom! / a cool, calm, and playful master bedroom

The base for the bedroom started with a textural and shimmery Calico wallpaper to add color and sheen to the space. It felt like it needed to sparkle just a little bit! From there, we added an accent of silver paint with warm, light woods, whites, and blues and mustard to accent those base colors.

1. Cedar & Moss side lamps, 2. Calico wallpaper in vapor, 3. Portola Royal Satin paint in Arrow, 4.  Lulu & Georgia nightstands, 5. Blu Dot Credenza from Wayfair, 6. Cedar and Moss Terra Surface pendant, 7. Sarah Sherman Samuel for Lulu & Georgia rug, 8. Lulu & Georgia velvet lumbar pillow.  

oh joy builds a house: our master bedroom! / inspiration

When thinking about the playful element, I'm always inspired by boutique hotels and restaurants because they tend to add in details you never see in someone's home. I wanted something in this space that felt fun but also could endure over time and still work when we want to change up our bedding or add new colors to the space in the future. I'm constantly inspired by India Mahdavi's retail design work and loved these seats from a couple of her retail projects.

oh joy builds a house: our master bedroom!

So, we created this scalloped headboard behind the bed that serves as the focal point of the room. I love the roundness of it and how it adds a soft edge to all the other straight-sided furniture pieces in the space. BUT, I don't know if I want to keep the head board all in one color or do a mix of colors? Here are a few options I love from single color, to dual color, to ombre...what do YOU think?

P.S. You can see all past posts about my home build right here!

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. Renderings by Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My jumpsuit is Ace & Jig*, boots are Red Wing Heritage*.} 

a jewelry storage solution...

a jewelry storage solution / oh joy!

We're back with another clever way to store your jewelry! This is one of my favorites because it's practical, colorful, and will help keep jewelry from tangling up. It's also a great way to take your jewelry on the go while traveling. Here's how to make it...


oh joy! wears jewel tones...

oh joy! wears jewel tones... / via oh joy!

I love September for its cooler, crisp weather! Transitioning between summer to fall is one of my favorites to dress for because I can wear flowy skirts, open toed shoes, AND layer cozy sweaters and cardigans. So here are three of my favorite outfits for those in-between days all in this month's Color Adventures theme...jewel tones! In case you aren't familiar, jewel tones are richly saturated hues named for gems, like sapphire blue, ruby red, amethyst purple, citrine yellow, and emerald green. Come check it out...


coming soon: oh joy! for apolis petite market bag

Coming Soon: Oh Joy! for Apolis Petite Market Bag / via Oh Joy!

Mark your calendars! We're partnering with our friends at Apolis to release their highly anticipated Customizable Petite Market Bag in Black! From October 8th through 15th ONLY, you’ll be able to get the words or phrase of your choice printed on this special, limited-edition Oh Joy! market bag —and each tote will help Baby2Baby provide a day’s worth of diapers to children in need. How amazing is that? See all the details are in this fun video below...


the perfect knotted headband diy...

the perfect knotted headband diy... / via oh joy!

We're ready for cooler weather, big chunky sweaters, and lots of fun fall accessories! So today, we're showing you how to make one of our favorite trends for the new season...sophisticated knotted headbands! They add a pop of color to any outfit, can be dressed up or down, and are surprisingly super easy to make. If you love them, too, but don't want to spent a ton of money on hair accessories, here's how to make your very own...



Nick Slater NYC

It's hard to believe that it's been 18 years. 18 years since life changed forever. I've talked about my experience on September 11, 2001 in past blog posts (here and here)...and no matter how much time passes, that day is still so vivid in my memory.


a very blue office...

A Very Blue Office... / via Oh Joy!

We're feeling blue in the best way possible! This bright office is the perfect spot to ease into the work week and transition into fall. If blue is your color, too, here are some style tips on how to bring your own oasis to life...


color adventures: jewel tones for the home...

Jewel Toned Home Decor

Even though it's still HOT, HOT, HOT here in Los Angeles, we're excited to cozy up and head into fall soon! So, we're kicking this month's Color Adventures off with a few of our favorite items for the home all in jewel tones!