Goodbye Hitch Design Studio

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Announcing Wild Measure  |  The Fresh Exchange

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First off this is not an April Fool’s joke…I am not a holiday person so I completely forgot what today was so forgive me. This is the real stuff. 

Someone once told me that it is better to begin, than to wait for perfection. Although it is scary to announce something you don’t feel you have completely planned out or finished, it is also super exciting. So say good bye to Hitch and hello to Wild Measure. We are launching today because we cannot wait any longer. With only a landing page, facebook and twitter account. But we have our voice, we have our logo, and we have a list of clients we are deeply in love with. I think that is all you really need to begin.

For the last 4 years I have worked under the name of Hitch Design Studio and when I launched I had the objective to design wedding invites, create logos, and design blogs. I quickly walked away from doing wedding invites as I realized it was not my thing, but continued producing logos, blogs, and web designs. I loved it, but it was not till this last Summer and early Fall that I began to see my passion shift in my work. I know now that the act of doing and jumping in head first was the smartest thing that I did for myself as a business owner. Many people ask me how I knew what to do and the short answer is I didn’t. You make mistakes but the mistakes are what show you the direction to go. Starting a business, beginning a blog, and everything in between helped me understand myself better and what I wanted creatively; and what I was best at creating.

It was in early Fall when Mike and I began talking about working together. I was feeling the shift in my work and Mike was feeling very similarly after leaving the agency he was at. What we did know was we wanted and needed more collaboration, honesty, and creativity. We felt these were things lacking in the branding and design world. After Mike working at an agency and me feeling creatively complacent, we both felt it was time to rethink the business. This all began while leaving for Europe and starting work on Clyde Oak. Like I said last week, Clyde Oak was a huge part of what solidified our new business. It was the catalyst that we needed to make this huge change and shift.

After returning from Europe it was a whirlwind with Texas, Seattle, Christmas, home, visitors, and then Alt Summit. The whole time Mike and I would question, rethink, and ask ourselves what we wanted, why we do this, what makes us crave to stay up late working almost every night. We wrote down words like creative freedom, passion, vision, innovation, story telling, and mold breaking, but nothing seemed to come together the way we felt good about. We also felt that Hitch was working, but neither of us had a deep connection to it.

It was during Alt Summit that the big a-ha happened. Multiple times as I handed my card to people I felt like gosh this isn’t me anymore…I am not coral pink, I am not this kind of whimsy. Instead I am tomboy, I am earthy, I am real, I wear a lot of denim, and I like black and navy and white. I also had multiple people ask me if I owned a wedding business, which is completely understandable and I am BEYOND thankful for the 5 people who asked me that because it made me go “Oh God no” in my head enough to get real about the name Hitch and this new business we were building.

Then it was Stefan Sagmeister…that man….remember me talking about him here? Well he made me realize how blind I was and how much I was over thinking.  How I was caught up in what other’s thought and how unhappy that was making me with my work and business. I realized then and there Hitch had to go. We needed to let go of it all, listen to what has been there all along, and go for it. Yes I cried in that trailer for the Happy Film because for the first time I felt like someone put words to what my heart had been telling me all along. It just so happened that Mike had snuck in the back during Stefan’s talk (shh!) and heard and saw most of what I had and had a similar reaction. It was at that moment that it all changed for both of us.

Announcing Wild Measure | The Fresh Exchange

The next few days after returning home Mike and I were consumed with everything that had come to light. Mike and I talked about all the same things as we did prior to our moment of enlightenment but now we did it with a freedom and openness we had not before. I finally felt like I could really be honest with myself about what makes me passionate, why I want to do this, and the kind of work we wanted to produce. What came out was simple.

1. We are passionate about telling a story and bringing the rawness of a lifestyle brand to life.
2. We are not just designers but we are brand builders and tastemakers
3. We are inspired by passionate entrepreneurs who are willing to take a risk to challenge what exists, define a new taste in the market, and alter their community by doing something good and doing something big.

What it all came down to was that we are not inspired by the time we spend behind the computer but by the time away from it. This means our most inspired moments as creatives have not come from the content we consumed online or from the design community; but from living, traveling, exploring, and experiencing.  We realized we want to build a business that encourages life, change, community, gorgeous design work, and collaboration. This means we want to work with businesses that expect the same and we want to partner with people who do amazing work and expect great things from themselves.

After figuring out the business we wanted to build, we then set out on a mission of creating a new name…many of you have been there, done that, and probably drank as many bottles of wine as we did so I am sure you know the pain and struggle that comes with name creation. I wish I could tell you there was a formula of how we produced a name, but what it came down to was thinking of what we had defined for our business to be and what we defined we are not. We wrote down hundreds of names and bought about 5 URLs I think. Mike was fighting wanting something safe and I was the one saying no let’s do something crazy, let’s think bigger, and he will tell you how crazy and uncomfortable it all was for his agency mentality he was used to. Many times he thought of a name and I would go to bed and wake up and say no that’s not it let’s let go more, let’s dream bigger, crazier, wilder.

It finally happened one night after cooking a good meal and drinking a great bottle of wine. We kept asking ourselves what is the common thread with the clients we have and the clients we want? What we came to was that they all are taking a Wild Measure. They are risking it all to chase a passion no matter what someone else says, and we want to be the ones to come alongside and work to make that passion a reality. We fell in love with these words because we know it what means to do just that. We have risked it all to chase what we believe in and we have been told it won’t work. We have given up certain things to do what matters most to us; bring to life the vision and ideas of the risk takers of this world. Taking a Wild Measure is the act of listening to your heart and going after what you believe in and what you feel called to do. But nothing great is created by just repeating what has been done.

From that evening on we have felt that it all had come together and we saw the culmination of the last 10 years we have been chasing our dreams of being designers and story tellers to reach the right path. We felt it had all finally fallen into place.  We know what we are building is not for everyone, but we what hope is that we will begin to inspire more people to find the guts to take a Wild Measure and to be more passionate as they see the brands we do build and the work we produce. We hope to encourage more collaboration and educate more about what it means to build community, lifestyle, and a brand in a more raw and honest way than we think it has been done before. We have big ideas and dreams and we know we ourselves are taking risks, but we kind of thrive on it.

Over the next few months Wild Measure will begin to unfold more of the ideas that have been living in our souls for years. And hopefully by Summer a new website… We will be rolling out 4 new brands we have been working on since the beginning of the year or longer and we feel for the first time in our creative lives that our work is going where we always dreamed it would. We want to share more on this, the people that inspire us, the choices we make, and how to truly take a wild measure in the next few months. Till then go and follow along on facebook and twitter !

Thanks for the all the love you all give us and for the encouragement. Without your support I sometimes don’t know how Mike and I would be as brave as we are with these types of things. Thank you! Thank you! 100 times thank you!

Hello! I’m Megan Gilger,

A strong believer that nature and the seasons are our greatest teachers. We live on a hill in Leelanau County, Michigan just a stone’s throw from Lake Michigan. This land we are responsible for is where we are focused on building a life around the seasons and intention. We spend our days here building a regenerative model of living and focusing our garden on native plants and intensive polyculture planting styles. My focus is less on self-sufficiency and more on community-sufficiency through how we grow and connect through the seasons.
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