Our Non-responsive Websites

We love the websites we have worked on and maintained through the years.  And we are grateful for all our clients who trust us with their website projects.  But, there’s no more need  for a portfolio to contain non-responsive sites.  So, even although these sites are still working for our clients, we are moving non-responsive sites from our website portfolio to this post for posterity.  So even though these websites are still working for our clients (some for over a decade, wow!), we need our portfolio to show sites which work on mobile devices.

Here they are, likely our final non-responsive website projects:


Built in 2007.  We love that when we visit AT&T Park, we see their work.


Built in 2007.  George and Kerrie are the best cut and color team out there!


We started working with Donna in 2013.  We still love the look of this site.

Homeowner Association Websites

These sites follow the same template so the property management company can offer their HOA clients sites at a lower cost, have site samples to demo as a sales pitch, and simplify the development process.  Each site has a password-protected area for HOA members with an events calendar, group e-mail and messengering, work-order forms, HOA policies, board meeting information and more.

HOA Websites


Made in 2011.


Another ten year old site going strong!


Running since 2012.


Built in 2008.




Artisan Macarons

Thank you, HPD Public Relations, for introducing us to Chef Alex and Artisan Macaron.  It’s been a fun project, and a tasty one because you gave us samples too!

Artisan Macaron needed some brand standards, so we started with new fonts, and finalized colors for print and web.  Moving forward, they have a brand package, so all designers and employees have access to the same branding elements for cohesive marketing collateral.

New Fonts


We made new business cards, special offer folded mini-tent cards, a tri-fold brochure, and two large banners.  My favorite part of this project was combining photos of individual macaron vignettes into collages making them look like they were all photographed together.  The collage for the tent cards is in the header above, and this is the inside of their new tri-fold brochure:

Macaron MenuIs your mouth watering yet?  (The salted caramel is to die for! This from someone tiring of this food trend, but Chef Alex knows how to get that perfect caramel bittersweet taste.  Naturally [wink!], I had to sample many macarons during the design process.)

All brand ingredients came together last weekend at a trade show in Long Beach (under the professional eye of Hope Daly, PR Queen.)  We heard all the new items looked great.

Trade Show Display






Wedding Photography

Wedding photography is not a service we offer, although we’ve enjoyed doing it for friends, like this recent wedding at Slate Creek Goat Farm in El Dorado Hills.  Our album uses photos we both took.

One wedding service we offer – and love to do – is signage for the event.

Signage for a wedding in Scotland:

Signage for Santa Cruz Mountain wedding:

We also have the opportunity to work with clients who offer wedding services.  Please consider them for any upcoming nuptials:

Gleim the Jeweler

Halo Blow Dry Bars (With the help of Hope Patricia Daly Public Relations, we just pulled together this fabulous guide, “All the Days to I Do” to help brides with their timeline.)

Hayes Valley Medical & Esthetics

Palace Cafe Catering (We just launched this beautiful new site for them.)





Custom Food Photography

Love it when I am able to create my own photo to fit with a design.  So much nicer than searching for stock photos and then trying to customize them.

For these food still-life shots, I knew what colours, what layout, and what vibe I wanted for the brand and shot it with food found in the house and garden.

Here’s the final rack card:

The image on the front is a mix of photos taken at events catered by Palace Cafe Catering.  It’s the same image you can see in a magazine ad in this post, “Catering Company Re-Brand.”  Photographers: Michelle Walker Photography and Michael James Buchanan.

And here’s the gift certificate:

Thank you, Palace Cafe Catering, for working with us on your new branding.  It’s been a special experience.






Flyer for my camera club photo exhibit.  Amazing photo by Tim Meadows.

I also did the better version below for online use, but we needed a pdf for print on personal printers and so needed to use far less ink.




My photo collage, Flora and Fauna, below will be included in the exhibit.  (It’s one of my most popular pieces, for sale on mugs, wall art, shower curtains, t-shirts, and much more at Society6.)




Thanks for reading, Rachel




Last year our client, Palace Cafe Catering, decided to close their Sunnyvale cafe and focus entirely on the catering side of their business.  They have begun construction on a huge and fabulous new kitchen with offices in Belmont.  We are looking forward to participating in moving their business forward.  Thank you, Palace, for including us in your exciting new business plans.

Along with this move, they are updating their branding.  They’ve new colors, style, design, and fonts.  New print collateral is in the works and their new web site is almost ready for launch.


blog-palace-logoNEW MAGAZINE ADS



Yesterday, we finalized their new e-mail campaign template and launched their Mardi Gras Menu.  As always, our mouths watered while we work – we know how delicious the food is.


If you would like to try them yourself (we could not recommend them more), call 408.774.6100.

On the web at palacecafe.catering.  If you see a site with a cream background, this is the site we made for them in 2004.  But with the new site just about done, hopefully, you’ll be looking at their new one.









Mail List Management FAQs

The answers below assume you are using Constant Contact or Vertical Response as your service provider. The only other provider we work with is MailChimp, but their list management is a struggle and contrary to the way our clients work, so we avoid them if possible.

If the same e-mail address is on several lists in my account, will that person receive the e-mail campaign more than once?

Short answer, no.

The service provider catches duplications and only sends the campaign to each address once. For example, say you have three lists in your account, Peninsula Clients, Marin Clients, and South Bay Clients. And Maggie Jones with address mj@gmail.com has visited your locations in San Jose and Palo Alto and so is on two lists. If you select all three of your lists to which to send an e-mail, the service provider will catch this and send only one to mj@gmail.com.

How to I get addresses to you to add to my account?

You’ll need to export them from your internal system or database and send to us, usually as an Excel or .csv file attached to an e-mail. All databases, whether MicroSoft Outlook, gmail contacts, your POS system, etc, have a feature to export. Occasionally John visits a client to train them on how to export, but usually a few minutes Googling “export + your database type” gives adequate direction.

We prefer to work with an Excel doc. But we have also received email lists as pdfs, hand-written addresses, and Word docs.

It is important to name the file to send to us uniquely and logically. For example, if the list is all clients, be sure to name it so – “acme-co-all-clients-022117.xls”, or if it’s just your VIP clients, “acme-co-vip-022117”. Including the date is also a good way to track the file in case we need to troubleshoot in the future.

Even more important, if you have more than one list in your account, be sure to communicate clearly to which list we are adding these new addresses.

How do I prevent an unsubscribed person from receiving mail from me?

That’s one of the great things about e-mail service providers. Once a person is marked as unsubscribed, there’s no way that account will send to that address. Even if that same address is added to the account manually or by uploading of a list, it will be blocked.

Can I log onto my account and edit lists myself?

Any time. We don’t own your account, you do. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction to handle your own list management if you like. For example, some of our clients save by manually updating unsubscribes who have reached out to them directly rather than unsubscribing themselves from a campaign.

I have a question regarding mail list management which is not answered here.

E-mail John!


Our client wanted to attract new customers for a high-value treatment they provide, and to help pay off the high-end equipment they just purchased.

If only one method of online advertising to get new clients is possible due to budget constraints, we always recommend Google AdWords campaigns, which reaches the largest audience in a targeted area, such as within a ten mile radius of your location.

We set up the campaign and wrote the ad copy, made a landing page, chose quality keywords and a specific method of keyword matching to maximize their daily budget.

We measure whether the ad is performing well in a few ways. (Please refer to the graphic below for the numbers in parentheses.)

  • Placement on the results page: Ideal positioning is either the first, second or third place on the page (6).
  • “Click Through Rate”: The percentage of time someone clicks on the ad (3) compared to the total number of times the ad is displayed. Above 0.5% is considered very good. It means the keywords we selected are a good match to what the user is seeing in the ad copy and is responding well to it.
  • “Conversions”: This is a big one. There are a number of ways to measure this, but it always refers to a way of tracking when the user takes a desired action. In this case a conversion is counted when the appointment form is submitted (7). The cost per conversion (8), is the total number of conversions divided into the total amount spent. In this case the cost per conversion is currently $89. Considering that the treatment being marketed typically brings in a few thousand dollars in revenue, paying ninety bucks for a likely new high-value client is money well spent.


It should be noted that conversions don’t measure all of the success. Visitors who click on your ad may also call your business for an appointment from your phone number on the landing page (the page we create specifically for the ad offer), and even if they don’t call or make an appointment right away, they have seen your company name and your offer. Repeated exposure to your business is one of the keys to brand layering and attracting new business, so every click to your site furthers your efforts.

We realize most of our clients aren’t seeking such high-value clients where $90/conversion is a reasonable number. This is just one example. A reasonable cost for a new customer or sale depends on your business. And it is not always possible to track just how much new business you are getting from any sales promotion, but a well-executed AdWords campaign should be high on your online marketing agenda.

There are many more important aspects of Google AdWords, enough to fill books, but the info presented here is the very core of how to measure the success of such marketing campaigns.