December 23, 2011


As you know from all the fawning I do here, we love our clients. We are so fortunate to work with friends—or people who will soon become our friends—because really, what’s better than creating with the additional mutual respect and radical trust that friendship inherently brings to the plate? But my favorite collaborative project is Viewers Like You’s annual holiday cards. My favorite collaborator in life—but more appropriately for the purpose of this post, in the studio—is David Shields. The process of getting to a singular theme, and marrying it to a holiday tradition, country and recipe, is our most favorite commission.

And sometimes frustration.

The sheer amount of dead ends we encounter trying to connect all those dots is…well, endless. That, too, is what makes the project so satisfying.

A portfolio of past years’ cards can be seen here.

As you can imagine, after ten years of creating Holiday Cards, the studio has amassed its fair share of print overage. Stacks of 50 or so extras per run sit in a drawer, awaiting next year’s discards. We’ve had high falutin’ ideas about what to do with the detritus at some future date in time—most notably, to bind them together and create a book—but this year we figured it out!

Leftovers are the uneaten edible remains of a meal after the meal is over. Some leftover food can be eaten cold from the refrigerator, while others may be reheated, or mixed with additional ingredients and recooked to make a new dish.

New dishes made from leftovers are quite common around the world, but our favorite leftover concoction is simply frying an egg and putting it atop pretty much anything. We cannot think of what isn’t good with an egg on top. Can you?

Creating a hash out of Christmas dinner (ham or turkey, potato and some fresh herbs) or reheating latkes are two solid seasonal foundations for a fried egg. On January 2nd, we warm up some Hoppin’ John and sauteed greens then don an egg as the final flourish. Right?! But the genius of the fried egg topper is that you can absolutely improvise, just go all out for it, and it’s pretty much fail-safe.

Our bright idea for this year’s card, a bit less care-free.

1. We tested a sampling of existing cards to see if the ink would hold, and to determine coverage/legibility. Check, check/check. But we thought that silk screening the white base would be more successful.


2. Screens were burned for the egg white portion. Front and back of cards were silk screened, white.

3. Using a CNC router, we cut into a ¾″ MDF board to create the egg yolk shape. Then brought it up to “type high” to print on the press, yellow. (Check out some hot video action hereYou might want to put your safety goggles on and ear plugs in…meaning: turn the volume down).

4. A polymer plate was burned for our holiday message: “put an egg on it”. We over-printed this on the white, on the back side, in black.

5. Hello corn starch! The cards took an exorbitant amount of time to dry due to unseasonable, but much needed rainfall… thus their late arrival. But isn’t that apropos? The cards arrived to their recipients AFTER the Christmas holiday.


Improvise. Imagine. Invent. Remnant. Remainder… what remains.

The drawer full of extra holiday cards. A refrigerator full off meals to be enjoyed again. It’s all grist for the mill.

Abundant holiday greetings for the copious holidays celebrated — Jennifer & David.


||||||  The Perfect Spanish Fried Egg (Huevos Fritos) ||||||  

1. Heat about 1/4 inch of olive oil in a very small, heavy skillet. Heat over medium-high heat until very hot; it should just be beginning to smoke.

2. Crack an egg into a cup or mug.

3. When the oil is hot enough, carefully slip the egg into the oil and immediately turn the heat down to medium-low.

4. Spoon the hot oil over the egg as it cooks.

5. Cook for no more than a minute and a half then take the pan off the heat and remove the egg with a slotted spoon.

6. Sprinkle with sea salt and fresh pepper and enjoy over ___________ immediately!


::  If you liked this post, your next move would be to explore here. And if you loved this post… fess up! What’s your favorite leftover meal?  ::  



Image: Diego Velázquez’s “Vieja Friendo Huevos” (Old Woman Frying Eggs), 1618