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  • Michelle Smythe

Where do I begin?

Updated: May 19

Welcome to my first blog!

I’m Michelle, pleased to meet you... I’m a mum, wife, daughter, new dog owner, (get a dog they said, it will be fun, they said!!), baker, runner, reader, (Dean Koontz, Terry Goodkind, James Patterson), Netflix watcher, gymnastic coach and last but certainly not least, a graphic designer.


Hopefully you’re here to find out what idesign is all about. I’ll be blogging about all things graphic design and also adding a few blogs about random subjects I’m passionate about. I’m hoping you find my blogs, interesting, engaging, and sometimes funny!

You may be a designer yourself, you may just be nosey (like me!). Whoever you are, I really hope you enjoy the read, it wont be too heavy with loads of big words, just a little enjoyable 5 minute break from the hustle and bustle of life. You can email me with any questions or comments.

So I thought I’d start my blogging with a brief history of me, from graduation to present day.


My goal of becoming a graphic designer started in secondary school. Already good at art and design, I knew art college was going to be my route to becoming a graphic designer. I loved anything to do with posters, typography, magazine layouts, and adverts.

1992 was my graduation year from Cumbria College of Art and Design, leaving there with a Foundation Course and a HND in Graphic Design.

My first ‘proper job’ as a graphic designer was at The Edinburgh Woollen Mill head office in Langholm, working in the Marketing Department. My main role there was to design all the graphics for the retail shops (over 200 in the UK), including seasonal events like Easter and Christmas graphics. EWM had a large number of visitor centres up and down the country, so the design of their leaflets, press adverts and in-store promotional material was my responsibility. When I first arrived, I had a PC with Pagemaker as the design software... I eventually persuaded the IT department to purchase a Mac and Quark Xpress!

In 1997 I joined Wetheriggs Pottery, just outside Penrith, as graphic designer. Responsibilities included leaflet design, adverts, site signage, shop graphics and event literature. A lovely location to work.

Later in 1997 I moved closer to home with a job in Staveley at Colophon Design, a small design studio offering a photocopying service. Head office was a printing company in Carlisle, this is where my interest in print began.


In 2009 I took the plunge and launched idesign - my new venture as a sole trader. Although a risk at the time as the country was experiencing a recession, it ended up being the right decision. Clients began to get in touch, the work started coming in and I made a good local printing contact.

The local print company was Stramongate Press, all my print was done by Stramongate Press and still is. In 2015 I started work there, part-time. idesign was still going strong with a healthy client base.


I love graphic design. It’s part of everyday life, every where we look and everything we read has been thought out and designed by somebody, somewhere. I am proud to contribute.



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